Kirielle "Kiri" D'Vadalis
Kirielle of Blitzschlag ('Kiri')
Countess Blitzschlag, Priestess of Fenric,
Human (True Werewolf) Female, Neutral (some chaotic tendencies) Good,
Artificer 8/Duskblade 1/Druid 3
Now 23, Kiri spends much of her time in Caer Shadowfast unless on missions for the Watchmen. Her mother is acting as Kiri's regent in Blitzschlag, but the existence of a pair of portal mirrors allows close contact between them, and members of her family visit Caer Shadowfast fairly regularly.
Of late Cassius has been pushing Kiri more towards the diplomatic side of things, giving her lessons in dealing with her new peers among the nobility, and leveraging her reputation in Karrnath to benefit the Watchmen. It remains to be seen if this type of duty will continue after Cassius' death. For these missions she has been partnered with Gerald Greywood, and a tentative relationship has been building between them. Kiri is not yet willing to admit just how she feels towards Gerald, both because of her friend Thelia who she believes would never have separated from Gerald of her own free will, and because she blames her own mistakes for many of the unpleasant events that have interfered with Gerald's life. The fact that she had no chance of outwitting a malicious efreet determined to twist the wish she made on Gerald's behalf to cause as much grief as possible, or that Gerald's own sense of honor would have pushed him into danger regardless of her presence is something she won't allow herself to admit. It frustrates her that everyone who sees them together appears to assume they're lovers.
While Kiri still works on projects of artifice, more of her time and effort is aimed towards her duties as Fenric's Priestess. When she can, she visits and takes lessons from the Grand Druid of the Blitzschlag pack, and she learns what she can from other sources. Rather than the ability to summon natures ally, she instead can use her magics to heal those around her. Her connection to the Wolf Lord allows him to see and hear what she does and to speak to her when it suits him to, though he usually simply watches.
When Kiri was excoriated from House Vadalis, her mother and siblings were similarly treated. Her father Karal, while not himself excoriated, chose to leave the House rather then abandon his wife and children. By and large, they avoid the subject of House Vadalis, but between Karal being Baron Dalin's youngest brother, his wife Celeste formerly being one of the senior administrators for the House, and the rather embarrassing collection of dirty secrets that Kiri has found out about certain members of Vadalis and their activities, they could do major credibility damage to the House if they had reason. The counterbalance held by Baron Dalin is the official reason for the excoriations - lycanthropy. It's in everybody's best interests to keep their mouths shut. Still, Kiri has found some use in the family connections - her uncle Sasik is married to Queen Aurala. Most of the family has settled in Blitzschlag, but Kiri's twin Amethyst lives with her in Caer Shadowfast.
Kiri now has the Greater Mark of Handling, with both the Feral Mark and Mark of Twelve Moons variations. It grants her the power to calm animals, use the Greater Magic Fang spell on her own natural weapons or those of others, and to summon animals to aid her. She can also use the Feral Mark to increase her strength and reflexes, or even to do the same for her allies as well. The mark covers her right arm and shoulder in all her forms.
A tall young woman, roughly 20 years old, with brown eyes and brown hair cut short. She is both pretty and well-built enough to attract a fair amount of unwanted male attention, which she ignores as much as possible. She normally wears greens or browns. She is reserved, and a trifle shy. In lupine shape she is quite large. Her coat is dark grey on the back, shading to lighter greys and cream on the belly, with white streaks marking scars - scars that match those on Kiri's human body. Her right foreleg has the pattern of her dragonmark glowing green-blue in the fur. Her eyes are amber. Her hybrid form has the wolf's fur, head, tail and claws, with her human body shape.
Kirielle is a scion of House Vadalis. Her personal view of her relationship with the family is that she is an embarrassment to the House, and she has left to make her own life. She makes sure that her family know she is alive and well, and certainly feels no hostility towards other members of House Vadalis, but she limits her contacts with them, and, given her reasons, the House as a group respects her wishes. Her mother's name is Celeste Maran, and her father Karal, both members of the House by blood. She has two older brothers, Klain and Cydus, and a younger sister Kristabelle. She has recently learned that her oldest brother, Klain, was murdered by an unknown assailant. Her mother and siblings are all true werewolves, her father is human. Of late Kiri has also learned of and met her twin sister, Amethyst. Kidnapped the day of her birth and raised by werewolf-hating terrorists, Amethyst is still a problem Kiri hopes to solve without bloodshed.
House Vadalis bears the Mark of Handling. Caring for and breeding animals is in their blood. Kirielle was expected to follow in the family trade, but from a young age it was apparent that this was not likely to happen. She is violently allergic to nearly all animals. In the cradle she sneezed around cats and dogs, and as she grew older, the reaction became more and more violent. By adolescence, mere proximity to animals could leave her choking for breath, while being near people who had contact with animals left her coughing painfully. The best that House Jorasco healers could do for her was to provide a herbal remedy that suppressed the most dangerous symptoms, limiting her reaction to 'just' painful coughing and sneezing. To add insult to injury done to her by life, she manifested a least dragonmark on her right arm, granting her power to calm animals. Unfortunately she couldn't approach anything close enough to use it without a coughing fit.
The result of her allergies was that while Kirielle did well at theoretical studies in the House business, her mastery of the more practical beasthandling skills expected of a scion of House Vadalis was non-existent. And since even too much proximity to those who worked with animals could become painful and debilitating, it became clear in her own mind that Kirielle would be best off finding a different path. She chose to become an artificer, and to travel, leaving home shortly after her dragonmark manifested when she was 16. Eventually she ended up at Caer Shadowfast after a disastrous trip into the Mournlands where she and her friend Tasha were betrayed by their companions. In Shadowfast she rented and later purchased a workshop, and officially makes a living both as a tinker and by selling potions she brews to adventurers. Unofficially she now one of the Watchmen, and is sometimes doing work for them. She has accompanied groups into the Mournland on occasion, but doesn't trust most of the parties foolish enough to head into the wasteland in search of loot. She is something of an artist, and items she crafts usually have an animal motif. This is exemplified by her homunculus iron defender, which is sculpted to resemble a miniature wolf made of steel. She calls it Clangor.
While she has been traveling under her real name and the records in Caer Shadowfast record her identity and House affiliation, Kirielle is generally just known as 'Kiri' to the locals. She is noted for being a trifle short with druids and rangers - most people attribute this to some sort of hostility, rather than the real reasons, the reminder they pose to her of what she would have preferred her life to be like, and the risk that she might wind up choking from her allergies to animal companions if she spends too long in their company.
During her time in Caer Shadowfast, Kiri took part in the defense of the town against the lycanthropic attack, during which she was scarred by one of the werewolves. In the aftermath of the battle her dragonmark grew to Lesser status, granting her the Greater Magic Fang power. It appears slightly different to the normal Lesser Mark, and Kiri recently has learned it is called the Mark of Twelve Moons.
In the defense of the village of Rose Quartz from the Blood Claws and Twelve Deadly Gods, Kiri took part in the attack on the enemy base, her first action after being recruited into the The Watchmen by Cassius. Her planned role was to attempt to avoid direct personal combat, while placing magical explosive charges to do as much damage to enemy personnel and equipment as possible. Unfortunately she was forced into combat against Keltis Dorran, one of the Twelve. Miraculously Kiri not only survived but left Keltis for dead, his throat torn out as Kiri underwent a lycanthropic transformation for the first time. Keltis survived his injuries, escaping after Kiri left, and Kiri expects him to return for vengeance in the future.
Kiri spent some time trying to deal with what she did to Keltis, and how she felt about having killed hundreds of bandits, regardless of necessity. She eventually dealt with the issues by using a magical amulet which forced her to confront them through visions. As a result she has accepted the fact that she is a werewolf, and the fact that necessity can demand harsh actions. How much of the latter is due to her more predatory lycanthropic instincts is open to question...
Since then she has encountered another resident werewolf in Caer Shadowfast, the Umbragen Delake. She considers Delake a friend, and on an instinctive level, packmate. Kiri has also become close to Thelia Vulpes, and considers her a good friend.
To date, Kiri has done her best to conceal her lycanthropy from others, though with far less success than she would like. The visions she underwent indicated that she wasn't infected during the attack on Caer Shadowfast. That left her with the puzzle of how she was infected in the first place, but a cryptic message sent by her mother along with the news of her brother's murder hinted that lycanthropy runs in her family line, and thus that she might be a natural lycanthrope, rather than afflicted. This was confirmed when she was captured by the exiled Karrn Count Otto Von Blitzschlag, a thoroughly vile and mentally twisted ancient werewolf, who claimed to be her great great grandfather. The Count was killed by Kiri and her allies, she revealing her lycanthropy to them during the battle. Despite her uncertainty as to the truth of the Count's claims regarding her family, she took his signet and sword as proof of his death. In the course of rescuing her, one of her allies, Gerald Greywood, was infected with a magically enhanced and apparently incurable form of wolf lycanthropy, something which Kiri blamed herself for, believing that it was her presence which had attracted the Count's attention to them.
When Gerald lost control of the infection in the ruins of Stormreach, Kiri was one of those who fought to restrain him, revealing herself as a werewolf to the other Watchmen. So far she is uncertain whether Cassius himself knows of her, but a partially overheard conversation regarding Gerald left her cautious towards discussing the topic. Her one attempt to talk the matter over with him was interrupted by a lycanthrope hunter deciding to sit in.
Kiri eventually contacted her family with details of what had happened to her, and the claims of Count Blitzschlag. When confronting her mother, she learned that the Count had indeed told her the truth about her heritage, but that her great-grandmother Aritha had spent most of her life hiding from her father the Count, refusing to be involved with his plans for her and her children. Despite her mother's invitation to return home to the Vadalis pack, Kiri has elected to stay in Caer Shadowfast with the Watchmen.
During the events surrounding the aborted rise of the Old Ones and the approach of Xoriat, Kiri's preferred close quarters weapon, an enchanted sledgehammer was destroyed. She fell back on using Count Blitzschlag's sword, but her lack of martial training made it extremely difficult to use. Since then she has been taking lessons with the sword and other martial weapons. Her artificer's training in magic allowed her to notice ways to create magical patterns from the motions of blade and body, which she has been learning to take advantage of. The result is that she has begun to learn the path of the Duskblade. So far she has not revealed the arcane skills she has learned, though it is common knowledge that she has been learning bladework.
Due to the odd influence caused by common origins, Kiri inadvertently drew two cards from Cassius' Deck of Many Things. While unaware at the time of what she did, she drew the Flames and Moon cards, the magic of the Deck combining them to grant her three wishes via the agency of Moloch, an efreeti prince. Kiri used one wish to remove her allergies, the second to free the werewolf Jan from Delake's control and restore his free will, and the last to cure Gerald Greywood of his Lycanthropy. Subsequently kidnapping her as a slave, Moloch failed in his initial designs on Kiri when she demonstrated how sharp a werewolf's teeth can be on a very personal portion of his anatomy, and was thwarted again when she escaped from the tower chamber he had imprisoned her in. The Efreeti is one of the few things Kiri is genuinely terrified of, considering death a better option than recapture.
During the maiden voyage of the Golden Dragon, Kiri's life took an unexpected turn. She was offered the position of Countess of Blitzschlag by Lord Chess, adviser to First Warlord Gruden ir'Erdai. The leader of the rebel forces in the Karrnath civil war hopes that by restoring one of the oldest families in Karrnath he would garner support from the unaligned nobles. Kiri's objections that she was of House Vadalis were overridden by Lord Chess's revelation that she and her immediate family had been excoriated from Vadalis due to lycanthropy. The influence of Count Cassius and Merrix had successfully mitigated the punishment to avoid public revelation and possible execution. By taking up the position, Kiri would gain some protection for herself and her family through diplomatic immunity. She no longer uses the Vadalis name.
Kiri eventually accepted the position, journeying to Blitzschlag, accompanied by Trent, Maya, Rupin, and Min. There she learned a considerable amount about her bloodlines, details which revealed that the Von Blitzschlag family routinely ignored any rules or customs that didn't suit them. Kiri has learned that the Von Blitzschlag bloodline traces branches of its descent from both House Vadalis and House Cannith, in direct violation of both the Korth Edicts and the agreements between the Dragonmarked Houses made after the War of the Mark.
Her explorations of Schloss Blitzschlag and the fascinating laboratories within were cut short by a request for aid from the local people. A series of disappearances had taken place, and now one of the victims had been found tortured to death. From Maya and meeting the local druids, Kiri learned that the culprits were the Order of the Silver Claw terrorists, using a horrific ritual to give themselves lycanthropic powers. She also learned that the position of Count or Countess came with more than the civil responsibilities - by participating in the defeat of the previous Count, her ancestor Otto Von Blitzschlag, she was the next candidate to take his place as the Priestess of Fenric. And if she failed, then the next candidate would be her twin sister Amethyst.
The Grand Druid, Rudolph Von Blitzschlag, father of Otto, and his predecessor as Count, told Kiri that Fenric was the Werewolf, bound physically beneath Blitzschlag. By binding herself to him she would prevent the Animal Lord from being dominated by the darkness within him. She would also thus block attempts by the Order of Damarius, through their catspaws in the Silver Claws to release or destroy Fenric. Having seen a very little of what the Werefox was capable of while limited by its mortal host, Kiri didn't dare allow the chance that Fenric might be physically released, and agreed to undergo the trials.
The first Trial, that of Truth, forced her to face parts of her past and present, most of them uncomfortable at best. During it she learned of how her sister had been kidnapped, of how her friend Tasha had been manipulating her life to set her course towards the Watchmen, and the true identity of Chess, Lord Shadowspawn, along with his and Kaius I's broad plans for the civil war in Karrnath. She also learned that Cassius had known about Shadowspawn, and had attempted to protect her from taking any hasty and probably fatal actions towards the treacherous madman with his silence. Kiri suspects (correctly, though she has no evidence besides knowing who he is) that Shadowspawn was behind her excoriation.
The second Trial, Purity, confronted Kiri with aspects of her personality. Despite the arguments of various parts of herself, she concluded that she had to continue with the Test for non-selfish reasons, passing it.
Finally Kiri had to face her sister in the Trial of Blood. Transported to Amethyst to face her in combat for the position of Priestess, Kiri fought her sister briefly, before the intervention of the wolf-shifter Kaira, who had been hired by Lord Chess to act as Kiri's bodyguard. Kiri refused to kill her sister once she was rendered helpless, and in so refusing proved herself fit to be Fenric's Priestess.
The Grand Druid of the Pack has returned Kiri, Amethyst, and her companions to the Golden Dragon. Kiri has asked for the aid of Patch and his daughters with her sister, who has had her life almost totally shattered by the events in Blitzschlag. And she needs to learn how she has been changed by her assumption of the position and duties of Fenric's Priestess. She has been told by Alice Meadowsdale, the resurrected first wife of Cassius, that Kiri is to receive lessons and guidance from her, but given Alice's slightly odd approach to things, it remains to be seen how this will work out.
As Priestess of Fenric and a true lycanthrope, Kiri receives the following benefits:
- A level in the Druid class.
- Eternal youth - but no protection against death by any other means.
- +1 to charisma when dealing with shifters.
- +2 to charisma when dealing with wolf-shifters.
- +4 to charisma when dealing with werewolves.
- The ability to partially shift.
- A permanent Speak to Animals effect when dealing with wolves or other canines.
- At Druid 5, Wildshape is replaced with the ability to summon an Avatar of Fenric with hitdice equal to Kiri's own.
- The Power to Commune with Fenric once per Week.