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TMDTue 15-Jul-03 02:14 AM
Member since 15th Jul 2003
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#35, "Xalthelir (Scion drow A-P)"


There were a half-dozen entries to this role, but I can only find the first and the fourth or fifth.

Xalthelir was the fourth son of a minor drow house in one of the equally minor
drow cities of the vast Underdark. A boy in a house with too many sons, in a
culture where even the firstborn son is lower than the youngest daughter, not
much was expected of him. As this unremarkable child grew towards maturity,
his Matron could but hope that he would be accepted by either the famed
warrior academy or prestigous wizard's school, the clergy, of course, being
denied to him as a male. He was nearly consigned to studying at a lesser
college for the lowest of the low, those unable to excel fully with either
spells or blade, but a timely assassination of an apprentice magi by one of
his elder brothers created the necessary opening and spared his house that
shame, or so it seemed.

It was during the sixth year of his study at the wizard's college that
Xalthelir's placid life was torn asunder. The ambitions of another house
called for his own to be eliminated, and in a heartbeat, his entire family
was butchered. Only by cowardly hiding among the house's slaves did he
manage preserve his own life. The conquering house took Xalthelir's house's
slaves as their own, and a grueling life of hard labor in the slave mines
began. Perhaps he might have managed a daring escape with his limited
magical training, but he lacked the nerve.

He dared not become too close to even the other slaves, for if any were to
realize who he was, they would surely sell him out in an instant. The years
of hardship and isolation gradually drove Xalthelir insane. Eventually, his
only comfort was the scripture of a forgotten religion. They spoke of the
doings of a dark god or his avatar in the mortal plane, and how this Hand of
the Dark wandered the world like a harbinger of apocalypse, maiming those who
obeyed him and killing any who didn't, whipping paladins for their blasphemy
and cursing orphans.

The scriptures also foretold a final disciple of this dark god, who would rise
out of slavery to walk the land like a king. He would punish his oppressors,
and then move on to punish all. He would pact with dark forces and wield every
mortal art in service to his wicked god. In the end he would be taken into
the dark one's kingdom to dwell in glory forever.

Given a new sense of purpose by the scriptures, the drow managed to escape from
his enslavers and begin to train for his role as the last disciple. In his
madness, Xalthelir does not realize that he wrote this "holy" text himself.

So begins a rather unusual story.


Adjusting to life on the surface was hard for Xalthelir. Though he found some
few allies he was amazed at the violent treatment he received from the denizens
of what he thought of as the sun-washed world. They relentlessly charged after
him, with axes covered in ornate etchings or ceremonial swords encrusted with
semi-precious jewels. He was deeply puzzled by this behavior. Did they not
know of the superiority of the drow over their insignificant races? Should
they not fear he, blessed of the Shaidar Haran, master of spell and blade,
above all others? In the name of his dark god he cut them down without mercy
whenever he could. Always, the surface fodder blamed luck for his victories,
rather than recognizing his obvious power. Was luck the name of the Hand of
the Dark among the surface people?

Often he would preach to them like a mad prophet, reciting proverbs from his
'holy' text. Like many such texts, it is subdivided into books, whose names
include Smiting, Blasphemers, Apocalypse, Contagion, Maiming, Oppression,
Obfuscation, Sundering, Torment, Slaughter, Venom, Decay, Depradation, and

He has been surprised at times by the relatively warm treatment he has received
from other dark elves on the surface. He does not trust them, though many have
shown him more respect than natural surface-dwellers. The invoker Naldaeruth
and shapeshifter Hiquilmas have proved useful allies to him at times, and on
one occasion the healer, Merzofzyauhn, offered Xalthelir considerable aid.
Most recently, a sorceress he traded some items with, Samira, asked him to seek
out the aid of another of the drow, a priestess named Nazira, who she claimed
could offer him useful training towards his goals. Xalthelir is intrigued by
the unusual beliefs and methods of the priestess, though his extreme relucance
to be under the thumb of a drow of a matronly mindset once more has kept him
wary and distant.

In his thirst for knowledge about his forgotten god and his destiny, he has
come to petition for a place among the Scions of Eternal Night, believing the
shadowy creatures they pact with to be agents of the Hand of the Dark or
somehow tied to his destiny. He currently seeks prophecies both fulfilled
and unfulfilled at the bidding of their Chancellor, Jhaelryna, a person he
feels drawn to in ways he does not fully understand.


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