Aliases: Mother Night; Mae yr Machshikhah; Eodumi; Ciara O'Caiomh; Lady Scarlett; Blanche Savage; Zella; Maude McGilvray; Talice Illistyn
Origin: Calimport, Calimshan
Alignment: Neutral Evil
Class: Cleric/Shadow Adept
Height: 5'11" (177 cm)
Weight: 140lbs (61 kg)
Hair: Hip-length Raven
General Health: Poor
Profession: Nightbringer; Saboteur
Habits/Hobbies: Crushing Hope, Seeding Despair, Undermining Faith & Order
Languages: Common, Calim, Abyssal, Infernal.
Weapons of Choice: Deception, Disguise, Necromancy, Illusion & Enchantment
When not masquerading as any number of viable disguises, Araphella prefers dark, monotone colours that reflect her inner nihilism and fatalism. She usually only gets to wear such things when conducting clandestine cultic ceremonies on behalf of Shar for the secret church at large, which are often few and far between.
The woman herself is actually a ghostly white, somewhat sickly with gaunt cheeks and significant burn scarring over much of her exposed body. She wears her never-cut raven hair proudly as a cloak and sign of her devotion to the goddess. Her grey-blue eyes are cold, emotionless and ever calculating her next move.
She is trained in guile, deception and disguises and uses Shar's illusory powers to alter her appearance according to the needs of whatever mission she is undertaking at the time. She will utilise a shadow duplicate to further deceive and dismay her enemies whilst she siezes full advantage of the distraction.
Deep under her visceral facade is a woman broken and shattered by an atrocious, unspeakable childhood. The psychological damage is both severe and significant, and when she discovered the umbral embrace of Shar's darkness she finally found a place to hide all her insurmountable pain and suffering. She does not actually know her birth name and was given the name Araphella (Mistress of Gloom) by Shar upon her initiation into the clergyhood of the Dark Goddess. She does not share this name with anyone, not even other Sharran clerics.
Araphella is intelligent, perceptive and possesses a force of personality to be reckoned with. She will carefully and patiently plot and scheme with the singular goal of disrupting the faith of other religious figures in the hope that they, too, will embrace the inevitable oblivion she has. If they will not turn, they will be enveloped in The Revelation: a vision she had of the end of the multiverse which she is doing her uttermost to accelerate.
She has one significant weakness: children. She will not cause them harm or suffering until they are at least twelve years of age, the only remnant of a secret and as yet unfulfilled yearning for children of her own. However, she knows she will never accomplish that objective with the physical damage caused to her body, notwithstanding a miracle that she knows Shar will never grant her.
Originally the daughter of a reprobate, drunken Calishi cobbler and his one-time tryst with an unknown woman, Araphella's upbringing was only one that knew the horrors of poverty, abuse and desperation.
Cast aside by her birth mother around the age of two, she was quickly snatched up and subsequently exploited by undercity gangs in the less reputable parts of Calimport. Araphella witnessed and was personally subject to the darkest side of organised religion and the abuses perpetrated by her primary 'clientelle,' men of 'faith' who were anything but.
A 'chance' encounter with a Sharran priest associated with the Temple of Old Night was the impetus for Araphella's ultimate change of outlook. She was told her raven hair was an omen and further perceiving immense psychological and emotional damage in the pitiful teenager, the Sharran 'purchased' her for a significant sum from her slavers and began to teach her how to enact revenge, the subtleties of deception, nihilism and the ultimate embrace of pure darkness, the finality of solace that only Shar could provide. She embraced it wholeheartedly.
What Araphella still fails to fully comprehend is that her entire upbringing was wholly orchestrated by that Sharran priest who was the one to actually find her during a night walk on that otherwise abandoned back alley. Possessed with a sudden revelation of a new recruitment plan, he was the one who actually handed her to the 'care' of the selfsame undercity gangs and ensured her mind was poisoned against every concept of love, kindness and goodness for her entire childhood. When she came of age, he was her 'saviour', handing her a knife with which to enact her first revenge. Her first murder was an Ilmateri monk of St Sollars, stabbed one hundred and twenty seven times. It was then he knew she was ready for induction and training in the clergy of Shar.
The manner in which she obtained vengeance against her former Calishi slavers is far too gruesome to regale, entirely orchestrated by her Father Night, but ever since she has been on a personal quest to expose hypocritical religion for what it is, disrupt order and, out of sheer nihilistic pleasure, subvert and destroy those whose faith is pure and genuine by whatever means necessary.
- To expose the dark side of organised religion.
- To subvert goodly faith wherever it is found.
- To promote the clandestine worship of Shar.
- Achieve promotion to Nightbringer within the Shar's church.
- Corrupt religious/political leaders for her to deceive, defame and destroy.
- To orchestrate a religious inquisition on behalf of 'The Watcher' into clandestine activities on the Sword Coast, a deceptive ruse she will try to organised to subvert the Helmite church in the region and feed more victims to Shar.
- Araphella hates cats, given the association between them and servants of Sharess, one source of her previous 'clientelle'.
- She similarly loathes the Temple of Ilmater & Helm.
- Araphella is unable to bear children.
- [Lore: Local - DC 10] Under the identity of Helmite Pryat 'Mae yr Machshikhah' she was known for her open air preaching alongside her supposed Tormtar compatriot at arms, Sir Anthem Arnemeiger, and all the angst it riled up amongst the denizens of Baldur's Gate.
Pryat Mae yr Machshikhah, Sermon I
Sir Anthem Arnemeiger, Sermon I
Sir Anthem Arnemeiger, Sermon II
Sir Anthem Arnemeiger, Sermon III
Pryat Mae yr Machshikhah, Sermon II
Highlady Alcarin Silversong, Public Notice
Sir Anthem Arnemeiger, Sermon IV
Lord Luke Darius, Public Address & Heckling
Squire Taevemira Ford, Sermon I
- [Lore: Local - DC 10] Their fiery sermons eventually lead to her expulsion from the Temple of Helm and subsequent charge of dissention for which neither she, nor her partner in 'crime' Sir Anthem Arnemeiger, ever showed up for.
- [Lore: Local - DC 15] Mae did release four damning tractates on drow collaborators, the contents of which were conveniently swept under the Duchal carpet by a change in Baldurian laws.
- [Lore: Local - DC 25] Documentary evidences discovered on her abandoned horse gave significant credence to the idea that the woman was in fact a Banite infiltrator.
- [Lore: Local - DC 30] It is rumoured that her last known location was Castle Dragonspear, although what precise association she had or may have had with the infernal invasion remains unknown.
- All of her known identities were stolen from people she had previously met and/or murdered. Her true identity remains unknown to most, other than that she is a Sharran as routed out by the tiefling, Amora Lininlith.
- Araphella betrayed and murdered Paladin of Torm Sir Anthem Arnemeiger somewhere in the foothills of the aptly named Sunset Mountains. Neither his body nor soul were ever found. His new bodak form remains a prisoner in an unknown location desecrated in the dark name of Shar.
- Araphella arranged the targeted murder of Helmite mercenary scout Lelande Lloros. He has not been seen nor heard from since. His blackened, cursed skull remains one of Araphella's prized possessions.
- She opportunistically kidnapped and sacrificed Ilmateri priest Ardem Yay to Shar. His soul perverted into a wraith and released into the eternal night of the Plane of Shadow whilst his body was fed to bodak Sir Anthem.
- During a cultic initiation ritual, the drow minstrel Jak'alan was killed by Araphella when the initiate failed to obey the urgency of her command to sacrifice him. His body was later dismembered by the selfsame initiate and disposed of in an unknown location, but due to the disruption of his bodak transformation his soul was actually released to Eilistraee's divine realm.
- Instead of alleviating a certain curse, Araphella doubled its intensity by cursing the other arm with her own divine mark of Shar as well as temporarily blinding her.