Laeral Silverhand

Open Lord of Waterdeep


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Like all of the Seven Sisters, Laeral is enchantingly beautiful. She is roughly six feet tall, thin and has long silver hair which she keeps out of her face with a silver circlet. Large, emerald green eyes complete her gorgeous features and she is liable to blush profusely when paid an honest compliment on her appearance. She is equally comfortable wearing leathers, roughspun, the latest and most extravagant fashions or even nothing at all.

Laeral Silverhand is known as the Lady Mage of Waterdeep. Together with her partner Khelben “Blackstaff” Arunsun they lead the Moonstars, a dissident faction of the Harpers, which sought to arrange the destiny of the cities and nation of the North.

After their mother died, Laeral, Dove and Storm were placed into the care of Elminster until they came of age. When her sisters left the Old Sage, Laeral elected to stay with him as his apprentice. When she had finished her studies, she left to join the Harpers. Laeral left the Harpers early and, at the age of 41, Laeral was a self-styled queen, ruling the realm of Stornanter from Port Llast. Many later sages suspected that Laeral named herself after this queen, not realizing that it was actually her. It was at this time that Laeral also attempted to rebuild and resettle the ruins of Illusk. Before she did so, she explored the Host Tower of the Arcane where she encountered several liches who were members of the Grand Cabal, rulers over Illusk from centuries before. She sealed the liches inside the tower with magic before continuing with her other works.

Barely ten years into her reign, Laeral’s court mage, Malek Aldhanek, with whom she had worked very closely, was apparently assassinated in a plot involving other nobles. Realizing too late that she was in love with Malek, Laeral quit her court and spent twenty five years wandering Stornanter. In truth, Malek was not dead – he never existed – and was actually Khelben Arunsun in disguise. Khelben faked his death to deal with a dire prophecy he had discovered in the works of Alaundo. During this period of wandering, Laeral came into conflict with Slarkrethel in 834 DR and although the great kraken was driven off, he managed to steal Laeral’s magical throne, which she had crafted with Malek.

Her activities attracted the attention of her sister Syluné who desired to rule over the same region and the two were drawn (some say manipulated) into spellbattle in 841 DR. Having grown up separately, neither recognized the other so before they destroyed each other, Mystra felt obliged to manifest herself before the two and explain their heritage, offering them both the mantle of Chosen. They accepted and journeyed together for a time, under the guidance of Azuth.

Under an assumed name, Laeral eventually established herself as a hard-drinking and fearless adventurer, coming to lead an adventuring band known as The Nine. In 1337 DR, Laeral along with The Nine discovered the ancient Netherese artifact known as the Crown of Horns in Yûlash. The Crown was actually planted for her to find by the Netherese lich Aumvor The Undying, who wished to use the Crown to influence her to marry him. The plot failed when Laeral donned the headpiece and the Crown’s powers conflicted with Laeral’s spellfire and drove her into madness.

Twenty years later, in 1357 DR, Khelben “Blackstaff” Arunsun traveled to the stronghold of The Nine in the High Forest, freed Laerel Silverhand from the Crown of Horns, the malign intelligence contained within and her madness. Laeral returned with him to Waterdeep for more healing, and after that, they were inseparable. She was referred to as Lady Arunsun, though they were never married. The mysterious circumstances surrounding Laeral and Khelben’s meeting and subsequent partnership led some to believe that Laeral was enslaved to Khelben against her will. Laeral never denied this, instead preferring to let those who wished Khelben harm seek her out as an ally against him.

In the Year of Lightning Storms (1374), Laeral was pregnant with her son Krehlan Arunsun, the future Blackstaff, whom she conceived from Khelben shortly before his death.

Laeral wrote “Lifelong with Regrets” in the Year of the Wrathful Eye (1391 DR). Thereafter, she and her sister Alustriel hid among the monks of Candlekeep to prepare the destruction of the wards so that no one could use them to get control over the Weave. In 1487 DR, Larloch foiled their plans and absorbed the wards. Shortly thereafter, Laeral, Alustriel, Elminster and the Srinshee prevented Larloch’s ascension to godhood. Laeral is still a chosen of the restored Mystra.

Laeral is incredibly organized – it is the only way she can manage to fit all of her activities into a single day. She is very friendly and accommodating, leading to almost everyone who meets her considering her a true friend (even the stuffy/haughty nobles of Waterdeep). She is also proactive, to the extent that certain Waterdhavians would stage calamitous events so that she would keep tabs on persons of interest for them without their needing to ask for her help or involve themselves directly.

Having been in thrall to the Crown of Horns and forced to commit heinous acts by it, she feels that she understands the nature of evil folk better than most and often acts as a go-between in mediating disputes with rogues, undesirables and sentient monsters, especially in Skullport where she keeps an alias identity in the form of Irusyl Eraneth.

She enjoys pretending to be other people and often goes to parties magically transformed as someone else where she would learn something of what it was to be that person and occasionally discover interesting information. When that isn’t an option, she sometimes becomes someone else simply to enjoy a good tavern brawl. She also transforms herself into a rat on occasion to keep an eye on the sewers.

Laeral is infuriated by magic-users who employ their power to deceive and exert baleful influence over others. She dislikes doppelgangers and slave-owners.

Laeral is especially conscious of personal security. Even when in the most revealing of gowns, she always manages to secrete several daggers on her person.

Laeral spends most of her day instructing and looking after her partner’s wizard apprentices, most of whom were too intimidated or overawed by their master to actually learn from him. She also maintains Blackstaff Tower, keeping it clean as well as ensuring its wards and stores are maintained. She also spends much of the day meeting with friends, allies and even strangers who want to speak with her.

The rest of her time is spent coordinating the efforts of the Harpers (until the Harper Schism), carrying out duties for the Lords’ Alliance, and acting as a spy for the Lords of Waterdeep both in the city and in Skullport as Irusyl (she also keeps constant watch on any of Khelben’s apprentices who left Blackstaff Tower to ensure that no treachery is afoot).

Her free time is spent either studying spells, exploring other planes, attending parties, shopping for clothes (which she refuses to haggle over) or alone with her consort Khelben.

Though she does not need to sleep, she insists on being left alone for her ‘highsun nap’, during which time she does as she pleases without the constraints of her hectic schedule. Also, if, for some reason, she is unable to perform some of her more mundane daily tasks, she can call upon a long list of trusted Waterdhavian ladies (some of whom are powerful nobles) to do them for her.

Apart from attending to her duties, Laeral held as her objectives the addition of Cormyr, Amn, Westgate and Luskan to the Lords’ Alliance. She also made efforts to remove Zhentarim influence from the Sword Coast and the North. Her ultimate goal however, was to unite all thinking races, be they dwarves, elves, humans or orcs in a goodly purpose.


Laeral Silverhand

Waterdeep - Paradise Lost? steventhompson