Ayla seems to be a thief. She is grateful for the quest as it gives her "an opportunity to get out of town and make some serious coin at the same time." Why she needs an excuse to leave town, we don't know.
Primary motivation: Ayla wants to find the staff and sell it for some cold, hard cash. Although, maybe where she comes from, cash is warm and soft, but we won't go in to that.
Primary ability - Steal - Ayla can steal items from her enemies... as long as there is something to steal. Steal can be used repeatedly.
Secondary ability - If alone, Ayla can only be surprised by the enemy roughly 1% of the time, and she has a 33% chance to surprise them. If with a partner, the heroes are only surprised 5% of the time, and have a 20% chance of surprising the enemies. The normal rates are 10% for both being surprised and causing surprise.
PeterHull: Ayla and Sensar are the ones who are in it for themselves, everybody else seems to have a higher purpose.
Ayla was once asked to join the EmbersGuild.
She was visited at home by one of the most senior thieves in the
Ember: Miss Ayla, I come to you on behalf of the Guild of the Ember Crest.
Ayla: What, that pathetic bunch of boy scouts? Give me a break.
Ember: Well, I guess I already have my answer. Good day.
(Leaves, slamming door)
Ayla: And I guess I already have your wallet, heh.
Unfortunately, the EmbersGuild do not handle that kind of rejection very well, and Ayla had to skip town that very same evening. Since then, she's been pursuing business opportunities in various towns and villages in Anistal, never staying too long in one place.
ChrisBarry: My take on Ayla is simple; she's just kind of a fun loving girl, kind of tomboyish, who has a talent for theft (possibly assisted by her feminine wiles ;). She's kind of bored with same old same old though, and this staff thing sounds like a lark. She's very carefree and nice, but check your pockets when you're done talking to her. :) Comparable to Yuffie from FFVII, I guess.
I'm not big on the whole EmbersGuild backstory, but if she really needs some sort of sidequest material, I guess it's okay ...
PeterHull:What I had in mind was a thieving mission in the palace in Sunarin. She talks her way past the guard, dressed as a maid, and then sneaks around, avoiding combat and grabbing loot. I wrote some script for that, but it only goes up to the bit where she gets into the palace. It's only on my computer at the moment, though, not checked in.