An oracle with a strange connection to the dead.
Arabella Lazarus was born and raised in Caliphas, the capital of Ustalav. Her father was Edmund Lazarus, a wealthy human merchant, and her mother was Amarthel, an elf from Kyonin who traveled to Caliphas to see how the humans lived. Amarthel bore Edmund two children, Arabella and her older brother Dorian, before tiring of the human world and returning to her home in Iadara. Arabella was only three when her mother left, and she barely remembers her.
From an early age, Arabella possessed an unnerving ability to commune with the dead. Spirits seemed to be drawn to her, and she occasionally lapsed into a strange language that no one else in her family understood. It was clear that she had either been blessed or cursed by the gods, but no one could ever quite decide which.
Amarthel’s departure and the emergence of Arabella’s strange powers marked the beginning of the end for Edmund – his business ventures began to fail one by one, as the cost of caring for two young children burned through his considerable savings. They lost the family home when Arabella was seven, and Edmund died two years later, leaving fifteen-year-old Dorian with the responsibility of caring for his sister and himself.
In his desperation, Dorian saw opportunity in his sister’s abilities. He began to advertise Arabella as a medium, convincing people that they could speak with their loved ones again through her. Through a combination of Arabella’s real powers and Dorian’s quick wit and trickery, they quickly became a sensation in the upper echelons of Caliphas society. The Lazarus children were rich once again. Despite the exhaustion caused by constantly using her powers, Arabella was happy to help – she had always harbored a belief that her abilities were the reason for her family’s downfall, something which Dorian (perhaps unintentionally) encouraged with his stories of how wonderful things were before she was born.
When Arabella was nineteen, she made a discovery that forever destroyed her faith in her brother. Dorian had been hiding money from her for years, telling her that they were making around two-thirds of what they actually were. Their childhood had given both siblings a complex when it came to money, and Arabella irrationally feared that she was going to be abandoned to the streets once again. When she confronted him about it in a panic, he became angry with her for the first time in her life, letting out years of pent-up frustration. He had sacrificed everything because of her; he had given up so many opportunities of his own to keep his broken sister fed. When he snapped that Amarthel had left because of her, Arabella decided that she had had enough. She took all of her own money and prepared to leave Caliphas, signing up with a mysterious group called the Pax Aurea. Perhaps with the Pax, her powers could finally be used to help others instead of take advantage of them.
Arabella has no memory of anything that happened after joining the Pax. From what she can tell, it has been approximately five years since then, but she remembers none of it. She awakens in the asylum with only a strange, lurking sense of danger, and the omnipresent whispers of the dead…