Seven Sisters (Forgotten Realms)

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The Seven Sistersfictional characters of the Forgotten Realms campaign setting of the Dungeons & Dragons Role Playing Game. The sisters are epic level characters (characters possessing nearly super-human levels of skill and power) of differing abilities, most of which involve some form of spellcasting and use of magic. Created by Ed Greenwood, they have been featured in multiple novels, games, and officially created scenarios by an equally large number of authors/game-designers.

Publication history[edit]

Some of the characters that would later be identified as members of the Seven Sisters were first introduced in the original Forgotten Realms boxed set (the Grey Box) for 1st Edition Dungeons & Dragons, where they were described as a group of powerful sisters, though they were not yet revealed to number seven. Only Alustriel, Storm, Syluné, and the Simbul were described in this first appearance. In this early incarnation the concept of their connection to the goddess of magic Mystra does not appear to have been developed yet, as, for example, Storm is listed as worshiping the god Milil. Over the years, through additional sourcebooks, the full nature of the Sisters was revealed, as the concepts of the Sisters' full membership, purpose, and importance to the world of the Forgotten Realms was gradually fleshed-out and finalized.

By the time the entire story of their births and lives was solidified and finalized by their creators, the Sisters had been revealed to be extremely powerful, nearly immortal, and immensely important to the Forgotten Realms setting; tied into the very nature of magic itself, serving a purpose to balance the power of a goddess, and to help maintain the very existence and functioning of magic in their world.

Publications[edit]

These characters have appeared throughout many Forgotten Realms setting Dungeons & Dragons accessories and novels.[which?]

The characters were fully detailed in The Seven Sisters supplement (1995) by Ed Greenwood.[1]

The Sisters[edit]

Sisters born to the ranger Dornal Silverhand and his wife Elué between the years 761 and 767DR. During which Elué harbored the Goddess Mystra within her body as a means of creating Chosen which had previously been highly difficult. Mystra's power consumed Elué by the end of the seventh pregnancy and Dornal (who was previously unaware of the arrangement between his wife and Mystra) abandoned his children to be raised by others.[2] - in order of birth, are listed below.

Syluné[edit]

Syluné is the kindly Witch of Shadowdale. Slain by a red dragon she remains as a ghostly spectral harpist, primary confined to the remains of her cottage and small pieces of said structure which may be moved to provide Syluné with a larger area of influence.[3]

Alustriel Silverhand[edit]

Alustriel Silverhand
Game information
Homeland Silverymoon
Gender Female
Race Human
Class Wizard20/Sorceress2/Archmage2
Alignment Chaotic Good
Age approx. 612 (Born in DR 762, Current Year DR 1374)
Setting Forgotten Realms

Lady Alustriel Silverhand is the longtime ruler of Silverymoon and founder of the Silver Marches, a confederation of various states in the areas around Silverymoon (including Mithral Hall, Everlund, Citadel Adbar, and other citadels, towns, and villages).

She is a powerful mage, being one of Mystra's Chosen and has a preference for creation magic. She is known for her love and devotion to her people (which may be considered unusual for wizards who act as the rulers of nations). Due to this, she is extremely popular in Silverymoon (as well as everywhere else she goes) and most of her subjects would do anything within their power to keep her from harm. She is considered a wise and fair ruler, only showing anger in cold, pointed speeches.[4]

Apart from being an intelligent, wise, and charismatic leader, she is also considered to be very beautiful. She shares the silver hair that is a trademark of the Seven Sisters.

She sought to create a realm that would radiate glory and culture, much like the (previously fallen, now restored) elvish kingdom of Myth Drannor.

In the current setting of 1479 DR, she has been dead for some time and her son is nearing the end of his life.

Relationship with Drizzt Do'Urden[edit]

Alustriel is a close friend of the drow hero Drizzt Do'Urden.

They first met in Streams of Silver wherein she was forced, against her wishes, into denying Drizzt entry into Silverymoon in order to maintain good relations with nearby Nesmé.

Eventually, as Drizzt became more accepted by the locals in the area (and regarded as a hero by many), he has since been allowed into Silverymoon by Alustriel. They have become friends over the years, and she and Drizzt (along with Drizzt’s animal companion Guenhwyvar) have repeatedly spent time alone together in Alustriel’s home.

Given the nature of both Alustriel and Drizzt, it is assumed that they have merely talked and enjoyed each other’s company. A romantic relationship is only once vaguely implied by Drizzt's companion Bruenor Battlehammer. Drizzt himself has denied any such relationship in the introspective essay at the beginning of Part 2 of The Legacy.

Official Material[edit]

Realmslore[edit]

Dove Falconhand[edit]

Dove Falconhand
Game information
Homeland ?
Gender Female
Race Human
Class Ranger/Sorceress/Rogue/Harper Scout
Alignment Chaotic Good
Age approx. 611 (Born in DR 763, Current Year DR 1374)
Setting Forgotten Realms

A ranger, Chosen of Mystra, and one of the Seven Sisters, Dove is known for her skill at arms. She was the eldest of the three sisters raised by Elminster Aumar at Mystra's bidding. She is a renowned Knight of Myth Drannor married to another Knight - Florin Falconhand.

She appears in various Dungeons and Dragons accessories and novels.

In the novel Sojourn, she was pursuing the renegade drow Drizzt Do'Urden. Following the dark elf for some time, Dove and her companions wished to determine his purpose and his role in the slaying of two barghest whelps. However, Dove came to the conclusion that Drizzt meant no harm, and allowed him to go on without pursuit. Later, she was glad to hear of Drizzt becoming the pupil of Montolio Debrouchee, and sent a message praising the "deserving drow."

Dove was one of the reasons that Drizzt was denied entrance to Silverymoon on his way to Mithral Hall. Due to the two of them being rangers, and also likely because of her pursuit of him years before, Dove wanted to meet with Drizzt. However, her sister Alustriel would not permit it at that time.

Storm Silverhand[edit]

Storm Silverhand is a famous and much-loved Harper, sorceress and Bard of Shadowdale. Despite sometimes appearing flighty, she has taken it upon herself to protect and care for the people of her home dale to the best of her abilities.

Laeral Silverhand Arunsun[edit]

Laeral Silverhand
Game information
Homeland ?
Gender Female
Race Human
Class Wizard/Sorceress/Ranger
Alignment Chaotic Good
Age approx. 609 (Born in DR 765, Current Year DR 1374)
Setting Forgotten Realms

Laeral Silverhand Arunsun is the radiant and good-hearted Lady Mage of Waterdeep. Together with her husband the great wizard Khelben "Blackstaff" Arunsun they lead the Moonstars, a dissident faction of the Harpers, which seeks to arrange the destiny of the cities and nations of the North.

She has one daughter, a human girl named Maura, conceived by Laeral during her time under the influence of the Crown of Horns by an unknown father. Maura is in love with the Crown Prince of Evermeet, Lamruil.

The Simbul[edit]

Alassra Silverhand
Game information
Homeland Aglarond
Gender Female
Race Human
Class Sorceress 20/Wizard 10/Archmage 2
Alignment Chaotic Neutral
Age approx. 608 (Born in DR 766 (Year of Yearning), Current Year DR 1374)
Setting Forgotten Realms

The Simbul, real name Alassra Shentrantra Silverhand (but few know it and fewer use it), also known as the Witch-Queen of Aglarond, is one of the Seven Sisters, a chosen of the goddess of magic Mystra, and one of the most powerful spellcasters in Faerûn. Her character features in a number of novels by setting creator Ed Greenwood, including Elminster in Hell, published in 2001, and Elminster Must Die!, published in 2010. She also features more prominently in the 1997 novel The Simbul's Gift, by author Lynn Abbey.

Her personality echoes her talents as a powerful and somewhat wild sorceress, highly unpredictable and prone to sudden outbursts of rage. She is queen of Aglarond, a nation in the east of Faerûn, but many of her subjects fear her for her recklessness and apparent unstable nature. She has been the paramour of the Sage of Shadowdale, Elminster.

History[edit]

After the death of her mother, young Alassra was entrusted by Mystra, the goddess of magic, to the care of the witches of Rashemen. Mystra gave the witches spells that enabled them to rule Rashemen and repel invasions by Thay.

After the Simbul left the witches, she started wandering the planes. Little is known about her whereabouts during that period, which lasted for some 400 years. It is said that Mystra herself revealed to her the fact that she was one of the Chosen, after one of her consorts (allegedly a wizard from another plane) perished.

She ended up posing as the apprentice of Ilione, a lesser sorceress and ruler of Aglarond and took the name "the Simbul" from a deity of the primitive human tribes that inhabited the Yuirwood before the elves there, and whose runes can still be found deep within the wood (the goddess known as the Simbul was absorbed as an aspect of Labelas Enoreth).

Ilione had designated the Simbul as her successor. The Simbul assumed the throne of Aglarond upon Ilione's death. The wizard Elminster recognized the Simbul for whom she was more than a century ago. Elminster's love helped reduce the frequency of her berserker rage fits, but she remained feared for the amount of damage she could inflict. It was the Simbul whom Mystra sent into Hell to retrieve Elminster when he was banished there. King Azoun IV of Cormyr once called her "a good friend, but a deadly enemy".

After Mystra's death by Cyric and the Spellplague that followed, The Simbul had her powers drastically reduced, like all other Chosen of Mystra. She is thought, even by her own people, to have perished in the Year of The Seven Sisters (1425 DR), consumed in the fire that destroyed the God Velsharoon. In reality, however, she is still alive, and now resides in the Dalelands.

The Simbul and Thay[edit]

As well as signifying Alassra Silverhand's connection to Aglarond through its deific origins, the word "Simbul" means "watchful warrior-wizard" in the ancient Aglarondan language, and Alassra lives up to that role. Her presence alone is a strong incentive for the Red Wizards of Thay not to attack Aglarond. When she commits herself to battle, the amount of damage she can cause is incredible. She sometimes makes her enemies an example, using far more magic than necessary to destroy them in a spectacular fashion. No Red Wizard in his right mind would face the Simbul, and even her own subjects in Aglarond sometimes fear and avoid her, thinking her mad.

Qilué Veladorn[edit]

Qilué Veladorn
Game information
Homeland Undermountain, Waterdeep, Promenade of Eilistraee
Gender Female
Race Drow
Class Cleric/Divine Disciple
Alignment Chaotic Good
Age approx. 607 (Born in 767 DR (Year of the Awakening Wyrm), Current Year 1374 DR)
Setting Forgotten Realms

Qilué Veladorn, or Eresseae Qilué Silverhand, the youngest of the Seven Sisters, is a drow priestess of Eilistraee, the goddess of the good aligned drow, and because of her background serves both Eilistraee and Mystra. As a Chosen of both goddesses she leads a temple complex, the Promenade, near Skullport, beneath the metropolis of Waterdeep in the subterranean area known as Undermountain.

Though born to a human couple, she is full-blooded drow. In the original story, her father had killed her mother when he had found out that she had been possessed by Mystra, the goddess of magic. Mystra, seeking to keep the child alive, came upon a pregnant drow priestess of Eilistraee whose child had died in her womb, and made a pact with Eilistraee that served both their intentions.

Qilué spends some of her free time in Waterdeep with dalliance of human men, on occasion appearing as her sister, Laeral. She also had a daughter, Ysolde, whose death she probably blames on Liriel Baenre, as the drow that killed her were actually looking for the erstwile princess. The relationship is at the least terse, as it was the second person whose death was caused indirectly by Liriel (the other being her lover, Elkantar). In spite of Qilué's grudge, the young Liriel admires Qilué.

As the youngest of the Seven Sisters she is not as widely known as her sisters. When she is whispered of she is called "The Dark Sister" — likely because she's drow.

In the game Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn, there is a drow female in the drow city of Ust Natha that bears Qilué's name.

In the Lady Penitent series, 1379 DR, Qilué, along with Eilistraee, who was then inhabiting her body, were beheaded with the crescent blade wielded by Halisstra Melarn. Halisstra was in turn later killed by another of Eilistraee's clergy. The effect of these actions has yet to be shown.

Literature[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Greenwood, Ed. The Seven Sisters (TSR, 1995)
  2. ^ Dungeons and Dragons Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting page 280
  3. ^ Silverfall: Stories of the Seven Sisters by Ed Greenwood
  4. ^ Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting page 276