It's hinted at a few times in Firefly that Inara, like most of the crew, has an interesting past. Most notably, see the following conversation between Mal and Nandi in episode 13, "Heart of Gold":

NANDI: She ever tell you why she left Sihnon?

MAL: Never asked.

NANDI: Yes, you did. And I don't know, my own self. I was gone long before. And I'll tell you, it was a shock, her leaving. She was special. There's 40 women in House Madrassa and you'd pick her out in a second. Coulda been House Priestess, few years time.

MAL: Is that right?

NANDI: Had her eyes on it too. Very focused. She's like you, more than a little.

Shepherd Book's backstory has been revealed in other canon, so maybe the same goes for Inara?

What is Inara's backstory? Is it ever revealed?

  • "is it ever revealed" or "has it ever been revealed"? One seems to suggest you're asking about future works
    – Edlothiad
    Dec 13 '17 at 12:10
  • @Edlothiad I wasn't aware there are any future works in the Fireflyverse?
    – Rand al'Thor
    Dec 13 '17 at 12:15
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    @Morrigan Thanks for the edit! Most of the Firefly transcript sites seem to be down, so I had to use the crappy Springfield transcript to find the exact quote :-/
    – Rand al'Thor
    Dec 13 '17 at 12:17
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    @Edlothiad I don't think my wording implies what you think it does. If I'd said "will it ever be revealed", that future tense would imply future works. Saying "is it ever revealed" is asking about the existing body of canon. Also, go and watch Firefly :-)
    – Rand al'Thor
    Dec 13 '17 at 12:18
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    There are future works in the same 'Verse with the same crew - I believe there's a new comic series inbound, and one has been published throughout 2017. They keep revealing backstories - e.g. there was one about Wash and Shepherd Book - so there may as well be one about Inara in the future. Dec 13 '17 at 12:25

Some clues in the series suggest she might be seriously ill, maybe dying. One conversation in particular, where Jayne (?) Says he "doesn't want to die like this" Inara replies she just doesn't want to die.

  • 9
    Her not wanting to die implies she's ill or dying? Could it not just be that she fears death?
    – Edlothiad
    Mar 18 '18 at 22:32
  • 1
    @Edlothiad Nah I think she's really supposedly dying from something. Take a look at this YouTube discussion clip with Morena Baccarin - youtu.be/YTxGOi9coWQ
    – Misha R
    Apr 17 '18 at 23:33
  • I could have sworn there was another bit in the series or movie implying she had an illness.
    – NJohnny
    Apr 18 '18 at 0:31
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    Don't we see her give herself an injection at one point? Apr 18 '18 at 3:55
  • 2
    Morena confirmed in a 'con panel that Inara was dying of a terminal illness. The only hint was the above, which occurred in the episode 'Out of Gas'.
    – JohnP
    Jul 31 '18 at 14:25

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