Athos: The Return
Random, The Wanderer
Walker of Worlds, Unexpected Savior, The Lost General, Prince of Wind, Speaker to Trees, Herb Seeker
A tall, limber man appearing to be aged roughly 26, but his dark green eyes show knowledge far beyond what his age seems to be. Short brown hair and a clean shaven face show a man filled with laughter, always looking for an opportunity to lighten the mood.
And he said to me, this man I fought with, “Random, why is it you travel to places such as this terrible war?” And I looked at him, smiled, and said, “Why not?”
Excerpt from “Random : An Autobiography”
Born to the heavenly father Athos and the human woman Malara, Random came onto the Earth in silence, without so much as a single scream. His father and many of the Deva expected that he would be the silent type, but once he began to speak, he almost never stopped. Random’s first words were to become his creed, his lifestyle, his mind, his choice of battle armaments, his choice of words, and also his name, “Random.”
As a boy, Random would rarely stay with a same group for more than a single mission. He would jump from one to another, unable to decide which one he liked best. He would change his role just as often as he would his group, always filling in what he thought the group would need the most. He would change from healer to defender as easily as he would change his own clothes. By filling in needed roles, he expected his nickname would become “The Helpful” or perhaps “The Hero.” But his often brash words and his overconfidence earned him no love from his siblings. As such, they called him “The Wanderer,” for his lack of ability to find and stick with friends.
Unabashed by his nickname, Random embraced it and continued to jump back and forth between roles and groups. When the Apotheosis occurred, many demigods had expectations of who would be chosen as Athos’ successor. Warren, Nox, and Anatolius were popular choices, but the only one who expected Random was Random himself. Those who spoke with him thought it was in jest, but Random believed that he was the only choice, the only one who knew the world as it was, and the only one who could properly rule. When Nox was chosen, Random confronted his father. The legend says that he demanded Athos take back his decision before it was too late, and name him as the chosen one instead. His father laughed, and told him, “If you were my last living child, I would rather birth new children than choose you as my successor.” It was then that Random left the heavens, and began to walk the Earth.
When the War of Failed Succession came to pass, Random was called upon by both sides to fight the other, but he refused and instead found a small home in the trees of Sylvania where he met and married his wife, an Elven girl named Eldárwen. He had originally planned to make the wedding a farce, a simple way for him to hide from his brothers and sisters. But the Elf girl was much more than he expected, and he fell madly in love with her, the first one to truly accept him as he was. Although they brought each other happiness, Random refused to have any children, afraid that they would live a life as outcasts, much as he had lived his own childhood. He and Eldárwen lived in hiding together for the entire war, and he only came forward when The Conclave formed in order to keep himself from their anger.
For many demigods, their immortality is a great gift. Random often thought of it as a curse. His wife eventually grew old, and although Elves live longer than men, she fell ill at the old age of 216, and her heart began to fail. As she lay dying, Random attempted every healing power he had ever learned, but it was not enough to fight off age. As she died, he cast a great ritual to keep her soul with him, and he stored her in a dark red tearmark on his right hand. In this way she has never truly left him, and he is able to feel her presence around him.
After Eldárwen’s death, Random planned on resuming his walk around the Earth, but the Regulators had other plans for him. While the choosing process was designed to be either by lot or by volunteering, Random was chosen twenty one times in a row, for a total of over one thousand years in a row. While he complained consistently to The Conclave, it wasn’t until he refused to serve a twenty second term that they began to pay him heed. He then spent a long and cold fifty years in the dungeons of The Conclave for his insolence. Once his time was served however, they finally let him be. Random then spent his time finally walking the Earth as he had always intended, as The Wanderer.
Few know exactly what happened during the years that Random walked the world. Many legends sprouted up involving him, claiming everything from him fathering a generation to him destroying castles. Random claims to have fought in all the wars of the world with the exception of the War of Failed Succession. He often speaks of spending years in small towns living among the mortals as one of them, keeping his heavenly ancestry unknown. He published a book titled “Random: An Autobiography” in 6027 but only a small number of copies were made as The Conclave believed it too be too revealing of and too embarrassing to the demigods for mortals to have it. As punishment, Random was given his 23rd post as a Regulator. After he was found sleeping during the fourth emergency meeting of The Conclave, they tasked him with joining the party to find his missing brothers.
Sightings and Stories of The Wanderer
The Grey Knight
“I’ve served under General Hans Von Hollsborne for my entire life since I came of age. I know every man he’s recruited, but on that day at the Burning of Zaragoza, he arrived. A tall man clad in tarnished gray armor, he rode atop a huge warhorse, larger than any I’ve ever seen. And when he fought…men fell before his blade like a weed falls to a hoe. And all the while he cracked jokes, as if we were children with sticks rather then men at war. At first I thought him a savior, but when he killed a Shadar-Kai by ripping it’s head off, I’ll never forget his laugh as he said, ’Who’s ahead now?’ It was then I decided he couldn’t be a savior, but rather a devil, one who dances through blood as if it were rain. This man should not be.”
-Lieutenant Marrkis of the 3rd Legion Beneath General Hans Von Hollsborne.
Random claims to have fought in every great war on the Earth since his own brother’s war. In many of them, there are no stories of him interfering, but he claims to have slipped under disguise and joined the soldiers while they were unawares, in order to better understand mortals.
The Whispering Woods
“I begged him for help. ‘Please sir,’ I said, ‘You know magic, I’ve seen you before. Please save my daughter.’ And he walked to a tree in my yard and whispered, and left the town never to be seen again.”
A fairy tale sometimes told on Athos Terrarum is one of a missing child. In a small village to the east of The South-Wood a young girl went missing for days. Although the village sent several men to seek her out, it was to no avail. Her father knew Random only as the simple blacksmith of the town, but had seen him practicing his magics in secret. He begged Random for his help, but the demigod merely touched a tree and spoke to it before leaving the town for good. As the sun rose the next morning, the daughter returned to the village, and told her father that she heard the woods directing her back to him.
Eldárwen’s Torn Soul
“And she whispered to me, ‘I love you my sweet Random, and I never wish to be away from you.’ So I kept her with me, safe and warm.”
-Excerpt from “Random: An Autobiography”
While Random’s official story is that he saved his wife, some believe that his arcane prowess was not nearly great enough to pull of such a feat. Having spent over two hundred years with this woman, he had not practiced such great rituals and would most likely have ripped Eldárwen’s soul by mistake, leaving her in incredible anguish for all eternity. This is one of the few legends that Random does not discuss at all in his book.
“He laughed at my pain, he mocked the years I spent beneath him. I accepted it, he was right, I was weak. But when he mocked my wife, I showed him what I’ve become.”
-Excerpt from “Random: An Autobiography”
While his autobiography hints that Random killed the Rakshasa that mocked his love, there is no clear explanation of what occurred. However, there are stories that claim he did much worse. A Rakshasa is able to reincarnate after death, so it is no fear to them. However, they are able to feel pain. Some scholars believe that Random took this Rakshasa, and tied the creature in chains, slowly cutting the body into pieces and demanding that the beast revoke his words against Random’s love. There are others that claim that Random not only dismembered the beast, but kept and removed one of Ravana’s claws and rides it as one might ride a horse.
“I swear, I had just planted wheat on the past morning! But when I woke that morning, all I found were corn stalks, ripe and tall as far as the eye could see!”
It is said that one of the first actions that Random took when he was freed from the cells of The Conclave was to head to a large farming community on Grashnak, where he promptly spent an entire night changing and ripening all the farmers’ crops from whatever they had been to corn. The mayor of the town said he saw the man early in the morning, and when he asked him what he was doing, Random looked up and said, “Here’s a gift. I like corn.” According the Random, corn is a personal favorite food of his, and one he was never given while in the cells of The Conclave.