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Morwen'cartel Da'Na'Draiken

Personal Information
Name: Morwen'cartel Da'Na'Draiken Player: Kimberly Moser
Race: Elf (Drow) Gender: Female Height: 5'0"
Class: Cleric - Goldheart Level: 6 Weight: 78 lbs
XP: 27,500 Next Level: 55,000
Kit: None Alignment: Chaotic Good
Eyes: Blue Hair:  Pure Snow White Deity: Hanali Celanil
Age: 153
Ability Scores
Str: 10 Weight Allowance: 40lbs

Bend Bars/Lift Gates: 2%

10 Attack Adj.: 0 Damage Adj.: 0 Max. Press: 115 Open Doors: 6
Dex: 14 Missile Adjustment: 0 Pick Pockets: 0 Open Locks: 0
18 Reaction Adjustment: +2 Armor Class: -4 Move Silently: 10% Climb Walls: 10%
Con: 9 System Shock: 65% Poison Save: 0
9 Hit Point Adjustment: 0 Resurrection Chance: 70%
Int: 13 Max. Spell Level: 6th Max. Spells Per Level: 9 Illusion Immunity: None
17 Bonus Proficiencies: 6 Chance to Learn New Spell: 75%
Wis: 18 Bonus Clerical Spells: 2,2,1,1,0,0,0 Clerical Spell Failure Chance: 0%
18 Magic Defense Adjustment: +4 Spell Immunity: None
Cha: 15 Loyalty Base: +3 Maximum Number of Henchmen: 7
19 Initial Reaction Adjustment: +8
Saving Throws
Paralyzation: 9 Poison: 9 Death Magic: 9 Petrification: 12 Polymorph: 12
Rod: 13 Staff: 13 Wand: 13 Breath Weapon: 15 Spell: 14
Hit Points: 37
Base THAC0: 18
Melee THAC0: 18
Missile THAC0: 18
Natural armor class
Balance Defensive adj.
Full Armor, Elven Chain
Magic Armor Adj
Weapon Proficiencies

Quarterstaff (Expert, Chosen Weapon)

Non-Weapon Proficiencies
Ancient History
Rope Use
Ancient Languages: Elf
Native Languages: Common, Dwarf - gray (duergar), Elf, Elf - dark (drow), Goblin, Halfling, Kobold, Orc, Silent Tongue, Undercommon  
Reading/Writing: Elf




#AT Speed


Range (-2) (-5)
Weapon Melee Missile Factor Sm-Med Large Type Size Short Med. Long
Quarterstaff +3
Racial Abilities

Infravision [Dark Elf] - 120' infravision range.

Resistance 90% - 90 percent resistant to sleep and charm-related spells.

Secret doors - Because of their acute senses, elves are quick to spot concealed doors and hidden entranceways. Merely passing within 10' of a concealed door allows an elf a  one-in-six chance (a 1 on 1d6) to notice it. If actively searching, an elf's chances improve to a two-in-six chance (1 or 2 on 1d6) to find secret doors, and a three-in-six chance (1, 2, or 3 on 1d6) to notice a concealed door.

Spell abilities - Once a day the elf can cast faerie fire, dancing lights, and darkness as a priest or wizard of the same level. When the character reaches 4th level, he can add levitate, detect magic, and know alignment.

Stealth - When the elf is alone and is not wearing metal armor, he gains a bonus to surprise opponents. The opponent suffers a -4 penalty, a -2 if the elf has to open a door.

Class \ Kit Abilities

Infravision [Dark Elf] - 120' infravision range.

Resistance 90% - 90 percent resistant to sleep and charm-related spells.

Secret doors - Because of their acute senses, elves are quick to spot concealed doors and hidden entranceways. Merely passing within 10' of a concealed door allows an elf a  one-in-six chance (a 1 on 1d6) to notice it. If actively searching, an elf's chances improve to a two-in-six chance (1 or 2 on 1d6) to find secret doors, and a three-in-six chance (1, 2, or 3 on 1d6) to notice a concealed door.

Spell abilities - Once a day the elf can cast faerie fire, dancing lights, and darkness as a priest or wizard of the same level. When the character reaches 4th level, he can add levitate, detect magic, and know alignment.

Stealth - When the elf is alone and is not wearing metal armor, he gains a bonus to surprise opponents. The opponent suffers a -4 penalty, a -2 if the elf has to open a door.

Free Spell - At level 15, Goldhearts are able to cast Heal or Prismatic Spray as the Wizard Spell once a week


Allure - May affect Reaction roll by 3 when dealing with romantic situations, and will attract one more henchman than normal.

  •  Items Readied

    • Quarterstaff, Magical +3 (The staff is carved with many pleasant scenes of love and happiness. There is also a cleverly crafted whistle and chime set in the head of the staff. When the staff is twirled/used in battle it makes very disconsolate tunes.)

  •  Items Worn

    •  Backpack

      •  Bag of Holding, 250 lbs.

        • Art Object (1000 gp)

        • Boots, soft

        • Dry rations (1 week)

        • Feywine (small cask)

        • Good cloth cloak

        • Gown, common x2

        • Healer's bag

          • Herbs (per lb) x3

        • Hose x2

        • Pin

        • Polisher rag

        • Rope of Entanglement

        • Rope, silk (50 ft)

        • Wineskin

        • Winter blanket

    •     Black baladrana with a  red silk lining

    •     Belt pouch, small

      • * Copper Pieces x2

      • * Gold Pieces x9

      • * Platinum Pieces x18

      • * Silver Pieces x8

      • Mirror, small metal

      • Perfume x3 (per vial)

      • Philter of Love

      • Ruby (500 gp)

      • Lavender soap

    •     Silken boot hose

    •     Black boots, riding

    •     Full armor, elven chain +3 (Worn beneath the clothing.)

    •     Black calfskin gloves

    •     Holy symbol (A rose crafted of black gold with a ruby tinted center.)

    •     Black pantaloons

    •     Plain brooch

    •     Ring of Mind Shielding (Appears to be a circle of golden hearts around her finger.)

    •     White shirt

    •     Red silk jacket

Character Description and History

Morwen’cartel is an ephemeral beauty, even for an already gorgeous race. Her face is perfectly oval and her eyes are twin pools of blue radiance. Her lips are perfectly formed and her cheekbones are soft, yet angular. Her delicate white eyebrows are in stark contrast to the deep ebony of her skin and her eyelashes are like a sprinkling of snow adorning her lids. Her hair is long and smooth, as spun silk. She keeps it braided and pulled into a coil at the base of her neck. When loose, it falls about her like a soft shimmering cloak of purest white. Her long neckline flows into a shapely torso. She is well-proportioned with ample breasts and smooth rounded buttocks. Her legs are long and slender, with well-cut muscles and her arms show similar musculature. Her movement is graceful and elegant and her voice is soft and smooth as velvet.

Her beauty is unmarred, but it hides a will of steel. Morwen has learned what true beauty and love are through a century and a half of suffering and hatred. She is outcast from her people because she chooses to be, and they would kill her on sight if she returned. She bears them no animosity, but her anger for Auraushnee, or Lolth, knows no bounds. She accepts the fact that surface dwellers fear and hate her because of the color of her skin. She strives to show them she is different through her actions as words often fall on deaf ears.

Morwen loves to dance and sing under the full moon and never misses a sunrise. She takes joy in the smallest things, a drop of dew or a simple smile. She surrounds herself with beauty, not only beauty of the eye, but also beauty of the spirit.

Morwen wears beautiful clothing, though not elaborate. Her prized possession is her elven chain, but she keeps it hidden beneath her clothing. Most elves frown on the gift and consider her a thief when they initially discover her possession of such a treasured elven artifact. When traveling, she typically wears either a simple soft gown over her armor or a red silk jacket, soft shirt, black pantaloons and black boots with silken hose, also over her armor.

She carries a delicately carved rosewood staff. It depicts simple real life scenes of times of joy and happiness. There is a carved whistle in the head of the staff and when the wind blows through it soft haunting melodies play; in battle this can be quite disturbing. Her holy symbol is a miniature rose crafted of rare black gold with a ruby tinted center.  She wears a simple gold band etched with stylized hearts on the ring finger of her right hand.

Morwen began life in House Da’Na’Draiken in the depths of the Underdark and the city of Menzoberranzan. She was the eighth daughter and a true disappointment to her black-hearted matron.

Morwen was much left to her own devices when not being ordered around by one of her older sisters. She watched and learned much through her formative years and worse … she questioned. Why did the males have to defer to the females? Why did they have to hate the surface world and the burning fire in the sky? Why were faeries her enemy? Why would a goddess be so cruel to her children and demand blood penance?

She made the mistake of asking her mother some of her questions one day - the day her soul died. Her mother beat her half to death with her snake-headed whip, and still there were no answers for the young drowling, only more questions. Morwen looked into her mother’s eyes with her own tear filled orbs and found the answer, there was only hatred in the heart of her family. She never questioned again and suffered in agonizing silence.

Morwen watched the steady plod of slaves through her family’s estate. The whippings and beatings were endless. So were the demands of her sisters and even her brothers. The females were petty and openly cruel, the males less so but even worse because they were subtle in their vengeance.

Then Morwen met her first surface elf. He was captured in a surface raid and taken for sacrifice. Morwen was given “night” duty of guarding the prisoner. She was timid at first, having never seen one of the hated faeries. She would stand outside his cell and just look at him for hours. She memorized every fold of skin and lock of hair. There was nothing different about this creature and he probably deserved his fate, or so she thought until she met his eyes. His beautiful deep green depths spoke of alien, unfamiliar places and enticing emotions. He caught her staring and smiled. Unbidden, a rush of joy came to her and she smiled back but caught herself almost immediately.

The elf’s day of sacrifice was three turns of Narbondel from the day of his capture. The second night Morwen sat outside the elf’s cell and watched his every move again. He looked at her with his beautiful eyes and smiled again. She creased her brow in confusion. “Why do you do that?” she asks. He smiled again and croaked out, “Because in all this darkness you are like a light; a beacon for my soul. Your beauty and innocence do not belong in the darkness but under the skies of my home.” Morwen frowned at his answer and questions again swirled through her mind.

“You are to die. Do you know why?” she asked.

“Because I am free,” he answered.

“Free? But you are bound and imprisoned. How are you free?” she asked.

“I am free because I have known love. Tasted the wind and felt the sun on my face. I have known kindness and caring and I have imparted wisdom in my children so they too can make their own choices. Things you probably do not know because of the lies imparted by Lolth. Do you make your own decisions or are you imprisoned by hatred and cruelty?”

His answer caused her to frown even deeper. “I do not understand,” but the swirling clouds in her mind were beginning to part. The elf did not answer he just smiled again.

The third night, and the night before he was slated for sacrifice, Morwen again sat outside his cell. He met her with another smile, but this one was a sad smile. “Why do you look at me like that?” asked Morwen.

“Because this is our last night together and I fear I have not followed my goddesses wish,” he said slowly.

“Then you deserve your fate,” stated Morwen. Then she asks trepidatiously, “What was your goddesses wish?”

His smile is again wan and sad. “She gave me a vision of a lovely rose, blooming in the darkness. It was being choked and was dying from inattention. She told me to find this rose and bring it to rebirth. I have failed.”

Morwen watched him with her clear blue eyes and asked, “What is a rose?”

He looked startled, “A rose is a flower.”

Morwen shook her head, “What is a flower?”

He looked even more startled, “A flower is a beautiful growing plant. Do you not have flowers?”

Morwen shook her head. “No flowers, but we do have fungus. We cultivate many types. Are these flowers?”

He shakes his head, “No. Fungus and flowers are different. Flowers need the sun and fresh air and rain to grow. Roses come in many colors and varieties. All are beautiful, and most have thorns.”

Morwen smiles then, “I know what thorns are!”

He smiles at her again, “The rose is the part of the thorn plant that entices creatures to come closer so it can spread itself through the world. They smell lovely; delicate and dangerous at the same time. You can cultivate them without pricking yourself if you are an experienced gardener. Even if you prick yourself, the flower is worth the time you spend on it.”

“But you bleed?” she says not really understanding but feeling very odd.

“What is a few drops of blood if you can breathe life into a thing of beauty?” he asked.

Morwen sat quietly just watching him for the rest of the night, trying to imagine what flowers looked like. In the morning the priestesses gathered and came to the elf’s cell. As they were walking toward them Morwen asked hurriedly, “What is your name?” The elf replied, “Call me anything you will.”

Morwen’s eldest sister shoved her from in front of the cell and ordered two slaves to grab the elf and wash him. Morwen frowned but did not let her sister see. There was anger boiling in her blue eyes at the elf’s treatment and the callous disregard her sister gave him. He was washed, dressed and anointed before being led from his cell to the temple. He looked back at Morwen once and smiled. “Mother! I have not failed,” rang through her mind in his soft voice as he was led away. Morwen was conspicuously absent at his sacrifice and received a severe beating by three of her older sisters and mother.

Life was one dull day of torment followed by the next until the day Morwen was led to the Teir’Breche, the schools for drow children. The day of her indoctrination was pure torture for the young drow. She was led to the steps of the temple and abandoned. When the priestess tutors came to collect the students their clothes were torn from their bodies and they were set upon by millions of tiny spiders. Several of the females died on the steps of Arach’Tinilith that day as they alternately flinched or killed some of the tiny arachnids. Morwen, did not – but a part of her soul balked and hid from the confusing world she was about to enter.

Her early years at the temple school were interminable as she learned about the Will of Lolth. The slightest of offenses were held against her and beatings with the snake-headed whips were frequent. Her matron grew more and more disappointed in her youngest daughter with each passing day. Morwen quickly grasped the true measure of the female’s power in her society – fear. Fear was how they maintained control and they thrived on it. Fear was the basis of Lolth’s teachings; fear of failure, fear of insult, fear of all things different. Morwen despised Lolth and her priestesses second.

After her fifth decade in the temple and her first century of life, Morwen was assigned a position on patrols. Her first patrol was a surface raid and three elder priestesses went with the group of trainees. Morwen, being the priestess trainee was actually assigned direct oversight of one group of raiders and was required to travel with them in the hated world above while the elder priestesses cast spells from the safety of a dark cave. Morwen made the mistake of mentioning this observation and was thrashed for her insolence and forced to sit at the entrance as guard while the moon rose and the others prepared for the raid.

Her first sight of the moon was terrifying and exhilarating at the same time. She was transfixed in terror but suddenly she smiled. She remembered the eyes of the elf so many years ago and their final conversation. “…Flowers need the sun and fresh air and rain to grow. …” Was this silvery thing what they called the sun? Her eyes darted in the darkness looking for the thing called flowers.

Her concentration was broken as the first warriors came forward. The leader indicated she was to come with them. She abandoned her contemplation of the moon and moved out with the party. They traveled though a forest of odd looking plants with hard skins and paused on the outskirts of a small village. After a count of ten thousand they moved in blades and bows drawn. They were hunting for slaves, but would kill all who resisted strongly. The humans did not know what hit them as the storm of ebony vengeance swept through their tiny forest home. Women and children were shot with sleep darts and the men were slain outright. The attack was chaos and Morwen became separated from the group as they retreated with their plunder.

She wandered in what she thought was the right direction for the safety of the hill - but only headed deeper and deeper into the unknown land through the plants with hard skins. Finally she stopped, exhausted in her search, and nestled between the roots of one of the larger plants and covered herself with her cloak.

When she woke it was much brighter and her eyes pained her. She could not see much beyond her and huddled in her cloak between the roots in fear. She tried to probe the area around her with her impaired vision, but saw only vivid greens and browns. This world of light was filled with colors and living things. As she sat between the roots she saw birds and bugs and even a rabbit. She did not know what most of these things were, but they were not dying under the light of this world. Suddenly she wanted to explore and know more about this place.

Carefully she stood up, afraid to draw attention to herself. Then step by step she moved away from the plant and deeper into the unknown forest. She smiled many times through the day, but each time it faded quickly as thoughts of the priestesses’ anger and their whips clouded her mind. Soon she became thirsty and hungry and realized her rations and pack were back in the cave. She did not know what could be eaten in this strange land so she settled down to watch the creatures of the forest. Soon she noticed a ring-tailed masked creature popping red berries from a plant into its mouth. Slowly she crawled forward and tried the same thing. The berries were plump and sweet. She gobbled as many as she could find and licked all the juices from her fingers. Smiling again she followed the ring-tailed beast and it led her to a stream where it began to wash.

Morwen waited for it to finish and went to the stream to clean herself and drink deep. This was one familiar thing … water. Sighing as she cleaned the blood, berry juice and dirt from herself she began to get curious again and looked around her. The light still hurt her eyes but it wasn’t as bright and she could see a little better. She saw a thin trail leading from the stream into the forest.

Morwen creased her brows in concentration and set off up the trail. It meandered through deadfalls, thickets and glens; finally it led to a small cottage nestled at the edge of a large clearing. The cottage was surrounded by colorful plants ending in beautiful blossoms of varied colors and many scents. These had to be flowers. Slowly, step by step Morwen drew closer. At the very edge of the clearing she reached her hand forward to pluck one of the blooms, a beautiful red flower; when she heard a voice.

“I hear you there. Come out where I can see you,” Morwen froze. First she did not know what the voice was saying and second, if she did not move, she might not be seen. The voice came again, “Did you hear me? I know you are there.” She heard someone coming. Morwen looked around for somewhere to hide, but the only place was across the clearing away from the cottage, so she ran. Or tried to run, the plants had somehow laced themselves around her boots and held her fast to the ground. Adrenaline pumped into Morwen’s body and she pulled and yanked but got nowhere.

Then she saw a golden-haired elven woman crossing through the flowers. They seemed to make a path for her as she walked. She paused just out of Morwen’s reach. Morwen crouched low like a pinned predator, her hand reached for the club at her belt, then the woman smiled. Her smile was like the moon she had seen the night before, full and mysterious. Morwen ceased her struggles and smiled back.

“I’ve been waiting for you. You are a few decades late, but time has no meaning when redemption is at hand,” spoke the woman in fluent drow. Too stunned to speak, Morwen just stared. The plants receded and Morwen was able to move but remained rooted to the spot. “Let us get you inside - into the shade so your eyes can recover from your first light of the sun.” The elven woman turned around and walked toward the cottage. Curious, Morwen followed.

Morwen followed the elven woman into the cottage. The darkness within soothed the drow’s eyes and gave her a sense of security. The elf moved through the cottage smoothly and looked back only when Morwen paused just inside the door. “Surely you aren’t afraid of one lone elf are you?” she asked.

“I do not fear you. But I do not know why you were expecting me,” states Morwen.

"Come in and be seated. Many decades ago my son left on a quest. He dreamt of a dark rose blooming in the darkness. He never returned. Then here you come, a beautiful dark elf, and you are out in the sunshine in the middle of my forest home. You were reaching for a rose when you froze and for a moment it all seemed right.” The elven woman smiles gently.

 Morwen sits in shock, “I knew your son. He was taken by my family and sacrificed.”

 “Ah, then I claim your life as mine,” said the woman.

 Morwen stood up, panic in her eyes as she reached for her club. The elven woman was already moving and Morwen lost track of her, though she was looking at the precise spot the woman had stood but a moment before. Morwen crouched, looking about warily. Then she felt a gentle touch on her shoulders and something was around her neck. Morwen reached up to keep from being garroted and found a pendant. A rose crafted of black gold with the petals just opening and the hint of a ruby center.

The elven woman came back around the front of Morwen. “Now you are mine.”

Morwen’s eyes closed to mere slits, “I am my own person. No one owns me!”

“Precisely, Morwen,” laughed the elven woman.

“How do you know my name?” asked Morwen shakily.

“I know everything there is to know about you. You hate your position in life. Now you have a chance to change it. You are curious, drawn to beauty and have a penchant for love. And you hate the fiend you called a goddess for the last century. You are curious and you love to dance and sing. I think I know you very well,” said the elven woman.

Morwen simply stared. The elven woman came closer and put her arm around Morwen’s shoulders and drew her down to a seat. “I am the answer to the prayers your heart has made Morwen. You are free. Rest now Morwen’cartel. Rest and be at peace.” The elven woman began rocking back and forth the motion lulled Morwen to sleep.

Over the next twenty years Morwen stayed with the elf and learned about the world she now lived in. She learned of the different races and how they lived. She learned languages and skills needed to live on the surface world.  She learned how different plants could be used to aid in the curing of different ailments and she learned to take joy in the small things of life. Morwen also learned the call of her spirit was being answered by Hanali Celanil. All she needed to do was listen and respond.

On the first full moon of her twenty-first year with the elven woman, something changed. There were several visitors to the clearing. Morwen was terrified at approaching them, but slowly came forward. They were a small group of elves and half-elves. They came to dance in the clearing.

Morwen waited for them to notice her, which did not take long as a moonbeam shone down on her. Morwen was temporarily blinded and when she could see again the elves were surrounding her.  “What are you doing here, drow?” demanded the leader, a male moon elf. He held a staff in his hands and watched her closely.

Morwen answered in flawless elvish, “I live here with the lady. What are you doing here?”

The elf’s eyes narrowed and he stepped closer to her, “No one lives here. This is a holy place to Lady Goldheart, you defile it with your presence, dark one.”

“No, we live in the cottage in the roses over there,” Morwen turned to point at the cottage and it was gone. She started shaking, “But I swear it was there. I’ve lived here for twenty years. She taught me … I swear it.” Morwen’s voice broke.

The elf was staring at the pendant around Morwen’s neck when she faced him again. “Stand still,” he ordered and spoke a few lilting phrases. His eyes widened and he shook his head. “You speak the truth. You truly do not know what this place is do you?”

Morwen’s lips trembled and she shook her head. “I found it many years ago when I was lost.”

“What does that pendant mean to you?” asked the elf.

“It is a symbol of my belief and the beauty in the world. She told me it was representative of the answer to my prayers. It meant Hanali Celanil was watching me and was pleased.” Morwen shudders and silvery tears began running down her cheeks, “She’s gone. I don’t want to be alone again.”

The elf stepped closer and looked down at her. He cupped her chin in his hand and brought her eyes to his, “You aren’t alone. You will never be alone so long as you wear this pendant.” He dipped his head and kissed her softly on the lips and stepped back. The others gasped at the elf’s actions and tried to pull him away but he waved them off.

“We will take this flower back to Tinali and let her decide her fate. For now we will celebrate life and joy in the moonlight, and she will join us.” The elves began their celebration with reserve at the presence of the drow. But soon they joined hands and danced and sang until the sun kissed the sky. In the morning they left to return to the Evereskan hills and the Fountainheart of Shimmering Gold.

The elves advised Morwen to keep the hood of her baladrana pulled forward to avoid stares from the people they passed. It was several days journey from the forest to the hills. Before Morwen was led into the hills they stopped and blindfolded her. The elf who first addressed her, Altarian, took her hand and led her through the paths leading to Bellcrest and then to the High Temple of Hanali Celanil – the Fountainheart of Shimmering Gold.

Once inside the Fountainheart, Morwen was taken to a small bare chamber and told to sit while Altarian brought Tinali to her. For some reason Morwen was very nervous and knew she would not escape intact. When the door opened again it was to let in a stunningly beautiful moon elf. The elven woman was dressed in elegant gold and cream colored robes and her smile shone in her face. “I had to see if what Altar spoke was true. I had a dream of you Morwen’cartel. Lady Goldheart said she was sending you to us. I have spoken to Altarian and he has agreed to teach you. Be welcome in your time here. But, I must warn you – your tasks are enormous and you will need steel to overcome the prejudice most will feel at your presence. Old hatreds do not die easily when drow continually foray, steal slaves, murder and maim.” The elven woman steps forward and embraces Morwen before leaving the room. Shortly, Altarian returns.

“You are my charge for your time in the temple. We will begin your lessons after your have rested and refreshed yourself.” Then he led her to a room, “This room will be yours for your stay in the temple. If you need anything please ask until you learn your way around. I do not suggest you wander freely as of yet. No one knows we have a drow in the temple and I would not like to see you harmed.” Altarian kisses her hand and leaves the room.

Morwen blushed at the touch of his lips on her skin and smiled back at him, “I will rest here.”

When Altarian left, Morwen looked around her chamber. It was small, but comfortable. The bed was soft and beautifully carved. The small writing desk was of a similar wood and high quality. There was also a carved chest at the foot of the bed. Morwen placed her belongings within and danced around the room there was a full length mirror on one wall and she caught sight of herself in its silvery surface and stopped dead in her tracks.

She tiptoed up to the mirror and reached one hand out tentatively toward the surface. She had never seen herself in a mirror under the light of day. She pursed her lips and creased her brow and so did the image. She stopped and it did to. She squealed in delight at this new toy and danced in circles in front of it. Finally she stopped before she fell down from dizziness. She watched her reflection until a soft knock came on the door and she walked to the side of the door and opened it.

Altarian stood outside and he had a tray of food and a large sack with him. She opened the door fully and let him in. The first thing she did was to ask him what the device was that showed herself. She pointed at the mirror. He laughed. “That is a mirror. It shows your reflection.”

“No, mirrors are dark and you can’t see anything in them,” answered Morwen.

“Dear Morwen, you are so innocent of some things. A mirror shows a reflection. The mirrors you knew reflected very little because your home was dark. If you brought one of them here it would show the same image as you see here,” replied Altarian with a smile on his lips.

“But, I’m beautiful. The mirror never showed me like this before. Do you think I am pretty?” she turned to look him in the eyes and caught him appraising her body.

Altarian looked away, “You are very pretty Morwen.”

A hint of rose tinted her cheeks and she looked down at the floor. “No one has said I am pretty before. Thank-you Altarian.”

Altarian set down the tray and the bundle then cupped her chin in his hand and raised her eyes to his. “Do not be ashamed for it Morwen. I live in the temple of Hanali, I see beauty every day. You are exotic, perfect and I am hoping to see more of you as I teach you the path of the Archer of Love.” He leans in and kisses her lips lightly again.

Morwen breathes in deeply, “Why do you kiss me? You do not know me.”

Altarian smiles, “I am sorry, it is just when I see you this close …. I will stop.”

“No. You don’t have to … I like it. In my home men would never touch me unless told they had to touch me. Unless of course it was during one of the ceremonies at the temple.” Morwen’s face crashes as she speaks of the ceremonies and without knowing, she slips into a dark memory and speaks in drow, “They were awful. The graduation ceremonies were attended by students from all the colleges and the priestess who was first in her class would summon a demon and copulate with it and around them the rest of us would …” Her fists clench and she winces at the memory. So lost to the darkness was she that she did not feel Altarian shaking her. Finally she felt a stinging pain on her face and she looked up.

She was lying on the floor and Altarian stood above her his hand raised. His eyes were frightened and he immediately knelt next to her. “You were talking, panicking, I could not understand you.” He gathered her close and held her against his chest. “I’m sorry I did not mean to hit you but you wouldn’t wake up. I’m so sorry.” He rocked her back and forth until she pushed away. She looked up at his face and saw he was crying.

Outside they both heard scrambling feet and the door burst open. Tinali Seleniva stood in the doorway and several other priests were outside, many holding weapons. The harsh words on her lips died as she saw the couple on the floor. Turning she ordered the others to leave. Some were reluctant, but all obeyed. Tinali stepped inside and shut the door behind her. Her strong, calm voice penetrated the gloom in the room, “Altarian, leave us.”

“Mistress, please, it was my fault, I hit her and …” Altarian argued.

“Now Altarian,” came the reply.

Knowing better than to disobey Tinali when she got that tone in her voice he stood, bowed to them both and left.

Tinali stood over Morwen and she felt very small, very alone and very scared at that moment.

“Explain to me what happened Morwen,” said Tinali.

Morwen drew her knees to her chest and wrapped her arms around them. “We were talking. I asked him if I was pretty and he said yes. Then he kissed me and I asked why. He said he was sorry and he wouldn’t do it anymore. I said No, that I liked it. Then I remembered some things from before … at the temple back home. They weren’t very nice memories and I felt drawn into them. I couldn’t escape. I was lost to darkness and Altarian had to help me, so he hit me to wake me up. It was terrible, I felt her again and I never want to feel her again. Never!” Morwen was surprised by the wetness on her cheeks, and she looked up at Tinali.

The priestess stood over her unmoving. When she looked down and Morwen’s stricken face her eyes dropped to the pendant around the young drow’s neck. Sighing Tinali sat on the floor next to Morwen and held open her arms. Morwen froze for a moment then wiggled toward the High Priestess and rested her head on her shoulder. They sat that way for a long time and Morwen cried softly. The priestess just held her without speaking. When the crises passed Tinali held Morwen at arms length, “Come with me. I want to take you somewhere we can speak without being overheard.”

Not really understanding the meaning behind the priestess’ words Morwen just stood up and followed her. When they opened the door Altarian almost fell in since he was standing with his ear pressed against the portal. Tinali laughed, “You too. You may as well come since you will be spending a good deal of time with her.” Altarian blushed a deep red at being caught.

The high priestess led the pair through the halls and deep into the temple. They emerged in a small clearing in the midst of a maze of rose covered boxwoods. A statue of Hanali stood in the center of the garden atop a low pedestal. The statue was carved from white stone one hand over her heart and one hand touching an ear.

Altarian looked a bit awed at where Tinali led them and sat at the feet of the statue. “Sit Morwen I need to talk to you and ask some painful questions of you.” Morwen sat as she was asked. Altarian reached for one of her hands and Morwen smiled when he took it.

“Morwen, you said you were in the temple. Were you ordained as a priestess of Lolth?” Tinali looked at the drow with piercing eyes.

Morwen nodded, “I spent fifty years in the temple. I was ordained in the priesthood the year I was allowed to join the patrols. Then I got lost and found the cottage and the golden haired elven woman who claimed my life.”

Tinali seemed a little taken aback by Morwen’s blunt answer. “I see.” Tinali removed a ring from her right ring finger and passed it to Morwen. It is a simple gold band adorned with etched stylized hearts. “Wear this. It is blessed and it will also shield your mind from intrusions. I do not want another episode like today.”

Morwen took the ring and put it on, “What episode lady?”

“Apparently your dark memory was more than a memory. The temple had an intruder, we tracked it to just outside your room. After sending the beast back to the Abyss we opened the door and found you two on the floor. Lolth is a jealous goddess Morwen’cartel. She will not deign to lose a gifted priestess easily. You will be hunted for the rest of your life by those loyal to her. The gift I gave you will help you to avoid the worst of some of those combats, until you are ready to face them.”

Morwen looked at the ring and up at Tinali in disbelief, “I am sorry. I never wanted to involve anyone else in my personal battles.” Altarian squeezed her hand and held it tight.

Tinali smiled, “Morwen, you are here because it is Hanali’s will. Do not doubt, even if your race dictates that we should hate you. Your belief dictates that we protect you as one of our own. I am afraid the secrecy of your presence has been compromised. This is why I brought you here. Stay here the rest of the night. I will come for you in the morning. I must move quickly to diffuse the situation.” Tinali smiled and took her leave.

Morwen looked at Altarian, “Are you going away too?”

Altarian stared into her eyes and cupped her chin again. “I will stay with you forever if you will let me.”

Morwen smiled, “Thank-you Altarian.” She hugged the elven priest and sat close to him. Altarian put his arm around Morwen and told her of Hanali’s church as they sat at the base of her statue.

The following morning Tinali found the pair sleeping next to each other. She stepped forward to wake Morwen, the drow’s eyes opened and she was on her feet in an instant. The wary look was replaced by relief at seeing who it was. The high priestess smiled and waved Morwen over to her.

“Morwen, I do not know how long I can keep you here in the temple. The hatreds are strong against your race and there are many here who have fought against your people and do not believe evil in the race can be so easily overcome. You will have to prove yourself to people like this every day for the rest of your life, but I have a feeling you already know that. I want to tell you a story. A story I feel you will understand, but I do not know why.” Morwen sat next to the priestess as she told her of Anoran Astald’osta.

Morwen listened carefully and stored away the information. Altarian chose that moment to wake up and came over, his expression questioning. Tinali looked at the young priest, “Take her to the library and let her browse through the tomes. I have some work to finish.” Tinali turned and led them through the maze and back into the temple proper.

Altarian took Morwen by the hand and led her through the sprawling temple complex to the library. Morwen gasped when she saw the multitude of shelves. “Go on, enjoy your time here. I will go get us something to eat and meet you in the arbor outside.”

Morwen stepped into the room and walked the length of the library stopping from shelf to shelf just reading titles and pulling out tomes and scrolls. In one corner of the library she found a shelf that really interested her and she went over each of the volumes carefully storing away their location for future use when she saw the corner of a tattered book sticking out beneath the shelf. Thinking it odd she got on her hands and knees and worked the book out. It was a small thing barely two-handwidths long and well used.

Turning to the first page she read the words in elvish, "an exercise in vanity....” Frowning she took the book back to one of the reading tables and started flipping through the pages reading. Altarian came into the library looking for Morwen when she didn’t come out for brunch. He sighed when he saw her and went back outside. Morwen devoured the journal and then slipped it into her pouch and left the library. She was surprised when she got outside and saw how much the sun had moved. She looked over to the arbor and saw Altarian. She blushed and hurried over to him. “I’m sorry, I was reading.”

“I know, I saw. But I did not want to disturb you. Sit, eat,” he smiled up at her and she sat and ate as he told her more about Hanali.

The following days were pleasant for Morwen; she spent time with Altarian and even a few of the younger priests. She learned about Hanali’s priesthood and the Seldarine. The stories were so much different from her teachings back in Menzoberranzan. She also learned why the priests call her Morwen’cartel and began getting accustomed to the addition to her name. It was the third week of her stay in the temple when her life changed again.

That morning she was torn from her sleep as three elves burst into her room and dragged her out into the courtyard. Tinali was furious when she arrived, “Lenathil you have no right to do this. The council gave me three months.”

One of the bladesingers, an elf missing an eye, steps forward and thrusts a parchment at Tinali. “The council reconsidered.”

Morwen’s thoughts were running - she knew this elf, his name … the story, the journal. Everything suddenly clicked in her mind. Time seemed to slow down for Morwen. She saw the younger priests running into the courtyard, Altarian with them. She heard them defending her. She saw the unwavering expression on the older Bladesinger’s face and the confusion on some of the others. She knew what she had to do.

Morwen shook off the hands of the two bladesinger’s who were holding her down and stood up. She stepped forward to look Lenathil in the eye. “Lenathil Enterasti, I will abide by your and the council’s wishes and leave this place. But not before you hear me. I cannot give you back Anoran or make recompense for all the ill done the day you lost your hand and eye. But I can tell you the prophecy made so long ago is coming true. And a warrior as honorable as yourself should not let hate rule his life – lest you become one with your enemy.” Morwen turned from the bladesinger and walked from the temple an escort of blade-wielding warriors at her back.

It was night by the time the warriors stopped pressing Morwen forward and returned to Evereska. Morwen sighed deeply and looked at the hills around her. She did not know where she was or where she could go. Tears filled her eyes and ran down her cheeks as she realized everything she lost that day.

The following morning dawned bright and clear but Morwen hid from the sun in the shallow cave she took shelter in the night before. She knew the hatred was natural but she never expected it to hurt so much. She cried quietly through the morning and fell asleep before highsun. When she woke that evening there was a cheery fire, she was covered with a blanket and the smell of a rich rabbit stew filled the air. She sat up and looked around. Two packs were along the wall and a beautifully carved staff. Whoever brought the items was not present.

Morwen looked in the stew pot and could tell the stew still needed to simmer before it could be eaten. She waited for the owner of the packs to arrive. After a little while she heard some clattering outside and saw a figure stacking firewood. When the figure was through it came into the light and she saw Altarian.

“Altarian!” she cried in surprise and relief. She ran to him and threw her arms around him and kissed his lips.

The priest smiled down at her and held her close, “I could hardly let you go. I’m not done training you yet. And you said I could stay with you forever, remember?”

Love for this stalwart elf and his flying in the face of traditional hatreds ran through Morwen and shone from her eyes. “I was so afraid and here you are and everything is better.” She held him tight for several minutes.

That evening Morwen and Altarian lay together beneath the moon. They spent hours touching and caressing and finally joining with one another. When it was all over they lay in each others arms and said nothing, each feeling the heartbeat of the other. Morwen finally broke the silence, “I have never been happier than I am right now. I have known joy, peace and beauty. But you have shown me love Altar.” She tilted her head up, kissed his lips softly and fell asleep on his chest.

The next few years the couple adventured together, always searching for communities that needed help, or performing for festivals. Their travels led them to many areas of the Realms and eventually to Waterdeep. It was outside this city the couple met a young elven woman heading for the city. She was carrying a babe in her arms and riding hard. She stopped to water her mount when Morwen and Altar found her.

She held them off with a moonblade; it took several minutes of explanation from Altar to keep her from killing Morwen. Finally she accepted Morwen, after her blade told her the dark elf had no ill intent in her soul. She explained she was running from assassins and needed to reach a boat leaving the City of Splendors for the Isle of Evermeet. The couple agreed to help her reach her destination.

The attack, when it came, was fierce and brutal. And the most shocking was the discovery that the attackers were elven. They fought with more seething hatred then Morwen had seen in her own people. Time and again they came at the young elf and her child and time and again the trio pushed them back. Then a tall gold clad elf atop a white stallion trotted into view. He pointed at Altarian and spoke a single arcane word. Altar paled and collapsed to his knees. Morwen was stricken at the fall of her lover and rushed to check on him. He was dying; he looked up at her and smiled one last smile. He handed her his staff and gasped out, “Save the princess.”

Something inside Morwen broke as his eyes lost the light of life. She grabbed his staff and turned to meet the elf who dared to take her love from her. He was riding down his blade flashing in the sun and struck at the elven woman. She fell to the ground and covered her child. Morwen screamed in rage and ran at him as he was dismounting to claim the child. She hit him from behind. The blow shook the staff, almost jolting it from her hands.

He turned to face the drow, and fell back. Something in Morwen’s eyes scared him and he raised his sword to defend himself. The battle was long and bloody, but Morwen kept coming, exhaustion had long since lost all meaning for her. The elf knew he could not defeat the drow so spoke another phrase and disappeared. Morwen dropped to her knees and yelled at the heavens until she was hoarse.

Finally she stood again and went to the elven woman and checked for a pulse, she was still alive. Morwen made a makeshift litter for the woman and her child and set them inside. Then she carried her love to the horses and laid him across the saddle. Then she put all the packs on the back of the princess’ horse and finished the trek to Waterdeep.

She was stopped at the gate and refused entry. She became belligerent and demanded to see the High Priest of Corellon. The priest was sent for as he would have been for the dead and wounded as it was. Morwen was shackled, gagged and held in a cell until the priest could be brought to her.

It was the following morning before anyone returned to her cell. She was immediately unbound and ungagged. She saw an older elf bearing the symbol of Corellon and a human woman with silver hair. The woman came forward and without saying anything and touched Morwen and the priest, teleporting them to the temple of Corellon. Morwen saw a bier on which was Altar. She cried until there were no more tears and collapsed at his side. The human woman picked her up and carried her to a bed in one of the acolyte’s cells.

When Morwen woke she saw the woman looking down at her a thoughtful expression on her face. The woman was holding the ring from her right finger and Morwen’s eyes narrowed. As if seeing her for the first time she smiled at Morwen and put the ring back on her finger. “I had to remove it Morwen, I needed to learn who you were and why you are here. I am truly sorry for your loss. Altarian was a great elf and we are all the poorer for his passing.”

Tears sprang to Morwen’s eyes and she begged, “Bring him back – please. I need him.” Morwen sniffled and the tears started flowing again.

The woman shook her head gently and placed a hand on Morwen’s head. “No Morwen. The priests will not. Altarian is in a better place. He walks with his goddess at the side of her pool. To take him from splendor to come back to you is selfish. You will always have him in memories and in your heart. The spell used to take his life from him is a permanent spell. Even if the priests were to choose to bring him back, it would fail and they may hurt themselves by trying.”

Morwen choked and realized the woman was right. Not trusting herself to speak she simply nodded and looked up at the woman. Morwen was caught by surprise at the empathy on the human woman’s face. “I share your pain young one. I have buried many whom I loved over the years.”

“It may help to know; Princess Amnestria and her babe were saved and are on their way to Evermeet. You have the gratitude of the elves of that island. I have been given a gift for you. It will never compare to the one which was taken from you, but it is a noble prize.” She reached to the floor and picked up a small bundle. Morwen opened the package and gasped at what was within. She withdrew a full set of elven chain.

“It is also magicked. You will find it a great asset on your travels. The priests also have sent Altarian’s belongings to you. High Priestess Tinali requests that you be allowed to keep them. She sends her greetings and her love. I will leave you alone with your thoughts.” The woman stood and left the room.

Morwen stood up and put on the armor. It fit snugly and was so light she put her clothes back on over the top. A princely gift indeed but any elf that saw her with it would be determined to remove it rather than see it on a drow and she knew it. Taking a ragged breath she moved to the packs and brought them to the bed. She also saw Altarian’s staff leaning against the wall. She went through the packs, her eyes tearing up several times. By the time she was finished there was a lump in her throat so large she could barely breathe. Kneeling next to the bed she prayed to Hanali to keep Altarian safe and happy. In her mind she heard Altarian’s voice, “You wear the pendant and when you wear the pendant you are never alone.”

“Good-bye melamin; but I must continue this journey now. It will be harder without you by my side. But I will never forget, never,” she whispered softly at the memories.

Morwen spent several weeks recovering in the temple. She never ate with anyone and spent her time in meditation and contemplation. Finally she approached the priest to tell him she was needed in the world again. He smiled and loaded her with supplies and set her feet on a path out of Waterdeep. The human woman, Laeral, came to the temple again to teleport Morwen out of the city without hassle. She sent Morwen to the country of Cormyr. It is here Morwen is currently and has been wandering for close to two decades; ever on the lookout for people she can aid and festivals to join. She has actually grown into her name now and is gaining some fame as the Dark Rose.

Generated by the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Core Rules CD-ROM 2.0

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