Vengarl was known as a raging, deadly warrior, not unlike a mad beast on the battlefield. He was born in Forossa, a land in the distant east. When he was born, the kingdom was already mired in prolonged conflict with its neighbours. The land was likely belligerent in nature, as it was a place where gods of war like Faraam were venerated.
Vengarl became a knight in the Forossa army. His strength and skill were legendary. The Red Rust Sword and Red Rust Scimitar were built to test the limits of the strength of Forossa knights, that was, until Vengarl swung them about like they were wooden playthings and claimed ownership by demonstration. This story is repeated for both the Red Rust Sword and Red Rust Scimitar descriptions, and indicates that Vengarl may have fought using a nimble two-handed swordplay like his mighty Lion Knight contemporaries. But we also know that Vengarl carried a shield called the Red Rust Shield. On it, in a cruel nod to irony, he recorded the amount of heads he had claimed in battle. Vengarl’s strength and ferocity were so great, that even Forossa’s Lion Knights, a motley crew of rabid fighters, kept him at arm’s length. From this we might gather that Vengarl, despite his skill, did not rise highly in the ranks of Forossa. In Forossa, sages led warriors into battle. These sages were called Northwarders and earned their title only after completing a great journey of great hardship, after which they would be worshipped as oracles of the war gods. But despite its might and power, eventually the kingdom fell, and perhaps inevitably, it was too war.
With the fall of Forossa the people were scattered and the territory became lawless. Its citizens were left landless and entirely to their own devices. Many were reduced to thievery, becoming bandits and most scattered to other lands. The Forossan knights, including Vengarl, became sellswords. As a sellsword, Vengarl was hired to defend the kingdom of Drangleic by his Highness; King Vendrick. Who Drangleic needed defending from, we are not told, but it is likely the Giants. The Giant Lord soul description (pre-SotFS update) states that the Giants landed on the northern shores and set siege to King Vendrick’s castle. Yet the only combat of the Giants we see is around Cardinal Tower in the Forest of Fallen Giants. So does this soul describe the Giant’s first landing on Drangleic’s shores, before the kingdom was prepared for such an assault? It seems quite likely that in the chaos that would surround the arrival of the Giants unannounced and the death of Sir Syan, King Vendrick would call aid from wherever he could to defend his kingdom.
Vengarl tells us that he remembers a long, brutal fight, and then… Somebody killed him. Or so he thought. When he came to, he found himself as a head amongst a pile of skulls in the Shaded Woods. It is very likely that the battle Vengarl died in was fought on the spot where his head now lies. The Shaded Woods are found at the base of castle Drangleic, and the area Vengarl is found in is haunted by the ghosts of dead warriors. Not only this, but the trees seem to be alive, and will groan when struck. We also find in this area a troop of Lion Warriors, an offshoot race that seem to despise their own looks, as they hate being seen. The design of their shield appears to have some religious significance, but we will never know what sort of gods these warriors answer to, though their finely crafted great axes indicate that the lion clansmen are much more than vulgar beasts. Is it any coincidence that in an area where we know a great battle happened between the hired sellswords from Forossa, very likely including the Lion Knights who worshipped Faraam (as Vengarl has ties to them) and the Giants took place that we then find an offshoot race called Lion Warriors who have a dramatically sudden appearance in the pages of history? It would seem that the soul of Seath has a sense of humor.
With all these facts we can perhaps safely assume that Vengarl was hired by Vendrick to defend the kingdom against the first wave of Giants after they had set siege to Castle Drangleic, hoping to reclaim their “prize”. In this battle he was killed and the area left in ruins. The Giants who died there, like those found in the Forest of Fallen Giants, endured and since they died long before the Giants found in the Forest of Fallen Giants, they have all but completed their transformation into trees. Or at least this is one explanation.
So with the battle over and in an all but helpless state, Vengarl watches the days go by, gazing at the sky and thinking of finer things, far removed from war. He still wonders about King Vendrick, and the kingdom, he was a hired hand, but he served alongside the kingdom’s soldiers, staring death in the eye together. That kind of bond is hard to break. Prior to his death, though without realising, he had grown weary of battle. The only thing to trouble this blissful existence (at least for Vengarl) is the visions he sees. Visions of his body, raging, still carrying on his former ways. His body, wielding his sword, forged only to kill. Prior to SotFS, Vengarl’s body could be found beside the primal bonfire in Brightstone Cove Tseldora. This implied that either his body had wandered there, or had been taken there perhaps to defend Lord Tseldora. But in SotFS Vengarl’s body is found in the Shaded Woods, much closer to his head (in fact, they are within throwing distance of each other), and one can easily imagine his head being cut off and falling down the ridge, while his body remained behind.
It would seem from this later positioning of Vengarl’s body, that his death was a ‘natural’ one, though how he endured is unclear. For his head to continue to exist this long, he must be afflicted by the Undead Curse, yet this does not trouble him. Vengarl is grateful for the peaceful days and has found contentment in the here and now.