The Joy Luck Club
Emo. Super emo.
At ten years old Nicolae found himself orphaned in a new land. The city of Waterdeep was a terrifying, crowded place, wholly alien to anything the young boy had experienced. He might not have survived, if not for the intervention of a kindly old wizard who happened to have accompanied him on his way to the city. The wizard took him in, initially as a servant, but as time went on she noticed his intense curiosity at her craft, and their relationship developed into one of mentor and apprentice. Nicolae studied the magic arts eagerly, seeing it as a way to gain power over a world that had done so much harm to him.
As with all good things, Nicolae’s time with the wizard had to come to an end. Thorough out the years, Nicolae had been plagued with frequent nightmares, which had begun to creep into the waking world as fleeting glances of shadowy figures out of the corners of his eyes, and reflections in mirrors that seemed to be mocking, sometimes threatening him. He decided that for everyone’s safety, he needed to go into hiding, and quietly fled Waterdeep with his spellbook, his divination cards, and little else. He traveled from city to town, finding temporary work performing small miracles and more mundane tasks, settling down only until the shadows came back. Soon after leaving his mentor, he decided he needed to shed more of his possessions, as they served only to slow him down. He committed the arcane knowledge of his spellbook to his own flesh as tattoos before burning the book itself, and traveled only with his clothing, a few meager supplies, and his cards.
After years of running from a hunter he knew little about, Nicolae decided to confront his demons, and found himself in a Vistani wagon, staring at a brooding tiefling, some sort of aquatic dryad, and a panicked fellow who stowed away in the wrong caravan.