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Sarai Shessembrae Val'Beldrobbaen
Appeared in chapters 41 44 51 52 54 56
Sarai is a Val'Beldrobbaen Overseer in the Imperial Guard, acting as a taskmaster for the Empress' slaves.
Appearance & Personality
Sarai is a tall and buxom female drowolath with grey eyes. She has white hair styled into a long braided ponytail. She wears a relatively plain silver tiara and a simple veil as is common among Overseers. She eschews heavy armor, instead equipping a chainmail shirt over which she wears a white robe bearing the Imperial emblem. Her preferred weapon is a heavy three-pronged whip which she readily applies as a disciplinary tool.
Sarai is generally cheerful and excitable individual. While displaying warmth and comraderie to those of her own station, she takes great delight in her duties as slavemaster, considering it as much a hobby as a duty and keeping tabs on her favoured slaves. Her outward cheer also belies a strongly vindictive streak, and she has a very low tolerance for any percived lapses in judgement by her peers.
Biography - Arc II
Assassination of the Fake Empress
Sarai first appeared as Kiel'ndia undertook her mission to assassinate the false Diva'ratrika. As Sarai was whipping a trio of Xuile'solen slaves cowering on the floor, she was interrupted by what she initially believed to be guests that Nemea'tari had permitted to enter. Caught off-guard by the surprise attack, she was able to little but sound an alarm as Kiel's group forced their way past her towards the Empress' chambers. Her fellow guards were likewise taken by surprise through Kiel's flagrant abuse of her group's diplomatic status and sudden assault, allowing the Vloz'ress to successfully assassinate their target.<ref>Chapter 41, page 15</ref>
Her arm broken and unable to join the other Imperial Guards in pursuit of the fleeing Vloz'ress, Sarai attempted to heal the false empress with a blood foci, despite her relative lack of training with such abilities and her own substantial injures. Unfortunately, the fake was too far gone to be saved, and Waes'soloth was alerted to the assassination by the same agent that had secretly allowed Kiel'nida access to the inner sanctum. Already tired of the ruse, Waes'soloth commanded Sarai to confirm the death, thus ending the charade and publicly declaring Diva'ratrika to be dead.<ref>Chapter 41, page 29</ref> This had great political ramifications and gave Waes'soloth her much-desired excuse to withdraw her clan from active participation in The District War.<ref>Chapter 41, page 50</ref>
Ultimately recovering, she would go on to attend Felde gathering hosted by Snadhya'rune, along with her fellow Guards Ran'diirk and Sorn'mal. Disguised as a Vloz'ress, Nau'kheol came upon the trio as Sarai pleaded with Ran'diirk to back down from his decision to make an attempt on Snadhya'rune's life, insisting that the Sarghress could spill their blood for that cause instead.<ref>Chapter 44, page 58</ref> Sorn'mal's dragon soon took notice of the young Sharen, seizing him by his cloak and dragging him before the three guards. They began to interrogate Nau, demanding to know who hired the Vloz'ress to assassinate the false empress. Forcefully, Nau insisted that the Nidraa'chal and traitor's among the guard were responsible, alluding to the real Diva'ratrika's death rather than the fake's. Though Ran'diirk considered the accusation with a grim expression, Sarai and Sorn'mal expressed scoffed at the claims, stating themselves to be among the few surviving Guards left and demanding Nau tell the truth. Recognizing the Nidraa'chal progoganda to be more believable than the truth, Nau wearily told them what they expected to hear and claimed that Kharla'ggen had masterminded the assassination.
As the gathering progressed, the three Imperials entered the great hall in which Snadhya'rune was preparing to make a grand speech. As Ran'diirk advanced on Snadhya'rune drawing his sword, Sarai made one last attempt to save his life by calling at him to instead attack Kiel'ndia.<ref>Chapter 44, page 70</ref> Unfortunately, Ran'diirk was fully ready to die and shoved Kiel aside as he made an open attempt to attack Snadhya'rune. Though he made a worthy effort, he was unable to overcome Snadhya'rune's defenses and was struck down. Though Snadhya'rune was willing to allow him to live, Ran'diirk opted to make a desperate suicide attack against his foe by overloading a mana core. The attempt was ultimately futile, and Snadhya'rune defended herself from the blast with accomplished ease. Remarking on the willingness of her mother's followers to follow her in death, Snadhya'rune pulled the lingering aura from Ran'diirk's corpse, converting it into a summon under her control. Though Sorn'mal attempted to comfort her, Sarai could only express bitter regret at the death of yet another of their few-remaining comrades.
A New Guard
Moons later, with the end of the District War and a tentative alliance having been struck between the Sharen and Sarghress, Snadhya'rune coerced Zala'ess into reinstating Nir'naya as a member of the Imperial Guard. Wary of Nir'naya's ties to Snadhya'rune and the latter's possible influence on any attempt to rebuild the Guard, Chrys'tel and Sorn'mal moved to confront their former captain. As the pair encountered Sarai in the hallway of the Guard's quarters, Sarai expressed shock at their intentions to kill Nir'naya, suggesting she could be made to serve.<ref>Chapter 51, page 7</ref> As the three entered Nir'naya's room, Chrys'tel insisted they would not allow Nir'naya to lead them, demanding she reveal Snadhya'rune's reasons for involving herself with the alliance. Though a cowering Nir'naya remained silent, Al'tesh arrived and explained why Nir'naya could not respond; having been subject to brutal interrogation by the Sarghress, Nir'naya's tongue had been cut from her mouth. To their surprise, he then revealed that Zala'ess had managed to bargain hard with her elder sister during their meeting. As part of their pact, Chrys'tel was to be named the new Captain of the Guard.<ref>Chapter 51, page 8</ref>
Biography - Arc III
Three years later, Sarai was assigned to escort duty for a large alliance convoy on a diplomatic mission to Felde.<ref>Chapter 52, page 54</ref> As the convoy traversed Nidavelir, it came under attack by a raiding party from Mimaneid, with Sarai herself taking on multiple combatants at once. As Ariel's Wolfpack watched from the shadows, Mimian warriors ambushed the convoy, assassinating two envoys and seizing hold of Suna'madhuri before the convoy's escort could respond. Though Sarai eagerly anticipated capturing one or more of the Mimian attackers as slaves as retribution for their raids, her joy quickly faded as the scale of the ambush became apparent and she herself was engaged by three Kavahini warriors. As the scene descended into chaos, the enraged commander of the convoy opened a nether gate, swiftly forcing the attackers to flee and ending the assault.<ref>Chapter 52, page 59</ref> As the convoy recovered from the attack, Sarai was helped to her feet by Banja'pyrex, expressing her newfound hatred for Mimians.<ref>Chapter 52, page 54</ref>
Wolfpack Assault on Felde
Though the convoy was able arrive at Felde without further incident, the city itself ultimately proved to be vulnerable to ever-growing conflict spanning the underworld. Attempting to strike back at Snadhay'rune for her attack on Machike and also to attempt to throw pursuing Sarghress into disarray, Ariel led her Wolfpack into a direct assault upon Snadhya'rune's tower, supported by both Highland Raiders under the command of Quill'yate and Kavahini warriors under the command of Chakri. As the Airship crash landed into the tower's docking port and Ariel's forces began storming through the ill-prepared garrison, Sarai attempted to lead a group of Alliance personnel away from the fighting. Though she had spotted mimians entering the tower through the windows below them, it was ultimately agreed to be less of a risk than staying as the upper level of the tower fell to attack.<ref>Chapter 52, page 54</ref>
Though Sarai was willing to direct defending forces to the attackers, she placed greater priority on securing the escape of the guests under her protection.<ref>Chapter 52, page 62</ref> However, as she summoned a lift to allow the group to fall back to the lower levels, the Beldrobbaen envoy was alerted to the presence of his daughter among the attacking Wolfpack forces. As Melas'ryon broke away from the group to attempt to rescue her, his escort was forced to wade through the skirmish to retrieve them, delaying the group's escape. This greatly angered Sarai, who retorted the three ought to be made into slaves for risking the lives of the others so recklessly. Even as the lift descended to the bottom floor, the group felt the effects of Ash'waren's empathy as she searched the tower for Snadhya'rune.<ref>Chapter 54, page 66</ref> While Ischa insisted on remaining behind, Sarai was able to lead the rest of her group across the bridge to the rest of the city, narrowly avoiding much of the ensuing carnage.<ref>Chapter 54, page 73</ref>
"Another one gone. Ran, why did you have to..."<ref>Chapter 44, page 76</ref> - Mourning the loss of yet another comrade.
"New exotic slave for... me..."<ref>Chapter 52, page 56</ref> - Her eagerness for a new slave giving way as she realizes the scale of the ambush.
Official concept for Sarai, Chapter 41.
- Concept Sarai2.png
Official concept for Sarai, Chapter 52.
- Concept Sarai3.png
Official concept for Sarai, Chapter 56.