1 year previous to meeting the party, Gauvlak is in his hometown….
His hometown is in the deep mountains, far from human civilisation. It has an inviting name – the Serpent’s Bite. It’s hard to say why they don’t have more visitors really.
The Kingdom of Fermer has sent a diplomat into the mountains to ask for recruitments for the upcoming war. After refusing, Fermer then sends military to force the issue. Gauvlak, being the leader of the group refusing to join, has his fiancee killed in retribution.
Gauvlak (later known as Man Mountain [MM]) develops a taste for violencee (in retaliation) and while he feels like he’s doing the right thing, other people view him to be turning towards evil.
He leaves the mountains and then discovers how much bigger the world is than he’d ever known before…. He’s trying to figure out his village’s place in this wider world. He starts to realise that the world outside his village is a very different place
As he’s running away from the village he enters a cave, makes a fire and falls asleep. He’s dreaming about all the things that have happened to his village when suddenly he hears a ‘RAWWARRR’ and he wakes to find a Drake licking his feet… perhaps tasting him? The drake had entered the cave when he was sleeping, and is pretty pissed off since MM is in his home.
MM wakes up, but because the drake isn’t moving (and is therefore invisible) he doesn’t make a move. He stands up and the drake attacks. A small fight ensues until MM takes a flaming branch and hits him in the eye.
Leaving the cave MM heads into a village.
He spends some time here, and he begins to lose his love of life, respect for the world and wonder of the universe. Basically, he stops being a country-bumpkin and develops hatred and selfishness. He’s living on the outskirts of town, trying to be treated as a person but he’s treated as close to rubbish. The town is completely biggoted and stuck up, and makes life incredibly hard and isolating for him. He can only find menial jobs that pay almost nothing.
He gets a job at a Ferret Breeders mucking out the cages, and he develops a hatred for all ferrets as a result.
He manages to stick it out there for 3 months before he starts having nightmares about the murder of his village again. His feelings start to intensify as he starts to progresses through the stages of grief. Entering the rage, and being isolated by this town and the uncaring nature of it’s people, he turns further towards being manipulating. What is the point of just living a good life, if bad things happen to good people? Better instead to try and get what you want out of the world without giving back. Just take.
A few months later it’s the end point.
He ends up getting into a fight with the owner of the Ferret Breeders. His boss asks his to work longer hours, but ends up paying the same amount of money. Flying into a rage, MM goes home and immediately starts plotting the Ferret Breeder’s imminent death. He goes into work the next day and poisons all the ferrets. The boss comes to take a look and as he does so, MM hits him over the back of the head with a shovel. By this stage MM has completely lost the realms of reality and he cuts off all the ferret’s legs and uses them to cut the boss up pretty badly.
Leaving, and taking all the ferret parts with him, he knows it will look like the ferrets escaped from their cages and killed the boss.
MM is angry, he’s lonely, and has no love for anyone in the world. He’s discovered that he’s strong and can kill. It’s all downhill from there….
MM leaves the town.
He travels to the capital because he feels like the place with the most amount of people and things happening, is the place where he has the most chance to start over again.
As soon as he walks in through the city gate he feels like something is not right. It feels like there is a lot of tension in this town which shouldn’t be normal, even for a city of this size. It seems like people walk with someone hanging over the heads, darkening their days. They don’t talk to each other, hurrying from job to job without the usual banter and chitchat which would be found in market places and city streets.
He shrugs it off – after all it’s the first time he’s been in the capital, and only the 2nd time he’s been in a city.
He heads to the local bar, The Ghost Squirrel, and talks to the bartender about rumours that are going through the city. He hears that the king is basically crazy (in not so many words). MM asks about the possibility of work and is told about an old woman who makes bread who may need a delivery person.
As he’s working delivering bread he starts to notice that the tension in the town is coming from packs of military walking around the city streets. He sees military everywhere, especially in crowded places, and it makes the people nervous. People don’t stay out to enjoy themselves, they go out and get their job done, and head back home. Kind of like living in London. People watching everywhere, no fun anywhere.
MM tries to talk to the people he’s delivering bread to, but he’s shut out as people refuse to chit-chat to him. But it’s different from the last town where he was picked out for being different. This time it’s happening to everyone. No one wants to be seen as ‘talking’ or ‘planning’…
He discovers that the town is offically under some type of lockdown after dark – you have to head home, can’t be hanging around. There’s no carousing in the local bars, no laughing or fighting. Nothing going on. At all.
He learns, by talking to the bartender at the Ghost Squirrel, the only person who will talk to him, about the situation in the town.
He begins to dream again, and realises that the military he sees around town is the same military as the people who had come to his village and slaughtered them. He begins to grow rage inside again as he realises he’s found the people who killed his people.
He talks again to the bartender at the Ghost Squirrel, and learns that the military is from the Kingdom of Fermer. He asks for more information about what’s going on in the town since there’s no war going on, and learns more about how the crazy king wants to start a war with the Kingdom of Antio. Rumour has it that the king is recruiting from all throughout the kingdom, and without. The bartender tells him that people are still talking about the rumour of the military slaughtering an entire village up in the Northen Goliath Tribelands…… he knows of course exactly what the bartender is talking about and is raging inside, although he’s holding it together in order to gain more information.
He questions if there is any resistance forming to this military presence, and the bartender tells him of a rumour about a rebellion forming and their encampment is somewhere to the East in the Wildlands……….
His mind is set. He now knows what he has to do… He heads East to where he thinks this camp might be.