Marlaia Grinise

Description:

Age: 30
Height: 5’7"
Weight: 186lbs
Eye Color: Black Sclera, Glowing Orange iris, Red Halo pupil
Hair Color: Stark White
Skin: Dark red, rough texture
Alignment: Chaotic Neutral
Other notes: Sometimes, she ends up talking to her Grimoire, as it is a means of communication between her and the strange entity she made a contract with. Only she is able to hear His words.

Personality:
Valuing monetary items of intellectual value over the presence of any conscious creature, Marlaia curls herself up with reading material and studies her magic rather than converse with those around her. Her life conditioned her to take little to no value in the bonds between men and instead focuses her attention on what lessons and events spurred said events. In short, she prefers knowledge over feelings. Because of this, she is quite dismissive and stand-offish in the presence of others. She sees them as white noise, even brutes when the acompanying individual is a warrior of some kind. Her quietness hails from how little she speaks to others—her voice suprisingly soft for a woman of her size and age. With a voice as rough as hers, one would expect anything she says to be at least vaguely threatening.

Ideals:
Learning and discovery is put above all else. Intellect can triumph over brute strength at any given opportunity.

Social Graces:
Not much of that really exists. Endless war hardens an individual considerably; combining her infernal heritage with the lack of empathy towards others due to a lifetime of battles made her unable to really bond with others. They’ll die anyways, so why bother?

Flaws:
Her emotional distance makes it difficult, if not impossible, for her to make friends very easily. Another major flaw of hers happens to be her inquisitiveness tends to be targeted towards static objects such as books, tech, or locations rather than people, themselves.

Weapon of Choice:
A leather-bound grimoire called Ividokol, held shut by a lock and chain in which she holds the key for. She also wields a mace-arm that can stand on its own, made from metal and sandstone which she uses as a close range weapon. (1d8 dmg +2).

Bio:

War, experimentation, subterfuge, calumny and the curse of hunger is all Marlaia has ever known. Being born and raised among the ranks of soldiers and mages in the Mevieni barracks proved to be a trifling endeavor for a curious mind, until the pact was made. Being exposed to only one of life’s many offerings becomes a hindrance for life.
At a young age, she was trained for warfare, to fight for Malletivet and fulfill the purpose of her bonds. At that very same age, she was forced not to question the Pact.
Endless preparation and quarrels over money, land, and resources were frustrating to deal with for her. It left her often feeling forsaken by her God, Malletivet, which in turn made her stronger in fending for herself and feeding her power. A natural inquisitiveness gave way to a burning need for more power and knowledge. The curse of the Pact was speaking to her in ways that kept her up at night, silent and in pain, until she fed it once more.
With only a little time, the violent and overwhelming pain between gifts of knowledge became frustrating, dull, and monotonous. Predictable. The pain would come, and she would breathe. Until it then became worse.
Always worse.
Her hunger was always stealing her away to books and tomes—-seeking fulfillment within the pages that killing the enemy and examining their corpses over and over could never seem to sate. Her power grew with every drop of knowledge she gained, and in turn raised her position of power to that of Hierophant.
It was only then, deep in the halls of the Scrollspire, that she learnt she was the only one who could consciously question the Pact. For some reason, not even Malletivet was aware her prize student was slowly and surely becoming a free thinker. All other minds that began to exhibit signs of disloyalty or divergent thought were frequently plucked from their beds and tortured publicly by their benevolent Goddess. She would always tell the others that they were such good children, to serve her so well, over the top of screams and squelching flesh.

The night of changing winds was dark, and lit only by candles. The pain was significant, burning, aching in her temples and her chest. She needed to find something new. Strangely enough, though she knew the corridor of infernal books like the back of her horns, a new book appeared to have been shelved innocuously near the top of the wall. It seemed to shine so very dimly in the candlelight. She climbed the small case ladder and retrieved it from the wall. It was truly heavy, emblazoned with symbols more like engraved pictures and pages more like stretched leather hide. Some pages were completely blank, and others were nearly black with ink. Feeling a surge of pain hit her chest, she gasped for air and climbed down the ladder, swelling with the need. She looked over the book even further, touching it was almost electric, sensual to her. A feeling unlike anything she’d ever experienced after the Pact. When the pain for the first time suddenly became too much to bear, she nearly crumpled, crying silent tears of black blood onto the pages of the forgotten tome. A hand…warm, strong and soft, stroked a single tear away and took her chin between thumb and forefinger. She opened her eyes, but was for some reason calm, given the circumstances. The pain had gone as soon as she’d felt their touch. A male tiefling, with golden eyes and long, shining black hair tucked and braided between two elegant horns stood before her, wearing a black and gold-embroidered tunic beneath a silky robe of onyx filligree, tied shut with a dragonscale belt. His boots were capped with fine silversteel, and pointed sharply toward the sky.
“Why do you weep, my beauty?” he asked. His words felt like a warm bed and wine to her.
Somewhere deep inside, it unsettled her and awakened her at the same time.
She said nothing. Calm, painless, and dumbfounded.
He licked the blood from his thumb with a smile.
“You are one of her Hierophants, are you not? Poor beauty. She’ll not e’en let you sleep. Poring over pages as if they might quench your thirst,” he purred while taking the candle from her and running his fingers over the flame, “Yet the only book you need is the one you hold aloft.”
The page before her, once blank, glowed with symbols foreign to her.
“Would you not like to know what it tells you?” he asked her running a single finger over palm, “Without all the pain and wrenching hunger?”
She could feel the color drain from her face. Disloyal thoughts would end her life.
“Ah ah ah,” he said, drawing a gentle line on her forehead, “She cannot hear you, while you can hear me. She never has heard you, did you not know? She keeps you, for you are an unknown prize. She will keep you until she opes your skull as I might a piece of fruit.”
Marlaia finally found her words, shocked.
“Who are you?” she asked, words hardly a whisper.
He smiled.
“You ask the wrong questions. But I will answer…I am Iremal, the Last Prince of Titans,” he soothed with a bow, “And I wish to steal you from this nest of feeble minds and bloody tears.”
She frowned, but she could tell her eyes shone with a glimmer of hope she never meant to feel.
“What must I do? It’s impossible, she will find me,” she replied.
He held up a hand.
“Your goddess can hardly find her sanity, my little beauty. What you do not realize…is that you have been doing it all along. And you will continue to do it. I will help you see the path, and assist you in finding that which you seek. I will give you more. I will feed you power. And that will feed me. We will be together, my beauty. Does that sound so bad?” he explained. A soft chuckle left his lips, revealing sharp canines and perfectly straight teeth.
She shook her head. She felt calm, yet violently aware that regardless of the outcome…nothing would be the same.
“Wonderful, sweet beauty…my stoic scholar. Would you like to leave the rotting bosom of this moldy, damp prison? Or would you like to stay, and wait for the hunger to return?” he asked with a raised brow, “What have you found here that you have not already learned?”
She shuddered. While he spoke, she looked down at the book again to the same foreign symbols…and found they became known to her. It was somehow, a symbol of trust. More picture than word.
“I hate her,” Marlaia uttered with a grave seriousness and resolve in her eyes, “She has made me hate everything, even the gifts she bestows. They seem to imprison me further.”
He smiled with genuine pity in his eyes.
“My little scholar, my suffered beauty. Let me remove your shackles and your bars. Let me be the bed where you rest your weary head. Let me be the book where you cast a worried look. Let me be your fate, lest we fill ourselves with hate. Let us be the thunder which draws the void asunder…” he spoke with such velvet, she could feel the power pulsing between them, more power than Malletivet had ever shown or offered.
He outstretched his hand. The air grew thick.
“What will you have me do?” she asked, one final question.
He smiled and chuckled a little.
“Prevail,” he said, with an eerie tone, “And find our fate.”
She frowned. The promise of anything away from the Scrollspire was worth killing a God, if she had to.
He seemed to hear her thoughts, and smiled fiendishly.
“The night is still young. But if you wanted to, we could.”
Despite herself, she smiled back…and took his hand.
His eyes flickered as he raised her hand to his mouth, and kissed her palm as a tender lover might.
“Ividokol,” he said, like a command which echoed through the hall.
The book shimmered violently to the inside cover, silverbacked and mottled with elegant engravings.
“Ividokol: A gift for my little scholar” appeared on the page. She took the book, and rushed out of the library, finding that there was no one to stop her. Not even a God.

With such discontent with her lifestyle, it was no surprise for the swiftness it took for her to strike a bargain with the Prince. Power potent enough to allow her leave of her monotonous life, in exchange for servitude. Needless to say, she didn’t hesitate to agree to the terms without understanding the fine print. The book led her anywhere she felt the need to go.
With magic potent enough to push herself out of the barracks and explore the world, she packed only the clothes on her back and set out to see what Thallon had to offer, narrowly escaping the strange, omniscient eyes of her former patron.

Marlaia Grinise

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