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Lady Malene of the House Emeraldsea is an Asur Mage and aunt of twins Teclis and Tyrion on their mother's side. Her expression is described as haughty, her amber-eyed stare piercingly direct, whilst her hair is raven-black.[1a]

Though at first glance it would appear an impossible pairing; the stony-faced mage and an open-handed and hearted warrior, Malene's relationship with Korhien Ironglaive is made obvious whenever the two look at each other.[1e] In truth, Malene envies those who did not grow up surrounded by the protocols of court.[1h]

After her father, Lord Emeraldsea, passed away, Malene became Matriarch of the Noble House.[2a] On Teclis' return from hunting the legendary Sunfang in Lustria, he would notice the change such responsibilities had made on his aunt. She did not look any different from the beautiful - in a severe way - elf he had first met a century ago. As ageless as any other elf. Yet still, she looked somehow different. The way she set her shoulders, the way her lips compressed. A slight frown ever present upon her forehead. Just the way she sat hunched over her father's old desk.[2b]

Yet, much to the young mage's surprise, his aunt smiled with genuine warmth when she talked with him, a warmth Teclis never expected save from his father and twin-brother.[2b]

Now, as head of House Emeraldsea, Malene is not only one of the richest and most influential women on Ulthuan, and personal friend of the Phoenix King, but also, since she was a mage, a powerful ally of the White Tower at court.[2b]

Concerning the Twins

When first she met her twin nephews, Lady Malene proved frank with her opinion of them, treating Tyrion like a servant by expecting him to help her off her horse. When he refused, she smiled coldly and gracefully dismounted.[1a] When at last she met Teclis, Malene called him "the cripple", only to have the Teclis rebuke her by pointing out her station; a noble speaking to a prince.[1b] From this exchange, Malene garnered mild respect for the youth, though like most elves, still looked at him in distaste, not used to being around the infirm.[1c] Despite this, Malene would become Teclis' tutor in the Art, after both she and Arathion agreed the boy would benefit from an education in a more active school of magic than that of his father. She would find affection for Teclis that very day, amused at her nephew's arrogance in thinking he knew better than the Loremasters of Hoeth. Such would be his embarrassment when Malene called him out on it, saying: "[So] in your sixteen years, you have become acquainted with everything written in seven millennia of asur history? You are quite the scholar". Yet, to the boy, Malene confessed both she and Arathion could sense a very great power in Teclis, claiming it was obvious to anyone with the Sight. She then brought Teclis to tears when she promised not only to take him to the White Tower - if he wasn't accursed - but, as a birthday gift, also cure him of his sickness.[1c]

According to Lady Malene, Arathion's medicine for Teclis only soothes the nervous system and boosts some of Teclis' body's resistance to disease. It allows him to breathe easier and, by taking the strain off his lungs, makes it easier for him to fight the disease. It does nothing else to help him. Arathion is an artificer, not an alchemist. Malene's potion, which she carries in a glass beaker, is described as a clear sapphire liquid made from a mix of aqua vitae and sunroot, into which she has woven several spells. The taste is foul, with Malene joking she would add peppermint next time, in that it would make the flavour even worse. The effects of said-potion take an hour to start working, and a couple hours after that to take effect, at which point she joked that Teclis would be dead. When Teclis gave her a black look, Malene explained that he was not the only one with a dark sense of humour, to which both she and Teclis at long last shared a laugh.[1d]

Malene would grow to adore Teclis, comforting the youth whilst encouraging him to see his own strengths, even when compared to Tyrion.[1d] She would also make it her effort to keep the twins from being destroyed by the courtly intrigue of Lothern's nobility. This would include keeping Tyrion from having "amorous adventures" with his cousins.[1h]

Unfortunately, Malene's attempts at curing Teclis would prove bittersweet when, at the Emeraldsea Palace, Teclis became dizzy and collapsed in his shared apartment. For this reason, Malene would insist he avoid overexerting himself for the time being.[1i]

Lady Malene's Magic

"In some ways, yes. It's hardly surprising that mages should be reclusive. Ours is a life that requires study and a great deal of time spent alone with books. We need a lot of specialised knowledge that can be of no possible interest to the layman. It also requires that we be strong-willed and self-centred."
Lady Malene, to Teclis.[1k]

Like many a mage of Lothern, Malene began her career of wizardry aboard ship. Most mages of Lothern spend half their lives aboard ship, summoning winds, protecting the ship from monsters, blasting enemy ships with spells when the need arises and preventing enemy wizards from doing the same to their vessels.[1f] During a storm aboard the Eagle of Lothern, Teclis watched Malene weave a spell of an entirely different order compared to his father, Arathion's. She had begun weaving a spell almost as soon as the storm had begun, a slow, subtle weaving that most elves would never have spotted but which was obvious to Teclis' peculiar sensitivity to the flows of power. Malene summoned more and more of the Winds of Magic to her. She pulled from the very air surrounding her and moulded it with gentle, small motions of her hands and body. As the storm intensified, Malene wove her spells. Over the howling of the wind, there was magic in the words and in her voice. They were laced with power and Teclis caught what she was saying in a way his hearing alone never could have if Malene were merely speaking words. He saw the relation between her words, her gestures and the flow of the Aethyr. She was the still centre and she was doing something that manipulated the forces around her. Something about her mind and spirit anchored the whole structure of spellwork she was creating. Even as Teclis watched, Malene made a gesture like a fisherwoman casting a net, and a lattice of power, complex and tight, flew forth from her hands. It enmeshed the Eagle of Lothern, bolstering its timbers and strengthened them against the storm, aiding it to cut through the water. The ship, which had been heeling before the wind, righted itself. The timbers creaked but held. Teclis then sensed that in some way his aunt was communing with the vessel. It was bound to her as she was bound to it.[1g]

With a gesture, Lady Malene parted the waves in front of her, sloughing off over the afterdeck. No sonner had she completed weaving that spell than she began another; summoning sentient vortices, forming the wind into air elementals, calming their anger and directing them about the ship as if they were a second crew. The sails billowed outwards but did not rip or tear or drive the ship down. Some of the elementals ran before the ship, shielding it from the worst buffeting of the storm; others gathered the fury of the wind and harnessed it, sending the vessel scudding along like a cloud over the angry sea. For long hours, she did this, and when the storm was passed, she looked a little tired but also triumphant. Indeed, though everyone else was soaked, she had remained dry, untouched by the storm.[1g]

Trivia

  • Malene notes that Tyrion looks like Alysia when he laughs.[1a]
  • In XI 10, Malene was part of the Phoenix King's advisory council, alongside Prince Iltharis and Korhien Ironglaive.[1j]
  • During a ball held at the Emeraldsea Palace, Malene wore a sparkling blue dress of some mage-woven cloth that shimmered with cosmetic glamour-spells.[1k]
  • Malene wears copper-framed bi-focals when reading.[2a]

Source

  • 1: Blood of Aenarion (Novel), by William King
    • 1a: Chapter 1
    • 1b: Chapter 3
    • 1c: Chapter 4
    • 1d: Chapter 5
    • 1e: Chapter 6
    • 1f: Chapter 7
    • 1g: Chapter 8
    • 1h: Chapter 11
    • 1i: Chapter 12
    • 1j: Chapter 16
    • 1k: Chapter 19
  • 2: Sword of Caledor (Novel), by William King
    • 2a: Chapter 10
    • 2b: Chapter 13

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