An Unlikely Crew of Survivors

Seemingly thrown together by chance, this unnamed but increasingly legendary group has been drifting across the face of Mahid for some time. It all started when the famed Victoria Mieunet Ophelia Lillian Alyssa Dominique Celeste Ebonhold, Adrahki nobility, orator, troubadour, and secret mountebank once recited a rousing Malzen of Grakkor tale for an unfailingly enraptured audience. Little did she know, the famous (and infamous) libertine himself and his comrade Dar were in that audience, and the three later settled into a swaggering, raucous, and unfailingly troublesome (when not downright illegal) partnership.

After a few months and as many foolish but very lucrative ventures, they found themselves as usual up to no good among society’s finest (or, at least, most well-off), at a sort of luxurious camp outside The Pactground, where the first Birtulan delegation in twenty years had been received in preparation for the next council.

One of the guards defending this delegation was Ash, who had been a Birtulan street urchin pressed into service as punishment for crimes committed. When an elder Ungimi man burning with a frightening passion, Sef ibn Sharif Shadee Saifushahaab, burst in, hewing down in the name of vendetta guards and diplomats alike, he saw the perfect opportunity to take his vengeance on his “employers,” and assisted him. Malzen, Dar, and Mieunet stumbled on the scene and, realizing that they would be prime suspects, unlikely to leave the Pactground basin alive unless they fled immediately, did so in the company of Sharif and Ash.

For some time, they laid low in normally xenophobic nomad tribes whom had accepted the others, for a time, on Malzen and Dar’s word, until they came to posses a great quantity of a certain mild stimulant produced in the north and popular for both recreational and culinary use there, but culturally considered anathema in most of the South due to a higher quantity of more strict religions there. Naturally this raises its value there, and so the four Unlikelies planned a lucrative trade run to the southern hemisphere.

Unfortunately, the captain (and sole crewmember) of the small sandskip they hired for this job apparently bore them some unknown grudge. Perhaps he was family of one of their victims. In any case, he cunningly abandoned them out in the equatorial region, trusting to Mahid herself to kill those whom he alone could not.

The five were very fortunate; they managed the almost impossible feat of crossing half the equatorial belt without a vehicle or great caravan, and only Dar died along the way. He remained nonchalant, witty, and optimistic, if rarely spoken, right up to the end. He did not deserve the ignoble, pitiable death by thirst, but it was his fate nonetheless.

However, Mahid leaves little time for mourning. Malzen and Mieunet returned to their old antics, as Sharif seeks further ways to exact his mysterious vengeance, and Ash provides cunning and muscle where it is needed, now for the sort of fascinating (and, perhaps more importantly, actually gold-producing) employers he never knew he wanted. So it has been for months, before our story begins…

An Unlikely Crew of Survivors

An Introduction to Mahid gnikrul