Ilyta is a walker whose training and impulses have long drawn her away from civilization. Or specifically, inhabited civilizations. Her homeworld is one that is rife with countless epochs and dozens of lost civilizations. Despite the many ruins and wilderness that has overrun much of those areas, civilization has claimed mastery over their portions of the world and technology has reached towards a zenith on the shoulders of lost knowledge. Knowledge, indeed, is considered the most precious coin upon Ilyta's world, whether it be minted in politics or history.
Ilyta's name means "Survivor" in her ancestral tongue, and it is a fitting name. It is a blessing and a burden in equal measure, because while she is defiantly resilient, she has had to suffer more trials than many of those of her comparable age. It has made her strong, but further separated her from others, an outcast born of her accomplishments. Her only remaining relation is an estranged sister, but following her ascension, Ilyta has cultivated an impressive network of contacts and friends and commonly is known to rely on, or test depending on your perspective, their good nature when she unexpectedly arrives on their world.
Ilyta's father is an unknown to her and her mother died quite young, giving birth to a sibling who itself did not survive. This left only her older sister to raise her, already nearly an adult and resentful that her own career and training were being bogged down by the added responsibility. Despite this, she cared for Ilyta the best she could and pushed her to find her path. However, when that path turned out to be in history rather than the military, cracks in the relationship began to develop.
Her sister joined the ranks as soon as she could, her career delayed long enough for Ilyta to gain admittance to a good school, and the tension between the siblings continued to mount as each followed their own path. As success began to accrue, the letters came more infrequently until they stopped coming altogether. By that time Ilyta was preparing for her first expedition to the nearest ruins under the apprenticeship of a professor. It wasn't until years later that the hostility between her sister and herself seemed to have fallen away, but the distance seemed impossible to bridge by that time.
Ilyta flourished in the wreckage of civilizations past, and through immense work, managed to gain a position working with the university, one of the youngest admitted to the staff. It was, essentially, in title only, as Ilyta spent most of her time away in some distant tundra, desert, or jungle. She specialized in forgotten history, and the findings she made filled several tomes, but despite this, she had little success in sharing the documents. The work she was doing was, in short, too advanced for most to understand and the theories strung together, groundbreaking if true, seemed to materialize from the aether. Frustration grew with academia, and consequently, she isolated herself further and further, spending even less time among people.
While everyone agreed she was no doubt brilliant, she began to develop a notoriety for being eccentric and fewer colleagues chose to journey with her for fear of their own reputation. Eventually, even they stopped and isolation began to lead to stagnation.
It was her sister, risen quite high amid the ranks of the military, that finally offered some form of salvation. As patron, her sister offered her unlimited funds to study a select period with the emphasis on weaponry and spellcraft. With little choice, Ilyta accepted, but resented the "guidance" given to her.
She made some progress, but was ultimately unhappy with how she felt her studies were being utilized. Ilyta grew careless and withdrawn, sending the assistants away as she became more and more dissatisfied with what she was doing. After having sent most of them away, she came to a newly discovered ruin at the behest of her sister, but that arrival would change her life. Shortly after beginning the dig, she and her team began mapping the ruin. However, someone on the team, possibly Ilyta herself, triggered a trap and most of them ended up dead. The sole survivor was Ilyta herself... but she was trapped within the ruin. She spent days trying to find her way out, and panic began to set in. Hope waned, and eventually, Ilyta faced the cold hard truth that she was about to die, alone and possibly forgotten.
And that realization caused her spark to ignite.
Ilyta took to planeswalking with surprising ease, her perspective shifting almost flawlessly to the greater multiverse... to the point that she is aware that though her gift is rare, the idea of further worlds manages to fail to astonish or impress. It is no different than anything else she has explored. That does not mean she is not affected by the worlds she travels, merely that she takes most things in stride. But among the many worlds she traveled, there is one encounter that gave her pause, and it is that moment which has redefined her life.
The first time she set foot upon a dead world.
The idea, the very concept, of an entire world whose population was gone, even before her first breath, humbled her in profound ways. She began to appreciate the little things far more, because though the great works of civilization withstood the fury of time, they were cold. In some ways, meaningless.... But the simple things, a broken pot, a child's doll, these were things that people cared for. They proved that life had happened, that people were once there in the dusts of aeons.
Ever since that moment, she's set out to explore dead worlds, trying to find their stories, some proof that the world was there once. It is a preoccupation which has drawn her across Dominia several times over, and her habit of collecting such small trinkets has begun to wear on the patience of her friends as, inevitably, she ends up stowing such things with them. She also carries with her a book, recording everything she learns of these extinct worlds, just so that someone, somewhere in all the Eternities will remember their story.
With such a scope and humbling realization of her place in the multiverse, she has developed a desire to make peace with her sister, but since her disappearance in those ruins so long ago, she's afraid of what her sister might say.
Ilyta's skin is as pale as you might expect from other kor, but aside from that, her facial features are far softer. Her face is heart-shaped and her short hair fades from darkness to silver at the tips, a color that complements the amber of her eyes. Her ears are more horizontal than a human's, similar to an elf's, but without the length or the pointed tips. Short twin barbels hang from the flesh behind her ears, similar to the barbels found on a male kor's chin.
Ilyta usually prefers simple, well made, but tough clothing, normally only choosing a tight leather jerkin and baggy pants which she tucks into her specially crafted boots. She normally wears thick gloves as well, wound with steel bangles covered in charms prepared for most situations. Her cloak is, itself, woven from spellwork rather than fabric, and rounding out her gear is a leather satchel with its own mysteries.
The last thing Ilyta carries with her is a secret embarrassment, one which is hardly secret to anybody that really knows her. Several pairs of glasses. She's reluctant to admit the fact she is farsighted, and usually avoids wearing her glasses whenever she feels she can get away with it, a fact that irritates most of her acquaintances who, in turn, irritate her about it. It causes her to blush when they bring it up, a strange gold color rather than the human pink.
Skills and Tools
Ilyta is an expert in languages and history. She specializes in the use of small devices and equally minor magics, both of which are usually modular in nature, giving her an immense breadth of magics or artifacts to supplement her, at best, average capabilities. This approach has prevented her from developing any real focus in most of her abilities and normally she maintains these spells to be used at a moment's notice. However, this further makes preparation far more important to her, and her reliance on this means that once her tricks are exhausted, she is left with far fewer options than others.
The one way in which her skills in magic have been honed in depth is the harnessing and reconstruction of forgotten, expended, or lost magic. She spent years in the academy and the abilities she developed there in language and magical resonance has given her the mastery to coax new magic out of the old. This specialty has made her an incredibly capable archaeomancer and a prodigy in the field. Combined with her gift for glyphs and other language, it has earned her a fair amount of attention from various parties, even if she would prefer to avoid some of the eyes turned to her direction.
When she encountered the Kor of Zendikar, she was horrified at how barbaric they were, as if looking at a twisted mirror of her kin. Despite the mysteries of Zendikar, this event has put her off the world permanently.