Crar Crisev, dwarven leather-worker extraordinaire, left his home of Dalurun in the Winged Mountains when he was a young man, choosing his departure vector with the spin of a top and traveling until his money ran out. Winding up in the community of Raven's Cross, he set to work plying his trade during the day, eventually taking over the local Tatters' after the death of the Master, and enjoying himself heartily at The Silver Hound Tavern at night.
Becoming a regular at The Silver Hound Tavern, Crar got to know, fell for, courted and eventually married the attractive elven barmaid, Aenyssira Graylock (Named for the streak of silver hair in her otherwise black mane).
17 years ago, Tevyn was born (3 months after Crar and Aenyssira's wedding). 5 siblings followed after that: dwarven brother Kos 16; elven fraternal twins, sister Adissola and brother Ilaphael, both 13; dwarven sister Tyth 10; and dwarven brother Caz 6.
Crar and Aenyssira moved to the edge of town from separate lodgings adjoining the local Tanner's and above The Silver Hound Tavern just after Aenyssira became pregnant with Kos. The front door faced the town, but the back door faced the wilderness.
Crar was rarely at home, spending most of his time at work, so Aenyssira raised the children predominately in the Elven tradition; although Crar made sure that all his kids could survive on the streets, if necessary.
Although Raven's Cross was not a backwater community and considered itself very cosmopolitan; there were still those who did not like that a Dwarf had found love with and married an Elf. Tevyn learned early on that one needed a thick skin and a quiet tongue to avoid trouble, causing him to become quiet and reserved in general and especially so in new groups of people.
Once his siblings began joining the picture, Tevyn refused to allow them to stand alone when faced with bullies, sneers or jibes. He would never allow his siblings to be picked on in his presence, inserting himself between them and danger whenever possible - a habit that would stand him in good stead in the trials to come.
Tevyn and Kos grew up barely aware of the bare year between their births and were inseparable. Their relationship developed in a strange balance of competition and teamwork - they would play any and all sports with the other children of the community for no reason than to compete, perhaps to prove their detractors wrong. In one-on-one sports, if one brother competed the other would be right behind. Tevyn, being slightly older, won the lion's share of their tests against each other - but Kos always gave as good as he got, and could often defeat his older brother by thinking up a new strategy or, occasionally, through pure blind luck. But when it came to team sports, they always worked together without conflict and were known to be a formidable team in any activity they were proficient in - a skill that would also prove useful soon.
Knowing his dad was busy with work and his mother had her hands full raising his siblings, Tevyn did what he could to help out around the house. Among other tasks, Tevyn always made sure that Aenyssira's cooking knives and the wood-chopping axe were well sharpened.
When Tevyn was nine, a band of Gnoll bandits attacked the city. Crar and Aenyssira quickly sequestered the family in the root cellar. Crar pulled out an old sword that he had used during his wanderings and a fresh suit of leather armor he was putting the finishing touches on for a client.
Crar took up his position at the entrance to the cellar, while Aenyssira knocked an arrow to the family's hunting bow with the other children behind her. Tevyn and Kos stepped in front of their mother, revealing the weapons they had secreted on their rush from the house to the cellar - Tevyn with the chopping axe and Kos with his mother's cleaver and carving knife.
Aenyssira began to tell the boys to remain behind her, but Crar nodded and ordered the brothers to take up a defensive position behind him to either side. Aenyssira's eyes began to tear, but as the first bangs on the door woke two year old Tyth she shook her head and regained her aim as the twins tried to shush their baby sister.
The door did not hold long, and soon Crar was slicing through the bandits who could only enter one at a time. Aenyssira held her fire, shooting only when a marksman tried to gain line of sight on her husband, while Tevyn and Kos did what they could to help Crar defeat those foolhardy enough to enter.
Soon, the city guard closed in on the back of the attacking Gnolls and the family emerged, shaken, but alive. Tevyn resolved that day that he would die before allowing harm to come to his family and began to train at any skill he thought would help him gain the power to protect those he cared for.
On his wanderings about town and through the wilderness, Tevyn would often come across hurt or lost animals. Unable to ignore them, he would bring them home and feed them until he was able to return them to the wild, find their owners, place them in new homes, or keep them as his own pets until they passed on. When he had to leave Raven's Cross, he had to leave his menagerie of 7 cats, 3 dogs, 2 wild hens, a forest lion cub and a lizard behind.
When he learned that he and his siblings would be leaving with Justin Firlog, he took up the mantle of head of the household when it came to his family as the eldest brother. Kos is his right hand man and though they often disagree, they never fail to eventually find a way to work together.
Often times, their disagreements come down to their childhood pastime of wrestling/brawling to determine a victor. Though Tevyn does loose occasionally, he is still often able to convince his brother after the fact with a cool head and persuasive words.
Although Caz, and Tyth to a lesser extent, are still too young to be able to rationalize their group's having to leave Crar and Aenyssira, the twins are an invaluable link between the older brothers and the youngest siblings in keeping the family together and cared for.
Noticing Tevyn's protective attitude toward his siblings, Justin decided to test the boy. One night, he had Tevyn stand first watch. Justin slept lightly, thinking he would have to wake himself up, but was surprised when Tevyn shook his foot gently when it came time to change watches. The night passed uneventfully and Justin woke Tevyn up early the next morning halfway to the general wake-up. Impressed again at Tevyn's ability to come aware on short sleep and stay awake through a late watch, Justin soon drafted the boy into assisting with the defense of their little band of refugees.
When Tevyn turned 13, he went in to town to find a job. Having small experience sharpening edged objects, he requested a position at the local smithy. He worked hard, but was unable to advance far beyond the ability he had developed in sharpening his family's tools. Unwilling to admit defeat, Tevyn never told his siblings that the Smith had let him go, but still went into town every day to find odd jobs.
During one of his wanderings, Tevyn came across an Adventuring Goods vendor who was being misdirected by an adult while an urchin lifted things behind the vendor's back. Tevyn intervened on the behalf of the vendor, lifting the urchin up by the collar and attracting the vendor's attention. The adult dropped the item he was pretending to be interested in and ran, while the urchin kicked Tevyn in the shin and made good his own escape. Breaking even, and grateful for Tevyn's assistance, the vendor gifted the young dwarf a Climber's Kit. Thanking the vendor and minimizing his action, Tevyn left to return home with his prize - not noticing the figure watching him from the shadows.