Ciara (pronounced KEER-ah) grew up traveling on her parents' merchant caravans. They had extended family all over the coast, and friends they could stay with who acted like family. She remembers the road fondly, sleeping in a different city every few nights, market days filled with hard work and plenty of companionship. Mostly she remembers wandering away from camp to talk with the animals.
She had an affinity for animals of all kinds since birth, and she discovered her affinity for water in her early youth when she didn't need to come up for air while swimming. Her black-haired human mother told her she was part water spirit after that incident, and let her know that her family had borne plenty of elemental spirits through the years. Ciara knew she was different and special, but far from unique, which comforted her.
Ciara's parents made sure she had the best of everything that money could buy, and they arranged for her to apprentice with a circle of druids when she turned twelve. They dropped her off and said their goodbyes. Two months later the news came that her parents were slaughtered by bandits up north near the Barbary Coast. Those responsible were executed after a brief trial, but Ciara now faced life on her own. Her druid circle became her family, and she still consults with her elders and peers to this day.
She finished her apprenticeship and started to wander the world to make herself useful. Before she left, she discovered her parents had left a sizeable inheritance for her with her extended family, who maintained and grew the money with investments. She let them continue the practice, only asking for occasional spending money when she needed it, but leaving the principal to grow over the years.
She wandered land and sea, always helping any living being she came across. She believes her duty lies in helping all living creatures, animal, plant, and sentient, and lending her voice to the voiceless. And then her second inheritance found her while she traveled the underwater routes of the Nelendi Kingdom.
Her elderly great-uncle Julian, some sort of lord in Fellport, died and named her the sole heir. She came ashore at Fellport, rising from the harbor and finding her way to the Council House. Julian had left her two manor houses, one in town and one a couple miles west along the Shore Road, plus a lifetime's worth of riches and a cache of magic items. She sold the city manor, but decided to move into the seaside manor.
An idea hatched in her mind, fed by her wanderings. She would rename this spacious estate Menagerie Manor, and it would serve as an animal refuge and hospital. Twenty years have passed since the idea took hold, and the array of animals living at the manor astounds everyone who visits. Ciara talks to all the animals, and she will awaken any who want to interact with humanity directly, but it needs to be their choice, not hers. She has attracted an array of apprentices and helpers over the years. She collects stray people as easily as distressed animals, both drawn to this woman who gives so freely of her time, understanding, and talent. Her followers come and go as they see fit, but almost all remain fiercely loyal to her to their dying day.
Ciara has black hair like her mother did, though the odd silver hair shines through since she's into her 40s now. Her skin turned a pale shade of turquoise during puberty, and water beads on her skin even in dry conditions. Her dark blue eyes have always been extra-large for her face. She has a wiry form of physical strength, and she's a little on the short side at 4' 11". She carries a gnarled staff that exudes life magic, and she wears hardened leather scale armor of elven manufacture. She favors utilitarian clothing, preferring durability over aesthetics.
She juggles many tasks, but she carries herself with a sense of peace that wherever she is, she is meant to be there. She speaks plainly and directly, having no time for guile nor social niceties. Everyone in the region knows her as the best person to care for animals, no matter what symptoms they have, and she makes more than enough money on house calls alone to support Menagerie Manor and all its residents, never mind the two fortunes she inherited.
Water Genasi Shepherd Druid (Level 14) (Noble Background; War Caster Feat)
Str 14 Dex 10 Con 12 Int 12 Wis 20 Cha 9
Animal Handling +10, History +7, Nature +7, Persuasion +4