Vax'ildan hails from the high-fantasy kingdom of Tal'Dorei, in a world called Exandria, a land of swords and sorcery. Vax has always made his way as an outsider of one kind or another, from his elven father's cool disregard to his years as a slippery thiefling, growing into a capable assassin. Always, he's had his identical twin sister Vex'ahlia with her ranger abilities by his side, and is a barely functional twin when he can't be with her. More recently their adventuring party known as Vox Machina (including Vex'ahlia, Percy de Rolo, and Pike Trickfoot) has become their family as much as their comrades in arms (including Kashaw Vesh), and Vax will find the absence of his druid girlfriend Keyleth especially difficult. Despite the inherent doom and gloom of being the Champion of the death deity known as the Raven Queen, Vax has a naturally warm personality beneath the weight of his serious responsibilities. He even has something of a ridiculous prankster streak.
Vax is 29, and being a half-elf, he is aging very well by human standards. He has long dark hair, which he typically wears back in a ponytail past long pointed ears. Though quick with a smile and a jest, his warm brown eyes are often touched with melancholy. Lean of build but toned with muscle, Vax might bring to mind a sleek alley cat in motion: gracefully fluid, uncannily silent, unassuming at a glance but vicious when cornered. Unless gifted with supernatural abilities, most will never see him when he doesn't want to be seen - he may even appear to vanish into shadow.
His body bears many scars, the marks that tell his story, mostly from old injuries. Most distinctively:
- Inside of his left wrist are the sounds for "V" and "M" written in Elvish script
- Inside of his right wrist is an icosahedron
- Handprint scar over one shoulder blade on his back (used to be Clasp brand, marking him as member of thieves' guild)
- Black raven wings may appear when Vax is wearing his black leather armor - see Powers & Special Abilities
- Slayer's Take brand on outer right shoulder (image below)
Powers & Special Abilities
Vax is an assassin/paladin, though typically without the outward fanatical zeal the word 'paladin' might evoke. His is the path of vengeance, punishing the evil and corruption that his merciful patron finds offensive to the natural order. His service is sacred, but it did not come easily to him, and his prayer is largely private. First and foremost a gruesome acrobatic savant with a set of daggers, Vax is a streetwise sneaker-in-er and slink-back-out-er, a talented thief with some understanding of disguise, poison, infiltration, and mimicry. (Though if you've seen Critical Role, you'll understand that doors may inexplicably present problems.) He also has practical skills that come from a life of hearty adventuring in a medieval world - a familiarity with lightweight arms and armor, basic outdoor survival skills, and the knowledge of several languages of Exandria.
Vax's less mundane abilities include a Divine Sense, limited healing, and a manner of mystical tracking. By willfully channeling the power of the Raven Queen, Vax can take on a truly terrifying manifestation of her deathly divinity, and cause her enemies to cower even in the heat of battle.
Vax's handsome yet eerie jet-black studded leather armor is textured with runic engravings on nearly every last inch, the mantle at his shoulders rippling with raven feathers. This armor grants him a resistance to the pull of death, advantages against various damage, and allows him to summon a fully functional pair of large black raven wings which he can use to fly. ...Yes, WINGS.
- Martyr Complex - Vax is ready to throw himself in front of the proverbial bus to save his friends and family at any moment - even if they wouldn't necessarily want him to.
- Deceptive - The twins spent many years fending for themselves, seeing it as the pair of them against the world. Vax in particular ran with some Very Bad People and did some Very Bad Things. Lying became second nature to him in that environment. While he has developed into a much different person than he once was, Vax still has the tendency to lie about and hide things, both big and small, benign and malignant, that the people around him might never expect.
- And I Walk Away - Like his deceptive tendencies, Vax's past has taught him to disengage from some difficult interpersonal situations rather than being direct. He may physically break away from an interaction rather than allowing it to play out immediately.
- Half-Identical Twin - Vax and Vex’s relationship is too codependent to be completely healthy. Losing one would break the other, possibly in ways that couldn’t be fixed. Threats to Vex will make Vax intensely dangerous and unpredictable. And the twins will go to any lengths, even making deals with a death deity, if it means bringing the other back from death. “Wherever you go, I go.”