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The Final Crusade


By Tomos JacksonPublished 2 years ago Updated 2 years ago 6 min read


This is a backstory for a character in a TTRPG game I'm playing. Apart from the character's themselves the world is not my creation. The Final Crusade is the name of the RPG and can be found on the Roll20 website.

Kaine is the bastard of a Gorgothan knight. The shameful circumstances of his birth make him a painful reminder to both his father Justin and his mother Margaret of the House of Agarathi. His two elder brothers, Mainar and Daerwin both mistreat him as a pariah and a shame on the family name, using every opportunity to distance themselves and their family from him.

With this painful background Kaine took to spending as many hours as he could away from the family estate, wandering the streets of nearby towns and villages or even venturing into the far less safe confines of the forests and woods. It was during one of these excursions that Kaine met with a certain young woman called Theodora.

The first he saw of her she was winding her way through the crowds and everyone she spoke to seemed to find her charming and dazzling giving her whatever she asked for. Curious Kaine stopped to watch a little longer, admiring her grace and beauty and above all, the way people seemed to pay attention to her and seek to make her happy.

Suddenly one of the men she speaks launches to his feet in a rage grabbing for her "Oi! Whatchya tryin on me young missy? I felt that!" grabbing for her she dodges nimbly away and makes a break for it, the man crying behind her "she's using demon magic! She's a witch! Get her! Get her!"

Hearing this a number of people in the crowd began moving to intercept her forcing her to angle into Kaine's direction. Barely knowing what he was doing or why Kaine waved at the woman "Hey! This way!" and dashed off to a side street he knew well, the woman following close behind. Quickly losing themselves in the narrow winding streets they stopped to catch their breath.

Having recovered mostly the woman spoke "Thank you young man. I was sure to be caught were it not for you. What is your name if I may ask?"

"Kaine" was all he said between breaths. "Yours?"

"I am Theodora, and it seems I am in your debt for saving my life. Tell me, what can I do to repay you?"

"Can you teach me to do what you do?" Kaine said immediately.

Theodora cocked an eyebrow and looked at Kaine carefully. "What is that exactly?"

"Make people like you. Make them want to help you to be happy. Can you show me how to do that?"

"And why would you need that? You seem like a good enough boy to me."

"My family hates me. They hate me because of how my father got me."

"I see." Theodora said thoughtfully. "Who are your family may I ask?"

Kaine grimaced a little before replying "Lord and Lady Agarathi."

A large smile crept over Theodora's lips as she heard this. "Really? Well that is interesting. Truly such a fine young lad such as yourself should be better appreciated by his family." Thinking briefly she continued, "It seems that I am no longer welcome in this town. Do you know the forested areas around here?"

Kaine nodded.

"Good" Theodora said, "And you know where the ruined Church of Holom is?"

Kaine nodded again.

"Very well. I will stay there, and in return for you help and for any supplies I might need I will show you what you want to know."

Kaine grinned "Thank you! Thank you so much!"

Theodora put up a warning finger, "But you must promise me that you will never tell anyone about who I am or where I am staying. If you do, then I will have to leave and never return."

"I promise." Kaine said eagerly.

"Very well. I will see you tomorrow then. Come quickly. I look forward to our first lesson."

"I will" Kaine said, "I will come as soon as I can. I won't let you down. Thank you!"

With a wave Theodora left Kaine in the streets to make his way home.

From that day onward at every opportunity Kaine would sneak out of the castle with a bundle of supplies in his arms to meet with Theodora. As way of explanation he claimed that he was simply taking the food to feed the hungry people in the surround area. This satisfied his family who were not pleased to have him around anyway, and were glad he was away and doing something good with his time.

So the years passed. Theodora taught Kaine a great many things and he often practiced her teachings on people around the local towns, often gathering more food and coins that he would bring back to Theodora at the Old Church, which became a home for Theodora.

One day though, Kaine, who had grown lax in his care for how he took his route to the Old Church, was spotted by Daerwin and Mainar while they were going out on a hunting trip. Feeling suspicious they trailed after Kaine who led them straight to the Old Church where they saw him delivering the supplies to Theodora.

Word had spread since Theodora's discovery in the village those years ago that a witch resided in the woods, and would sometimes come out to charm her victims for her needs. These stories had not been widely believed by the Agarathi's, until now. With battle cries Daerwin and Mainar charged with their hunting company down into the Old Church, bursting down the door. With a blast of flame Theodora blew back her attackers before phasing through the walls. Rushing outside the two brothers saw nothing. She appeared to have simply vanished. What they did find however, was a cowering quivering Kaine in the corner of the house.

Bringing him back to the family keep the Agarathi brothers presented their bastard brother to their father and told what they had seen. Margaret had asked that the Church be brought in to hunt down the witch, but Kaine's father was loath to endanger his son so. Whether out of some forgotten strains of love, or further fear of harming his family's reputation, Justin refused. Instead he called for the local priest of Holom and swore him to secrecy before sending him into the dungeon to banish the demonic influence of the witch from his bastard boy.

Many excruciating months followed where Kaine suffered under the torturous scrutiny of the the priest and his family, who inflicted pain on both his mind and body seeking to force him to repent for his crimes. Kaine remained stubborn.

Calling on what Theodora had taught him, he remained patient until he was ready. Pouring all his will and desire into his words he bade the priest remain still while he took the key of the cell from him and made his escape from the keep.

Outside the walls of his home Kaine turned.

"Henceforth I vow I will not return here without Theodora, when I do, it shall be with an army at my back and steel in my fist. Woe unto the family that scorned me until now for there shall be no mercy."

With that, Kaine turned and ran off into the forests, searching for his lost teacher...


About the Creator

Tomos Jackson

I love how inspiring stories and character can be. I try and replicate that in my own writing to not only give inspiration, but also to encourage the reader to consider important matters through a more enjoyable and digestible fantasy lens.

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