Sometime after the reported death of first Arthur, then Merlin, the distant and magical land of Alaejzia (uh-LAY-jhee-uh)
noticed the methodical disappearance of their magical portals from the land of men. Alaejzia was a land of magic and fantastical
creatures, theorized by some to be the same land known as Elyssium, as well as the destination of the elves during their exodus
from the mortal realm. The Alaejzians then began to experience first small, then larger attacks coming from the portals which
had already closed.
Small armies at first, then larger ones of the darker races, orcs, goblins, even demons, were destroying village after village
and becoming more and more difficult to thwart. It was deduced that the portals had only closed on the Alaejzian side, and
that either these races were escaping the lands of dying magic, as so many had before them, or the other side of the portals
had opened to new, darker realms. Either way, their goal was conquest.
At first Alaejzia attempted to send armies through the remaining portals, to defend from the other side. It was immediately
evident that once a single person had passed through, the portal would close down. Again, this was only on the Alaejzian
side, as the dark races continued to come forth. After some time, however, it appeared that those who passed through were
able to defend or shut down their portal, as the greater percentage of those passed through would become inactive. Those
few that remained active usually produced armies sporting the travellers head on a pike.
Thus it was decided that champions would be selected from among volunteers. Champions who would risk their lives to protect
their beloved home, though they would apparently never return as none yet had. Each race deferred to the most magical and
wise creatures in their kingdoms to choose their defenders, usually from amongst society's exceptional warriors and nobles.
Etienne was not one of these.
Born Zephendriel Jzanaire, a glen elf from the shire of Behren, he was of modest means from a family of artisans. When an
army of pit demons ravaged his land when he was still just a teen, Etienne lost his entire family. Being a fairly exceptional
artist and poet, he was taken under the wing of an anthropologist for the local Duke. This Duke was concerned about the preservation
of the arts and histories of the land, and sent the young artist and his master on an expedition to the Elder Forest where
they were to document in word and art the Dragon-Shields, a people who trained and rode wyvern dragons, as well as befriending
their far more intelligent brethren.
It was on this journey that Etienne met Etléon (et-lay-OHN), one of the two great dragons of the Elven Kingdom. Etléon was
the great emerald dragon of Lake Silverwind, a creature of discipline, power and skill. As the young elf made sketches and
notes of the great creature, their many conversations grew into friendship. Etléon even began to train Etienne in swordplay
and warfare. Etienne was also able to meet Etléons counterpart, Namorill (NAM-o-ril), the silver-blue elvish dragon of Alaejzia
Palace, the spirit of magic, passion and beauty. Namorill never spoke, but communicated only in emotion, and warned Etienne
that a great occurrence was coming in his life, and to prepare.
There came a time of calling in the great city, which Etléon invited the elf to witness. The emerald guardian was being summoned
to select a new champion for another portal. As Etienne marvelled at the citys beauty and the great crowd gathered in the
square, he suddenly heard his name. It was Etléon, calling him to the Kings side. The dragon told Etienne that this was
his calling, to become a champion of Alaejzia, and to guard a portal, never to return. The crowd was aghast that such a commoner
would surpass all their nobles and warlords, but none questioned the wise and immortal Etléon. An unnatural peace accompanied
Etienne as he realized that, though he loved his homeland, he had nothing to tie him there. The king presented him with ancient
magical weapons and Etléon gave him one last word.
Henceforth, you shall be known as Etienne, making your full name Dragonsword, bearer of the winds of change. You are a guardian
of magic, champion of Alaejzia, friend of dragons, and bringer of light. Trust in yourself, your skills and your heart.
Do not think that you will not see my sister and I again... and with that, the elf was swept away.
Arriving in the land of men, the lands of dying magic, Etienne found himself in a kingdom controlled by the Francs. In a
few short years, he deduced that where he had arrived was most certainly not where the portal that travelled into Alaejzia
was located. He found himself persistently, though not constantly, harassed and attacked by dark races. Etienne defended
himself and those around him well enough, but it was his drawings and paintings of his longing for home that began to stir
Etienne found that the people began to grow stronger in their defense against the dark races. He found his counsel being
sought by all sorts, from milk maids to nobles, all inspired or haunted by his art. He also found himself the target of
doubt and suspicion. But most surprising of all, he found that many of the mortals did not see the dark races for what they
were. They called them bandits, rogues, and foreigners. That is, until they studied on his arts. Those that truly looked
upon and thought upon his paintings began to see the orcs and goblins for what they were. It was during this time that a
young common woman named Joan came to him. She told him of a vision she had experienced while viewing a painting of his at
her village chapel. She saw an enormous army of ogres and orcs besieging their land from the West. She saw a sword in her
hand, a shield at her breast and two dragons at her side, one silver, one emerald.
Immediately they swept to the British coast of France, where fortresses were being defended against what the soldiers saw
as Britons. Joan and Etienne saw something else. Etienne worked his slowly waning magic to gain Joan an audience with the
king, as well as to sway him to give Joan her army. The two led their country to victory over the dark ones, but the church
heard rumors of what Joan had not told the king, and grew suspicious of her. She was put on trial and convicted of treason,
but Etienne worked the last of his magic to free her by casting an illusion of her burning body. The two travelled away to
towards the source of their former enemy, but Joan had insisted they take her fiance along. The years rode harder on Joan
and her husband than they did on Etienne, so he bade them to tuck away in a small village in Scotland to live their lives
in peace, knowing they had done their duty to their country and their people.
Disillusioned with the government of his former home, Etienne travelled on to the wilder lands of the Celts. Here, he caught
rumor of a holy grail, lost long ago in the realm of King Arthur. Etienne knew that Merlin had actually been an Alaejzian
wizard of great reknown. Being rumored in his homeland to be a child of Etléon, he had travelled to the realm of men to nurture
a ruler and guide them into peace and prosperity. Where Merlin had been successful in his former goal, the darker races had
twisted the realm until Merlins champion, Arthur, was eventually betrayed. Merlin had taken a powerful magical artifact,
a chalice of immortality to this land, but had hidden it away after Arthurs death. This enraged the dark races and they hunted
him down, supposedly led by the greater devil, Asmodeus, who finally took Merlins life.
Etienne rushed to solve the mystery and find the land known as Avalon, to fulfill his duty, for he was sure it must be the
portal to Alaejzia. At the misty hills of Stonehenge, Etienne heard a familiar voice and saw a glint of emerald in the distant
fog. A faint whisper told him, You are near, Dragonsword. Your path is true. Make your hearth for those like you, and ally
with the rose and the wolf. Your answer lies in the great mystery...
Etienne then found others waiting at the Gates of Avalon, there to defend, understand and celebrate all that once was in this
holy land. Etienne has attempted to uphold what his guide instructed, as best he has yet understood, and has established
a realm of patrons, practitioners and defenders of the arts.
He has named this realm... Behrenglen.
But he has not gone unnoticed.