Hero Allystra Skylark, steadfast Shienaran blademaster

Level 22 (female)
Age: 36d 3h 54m 46s
Bartle type: (SEAK)
Can be mailed at: Allystra@Cairhien Palace
Info: Back in the game!

Tale of Allystra Skylark
   The daughter of a powerful Cairhien noble and a Shienaran
commoner, Allystra never knew she had a twin sister. Shortly
after her birth, her mother and father separated. Allystra was
taken to Cairhien with her mother, while her sister remained 
in Shienar with her father. Raised in a noble house, Allystra 
received the best education to be had, and she also became 
skilled in the Great Game. When she was sixteen, Rand al'Thor 
and his Aiel arrived in Cairhien, and much about her life was
changed. She began studying with Teniel, a blademaster, and 
soon became a skilled swordswoman.
She set out into the world, wishing to avoid the tensions 
in the Cairhien palace. Her journeys took her as far as 
Emond's Field, where she stopped to help repel the shadowspawn 
who were ravaging the area. After a day of long, hard 
fighting, she staggered wearily into the only inn in the 
village. Snagging a mug of apple brandy, she found an empty 
table, and listened to a gleewoman recount an amusing tale of 
her early days of entertainment. At the conclusion of the 
tale, Ally looked up ... and dropped her mug. The shock in the 
gleewoman's green eyes mirrored that in her own blue ones. 
With the exception of eye color, she might as well have been 
looking in a mirror.
The gleewoman called for a break, and amid protests from the
partons, she made her way over to Ally. Speachless, Ally 
watched her approach. With a half-hearted flourish of her 
cloak, the gleewoman introduced herself as Alyssia Skylark of
Shienar. Thoroughly baffled, Ally responded with her own name
and invited Alyssia to sit, which she did. After much talk, 
the two eventually realized that they were sisters, and twins 
at that.
The happiness at having found her long-lost sister was 
short-lived, however, as Ally received news of her mother's 
death a few days later. With a heavy heart she returned to 
Cairhien to assume her place as high seat of her house. She 
invited Alyssia to stay with her in the palace, but having been
raised in a common inn, Alys was uncomfortable with all the
formality of court, and chose instead to buy a house on a quiet
street not far from the palace. Ally often visits her there.
Shortly after her seventeenth birthday, Ally was handed yet 
another surprise - Xanatos, King of Cairhien, asked for her
hand in marriage. She joyfully accepted. Shortly thereafter, 
however, war broke out between Shienar and Cairhien.Torn by her
loyalties to both nations and wracked with grief when her long-
lost sister returned to Shienar, Allystra went into retreat 
from her duties as a noble. 
Following her sister to Shienar, Allystra was overcome by the
warm welcome she received there despite her Cairhienin upbringing
and the ongoing war between the two nations. For weeks she was 
torn by indecision as to which country truely held her heart, but
in the end she realized that, with one notable exception, the
Cairhienin nobility had become hostile and unwelcoming. She at last 
decided to give up her comfortable life in Cairhien and live with her 
sister in Fal Dara, despite the love she felt for Cairhien and her 
people. She still maintained close contact with the one friend she had 
left in Cairhien - a friend more dear to her than life itself.
Over time, it became clear that what she originally perceived as 
hostility and unwelcome was nothing more than hurt feelings on both 
sides - nothing that time wouldn't ease. Though not as close as they 
once were by any means, Allystra no longer sees nothing but ice and
closed doors when she looks towards Cairhien. She hopes that, in 
time, perhaps there can be peace and old friendships can be restored.
After she had been living in Fal Dara for a while, Allystra was 
summoned to the Palace. Hearing of her courage and valor in the 
defense of Fal Dara during numerous raids from the Blight, the Court 
of Shienar called Allystra before them and bestowed upon her the 
honor of knighthood. Overwhelmed, Allystra humbly accepted this great 
honor and is now dedicated, mind, body and soul, to the defense
of her people.
   Around this time, a heart that Allystra was sure would never love
again showed her just how resiliant the human spirit is. Duke Riadon 
Adarius awakened in her feelings that she had long-since given up hope
on ever experiencing again. Their friendship had always been strong, 
even when they were supposed to be at war with each other. Now the 
bond they shared was proving to be stronger than friendship.
   Shortly after their courtship began, Riadon's brother Circe vanished,
leaving Riadon to assume his place as Prince of Shienar. Around this
same time, Allystra and Alyssia discovered a letter from their father,
explaining who he truly was and how it came to be that they were separated.
With this new evidence, the Court of Shienar restored both to their
rightful stations as Duchesses of the land.
   For a while, all was happy in Shienar. Aside from the usual raids 
from the Blight, things were peaceful. Or so they thought. After one
particularly harsh raid, the leaders of the land decided to try and 
stop future raids at the source. Riadon, the newest prince, was chosen to
lead the excursion into the Blight. Many weeks he was gone, and Ally 
received not so much as a single letter to let her know he was all right.
Then one afternoon, as she, her sister, and their cousin Alisande sat 
idly about the palace, he staggered in, wounded but alive. Alisande
offered him Healing, and he told them of events in the Blight. The tale
was a bleak one. Riadon was the sole survivor of the party that had ventured
forth. It was whispered about the Keep that the forces of the Shadow had
forewarning, though whether this was fact or rumor was uncertain. For her 
part, Allystra mourned her fallen soldiers while rejoicing that Riadon 
had returned to her. Then one day she awakened and Riadon was gone. Upon
being told that he had been sent back into the Blight on a mission so 
secret, no one but the King himself knew beforehand, Allystra sank into
a constant state of worry. One week passed. Two. A month. No word. At 
last a report came that none of the party had survived. Completely 
devastated, Allystra assumed the white gown of mourning and cut her hair

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