After a good bit of going around and talking to people, the resulting accumulation and development of statuses in The Glades is approximately thus:
Evil Lolth-worshipping drow. This would be wholly unexceptional except she’s living in the middle of the capital city of an elven region. And has a following. A potentially growing following. They may or may not be murderous. It’s kind of a problem. Allegedly Eldarion permits this because of her skill in political maneuvering, which she’s been using for either the benefit of The Glades or the benefit of Eldarion, depending on who you’re talking to. Whatever the reason, it does not sit well with everyone in The Glades, because Lolth.
You care about her because she’s your only real lead on the Sword of Kas, which she claims to have buried herself at the end of the last war involving the hand and eye of Vecna some 250 years ago. From what you know of history, this isn’t farfetched. According to the records of the time, hers was the only drow house to enter the war against Vecna. It seemed like a good idea at the time. It was soundly defeated and banished from the Underdark while she was still a child. She related to Murg Starblink that her house’s involvement in the war was, in fact, trying to acquire the Sword of Kas.
Her price for the information of the sword’s whereabouts is your help in the following plans – One: She wants Lavonne to accept a life in the Glades under Alaric Hellnor. This will apparently help cement her standing in The Glades and provide a grateful nobility. She has also said it’s the only option for Lavonne that allows her a future with love, freedom and a family of her own. Two: Bring her daughters in line with her ambitions so she can have some semblance of a house. Three: Profit.
Drow, but not an evil one, if not entirely altruistic at all times. She’s the daughter of Umraeafay whom she’s had a falling out with on numerous occasions, the latest of which nearly involved her being sacrificed for the glory of Lolth. So, really, it’s less, “feels are complicated,” and more, “irreconcilable differences.” She took the name Lavonne for herself as part of her efforts to distance herself from her drow heritage. She is also the former lover of Andrew Hellnor, last of the Hellnor Kings. This led to her becoming great friends with his sister, Aurora, having Aurora’s daughter named after her and becoming involved in the upbringing of the young Lavonne to an extent that Lavonne (The younger) considers her (Lavonne the elder, referred to here as Phaedra) an aunt. This has nothing to do with the DM liking Tolstoy. She is a veteran and accomplished scout, infiltrator and combatant.
She first arrived at The Glades and was nearly chased out as a mere child, having just escaped her mother after her grandmother’s arrival had succeeded in converting the woman into a priestess of Lolth. She was nearly chased out for being a drow because elves are kind of racist. (“I mean, don’t get me wrong.” A spokesman reportedly attempted to explain once. “Dwarves and Tiefling are fine. Their skin’s not black.” He was shortly thereafter fired.) Regardless, she was allowed to remain and be trained due to Shazihar’s influence. While there, her vehement repudiation of Lolth and all her tenets, charm and great skill earned her a combination of admiration and scorn. She would leave after her mother’s arrival and continued presence in The Glades became too much for her to bear. Parents. Seriously. What are you gonna do? She had not returned since then until now.
Despite her following, she has said she would not be able to take any position of leadership in The Glades, believing herself to lack the ability. She has said her concerns here are – One: Lavonne Melindor’s safety Two: Lavonne Melindor’s happiness. Three: Profit. (No, not really) She has also said she has no plans to accede to her mother’s wishes, would not be able to bring herself to even had she wanted to and could never effectively lie to her mother either. This has led to her telling The Band of the Rose that she can’t help them with her mother’s demands. She seems unhappy at the prospect of seeing her sister again as well, whom she still bears a grudge against for her involvement in the whole, “Nearly involved her being sacrificed for the glory of Lolth” thing.
Niece of Andrew Hellnor, last of the Hellnor Kings. I mean sure, she’s charming, clever and charismatic, (being almost solely responsible for the Western Foray) but have you seen that potential birthright? Dayum girl. No? Well, her parents did, which is why they turned aside all potential suitors, forbade her from marrying and bearing children and had her watched pretty regularly. Somehow, “It’s for the good of the future of the kingdom,” didn’t really sit with her as well as everyone had wanted to believe, and she’s apparently been carrying that fact with her her whole life. She’s also the heiress to the title of Warden of the West, the lands and station of Marquess of Avon and their respective armies. She just probably won’t get them until she’s an old women with no surviving family and no family of her own. In her case, feels are totally complicated.
Sure, there’s more to her and her life and story, but, they don’t matter much to just about anyone. Really. That’s all almost anyone’s talked to her about 99% of the time for like the last year. So, she was trying to get home from the wedding of one of those few people, her best and oldest friend, Adaia Barshai, when she was hunted down, captured and brought to The Glades. She now she sees herself being used as a political pawn in The Glades where she may be used to force her father and his armies into the war, and she seemed uncertain how much she cared beyond what her position in The Glades might mean for a future for her and what she should do.
The Band of the Rose argued to her that she was already involved. Even if she chooses to do nothing, by virtue of who she is and where her choosing to do nothing would make her remain was making a choice that could effect the outcome of the kingdom and the war. They suggested escape, political marriage and (totally by accident accident) incidental treason and asked her what she wanted. She said she needed time to consider and told them to return the next day. They did not.
The founder and leader of The Glades. She seems nice, if, well, filled with machinations. She’s also the aunt of Alaric Hellnor, current claimant of the head of House Hellnor and leader of the Loyalist faction. Again, machinations. Most of what is known about her has come from the opinions of other people. According to those voices critical, she’s trying to restore for herself a position of similar power and authority as she had in The Crystal City before she left under uncertain circumstances. Those same voices say she is involved in the politics of the kingdom in ways unbefitting of the elves. Voices supporting have yet to be sought.
A revered philosopher, former soldier and general individual of great prominence in The Glades. She has and currently still taught and teaches many students over the years and commands great respect. She is the reason Phaedra was taken in and trained and Umfraeafay, by extension was not immediately chased out. The relationship between her and Phaedra, whom she herself had taken in, became strained when she foiled Phaedra’s attack on Umraeafay. Unraeafay has not done much to convince Phaedra she was wrong on that one.
She is also very, very old, even for an elf, and seems near the end of her time in the physical realms. For some reason she didn’t succinctly and directly answer questions about political allegiance, her unambiguous judgement about the founder and ruler of The Glades, who she thinks would be good options for replacing said founder and leader of The Glades or plans for overthrowing any of the above when asked by a collection of non-elves she had just met. This was the source of confusion to some in The Band.
A number of her students were among those who were fond of Phaedra before her departure and have taken to keeping an eye on Phaedra since her return, to ensure no harm befalls her. For her part, she has simply offered, when asked, that elves follow not because they owe allegiance or fealty, but because they chose who to follow for the good of them all. The qualities that would most encourage elves to follow someone are those following tenets of their god and creator, Corellon Lorethian. It stands to reason that the tenets of Sehanine Silverbow, another fae deity considered second only to Correlon, might likewise be welcomed. Lolth is right out.