Tales from Velrah
A burly set Hobbit
Brimbleton was born into a poor family among several other children, in one of the main cities. During the days they would labor in the local iron mines, and in the evening their father would teach them to read and write while their mother prepared dinner. His parents had noticed his aptitude for manipulating magical energies at a very young age, but it was rarely spoken of. Impoverish families with gifted children could never pursue the art, as the colleges were expensive and the craft was aggressively guarded against all but the wealthy and prestigious.
When he was old enough to leave home, he immigrated north to the colder regions where the winters were long, and days were short and dim. A large nickle deposit had been discovered, and a small village had formed to accommodate the miners. The foreman was a mean spirited dwarf, who was never seen without a mug of Ale in hand, and was drunk more often than not. After a few weeks of grueling work he could hardly remember what it felt like to be warm, and free of the numbness that tingled at the end of every limb.
Two years into working the nickle mine an elderly man arrived with news of growing pressures from south, and the need for greater production. Two women accompanied him, one short and plump, while the other stood nearly seven feet tall and walked with a limp. They formed a council with the dwarf, and the four began overseeing a the newly structured operation. Among other improvements, they brought in a withering old sage and a group of fresh apprentices. A program was started, and any miners with enough aptitude were taught the spell “lift”, and were sent to a semi-permanent encampment deep in the belly of the mine where they were made to work together to lift any stone too large for the men to carry. Brimbleton was one of these men.
The pay was much better, and he was actually able to pocket a few copper each week as savings. The work was exhausting, but it was much warmer so far below the surface. Every second week a few of the men were transferred out, and a group of new workers would arrive. One day shortly after one of these shift changes, one of the men leaving came screaming down the corridor back to the encampment. The flickering torchlight made it hard to discern what was happening from a distance, but as he grew nearer, the forms of three robed men appeared behind him. Reaching the encampment, blistering red boils could be seen on his skin, and a steady stream of snot and tears rolled down his face. In anguish he yelled “THEY’RE KILLING US! WE… WE DONT RETURN TO THE SURFACE! THEY KILL US!”. And with that, the three figures were on him. Fire erupted from their fingertips melting the flesh from his body, and sending a putrid stench throughout the encampment.
Chaos ensued. The miners panicked and a group of them charged the robed men. Fire erupted everywhere, and the bloody screams of the dying echoed all around Brimbleton. He managed to find his footing and bolted for the cavern leading to the surface. Two men followed him as they dodged their way through dark tunnels, around equipment, and over the scorched bodies of the former gifted miners. Nearing the surface they pushed their way past their coworkers, returning their looks of confusion with panic and fear.
Finally, Brimbleton bursts out into the sunlight. The ringing of his friends deathcries far behind him. Before him stands a startled dwarf, drunk and angry as ever. He lunches towards Brimbleton, but is easily avoided with a swift step to the right. Brimbleton takes off running, diving into the bushes, and pushing his way through thick underbrush. Adrenaline and fear fuel his escape, and he doesn’t stop running until nightfall.
Brimbleton escapes, and returns home. He briefly visits his family, but the fear of being found again by his pursuers keeps him from staying. Obviously, the sage had never meant to allow him to keep the knowledge of his magic , and would do whats necessary to protect it’s secret. Brimbleton joins two companions on a grand adventure to a strange new land.