Oiloss'lin Xyrrai'zestu Sharen
((Oiloss'lin Xyrrai'zestu Vel'Sharen shared first place in the FFRPG character contest in 2006 with Nal'Relka Val'Sarghress. Oiloss'lin created by Thalar.))
Appears in chapter(s):
Oiloss’lin was born as the second daughter of Tal’xuess, the Ilhar of Xyrrai’zestu, a subhouse of the (then) Val’Sharen. Tal’xuess, was rich, graceful and ambitious, and determined to increase her subhouse’s influence. The fact that Xyrrai’zestu was one of the smallest subhouses at the time, was merely an obstacle to overcome.
Normally, the second daughter of a noble would be raised by the noble’s first daughter, but as a part of her plans for the subhouse, Tal’xuess was determined to bear many children, and often. She expected the same of the other females of the subhouse. At the first mention of her plans, there were scandalous outcries and several challenges were made, but as Tal’xuess kept talking they all eventually listened. Perhaps it was the magnitude of her plan; the long-term implications were baffling. Her intention was to raise an army, the old fashioned way. The end result was that Telusonne, Oiloss’lin’s elder sister, was elder by a mere four years.
It would be unkind to say that none of the children were born out of love, but for the most part every child concieved in the subhouse was a product of strict breeding. Oiloss’lin was no exception. Her father was a well-off faern trained in the high arts. Telusonne’s, a renowned empath. Neither of the girls ever knew their fathers.
Of course, with Sharen nobility, comes a personal servant, bodyguard and a deadly enemy or lifelong friend; the adopted protector twin. Tal’xuess had been scouting for prospective twin candidates, and had decided on the newborn girl of a wealthy merchant who had recently ingratiated herself to Xyrrai’zestu. The merchant, overwhelmed by the offer and jubilant at her girl becoming a noble, did not protest. The family didn’t have any special traits but beggars can’t be choosers, Tal’xuess reasoned, as she carried the babe home. The protector twin was given the name Anai’los.
Oiloss’lin and Anai’los grew up together with a great number of other children, playing in the empty and abandoned parts of the Xyrrai’zestu house, a fortresslike building dwarfed and obsqured from outside view by the massive Sharen main tower. Tal’xuess educated her first two daughers, and their twins, on her own, an impressive feat. They were indoctrinated with a sense of honor and loyalty; to the Val’Sharen, to Xyrrai’zestu, and to Tal’xuess herself. Oiloss’lin and her twin were also taught to be loyal to the first Heir, Telusonne, but no such considerations counted for her protector twin, Pyrilin. It was a small, but constant reminder of Pyrilin’s status compared to Telusonne.
Oiloss’lin took her mother’s teachings to heart, and would often act as backup for Telusonne if she got into an argument with other kids. This she did because she had asked her mother what loyalty really was, and her mother had answered ”It is to stand supportive of your clan, your mother or your big sister, even if you don’t necessarily agree with their argument. It is to never argue with those you are loyal to, if that argument would hurt their standing.” Oiloss’lin had protested, ”But if what they say isn’t true, and I know it?” “Then you talk to them in private, afterwards. Only those who are your enemies must you expose then and there, and only if it will gain you or those you are loyal to.” Oiloss’lin had thought it over, then nodded slowly, accepting her mother’s words as the truth.
When Telusonne and Pyrilin were allowed to go to the Orthobbae to study, Oiloss’lin was downright envious. She still had to wait four years, and it seemed like such a long time. The next few years, more of the kids would be of an age to go there as well, long before it would be her own turn. Oiloss’lin and Anai’los grew closer during this time. No longer with a bigger sister to watch out for, the two played games of dominance over the other kids, and with their combined efforts soon ruled supreme over the playground. As curious as they were, they never thought to disobey their mother’s command never to go outside, instead spending their time exploring the building – which was a tremendous task in itself, with all the old, closed-off sections.
The next few years passed slowly, with Telusonne and Pyrilin growing stronger and more selfconfident, and Oiloss’lin and Anai’los becoming more and more impatient to join them at the Orthobbae. Their mother still played a big role in their lives, of course, they were still very young. And although Tal’xuess most of the time kept herself busy overseeing the development of her subhouse, giving instructions, recieving reports and the like, she somewhere found the time to occasionally read to her two youngest daughters, regaling them with stories of bravery, of the surface world, and the glorious history of the Val’Sharen clan.
When Oiloss’lin was 10, she and Anai’los were finally admitted to the Orthobbae. They were dismayed at discovering they would be sharing a room with a non-Sharen girl. From what they had heard sofar, everyone that was not in the clan, was almost as bad as regular peasants. The girl was nothing like what they expected. She was in the room when they arrived, apparently just finished unpacking. She greeted them with a near-royal dignity, only slightly marred by fresh bruises on her body, where it showed through her clothing. Erilin’tyrr was her name, and she was a Val’Illhar’dro. Despite some initial confusion as to their relative standings, with rank in one clan mattering little or nothing to another, it was soon clear that Erilin’tyrr was no leader. Oiloss’lin easily assumed leadership of the trio.
Where Oiloss’lin was stubborn, calculating and sometimes brutally honest, Erilin’tyrr was mellow, could change plans at the blink of an eye, and she had a way of weaving truths with lies that made Oiloss’lin step back in awe. Anai’los was their shadow, not lacking in importance, but rather gathering and supplying them with intelligence, playing on the strings of others to gain their trio an upper hand. The three girls made a powerful group, one which other students often either stepped carefully around, or made efforts to befriend.
They attended the same classes, year after year. Their education focused on the powerful art of summoning, and all three girls were fascinated by the possibilities it offered. Much to their disappointment, their studies left very little time for weapons practice, something which both Oiloss’lin and Anai’los, and to a lesser extent Erilin’tyrr, had been secretly dreaming about. In their third year Anai’los discovered an apparently unused room not far from their own. It was too tempting to not make use of their secret, and the girls smuggled up weapons which they would use to practice outside of their normal lesson hours.
That year, the girls showed a remarkable progress in their few weapons training classes, but their summoning teachers reported a noticeable lack of progress in the art. This news was not recieved well at home. Tal’xuess gave her daughers a stern lecture on the relative power of subhouses, and how the twins’ talents for magic would increase Xyrrai’zestu’s standing, whereas weapons training would just reinforce an old image of Xyrrai’zestu as brainless muscle-beasts and cheap cannon fodder. Oiloss’lin took her mother’s words to heart, and vowed to be a part of Xyrrai’zestu’s rise to greatness, and Anai’los swore the same.
When they returned to the Orthobbae, they took their magic arts classes more seriously than before, and for the remainder of their years at the Orthobbae, they were either at the top of their classes, or very close to it, pursuing knowledge almost ruthlessly. All three of them graduated with honors, and even with invitations to come teach once they had gotten some ”life experience”. When Oiloss’lin was 30, she walked out from the Orthobbae for the last time, eager to see what her life would offer up next.
With her obvious talents for leadership, Oiloss’lin was quickly enlisted into the Sharen army’s officer training program, together with her twin. Anai’los was still her living, breathing shadow, and it was quickly noted that the two worked extremely well as a team. They were assigned as junior officers to a small platoon, consisting of both warriors and magic users from several of the smallest subhouses. The platoon was lead by a woman named Chaleel, a stern commander with little ambition besides serving her clan. She took the two juniors under her wings, and taught them much of what she knew of life in the army. Although it was clear that she wanted more out of the relationship, the twins always kept at a distance, grateful for her advice but not willing to cross the line into something more personal.
The first thirty years with that platoon was mostly spent policing the streets of the Sharen section of Chel’el’sussoloth. They would deal with insurgents, criminals and members of other clans when they stepped over the line. While Oiloss’lin felt that they were better than mere city patrols, she took the opportunity to learn the city by heart. She and Anai’los would occasionally meet up with Erilin’tyrr, mostly for shopping in the Klar’bol, or at parties and other social gatherings. The three stayed close, but adult life had caught up with them, leaving little time for socializing.
When Oiloss’lin was 72, Chaleel was killed, along with three of the warriors of the platoon, in an ambush staged by a small, rebellious group of clanless drowolath. The rest of the 30-odd in the platoon survived the attack, beating back the enemy with a brutal show of force. With Chaleel dead, Oiloss’lin was next in the line of command, and her first order was the capture, and painful death of the rebels. They captured many that day, and the remaining few were discovered after some crafty spywork of Anai’los’. Through interrogation, the twins found out that there were more such groups, apparently planning a coup against the Sharen. When they reported this to their superiors, they were very disappointed to hear that they were not the first to discover this. A few days later, the Val’Sharen’s full might descended upon a small, would-be clan, and completely decimated it in a few days of battle.
There would be more skirmishes like this throughout the years, some times the Sharen would outnumber the enemy, some times not. Some times the enemy would be clanless wretches, barely trained with the weapon they wielded. Some times they would be an enemy clan’s finest troops, with centuries of experience. They all yielded to the might of the Val’Sharen.
When Oiloss’lin was 124, her mother finally convinced her to bear a child for Xyrrai’zestu. Her mother had found a suitable male, a man named Ueluan, from another of the subhouses. Apparently his mother’s bloodline had some rare pressure sorcery, and Tal’xuess wanted that ability for her own. The man was noone special, and Oiloss’lin never saw him again after the fact. She heard some years later that he had died in battle, yet it meant nothing to her. To Tal’xuess’ joy, Oiloss’lin bore a healthy girl, whom she named Tialu’tel. She was paired with a twin from a merchant family, much like Oiloss’lin herself. The twin’s name was Yluna. With two children needing her attention, she took a break from officering. Instead she would spend her free time sparring, training with different weapons to stay in shape. Anai’los, her fate as always tied to the one she was born to protect, was not happy at their confinement, believing firmly that their potential lay in fighting, not rearing children.
Fifteen years later, Oiloss’lin and Anai’los fell in love with a man named Kalorde, a middle-ranked faern only a century old, also a Sharen. The three of them stayed together for almost forty years before parting ways. Despite Tal’xuess’ objections about breeding without her planning, both Oiloss’lin and Anai’los gave birth to a daughter as a result of this union, with only a year between the two. Oiloss’lin’s was 149 when she had her second daughter, Ellienda, and adopted her twin, Wenlyche. Anai’los gave birth to Tiril’qua the year after, and despite some bickering – she was ”just” a protector twin after all, which Oiloss’lin countered with the fact that her adoption into the subhouse technically made her a noble – adopted a protector twin for her girl, whom she named Dyryn’lu. That same year, for no apparent reason, the still childless Telusonne murdered her protector twin. She proclaimed that Pyrilin had been plotting to kill her, and with Telusonne’s well-trained empathy skills, everyone was convinced she had uncovered the plot through use of her powers.
At 179, Oiloss’lin and Anai’los returned to the army, this time to a different section. They spent the next sixty years defending the Sharen clan’s honor both in Chel’el’sussoloth, and more foreign locales, once going as far as two days’ journey into the lands on the surface, hunting a traitor. Being summoners, they were always looking to expand their skills, and around the 1000-year mark of Chel’el’sussoloth’s founding they got involved in experiments with demonic summoning. It was a dangerous skill, very much like playing with fire. Occasionally one of the summoners would loose against the demon that was summoned, and she would be kicked out as a worthless, tainted wretch. It was soon found out, however, that this ”taint” made the individual immune to the effect of demons. But before their group started experimenting with tainting themselves, other groups had been caught experimenting with it, and the Val’Sharess herself had proclaimed it a capital offense. So the twins put their demonic summoning on ice. That same year, Erilin’tyrr moved to Val’Raveran, much to the twins’ disappointment.
After those sixty years, Oiloss’lin had another girl, by the name of Yiren’kylesse, paired with a girl named Rhyalu. Her two eldest daughters had by then both argued with, and killed, their protector twins. It wasn’t surprising, considering neither twin had been a good fit, but Oiloss’lin was both pleased with her daughters’ performance, and displeased with not having raised them to see the benefit of a twin. She vowed to make a better effort with her youngest. She once again took a break from the army. Eighteen years after Yiren’kylesse was born, Oiloss’lin had her first son, whom she named Alaun’alton. The father of both Yiren’kylesse and Alaun’alton was a man from the ranks of her own platoon, a warrior named Chyrrul’aon. Up until the start of the Nidraa’chal war, Oiloss’lin spent her time either with her children, or working as a weapons instructor for young nobles. Anai’los was by her side at all times as always, after all these years the two of them were almost as one person. Their daughters were all growing up to become powerful women, skilled in both magic and melee, finding their places in the well-oiled Sharen army.
Then the Nidraa’chal appeared, as if out of nowhere, declaring war against the Sharen. A clan full of tainted drowolath, it was the unthinkable made reality. Oiloss’lin started to have some horrendous nightmares, each night she would dream that the clan she loved so much, the Val’Sharen she had dedicated her whole life to, would succumb to demons, to become like the tainted wretches of their failed demon summoning experiments. She felt ridiculous, but the dreams were putting her on edge. Her youngest daughter was at the Orthobbae, she should be safe there. The others were old enough to take care of themselves.. but her son, she couldn’t leave him in the fortress. He had several years to go before he would be accepted at the Orthobbae, so she decided on the next best thing. She wrote a short letter to her old friend, Erilin’tyrr, asking that she treat Alaun’alton as her own, until Oiloss’lin could retrieve him. For some reason, she was certain that the conflict would last longer than usual. She sent her most trusted servant, a woman named Minaeldre, off with Alaun’alton, with enough ada to get them passage on a caravan to Val’Raveran. Hopefully they would be able to make it safely, looking like a commoner woman with her child should keep them out of harm’s way.
With that out of the way, she set out to prepare herself and her platoon for battle. They eagerly awaited the order from their Val’Sharess, and as the days went on with no word, they started to get restless. Surely the Queen would order them out soon? The order came late, so very late, Oiloss’lin thought afterwards. When the order was finally given, the Sharen forces descended upon the Nidraa’chal to wipe them out.. and found Death.
She remembers only fragments of the days of fighting that ensued.. fighting in the very city they were meant to defend. The battalion she belonged to, numbering nearly a thousand women and men, decimated by deadly summoners, using their auras against them. A dragon, no, several dragons, turned into mana-hungry beasts, eating their way through the army. Her summons, all corrupted and useless. Fighting for her life against a possessed soldier she once called lover.. Chyrrul’aon, a mockery of his former self, claws like a beast, and completely red eyes. Anai’los’ sword through his body, her eyes red like the tainted.. Barely winning the battle against a demon trying to consume her soul, yet knowing the victory she had won was almost as bad as loosing. The empty feeling inside as she reached out and took the last pieces of Anai’los’ soul, at the sound of her pleading voice, and stored it inside her last soulmir. The last will of her protector twin, to not let her be taken over by the demon she was loosing against.
How they won, she has no idea. She’s not entirely sure they did. She was tainted, she knew as much after her fight with the demon. Most of the Sharen she saw still up and walking were tainted as well. Almost like a procession of zombies, they made their way home. The proclamation of an assassination attempt on the Val’Sharess was nothing. She couldn’t find it in herself to feel shocked anymore, even though she felt like she should be. The next proclamation, that the Sharen clan, the proud royal clan of Chel’el’sussoloth, was going to become a clan full of tainted, did nothing for her anymore either. The only thing she was sure of, was that she pitied the men who had not become tainted in the battle. She had to sit through the forceful tainting of many of the men who had served under her, to watch their horror as they went through the male version of the tainting ”ritual” that had so conveniently surfaced at that time.
Ever since the Nidraa’chal war, Oiloss’lin has been unable to use her old summons, with all her soulmir save one ruined, and the last one containing the soul of her most cherished love, her twin. She feels it would be blasphemic to use it for such a mundane purpose, and she isn’t sure she would actually be able to use it even if she had wanted to, given that most of the soul was devoured by the demon before she could take it. She has spent most of her time as a weapons instructor, working with mostly young nobles, trying to recover a sense of normalcy. Outside of working hours, she has been slowly looking for ways to improve her demonic summoning abilities, after having heard rumours about powerful summoners being able to crush the seed within them, and gaining control of its powers. So far she has learned nothing of use. She is heavily tainted, although not to the point where the personality completely disappears, and wears sealing armor at all times. Somehow both her daughers and Anai’los’ survived the war, and Oiloss’lin adopted her twin’s daughters as her own. She is still somewhat miffed at her youngest daughter getting tainted of her own volition. But if the Val’Sharess has ordered it, that’s how it should be. Oiloss’lin hopes she will come to understand some day why the Queen has made such a change to the clan.