Livia posing as Exemplar Kerida.
The time has come. You ready to fulfill a prophecy?
Livia is an old and powerful human necromancer who served as the third Master Exemplar of the Shining Blade. Like the rest of the Shining Blade, Livia has a narrow-minded devotion to the continuation of Queen Salma's bloodline, no matter the means. Having used the Scepter of Orr to prolong her life, Livia continues to zealously serve the throne to this day under the alias of Exemplar Kerida.
Livia was reportedly born in 1064 AE, and first came to prominence in 1078 AE. A royalist who was said to be willing to risk everything for peace, she had dedicated her life to the liberation of Kryta from its White Mantle puppet rulers during the Krytan Civil War. To this end, she sought a weapon of power that would bring an ultimate end to the war that tore apart her homeland. She approached the renowned asuran golemancer Gadd with an offer to help him research the Bloodstones in exchange for asuran technology, but she eventually left his employ due to ethical objections. Before doing so, she learned both about necromancy and the Scepter of Orr.
After leaving Gadd, Livia played an instrumental role in the defeat of the Great Destroyer, champion of the Elder Dragon Primordus, and stated her intention to go to the then-sunken city of Arah to seek the Scepter of Orr. What happened after is not clear, but it is known she wielded the Scepter's power, for a time.
A year later, Livia used her credentials with the asura to convince the exiled golemancer Zinn and the eccentric Blimm to develop a golem that could help defeat the White Mantle's mursaat masters. Using energies extracted from a dead Seer, they were able to defend Lion's Arch from the brunt of the mursaat magic, and the royalist forces were victorious. With Queen Salma restored to power, the Master Exemplar of the Shining Blade, Bartholos, left to command the newly-formed Seraph in 1088 AE, and Livia was promoted as the new Master Exemplar. No longer needed as a rebel group, the Shining Blade was appointed as the royal guard of all future kings and queens of Kryta.
As Master Exemplar, Livia created the Oath of Confidence, a magical rite that prevented those who undertook it from revealing the secrets of the Shining Blade under penalty of death. She bound this ritual to The Shining Blade, a magical artifact of Seer origins. Being fully dedicated to the cause of ending the last mursaat, Livia never married or had children. She eventually stepped down and was succeeded as Master Exemplar by Laurelai. Livia retreated into seclusion in the Shining Blade headquarters where she lived out her life and was reported to have died in 1157 AE, at the age of 93.
However, in 1256 AE, after the Rising of Orr, Livia showed up alive and well as the personal bodyguard to Prince Edair of Kryta, and held the rank of Exemplar within the Shining Blade. She was aboard the Balthazar's Trident which was attacked by Dead Ships, and used her magic to prevent Risen attackers from coming aboard.
Livia claimed to have studied much of Orrian magic after acquiring the Scepter of Orr, and had retained her youthful appearance. How she had managed such a feat was not known—some tales said she had sold her soul to become an immortal lich, and others claimed that Livia had sacrificed prisoners in the dungeons of Divinity's Reach and used their blood to give herself eternal youth and beauty. She became the subject matter of hundreds of legends, usually told around Mad King's Day, when children were trying to scare one another with spooky tales.
In 1330 AE, Livia was still working for the Shining Blade as an Exemplar, this time under the alias of Kerida, and spent her time alternating between visiting Divinity's Reach and searching for the missing aspects of Lazarus, the last mursaat. She had formed a bond with Countess Anise, the present Master Exemplar, in what was referred to as a mother-daughter relationship, and she became one of the few people Anise truly respected.
After contact with Kerida was lost while she was tracking down the Eye of Janthir and one of Lazarus's aspects into a White Mantle hideout, Anise sent the Pact Commander to assist her. The Commander saved Kerida from a trap, and the pair begrudgingly worked together as they navigated the hideout. They defeated Justiciar Araya and the last remnants of the White Mantle before seizing a sword which held one of Lazarus's aspects, although the Eye of Janthir fled from their grasp.
After returning to Divinity's Reach, Kerida witnessed an exchange between Anise and the Commander and was shocked by Anise's decision to initiate the Commander into the Shining Blade's inner circle so they could reveal their plans without risking breaking the Oath of Confidence. However, she calmed down and went along with it, witnessing the Commander's initiation and even offering the Commander advice during the more dangerous parts of the ritual that involved combat.
After the Commander had been sworn in and had been told what Anise and Kerida were up to, the hunt for the Eye of Janthir commenced as it would lead them to the final aspect of Lazarus and, hopefully, to the rogue god Balthazar whom the Commander wanted to catch. While the Commander headed for Siren's Landing, Kerida traveled to other potential locations the Eye might have fled to, including Ember Bay where she witnessed the rampage of a Sloth Queen.
Once the Commander had tracked the Eye of Janthir to Abaddon's Reliquary where Balthazar had hidden the final aspect in, Kerida joined the Commander's side. The pair braved many traps of the reliquary and reached the innermost sanctum only to discover that Balthazar was already gone although the Eye and the final aspect were still present. Seizing the opportunity and being anxious to reach the end of her lengthy quest, Kerida performed a ritual with the other aspects she had brought along to revive Lazarus in order to kill the last mursaat once and for all so he could never threaten her beloved Kryta again. During the ensuing battle, Lazarus recognized Kerida for who she really was, and the Commander was taken aback by the surprising reveal of Livia.
Despite a lengthy struggle, the pair nearly lost when Lazarus briefly gained an upper hand on Livia and intended to end her for good. However, the Commander successfully intervened and struck the final blow with the Shining Blade, saving Livia and defeating the distracted Lazarus. After showing the Commander a vision of Balthazar heading for the Crystal Desert, the Eye of Janthir faded, confirming the death of the last mursaat.
Livia and the Commander briefly exchanged words, and Livia wearily revealed how the Scepter of Orr had kept her alive for centuries so she could finish her mission. With the last mursaat truly gone, she could finally slow down but not before urging the Commander to go save Tyria from Balthazar's wrath.
- Episode 6: One Path Ends
- Defeat the invading Awakened (30) [Group Event]
- Fragility - Applies Fragility to enemies.
- Health Regeneration - Applies Health Regeneration to allies.
- Order of the Vampire - Enchantment: attacks steal health.
- In Queensdale during event
- Don't get distracted, hero—the undead are prowling near here.
- Not for long.
- In Queensdale after event
- Good day, Commander. I was out for a stroll and just happened upon this pitched battle. I've heard Joko holds grudges a long time—perhaps you two should discuss this in person? (If completed One Path Ends)
- Such slipshod creations. For a centuries-old sorceror, Palawa Joko hasn't learned many new tricks. (otherwise)
- Divinity's Reach secured from attack?
- The Shining Blade is prepared for many scenarios, especially attacks from within. But these attacks are simple displays of power to provoke fear.
- Soon enough, Palawa Joko's going to remember what fear feels like.
- You're one to talk about old grudges. (If completed One Path Ends)
- Age hasn't granted him wisdom. It's time he learned the value of peace. (otherwise)
Concept art by Kekai Kotaki for Guild Wars 1
- Livia seeking out the Scepter of Orr in Arah was one of several "hooks" that developers placed in Ogden's Benediction without necessarily knowing how they were going to be used. This event was not mentioned at all throughout Guild Wars Beyond (suggesting it may actually have taken place after the Krytan Civil War, rather than immediately after the defeat of the Great Destroyer as suggested in the Eye of the North epilogue), nor was it mentioned in Guild Wars 2.
- When asked about what happened to Livia and the Scepter of Orr, continuity designer Ree Soesbee stated that she "couldn't answer that question" and that it was important that she couldn't answer it.
- Her rank changes from Legendary to Veteran during the Defeat the invading Awakened event.
- Livia is voiced by Courtenay Taylor.
- A Pact airship, the Lady Livia, is named after her.
- Some of the rumors about Livia's unnatural longevity are reminiscent of those told about Báthory Erzsébet.
- In the novel Sea of Sorrows, Livia is described as having "White-streaked hair".
- Livia's current alias is Kerida. In Spanish, the word for "dear" (an endearment Livia likes to use) is "querida".
- Her combat abilities were intended to be a "fun call-back to GW1".
- Livia wields the focus King's Remembrance, and the sword Vengeance.
- Associated items
- ^ a b A document found in Shining Blade Secrets describes that Livia reportedly "died" at the age of 93 in 1157 AE, making her date of birth 1063 AE or 1064 AE.
- ^ Guild Wars 2 Lore Q&A, GuildWars2Guru.com (Archived version)
- ^ Comment by Linsey Murdock, Reddit.com
- ^ The Shining Blade Manual (complete)
- ^ The Last Chance
- Lazarus: Tell me, Livia. Do you have children? Grandchildren? Great-grandchildren?
- Livia: I do not.
- Lazarus: How disappointing. Your line dies with you. You've wasted lifetimes on me.
- ^ a b Comment by Matthew Pennebaker, Reddit.com
- ^ Guild Wars 2 lore designers on rebuilding the world, and why they keep blowing up cities, PCGamer.com
- ^ TowerTalk gamescom 2011: Ree Soesbee zum Thema Lore in Guild Wars 2, Wartower.de
- ^ Comment by Matthew Medina, Reddit.com
- ^ Sea of Sorrows Pages 384-385