Kal is a very special half elf. Very special.
Kal grew up on an island way south, past the equator, although she doesn't know what one is. Life down there is slightly different to life up here, which amuses, confuses and, occasionally, upsets her. The island is goverened by a set of priest monks, worshippers of a character known as Auster, an anally retentive megalomaniac who tried to pass himself off as an ancestor. Him and his followers were kicked off their original island, and settled down to follow their own set of beliefs on a much smaller one.
A number of these beliefs are rather strange - the beliefs about looking up and down as evil, for instance. Some are more understandable, such as the law forcing all men to take a second, usually slave, wife from outside the original gene pool. Some are just plain wrong, the belief that magic and magical healing are, for anyone who is not an avatar/incantor of Auster, the sign of the great devil.
The last one is what got Kal into trouble. Her mother Tae, also rather simple, was a slave elf with plenty of magical and healing training, but a low batch of power, and a general ignorance as to what she could use it for. As Kal was her only child with the 'pointy' ears, she taught Kal what she knew. And Kal just happened to have an innate amount of power. She wasn't so simple as to not tell Kal to hide it, however.
Tae died when Kal was 14, leaving her as the only daughter in the house of Ohn, her father and his "head" wife Ki, a bardic dancer. Everything was ok, until she turned 19. Then her brother Dar fell off his horse by getting (sideways) distracted by a young wenchmaiden, and took a nasty (-1) blow to the head. In her concern, Kal healed him. And got caught by the priests of Auster.
The punishment for using magic on the island is death. By burning. At the stake. The punishment for just being caught helping someone who's suffered the 'judgement' for breaking Auster's rules is imprisonment followed by slavery. Ki and Ohn did their best, and by using their not instubstantial pull, and all the money in the family bank, bought off, paid, and bribed their way out of the first penalty. They just couldn't get rid of the latter.
Kal was sold off to a slave ship, to be transported North and sold, most likely as a brothel worker or drudge. However, part way there they came across an Erin trader ship, containing sleeping dwarfs and a stone drunk lookouts, and decided to capitalise on their findings. Bad move on their part.
Whether or not it was actually Kal who got out of the bonds first and then freed the rest of the crew is still debateable. What's even more dubious is the nature of Kal's journey alone, on a ship full of slavers.... What we do know is that the dwarfs escaped, mutineed, and killed off every last slaver on there.
They sailed around for a bit, mainly around the coast of Erin, and let Kal live with them for a while. Rumour states that she spent most of her time in the captain's quaters, but it's hard to figure out, all she'd say is that he 'taught her special things', then smile.
They finally kicked her off on the coast somewhere, after picking up the Captian's wife (who wasn't too pleased with the ship's new 'aquisition', and had heard rumours). Kal wandered around for a while, making a little money here and there by dancing or healing, occasionally being supported by a 'nice man'. However, she got lonely for the sea, and always wanted to join another ship...
What the other, non-elf half of Kal is, well, not even I know. All she knows is that they were smaller, without pointy ears, and most had 'not big' beards.