Character Name: Alexis Montjoy (aka Nightshade) of Baja Alexis Montjoy of Queen Shieba's Alliance Authors note: The story of Alexis was actually played out on Baja shard. Every character and guild in this story is also a character or guild in Baja and they should also be recognized as co-authors. Every one of them had a hand in this stories telling. I am merely recording the events as they happened. Orphaned at an early age, Alexis Montjoy was raised by her foster brother Blackwolf in the town of Delucia. Blackwolf's father, the clan's chieftain, had died the year prior and the mantle was passed from father to son. It was a duty Blackwolf held in great honor and took very seriously. Equally did he take to the role of raising his new sister. She was introduced to a scribe by name of Hargrave who took charge of her training in the ways of magery. The scribe became the father figure Alexis never knew, a role her foster brother could not fill. It was why both took it hard when Alexis became very ill, teetering on death's door. The clan's healer worked tirelessly tending her, trying to bring her from her sickness. In the end the healer had succeeded, but not without a cost. Alexis' nature had grown steadily darker. As she grew, Alexis found herself getting into deeper and deeper trouble. As a young teen, the girl left the Lost Lands without goodbyes and entered Britannia. She wandered the streets of this city or that stealing for food, doing whatever it took to survive. It was not long before she was recruited by a young organization known as the Dark Tower. It was here in these dark chambers that Alexis became to known as Nightshade, alchemist, poisoner, and assassin. She learned fast, to the surprise of her supervisors, and even seemed to relish her work. Years passed and Nightshade grew strong and quick. Her soul grew darker and darker. Neither Blackwolf nor Hargrave stopped trying to find the girl that they had raised. When word of reached Blackwolf of his sister's whereabouts, it devastated him. Something within him died. He knew that as clan chief it fell to him to carry out justice on her. He knew it meant his sister Nightshade must die. It was a betrayal to his heart that never healed. It was at the insistence of Nightshade's childhood playmate Jatarri, that a reason for Nightshade's change was found. Jatarri, daughter to the clan's healer, begged her mother to help Nightshade, to find some way of saving her. What the healer found was more terrifying, and also sealed Nightshades fate. The healer had learned that when Alexis was so near death, she had become possessed by a lhiannon sidhe (pronounced: lan-AWN- shee). Known mostly through legends and folklore, the lhiannon sidhe were malevolent fey spirits that haunted the living, feeding on the misery and pain that they caused. Knowing this was of no consolation. For even though it explained Nightshade actions were not her own, the spirit was immortal. Nightshade could only be freed by death when the sidhe would leave to find another body to serve as host. Nightshade's life was still condemned to death. Unaware of these discoveries, Nightshade took up residence in the town of Haven. It was there she that she had been dispatched by the Dark Tower, to observe and report the actions of Tider Lilly, Haven's emissary for The Dark Warden. The Dark Wardens were a new guild in the service of the light, which was growing fast in power and in numbers, too fast for the taste of the Dark Tower. Despite the sidhe's or the Tower's influence, Nightshade and Tider grew to become friends. Nightshade was drawn to something in Tider, something missing in her own life. Tider Lilly and the Dark Wardens Perhaps sensing the wavering loyalty of their disciple, the Dark Tower ordered Nightshade to assassinate Tider Lilly. Without question or hesitation the assassin slipped into the night air to meet her target. Not much is known about what happened that night, for neither Tider Lilly nor Nightshade have spoken of it. What is known, that in the end, Nightshade took her own life. Nightshade woke later in the home of Tider Lilly. Tider had use magic to bring her back from the grips of death. It had seemed that the sidhe had fled when its host died. In truth the spirit had become trapped in Nightshade's body, lying dormant, needing to grow in strength before it could take control once more. With very subtle suggestions, the sidhe influenced Nightshade's fears and doubts. Soon she was on the road again and alone. The Knights of Steel Fate is a strange master. It has a reason for every turn in ones' life, though we may not see the why at the time. So it was for Nightshade, when she found herself constantly running into members of the Knights of Steel. So she began traveling with them and in no time was befriended by them. There is no force that serves the light that does not have a shadow that follows it. For the Knights of Steel, this shadow was known as the Crimson Triad. Their leader was an evil creature, named Darkfire, a creation of a dread lich lord. Upon their first meeting, Nightshade felt unexplainably drawn to the man. Both terror and desire filled her being. What she did not realize was that the lhiannon sidhe that lay dormant inside her, was feeding off the creatures evil and was rapidly growing stronger, and worse, was growing more in control. In the course of a month the sidhe had nearly full control again. The Knights of Steel were helpless to save her. Jatarri's Return Hope came when in the form of a message, and a plea for the Knights to meet with Nightshade's childhood friend Jatarri. The young elven woman had grown to a fine druidess, and had assumed her mothers role in the clan. Having heard of the sidhe reappearance Jatarri brought to the Knights what they had hoped for, a possible cure. Armed with the knowledge she supplied the Knights were able to capture and perform a ritual that drove the sidhe from Nightshade's body. Nightshade was born again into the light. Like a child learning to walk, Nightshade had to learn control of her life and her emotions. Finally she was free. It was then that she took back the name Alexis Montjoy. Freedom Lost Struggling with feelings of guilt and remorse for her life under the sidhe's control, Nightshade learned the art of healing. For her it was both therapy and atonement. Though her friends told her that her past was not her fault, it was the sidhe's influence that made her do the things she did. To Nightshade it mattered little. Her hatred for the evils in her past grew to extremes, as she constantly drove herself to greater perils, trying to atone for, as she saw it, the unforgivable. Then one day as she traveled through the deserts of the Lost Lands, she encountered a strikingly familiar face. It was that of her own. "Hello dear sister," her mirror said to her. " I have been looking all over for you." At first Alexis believed that she had gone mad. But when the truth hit her, madness seemed a kindness. The sidhe was back, and in a body that so closely mirrored her own it was nearly impossible to tell one for the other. The sidhe began to terrorize the locals and the Knights of Steel alike, placing the blame on the Alexis. In desperation she was once more on the run. She knew that the sidhe was only interested in punishing her. If she ran, the sidhe would follow. Having nowhere else to turn Nightshade returned to her old mentor Hargrave. He welcomed her as if she had never been gone. He took her to his own life long friend, secret love, and guild mistress Queen Shieba. It is with Queen Shieba's Alliance that Alexis Montjoy has called home for many years, and will likely call home for many more. Hargrave once told her, ' You can't choose your family, but you can choose your friends. And if you are real lucky they both become one and the same.' She has found friends that have and will continue to stand beside her. Moreover she has found family. Armed with that knowledge in her heart, Alexis Montjoy will always stand strong, never be afraid, never be alone.