Malix Carthwright grew up in the small town of Calder several miles east of Turley, which is in Southern Khenshire. From a very early age, Malix was always getting himself into trouble. He was known as the town bully to other kids his age. Malix would not pass up an opportunity to terrorize both children and the elderly. Several occasions he was arrested by the local town guard for committing acts of vandalism.
These pranks and law breaking caused Malix’s father Jeremiah much discomfort. Jeremiah was a prominent citizen and the Carthwright family was the richest family in town. Jeremiah’s family had been in the trading business for several generations and they enjoyed great success.
Jeremiah had tried to do the best he could raising Malix, it wasn’t easy considering that he didn’t have his wife to help him out. Gloria, his wife, died giving birth to Malix. Jeremiah had a strong dedication to his work and therefore, didn’t spend as much time with Malix as he should have. Because of this, Malix really didn’t have a strong authority figure.
By the time Malix was sixteen he had developed the reputation as the town’s bad boy and this didn’t sit well with Jeremiah. He knew he had to do something or else the path that Malix was currently on would surely lead him to jail or death. So, Jeremiah used his political contacts. He went to see Mayor Hardstrum one day.
“Mayor, it is so good of you to see me on such short notice,” says Jeremiah.
“Think nothing of it, your family has been a valuable asset to this town for several generations. What can I do for you?” asks the Mayor.
“Well, I’m sure you’ve been keeping an eye on my son. He has caused many problems for our town,” says Jeremiah.
“Well, kids will be kids. He hasn’t committed any serious crimes and because of your family’s shining history, I am willing to overlook his indiscretions. I know it wasn’t easy on you, without your wife to help raise Malix,” says the Mayor.
“Yes, however, I do place a large amount of the blame on myself. Therefore, I wish to rectify my mistakes. I want to give Malix a second chance at life,” says Jeremiah.
“What do you have in mind?” asks the Mayor.
“Well, for about three years now, I have commissioned a weapons master, an adventurer to train Malix. He typically is lax when it comes to these lessons. However, the weapons master did tell me, that when Malix does choose to pay attention, he displays a great amount of skill. The weapons master tells me that he has a lot of natural talent. I wish to bring that talent out. Will you give him a position in the town’s militia?” asks Jeremiah.
“I could speak to Captain Sove, but I can’t guarantee that he will get in. The Captain has the final say on who gets in and who doesn’t. I will persuade the Captain to test your son though. Have Malix come to the barracks in two days,” says the Mayor.
“Thank you, Mayor Hardstrum, I owe you one,” says Jeremiah.
“That is not necessary,” says the Mayor.
So, Jeremiah goes home and finds Malix taking a nap in the family gardens. He wakes Malix up.
“What do you want, father?” asks Malix.
“I have found a way to redeem my past mistakes with you son. I am giving you the opportunity to lead an honorable life. I talked to the Mayor today and he is going to get you an interview with Captain Sove,” says Jeremiah.
“Why would I want to be a soldier? I am happy where I’m at,” says Malix.
“Son, listen to me. The path that you are on right now can only lead to disaster. I’m pleading with you, take this opportunity. It will save your life,” says Jeremiah.
“NO!” says Malix and then he runs off. Jeremiah just shakes his head and goes into the house.
Malix runs down the street and into the woods. He always comes here to think about things. ‘Why would father do such a thing? It’s stupid. I have no intention of doing that. The militia is so boring…though…’ Malix chuckles and walks off.
Two days later, Malix reports to the barracks. Captain Sove is waiting for him.
“Malix, take a seat. I want you to know that the only reason that I am considering you is because of the Mayor and your father. I am well aware of your reputation. If I allow you to join, you will give up this foolish behavior. I expect complete discipline from all of my men,” says the Captain.
“I wish to change the course of my life sir, I want to throw off my childish ways and become a man that my father can be proud of,” says Malix.
There is a knock at the Captain’s door. “Enter.” A man comes into the room and salutes the Captain. “What is it sergeant?”
“Well sir, I need you to come with me, there is a matter that begs your attention immediately,” says the sergeant.
“Very well, Malix wait here I will be back in a few minutes,” says Captain Sove.
“Yes, sir,” says Malix. The Captain leaves with the sergeant and closes the door behind him.
“What a dope. He actually bought that as sincerity. Now, as soon as I get in, I’ll have to find a couple of men to trust and this will be quite an interesting adventure,” says Malix.
Several minutes later the Captain comes back into the office. “Well, let’s take you down to the practice yard and see how you size up against my staff sergeant,” says the Captain.
The two leave the office and head out of the barracks to the practice yard. Here there are many men receiving combat lessons. In the center of the yard there is a patch of dirt that has a white circle around it. Outside of the circle are racks of weapons and armor. In the middle of the circle a very tall and powerful looking man is standing there. He is wearing chainmail and holding a bastard sword. Malix and Sove walk towards the man.
“Malix Carthwright, may I introduce you to Staff Sergeant Toluv. He is one of the staff sergeants that works with the new initiates and has the honor of testing the potentials. Please, go over to the racks and choose a weapon and some armor. I leave you in Toluv’s hands,” says the Captain.
The Captain then walks back to the barracks. “Well, what are you waiting for kid, get a weapon and some armor and let’s see what you’ve got,” says Toluv.
Malix puts on some studded leather armor and grabs a broad sword. “Rules are simple, first one to bleed looses and you must last at least five minutes against me to be considered. Based on this and how skilled you are will go into my report to the Captain and then he will make the decision based on my recommendation. Begin,” says Toluv.
The two square off and begin to fight. The fight goes on for fifteen minutes before Toluv gets through Malix’s defenses and gives him a shallow cut on the side of his torso. “You did well kid, go to the medical tent and get yourself patched up. I will give my report to the Captain and you should know shortly,” says Toluv.
About half an hour later, the Captain finds Malix. “Congratulations, your in,” says Sove. Go report to the supply depot with this piece of parchment and secure your gear, armor, and weapon of choice. Then go to the sleeping quarters and secure a bed. You will begin your training tomorrow. Staff Sergeant Toluv has asked to train you himself. He sees a lot of potential in you. He tells me that you display a lot of natural talent,” says Captain Sove.
Because of Malix’s natural talent and his limited training already, he is placed on an accelerated program. Toluv wants to turn Malix into his protégé. For the next six weeks Malix trains hard. Deep down he hates having to take orders from someone, but he knows that if he get his plan together and find a couple of guys, then it will be a very good future for him.
After he graduates the program, Malix is placed on active duty in the militia. Because of his advanced training he placed in charge of a squad and given the rank of sergeant.
Several years go by and Sergeant Carthwright begins to loose hope that he will ever be able to pull off his plan. He thinks, ‘I just haven’t found the right opportunity yet, don’t worry it will come.’ Then, finally it does. When Malix is 22 years old he finds the opportunity that he is looking for. He is taking a bit of leave and he’s in the tavern enjoying a drink when he overhears two other sergeants grumbling about the Captain. He leans in closer to hear what they are saying.
“…It’s just not fair George, the Captain has turned us down again for promotion. We’ve been serving him loyally for many years. Why haven’t we been promoted to lieutenants? It’s well overdue,” says Sergeant Xander Montro.
“The old man’s just not thinking right anymore. He’s been in charge of the militia for too long. The Mayor is just too soft, he should have sacked him long ago,” says Sergeant George Vertin.
Malix stands up and walks over to their table. “Gentlemen, might I have a word with you in private?”
“About what?” ask Sergeant Vertin.
“Your little dilemma,” says Malix.
“Let’s hear what the man has to say George,” says Sergeant Montro.
The three of them leave the tavern and walk down a side alley. “Okay, listen up. I have a way of solving your problem guys. You want to be lieutenants and I want to be Captain,” says Malix.
“What do you propose, Malix?” asks Xander.
“We kill the Captain and I assume command. With you two backing me, the other officers will fall into line under my leadership and you two will make history as being the first two lieutenants in this militia. What do you say?” asks Malix.
Both of the sergeants answer in unison, “I’m in.”
“Good, in two nights time, we will go to see the Captain at his private home. It will be perfect, it’s his night off and no one will be at his home. We kill him and I assume command. We are the army of the town and no one will send any help. When I have assumed command and dealt with anyone that’s unsure of following me, I will declare martial law on the town,” says Malix. The three sergeants go off in separate direction and agree to meet outside the Captain home in two night’s time.
The next day goes on as normal. Malix does his duties as squad leader and patrols the southern border of the township. When his shift is over he goes to the sleeping quarters and falls asleep.
In the middle of the night he is grabbed. He looks up and sees the Captain and Sergeant Vertin standing next to him gloating. Behind them, Sergeant Montro is bound and gagged.
“I am very disappointed in you Malix. You could have really made something out of yourself. Instead you choose to waste it. Malix, you and Sergeant Montro will be dealt with severely. I hope the judge gives you both the death penalty for your schemes,” says the Captain.
Malix and Xander are carted off to the militia’s jail cells. Once inside, several of the militiamen begin to beat up Malix. By time they are through with him, he’s heavily beaten and bloodied. The two wait in the jail cell for a few days before brought to trial.
As they are carted off to the courthouse many townsfolk boo, throw things at them and spit curses at them. The trial runs pretty quickly. Sergeant Vertin serves as the key witness. At the end of the trial the three men are asked to stand to receive sentencing. “Sergeant Vertin, though your intentions were honorable, you still participated in this scheme, you will be stripped of your rank and serve five years in prison. As for you two, for conspiring to kill a prominent citizen and important military leader you both will be executed…”
Just as the judge says this, Malix’s father comes running into the courtroom. “Please Judge I beg of you to find an alternative punishment. Don’t have my son killed. His actions were rash, but they were stopped before he could follow through. Please show mercy,” pleads Jeremiah.
“Very well, because of the respect I have for you sir, I will grant leniency. Both you and Sergeant Montro will be banished from our town. Should either of you ever be caught again in this town, you will both be executed for your crimes. I will grant each of you your weapons and armor and two weeks food supply. You two must leave the town within the hour though and until you do a guard will be placed on both of you to make sure that you don’t try anything. This case is concluded,” says the judge.
Within the hour Malix and Xavier walk out of town. At the edge of town, the Captain is waiting there with several of his men. “Malix, I wish to give you something to remind you of me and how you failed,” says the Captain. Sove draws a knife and slices a wound on Malix’s cheek. Malix growls away the pain and continues to walk out of the town.
For the next several years, Malix and Xavier wander around southern Khenshire and adopt the lifestyle of highwaymen. They ambush many trade caravans throughout the area. After several years of this the caravans begin to become more and more guarded. Then one day, their days as robbers end. For they ambush a trade caravan and when they do additional fighters come out from hiding. Xavier ends up getting killed and Malix is forced to flee east. The trail leads him back close to his hometown. He does the best he can to survive, by sneaking into Turley occasionally and stealing some food.
After several months, he gets tired of living like this and sees a new opportunity. Over the months he has witnessed several greenskin raids into the area. They always flee back into the swamps when they are done.
Malix thinks, ‘these greenskins have such potential, I shall have to find a way to exploit that.’