Klatang ‘Emashi, Chosen of the Moon

Background

Lightning struck the ship not far from land. ‘Emashi wasn’t the only one to see it, but she was the only one to jump into the water. Someone had to save them. When the second bolt struck, she was in the water. The light of the moon burst through the clouds. Those on the small dock were blinded; confused. Many wandered away in a daze. They didn’t see a young woman swimming like a fish, pulling one sailor after another to shore.

All her parents knew was that she was exhausted the next morning. She had snuck out to watch the storm with some friends; those who realized what happened covered her in a blanket until the glow faded and snuck her home. That was only three weeks ago. With characteristic fearlessness her friends convinced her to sneak out a few more times and “discover her elemental powers,” but her sharp-eared mother had her grounded before long.

‘Emashi grew up thinking that the Dragon-Blooded were the only real Chosen. The Dragon-Blooded were the virtuous Chosen of the mighty Elemental Dragons. Besides them, there were the god-blooded, and there were strange things and monsters, and there were the Anathema. She saved people, so she must be Dragon-Blooded – perhaps water? But the lightning, and the silver-white glow… air? And the powers that flowed from her didn’t feel elemental at all. She’s starting to worry that she might not be Dragon-Blooded after all, and that leaves few good options. It’s not easy to ask your parents if your real mother was a god… a flashing, shimmering woman who swam next to her in the depths that fateful night, with a silver ring on her forehead.

She knows she’s hunted, though. Someone has been asking about her around Pech – perhaps several someones. She thinks it’s probably just the sailors wanting to know who saved them, which is bad enough. (Her mother would ground her for a century.) Her friends think it’s the Wyld Hunt – or the Anathema – or V’neef Kharavi – or the ghosts of the sailors she couldn’t save, though they don’t tell her that last one. It would be cruel. Regardless, someone has been asking about a young woman matching her rough appearance. It’s only a matter of time until they find her.

Appearance

Klatang Emashi 500

Like many women in the Pearl, ‘Emashi wears copious amounts of silver jewelry. Her family wears saris covering much of the face, and she does as they ask, though she doesn’t completely buy into the tradition. She has deep brown eyes, with carefully applied kohl. Her skin is a rich medium brown with terra cotta undertones. Her favorite color is robin’s-egg blue.

‘Emashi has just one animal form so far: her totem, the giant arapaima. She hasn’t discovered her war form yet, nor even realized that she can hunt animals for their forms.

Demeanor

Ordinarily, ‘Emashi is respectful and compassionate. She practices a proper physician’s bedside manner often. Among her friends she also giggles and gossips, at least when it won’t hurt anyone. Right now, though, she’s more sedate, and more introverted. She’s been told she can’t talk to to her friends for a week yet (though they come up and whisper things in the window while she works, and she shoos them away before the healer hears them). Honestly, she’s nervous. She’s frightened. She’s not panicked yet, but she’s getting there. She doesn’t know what she’s becoming yet, and she’s afraid of the answer.

When Nakotch Detla first came to the Pearl (before she was V’neef Detla), carrying her mother, ‘Emashi was the one who directed her to V’neef Kharavi for aid. She followed her into Sandpiper, wanting to see what the famed surgeon would do. Unfortunately, she wasn’t allowed into the V’neef estate. She was still concerned, though, and curious about Detla’s fate. ‘Emashi made sure to approach Detla when she was in the marketplace some time later. ‘Emashi’s positivity and visible compassion warmed Detla’s heart, and Detla’s courageous story enthralled and fascinated ‘Emashi. The two have been friends ever since. She also helps take care of Vatli Butterfly sometimes, when the little girl’s relatives are busy – which is all too often.

Intimacies: “I will be as great a healer as V’neef Kharavi” (Defining), “V’neef Detla” (Positive, Major), “Vatli Butterfly” (Positive, Major), “My Friends” (Positive, Major), “Suitors in general” (Negative)

Capabilities

Young ‘Emashi hasn’t had the chance to practice many worldly skills. She can help with the rice harvest and catch fish in the lake. She’s athletic enough, and can run, balance, swim, and climb her way into all kinds of trouble. She can’t dance well. (Her parents always looked down on it.) She knows how to read and write and do simple figures. As may be obvious from her background, she knows nothing of spirits and the ways of essence. As a No-Moon Lunar, she is likely to learn quickly.

More than anything, ‘Emashi wants to be a healer. V’neef Kharavi is her idol, quietly worshipped from afar. She begged her mother to apprentice her to the local healer, and last year she finally relented. ‘Emashi has an excellent talent for the work, and the old man grudgingly admits that she will surpass him quickly. Since the incident, however, she has felt her breath flowing through her every time she touches someone. Her power doesn’t cure the diseases of those she treats; instead, they’re made stronger, hardier, more durable by her power. They become vigorous enough to recover on their own. It wouldn’t work on every injury, but she’s never had the need to treat soldiers with arrowheads buried in them. She doesn’t quite realize what’s going on yet, but it won’t be long before she puts it together.

‘Emashi has never been in a real fight. Given that her native animal form is a giant fish, it’s unlikely to be of much help if she gets attacked.

Supporting Characters

  • Klatang Tapatli, her mother the rice farmer. Strict, helpful, humorous.
  • Klatang Koptat, her father, a fisherman who is often away. Adventurous, loving, businesslike.
  • Popot Denkto, a friend who was on the dock with her. Adventurous, clever, smart-mouthed.
  • Tlalok Ihuatl, a suitor whom ‘Emashi finds insufferably immature. Sincere, melodramatic, eager.
  • Patli Achat, the neighborhood healer and her mentor. Irascible, tenacious, bossy.

Questions

  • How does ‘Emashi feel about her parents? Has she realized how much they love her, or is she still in the “parents are too strict” phase?
  • Does ‘Emashi know Adach Molo? What does she think of him?

Kotala Fesho, Chosen of the Moon

Background

Kotala Fesho is here to undermine House V’neef, kick the Realm out of the Pearl, and turn the riches of this land against the Scarlet Empire. She’s just so gosh-darned cheerful about it.

Fesho originally came from a small city north of Ember, on the edge of the Burning Sands, where she had a different name. She grew up on the Guild’s trade routes. Her mother raised her to be a merchant. She made a small fortune on the route between Red Jade Canyon and Urim. When she was about forty, her caravan was attacked by fair folk raiders from the deep desert. They had little chance, until the moon rose, and Fesho’s body shimmered and changed. She was at once the confident, dour merchant with a nose for numbers, and a fearsome creature with a translucent wings, a thick black carapace, and a deadly sting. The fair folk still took their due from her soldiers, but paid for it with their immortal lives.

She was taken in by Shikareth, an elder Lunar of the Silver Pact. She told Fesho what it meant to be a Lunar – the war they fought against the Realm, the nations they raised, the role they played in saving Creation from the Fair Folk. Shikareth taught Fesho that one of the Chosen could become whatever they wanted to. Fesho took the lesson to heart.

She traveled across the southeast for another hundred years, north as far as Thorns, east to the lairs of the deadly elders of the Pact. She found the lost, taught kindness to the cruel, and brought hope to those who had lost theirs. She learned how to fight – the cruel do not always learn easily – but learned more about how to connect with people. She saw the pain that the Realm caused to the people of Threshold, and how they were unable to keep it safe. It took many years of wandering and more than one run-in with the Wyld Hunt, but Fesho eventually agreed with the Silver Pact’s cause.

Fesho set her eyes on the Pearl of the Realm, a place that the Scarlet Empire had long ignored. Here, she thought, she could gain some leverage, bring courage to the people, and perhaps start a quiet revolution that would hit the Empire when it was most vulnerable. She settled into the town of Pech and started her work.

Unfortunately, she hasn’t had the chance to do more than lay the groundwork. The Scum of Heaven got here years before her, and left one of their servants, who considers Fesho a threat. She’s hardly able to exercise her powers without facing the living golem Adach Molo. He must be guarding someone nearby. There are rumors of a woman claiming to “bring peace,” which is always bad news. Plus, not one a month ago, people reported seeing silver flashes in the night for a week straight. It’s a near-certain sign of another Lunar in the area. Fesho is working to find and rescue the newcomer before someone kills them. The quiet and sleepy Pearl is about to become a lot busier.

Appearance

Kotala Fesho 500

In her true form, Fesho has the dark brown, slightly reddish skin characteristic of many southerners. Her eyes are brown. Her hair is dark, and pulled back under whatever loose, colorful garment she is wearing today. She uses henna often. She wears the extensive silver jewelry that is common in this region: finger rings, nose rings, chains from ear to nose, forehead ornaments, and so forth.

Fesho wears only female bodies when in human form. Her original true form was male, but it never felt quite right to her. Her animal forms vary greatly in size, but her greatest variety is at the smaller size. Wasps, bees, spiders, scorpions, beetles, mice, rats, anoles, hummingbirds, minnows, tiny octopi, and even a few worms can be found in her repertoire. With Adach Molo watching, sometimes it’s the only way she can get out of the house. Of larger animals she typically has just one of each type – and a hippopotamus draws too much attention to be practical around town.

Demeanor

Peppy, smiling, and helpful. Fesho intends to undermine the Realm here in a number of ways, but one of the most important is being helpful to others and building a grass-roots base of support. She’s both realistic and positive. This doesn’t mean that she’s unreasonably happy when others are sad – she’ll share sorrows with someone as well as joy, and can be somber and serious when the time calls for it. Afterward, though, she tries to help people see the positive potential in the world.

Fesho does still have some of the snarling anger for which the Chosen of the Moon are famous. She can be insistent, aggressive, and even dangerous when circumstances call for it. Still, her general good humor isn’t a front. She dislikes the negative parts of herself, and tries to nourish the positive. She finds the King of Kindness to be a fascinating counterpoint to her own position, and has cultivated a friendship with him for both practical and philosophical reasons.

Intimacies: “Bring hope” (Defining), “The Silver Pact” (Major, Positive), “Adach Molo” (Major, Negative), “Rescue the new Lunar” (Major), “V’neef Detla” (Positive), “The King of Kindness” (Positive)

Capabilities

With her time spent wandering the southeast, Fesho became an expert traveler. She can smell the change in the weather over the lakes, hunt down animals for food, and find shelter in the wilderness, even in her human forms. She’s especially good at navigation and pathfinding. She typically hunted with her natural poison, but was also a good shot with a sling or a thrown rock.

She’s better with people than she is with animals, though. Kotala Fesho makes friends quickly and easily, and even those who find her a little annoying can’t find it in their hearts to dislike her. People find that they share information with her freely, and she is at the center of a great web of gossip that spans the entire Pearl. She also leaves a lasting impression. Hope in this fallen age is a rare thing, and people remember her for it. She can give a rousing speech to inspire hope or righteous anger. The elders of the Silver Pact view her as having great potential because of this gift, but not having fulfilled it yet.

Being a Changing-Moon Lunar has its advantages. With a bit of will and essence, Fesho becomes even more compelling, especially at an emotional level. Subtle pheromones add a bit more impact to her words. She can help people overcome fear, put their animal instincts aside, or stand down from a fight. She can reverse these, too, if it comes to that. She is capable of putting fear into even the hungry dead or mindless beasts from the Wyld. She’s an expert at the art of the feint, both physically and politically. She’s not much good with warbands. She can keep them together, but doesn’t properly know how to direct them. Political groups, on the other hand, she knows much better.

Fesho’s totem is the paper wasp: a careful builder, layers within layers. She hasn’t put a lot of time into her war form, but its horrifying insectoid visage wins most fights without a punch. She is also a fast and fluid shapeshifter. When she can spend essence freely she’s damnably hard to hit, jumping between her human form and an insect-sized speck every few seconds. She can pull aspects of her various shapes together in her human form and speak in a human voice in her animal forms. In any form, she can sting with a touch, delivering a much more powerful poison than that of a mere wasp (treat as arrow frog venom).

Supporting Characters

  • Idashavo, the reincarnation of Shikareth, who lives in the South. Young, clever, agitated.
  • Eztli Izil, her house-servant. Hard-working, close-mouthed, no-nonsense.
  • Chennai Sharpnose, a Lunar whose circle was seeking Pelagials in the lakes a few years ago. Literal, exploratory, muttering.
  • Xochitl Mecal, who takes messages from her to the King of Kindness. Discrete, grubby, mercenary.

Questions

  • Does Fesho think this land is ready to turn against the Realm? If so, did she conspire with the King of Kindness to steal the tribute and force the matter?
  • Fesho must know about Peacebringer – her gossip network would not miss this morbid individual. Does Fesho realize who she is, or whom she works for? If not, how will she react? If so, what game is she playing here?

Claws Lock Deep, Chosen of the Moon

Background

Claws Lock Deep was once a priestess named Goa Hakeala, on a small island in the West. The island and everyone on it were the property of House Nellens, ruled by the merchantile and businesslike Nellens Badu. So long as Goa’s tribe provided sugarcane and companionship to the ruling class, they were treated civilly. When they did not, they were beaten. Goa led secret prayers for the strength to endure… and, occasionally, for deliverance.

Then soldiers from Skullstone came. Dark ships arrived, with messengers whiter than sheets. They were repelled. More came, and more. Eventually, after a battle within the mayoral palace itself that Goa’s tribe could scarcely see, House Nellens abandoned the island and sailed east toward Wu Jian and home. Goa’s island was abandoned in its time of need by those who had abused them for centuries.

Goa stopped praying to the Elemental Dragons to gift their children with mercy and forbearance. She instead turned to the forbidden prayers, to the Incarna, to the Fickle Lady of Rage and Beauty. Angry, she demanded the power to stop the invaders. She remembers screaming at the sky, cursing the full moon above for its silence, her eyes shut tight and streaming with tears, and being slapped, hard across the face, by someone she did not see. She fell to the ground in shock. When she stood, she was streaming with moonlight and rage.

She took a new name that night. Claws Lock Deep tore through the invaders, choking, crushing, reaping them like the canes of her island. She fought the deathknight known as Pain to a standstill, forcing her into retreat with her pure hatred. She rallied her people and armed them with her fury.

After a week of ceaseless battle, the invaders withdrew. Goa’s gifts did not, nor did her anger. Her old persona had become a thin shell over her seething rage at years of mistreatment and injustice. It took little provocation to bring this to the surface. She saw it in their eyes: her people now feared their savior. Fearing that she would kill someone in her rage, she left the island in the form of a falcon.

Claws Lock Deep briefly met a group of more experienced Lunars, who convinced her of the necessity of their traditional tattoos. They inducted her into the Silver Pact and recommended that she seek out the Caul, where elders lived who could help her tame her rage.

The winds blew her to Athanor instead.

Appearance

Claws Lock Deep 500

Claws is quite beautiful, with soft tanned skin, black hair, and red lips. She wears the ceremonial mask and headdress of her old position upon her forehead. When she goes into battle she lowers the mask over her face.

She has just one animal form thus far: that of a Peregrine falcon, swift and deadly. It is likely that she will have more skins to wear by the time this battle is over.

Demeanor

Claws Lock Deep is an eggshell of civility and nerves. When that shell cracks, no bargaining or pleading can reach her in her anger. When the rage fades, she sometimes feels shame. Sometimes she does not.

Intimacies: “My exaltation is a curse with which I strike at my enemies” (Defining), “Nellens Badu will pay for abandoning us” (Major), “The Deathknight named Pain” (Negative, Major), “I will not be made a slave again” (Major), “The Silver Pact” (Positive)

Capabilities

Trained as a priestess, but born into a life of servitude, Claws Lock Deep speaks both Wavetongue and the High Tongue of the Realm. She knows how to propitiate spirits and how to organize people. She knows how to watch the weather and the waves, when to sow and reap, how to till the soil and catch the delicious trilobites that scuttle along the beaches of the West. Her fighting talents are mostly instinctual, drawn from past lives, and she relies heavily on the terror that her assaults provoke in her target.

Claws is a Full-Moon Lunar, and her essence is the breath of battle itself. Her totem is the Peregrine falcon. When she fights she instinctively enters her war form. Talons grow on her hands and feet. Her mouth becomes a cruel beak. She has no wings, but she is swift and strong, and her claws are quick to catch and lock. Her birdlike scream invokes the fear inherent in all prey creatures – and before the Lunars, all are prey. If her prey runs, she can catch it. If it hides, she will see it or smell it. If it strikes at her, she can dodge quickly and gracefully – not that a single wound will be enough to take her down.

Thus far her essence fills the space between her mortal skills. If she survives here, it may come to enhance her abilities, in time. She has the power she asked for, but little more.

Supporting Characters

  • Ten-Touch Tenoch, who inducted her into the Silver Pact. Wily, personable, calming.
  • Pao Mehaka, who fought alongside Claws against the invaders. Old, strong, intense.
  • Nellens Disessa, who knows where Claws’ family lives. Talkative, incautious, indebted.

Questions

  • Claws Lock Deep sees her power as a curse. Would she give it up if she could? Does she see this contest as the opportunity to become something else?
  • Did the Silver Pact members that she met tell her to distrust the Sidereals? If so, how strongly does she weigh those words?

Princess Ralia, Chosen of the Moon

Background

As the first child of Voana and Selno, Ralia was showered with love and affection. Both of them took care to make sure that she was loved, appreciated – and supported, to better carry the burden she bore as first child. Ralia knew that she was literally born to rule Slumber’s Grasp. She tried to lead her siblings, with as much success as one can have when one is a child leading toddlers. Her mother’s death was painful to her, but even at nine years old Ralia knew that the other children needed her comfort and help. She tried to be a model of good behavior, and to take care of her brother and sisters as her mother would have.

In her fifteenth year, traveling through the countryside with her father Selno, Ralia was buried under twenty feet of snow. Her father was killed instantly by debris from the carriage. Twenty soldiers suffocated and froze. Ralia struggled to reach the fading light above for nearly an hour, but her strength gave out. As night fell and the full moon rose, a strong, pale hand reached down and pulled Ralia from the snow. Thin, strong arms embraced her and held her as she cried. When Ralia looked up, she was alone, looking upon a city she had never seen before. Her hair had turned silver-white, and her eyes, the same.

Ralia spent over two years in the city called Crystal. The kindness of strangers and the offhand cruelty of the uncaring both taught her much about life outside of a royal family. She became stoic, secretive, hardworking, daring – all the things she admired in her younger siblings. She let her memories of their gifts lead her as she had tried to lead them, and grew in both wisdom and gratitude.

When Ralia left Crystal, she vowed to return to her home. This has proven more difficult than she hoped. No one she spoke with had even heard of Slumber’s Grasp, let alone knew where it was. Her tutors had shown her nearby kingdoms on maps, but not the full shape of Creation. Ralia wandered, exploring the North, for nearly ten years. She hunted on instinct, walked the tundra, swam the White Sea as a seal. She met a handful of others like herself, but carefully refused their fearsome company. She hid from the Wyld Hunt. She sought refuge in ruined castles and empty towers, many of which held magics from long ago. She helped travelers along the way. In her wake, the story has spread of a white-haired woman who aids the needy.

Finally, instinct and prophecy have guided Ralia back to Slumber’s Grasp. She knows nothing of the current situation, only that this is a time when she is needed – when her presence could tip the balance one way or another. She fears what a meeting with her siblings will mean for her.

Appearance

Princess Ralia 500

Ralia’s thick hair is silver, and her eyes are grey. Her soft white skin bears light scars beneath her eyes – a reminder of the tears that froze on her face as she clawed her way toward freedom. She is garbed in the magical artifacts of past ages. Her expression is often turned inward.

Those familiar with the Lunars may be horrified to see that Ralia has no tattoos.

Demeanor

Introverted, furtive, and uncertain. Freed from responsibility, Ralia has now become somewhat averse to it. She commits herself to things, then hesitates to complete them. She has difficulty watching loving parents with their children. Her voice is clear but soft, and she stutters occasionally.

Intimacies: “I won’t let someone die next time” (Defining), “I will see my family again” (Major), “Stay away from those with power” (Negative), “Those who seek to aid others” (Positive)

Capabilities

Ralia was trained for leadership as a young woman, but much of that has atrophied over the past twelve years. She is more skilled now at survival than statecraft. She is fast and strong, used to extreme cold and howling winds. She speaks Skytongue, Rivertongue, and Low Realm. She hunts with snares, but also with bursts of speed that allow her to catch larger prey and kill them with her blade.

Ralia’s totem animal is the arctic seal. Her white hair is her tell; one simultaneously obvious and easily missed among the people of the North. As she typically has little reason to take a seal’s form, she makes little use of her shapeshifting powers, relying on other expressions of her essence. Her breath hardens her muscles, deflecting tooth and blade. She can walk through blizzards atop the snow, and smell water or blood from miles away. She can become faster, stronger, tougher, more keen-eyed and sharp-nosed, and can maintain these changes for long stretches of time when circumstances demand it. She also recognizes boundaries in Creation, such as shadowlands, borderlands, and the influence of manses. Most of these she skirts instinctively.

Ralia wields a curved moonsilver sword taken from a tomb decorated with owl’s feathers. She wears a cloak of purple and silver that helps her to breathe in essence more quickly, and a suit of moonsilver plate that flows around her body as she moves. The hearthstone of a distant undersea manse is set into the clasp of her cloak. It keeps the water for miles around her pure and healthy, though it does not remove salt.

Supporting Characters

  • Feros Irontooth, the Lunar whose invitation to the Silver Pact she declined. Intense, ferocious, predatory.
  • Lio, traveling merchant who recently guided her back toward Slumber’s Grasp. Comfortable, huffy, irresponsible.
  • Kati, a childhood friend who remembers her fondly. Gregarious, prudent, remorseful.

Questions

  • Why was Selno out with his daughter in treacherous territory? What drove him to such travel?
  • Why was Ralia transported across the North when she was Chosen? Whose prophecies guided Ralia back here?
  • How will Ralia’s siblings react to her presence? To the simple fact that she’s alive?

Multaniko, Chosen of the Moon

Background

The Silver Pact takes different approaches in different directions. In the North they are vicious and brutal, waging open warfare on the frozen plains. On the Blessed Isle they are circumspect – they run often, and hide constantly. In the South, they seek connection and fellowship and use it to their advantage against the Realm. Multaniko is an exemplar of this approach.

Many years ago, when he was young, Multani’s mentor Shikareth founded the desert cavalry. She set them, not against the Realm, but against creatures of darkness, for the desert of the South contained many secret pathways to a desert infinitely larger, and the city of horrors beyond it. Shikareth then left to continue her work elsewhere, bringing Multani with her. He and she eventually parted, as is proper for teacher and student to do, but he bore a great respect for her in his heart for dozens of years afterward.

More recently, Shikareth died in battle, slain by the hated Scum of Heaven. The leaders of the southern Silver Pact asked Multani to check in on her mounted warriors, left for so long to their own devices, while they sought for her reincarnation. He agreed.

Multaniko was stunned to discover that his mentor’s distant descendant Shafallika, now Lady of the nomads and Master of the cavalry, had made a bargain with forces from beyond Creation. This charismatic, invincible warrior had forged the nomad clans into a fearsome army… but at what cost? Bound by honor and morbid fascination, Multani insinuated himself into her war-camp, and worked his way quickly up to become her trusted advisor. It was he, informed by sources within the Silver Pact, who brought her the news of Red Jade Canyon’s infestation.

Now he travels with her as she and her cavalry ride, and tries to see into her heart. How far will she take this army? How strong a hold do the Fair Folk have on her? What has hardened her heart so, that she turns from mercy so often? Were she a fellow member of the Silver Pact, Multani might find this mindset inspiring. In a mortal, and one to whom he feels like an uncle, he find it worrisome. He has put his mind to the puzzle of The Thousand Tales of Shafallika, hoping to eke out the truth, and worries that he might be too late.

Appearance

Multaniko 500

In his natural form, Multani’s skin is an umber brown. His eyes and hair are black. His beard is kept trimmed short and neat. Naturally, as a shapeshifter, Multani can take on many appearances, but he wears his true form among the desert nomads. Nearly everyone mistakes the numerous black scales on the back of his head for short-cut hair.

Demeanor

When he’s in his element, Multaniko is the extrovert’s extrovert. He’s friendly, jovial, and so smoothly manipulative that people don’t even realize he’s done anything until he’s gone – and often not even then. He’s also a perfect infiltrator – Shikareth used to tell say that whereas most Lunars changed their bodies, Multani changed his mind. She warned him not to change his heart the same way, and he listened… for the most part.

Multaniko came here hoping to find an ally against the Realm in their time of weakness. Now that he has one, he genuinely doesn’t know what he should do. He’s more withdrawn than he’s ever been. As Shafallika’s advisor, he constantly counsels caution – gather more information, wait for someone else to make a move. He’s talking at least half to himself.

Intimacies: “Be at the center of things” (Defining), “My mentor’s legacy” (Major), “The Silver Pact” (Positive), “The Scum of Heaven” (Negative), “A little lie never hurt anyone”, and see “Abilities” below.

Abilities

Multani is a charismatic and shrewd individual, with over a hundred years of practice blending into every society in the South. He’s a smooth-voiced fast-talker with a real dedication to the cause of the Silver Pact. Multani’s skill with people extends to animals as well, and he’s yet to find one that he can’t convince to bear him as a rider.

As a Changing-Moon Lunar, Multani’s essence is perfectly suited to missions of infiltration, stealth, and adaptation. His eyes are sharp, and he can feel vibrations in the ground through his sensitive feet. He can see through the eyes of animals, and speak to many of them as well, through gentle noises, gestures, and eye contact. He has a dozen or more desert-adapted forms, as well as some more common on the South’s shoreline. Multani’s shapeshifting talent has also been turned inward, allowing him to take on an Intimacy appropriate to whatever role he’s performing.

Multaniko’s totem is a desert lizard. He is capable of taking on a war form, but rarely does so, preferring to stay out of combat and let others fight. He’s best after a fight, where his understanding of bodies and minds allows him to heal wounds and help his allies recover spent energies. If cornered, he transforms and flies, runs, or burrows for freedom.

Supporting Characters

  • Flora Softwing, the Silver Pact scout who learned of the demons. Perceptive, shrewd, distractible.
  • Waiid Tenstone, the servant assigned to Multani in Lady Shafallika’s camp. Large, intimidating, friendly.
  • Bey Denscraith, a fellow advisor that Multani has befriended. Frustrated, emotional, considerate.

Questions

  • What will Multaniko do if he finds out that Eight-Ways Ready is here?
  • Is Multaniko ready to kill Lady Shafallika if she becomes possessed by the Fair Folk? Is he capable of it?

Chennai Sharpnose, Chosen of the Moon

Background

Six years ago, Chennai Valwood was an adventurous young woman traveling down the Yellow River. Several unsavory folk attempted to fleece her of her earnings, hoping to use her debt against her later on. Unexpectedly, she suddenly found herself able to hear their whispers, see the small signs they made to one another, and smell their intent on them. She ended up duping all of them, sneaking off the boat, and impressing a more experienced Lunar who had expected that he would need to rescue her. Three months of mentorship later, Chennai took the name “Sharpnose” to indicate her new status as a member of the Silver Pact.

Then she was nearly killed by the Wyld Hunt.

She, her mentor Nokura the Grey, and three other Lunars had gathered in the wilderness south of Nexus as a sort of makeshift moot, to honor her elevation to full member of the Pact. Five dragon-blooded and their soldiers swept in, including a pair of Immaculates. Chennai herself was nearly killed, drowned in her own blood. Nokura the Grey was driven into hibernation by horrible wounds left by a blade of fire. The five of them barely escaped with their lives.

Since then Chennai has been brave but careful. She and her packmates restored Nokura to health, traveled the southeastern lakes in search of a lost tribe of pelagials, and denied the hated Scum of Heaven a foothold along the Dreaming Sea. Recently they have gone their separate ways for a year, each pursuing their own interests, and Chennai has been exploring on her own.

Chennai wants safety, but she also loves exploration too much to ignore that. She wants, in animal terms, a safe burrow from which she can explore the world, and to which she can return in case of danger. This brings her to the Shores, and to the abandoned manses in the mountains to the north. For more on Chennai’s current exploits, see the entry for her new ally Longface.

Appearance

Chennai Sharpnose 500

Chennai is light-skinned and brown-haired, with blue-green eyes. She wears rugged traveler’s clothing in a variety of colors. Many mistake the markings on her face for odd makeup, or for simple dirt and smudging from her long time in the wilderness.

Demeanor

Chennai enjoys exploration. It’s not easy to see on her face, but she loves finding new places and uncovering their secrets. From hidden mountain caves to lost manses, from concealed rooms to the invisible flows of essence, Chennai delights in the world’s secrets. She also has an excellent memory for them, and picks up both lore and languages easily. When another brings up her favorite subject it is difficult for her to stop talking about her discoveries, even if it would be beneficial for her to keep them to herself.

She’s also very literal-minded, and despite her Charm set, has poor intuition for what other people might do. She often misses subtle communication and gestures. She has accepted occasional misunderstandings as a part of her life. Others are not always as forgiving, so she rarely settles down in one place for long. When she is nervous she rubs her index fingers against her thumbs to soothe herself. Her previous pack helped her find more of her inner self, and she misses them.

Chennai rarely makes eye contact when speaking, but tries not to mumble, at least when speaking to others. She mutters to herself fairly often.

Intimacies: “I must have a safe home” (Major), “Allies are more trustworthy than friends” (Positive), “The Realm is my enemy” (Negative), “Uncover secrets” (Defining)

Abilities

Chennai is a No-Moon Lunar. Her totem animal is the marten.

As an experienced adventurer, Chennai knows how to stay fed and healthy in the wilderness, as well as how to read the weather and the land. She can hunt with a bow and snares, and is a fair hand at sailing.

Chennai’s essence allows her to sharpen her senses, both physical and mystical. She can see the flow of essence, tap out secret doors, smell emotions, feel her way in the dark by wind currents. Some day this may become more instinctual for her, but at the moment she must focus her intent in order to do so. She can also bolster her resistance to magical influence, such as that of the Fair Folk, and can help others heal their wounds more quickly. She is a novice sorceress, concentrating on countermagic and the summoning of elementals.

Chennai was taught how to fight by a grizzly bear and a wolverine, and while she didn’t take to all the lessons, she still knows how to send people and animals recoiling in fear. Her war-form is equipped with ferocious claws and long, sharp teeth. She moves quickly and aggressively in battle, counting on her supernal healing abilities to let her strike, retreat, heal, and come back to finish the job.

Supporting Characters

  • Wolsung, her contact within the Silver Pact. Towering, soft-hearted, slow to anger.
  • Ilia Ramsherd, a shepherd who took in Chennai and treated her well for a time. Sheltered, kind-hearted, industrious.
  • Shellturner, a beach spirit who has been following Chennai for a few weeks. Talkative, fascinated, quick to hide.

Questions

  • How will Chennai react to Iselsi Umon‘s presence?
  • How close is Chennai to rebuilding or reactivating the broken manses of the Shores?
  • What will Chennai do once she has a home? If allowed to settle in the Shores, what will her next move be?
  • Are Chennai’s pack members following her here? Are other members of the Wyld Hunt tracking her?