Ways of the Seven
A mysterious, shadowy ally who contacted the party with an offer of aid, given on behalf of a mysterious “shadow noble” known as Lord Darius Vengeant.
By her admission, she is the Spymistress of this mysterious nobleman, and along with her brother, Phthaesis, act in his interests.
She appears as a robed and hooded woman of average build, her features obscured by shadows that seem to move at her discretion, such that she is always followed by a cloak of darkness into which she seems to come and go. She and her brother have met with the party only once, at midnight on one of the docks of the city of Falconcrest. There, she informed them of her identity and told them that it was in her Lordship’s interest that they remain safe and attempt to disrupt the cult of the Seven. Pledging their aid in the coming conflict, she left the party with perhaps more questions than answers—-but when counted on to provide a distraction that would allow the party to enter the mansion of Irem Tanos, she seems to have provided an explosive solution.
She is armed with an unusual-looking longbow made of black ashwood and engraved oddly, and seems to be an expert archer. Her skill with daggers has been demonstrated as well.
When the party made contact with Darius Vengeant, and through his continued partnership, more about Iika was revealed. She and her brother are shadar-kai, members of a race doomed to be metaphysically siphoned away to the Plane of Shadow. Shadar-kai are able to exist on the Material World, and in other realms, thanks to agonizing bracers worn on the wrists, which puncture the shadar-kai’s skin. The constant pain anchors their will to their body. Shadar-kai seek the emotional, adrenal rush of combat and grand schemes, the fleeting feelings it brings helping them keep their minds free from the poisonous numbness calling to them from the Shadowfell.
Shadar-kai thrive in the Underdark, but naturally must fight savage, murderous wars against the great houses of the drow, as well as fending off dwarves, ilithids, beholders, and the other manifold horrors of that place. Iika as well as Phthaesis were victims of the drow’s mastery of intrigue—-due to an ancient grudge, their whole clan was wiped out in a single night of deliberately gruesome assassinations, and they only escaped death thanks to Vengeant’s intervention. The horror left Iika supremely paranoid, and it took over a decade before she really began to trust her new benefactor and his strange extra-planar realm. Vengeant honed her natural talent for stealth and keen perception and instinct.