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Originally created as a player-character for a long-running homebrew campaign and system in early 2018, Valkrana would instead make her first appearance as a prominent non-player character in the same campaign. 19 sessions later, that campaign then transitioned into another setting in the same universe for 69 more sessions. She then showed up in Hoard of the Dragon Queen for 17, and several one-shots. Longest of all is the ongoing Witty Otters 5e campaign with upwards of 200 sessions, which began as Ghosts of Saltmarsh and has long since progressed into open world territory. The character now exists beyond the table in mods, memes, supplemental material, and across the Internet at large.


Birth Name: Valkrana vil Galath Faeri Naerel

Assumed Name: Valkrana Miraquinal

Nicknames: Skel, Skelkrana, Valk

Titles: Archmage, Prince of Thieves (domain: Intel/Urchins), Captain of the HMS Parfait, Right Hand of Ilyana Miraquinal

Epithets: "the Skeleton Key", earned because it was said that her information hoard could open any door. "the Endbringer", a title bestowed by a mysterious cult following.



The feats of the Great and Mighty Ilyana Miraquinal are mandatory curriculum at any bard academy. But Valkrana Miraquinal, her wife and right hand, manipulates the limelight to fall on only Ilyana. An interview with Valkrana would surely earn you the prestige of an entire paragraph in the Centennial Manual di Bards. At least! Such was your eagerness that you arrived at this boondocks tavern a full week in advance. 'If nothing else, these candy corn cookies are the best you've ever had,' you think as you bite into one. Naturally, the two show up when your mouth is full.

A poison-purple sphere appears some ten paces away. Even at a distance, it's acrid enough to cause your eyes to water. The sphere shrinks almost immediately, leaving four figures in its wake. Ilyana carries herself with refined elven confidence, a real high-class hero; her presence commands your attention. Meanwhile, Valkrana has her face pressed into Ilyana's side, clinging to her with three skeletal arms; her presence is at the same time childlike and monstrous. They're flanked by a pair of burly dark-aura figures in robes. Valkrana is beaming in a way you've only ever seen in paladins. "Eheheheh. What is the surprise, My Darling? Is it, is it a date in the boonies? Holey moley, will it be a bully for us if it is a date in the boonies."

The Great and Mighty Ilyana Miraquinal looks down her nose at you in a way that manages to make you feel honored to be beneath her, then at Valkrana. Ilyana's telepathy is well-documented, so the span of silence tracks—not that you'd dare clear your throat regardless. Valkrana's mood plummets sharply. Where Ilyana's haughtiness made you feel honored, the contempt Valkrana turns on you makes you feel like an insect to be exterminated. The dark-aura figures take a step forward. You nearly choke on the cookie. "I warned you fucks," she growls. "You—" Valkrana blinks at Ilyana. "But, My Darling." She levels a skeletal finger at you. "This—"

"It's as I said," Ilyana finally speaks aloud. "This bard has written fair accounts of even the most villainous historical figures. You're already a historical figure by virtue of standing by my side. There's no avoiding that, is there? You wish to fulfill my dreams, do you not?"

"More than anything, My Darling!"

"You have many times over, and the honor will continue to be yours. But the time has come to accept your rightful place in them. I will not have it any other way. I will not. Hmph."

Valkrana stares. A strand of potent acid glistens between teeth made for obliterating bone. She obeys with a simple, "Yes, My Darling." Ilyana makes no attempt to hide her satisfaction. With that, Valkrana removes her wide-brimmed witch hat and waits for Ilyana to take a seat before sitting in her lap. The dark-aura figures stoop to serve two steaming mugs of coffee and a saucer piled high with cookies.

"Hi," Valkrana says. She interrupts your reply. "Hi. Hi." She gestures in what was either an odd wave or her stretching her arm. Her three bony hands fumble for the same cookie. Valkrana exudes awkwardness. She stares at you, unblinking and aloof. Meanwhile, Ilyana drinks her coffee without a word.

Cosmic Coin Flip

Valkrana was born into Quellar vil Galath Faeri Naerel, or the House of the Great Flame Forest. It was at the time a well-to-do elven household of ancient origin ruled by her father, the accomplished mage and diplomat, Eldrin. The circumstances of Valkrana's birth would set in motion a swift decline for her family.

Her father had always loved dragons. It wasn't until much later in life that she learned he did not just love them, he made love to them. This proclivity eventually led him to the bed of a world dragon by the name of Ssstzrazolik. That adulterous coupling would soon ruin Eldrin, because it gave birth to Valkrana.

On Valkrana's homeworld, these legendary world dragons were veritable demigods, intrinsically tied to the well-being of the planet. And on Valkrana's homeworld, interspecies mating resulted in one of the two species involved. In that cosmic coin flip, Valkrana was born an elf. Because her soul burned white-hot with the lineage of her birth mother, her inferior elven vessel could no more contain it than whey in cheesecloth. She was doomed to a short life in a body consumed by the strain of her soul: minutes-long sensations of being burned alive, a weakened immune system, and sleep deprivation all hounded her.

Even in her utmost respect for her Papa, Valkrana admits he was not a good person. Whatever mob justice he eventually suffered was likely well-earned. But never let it be said that he did not love her. Especially not in front of Valkrana. Within a few years of her birth, he had squandered everything in funding and searching for a cure. Their reputation was ruined. They lost it all. Meals were stone soup in slum water. The family abhorred them. Eldrin's wife, Valkrana's adoptive mother, died inexplicably soon after. While they couldn't afford a healer to examine her, it wouldn't be far-fetched to say her father's infidelity and the sudden ruin it invited played a part in her demise.

Outcast by her relatives for her role in their misfortune, outcast by others for fear of her illness, Valkrana's youth was all so much solitude. Even the urchins only dared to throw rocks from afar. Her father did his best, but he was not an elf prone to displays of affection, and certainly not in top form besides. This went on until a chance meeting in the cramped alleys between hovels. Throat raw and soaked in sweat from a recent episode, Valkrana had stumbled in and tripped over a corpse. This was by no means her first corpse, but it was the first damaged enough by wild animals to lay bare much of its skeleton. Valkrana had never seen anything like it, had never seen anything so utterly, inimitably cute. Her big, stupid grin stretched from ear to ear. At the time, she was too ragged to really investigate further. So she curled up to stare at her new obsession until she fell asleep.

From that day forward, Valkrana elevated her outcast status from 'a deathly-ill child' to 'a deathly-ill child who also picks apart corpses'. She began dissecting the dead wherever she could find them, which was never all that far in the slums, to get at the skeleton inside.

Not All Souls

"Skeletons were a welcome but fleeting happiness. Papa looked less and less himself. He would never say as much, but it was no feat for someone of my intellect to piece together the reason: My Darling's me. Papa's worthless fucking daughter deserved to die. So I stopped fighting. And I did, die." Valkrana peers inward. Her arms rattle gently as she retracts them into her cloak. "Sort of. It is said that all souls are created equal, but that some are more equal than others. The soul of a world dragon simply is not engineered to pass on; conversely, the soul of an elf is meant to. Neither law would relent in its pull. My spirit spun in place like a runaway top, breaking up under the forces. I will never forget that timeless agony."

This dreadful preview of what death had in store reignited her will to live. Valkrana pulled through. According to her father, she had been dead less than a minute. To this day, it shapes her. The experience stirred in Valkrana a deep-seated obsession with the afterlife. Where some feared it, wielded it, or fled it, she needed to master it. At that time she had found both her fascination with skeletons and a spark of determination, but the direction of necromancy was years away.

In the last stages of her illness, she was often delirious, and wished to see with her own eyes the creatures her father would describe to her with such passion and in such vivid tales. So it happened that, a few years later, she decided in her delirium to seek out the lair of a dragon. Ironically, the condition that had plagued her since birth wouldn't be her downfall. Instead, Valkrana would perish in a backwater lair to the claw of some petty swamp dragon, and earn her mutilation.


Valkrana's skeletal fingers clink against her porcelain teacup. She watches them as they do. "Would that all of My Darling's me were like this. I might at least be cute on the outside." She removes her hat and eye patch to lay bare her gnarly wounds. She flashes a deadpan shark-toothed grin. "I believe my old master meant well in trying to preserve what was left of my original body, but I am a disgusting perversion of the skeleton."

Prior to her death, a necromancer had approached her father with a solution, but had been summarily rejected at the time. With nowhere else to turn, options Eldrin once refused to entertain were much more palatable. This necromancer was an expert on souls who grasped the underlying issue to Valkrana's condition. He offered his services free of charge. In truth, the man was thrilled at the idea of working with such a soul, and feared the missed opportunity. What's more, he'd heard of Valkrana's broad-daylight dissections.

Valkrana's body had been recovered, but it wasn't intact. Some limbs were missing; others were beyond repair. So he performed bone grafts, gave Valkrana the means to break down and assimilate bone, modified her disposition, and ultimately made an undead scavenger out of her. The first graftling. He thought this would please Valkrana, but she would come to see herself as nothing more than a perversion of the skeleton. Once he had finished, the necromancer kept his word. An undead is far more resilient than a mortal vessel, so he used her new body as a chassis, and reunited her soul with her body. Hardly a month after her death, she had been successfully reanimated.

Valkrana was made into the monster everyone believed her to be. The following years had her locked in a trunk—starving, raving, and alone but for her father's voice. He would sing old soulful songs to her, and on special days, bring her a cookie. These were the only pockets of happiness within her isolation and the unabating hunger of undeath. She craved bones as much as the living crave their next breath. It wasn't until Valkrana had been locked away for nearly two years that she began to seize for herself a measure of control over the hunger. Her newfound vitality had reinvigorated her dear father as well, so it was at this time that he began to teach her to ply his trade. By a slit of light, in a cramped trunk, she trained for four years to become a diplomat and mage. When at last she was released, it became clear that a career in diplomacy was off the table. However, she showed promise elsewhere.

Necromancy 101

Valkrana turns a frown on her cookie. She sighs. "Maybe I was always going to be this way. Maybe I was a blank slate. Maybe it is a case of nature against nurture. It does not matter. Whatever the cause, I emerged from that trunk... me. Unsuited to diplomacy. Unbearably awkward, with a short fuse, and utterly dependent. I often wish I were not aware of these fucking disgusting traits. I do not just see them in myself. I see when others see them." Valkrana glances up at you briefly; you catch her meaning. She leans back, and cranes to bury her face in Ilyana's neck. "Your vertebrae smell as savory as ever, My Darling." Ilyana smiles. "I know. Of course they do. Thank you."

Valkrana was clever and tenacious. Magic had saved her from certain doom. Magic made her feel as if she were no longer powerless. She was spellbound. By the time she emerged from isolation, Valkrana was a better wizard than her father. A prodigy. So he pulled a few strings to secure for her a more proficient wizard under whom to apprentice. Her new apprenticeship came with shelter and academy classes, but it didn't last long. Clerics hounded and abused her. Her peers reviled and bullied her. She regularly flew off the handle at both parties. Her awkwardness led to miscommunication. She cried to see her father. She drooled buckets. She studied the dark arts and necromancy. But most of all, she did not respect her master. For all these reasons, her apprenticeship was ultimately dissolved.

Afterwards, she studied diligently under the same necromancer who had reanimated her. Hardly a charmer himself, he was more tolerant of her idiosyncrasies. And she possessed an inkling of respect for him. During this time, her father was busy climbing his way back up the social strata. This is where Valkrana got her first taste of the criminal underworld. Father-daughter days often involved practical applications of his Machiaelfian lessons, including shady uses of magic, information trafficking, and well, Valkrana was a walking corpse disposal. Before long, they had carved for themselves a path out of the slums. Despite their sphere of operation, Valkrana never meant to hurt anyone. No matter how much she hungered for their bones, it had never even crossed her mind. She wanted to be a good person. It wasn't until years later, when an overzealous cleric and a superfluity of his peers brought her to the brink of death, that she lashed out. Those would become her first kills.

Valkrana never grew out of her fascination with skeletons or mastery over death. Only got better at hiding it. She loved her father, and was supremely grateful for the lengths to which he had gone for her, so when he firmly told her to find another interest, she obliged. Valkrana understood that her necromancy put his hard work in jeopardy. Eldrin had always told her stories of dragons, so for an impressionable young elf who cared deeply for her father, Valkrana had no qualms with pursuing the field. Even if one had killed her.

In Her Element

Valkrana recites the arcane utterances to cast one of the simplest of spells. The image of a tiny skeleton dances on the table. She emits a weird chuckle. "Eheheheh. Cute. I may have been born a prodigy, but magic is more than my specialty. I am more than a hobbyist or enthusiast. It is my key. It is how I unlock a world with which my interactions have always fallen short."

Valkrana had no pangs of lamentation for her lost childhood. She never felt the desire to run amok in her new life. Instead, she tucked herself away in a dank little room in the cellar of the same tower from which she had been expelled. For decades, Valkrana buried herself in her studies, leaving only when her father, on whom she'd placed a tracking spell, was the slightest bit late for a visit. But it wasn't only a fear of death that fuelled her zeal; far from it. The joy she found in magic was indefatigable. Common or rare, everyday or catastrophic: Valkrana wanted to see, touch, learn, cast it all.

She had her history to overcome, but Valkrana joined an uncommon intellect with the sweat of her brow and the tirelessness of undeath to great effect. She earned respect in the highest arcane circles. In public, she was a scholar. In private, she honed her necromancy. Her passion inspired her to go as far as creating an entirely new subgroup of necromancy spells. From Valkrana's Enduring Link to Valkrana's Rattling Geyser, she left a lasting mark on the world of wizardry. This would all fall apart while doing field research for her archmage dissertation on 'The Parental Habits of Dragons and their Ilk: An Ancient Pattern of Negligence'.

A Mother's Curse

Valkrana is rarely expressive when it doesn't concern Ilyana, magic, or skeletons, but her impassiveness feels out of place among her words. "After the curse, I never again had the chance to visit my dear Papa. We exchanged a few letters, when my travels allowed it. Months-late, at best. I will never know whether he was proud of his worthless daughter."

Valkrana had only meant to observe the nest from above, but the overlook wasn't as sturdy as she thought. It dislodged and fell to the nest, striking and killing one of the whelps. Valkrana asserts that she was suitably saddened by this, but that dragon bones were hard to come by. It made perfect sense to her to scavenge the corpse. Unfortunately, its mother returned during the deed, and didn't take kindly. With a single swipe of its claw, the biggest dragon she had ever seen dispelled her magical defences and brought her to the brink of death. Valkrana called it a 'sucker punch'.

Yet, the dragon didn't kill her. Neither did it take mercy on her. It cursed Valkrana to follow the whelp's spirit wherever it wished to go, bound to show it the world she had denied it. That accident forced her to abandon everything she had worked so hard to achieve. Some years into the curse, she would discover the dragon's name: Ssstzrazolik, her birth mother. Valkrana's vengeance is at times a slow beast, yes, but it is as tireless as she.

Valkrana was forced to wander at the whim of a child. She became wanted for breaking and entering. A common criminal. Nations and clerics alike hounded her. Still, she did her utmost to stick to her mantra. To be a good person. Even if she never really knew what that meant. The worst part for her was the separation from her father. Until she could unravel the curse, she had no means to see the man she so loved and idolized.

The Von Trapp Party

"As far back as I could remember, there was this unused area, a pit in my mind and soul. Existence itself had washed out colors. But I didn't even realize it. Until," Valkrana's impassiveness breaks into a fanatic's wild grin. She tucks her hands against her chest. "Until My Darling kissed My Darling's me. More than holding hands, more than a hug, a kiss is the most precious, most meaningful display of love. My first kiss. Eheheheh."

Valkrana's curse was lifted by the goddess of paradox, Cassandra Sledgehammer, who handed her the whereabouts of those responsible for her father's demise: the Von Trapps, and their leader, Zandro. Valkrana had every right to eradicate them; their misdeeds were many. She had fully intended to. But when the time came, she still believed she could be a good person. If she were to kill Zandro for his mistake, how would she have been any different from her mother? So she stayed his sentence to join him. Valkrana would let him prove his innocence.

She saw a kindred spirit in Vexia, the party thief. An outcast the world could not comprehend, not that it had cared to try. Valkrana's awkwardness was no hindrance. They became easy friends. Then, neither really knowing the enormity of the moment, Vexia and Valkrana found themselves in an accidental kiss. For Vexia, it was a mistake. For Valkrana, it was life-changing. Her obsessive tendencies kicked into overdrive. An unused pit in her mind that had been purpose-dug for a lifelong obsession suddenly flooded with Vexia. Memories in which she'd never been now housed unending love for her. Motivations all fell to the wayside before her. Vexia became Valkrana's prime directive. Even though Vexia's rejection smarted dearly, Valkrana's dedication was absolute. But an unrequited love meant that Valkrana's obsession was still incomplete. Then the end of the world happened.

Intervening Time and the Outfit

Valkrana toiled first on her homeworld, then for nearly three decades on some new ark-type world to which she and others were spirited away. She knew it'd be exceedingly difficult to carve for herself a place among the lawful in this new world, especially in secret. But the underworld, the underworld was pliable. With the help of her father's lessons, with an understanding of what drives urchins, and with a figure less likely to raise their hackles, she became their big sister. A kingpin with urchins as her domain. No one wants to acknowledge them, because that would mean feeding them, or admitting that a problem exists at all. This made them ideal for gathering intel. She expanded the operation to cover adjacent tasks, but intel was always their specialty, and her aim. Because every eavesdropped conversation, every secret shared in confidence brought her one step closer to the whereabouts of her darling.

At the same time, she encouraged a formidable member of the Von Trapps by the name of Mira to spearhead a coalition of others from her homeworld. This coalition's primary focus would be to find and secure the locations of interdimensional phenomena like those that had stranded them there. After this organization found its footing, Valkrana left everyday management to Mira and her crew. While her simulacrum handled underworld affairs, Valkrana would sit in a dark room for days on end, monitoring and learning about their new home through the thousands of skeletons under her control.

The Miraquinal Party

"My Darling." Valkrana swivels to face Ilyana, who acknowledges her with the attention for which she yearns, and for which the masses would divest their life savings. "My Darling shared with My Darling's me her broom, her travels, her trust, her life, herself. My Darling showed My Darling's me how to be happy. She made My Darling’s me, My Darling’s me. And now, now I belong to her. Absolutely. As the years pass, as the world changes, as people enter and exit her life, I will be her constant. Always and forever. My Darling's me. Whatever she considers worthy, whatever she needs, if I am not that, I will strive to become it. If I cannot, I will help her to find it."

Little by little, Valkrana gave herself over to the hunger of undeath. She did not become the person she intended to be; she became the person she needed to be. Then, through the combined efforts of the Outfit and her underworld connections, she finally found Vexia's reincarnation: Ilyana Miraquinal. But Valkrana had lost a bit of herself over the years. Her too-forward advances and extreme clinginess made for an exceptionally poor first impression. Ilyana feared her. However, Valkrana's power and position in the Outfit meant that Ilyana had no choice but to tolerate her.

This gave the two time to settle into their relationship. Valkrana fought to hold back her clinginess while Ilyana learned to look beyond her issues. They adventured as party members, and eventually in these travails they each found their stride. Ilyana discovered in Valkrana someone who, despite knowing her shortcomings, put her on the pedestal she deserved. Valkrana's obsession meant someone she could trust in all things, and her undying drive to elevate Ilyana meant a partner in her dreams. When she was under the weather, Valkrana tended to her; when she needed a shoulder to cry on, Valkrana offered hers. She even came up with awful puns to brighten her day. Before she knew it, Ilyana had warmed up to Valkrana's point of view.

For her part, Valkrana embraced the truth that while the two were the same soul, Ilyana was not Vexia, and that was a good thing. Ilyana was an elf who shared her love for learning and magic, challenged her intellect, knew the trials of living in the slums. Ilyana didn't fight her obsession; instead, she gave Valkrana a chance to help her see it for what it was. Ilyana showed her a kindness she had never known. Ilyana accepted her undeath, her nasty personality, her rocky past—all of it. And when at last Ilyana sealed this acceptance with a kiss, Valkrana permanently imprinted. She became 'My Darling's me'. It made Valkrana the best version of herself. They formed a formidable team.

Unfortunately, Valkrana's fear of losing Ilyana a second time ended in exactly that. She convinced Ilyana to perform a ritual that would bind their fates such that they would never again be apart. The ritual backfired. It shattered Ilyana's soul, and the shrapnel buffeted Valkrana's soul to become trapped there. It took Valkrana some time to pull herself together; between the ritual and losing her darling, she found herself in a bad way. But once she did, she set out on a journey to find the means to restore the hero the world knows and loves. Without her, she was no one.

Nearly a century later, Valkrana had exhausted every conceivable solution with no progress to show for it. So she did what she had to do. She traversed the vast network of underground tunnels home to grub-riding elves, dangers untold, and above all else, loneliness. Eventually, tirelessly, Valkrana's descent found its goal. She stood before Urt, God of All That is Deep. There, she forged a pact that would grant her the means to continue her quest in other realities.

The Last Resort Party

Entry coming someday...

The Witty Otters Party

The act of forcing her way into another reality was never without consequences. Otherworldly abilities had to be reconciled, and at times, damaged in conversion. Upon reaching Oerth, Valkrana found her expertise in the world's arcanum necromantic altogether wanting. Fortunately, she retained her natural talent in and enthusiasm for the craft. Better still, an undying drive to restore her darling's soul. So she set forth once more on her quest.

One such consequence of entering the reality of Oerth was an omega brand that bound her journey with that of other would-be adventurers. Though she wasn't fond of the enchantment, she understood the value of aligning herself with an adventuring group. In her search for the means to revive Ilyana, they could prove to be valuable assets and possible springboards into actionable intel and relationships. If nothing else, they'd help her get a lay of the land.

Awkward though she may be, the strength of Valkrana's resolve was enough to forge a party with her at the helm. She trained yet another network of urchins. She entered spheres of power and influence. She performed heroics. As with every other reality, Valkrana gave it her all. Even damaged as she was from both Ilyana's death and the latest leap across realities, she would settle for nothing less. The Witty Otters quickly gained traction in their corner of the world. Although, something loomed large in the back of her mind. She could not recall the details of her bargain with Urt, only that she had bargained.

Just as the Witty Otters had finished exterminating the sahuagin menace, an entity known only as "the Creator" entered the arena to steal Ilyana's soul, which left Valkrana in a bad way. The desperate chase that ensued was frought with perils, and eventually ended with Valkrana confronting the Creator in a corrupted grove. Finding that her magic had no effect, and unwilling to risk Ilyana's soul any further, Valkrana could only watch as a dark ritual fashioned for Ilyana a new body into which her repaired soul was installed. But not without a cost; at the final moment, so too did the Creator's soul enter.

Thus, Ilyana became a vessel for this entity. What that meant was yet to be discovered. For Valkrana, whose century-long mission had finally bore results, her joy was inviolate. Ilyana had returned. Color diffused a heretofore muted world. However, signs of possession would soon rear their head. Ilyana's latent psychic powers went into overdrive. Valkrana recognized her temper and harshness as qualities foreign to the elf. Most telling, she took no issue with cannibalism.

Divine consultation became betrayal when, after braving the Dreadwood, their expedition ended at a brass dragon who revealed its plan to extinguish both souls by consuming Ilyana. That left one less brass dragon in the world. Soon after, Valkrana and Ilyana were invited into an extradimensional manor in which a blood ritual was underway. Druid, vampires, devils, and others whose beliefs amounted to some interpretation of 'might is right' had come together to transplant the Creator into a body fully its own. They treated Ilyana kindly, the transplant was successful, and afterward, the Creator would continue to show its gratitude as time went by.

At last, Valkrana can once again enjoy cruising in the backseat of Ilyana's flying broom. Marketing, logistics, cooking, maiding, intel, scheduling, dirty deeds—Valkrana works tirelessly to support Ilyana in making her name one synonymous with greatness. Meanwhile, her darling can focus on adventuring, and fully enjoy her role as the great, mighty, unrivaled Ilyana Miraquinal. What is best in life? To aid your darling, see her succeed before you, and hear the celebrations of her fans. Video below in celebration of the campaign running for four years.

And Beyond

The final hour is spent gushing over her darling. Relating her virtues, recounting her feats, and recalling with exactness the details of their relationship. Take day 10,297 of the Era of Rediscovery, for example, whereupon her darling administered a knucklebone, ate cookie dough cookies, visited for the first time with Valkrana a fractured continent, received and giggled at a letter on said continent, enjoyed a scoop of mocha ice cream, cast a spell on Valkrana, successfully and single-handedly explored a frozen ruin in the bowels of the continent, dedicated precious hours to teaching Valkrana a spell, and most importantly, initiated a hug for the very first time. Valkrana rambles on with the honest passion of a stamp collector who had finally been invited to share their collection. Never mind that she hadn't been invited.


Ilyana Miraquinal — Wife and mistress, elf. See "The Darling" for more info.

Eldrin vil Galath Faeri Naerel — Father, elf. Villainous mage and diplomat. Death by mob.

Lathana vil Galath Faeri Naerel — Adoptive mother, elf. Accomplished enchanter. Succumbed to sickness shortly after birth.

Ssstzrazolik — Birth mother, legendary red dragon. Death by Valkrana.

Mao — Adopted daughter, human vampire. Found as basket baby, raised as right hand in underworld.

Yara — Apprentice, lab-grown human. Taken under wing due to her intellect.


Valkrana’s predisposition to obsessive and needy behavior manifests as, and is utterly and helplessly focused on, her love for her darling. She managed, if only just, before meeting her darling. But now that they have bonded, it is likely impossible for her to return to a state prior to her having imprinted. Such is most concisely illustrated in the way she thinks of herself as “My Darling’s me”. This has become a crucial part of her identity. Separation from her darling, by even a single wall, causes terrible anxiety.

One need not look hard for the multifarious symptoms of her illness, even as tangled as they are. Valkrana believes whatever is done for love is done beyond good and evil—a belief that history tells us she is willing to take to any extreme. Based on this observation alone, the elf should be isolated, or kept on a short leash within reach of her darling, whose scruples are more grounded. While unfortunate, the complications surrounding her darling’s death prevent her from resorting to extreme measures.

Would that this were her only affliction. Valkrana’s formative years were a mess. Embroiled as she was in a surfeit of contributing factors, it is nigh impossible to determine where the influence of one event ends and the other begins. Suffice it to say, her lineage, the early onset of the fear of death, a fascination with dissection, a father who by all accounts was a ruthless villain, her death and reanimation, the acute isolation that followed, and all the subsequent adjustments, or maladjustments: these wrought havoc on her psyche.

Until the bond forged with her darling, which galvanized a swift and destructive shift in priorities, Valkrana was, above all else, obsessed with mastering death. What she experienced beyond the veil left a lasting impression. Curiously, the elf does not seem to recognize her fascination with liberating dissected bodies of their skeletons as out of the ordinary. On multiple occasions, she has been chased out of town for, as she would put it, innocently scavenging the dead. At first glance, one might believe this is by design—she is, after all, an undead scavenger. However, this oblivious fascination seems to have formed prior to her reanimation.

Valkrana is not without her endearing traits. She is what becomes of a person when the wolf and the sheep are one and the same. While she doesn’t necessarily view the world around her as a child would, she will sometimes interact with it as such. This is especially glaring in her selective filter, in the amusement she finds in inappropriate situations, and in her leaps of logic where interpersonal relationships are concerned. When she timidly flaps her arm at you, failing miserably at something so simple as a wave, it is difficult not to see her and think of a troubled child. When she prattles over her darling with pure, untrammeled love, or when she giggles over how significantly cute a skeleton is as it is jettisoned from a geyser, or when she enthusiastically inspects a new magic item, Valkrana shines.

More than just a pragmatist's self-awareness, her ego swells when it comes to her advanced intellect and mastery over wizardry. She has no issue rattling off phrases such as "I am the smartest person you will ever meet." with a straight face and believing every word. She also possesses pride over her undeniable genius in matters arcane. Though well-earned, it causes her to look down on spellcasters whose repertoire was obtained through what she believes to be lesser means. Bloodlines and pacts, for example.

Besides this, Valkrana possesses a low opinion of herself. She scorns herself for any misfortune that befalls her darling. Oftentimes, she’ll refer to herself as worthless or disgusting. This outlook can be observed in her outlook on baking cookies, which she views as a proxy. In her own words, to her darling, “When the batch has finished, and you and your minions sit around the table and eat the cookies I have made, it almost makes My Darling's me feel as if I am not unwelcome.” Her use of ‘almost’ is telling: that she feels perpetually and irredeemably unwelcome.

Mostly harmless, maybe even sweet, is her awkwardness. Her socially-challenged nature was made to worsen during her developmental years, when she was either ostracized, locked in a trunk, or both. Valkrana, even when alone with her darling, for whom her trust is absolute, never loses her awkwardness. It is, of course, aggravated in social situations, sometimes causing her to evacuate her unsettled stomach. She'll say the damnedest things, frankly and without malice; she'll fumble basic social interactions; she'll breach taboo as if it's nothing.

At rest, Valkrana is an aloof, low-energy person. This can aggravate her botched communications, when she delivers a thorny truth with no verve or personal investment. Generally, she operates at low battery by default. Certain things, such as magic or her darling, will kick her into a higher gear, but she's quick to settle down without constant stimulation.

Between her mother, the dragon; her maladjusted upbringing; and the side effects of the necromancy that maintains her, the origin of Valkrana’s hair trigger temper is a mystery that eludes explanation. More important is respecting it. That when she flies off the handle, you would do well not to encourage her.

It is worth noting that, despite these observations, Valkrana possesses a keen intellect, and when left to her own devices, has demonstrated her worth in scholarly pursuits. Having grown accustomed to complete isolation, Valkrana has no trouble sitting for days, weeks, even months, absorbed in research. That considered, she doesn’t apply herself like she once did. Valkrana would rather rejoice in a world shared with her darling, whose adventuring keeps them busy. However, when the time comes to settle in, when she has finished servicing her darling, cooking, and taking care of chores, Valkrana delights in returning to her studies, surrounded by kept silence, interrupted only by the all-too-welcome breaths of the one with whom it is shared. While Valkrana’s hopes of following in her Papa’s footsteps as a diplomat were summarily dashed, she did nevertheless study under her father. Valkrana has none of the charisma, bearing, or tact to pursue the role, but she is quick of wit, which allows her to leverage his Machiaelfian wisdom in practical applications where intelligence prevails. In this, she has emulated her Papa to dark ends. It is fortunate then that Valkrana has pledged to put that life behind her, as much as she can. However, Valkrana has in her make-up the predispositions of a villain, inherited from her father and enhanced by her mother. Rarely does she allow them to bubble to the surface, but they are always there, always a part of her.

"I am not a complicated person. I am devoted to you, absolutely. I want to better your life, and I want us to be close. Whatever it takes, I do it. Anything. And I never say, never even think, 'Ilyana must love her me for this.'"

That damning appraisal belies her nature. Valkrana gleans no pleasure from hurting others. She will even help them at times, provided that doing so does not interfere with her prime directive. Some would argue that her regular threats run counter to this observation. However, these are little more than a mostly benign product of her trouble with social situations. Rarely are they something she either wants or intends to follow through on. You would do better to worry about her quiet considerations: it is there that her Papa's daughter plots your demise. If you travel with her or if you have insulted her darling, rest assured you've occupied those ruthless plots. Most such plots exist only as a contingency. Her darling intercedes in most others before they can take shape.

Valkrana's disdain for her birth mother doesn't forfend her from sharing at least part of Ssstzrazolik's outlook. Namely, the crucible. While Valkrana will protect and provide for her urchins, she still believes in the path of adversity. An urchin who endures the crucible is an urchin who has bettered themselves, and in turn, earned a brighter future than their less challenged counterparts.

Addendum: We find ourselves in a strange and unexpected outcome. Valkrana both has and has not lost her darling.

While her dedication in seeking to revive her darling is expected, in this eventuality it manifests alongside a refusal to employ any means necessary to do so. It seems to be respect for her darling that stays her hand. As it is a well-documented characteristic, Valkrana’s tireless pursuit of a solution will not be covered in greater detail.

Immediately following the death of her darling, Valkrana suffered an observable downturn in mental acuity and temperament. The following were witnessed: severe depression, a degradation of identity, damage to memory integrity and invocation, and an unstable disposition. She chose to counteract these symptoms by using concentrated bone meal to induce a drug-like state, but could not under any circumstances rely on it for an extended time. As has been demonstrated, too much and Valkrana risks succumbing to the hunger of undeath, and had not entirely recovered from the relapse for which her darling administered daily knucklebones.

While the devastation wrought by her darling’s unfortunate death is likely irreversible, Valkrana is nevertheless fortunate for the way it resolved. It is only thanks to her vessel’s cohabitation that she doesn’t continue to deteriorate—that is, she was saved by what remains of her darling’s soul. Ultimately, this leaves Valkrana depressed and slightly unstable, but far better off than she would have been otherwise.

Addendum 2: We bear witness to an unexpected turn of events. With the miraculous restoration of her darling's soul, Valkrana once again shares a broom with Ilyana.

It is thanks to this that Valkrana has more than merely stabilized: she exhibits a full recovery in every observable metric. By all accounts, she is herself again. If anything, she has emerged from the experience better equipped to fulfill her role in the relationship. While she feels no small amount of guilt for what befell her darling, Valkrana's prime directive remains unshaken and unchanged.

"Choose any path you wish, My Darling. Recognition. Tyranny. The love of another. A quiet life. Then see me. Really look. You will not see an obstacle. Rather, a helping hand. I am short-tempered, awkward, and clingy, but I am, without exception, your friend, and... anything else you allow me to be."

Physical Description

Age: 173, Height: 4'2", Weight: 37+1lbs

To the rare few to see her without her wide-brimmed brown wizard hat and embroidered eye patch, Valkrana's most striking features are the three gnarly wounds raked into her skull. Product of her encounter with a dragon, and cause of death, they never heal. Originally, they were stapled shut, but only a few staples remain.

Due to these wounds, Valkrana has a difficult time keeping her hair in order. Because of such, she only ever bothers to keep it in one messy braid, allowing the rest to fall as it pleases in oily-black lengths.

Valkrana lost both eyes in her death, but the necromancer who experimented on her managed to restore her right eye. Once as lovely as amethyst, it is now a pale purple at best. The same necromancer replaced her teeth with a sharklike set better suited to rending carcasses and crushing bone, and widened her mouth to further assist. To the same end, he modified her digestive system to break down bone. She produces these noxious fluids constantly, and as such, can't help but drool. If one were to get into the technicalities of Valkrana's reanimation, she would be qualified as a graftling, which is typically only apparent when her bundle is removed.

This would lay bare the bones that were grafted to form her limbs (those taken from other children, as her originals were unrecovered), and the extra skeletal limb or limbs that have been attached to her back. Unlike some graftlings, Valkrana doesn't make a habit of decorating herself with superfluous bones, though she does keep a few that once belonged to her darling quite literally close to heart.

Valkrana died, and was subsequently reanimated, at the age of ten. Her undeveloped figure, malnourished weight, and manner of dress make it difficult but not impossible to tell her gender. Only her head, neck, torso, and half of one leg contain the marrow- and cartilage-stuff that mimics the meat of her corpse. This false meat is pale white and has a too-smooth texture. See the art guide for a visual explanation.

Valkrana wore her walnut brown robe, skull bandana, and heavy orange poncho for over a century. Having assumed the role of right hand, aide, and so much more to Ilyana Miraquinal, Valkrana commissioned a more distinguished outfit befitting her position. According to her, anyway. Now, she wears a combination wizard robe militech jacket, underscored by the striking poison-purple of her ribbon and cloak's inner lining. A bronze clasp secures her ensemble, embossed with the emblematic broom of Ilyana. See the art guide for a reference.

The Darling. The Great, Mighty, Unrivaled Witch Ilyana Miraquinal

Race: Wood Elf, Age: 187, Height: 4'4", Weight: 64lbs

Ilyana art by Nyama.

Ilyana Miraquinal was raised in the standard trappings of elven society, though she ended up rather... different. She sees herself as the Great and Mighty Witch Ilyana of the famed Miraquinal household, her mission: to prove the magnificence of her family. This belief brought out a haughty, but not malicious, nature in the elf. Her behavior made her enough of a problem child that her family enlisted the help of a wandering "mind doctor" known for fixing problem children. When he failed, Ilyana's grandiose ideas became further entrenched. The great witch had resisted.

For a time, Ilyana strove to hone her rare psionic talents, which she eventually paired to great effect with wizardry. Until, finally and eagerly, her parents sent her out into the world under the guise of getting actual experience. More likely, they just wanted to be rid of her.

Some kind-hearted souls in the community scrounged together enough money to buy for her a run-down hovel in the depths of the elven caverns. With her hovel as a base, Ilyana set out on her adventure to spread the glory of Miraquinal. Early on, she went out of her way to help others, expecting only gratitude in return. Money means little to her; she'd rather hear words of praise. However, the harshness of the world eventually got through to her. While a smile meant more to her than any coin, she realized that in order to survive, and eventually flourish, she would need money. Thus she lived for many years, getting by and adventuring by her lonesome. Until...

An urchin handed her a letter gritty with sand and dust. The letter contained an invitation to the notorious Outfit, along with a promise of the recognition she sought. She figured the Outfit knew a thing or two about self-promotion. If anyone could help her achieve her dream, they ranked high. So she set out.

Perhaps the Outfit wasn't all it was cracked up to be. Its core crew was powerful but dysfunctional. To make matters worse, one member in particular clung to her like nobody's business, claiming Ilyana was the reincarnation she'd been searching for all along. This was, of course, Valkrana. Nevertheless, Ilyana saw an opportunity and seized it: she fashioned herself the leader of this Outfit. Between her noble carriage, the image she painted of herself, and the support of a core member, she was the prime candidate for this ragtag group of sometimes-do-wells.

Now at the helm, she led her party on a great many adventures, and indeed, succeeded in spreading the Miraquinal name far and wide. The Outfit gave way to the Miraquinals. They thrived. This band of comrades achieved a great deal together, and during their exploits, love would soon bloom.

Perhaps Ilyana only meant to entertain Valkrana at first, or placate her otherwise. But time passed, and eventually she accepted Valkrana's unabating affection. Ilyana wasn't one for public displays, but she cared, and showed it in her own way. They looked after one another. Each knew what the other needed. Each provided.

That is, until Valkrana convinced Ilyana to defy fate itself. To perform a ritual that would tie their fates together. Technically, they succeeded. But fate is cruel to those who challenge it. The ritual backfired, shattering Ilyana's soul, and buffeting Valkrana with the resultant soul-shrapnel. Neither emerged unscathed. For a century, all that remained of Ilyana was a silent passenger lodged in the soul of her lover.

A century later, Ilyana was revived with the help of an unknown primordial entity. Unfortunately, this came with a price: Ilyana became this entity's vessel. For months, she fought to control its influence. Her innate psionic prowess and stubborn nature helped her to withstand its assault for a time. But she was fighting a war of attrition, and it would sometimes rear its head to take over. For her part, Ilyana was conflicted. She knew it was eating away at her resistance. But surely, if anyone could be trusted to tame the entity, it should be her. Ilyana had her pride. Ever aware of her darling, Valkrana noticed the changes in Ilyana, and so hurried along their journey to free her of her burden.

This brought them into contact with a druid grove that worshipped the entity as one that would even the playing field for only the strongest to prevail. And though they lavished her with praise, it was hollow. To them, she was only a vessel. The druids escorted her to the site of a blood ritual performed by vampires, where Valkrana would join her. Ilyana saw her own uncertainty in Valkrana, but trusted that if there were some other way, her partner would have found it for her. Together, they completed the ritual, and freed Ilyana by unleashing the entity upon the world.

With the entity gone, so too were the psionic powers with which she'd been born. For a short time, Ilyana wallowed in depression. She'd been robbed of a part of herself, something central to her identity. But for reasons unknown, the entity gifted her a book that would restore something else she'd lost in being revived in this new world: the wizardry she had worked so hard to master in her past life.

Once again empowered, once again welling with pride, Ilyana joined Valkrana in spreading the name of the great, the mighty, the unrivaled witch of all heroics, Ilyana Miraquinal.

Valkrana's Duties

More hats beneath the wizard hat. While these privileges both support Ilyana's dream and strengthen the bond between the two, they define neither. All duties are performed of Valkrana's own volition.

Maid — Valkrana understands that the little, everyday things have a profound impact on quality of life. Knowing this, she personally tends to Ilyana's comfort and health. Bathing, dressing, cooking, cleaning, serving, servicing—Valkrana gives her the royal treatment.

Advisor — To worship Ilyana is not to ignore her faults and shortcomings. Valkrana is open with advice, knowing that Ilyana will listen if her words have merit.

Right Hand — A role learned from her father and her time as a prince of thieves. Ilyana has the freedom to focus entirely on adventuring and to fully enjoy the fruits of her deeds because Valkrana assumes logistic and administrative responsibilities. If it needs doing, Valkrana either handles it or finds someone who can.

Battlefield Support — In combat, Valkrana leverages her spells, skeletons, and even herself to play the defensive counterpart to Ilyana's offensive focus.

Tabletop Characteristics

Some insight into how Valkrana translates back to the tabletop. Not at all comprehensive.


System-appropriate undead traits. Very high intelligence, low charisma due to awkwardness, above average HP due to undeath.

Crafts and Skills

Arcane fields, cooking, maiding, intel gathering and handling, leadership, logistics, organized crime.


Valkrana's focuses are necromancy, intel, defense, and trump cards. How this translates to P&P will depend on the system and whether she's a PC or NPC.

Combat — Valkrana is very conservative with resources. While she can hold her own in combat, she's more likely to rely on others. And usually isn't all that equipped for it besides. For her part, she uses abjuration, lightning, necromancy, undead, trump cards, and items.

Necromancy — As a PC, Valkrana typically surrounds herself and Ilyana with one high-level skeleton and 10 or fewer normal skeletons. As an NPC, she's gone as far as tens of thousands of skeletons: some scattered throughout the world as constant surveillance, others stowed in caverns while awaiting orders. On both accounts, Valkrana makes gratuitous use of skeletons as utility.

Intel — In seeking to gather and control information, Valkrana defaults to urchins as her main non-magic means, which can then be used in efforts such as running a printing press to further the cause. In terms of magic, Valkrana makes heavy use of spells like Scrying, Sending, Detect Magic, True Seeing, and Detect Thoughts; Sending rarely goes unprepared.

Defense — Valkrana places Ilyana's defense before her own, using her limit break (below) to great effect. For both herself and Ilyana, Valkrana maintains a defensive barrier of well-armed lesser skeletons, prepares contingency spells that provide invulnerability if either would go down, and generally, makes both great and creative use of a system's preventative measures.

Trump Cards — Rarely does she go all out. Valkrana prefers to keep an entire deck of aces in the hole. Pocket dimensions with glyphs that can instantly reanimate hundreds of skeletons, apply a flurry of buffs, unleash enough magic to annihilate an army, or expel a lava flow. Rare items or consumables with high-CD or high-penalty yet high-reward effects. Methods to summon allies from across the planes. Copies of herself that can safely extend her will beyond her physical limitations. Permanent magical defenses in key areas akin to multiple Lairs.

Preparedness — Valkrana saves enough resources to escape most situations, and tries to avoid going into one without being at least somewhat prepared for what lies ahead. Even her mother's prideful draconic genes can't squash this habit. Trump cards help here.

Noteworthy Items

Teeth of Dahlver-Nar, Robe of Eyes, Staff of Souls, Mirror of Scrying, Wand of Detect Magic, Cubic Gate, Spell Tattoos, Sending Stones, Bag of Holding(2)

Noteworthy Abilities

Limit Break: Undying Fervor — Whenever Ilyana would take damage, Valkrana is made aware and can choose to take that damage in her place. Functionally, Valkrana can use this ability to traverse any distance, even across the planes, to instantaneously place herself between Ilyana and any source of danger (direct, area, or otherwise).

Multithreading — Valkrana has no issue processing multiple sensory inputs at once (such as eyesight and hearing from three creatures). Whether from a homunculus or skeleton, she usually has at least one picture-in-picture active at all times.