The healer's use of soul-images suggested that the body reflected the spirit. Was Dari really so ambitious that he would even devour himself? So far in his grandfather's absence, however, he had run his house well. Prune-faced or not, he was a competent man.
– Torisen's narration, Honor's Paradox, "Chapter V: The High Council", II
Dari is an ambitious Ardeth Highborn. Though he does not hold the position of Ardeth Lordan, he wants it, probably more than Timmon, the actual lordan.
When Adric, Lord Ardeth, went south, to search for Pereden's bones, Dari began managing the house, and come spring, he asked the Highlord to make him lordan regent, despite not having enough support within the Ardeth. Dari attended the Lordan's Presentation, and was described as a middle-aged man with a pissy expression. Even after Adric returned, Dari continued to push to be made lordan regent, especially after Adric started to show signs of sensibility.
Dari is infamous for a gum condition of his. He suffers from horrible breath, like a rotten eel, and his teeth keep falling out and growing back. Out of embarrassment, he tries to move his lips as little as possible when he speaks, to hide his teeth and lack thereof.
In terms of trying to make sense of all this, what Jame and Marc — and to a lesser degree, Torisen — say about Dari's relations can written off as them not knowing better. Adric is becoming senile by The Sea of Time, and if definitely beginning to mix up sons and grandsons: for example, Pereden and Timmon. His mind was still strong in Seeker's Mask. In Dark of the Moon, Adric says that all his sons but Pereden, the youngest, died in the White Hills, and this would rule out the possibly of Dari being Adric's son, and it would imply that Dari is the son of one of Adric's sons who died then.
↑ 1.01.11.2Seeker's Mask, "Part VIII: Kithorn" — " 'My grandson Dari will probably be the best choice,' he added, thinking out-loud. 'His breath may smell like a rotten eel, but no woman ever contradicts him twice.' "
↑ 2.02.12.2To Ride a Rathorn, "Chapter IV: Testing", I — "the Ardeth Dari, he with the breath of a rotten eel (according to his father) whom no woman contradicted twice."
↑ 3.03.1To Ride a Rathorn, "Chapter IX: School Days", II — " 'But lordship sounds too much like hard work. Let cousin Dari have it if he wants it.' "
↑ 4.04.1The Sea of Time, "Chapter II: A Willow Rampant" — "He drew out a parchment at random. 'Huh. Dari is still petitioning to be made lordan regent of the Ardeth.' "
↑ 5.05.1The Sea of Time, "Chapter II: A Willow Rampant" — "He pulled out another message and scanned it, frowning. 'Here’s one from Adric himself. Huh. Still matchmaking.' […] Your sister is a powerful Shanir. […] Others will be drawn to her, especially those Kendar whom you choose to bind so lightly, […] She may seduce them away despite themselves unless someone takes her firmly in hand. Now, my son Dari…"
↑Honor's Paradox, "Chapter III: Pyres and the Pit", VI — " 'You know that my grandfather Lord Ardeth has been in the Southern Wastes since last winter looking for my father's bones. Well, in his absence Cousin Dari has been managing the house. […] Anyway, now he's applied to the Highlord to be made lordan regent. 'He can override you and dethrone his lord that easily?' 'Only if the entire house and the Highlord agree. So far, Dari doesn't have enough support.' "
↑ 7.07.1Honor's Paradox, "Chapter IV: Relics" — " ' Lord Adric’s grandson Dari wants to be made lordan regent. That would effectively make him Lord Ardeth, wouldn’t it?' 'In all but name, yes.' "
↑ 8.08.18.2Honor's Paradox, "Chapter V: The High Council", II — "As he did so, a middle-aged man bent to whisper in Lord Ardeth's ear. […] So this was Adric's grandson and would-be lordan regent. He might have been handsome if not for his prissy expression, half disapproval, half an effort to move his lips as little as possible when he spoke."
↑Honor's Paradox, "Chapter III: Pyres and the Pit", VI — " 'He with the breath of a rotten eel.' 'Well, yes, but that's not entirely his fault. The poor man is allergic to his own teeth. They keep rotting, falling out, and growing back.' "
↑Dark of the Moon, "Chapter 6: The High Council" — " '[Pereden] is the child of my old age, my last son. All the others died in the White Hills, fighting for your father.' "