- See also: Jean-Marc Stroud
Born the younger son of a minor noble family in the Fields of Ghislain, Jean-Marc Stroud had just finished training at the Academie des Chevaliers when he received word that his family had been killed, ostensibly by bandits. In reality, they were victims of the Orlesian Great Game. Ser Stroud's plan to find his family's murderers was cut short when the Grey Warden, Clarel, recruited Stroud on the advice of the Academie trainers, who did not wish to see a promising young chevalier throw his life away in fruitless pursuit of vengeance. Unable to refuse such a request honorably, Ser Stroud joined the Wardens and left his old life behind.
Warden Stroud has served the Grey Wardens with honor for decades. He is regarded as one of the finest swordsmen in the Order, combining his study at the Academie with years of fighting darkspawn alongside dwarves in the Deep Roads. Warden-Commander Clarel has tasked him with recruiting and training new Wardens; most young Warden warriors owe their skill to Stroud's mentorship.
Stroud prefers to travel in the Free Marches rather than Orlais, knowing his family history could cause him to become caught up in the Game, leading to accusations of political interference among the Wardens. He also has no strong opinions regarding mages or templars, although he believes both groups wrong to turn their back on the Chantry, which Stroud holds in some esteem.
—An intelligence report delivered to Leliana