Countess Alara ir’Etrielle
View attachment 118500
Blue; Skin Tone:
5' 6"; Weight:
Lawful Neutral; Proficiency Bonus:
10 (+0), Dex
12 (+1), Con
16 (+3), Int
17 (+3), Wis
12 (+1), Cha
9 (HD: 1d6)
Str +0, Dex +1, Con +3, Int +5, Wis +3, Cha +2
Arcana +5, History +5, Insight +3, Persuasion +4
Passive Perception 12
Common, Draconic, Elven
Aureon (The Sovereign Host)
I have been in the army a long time, and I like discipline.
I will bring honor to my House.
If you fight beside me, we are brothers/sisters in arms.
The good of my House comes before the good of commoners, even those who fight beside me.
You have learned to regain some of your magical energy by studying your Spellbook. Once per day when you finish a Short Rest, you can choose expended Spell Slots to recover. The Spell Slots can have a combined level that is equal to or less than half your Wizard level (rounded up), and none of the slots can be 6th level or higher. Currently recovers 1x1st level spell.
Noble Background Feature: Position of Privilege.
Thanks to your noble birth, people are inclined to think the best of you. You are welcome in high society, and people assume you have the right to be wherever you are. The common folk make every effort to accommodate you and avoid your displeasure, and other people of high birth treat you as a member of the same social sphere. You can secure an audience with a local noble if you need to.
. Melee weapon Attack: +2 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 1d4 + 0 piercing damage.
. Ranged weapon Attack +3 to hit, 20’/60’ range, one target. Hit: 1d4 + 0 piercing damage.
+5 to hit, 120’ range, 1d10, can ignite unworn/uncarried flammables.
Spell Slots: 2 First Level
Spell Save DC: 13
Ritual Casting: Yes
Cantrips: Fire Bolt, Mending, Light
First Level Spells Known: Grease, Fog Cloud, Silent Image, Thunderwave, Feather Fall, Detect Magic
Traveler’s clothes (worn), Dagger, Cane (arcane focus), Explorer’s Pack, Spellbook, Chess Set, Fine Clothes (in pack), Signet Ring, Scroll of Pedigree,
, 37 gp (23 gp start, +25 gp Vilroy payment, -10 gp bottle of wine, +50gp Watch payment (~7/7),-0.8 gp for skycoach 9/5, Bottle of Etrielle wine, -0.2 gp for skycoach 4/1, -50 gp Healing Potion 4/1)
Alara is a 29 year-old human woman, standing 5’6” and weighing 120 lbs. Her hair is black and cut short, and her skin has been darkened and weatherbeaten by hear years of military service. She walks with a soldier’s bearing but a slight limp, and carries an elaborately-carved cane. She favors a blue cloak and red sash that mark her as an Aundairan warmage. In conversation, she is reserved but not unfriendly, and is capable of laughing at a baudy tale but is unlikely to share one herself.
The history of the Etrielle family reads as a microcosm of the fate of Aundair. Before the Last War, the family’s vast holdings gave it great wealth and power, and its Counts and Countesses sat at the center of a sprawling aristocratic family. But over the course of the war those holdings were systematically eaten away, lost either to the depredations of war or sold to pay the family’s growing debts. And that sprawling network of kin were fed to the war or married off for the sake of alliances that, in the end, never reversed the waning fortunes of the house.
A decade ago, the ailing Count ir’Etrielle considered his three children. Another levy had been called, and one of his children needed to join the war. His eldest daughter had been groomed as his heir, and could not be sent. His son, though clever enough to lead the family should the need arise, was cursed with frail health and would never have survived the rigors of the field. And so it was that he recalled his youngest child, a daughter not yet 18, to return from her studies at the University of Wynarn and answer the Queen’s call.
Alara ir’Etrielle did as she was told, donning the blue cloak of the combat mage and serving on the Thranish front. She rode with the Aundairan cavalry, casting spells and reading scrolls to support the efforts of the armored horsemen. It was a more dangerous post than most mages received, for she had to ride close to the forces rather than hanging back behind a screen of infantry, but Alara accepted it as her duty and never shirked. She won two commendations for valor, and prided herself that she brought honor to her family.
But after seven years of fighting, her luck ended. Her horse was shot out from under her during a retreat, and she was pinned. She was promptly captured by their Thranish pursuers and imprisoned. As a woman of noble rank she was well-treated, but was held against a high ransom.
That ransom would never be paid. The elder Count who had sent Alara off to battle had succumbed to old age some years before, and Alara’s brother had died in a plague circulating in the wake of the war. And when Thranish forces advanced on their hereditary home, Alara’s sister had made a fatal error by leading what men she could muster in an effort to resist. Unbeknownst to her at the time of her capture, Alara was in fact Countess ir’Etrielle, head of an impoverished noble house.
Alara was held for years, until the Treaty of Thronehold finally secured her release. She returned home to take stock of her family situation. The family’s holdings in what had become the Scarred Lands were now worthless, and even those set on still fertile soil could barely sustain themselves. There was no surviving manor house worthy of a local Lord, let alone a Countess, and the family’s crushing debt to House Kundarak was slowly sucking the life out of it.
In another time she might have found an influx of cash by marrying a wealthy scion of a commercial family, perhaps an unmarked House member looking to trade in his House name for a new title. Alara surely considered it. But the war had left a surfeit of noble titles available for such a purchase, and hers would have come with the estate’s debt. More than one suitor hinted that he would surely marry her for the title if she would simply allow Kundarak to claim the lands and settle her debt.
If there were ever a member of House Etrielle who would have accepted such a solution, it was not Alara. She put the affairs of her lands into the best state she could, and then set out. She at first thought to form a mercenary company, but quickly realized that in with the War’s end the supply of soldiers far outstripped demand. So she set her sites on finding a way to swing a commercial venture with one of the Dragonmarked houses, hoping to siphon enough wealth from commerce to save and rebuild her remaining holdings.
Were she capable of setting aside her determination to return her family to glory, she might have recognized the desperation of her quest and seen its near-inevitable failure. But that clarity would not have changed her course.
She is currently traveling incognito-ish, introducing herself as “Lady” rather than “Countess”. Under Aundairan rules of peerage she is entitled to refer to herself this way, but it implies she is local gentry under a liege instead of a more prominent noblewoman. She does so partly to ensure if she is captured she will not be ransomed at the level of a countess, and partly so that her creditors are less likely to hear about her desperate adventures. But also, she is ashamed that she has to do what she is doing and does not want to fully claim the title until she has restored honor to her family.
It would be unfair to describe Alara as haughty, but she does have an arrogant streak. She tries to be respectful of the people around her regardless of their station, and she has certainly learned that good ideas and great deeds can come from anyone. But if there is no other noble present, she expects to be the one making decisions. If someone calls her out on this, she is likely to acknowledge she does not have the authority to make decisions, but she will not back down easily.
Those complications aside, she believes it is her duty to raise those around her up rather than tear them down. And with people she trusts, she is capable of sharing a joke or a good story. She loves chess and will eagerly play with any competent opponent or teach any interested novice. And she will stand beside those who fight beside her.
But underneath all of that is a desperation bordering on madness, one that she does not even admit to. Put treasure in front of her and she will take only what she is due, and share the rest according to law and custom. Offer her honors and she will recognize those who helped her achieve it. But put her in a position where she must choose whether it is her or another, and it will be her. Not because she craves these things for herself, but because she must have them for her family’s sake.