Rayek was created by Wendy and Richard Pini, the creative team behind ElfQuest. They describe him as "that proud, brooding lover, who was, before Cutter came along, Leetah's Lover. When he lost Leetah to the Wolfrider, Rayek left the sun village to find his own destiny." (Who's Who EQ #8) He challenged Cutter in a contest of head, hand and heart and lost his right to court Leetah, who was recognized to Cutter. Rayek came to feel as though he had been replaced, and so he left.
Readers first meet Rayek as the male protector of the Sun Villagers. Rayek is known for his numerous magical abilities and his paralyzing fire-gaze.
In his travels, eventually Rayek discovered Guttlekraw's troll colony. While there, he rescued Ekuar who would became his mentor. Ekuar guided Rayek to an incredible increase in his powers, learning how to levitate himsela as well as float other objects. Rayek sought to use his insights into magic to uncover its secrets. The pair reached the Palace of the High ones, and there Rayek engaged in advanced training, regaining all of the cosmic powers once vested in his ancestors, an extraterrestrial race.
Rayek often claims to have the greater good at heart, but his vision of regaining former glory causes him to neglect the wishes of others, often putting him at odds with other elves. His actions have also made him a bitter enemy of his old rival, Cutter. At one point, Rayek was responsible for Cutter being separated from Leetah and his children for several thousand years, but Rayek has also redeemed himself numerous times.
During his travels Rayek also came along the Go-Backs who sought the Palace of the High Ones. He helped Kahvi conceive daughter Venka, who was born with a natural purity that could protect all other elves from the dark cunning of Winnowill. Rayek could not withstand the beguiling charms of Winnowill, calling her "my soul's sister". In Siege at Blue Mountain saga, he gives his powers into the Great Egg of Blue Mountain, which grows and "hatches out of the mountain". The organic egg is the reflection of the cosmic egg of SHARDS, a recreation of crystal-stones that fused together when the elves' collective urge to racial unity grew strong enough.
Rayek may be recognised to Winnowill, but this is never officially confirmed in the story. On one occasion, Two-Edge, the half-troll son of Winnowill falls at Rayek's foot and calls him mother. Rayek's daughter Venka is briefly courted by Two-Edge. At the conclusion of SHARDS, he saved all elves from Winnowill by absorbing her soul into himself. He now wanders the world with Ekuar as both her jail and jailor in the EQ miniseries Rogue's Curse.
It is debatable who out of all the original elves, who has the greatest aspirations towards Tribal Reunification in the Palace of the High Ones. The likely candidates are Rayek, Cutter, Suntop, Savah, Timmain, or Lord Voll.
Among those elves who discover the palace in the original ElfQuest , only Ekuar, Timmain and Rayek elect to remain inside the Palace of the High Ones. There, Rayek is in constant mental-communion with The High-Ones, and he hears the long saga of the E.T. High Ones before landing on world of two moons. The more he studies, the greater his powers grow. At the high point of his development, Rayek has most-types of full blown superpowers, except for healing others, and yet his mind can be directly invaded by all other elves.
Pride versus Family
In ElfQuest: Kings of the Broken Wheel #6, his powers blind him to the necessity of cooperation, and it is debatable by ElfQuest: Kings of the Broken Wheel #9 whether he has disowned himsela from the greater-elf tribe, led by Cutter, or whether he had the greater good in his heart while trying to seal the time-paradox of the world of two moons. Rayek may be called a Renegade or Desperado because of his wilfulness and fierce individualism.
This is the high-point of Elfquest where Rayek meets his full-grown daughterr for the first time. This is the same occasion where Rayek, in the Palace of the High Ones witnesses the original Palace of the High Ones begin to descend to his world, somehow flash-landing 20,000 years into the past.