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- See also: Character: Bartrand Tethras
"Half of Kirkwall wants to be my best friend right now."
The history of noble House Tethras stretches back to the foundation of Orzammar. The memories say that three times, a child of House Tethras took the office of Assembly Steward. They held appointments in the Shaperate of Memories and the Shaperate of Golems. But no longer.
In the second year of the reign of King Endrin Aeducan, Lord Andvar Tethras was found guilty before the Assembly of willfully manipulating Proving matches in favor of his House. For this affront to the Ancestors, he and all his House were sentenced to exile on the surface. Andvar died a mere five years later, leaving behind his Lady Ilsa, ten-year-old Bartrand, and two-year-old Varric.
Exile, surface life, and the loss of her husband conspired against Lady Ilsa, who took to drink, leaving young Bartrand to manage what was left of House Tethras.
By the time he was fifteen, Bartrand had doubled his family's fortune. The disgrace of House Tethras fueled his ambition and his once-noble title gave him an instant place among the kalnas, the old money elite of the Dwarven Merchants Guild; he used it to build alliances and business ventures as if he were a member of the Orzammar Assembly.
By the time Lady Ilsa died, Bartrand had made the Tethras family one of the Guild's most influential, but wealth and power on the surface couldn't sate him. He began to court alliances with the wealthiest ascendant families, branching into banking and mercenary companies. Guild members mutter that nothing will satisfy Bartrand but a complete reconstruction of House Tethras' estate in Orzammar--down to the rivers of lava--built in Kirkwall.