Amlin is the child of Garreth Thane and his wife Amelia. He was born in a small town called Vaerdel, where he was a leader among his peers at even a quite young age. Everything was looking up for the young family - there was another child on the way, garreth was doing very well in his work as a hunter, and they never had to worry about getting food on the table.
That ended when a man in town got drunk one night and started beating Amelia when she wouldn't have sex with him, and in his drunken rage, he broke her neck. When garreth got wind of it, he took a knife and stabbed the man to death, right in front of Amlin. His father raised the bloody knife in front of the boys face and screamed at him, "This is what happens to those that threaten us!". Perhaps this is what sparked his talent for necromancy.
It broke down over the next few years. garreth became a drunk that cried in his sleep, an ambrrasment to the village of Vaerdel. He barely worked enough to keep buying booze, forcing Amlin to find a way to feed them. luckily for him there was a huge battlefield, littered with old bones of fallen warriors from a battle that had ended more than thirteen years before - most of the valuable gear had already been picked up by scavengers long ago, but the winds would often bring nw things to the surface - it was like that all over. Some farmers couldn't put a plow in the ground without turning up an old weapon or two, and Amlin became skilled at learning where such trinkets might be burried.
Then another war started
Amlin's village was cauhgt in the middle of it, using the old battlefield as the main point of combat, and many of the warriors used the village as a refuge, building walls and the like to help fortify the position, since the other side wasn't prepared for a siege. all the villagers did their best to flee immediately, but Garreth was slow to leave his alcohol induced stupor, and so Amlin and he fled only once the battle had started, and got caught in the middle of it.
The group that Amlin encountered didn't even let them get away when they saw the two Thane men from the village. Garreth was killed by the sword immediately. Thane, they tried to, but the fear of death and the loss of his father - the only family he had left - triggered something in him. he wasn't going to let himself get murdered by these giggling idiots, and he reached deep into the earth - and found the bodies of the long dead, covered by the dust and dirt that the wind blew.
As the sword came down to strike amlin dead, a skeletal hand came up and stopped the man from completing his attack. A small legion of skeletons decked out in chainmail, two of them even riding rotting horses rose from the ground and began slaughtering the soldiers around them. as the dust cleared, a mage who had orignally been brought into the service of one side of the war realized that it was this young untrained boy who had called down this much havoc. he was rescued from the battle before the other soldeirs could slaughter him, and once he was safely away from the battlefield his skeletons fell to pieces.
Amlin doesn't remember much of what happened next, but he recalls travelling, and he supposes that's how he ended up at the University Of Eight. He was immediately inducted, already having proven his potential as a mage, and sent down to the catacombs to be trained by the necromancy specialists that worked there. A lich named Caladimoi took him as an apprentice, and began teaching him everything he could. Amlin showed that he had an excessive amount of trouble with even the simplest cantrips outside of his specialization, but in necromancy he excelled, surpassing other apprentices with blinding speed.
Five years passed, and he was given the robes of a Magister, a full four years ahead of other students, which earned him the ire of those who so greedily wanted that title. They worked gainst him, and influenced his assignments as part of the University to get the drudge jobs of the academy - all who graduated were given duties they had to attend to, but Amlins work was often things that no self respecting mage would enjoy, and the others reveled in it.
His latest job was to investigate a rift in the middle of a bog. the conjurers believed it was potentially a link to another world, but were unwilling to go themselves, as it was located in the middle of the harshest and most expansive swamp known to man. It took him two months to reach the site, but, when amlin arrived, it was like the rift reached out and drew him in...