Rise of the Runelords Anniversary Edition
A Qadiran wizard, clever and brash.
Dressed in embroidered, many colored Qadiran robes this mahogany skinned man flashes a smile from deep within his cowl. He leans on a staff of smooth black wood, banded in gold, as he applies dark paint below each eye using a small mirror.
Born in the slave pens of Sedeq in far off Qadira, Zakiv was never loved as a child. His father(Jahirak the Grief-maker), a powerful slaver lord and genie-binder, bred with all of his slaves in order to create a sorcerous horde of genie-kin and elemental-kin slaves. Zakiv’s human, slave mother was gifted with magic in her blood as well as beauty,so she was an obvious target for the Grief-maker’s appetites. Zakiv never learned her name(and was told she died in childbirth) as he was placed in a training facility that would teach him and monitor him until his sorcerous powers would(or would not) manifest.
Two things happened in this facility that would change his life forever. Firstly, after years of study (which included horseback-riding[in which he excelled and even won a number horse-races], writing, languages, etc.) it was evident to Zakiv that many of his fellow students were beginning to manifest magical powers, while he was not. This brought him great fear, for the competitive nature of the training program pit the students against each other. If you had no natural affinity you would be almost certainly called out by your fellow students and sent away with Jahirak’s two legitimate sons(even fouler creatures than their father), never to be seen again.
The second thing to happen would save his life:meeting his older half-sister, Suerni. Her mother and been a djinn that Jahirak had captured with aid of a vile efreeti. She worked in the library and had taken pity on Zakiv. Suerni allowed her sibling to come in at night to study magecraft while she used her ability to control air to clean the stacks. In order to never be separated from his ability he bonded with his slave collar, and wears it to this day under his robes.
He took to the art of wizardry quickly and was soon besting other students often in the frequent duels the students were forced into by the Grief-maker. During one such duel, Zakiv betrayed his closest friend, knowing the loss of face would ruin the other student. It mattered not to Zakiv, for his conditioning had made him a survivor first and a friend second. The loss of face would put Zakiv higher in the pecking order, and closer to the concubines of his master, with whom he could forget his servitude(if for a time).The friend was taken away to the mines as his will and mind broke from the strain.
Soon after this, Zakiv was awakened to the ultimate horror of his life. Suerni informed him one day that his mother had recently died and not, as he had been told, when he was born. She told him that Jahirak was really his father and that the sorcerer suspected Zakiv’s secret. She helped him to escape, but she could not go with him for reasons she would not explain. He vowed to one day return and free her from the tyranny of the man he had never known as his father.
He has been traveling for some time, always on the lookout for those who would want him dead. Now on the opposite side of the Inner Sea, he searches for power to help him achieve this goal.