Lady Discordia Carus
Lady Discordia Carus is the firstborn daughter and heir of Imperial Senator Claudius Carus and his wife Drusilla, Duchess of Arrundal. When Discordia was born a seer told her parents she bore the gift of magic, a rare thing in the empire. If properly trained she could become a wizard, giving her family a great advantage. But Discordia’s parents could not wait for their daughter to grow up. So when Discordia was five years old, they cut a deal with Duke Elliott Swartout of York: Duke Elliott would decline the imperial senatorship offered to him and pass it to Discordia’s father, and in return Discordia would be given to the Duke and Duchess of York to raise as their foster daughter.
But Duke Elliott didn’t rely on fostering alone to ensure young Discordia’s loyalty. When Discordia came to live in York, the duke had a ritual performed to bind her soul to a gem for his keeping. Unfortunately, the rite didn’t go entirely as planned. Discordia’s soul was indeed bound to the gem, but her body suffered: her eyes turned a solid milky blue and her bones and muscles withered, leaving her tiny, thin, frail, and wracked with pain. Only her jet-black hair remains to show the beauty she might have been, and Discordia refuses ever to have it cut.
Eventually Discordia learned to live with her physical difficulties, and as the seer predicted, she became a talented wizard officially known as the duke’s alchemist. But she never forgave Duke Elliott for stealing her soul and warping her body, and the bitterness she bears toward him is kept in check only by the fact that he still controls her soul. More than anything, Discordia wants to get her soul back and then make the duke pay.
Living without a soul has given Discordia a callous outlook toward people in general, and she doesn’t care that most of the duke’s court dislikes and fears her. The only person whose opinion matters to her is her foster brother Robin, who was born on the same day she was and who has always treated her with love and kindness. Robin’s love for his father puzzles Discordia, and she hates knowing that one day she must choose between her vengeance and her only friend.
Adrian Swartout has worked in the tabletop gaming industry since 1998, when she was the trade show marketing manager for Wizards of the Coast. Throughout the 2000s Adrian and Peter played occasional “indie” RPGs together. They started roleplaying together more consistently in 2011 when Peter started his Burning Wheel campaign, set in Chaldea. Currently Adrian is the CEO and co-owner of Gen Con LLC.
Adrian talks about her character, Discordia.
Adrian describes Discordia at the start of this adventure.