Level 11 Aasimar Paladin
In -2151, a girl named Serah, was born in Durpar. As was tradition in Durpar, her parents, Rabinas and Lucinda, were merchants. They sold all kinds of general goods until their home, storefront, and all their belongings were destroyed for having decided to not pay for “protection”. By now, Mulhorand had become well established. The Devas (corporeal angels) that had been sent by Ao to help the Mulan tribe (ancient egyptians brought to Fareun by the Imaska Empire as slaves) during their fight for freedom had completed their task. Some returned home, others remained in Faerun to explore the world their master had created. One such Deva, Tenamyn, made his way to Durpar, where he met and fell in love with Serah. As was the case with several thousand Devas all over Faerun, most of whom remained in Mulhorand, Tenamyn was not aware that a human could conceive a child with him, and so Serah became pregnant. Serah spent a good portion of her adult life with Tenamyn, though she aged, while he did not. She bore him three children: Rucilef, Veran, and Ciel; two boys and a girl. Rucilef was the largest and strongest of the three. He stood a full head above Veran, who was also very tall himself. Veran’s eyes were blue as the sky on a clear day, like his sister; though his hair was silver, and hers was white like newly fallen snow. Ciel’s skin was somewhat darker than her brothers’, as if she had spent her life taking in the sun at a beach, a trait she got from her mother. The contrasting colors between her eyes, hair, and skin made her the desire of any who looked upon her; something her brothers were not fond of of course
Eventually, Tenamyn understood that he’d have to leave, so he moved his family to Mulhorand. He knew from his travels that the humans there saw the half-Celestials as something special, and that they’d be treated well. Upon arriving, he realized that most of the Devas had already left. The half-Celestials, given the name Aasimar, were seated in places of limited power in the church and were looked up to among the general population. He said his goodbyes, and returned to the Celestial realm. His children were only 15, 13, and 9 when he departed.
Serah lived out her remaining years in relative comfort, having not just one, but three Aasimar children. She raised them in the way she believed their father would raise them, teaching them about Ao, Tyr, and Torm. She never took any slaves for herself and taught her children not to either. She died in peace after a very long life, never taking a husband after Tenamyn left.
Rucilef became a high-priest of Horus-Re and was a just, and noble leader. Veran, like his father, devoted his life to the teachings of Tyr and Torm, cultivating a very close relationship with the latter. Ciel was also like her father, though she felt more the call of exploration than any other. She traveled all over Faerun and beyond, into Zakhara, Kara-Tur, past the Celestial Sea, and into the Unknown Lands. She always loved her brothers, but loved the call of the unknown even more. To this day she somehow manages to find her brothers to say hello and tell them of all the strange and wonderful things she had seen.
Veran’s Timeline from -2132DR through 1256DR
Born in Durpar -2132DR
Moved to Mulhorand in -2125DR
Fought along side his brother for Mulhorand in the first Unther-Mulhorand War during his 2rd life in -1967DR
Fought and died for Cormanthyr in -1354DR in an attempt to drive out the Drow during his 12th life
Fought along side the Elves and Dwarves against Unther in -1250DR during his 14th life. This war was largely ignored by Mulhorand and was not well received by Rucilef.
-1142DR takes a half-elf wife named Ellenduin in his 15th life.
-1145DR has a son and names him Tenamyn, after his father.
Fights for Mulhorand in -1087DR against Thayd and his rebel wizards during his 17th life
-1007DR Ellenduin dies at the age of 172.
He and his brother defend Cormanthyr in the -750’s against several Drow attacks in his 23rd life
Dies fighting off bands of Orcs in Yrlaphon during the summer of -722DR during his 23rd life
In -623DR, helps to stave off the Narfell invasion of Mulhorand and Unther in his 25th life
With his son, joins the war against the Twisting Tower in -470DR during his 27th life
Tenamyn dies in -366DR of old age during his 12th life. He has not rebirthed since.
He and his brother follow General Halflar into battle against the Green Wyrm Venom, but dies along side the rest of the army when it is discovered that Venom is one dragon, but two, in -249DR during his 30th life.
Under order from the Morninglord, helps to overthrow the Night King of Westgate in -137DR in his 32nd life.
Present at the rising of the Standing Stone in year 1 during his 33rd life.
Helps protect Mulhorand from invading barbarians in 202 during his 36th life. Rucilef died in this battle.
Loosing his taste for battle, Veran joins his sister Ciel and explores lands far beyond the reaches of Faerun, and enjoys the simple pleasures of life for the next 1053 years.
Hearing Torm’s call in 1256DR, Veran returns to Faerun and rededicates his life to Torm’s service in his 54th life.
Veran had been gaining great favor for his acts of faith and loyalty to the gods of the Triad, more specifically with regards to Torm. In 1289, he was made a vessel of Torm’s strength in the material plane. During a battle to defend a temple of Torm against a horde of Cyric’s clerics and warrirors, a battle he was losing, he prayed to Torm that he’d give his life freely in order to defeat his enemies and protect the innocent. Veran’s prayer was answered as he became a beacon of holy energy that exploded outward. Anyone considered evil in Torm’s eyes was vaporized while anyone else who also attacked the temple, for whatever their reasons, were thrown to the ground and permanently blinded. Those had been injured were healed, though any who had left Toril, remained in their celestial home. Veran was then brought to the lower levels of the Celestial Realm where he was awarded a set of the finest mythril plate armor, and the holiest of holy avengers. He was also granted access to the lower levels of the Celestial Realm on a permanent basis, so long as his faith remained strong, where he’d command his own battalion as a general in Torm’s army, though he spent most of his time in Faerun doing whatever work he could as a member of the Knights of the Merciful Sword. During his command in 1309, he helped to defend the Tablets of Fate against Bane, after which he was awarded his wings by Torm.
By now, some of the gods (mostly those who would be considered enemies of the Triad), who had seen the type of attention Veran was receiving from Torm, grew spiteful of him, believing that if he were to someday be raised as a Demigod, he’d become a thorn in their sides, with potential to be something greater. A few of these gods, Cyric, Bane, and Asmodeus, conspired together in order to show Torm that even the mightiest of his followers could be led astray given the proper motivation. Asmodeus put together an army of demons and tieflings together, those he considered the best of the best. Bane, through the more deceitful members of his clergy, turned several members of the Knights of the Merciful Sword to his own service. Cyric however, had lured under the promise of great power Veran’s brother Rucilef to his cause. He knew Rucilef was very powerful, though more politically motivated and would make a great leader once turned.
In 1345, after years of planning and preparation, the plot was set into motion. Using an unknown location in Thay as a base of operations, an army consisting Tieflings, demons, genasai, humans and several others loyal to the three gods, marched east toward their target, Mulhorand. Veran, who was now once again staying in Mulhorand, was allowed to catch wind of the impending invasion just as the army had left Thay. He put together his own army, consisting of the Knights of the Merciful Sword, several paladins of the different good aligned faiths that may be found there, including several Aasimarian paladins.
Once assembled, Veran led 1400 troops toward the Thay/Mulhorand border, sending scouts ahead with any news of where the invasion might cross. Finally, after a few days, the armies spotted each other over the distance. Within moments, the battle had begun. Prayers and chants for spells harmonized with the ringing of steel against steel as the battle raged on. Bones were broken, limbs were severed, blood was spilled. At the height of battle, Veran noticed that his army began to fight against itself. Most of the Knights of the Merciful Sword had been slain and the hands of their own while Aasimar turned against Aasimar. Desperate, Veran raised his hand to smite the evil, but nothing happened. He prayed over his weapon to strengthen it power, but again, nothing happened. He ran toward the nearest of his enemies calling out to Torm for aid, and felt the sudden disappearance of Torm’s presence. Unknown to Veran, Rucilef’s part in the battle had begun. Veran felt betrayed but tried to carry on. Soon, he was outnumbered and was being beaten senselessly. The world became silent and slowed to a crawl. One by one his friends fell to the ground around him. The battle had stopped, and the executions began.
Many of those loyal to Veran and their gods were impaled or beheaded, but the Aassimar who were present; it was known they would not simply die. Their armors and weapons were stripped from them as they were dragged into a nearby cave where a tomb had been prepared. Though Torm’s power had been cut off by Rucilef, Veran’s weapons and armor were still imbued with holy power of their own and could not be handled by the traitors and enemies. They were wrapped up in cloths and taken to be destroyed by whatever means possible.
The Aasimar were taken into a cave at foot of the Dragonsword Mountains and tortured for days They were given only enough food and water to stay alive. None of their limbs were severed, as there were hopes that they could be turned eventually to the service of their captors. They were not allowed to sleep. Weakened and defenseless, they could not fight back as they were taken away individually. Twenty-three Aasimar had survived the battle, but now only sixteen of them were left. Finally, Veran was the only one left in his prison. He prayed to Torm quietly, but could still not sense his presence. His will was broken, and Veran wept. He was left in the prison for days after the others had been taken until finally, his time had come. The guards took him past by the bodies of his companions, stacked as if they were in a mausoleum. Whenever Veran tried to hold his head high, they beat him down again. When they had reached an empty circular room, Veran heard chanting. He prayed one last time, hoping beyond all hope, but nothing happened. Tears streaked down his face again, as a cold, dreamless sleep fell over him.
Years later, Veran awoke to find himself in the same room in which he was put to sleep. Unsure of how or why he had awaken, he stumbled his way out. The sunlight burned his eyes. His muscles ached with atrophy. All his thoughts were on his hunger. Veran wandered in Mulhorand’s wastes for almost a three days until he found a small village. Upon arriving Veran collapsed at the feet of kind elderly man. Being an Aasimar in Mulhorand, he was immediately taken in and cared for by the old man and his wife. He kept anything he could remember about the battle to himself as he did not want to raise suspicion, or possibly scare any of the villagers. He simply told them he could not remember how he had arrived. Many of them believed he had fallen from heaven. Others believed he was sent on some important errand. Still, others thought his lack of memory was omen.
After a week had passed, a newly strengthened Veran departed from the small, nameless village, and decided to head to the capital city of Skuld for a few answers.
While on his way, small flashes of memories came to Veran as he passed by familiar places. He began to remember more specifics about the battle. How the two armies spotted and ran toward each other with no hesitation. He remembered his enemies falling in waves before him. Then he remembered the solitude; the abandonment; the betrayal. All his emotions flooded to the surface. His blood boiling in his veins he cursed Torm for abandoning him in his greatest hour of need. He cursed all the other gods who watched and did nothing to stop Torm’s injustice. In his blind anger he tore off his left wing in defiance, leaving the other as a reminder of what would claim to be his purpose in life: to become the most powerful being imaginable, and kill all the gods. In Veran’s mind, the only explanation for the abandonment against him was that Torm had been building him up only to watch him fall in disgrace and humility. The other gods must have all watched and laughed as Veran became the punch line to a very cruel joke. He would make them suffer, take their place, and rule over Toril with the principles he had learned as a paladin. Only he would keep those principles more closely than Torm ever did. But first, he had to find a path toward that power. A path he knew would be very long, and very difficult. When the pain had subsided, he slowly rose to his feet held himself high, and renamed himself Vernova.
Heart Becomes Stone
For the next two years, Vernova took it upon himself to search for anything of magical value to help increase his power. On rumor alone he would venture into caves and ruins searching for anything to relieve his new found desire. He also began to search within himself. After a time, his celestial blood awoke in him a magic he had not known before. Soon he was casting small spells of pain and misfortune upon any that stood in his way. Those who his magic did not affect, he fell with a stolen sword.
He’d enter temples in contempt and influence many to leave and turn away from their gods. Priests and priestesses who got in his way would meet an unfortunate end. Later, this was no longer enough. He made a practice of entering temples, saying nothing killing all the clergy inside. Even worse still, he’d kill all the witnesses he could find: men, women and children, and burn temples to the ground. Vernova had killed countless people and detroyed several temples across Mulhorand and Unther in his quest to become a god, only to become a demon.
A Burning Tree Begins to Warm a Hardened Heart
Eventually, when it no longer became safe to remain in the Mulhorandi/Untheric region, Vernova made his way toward Cormyr. As he entered into a small town, he saw what seemed to be a peculiar man that people were visibly avoiding off in the distance. As he came closer, he noticed his clothing was rather odd, though the man stood very confident. He wore what Vernova took for some tribal witch doctor’s leathers. They were thin and ragged and exposed the man’s chest. He also wore a long cape and a menacing mask. He was leaning on his spear in the middle of the road, and though Vernova came walking straight toward him, the man did not move. Soon they were face to face. Everyone had cleared the road, making way for the two very odd and imposing figures. Both stood motionless and stared each other down and for a moment, the people watching from their windows all held the breath as the full weight of all their tension rested very uncomfortably on their chests.
To be continued…