Larynda Dalael is a Drow priestess of Eilistraee.
She is played by I'kai.
Originally from a minor House in Menzoberranzan, Larynda was faced with the typical trials and hardships of a Drow upbringing. This made her into a strong, confident and thoroughly evil young woman. With the hubris of your typical aspiring Matron, her world was crushed when her house was destroyed by a stronger rival. Ever the determined one, she refused to admit defeat and spent decades trying to regain power.
After a particularly spectacular disaster, the young Yathrin found herself dying in a tunnel, far away from any civilised (drow) city. Cursing Lolth for her defeat and the countless lives she had seen wasted in the spider queen's name, she renounced her faith. Soon afterwards, she lost conciousness, never expecting to wake again...
When she did wake from her torpid state, Larynda found herself in the company of a group of Eilistraeans. Their leader had, as she put it, heard the Lolthite die and had decided to save the surviving Drow woman that had been left behind. During her recovery, Larynda listened to the teachings of her saviour with some reservation but eventually came to accept the tenants she considered most agreeable.
With nowhere else to go, she stayed with the others in their cavern, not too far from the Surface. With time, her loss gave her a deep desire to preserve her people, saving them from Lolth's destructive games. Larynda's old bloody-minded fanaticism matured into a humility before her Goddess and a passion to create a better place for her kin. Her fierce determination came to fuel an indominable sense of purpose.
Some 20 years later after this change, Larynda finished her training and assumed the position of Yatharil. Eager to put her lessons into practice and test her skill and faith against the monster that enslaved her people, she traveled the depths and brought more than a few back to the temple cavern. Most chose to stay, others left to return later with others in tow but one of the converts returned under false pretenses.
One fateful eve, Larynda returned to find the cavern awash in blood. Her friends, her converts and their families had been murdered and her wise, revered teacher had been sacrificed on her own by now desecrated altar. This betrayal shook Larynda deeply and she blamed herself for the deaths. All the more determined to bring change or die trying, she left for the Surface.
Traveling the bright lands of the world Above, Larynda's new sense of caution kept her hidden long enough to reach the Sword Coast. At this edge of the known world, she sought to establish a new sanctuary far from the eyes of Lolth. Working in solitude for years, aiding travelers when able, she spread some rudimentary awareness of the Dark Maiden to the surfacedwellers. While a good cause in itself, paving the way for a safer world for the faithful, it was no way to directly aid her people and after some time, she returned to the Underdark to find others to bring back to their rightful home above ground...
Larynda knew by experience that in difficult times of turmoil, those with less tangible beliefs found themselves wavering. Knowing that many in the underdark were violently coerced into servitude in lack of alternatives, Larynda chose her targets carefully. Disgruntled servants, the battle wearied warriors of weak houses and the wounded dying proved more receptive than most. After a time, she found herself with a new group of converts. Smaller than before, of course but large enough to have influence.
Among these was a former Vhaeraunite assassin named Tarlyn Dalael whom she had saved from certain death at the hands of his kin. Bonding from their mutual loss and betrayals, they found much common ground. Having decided to spread the message of the goddess as a personal responsibility, the converts parted ways. Each were expected to gather in the relative safety of trade city of Sshamath at the turn of the next decade to share their progress. Larynda and her assassin came to work intimately enough to stay together as the band of converts disbanded.
Returning to Larynda's former duty to spread awareness and secure a foothold on the surface, the two returned to the world above. Resolving to seek contact with any possible ally and build their new sanctuary wherever possible, they lived a meager, nomadic existence for years. In such circumstances, it was no surprise that they bonded closely and soon came to care for one another. Within a few years, they had come to swear devotion to each other. At this point, Larynda renounced her house name, feeling it belonged to a dead woman and took the surname of her lover.
Feeling safe and truly happy in this new life, Larynda soon wanted a family. Children to care for and raise in the goddess' light. As time passed, however, it became tragically clear that something was wrong. Despite her best efforts, prayers and desires, Larynda was unable to carry a child to full term. Embittered by this perceived failure, she blamed herself once more but her awareness made her all the more determined to preserve the family she had found in her converts.
As another decade dawned, the Dalaels gradually moved back to the sword coast, having made little lasting progress. The fates are peculiar in their whims and this was where another tragedy struck. One eve, as they were travelling in the wilderness along the Trade Way, not far from Daggerford, they were found by elves. Worshipers of Corellon Larethian, they were determined to destroy all traces of drow, using faith to mask their bloodlust. Though outnumbered, the foolish man refused to relinquish the so called spider worshiping harlot and attacked. Larynda could only watch with horror as they shot her husband before running him through. A heroic sacrifice that allowed her to escape...
Griefstruck, afraid and hunted, Larynda returned to Sshamath to wait for her friends. They never came. During her time in the city, she drew upon experience to emulate the manners of the local Lolth worshiping minority. Careful not to make herself too much of a problem to be noticed and dealt with, she spent some time perfecting her act. She used this partly to blend in but also to regularly act the domineering Yathrin, testing the devotion of the faithful. To spend her time, she would present questions and philosophical conundrums to expose any and all weaknesses in their resolve that may have allowed conversion.
While under her adopted guise, Larynda came across a mysterious figure. A drow woman who, like herself, hid something of value. Her suspicions were confirmed when the woman made a less than covert attempt to convert her. Mayavin'dra, as she was called, was one of the favoured of the Goddess and had gained a small number of supporters in Sshamath. The presence of such a being in that dark place gave Larynda hope and her efforts to find converts intensified. Years of struggle had been rewarded and the time had come to act. This was a sign!
It was then that she came across a timid halfblood sorcress. This Belae claimed to be of Baenre ancestry and had been horribly mistreated on account of her half-human heritage. Seeing a poor soul that had been coerced into Lolth's web, Larynda simply had to help her. With her trained obedient nature, Belae proved a receptive target for conversion, albeit tragically scarred by her experiences. Larynda played on the woman's obedience whilst questioning her choices and made sincere effort to help Belae break her conditioning and decide her own path.
Having been faced with so much loss, it became important to not only save Belae but also keep her. Over time, Larynda nurtured a protective bond and did her very best to supress Belae's bloodthirsty impulses brought about by the years of abuse. With a mixture of pity and compassion, Larynda decided that this was one convert she wouldn't allow to slip away.
When news reached her of Mayavin'dra's death on the Surface, Larynda was reminded of her task to secure a sanctuary. The converts, though scattered, had lost their leader and the responsibility of securing sanctuary had been passed on. Figuring it was time to test Belae's devotion and allow her to think for herself, Larynda left for the Surface. Faced with the surfacers' imagined war on the local drow, she spent months evading the attentions of the newly formed Flaming Fist whilst preaching to those willing to listen. A charming half-elven rogue named Seadin Alerios helped in hiding her from the masses and the two shared a brief intimate encounter.
Though faced with terrible setbacks, Larynda found sanctuary in Candlekeep under the protection of Joan DeGaulle, a bard from Algarond who had been touched by Larynda's message of tolerance. Travelling back and forth whilst struggling with the violent, bloody-minded opposition to her very presence, Larynda came to feel lost and trapped by her situation. Praying for guidance, she was drawn to the woods of sharp teeth one night where Alarice, a darksong knight gifted her a blessed sword, a holy symbol to replace the one she had lost and a new sense of hope.
Some tendays later, Belae appeared at Candlekeep, brainwashed by a Lolthite and attempted to kill the priestess. While the sorcress was convinced to relent, the realisation of her own betrayal drove her to a maddened attempt at suicide. Though saved from herself, Belae was gravely wounded and after nursing her convert back to health, Larynda returned to the underdark, determined to make up for her own perceived failure.
With time, Larynda established her sanctuary in the caves surrounding Sshamath. She spent considerable effort on getting to the bottom of Belae's troubled being and completed her conversion by willing acceptance and consent. Though successful, Larynda still felt as if she had abandoned her duty and noticing this, Belae eventually convinced her to return to the Surface.
They travelled together for a time, meeting up with Joan and Seadin once more but as the fates would have it, the Flaming Fist cornered Larynda on the bridge outside Baldur's gate and attacked. Belae came to her rescue but both were cut down and thrown into the waters below. Although Larynda survived the ordeal by the goddess' grace, Belae was nowhere to be found. After searching for a time, Larynda was betrayed and murdered but found herself resurrected (unbeknownst to her, by Belae's doing) back in Sshamath where she stayed to grieve the loss of her friend...
The accumulated pain of her failures struck Larynda hard and she fell into a great depression. For a time, she sought comfort and solace in the simple pleasures of alcohol and the company of casual lovers but it was a hollow existence. She knew that her true place was on the surface and left Sshamath during its bout of Lolthian resurgence.
With the old pathways to Durlag's Tower sealed, Larynda wandered the vast caverns for some time. Following the trade lanes, she joined the caravans for protection and eventually found her way to Skullport. In this hub of interspecies interaction and commerce, Larynda settled for a while. Having sold most of her valuables and lost the rest to bandits and surfacers, she made a living plying her skills as a healer.
When the Time of Troubles came upon the world, Larynda was reawakened to her cause and travelled to the surface. Emerging in Waterdeep (which was in chaos at the time), she left the city at first opportunity and crossed the sword mountains into the Neverwinter wood. Despite strained relations with the local druids and elves, the vast forest provided a sort of tranquility Larynda had missed for many years and she returned to her ways as a nomad.
Now alone without Tarlyn or any of her friends, she became a reclusive hermit, never staying too long in one place and avoiding contact with the others of the forest. The matter of survival kept Larynda separate from the world around her and when she emerged from isolation, she entered a changed world.