Elaine Dreux is an Ishgardian noble, head of House Dreux, a house which has long since been an ally to House Dzemael. She fought as a knight for Ishgard for some time, dstinguishing herself for greatness and gaining the chance to join the ranks of the Order of the Knights Dragoon. She fought for years alongside others who held the title, before being captured in a surprise attack, and forced into drinking of Dravanian blood. When she was found, having transformed back, she was accused of heresy and conspiracy only to be acquitted through a trial by combat.
Appearance & Personality
- Standing tall and lithe, her elezen features exentuated by her slim and fit body. Her snow white hair is clean as often as can be, always combed meticulously to keep it's soft texture, as if a bed of clouds. Upon her ears are two golden clasps which have the sigil o her house inscribed upon them, her lips carrying a light red lipstick and eyes holding light blue eyes like the skies.
- She holds a certain air of nobility about her, though she often tries to hide it since having to leave Ishgard, it can still be seen through her movements and hints left in her voice. As all nobles of Ishgard have been, she is deeply patriotic for her homeland, taking slights against it as slights to her own honor as a knight and noble of it. Though, perhaps from this sheltered early life as a noble, it has left her a bit too open toward agreeable persons whether they are genuine or not. Since her return to Ishgard, she has tried hard to hold true to her changed homeland, though at many a time it is clear she is not entirely comfortable with it.
- Elaine Dreux was born the first and only child of Oldant and Alelle Dreux, a lesser house which had allied itself with House Dzemael long ago, each head of the house reaffirming this allegiance to the greater house time and time again. Her mother was a lesser cousin within the Dzemael family, her father being the firstborn son to his late father, Lord Druseaux Dreux. Soon after her birth however, her father was lost to a Dravanian raid against a caravan he had been leading to bring supplies to the vigils. Too young to know anything of this, her mother had to take the mantle of the house, though she left most matters to a steward for she was stricken with grief.
- Alelle, after months of grieving, finally began to return to living her life for herself once more. She took up tasks with caring for Elaine who was still but a babe in a crib, feeding her, changing her, and doing many other tasks which she would normally leave for the nursemaid. Eventually having no use for the nursemaid, she let her go and cared for Elaine alone, growing deeply attached to her as perhaps a way of coping, or maybe seeing her as the last living vestige of her husband. Elaine grew up healthy, living the luxury all nobles were afforded in Ishgard, albiet not as great as those of the High Houses, she was still afforded many ammenities which others could barely dream of.
- Though, even with these ammenities, Ishgard is always in need of soldiers from it's sons and daughters. After much pushing from the house's steward, and relatives from Alelle's family, Alelle hired a retired knight to begin training Elaine. Never comfortable with it, Alelle finally grew to accept it as she saw Elaine grow into fighting over the years, having a natural talent which the closest relatives of House Dzemael were quick to claim was the Dzemael blood flowing in her veins. No matter what gave her this natural talent, she was quickly showing signs of becoming a great knight, nearly everyone elated at the signs except for her mother, who grew fearful.
- She gave harsher critiques to Elaine's training and mentor, ensuring Elaine stayed in bed at the slightest sniffle or cough, and doing everything she could to stop her training. She feared that should she become a knight, the same fate would befall her daughter as it did her husband. Eventually, her mentor had enough and gave her mother an ultimatum: She would stop interfering with Elaine's training or he would leave and not return. He left House Dreux's home the next day, leaving Elaine miserable and those who had been cheering on her growth furious with Alelle. This act distanced them both from nearly anyone whom had become much closer to the family since Lord Oldant's death.
- Yet one relative, a cousin named Ibeaux from a distant offshoot of House Dzemael, decided that Elaine's talent could not go to waste due to her mother's fears. He began scheming with the mentor of whom had just left, and in a facade of getting to know his niece better, took her each day to train with the same mentor who had been leading her on the path to greatness she had been treading just before. For years, her mother did not notice, for it only came to light when she began coming of age.
- As Elaine grew into a woman, she began to become rebellious against her mother's overprotective nature. She began speaking to her of becoming a knight, slaying dragons, and other starry eyed visions of glory which only filled her mother with dread. Yet, the more her mother rejected it, the further Elaine pushed for it, until in one heated argument she accidentally had let slip what she had been doing these past few years when leaving for her uncle's home. Heartbroken, her mother resigned herself to remaining at the family home and gave in to Elaine's desire to become a knight, though it left no pride in her heart.
- Elaine, on the other hand, was elated to finally join the ranks of the Temple Knights and fight for Ishgard. Her first duties were, as to be expected, less than glorious albeit better than that of others due to her noble heritage. She was left to paperwork and guarding the doors to the Congregation of the Knight Most Heavenly or the streets of The Pillars. It wasn't until her second year within the ranks of the knighthood that she left into the lush plains of Coerthas to aid in shoring up the defenses of a vigil in preparations for an attack. They were meant to simply bring a caravan of supplies and shore up the defenses before leaving well before the Dravanians arrived on the date predicted.
- Yet, not all things go to plan, especially not when involved in a war so fierce or bloody as the Dragonsong war. The Dravanian horde arrived early, before all of the defenses had even been tested or inspected, many knights still eating or sleeping at the time. Elaine herself had been overseeing the oiling and cleaning of a dragonkiller mounted on a wall when the alarm bell began ringing. There was no time to get to safer ground, and all she could do was begin shouting orders to toss the oil away and prepare the dragonkiller to fire. It was only minutes before the horde on the horizon was upon them, and the dragonkillers roared to life to bring down their winged foe. Rather than hide and help command the defense from within the keep, Elaine's courage and honor kept her at the defense of the dragonkiller.
- She and the few other knights could not hold forever, for her foe flew from above and soon enough she had to take what few knights remained atop the battlement with her and retreat within to recuperate. They did not stay long, only sitting to catch their breath before leaving the tower into the courtyard, the squadron killing any Dravanian or heretic in their path to reach the keep to get commands as to where needed aid, Elaine herself having gutted a number of lesser Dravanians on her own before reaching the doors to the keep. Once inside, it seems no rest was to be had as heretic troops had fought their way inside.
- Fighting their way further into the keep, the found the command room and were soon sent across the battlements to help clear out the dragonkillers for further use. Though it was long, bloody, and strenuous it seemed that they had managed to route the Dravanians and slay what few heretics had been left hiding within the keep. After the battle, the knight commander called for Elaine. For her heroism and valour shown throughout the battle, as well as skill wielding a spear, he wrote a flying recommendation of her skill and valor for Knight Commander Aymeric in hopes of her getting formally recognized within the Knights Templar. Leaving with the few Knights Templar that could still walk, they returned to the Congregation of the Knights Most Heavenly as heroes for having helped drive off the incursion at the
- Having been given a few weeks to rest and heal, Elaine had been spending days in the clinic resting and relaxing before being given even further leave because of her heroics. When she returned home, her mother couldn't decide whether to be furious, worried, or proud and so had decided to try all three. Eventually, she calmed down enough to simply fall on pride, and the two bonded again for a short time. Then that short time turned into a month, then multiple months, and each day Elaine grew more antsy to leave. Eventually, she was called back to duty: Yet not by the Knights Templar, but by the Order of the Knights Dragoon. It seems that her valour and skill was enough to be deemed worthy of attempting the trials of becoming a Dragoon. She nearly left in her sleepwear from how excited she was, and after saying goodbye to her mother she left to meet with the clergy and begin her training.
- The training was rigorous, painful, and nearly broke Elaine by the time it was over, though she managed to persevere. When she emerged once again, she had donned the drachen armor, and become a fully fledged Dragoon. She began fighting immediately, being sent out at the forefront of the Dragonsong war with her brothers and sisters in arms, soaring and fighting as the Dravanians did, killing them where they flew. It was exhilarating and terrifying at the same time, always dancing just a hair away from death in the skies with your enemies. Yet she managed to live, thrive in this kind of combat, until one raid went awry, a Dravanian managed to grab ahold of her in it's mouth and had it not been for the Drachen armor her bones would have been crushed, though she was instead dropped to the ground where she was soon set upon by heretics. Before she could even stand up fully, a large club hit the back of her head and she was unconscious in the soot covered grass.
- She awoke in a place entirely unfamiliar to her, tied to a chair with a torchlight in her face, goblet on a table nearby. She had been entirely disarmed and armored, both sitting in a pile in the corner as they grabbed ahold of her jaw, trying to force it open with rods as they brought the goblet and forced the warm red liquid inside of her. She either drank it, or she choked on it, and so she drank it instead. Her heart raced as her stomach churned, her head grew pained as she shut her eyes and yelled out after only seconds from drinking the liquid. Yet, the scream she heard began to change as she felt the ropes around her getting tighter, until they finally burst off of her, the chair breaking under her. She was growing, changing: Her bare skin began to feel hard and scaley, her hair gone, sense of smell increased... It was as if she was changing into something else until finally she blacked out.
- When she came to, she was nude in a burnt field, her armor and weapon strewn about it, and many wounds across her body. By the time she had gathered her weapons and armor, she had already been spotted and a group came toward her. Hardly in a position to defend herself, she still prepared to do so... Until those who rushed toward her were Ishgardian. Lowering her spear and walking forward, trying to cover herself she was ready to find aid back to Ishgard and find out what happened to her captors... Yet as they came closer, they did not lower their spears, instead ordering her to lay down away from her weapon and armor. She was brought back in chains, accused of heresy by an Inquisitor who claimed he saw the dragon which burned that field land exactly where she had landed, and that it had never left that field. They barely had the decency to clothe her even, treating her as if she had committed heresy before any legal accusation could be levied against her.
- The trial was quick, as Elaine know that with how her memory was acting at the time, the only defense she had was to request a trial by combat under the eyes of Halone. Due to her status as a Knight of the Order Dragoon, she was granted this and won her freedom posthaste. Yet, even as they undid her shackles, she could still feel the accusatory eyes of those around her. As if she had committed the heresy she was accused of even though she was just proven innocent. Even the moment she left the courtroom she was unwelcome within the walls, a notice being handed to her to inform her of the Order of the Knights Dragoon has deemed her unworthy of their ranks any longer. Everything her life had built up to, shattered in a matter of days. Once home, she took her wrath out upon the furniture and verbally against any who tried to calm her. It took an entire day worth of sobbing, anger, and breaking things to come to terms with the loss. Though, as they say: When it rains, it pours.
- It was this day that the moon could be seen hanging low in the sky even from Ishgard's walls, and that it was continuing to lower by the day. The sense of dread in her gut only furthered as she spent the next few weeks caring for her mother and trying to repair the things she had destroyed in her rage. She feared the Armageddon that was to come, though at this time when everything had come crashing down around her, she tried only simple things to find solace: Helping care for her mother, enjoying what she could, and ignoring the sneers or looks other nobles and even the commoners began giving her for the charges that had been dropped what seemed like months ago to her.
- When The Calamity finally struck, Elaine had been in the market buying foods for the weekend. As Bahamut's roar struck fear through the hearts of men, Elaine could only watch in horror at the destruction that followed. She desperately wished she could do something, anything, against this. The city around her shook as the air began to chill, a flurry of snow flying across the city as all she could do was cower. A Dragoon who could only cower to a dragon... Underneath the fear, she felt sick to her stomach at herself. At what she had become, and what had been happening to her since the day she had been forced to drink the dragon's blood. As the Calamity ended, she stood and rushed toward home only to find that the rain had hit the hardest that day: Her home was destroyed by rubble from a neighboring mansion. Her possessions, the help... Her mother. All gone from a single event. Elaine sat there and wept for minutes... hours? It was hard to tell, and when she finally stopped crying, she stood and began digging in hopes that something, someone, had survived.
- All she found was from the rubble of her room, the Drachen armor she had kept sitting on a rack. A taunting reminder of her past, and now the only thing she could find to survive this cataclysm. She hugged it, whispering a prayer for her mother and all that had been lost, before standing and leaving. She left not only the ruins of her home with armor and halberd in hand, but left the gates of Ishgard. She was not going to lie in the city which hated her any longer, as she had nothing left in the city in her eyes. She began wandering Coerthas, killing heretics and dragons which came across her path and finding free refuge in the holds across this new frozen landscape. She aided those who needed it, and did everything she could to try and fill herself with that same pride, honor, and courage which had filled her before.
- It was a year before she returned through the gates of Ishgard, and went back to where she presumed the ruins of her family home would be. She wanted to pay her respects to her mother, only to find that there were no ruins, but a full home. Furious, she went up to begin yelling at whatever self-absorbed noble thought a grave site would be the best place to build their home: Only to find the door opened by the steward she had known all her life. The same man who had helped raise her as a father figure. The same steward she thought dead for an entire year. Once again, the only thing she found herself able to do was sob. When they could finally speak, she found he survived the calamity, as he had been fetching medicine for Alelle when Bahamut struck, leaving him with only a few scratches. They shared stories for a time, before Elaine asked for him to watch the house, only taking some of the money from her family to cover travelling expenses and leaving, wishing to find the same courage and pride she had before, one which wouldn't break for any reason.
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