Rise of the Thrall Lord
Head of the Penwick Merchant House of Dunamal
Father of Alice Dunamal
An austere gentlemen, and Penwick’s current Master of Coin, Alburg comes from humble origins and is a self-made man of wealth.
An orphan of unknown parentage, Alburg was a serious, industrious young lad. He began his apprenticeship in the merchant house of Relvern when he was just ten. He quickly rose up through the ranks and by the time he was twenty two, Alburg was right hand man to the head of that house, Marconus Relvern himself.
Marconus relied heavily on Alburg’s keen mind and Relvern became one of the most prosperous merchant houses of its day. However, the two had a sudden falling out when Marconus discovered Alburg was secretly paying off one of the pirate clans to let their vessels passed untouched through the Merchant Sea to the mainlands. Alburg thought it merely good business and saw it as an investment, while Marconus felt it was extortion.
Thus Alburg left the Relvern merchant business and quickly formed his own shipping company, Dunamal Trading, based on the contacts he had gained from working all those years for Marconus. The company quickly prospered, having an almost guaranteed delivery rate thanks to his silent “tributes” to a couple of the strongest pirate clans, and a mere six years later Alburg found himself head of his own merchant house.
When Penwick was raided by Eboneye’s pirate hordes, Alburg’s ships remained curiously untouched by the pirates. Rumors abounded at the fact, some saying he had dealings with the pirates, or was secretly a pirate himself. Whatever the case, Alburg’s business continued to prosper after the hordes were driven out of Penwick.
His success caught the eye of the new Baron of Penwick, Cavernous Avernous. Alburg was invited to sit on the Baron’s new council as Master of Coin, along with the Baron’s brother Aillinn, the newly appointed General of the Army, Argis Hault, the Lord Talisan Lisink, the Lord Kadin Gailgre, and some of the heroes the resistance effort, including the Lord Laegaire Hightower, the young Lord Kratos Stealle, and the Lady Lara Stealle.
His new found position led to alliances with both the Lisink’s and the Gailgre’s, both families seeming of a like mind with himself and the Baron; focusing on rebuilding the businesses of Penwick and amassing wealth. This was somewhat in contrast to the Stealle’s, Hault’s and Hightower’s who were pro reconstruction and spending to help individual families who had been disposed during the dreadful “war”. The only thing all could agree on was the building of forces, especially at sea, to protect the city in the future.
Alburg’s new found status and allies led to a betrothal with Talisan Lisink’s youngest daughter, Lelita. A fiery young red head, she was the rebel of the House of Lisink. She would often be found frequenting “lower class” taverns, cavorting with everyday people; for Lelita had a voice, and she knew many of the more outrageous songs of the day. Thus she was a hit with the people.
Lelita’s stark contrast in personality to Alburg grated on him at first, but an alliance with the Lisink’s was too prestigious to pass up. Thus the two were soon married. Their relationship was tumultuous at first to say the least, but somehow Alburg fell in love with Lelita’s indomitable spirit and carefree ways. He began to mellow and actually was caught smiling for the first time in his life.
A year into their marriage, Lelita became pregnant. She gave birth to a beautiful little red-headed baby girl, who she promptly named Alice. Unfortunately, Lelita experienced complications post childbirth and died a month later. Alburg was devastated. He felt as if life was cruel, taking away the one thing that truly ever made him happy. Thus he hardened his heart and reverted back to his old ways, only allowing himself to desire power and money, two things that he had control over.
He was now sole charge to Alice, who as she grew, became the spitting image of the mother. Further, she had a voice to rival her mother’s. It was both a blessing and a curse to Alburg, seeing his beloved wife in his daughter, but not quite able to bring himself to open up his heart once again to the young girl.
Alburg set up a rigid schedule of private tutors for the young girl, ostensibly wanting her to have the best schooling and run in the best social circles. Deep down inside however, he wanted her safe, kept away from the “cruel” outside world, only allowing her to attend social events he was at, or travel with him.
Alice however, turned out to be a free spirit, much like her mother. Thus the young girl would be forever sneaking out and making her way around the more questionable areas of town. She ended up befriending the children of Kratos and Lara Stealle, particularly their young daughter Thea.
This became a thorn in Alburg’s side; the Stealle’s disagreed in their parenting approach with him just as they did not see eye to eye on what was best for the City of Penwick. They allowed their children free roam of the city, even encouraging their daughter to learn how to fight. It was unladylike and Alburg was beside himself that the two girls were inseparable.
The last straw came when Alice and Thea nearly died during an “adventure” out at the old watchtower out in Penwick Bay. Alburg denounced the Stealle’s to their face and forbade his daughter to see any of the Stealle children again. Alice railed against this, however, and Alburg was forced to take more drastic measures. He used his contacts to secure an opening for his daughter in the Bardic College at Lukescros and promptly escorted her there himself to make certain she arrived.
Alburg left Alice there for four years, only visiting once a year for their Festivus concert. However, he had people he knew keep constant tabs on her. As was her want, the young lass kept company with a rowdy crowd, again sneaking off with them to the seedier sides of Lukescros. However, Alburg paid well to have her “discretely” protected from harm’s way.
He was secretly proud when she rose up to top ranks in her class, and smiled for the first time in years when he heard she was to tour with the great songstress, Cassilla Nightbird, a true lady of high standing in the entertainment world.
When the tour finished, Alburg sent his own private yacht to fetch Alice home. He was looking forward to seeing his daughter after all these years. When he heard she had been waylaid his world nearly came crashing down on him once again. He was greatly relieved to hear she had been saved by the crew of the Avenger, and further surprised that her rescue had been led by the young Pallas Stealle, the oldest son of Kratos and Lara.
Alburg was friends with Captain of the Avenger, Lagrange Hightower, the estranged son of the Lord Laegaire. On their voyage back, Lagrange reported to him that young Alice seemed smitten with the dashing young Pallas. Thus a plan began to hatch in Alburg’s mind.
An alliance between Alice and young Pallas would only further his standings in the community, AND perhaps give him some leverage with the Stealle’s, ever his adversaries in the council. However, Pallas needed to be of higher standing, not a mere second in command of a naval ship. Knowing that Kratos would never promote his own son, Alburg took it upon himself to “arrange” things so that Pallas would end up as Captain of the Avenger.
Thus when his daughter returned, his plan was already set in motion. However, Alburg was totally unprepared for the affect seeing his young daughter had on him. She was now indeed the spitting image of his dearly departed wife, Lelita and he found his heart melting for the second time in his life. And thus Alburg, an older man in his fifties, found himself once again wrapped around the finger of a fiery young redhead.