Arkana was a young woman from the ruling family of the Voroshk world who appeared in Soldiers Live. She and three other Voroshk teenagers surrendered to the Black Company before their world could be invaded by an onslaught of shadows. She was a minor wizard, who though originally a hostage later became a member of the Company. She and Shukrat eventually became adopted by Croaker and Lady.
Soldiers Live[edit | edit source]
Arkana was originally from the Voroshk world where her clan ruled absolutely. She is described as being in her mid-teens and having fair skin, blonde hair, and blue eyes like the rest of the Voroshk. Also like other Voroshk women, she is noted for being gorgeous and curvaceous. When the Black Company came through the glittering plain to the Voroshk world, three Voroshk patriarchs unintentionally destroyed their world's shadowgate after being tricked by Croaker.
Arkana and three other Voroshk teenagers Sedvod, Magadan, and Gromovol surrendered to the Company to escape the shadows that now threatened to overwhelm their world without the shadowgate to hold them back. The Company leadership accepted them but demanded that they hand over their priceless shefsepoken (magic robes) and rheitgeistiden (flying posts). They all expected to be treated like royalty, and were shocked when Croaker educated them about their new status at the bottom rung. The four remained wary of Shukrat, another Voroshk teenager, one who had been captured in combat but who proactively integrated with the Black Company.
Crossing the glittering plain, they were introduced to Tobo who assigned a group of soldiers to watch and teach them the Taglian language, local culture, and local religions before they arrive in the new world. Soon after, Sedvod fell into a coma from which he never recovered, and eventually died. Like Gromovol, the scowling Arkana carried herself in an aloof manner around the Company and earned the moniker "ice queen".
Disastrous escape attempt[edit | edit source]
Dissatisfied with their new situation, Arkana, Magadan, and Gromovol decided to escape. On the night of the Battle of the Middle Ground, the three attempted to steal their shefsepoken and rheitgeistiden and flee from their new, dangerous, alien surroundings. They used "feeble disorientation spells" to disable their guards, but Gromovol murdered the defenseless men against Magadan's explicit protests. Before the three could make their escape or retrieve their magic artifacts, Company soldiers discovered the murders, raised the alarm, and retaliated. Gromovol was seriously injured, Arkana was raped, and Magadan was killed. She withdrew emotionally for a long while afterward.
Eventually, Arkana opened up under Croaker's care. She slowly earned trust and came to take part in the activities of the Company. She also started to accept Croaker as a protector and father figure.
Siege of Taglios[edit | edit source]
One night during the Siege of Taglios, Arkana was sent to invade the private quarters of Protectorate general Aridatha Singh at the Palace. She wore her protective shefsepoke and was riding one of the rheitgeistide, and was accompanied by a whole force of Tobo's Unknown Shadows. She asked Aridatha to order his men to lay down their arms, to spare the city any further bloodshed. But, he refused and instead asked her to find a way to get Mogaba to surrender. She departed but some Unknown Shadows remained behind, preventing him from getting much-needed rest. The Black Company would win the siege, and Aridatha immediately became a close Company ally in restoring order to the city. Arkana was attracted to Aridatha, but despite the temptation, did not try to seduce him.
Rescuing Tobo[edit | edit source]
Arkana next accompanied Croaker and Shukrat on an unsanctioned mission to rescue Tobo, after the young wizard was captured during his foolhardy attempt to murder Aridatha. Croaker and Shukrat, with the help of the Unknown Shadows, kidnapped Aridatha aboard their rheitgeistiden, and threatened to drop him out of the sky if he did not inform them where Tobo was being held. Aridatha relented and told them the location, and waited with Arkana on the north bank of the great river while Tobo was smuggled out of his cell. Aridatha was unharmed in this incident and was restored to Taglios in the end.
[edit | edit source]
Arkana was directed by Soulcatcher (speaking through her white crow) on the correct spells to deposit Croaker's recently-deceased child, the Daughter of Night, a scant few yards from Catcher's own frozen body in the cave of the ancients. But, she next abandoned Croaker there and returned without permission to her birth world, the Voroshk world. This world had suffered an apocalyptic invasion of killer shadows, and the minor fortress Rhuknavr was one of the last three surviving strongholds of her Family. When Arkana returned, the three or four male Voroshk who controlled Rhuknavr did not welcome her back as an equal. Instead, they deprived her of her shefsepoke and rheitgeistide, and decided to force her to become a breeder to help continue their family line. They also did not inform the other surviving Voroshk who commanded Junkledesag and Drasivrad of her capture, intending to keep her for themselves. Though Arkana could not escape Rhuknavr, she was not completely helpless. She did fend off everyone who attempted to seduce her.
Arkana was rescued by Croaker and Shukrat, with help from Soulcatcher, who still haunted a white crow. When Rhuknavr's occupants awakened from the effects of Shukrat's and Arkana's sleep spells, they finally notified the other Voroshk at Junkledesag and Drasivrad. Seven or eight Voroshk flew out to pursue but were too late. Rescuing Arkana from Rhuknavr would be Croaker's last adventure before the end of the Annals.
At the close of the Annals, Arkana and Shukrat together took over the duties of Annalist after Croaker put the pen down for the final time. Arkana admitted that she may try to become romantic with Suvrin, and traveled with him and the rest of the Company to Hsien.