My name is Altair, I am 250 human years old and I have had a difficult life up to this point. I was born in the Northern Forest of this land, known to my people as Nal-Alheim. My family was a part of a larger clan of elves holding residence in the forest. The only family I ever knew was my parents, they had no living relatives and I was their only child. My father was a hunter and my mother a trader, so we had no great position in Elven society, though my father Umar was highly respected and renowned as an adept hunter. He taught me the basics of knife work, and taught me how to move silently and blend as to not alert prey. My mother had acquired many useful and interesting skills from traders she met, which she then taught me. Thus I became practiced in playing the lute, flute, and drums, bluffing customers, and a trivial understanding of mechanics. I was happy, perfectly contented in my life, and enjoyed a relatively peaceful childhood. Then, at the mere age of 100, my life changed its course. I was at the stream near our camp as I usually did collecting herbs for my mother’s potions, when a party of traders rode in. Not an uncommon during the harvest seasons. The group of traders consisted of 2 Humans, an Orc, and a Halfling. The Halfling I recognized from many trading sessions in the past, but the others faces were new to me. I wasn’t worried because as new people came often to catch a glimpse at a real Elven clan. Thinking nothing of it I returned to my whimsical task. Then, I heard a commotion in the background. I stood and turned only to take a club to the face and fall unconscious.
I awoke in bondages in the back of the caravan that had visited my camp. I struggled to get free until I noticed that I was alone. Confused, I wormed to the entrance of the cart I was in, and was shocked to see hundreds of towers of stones upon stones, that I had heard of only from the tales of travelers, called it a city. In my moment of awe, I was pulled from behind by the Orc from camp who had several new fresh wounds on his familiar gray hide. He dragged me out of the caravan and removed my gag so I might speak; frightened I asked where I was, to which I was given an indignant snort. I kept asking unanswered questions until I was thrown into a room lit with torches and candles. A desk adorned with coins and a trading scale were central in the room. Behind the desk sat a short weasel of a man whose name I later learned to be Minard. Minard glanced up at me and scoffed as he sent the Orc away. He told me that he and his colleagues had been hired by a group of sorcerers who required the blood of a young elf to power some bizarre ritual. He explained that they had gone to my camp to merely barter for a small amount of blood and leave, but my mother became outraged and refused to hand me over to them. She called for Umar in the panic the orc instinctively swung at my mother, effectively severing her head. When my father rushed in and saw my mother, he attacked and wounded the orc, but was also killed in the struggle. Since they knew that the whole clan would soon be on top of them, they snatched me and ran. I was so shocked by this I collapsed.
For the second time I awoke not knowing where I was, until I noticed that the bondages were gone and the caravan was nowhere to be seen. Coming to my senses I found a note at my feet that read “We got what we needed so this is where our business ends and you get left here to fend for yourself. Thanks and have fun kid. P.S. Welcome to Acre.” Bewildered and confused I barely noticed the wound on my arm where they must have taken my blood. For the next few days I drank rain water from gutters and ate scraps with rats, I was so confused by the immensity and complexity of the city that I had no hope of finding my way out of Acre. I was at the brink of starvation a week after they left me; I just curled into a ball and cried myself to sleep. I awoke to find a human boy around my age (relatively) looking down at me and staring at my ears. I engaged him in conversation and asked him how he could survive in this city alone, he told me of a gang of young thieves who shared their profits in food. Desperate, I begged him to take me to them. After showing them my proficiency with a knife and my sneaking skills they allowed me to join their ranks. My teacher who showed me the basics of thieving was named Arond, he was half-elf which made a bigger bond to him than most I had with others. I spent the next 50 years in that gang. Since I aged slower than the human boys I eventually rose to the leadership and held it until I was old enough to make a real living for myself. Using the money I had scraped from the gang I left to find my clan. When I got there I found nothing except two young sapling trees growing side by side. I knew that this had to be my parent’s graves as was our tradition to plant trees over graves. After paying my respects to them I made no more effort to locate my clan, as they would no longer accept someone as criminal as I. After some time back in the city arranging my affairs I moved to the desert village of Masyaf where I joined a guild of assassins and thieves. My mentor Al Mualim taught me how to use the weapons of an assassin and honed the thieving abilities I had learned from the Acre gang. Al Mualim also taught me new methods for agility and speed like climbing or tumbling. I felt very included in the Brotherhood and felt as if I were at home until Al Mualim died and I was offered the leadership. I didn’t want it. I left and the Brotherhood dissolved, very few real assassins remain. I spent the next 50 years or so moving from town to town, selling my skills. I made a very handsome amount of gold. Slowing down I spent my fortune buying ale. Eventually my funds ran out, and had to resort to petty theft. Apparently I am not as good as I once thought, and got thrown in jail, which is where I sit at present. So here I sit, writing this journal, hoping someone will show the kindness to bail me out so that I can start anew.