Born into the landed gentry of the Kingdom of Pelayo, Álvaro Montañes is primarily famous for two things: the namesake footwear that ensured that he would be known to later generations as Blackboots, and his role as one of the founding fathers of the Brotherhood of the Coasts.
Enlisting in the Pelayan navy in early adulthood, Blackboots eventually retired from service, only to induced back into service as a privateer in defence of the Pelayan colonies in the Circle Sea.
Notably, Blackboots never renounced his allegiance to his homeland, even at the height of his piratical career.
This may serve to explain his conduct as a pirate. Blackboots is known to have never deliberately harmed women, children, the elderly, or the infirm and only to have led his crew in attacks of military targets.
Although the details of Blackboots’ life are fairly well-attested, it remains unclear when he first came into possession of his famous black boots.
Blackboots himself did nothing to clarify the matter, giving several contradictory accounts of the origins of his famous footwear: that they were a wedding gift from his late wife, that he made them himself from the skin of a monstrous shark he slew with his bare hands, that he won them in a late-night card game with the Prince of Porthaven, that they were simply the only pair he could afford at the time.
Blackboots was an infamously short-tempered man.
Most notably, when a magistrate of Goldharbour attempted to cheat him out of his fee for services rendered to the city, Blackboots responded by using his famous boots to kick the magistrate out of a window.
Luckily, it was a first-storey window and no serious harm was done. Except to the window.
This would be remembered as the First Defenestration of Goldharbour — Blackboots himself would also later be responsible for the Third and Seventh Defenestrations.
This short temper is likely the cause of Blackboots’ long-standing feud with Greybeard.
The establishment of rival pirate factions led by Blackboots and Greybeard quickly culminated in the two sides preparing for all-out war, a cause of concern for even many of the non-pirate polities in Realmgard.
Luckily, disaster was averted through seven weeks of difficult negotiation that laid the groundwork for the creation of the Brotherhood of the Coasts.
These negotiations were also successful in ending the feud between Blackboots and Greybeard and the alliance between the two former rivals was secured when Greybeard married Blackboots’ younger sister Manuela.
Thereafter, Blackboots and Greybeard were known as steadfast allies and the best of friends.