Liolesa Galare

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Liolesa Sketch

Empress of the Eldritch Empire. Head of the Galare, the imperial House.

Pronounced lee-OH-less-AH.[1]

Physical Description

Has tawny/light brownish-amber eyes. She shares the shape of her face and chin with Hirianthial and his brother Baniel. The combination (face shape and eyes) are reminiscent enough of Jerisa that some of the older Eldritch approved of Maraesa's selection of her for heir based on the resemblance. [2]

Powers

Touching anyone, even briefly, makes her see how they fit into the Pattern, which makes her uncomfortable; she doesn't touch because (as often as not), she prefers not to start deciding where to slot people so they will best serve the Pattern. [3]

Biography

The Heir

Liolesa was born before the Pelted were even engineered on Earth, and she was heir when Maraesa made the treaty with them. She was invested as the heir during a winter ceremony, and her vigil gatekeepers were her confessor from childhood, Elder Tasisaressa; and Hirianthial, who joined the Swords when Liolesa was selected by Maraesa as her heir. [4] (In what is perhaps a demonstration of what time does to memory, Hirianthial tells Reese at some point that Liolesa had been heir since birth. [5]) At the time, her chief concern was the growing class divide in the Eldritch population, between those who labored and those who ruled them... but during her vigil, she had a vision of a future that would ask far more of her than the oversight of the Eldritch's society. It was also during that vigil that her nascent talent for Pattern-sensing bloomed. [4]

After she became heir, Maraesa sent her on several missions to the Alliance, acting as her ambassador. She also took multiple covert trips off-planet over a period of two centuries. Her cover for these trips was meditation retreats to the Convent of Saint Wilthelmissa. Some of these trips involved helping others, as when she escorted Fassiana to the Alliance to find her help conceiving. (And also when she discovered she was infertile herself.[6]) Some of those trips furthered her love affair with Pieter (a human geneticist). [7] Hirianthial, who was at the time the captain of her White Sword contingent, didn't know about these trips off-world.

The New Queen

The moment she saw Fasianyl enter her throneroom with Sellelvi at her side, she'd known that her people would one day include more than the Eldritch. [3]

It is not long after she's crowned that she ceases to use Hirianthial's milk name.

Somewhere near the end of this period she hires Maia also.

The Empress

Liolesa is over 600 years old and is of an age with Hirianthial.[8] Not long after he married, she began hoping that he and Laiselin would produce a daughter she could tap as heir, having begun to see errors in Bethsaida that would render her unsuitable.[2] But Laiselin died in childbirth, and Hirianthial left the planet not long after. She gave him the work of discovering the whereabouts of the missing Eldritch (most of whom were taken by the slave trade). Six years prior to the misadventures that necessitated his rescue, Liolesa began cultivating merchants, including the human trader Reese Eddings, sending her an encrypted message and enough money to rescue her from debt. [8]

Family

  • Mother: Rylaniel Jesa Galare
  • Father: Toltheniv Delen Galare
  • Spouse: none
  • Children: none
  • Other family: Maraesa was Rylaniel’s sister. Rylaniel’s brother, Theval Jesa, married Sylfani Sarel Jisiensire, and these were Hirianthial and Baniel’s parents. Liolesa’s other cousins, Maraesa’s two children, were Besinir Jesa (m) and Anariel Jesa (f)—the latter is the one who produced Bethsaida’s father.

Quotes

  • "If we wait to act until we're certain, we will never act." [6]
  • "One cannot be paralyzed by the future's uncertainty, cousin... because the future is forever uncertain. That is our salvation, for otherwise we would surely be hunted by insanity. We live too long, to also live without surprise." [9]
  • "Go on, then, dear one. Let us put an end to this era in our history and move on to brighter days and better deeds." [9]

Quotes about her

  • "When our Empress keeps a secret, the only people who learn about it are the goddess and herself." (Fassiana, in Healer's Wedding, chapter 5)

Trivia

  • During the Solstice Vigil, Liolesa received toys from Bryer, Irine, Sascha, and Kis'eh't - a ball of goo that always bounced back to shape, no matter how hard it was thrown, smashed, or torn; a sliding metal puzzle; a bead that projected a starfield; a pocket sized board that could be used to play four different games; and a palm sized palomino horse plush. From Hirianthial, she received a Book of Hours from the Convent of Saint Wilthelmissa and from Reese, a pouch hammock of pastel cords with a matching blanket of pale yellow and pillows of white and cloud blue. [5]
  • likes almond liqueur
  • does not admit people to her private morning time until she likes them, and doesn't stand on formality during that period [3]
  • has a health scan "every century or so" [6]
  • had conversations with Hirianthial, before she was chosen as Heir, about whether "there was any use plundering what was left of the ship for parts to make their lives more tenable, and if there was anything left worth scavenging"[4]
  • When Liolesa wants to disarm her enemies, she wears a perfume involving ambergris and thorn marten musk. [8]


Body Language

  • is capable of ridiculous feats of bodily self-control (to the point of her pupils not changing size). Lets her guard down around people she knows and likes, though. [6]

References

  1. "Pronunciation Guide," Even the Wingless backmatter
  2. 2.0 2.1 Author's private notes
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Farmer's Crown, Chapter 4
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Major Pieces, "Prophet's Vigil"
  5. 5.0 5.1 A Rose Point Holiday, Chapter 4
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 Farmer's Crown, Chapter 13
  7. Rose Point, Part Three
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 Earthrise, Part One
  9. 9.0 9.1 Laisrathera, chapter 24