A father and husband on a fruitless quest to find his vanished family.
Husband, Father, Wanderer
Vallus Thayne was born 29 years BCD (before current day) in the small village named Callon’s Rest. Callon’s Rest is one of the many small family homesteads and villages that were carved out of the Elernain in the fertile land on the banks of the Eredral, where the cut from Nornuen and the Giant’s Steps and lake Eredras meet. Two generations ago Callon Thayne led a few families out from the drought and famine of central Burnordraath and struck upriver into the Elernain, eventually carving out land for farming in the rich soil north of the Nornuen tributary for the families. However, in the brutal winter that followed Callon was caught in a blizzard and perished. The families built a village on the banks of the river, and named it Callon’s Rest after the man who had led them. Callon Thayne had a son, Vallon. And as the years passed, Vallon had a son, Vallus.
Vallus grew up on the farm that his father inherited from his father, where they raised a number of animals, grew their crops, and hunted in the Elernain. The village would sell their excess crops, as well as furs, and other crafted items to the occasional traveling merchant or riverboat captain. Vallus grew up on the farm, and possessed many of the strong traits of his father and his father’s father, a strong will, dedication and a love of family. He met his wife, Lyra, on a trip to a neighboring village when he was 15. They realized that they were meant for one another and married shortly after in the summer. Their daughter Calla, named for her grandfather, was born two summers later, the greatest source of pride and joy for Vallus. For four beautiful years their family toiled happily and lived in Callon’s Rest.
The Flood: (9 years BCD)
In Vallus’ 21st year, a flood from Nornuen swept down through the river valley and destroyed the crops, leveled the village, and swept many of the villagers homes away. Vallus’ home was spared, as he lived on a rise outside the village, and the silo in which the whole village stored their surplus was also spared because it was located on a bluff above the village. However, Vallus knew that his village would not last through the next winter without more food, as well as tools, blankets, and numerous other necessities, but the flood had destroyed everything of value, leaving only the barest of essentials. He realized that he and some men would need to strike out and find a way to get the means to supply the village for the next winter. He gathered a small group of men, 8 in all, leaving behind the rest to rebuild the village, and left his wife and beloved daughter and struck out for Northwater, a days-long journey, to find work for he and his men,. With that money they would be able to feed their village through the winter.
Northwater was filled with refugees and workers from the famine, flood, and similar disasters that struck Burnordraath that spring, and work within the city was virtually non-existent. However, the supply caravans on Circletown Trade Road were hiring people in droves, as drivers, porters, and guards, due to the high demand for supplies throughout Burnordraath. The men from Callon’s Rest found that they would be given meals and receive years wage for only 8 months of work, and be given equipment, as guards for a caravan, and they readily signed up. So for 8 months the men travelled with the caravan, three perished, one from an orcish arrow to the throat, one from a bandit ambush in the night, and the third from fever, but at the end of 8 months, in late Autumn the men were let go in Northwater, with a year’s wages as well as the extra pay for the men who perished. They loaded up with supplies and food for the winter and made the return to Callon’s Rest. When they arrived by riverboat days later, no one ran to greet them at the wharf, which was dilapidated and nearly collapsing. The village had been abandoned, the still drying fields left untended, the rafters of the half-built buildings standing like the bones of some great beast. Vallus was crushed, there did not seem to be any indication of where the entire village had left to. However, he decided that they would begin by moved down stream to where a larger town lay. There they found the lost villagers, who had sought the protection of the larger town from bandits, robbers, and beasts from the Elernain, all seeking to capitalize on their exposed state.
But no Lyra or Cayla. Anywhere. The other villagers told him that they had disappeared from their farm without a word to anyone about 2 months after Vallus had left for Northwater. There had not been any trace of them, and no signs of struggle, so the villagers had assumed he had returned and taken them with him.
The Search: (8 years BCD)
Vallus immediately packed his bags, vowing that he would find them. Convinced that they had been kidnapped by something or someone in the Elernain, knowing that they would never simply leave him, he gathered some supplies for the road and set out from his old farm, doing wider and wider circles every day. When he could no longer return home at night he slept in the forest. He battled robbers, clubbing them over the head with his stave, or shooting them from the dappled shadows of the forest. He fought wild animals, and dark things deep in the Elernain. For three years he wandered the Elernain, and the many lakes and rivers throughout the region, stopping in towns and villages asking after his lost wife and daughter. Every autumn he returned to his farm in Callon’s Rest, hoping to find signs of his wife and daughter, only for his search to come up fruitless. However, Vallus never gave up hope, knowing in his heart of hearts that the love of his life and his precious flower lived.
In the spring of the 4th year of his search for his family (3 years BCD) Vallus finally gave up his search of the region. Out of ideas for where to continue his search, he decided that he would continue his search throughout the rest of Burnordraath. He left a message with the villagers, who had rebuilt Callon’s Rest, and set out for Northwater, believing firmly that every step took him closer to his family.
When he arrived in Northwater he sought out his old employer. He believed that he could explore and see more towns if he were employed with the caravans. His past experience as a guard and obvious drive secured him a place as a crew foreman. In every town the caravan passed through he would ask after his missing daughter and wife, hoping to catch even the smallest tip to warm the frozen trail. Disappointment after disappointment wore on Vallus’ hope, but an old man who ran a widows and orphans home recalled seeing a pair that nearly matched his description years earlier. Bolstered at hearing the (dubiously) hopeful news, Vallus again vowed that he would never stop looking. For three years he has worked as a foreman for the caravans, volunteering for longer and longer trips to more and more disparate places in the hopes of stumbling across another clue. He knows that every step takes him one step closer to finding his family.
Vallus Thayne is an approximately 6 ft. tall human. His long, black hair shows signs of beginning to gray, and is held in a loose ponytail by a leather thong. He wears a thick beard, kept neat, which is flecked with gray as well. His skin has the tanned leather look of a man who has been on the road for years. His face is deeply lined, and speaks of a man of late middle age. However, upon a second glance his poise and gait point to his true age being younger than he appears. He wears kneelength boars-hide boots, into which are tucked his deerskin pants. A dull, smoke-darkened, breastplate is visible under a road colored shirt. Over top of this is a worn, brown, knee length duster. Around his neck on a thick leather thong hangs a small leather pouch, worn smooth from touch. Strapped to his back is a longbow and a quiver and hanging from a loop in his belt is a battleaxe, covered with short leather sheath. He carries a corded knotwood stave.