This blog is part of the series I am writing for the A to Z Blogging Challenge. The goal is to write a blog that matches up with each letter of the alphabet, and to do them all in the month of April. Ideally, a person is supposed to post each lettered blog on a specific day. So far, I haven’t fallen behind. Those who post their blogs on Twitter are using #AtoZ.
I have decided to use this challenge as an opportunity to begin writing about the Diablo III game (and the “universe” it exists in). H is for Haedrig Eamon.
Haedrig Eamon has had a difficult life. It seems like trouble is attracted to him, even though he gives it no encouragement. Despite this, he somehow finds it within himself to continue his work as what appears to be Sanctuary’s only Blacksmith.
Fairly early in the Diablo III game, he tells the player’s character, “I want my life to mean somethin’.” Perhaps the only fortunate thing about Haedrig’s life is that he is one of the few who finds their employment situation to be both satisfying and meaningful. His job gives him purpose.
As a boy, Haedrig grew up in Caldeum. He lived with his father, who was a diplomat. This means Haedrig came from a family that had money. There isn’t any information about his mother, though. We are left to speculate.
Did his mother die in childbirth? Haedrig doesn’t have any siblings, so that is a possibility. If that was what happened to Haedrig’s mother, it would make sense that Haedrig’s father would be able to raise his son on his own. Or, rather, with the help of a hired servant/nanny. As a diplomat, he would have had the money to pay wages to a nanny that could take care of young Haedrig. Haedrig talks a little bit about his father in game when speaking to the player’s characters. But, he never mentions his mother. This makes me think that he never knew her, so maybe she did die in childbirth.
Haedrig’s father, as a diplomat, was probably spending a lot of time away from home. The main job of diplomats is to speak to the “high-ups” of other nations on behalf of whomever they were hired to represent. I get the feeling that young Haedrig may have spent a lot of time with a series of nannies, and little with his father. Haedrig doesn’t share any fond memories of a particular nanny. Either he never bonded with the one he had, or he had several nannies that came and went. Put this together, and it paints the picture of a very lonely young Haedrig.
Haedrig’s grandfather (who must have been his father’s father, not his mother’s father) was Chancellor Eamon. He was an advisor to King Leoric. Chancellor Eamon held a high and noteworthy position. He must have been paid well. The money in the Eamon family goes back at least two generations. At some point, Haedrig and his father moved to Tristram. Things were going well until King Leoric went mad. People blamed Chancellor Eamon for what happened to their King, and also for the events that were talking place in Tristram.
After the mad King Leoric (who became the Skeleton King) was destroyed, Chancellor Eamon attempted to help villagers leave the city. He suffered a sword wound in the chaos. Chancellor Eamon managed to take the damaged crown of the Skeleton King and put it someplace safe. He died from the sword wound after placing the shattered crown in one of the Crypts in the Cemetery of the Forsaken. Players are given a quest in Diablo III to find the Shattered Crown. They have to fight Chancellor Eamon for it in order to finish the quest.
By this time his grandfather died, Haedrig must have been a young adult (or near that age). Shortly after losing his grandfather, his father is murdered. The villagers who blamed Chancellor Eamon for what happened to King Leoric (and to Tristram) also blamed Diplomat Eamon. A group of crazed villagers broke into the Eamon home and attacked Diplomat Eamon. He suffered a knife wound to his back, and another to his throat. Before he died, he implored Haedrig to escape.
Haedrig survived, undoubtedly scarred by what happened. There aren’t many specific details about what happened to him after that. Obviously, at some point, he must have become an apprentice to a Blacksmith. Having no family, and no money, would have required Haedrig to learn a trade. He would have had at least a few years to learn the trade and to get reasonably skilled at it.
After a few years of learning how to be a Blacksmith, and working as one, Haedrig met the woman who would become his wife. Mira was locked in a cage because people believed she was a witch. Somehow, Haedrig knew that wasn’t true. He helped Mira escape. The two of them met up with a Vecin caravan. The Vecin are a group of nomadic people who travel in wagon trains. It is a matrilineal society. The Vecin people have “The Sight” and are blessed with magical visions from their patron diety, the Allmother.
It stands to reason that at least one of the Vecin had the authority to marry Haedrig and Mira. They cannot have been “dating” for very long. Perhaps the extremely dramatic and stressful situation in which the two met enabled them to quickly form a strong bond. Eventually, the newly married couple decided to move to New Tristram. Haedrig supported them by setting up shop as a Blacksmith. Haedrig and Mira didn’t have children yet, so he teaches his trade to a young apprentice.
Haedrig probably thought that life was good, and would continue to be. Then, the dead started to rise. Mira was absolutely terrified of the “zombies”, but gathered the courage to try and help the sick.
Things don’t get better. Mira falls sick with the “plague” that has infected several of the townspeople. The people of New Tristram have set up a means of containing the diseased. They are locked in a cellar, waiting to turn into zombies. The unfortunate Haedrig has been assigned the task of killing off the townspeople who become the undead. Now, he is in the horrible position of having to kill his own wife. Fortunately, the player character steps in to help him with that tragic task. Even so, this event haunts Haedrig, and he refuses to talk about Mira. He is too shocked to begin to grieve the loss of his wife.
Haedrig’s apprentice, for unknown reasons, disappeared. Haedrig knows the player character is about to leave New Tristram and travel through the Weeping Hollow. “If you see my fool apprentice out there, tell him to get back to town!”, Haedrig requests. Eventually, the player character finds the body of Haedrig’s “fool apprentice” lying in The Weeping Hollow. The player character returns to Haedrig to tell him the sad news. Haedrig’s first words are “Fool boy!” It is obvious that Haedrig is really sad, though. I think Haedrig might have considered the teenager (or young man) as a son. Suddenly, he, and the knowledge Haedrig passed along to him, are gone.
There isn’t a lot of lore about Haedrig. What we know shows that he has lost his grandfather, his father, his wife, and his apprentice, all in a row. He throws himself into his work as a Blacksmith, hoping to make his life “mean somethin'”. I cannot help but feel sorry for Haedrig. Somebody needs to buy the poor guy a drink (or several drinks), give him some time off work, and let him finally grieve for his losses.