Legend of the Crystals
Former Leader of Liberation Army (Deceased)
Sebastian was born into a family of gem cutters a jewellers, and quickly learned the trade himself. His fairly wealthy upbringing afforded him the benefit of an education. He went to the academy, where he studied everything from higher mathematics and physical sciences to economics and philosophy. Such a privileged and learned man was quickly bored with just making jewellery, and decided he could expand the business by buying a cart and hiring employees. He wanted to travel and see the world, and at the same time make money as a merchant. He started by selling jewellery he and his family made but were unable to sell locally. He soon branched out to buy and sell food and spices, precious metals, leather and leather goods, livestock, horseshoes, even weapons and armour. His business soon expanded to include a fleet of drivers and armed guards to discourage highwaymen.
Sebastian’s reputation as an honest hard working business man grew, and soon he was well known among the common man and nobility alike. He had the opportunity to mix and mingle with high society, including nobles and officials of several nations including the empire. He was an idealist and believed in nations working together to solve common problems. When the empire began its aggressive posturing, Sebastian realized his business would likely be diverted to the war effort. He pulled his business out of the empire except for a few select routes. At this point he began propositioning the other nations to form an alliance, to resist attempts by the empire to divide the south through bribery, intimidation, extortion or all out war. He knew the vast power and wealth of the empire and that it was capable of dividing and conquering the south. Some nation states learn more towards wanting to join the empire so they can be protected, others are very proud and think they can defend themselves without an alliance, and others are more likely to work together. Still, he pushed his brand of diplomacy as far as he could, as a lowly merchant, but knew even if he was a king and was able to forge such an alliance, that they would still fail. Their number would be too small against the might of the empire. It will be too little, too late. He had to do more. As such he started working with the common people.
He started locally, recruiting those that saw the empire as a threat and who realized their governments were not doing enough to stop them. He formed a militia known as the liberation army, who met secretly to discuss how to react should the empire wage war against them. Many of his caravan guards were his first soldiers, but he recruited everyone from blacksmiths to tailors, farmers to fisherman, peasants to merchants. Even some nobles secretly joined. This manpower allowed him to move into the next phase of the plan, to find those in the empire that were against its rule, those who wanted to be liberated. He sent spies north to learn what they could. It turned out there was already a small group going by the name liberation army who had secret meetings thought the empire. These were people who were in some way or another oppressed by the empire, and wanted to be free from tyranny. The problem is this group, led by a man named Richard Gray, mostly just complained, and with the exception of the group that regularly met with Richard, who actually worked to free political prisoners (that was the group that freed the PCs), the meetings were disorganized and mostly just complaining. Very little planning got done. A solution was beyond them.
Sebastian’s men joined these meetings, and started influencing them to be more goal oriented, while at the same time opening them up to the idea of help from the south. Eventually he sent envoys to discuss merging the too liberation armies. As he had the wealth and power, the liberation army of the north agreed to be under his command, with Richard in charge of Northern operations while he was not there. Richard had autonomy to act on his own, with the exception of declaring war on the empire, which requires a declaration from Sebastian. He also most follow any orders Sebastian gave him, which was rarely done, as sending orders north could be dangerous if they are intercepted.
Sebastian was noble in death, as in life. He knew he was going to bleed out. He held his throat with one hand and surveyed the scene of death around him. He knew his officers would likely parish, and that even if they survived the attack, he could not trust them. He could not trust anyone in his organization. He knew in order for the liberation army to survive, he had to make an outsider the leader. He made the logical choice, a man that not only was unlikely to be a doppelgänger, but also a man of great leadership potential, and with reason to hate the empire. When he saw James escape, he knew it was his last chance. With his last few breaths he wrote in his own blood “I hear-by declare the new leader of the liberation army is Gildrak Blackpeak. Gildraak, seek the help of Lucus”. With ths act he gave the Liberation army its best chance to survive.