Fulmine Cathak, the Mastermind

Background

The Great Families are in disrepute. They were on the decline even before the Day of the Broken Sky, which learned folk call The Graze. After that day, when their failure became visible in silhouette against the success of others, few showed them any respect. Several of them – Mnemon, Karal, and V’neef – are all but extinct at this point. The rest are scattered into fiefdoms, or have lost their fortunes entirely.

Fulmine aims to change that for her family. Over the past few years she’s been traveling from one province to another, finding the lost members of Cathak and making connections. Few of them remember the glory that used to be, but all of them have heard the stories. The kind of stories that make one hungry for importance. Fulmine tells tales of heroes: wise governors, valiant soldiers, clever scientists, humble farmers who reached above their station. Grand balls, jewelry, wine, love, exploration, intrigue – and most importantly, respect.

Not all of the family has reacted well to this. She’s had to flee a few places. Nevertheless, her travels are important. Everywhere she goes, someone decides to work a bit harder. Parents connect with long-lost relatives. Malcontents leave home to seek their fortunes. Once in a while she finds someone with particular talents and helps them decide how to use them. That’s how she got Calcite and Stratus on her side, and how she found the wreck of an airship and the right people to repair it.

Right now she’s turned out of her usual path. She sees chaos and destruction coming. Something bigger than herself and her family pulls her eastward across the Continent. She’s told her crew that they’re headed toward Millie Eikar’s place to give the ship a tune-up, but she knows that there’s going to be something dangerous in the way. For the first time in her life, she’s not sure what.

Appearance

Fulmine is a little taller than average, thin, with light brown skin. Her thick black hair is looped and tied up on her head, along with a pair of pilot’s goggles. Her black eyes often seem to be staring at something in the distance. Her voice is strong and steady. When she tells stories she sometimes seems lost in the past.

One of Fulmine’s cousins makes her some fairly stylish clothing in black, brown, and white, using found fabric. She wears large jewelry, including earrings, necklaces, and a compass brooch. She dyes her lips red and uses green powder around her eyes. One of Calcite’s special guns hangs at her hip.

Demeanor

Caring, confident and precise. Fulmine was raised with the high expectations that have always come for members of the Great Families. Unlike so many of the Blessed Continent’s past leaders, she was also raised with love. When she failed, no one beat her or shrieked at her. They helped her stand up, regroup, understand her mistakes, and try again.

Sometimes Fulmine falls into a trance. Her voice quavers and she loses the outside world for a few minutes. Her crew knows to protect her during this time. Many of them keep an eye on her whenever she’s nearby, just in case she’s about to collapse.

Intimacies: My family’s future will be bright (defining), Sam Eikar is the key to the future and we must be the ones to defend her (major), Our world can be improved (major), Power is a gift that should be respected (major), Stratus needs to reach for his potential, Calcite is too focused on war.
Catchphrase: Our fate is what we make it.

Capabilities

Fulmine is god-blooded, born with the future-sight that runs through certain branches of her family. She can literally plan for the unexpected. She was already intelligent and keen-eyed; future-sight makes her seem brilliant. Her strategies are without peer in the Splinter. The most important visions put her into a trance where she’s unable to react quickly and may respond to things that are happening in the future. She always remembers the details of these events… except when they involve the Component. This gap in her knowledge genuinely frightens her. She also hasn’t foreseen anything about Cyn Walker, which will make Fulmine very suspicious when they meet.

Her family training also means that she can wield a gun and a sword, sail, keep books, paint calligraphy, ride an austretch, bind wounds, and carry herself in polite society (not that there’s much of that left these days). She knows exactly what she’s capable of – all the more so for being able to see the outcome of actions. This self-confidence gives her a compelling presence.

Fulmine can’t do it all on her own, though, and her crew fills in many gaps. They’re experienced sailors, navigators, engineers, carpenters, and soldiers. They’ve already followed her to the ends of the world. Anyone looking to take over No Memory will have a hell of a fight on their hands.

Unlike Calcite, Fulmine’s future-sight is of less use in combat. It shows her key moments and sweeping overviews, not blow-by-blow details. To help make up for this, Calcite has provided Fulmine with an enchanted weapon: a gun that fires lightning. Treat this as a heavy artifact archery weapon.

Connections

  • To the extent that there is a unified Cathak Family at all in these times, it’s because of Fulmine. Some of them resent her for it, but there are many places she can turn for support.
  • Her immediate family. Fulmine cares greatly for her parents and siblings, who live near Brightness on the northwestern coast.
  • One of the few Great Families to remain united, the Cynis Family believes that Fulmine’s airship, No Memory, rightfully belongs to them. They’d like to have it back.

Questions

  • No Memory used to have a cloaking device. Is it still functional?
  • Are there any crew members aboard the ship who are sick of taking Fulmine’s orders?

Fate: Prominence

Sam Eikar, the Savant

Background

Sam Eikar is eight! It’s an exciting age. Everyone says so. Also, Sam has proven it mathematically.

People say it’s because eight is the Machine God’s Auspicious Numeral, but Sam knows that’s rubbish. First of all, obviously, a numeral is not a number. The number is auspicious because it’s the basis number for orthogonal three-dimensional reflection symmetry. Sam suspects that the three dimensions are not perfectly orthogonal. That would explain several space-crossing Charms that she’s observed, but it would also result in either a much larger number or the need for fractional symmetry bases. She kind of hopes it’s an irrational number. That would be funny. You could do three reflections and a small cyclic permutation and divide by pi and be a little short of 8, so that’s pretty close. The numeral is auspicious because if you turn it sideways you get an infinity sign, and if you write the Machine God’s Eighth Sutra vertically but the characters horizontally and make a new vertical bar every eight characters then you get the Yllondias-Chalsax Fomulation for Vortexed Fluids with the Eikar Correction. No one else knows about the Eikar Correction, yet, but clearly it’s there.

You can also prove that every number is interesting, but that’s pretty trivial. It’s not very interesting. Everyone and their grandmother knows that one.

Sam’s parents have never known quite what to do with her. She’s been to all the tutors they can find and none of them could keep up. The fact that she’s a genius would be enough to deal with, but it’s late at night when she’s sleepwalking that’s the really disturbing part. She sometimes wakes up crying in the middle of it and never remembers why she was putting together all these strange pieces of electronics. They even brought her to a medium, though they didn’t much like what they heard. (Whatever it was, they never told Sam.) Her friends think she’s strange, but whatever. She just says weird stuff while they go and chase frogs together, and her parents run an orchard so they have the best apples in town, so they’ll come over any time.

The Component arrived in Sam’s hometown just days ago. A few dozen villagers, including Sam’s parents, went out to talk to it. They brought some old guns just in case. The light from its eye swept across the frightened crowds and focused in on her home. She saw it through the window. The villagers tried to stop it. It brushed aside pitchforks and lead shot, and stamped its way across the houses toward her family’s farm. Then there was a strong arm around her, and a hand over her mouth, and someone whispering to stay quiet. They *leapt* somehow. Sam saw the village disappearing, and lost consciousness.

Appearance

Sam is a short young girl with brown pigtails, pale skin, brown eyes, and a big forehead. When she’s happy she gets a big froggy grin across her whole face. She wears goggles to correct her farsightedness. They’re substantially too big for her, but Aunt Millie said she’d grow into them eventually. When she was saved from her village she was wearing a green shirt and some pajama pants. Regardless of who’s found her now, she’s probably wearing clothing a few sizes too large for her.

Demeanor

When she’s feeling safe, Sam is happy, curious, and a little sappy. She’s definitely not afraid to say what she thinks. She can be a little rude, but she doesn’t mean anything by it, and will try to make people feel better if she hurts their feelings. When she’s scared, she gets nervous, starts looking for exits, and might cry. She’s definitely more on the “flight” side of “fight or flight.” If you can get her to talk while she’s sleepwalking, she’s downright insulting.

Wherever she is right now – with Millie or with the Cathaks – Sam would much rather be with her family. Ortho was nice enough to her, but what happened to her family? She doesn’t know. Not knowing something is pretty rare for her. It’s not something she’s comfortable with.

Sam will be SO EXCITED to meet visitors from another world, especially if there are TWO other worlds, because that would provide evidence for her cyclic permutation theory.

Intimacies: I love my parents (defining), Mathematics is the best (major), I owe Youngest for saving my life (major), Trust my family, Fear of anything Yushoto Koletta appreciated
Catchphrase: How does it work? Or: Obviously.

Capabilities

Sam is the reincarnation of Yushoto Koletta, who engineered the Luminous Godkilling Machine. She’s also a Celestial Aion, chosen very young. Most of her powers are still hidden at this time, or relate purely to mental capacity. She also has some potential as a Technologist, but hasn’t begun to tap into that yet. It’s a lot to put on the back of an eight-year-old.

If there’s a mathematical problem put in front of her, Sam will probably solve it or prove it unsolvable within 30 seconds. Once there was a problem that took a whole day to solve and she had to invent a new branch of mathematics to do it. Physical objects take her a bit longer, and she’s not shy about asking how things work. Socially and physically she’s pretty typical for an eight-year-old. Mentally she’s off the charts.

Sam is a non-combatant.

Connections

  • Millie Eikar’s family. Millie is Sam’s aunt once removed. She and her assorted relations have watched Sam from time to time when her parents were unavailable. Sam and Millie have met a handful of times but aren’t close.
  • Rella Cathak is a minor noble of that family, and was the mayor of Sam’s village. She has promised Sam’s parents that she’ll do what she can to get Sam back to them.

Questions

  • What sort of powers will Sam have once her Aion abilities begin manifesting? How will her current predicament impact their development?
  • How much access will Sam have to Yushoto Koletta’s past-life memories?

Fate: Greatness

Ortho the Youngest

Background

Ortho the Youngest was the last of three clones to be decanted. In his first few days outside the cloning vat he gained the confidence and admiration of the scientists of The Right Path, then stepped aside as Heartless slaughtered them and scattered them to the winds. On that fateful day he felt truly alive.

Youngest is the most social, most talkative and manipulative of the Ortho clones. It is the plan of the Eldest that Youngest will find heroes to pursue the Component, help them find the mechanism or ritual that controls it, and then take the power for Eldest himself. Youngest jumped at the idea. His heart yearns to recapture the feeling of total control that betrayal gave him. Naturally, he’d rather end up with control over the Component himself, so if those heroes happen to discover Eldest’s hand in things a little too early, and Eldest ends up in an early grave, well, life will just be that much sweeter.

Youngest has identified two potential groups that stand between the Component and its goals. One is the trio of god-bloods led by Calcite Cathak. They are hungry for the power that would let them rebuild the Blessed Continent. The other is Millie Eikar and her band of rogue engineers. They have the technological know-how to understand the Component and potentially stop it. Youngest just needs a connection; an “in” with these groups, and he’ll have them following him to the ends of the world.

His “in” is Sam Eikar. He saw the Component turn toward this young girl – her, specifically, while it was annihilating an entire town. He saved her, gained her trust, and deposited her farther along the Component’s path, saying that he was going back to save others. He’ll come in after she’s bonded with the Cathaks and/or Millie, introduce himself as her guardian, and accompany them on their quest to find the Component’s original blueprints in the wreckage of Castle Volan.

Appearance

All the Ortho clones have light skin and hazel eyes. Their hair is brown. Their fingers are long and delicate. An optical device is strapped to their right eyes, with a variety of lenses. They have difficulty seeing straight without it.

Physically, of course, Ortho the Youngest is nearly identical to his elder clones. His clothing and accessories distinguish him somewhat. He wears white clothing (usually off-white after all his travels), including a cloak. His left ear has a fine chain across it, a little bit of jewelry that his twins lack. His hair is not quite so long.

However, the greatest difference is in he holds himself. He stands tall, looks people in the eye, and offers a firm handshake or a respectful bow. He often has a little bit of sorrow or regret in his eye. Someone who saw Eldest or Heartless would see an obvious connection between them and Youngest, but he would not be easily mistaken for one of them.

Demeanor

On the outside, he’s friendly and pleasant, with a streak of determination. Recognizing his own fragility in a dangerous world, Youngest tries to surround himself with allies. He’s the kind of person who will offer to help if he sees you cleaning a room, or ask whether you need someone to carry some of that water. He holds doors and carries tired children, but he’s not pushy about it. He responds to suspicion with “I guess I’ll just have to prove myself, then.”

When pressed on why he’s being so helpful, or when he has to explain an attack by the Heartless (who looks exactly like him, of course), Youngest admits that he has a goal that he doesn’t talk about often: defeating his clones. He gathers artifacts to prepare for an assault. (He’s actually giving them to Eldest.) He gets people out of the way of the Heartless. (He’s just using that as a way to gain trust.) When the time is right, he’ll go at them with everything he’s got. (This is true.)

Intimacies: Have the whole world wrapped around my finger (Defining), Pave the way for my brothers’ victories (major), My brothers should be working for me (major), There’s no reason to be mean.
Catchphrase: I have bad news for you.

Capabilities

Youngest is the slickest liar on the Blessed Continent. Catching him in an untruth is practically impossible – his body gives no sign. He’s a great actor. He’s also a compelling leader, exuding personal presence and visible empathy (faked though it may be). However, like his twins, he’s a bit over-specialized sometimes. He spends a lot of time on the road and has the stamina for traveling, but he’s not great in a fight. As good as he is at reading faces, he’s not that great at paying attention to his environment. He has a handle on people but not numbers.

The greatest assets that Youngest has are his connections with other people and organizations. So far he’s managed to stay fairly quiet within these groups. The folks at the top recognize and trust him, but he’s not a recognizable face for most outside the ruling class. Several of his alliances are noted below under “Connections,” but this should be considered just a sampling.

The lenses from their optical devices allow the Orthos to see dematerialized spirits and the flows of essence. If the device is knocked from their head (a difficulty 6 gambit), they will be disoriented for a round (no actions) and have great difficulty seeing straight afterward (-3 penalty on vision-related actions) until they can recover it. The lenses are made of adamant and quite sturdy.

In addition, Youngest has an advantage that lets him cover ground quickly: a Twilight Cloak. When it’s bright and sunny outside, or in the darkest hours of the night, it’s just a regular piece of clothing. For a few hours around sunrise and sunset, though, and in places where illumination is dim, it lets him step from one shadow to another. The cloak functions over a distance of about 100 feet. He can use it dozens of times in a row, stepping back and forth, making ambushes in combat or traveling many kilometers each day. He can carry one other person. If it’s damaged, it’ll be ruined, so he tries to stay out of a fight. Removing the cloak from him without damaging it would require forfeiting 5 rounds of control during a grapple.

Connections

  • The Nellens Family has been one of his major targets in the local area. Youngest has gotten their trust and even some funding from them in the past, using it to “chase away” an unknown assassin (the Heartless).
  • The warlord Nail-Eater thinks Youngest is full of shit, but has done business with him from time to time regardless, because everyone’s full of shit and he’s better than most.
  • A band of would-be do-gooders named Starsight’s Children (they’re not) keep an eye out for artifacts of the Imperial Era for Youngest. He’ll gladly take away things they consider dangerous.
  • Distributed Trading is a young but far-reaching mercantile organization, gaining wealthy members every day. Youngest has an extensive line of credit with them that many others would accept.

Questions

  • How much information is Youngest willing to give out about his twins? Does he want to betray them soon, or is he still building his power base and just running people into the jaws of death in the meantime?
  • How much has Youngest worked his way into the nascent spirit courts of the Blessed Continent? Is he as well-connected there as he is in the corporeal world?

Fate: Karma

Ortho the Heartless

Background

The Heartless was second to be decanted of the Ortho clones. When it came time for the scientists of the Right Path to be murdered, the Heartless was the one who did most of the work. The first one was the hardest. After that, the rush of it has sustained him for years.

Once the Right Path’s laboratory lay in ruins, Eldest started rebuilding and plotting. Youngest traveled to nearby settlements and learned the state of the world. The Heartless kept them both safe. Even though they were intended as saboteurs, neither of them was really suitable for the task. Not the way the Heartless was. He looked near and far for those who might prove dangerous to his twins, and ensured that they never would. He picked off leaders and scientists, demagogues and explorers, anyone who might want to seek or expand. No one ever saw him.

There are rumors, of course. The most common is that a Celestial Aion arose for a particularly nasty sky-sign – perhaps The Death Of The Highest, or Punishment Beyond Reason. The Heartless doesn’t concern himself with rumors. Let Youngest spin them into stories to keep the peasants in line. There are always more threats to be removed.

The Heartless has taken a few excursions now and then, when things seemed safe. He visits places like the Godsfall Crater, the cliffs near the Straits of Silk, and Castle Volan. These places call to him. He finds tiny fragments of the Luminous Godkiller Weapon there, minute shards that will never weather away because no spirit will touch them. He places these fragments in his right eye.

He grows ever more unstable.

It is unlikely that the Heartless will let Eldest keep ordering him around, or that he will keep protecting Youngest. He wonders what it would be like to kill someone so like himself. Until he completely goes off the rails, though, he’ll still working to Eldest’s plan.

Appearance

All the Ortho clones have light skin and hazel eyes. Their hair is brown. Their fingers are long and delicate. An optical device is strapped to their right eyes, with a variety of lenses. They have difficulty seeing straight without it.

Heartless’ body is identical to that of the other Ortho clones. His expression is more serious, his affect more flat. Unlike his twins, the optical apparatus on his right eye glows with a blue-green light. Those who once fought the Luminous Godkiller Weapon might find the color of the glow familiar.

Demeanor

The Heartess lives for fear and slaughter. It excites him and makes him feel powerful. He’s exactly the sort of murderer who will draw out a kill if it seems like it might be safe to do so. Of course, if he thinks there’s a real danger, he’ll finish someone quickly and get out. He’s not a complete fool.

If placed in a situation where he’s not in power, the Heartless will tend to laugh uncontrollably and manically.

Intimacies: I will not feel powerless again (defining), Use my brothers as long as I can (major), The joy of the hunt (major), Stay hidden (major)
Catchphrase: Your future ends here.

Capabilities

The Heartless has a body well-trained in the ways of violence. He’s fast and strong. He’s double-jointed and can escape from most bonds with ease. He’s used to pain. He’s also very observant, and has lightning-fast reactions to anything that might be perceived as danger. Outside of that fairly narrow skill-set, there’s not much going on with him. He dreams of having control over others but can’t think of what he’d actually do with it beyond making them suffer.

As a hunter, the Heartless is fairly capable in the recovering wilderness of the Blessed Continent. He can set up shelters, find food and water, and track quarry through scrub and badlands. He’s good at staying hidden in populated areas. If there are hidden places nearby – underground tunnels, back rooms, etc. – he’ll find them right away. He never loses his way.

The Heartless fights primarily with a set of knives. He’ll get up close via stealth and take people out silently, one at a time, or cut them down from a distance with a thrown blade. He’s more assassin than soldier. His elder twin provides him with poison that he applies liberally to his weapons.

The lenses from their optical devices allow the Orthos to see dematerialized spirits and the flows of essence. If the device is knocked from their head (a difficulty 6 gambit), they will be disoriented for a round (no actions) and have great difficulty seeing straight afterward (-3 penalty on vision-related actions) until they can recover it. The lenses are made of adamant and quite sturdy.

The Heartless has a fragment of the Luminous Godkiller Weapon where his right eye once was. It shines through his optical lenses. Gods and spirits of all kinds fear him instinctively and will cower or flee. Some of the essence from magic used to directly attack him is syphoned off to enhance his speed and strength. This does not affect indirect assaults (like an essence-enhanced sword blow), only attacks of pure magic (like a bolt of Solar or elemental energy, or a sorcerous assault). If the Heartless kills a person, the eye destroys their soul as they die.

Connections

  • Pale Rondeau, god of murder, watches the Heartless with great interest.
  • One of the few survivors of an encounter with the Heartless, Siobhan Ragara now attempts to hunt the hunter.

Questions

  • How cocky is the Heartless? Is it possible to lure him out, or will he just retreat to strike another day?
  • How does the Heartless feel about letting the Weapon loose again? Would he do it just to watch it in action, or would he become jealous of it?

Fate: Murder

Ortho the Eldest

Background

When the Seventh Legion fell, and Yushoto Koletta’s awful works were ended, some of her research staff refused to be part of the new order. They liked being accountable to no one and to nothing but the success of their endeavors. They hid in the deep valleys of River Isle, then moved to a floating island base, then eventually back to the Blessed Continent. They were pursued intermittently over the course of decades, but never captured. The group called itself The Right Path.

When The Right Path made landfall on the Blessed Continent, it was near the grave of Jek Eikar, well-known as a mad inventor. Since their enemies had the bloodlines of the gods, returning generation after generation to harry them, they thought it only fitting that they could make one of the greatest heroes of the Fall return to fight against the gods.

The Right Path intended that they would correct the injustice that had been done to them – by any means. They cloned Eikar three times over. The clones were each named “Ortho”. The Right Path added mechanical devices to the bodies as they grew quickly to adulthood. They made recordings of propaganda and philosophies, and played them back over and over. They hoped to turn these mad, brainwashed geniuses loose on the new rulers of River Isle and finally take revenge for what had been done to them.

Unfortunately for the scientists, Eikar’s clones enacted plans of revenge on their creators first. The Right Path’s secret base was destroyed; the scientists killed or scattered.

The clone who was decanted first took the name Ortho the Eldest. He was the most canny, the most power-hungry. It was he who suggested rebellion to the other two, who readily agreed. Once they succeeded in their coup he found records of the Weapon in The Right Path’s notebooks, and realized that he could gain more than just independence: he could gain power.

Eldest seeks to learn the secrets of the Component and control it, and thereby hold the world hostage.

Appearance

All the Ortho clones have light skin and hazel eyes. Their hair is brown. Their fingers are long and delicate. An optical device is strapped to their right eyes, with a variety of lenses. They have difficulty seeing straight without it.

Eldest’s hair is already receding from his temple, but is long enough to reach his waist. He has lines around his eyes. His premature decantation aged him a decade in minutes. That pain is his first concrete memory.

Demeanor

Thoughtful, cantankerous, and anti-social. Eldest prefers to have as much time alone as he can. Most of the time he stays in The Right Path’s laboratories, working on ways to control the Weapon once it’s rebuilt. He trusts Heartless and Youngest as his agents in the world. Well, “trust” is perhaps too strong a word.

Eldest is prone to mood swings. When he’s on his own he’s more stable, but with people around he’ll often switch from careful consideration to aggressive ranting and back. Part of him recognizes that other people don’t do that, but he just chalks that up as an advantage Youngest has that he doesn’t. He’s not interested in changing.

Intimacies: Control the Weapon and rule the world (defining), I need my brothers (major), I can’t trust my brothers (major), I prefer solitude
Catchphrase: All is part of the plan.

Capabilities

Eldest is in good shape, but he’s not an athlete. The conditioning from the clone vats won’t last him forever, and eventually he’ll become softer and weaker. He’s a social disaster, with little to no filter between his mind and his mouth. Where he really excels is in scientific tasks. He’s clever and quick-witted. He can focus on multiple tasks at once and see the connections between seemingly unrelated things.

Eldest’s paranoia keeps him in armor constantly. He wears a set of leathers reinforced with pieces of scrap metal from The Right Path’s laboratories. He can’t fight very well, but the weapons he does use are either long-range (a set of razor-edged homing disks) or exude the deadliest of poisons. The lab abounds with automata, all reprogrammed to be loyal to him first and the other Orthos second. Eldest uses them as servants and experimental assistants, but they were designed as bodyguards and combatants. He won’t hesitate to deploy them against intruders who turn hostile.

The lenses from their optical devices allow the Orthos to see dematerialized spirits and the flows of essence. If the device is knocked from their head (a difficulty 6 gambit), they will be disoriented for a round (no actions) and have great difficulty seeing straight afterward (-3 penalty on vision-related actions) until they can recover it. The lenses are made of adamant and quite sturdy.

Connections

  • The remaining scientists of The Right Path, on the run from Heartless. They’re terrified of all the Orthos, but would be able to give much useful information about their laboratory and the surrounding territory.
  • The lab automata are more intelligent than Eldest realizes, speaking with one another via invisible waves. They can’t disobey their programming or his commands, but they can still attempt to escape or communicate if the opportunity arises.

Questions

  • Eldest thinks he knows how to control the Weapon: capture Sam Eikar’s soul, put it in a jar, and lead the Weapon around by the nose. Will it work?
  • Does Eldest have a place for his brothers in his imagined new world order?
  • Eldest has access to the cloning vats. Has he restored them? Has he made more Orthos?

Fate: Betrayal

The Component

Background

The Luminous Godkiller Weapon was defeated on the cliffs of River Isle, overlooking the Straits of Silk. It toppled backward, crashing and tumbling down the stone, pieces coming off as it went, until it hit the water. Its head washed up on the shore the next day. The rest of it sank to the bottom of the ocean a mile beneath.

Decades later, the Component crawled out of the sea near Chanos. Currents had carried it clear around the world.

It was once the Component’s energy that drove the Weapon. A confluence of raw elemental violence, it provided spiritual resilience, motive force, and pure destructive energy. The Component was the very heart of the Weapon. Decades ago it was a simple solid half a meter wide, of a shape that could only be seen from the corner of the eye. Since then it has… unfolded, into a form more like the whole of the Weapon.

It has no idea what is going on. It does not remember being part of the Weapon. It does not think that it is dangerous, or that there is anything wrong with what it does. It may not even remember what happened yesterday. It says things like “Help me fulfill my purpose,” and “Where can I find my home?” while walking to the southeast… and occasionally things go badly.

The Component, like all the pieces of the Luminous Godkiller Weapon, was designed by Yushoto Koletta at Castle Volan. Its blueprints are still in the basement there. It walks there – not in a perfect line, but haltingly, recalibrating every few days, seeking the place where it was created. The building itself was leveled by the Weapon in its final rampage. If there is any hope of stopping the Component, it lies in finding and understanding these blueprints. Unfortunately, the castle was a well-built and heavily-defended manse, and even in its current sorry state its traps and automatic defenses will be difficult to bypass.

Appearance

The Component’s shape is humanoid, as the Weapon’s was, but it bears little resemblance to its predecessor. Its body is more crude, more angular and metallic. Its power has been drained over the years, and the light that burst forth from the Weapon at all times comes just from a single eye in the Component’s head. It’s about twelve feet tall.

Demeanor

The Component doesn’t have much personality. If someone other than Sam Eikar talks to it, it will be fairly hollow and robotic. It speaks straightforwardly, without politeness or rancor regardless of the situation. When it speaks with Sam, its voice will fill with emotion. It will treat her somewhat like an aged mother – precious, worthy of respect, but in need of protection.

When the Component speaks, it seems to be fairly simple-minded. This is accurate. It has neither a sophisticated mind, nor a cunning intellect. It is not manipulative or even particularly compelling. It simply speaks its need.

Intimacies: Become whole again (defining), Respect Yushoto Koletta and her incarnations (major), Be efficient (major)
Catchphrase: Help me become whole again.

Capabilities

The Component does not have the raw might that the Luminous Godkilling Weapon did. However, in this age after the Day of the Broken Sky, its power proves more than sufficient against those who might destroy it. Essence beams emit from its single round eye to destroy or blind opponents. Its metal skin deflects bullets and swords alike. It is strong enough to tear through nets and break steel manacles. Its punches drive the breath from the living and shatter walls with ease.

Unlike the Weapon before it, the Component is not immune to godly power. It can steal power from spirits and Exalted alike, but cannot destroy gods in the way the Weapon did. A concerted assault from a number of deities could prove quite dangerous to it. However, many gods have an inherent fear of the Component. The Holocaust of the Gods left a memory that has become part of the world itself. Few can forget or overcome it.

The Component only fights to defend itself. Unfortunately, it needs to this quite often, as guards and military forces do not respond well to its strange appearance and even stranger demands. Once the battle begins, the Component continues fighting until there are no more targets to defeat.

There are many people who have died while fighting the Component. It is interesting to note that none of them perished in direct conflict with it. Some were crushed by collapsing buildings; others died in airship crashes – but those whom it strikes with its fists or its eye-beam live to awaken some hours later, when it has moved on. It seems to know the exact amount of force needed to incapacitate its targets.

Connections

  • Several of the once-Great Families know of the Component and its movements. All of them have decided that it’s some sort of strange semi-natural phenomenon and have decided to ignore it in favor of their own more immediate needs.
  • The exception is Corporal Sesus Iver, who leads a growing band of revenge-driven soldiers and mercenaries. They know they can’t tackle the Component directly yet, but perhaps with some weapons from the Imperial Age they might be able to destroy it.
  • The wind-spirit Invisible Night follows the Component and reports to the other gods. They wring their hands and wonder what they could possibly do.

Questions

  • Does the Component know how it might be restored, or is it just trying to go home?
  • How fast is the Component moving? How erratic are its movements?

Fate: Destruction

Echoes Relationship Map

This image shows the relationships between the characters in this setting. For those who are not helped by a visual representation, we include the same information in bullet-point form below.

Echoes of the Godkiller Relationship Map

The Component…

  • Seeks Sam Eikar

Ortho the Eldest…

  • Does not trust his fellow clones
  • Seeks to control the Component

Ortho the Heartless…

  • Does not trust his fellow clones

Ortho the Youngest…

  • Does not trust his fellow clones
  • Is manipulating Sam Eikar

Sam Eikar, the Savant…

  • Is Millie’s niece
  • Is mostly a pawn in all this

Fulmine Cathak, the Mastermind…

  • Fears the Component
  • Recognizes the important role Sam will play
  • Has been Millie’s ally in the past

Calcite Cathak, the Gunbinder…

  • Has faith in her cousin Fulmine
  • Thinks Stratus is greedy

Stratus Cathak, the Treasure Hunter…

  • Acts aloof toward Fulmine
  • Is genuinely concerned about Calcite

Soulsteel Justice Warrior…

  • Has been Millie’s ally in the past
  • Is famous or infamous across the land

Millie Eikar, the Inventor…

  • Employs Janek and Tenor
  • Has been allied with Fulmine and the Warrior
  • Is Sam’s aunt

Janek Ragara, the Guardian…

  • Is employed by Millie
  • Will protect Sam instinctively
  • Has a crush on Feather
  • Is friends with Tenor

Tenor Black, the Mechanic…

  • Is friends with Janek
  • Is Feather’s older brother
  • Is a high-ranking employee for Millie

Feather Black, the Explorer…

  • Is Tenor’s younger sister

Cyn Walker, Daughter of Ether…

  • Has no idea where she is or who anyone else is.