Adreil Soulguard- Origin Story
Adreil Soulguard’s human mother, Lilly, gave birth to him privately, at home with a few friends. Their home world, PlanetMe, served as humanity’s central existence in the new solar system, Dawn. With humanity having settled in Dawn less than a hundred years ago, humanity’s presence wasn’t yet accepted by all races and species. Visiting otherworldly beings sometimes drew ire and prejudice from the humans on PlanetMe. With that, living on humanity’s home world as a being touched by the elements, with ashen-blue skin, meant having very few friends and plenty of detractors. It weighed on Lilly, thinking of what her son might face. Where they lived in the main city, Meta PlanetMe, Lilly mainly kept to herself for a couple of years. She tried to stick it out, have faith in humanity, remain in the only home she ever knew. She eventually gave up and relocated when Adreil was two.
Before Adreil’s birth, his father, Jaishoj, left Lilly plenty of riches when he eventually had to leave her. A life on the material plane just wasn’t in the cards for an air genie. Lilly took her riches and moved her family of two, away from the skeptical posturing that the population had grown to accept as normal. She bought a house in a wooded area named, Aural Respite. The more spiritually aligned gathered in this small locale to the north, a place Lilly felt was perfect for her son. She schooled him on being a good person and polite. He studied academically on his own by taking video-recorded classes and tests. Adreil learned quickly in most of what he studied and practiced.
Having never known his genie father from the elemental planes, Adreil found himself with very little to guide him in the ways of magic. He possessed an arcane way of manipulating the air around him; harnessing it was a different matter. As time carried on, Adreil found himself increasingly enthralled with nature. The plants and trees, the animals, the way the water moved through the lands and the wind rustled through the trees. He found himself more and more capable of directing the energy nature provided, even if it equated to moving two grains of sand instead of one. To him, progress meant progress.
When Adreil came of age, his mother knew it was time for him to leave and explore the solar system. On PlanetMe, there was very little left for Adreil to learn. And to know at all about the Djinn blood running through his veins would mean leaving the planet. So Adreil kissed his mother’s tears goodbye and took a month’s passage on a transport ship to the planet Katura, known for its vast spans of forests, grasses, and swamps. Here he spent the next few years living with Partel, an old halfling shaman he met soon after arriving.
Partel looked after and taught Adreil the way of the woods, how to listen to what nature had to say and how to react to his environment. He also worked with Adreil to control his magic, call upon it at will, and tame it when needed. The student practiced his skills for a few years, earning a lifetime of knowledge about the essence of the natural world. Then his mentor became very sick. In Partel’s last moments, he grabbed Adriel’s arm and forced a surge of emerald green energy through him. The rush of power left Adreil reeling to the wooden floor, gasping for air, his skin pulsating a green glow. The student rushed back to his friend and held his hand, comforting Partel as he died peacefully several seconds later. Adreil was saddened to let go of the closest thing to a father he ever had. This also meant that his time on Katura had come to an end.
Having no one to guide him and no direction, Adreil traveled to Katura’s main spaceport to look for a way forward, find a new path, a new life. He met an elf woman who told him she knew a collective that needed someone with extraordinary talents like his. She said the group fought for freedom and the oppressed. With very little in the way of a purpose, Adreil was happy to find a place that could use him, with a group of people who wanted to help keep things fair for all and fight prejudice. So he accepted.
Adreil took a transport to an unnamed planet further from the sun, mostly covered in ice. He studied and practiced with a handful of other people, all older than him. He learned about the current affairs in Dawn and its thousands of planets orbiting the two stars, Tripoas and Alectrona. His mentor, Triga, trained him in the arts of deception and performance. As a gnome, she was extremely agile and quick, something he needed work on. Triga also taught him how to pick locks, a skill he hoped to master one day. He enjoyed learning to play Poker from the other trainees, a skill he excelled in. In a different classroom, he learned to sing songs of lore. In those classes, Adreil also learned he couldn’t sing very well.
Living in the ice caves, away from the forests he spent most of his life surrounded by, he found himself being able to use his abilities rather well. Whereas growing up, and even under Partel’s tutelage, he felt as if he needed nature’s energy to be able to cast even the slightest hint of a spell. He attributed his unforeseen fortitude in magic to Partel’s passing gift.
Feeling nothing was amiss made it easier for him to focus on his new endeavor as a Grinner. The Golden Grin, a secret society that promotes the expression of one’s self free of hindrances and roadblocks, strives above all to achieve freedom for the oppressed. They serve as a band of performers and bards seeking people to inspire. There were times when he wondered if he had chosen the right path in training as a Grinner. Alternatively, he couldn’t argue with the skills he learned and what they could do for him should the need arise. In the end, somehow, Adreil learned to get by as a performer.
After a year on the ice world, he was told of a highly respected ship looking for a new crew member. Adreil was to join Venture, a transport ship, to get experience in space. Triga said she would inform him when it was time to move on. For now, it was essential to have experience away from land for a couple of years. Adreil accepted, happy to learn completely new skills.
Once he boarded the ship, an earpiece was installed behind his ear. Living with technology in his ear was far from the naturalistic way of life he practiced. But he grew up with forms of tech on PlanetMe, so it didn’t bother him too much. And being able to talk to the crew so effortlessly wasn’t unimpressive. Adreil was taken on a tour of the vessel the next day. He decided to keep his magical talents to himself after meeting the vast array of races onboard. With so many new people, whom to trust was an unknown.
His first job on Venture was working in the loading dock, a position he found rather monotonous. The Aasimar that trained him, Xavier, made the job a little better. Xavier was close to his age and, like Adreil, shared blood from another plane of existence. They each gained a friend, someone more similar to them. They also learned they were the only one of their kind each of them had ever seen, a fact that encompassed the very essence of bittersweet. It served to reinforce the reality of knowing that they genuinely were alone. But now, at least they had a good friend to trudge forth alongside.
After eighteen months, Adreil was promoted to the bridge to work in communications. Where he met the captain, Tilar. Seeing a human so far from PlanetMe was strange to him. Adreil had heard of the humans who rallied to keep humanity from taking so many planets for themselves. Perhaps Tilar was one of the same.
Only months after his promotion to the bridge, Adreil received a message from Triga. She informed him of a mission that will return him to the planets he missed. She said Xavier will be offered the same. Triga asked Adriel to accept the task and have Xavier join him. He pondered how they knew about Xavier and why they wanted his participation. From what Adreil could tell, Xavier wasn’t exactly mission-type. Had he any training for this? Would he get hurt? Regardless, Adreil felt happy to have his friend get out of space for a while and be a part of the operation. He figured if Xavier would go, so would he. And so they did.
They ended up in a private spaceport, where they were assessed and placed into an undercover mission on a world called, Carida. There they would join a group called Those of Justice, the only way to get onto the planet. The Founders, a human collective exploiting inhabited planets, had an outpost there. An unsettling aspect to the mission, but also a chance for Adreil to put his Grinner tactics to work liberating the people. Their mission was to find something called the Phasing Stone. And the best part, no one knew where it was or what it looked like.
An update to his earpiece was installed and then Adreil and Xavier boarded a ship. On board, they were processed and put into an empty holding room with two chairs and a table.
Xavier jumped up and put his hand to his ear. “Hello?”
Adriel looked at him curiously, his eyes squinting. “Who are you talking to?”
“Hello, Adreil,” an AI voice said in Xavier's ear, sounding gentle and smooth.
Adreil also jumped, covering his ear. “Who is that?”
“I am Aria, and I will be your guide.”
A day later, they mysteriously woke up in a cell, not remembering how they got there or where they were.
And this is where our story begins….