Lead Into Horses
Simple farmers in a proud rural area in Taldor, Akiros’s parents wanted nothing more for him than life as a protector of the town—as a paladin of Erastil, no less. Every moment of Akiros’s life was spent in preparation for his acceptance into the order, yet not one month after he achieved his parents’ dream and became a paladin, Akiros fell in love with the married daughter of one of his hometown’s wealthier merchants, a woman named Rosilla. The affair ended all too soon when Rosilla’s husband found out what she’d been up to and threatened to divorce her. The thought of losing the life of luxury was too much, and she told her husband that Akiros had raped her. Furious, he took Rosilla to the temple of Erastil to confront her attacker. The young paladin was flabbergasted, but when Rosilla took things too far by spitting on him and publicly denouncing him as a rapist, a heretofore unknown rage woke in Akiros’s heart. All of his repressed frustrations and anger poured out in one powerful blow, and with that blow he snuffed out Rosilla’s life. As she crumpled to the floor, Akiros knew his life had been snuffed out as well. He turned on Rosilla’s dumbfounded husband and killed him as well, and with the temple guards still in shock, he fled the city. He barely made it out of Taldor, stowing away on a merchant ship bound for Mendev. Akiros switched ships dozens of times as he fled north, losing himself in the River Kingdoms, living as a bandit, a vagabond, and a criminal, and growing to enjoy his newfound rages.
Eventually, his wanderings took him into the Stolen Lands—he’d heard of the Stag Lord, and still unsure of where he needed to be in life, he sought this new liege out. Akiros has been with the Stag Lord’s bandits for only a few months, but already his commanding presence has earned the Stag Lord’s favor—Akiros was considered to be the second-in-command of the fort, much to Dovan’s displeasure. Ironically, Akiros has come to the realization that life as a bandit is even more hollow than life as a paladin of Erastil, and when the PCs make their attack on the fort, he sees in them an opportunity for a new life and, perhaps, redemption.