The year is 1108.
"Why did I have to come to this Godforsaken land?"
You mutter those words to yourself, looking around quickly to make sure none of the young and impressionable archers has by chance overheard you. But as you walk along the perimeter of this dull and foreboding outpost, those words echo again and again in your mind.
Just seven months ago, you were in the Royal Gaurd of the King, a highly decorated young Knight full of potential and with the promise of command just over the horizon. Then came the war with the Duc De Beauregard, a treacherous and unexpected rise against the power of the throne, and with it came the dissension and corruption to the forefront of the Royal Gaurd. You grimace angrily as you think back upon the infighting that plagues the Gaurd, and the plots of a certain commander whose actions brought you to this shameful place known as Esregoth.
Discredited by your superior officer, you were given this lowly and very dangerous assignment here, to protect the vital pitch repository of Esregoth from falling into the hands of the Snake. As if this weren't difficult enough, along with the King's request for an emergency shipment of the foul-smelling substance and stores of iron, new orders have arrived today from the commander of the Gaurd. As you read this latest dispatch, you note well by whose hand this order has been penned, and now you have the confirmation of your commander's desire to see you destroyed.
For the orders call upon you to assail and defeat the Lord Amothous, a powerful and ruthless bandit leader, and ally of Beauregard, whose fortress across the river Goth has stood against the power of the gaurd for over a decade. Crumpling the parchment in disgust and anger, you silently curse Commander Jerrod and his corrupt cronies in the Gaurd.
You look out over the desolate plains of Esregoth, and vow to God and the Crown that you will purge the Gaurd of this stain, and restore your place of honor in its ranks.
"But only if I get out of this hell alive, that is!", you smile grimly.
This is Part I in the "Return to Glory" series.
Part II: Defenders of the Faith
Part III: The Price of Blood
Part IV: Restoration