Upon the Shoulders of a Titan
A kindly and esoteric dwarf trying to redeem himself through faith and thunder.
From the moment of his birth, Rurik was destined for misfortune. His father, an immigrant to Paradise, died in an airship accident before he was born, leaving his mother alone to raise Rurik and his 6 brothers and sisters. Though his mother worked hard as a washer woman, she was never able to provide the family with more than bare subsistence. Rurik, a fiery and wanting lad, turned to crime at a young age to acquire that which he could never have. After one too many run-ins with the law, Rurik fled from home aboard an airship as a deckhand. It was in this position that he encountered and befriended a young human named Bjornson. Each born to misfortune and discontent with the lot life threw at them, they saw in each other a kindred soul. They yearned to weave a life of their own, free from the arbitrary whims of “civilized” society. With such desires, they decided to instigate a mutiny aboard their ship, “The Kindly Lass.” Rurik proclaimed himself captain and Bjornson as his first mate. Thus began the infamous career of Rurik the Raider, feared pirate of the Paradisian skies.
So prolific and deadly were Rurik’s raids that the Paradisian government was forced to act and proclaimed him enemy number one, ordering the creation of an elite navy unit to apprehend the man, dead or alive. In charge of the manhunt was the famed elven admiral Quentin LeSearle. For half a decade, the two men engaged in a cat and mouse game, with Rurik escaping capture and death multiple times. Though both were bitter enemies, their long association engendered a mutual respect for each other. The reverse occurred in respects to Rurik and Bjornson. The threat of imprisonment placed a hard stress on their friendship and Rurik’s efforts to escape capture created a severe loss of profit for the crew. This eventually led to Rurik’s downfall. One night, Bjornson, leading half of Rurik’s crew, lead a mutiny against his former friend and captain. After a night of bloodshed and slaughter, Rurik was defeated and brought before his former first mate. In an act of mercy, Bjornson offered to spare Rurik at the cost of slavery. In response Rurik clawed out Bjornson’s eye, prompting him to be cast overboard from the airship, supposedly thrown to his death.
Rurik awoke on an island, unharmed and fully able-bodied. Amazed at being spared death, Rurik searched the island for life but found himself alone and abandoned. Over the next few years, Rurik situated himself to his life of solitude, fashioning himself a simple existence. Life became acceptable to Rurik, he had what he needed to live and was free from the world that never accepted him. Alas, even this life was not to remain his for long, as a mighty storm came to the island and destroyed all his shelter and ruined his source of food. Seeking shelter from the mighty deluge, Rurik went far inland, eventually stumbling upon a derelict temple to the storm god Kojima. Inside the temple, sick and starved, Rurik fell into a deep sleep. In this state, Rurik had visions of storm and rain and, perhaps worst of all, of the pain of every act of criminality he had caused in his life. When Rurik awoke, he had a new purpose. He realized that his arrival on this island was a just punishment from Kojima, to teach him the price of his selfish ways. He vowed to serve Kojima, to do good and protect the weak, to be a man that could heal the wounds of his past. Rurik the Raider announced himself dead, and instead declared the birth of Rurik Thunderson. At that moment, a lightning from the sky descended upon the dwarf, anointing him a priest of the storm.
Many more years passed before Rurik left the island. One evening, a lone ship appeared in the distance. Rurik signaled to the ship, hoping that Kojima had deemed him worthy of salvation. When the ship docked, Rurik was surprised to behold his longtime enemy, Quentin LeSearle. Quickly apprehended, Rurik consigned himself to his new fate, accepting imprisonment as justice from above. Yet, this acceptance proved hastily. During the return, pirates attacked the ship. Firing with cannons, Rurik found his cell pulverized and open, allowing for quick escape. However, he chose instead to heal the crew and fight back, saving LeSearle from certain death. In gratitude, LeSearle pardoned Rurik for his crimes, acknowledging him as a changed man.
Rurik returned as a new man to a new world, hurting and needing of kindness. The sins of his past remain ever present in his mind. While the paths to redemption before him are many, one remains the most obvious: Bjornson. In Rurik’s absence, Bjornson, now under the moniker of “one eye” due to his missing organ, had amassed power. He had become a “pirate king,” a lord of destruction and misery. Rurik knows that one day he must fight his old friend and finally end the cycle of pain he had begun.
Led by cryptic visions from his god, Rurik soon came upon the Lorekeepers in Aequis. Deciding that their motives were pure, he joined the group and was led to the Titan. Awed by the wondrous best, Rurik realized Kojima’s purpose for leading him here: he would establish a church to his god. For days the dwarf labored to construct a chapel for his deity and when he was finished the entire Titan was invited. Alas, no one showed save for his old ally Quentin and with him, news of Bjoronson’s crimes. His conviction renewed, Rurik decided to throw himself more so into his quest.
Soon his temple blossomed with a handful of congregants and the addition of a new priest Lad. Rurik was able to leave the temple and quest with the Lorekeepers in their crusade against Drusilla, the vampire queen. After a series of adventures the Lorekeepers were able to apprehend Senseela, Drusilla’s right-hand. Rurik, seeing in the captive the same wretched soul he once was, decided to attempt to turn the woman from her evil ways. He visited her in her cell daily, explaining that redemption was always an option but alas, she ignored his word. This continued until one night, Rurik was summoned by Senseela. The optimistic dwarf believed that she was ready to repent and assist the heroes on their quest. He traveled to her room alone, smiling brightly but something was instantly amiss. He found himself unable to move as Senseela began to weave a spell. The next instant all was black. As the Lorekeepers rushed to their friend’s aid, they found no remnant of him, only a trail of destruction as Senseela escaped into the horizon.