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BTL Backstory


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#1 Zyraen

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Posted 21 November 2007 - 11:22 PM

Contrary to the title, this does not cover the Background of Kova and Kiyone. However if more people are interested in their past, their parents, upbringing etc, I'll be quite glad to post my notes on those in here.

What this topic does, is that it outlines the Backstory of BTL, all the characters mentioned in the story, like Renal, Aran, Mae'Var, Jharen, Kova, Edwin, Jermien, Seida, Kharen, Deros, Elvan, Arledrian, Gaelan. It also ties in almost perfectly with the original Bioware Quests, making the whole thing very sound indeed.

Not all the characters listed here will be put into the backstory, as they may affect in-game decisions, and in fact overall the Story here may prove spoiling to a certain degree.

This post is best appreciated by people who have played through BTL at least once and want to know why things happened as they did. Before you do read it you may want to read the last portion of the following topic, on Other Characters in BTL.
http://www.shsforums...showtopic=24363

HOWEVER one more thing - this story is NOT Perfect, I am not an angel of some sort to write perfectly water tight stories based on other people's work (especially Bioware's seemingly random placement of characters and quests...).

Criticisms and Questions can be formed in another non-pinned topic in the forum, that's fine, but please don't place any on this topic, thanks ^^;; Feel free to quote from this story though in the Topic, as required.

Edited by Zyraen, 22 November 2007 - 12:29 AM.

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#2 Zyraen

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Posted 22 November 2007 - 12:18 AM

BTL's Backstory

IG - In-Game reference, meaning there are verbal / written notes in SoA/BTL to illustrate this.

Seida is a guildmaster under Aran Linvail, second to Renal only, mostly due to trust issues with Aran rather than solely by influence / power.

Aiming to supplant Renal and Aran, the idea he comes upon is to harness magical allies like Cowled Wizards to utilise against them where necessary. However the Cowled Wizards are not open to any sort of outside influence or bribery, so this proves troublesome.

To this end, he plants several promising Shadow Thieves who are trustworthy into the Cowlies. These include Kova (IG - when he joins) and one other individual of significance. (I shall refer to this individual as X)

Meantime, Mae'Var, a guildmaster who used to work under Seida (IG - if Mae'Var sees Kova) also harbours thoughts of removing Renal. Seida is unwilling to have anything to do with him, having confidence in his own plans and seeing that Mae'Var is inherently suspect and too "blatant" for his tastes. This disturbs Mae'Var who ends up courting the Night Knives (IG - SoA).

Kova's skill increases and X's skill and influence in the Cowlies grows. Along comes Bodhi to Athkatla and the Guild War begins (IG - SoA). Aran and Renal are tied up but Seida is careful to conserve his resources. At this point he decides if Cowled Wizards hostility against Aran were to begin, Aran would be in considerable trouble. He issues orders for Jharen and Kova to poison the village of Shanro, a Cowlie supply base, to incite a war against Aran (IG - when Kova joins).

The ruse succeeds but Jharen is killed. With his death, if the matter became a matter of war for the Shadow Thieves, it would be easy for Aran to identify his Guild as the culprit and set him up to take hostilities from Cowlies. Kova becomes the convenient scapegoat, but the Cowlies are still suspicious. One of those most alarmed by these events is Elvan (IG - mentioned in Rayic's letter) and Rayic, who starts to wonder if something is amiss.

Seida now decides a reward is due for Kova, as he knows both of the Cowled Wizard moles, and of the order of Shanro's destruction, but his funds are running low with his expansion of his influence and the occasional unavoidable losses due to meeting Bodhi's skirmishes and handling Renal's spies. So he forges a similar blade to Kova's and kidnaps 3 nobles, obtaining their ransom before disposing of them (IG - when Kova joins). Kova is set up to take the fall, in his absence, and Seida enriches himself by about 10K-12K gold. Enough for him to offer a sizeable reward, ensuring Kova would be dealt with or would not return to Athkatla to affect his plans (IG - the highest reward for Kova is 9000 gold, offered by the Shadow Thieves. All other reward amounts are less). In any case holding gold in reserve is also good even if Kova is not caught.

The Cowled Wizards refuse to be drawn into this, and remain aloof and non-comittal, focused on finding out the truth behind Shanro's destruction. To goad the Cowled Wizards into action against Kova, X slays 4 enforcers and sets Kova up to take the fall (IG - when Kova joins). Unknown to X, this act is witnessed by Deros who happens to be around as a civilian (IG - Rayic's letter, Jermien's words). Meantime, Corneil appoints X as the person in charge of this investigation, as X indeed volunteered for it (IG - Enforcer Reports). This alarms Elvan and Rayic further, who start their own investigations regarding the background of X (IG - Rayic's letter)

Mae'Var also gets wind of this and the Letter of Authority that Seida issued falls into his hands (IG - when you open Mae'Vars documents). He threatens Seida with this, intending to secure his help against Renal. At this point Edwin comes along to Athkatla. Fearing the Cowled Wizards, Edwin tries to find his own place, and ends up under Seida's umbrella, since through X he can be relatively prevent Edwin from running into serious trouble from the Cowlies. In return, he plants Edwin into Mae'Var's guild to spy upon him, and the Red Wizard quickly climbs the ranks in the Guild (IG - SoA. Edwin was obviously working for someone else, YET he was clearly not working for Renal or Renal would have referred the PC to him)

X gets wind of Rayic and Elvan's suspicions and how they are investigating X's background, and informs Seida. Seida intending to conserve his strength by using other guild's influence, tells Edwin to find a way to get rid of Rayic (IG - SoA), as X continues to scour for Elvan's whereabouts. Mae'Var is supportive of the idea, only verbally, and does not give Edwin the support he needs. Edwin finds out about Night Knives overtures, and through Seida's machinations, Renal becomes aware of this and hires the PC to remove Mae'Var (IG - SoA).

Meantime Deros, seeing the reward on Kova's head, has left Athkatla and goes travelling, meeting Jermien and telling him the truth and fleeing for his life. Jermien encourages him to write back to Athkatla but Deros' letter is intercepted, and Seida has Deros murdered. Jermien, hearing of Deros' murder, starts to build a golem to protect himself and also take care of his daughter (IG - SoA) as he expects to be lying low for a while. Meantime he writes back to Rayic to make sure the information that may not have got through to him is successfully conveyed (IG - in Rayic's letter he refers to what Jermien has told him, meaning that Jermien must have already communicated at least once with him)

Alarmed by the news, Rayic also sets about protecting himself from treachery among the Cowled Wizards. His choice of guards is similar to Jermien's - Golems, especially ideal from protecting against Mages, since most are immune to magic. Unlike Jermien though he is a much more capable wizard, and so he fends his 2nd storey of his house with 2 such creations (IG - SoA). Meantime he prepares a letter for Elvan in case anything should happen to him (IG - Rayic's Notes).

================

In this whole storyline, events in BTL become clearly correlated and linked to many of the Bioware default Quests, such as the extermination of Mae'Var, the Juggernaut Golem Jermien was building, the murder of Rayic (and choice of guards) orchestrated by Edwin, what *EXACTLY* Edwin was doing in Mae'Var's Guild, how Renal came to hear about Mae'Var's treachery.

From this starting point, the developments in BTL itself (such as the death of Rayic and Mae'Var, as part of the game, and many others) also become very clear and straight forward. And yes, even details on how the Shadow Thieves could afford such a handsome reward for Kova despite fighting Bodhi is addressed in the backstory above.

There's more details, but most of them are revealed in BTL itself. The final link of who X really is is revealed in Part 7 of BTL, AFTER the Trial (and acquittal of Kova), although X's name itself pops up quite early and clues as to X's real identity is hinted at numerous times IG, albeit never directly.

As I noted in the post above, this story is not 100% watertight, not least because I am not *that* familiar with FR. I just hope people will find it enjoyable to know what went into BTL, since no one, to my knowledge, ever pieced together the Backstory of BTL while cracking their brains to solve the Quest.

Edited by Zyraen, 22 November 2007 - 12:25 AM.

kiyos.jpg____btlbn2.gif____kovaS.jpg
Love between a Law Enforcer and a Fugitive - can such a thing even happen?
SoA Release - Overview / Download Links

Zyraen's Miscellaneous Mods - Ust Natha Accelerator, item tweaks, XP caps, The Ub3r Reaver Kit, and much more...
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