Boryael Illuriel, better known as Boryael the Swift, Queen of the Void Winds, is an Eldar outcast, corsair and the leader of the mercenary group The Wild Kin. Born on the Craftworld Alaitoc, a Craftworld known for it's strict interpretation and execution of the Eldar paths. She is notorious for latent violence and her desire for excitement and battle, letting many suspect that she will one day fall to the side of the Dark Eldar.
Born as a daughter of an Aspect Warrior on Alaitoc, her siblings had pursued successfull, though quiet careers as artisans, politicians and craftsmen. In contrast, Boryael's showed no such talent, excluding her from following in their footsteps. The young Eldar showed no special talent or ability, aside from stirring up troubles or fights with other kids her age. That was, however, only until she reached an age when she was able to tread the Path of the Warrior.
While following the Path of the Dire Avenger, like many others her age swayed by the aura of honor surrounding them, her trainers and teachers attested her a promising talent and dedication for the arts of war, but mourned her lack of discipline. It would turn out that she merely chose to start with the wrong Aspect.
After completing this first step, Boryael continued her search for a place to fit in and eventually joined the Alaitoc shrine of the Howling Banshees. Both their direct approach to combat as well as their ferocity impressed her greatly. Now, she showed both dedication together with the discipline she had lacked before. Throwing herself into training, she soon exceeded pupils older than her in skill and talent. During missions, the Exarch mentioned positively that she was eager to enter battle, displaying a distinct lack of fear and restraint, befitting the Aspect's mentality. Both her mentors and her family considered her future to be decided now, but they would be proven wrong.
A Divided Child
After she had learned what there was to learnit became clear that she would not develop the necessary deep devotion to become an Exarch and Boryael left the shrine. Though not uncommon among Eldar, her lack of decisiveness was received differently among those around her. Some saw this as an early sign for her potential as an Autarch, others regarded her fickle nature as a sign of a weak and potentially dangerous mind.
Undeterred by such accusations, her interest fell on the shrine of the Striking Scorpions. Their focus on melee and close combat tactics suited her own preferences and their approach to them over stealth rather than direct assault interested her. Like before, close combat lied within her range of talents and like before, she soon outdid pupils with more experience in terms of sheer combat prowess. Their use of stealth tactics and their long waiting in ambushes and hideouts intrigued her. Forced to apply discipline and patience over ferocity, her time there would teach Boryael how to keep her temper in check around others. Regardless, she left the shrine as soon as she had learned what there was to learn.
Afterwards, she visited several of the other Aspect Shrines of Alaitoc, but none seemed to catch her interest for a longer amount of time. Voices behind her back, some whispering some not, arose displaying worry about her fate, but seemed to fall on deaf ears with the young Eldar.
At last, she learned of the Aspect of the Crimson Hunters, exceptional pilots that dedicate themselves to controlling their vessels with unparalleled mastery. It was during that time when her desire to flee the spacious boundaries of her homeworld. The galaxy beyond the wraithbone walls of Saim-Hann were infinitely more intriguing than anything at home. Learning of the Aspect of the Shining Spears on Saim-Hann, who shared her affinity for Jetbikes and direct combat, there was little to hold her at home. Despite the heavy resistance of her family, Boryael eventually left for Saim-Hann, a different craftworld, seeking to learn more both about the world she lived in as well as the others of her kin.
After several hundred years, Boryael returned. Meanwhile, her home had learned that she had not stayed on Saim-Hann. She had trained with a group of Rangers, listening eagerly to their stories about the wonders and profanities of the universe. It was during that time that she got to know her later companion Shiso Nadar, who hailed from Alaitoc just like her. Travelling with them for some time, they eventually lost her to a group of Shining Spears, who in return left Boryael in the care of a shrine of Swooping Hawks on Biel-Tan. After that, her traces became less clear, deliberately seeking independence and isolation.
The Eldar that returned was different from the one who left. Matured, experienced, it seemed she had left her erratic past behind her and was on the best way to become an Autarch. She would be able to prove herself when a Chaos Warband, the "Sons of Slaughter", attacked one of Alaitoc's expeditions to an Exodite world. Joining the deployed war host, she assumed command after the leading Autarch fell during an enemy pincer attack. Boryael lead a number of attacks on the renegades in order to take out key members and fortifications before leading an assault on their headquarters. With a single attack, she effectively tore out the enemy's heart and brain in one move.
When she returned, her family, friends and mentors praised her greatly, celebrating the return of an Eldar back to the Craftworld. Boryael, however, was greatly dissatisfied. Instead of pursuing and crushing the Chaos Marines, the orders from home had forced her to give up on pursuit in order to minimize her own losses. A hundred years of fighting in smaller groups of Alaitoc's military forces only deepened her dissatisfaction with the Eldar society. Their focus on self-preservation and -restriction unnerved her to no end and several of those serving with her reported that she often endangered her troops in the pursuit of battle. This was only tolerated because her talent in the art of war was enough to make the success worth the risk.
A Leave, Final This Time
Ultimately, Boryael felt not only not at home, she felt drawn away into the open galaxy. Despite her obvious and outstanding talents in the arts of war, she was never considered for the Path of Command, as she her lack of restraint and desire for battle were considered as flaws. The tensions between her and the leaders of the Craftworld only intensified, until one incident decided her fate. During the middle of M39, she was assigned to secure an Eldar artifact from the death world Carnaas. Upon arrival, the Eldar learned that an expedition force of the Ordo Xenos was already on the planet, conducting an excavation. Being ordered to retreat due to the difference in numbers, Boryael ignored her orders and let her troops into combat. Though being ultimately able to secure the artifact and escape back into the webway, the losses were considered intolerable.
A dispute broke out between Boryael, her family and the other leaders of the Craftworld, lasting nearly a year. At the end, Boryael would leave the Craftworld, officially on her own accord, but actually being pressured into doing so. With a light heart, she was accompanied by a few individuals sharing her eccentric world view, feeling loyal to her after serving with her or simply wanting to leave the Craftworld. Boarding her personal ship the Void Dancer, she left to never return.
- Shrine Of The Dawnstorm: The Dire Avengers Shrine of Alaitoc. Many young Eldar join them, enticed by their aura of honor, skill and proficiency. While not exactly lacking ability in ranged warfare, Boryael quickly discovered that she preferred to engage enemies from up close.
- Shrine Of The Wounding Blade: A shrine of the Howling Banshees on Alaitoc. Their combat doctrine of rapid, almost reckless approach suited the young Eldar's preferences perfectly. Learning quickly and thoroughly, Boryael rose to one of the most skilled and talented members of the shrine.
- Shrine Of The Hidden Claw: At last, Boryael learned some discipline, patience and restraint under the Striking Scorpions' tutelage. According to herself, it was there where she learned to value those virtues along with the overwhelming use of stealth.
- Shrine Of the Hidden Web: Warp Spider's Aspect Shrine.
- Shrine Of The Falling Stars: Dark Reaper Aspect Shrine.
- Shrine of the Winged Serpents: Crimson Hunters are a Craftworld's most proficient and excelling pilots and Boryael felt immediately at home around her free-spirited kinsmen. Some of them would later join Boryael's exile, seeing a chance to hone and test their abilities agains many different foes.
- Shrine Of The Striking Chance: Though actually a travelling shrine, these Shining Spears resided on Alaitoc when Boryael learned of them. Seeking to expand her knowledge about Jetbike warfare combined with her desire to explore the galaxy, Boryael left her home to join them.
- They Who Seek: A group of Rangers under the lead of Pathfinder Shiso Nadar. They further increased Boryael's hunger for exploration by sharing their stories about their adventures of the universe. In return, they were unable to stop her from accompanying them when they left.
- Caridia: On the Exodite world of Caridia, Boryael and the rangers parted ways. They agreed to return and pick her up again later, which they did after around 30 years. In these years, Boryael lived among the Exodites, training the archaic Eldar ways of warfare and hunting. After the Rangers returned, Boryael declared herself ready to return home.
- Conquest Of Wrath: An expedition against a Chaos Warband named 'Sons Of Slaughter'. For the first time, Boryael displayed her ability to lead, rather by setting an example of bravery, ferocity and cunning than working out detailed battle plans. Though victorious, she had to give up pursuit in favor of preventing further losses.
- Against The Racing Sun: A Ork WAAAGH! threatened one of Alaitoc's webway portals in the Segmentum Tempestus. The fight against large forces of Evil Sunz challenged the Eldar's own proficiency in speed. Ultimately, Boryael's strike force eliminated several Meks and destroyed their workshops, giving the main War Host the necessary advantage to end the campaign and secure the portal.
- Heart Of Darkness: On the Night World of Charybdis, Boryael was able to apply what she learned with the Striking Scorpions. With the goal to exfiltrate a shot-down Farseer, the Eldar used stealth as their main advantage. On the imperial side, the campaign became infamous for not being able to confirm more than 50 kills on the enemy side while suffering over a 1000 men of losses on their own.
- Defend Our Past: The defining incident in her career, Boryael deployed against the will of her superiors to fend off a Deathwatch Kill Team tasked with securing an Eldar artifact. Ultimately successful, the losses her troops suffered were considered intolerable. Stripped of her position, Boryael took the consequences and left the Craftworld.
After this point of time, the information about where and how Boryael engaged in combat are highly unreliable. Especially the campaigns under Imperial employment are often little more than rumors, since interaction with Xenos is often punishable by death.
The Wild Kin
Along with the few Eldar that accompanied Boryael when she left Saim-Hann, Rangers, outcasts, lost and exiled forces eventually formed into the mercenary group known as 'The Wild Kin'. All of them share their leader's free-spirited mindset and desire to put their own independence above anything else.
Wargear & Abilities
Over the decades, Boryael has gathered and collected herself a private armoury, filled with weapons, armor and even vehicles.
- Khaine's Gnawing Teeth: A biting blade, a two handed chain-sword usually used by Striking Scorpion Exarchs, specifically crafted for Boryael's demands by an unknown Bonesinger. Aside from extra-hardened teeth, it also sports a psycho-activated force-field, allowing Boryael to survive most ranged fire with ease.
- Koromen's Legacy: Once belonging to a close friend, this pair of Void Sabres comes in the style of sword and dagger. It is the captain's preferred choice of arms for combat in buildings, boarding missions or wherever the somewhat unwieldy Gnawing Teeth's size would be a disadvantage.
- Neglected Destruction: A heavy flamer, usually only available to Fire Dragon Exarchs, Boryael received this weapon as compensation for transporting a group of Fire Dragons into battle. The Exarch had no regret to entrust her with this weapon, since 'he would never be able to put it to use anyway'.
- Stinger: A gift from an admirer in Saim-Hann's Striking Scorpions shrine, this helmet features the signature Mandiblasters.
- Armor of the Wind: This suit has seen repair and replacement parts over time, far beyond what would be considered standard. Though light like all Eldar armors, it features some heavier armor plates for additional protection, befitting it's owners preference for the center of battle.
- Wings of Fate: The most recent addition to her collection, this set of Swooping Hawk Wings replaces the Corsair Jump Pack Boryael used until then. Specifically for this piece of equipment, the Eldar corsair accepted to escort a group of Biel-Tan representatives to a meeting with members of the Inquisition.
- The Warp Wolf's Hide: During her time in Saim-Hann's fighting forces, Boryael was scent to push back demons that had invaded the webway. Among them was an unknown warp beast, whose hide Boryael claimed after slaying it. Wearing it now as a coat, it features all fur, feathers and scales of a strange gray color that shows shades of different colors in the light. As it is unusually thick, it provides some degree of protection against weak weapons.
Having walked many different Paths of the Warrior, Boryael refined her initial raw talent for combat to near perfection. The years in exile as a corsair have topped this with centuries of direct experience, making her a lethal opponent.
- Face To Face: Both the Banshees and the Striking Scorpions emphasize melee combat, a preference shared by Boryael. The natural speed, agility and reflexes of the Eldar give her an edge above most opponents and if that is not enough, her experience and skill take care of the rest. Often, the corsair will lead the charge, cutting right through helpless enemy infantry.
- Drown Them In Wind: Though quite able to match her melee prowess with guns, Boryael regards distance warfare as secondary. If necessary, speed has priority over precision meaning that both herself and her forces will shower the enemy in a storm of assault fire while advancing. Boryael herself rarely wields anything that is not a melee weapon, unless the situation demands it.
- Show, Don't Tell: Having never completed the Path of Command, she lacks proper and thorough education on strategy and warfare. Boryael derives the tactics of the Wild Kin from her own approach to combat and then abstracting the principle for the different kind of troops under her advance. In the midst of battle, she prefers to set a good example rather than directing her subordinates through direct orders. She trusts them to be able to handle themselves and do what has to be done.
The core motifs dominating the Wind Queen's actions are for once her curiosity for experiences, encounters and information, seeking to the self-centered world view of their brethren behind. Some of her companions speculate that she searches for new homes for the Eldar, but she has never confirmed that. Most under her command speculate that she just can't stand the sight of Wraithbone some times. Furthermore, she bears a deep desire to create a home for all those unfit or unwilling to endure the life on a Craftworld or among the Exodites. This has expanded somewhat beyond her race, as the Wild Kin now accepts almost everyone in their ranks who cannot return to their home for whatever reason. Chaos worshippers are one of the few exceptions.
Like most Corsairs and some Outcasts, Boryael is much more open when it comes to voicing thoughts or expressing opinions and feelings. Feeling confident with extravaganza and luxury that Craftworld Eldar might regard as dangerously hedonistic, she is a collector like many of her fellow Outcasts. However, where they collect weapons, treasure or rare artifacts, Boryael is known to collect people. Easily bored by conformity, she has made it a habit to seek out rare individuals with the goal to include them into her crew or at least add their stories to her memory.
Furthermore, the Wild Kin is often found on the fringes or the galaxy or traversing barely charted systems and sectors. Potentially dangerous, the information and maps they gather respectively create fetch high prices from the right buyers and sate the Captain's desire to discover ever new aspects of the galaxy.
In general interaction, she usually remains polite, though somewhat arrogant. Additionally, she has a tendency to grow bored of an encounter if her opponent does not manage to grasp her attention. When it comes to business, she is thoroughly professional, however. A contract is a contract and even if it expires, killing her former employer for the sake of money would just be a lack of character, in her opinion. If hired, she is sure to fulfill her task flawlessly, though one should give her free rein in the approach to it.
In combat, she displays ruthlessness towards her opponents, though she lacks any strong feelings for them, whether positive or negative. They were just unlucky to face her, most of the time not even out of their own motivation. Therefore, surrenders will be accepted while that doesn't guarantee survival. After all, the Wild Kin is no political faction and therefore rarely takes prisoners.
Allies and enemies
- Shiso Nadar: Perhaps the most trusted out of her commanders, Shiso considers himself directly responsible for Boryael's fate. Having known her from her early life on, she regards him as a mentor and friend.
- Hector Baez: Having rise from a seargant in the Imperial Guard to a de-facto renegade mercenary, he allied his forces with Boryael's in exchange for a place to call home. Though being watched by many WIld Kin with suspicion, he regards the question of his loyalty as rhetorical.
- Ymani: The most recent additon to Boryael's inner circle, this young, rebellious former Farseer, now Void Dreamer, admires Boryael for taking direct action against the enemies of the Eldar while simultaneously rejecting her savage approach to it. Yet, she regards the Wild Kin as the only suitable place for herself and the small group of Warlocks following her.
- Serycca Vraxx: Once belonging to a Wych Cult, this Dark Eldar lost her arm in an attempted coup d'etât. She was betrayed herself and lived a life in the shadows from that point on, making a new name for herself as a bounty hunter and assassin. Boryael and her clashed on several occasions throughout their life, a fight between them lacking a clear winner so far.