Aldric Durant began life as the son of a village blacksmith on the edge of the Barony of Brandoux, but he always wanted more. He strove to better himself in both body and mind, and sought entrance to Rochefort College when he came of age. However, his family could not afford the tuition fees, leading the ambitious young man towards a different path of advancement--military service under the banner of the local lord. He proved himself an able warrior over his service, and eventually became an elite knight leading his lord's vanguard.
Durant's distinguished military career lasted for over a decade before being cut short in a startling fashion in 989 AF. During a border skirmish with a lord of Debordoux, his sword shattered in battle, and the shards of it struck his horse's neck. The dying beast collapsed on its rider, crushing his leg and leaving Durant unable to continue the charge of his knights. it came out after the battle that many of Durant's fellow knights had suffered ill fates as well, with nearly every sword in the regiment found to contain subtle flaws that ruined their worth in battle. As soon as he was well enough to leave his bed, Durant swore he would right this failure.
He joined a crowd of petitioners to the royal court, and was eventually able to obtain an audience with one of the King's councilors. Durant convinced the councilor to allow him to secretly investigate the Royal Armory of Arkland. With cunning and patience, the injured knight uncovered evidence over the following months that the Debordoux lord had paid for sabotage of the swords used by Durant and his knights, a violation of the Royal Armory's duty to serve the King of Arkland above all others. With Durant's evidence, the conspirators were hanged for high treason. Durant was offered payment for his efforts, a pension that would have allowed him to live comfortably despite his injuries, but he requested the chance to serve further instead. In 991 AF, he was granted the position of Royal Armorer, charged with overseeing the workings of the armory and ensuring the continued quality of its arms--and the workers' continued loyalty to the crown.
Durant's time as Royal Armorer has seen him become a fixture of the King's court and the institutions of state. He has established spies for the king not only within the armory, but among many mercantile efforts associated with supplying Arkland's military, from mining and steel-making concerns to horse-trading and grain shipping. Wherever the nobles of Arkland attempt to play their political games in a way that weakens Arkland's military strength, Durant considers it a personal affront. Between his unflinching demeanor and ruthless application of his office's authority, he commands respect from even the haughtiest nobles. Durant cultivates an atmosphere of unbending command about him, incorporating even what might be considered signs of weakness by some into his persona. His ruined leg is braced with steel, and his walking cane is topped by the hilt of the very sword that failed him all those years ago. In this way, he reminds onlookers that the greater part of his success came after the last time someone attempted to ruin him. Few are willing to consider making another attempt.
--Jgoldfarb (talk) 01:23, 12 October 2016 (AST)\