House of Romel
Harold Grove (née Meadows) is a former mercenary in the payroll of the Queen's Gilnean Legion, serving Lord Romel directly in Stranglehold. It has recently come to light that he is the bastard son of Riese Vine.
Following the conclusion of the Northwold Civil War, Queen Madelynne I knighted him for his service and granted him a new surname: Grove. Henceforth, the stain of bastardy has been removed from both his and his daughter's name.
He now serves as a Knight of the House of Romel.
In his early thirties, Harold is still in prime physical form. Fruit of long hours of exercise, the sellsword mantains a well-built, but lean body. That enables him to move with the required swiftness and still present himself as a strong and resilient fighter.
Moreover, he keeps his face perfectly shaved and a very short hair. Combined with his angular features, fair skin, coal black hair and emerald eyes, the man resembles very closely the image of his father in his best years.
Harry was born in Stranglehold, one of the largest cities of Blackmarsh. A bastard, he never met his father, who allegedly was a nobleman who sired him upon Silvia, a serving wench in one of the many taverns of the town. His heritage, or lack thereof, had always bothered him during childhood, for he often aspired for greatness, something many, including his mother, claimed he could not achieve.
Because of this, at the age of fifteen, the youngster departed Stranglehold , to find his own place in the world. However, as he soon learned, life without gold and friends could be more than an adventure. Harry was forced to sell his sword to a number of mercenary companies, and though he fought with distinction, his natural talent for battle quickly revealing itself, his deeds went unsung. This bothered him to the point he gradually turned to whoring and drinking.
Despite this, there were truly positives events in his life, the best example being the birth of his daughter, Marianne. Unfortunately, Mary Anne, his girlfriend, perished in chidlbirth. As such, Harry was forced to raise the girl by himself at the age of twenty-one years old.
Recently, his bad decisions cost him more than simple coin: his last employer, the Greenleaf, a mixture of criminals and mercenaries, took his daughter as a hostage, demanding gold in exchange for her release.
Without a single penny, the bastard decided to return to Stranglehold, where he heard a new lord ruled in the place of the House of Vine. Right now, Harry is saving gold to raise a small army to save Marianne.
Service to the Crown Edit
After joining the ranks of the Queen's Gilnean Legion, it did not take long for Harry to be put in the forefront of Lordaeron's military efforts. His first campaign of note was the Forsaken Containment, when he was present during the Battle of Diregate. It was there that the mercenary first found his purpose within the Royal Army and regained hope that Marianne would be freed from his enemies' grasp.
Later on, the mercenary fought alongside the Legion under the command of Viktor Romel during the War of Argent Aggression. Participating in every engagement of the conflict, the bastard's performance was not noteworthy, with the exception of the naval battle in the outskirts of Blue Harbor.
More recently, Harry journeyed to Draenor, in pursuit of coin to finally assemble an army to retrieve his daughter. Although he was successful in amassing a decent amount of sovereigns, the campaign did not end well for him: during the battle of Fort Blackwing, the sellsword was severely injured and had to return to Blackmarsh. In light of this, a couple of months in convalescence were required for him to fully recover.
Finally, as he prepared to commission a mercenary army, it came to his attention that the Greenleaf was stationed in Northwold, where it fought for Gideon, a rebellious worgen trying to overthrow the sitting baron, Lord Byron III Bankston. With the Legion already in Gilneas, Harry rode to meet them at once, in hopes to seize the opportunity presented to save Marianne.
Northwold Civil War Edit
Upon arriving in Northwold, Harry met with Viktor Romel at the Queen's Club, an establishment that would later be burned to the ground by Brentley Wolsingham at the behest of Byron III Bankston. Nonetheless, there the then mercenary pledged to stand with the Duke throughout the campaign and to never falter in his service. In return, the bastard required the Legion's help in retrieving his daughter Marianne.
Immediately were his comrades and he put into a difficult situation. In full retreat after their defeat to the Silver Fist, the Legion ventured to Maiden's Cross, held by Dame Alhertine Moreau. She imprisoned them for their alleged crimes against the people of Northwold and demanded to see justice done. However, as a chance to prove themselves, the knight told them to right the wrongs they had committed: the champions would need to aid the peasant they had previously beaten in the streets, Holberton.
Agreeing to these terms, Viktor and his subordinates were in en route to meet him, when they were blocked by the Greenleaf, the mercenary company who held Harry's daughter hostage. Drawing his blade after the insults received, Harry almost lost his temper, but was forced to stay calm due to the circumstances.
The tense exchange words escalated into battle, after the Duke of Stranglehold drew his pistol in an attempt to assassinate the mercenary band's leader, as he was unwilling to turn Harold over to the despicable sellswords. In a confrontation that saw both sides bloodied beyond repair, the Queen's champions were brought to heel, only avoiding capture because of Brentley Wolsingham's timely rescue.
Nonetheless, the combat also saw the Greenleaf dismantled. After speaking with a survivor, Harold extracted the information on his daughter's whereabouts. Given permission to follow this lead, the bastard moved swiftly to retrieve her in an old inn at the marsh. Once he arrived, the tavern was apparently empty, though that did not give him any rest. The sellsword inspected the rooms thoroughly, only to be ambushed by a Forsaken assassin that skulked in the shadows.
Emerging victorious from the duel, Harry returned to the main hall, now filled with people. After initial suspicions, they informed that Marianne was kept at the basement. What followed was an emotional and long due reunion.
Return to BlackmarshEdit
Following the campaign's conclusion in Northwold, Harry manifested the desire of restoring honor to the name of the defunct House of Vine, having learned of his heritage. However, Duke Romel quickly dismissed the notion. At the time, the Grasp was suffering with the rebellious activities of the Silver Fist, and the political landscape in the region was tumultous at best. The recreation of the household, with a bastard at the forefront no less, would no doubt spark further discontent amongst the nobillity. Moreover, the House's history of rebellion and consort with dark forces was another argument that indicated this was ill advised, no matter how righteous the mercenary's intentions may have been.
Nonetheless, Queen Madelynne I saw fit to confer him with the new surname of Grove, effectively removing the stain of bastardy from his shoulders. In consequence, the social status of mosquito (the child of a bastard from Blackmarsh) was also lifted from his daughter, Marianne. Additionally, Harold was knighted by the Lord of Stranglehold, entering formally into his service.
Although the rewards have been substantial, Harold's current state provides him with a new array of challenges. For one, his relationship with Marianne is strained, as she struggles to forgive her father for his role in her past predicament. After all, it was due to his choice of affilitions and inability to pay his debts that she was taken hostage. And though he worked feverishly to see her rescued, it did not wash the nearly two years of suffering at tha hands of criminal individuals, deprived of kindness and familial affection.
Likewise, knighthood demanded that he adopted a more chivalrous behavior, a trait that does not come naturally to the former bastard, a womanizer and prankish fellow at heart.
In order to alleviate the first concern, or at least his guilt, Harold arranged for his daughter to attend the prestigious Dawnhaven Academy, the best educational institution in Her Majesty's Kingdom.