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Lirah
Character Description
Name Lirah
Age 40s
Gender Female
Title none
Ethnicity Charyn, Serker in particular
Alias The King's Serker Whore
Physical Description
Skin colour golden
Hair Colour dark
Eye Colour dark
Height average
Family
Mother unnamed older sister
Father unknown
Siblings unknown
Children Froi of Lumatere (biological), Quintana of Charyn (adopted)
Other relations Arjuro of Abroi and De Lancey of Paladozza (former nemeses)
Significant Other Gargarin (lover), Old King of Charyn (former master), King Tariq of the Citavita (biological grandson)
Affiliation
Allegiance The Citavita and Quintana of Charyn
Residence The Citavita Godshouse


Lirah of Serker is the mother of Froi and lover to Gargarin. She was the King's Whore for years before the King's death, and was imprisoned for twelve years for attempting to drown Quintana. She can be very cold and disdainful towards others, but is protective of those she loves.

Biography

Early Life

Lirah grew up in Serker. Her mother was her own sister, who was her father's concubine. Her sister was jealous of Lirah, and as soon as Lirah turned thirteen she was sold as a slave and taken to the Citavita. Lirah never had anything she wanted to remember from her childhood in Serker, except her love of the Serker breed of horses.    


Life as a slave

At the age of thirteen, Lirah was sold to the King as a slave and taken to the Citavita. The King used Lirah as a whore, and gave her to any of his friends that pleased him. That was how Lirah met Gargarin. The King offered Lirah to Gargarin as a whore. Gargarin was shamed by the offer, and told Lirah that they could just sit and talk. Because of that, Lirah began to suspect that Gargarin preferred the company of men in his bed, like his brother Arjuro did. Lirah loved horses, but Gargarin didn't so that killed the conversation that first time.

The next time Gargarin pleased the King, Lirah was given a history of Serker. The time after that, he read to her. Later he began to teach her to read. All her life, Lirah had always been treated like a possession, not a human being. In Gargarin's eyes, she was not just the King's Serker whore, forced to share the King's bed. She was an equal, just like him. Gradually, Lirah began to fall in love with him. By winter she could read and write, and by summer she knew she was in love.

For the first time since becoming the King's whore, Lirah wanted to seduce a man, namely Gargarin. She recited to him love poetry written by the water god when he was courting the earth goddess. After that, Gargarin pleased the King as much as he could.

Lirah and Gargarin began to see each other clandestinely, and used young Rafuel, the Sixth Advisor's boy, as a messenger between them.

Around the time of the massacre of the Priestlings in the Citavita godshouse, Lirah became pregnant. She did not know whose child it was as she had been forced into the beds of so many men besides the King. Nine months later, Lirah gave birth, and a beautiful boy was placed in her arms. However, after waking from a nap, she found another babe in her arms instead of the son she had first seen. Terrified and confused, Lirah screamed. Later, she heard of what Gargarin had done to the Oracle and her babe. She realized that the babe she now had was the Oracle's and that Gargarin had murdered her son. She hated Gargarin for it. She grieved her son until she had no more milk left to give the Oracle's babe, who was called Quintana.

Over the next few years, Lirah became a mother to Quintana, and raised her until Quintana was six years old. Lirah was the one person Quintana went to when time and time again assassins tried to kill her. Lirah grew to love Quintana in her way. When Quintana was six years old, she ordered Lirah to cut both their wrists in the bathtub, claiming that in that way she could see her mother the Oracle and Lirah could see her son. Lirah did as Quintana wanted, despite the risks. However, Lirah saw nothing, and returned half-mad. Quintana did see something, although Lirah never found out until later, and returned with a spirit retrieved from the lake of the half-dead. She was never the same afterwards, and Lirah believed that 'her mind came back in pieces.'  Lirah was imprisoned in the prison tower for attempting to kill Quintana.

For the next twelve years Lirah and Quintana did not speak face to face; they were forced to call to each other through a window in the prison tower. The only time Lirah saw Quintana was when Quintana was brought to her to learn how to be a 'whore'.


Imprisonment and freedom

Lirah has been imprisoned for twelve years. She hears from Quintana that Olivier of Sebastabol has come to plant the seed. At some point, Gargarin visits Lirah in her prison, and Lirah manages to get a dagger from a guard and plunge it into Gargarin's chest.

When Lirah first meets Froi, or 'Olivier' as she believes him to be, she is suspicious of him, and sees that he has a face from Serker. She tells him about the brothers from Abroi, Arjuro and Gargarin. When the King is killed and the street lords invade the palace, 'Olivier' climbs to her tower and tells her what Gargarin told them to do. Lirah demands to know where Quintana is, and is furious when she realizes that Olivier did not save her. She is also skeptical when she is told that Gargarin smuggled her babe out of the palace on the Day of Weeping eighteen years ago.

Lirah and 'Olivier' escape the prison tower posing as prisoners of the King, and manage to get out alive and unharmed. They take refuge in the godshouse. There, Lirah discovers that 'Olivier' is not Olivier but a boy named Froi, who happens to be her son. She is speechless with horror. Soon after, Lirah witnesses as Froi bargains for Gargarin's life, and succeeds. After Froi disappears from the godshouse, Lirah continues to stay with Arjuro there and goes with him to the square each day to watch the executions of the King's relatives. On one day, after the hangings she and Arjuro go to the soothsayer's home, where Arjuro hopes to gain information about why the King wanted the babe dead on the night of the Oracle's death. When Lirah sees that Froi has followed them there, she asks him where he has been, clearly having been furious at his absence and worried for him. When she sees the soothsayer, Lirah attacks her, out of fury for what the soothsayer did to Quintana for all those years. Froi stops her from killing the soothsayer, reluctantly, at Arjuro's insistence. During a brief conversation, it is revealed that the people of Serker died voiceless, meaning that their names were left unspoken after their deaths, so they never found their way to the lake of the half dead, and that Lirah grieves for her people.

Afterwards, Lirah helps Arjuro and Froi hide the plants that Arjuro grows in his rooftop garden from the street lords. Froi urges Lirah to leave the Citavita while she can, and tries to give her a bag of coins, which he stole from someone else. Lirah refuses the coins, saying that he can use them to return home, and that she can find her own way of out of the Citavita. Arjuro and Froi wait until Lirah is out of earshot before discussing Quintana and her chances of not being executed by the street lords.

Finally, the day comes when Quintana and Gargarin are dragged out into the square. Gargarin is released, but Quintana is to be executed. When the hangman places the noose around Quintana's neck, Lirah cries out. The lastborns and Froi manage to save Quintana, however, and disappear with her into the Citavita tunnels.


Travels with Gargarin, Arjuro, Froi and Quintana

Lirah and Arjuro move to the Crow's Inn, which is close to the bridge of the Citavita. Five days later, Quintana comes to Lirah, hysterical and afraid, and tells her that she carries the first. She says that Froi is an assassin that has come to kill her and her babe. Lirah takes Quintana, who is dressed as a boy, and flees the city, going to the only safe place she knows of: the cave Lirah, Arjuro and Gargarin shared at the base of the gravina. However, once there, Bestiano's soldiers find them, and hold them hostage. It is only because of Froi's appearance that they are rescued.

Lirah and Quintana then stay with Froi, Gargarin and Arjuro in another cave close by. Gargarin finally reveals that on the night of the Oracle's death he was given a babe to throw into the gravina along with the Oracle, but that he smuggled the babe out of the palace and threw the Oracle's second stillborn daughter out instead. Lirah is stunned at the realisation that the Oracle gave birth to twin girls.

Because of Quintana's fear of Froi and her refusal to sleep while near him, Lirah insists that Froi sleep in a separate place. When Froi argues with her about it, Lirah tells him of the state Quintana was in when she came to her in the inn, and blames the whole of Charyn for what Quintana has become. When Quintana cries out in fear at the sound of Froi's voice, Lirah comforts her and wants Froi gone.

When Froi suddenly leaves the gravina, Lirah is worried and afraid for him, as are Arjuro and Gargarin, and fears that he is dead. When Froi returns alive and unharmed days later, Lirah is cold and furious towards him, but is relieved that he has returned.

When the group are climbing the steps to Jidia, Arjuro panicks, as he recalls his abuse at the hands of his father. It is Lirah who brings him back to himself and reminds him that he can't be hurt by him anymore.

In Jidia, the group calls upon the Provincara of Jidia, Orlanda, wanting to ask if she will shelter Quintana from Bestiano. While they are waiting at the bathhouse, Orlanda comes unexpectedly. She brings Quintana and Lirah to a private room and orders them to leave her province. When Quintana steps forward Orlanda shoves at her, and speaks rudely to her. Quintana then proceeds to choke the life from her. Later in the stable where Orlanda sends the group, Orlanda apologises (at Gargarin's request) to both Quintana and Lirah for behaving in this way towards them. She feels Quintana's stomach, and slaps Lirah in the face for threatening to bite of her fingers in she touches Quintana. Orlanda then pledges an army, but refuses to shelter Quintana because of the threat of Bestiano's huge army invading her province.

Lirah is forced to cut her hair, because that is how their group was recognised in Jidia, and is furious with Gargarin for making her do it. Quintana mentions that Lirah told her that the King would never let her cut her hair and that it was just another type of shackle.

Lirah travels with Froi, Quintana, Arjuro and Gargarin to Turla, and it is revealed that she can ride a horse with ease. They meet the dying man of Turla, who tells the tale of Solange of Turla, who was abducted by the Priests to become Oracle to a people. Froi compares Lirah and the Oracle, thinking that the Oracle was as much a prisoner to the godshouse as Lirah was to the palace. Later, Quintana tells Arjuro to call her sister's name out along with the Oracle's and the old man's so that they can finally be at peace. Lirah begs him not to, out of fear of what it would do to Quintana, but Arjuro does it anyway. Lirah holds Quintana in her arms as Arjuro sings the names.

For days after Lirah is saddened at what has occured and does not speak during their journey down the mountain. At one point, they all stop for a break and Froi approaches her, and talks to her. Lirah tells him of how she met Gargarin and races Froi on the horses. Froi notices that Lirah relaxes, but soon she returns to her usual cold demeanor.


Life in Paladozza

They reach Paladozza eventually, where De Lancey shelters them. Lirah and Gargarin share a room and are implied to be sleeping together again. Lirah spends each morning with Froi watching the sunrise on the roof, mainly to see if Bestiano's riders are approaching.

In Paladozza, Lirah's relationship with Froi deteriorates because Froi resents Lirah and Gargarin's close relationship and the fact that they still have not acknowledged or are happy that he is their son. Once, Lirah approaches Froi to tell him that Gargarin would like him to visit to talk about the Avanosh people. Froi lashes out at her verbally, and Lirah is angered and hurt and walks away.

Later, Froi comes to their chamber and tells Gargarin about his plan to sneak out of the city alone with Quintana. Lirah argues against it, saying that they should all stay together. Froi does not listen to her, and tells Lirah and Gargarin of his childhood in Sarnak, what the street thugs there made him do. This horrifies Lirah and she does nothing as Froi leaves.

Lirah stays in Paladozza with Gargarin. Soon after Froi's departure from the province, they hear news that Froi is injured and Quintana missing. Lirah witnesses Gargarin weep at the news. Soon after that they receive news that Froi had been found by the Priests of Trist and is being healed by Arjuro.


Attempted Assassination and reunion with Froi

Lirah goes with Gargarin to the border of Charyn and Osteria, where Gargarin would meet with representative of Belegonia. However, the man is really Finnikin of Lumatere, who was sent to assassinate Gargarin because Lumatere believes that he planned the murders of the Lumateran royal family. They are saved by Froi, who convinces Finnikin, Trevanion and Perri that Gargarin is not a threat.

Later, as Lirah, Froi and Gargarin sleep in the forest, they are ambushed by Bestiano's men. They are rescued by Finnikin, Trevanion and Perri, who had returned because they saw that there was an army in the vicinity and wanted to help Froi. Lirah is scornful of them and stares at them coldly all night, and begins to call Finnikin the 'ginger king'. She becomes irritated that they presume they can tell Froi what to do, and tells Froi that they don't own his heart.

Lirah, Froi and Gargarin discover from Perri the Savage that Arjuro was trapped in Lumatere for ten years because of Lumatere's curse and that Arjuro was mistaken for Gargarin (who was a traitor in the eyes of Charyn) and was imprisoned by the Imposter King. Lirah covers her mouth in horror at the news, and Gargarin roars in fury and hits at a tree with his walking stick. After the Lumaterans' departure, the trio decides to go to Sebastabol to confront the Priests of Trists about Arjuro's imprisonment in Lumatere. 

Journeys to Sebastabol and Serker

The trio travels to Sebastabol, where Gargarin plans to see the Priests of Trist to talk about Arjuro, having just discovered that Arjuro was trapped in Lumatere and no one told him about it. The head priest, Simeon, asks Gargarin to go represent the Priests in the Provincari meeting and Gargarin agrees. Gargarin takes Froi and Lirah to see the ocean, and Lirah is awed by it.

At the meeting the Provincari ask Gargarin to be First Advisor to the King, and Gargarin agrees as long as Quintana is recognised as the rightful Queen of Charyn while the King grows up. The Provincari also say that Lirah cannot stay in the palace, because she is known as the dead King's whore and part of the dirty past Charyn wants to forget. Gargarin cannot persuade them otherwise and reluctantly agrees to the terms. This news embitters Lirah, as she has nowhere else to live and does not want to be anywhere where Gargarin is not.

Then the trio travel to Serker to search for the hidden army that Froi tells them might be there. They meet Perabo, who says he can lead them to it. On the way there, they find out that Arjuro has been captured by Bestiano's men. The men say that if they don't give them Gargarin Arjuro will die. Perabo urges him to leave Arjuro behind for the sake of their kingdom, but Lirah tells him that Gargarin cannot, that he would never forgive himself if he did now that he knows that Arjuro spent years in a Lumateran dungeon because of him.

Froi then decides to rescue Arjuro without telling his plan to Lirah or Gargarin. Lirah later tells him that she believed that he was 'sacrificing himself for Arjuro'. Froi's plan succeeds but he almost dies of hypothermia. As Froi fights for his life Lirah dreams of him at the Lake of the Half-Dead and is terrified that Froi is going to die. She later wonders if the souls at the lake will ever let her be. Lirah is the one who bluntly tells Arjuro that they know that he was trapped in Lumatere. In Quintana of Charyn Froi thinks of how Lirah is smarter than the rest of them in that way, because he and Gargarin would not have talked to Arjuro about it like that. 

Lirah, Gargarin, Arjruo and Froi follow Perabo to the castle where the hidden army is training in, and they stay there for a while. During their stay, the men in the barracks treat her badly because of her history as the King's Whore. This infuriates Arjuro, Froi and Gargarin when they find out about it, and shows how close the group has become. Lirah is also worried about not living in the palace when little King is returned there, as she has nowhere else she can go. However, Arjuro offers Lirah a home at the godshouse with him, and Lirah accepts, somewhat misty-eyed.

Lirah spends most of her time trying to figure out where Quintana is hiding. She uses the list of trusted people Froi and Quintana told each other in Paladozza, and continuously asks Froi to repeat the list to her. Lirah realises that Quintana has gone to the valley between Lumatere and Charyn and Phaedra of Alonso is hiding her, her being the twenty-ninth person on Froi's list and the only one she can go to for help.


After the Restoration

After Quintana and the little King are restored to the palace, Lirah lives in the godshouse and visits the palace secretly at night to be with Gargarin and Quintana. She and Arjuro live happily together in the godshouse, having thrown away their old enmity. Rafuel of Sebastabol is brought to the godshouse after being left for dead in an old mineshaft in Serker, and Arjuro heals him. Later Lirah tells Froi that Rafuel belongs with them there and they have high hopes of his recovery. Froi comes to the Citavita to represent Lumatere, and Lirah is happy to see him, but is unhappy that the Lumaterans are keeping him from them.

Lirah witnesses as the Lumaterans gate-crash the reception where the Provincari are choosing a husband for Quintana. Froi ends up becoming Quintana's husband and Lirah's family is finally complete.

Physical appearance

Lirah is incredibly beautiful, with dark hair and dark 'Serker eyes'. The old King of Charyn would not let Lirah cut her hair and so it remained long until Gargarin forced Lirah to cut it after being discovered in Jidia to avoid being recognised again. Lirah refers to her beauty as her 'downfall', as her beauty was the reason she was sold to the Citavita and forced to be the King's Serker Whore.  



Personality   

Lirah has a blunt personality, and is very cold and disdainful towards anyone besides Froi, Arjuro and Gargarin. She is extremely bitter in Froi of the Exiles at the hardships she was forced to endure (being the King's Serker Whore, losing her son just moments after giving birth to him, and being imprisoned for twelve years for supposedly trying to murder Quintana). She is less bitter after the King is dead and Quintana is restored to the throne.

Despite seeming to hate many things about Serker, Lirah grieves deeply for her people and is sad that her people will never be at peace because they died voiceless. Lirah is happy when Perabo gives her a list of all the Serkers that were present for the census that was to have taken place at the time of the massacre, as she can now be sure that her people's spirits can be sung to their rest. The only thing that Lirah misses about Serker is the Serkan horse breed, as she adores horses.

Lirah is very protective of Quintana, although she hated her at first. She has a passionate love for Gargarin of Abroi, and also cares deeply about Froi, her biological son, though she does not show it very openly. She used to have a mutual enmity with Arjuro, Gargarin's twin, because Arjuro was jealous of Gargarin's love for her. However, during their travels together with Froi, Gargarin and Quintana, their enmity faded to the point that Arjuro was furious when he heard of the soldiers' treatment of Lirah in the barracks, and even offered her a home in the godshouse.    



Abilities

Relationships   

Quintana

Gargarin

Froi

Arjuro

De Lancey

Relatives

Appearances

  

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