Although slavery had long been illegal within the Deadfire, adequately policing it proved almost impossible, and roaming gangs of slavers operated with relative impunity throughout the Archipelago. Xiuhte was born on Crookspur, an island atoll housing the largest and most brazen of the Deadfire's trafficking rings. Some of Xiuhte's earliest memories involve being forced to fight the other children for the entertainment of assembled adults, with harsh penalties for failure. Her experiences shaped her into an aggressive, merciless fighter, with a frank sense of self-preservation, and from her late teens onwards she would often join the Crookspur slavers on raids - boarding vessels and killing the crew, before subduing any children or civilians on-board. This might have continued indefinitely, had they not chosen to pick on a vessel carrying several seasoned Ixamitl warriors. Having dispatched the slavers, the Nalpazca monks welcomed Xiuhte into their ranks - though, privately, some would later admit that they were at a loss as to what to do with her.

Xiuhte trained with the Nalpazca for several years, although she was a notoriously difficult student - hot-headed and impatient, she was more concerned with strength than enlightenment, and questioned many (if not all) of the Nalpazca's teachings. Xiuhte eventually parted ways with the Nalpazca, mere months before their subjugation by the neighbouring Quechmatl tribe. She came to the Dyrwood searching for the last Nalpazca practitioner, Zahua. However, when their caravan was set upon by a bîaŵac, Xiuhte was forced to seek shelter in some nearby Glanfathan ruins. There, she witnessed a strange ritual which left her with the power to see, speak to, and manipulate souls - an ability which had dire consequences for Xiuhte's sanity. Xiuhte eventually confronted the Leaden Key grandmaster Thaos ix Arkannon, putting a stop to his plans for the Dyrwood, but was unable to reverse the effects of the ritual.

Xiuhte eventually returned to the Dyrwood several years later, where her one-time companion Edér had been acting as Lord of Caed Nua in her absence. During this time the supposedly dead god Eothas returned to life beneath Caed Nua's foundations, killing hundreds, and absorbing part of Xiuhte's soul in the process. Subsequently pressed into service by the gods, Xiuhte was tasked with tracking Eothas down in the Deadfire and returning the souls he had stolen during his flight from the Dyrwood. Older and wiser than she had been in the Dyrwood, Xiuhte accepts the gods' task with ill grace. However, being back in the Deadfire comes with its own set of issues, and for once it's not just the dead ghosts of the past that Xiuhte needs to watch out for.

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