Name: Eva Xuresh (Cam, Chameleon)
Date of Birth: 7 Justinian, 9:10 in Eastshore
Companion(s): A raven named Trickster, Trix for short
Cam is on the average side for a woman and short for a man, standing just shy of 5’5’’. With a lean build and a decidedly flat chest, her figure is androgynous without the aid of clothing or makeup. Her skin is lightly tanned from many years spent at sea, short hair dyed and styled so many times that it’s beginning to sustain damage, the ends easily splitting. High cheekbones and a slightly squared jaw lend to a look that’s somewhere between pretty and handsome, and her light blue eyes convey an overabundance of attitude.
A master of disguise, Cam’s clothing changes to suit her mood and the role she wishes to occupy. Masculine or feminine, colorful or drab, fine or patchwork, she seems comfortable regardless of what adorns her body. This includes jewelry and makeup, as well, and a wide range of accessories to suit every occasion.
Most of Cam’s clothing is borrowed, fashioned after whoever she’s trying to imitate at the time. The few pieces she owns are simple, making use of layers to conceal or accentuate curves, depending on mood.
Weapons & Armor: Cam keeps a pair of steel kris belted at her hips, their guards in the shape of a chameleon’s tail, their handles decorated with iridescent scales. While their presentation is flashy, they’re no better--and might perhaps fare a bit worse--than average daggers.
Cam doesn’t typically wear armor--it tends to clash with her disguises--but particularly dangerous dealings usually find her in a leather vest, overcoat, fingerless gloves, and knee-high boots.
Languages: Common (written & spoken), Orlesian (spoken), Antivan (spoken)
Expert: Disguise, Contacts, Coercion
Intermediate: Stealth, Alchemy, Bargaining, Evaluation, Cryptography, Etiquette (Fereldan, Orlesian, Antivan)
Novice: Lockpicking, Research, Searching, Cultural Lore (Fereldan, Orlesian, Antivan)
Expert: Dual Weapons (Daggers), Single Weapon (Sword)
Intermediate: Crossbow (Light)
Novice: Unarmed Combat
The self-described black sheep of her large family, Cam’s personality often seems as mercurial as the shifting tides. She is whoever she needs to be at any given moment, adopting traits and mannerisms to suit the job she’s trying to pull off.
There are limits to this technique, however, and Cam often has a difficult time acting meek or subservient. She works well enough with others, but finds it nearly impossible to grovel to those she doesn’t respect.
Along with these natural boundaries, there are elements of Cam’s personality that shine through in most of her interactions. She is brash and opinionated, sarcastic and smug. She’s maintained a lifelong chip on her shoulder thanks to her family, but while she pretends it doesn’t bother her, deep down she fears being abandoned by anyone she gets remotely close to.
Born the youngest of five children, Eva understood from a very young age that she was unwanted. Her mother’s pregnancy was unplanned, and while she did the best she could, it took a toll on her physical and mental well-being. By that point Eva’s father was away most of the time, her eldest brother Dristan had entered an apprenticeship in Rainesfere, and the twins Tiran and Kiran were soon to be shipped off to the Circle Tower.
Because of this, Eva’s mother was forced to run the Xuresh Apothecary alone while her eldest daughter, Yvarin, took over the parental duties. It was a trend that would only continue when Eva’s parents were imprisoned for lyrium trafficking.
Hoping to wash her hands of the family business, Yvarin closed shop and took Eva with her to Redcliffe, acting as her mother in all but name. Yvarin worked seemingly endless shifts in an inn just to keep a roof over their heads, and Eva’s early years were spent in the common room where she watched locals and travelers alike, fascinated by the stories they brought with them.
Overworked to the point of exhaustion, Yvarin wasn’t the most attentive guardian. She did the best she could given the circumstances, but a young child is difficult enough to watch, let alone one who seems inclined to trouble. Eva was frequently brought home by beleaguered guards who found her sneaking about, stealing harmless items, and generally being a nuisance.
Strife between the siblings grew as Eva aged into her teenage years, desperate for attention from a woman who was little more than a child herself. Even Eva will admit she was awful during that time, running her sister ragged by staying out all night, traveling to nearby villages and passing herself off as various people she’d seen come through the inn over the years. Anything to be something other than what she was: The unwanted child of parents who were both dead by this point, and the sister of siblings who--outside of Yvarin--scarcely seemed to acknowledge her existence.
She was arrested twice during these endeavors, her disguises of poor quality, her tactics quite obvious as she tried to intercept trades between merchants and anything else that might earn her enough coin to leave. Both times she was let off with a warning, thanks to a guard who was sweet on her sister.
But the older she got, the more restless she became, and the more she argued with her sister. Feeling like a burden to Yvarin--who by that point had secured a job in the kitchens at Redcliffe Castle--she left the city and made her way to Denerim. Learning very quickly that Denerim guards were far more toothsome than the ones back home, she was forced to lie her way aboard a merchant ship to escape the law. That lie turned into “honest” work, as the captain found her to be a quick student and a talented smuggler. Soon she was running contraband from Ferelden to Antiva and back again, eventually finding herself in Orlais.
While running her usual gambit--which by this point typically involved impersonating a contact to either intercept goods, or help them clear a guard presence--Eva met a woman named Valeraine who took a keen interest in her. Smitten with the woman and unused to being showered in attention, Eva ate up everything she was offered--including further training.
She honed her skills, becoming far better at reading strangers and understanding them after just a handful of interactions. It was during this time that Eva earned the moniker “chameleon” due to the many personas she adopted. She began calling herself Cam, leaving her birth name far behind her.
Cam would have gladly built a life with Valeraine in Orlais, if not for one tiny detail: Her mentor was using her. Grooming her to play a Game she knew Cam had no interest in playing. Devastated by the betrayal, she returned to Ferelden with a harder heart, just barely managing to skirt the Blight. Pride kept her from looking up old contacts, and instead she worked on forging new ones and starting her own smuggling enterprise in Denerim.
By that point, the competition was fierce, and infrastructure damaged by the Archdemon made it easier than ever for less-than-reputable doings to go unnoticed. She needed an edge to survive, and eventually she found that edge through her own family’s checkered past. It wasn’t fair to say Cam fell into lyrium trafficking, but it was a life that seemed to choose her rather than the other way around. Tracking down her father’s old contracts, she took the risks to bring lyrium into the city, and they paid off handsomely. Over time, she's built up trust with the Mages' Collective and has found them an willing--and discrete--buyer.
These days she deals in a wide variety of contraband, her moral code fixed firmly in the neutral range. Her business operates out of Denerim, with associates in Amaranthine and Highever. She’s currently looking to expand to Antiva, and is always seeking lucrative contracts in Ferelden.
Timeline: DA:O / DA2