The Snake in the Grass questline revolves around Neal's past. He grew up an orphan under the name Neal Bartok, with his older brother, Troy. He joined Marcus Gray and the Ophidians when the two brothers broke into his house, and Troy revealed his Guardian abilities when Marcus caught them. Neal became a smuggler in order to stay close to Troy. Troy is killed later while on a mission, and, believing Geoffrey to be responsible, Neal infiltrates the Council to get close and kill him.