- “I don't have any idea what we'll find there. Whatever it is, though, I know that I want us to be the ones to decide what will be done with it.”
Valya arrives at Weisshaupt Fortress in 9:41 Dragon, with the other Circle mages who accepted the Wardens offer of recruitment, Padin, Berrith and Sekah and Eilfas. On orders from Caronel, Valya and her fellow Warden-Recruits are assigned to a library under the supervision of the Chamberlain of the Grey to search through assembled records from the Fourth Blight, in order to gain insight into newly reported, and disturbing, darkspawn phenomena. Her research leads her to an encoded reference scrawled in an ancient map, and to the hidden diary of the Grey Warden Isseya, one of the last of the fabled griffon riders and twin sister of Garahel.
After two months pass without any of the Warden-Recruits being put through the Joining, Valya begins to question if they will ever become fully fledged Wardens and how willing the Wardens will be to defend the various Apostate mages sheltering at Weisshaupt if the Templar Order or the Chantry pursue them to the fortress. Seeking an explanation, Valya confronts Caronel, however he assures her that the apostates are safe and that because they are needed for the Wardens archival research their Joining has been postponed temporarily. Not long afterwards a group of Templars arrive at Weisshaupt seeking to join the Grey Wardens. While the Templars display no hostility to their would-be charges, Valya decides to avoid interacting with them in any capacity regardless.
While assisting the Chamberlain of the Grey, Valya questions him over how the Griffons became extinct. The Chamberlain claims that disease and the loss of so many of their flying mounts in combat with the darkspawn led to the Griffons dying out, however this only persuades Valya that the truth of Griffons demise is being concealed.
Valya is eventually confronted by Reimas, one of the former Templar recruits, who questions why Valya is so suspicious of the former Templars and attempts to persuade her that they too have chosen to join the Wardens to put aside the divisions of the outside world as the mages have. Valya remains unconvinced and elects to return to her research.
Through her study of the diary, Valya discovers that Isseya used the Joining and Blood magic to force the griffons to accept the darkspawn taint to save a Griffon which had become afflicted with the taint. Discovering that the wardens willingly chose to use blood magic in pursuit of an ostensibly worthwhile goal, Valya eventually feels compelled to seek out Reimas again to discuss the matter with a Templar who has confronted a blood mage. After Reimas concedes that perhaps it is possible to achieve a noble goal via blood magic, Valya persuades Reimas, Sekah and Caronel to join her in a mission to Red Bride's Grave to retrieve something of great value to the Wardens however Valya refuses to reveal what that is prior to leaving or to inform the Grey Warden leadership of their mission.
Valya discloses to her companions that the true reason the Griffons died out was because in an act of desperation the Grey Warden subjected too many of their Griffons to Isseya's fatal improvised joining ritual. The condition was eventually discovered to be contagious and thanks to the Wardens frequent travel via griffon, soon all the griffons were infected. Isseya however sealed away a large clutch of griffon eggs sired by Crookytail, Garahel's Griffon, which she believed to be untainted in the Red Bride's Grave.The group enter the grave which as they suspected is infested with Skeletons and Shades. Valya, Reimas and Caronel are almost killed by an Ash Wraith but are saved by Sekah's healing magic however Sekah himself is struck down while reviving them. In spite of this loss, Valya discovers Isseya's hiding place and that the untainted Griffon eggs have survived thanks to her protective wards. Released from their magical suspension, the eggs hatch and Valya elects to name the first hatchling, Crookytail, after its father.
- In the novel Last Flight Valya never goes through the Joining, making her only a Warden-Recruit.