You see Legendary Thief Kraelyst, The Hand, an Elf.
Kraelyst has an angular face, pointed ears, deep-set dark eyes and a crooked nose. His amber hair is shoulder length and wavy, and is worn loose, tucked behind his ears. He has tanned skin and a thin build.
He has a tattoo of a bare-chested pirate with a girl under one arm and a keg in the other on his neck.
He is holding a fire-blackened assassin's blade in his right hand.
He is wearing some opulent platinum-threaded battle leathers crested with a scarlet hand, an azure-scaled poloh'izh hide cloak, a miniature crossbow, a hand-crafted brigand's crossbow carved from deobar and fitted with ogre-gut string, a braided spidersilk climbing rope, a glossy black spider bracer with white bands on its legs, a soot-stained climbing rig, a dark leather lockpick case shaped like a hand, a highwayman's belt, a locksmith's toolbelt fashioned from darkened leather, a gleaming animite key, an animite ring etched with nautical symbols encircling an onyx-inlaid hand, some fitted leather pants, some scarlet-trimmed black leather bucket boots, and a wicked brand.
The character Kraelyst was created in May 1996, shortly after DragonRealms came out of Beta testing.
Kraelyst joined the Thieves Guild in May 1996.
Kraelyst is the founder and former leader of The Locksmith Union, a loose organization of locksmiths that opens treasure boxes in various locales throughout the Five Provinces.
Kraelyst shares in the ownership of two ships, a brig named The Immortal Hand and a galleon named The Tipsy Gypsy.
In 2002 Kraelyst instigated the Lavender Prank.
Kraelyst is the author of several elaborate travel scripts.
Kraelyst may be the only non-Ranger able to climb the quick way under the Ilithi gondola.
Events in Which Kraelyst Was Involved
Kidnapped Maedow on the eve of her wedding and received ransom for her safe release.
Organized first three Locksmith Union box raffles.
Organized multiple group raids on the Throne City Museum.
Organized group tour of the M'riss Penal Colony.
Kraelyst Umbyr was born in a town founded ages ago by his ancestor, the notable bard Bryndal the Blue. That town was, and still is, the wayside village of Bargenstone.
Bryndal the Blue had travelled far and wide, but had achieved his greatest fame in the bustling city of Wheinemer's Landing. He long dreamed of owning an inn, and in the year 280 Before Victory (as the calendar is kept in the Five Provinces) he did just that. Along a popular trade route, Bryndal built his inn and tavern and named her The Gentle Wyvern, reflecting one half of the famly crest (a silver Harp and Wyvern over a blue field). The inn was well placed between two major Elven cities and was thus a very popular travel stop. Many of the travellers who frequented that trade road eventually chose to settle there. Slowly the loose assemblage of homes and shops grew into a proper village and was named Bargenstone. When it came time to establish some semblance of a government, the respected head of the Umbyr family, Bryndal the Blue, was persuaded into the Mayor's position of the largely Elven community he had founded. Three more generations of Umbyrs would inherit both proprietorship of The Gentle Wyvern and Mayorship of Bargenstone before both honors were finally passed down to Sebastion Umbyr, an austere Elf who would be Kraelyst's father.
In the Year of the Bronze Wyvern, 281 A.V., Kraelyst was born to Sebastion and Celeste Umbyr. The town celebrated for the couple's firstborn male and the continued legacy of the Umbyr family. Much of Kraelyst's youth was spent in apprenticeship to his father so that he could one day run The Gentle Wyvern and care for the community of Bargenstone, as had his father before him, his father before him, and so on. Unfortunately for all, Kraelyst's interests fell elsewhere and trouble followed him around closer than flies on a swamp troll. Kraelyst was frequently found ditching his household duties, scrapping with his fellow Elflings, cursing like a bamboozled Trader, and even cheating and stealing from the other townsfolk. When Sebastion finally encountered his son about such behavior, Kraelyst exploded, cursing his father for forcing him with the duties of work and leadership which he never desired, and denouncing what he knew his father held dear, the family's bardic tradition. On a crisp winter night in 305, just after his 24th birthday, Kraelyst left Bargenstone unannounced, never to return.
For two years Kraelyst wandered the land until he came across the large seaside city of Nelfour. There he took employment as a Priest's assistant in the Kilth rae Kweld (Temple of Death - Urrem'tier's temple). While working as an assistant (really little more than an errand boy), Kraelyst continued his practices of theft, dishonesty, and misdirection whenever possible. After three years time, Kraelyst was hardly more respected at the temple than before, yet he enjoyed his time with the strangely reassuring god of Urrem'tier and his frequent outings around town to acquire the priest's necessities. During one such outing, Kraelyst made his way through the bazaar, stealing wherever he could and cheating wherever he couldn't... and relenquishing very few of the coins given him by the priest for purchases. Over the course of his little spree he also managed to attract the attention of a very curious and dangerous stranger. At first the stranger intended to rid the bazaar of the little pest who was treading on claimed territory. The stranger began his pursuit, but after watching for a short while he recognized the potential abilities of one so young (by Elfin standards) and surprisingly talented. It was that day that Kraelyst was invited into the "Eternal Night" by none other than Steven the Quick, master of the most feared band of Elven thieves and assassins ever to inhabit Nelfour.
Kraelyst's natural talent was given nourishment and he quickly advanced through the ranks of the Eternal Night. It was within this group that Kraelyst learned and accepted a history of life with a decidedly Elven slant. Hardly two years had passed before Kraelyst was selected above all others for a particularly bold and difficult mission. In the middle of the city's most ostentatious ball, Kraelyst successfully nabbed a priceless bracelet (and two rings) from the hand of Princess Bryona, causing havoc and humiliation for the royal family and earning Kraelyst his moniker, "The Hand".
The Hand of Urrem'tier
Kraelyst continued to thrive in the Eternal Night, particularly in the ways of assassination. The Eternal Night was frequently sought out by those who wished others ill, and the payoff for such jobs was considerable. Kraelyst's skill and reputation grew and many began referring to him as The Hand of Urrem'tier, both for his proficiency in assassination and his growing devotion to the overseer of death, Urrem'tier. Back in Bargenstone, unbeknownst to Kraelyst, his younger brother was birthed and given the name Bryndal, in honor of his renowned ancestor, Bryndal the Blue.
By the year 317, Kraelyst had become the most beloved of Steven and was gifted a weapon forged by Nelfour's premier weaponsmith. It was a fire-blackened assassin's blade and upon the crossguard was an inscription, '"To my son, loyal servant of the Eternal Night, most feared assassin in all Nelfour and the Outer Dales. May Urrem'tier guide thine Hand." -Steven the Quick. 317 A.V'. Soon after, Kraelyst was appointed as an instructor and organizer within the sect, and as such, was rarely sent on jobs and no longer needed to steal to maintain his lifestyle.
Some years later, soon after a suspicious chain of events led to the death of Steven, Kraelyst was forced from the Eternal Night and no longer able to walk the streets of Nelfour with any type of security. He left the town then, in the dead of night, the same as he had done with Bargenstone many years before. Twenty years passed as Kraelyst wandered throughout the world, never staying in one place for more than a couple years, until one Summer day in the year 345 he set his eyes on River Crossing, a city very nearly the twin of Nelfour. Within hours he had found his way into the local thieves guild and met the first Gor'Tog he'd ever taken a liking to, Kalag the Black. Both men respected one another, but Kalag informed Kraelyst in no uncertain terms that to earn his bread in the Five Provinces he would have to prove his skills same as everyone else.
River Crossing, The Early Days
Though it had been many years since Kraelyst had practiced his trade seriously, his instincts were still sharp and he advanced through the thieves guild rapidly, staying at the forefront for nearly two years, and being one of the very few to earn the title of Outlaw the day Kalag began bestowing titles. In those early days he ran with a rough crowd including the likes of Jokbed, Torkens, Shanwynn, Avoral, Dynos, and others, frequently around the Theren Keep and out hunting kelpies or swamp trolls. Kraelyst soon became a fixture in the Crossing guildhall, a mentor to a great many of the "2nd generation" Thieves, such as Kainan, Rim, Vow, Amberdream, Cardinale... During that first year, while on a hunting trip south of Shard, Kraelyst acquired a brigand's crossbow for which he is somewhat famous and is still using to this day.
In the year 346, Kraelyst disgraced the Riverhaven guild by gaining quite a reputation in the Therengian province. The northern guildmaster Crow forced him to spend one year without speech so that he may learn the discipline he was apparently lacking.
In the beginning of 347, Kraelyst became involved with the Dark Court, a group resurfacing from the Empire days. He helped to build and guide the very secretive group under the leadership of The Moray. As with his other ventures into the thief's world, he advanced quickly, heading up recruitment, earning the job of quartermaster, and eventually succeeding The Moray as head of the Dark Court. The Court gained strength under his hand and became (under disguise) one of the first three Orders to be officially recognized and granted a house. But soon a struggle for power arose and tore the Court apart, landing Kraelyst in a dungeon, supported by half the Court, condemned by the rest. Kraelyst was freed by one of his supporters and moved on, leaving the Dark Court to its own devices.
More recently Kraelyst has had his hands in many scandals and guild-related occurences, such as leading a massive hunt for the Fifth Passage, tricking mages into going on a 'lavender quest', founding the Locksmith Union, assassinating lockpick undercutter Galain, leading a raid on the Throne City museum, helping rid the Crossing guild of Ishtvan & his cronies, smuggling Swan out of Riverhaven when the guild was betrayed, and subsequently being betrayed by Kalag and the Birds when he needed them most. Kraelyst's influence in the Guild continues to grow, as do his many exploits. It will be many years yet before the Five Provinces might be rid of the scourge of Kraelyst the Hand.
Kraelyst the Hand
Kraelyst's past colours his present. Spending most of his life in the company of Elves, including many years with a group that believed all other races to be inferior, Kraelyst has turned out quite arrogant and openly racist, exuding an aura that is both condescending and mildly threatening. His religion began with his work at the Kilth rae Kweld in Nelfour. The goddess of his family was the patron of Bards and he was unable to relate to her in any way. Urrem'tier fit his lifestyle snugly and is (in Kraelyst's opinion) the most powerful god, a trait important to Kraelyst. Women have never played a large role in Kraelyst's life, as he is nearly as sexist as he is racist. He did have one brief stint during his first year in River Crossing, an Elven lass named Tzigane, but he found as always, that life is simpler without relationships. Besides that, Kraelyst is far too selfish and cold to ever develop a real love for anyone but himself.