- 1 Character
- 2 Combat
- 3 Tendencies
- 4 Relationships
- 5 Rumors
- 6 History/Timeline
- 7 Possible Hooks
- 8 Art
Ashildr hails from Ala Mhigo, though she left at a very young age due to the loss of the war. Like many Highlanders, she found her calling out of refugee status and poverty through her martial prowess and strength, earning a name and career for herself in the arena of Ul'dah as a gladiator. Since gaining both experience and enough coin to live healthfully off of, Ashildr's taken to adventuring. Quick enough to make friends but at times a bit distant or hard-edged, Ashildr's been struggling of late to master her inner darkness to enhance her abilities and allow her to be the steadfast guardian that those close to her need, even in the fact of magical threats that steel and resolve alone can't defeat. That resolve shows cracks sometimes, and when that happens an entirely different woman presents herself.
Ashildr stands quite tall, and rather well-bodied at that. It's clear at first glance that the woman's a Highlander, not a Midlander or anything else, due to her height, well-toned and strong body, and proud, unbending stature. The gladiator keeps her hair cropped somewhat short, or kept up and out of her face depending on her mood, with its natural deep black color combined with some blood red dyes to provide contrast and accent. Her face bears scars and tattoos both, bone-white patterns in the usual Ala Mhigan fashion. The scars seem from blades mostly, though there are other markings on her as well. All seem to be dealt through combat, unsurprisingly. What would be most notable about her appearance would be the black leather eyepatch she wears to conceal her right eye. The eye is still there, if the patch is ever removed, but it stands a murky, cloudy white in comparison to her other eye, which is a natural green. A scar runs over her injured eye, as if she long ago took a sword down the region and just barely preserved her organ. Ashildr paints her lips with some minor cosmetics, a dull and dark red being her color of choice in most occasions. As for the woman's other traits, she could generally be seen as attractive to many. Her body is tight and toned, her limbs generous, and her bust quite large indeed. She certainly makes no effort to hide or conceal her traits.
Ashildr prefers to dress, travel, and fight light. She can often be seen in an accented, black coat that she leaves open, wearing nothing underneath save a tied strip of cloth to preserve her modesty. This is kept tied up through various red bands and golden fastenings. Underneath, she most often wears a simple black skirt, and the outfit is completed with fingerless black gloves and long black boots. The gladiator seems well-used to fighting in this attire, and it does not tend to impede her abilities in battle, regardless of the weapon she's using. Speaking of those, the Highlander favors all of the longsword, greatsword, and just her fists and body. She carries a scarred, well-used sword and shield set, that exhibit visible, dark power whenever she channels her darkness-derived aether through the weaponry. The same could be said of her greatsword. Other than that, she fights with her bare fists and feet, only surrounding the limbs with her dark aether when she feels it necessary.
Ashildr is generally a pleasant, open woman to be around. She seems to genuinely care for the happiness and well-being of those around her and close to her, and is very defensive of friends and lovers alike. She can be rather crude at times, that said, and very direct besides. Off-color jokes and healthy sarcasm and insults are never far from the woman's lips. Nor is a bottle of alcohol, for whatever that's worth. Ashildr is also a very prideful woman, as most Ala Mhigans are in their own way. She returns respect only when it's offered, and isn't one to shy away from combat when she deems it necessary. She takes some amount of thrill from battle, one would have to to make a career of it, but she doesn't seek it out for its own sake. At times though, she can get carried a bit too far away, and be too direct or hard or cruel in her dealings. This might be the result of the latent darkness she is trying to channel influencing her, though she seems of strong enough will to keep it at bay and control it like some are able to.
That said, the highlander suffers from some form of dual or split personality. At times, especially in times of duress or combat where she fully unleashes herself, another part of her can take over. This part is the repressed darkness and malice that most people bear, but only a few learn to harness, and at cost even so. This cost is readily apparent when the 'other' takes over. This is a far crueler, more malicious woman, one that delights in violence, excess, expression and enforcement of her will, and various other things besides. All of the fouler excesses of the usual Ashildr's personality exemplified and given a voice and expression. That said, even this half of her isn't without merits. She can often be more decisive, and has a greater resolve than even the gladiator normally manages. And she still notes and considers those useful to her, or somewhat close to her, but with much more callousness than the other Ashildr.
Ashildr fights with the smooth, swift, and practiced actions of someone that's made their career on the bloodsands. She's skilled with sword and shield, greatsword, and her fists and body in equal measure, using whatever the situation and circumstance demands. More often than not, she attempts to deflect or dodge attacks instead of take them head on, as she equips herself lightly and eschews heavy armor. Or, most of the time, armor at all. Her blows are quick and efficient, not taking chances or showing off in battle. Ashildr is also capable of channeling her inner darkness to some degree, using it as a conduit of aether to enhance her abilities. For now, her mastery of this is rough and it takes focus and concentration to maintain any directed energy. She tends to focus it around either her weapon or limbs, making her blows stronger and her defense more sure, but draining her far more than physical exertion would. She becomes more brutal when this happens, losing herself to the emotions and energy, only able to somewhat fight the urges with effort.
- Alcohol: Ashildr, as many do, enjoys drinking on occasion. Or more than that. Rougher drinks such as ale or whiskey are her preferred vices.
- Battle: The gladiator, naturally, takes some joy in the act of combat and the back and forth dance that ensues. She doesn't often seek it out, lethally at least, for its own sake, but she's not likely to turn it down either.
- Miqo'te: Ashildr has a soft spot for these people, calling them kittens on occasion, and perhaps being a bit more defensive of them and friendly with them than most other people save fellow Highlanders.
- Ala Mhigo: She'll see her city again and in the hands of her people before she dies. Insults to it or Highlanders that are serious usually don't end well for the other party.
- Garleans: They will pay for what they did to her people.
- Lalafell: More of a playful and casual dislike. Something about the little people puts her off though.
- Aristocracy/nobility: Ashildr doesn't have anything particularly good to say about Ul'dah's ruling class, or many that live in the upper reaches of the city. She also doesn't have the best view on paladins, for both social reasons and that many don't take kindly to her own ways of power.
- Magic: Ashildr is only somewhat-capable of dealing with magic still. She dislikes mages as they're not at the same martial level she is, and they rely on not their own power to succeed.
- Training: To keep up her skills and relieve stress, Ashildr trains against both dummies and live foes quite often.
- Smithing: Ashildr is a decent hand at the forge, able to make basic implements and items, as well as do repairs, but further talent is beyond her.
- Cards: Be it Triple Triad or more traditional games, Ashildr enjoys games of chance and skill alike.
- Racing: Chocobo racing is something Ashildr dabbles in, though she's not all that good at it.
- Ashildr has, some time ago, journeyed to Ishgard to seek out the Dark Knights that dwell there. While she's not one in the traditional sense, she did manage to learn some of what they do, which is how she is able to attempt to channel her darkness into aether for combat uses. But her resolve and purpose aren't as strong or constant as those she learned from, so she struggles with the consequences of using this power more often than not.
- Her eye seems to pain her more of late, and sometimes she can be seen hovering a hand over it or rubbing at it to relieve some stress.
- She has an appreciation for dancing, not a practitioner herself, but she enjoys watching.
- Ashildr is generally friendly and open to conversation, sometimes initiating.
- Ashildr is left handed!
Ashildr's immediate family died in the fighting of Ala Mhigo, so she's never known them during her cognizant life. Her extended family were the ones that helped her escape as a child, and they are scattered around Eorzea as most Highlanders have come to be. She keeps in sparse contact with a few in Little Ala Mhigo, to keep appraised of her people's goings-on, but she does this more rarely than they'd like.
Keten Staza: Ashildr met this Miqo'te lady during one of her soujournes into the Quicksands, and they became fast friends, and in time rather more. It's her drive to defend this woman that made Ashildr take the path she did in her journey to Ishgard, to keep Keten safe and all that threatens her at bay. Time though has made her more distant, as their lives seem to start to diverge a little. But she still holds the Miqo'te dear as she's able.
Ceres Lucretia: One of the closer people to the Highlander, Ashildr has helped this Elezen professor through some issues in her life, and has been helped in turn. Someone that she's come to love in her own way, there's a lot the gladiator would do for this woman.
Z'ellia Dia: Ashildr met this Miqo'te at a downward point in her life, but the woman helped the Highlander out of it. Fast friends, and now in a committed relationship together, Ashildr looks forward to seeing what the future holds for the two of them.
X'myra Bhen: Another of many Miqo'te friends. They are rather close friends, and became such after Myra kept trying to get free food and room off of the Highlander. But they've moved past that point, and enjoy each other's company well enough.
Leti Moonreaver: This woman drove Ashildr to seek new paths of power when she threatened and attacked Keten. Though the Highlander hasn't seen Leti since, any future meeting would probably not be pleasant.
- "Did you see Ashildr fight last night? She took down that elezen with only a few scratches on her! I love it when she's on the sands." - Lalafellin arena fan
- "Ashildr, is it? Yeah, I know her. Good for her, making a living in Ul'dah. She sends us some coin now and then, but I still think her hand would be better suited here with her people, and not just serving herself." - Little Ala Mhigo Resident
- "I think that one-eyed woman across the bar is eyeing me up." - Miqo'te woman, to a friend.
- "A Highlander? We get one here now and then. Tall, dark coat. Seems to have a fancy for someone here. But she helps keep the sandworms at bay and even hunts food for us sometimes, so I'll let her business be and won't say more." - Forgotten Springs community leader
- "Did you hear about the Fury of Ala Mhigo? Word is her family all fell in the Garlean invasion. Shame, if that's the case. It explains her arena moniker, though..." - Ul'dah gossiper
- "Oh, the eyepatch. That's nothing special. Just hides an old war wound, she probably wears it to not be distracted by blurred vision. We all get our wounds on the sands." - Ul'dah gladiator
- "Ashildr? Ah, yes. The angry Highlander in the dark coat. She left before we could teach her much, and she didn't seem interested in all of our ways. But I think she knows enough to be dangerous. To herself, if not her enemies." - Ishgardian Dark Knight
None yet. Edit if your PC would have rumors about Ashildr.
Ashildr was born around twenty five years ago, sometime briefly before the Garlean occupation of Ala Mhigo. She was born to a typical family of highlanders, of the merchant sort. She grew up with a sister and brother, both older than her. Her time in the city predates her memory though, at least mostly besides snippets here and there. When she was very young still, the city fell to the Empire as has been related elsewhere many times. In that fighting, her mother and father both fell trying to defend their homeland. Ashildr lost contact with her siblings as she was spirited away from the fallen city by her extended family. That being done, most of her early childhood into her adolescence was spent in Little Ala Mhigo, as her people tried to reestablish themselves and find a new identity without their city. She grew up well enough, though she often had to fend for herself without immediate family. The community tried to take care of her as they could, but understandably the war left many orphans, and she often fell through the cracks as they did. This led to a mild dissatisfaction and frustration with the remnants of her people as the gladiator entered into her teenage years, but she still worked as she could to support her community. After all, they provided for her as she was growing up, and the respect for that at least was not lost on the highlander.
In due time though, she felt the pulls of wanderlust. Leaving her temporary home behind, a youthful Ashildr wandered Thanalan for a time, until she came to Ul'dah. This was still a couple of years before the Calamity, so the city was not suffering the full brunt of refugees quite yet. She found entry somewhat easily, and for months lost herself in the crowds of such a large city. Having grown into a strong woman, one that had a knack for violence and the like, she soon considered attempting the bloodsands. Her first bouts, which were thankfully not to the death, went poorly, and the woman struggled for some time indeed to better herself. She endured a strict training regimen, both inside and outside of the city, until some time later she was starting to win a bout or two, favoring a combination of her speed and strength to succeed. It was around this time that the war with the Garleans was coming to its first climax, but the highlander did not participate in any of the defining moments of that war. She spent it in Ul'dah all the while, even when the Calamity raged above Eorzea. Luckily, she survived the ordeals that followed, though it was not easy. She didn't exactly make much coin before the Calamity in her gladiator work, enough to live a poor life off of, but the influx of refugees after the event drove her further into that impoverished hole. Thankfully, there wasn't exactly a shortage of new foes in the arena, newly desperate people trying their luck on the sands. Given that, Ashildr was able to gain skill and some amount of recognition and a living. During this time as well, she occasionally entered into short term work with the seedier elements of Ul'dah society, as a gladiator of some talent was a useful asset indeed. She never got up to any excessively heinous activities, but she did have to do things she was less than proud of to gain more of a chance to live a decent life.
Before long, the highlander got somewhat sick of this way of existence. Desiring a change, she started trying her hand at adventuring, figuring her skills in the arena would translate at least somewhat well to the rigors of the adventuring lifestyle. Since then, she's gained a moderate amount of success at the task, helping people where she's able with problems needing violence or a strong hand in exchange for coin, but she still continues to fight on the bloodsands for the mild fame and recognition it provides her, as well as the coin which doesn't go amiss. After meeting and getting close to a miqo'te named Keten, and defending her from both her past and a foe that proved beyond the highlander's abilities, Ashildr spent some time in Ul'dah recovering. Recovering from both the greivous magical wounds offered by Leti, her foe, and the wounds dealt deeper, to the core of the highlander's confidence and pride. Always having thought of herself as a strong, powerful woman, to be brought low like that shook Ashildr some. She suddenly understood that steel and resolve alone would not avail her against a competent magical opponent, and that she needed more. Leaving her friends adn connections behind in silence once she was recovered enough, the woman took to Ishgard, now that the borders were open, perhaps hoping to learn something outside of the bounds of the Alliance. While there, she came across those that followed the way of the dark knight. Petitioning htem for aid, and showing her potential as she was able, they accepted her after some struggles. Unfortunately, Ashildr didn't quite have the resolve for the life or the demands it would place on her, but she did learn enough to unchain her darkness, her other half, and let it exhibit herself for power and magical might. This power gained without the resolve to properly temper it and put it in its place, from that day forward Ashildr walked with two different personas in one body and mind, the normal woman, and her freed darkness, which ever fights to exert its control over the woman. Returning to Ul'dah a changed woman, it is here that Ashildr's tale remains unwritten.
- Bloodsands: Ashildr is a gladiator in Ul'dah. She could be hired to represent someone, take part in arena fights or tournaments, or do otherwise seedy things that those good with arms could well be hired to do.
- Ala Mhigan: As a Highlander Ash could naturally be well-afforded some opportunities to help with.. Highlander things. Little Ala Mhigo, the Ala Mhigan resistance, Rhalgr stuff.
- Dark Knighting: She did spend some amount of time in Ishgard with these types. Enough to learn enough to be dangerous. But not enough to restrain or bring her other side to heel. Maybe some try to teach her to fix that or try to put her down? Options.
- Adenturing: The usual, everyday adventurer sort of tasks. Monster infestations, research or trade guard, ect, ect. Ash isn't a stranger to violence or leaving the city for a time.