Aran Linvail is the name of two distinctly different characters that play a very broadly similar role in the novel and game versions of Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn.

The novelEdit

Aran Linvail was an assassin who was killed by Abdel Adrian. Adrian needed a large sum of money to go after two of his friends, and Bodhi passed him the offer to gain the sum by killing Linvail. He hesitated at first, having decided never to kill for money again, but as he very much needed the money, he decided killing an assassin might be a form of justice. He infiltrated Linvail's house, waited in his closet for him to be finished with a lover, and finally killed him after a protracted, awkward fight.

Who wanted Linvail dead and why, or if there even was a genuine outstanding price on his head, is never explained. The only source of information on this was Bodhi, who had her own agenda.[citation needed]

In gameEdit

Aran Linvail was the Shadowmaster of Athkatla, the leader of the Shadow Thieves, and one of the most powerful people in all of Amn. In 1369 DR, the position of his entire guild in Athkatla was threatened when Bodhi formed her own, using vampire abilities to gain an advantage. Linvail and Bodhi both tried to gain the service of Gorion's ward and their party, whose choice ultimately turned the situation to the advantage of their allies.

Aran Linvail can first be seen in the game if the player elects to take the Shadow Thieves rather than Bodhi up on their respective offers to get them to Spellhold once they have enough gold to pay for it. At the same time, it is also revealed openly for the first time that it is the Shadow Thieves besides Bodhi who are making the offer. The player will need to enter their guild hall in the Docks District and there a secret door that leads to an inner part of the guild. Linvail, staying in his own luxurious room, flanked by guards, will put on a reasonable and polite sort of air, but refuse immediate aid and instead say that he needs the player's party's help before he can sail them to Spellhold. They will need to first take some minor actions to help in the guild war, and finally enter Bodhi's lair and destroy her and all her vampires (though she will get away). Then Linvail will give the party some enchanted items for extra compensation and send them on their way on Saemon Havarian's ship. When the player later returns to Athkatla, they can go to Linvail again to ask help against Bodhi and for extracting revenge on Havarian. If, on the other hand, the player sides with Bodhi, they will be sent on a series of similar tasks, culminating in attacking the guild building and killing Linvail.