Summary: A medieval assassin with a new lease on life
Owned by: Rosmary
Group: Awakened Heroes
Game: Engines of Chaos Redux
Place of Origin and RaceKalena is a human who was born in the nation of Achaea, and of late was an important citizen in the Kingdom of Dalen.
Physical Appearance and Preferred Attire/EquipmentKalena possesses a striking, somewhat exotic face with high cheekbones, cold, mischievous, sage-coloured eyes, and fair, slightly olive skin. She has a mane of dark brunette hair that she wears in various updos and styles, and that when free falls about her shoulders in a rich tumble of curls. She stands at five feet seven inches (1.75 m) tall, her body lithesome and statuesque; though athletically-toned from regular exercise, she carries far greater strength than her slender build would suggest due to her many years of sword and martial arts training.
She takes great pleasure in getting dolled up in fancy gowns and dresses, but she's more often seen wearing her 'adventure garb'. High-heeled black riding boots with soft soles for stealth, and steel-toes for kicking. Snug purple leggings, a black short-sleeved leather tunic containing a light layer of chainmail worn over a silk blouse, and a fine hooded sable cloak clipped to her shoulders with a broach. A sword belt with a black embossed scabbard for her sabre and fighting dagger around her waist, secured with an ornate belt buckle, and a small bandolier of throwing knives completes the ensemble. She prefers not to wear armour that impedes her speed and range of movement, but will don a set of custom-fit lightweight armour (including a Praitine steel breastplate) if she anticipates heavy combat. The armour, forged by her orc blacksmith friend Gularzob Nugbu, is imbued with a magical enchantment that allows her to blend into shadows and darkness.
Personality Quirks, Interests, and GoalsKalena is an elegant, very self-assured, and usually good-humoured woman who moves comfortably among the upper classes, but due to her humble origins is equally at ease among peasants. She is a bit of a study in contradictions that way. She can be very cold and disdainful of her slaves, whipping them when they displease her. At the same time she is loyal and warm to her friends no matter what their social standing. She has little true empathy for others though, and her warped moral sense is a reflection of the harsh, unenlightened age from which she comes. Typically she is quite ruthless, as well as daring and fearless as any trained killer would be.
In her normal day to day life she is a passionate equestrian, and religious about her martial prowess; she has dedicated much of her time to honing her combat skills, and is always proud to show them off. Her other pastimes include fine wine, dining, gambling, attending concerts and the theatre, and hunting. With a taste for ostentation, she loves jewellery and expensive garments and accessories.
In recent years Kalena ambitiously set her sights upon becoming a powerful noblewoman in Dalen. With the kingdom all but destroyed she hopes to find somewhere else to settle down again, but before she can do that she must first settle accounts with the Being.
Powers, Skills, and StrengthsKalena is a formidable swordswoman, duellist, hand-to-hand fighter, and athlete. She is a near master with the Makhairan sabre, her preferred weapon of choice. She possesses highly developed hand-eye coordination, balance, agility, and reflexes; her movements tend to be fluidly graceful and precise. As a rigorously trained assassin she is skilled in stealth, reconnaissance, gymnastics, climbing, lockpicking, infiltration, and the various killing arts, including the covert use and manufacture of potent poisons. She is an extremely accurate knife thrower and has considerable skill with a bow. She is an accomplished horse rider, speaks several Indo-Aeran languages, and has moderate woods skills. Despite certain negative personality traits, she is quite charming, able to make friends of people from many walks of life.
Weaknesses, Flaws, and LimitationsKalena is boastful and prone to exaggeration, stemming from having to look out for herself at a young age and constantly prove and sell her skills. There is an underlying harshness about her that can take away from her charm. She has a reckless and bloodthirsty streak, and her skills tend to make her overconfident, causing her to sometimes underestimate her opponents to her peril. Though she possesses extraordinary fighting judgement, able to outthink and outwit opponents in a blindingly fast sword fight, she is not particularly good at reading people and judging character, lacking in some of those basic human instincts. She does however have quite an affinity for horses, as well as a weakness for them; even in a pitched battle with her life at stake she will be highly reluctant to harm those ridden by an enemy. Whilst she occasionally drew her assassination targets to their deaths using her illecebrous looks as a lure, this wasn't something she cared to do any more than necessary (feeling it beneath her dignity) and so she is not especially well-practised at artful seduction. She has spent her entire life in a medieval world and is completely out of her element in a post-industrial high-technology society. She is physically only human and though capable of defeating multiple skilled human-level foes simultaneously, she will struggle against opponents that are inhumanly strong and fast, especially in a head-on confrontation, or those wielding weapons and technology of which she is unfamiliar.
Character Job, Rank, and/or TitlesKalena was of late a socialite, high lady of Dalen and advisor to Queen Thalia; she has now effectively returned to her roots as a professional assassin and mercenary under special contract to the Being.
BackstoryKalena was born in a small farming village in Eastern Achaea. Her mother died in childbirth and she never knew her father, who was said to have been a soldier killed on a military campaign against the Zatar. She was raised by her maternal grandfather who owned a horse farm that produced champion destriers, instilling in her a lifelong love for horses and equestrian sport. When her grandfather died during a plague outbreak the farm was seized by creditors and Kalena was left to survive on her own. She found a series of odd-jobs to support herself, including working in dance troupes and a travelling circus. It was at the circus that she caught the eye of its trick-shooting archer, who was secretly a master assassin. He enlisted her to assist him during some of his assignments, and thus began her training in what would become her life's trade.
Kalena subsequently trained and apprenticed under a variety of respected swordsman, duellists, archers, and battle masters, including the famed Old Man of Merovignia, a grand master martial artist without peer, who years later she would learn had also trained Lafayette. With each passing year, even as her skills continued to excel, Kalena forged a reputation as a competent and daring killer-for-hire. Always on the move, her only constant companion was a beautiful black war mare called Enyo, who she claimed as her own after killing the horse's previous owner in a duel. At twenty-four, Kalena received an invitation from Count Chiren Soldor to come to Dalen to eliminate numerous individuals on behalf of Queen Thalia, some of whom the monarch could not move against openly. Within a two year period, Kalena carried out a score of high-level assassinations in the Two Kingdoms, from Count Xavier Malfrod, to Tyreth Cartigan's uncle, to several Verdish noblemen and military leaders. During this time Kalena became a friend and confidant to the Queen, who awarded her with fabulous riches and a palatial villa following her successful assassination of King Authun, the Timber Crag's ruler, who Thalia feared intended to invade Dalen. It was the most significant achievement of Kalena's career and her final professional job, as she promptly retired thereafter with the Queen's blessing to enjoy her newfound wealth.
Kalena established herself in the capital city as a glamourous socialite, and, as a hobby, bred and trained champion horses, something she had dreamed of doing all her life. Even in luxurious retirement, she indulged in adventure, occasionally hunting outlaws for sport (such as joining the bounty hunter Oruvand in his pursuit of the fugitive Jack Nahema) and fighting insurgent elements (the Emerald Scarves and the Rising Star) that sought to overthrow Queen Thalia. Kalena made many allies and friends, notably Baron Kline Lowson and Lafayette Le Renard. For the past year they had fought together on the side of Dalen against the invading Timber Crag Kingdom that had learnt of Dalen's responsibility for the death of their beloved king and were out for blood, led by the monstrous crown prince, Thierri. The werebear hordes ultimately proved victorious over Dalen, laying the once great kingdom to waste. As the Queen was killed and the capital destroyed, Kalena's life was saved only by the timely intervention of the Being's agents, who offered her an unexpected opportunity both at vengeance and to salvage her very bleak prospects, and it was an offer Kalena was in no position to refuse.
Player Goals for CharacterI'd like to try to get myself back to writing regularly again and Kalena was the character I probably had the most fun writing back in the day. I haven't had much luck with OW lately and I don't have as much time as I used to, but we'll see what happens.
Player Questions and Moderator FeedbackShall I start posting?
This character is owned by: Rosmary
Mentioned in the post Into the Deepwood Jun 19, 2019, 3:20am
Mentioned in the post Doom of Opra Dale Jun 17, 2019, 7:58am
Mentioned in the post Swords of Fury: Epilogue Jun 12, 2019, 3:11pm
Mentioned in the post Swords of Fury pt 2 Jun 11, 2019, 4:53pm
Mentioned in the post Swords of Fury Jun 6, 2019, 1:55pm
Updated character profile Jun 6, 2019, 1:45pm