Alain went to the Circle at the age of six. He used to be a mage at the Circle of Starkhaven before it was burned down.
Alain is involved in the quest Act of Mercy. Ser Thrask sends Hawke a letter asking Hawke to come to a remote cave along the Wounded Coast. When Hawke arrives, Thrask explains that a group of apostates who escaped from Starkhaven are hiding inside. Hawke must get the mages to surrender or else Ser Karras will arrive and slaughter them. After entering the cave and eliminating the early threats, Hawke finds Alain, who claims that he never wished to join the group of mages, and is terrified by the use of blood magic. Alain runs to the entrance and surrenders himself to the templars. Alain is taken to the Gallows by Thrask or Karras at the end of the quest.
If Hawke subsequently talks to Alain in the Gallows courtyard, Alain remarks that Starkhaven's Circle was never as strict or abusive as Kirkwall's. Alain says Kirkwall templars beat the mages but are never reported. Alain is forbidden to send mail out, and he found a letter to his parents burned in the furnace. Finally, if Karras was spared, Alain states that Karras threatened to make him Tranquil if Alain told anyone he has been in Alain's chambers.