Ultimately, it is revealed that the Prophet is a magical being created by the High Ones and is based on the person stowing away on the ship. The stowaway actually died after being thrown overboard, with the player character being a direct manifestation of the stowaway's unfulfilled desire to become something greater. To be someone who matters. This made them an ideal piece in the High Ones' game.
- The Ageless: One of the side-effects of being a creation of the High Ones.
- Back from the Dead: Subverted. The person you play in the first few minutes on the ship dies and is Killed Off for Real. The person you play for the rest of the game is an entirely different entity who shares the memories of its original counterpart.
- Broken Ace: The Prophet in a nutshell. On the outside, a complete badass with mastery over all known fighting styles, a wide range of exceptional talent in useful hobbies, and an amazing love life. Inside, constantly living in angst from watching grim tragedy unfold throughout their adventures, insecure about their humble origins, and plagued with major daddy issues. This is completely intentional.
- Came Back Strong: After the near-death experience, the Prophet practically becomes a One-Man Army, possessing skills and abilities that would take an average person decades to learn. This is ultimately subverted as it's revealed the Prophet never even survived the near-death experience to begin with, and all their newfound skills and abilities were the result of being a Fleshless One.
- The Chosen One: Chosen by the Veiled Woman from the start of the game. If you can call "injected with supermagic and then reported to a psychotic Captain so she can gleefully execute you" chosen. And at the very end of the game, you learn that you were also chosen by the High Ones to be their puppet.
- Dead All Along: The original character the Prophet is based on died at the very beginning of the game when they are tossed overboard along with Sirius.
- Deadpan Snarker: Has some very sarcastic dialogue choices, especially in the Rhalâta and Golden Sickle questlines.
- Featureless Protagonist: Like in Skyrim, the player character can be just about anything. That said, your character is always Half-Nehrimese, and if you load a save that occurs during the initial dream sequence, it mentions their race as the default one.
- The Hero Dies: If you choose the Sacrifice ending.
- Heroic Sacrifice: The Sacrifice ending has you destroy the Beacon before it can fully complete the Cleansing. The resulting explosion completely destroys Enderal, but not the world.
- Humanoid Abomination: The protagonist is not a 'flesh-and-blood' human, but an artificial construct of the High Ones; a 'projection' based on their ideal self.
- Instant Expert: Their actual superpower, a side effect of becoming a magically-augmented The Chosen One. The Prophet has the ability to instantly learn complex skills and techniques which would take years to master in mere seconds. They only conditions are (A) they need to level up by overcoming challenges and crafting useful items, and (B) they need to read expensive skill books or choose from a limited selection of perks during meditation.
- I Just Want to Be Special: The Prophet is an anthropomorphic manifestation of this desire.
- Intangible Time Travel: One of their powers, albeit not one (s)he directly controls. The Prophet is able to see "echoes" of the past at locations where events related to the previous Cleansing took place.
- Killed Off for Real: The original person the player character is based on died very early in the game. You even encounter the corpse of the original character.
- My Greatest Failure: It's implied whatever happened to their family is this for them.
- Superior Successor: Inverted, as opposed to Nehrim's protagonist being able to Screw Destiny, The Prophet is merely able to delay it at best.
- Tomato in the Mirror: Near the end, the Prophet (along with their predecessor prophets) is revealed to be a mere pawn of the High Ones to cause the Cleansing. They are not even human, but a 'projection', an undead created by the High Ones by projecting an illusion of someone's ideal self which is so lifelike that the world itself treats them as real). The player character's original body died at the start of the game.
- Walking Spoiler: The true nature of this character is integral to the plot. Revealing it would spoil just about everything. Therefore, many of their entries are spoiler tagged.
- Unwitting Pawn: To the High Ones. The Prophet was actually created by them as a puppet in their game to cause the Cleansing. Every step the Prophet undertook to stop the Cleansing was orchestrated by the High Ones to cause it in the first place. It's not until the very end where the Prophet finally makes a choice that won't benefit the High Ones.
Voiced by: Ben Britton (English), Martin Sabel (German)
- Back from the Dead: Gets revived by the Veiled Woman after being killed by his Demonically Possessed sister.
- Bi the Way: In addition to be a romance option for the Prophet regardless of gender, he also mentions to them finding both men and women at taverns attractive, and can be found in the company of male and female prostitutes at one point in his personal quest.
- Cain and Abel: He becomes the Abel to his sister, following her possession by the Black Stone.
- Deadpan Snarker: He can get really snarky about subjects he doesn't like. He also prefers snarky responses when talking to the player.
- Despair Event Horizon: His sister's descent into insanity and her death becomes this for him. After recovering from his would-be death, he becomes overwhelmed with guilt and proceeds to go on a bender in the Undercity. He eventually recovers from it, though.
- Drowning My Sorrows: After his sister's death, you find him drinking and whoring away his feelings in the Undercity.
- Mr. Exposition: Being the first major character the player encounters, Jespar takes on this role to explain the player how the world of Enderal works. He takes this role again when arriving in Ark, explaining the different districts.
- My Greatest Failure: He left his ex-girlfriend at the mercy of six bandits.
- Sad Clown: He's a pretty broken man underneath his snarky exterior.
- Worth It: If he dies in the Cleansing instead of Calia, he admits he doesn't regret finally fighting for something bigger then him.
Calia Sarkaresh/ Maya Dal'Galar
Voiced by: Caitlin Buckley (English), Michelle Winter (German)
A soft spoken novice at the temple. She takes on her initiation ritual at the same time the player does. She has a dark entity living inside of her that wants to take possession of her body.
Later on, it has been revealed she is really Maya Dal'Galar, the daughter of a wealthy apothecarist. When she was a little girl, she died from an unknown disease. Her father, unable to let go of her, spent a fortune and destroyed his reputation trying to bring her back from the dead. He got his hands on one of the black stones and succeeded in resurrecting her, but the experiment was unstable and killed him. The Veiled Woman then renamed her Calia and brought her to a village, where she ultimately grew up into the woman encountered in the game.
- Affectionate Nickname: She starts calling the Prophet "Sa'Ira" which is roughly Qyranian for "Brother-In-Arms".
- Back from the Dead: Her father resurrected her when she was a little girl. Unfortunately, he died from backlash from the spell or the demon moments later, and she developed permanent amnesia of her childhood (and a resentment of her father for getting innocent people killed both intentionally and unintentionally), making her resurrection pointless.
- Bi the Way: In addition to being romanceable by both genders, her only previous lover was a woman. A male Prophet can express surprise at this and she will explain that she doesn't really view gender.
- Boyish Short Hair: She has this, fitting her style as a warrior for the Order.
- Broken Ace: Calia is a kind woman who is incredibly skilled in combat and has a Superpowered Evil Side which makes her nigh unstoppable in fights. However, she abhors the entity inside of her and is in constant fear of it taking complete control. This fear causes her to be cautious towards new people and forces her not to pursue any relationships or friendships.
- Enemy Within: Has a demonic entity living inside of her that takes control whenever she feels extreme anger or powerlessness.
- My Greatest Failure: She has a memory of her other entity destroying a village, and she remembers having an immense sense of pleasure from the destruction.
- Nice Gal: Tries to be nice to everyone, even if they insult her in a very vicious way.
- No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Whenever her Enemy Within takes control, the fight usually devolves into this.
- Shrinking Violet: Tends to distance herself from other people and does not know how to react to others being genuinely nice to her.
- Superpowered Evil Side: Her other half may be a murderous and frightening creature but it almost always results in a Curb-Stomp Battle in her favor.
- Uniformity Exception: Once she becomes a Keeper, she doesn't wear the regular red-and-grey Roman Legionnaire-looking plate armor worn by the other Keepers◊, but instead she wears a fitting leather suit, with plated tigh-high boots, leather gloves, and a metal breastplate◊. She also wears a short blue cape instead of the long red cape of the other Keepers. The trope is averted when you first meet her, though (she's initially a Novice and wears their standard uniform).
Voiced by: Andreas Wilde (English and German)
The grand master of the Order and de facto ruler of Enderal.
- Arc Words: "I can feel it." He even says this when he is unknowingly about to start the Cleansing.
- Ascended Extra: He was only in Nehrim for one quest and was a pretty insignificant character for that story. Here, he's a major force in the main quest and takes his son's role as the Big Good for this story.
- The Atoner: Downplayed. Tealor was never an evil person, but it's clear he's made some pretty questionable decisions from the Night of a Thousand Fires to abandoning his own son, Narathzul, for a promotion. However, it's also pretty clear he deeply regrets these mistakes and is using his mission to stop the High Ones as a chance to make up his failures from the past.
- Back from the Dead: He actually died during his 30 year imprisonment. The Tealor we meet is a Fleshless, a clone generated by the High Ones based on the originals last desire.
- Big Good: He is the leader of the Order and the one taking the fight to the High Ones. Unfortunately, this is subverted when it turns out his actions are what cause the Cleansing to begin with. The High Ones intentionally helped Tealor become a total badass because they knew they were also turning him into a Broken Ace who would fall for their schemes, hook, line, and sinker.
- Broken Ace: Tealor is a very skilled fighter, leader, and tactician, but he is also very insecure about his mistakes from his past, which the High Ones use to their advantage.
- Dead All Along: The real Tealor died during his imprisonment in Nehrim.
- Dragon-in-Chief: In theory, his role is merely a high ranking enforcer to Enderal's God King Malphas. Since Malphas and the other Light Born are long dead, he is now the closest thing to a leader in the country.
- Famous Last Words: "I led them to the light. I, alone..."
- Humanoid Abomination: Like the Prophet, Tealor is revealed to be a Fleshless One, a projection created by the High Ones to bring about the Cleansing.
- It's All About Me: His refusal to die a failure ends up causing the extinction of Enderal and depending on player choice, the entire world.
- Know When to Fold 'Em: Inverted. Tealor will never surrender even when it's clearly a losing battle. This ultimately causes both his oldest friends to turn on him and causes him to unwittingly usher in the apocalypse.
- Mike Nelson, Destroyer of Worlds: He unknowingly starts the Cleansing because of the assumption that activating the Beacon without the Numinos would only cause a massive explosion on Enderal, buying the other countries time. It turns out this was exactly what the High Ones wanted him to think.
- Miles to Go Before I Sleep: He admits to the Prophet that his long life full of mistakes and tragedy have begun to take it's toll on him and he expects the fight against the High Ones to be his last big hurrah. The High Ones know this and are exploiting his determination to see it through to the end.
- My Greatest Failure: Two, to be exact. The Night of a Thousand Fires where a small mistake on his part lead to the massacre of civilians. The other, abandoning Narathzul, is a more personal one that acts as a Berserk Button when the High Ones taunt him about it.
- Not So Stoic: Tealor usually remains under control throughout most of the game, but when Yuslan betrays the group by killing himself along with the Numinos, he absolutely loses it. After this, he becomes significantly more unhinged and impatient than before.
- Tealor Arantheal: "MISERABLE, SELFISH FOOL! You killed us all!"
- Parental Abandonment: He gave his son Narathzul to a servant rather then raise him himself, so he could keep his position in the Order.
- Sanity Slippage: Is accused of this, not without reason, by some of his followers, but it doesn't really seem that he's suffering from any until the ending. On the floor dying, he becomes completely delusional and doesn't seem to be aware that the world is ending around him. You can even tell him that he started the Cleansing, to which he laughs and denies.
- Taking You with Me: Ironically, he thinks he's doing this to Coarek's armies in order to prevent the Cleansing. As it turns out, he ended up starting it, unintentionally taking the whole world with him.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: Tealor is initially a rather polite and composed leader, but as the game goes on and the worse the situation gets, he becomes much more openly hostile and aggressive, even towards his allies.
- Tragic Hero: Despite all of his flaws, he genuinely does want to stop the Cleansing. But his inability to move on from his past and his refusal to fail the mission causes him to get careless and desperate, which culminates in him activating the Beacon without the Numinos, which starts the Cleansing, dooming Vyn to extinction.
Voiced by: Philip Hurd-Wood (English), Wolfgang Riehm (German)The leader of a group of Nehrimese mages aiding the Holy Order and Jespar's employer.
- Accidental Misnaming: Frequently forgets Jespar's name because he cares so little to remember it.
- Deadpan Snarker: Snarks along with Jespar whenever the two are conversing.
- Grumpy Old Man: Besides Lishari and eventually Jespar, very few people seem to have his respect.
- Jerkass: He's a very snippy old man and frequently argues and insults with whoever he happens to be on screen with.
- Hollywood Atheist: Like most people from Nehrim, he's vehemently against the idea of any divine figure.
- Go Mad from the Revelation: Ends up dead by you and Jespar's hands after he realizes that your actions are causing the Cleansing and he tries to kill you in a vain attempt to stop it.
- Pet the Dog: A downplayed example, but when you are about to enter the Living Temple, Jespar asks Firespark why exactly he keeps hiring him. Firespark, despite starting with sarcasm and insults, admits to Jespar he does his work well enough to earn his trust.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: He's from Nehrim, a nation of militant atheists, working with the Holy Order of Enderal, an army of religious zealots.
- Wizard Beard: Befitting of an experienced mage like him. Jespar makes a joke about it.
Voiced by: River Kandoff (English), Johannes Semm (German)A Qyranian arcanist working alongside Firespark. A very serious man who is not very keen on the Order and speaks to a voice in his head he calls Naea.
- Ascended Extra: He was initially a supporting character. The Forgotten Stories DLC adds a questline focused on him and some of his backstory.
- Dark and Troubled Past: He was the sole survivor of the Night of a Thousand Fires.
- Deadpan Snarker: He has his moments, such as explaining that the Golden Queen is a queen.
- Despair Event Horizon: The death of his family destroyed him and he will stop at nothing to avenge them.
- Famous Last Words: "You asked me once what my daughter's name was. Do you remember? Lina. Her name was Lina."
- Hearing Voices: Nothing indicates that "Naea" has a real presence since she died years ago.
- The Mole: Only working with the Order so he can be in the exact position he needs to get revenge on Tealor.
- My Greatest Failure: His family was killed during the Night of a Thousand Fires. His only reason for living after that was to get revenge on the man responsible for the massacre, Tealor Arantheal.
- "Reason You Suck" Speech: Delivers a vicious one to Tealor, not-entirely incorrectly labeling his supposed selflessness as just an excuse to play the heroic martyr. All before screwing the entire world just to spite him.
- Suicidal Cosmic Temper Tantrum: Kills himself along with the very tool to finally defeat the High Ones all to make sure Tealor will die a failure.
- Taking You with Me: What he plans for Tealor and by extension, the entire world.
Voiced by: Jack de Golia (English), Andreas W. Schmidt (German)
A race of evil godlike entities who are responsible for the Cleansing; an event that wipes out all sentient life on the planet.
- A Form You Are Comfortable With: Since they lack a real physical form, they frequently appear to mortals as illusions of things they do understand. But these forms are far from comfortable to look at, as they range from spectral talking animals, talking corpses to even the forms of friends and loved ones.
- Animate Dead: As a plot point, the only true superpower the High Ones have is the ability to raise the dead as their pawns at extremely inconvenient times. The problem is, they can do it reeeeeally well. Just ask the player character and Tealor Arantheal. And that entire ghost dragon.
- As Long as There is Evil: Its not they, themselves, who are the main threat, but rather the humans they manipulate into causing the Cleansing. They always know how to manipulate the negative emotions of their victims. Emotions like hatred, fear and uncontrolled ambition. Most importantly, they can only infest those who have hidden or denied their negative emotions. If humanity would be able to confront and accept their dark sides, the High Ones themselves would be mostly harmless.
- The Bad Guy Wins: Despite all the struggle and pain everyone goes through in the main quest, the High Ones still succeed by manipulating Tealor Arantheal into starting the Cleansing. However, both endings have a sliver of hope that the High Ones will finally be defeated.
- Big Bad: They are the race that wants to wipe out humanity, using the ego of humans to do so.
- Blue and Orange Morality: They really have no qualms about destroying an entire civilization. In fact it is required for them to do so in order to procreate.
- The Chessmaster: Everything you do in the main quest go exactly according to their plan. And it works.
- Eldritch Abomination: It never becomes clear what the High Ones really are. One character even compares them to a sentient force of nature.
- The Heavy: Inverted. They actually require other people to be this trope, as the High Ones themselves can't directly act in the world.
- Manipulative Bastard: Their entire shtick. They constantly manipulate events in their favor to cause the Cleansing. Manipulation is also the only way for them to act. If humans wouldn't give in to their manipulation, the High Ones are powerless.
- Voice of the Legion: They speak in a very deep echoing and distorted voice.
Voiced by: Ian Gordon (English), Oliver Warsitz (German)
- Be Careful What You Wish For: In the end he manages to get the Cleansing started and, unsurprisingly, it turns out not to be what he hoped for: you'll find him agonizing in the Sun Temple together with his troops and the few Keepers left, burning from the inside as the Cleansing spreads all over Enderal.
- Big Bad: He wants to start the Cleansing and seems to be working with the High Ones to achieve this. But, like with Tealor's role as the Big Good, this is subverted. The High Ones manipulated him into invading Enderal with the hopes that starting the Cleansing would bring about a new transcendence, but him and his forces are really just to get Tealor to unwittingly start the Cleansing as a last act of desperation. If Coarek won like he hoped he would, the Cleansing wouldn't have even happened.
- Big Bad Duumvirate: It seems as if he and the High Ones are both collaborating to bring about the Cleansing, but Subverted; Taranor is not the one meant to start the Cleansing. He's just meant to force Tealor's hand.
- Faux Affably Evil: He acts polite but is a brutal war criminal more than willing to usher in the apocalypse.
- Fantastic Racism: Towards Enderaleans for their devotion to the Lightborn.
- Hollywood Atheist: Like most Nehrimese, he's an atheist but Taranor takes it to the extreme with his desire to utterly purge the world of religious people.
- Knight Templar: Despite his hatred of religious zealotry, he's ironically one of the most ideologically zealous people in the game.
- Red Herring: The game hypes him up to be the true Big Bad of the story, but it turns out he's nothing more than just a tool for the High Ones to get Tealor to start the Cleansing out of desperation.
- Sudden Sequel Heel Syndrome: Considering the Perspective Flip from Nehrim, it's logical that Taranor is an antagonist here. Yet, he appears to be incredibly more megalomaniac and cruel compared to his previous appearance in Nehrim.
- The Unfought: Despite a large amount of buildup, Coarek and his armies are ultimately killed by the Cleansing before you can face them one final time.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Kills the Truchessa after she opens the gates, despite his promise he would spare her and the people of Ark if she betrayed Tealor.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: How he justifies his acts. According to him, the Cleansing represents humanity transcending to new heights.
The Black Guardian
Voiced by: Dave Fennoy (English), Till Hagen (German)
Widely considered as a myth to most of Vyn, the Black Guardian is revealed not to be a god or mythical creature, but a man from an ancient civilization trapped inside a colossal machine. He is the one who finally explains everything from the High Ones to the Prophet's true nature.
- And I Must Scream: He's been stuck inside the incomplete machine for eons and has been forced to watch multiple civilizations rise and fall again and again, all without any human interaction. When you meet him, he comments that you are the first person he has talked to since he's been in the machine.
- Apologetic Attacker: He tricks the Prophet into pushing a button on his console with the idea that it'll Mercy Kill him. However, it really forces the Prophet to a Grand Theft Me with the Black Guardian. While this is happening, he profusely apologizes to the Prophet.
- Badass Baritone: Dave Fennoy gives him a very deep voice that turns into a furious growl during the fight.
- Fate Worse than Death: Unlike most people in his time, he actually anticipated the Cleansing's arrival. Out of desperation, he constructed a humanoid machine in the hopes that he would be able to survive. However, the Cleansing arrived sooner than expected, forcing him to transfer his consciousness on the incomplete machine. He survived, but was trapped and alone, now forced to watch multiple civilizations after his rise and fall.
- Final Boss: He's the final opponent you face in the main quest.
- A God Am I: The main reason he constructed the machine in the first place besides surviving the Cleansing. He wanted to lead the next civilization to avert the next Cleansing, but the Cleansing in his civilization happened during construction, forcing him into a And I Must Scream situation. It's soon revealed that he still retains this mindset as he proceeds to go into a speech during the Grand Theft Me saying he is more capable in leading the new world. After your companion intervenes, he proceeds to scream and preach that he "deserves to be a god" because of everything he's witnessed.
- Mercy Kill: Convinces the Prophet to press a button that does one, but Averted as it's revealed he tricked you into a Grand Theft Me.
- Mr. Exposition: And how. He gives The Reveal on true nature of the Cycle, the High Ones, and the Emissaries to the Prophet.
- Not So Stoic: During the entire Info Dump conversation, he seems very wise and collected toward the Prophet. However, once either Jespar or Calia interrupt the Grand Theft Me, he loudly threatens the duo, boasting and preaching at them during the entire fight.
- Walking Spoiler: He's the last person the Prophet meets (and fights) in the game, and he informs them The Reveal and the two choices for the ending.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: He too just wants to defeat the High Ones. But he's so convinced he deserves to be a god that he decides to Grand Theft Me your body in the hopes that he can properly lead the new civilization.
Tharaêl Narys/Brother Wrath
Voiced by: Gabriel Wolf (English), Marvin Kopp (German)
- Anti-Hero: Tharaêl is a short-tempered man whose only focus is to kill The Father. Anything or anyone else is just collateral. This comes back to bite him in the end, as The Father ends up surviving the assassination attempt and achieves Transcendence anyway.
- Back from the Dead: As a child, he was experimented on by The Father in order to transfer his consciousness into an artificial body since he was already dying from a terminal disease. The experiment ended up succeeding along with Letho and Nessiah, albeit it with some severe side effects.
- The Blank: It's revealed that Tharaêl is starting to suffer the Estrangement (melting faces and feelings of emptiness), just like Sister Pride. This is hinted during one point in the questline, as he approaches you and suddenly asks distressingly what you are doing, only to dismiss it a few seconds later. However, if you prevent his suicide, he later claims he doesn't feel the Estrangement anymore.
- Took a Level in Kindness: If he survives the questline, he looks and sounds a lot healthier, finally having a second chance.
- I've Come Too Far: His whole mindset in the questline. He's so close to killing The Father that he's willing cross any line as long as it will get him closer to his target.
- Dark and Troubled Past: Contracted a terminal disease at a young age, to which he and his closest friend were sold to The Father for a chance at survival. He survived, but his friend was gone and he retained severe PTSD from the experiments. And somewhere along his quest for revenge, he was forced to kill an entire family in order to fully keep his cover.
- Deadpan Snarker: Definitely has his moments.
- The Prophet: "Do you want me to wake Nailaq?"Tharaêl: "I sure as fuck don't want you to cuddle with him."
- Despair Event Horizon: The ending of the questline becomes this for him if you fight The Father. The Father escaped and survived the assassination attempt, Letho is dead, and he realizes he's nothing more than a dead soul trapped in an artificial body. This can ultimately lead to his death.
- Driven to Suicide: With all his efforts on killing The Father being for naught and being overwhelmed with guilt over killing Letho and everything he's done to maintain his cover, Tharaêl will choose to fall to his death at the end of the questline. Although you can prevent it and convince him to let you help him find something to live for if you have 40 sympathy points with him and disagreed over killing Nailaq.
- He Knows Too Much: When he was stealing Rhalâta documents, a worker in the warehouse saw him. He followed the worker to his house and ended up killing him and his entire family just so he could maintain his cover.
- Fatal Flaw: Wrath, as his name in the Rhalâta suggests. Tharaêl tends to lose his cool once being presented with a revelation (Nailaq working in the orphanage and Letho being Brother Sorrow). His uncontrollable temper makes him ultimately murder Nailaq and Letho in cold blood out of impulse. And it can end up getting him killed if you side with The Father.
- Final Boss: Of the questline if you decide to side with The Father.
- Jerkass: He's pretty abrasive towards other people and can be to you if you choose to disagree with him on certain topics.
- Laughing Mad: After The Father explains to the Prophet and Tharaêl the true nature of his experiments, all Tharaêl does is laugh hysterically before cheerfully explaining his plan to kill The Father and Brother Sorrow.
- Nominal Hero: As he admits in the end, his mission to kill The Father wasn't for justice or for the children he experimented on, but for himself.
- Redemption Rejection: A pretty tragic example if you try to convince him out of suicide, but he declines.
- Split Personality: At one point in the questline, Tharaêl suddenly regresses to a child-like personality who goes into detail over what he went through during The Father's experiments. But Tharaêl doesn't remember what happened and it's never mentioned after the quest is finished.
- Unstoppable Rage: Once Tharaêl loses his temper, he tends to kill anyone in front of him regardless of whether they are a threat or not.
- Tomato in the Mirror: During the final confrontation with The Father, he reveals that Tharaêl is actually Back from the Dead. It turns out Tharaêl's cough long ago was actually part of a terminal disease he contracted as a child along with Letho and Nessiah (Sister Pride). The Father took them in order to try to transfer their consciousness to an artificial body. Tharaêl's reaction to this is... not great.
- Walking Spoiler: Much like the Prophet in the main quest, revealing Tharaêl's true nature would spoil the entire questline.