The Dark Maiden, Lady of the Dance, Lady Silverhair, The Dark Dancer
- Lesser Deity
- Symbol: Unclad female night elf with long hair dancing before a full moon with a silver bastard sword
- Home Plane: The Abyss
- Alignment: Chaotic Good
- Portfolio: Beauty, dance, freedom, hunting, moonlight, song, swordwork
- Worshipers: Drow exiles; drow seeking an alternative to their society
- Domains: Life, Light
Eilistraee (eel-iss-tray-yee) is a self-apppointed patron and protector of the few drow who long to return to the surface and live there, at peace with other races, abandoning the endless conflicts and intrigues that dominated their lives. Despite her mother’s treacherous involvement in the creation of the drow, she chose to share their plight for she believes these fallen elves will need her light in the darkness, as a shining beacon of hope, if they are ever to find redemption.
Eilistraee tries her best to be a mother goddess to her people and bring them the hope of a new life: she fights to lead them back to the lands of light, helping them to flourish and prosper in harmony with all other races, free from Lolth’s tyranny. She has a strained relationship with Sehanine Moonbow whom, she believes, does not do enough for the sake of the drow.
Clergy and Temples
The clergy of Eilistraee are collectively known as “the Dark Ladies”, although individual temples often have their own naming conventions for both the clergy collectively and individual titles. Young initiates and acolytes are known as Maids. Individual titles vary greatly from temple to temple, but some suitable examples include Moon Dancer, Moon Singer, Dark Huntress, Argent Maid, Living Sword, Unsheathed Blade, Sword Smith, Bright Edge of Darkness, Darksong Knight, Protector and Ghost of the Moonstruck Night.
Clerics of Eilistraee are individuals of any race, but almost always female, because – due to the goddess’ nature of nurturing mother – One cannot truly feel the Divine Dance of Eilistraee properly except as a female. Nonetheless, no priestess would reject males who wish to join the clergy, or act against them, refuse to aid and accept them, or renounce to Eilistraee’s vision. On the contrary, taken as a whole, all clergy of the Dark Maiden welcomes the fellowship of more and more followers of the goddess, no matter what gender.
Temples of the Dark Maiden are typically established in the mouths of caverns or in woodlands, places that allow her followers to reach and act on the surface world. Temples in the Underdark – even shrines close to the surface – are unusual and always very secretive. Her temples include a glade in which to dance and from which the moon is fully visible.
As an avatar, Eilistraee appears as a night elf female of extraordinary beauty. Over 2 meters tall, with long, strong, graceful limbs and a glossy, obsidian-dark skin. Her face is like that of her mother, Lolth, with delicately sculpted features and shape, but her hair is ankle-length, of a glowing silvery hue, and her eyes large, with irises that held a shifting hint of blue like moonstones. She usually appears unclad, cloaked only by her hair and silvery radiances that are ever-moving about her body. Her voice is soft, warm, and carries a sweet musicality within itself.
Overall, Eilistraee’s appearance inspires utter awe and astonishment, as well as emotions so deep to move mortals to tears.