“There is a sword that is black and cold as the space between stars. It has gone by many names throughout the ages. When it laid asunder the Empire of Vesuuv two-thousand years ago, it called itself ‘Ilsafar’, the Vesuuvian word for ‘disaster.’ Centuries later when it slew every member of the royal family of Grandal and threw the nation in a bloody civil war, it took the name Belsavis, which was the name of the greatest demon in their religion. Most recently it was wielded during what it called “The Culling”, it was wielded by a terrible, evil swordsman called Anubis, and the sword took the name ‘Death’."
“It took an alliance of every knightly order in the realm to finally stop Anubis. A paladin strike force numbering one-thousand and backed by the largest army that the kingdom had ever fielded declared war on Anubis. Anubis lead no army, he had no followers that he hadn’t already killed. He stood against them alone, smiling.”
“The army was utterly destroyed. There are survivors, but not many. And the paladins… they all died, save one. Hadiyah, their leader, was the only survivor, but she brought news that Anubis had been defeated. He would plague the kingdom no more. We could rebuild. We could heal. We could mourn the dead.”
“The temples were all in ruins, the palace was on fire, and few had homes worth returning to. One man, and his wicked blade, had destroyed a kingdom thousands of years old. Hadiyah traced the swrod’s history through time, and found that always, when the sword surfaced, men suffered. She decided to find a way to destroy the sword, once and for all. But her order of paladins had been utterly destroyed, and she needed aid. She found me, and thought I was worthy, and recruited me to be her apprentice and her partner. Together we seek the anathema to the Dark Blade, that which can shatter it forever.”
“I am Iskandar. Anubis killed my parents before my eyes and forced me to watch. I was not a paladin when they launched their brave assault on the monster Anubis, but I was present at the battle. I am a swordsman, wanderer, seeker, and scholar. I chase tales of the sword in dusty tomes, forgotten on the shelves of ancient libraries. I pursue rumor of the sword’s twin — a weapon of light, as righteous and just as the sword is wicked and bloody. And I seek the sword’s new wielder, so that I might try to save them from the blade’s corrupting influence before it is too late.”
- Iskandar is a vegetarian, and does not drink alcohol.
- Although he is apprenticed to and partnered with a great holy warrior, Iskandar himself is not a paladin. He lives by the general creed, but he does not hear the song of the divine.
- The word iskandar means “starlight” in the ancient language of his people.