- “That's what I do. Fall out of the sky, make bad decisions, and somehow everyone still follows me.”
- – Ethera to Morrigan
Ethera Lavellan is the Herald of Andraste and former Inquisitor.
Ethera has dark skin and hazel eyes. Her brown hair is very long and often kept in a large bun. Ethera initially has dark green, simplistic June valasslin. After Trespasser she cuts her hair very short, about mid-neck length.
Talents and Skills
Being a good hunter requires skills in various areas. Ethera is a pro archer who also has a knack for sneaking around unnoticed, the latter being one of the reasons the Keeper chose to send her to the Conclave.
Before Ethera was born, her parents Jarith and Shahira had a son named Tamrian. At the age of ten, Tamrian began having strange dreams. His parents reported this to the Keeper, who informed them that such dreams were often a sign that a person was a mage. It was later confirmed that Tamrian was indeed a mage, but there was no room in the clan for another mage. The Keeper contacted as many other clans as he could get in touch with, but he found none. With no place for Tamrian to go, he was given a week's worth of supplies and left by his clan in the woods.
Shahira gave birth not long after, and she and Jarith feared losing another child to those strange dreams. As a ward, they named their daughter Ethera, roughly translating to "safe dream".
Ethera became a hunter at a young age. She was very skilled and as she matured became seen as both a protector and provider among those in the clan.
In 9:40 Dragon, a year after the Mage-Templar War began, a Conclave was to be held. The fighting had gotten so bad that it was affecting outside parties, such as the Dalish. Keeper Deshanna Istimaethoriel of clan Lavellan sent Ethera to spy on the meeting at the Temple of Sacred Ashes, the outcome of which would impact everyone. During the Conclave the Temple was blown up, with Ethera being the only person to emerge alive.
Being given the role of the Herald of Andraste by those who thought she survived the explosion due to divine intervention, Ethera was given a leadership position in the Inquisition. In an effort to close the Breach, the mages of Redcliffe were allied with. After the Breach was sealed, Haven was attacked by Corypheus and his red templars. Everyone escaped while Ethera provided a diversion, barely managing to escape from Corypheus in the end.
Solas lead everyone to Skyhold, where Ethera was later named the new Inquisitor. Knowing that the true enemy was Corypheus, Varric introduced his old friend, Lyra Hawke, to the Inquisitor. Hawke explained that her Warden friend, Stroud, had been looking into red lyrium, and he was retrieved from Crestwood.
Ethera manages to begin getting used to her position as Inquisitor, making difficult decisions, such as encouraging Cullen to stop taking lyrium. She also got to know each of her companions better after helping each of them when she had the chance. She also got closer to Solas, and the two began a romantic relationship.
Knowing that Corypheus' plan was to kill Empress Celene, the Inquisitor and her companions attend Grand Duchess Florian's ball in the Winter Palace. While there they discover various conspiracies, and ultimately that the Duchess was working for Corypheus. After rescuing the empress and arresting Florian, Ethera told Empress Celene of Gaspard's treacherous plans to usurp her, giving the credit to Briala and reuniting the two former lovers.
After they found out the Wardens were working for Corypheus and summoning demons, the Inquisition stormed Adamant Fortress, sparing what Wardens they could and managing to convince Commander Clarel that the Wardens were being used. When attacked by both demons and Corypheus' dragon, Lyra, Stroud, and Ethera and her companions were trapped in the Fade. They managed to fight their way out, but in the process, Lyra was seriously injured and Stroud is left in the Fade to buy everyone time to leave. Despite the Wardens having caused the mess, Ethera allowed them to stay, convinced that they are needed to defeat Corypheus. An Inquisition agent was sent to Weisshaupt to inform the Wardens of what had occurred.
Following the events of Adamant, Ethera was forced to deal with a variety of matters dealing with her companions. In the end her decisions effect each of them greatly. Josephine's family, which was once the target of an assassination plot, was saved. Cole had been concerned about the potential that he would become bound and become a demon, but after retrieving a magical necklace Cole is kept safe, and also becomes more spirit-like when Ethera encourages him to let the templar responsible for the death of the real Cole go free. The Inquisitor was going to make an alliance with the Qunari through the Iron Bull, but in the end the alliance was called off in order to save the Chargers. Leliana received a last message from Divine Justinia V, and was able to let go of her past and make peace with the present. Ethera helped Molly kill the man who had been looking for her for over half a decade, allowing her to live her life out in the open again. Everything was going well until Blackwall disappeared, and when he was found, Ethera learned that he had been lying about his identity the entire time. Believing that letting him hang for his crimes was an easy way out, Ethera used diplomacy to take Blackwall back to Skyhold and judge him herself. In the end she decided that, once Corypheus was defeated, Blackwall was to go through the Joining and become a real Grey Warden if he lived.
At the Temple of Mythal, Ethera chose to respect the temple rituals and allied with the temple Guardians to defeat Corypheus' forces. After defeating Sampson with Dagna's rune, the threat was over. After the Guardians left, Ethera allowed Morrigan to drink from the Well of Sorrows.
After the events at the Temple, Solas took Ethera out. Solas explained the history behind the valasslin, that they were slave markings, and offered to remove them for Ethera. After removing her valasslin Solas told Ethera that they couldn't be together. Despite telling him that she loved him, he was firm in his decision.
After Corypheus was defeated, Solas left. Ethera put on a smiling face, but those closest to her knew that she was forcing herself. Not long after, Leliana was named Divine Victoria.
The Inquisition lasted another two years before its fate would be decided at the Winter Palace. Rather than debating, Ethera spent most of the time trying to figure out what the qunari were up to. She began to learn more about elven history, losing more and more faith and becoming more and more lost the more she learned. and Marsaili were her only confidants at the time that she could share this stress with.
Eventually it became evident that Solas was involved, and in the end, Ethera and her companions were able to stop the Qunari's Dragon Breath plan and save Thedas. Finally, Ethera met up with Solas once more, having learned enough to come to the conclusion that he was the Dread Wolf. Solas told Ethera his plans, assuring her that their love had been real. Solas saved her from the Anchor, which had been slowly killing her over the years. They expressed their love for each other one last time, with Ethera saying that her love would endure, before Solas left again.
After having her companions help her remove the part of her arm that was beyond repair and patching up what was left, Ethera returned to the Exalted Council. She interrupted the arguing, saying that the Inquisition would be disbanded.
The Inquisition was disbanded, but Ethera and some of her close friends and contacts continue to look for Solas, who Ethera hopes can be redeemed.
Ethera had been putting off seeing her family since after the Breach was closed. She was concerned about how they would react to her not having the valasslin, as well as her potential discomfort around the now that she knew what the valasslin truly meant. Her constant excuse she wrote in her letters to them was that she was too busy dealing with the Inquisition to come.
When the Inquisition disbanded, Ethera could no longer use her old excuse to avoid her clan and parents. Knowing the truth about elven history made it even harder, if not impossible for her to face her clan. She wrote to her parents saying that she did not know when or if she could return home, and has received no letters from them since.
Dorian Pavus: Though unsure of whether or not he could be trusted at first, Ethera and Dorian became very close friends. The two often talk to and confide in one another via the crystal Dorian gave her.
Lyra Hawke: Ethera and Lyra have a mutual respect for one another, and their friendships with Varric are another bonding point for the two. They occasionally meet up even now, though Varric usually accompanies them as well.
Marsaili: Ethera was resentful of Marsaili for gaining a place as a mage in the Lavellan clan while her brother had none. She was very cold and spoke little to Marsaili, but her opinion of Marsaili changed when Marsaili volunteered to leave the clan instead of a young mage boy who was going to be left in the woods. For this reason, she was much kinder and very welcoming of Marsaili when she arrived at Skyhold. The two developed an actual friendship thereafter, and Marsaili was an especially valuable confidant when it came to Ethera learning the truth about the ancient elves.
Molly: Ethera had a rather horrible first impression of Molly, who she had met when getting pickpocketed. However, after learning of Molly's circumstances and getting to know her, Ethera realized that Molly was much more than a thief, and got along with her well.
Sera: Ethera got along with Sera for the most part, but their differing views on elven culture were always a point of debate for them and a topic which they tried to overall avoid. Ethera was deeply hurt when Sera had laughed after finding out the true meaning of the valasslin, which the Dalish took such pride in. After seeing Sera two years later, Ethera was extremely surprised by how much she had grown. Sera asked her how she was doing and offered a listening ear when things became harder for her after learning more about how what she had been taught was a lie. Ethera now thinks of Sera as a very dear friend, and the two keep in touch.
Solas: Ethera was always somewhat wary of magic due to her past, but was open to talking to Solas and learning more about magic and the Fade. Her interest eventually shifted from the Fade to him. She loves Solas even after learning that he is the Dread Wolf and plans on tearing down the Veil. She hopes to bring him back one day.
Varric Tethras: Ethera thinks well of Varric. The two had a shared sense of duty in defeating Corypheus. They have a mutual respect between them, and they get along well.
- Ethera has the British Inquisitor voice.
- All possible companions were recruited.
Reddit Headcanon and Writing Prompt Threads:
- Marsaili's story
- Solas watches over her
- Meeting Molly
- Visiting Redcliffe
- Starting "Burdens of Command"
- The worries of the Requisition Officer
- Cullen and Marsaili prepare for a mission
- Cullen and Marsaili's conversation (mentioned)
- Solas' nightmare
- During "Deep Trouble"
- Marsaili overhears some gossip (mentioned)
- Servants' gossip (mentioned)
- After defeating Corypheus
- Marsaili confronts Ethera
- After seeing Solas again
- Confiding in Marsaili about Solas
- Discussing Solas's plans with Nerissa
- Avoiding her clan
- Telling Lyra Hawke about Bianca