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"Do you really wish to know?" — Spoilers from the books and/or adaptations to follow!
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Triss Merigold was a Temerian sorceress who enlisted in the help of Geralt of Rivia to cure the princess of Temeria.

Biography[]

Saving the Princess[]

Triss Merigold sought out the help of Geralt of Rivia, a renowned witcher, as Temeria was terrorized by a creature of unknown origin. She served King Foltest, but was acting under her own agenda to keep the nations stabilized. Rather than kill the beast, she wanted Geralt's help in saving it.

Six years ago, stable hands started vanishing at the castle above the city. Before long, citizens started disappearing throughout all of Temeria. They soon realized that the creature was coming from the crypt within the castle, where the king's sister Queen Adda was laid to rest. Rumor has it that she was having an affair with a young man in town when she died and that she was with child, making that child sole heir to the Temerian empire. The king fled the castle ignoring the rising death toll. So, Triss was sent 3 months ago to kill the creature.

In order to determine what exactly they're faced against, she takes him to the tomb to examine the corpses of the victims of the creature. He examines Remus' corpse and comes to the conclusion that she covered up his death to hide the fact that the creature bested a witcher. Upon further examination, Geralt discovers that Remus is missing both his heart and liver. Only a striga's eating habits are that selective. They're very rare and can only be created through a curse, meaning someone wanted Adda dead. However, the curse didn't stop with Adda, and it turned her daughter into a monster, meaning the striga is the Princess of Temeria.

Triss Merigold takes Geralt to see King Foltest, Lord Ostrit, and Captain Segelin, with whom she pleads to enlist in Geralt's help. However, Segelin is skeptical of Geralt's claims that Princess Adda was murdered. Triss hopes that the king will allow her to search the abandoned castle for clues as to who killed Adda, however, Segelin fears that Geralt will kill the princess. Geralt explains that the creature grew inside of Adda, feeding on her womb and mutating, growing for years until she got so hungry that she was forced to "slither out," essentially an "overgrown abortion." This incenses the king, who orders everyone to leave.

Disregarding the king's orders, Triss and Geralt hide outside the abandoned castle and crypt. She asks if he's going to kill the striga, to which Geralt replies that he doesn't want the miners' coins. He and Triss proceed to sneak into the castle, where they discover letters from the former queen of Temeria in Adda's bedroom. The letter details Queen Sancia urging her children to end their affair. Geralt and Triss take this discovery to Ostrit under the suspicion that the former queen cursed her children. Ostrit claims that he was Adda's confidant and protector. He believes that Foltest raped Adda and cursed the child to cover it up. However, according to Geralt, Ostrit's scent was all over Adda's sheets. Old ones and new ones. He smelled what Ostrit was doing in there. With that, Ostrit confesses to being Adda's lover and placing the curse on her, albeit unintentionally. Geralt asks how to lift the curse, but Ostrit refuses to tell him, as he wants to see Foltest punished for defiling Adda. In response, Geralt simply knocks him out with a single punch.

Triss uses this information to convince the king into accepting Geralt's help. That night, Geralt enters the castle and the striga awakens. This results in an overnight battle between the two, ending with Geralt lifting the curse. However, in his attempt to help the young girl, she turns around and slices his throat with her claws. He bites her neck to get her off of him and passes out from blood loss.

Geralt awakens shortly after being healed by Triss. She informs him that the princess is fine and that King Foltest issued a statement that Lord Ostrit gave his life defeating the creature. The miners are even building a statue in his honor. Triss asks about Renfri, whose name Geralt uttered repeatedly while sleep. He doesn't reply, simply asking for his money. She asks if all life is to him is monsters and money, and he claims that it is. She doesn't believe that, and claims that there is a "vortex of fate" around each of them, drawing their destiny closer with each decision they make. Triss hands him his money and returns the gift he left for the princess.[1]

Conclave of Northern Mages[]

Triss Merigold was one of many mages who attended the conclave of Northern mages in Aretuza. Artorius, Stregobor, and Tissaia led the conclave. Artorius and Stregobor had no desire to go to war with Nilfgaard. Especially not for Cintra, who rejected their mages for decades. Rather than watching them fall, Tissaia wanted to help Cintra defeat Nilfgaard. Sabrina, Vilgefortz, and Vanielle sided with Tissaia, wanting to convince the kings to send their armies because if they didn't stop Nilfgaard now, more kingdoms would fall.

Fringilla arrived at the conclave and denounced any suspicion that Nilfgaard was planning to take over the continent. Under their new leader, Emperor Emhyr, Nilfgaard had strengthened trade and funded research. Tissaia accused Fringilla of rejecting the order and way of life that took centuries to build. Fringilla retorted that they simply modified it. They've taken a new path, guided by the White Flame. When Triss claimed that Nilfgaard also forced mages into servitude and practice black magic, Fringilla responded that they believed in shared sacrifice and that there was no such thing as dark or light magic. Fringilla believed that in taking Cintra, they had a chance of saving the continent. The mages put it to a vote. Unfortunately, most side with Stregobor and Artorius to allow Cintra to fend for themselves.[2]

Battle of Sodden Hill[]

Approximately 60 mages, Triss, Yennefer, Tissaia, Vilgefortz, Vanielle, Coral, and Sabrina included, board a ship headed for Sodden Hill. They must get to the Elven keep that guarded it before Nilfgaard did. They had already sent word to the Northern kingdoms. Temeria and Kaedwen agreed to join them in defending the land. The plan was to protect the keep. Triss, Yennefer, Tissaia, Vilgefortz, Vanielle, Coral, and Sabrina arrived at the keep. The only thing separating Nilfgaard from the North. They were greeted by a man. Yennefer advised him to take the children and hide, but as he explained, there was no more hiding from Nilfgaard. Their only chance was to fight.

Yennefer recalled Triss spending time in Temeria and asked if she truly believed that King Foltest would bring the Northern armies. Triss trusted that he would come through after she and Geralt helped save his daughter, who was cursed as a striga.

The keep was attacked by Fringilla and Nilfgaard in the late hours of the night. The sun had risen and the Northern mages made it through the night. Unfortunately, Nilfgaard arrived much sooner than they anticipated and the Northern armies were still a ways out. There were only 22 of them left, Triss, Yennefer, Tissaia, Vilgefortz, Vanielle, Coral, Atlan Kerk, and Sabrina included. They witnessed as a thick fog consumed the mountains around them, signaling Nilfgaard's encroachment. Tissaia ordered Sabrina to take the villagers to the artillery room while she and Triss head down. Yennefer was instructed to keep watch on the tower and reserve her chaos.

Tissaia guided Triss to an open field, where she proceeded to make mushrooms grow out the ground that when inhaled, its gases caused the Nilfgaardians to die. She then barricaded the front gate with vines to prevent Nilfgaard from penetrating. While protecting the gate from the Nilfgaard army, Triss was burned in the chest by a fire torch, which also allowed for Nilfgaard to burn through her vines forged around the door.[3]

Battle Scars[]

Triss was left badly wounded and burned from the Battle of Sodden Hill. She was taken back to Aretuza, where her condition worsened, and she began to have a seizure until Tissaia, Vilgefortz, and Artorius intervened and managed to stabilize her.[4]

Triss and Sabrina joined Yennefer by the pool following her return to Aretuza. However, Triss wasn't comfortable showing her burn wounds yet and remained by the poolside, where she recalled the Battle at Sodden and how when she was on the ground screaming, and Yennefer walked by her, she remembered thinking that if only one of them got to live, she was glad it was Yennefer, who offered to find a cure for Triss' scares, but she didn't appear too concerned, telling Yennefer, "What's lost is lost." She was just thankful not to be on Tissaia's plaque.[5]

Training Ciri[]

Triss traveled to Kaer Morhen at Geralt's request to help Ciri gain a better control of her magic. However, doing so would prove difficult, as according to Geralt, Ciri hadn't exhibited any typical indicators of Chaos. She only seemed to have the power of foresight, as well as a pull that led them to a leshy, leading Geralt to suspect that the creatures could've been sent by a mage to come after Ciri. So, Triss performed a test to determine any signs of mutagenic alchemy, but they wouldn't have results until morning. Until then, Triss proposed that she and Geralt stay the night together, but he turned her down.

After scolding Lambert and Coen for teasing Ciri, Triss checked the results of her test. While there was no evidence of mutagenic alchemy in the monster Geralt killed, Triss did uncover stellacite from a monolith. Inside the leshy that turned Eskel, they uncover more stellacite, suggesting they came from the same monolith. It was then that Ciri revealed that when Nilfgaard attacked Cintra, she screamed and caused a monolith to topple, which Geralt decided to investigate for himself.

Triss handed Geralt his elixirs as he prepared to leave and investigate the destroyed monolith outside of Cintra. Regarding the night before, Geralt explained that he couldn't give her what she wanted or deserved, but for her, he was all that she was looking for last night. His pain excited her because she finally felt something again. Most of them were cured after the battle, but all wounds could not be healed, like her burns. Geralt hoped that in her search to feel again, she'd find her value to him, as she was important to him. Triss then portalled Geralt to Istredd, who was an expert on monoliths.[6]

Perfoming Dol Durza[]

Upon Ciri's consent and learning from Vesemir that Ciri had Elder blood, the primary component in creating more witchers, she assisted in creating a new batch of witcher mutagen. However, it wasn't until the mutagen was complete that Triss discovered Ciri's plan to become the first of the new witchers.

In an attempt to convince Ciri out of taking the mutagen, Triss proposed a different method to find out where Ciri's power came from by performing a Dol Durza, which roughly translated to Valley of the Soul, which allowed them to enter the deepest layer of Ciri's consciousness and uncover things that may be hidden, like genetic memories. They not only walked through Ciri's memories, but those of her mother and grandmother's as well. However, at some point, Triss realized that the Dol Durza wasn't functioning properly, but the breaking point wasn't until Triss was nearly killed by Lara Dorren, who referred to Ciri as the "Child of Elder blood, child of wrath," and claimed that she would bring death to the world. Triss and Ciri regained consciousness, and Triss cowers in the corner, terrified by the death and horror prophesized.[7]

Confiding in Tissaia[]

Triss and Vesemir both felt foolish for ever thinking that they could tame Ciri. Whatever was running through her veins and whatever they made from it was more dangerous than they knew. As if on cue, Rience invaded the den, attacked them both, and fled with the witcher mutagen made from Ciri's blood. After being attacked and discovering that the fire mage stole the mutagen, Triss fled to Aretuza, where she revealed to Tissaia, who she trusted above anyone else, that a drop of Ciri's blood could change the world. And in the wrong hands, she would destroy it.[8]

Triss learned from Tissaia that she saw Geralt with Ciri at Sodden, but Tissaia didn't know who she was at the time, and they had come looking for Yennefer. Tissaia then asked who else knew about what Triss saw when she performed the Dol Durza on Ciri. No one outside of them and the other witchers, Triss revealed. Before they could continue, Vilgefortz interrupted after having learned the truth from Tissaia and demanded to know everything about Ciri. Triss viewed this as a betrayal and exited without saying another word.[9]

Gallery[]

References[]

  1. Season 1, Episode 03: Betrayer Moon
  2. Season 1, Episode 07: Before a Fall
  3. Season 1, Episode 08: Much More
  4. Season 2, Episode 01: A Grain of Truth
  5. Season 2, Episode 03: What Is Lost
  6. Season 2, Episode 04: Redanian Intelligence
  7. Season 2, Episode 05: Turn Your Back
  8. Season 2, Episode 06: Dear Friend...
  9. Season 2, Episode 07: Voleth Meir
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