The Ballad of Hal Whitewyrm
Half-elven bard in search of his place in the world.
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Hal Stephaln was born into Zhentarim slavery under the torturous ownership of Xerez the Mad. His mother, Ariadne of Highmoon, had been captured by brigands and sold to the wizard while pregnant; for some reason the wizard let the baby come to term instead of killing it in the womb with foul magic. Where other babes died, Hal lived and thrived as best as possible. Ariadne knew it was the blood of his father, his elven father, which made the difference. It was a miserable life, but they made the best of it, with Ariadne playing the flute her elven paramour had given her to soothe her child.
On his twelfth year of slavery, Hal found another of Xerez’s slaves, one he kept chained, gagged and in darkness in a separate dungeon. It was a young elven lady and Hal fell in love with her instantly. He visited her as often as he could, sang and played his mother’s flute to her and tried to sooth her misery. When his mother told him that some slaves were planning an escape, he knew he had to free the elven lady as well. This he accomplished, but only at the cost of time. As Ariadne waited for her son to arrive at the tunnel, Xerez caught wind of the escape and went to deal with the escapees himself. Ariadne rushed the mad wizard to give her son and the young elven lady the time they needed to reach the tunnel. As Hal turned around to look for his mother, he saw Xerez kill her with magic: she had sacrificed herself for him to escape.
Hal and the young elven lady, Nasharel, wandered the Bloodstone Lands for years, slowly making their way south towards civilized lands. Along the way the pair became fast friends, and the friendship grew into love. With time Nasharel revealed to Hal that she was an elf from Evermeet, far to the west, and bound to become a song dragon, heir to an ancient powerful lineage, and the reason why she had been captured by Xerez. Hal vowed to protect her and her secret with his life.
The pair spent some years in the city of Raven’s Bluff, where Hal honed his talents as a duelist, working odd jobs, helping out adventurers, fighting off petty thieves, while collecting money to buy passage across the Sea of Fallen Stars back to his mother’s land, the Dalelands. Before dying, Ariadne had hidden her flute in Hal’s sack and inside was a small scratched-out map of her home in Highmoon, Deepingdale.
As Tymora would have it, Hal finally found passage in the employ of an old wizard, Geruth, also hailing from Highmoon. Geruth had been absent from his hometown for decades, but he did know of Hal’s family. Geruth also told Hal that his flute was of elven making and he recognized the mark of the Whitewyrm clan of Cormanthor. Could that be his father’s clan?
Geruth recognized in Hal raw magical talent and decided to try to teach the young man how to harness it. As good as an apprentice as Hal was for those last few years in Raven’s Bluff, he simply never learned the ways of sorcery. He could understand it, but not channel it, much to the frustration of his master. As they sailed across the Sea of Fallen Stars finally heading home, Geruth realized why this was: the elven blood in Hal cut him off from human sorcery. But maybe, just maybe, that meant he could learn elven magical songs if he ever found a mentor.
It was a year ago that Geruth passed away, finally having seen his hometown of Highmoon once more. Hal reclaimed his mother’s small cottage and found a cousin he never knew of (a family reunion which did not go at all as Hal had hoped). Nasharel remains at his side, though he has of late seen her gazing west.
It is time to seek out his father in the vastness of Cormanthor. It is time to reclaim his elven heritage as he has been able to reclaim his human one. Taking the name Whitewyrm, Hal now sets out to find his place in the world, once and for all.