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The Fox-at-Twilight (real name: Ilira[1]) is a creation of author Erik Scott de Bie.

A swashbuckler and con artist, the moon elf called the Fox-at-Twilight (or “Light,” as her friends name her) is an enigma at best. She fights by trickery as much as by blade, luring her opponents into underestimating her by guile or plying her considerable charm to get what she wants. She is an accomplished duelist, extremely agile, and possesses powers akin to those of a divine seeker (a holy spy/thief who can sense the location of certain objects and call upon divine providence to save herself from mortal wounds) and a shadowdancer (able to teleport/"dance" through shadows and animate her own shadow).

Her exact origins are unknown, and she has made a variety of outrageous claims about her past, including being a former lover of her divine patron, Erevan Ilesere.


Twilight is often described as having an athletic build, slight and lithe (sensual) with a kind of allure not entirely like that of an elf. Some find her beautiful, while others do not, but hers is not a forgettable face or frame (see Depths of Madness 20-21). Human men who find themselves drawn to her seem to do so for what they see as her “elf” nature. Elf men are drawn to her for much the same reason they are drawn to humans: her vibrancy does not seem entirely like other elf women (like Yldar). Twilight does not exhibit the patience of elves and is as lusty as a human woman.

Twilight has pale skin and raven blue-black hair that she usually wears in a tail to the small of her back. The color of her eyes depends upon the light and her mood, and she is often described as having “pale eyes.” She also has alabaster skin and delicate features (Depths 21). She wears several earrings and has at least two tattoos: a gold, eight-pointed, asymmetrical star on her lower back (this is the symbol of Erevan Ilesere), which has been known to shock at a touch (Realms of the Elves 186), as well as a small black-and-silver fox tattooed on her lower belly (Depths 150).

Her favored garments seem to be black breeches, a billowy white blouse, vest, a single scarlet glove (as of a fencer), and a matching half-cape (Elves 150). Whether any of these items have magical properties is unknown. She also carries a particular rapier (shorter than most of its kind) called “Betrayal,” which is fashioned of Hizaghuur metal. In addition, Twilight is never found without her “Shroud,” which is a star-sapphire amulet that seems to hide her from scrying. She seems to have some sort of fixation on the device and fear of being “visible” without it (Depths 7-9).

Twilight’s appearance is updated slightly in 1479: she has solid gold eyes like those of a wolf (she is definitely an eladrin in the 4e FR) and has Gargan’s name (see Depths) tattooed across her breastbone. She is said to wear only black in mourning for a lost love, though she herself denies this (Downshadow).


Twilight first appeared in the Realms of the Elves novella, “The Greater Treasure” (dated 2006) in which she helped the sun elf Yldar Nathalan and his sister Cythara in their quest for Ynloeth’s Bracer, a powerful elven relic. Twilight proved herself to be far from trustworthy or dependable, and vanished rather than allow Yldar to grow close to her (though she left him the bracer as a token of their time together). She seems to follow this pattern through her adventuring career: using deception to throw potential romantic interests off track and thus avoid intimacy.

Twilight next appeared in the novel Depths of Madness (1375 DR[citation needed]), in which she and a number of disparate adventurers were trapped in a dungeon controlled by a mad priest of Demogorgon named Gestal. She demonstrated her speed, physical prowess, and shadowdancing abilities, but was almost driven insane by the machinations of her tormentor. Only the timely intervention of Erevan Ilesere—the Seldarine deity of trickery—spared her, though this may have been just a hallucination. She escaped the Depths, along with the goliath Gargan Vathkelke.

Twilight appeared a hundred years later (1479 DR) in the novel Downshadow, in which she was living in the bustling city of Waterdeep in disguise as a silk merchant and fashion queen called Lady Ilira Nathalan (Ilira was revealed in Depths as her real name—Nathalan is Yldar’s surname, suggesting a relationship with him in the intervening time). She was framed for the murder of her best friend Lorien (a priestess of Sune) and quickly took revenge through use of a spellscar that burned any flesh she touched like acid. She fled the scene rather than be arrested. This (along with her shadowdancing abilities and her now entirely gold eyes) has led to speculation that she is a shade agent, and evidence has been uncovered that sometime in the early fifteenth century, she may have been a Netherese assassin.

It has been rumored that the Silver Fox series of chapbooks deals with her adventuring career. The latest volume (Fox and the Blue Fire)—would ostensibly deal with her life in and around the Spellplague. (Downshadow)

Note: Twilight is particularly notable in that she is one of the few 1370s-era characters currently known to have survived the 3.5/4e transition to the Realms of the Year of the Ageless One (1479). This is presumably due to her elven blood (which allows her to live centuries), though her actual age is uncertain.


Twilight was the sometime lover of Yldar Nathalan, and a dream sequence (in Downshadow) suggests that she had a long, bitter struggle with Cythara (Yldar’s sister) that ended in Cythara’s death at Twilight’s hands. Cythara’s daughter—the fey’ri warlock Fayne—has sculpted herself to excel at Twilight’s strengths (“beat her at her own game”) and finally gets her revenge in Downshadow, though she finds it unsatisfying.

In 1375, Twilight became a close companion to Gargan Vathkelke, a goliath ranger who helped her escape the Depths of Madness. In 1479, Gargan manifests as a tattoo of his name across Twilight’s breastbone, and Twilight’s sentient shadow (which she can detach from her body and cause to fight on its own) has a shape similar to his. This precise situation is still a mystery.

In 1479, Twilight (as Lady Ilira) had a close relationship with the Sune priestess Lorien that was rumored to be more than a mere friendship, but Lorien herself denied that their intimacy had ever been physical. This may have been due to Twilight’s spellscar.

Twilight mentioned two particular men in Depths that share an unknown connection with her: Neveren (whose identity is still a mystery) and Lilten, who appears in 1479 as Fayne’s extremely handsome and charming patron (also he claims to be her father). Whether these men are friends or foes to Twilight is unknown.



  1. Erik Scott de Bie (March 2007). Depths of Madness. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 270. ISBN 978-0-7869-4314-2.
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