Kael is a black sheep among Dark Elves: he is not a cynic. He began his road away from nihilism at a very young age when he fled Durham Forest and went to one of the Free Cities, where he made a favourable impression in one of its foremost academies and secured permission for a permanent post. There Kael gained something that would change his life: access to a massive library of knowledge not curated by the Dark Elves. By the time of his return to Durham Forest, Kael could hardly recognize his home. The place swiftly became a pit of infighting, exploitation, and competition, and the struggle for power and influence was life-and-death for many. It was a life Kael wanted no part of.
Kael proved to be an enigma to his people. Knowledge and contacts among Humans he gained gave him considerable leverage and he was an undeniably capable mage, yet he – inexplicably – did not strive for power like a proper Dark Elf, with exploitation and murder. Even worse, as his research bore fruit he had become a High Elf ‘sympathizer’ – he even dared suggest that the High Elves and the Dark Elves were far more alike than different.
Though those beliefs could have cost him dearly, Kael was unbothered by any of the consequences save one: access to the peace talks between the Elves. Even then, he initially had not been concerned. While he would have liked to interview some High Elves, he had little hope the negotiations were any more than an opportunity for politicians to shout at each other, with little hope for constructive dialogue. But then he learned of the cave networks that ran beneath the capital city of Aravia. They were incredibly ancient – some reaching all the way back to the Gray Age… and perhaps beyond. What secrets could they hold? He had to find out. He spent favor after favor, and he finally secured a position in the next conclave. It was a choice that would reshape his life forever.
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