Drow pantheon: Eilistraee.
Last update: 26 jan 2001

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(The Dark Maiden, Lady of the Dance, Lady Silverhair)

Lesser Power of Ysgard, CG PORTFOLIO: Song, beauty, dance, swordwork, hunting, moonlight ALIASES: None DOMAIN NAME: Nidavellir/Svartalfheim SUPERIOR: None ALLIES: Callarduaran Smoothhands, Haela Brightaxe, Lurue, Mystra, the Seldarine, Selune FOES: Deep Duerra, Kiaransalee, Laduguer, Ghaunadaur, Lolth, Malar, Selvetarm, Vhaeraun, Blibdoolpoolp, the Blood Queen, Diinkarazan, Diirinka, Great Mother, Gzemnid, Ilsensine, Ilxendren, Laogzed, Maanzecorian (dead) SYMBOL: A silver long sword outlined against a silver moon, with silvery filaments (Eilistraee's hair) around all, in a nimbus WOR. ALIGN.: LG,NG,CG Eilistraee (EEL-iss-TRAY-yee) is the goddess of the good drow-those rare dark elves who yearn for a re-turn to life on the surface Realms, existence akin to that enjoyed by elves of the woodlands, left behind by the drow long ago. She is a goddess of song and beauty, goodness and light, worshiped through song and dance-preferably in the surface world, under the stars of a moonlit night. Eilistraee aids her faithful in hunting and swordcraft, and worship of her is usually accompanied by a feast. Eilistraee also has worshipers of human, elven, and in particular, half-elven stock (particularly around Silverymoon), and she looks kindly upon the Harpers. She is usually seen only from afar, hut her song (of unearthly beauty, driving many to tears) is heard whenever she appears. The Dark Maiden is the sister of Vhaeraun and the daughter of Araushnee, who was cast out and became Lolth, and Corellon Larethian. After Eilistraee nearly slew her father with an arrow during a great battle between the Seldarine and a host of evil deities bent on conquering Arvandor, the Dark Maiden forswore the use of ranged weapons (although she permits them to her followers). Although her arrow went astray because of Araush-nee's treachery, Eilistraee chose banishment from Arvandor (and the Seldarine) along with her mother and brother, foreseeing a time when she would be needed to balance their evil. On Aheir-Toril, the Dark Maiden strove for centuries against the hatred of Vhaeraun and his corrupting influence on the Ilythiiri (southern, darkskinned elves). Eilistraee's power ebbed with the death of many of her faithful in the Dark Disaster, and the rise of Lolth and Ghaunadaur among the dark elves marginalized the influence of the Lady of the Dance for millennia. Only in recent centuries has Eilistraee's faith regained a small amount of prominence in Faerun, as the Dark Maiden seeks to lead the fallen drow back to the long-forsaken light. Eilistraee is a melancholy, moody drow female, a lover of beauty and peace. The evil of most drow banks a burning anger within her, and when her faithful are harmed, that anger is apt to spill out into wild action. It is not her way to act openly, but she often aids creatures she favors (whether they worship her or not) in small, immediately practical ways. Eilistraee is happiest when she looks on bards singing or composing, craftsmen at work, lovers, or acts of kindness. While the Dark Maiden and the Seldarine remain allies, it is a strained relationship that reflects the divisions that persist among the elves. Among the elven powers, Eilistraee is only close with Erevan Ilesere, and she has only recently worked out an uneasy truce with Shevarash. Eilistraee is unusually close with the human goddess of magic, Mystra; Qilue Veladorn, seventh of the Seven Sisters, serves both goddesses as Chosen of Mystra and as Chosen of Eilistraee. The Dark Maiden hates the corruption and unredeemable evil that both Lolth and Ghaunadaur represent, and she mourns her brother's enduring cruelty and selfishness. Eilistraee's Avatar (Bard 29, Cleric 24, Ranger 21, Fighter 21) Eilistraee appears as an unclad, glossy-skinned female drow. She is 9 feet in height with ankle-length, sweeping hair of glowing silver. Her hair and wandering silvery radiances cloak her body in a smoothly, continuously moving array of beauty. Eilistraee can call on all spheres and schools of magic, but favors spells from the spheres of animal, creation, healing, and plant and the enchantment/charm school. AC -2; MV 15, Fl 18; HP 165; THACO 0; #AT 7/2 Dmg ld8+12/ld8+12 (singing sword of dancing +3 x2, +7 STR, +2 spec. bonus in all swords) MR 50%; SZ L (9 feet high) STR 19, DEX 20, CON 16, INT 21, Wis 22, CHA 23 Spells P: 12/12/12/12/11/8/3, W: 6/6/5/5/5/5/1 Saves PPDM 2 RSW 4, PP 4, BW 4, Sp 5 Special Att/Def: Eilistraee wields twin singing swords of dancing +3, each with all of the powers of a bastard sword of dancing (but with a fixed attack and damage bonus) and of a singing sword (see below). When she wishes to appear clothed, the Dark Maiden is garbed in a set of deep brown leather boots with all the powers of boots of elvenkind, boots of varied tracks, and boots of the north that allow her to pass without trace and move in total silence at will. She also wears a dappled green cloak that shifts its colors to match the foliage around it, providing concealment similar to that of a cloak of elvenkind and a ring of cha- meleon power, but always providing 100% invisibility in natural surroundings. Eilistraee has true seeing (continuous, but otherwise functions as the priest spell) and can unleash nine silvery magic missiles per round in addition to her normal avatar melee combat and spellcast-ing attacks for a round. These missiles unerringly inflict 2d4 points of damage each to all creatures except evil beings and undead creatures, who suffer 4d4 damage per missile. Once per turn, Eilistraee's avatar can employ spell turning as the ring, but the effect works against all magic directed against her in that round. This replaces her magic missile attack for the round. Once per turn, the avatar can also regenerate damage to herself, restoring even lost limbs without a system shock roll and healing ld4+l points of damage per round. (This process can continue for 4 continuous rounds and precludes spellcasting, but not other activities or combat.) At will, the Dark Maiden's avatar can create moonfire (see the Eilistraee's moonfire spell below), silvery light, or dancing lights; cause harp, horn (a far-off horn is her sign), or flute music to sound; and sing. At will, her song can affect undead and evil creatures of 3 Hit Dice or less as a repulsion spell; can stun any one being (saving throw vs. spell at -2 to avoid) for 1 round; or can act as a knock spell (as if cast by an 11th-level wizard). She can also levitate at will (self only, horizontal move of up to 160 feet per round). She can only be struck by +1 or better magical weapons. Other Manifestations The Dark Maiden seldom takes a direct hand in the affairs of mortals, but she sometimes appears in the midst of a dance in her honor, leaping amid the flames of the feast unharmed. She also appears, radiance dimmed and clad in a plain, cowled cloak, at the campfires of wayfarers in the woodlands by night to test their kindness. Most worshipers see Eilistraee only from afar, perched on a hillock or battlement, silver hair streaming out behind her. She appears to show her favor or blessing and often rallies or heartens creatures by causing a high, far-off hunting horn call to be heard. (On several occasions, this has frightened off brigands or orc raiders, who thought aid for their quarry was on the way.) When Eilistraee's hunting horn is heard but no foes are present, her followers interpret it as a sign that someone nearby needs their aid. Eilistraee's most used manifestations are a silvery radiance, sometimes accompanied by a wordless snatch of song or a few echoing harp notes. If the radiance surrounds an item (almost always a sword or other bladed weapon), that item typically gains the following two powers for 6 rounds: full possible damage (maximum roll, plus all bonuses) and immunity to breakage or other damage (automatic success of all item saving throws). If the radiance envelops a being, Eilistraee's favor typically gives any or all of the following three aids for 4 rounds; the ability to strike first in any round, an increase in Armor Class of 2 points, and a bonus of +4 to all attack rolls, including the ability to strike creatures normally affected only by magical weapons of a +2 or greater bonus. Eilistraee sometimes manifests to a worshiper or nonworshiper who honors her with a solitary dance as a silver radiance that transforms the recipient's hair into a mane of silver fire for a month or even permanently. Eilistraee has also been known to aid her worshipers by providing a faint silvery radiance when they need to find something dropped in darkness, or follow an unknown trail by night through dark woods, or when childbirth occurs in darkness. She sometimes sends a flutter of silvery swallowtailed moths to show her favor, join in a dance, or lead her faithful that have become lost or need some indication of the best direction to take. In rare circumstances, males who worship Eilistraee-or beings without any priest powers who work to further Eilistraee's aims and need her visible blessing and support (or just some light)-will temporarily manifest moonfire (see Eitistroee's moonfire below). Such manifestations are at the will of the goddess; the lucky recipient has no control over the duration, intensity, and location of the radiance. The Church CLERGY: Clerics, crusaders, mystics, specialty priests CLERGY'S ALIGN.: LG, NG, CG TURN UNDEAD: C: Yes, Cru: No, Mys: No, SP: Yes CMND. UNDEAD: C: No, Cru: No, Mys: No, SP: No Eilistraee is served by aasimar, aasimon (particularly lights), asuras, cath shee, einheriar, eladrins, mercury dragons, elven cats, fcystags, frosts, hollyphants, incarnates of faith and hope, lythari, mist dragons, moon dogs, moon-horses, mortal, pixies, radiance quasielementals, reverend ones, silver dogs, silver dragons, sprites, sunflies, a tiefling or two, and silverstriped tabby cats or normal-looking animals with solid silver-colored eyes. She demonstrates her favor through the discovery ofmithral, moonbars, moonstones, and silver, and the sudden inspiration to write a beautiful song or poem or the skilled to craft a gorgeous sword. Eilistraee indicates her displeasure with the sudden rising of a cold breeze, the disfavored ones hands or feet growing chilled, a sudden lack of inspiration for or capability in any artistic endeavor, or the inability to catch anything while hunting. All clerics (including multiclassed clerics), crusaders, mystics, and specialty priests (including multiclassed specialty priests) of Eilistraee receive reli gion (drow), religion (elven), and reading/writing (drowic) as bonus nonweapon proficiencies. All clergy of Eilistraee must be female, but they may be of any intelligent race. Multiclassed priests are permitted if normally allowed by race. (In other words, if they are not dark elves.) Note that the base and mature spell-like powers as well as the magic resistance and saving throw bonus vs. magical attacks of nearly all priests of the Dark Maiden have either faded due to extended sojourns on the surface or were never even acquired. A player character dark elven priest of the Dark Maiden never receives any such powers. The followers of Eilistraee are figures of legend in both the Underdark and the Lands of Light. They are the subject of superstitions and wildly inaccurate mistruths, held by surface dwellers to be the evil vanguard of the Spider Goddess's plot to plunge all of Faerun into darkness under her rule and held by those drow who follow the Way of Lolth (or other evil gods) to be faerie (surface elf) invaders masquerading as dark elves in preparation for the coming war of annihilation. Rare is the individual-dark elf or not-who appreciates that Eilistraee is forging her own path, one that welcomes beings of all races who revel in life and the free form expression of all that entails. The clergy of Eilistraee are collectively known as Dark Ladies, although individual temples often have a unique collective name for the Dark Maiden's priests. Acolytes and aspirants to the clergy who wish to join a temple or who have not yet attained full priesthood are known as Maids. The titles of individual priests vary widely-and at some temples are personally selected during a private Flame Song-but some common examples include Moon Dancer, Moon Singer, Dark Huntress, Argent Maid, Living Sword, Unsheathed Blade, Sword Smith, Bright Edge of Darkness, and Ghost of the Moonstruck Night. Specialty priests of the Dark Maiden are known as sword dancers and, including multiclassed specialty priests, make up the vast majority (90%) other clergy. The fraction of clerics (including multiclassed clerics) in Eilistraee's service (6%) has always been small and is continuing to shrink. A small fraction (2%) of Lady Silverhair's clergy, found predominantly in the South, although that has started to change in the aftermath of the Time of Troubles, are crusaders, and all are members of the Darksong Knights. An even smaller fraction (less than 1%) of those who venerate the Lady of the Dance are mystics. Such priests invariably discover Eilistraee on their own and come to worship the Dark Maiden outside of any established church environment. Temples of the Dark Maiden are typically established in the mouths of dark caverns and in dim forests on the surface world from which her priests can venture forth at night to brave the moonlight. It is rare for clergy of Eilistraee to found a temple below the surface, even one so close to the world above as the Promenade (see below). Eilistraee's places of worship are chosen and developed in a manner similar to those of the surface elves dedicated to the Seldarine. The Dark Maiden's clergy seek out pristine, natural sites that need little modification. Temple complexes typically include a glade in which to dance and from which the view of the moon is unobstructed, a dark place removed from the light of day, a thick tree canopy, a lively fresh water stream that playfully dances and sings, a forge and smithy for Grafting swords, an access tunnel to the Underdark, and a vein of iron or some other metal suitable for the Crafting of swords. However, the simplest shrine of the Dark Maiden requires naught but a moonlit glade and a song (audible or imagined) that draws one into a dance. Dogma: Aid the weak, strong, grateful, and churlish alike; be always kind, save in battle with evil. Encourage happiness everywhere; lift hearts with kind words, jests, songs, and merriment. Learn how to cook game and how best to hunt it. Learn new songs, dances, and ways with weapons, and spices, and recipes, and pass this learning on whenever possible. Learn how to play, make, and repair musical instruments. Practice music and sword-work. Defend and aid all folk, promoting harmony between the races. Strangers are your friends. The homeless must be given shelter from storms, under your own roof if need be. Repay rudeness with kindness. Repay violence with swift violence, that the fewest may be hurt and danger fast removed from the land. The faithful must aid drow who are in distress. If the distressed are fighting with other drow, the combat is to be stopped with as little bloodshed as possible. So long as the drow met with are not working evil on others, they are to be aided and given the message of Eilistraee: "A rightful place awaits you in the Realms Above, in the Land of the Great Light. Come in peace, and live beneath the sun again, where trees and flowers grow." Priests of the goddess are allowed to keep and accumulate money given them as offerings-with the understanding that this wealth is to be used to buy food, musical instruments, and other tools (such as good swords) to serve the will of the goddess. Priests of Eilistraee are allowed to go adventuring, so long as they feed, aid, and defend the needy along the way. They are encouraged to aid adventuring parties, with the price of their aid to be provision of some sort of beneficial magical armor they can use (or failing that, an enchanted sword of some sort). Faithful of Eilistraee are encouraged to give food to others in need with a prayer to the goddess, to act with kindness, and to give food and money they can spare to their priests. Priests are to feed themselves by their own gardening and hunting skills as much as possible and to try to convert at least one stranger per moon to the worship of Eilistraee. Leading a convert in a prayer to the Dark Maiden is itself an offering to the goddess, who often (68%) manifests as a sign to the convert. When priests of the goddess must fight evil, they are to bum the bodies of the evil creatures they slay as an offering to the goddess-unless such creatures are edible and nonsentient, and there are hungry folk near. Any hungry travelers met with, who offer no threats, are to be fed by the faithful of Eilistraee. While traveling, priests are to carry food with them for this purpose at all times. Where food cannot be purchased or received, it must be gathered or hunted for. Faithful of Eilistraee are to set aside food and give it as often as possible to strangers in need, particularly outcasts and those of other races. If food yet remains, it is to be given to the priests of Eilistraee, that they may do the same, and none shall go hungry. In times of plenty, store food for lean times ahead. In harsh winters, patrol the lands about to find and take in the lost, the hurt, and those caught in the teeth of the cold. Whenever possible, food should be eaten with the accompaniment of song. Except for properly sad occasions, a feast should be accompanied by merriment; the faithful of the Dark Maiden are commanded to promote happiness and gaiety whenever possible. When faithful and allies of a priest fall in battle, any priest present must, if possible, provide burial, a funeral song, and comfort to the bereaved. Day-to-Day Activities: Whenever and wherever possible, faithful of Eilistraee encourage drow to return to the surface world and work to promote harmony between drow and surface-dwelling races in order to establish the drow as rightful, nonevil inhabitants of Faerun. They nurture beauty, music, the craft of making musical instruments, and song wherever they find it, assist hunters and hunting, and help others in acts of kindness whenever they see ways to do so. Priests must be skilled in the playing of at least one of the Dark Maiden's favored instruments-horn, flute, or harp; be adequate singers; and be fit, graceful dancers. They gather songs and musical knowledge constantly and acquire training in the use of the sword when they can. Holy Days/Important Ceremonies: The customary worship to the Dark Maiden is a hunt, followed by a feast and dancing, and a Circle of Song, in which the worshipers sit and dance by turns in a circle, each one in succession leading a song. If possible, this is done out of doors, in a wooded area, on a moonlit night. Daily prayers are sung whenever possible, and priests try to lead others in a song or two every evening, even if no formal ritual is held. Worshipers of Eilistraee try to let out all of the gathered emotions of the day with an 'evensong'. An evensong is a personal thing, often wordless and done in private. Priests of the Dark Maiden who have the coins to do so are expected to hire any strange minstrel or bard they meet for a song or two; lay worshipers are encouraged to do so. Whenever a sword is finished or first taken into use by a worshiper of the Dark Maiden, a priest tries to call down the blessing of the goddess upon it. This is done by planting the blade point-down in the ground, out of doors and by night, and dancing. The Sword Dance circles the blade and involves the priest drawing blood from each of her limbs by dancing momentarily against the blade. If successful (45% chance, per night attempted), the blade glows with a silvery radiance. For three months, it does not break or rust (if a drow weapon, it is also made immune to sun and removal-from-radiation damage for the same period), and though lacking a bonus or dweomer, can strike creatures normally hit only by magical weapons. The High Hunt is celebrated at least once in each of the four seasons: a night-time hunt of a dangerous beast or monster, led by priests of Eilistraee. By tradition, the hunters may use any bladed weapons, and wear anything-except the priests, who go naked, carrying only a single sword. If the quarry is slain, a chanted prayer and circle dance to the goddess is held. At least once a year, priests of Eilistraee undertake a Run. Those who are not drow blacken their bodies with natural dyes and oils. All priests, drow or not, boil certain leaves and berries to make their hair silvery, and go wandering (on the surface world). (Hostile drow say their silver hair indicates that the brains within the head are addled, though many drow who do not worship Eilistraee have silver hair.) Trusting to their music, kind ways, and sword skills to keep them from being slain as drow, priests of the Dark Maiden go where they are strangers, making an effort to seek out elven communities and bring them game, kindness, and helping hands. They try to learn new songs, music, and sword ways, and do not come to preach their faith or make a mark for themselves. In the end, all priests who do not die in battle hold their greatest ritual: the Last Dance. In old age, Eilistraee's priests hear the goddess singing to them by night, calling them to her. When the song feels right, they go out unclad under the moonlit sky and dance-never to be seen again. Those who have observed such dances say that the goddess comes and sings overhead, and the aged priest begins to dance more effortlessly, looking younger and younger. Her hair begins to glow with the same radiance as the Dark Maiden's, and then she becomes slowly translucent, fading away as the dance goes on. In the end, only a silvery radiance is heard, with two voices-the goddess and her priest-raised together in melancholy, tender song. Major Centers of Worship: Before the elven Crown Wars, Eilisrraee's faith was strong in Miyeritar, and she had small numbers of faithful in Ilythiir and the other elven realms of the time. The Dark Disaster, unleashed during the Third Crown War, transformed Miyeritar into the blasted wasteland now known as the High Moor and dealt a devastating blow to the ranks of the Dark Maiden's followers. When the Ilythiiri were transformed into the drow and banished from the sunlit lands at the end of the Fourth Crown War some five hundred years later, Eilistraee's church effectively collapsed and was not reformed for millennia. A few ancient, sacred sites of power built before the Crown Wars survive in the Misty Forest, along the borders of the High Moor, and in the Shar, scattered across the onceverdant savannah. In the Year of Shadows Fleeting (-331 DR), the drow of the Twisted Tower fell to the armies of Cormanthyr and Rystal Wood was left in the hands of good-aligned dark elf allies. Within a century, the Tower of the Dark Moon was Eilistraee's greatest temple in the Realms. The Dark Maiden's temple fell once again to the drow beneath Cormanthyr in the Year of the Apparition (190 DR) and survives today as Shadowdale's primary redoubt where it is known by its original name, the Twisted Tower. All that remains of the Dark Maiden's legacy is the swirl of Eilistraee's moonfire that envelops any follower of Eilistraee who mentions her name within the once-sacred halls. The Promenade of the Dark Maiden, also known as Eilistraee's Promenade or simply the Promenade, occupies a large ruined city located to the east and north of the lawless, subterranean city of Skullport on the third level of Undermountain deep beneath Waterdeep, the City of Splendors. Of the four major caverns that comprise the temple, one cavern contains many two- and three-story buildings that serve as living quarters for the faithful; another cavern-the Cavern of Song-serves as open space and as an amphitheater for the hymns of the Dark Maiden's worshipers; the third cavern serves the priests as living quarters; and the fourth cavern houses guards' barracks, storehouses, armories, and living quarters. A large side cavern leads off from the Cavern of Song to Eilistraee's Mound, site of a great statue of the Dark Maiden hewn from a jagged mound of rock. Adjoining the main temple is the Hall of Healing-once a temple of Moander that was destroyed by an unknown band of adventurers in the service of Tyr long ago- which serves as a sick nursery for the care and tending of the temple's wounded as well as those unfortunates who suffered from the dangers of the Under Halls and were rescued by the Dark Ladies. A fixed one-way teleport spot from the sixth level of Halastar's Halls delivers adventurers and an infrequent monster to the northwestern corner passage north of the Hall of Healing itself. Priests of the Promenade heal any who come to the Hall, offering the hand of friendship oft denied to those of the Shunned Races. Many races live among the community of faithful, and their numbers are drawn from escaped slaves, former adventurers, and the Chosen of Eilistraee, as the dark elven priests are known. Prominent individuals resident in the Promenade include: Qilue Veladom, High Priest of the Promenade, Chosen of the Chosen, and Chosen of Mystra (see Seven Sisters and Heroes' Lorebook for additional details on the least-known of the Seven Sisters); Elkantar Iluim, Right Hand of the Lady; Arrikett Uruth, Hand of the Protectors; Iljrene Ahbruyn, Hand of the Protectors. The Protectors of the Song, who wield the temple's sacred singing swords, serve as the temple's guards. Their ranks include 24 drow (nine females), 9 dwarves, 27 humans (12 females), and 4 halflings. Daily activities in the temple include food-growing, temple-building chores, patrolling the temple caverns and passages, and practicing diplomacy beyond the immediate temple area. The Chosen of Eilistraee work tirelessly to further the Lady's aims toward the peaceful coexistence of drow with other races of the Realms and to fulfill her commandments about preventing the return of Ghaunadaur. Centuries ago, Eilistraee appeared to Qilue Veladorn and commanded the young dark elf and her playmates from part of the now-vanished drow settlement of Buiyrandyn-a small, poor gathering of drow families too small to be considered a city-to take up the singing swords provided by the Dark Maiden and destroy the Pit of Ghaunadaur. The Pit was a mile-deep shaft whose upper terminus opened into the third level of Halasters Halls. After a great battle that resulted in the destruction of an avatar of the Elder Eye as well as the most of its slithering, oozing, and creeping worshipers, the Pit was filled with rubble and the caverns around its opening collapsed. (The rubble-filled Pit of Ghaunadaur is located in the area north of Skull-port and west of Eilistraee's Promenade. The only remaining access to the rubble-filled Pit is via a long, twisting staircase capped by Eilistraee's Mound.) Qilue and the rest of the Chosen of Eilistraee then took up responsibility for patrolling the region in armed, vigilant tours mockingly referred to as promenades by other inhabitants of the area. In the years since their great victory, the number of battles the Dark Ladies have been forced to fight-particularly with the minions of Ghaunadaur-has continued to increase. After centuries of conflict, the Chosen began construction on a temple complex where they could receive the guidance and aid of their goddess late in the Year of the Harp (1355 DR). Although construction continues, the temple was largely completed and habitable by the end of the Year of the Prince (1357 DR). Since that time, the Chosen of Eilistraee have continued to patrol the surrounding tunnels of Halaster's Halls, but with the added security of a fortified redoubt to which they can retreat when prrudent. In the spring of the Year of Maidends (1361 DR), the Dark Maidens participated in a daring raid of a slave ship berthed in Skullport that resulted in the death of the deep dragon Pharx and the destruction of the Dragon s Horde consortium, a merchant band led by a priest of Vhaeraun. Several years later in the Year of the Banner (1368), the Promenade came under attack by Ghau-nadaur's cultists who led a full-scale assault on the temple that lasted for several months before the Elder Eye's followers were driven off. Aboveground temples of Eilistraee are known to exist in the Moonwood north of the village of Quaervarr and at the northern end of the Velarwood in Harrowdale. The Mouth of Song, as the former temple is known, is located in a cavemouth beneath a treeless hill-atop which the dark elven priests and a few half-elven and elven faithful from Silverymoon dance in a great ring on moonlit nights-a day's travel north of Quaervarr. The Shadowtop Glade, as the latter temple is known, is located in a series of caves that line both sides of a steep-sided overgrown gully dominated by a grove of towering shadowtop trees. Dark elven priests of the temple armed with enchanted silver swords and moon-worshiping lycanthropes from the nearby Howling Hill join together to conduct sacred hunts to Eilistraee and Selune when the moon is full. Smaller shrines of the Dark Maiden have been spotted in the Misty Forest, the High Forest (where the Dark Ladies are led by Ysolde Veladorn, daughter of Qilue), the Forest of Shadows, the Lake Sember region, the Grey Forest, the Forest of Lethyr, the Yuirwood, and the Chondalwood. Hidden temples of Eilistraee may exist in the hearts of such forests as well. Temples of the Dark Maiden are conspicuously absent on Evermeet, the Green Isle, despite the recent rapprochement engendered by the dark elven ambassador, Lady Karsel'lyn Lylyl-Lytherraias. Affiliated Orders: The Darksong Knights are an elite order of Eilistraeen crusaders active of late in South beneath the lands of ancient Ilythiir. Composed entirely of crusaders and warrior/priests, each members of this order is expected to devote her life to the furthering of the Dark Maiden's ethos, and in particular, the destruction of the Abyss-spawned yochlol, also known as the handmaidens of Lolth. Priestly Vestments; Priests of Eilistraee wear their hair long, and dress practically for whatever they are currently doing. For rituals, they wear as little as possible. Otherwise, they tend to wear soft leathers for hunting, aprons while cooking, and-when battle is expected-armor. When relaxing, they favor silvery, diaphanous gowns. The holy symbol of the faith is a silver sword pendant the length of a Dark Lady's hand. Such symbols are typically worn as pins or hung around the neck on a slender silver or mithral chain. Adventuring Garb: Eilistraee's clergy must garb themselves in either magical armor or armor of drow make. Whenever possible, priests of the Dark Maiden must use swords in battle. If no swords are at hand but other bladed weapons are available, they must be used in preference to other weapons. Long bows and silver-tipped arrows are also commonly employed as secondary weapons. Singing Swords XP Value: 1,600 GP Value: 10,000 The favored weapons of priests of Eilistraee are singing swords. Some are sentient and aligned to chaotic good, but most can be wielded by any being capable of lifting them. A singing sword is a silver bastard sword +3 that sings constantly and loudly when unsheathed. When and if silenced, the weapon loses its attack and damage bonuses. Its song makes its wielder more confident, so she need never make any morale checks while using the singing sword. The sword also renders its wielder immune to charm, command, confusion, fear, friends, repulsion, scare, and suggestion. If emotion is cast on the wielder, the only result is rage directed at the caster of the emotion spell. The sword's song also negates the songs of harpies, stills shriekers, and can entrance creatures of 2 Hit Dice or less (except undead beings or creatures from other planes). Such creatures must succeed at a saving throw vs. spell whenever they are within 60 feet of the song or be subject to an automatically successful suggestion from the sword wielder. This suggestion ability functions as the spell of the same name. Note that the sword wielder can enact a different suggestion on each creature affected. Also note that a bard can easily negate this latter power of the blade by singing a countersong. Specialty Priests (Sword Dancers) REQUIREMENTS: Dexterity 16, Wisdom 9 PRIME REQ.: Dexterity, Wisdom ALIGNMENT: LG, NG, CG WEAPONS: Any (swords preferred) ARMOR: Only magical or drow armor (of any kind) MAJOR SPHERES: All, combat, creation, elemental, guardian, healing, necromantic, protection, sun, wards MINOR SPHERES: Animal, charm, divination, summoning, travelers, weather MAGICAL ITEMS: Same as clerics REQ. PROFS; Ancient or local history, artistic ability, hunting BONUS PROFS: Dancing, musical instrument (horn, flute, or harp), singing * Sword dancers can be of any intelligent race, but they must be female. * Sword dancers can multiclass as a sword dancer/fighter or as a sword dancer/ranger provided that their race is allowed to multiclass as a cleric/fighter or cleric/ranger, respectively. Half-elven sword dancers are allowed to multiclass as sword dancer/bards. * Sword dancers can use a sword of dancing to great effect. On any round in which the blade's plus is not a 1 (for example, round 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, etc.), a sword dancer can release the sword of dancing. At 5th level, sword dancers can release the weapon on any round after the first round; the sword of dancing fights on its own for a number of rounds equal to the priest's level before returning for 1 round. (The cycle of pluses continues unaffected by when the priest actually grasps the blade.) * Sword dancers can cast Eilistraee's moonfire at will, once per day for every level of experience they possess. * At 5th level, sword dancers can cast magic missile (as the 1st-level wizard spell, four missiles per spell), or they can temporarily enchant an edged slashing weapon to ignite with a fiery blue-white glow visible to all and strike with a +3 attack bonus (but not a damage bonus) in the next round (in addition to any other bonuses it has). They can either cast magic missile twice in one day, enchant a weapon twice in one day, or use each ability once in one day. * At 7th level, sword dancers can cast enchanted weapon (as the 4th-level wizard spell) three times per day by touch on any bladed weapons. Blades so enchanted glow with a silvery radiance and exhibit a +2 attack and damage bonus for 7 rounds, regardless of how many attacks they land or how many dispel magic spells are launched against them. * At 10th level, sword dancers can cast speil turning (as the 7th-level wizard spell) once per day. * At 13th level, sword dancers can cast commune or true seeing (as the 5th-level priest spells) once per day. * At 15th level, sword dancers can cast stone tell (as the 6th-level priest spell) or plane shift (as the 5th-level priest spell) once per day. Eilistraean Spells Two unique spells widely employed by the Dark Maiden's followers are lesser spellsong and spellsong. The use of these spells has given the clergy of Eilistraee the name spellsingers in the North. Sword dancers should not be confused with spellsinger wizards who cast spells in the same way, but who worship Mystra and other gods, with other aims. (Spellsinger wizards are detailed in 'Wizards and Rogues of the Realms'.) In addition to the spells listed below, priests of the Dark Maiden can cast the 2nd-level priest spell 'stalk', detailed in Faiths & Avatars in the section on Mielikki. 2nd Level Eilistraee's Moonfire (Pr 2; Alteration) Sphere: Sun Range: Variable Components: V,S Duration: 1 round/level Casting Time: 1 round Area of Effect: Up to 1 cubic foot/level Saving Throw: None By means of this spell, the caster can conjure controlled moonfire. Moonfire can range from a faint glow to a clear, bright (but not blinding) light, varying in hue as desired: blue-white, soft green, white, and silver. It serves as a source of light for reading, finding one's way, and attracting others to a desired location. Moonfire is the same as the strongest moonlight for all purposes. Eiiistraee's moonfire lasts for one round per level of the caster. Concentration is not required to maintain it, but it can be ended at will by the summoner, by a successful dispel magic spell, or by any darkness spell cast against it for this purpose (which the Eihsrraee's moonfire negates during its own destruction). 3rd Level Bladedance (Pr3; Conjuration/Summoning) Sphere: Combat Range: Touch Components: V,S,M Duration: 1 round/level Casting Time: 6 Area of Effect: 1 bladed weapon Saving Throw: None Moonfire always appears to emanate from some part of the body of the priest casting the spell, but it can move about as the user wills. Priests of 4th level or higher can cause moonfire to move away from their bodies altogether, drifting about in the manner akin to dancing tights. Moonfire moves about the caster's body as rapidly as desired, but when no longer in contact with the caster it can drift in any direction (and through the tiniest openings) at a rate of up to 40 feet per round. Moonfire can fill as large or small an area as the priest desires, up to the volume limits of one cubic foot per level. This spell enables a single bladed melee weapon touched by the caster to animate and attack a chosen creature. The spell confers only the ability to move and fight; it does not confer any other magical abilities or properties. If at any time the caster and the weapon are separated by more than 60 feet, the spell ends and the weapon falls to the ground. Any time after the spell is cast, the bladed weapon can be cast into the air by the priest and commanded to attack. The weapon flies toward the target creature by the most direct route. It attacks any creature that tries to block its way. If left to itself, it will fight its way to the intended target through all opposition; however, the caster can, at will, take direct control of its flight, its positioning, and its attack. Doing so requires full concentration on the weapon for the entire round; otherwise, the blade attacks on its own. The weapon attacks once per round, as if wielded by the caster. If bladedance is cast on a magical weapon that has powers activated by a wielder (such as the radiance effect of a sun blade), the caster must concentrate on the blade in order to use them. The dancing weapon does not take normal melee damage, but any attack that might destroy the weapon under normal circumstances can affect it, and of course the bladedance is subject to dispelling. If the weapon is engaged in non-lethal combat, it defends as if it was the caster. While the blade is acting on its own, the caster can take any other actions: resting, discharging missiles, spellcasting, melee, and so on. At 5th level, a priest can cast bladedance on any size S bladed melee weapon. At 7th level, she or he can cast the spell on any size S or M bladed melee weapon, and at 9th, a size S, M, or L bladed melee weapon can be affected. The material component is the priest's holy symbol, which is touched to the weapon. Lesser Spellsong (Pr 3; Evocation) Sphere: Creation Range: As spell created Components: V, S Duration: As spell created Casting Time: 1 round, or variable depending on the value of the material components used in the spell created Area of Effect: As spell created Saving Throw: None This spell enables the caster, by song and supplication to Eilistraee, to cause an effect equivalent to almost any desired priest spell of 3rd level or less, in effect casting the spell with normal effects, range, duration, saving throws, and so on, but without the usual gestures or (most often) material components. However, spells that require material components in excess of 100 gp in value require an additional round of singing to be added to the casting time for each 100 gp of value or fraction thereof of the material component. Spells that specify that the material component cannot be eliminated or substituted for cannot be created with lesser spellsong. The caster must be able to move (hands and shoulders at least) and sing free of magical silencing. Priests of Eilistraee are trained to sing when in pain and can sing while dodging about in combat. 6th Level Spellsong (Pr 6; Evocation) Sphere: Creation Range: Special Components: V, S Duration: Special Casting Time: 1 round, or variable depending on the value of the material components used in the spell created Area of Effect: Special Saving Throw: None This spell enables the caster, by song and supplication to Eilistraee, to cause one of several effects. If other priests of Eilistraee are present, the options for the possible effects this spell can produce increase. The caster and any additional choral participants must be able to move about freely to dance and sing free of magical silencing. Priests of Eilistraee are trained to sing when in pain and may sing while dodging about in combat. Choral work by multiple priests involves a circular dance around the person to be aided, a fire, or other focal point. Failing anything else, a long sword driven point-down into the ground or a tripod of sticks surmounted by the holy symbol of the caster can be used. This spell can perform one of the following functions: (1) Spellsong can cause an effect equivalent to almost any desired priest spell of 4th level or less, in effect casting the spell with normal effects, range, duration, saving throws, and so on, but without the usual gestures or (most often) material components. However, spells that require material components in excess of 100 gp in value require an additional round of singing to be added to the casting time for each 100 gp of value or fraction thereof of the material component. Spells that specify that the material component cannot be eliminated or substituted for cannot be created with spellsong. (2) Alternatively, a spellsong may be used to recall to memory and the immediate ability to cast any one spell of 4th level or less cast by the spellsong caster earlier in the last 48 hours, not including any spells cast from scrolls. (3) It can also, with different wording, bestow spell immunity. If a spellsong is cast when more than one priest of Eilistraee is present, the other priest or priests can join in the song without using a spell themselves. In this case the spell immunity is not only applicable for a spell known to the caster by casting or by the experience of having it cast on or against her, but also can be applied from any spell known to others in the choral group by casting or having it cast upon or against one of them. (4) A differently worded spellsong can heal 1d4+1 points of damage to the caster or to any creature touched. Each additional singing priest who touches the injured creature while the spellsong continues heals 1d4 more points of damage. (This choral addition can he used only for healing points of damage, not in other healing uses of the spell.) (5) If seven or more priests of Eilistraee are present, they can work a cure blindness, slow poison, or cure disease instead of curing points of damage if they will it so and sing together. (6) If nine or more priests are present, a dispel magic, remove curse, neutralise poison can be worked. Dispel magic or remove curse take effect at the level of the highest choral participant. (7) If 12 or more priests are present, a regeneration can be worked instead or an experience level lost within the last day restored.

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