In the far north, where the hills wander the plains and the earth is eternally baked beneath the uncaring sun, the lands which the shemlen call Anderfels, a clan of our people lived, struggling to survive the Blight.
Iloren was their keeper. A hunter in his younger days, crafty as any wolf, he led his people always just ahead of the darkspawn who chased them. But the old hunter knew that even halla cannot run forever. They must turn and fight, or be run down.
At the foot of the Merdaine, the darkspawn cornered Illoren's clan. That night, the moon was strangled by clouds, the earth concealed by a dread mist that rose out of nowhere, so that the elvhen could not tell up from down. In the confusion, the darkspawn attacked.
But Iloren had prepared for them. All around the camp, the hunters had strewn dry grass, brush and brambles. When the sound of rustling footfalls began, Iloren and the other hahren called upon the old magic. They struck out with lightning, and though the bolts missed the darkspawn, they hit their target all the same. The sea of kindling lit, and not one of the dark creatures made it through the fire to reach Iloren's clan.
This event takes place during the Second Blight, when the Dales was an independent kingdom. This was a period of time when the Keepers were priests who served as archivists and magical scholars.