Weapons Master aboard the Araen Horizon
LG Old Male Human Fighter 10
The El-Amin family was one of the lucky ones who managed to flee Sa’Har La’Parn ahead of Calimar’s conquering armies flowing out of the Shadowlands. When the family patriarch volunteered to return and fight the hordes, 15-year-old Haroun went with him. Skilled with a blade, Haroun also showed a knack for seeing more than just his small part of the battlefield. When a ballista crew was killed by catapult shot during one battle, Haroun quickly gathered up some men and took over the siege engine’s operation. His eye for tactics, coupled with the high ground where the artillery sat, allowed him and his crew to target trouble spots with unerring precision and helped turn the tide of battle. His superiors were impressed, and Haroun spent the rest of the war as a siege engineer, working his way up the ranks to a battery commander by the war’s end.
After the Fall Haroun put what he had learned in engineering to more peaceful pursuits, helping to rebuild his wartorn homeland. He oversaw many construction projects throughout the kingdom, though his skills with siege engines was in high demand along the border with Sarduk’Noir as the two countries settled into something of a cold war. Despite being busy with numerous projects, Haroun found time to fall in love and start a family. It was a happy time, and one that Haroun looks back on with bittersweet joy.
As an engineer, Haroun had always been fascinated by the stories he heard about Wavebreaker Keep, the floating fortress built by the dwarves of Clan Wavebreaker. Two decades after the Fall, on his 45th birthday, Haroun’s family surprised him with a planned trip to the Keep. Booking passage on a large merchant ship that also took passengers, the family boarded the ship for an extended vacation. They were less than a week away from Wavebreaker Keep when the vessel they were on was attacked by Noiri pirates. Haroun worked the ship’s single light ballista like a fiend hoping to save them all, but it was not enough. The pirates had a captured Yungian cannon aboard their ship, and a lucky shot took the merchant vessel just above the waterline. As the ship began sinking, the pirates swarmed aboard, killing and looting with equal abandon. Haroun’s wife and sons were all killed outright, while his daughter was dragged, screaming, aboard the pirate’s vessel. Haroun himself fought like a man possessed, but was brought down by volleys of crossbow bolts. As the merchant ship broke up and slipped beneath the waves, Haroun and any other survivors who weren’t taken as slaves were left for dead. Barely conscious, Haroun clung desperately to a piece of planking.
Haroun drifted alone on the sea for three days, barely alive. The attack had come when the merchant ship was sailing along a major current used by numerous trading companies, however. On the third day, another merchant ship passed and spotted him in the water. They fished him out and brought him to Wavebreaker Keep. Though this was not how he had wanted to arrive at the Keep, the clerics there were able to heal him, bringing Haroun back from the brink of death. Though his body and mind were whole again, Haroun’s spirit burned with hatred for the men who had taken his family from him, and for all who would make their living through piracy and enslavement. At the age of 45, Haroun rededicated himself to war, this time taking his skills to sea. Recruiting himself an able crew of siege engineers, Haroun signed onto any ship in need of his services and likely to see action against pirates. Over the next decade, he built himself a reputation as one of the best weapons masters under sail.
In that time the burning passion of his hatred abated some, though it would never die completely. Despite his skills in war, Haroun was a builder by nature, and deep inside he knew that his family would wish that, rather that rage and death, to be his legacy to them. When Captain Breakwater came to enlist his services for the Araen Horizon’s journey, Haroun agreed and set aside battle for exploration.