(Somethings are omitted from the back story that you can learn in character)
Born in Casper Wyoming to a single alcoholic mother. Marcus didn't have much drive for the academics in his younger years, getting through the grades as best as any other student his age. Though he did join Scouts. It was an opportunity for him to get out of the house and into the outdoors. He fell in love with it. Being in the outdoors, no one around, no one to tell you what to do, well except for the other scouts and adults but he usually ignored them when he could.
After high school and aging out of Scouts, he started to take some night classes at a local community college. He was able to get a job during the day and move into a small flat and get away from his mother, leaving her to go about her business in peace. Marcus eventually dropped out of school after two semesters, it wasn't because he didn't do well academically. He simply wanted to travel with the money he had saved and gained from a recent inheritance. He was set on travelling across Europe and through some of the middle east. After doing some research he was much more interested in setting out on a hike through some of the safer countries there. Over the course of a few months he hiked and camped, eventually returning to the states.
When he returned to Wyoming he decided to continue his outdoors lifestyle and bought a cabin in the wilderness where he could have easy access to the outdoors anytime he wanted. He started to take up hunting as a normal hobby as something to do when he wasn't working at his new job as a bartender. Working most weekend nights picking up tips and chicks when he could and hunting during the week and selling the pelts he got online, Marcus was making decent pay. His interest in the middle east was still in mind.
He kept saving up his money and took up bird hunting, collecting feathers and talons that he got from hunting them. After saving up enough cash and going to a few more night classes at a local college to learn some Arabic he found an underground hunting party that travels out to the middle east to do some sketchier hunting. Hunting rare birds and mammals for rare trophies and furs to sell. Well armed and with a small hunting party they flew out to begin their hunting. The band was rough and tough living off the land and MREs that they brought with them, after a few weeks of being there they heard radio frequencies about an outbreak happening in a country near by in South Zagoria. News reports started coming that the infection was spreading rapidly to other countries as well.
It wasn't long before the hunting party went into a small village to hunker down and encamp and make a safe place for themselves they scared off the locals with their gunshots. The hunting party understood it was a dog eat dog world now, trying to work with civilians in a different country just wouldn't work out. Some of the hunters were resistant to some of the things they did, but they were quickly whipped into shape when threatened with being thrown out, or just shot on the spot. The group made a good camp for themselves establishing a good safe house for themselves, when they had to go out eventually to neighboring villages.
They found another encampment of locals, with weapons. Due to Marcus' Arabic classes he was able to talk to them a little, it was obvious they were hostile but they didn't try and attack the large group of Americans. Marcus did his best to negotiate supplies for food and rations, the group wouldn't have any of it and said that they needed workers to help build up their encampment. Marcus wasn't about to employ himself and his men to help build a camp, so he gathered up his men and went out on a mission to appease these locals.
Marcus and the hunting party came back a few days later with a few captured men and women tied up. The local leader of the encamped men came down and gave a crooked smile to Marcus revealing yellow teeth, he gave a signal to some of his men and they brought down plenty of rations to compensate the hunters. The hunters found a new way to make a profit and decided to go all in, ruthlessly. They made a good life for themselves. Resources eventually did begin to dry up after quite a few months of easy living, this made tensions rise between the hunters and the locals, eventually a small skirmish broke out between the two groups. When the only two hunters Marcus was close with died, he left in the night taking enough rations and ammo for himself, he headed east bringing him to South Zagoria.