As a dancer, she wore white, translucent dancing robes and a transparent face veil. She was described as a slip of a girl with kohl-ringed eyes that sparkled impishly and long black hair. Taya had long arms and pale, muscular shoulders and high, small breasts. She could put unexpected iron into her voice.
Taya relocated to Unta with the Lady Batevari and managed to avoid the notice of the Claw. The ambitious councillor Mallick Rel found out that she was the daughter of the mage Vorcan Radok, the former Mistress of the Assassins' Guild in Darujhistan. He presumed that Taya was seeking revenge against those she thought responsible for murdering her mother and forged an alliance with her, ostensibly to further mutual ends. Rel employed Taya to assassinate or otherwise remove numerous non-compliant Malazan nobles from the Imperial Assembly and to thwart assassination attempts against himself.
During the Crimson Guard invasion of Unta she carefully followed Empress Laseen to observe her skills as she fought several of the Avowed in hand to hand combat. Taya ambushed Clawmaster Possum in the process who thought her a talented mage from the way she disappear from the enclosed area. Possum heard her snarl in a language unknown to him.
Posing as a lieutenant's mistress, Taya accompanied Laseen and her army west to Li Heng where the rebellious Talian League awaited them. During the fighting of the Battle of the Plains Taya lingered in the Imperial encampment where Laseen had her headquarters. Possum spotted her, but was once again outclassed and nearly killed. He observed that she possessed inhuman strength.
In Orb Sceptre Throne
She played an instrumental part in the rise of Jeshin Lim's power, up until the point where he had received the council's permission to re-instate the position of the Legate. She then helped the Tyrant impose his will on Jeshin by forcing him to take on the gold mask, making him the Tyrant.
She acted as the Legate's hitman on several occasions, killing several of the people who impeded his way to power in any fashion. She also tried to attack and assassinate Rallick Nom, but was beaten back.
Finally, in the Throne room of Majesty hill, she was confronted by Topper, who attacked her for her part in Laseen's assassination. Beaten and bloodied, she retreated back to the Varada estate, where Vorcan asked a pursuing Topper to leave Taya to her. She failed in killing her mother and was in the end imprisoned in chains by her.
It is assumed that Taya had demon blood from her mother's side. She was variously described as possessing inhuman strength and snarling in an unknown language. Her exact heritage was never stated.
Notes and references
- Return of the Crimson Guard, Dramatis Personae, UK PB
- Return of the Crimson Guard, Book 1 Chapter 2, UK PB p.65-70
- Return of the Crimson Guard, Book 1 Chapter 2, US HC p.65-70
- Return of the Crimson Guard, Book 2 Chapter 2, US HC p.301/302, 315/316
- Return of the Crimson Guard, Book 2 Chapter 6, US HC p.516
- Return of the Crimson Guard, Book 3 Chapter 4, UK Bantam Press PB p.663-664
- Orb Sceptre Throne, Chapter 3
- Orb Sceptre Throne, Chapter 14, US TPB p.414
- Orb Sceptre Throne, Prologue
- Orb Sceptre Throne, Chapter 8
- Orb Sceptre Throne, Chapter 5
- Orb Sceptre Throne, Chapter 7
- Orb Sceptre Throne, Chapter 19
- Orb Sceptre Throne, Chapter 21
- Orb Sceptre Throne, Chapter 21