Image of Kalena Valade

Summary: Former Opra Dale socialite and washed up assassin

Kalena Valade

Gender: Female

Age: 29

Group: Rogues/Assassins

Nationality/Loyalties

Kalena was born in the distant nation of Achaea, and was a former member of the gentry in the Kingdom of Dalen with a sworn allegiance to the late Queen Thalia. She is now kingdomless.

Title/Rank

None; former high lady in Dalen and personal assassin to the Queen

Race/Appearance

Kalena is a human being and 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. Beautifully poised with a regal bearing, she stands at five feet seven inches (171 cm) 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 intensive sword and martial arts training.

Personality/Interests

Kalena 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 was very cold and disdainful of her slaves, whipping them when they displeased her. At the same time she is extremely loyal and warm to her friends no matter what their social standing. She for most of her life felt 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 and more or less succeeded in doing so. With the kingdom now all but destroyed she hopes to find somewhere else to settle down again, and something new to give her life meaning.

Brief History

Kalena 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 decorated soldier killed on a military expedition against 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 highly 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 throughout 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 close 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 to that point 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 Gularzob Nugbu, Baron Kline Lowson, and of course, Lafayette Le Renard. The companions fought together on the side of Dalen against the invading Timber Crag Kingdom that had somehow learnt of Dalen's role in the murder 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 entirely to waste. As Queen Thalia was seemingly killed and the capital city destroyed, Kalena and Lafayette's lives were saved only by the timely intervention of Horo and Orla, the latter who was representing the Cult of Fernoia, which offered the pair an unexpected opportunity both at vengeance and to salvage their very bleak prospects, and it was an offer they were in no position to refuse. Kalena went on to participate in a daring assassination mission with Lafayette and Orla's cousin, Maelwin, to infiltrate the Praitine Vale and slay Queen Lellian, the defacto ruler of the Timber Crag Kingdom and Thierri's mother. The mission succeeded and Lellian died at Kalena's blade.

Through subsequent events that presently remain unrevealed, Kalena and Lafayette have found themselves thrust into a dark future they hardly recognise.

Arms/Equipment

Kalena's signature weapon is a superbly crafted Makhairan duelling sabre that has a slender, silvery blue black mithril-edged blade and a carved ebony hilt and steel crossguard. The sword is perfectly balanced and specially treated so as not to reflect light.

A straight-bladed single-edged fighting dagger for close-in combat she wears in a hip sheath.

At least half a dozen throwing knives kept in either a bandolier or concealed in sheaths in her boots. These small, black flying blades are razor sharp and some are laced with a deadly fast acting poison.

A recurve bow composed of gold teak wood and ornate leather trimming gifted to her by Queen Thalia on the eve of one of their semi-regular hunting trips. Along with the bow she has a quiver containing 30 arrows including, incendiary, poisonous, armour-piercing bodkin and a few silver tipped shafts fashioned to kill werebears left over from the war with the Timber Crag, in addition to normal broad-headed arrows.

An assassin's sword belt with a black embossed scabbard for her sabre and fighting dagger secured with an ornate belt buckle that contains a concealed spring knife.

She is rarely without her fine hooded sable cloak, and velvet coin purse with gold strings

Before fleeing her luxury villa in Dalen, Lafayette offered her space in his capacious trunk for some of her belongings, in which Kalena stowed a number of her favourite pieces of jewellery and perfume and various high-end tailored garments.

She prefers not to wear armour that impedes her speed and range of movement, but will don a set of lightweight custom-fit 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. http://www.ongoingworlds.com/games/3249/posts/1193

Talents/Abilities/Advantages

Kalena is a formidable swordswoman, duellist, hand-to-hand fighter, and all-around 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 highly 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 and trainer, speaks several Indo-Aeranian 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.

Fears/Weaknesses/Phobias

Kalena is boastful and prone to exaggeration, a bad habit 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 moral 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 absolutely no talent at magic and has a slight aversion to it, as well as disdain. She is physically only human and though capable of defeating multiple skilled human-level foes, 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.

Favorite Sayings or Quotes

“To achieve greatness one should live as if they will never die.”

“Train like you've never won, fight like you've never lost.”

“Riches are not an end of life but an instrument of it.”

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Character questions

Recent Activity

Image of Kalena Valade
Mentioned in the post A Trip to the Market Oct 2, 2021, 2:31am
Mentioned in the post From Peasant to Guardian Sep 27, 2021, 7:30pm
Mentioned in the post A Tale from the Past: Reap the Whirlwind Sep 25, 2021, 3:57am
Mentioned in the post The Uninvited Guest Aug 24, 2021, 3:48am
Mentioned in the post Meeting Shade Aug 8, 2021, 8:40pm
Mentioned in the post Escape from Indrasel Jul 30, 2021, 3:09am
Mentioned in the post Rethinking Jul 27, 2021, 10:54am
Mentioned in the post The Fall of Opra Dale: A Tale from the Past Jul 26, 2021, 1:21am
Mentioned in the post Worm and Fire II Jul 12, 2021, 4:36pm
Mentioned in the post Worm and Fire I Jul 12, 2021, 4:26pm
Updated character profile Oct 6, 2020, 1:23am
Mentioned in the post