Elder knight and nominal leader of a rag-tag group of adventurers.
13th Level Warlord and Captain of Fortune
STR 20 – CON 16 – DEX 11 – INT 18 – WIS 11 – CHA 17
AC: 30 – FORT: 25 – REFL: 25 – WILL: 23
Growing up in the kingdom of Calidor, Stephen Fauntleroy came from simple origins being the son of wood cutters from the town of Dhedluk. Fortunately for him, his great devotion to Torm and aptitude for martial skills caught the attention of a retired Tormtar who sponsored him as a squire for the Order of the Golden Lion. There his faith in Torm and skills in the ways of war grew and upon reaching manhood, he attained paladinhood.
As Calidor was always under threat on frontier or another, Fauntleroy decided his people and god may best be served by joining a chartered adventuring company to go out and deal with these threats. The adventuring company he gained some notoriety driving back orc and goblins but it was when they were digging around an ancient vault that he acquired his signature weapon, Lightbringer. Seeing it as a boon from Torm, he became more driven to battle evil where it may be found. Eventually they traveled to the north east to aid the province of Livenarc, near the remains of Bewcastle. Answering the call for help, they thought they were dealing with a simple goblin menace but uncovered a necromancer cult which had replaced the local lord. With great effort, Fauntleroy and the company managed to slay the necromancer and his minions. The people of Livenarc now freed of the cult had no lord to rule and protect them. Petitioning King Cethern III, they spoke of the great bravery of the company and Fauntleroy in ridding them and Calidor of the undead menace. Moved by their petition (and the desire to have an obstacle to would-be raiders coming in from the northeast) he named Stephen as the Lord of Livenarc. While the adventuring company moved on to battle evil elsewhere, he remained to protect his new charges.
For years he served as a kind and just ruler and the people of Livenarc knew peace with only the occasional raiding party to deal with. Through clever schemes as well as artful diplomacy, he managed to keep out of most disputes with the other Lords and Ladies of the court. But then came the day that would be both the proudest and the darkest day of his life. The day had come for Princess Jocelyn to rise to the throne and Fauntleroy was asked to attend the ceremony with his family. However his oldest child was ill and so the decision was made for Fauntleroy to travel to the capital while his wife remained home with the children. Thinking nothing of it at the time, he gathered his retinue and traveled to the palace to witness the land of Calidor gain a new Queen.
The court was in full splendor and the great hall was lined with the banners of the Lords and Ladies that were in attendance. Fauntleroy was proud that the Standard of Livenarc was in a place of honor near the throne, well, closer than he felt he really deserved anyhow. While he took in the sights and sounds of the preparations for the crowning, he wished his little girl could have been with him to see the splendor of it all. He imagined his son pestering the White Mountain guards about their weapons or armor or training or whatever else his inquisitive mind could come up with. “A shame my family could not witness the ascendance of our new Queen” he thought to himself. Little did he know that this very evening he would also bear witness to the fall of Calidor.
The forces of the Dark Lord struck just before Princess Jocelyn was crowned Queen and the whole court was thrown into disarray. The Knights of the White Mountain moved quickly to protect the royal family but the attackers were too numerous and soon a melee had broken out in the court proper. While Fauntleroy and his entourage fought hard to protect the Princess, he was overwhelmed and fell. The next thing he knew, he awoke outside the capitol with but a handful of his retainers. Apparently soon after Fauntleroy was knocked out, the fighting devolved into an all out fray and Chauncy and the rest of the entourage fought hard to recover his body and get him to safety.
“Where is the banner?” Stephen asked.
“Still in the palace as far as we know” Chauncy answered.
“Where is my sword? Where is Lightbringer?”
“We barely recovered your body as it was. There was no sign of Lightbringer and little hope now of going back to try and recover it” Chauncy replied.
Looking about at his remaining retainers, Fauntleroy saw in their faces that they had done their best and could see by the faces that were missing that his life had been paid for in the blood of many good people. Seeing little point in returning to the capitol, his thoughts now turned to those of his people and family back in Livenarc.
In the week after the Dark Night, Fauntleroy and his remaining men made his way back to Livenarc by back roads and cross country to evade the patrols that seemed to be everywhere. As he passed other holdings, he found many to be ransacked or under siege, but a handful seemed to be virtually untouched – collaborators in the betrayal or just lucky enough to not be attacked yet? There was no time to sort these things out as Fauntleroy needed to get home quickly as he was able. Clearly this attack was far greater than just taking down the royal court. Everyone that might be loyal to the Crown of Calidor was to be dealt with as well it seemed.
When at long last Fauntleroy arrived at Livenarc he was horrified at what he beheld. The land seemed afire and the dead were left to rot in the streets. As he and his entourage arrived at the castle, they found it burning with the defenders laying where they fell. It was obvious they had put up a great fight, but it was not enough. Distraught at the carnage he saw before him, he dismissed his attendants – urging them to go and try and find their loved ones.
Only Chauncy stayed at his side as he scoured the ruins for signs of his family. Days later as the embers cooled, Stephen had finally come to realize that his family lay dead – buried under tons of stone and timber. The proud castle that was his family’s home had now become their tomb. This final loss was too much for him to bear. Having failed to protect his queen, his people and even his family crushed his spirit and he lost faith in himself. He was no longer fit to be a Paladin of Torm in his mind.
Chauncy did what he could to ease Fauntleroy’s torment and fearing the ruins were not a safe place to linger, took him away to a hermitage dedicated to Illmater located far away from these ill events. Fauntleroy would spend many years there trying to come to terms with all that had befallen him and Chauncy, ever loyal, stayed at his side. For nearly twenty years Fauntleroy remained in exile at the hermitage until one day he received a strange invitation from Captain CAN’T REMEMBER, and invitation he felt he could not refuse.