"Without Wisdom, Life is meaningless. Without Life, Wisdom is dead."
Nilandia Liserna is a Sylvan mystic, empath and scholar. She makes her living as an herbalist, spiritualist and healer practicing traditional and empathic medicine. Known to hold to orthodox Sylvan culture, she is also a talented mentalist.
Introduction[edit | edit source]
Nilandia is a servant at heart, gladly helping anyone who needs without asking for anything in return. Though she takes joy in providing assistance, it is far from the only thing she does. Instead, she can be found engaged in conversation on a wide variety of topics, communing with the local spirits, reading whatever books she can find, playing her lute, crafting charms, or simply wandering the forests.
Personality-wise, Nilandia is often quiet and shy upon first meeting someone, but she will become much more friendly and outspoken as she grows more comfortable. She is very polite, believing in showing a person respect unless given reason to do otherwise. Underlying it all is a deep thirst for knowledge, wisdom and adventure which has gotten her into trouble on more than one occasion.
Background[edit | edit source]
Nilandia was born in Yr'Lassa, a small Sylvan community located outside the southwestern border of Yuriqen. Founded by Sylvans from Yuriqen with the dual purposes of preserving their culture and watching the Silver Veil for when the city reopens, Yr'Lassa was Nilandia's home for most of her life. Its people shaped her outlook and experiences, particularly her family and her patron named Sarenna. Sarenna instructed Nilandia in many things she would need to know as an adult, and the bond between teacher and student was as close as any she would know, including with her family. Sarenna also introduced her to the worship of Lumnis as well as Imaera, a practice she continues to this day.
While Nilandia was still in Yr'Lassa, she found friendship with a forest spirit she calls Whisper due to its shy nature. Whisper has accompanied Nilandia throughout her travels and is a near constant companion, coming to her aid on several occasions.
Adventuring[edit | edit source]
Nilandia left her home in 5102, before she was old enough to join a D'ahranal, and eventually ended up in the frontier town of Wehnimer's Landing. She quickly found work as an empath, making use of her latent spiritual and mentalist talents, and was able to make enough money to sustain herself. Though she had left the forests of her homeland, she still maintained a connection with the lands around the cities she stayed in as well as the local spirits. Her communications with the spirits revealed more ways in which she could call them to her aid, and combined with her flourishing empathic practice, her skills have continued to improve.
At the same time, Nilandia also began a practice of contacting the spirits to help others. Her primary methods of doing so are blessing various materials for people to carry, performing rituals to contact and consult with the spirits, scrying using a scrying bowl, or crafting charms, which are small pouches containing herbs, flowers, feathers and other small pieces of flora or fauna which may convey a specific blessing.
Nilandia has recently revealed the potent mental abilities she possesses, having kept them secret for reasons known only to herself. She has demonstrated a strong proficiency in telepathy, often referring to herself as a Mindwalker. She has often made use of her ability in the various circumstances she encounters, though she strongly believes in obtaining permission from a person before entering their mind except in cases of emergency. Regardless, some people have begun to view her with suspicion, wary of how she might manipulate others.
Merchant Archives[edit | edit source]
For a long time, Nilandia had made private notes on items she had come across in her travels to help her remember their significance and abilities. In the year 5104, this note taking became a full-fledged inventory of the various shops she found, and she made her notes available to whomever would like to read them. Since then, she has become one of the pre-eminent archivists of shop inventories, and her records are free for all to read. They can be found in her library.
Prime[edit | edit source]
In Prime, life has been quiet lately and Nilandia's studies in various subjects continue. At the same time, she has been actively seeking other sylvans to connect and communicate with other people sharing her heritage. She also has sought to find other people exhibiting mentalist talents to learn of their techniques and experiences, or to practice and strengthen her own ability. Though she continues to observe and study the events taking place around her, she has chosen to withdraw from public life for the time being.
Platinum[edit | edit source]
Nilandia is quite active in Platinum.
Ta'Illistim[edit | edit source]
For a time, she had been wary of spending time in Ta'Illistim, despite her great respect for its love of knowledge. An organization known as the Silver Rod, focusing on research into mental magic, had wanted to study her as she was the first sylvan known to exhibit mentalist talents. Members of the group would often approach her in an attempt to persuade her to allow them to study her, such as what happened here. She, however, had no intentions of allowing it.
The attention from the Silver Rod caused disruptions in her research, leading her to bring the matter before the Argent Mirror Myasara of Ta'Illistim during one of her recent public audiences. Myasara responded by naming newly-appointed Chief Scholar Hiraani Gael to oversee Nilandia's research. Hiraani would also keep Myasara informed of the situation. Nilandia has since sent Hiraani periodic updates on her research, who has provided occasional guidance in new avenues to pursue.
Nilandia was also honored to have designed two memorials that are now installed in Ta'Illistim, a bronze book just outside the Library Aies and a rotunda near the shrine to Lumnis. Myasara was so pleased with her designs that she named Nilandia a Sculptress of Ta'Illistim. Nilandia gladly accepted the honor, but she is uncomfortable with it, as she is with every formality and title people attempt to use with her.
The Watcher[edit | edit source]
During the summer of 5110, Nilandia came into contact with a malevolent entity that speaks from the shadows, which has startled or even attacked people. Her attempts to use her mental ability to track down the entity attracted its attention, and her life has been threatened. Though she did fear for her life, she believed that defending those she cares for against the shadow is more important, and continued to try to warn people of the danger as well as try to find a way to combat the darkness. The entity appears to have been quiet of late, leading her to wonder if it has forgotten about her.
A Long-Delayed Reunion[edit | edit source]
In the last month of 5110, adventurers began to experience ghostly visitations that turned out to be the spirit of Ralyn, one of Nilandia's dearest friends from Yr'Lassa. Unknown to her, he had left Yr'Lassa to find her and bring her back home, but was killed and robbed before he could find her. He finally found her one night and led everyone present to his remains. Then he noticed Nilandia wearing a talisman that had belonged to him but had been stolen, and begged that it be sung to so his story could be told and he could finally rest. With some misgivings, she gave up the talisman, whose song told of the life Ralyn and Nilandia shared as blue-mantled acolytes of the sylvan hierophants as well as Ralyn's death. The story done, Ralyn was released from his wanderings, but he chose to remain with Nilandia. His spirit inhabits the talisman that she carries with her to this day.
The Crimson Moon[edit | edit source]
In place of the entity of the shadows, Nilandia has encountered the crimson moon, which has skillfully been able to draw out her deepest fears and insecurities. According to an old and blind gnomish seer, the crimson moon brings to light that which a person hides. She has also told Nilandia that she lacks the understanding that certain things must not be known and fears not being able to use her 'greatest gift.' In her torments in the light of the crimson moon, her fears of not being able to help those in need have been brought to the fore.
Seeking to shake free of the crimson moon's hold, Nilandia has begun writing and publishing reports of all she has seen and heard, available here. Through this, she is able to keep others informed and alert them of any danger as well as bring solace by emulating Lumnis' example of teaching others. When she is not composing her reports, she can be found meditating in an attempt to confront her fears and reduce their hold over her so the crimson moon cannot use her against her will.
On the evening of the second of Charlatos, following a ritual ostensibly to help free a young girl from the crimson moon's influence, an unnamed stranger who appeared to be known by the gnomish seer presented Nilandia with a piece of parchment. He said that he had been instructed to give it to someone marked with a key, and that it was not to leave her person. He also referred to her as a 'chosen of Lumnis,' much to her surprise. Though she initially felt herself unworthy of being named such, she has come to accept that Lumnis chose her for a reason and has resolved to serve to the best of her ability.
Some months later, Nilandia has begun fulfilling the role of assembling knowledge about the crimson moon into a cohesive whole so more informed decisions could be made. Soon after she had started in this task, the gnomish seer named her the Keeper of Knowledge. Since then, she has worked to collect any information she can find and disseminate it to those in need.
In the winter between years 5111 and 5112, the Sheruvian Avatar Azorlok spread a blight across the land, threatening plants, animals and people alike. Nilandia devoted herself to researching the sickness in hopes of finding a cure, and through extensive work and collaboration with other researchers, a way was found to push back the threat. The lands now freed from the blight, Nilandia and Ephelysse were honored by Ta'Illistim's ruler, Myasara, with the title of Master Inquisitor in recognition of their work.
Appearance[edit | edit source]
Nilandia's outfits change with the seasons, though she most often will be found in simple clothes she wears while she works. She prefers natural materials, and like much of what she does, the embellishments on her clothing often carry subtle or symbolic meaning.
A sample outfit from Platinum for winter:
You see Nilandia Liserna the Master Telepath.
She appears to be a Sylvankind.
She is tall and appears to be youthful. She has keen, vivid faenor-hued eyes and smooth, creamy white skin. She has rich, copper-infused henna red hair adorned with a fall of frosted silver iceblossoms. She has a serene and delicate face and slightly upswept ears arcing to fine points. The planes of her cheeks and the swell of her lips echo the curvilinear forms of gently unfurling new leaves. A forest green glimaerstone inlaid with a tiny gold leaf is positioned between her eyes, which casts a sparkling gold sheen across her face.
She has an inked spiral of bronze tendrils tightly coiled upon each temple, and a rose-twined ebony key tattoo on her neck.
She is in good shape.
She is holding an amber-inlaid silvery faewood runestaff in her right hand.
She is wearing an orb-inset haon talisman, a thick winter-weight mantle of snowy brushed wool, a slim pallid cameline tunic smoothly draped to knee-length, a set of layered suede handwraps, a mistwood beaded leather belt, a pair of icy white wool pants subtly feathered with vaalin frost, and a pair of pointed alabaster doeskin boots lined with soft snowshoe hare fur.