The land of Dalriada is a spring of many tales, but it is the rise of its greatest
king and smallest champion that we share today. Many ages ago the Kingdom of Grendale
stood protected by guardians of the earth. Gnomes, brownies and fairies watched over
its people. When king Gyro was crowned, things changed.
The king was passionate about engineering and soon had his people building industrial
inventions to make life easier. As they laid down roads and put up street lights, the
protection of the Elderwood spirits became less necessary. Years passed as the people
of Grendale enjoyed a life of comfort and safety.
Satisfied with his kingdom's progress king Gyro called for a grand celebration. The
entire kingdom would enjoy fireworks and fill their tummies under an autumn moon.
The Elderwood is full of gnomes but its local watchman is the only fire gnome amongst
them. Kindle was raised by his uncle Gusto while he was working in a dwarven forge.
When the forge was invaded by gremlins Kindle’s uncle decided it was too dangerous
for them to remain so deep underground. The two of them came to the surface to live
in peace in the Elderwood. Kindle took up job as an Elderwood watchman, flying about
on his owl at night lighting lamps and ensuring no harm came to his new home.
Dalriada was once a peaceful area inhabited by all kinds of beings but humans polluted
the land with politics and began to fight amongst themselves. The great and ancient
snow owls didn’t believe the humans would ever stop fighting so they migrated north
deep into the highlands. One owl named Wick stayed behind to watch over the Elderwood
and bring word to the north if peace ever returned.
Powerful evils sleep deep in the earth and are only awoken when others call upon them
to do their bidding. More than 400 years ago Dalriada saw a great war of kings, the
Ulma Empire and Gaels fought over Glengorm Castle. The King of the Gaels ripped off
his cloak and threw it to the ground cursing his enemies. One of his naïve troops
picked it up and was twisted in fire and darkness. Great smoke bellowed from
where he once stood and the entire battle fell quiet. Then arising from the ashes
stood a tall and gnarled figure. He was known as the demon warlord "Candlefinger".
The soup troop
These clueless gremlins hunt for anything soft and tasty enough to throw into their
soup pots. Originally they were master chefs of hell’s kitchen but when Candlefinger
realized their secret ingredient was throwing in anything that they whacked over the
head he quickly recruited them for his war. In fear of them hurting themselves more
than the enemy Candlefinger rearmed them all with soup ladles rather than knifes.
It is said gremlin scouts are some of the best spies in the Underworld; unfortunately
they have a hard time every reporting anything back because they always find a way
to get lost. Candlefinger knows his scouts are a bunch of hopeless twits but any
help is better than no help, especially when you are an evil overlord that doesn’t
pay well or at all.
Pillaging an entire kingdom is a big job and to do so one would need a lot of muscle
to move the King’s loot. Candlefinger noticed the Underworld's coal workers playing
tricks on each other and stealing each other’s stuff so he recruited each of them
and gave them a sack of bombs. Months of arduous training and finally he had them
disciplined in the art of putting stuff into bags.
Consuming strange cave mushrooms is rumored to make one’s size increase. In reality
they just make you bonkers and jump around like an idiot. Gremlins that have snacked
on these too often have become a bit odd. Candlefinger at first didn’t see any good
in sending them to war but after watching them bounce around and smack things with
a club he decided to use them en masse.
The biggest problem with running a gang of evil gremlins is that you can never trust
them. Gremlins aren’t particularly loyal or interested in taking orders. There is
however a group of extremely stubborn purebloods that consider the protection of
anything the highest honor. Candlefinger has promised them all sacks of coal to
guards on success of his siege.
Few gremlins ever learn to fight or take orders, but when Candlefinger first appeared
in the underworld he was met by a force of gremlin warriors unlike he had ever known.
They came at him with daggers, clubs and shields but in the end however they met defeat
by his magic and pledged to follow him to war for a share of the king’s treasure.
Knowing most couldn’t count let alone survive, Candlefinger agreed to their terms of service.
Castle Grendale has seen many kings but none of them adored by its people like king Gyro.
The king was crowned at a young age because of the early passing of his father; Gyro
shouldered his loss by absorbing himself in engineering and never made his sadness public.
After years of practice Gyro set his sights on industrializing the city and making everything
automated. He and his people found successes by replacing terrible common jobs with inventions,
lining the streets with lamps and buildings with lifts. Little did the king realise he was
making his people too dependent on technology and the repercussions would soon draw near.
The King's guards
A king never handles his own dirty work, that’s what he has knights for. Gyro being
so overly compassionate and concerned for his men’s lives dismissed them all to live in peace.
The people were terrified at the idea their kingdom was without protection. However a month later
Gyro addressed his people and presented them with his newest invention the Arthur-209. An army
of fully steam driven suit of armors build specifically to deal with unsavoury folks and flapjacks.
Grendale was built by a Celtic tribe of hopeful and warm hearted people. This tribe drew their
strength from the land and the spirits dwelling in it. Every morning they would place out small
offerings and ever year they would celebrate the Solstice to embrace their humble lives. Time
is an unfortunate formula for change and loss of innocence. Grendale’s people slowly turned
away from the old ways giving in to convenience and abandoning the roots of their culture.
The Elderwood is home of countless spirits and sprites, the most difficult one to ignore is
its large brownie population. Brownies litter the natural landscape playing tricks on each other
and practicing their mischievous spells whenever they get a chance. They are powerful and stubborn
but lack any sort of bravery retreating at the first sight of trouble or defeat.
Not all sprites are completely good; some sprites believe the realm of humans only exists as a
backdrop to their own world, flamesprites are one of these unruly types of sprites. Their origins
lay deep underground beyond the Underworld close to the center of the earth. They slumber within
fairy stones unless woken by kindred spirits in search of help or advice.
Air gnomes are said never to touch the ground, they are far too hyper active and curious to stay
in one place for too long. Kindle’s uncle Gusto is not only an air gnome but the oldest known one
to live in the Elderwood. Gusto raised his little nephew Kindle when his parents were lost to him
in a great subterranean earthquake. Gusto is in and out of the Elderwood but hasn’t been seen in
over 4 years. Kindle knows his uncle will drop in soon since he raised him to stand tall and live
by his word.