The exact circumstances surrounding his very early life are unknown even to him. House Saizryn believed that he was one of a number of Drow males bred to serve as guards for the high caste and was found to be unsuitable. He was found living in the slums of Meerdistrin by Prugzolk Gres, Ikqerzin Saizryn's Orc business partner. Like many slum dwelling orphans of his time little, if any attention, was paid to the plight of the casteless. Many years later Ikqerzin would say that he never really approved of Prugzolk's methods, but the orc was ruthlessly efficient in finding servants and fighters, so those who lead House Saizryn never questioned the Gres Clan's methods until they were discovered by agents of House Zoliir.
Though Veldrin was originally intended for servant work, a scuffle between Ikqerzin, Prugzolk, and Veldrin during his branding ceremony lead to his placement among the ranks of the pit fighters in the arenas Prugzolk ran on behalf of House Saizryn. Initially this was done by Prugzolk out of irritation for Veldrin's actions during the branding ceremony. While Prugzolk obviously intended for Veldrin to die Veldrin would later say that Tsern had other ideas.
The First Match
Veldrin's debut match was a melee between captured goblins and several casteless children. While this sort of match was never sanctioned by House Saizryn, Prugzolk frqeuently ran them away from the actual arenas where all of the coin raised went directly into his own pockets. Veldrin was the sole survivor of that melee. Ikqerzin Saizryn had become aware of Prugzolk's activities behind House Saizryn's back, and had placed the lone bet in favor of the slaves.
The coin House Saizryn won was paid as tribute to House Zoliir. Z'resre Zoliir, the reigning Mother Superior, was outraged at the Gres Clan's activities and had demanded the profits won as payment for House Saizryn failing to keep the Gres Clan in check. Orcs were suspended from trading in Meerdistrin's markets and banned from the better quarters for a month thereafter. This lead to infighting amongst the Orc clans who blamed the Gres Clan for their losses, and the outskirts of Meerdistrin ran with a river of orcish blood for the duration of the ban.
Veldrin was brought directly into the service of House Saizryn to serve as a gladiator and placed under the tutelage of Elkoyn Oussth House Saizryn's Master at Arms.
Veldrin enjoyed a formal education given to all gladiators. He was taught to read, write, and given his exposure to many other captives or slaves he learned a phenomenal number of languages. He was formally trained in the sword, dagger, bladed staff, and double bladed staff. As time went on he managed to master a great many weapons, though the aforementioned four are his preferred weapons. It was Elkoyn Oussth who taught Veldrin a style of combat that favored speed and agility. His small size did not favor prolonged exchanges back and forth with larger foes. By the time he was a young adult Veldrin had advanced into full on arena bouts against some of Meerdistrin's greatest foes, and of course Drow who fought for other houses.
Veldrin quickly rose in rank and fame as he carved his way through whatever they sent against him in the combat pits. In terms of their gladiators he brought more money in for House Saizryn than any other gladiator they owned, or had ever owned. His origins became a source of local legends and tavern tales, but in truth those in the higher castes knew he was one of theirs even if they would never acknowledge him. Veldrin himself did not care. Day to day was a fight for survival as he felt the call of Tsern.
I am Drow.
A Drow knows no fear. A Drow knows no doubt.
When faced by our enemy we must never hesitate.
I will become one with my weapons to destroy those who stand against me.
May the Red Queen guide my hand.
Though a chaotic people, Drow do acknowledge heroism and heroic deeds. They are a people steeped in a rich warrior's tradition. In that way Veldrin was no exception, such that even members of House Zoliir were said to attend his matches. As Drow also reenact their epic battles in their arenas Veldrin quickly became a crowd favorite, but that meant he was often featured in reenactments of their most legendary battles. His was not an easy life, but Veldrin felt Tsern's hand in these struggles and as such never questioned the hardships. He would persevere and survive each challenge for several decades as Meerdistrin outside the arena continued to change and move forward and realize a future, Veldrin found himself trapped in the battles of the past.
At the age of 98 Veldrin was one of six other gladiators from Houses Vruil, Dyrr, Nirinath, Keteeruil, Saizryn, and Zaumtor who fought in a grand battle royale in hopes of being selected as the Master of Arms for House Zoliir. Veldrin ended up as the last man standing despite the gladiators from Houes Dyrr, Vruil, and Zaumtor fighting him three on one in an attempt to eliminate him from the match. Nirinath and Keteeruil, longtime rival houses, fought each other while the three on one melee between Veldrin and the others was separately fought. By the end of the bout Veldrin had won out over the other three gladiators. Though the gladiator from House Keteeruil had delivered a mortal wound to the Gladiator from house Nirinath, Keteeruil's gladiator bled out from his wounds and ultimately died. In the end the horribly wounded fighter from house Nirinath was no match for Veldrin leaving House Saizryn's Veldrin as the victor. This caused an uproar amongst Meerdistrin's upper caste that lead to a long delay in his appointment. An appointment Veldrin would never end up filling.
Knowing full well they had no intention of allowing him to claim his place as their Master at Arms, an appointment Veldrin did not want anyway, for the first time in his life Veldrin would seek aid outside the arena. His aid came in the form of a smuggler who specialized in moving Drow, and Drow goods, to the surface world. With her help, and Veldrin to serve as a guard, their caravan of casteless Drow, escapees, and anyone else with enough coin to buy passage to the realms above made their way through Meerdistrin's tunnels. It was a perilous journey fraught with all of the normal hardships in addition to the dogged pursuit of guards from House Saizryn, and Zoliir. With minimal losses they managed to make their way to the surface.
Life on the Surface
The surface was a whole new experience for Veldrin, and the wrath of Aralkor's sun beat down on him relentlessly. He became accustomed to moving around only at night, skulking in tombs, caves, dungeons, or forest undergrowth during the day. A few weeks after his arrival on the surface he found his way to Blacksands.
Voyage on the Wailing Spark
Knowing full well that House Saizryn and Zoliir had agents who could pursue him even on the surface Veldrin opted instead to join the crew of a ship out of Blacksands. He became acquainted with Estvale's Beatrice 'Hellfire' Vanelis. His sensitvity to the sun relegated him to a position in the hold of her ship, The Wailing Spark. He was appointed her Quartermaster and put in charge of the ship's provisions. That also meant he was responsible for guarding the wealth housed on the ship.
The Mighty Mini
He spent more than a year at sea where the crew of the Wailing Spark battled everything from creatures of the deep to officials looking to ascertain the nature of questionable cargo. In the lightless world of the ship's hold, or on deck at night, Veldrin's skill was unmatched. In time the crew began to refer to him by the moniker, 'The Mighty Mini'. They never lost a melee he joined, and he was never once bested by anyone who attempted to steal anything from the hold. He was known for an unwavering steadfastness to his orders, and was unquestionably loyal to the Captain herself.
The Fate of the Wailing Spark
The Wailing Spark, and her crew, eventually became known for it's horde of treasure. In the end they were faced with an entire fleet of pirates in pursuit of it's wealth. Knowing the ship would be lost Beatrice, true to her own moniker, fired the Wailing Spark rather than allowing the pirates to seize the haul. Veldrin found himself adrift at sea, and the Wailing Spark's crew and treasure were scattered across the seas. Veldrin eventually found his way back to Blacksands with what little wealth he had, he settled at the Crossroads Inn.
Though a period of about five years has passed since Veldrin arrived on the surface, he is becoming more and more accustomed to life on the surface. He still suffers from extreme sensitivity to sunlight, though it is not as bad as it used to be. He can sometimes be found outside at dawn and dusk where he can tolerate some low light from the sun. He can primarily be found at the Crossroads Inn, usually working in it's kitchens. As night falls he will sometimes set out to battle creatures of the surface, or delve it's dungeons. There are few expeditions he will turn away, if the chance to challenge an especially challenging opponent, he has all the more reason to join in.
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