Faidaeva Vonnarc

Sariel Cerea's page

No posts. Alias of UnArcaneElection.


Full Name

Sariel Cerea

Race

Drow

Classes/Levels

Swashbuckler (Whirling Dervish) 1/Oracle 0

Gender

Female

Size

Medium (6' 3", 160 lb)

Age

118

Special Abilities

(See Extended Crunch, Quick Statistics, and Temporary Conditions sections)

Alignment

Neutral Good

Deity

Sarenrae (1st allegiance), Shelyn (strong 2nd allegiance)

Location

Almas, Andoran

Languages

Common/Taldane (main language), Chelaxian/Infernal (good proficiency), Celestial (not activated yet), Elven (passable proficiency), Undercommon (poor proficiency),

Occupation

Investigator and behind-the-scenes freedom fighter for the Dawn Bellflowers in Almas

Strength 11
Dexterity 17
Constitution 12
Intelligence 12
Wisdom 10
Charisma 16

About Sariel Cerea

{Not yet in a campaign; intended for Second Darkness.}

Backstory:

Mom and Dad's backstory

Sariel Cerea was born of Drow parents who had eloped and escaped the Darklands into Andoran. Under a part of Andoran's Underground Roadway (one of the predecessors to the modern Bellflower Network) that has since evolved into Andoran's Witness Protection Program, mom and dad now go by the intentionally unoriginal Elvish names of Tessara and Caladrel. The Underground Roadway chose their new first names from the lists of most common and least imaginative Elvish first names for them, and then oddly a new last name modified from that of a night-blooming cactus, in a misguided attempt to follow the traditions of surface Elves (and in a misguided attempt to follow Drow tradition that they knew almost nothing about, the Underground Roadway managed to botch the name of the cactus, too).

In their homeland they were originally known as Nadora Azrinae and Umbremourn Vonnarc, scions of two powerful noble houses that were (and still are) bitter rivals, backstabbing each other endlessly across a wide region of the under-Avistan Darklands. Although when they met they were young Drow already dissatisfied with Drow society, their dissatisfaction would not have led them to the enormously dangerous act of fleeing their homeland, if not for a clash of phenomena that left them with no other solution: They fell in love with each other, and their families disapproved, and not only that, were planning to marry both of them off to other individuals of noble standing, but considered thoroughly unpleasant even by Drow standards. Their respective house elders were completely unyielding with respect to any relationship of the youths with each other, with both houses considering such a relationship to be inherently treasonous, and the young lovers fell into despair. But one part of Drow nature was actually with them, so instead of committing suicide together as they had actually considered, Nadora/Tessara and Umbremourn/Caladrel firmed their resolve, packed whatever supplies they could, and faked their deaths together to throw off house guards that would try to track them down. Although they never found out how long their trick worked, or if it even fooled their house elders at all, they were able to escape.

Nadora/Tessara and Umbremourn/Caladrel had intended to disappear into the River Kingdoms, a part of the surface world about which they had heard rumors of freedom. However, being only barely informed about surface geography, and being less well informed than they thought about pathways in the Darklands, they instead ended up in northern Andoran (which back then was under Chelish rule). Initially believing this to be part of the River Kingdoms, they first decided to settle there, but almost immediately ran afoul of a party of the dreaded surface Elves who actually did have some knowledge (albeit formed as much from propaganda as reality) of Drow, and had to flee again, barely escaping with their lives. While still fleeing this latest encounter, they ran across an Andoren caravan that had come under dire attack by an assortment of slavers, evil fey, goblins, and other bandits. Fortunately for both, their unexpected arrival turned the tide of battle, and in gratitude, the caravan (which didn't know anything about Drow) accepted them as new members for the trip to Almas. Several members of the caravan (including the leader) were surprisingly sophisticated (although not knowing anything about Drow), and although informing they informed Nadora/Tessara and Umbremourn/Caladrel that they were not in the River Kingdoms after all, soon convinced them to stay, and, in further gratitude for their help against the slavers and bandits, introduced them to the Underground Roadway, of which the caravan leader was secretly a member. One thing led to another, and soon they had become trusted agents of the Underground Roadway. Although they encountered prejudice from agents of Kyonin who were assisting the Underground Roadway (but who had just enough knowledge of Drow to be hateful to them), the Underground Roadway already had the ideology of the future nation of Andoran, of freedom and equality and rule of law rather than leaders, legends, and edicts. The people of Andoran, exemplified by the Underground Road, were already chafing under Chelish rule that was becoming increasingly diabolical, even though House Thrune had yet to make its official move to seize power. Thus, the Underground Roadway helped them to hide by assigning them to tasks not overseen by Kyonin agents, and even gave them new names to conceal them from both Kyonin agents and possible Drow agents that might also be looking for them, and reassigned their geographic scope of operations to the larger cities (chiefly Almas), where they would be less quickly noticed, and would have greater safety in numbers of cosmopolitan neighbors if someone did make a move against them.

Although arguably this had been an extremely risky move by the Underground Roadway (which tended to be TOO dismissive of warnings given by the agents of Kyonin), Nadora/Tessara and Umbremourn/Caladrel had a life in Andoran that was clearly better in many ways compared to their life in the Darklands, which included more than one opportunity to assist couples in situations that started similar to their own in increasingly infernally-ruled Chelaxian families, and this has kept them true to their trust; arguably, in their enthusiasm for assimilation into Andoren society, they may have gone a bit overboard and become a bit TOO trusting of surface dwellers. Their history of forbidden love also drew them to the church of Shelyn, although as noted below, an even greater influence in their lives would soon be one of the dissident sects of Sarenrae, the Dawn Bellflowers. Although Sarenrae's faith as a whole is not noted for its anti-slavery stance, and in fact is sometimes reviled among the officially "Good" religions for its tolerance of the Peculiar Institution, and was in general not very popular in Andoran before, during or after the People's Revolution, this sect, the Dawn Bellflowers, were attracted to the growing anti-slavery sentiment in Andoran, and hoped to carve a place for themselves in the upcoming People's Revolution, and as representatives of a goddess of redemption, they were in turn attractive to Nadora/Tessara and Umbremourn/Caladrel, who were quickly welcomed into the sect, although Sariel's parents continued to hold the (mainstream) church of Shelyn in high regard. In the aftermath of the People's Revolution, the Dawn Bellflowers did not gain the influence that they had hoped for, and their cult remains obscure, confined mainly to Almas and the other major cities of Andoran, and currently has minimal influence even in these cities; nevertheless, Nadora/Tessara and Umbremourn/Caladrel remain loyal members, since this sect was the one that walked the walk for them when they needed refuge, even though the sect itself has fallen on rather hard times.

Sariel Cerrea's backstory

In another respect, one thing also led to another, and Sariel was born. Her well-meaning but less than perfectly informed parents did their own bit of Elvish name-botching, so that her name sounds Elvish to people who have only a passing familiarity with Elvish names (which included her parents at the time), but is not a standard Elvish name. By the time she was born, a life as agents of freedom had already evolved into more than an occupation of convenience for her parents, and so Sariel was brought up much more strongly influenced by Andoren ideology than (including that of the Dawn Bellflowers) than anything else. All Sariel knew of the Darklands and the chaotic and evil society of Drow was what her parents told her, combined with snippets picked up from other people. Said snippets included enough personal attacks from people influenced by Kyonin Elves and other prejudiced people for her to realize that she was not welcome everywhere, even decades after the People's Revolution freed Andoran from the increasingly infernal Chelish rule. One can make a good argument that her information about Drow is still better than that of a lot of surface dwellers, including many Kyonin Elves, even if itself leaving much to be desired -- Sariel has serious gaps in her knowledge, but she is neither naive or stupid. In part, her parents were to blame for incompleteness of her education about Darkland society: Arguably having become TOO trusting of surface dwellers, her parents largely agreed with Underground Roadway and Dawn Bellflower agents and other supporters who encouraged them to sacrifice education about Darklands life in exchange for giving her the most sophisticated Andoren education (of largely Human influence) that they could, especially once the People's Revolution got underway, but even before that starting from her infacy. This explains, among other things, her personality that is completely at odds with the expectations of those who know (or think they know) something about Darklands Drow. This can be heard (or seen, when she writes) in her linguistic profile, to the extent that Common/Taldane is her native language (her parents forced themselves to speak Common/Taldane and to a minor extent Elven at home as much as possible), and her proficiency with Undercommon is noticeably deficient; she later picked up Chelaxian/Infernal from her parents' work with the Underground Roadway. Embarrassingly, she is still only on the cusp of picking up Celestial from her temple-mates, because the language of Good outsiders gets little use in a temple that spends so much of its effort trying to help people from Cheliax; many non-Bellflower Sarenites would say that this is proof of the Dawn Bellflowers' heresy. Her temple-mates did give her a going-away present of a pack of flash cards for learning Celestial, though, and she intends to study them when she can get to them. She doesn't even know Drow Sign Language, although her parents have given her a set of flash cards that they hope she will one day use to learn it; so far, she has kept putting this off, although she does plan to do so at some point, given the idea that an already well-developed sign language might be useful for communication with and between deaf people.

Although Andoran gained its independence from Cheliax and abolished slavery decades ago, the Underground Roadway and the Dawn Bellflowers still have work to do in taking in slaves that have escaped from Cheliax (and other slaveholding nations) in the present, so Sariel has had acquired some experience with a freedom network that is usually less fraught with danger than what her parents were in (hence her reasonably good fluency in Chelaxian/Infernal as noted above, since Infernally-ruled Cheliax is still the source of most of the escaped slaves seeking refuge in Andoran). Unfortunately, this has not only earned her work experience, but the enmity of the bounty hunters and spies of slaveholders (including but not limited to undercover agents of the dreaded Order of the Chain), recently leading to an extremely harrowing and nearly fatal experience for her: Agents that were working for Cheliax, attempting to disrupt the Underground Roadway and the Dawn Bellflowers (as well as more official Andoren anti-slavery organizations) had heard of the strange Elf-yet-not-Elf family in Almas that was working against slavery, and sent assassins to kill Sariel while making it look like the whole family was involved in some nefarious business, to try to drive a wedge between her parents and their adopted homeland, while sending a message to the Andorens against freedom and tolerance of outside people. However, in their arrogance, the Chelish agents had not bothered to get in touch with agents of Kyonin (more specifically, of the anti-Drow Lantern Bearers and their even more sinister parent organization the Winter Council), who had a very similar idea, although for their own unrelated reasons. Unfortunately for the two factions, but fortunately for Sariel, the two factions had decided to begin execution of their conspiracies on the same day, and while almost killing Sariel, they instead came to blows with each other. In the confusion of the battle that followed, Sariel escaped and managed to alert the authorities, although their response was slightly delayed by the fact that she was completely unable to speak, write, or understand any spoken or written word for a few minutes, despite obviously being able to hear sounds, and being able to understand and make gestures; fortunately, it wasn't too terrible a delay, since she wasn't the first person that the authorities had to deal with who had a communication problem, and both factions were thwarted . . . for now. After recovring from barely escaping with her life, Sariel once again spoke normally and understood all the languages she knew before, so most who know of this incident at all dismiss it as some kind of fluke caused by the stress of nearly being assassinated. Sariel and her parents aren't so sure about this, since she has hadd recurring nightmares after this, in which she is on trial and about to be killed by agents of Hell (who somehow have Paladins among them) and agents of Kyonin's racial purity enforcement organizations (who have somehow integrated members of all of the common civilized surface races, despite having obvious great disdain for them), who are this time in full cooperation with each other, and all she can do is babble in terror using the tongue of Devils, while various bystanders look on apparently in total puzzlement.

Another extremely important influence in Sariel's life from infancy through the beginning of adulthood has been the Dawn Bellflowers, the dissident cultists of Sarenrae noted above. Furthermore, an accident of nature drew Sariel (and her parents) together with this sect: Her hair was of a fiery color; in early life, her hair was also of a flowing nature, although now due to sun bleaching, it tends to both curl up and splay out too much, and become evolved towards a golden-white variety of blonde, although never entirely losing its fiery tint. This reminded the Sarenites of their own goddess; having extremely minimal knowledge of Drow (shaped partly by propaganda fed by Kyonin agents who were themselves less than ideally informed), they considered this to be a divine omen, and took her in as much as possible, teaching her their ways and contributing much otherwise to her education. (In reality, fiery-colored hair is simply uncommon among Drow, and certainly not unheard-of for anyone who has actually seen a respectable number of Drow from various lineages.) However, as she was growing up, the misgivings instilled by agents of Kyonin's Winter Council combined with Sariel's lackluster performance on the Test of Will to convince her temple-mates to try to steer her away from learning the Divine Arts, and instead steer her in a more martial direction. Unaware of the cause for this (although eventually suspecting it), she complied with their wishes, even going so far as to learn Dervish dances, although the purely martial path never felt entirely right to her.

Unfortunately, they were overzealous in their efforts to make her and her parents paragons of Sarenrae (even if shying away from teaching her the Divine Arts), and as noted above, her parents themselves may have gone a bit overboard in their zeal to assimilate. This resulted in her parents eventually getting cataracts in their eyes from too much sunlight exposure, while spoiling Sariel's Darkvision as her eyes adapted to the bright surface light, since this treatment happened during her developmental years. As a result, although Sariel does not recoil from sunlight, she also does not see in the dark like her parents do with what is left of their vision. Nevertheless, she remains in their service (and the service of Sarenrae) in spirit, even when forced by circumstances to go elsewhere. They were unsure of how to train her for the rough and tumble of the real world -- and they want her to follow spiritually in her parents' footsteps -- not with the Andoren Witness Protection Program with which they are now employed, but with something like the Eagle Knights. The temple was not well set up for giving her an arcane education, and having a prejudice against giving her a Rogue education, the temple decided to go initially with training her as a Lore Warden for her to start out as a well-rounded investigator, but they could already see that this is not where her heart lies, and that she is destined for other things, although as far as they can say, only Sarenrae knows what.

Backstory Footnote:

Machinations by agents of Cheliax (slavehunters including but not limited to the Order of the Chain) and Kyonin (more specifically, the anti-Drow Lantern Bearers and Winter Council) to try to get rid of her and her parents may cause her to be sent to some strange way out-of-the-way place, like for instance, Riddleport.

Appearance and Personality:

As noted in part above, Sariel Cerea is tall, with appearance all at once mostly typical of a young Drow woman and yet strikingly different from the point of view of someone who has seen other Drow. Physically, she is a Drow, but does not have the variously paranoid, contemptuous, treacherous, or otherwise mean expressions often found on most Darklands Drow, nor does she normally adopt a purposely plain "street face" as many of the Darklands Drow do in their own territory, for despite discrimination and occasional danger she has suffered that has had a noticeable effect on her behavior, the overwhelming majority of her life has been much safer than it would have been in the Darklands -- if she had even been allowed to come into existence at all. Her overzealous temple-mates even say she has a "sunny" disposition; this is actually not true, but she tries to avoid disappointing them. Nevertheless, it is hard for one who has had to draw back frequently and suddenly in response to the aforementioned incompletely developed but quite noticeable anti-Drow prejudice that she has run across from time to time; for although Drow are so rare on the surface of Golarion as to be mythical from the point of view of many people (including the overwhelming majority of residents of Andoran), myths still have power . . . and staying power. As noted above, she has gaps in her knowledge about her heritage, but she is neither naive nor stupid.

With respect to purely physical differences, the most immediately obvious one to people who have only seen a few other Drow (apart from external things such as different selection of clothing) is her fiery yellow-orange (some would say sun-like) hair -- some would say reminiscent of that of Sarenrae herself, although now it is bleached too much towards the yellow, and tends to both curl up and splay out too much for a true likeness, and of course Sarenrae herself has bronze skin more like a Human of Keleshite heritage, not blue-black like a Drow (although in truth different from both); in fact, this hair color is merely uncommon among Drow rather than exceptional, and scattered other members of her parental Vonnarc family have almost the same hair color, although not exactly the same due to hers being partially sun-bleached. One unusual part of her appearance (by surface dweller standards, anyway) is that when one looks at her eyes from a direction close to that of the primary source of illumination, her pupils and irises almost seem to disappear into the white color of the remaining areas of her eyes. Apparently this spooked more people than just those swayed by the Winter Council's insinuations, so her temple-mates did some research and made it into an educational experience. Unlike Humans, but like many animals, Elven eyes have a reflective layer behind the retina known as the tapetum lucidum, which reflects light back through it for greater sensitivity to light, thus improving low-light vision and/or darkvision. This causes a red-eye effect in most creatures when the angle between the light and point of view are just right, but the version present in Elves and some other Humanoids gives a more silvery reflection, which combines with the normal white color of most Humanoid eyes outside the iris and the very light grey of Drow irises (at least judging from Sariel and her parents) to camouflage her pupils. This effect no longer occurs in her parents: Although they have the same eye colors outside the pupils, they both have pupils discolored by painfully obvious cataracts that probably resulted from their overzealous efforts to become creatures of the Sun when they were already past the age at which their eyes might have adapted to the bright light as Sariel's did.

Like her primary patron goddess (or at least like the religious artwork of her), Sariel is left-handed; even within a temple of Sarenrae, most people would tend not to make too much of this, but her temple-mates have made note of it a few times. Her clothing and gear are what one would expect for a Human explorer from Andoran, not for a Darklands Drow. She has almost no Elvish clothes, since she and her parents largely gave up trying to get Elvish clothing after running into too much prejudice and outright danger; as a result, a significant subset of her clothes are noticeably too short; while she and her parents are not in poverty, they are also far from being rich (made harder by her parents' impaired vision), and as noted above, the Dawn Bellflowers themselves have fallen on fairly hard times. Her easily visible gear also includes her (usually) prominently displayed holy symbols of the Dawnflower and Shelyn (the former just over the latter). The former holy symbol has subtle differences from other Sarenite holy symbols characteristic of the Dawn Bellflowers cult, the most visible being a broken chain being wrought into the symbol, although most people would probably not recognize this immediately; the latter holy symbol is completely mainstream. As noted above, Sariel's parents' primary religious observance is to Sarenrae and the Dawn Bellflowers, since these were the ones who walked the walk for them, but they also hold Shelyn and her mainstream church in high regard for Shelyn's appreciation of their type of situation, and Sariel closely follows this religious observance.

If she is seen with a melee weapon drawn, she is seen with the scimitar forged by her temple-mates.

Extended Crunch can be found here.

Quick Statistics:

General

Full Name: Sariel Cerea
Race: Drow (Surface Infiltrator)
Class): Oracle
Gender: Female
Size: Medium (6' 3", 160 pounds)
Age: 118
Alignment: Neutral Good
Initiative: +3 (includes +3 Dex Bonus)
Senses: Perception: +6, Low-Light Vision

Defense

AC: 13 (10 + 3 Dex Bonus); Touch AC: 13 (10 + 3 Dex Bonus); Flat-Footed AC: 10
HP: 11 (10 from starting HD + 1 Con Bonus/Level)
Fort Save: +2 (includes +2 Con Bonus and +1 from Campaign Trait Into Enemy Territory)
Ref Save: +5 (includes +3 Dex Bonus)
Will Save: +0 (+2 vs against enchantment spells and effects, including +2 from Drow Immunities)
CMD: +3 (Dex Bonus only)
Spell Resistance: 7 (6 + 1 for Character Level)
Weaknesses: None
Immunities: Magic Sleep effects (from Drow Immunities)

Offense

Speed: Normal (30'); Slow (20') when Encumbered with Gear
BAB: +1
CMB: +4 (including +3 Dex Bonus) when using a Finesse melee weapon or ranged weapon; +1 (no bonuses or penalties) otherwise
Melee: Scimitar +4 (1d6, S, 18~20/x2, reach 5', Swashbuckler Finesse (Whirling Dervish version), Weapon Focus coming online at Character Level 2)
Ranged (not available yet): Hand Crossbow +4 (1d4, 19~20/x2, increment 30', maximum 150')
Space 5'
Oracle(Battle) Spells Prepared (CL 1; concentration +3 for Cha Bonus): See under Temporary Conditions (not activated yet)

Ability Scores: Str 11 (+0); Dex 17 (+3); Con 12 (+1); Int 12 (+1); Wis 10 (+0); Cha 16 (+3)
Traits: Helpful, Into Enemy Territory
Feats: Nimble Moves (improved by Drow Moves when underground), Weapon Finesse
Skills: Acrobatics (untrained) +3, Appraise (untrained) +1; Bluff (untrained) +3, Craft/various (untrained) +1, Diplomacy (untrained) +3, Disguise (untrained) +3, Escape Artist (untrained) +3, Fly (untrained) +3, Heal +0, Knowledge(History) +2, Knowledge(Planes) +2, Knowledge(Religion) +2, Linguistics +2, Perception +2, Perform(Dance) +7, Perform(various other than Dance untrained) +2, Ride (untrained) +3, Sense Motive (untrained) +0, Stealth (untrained) +3
Languages: Common/Taldane (main language), Chelaxian/Infernal (good proficiency), Celestial (not activated yet), Drow Sign Language (not activated yet), Elven (passable proficiency), Undercommon (poor proficiency)
SQ: Panache (capacity 3), Incipient Oracle's Curse (Tongues), Battle Mystery (not activated yet), Drow Stalker, Drow Weapon Familiarity

Carrying Capacity (Str 11)

Light: Up to 38 pounds
Medium: 39 to 76 pounds (Combat Gear + all Non-Combat Gear = 48.34 pounds)
Heavy: 77 pounds to 115 pounds

Combat Gear

Scimitar: 15 gp, 4 pounds
Light Crossbow: 35 gp, 4 pounds
Crossbow Bolts, 2 packs of 10: 1 gp each (2 gp), 1 pound each (2 pounds)

Non-Combat Gear, Non-Slotted

(Initial Combat and Non-Combat Gear and remaining Currency calculated assuming Average Starting Wealth for a Level 1 Oracle = 105 gp, plus 1 outfit worth up to 10 gp, and 1 Spell Component Pouch.)

Explorer's Outfit (includes boots): 10 gp, 8 pounds
Traveler's Outfit (includes boots): 1 gp, 5 pounds
Wool coat (treat as Furs): 12 gp, 5 pounds
Poncho: 5 sp, 2 pounds
Backpack (common): 2 gp, 2 pounds
Bedroll: 1 sp, 5 pounds
Blanket: 5 sp, 3 pounds
Canteen: 2 gp, 5 pounds (when full; only 1 pound when empty)
Spell Component Pouch: 5 gp, 2 pounds (when full; 1/4 pound when empty)
Journal Book #1: 10 gp, 1 pound, capacity 50 pages (10 used), in which Sariel has been writing various thoughts about her schooling, her life more generally, her philosophy, and her journey to Riddleport
Ink (common): 8 gp, 0.1 pound (includes 1 ounce of ink)
Inkpen: 1 sp, negligible weight
Chalk (pack of 10): 1 cp each (1 sp), negligible weight
Charcoal (2 sticks): 5 sp each (1 gp), negligible weight
Rice paper (20 in pack of paper): 5 cp each (1 gp), negligible weight
Pack of flash cards that her parents made for her to teach her Drow Sign Language, that she hasn't yet gotten around to using: 5 gp, 0.1 pounds (based on Undercommon, so likely to introduce some mistakes since her proficiency with Undercommon isn't very good either)
Pack of flash cards that her temple-mates made for her to teach her Celsetial, that she hasn't yet gotten around to using: 5 gp, 0.1 pounds

Currency: 0 pp, 0 gp, 2 sp, 0 cp; total weight 0.04 pounds

Non-Combat Gear, Slotted

Belt: None
Body: None (but see clothing above)
Chest: None (but see clothing above)
Eyes: None
Feet: None
Hands (except Rings): None
Head: None
Headband: None
Neck: None
Ring, Left: None
Ring, Right: None
Shoulders: None
Wrists: None

Temporary Conditions (including Spells Available/Used):

Hit Points remaining: 9 of 9
Panache remaining: 3 of 3
Ability Scores remaining (in case of Damage/Drain): Str 11 of 11 (+0); Dex 17 of 17 (+3); Con 12 of 12 (+1); Int 12 of 12 (+1); Wis 10 of 10 (+0); Cha 16 of 16 (+3)
Buff Conditions: None
Debuff Conditions: Encumbered with Medium Load
Mixed Conditions: None

Oracle (Battle) Spells Usable (CL 1st; concentration +3 for Cha Bonus) (not activated yet):

Level 0 (at will): {Repopulate from Extended Crunch when this is activated}

Level 1 (maximum 3 total castings from Oracle Level 1 + 1 Cha Bonus Spell = 4): {Repopulate from Extended Crunch when this is activated}