Arwyl Swan's Son was the Mercykillers' Ward Monitor of the Lady's Ward in Sigil and later leader of the breakaway faction known as the Sons of Mercy. During his time on Toril, he was a Cormyrean paladin devoted to Torm.
At age 150, owing to a blessing of Torm, Arwyl still looked youthful, possessing a sturdy build and attractive features, although his hair had turned white by this point. His eyes were a bright blue.
Although committed to the cause of his faction, Arwyl placed his faith in Torm before his allegiance to the Mercykillers. An opponent of tyranny, he strove to keep Sigil an orderly haven, although he was willing to stray from the letter of the law in the name of justice, sometimes even going as far as circumventing the law entirely if he deemed it the right thing to do.
Prior to becoming a member of the Mercykillers, during the mid–14th century DR, Arwyl was a zealous paladin champion of Torm. He ended up in the Outlands after chasing a succubus he was fighting, successfully defeating her before she could escape back to the Abyss. The conflict left Arwyl heavily wounded and unable to return home.
Arwyl was eventually found by an unknown Mercykiller Justiciar, who tended the paladin's wounds, telling tales of his exploits and triumphs of justice over demons and other wrongdoers. After Arwyl regained enough strength and the Justiciar left, he made the trek to Sigil to pledge his allegiance to the Mercykillers, inspired by his rescuer's tales.
Once he became a full-fledged member of the faction, Arwyl started to realize that a lot of fellow Mercykillers had troubling ideas about justice. Wanting to work against these elements while maintaining his allegiance to the faction as a whole, the paladin tried to work from within to steer the faction towards a more just path. To this end, he shifted his attention towards making sure nobody got executed by the Mercykillers for a crime they didn't commit. He also tried to increase the number and standing of fellow lawful good faction members.
Like many other prominent figures in Sigil, in the lead-up to the Faction War, Arwyl was subject to the manipulations of Duke Rowan Darkwood, factol of the Fated, who had long been rumored to be in a romantic relationship with Mercykiller factol Alisohn Nilesia. The Duke ingratiated himself with Arwyl by pushing for a reform in the sentencing guidelines of the Prison, as well as backing the paladin's plan to pardon those unjustly imprisoned. Rowan had an ulterior motive for making this move, however, planning to release around a dozen experienced murderers with grievances against Sigilians of high standing.
In an at first seemingly innocuous speech held at Petitioner's Square, Arwyl made a series of shocking announcements. The first was that factol Nilesia had disappeared, a fact that the higher-ups of the faction had kept under wraps for some time. Secondly, the Mercykillers were fracturing into three separate factions as a result of their missing leader: the predominantly evil-aligned Sodkillers, the mainly good-aligned Sons of Mercy (which Arwyl would lead), and a neutral-leaning group retaining the name of the Mercykillers. The last announcement was that, as the group in charge of the Prison, the Sons of Mercy would be proceeding with sentencing reforms and were releasing over a thousand unjustly detained prisoners. To conclude his speech, Arwyl cut down the noose from the gallows.
As the Faction War itself started gearing up, Arwyl participated in its first real battle, leading 50 members of the Sons of Mercy in storming the Armory. In the aftermath of this conflict, which left the building in ruin, the paladin offered any survivors respite and medical aid at the City Barracks and Prison in a bid to end the war.
As the war wound down, Arwyl shifted his attention to the violent offenders that Darkwood had manipulated him into releasing from the Prison, directing the Sons of Mercy to hunt them down and lock them back up.
Arwyl would continue leading the Sons of Mercy for at least another century after the group's formation.
- Faction War
- ↑ Tim Beach, Dori Jean Hein, J.M. Salsbury (June 1995). The Factol's Manifesto. Edited by Ray Vallese, Sue Weinlein. (TSR, Inc.), pp. 105, 107. ISBN 0786901411.
- ↑ 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 Robert J. Schwalb (December 2008). “Riven Justice: The Mercykillers”. In Chris Youngs ed. Dragon #370 (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 16–18.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 Tim Beach, Dori Jean Hein, J.M. Salsbury (June 1995). The Factol's Manifesto. Edited by Ray Vallese, Sue Weinlein. (TSR, Inc.), p. 107. ISBN 0786901411.
- ↑ Bruce R. Cordell, Gwendolyn F.M. Kestrel (July 2004). Planar Handbook. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 142. ISBN 0-7869-3429-8.
- ↑ James Wyatt, Bill Slavicsek, Robin D. Laws (September 2009). Dungeon Master's Guide 2. Edited by Michele Carter. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 202. ISBN 978-0786952441.
- ↑ Monte Cook, Ray Vallese (November 1998). Faction War. Edited by Michele Carter. (TSR, Inc.), p. 120. ISBN 0786912030.
- ↑ Monte Cook, Ray Vallese (November 1998). Faction War. Edited by Michele Carter. (TSR, Inc.), p. 34. ISBN 0786912030.
- ↑ Monte Cook, Ray Vallese (November 1998). Faction War. Edited by Michele Carter. (TSR, Inc.), p. 51. ISBN 0786912030.
- ↑ Monte Cook, Ray Vallese (November 1998). Faction War. Edited by Michele Carter. (TSR, Inc.), pp. 59, 61. ISBN 0786912030.
- ↑ Monte Cook, Ray Vallese (November 1998). Faction War. Edited by Michele Carter. (TSR, Inc.), p. 111. ISBN 0786912030.