Hale was raised by Zakarum priests. As a Paladin, he sought to fight evil and protect the innocent wherever they might be found.
While in a forest, he found a family under attack by khazra. He slew the creatures, but not before they slew the farmer and his wife, leaving their daughter, Bay, as the only survivor. He buried Bay's parents and offered to take her to the Zakarum. She offered to show him a Zakarum cathedral not too from from where they were. As they walked through the night, she explained that her father had had an adversarial relationship with the priests there, as he'd refused to pay them tithes for their holy works.
They arrived at the cathedral, and were granted entry. The curate agreed to take Bay in and train her in the ways of the Zakarum. Bay was put off by the cathedral's grim interior, and even Hale himself was uneasy. Telling himself it was fatigue, he went to the chamber that he was given, and fell asleep. However, he awoke to the sound of Bay calling out for him. He found that his chamber door was locked from the outside, but was able to smash through the wood. Following Bay's cries, he descended into the cathedral's crypt, only to be attacked by skeletons. Fighting his way through them, he came across the Zakarum priests about the sacrifice Bay.
Bay fought his way through the priests, while the curate declared that he was fighting a losing battle. He revealed that Hale had in fact been serving Mephisto, the Lord of Hatred (per his corruption of the Zakarum faith), and would always serve him as long as he counted himself among the Zakarum. Hale refused to believe him, and continued to cut his way through the priests. The curate however, teleported away with Bay. Hale slew the remaining priests, but it was a hollow victory. Haunted by what the curate had set, Hale set the cathedral ablaze and departed. He told himself that whatever the truth of the matter, his purpose was still clear. He would find the truth, and if Zakarum truly had fallen to evil, the church would burn as well.