Born Gasbron of Ganust to immigrant parents in 1488 AU, taking his name from the city in which he first entered the world, the man who cane to be known as Gasbron Wrathun was a Bennvikan military leader active in the 16th century AU. This is his story up until the events of Vengeance of Hope.
Gasbron’s beginnings were nothing if not humble. His father, Vekrik, was an Invictirion in the Divisios of Ustenna. He was killed in 1493 in what was formally recognised as a diplomatic incident with Medrodor, when enemies of the Medrodorian King, hoping to create civil strife at home, had tried to instigate a damaging war with Bennvika by lunching a military incursion into Bennvikan territory.
The incursion was beaten back by the troops of Ustenna, during which time Vekrik fell, and after they retreated, the perpetrators were rounded up by the Medrodorian King Spurvan who, knowing he was in no way ready for a war with Bennvika and did not want to take in the vastly more experienced Bastinian the Great in battle, was at pains to hand over the traitors for Bastinian to do with them as he pleased. While these men and women were taken to Kriganheim to be flayed alive, a distraught five-year-old Gasbron was receiving news of his father’s death.
After this point, he was brought up by his mother, Harimae, a former bead maker, who was forced into prostitution in order to feed them both.
It is thought that Gasbron vowed to join the army to honour his father’s memory and to save his mother from the suffering she was forced to endure. But he was too late to save her. In 1505, Harimae died of syphillis.
With no way of earning his keep on his own, a seventeen year old Gasbron, still a year too young for the army, made for the barracks of the far side of the city where fewer people knew him. Here, he lied about his age, and joined the Divisios.
Never telling anyone about his true age until some years after joining the Divisios, Gasbron first saw action and gained his nickname while in a task force sent to the land in which his parents had been born, Gilbaya, in 1510.
The Gilbayan King Dutta had called for support from his ally Bennvika when his upstart brother, Gebba, in a move publicly endorsed by the Verusantian Emperor, had rebelled, desiring the crown for himself.
Yet King Lissoll III of Bennvika was astute enough to see that if the Verusantian Empire acheived control of all the lands on the eastern side of the Kebban Sea, it would then be free to cast its greedy imperial eye across the water towards wealthy kingdoms such as his own. Given that Bennvika did not want open hostilities with Verusantium, and Verusantium was not in a position to attack Bennvika, the Gilbayan civil strife became something of a Bennvikan-Verusantian proxy war.
Gasbron's moment came at the Battle of Pellebuaco. Tired of waiting for any serious number of reinforcements from Verusantium, Gebba, who had already mustered a strong army, thanks to local support from Gilbaya's eastern nobles and nominal support from the Verusantian nobles of the borderlands, marched west.
Facing him was the royal army, led by the warrior Queen Ruizta, wife of King Dutta, who had already become a general of some renown prior to her royal marriage.
By the time be met in the field, Gebba had Ruizta outnumbered by almost two to one. Both armies still relied heavily on the bristling spear phalanxs, which were by this time considered obsilete throughout much of the world. Small wonder then that it was Ruizta's three Bennvikan Divisios from Ustenna, among whom Gasbron numbered, that proved the difference between the two armies.
The spear phalanxs were still almost unbeatable if they were to attack a unit head on, but it was difficult for them to turn while maintaining formation, and they were poorly armed against attack from the side. This proved crucial.
Knowing the quality of her Bennvikan troops, Ruizta had placed the divisios at the centre of her own line. The approach had almost gone disastrously wrong, and many fell to the enemy spears in the opening moments of the battle. Gasbron's divisio lost both its invicturion and its corpralis in quick succession, and almost broke completely. Yet Gasbron, in only his first battle, as heard rallying more experienced men back to his side. As others wavered, he had thrown himself forward into a gap between two of Gebba's phalanxes, cutting the spearmen to pieces as they tried to turn their awkward formations and unwieldy weapons to face him. As more Bennvikans and Gibayans of the royal army advanced, punching deep into the everopening gap, the rebel battle line was split apart completely, and put to flight.
General Ruizta was hit by and arrow as her forces pursued the enemy, and it is said that while in her death throws she asked for the name of the soldier she had seen from her positon on the high ground, rallying the centre of her line and breaking the line of the enemy. When told it had been a Bennvikan named Gasbron, it is believed that Ruizta's dying words were 'Gasbron. We must give him an honourable reward name for his wrath then.' The name 'Wrathun' was bestowed on a reportedly bemused Gasbron by King Dutta, in honour of his deceased wife, upon the army's return to the Gibayan capitol.
Image courtesy of Tyler Nix at Unsplash.