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|Groups||Knights Radiant (Lightweavers), Unseen Court|
|Featured In||The Stormlight Archive|
”I think we all hide pain to an extent.
Appearance and Personality
Beryl is a tall darkeyed Alethi woman with long legs and delicate, supple fingers. Her luxurious dark hair, perfectly tan skin, and stately bearing give her a resemblance to Jasnah Kholin. Even when Beryl is not intentionally Lightweaving, Veil believes that she instinctually uses her powers to enhance her appearance. She is a few years older than Shallan, putting her in her early twenties when she joins the Knights Radiant. She seems to eschew the traditional Vorin havah in favor of other styles of dresses and skirts.
Beryl is relatively introverted and relaxed. She has a sunny disposition, and is generally optimistic. She is eager to learn about her powers and practices diligently. She seems confident that she will be able to overcome any obstacles in her training, although she does experience some self-doubt about interacting with important people. She is introspective, and seems to be at peace with herself and her past. Like many Lightweavers, her personality has a tendency to shift to match whatever face she is wearing.
Attributes and Abilities
”I can't change anything but my own appearance! I know I can do more. I’ve seen the rest of you.—Beryl
She can instinctively Surgebind to change her appearance to look like someone else. She sometimes makes subtle changes to her own features subconsciously. However, Beryl has not learned how to Lightweave anything other than her own appearance. She has attempted to replicate the methods used by other Lightweavers, but she is not good at drawing (like Shallan) or shifting her mindset to think like the object of an illusion (like Vathah).
She is able to quickly learn how to Soulcast, and even develops a new technique to make it easier. She "shows" the soul of an object whatever she wants it to transform into; for example, she carries lavis seeds if she wants to transform stone into lavis grain. She has shown Vathah this trick and he agrees that it is easier to Soulcast with the seeds. This method is not known to Jasnah, and raises a question about potential differences in Soulcasting by Lightweavers compared to Elsecallers.
”I won't pretend my life was easy. The profession isn’t an easy one, and the women who find their way to it often have their problems magnified. There are ways to keep it from chewing you up, however. To make it your choice, done in your way. Or at least ways to tell yourself that...—Beryl
Beryl's early history is unknown. She did not come from a stable background; she noted that she had led so many lives that she could not recall her real name.
Beryl worked as a prostitute in the Alethi warcamps on the Shattered Plains. Although her life was difficult, Beryl did not face the same struggles as other women in her profession, such as firemoss addiction or threats of violence. She was not ashamed of being a prostitute, and noted that she always felt in control of her professional life.
Joining the Knights Radiant
”Queen Jasnah doesn't know everything, right? Or maybe it’s different for our order. It’s not her fault if she doesn’t know how Lightweavers work.—Beryl on Soulcasting methods
Beryl was not among the Alethi who moved to Urithiru after the Battle of Narak, and she remained in the warcamps. At some point, she bonded the Cryptic Ornament and independently learned how to Surgebind. Despite her lack of training, she was able to use her newfound abilities to start wearing illusory faces at the request of her clients. This presumably raised her profile in the warcamps, and rumors about her made their way to Shallan. Shallan sought Beryl out and recruited her to the Lightweaver organization known as the Unseen Court about three months prior to the expedition to Lasting Integrity. Beryl later realized that she could have walked away from her job months earlier, but she had enjoyed becoming the women that her clients desired and the control that she had over them.
Beryl became an apprentice in the Unseen Court's base in Urithiru. Shallan felt that her team was complete after Beryl joined. Beryl was trained to use her powers; she also learned how to fight, as a last resort. Her control over illusions that altered her appearance improved, but she remained unable to create illusions of other objects or people. Beryl was also introduced to Soulcasting and seemed to have a knack for it. She showed Vathah a Soulcasting trick that she developed independently; Shallan asked her to show it to Ishnah and report back on the results.
Beryl was one of the few members of the Unseen Court that seemed eager to join the Urithiru coalition's diplomatic mission to Lasting Integrity. However, Shallan had become concerned that there was a spy Mraize and the Ghostbloods in her team, and did not want to bring both Beryl and Stargyle since they were the newest recruits and the least known to her. Shallan settled on bringing Vathah, Ishnah, and Stargyle.  However, just before the party was set to leave Urithiru, Stargyle's wife became ill and he backed out of the trip, and Beryl took his place. During the trip, Beryl worked on recording observations about Shadesmar.
Shallan got to know Beryl a little better and realized that she was somewhat envious of Beryl's optimism and self-confidence. However, Shallan also became increasingly suspicious of Beryl, and temporarily believed that she was the spy, particularly after she fed her a tidbit about a corrupted gloryspren and Mraize repeated it. Shallan did not immediately act on her suspicions since she did not have hard proof, and continued to work with Beryl on her Lightweaving powers as if nothing was out of the ordinary. She tried to get information from Ornament, but did not learn anything incriminating. Shallan asked Beryl to attend a meeting with Adolin and other leaders of the expedition, and Beryl displayed some obvious hesitation and discomfort with the situation. This reduced Shallan's suspicions, but Beryl was not fully exonerated until Shallan discovered the true spy.
After the group reached Lasting Integrity and Adolin, Shallan, and Pattern entered the city, Beryl and the rest of the expedition (except Godeke, Felt, and Malli) left their camp for the Oathgate to tell Dalinar what had happened.
- The source of Beryl's assumed name is unknown, but beryl is a real-life mineral; both emerald and heliodor (two of Roshar's polestones) are varieties of gem-quality beryl, and Brandon is aware of this fact.
- Shallan refers to Beryl as a "Surgebinding savant", but the cosmere term savant is not known to be used on Roshar, so Shallan is presumably referring to the fact that Beryl showed an innate talent in Lightweaving before receiving any training.
- Adolin once protected a prostitute in the warcamps, but it was not Beryl.
- Rhythm of War chapter 20#
- Rhythm of War chapter 26#
- Rhythm of War chapter 32#
- Rhythm of War chapter 34#
- Rhythm of War chapter 21#
- Rhythm of War chapter 24#
- Rhythm of War chapter 30#
- Rhythm of War chapter 36#
- Rhythm of War chapter 75#
- /r/fantasy AMA 2013
— Arcanum - 2013-04-15#
- The Way of Kings chapter 46#
- YouTube Spoiler Stream 4
— Arcanum - 2022-06-16#