About a year ago, Shimmering Hope was Sephra Longhand, mayor of the city of Tsannia in the Shores. She was cramped, so to speak – desiring growth but unable to achieve it. Were she born twenty years earlier, perhaps it would have been she who united the Shores, but she was not, and Amilar Valna did so in her place. Sephra blamed Valna’s appearance, but not the woman herself.
Yatna the Yellow, one-time friend of Valna, heard of Sephra’s unrest and sought her out. She hoped to change the status quo of the land to one more amenable to profit – hers, of course – and she knew that many found Sephra to be a more palatable alternative to a dragon-blood whose family might start a dynasty.
Together, they hatched a plan. Yatna took Sephra first to the Wyld-witch Ixar. Among other gifts, her body was made proof against the assassin’s blade, and her mind proof against the words of the Chosen. Second, she was brought to meet with representatives of the Guild, who approved this plan and gave her the wealth to accomplish it. And third, she was brought to the people of her land, that she might understand that they were still under the thumb of a foreign ruler. Sephra knew that Yatna was manipulating her, but that didn’t mean she was wrong.
Sephra took on her new identity as Shimmering Hope. Reluctantly, with a heavy heart, Shimmering Hope looks to prove to Valna that the people are not truly hers. If that means a rebellion, so be it.
Shimmering Hope has the wood-brown skin common among Eastern citizens. She has a round face, short hair, and a large figure. She wears clothing in a variety of colors and patterns, and enjoys those with interconnected abstract shapes. When acting in an official capacity, she wears a hat that signifies her station as mayor. She often wears jewelry.
Shimmering Hope is reasonable and cordial. She is friendly, but not overly so, keeping her authority and station between herself and the common folk. Many folk see her as a natural leader.
Amongst her friends (who are few but close), Shimmering Hope is a thoughtful individual who discusses all manner of topics from the practical to the philosophical. She loves a good joke, but leans toward clever wordplay and irony rather than pratfalls and low humor. The barrier of propriety that she maintains in public never keeps her from connecting in private.
Intimacies: “I will bring freedom to my people” (Defining), “Yatna is a true friend and a good advisor” (Positive), “Do good, that the dragons may judge you well” (Major), “The dead should move on to their final rest” (Negative), “I repay my debts”
Shimmering Hope is a charismatic politician with an excellent understanding of how to strike a bargain or a balance. Thanks to the Guild’s coffers, she is very rich. She has a keen sense for who is truly in power in any given situation, and an excellent intuition for how that power is maintained. She does not navigate bureaucracies well, and so surrounds herself with those who do. She has never trained with a weapon.
Ixar’s gifts make Shimmering Hope exceptionally resilient, both mentally and physically. She can absorb punishment that would break her ten times over before succumbing. Moreover, she can share her mental resilience with others in her presence, and is also aware of any magical attempts from another individual to usurp her authority over such individuals. The one exception is, of course, Serranos, whose influence she subtly spreads each time she does donates her strength. This mastery of blood, bone, and void come at a price that is slow to rise.
- Propaisas, chamberlain and mayor pro-tem in Sephra’s place. Smart, efficient, relaxed.
- Ophiuka, Sephra’s dead mother, who haunts her on bright moonlit nights. Silent, sad.
- Yala Clever-toes, sometime lover of Sephra who has seen subtle changes in her in the last year. Coy, thoughtful, clever.
- Etina Silvertongue, who encourages people to follow Shimmering Hope and carries word of her to other towns. Brave, loyal, outspoken.
- Why does Shimmering Hope’s mother linger as a ghost?
- What changes will Serranos’ gifts inflict on Shimmering Hope? How long will it be before they are noticeable?
- How will Valna deal with Shimmering Hope when she finds out?