Major Characters

   Ranko Anchienkienda (Formerly Tendo) was originally an expert martial artist with minor innate magical powers derived from some supernatural ancestor which enhanced her strength and speed, as well as producing minor “telekinetic” effects, Ranko was the central focus of The Ranko Show – a popular program combining action clips of her activities during the last few days from her attendant camera drones with segments on villains, other heroes, history, and “popular science” moments when someone would briefly take over the screen to explain what was going on (more in-depth material was available on the web). Ranko married Huitzilopochtli, the Aztec god of war, after a brief confrontation in the realms of the Aztec gods and an extremely turbulent courtship. While the marriage was originally more of an exercise in damage control than anything else, Huitzilopochtli was a vital ally during the Darkstorm War and turned out to be considerably more fun that anticipated: Ranko took some time off to give birth to Isacora, their first son – but returned to action shortly thereafter. Ranko’s recent transformation to a Cat-Girl after absorbing a minor conjuration of Bast has – according to 98% of the viewer vote – made her even cuter.

   The White Necromancer I and II: The original White Necromancer was a priest of Death, in an aspect of rightful passage. Cast into a death-sleep in battle with evil mages, he remained asleep for thousands of years – only to be awakened by nazi necromancy during WWII. In conjunction with Fist-of-God, Matsumoto, and the Indestructible Man he helped defeat Theodor Eicke, commandant of Dachau (alias “Deathurge“, a master blood-path necromancer) in his attempt to invoke a week-long rain of corrosive blood across much of Great Britain and Western Europe. Hit by an antitank missile during a mission, the White Necromancer was forced back into death-sleep. Awakened again by the unleashed energies of the Darkstorm, the White Necromancer died heroically for a third time – but, having trained one extremely talented (and several lesser) apprentices during his time awake, he elected to pass deeper into the lands of death this time around. He might still make it back some time – but it isn’t likely to be any time soon.

   The second White Necromancer has inherited a good deal of the originals power, less of his control, and very little of his experience and knowledge. He’s also only 15, and is still trying to come up with a way to explain to his mother that he’s technically dead, at least until he figures out how to get his body functioning again instead of just being animated.

   Darius Metaxis, the Castellanis an powerful earthmaster, skilled architect and siege engineer, and – thanks to the Eye of the Infinite Night – a minor wielder of darkness magic, Darius travelled the (d20) world of Atheria as a mercenary, turning his siegecraft, boulder barrages, and death golems against a wide variety of targets. Darius found a higher purpose when he was caught in an invasion of chaos demons and was confronted by a malevolence far beyond the petty evils of men. Taking his stand with the other heroes who fought to defend the Crossworlds Realms, and bar the path of chaos into the many worlds beyond, he was cast into the interdimensional void – only to emerge on Earth.

   The Hauntsman is a twilight creature of the Phantasm Worlds of Darkness – a centuries-old imaginary friend, a minor protector against the creatures of the deeper night. Accidentally acquiring the Wings of the Nightmare after the fall of the Darkmage, he gained access to “quick” darkness powers, and some servitor spirits, in addition to his mastery of rituals – and became a notable player in the Darkstorm War. While immortal as long as people believe in him, he was disrupted in the fighting. It would take months for him to pull himself back together.

   The Super Bum is a mysterious figure, who apparently acquired a random selection of mystical powers – including an uncontrollable set of random mystical senses, superhuman strength and durability, and an uncontrollable troubleseeking teleportational ability, towards the end of the Darkstorm War. Since then he’s occasionally appeared to help out – and vanished again just as quickly.

   Huitzilopochtli Anchienkienda, God of War, Patron of Youth, Master of Feather Magic, and the Judge of Passage is a member of the Maraktocli, a tribe which had the misfortune to move to one of the Hundred Realms which slowly drains life energy. While the sorcerers among the tribe could compensate, the process required a steady supply of human life force to use – forcing them to seek human offerings from the people left behind on Earth. Over 26,000 years of magic, drawing the life force from mortal sacrifices, enhancing himself, practicing the arts of war, and exercising his (now-vast) powers on behalf of his worshippers, has left him pretty well convinced that he is a “God”, entitled to worship, to judge mere mortals, and to take what he wills. While personable, somewhat obliging, genially kind to smaller children unless there’s some reason not to be, and generous with gifts and the use of his powers, he still encourages duels, skirmishes, and wars, requires human sacrifices, casually enslaves and transforms people, kills whenever it suits him, applies his own standards to everyone he encounters, and is tremendously arrogant. He gave presents to the children at the orphanage, yes, but he also massacred all of Ranko’s other suitors and used their skins to make leather gifts for her, enslaved, neutered, and disembodied Vasilko to use him as a gift and courtship gambit, and otherwise offered unwanted “assistance”.

   Thanks to his link with his son, and the recent rise of magic, Huitzilopochtli is now able to visit earth for the fist time in the last 26,000 years. He’s continuing to judge those near times of passage (youth to adulthood, adult to elder, elder to spirit) who come before him; those he sees as noble of spirit tend to be rewarded, the merely adequate are ignored, and the unworthy – those who show pettiness and delinquency in place of strength and honor (or who ask for such a thing, or for unearned power) – tend to be transformed and given to the worthy as useful beasts. It’s a second chance of sorts – but it’s pretty harsh by more modern standards.

   Vasilko, A.K.A. “The Kamikaze Puppy” is a young Siberian werewolf who, at age nine, had the misfortune to nip Ranko when she scooped him up from where he was napping – and thus became a “suitor”: Huitzilopochtli allowed him to live – but neutered him and used him as a courtship gambit with a trip to the Aztec hells waiting if he didn’t work out. Vasilko spent some time leaping in front of attacks on Ranko, but eventually (with the help of the other heroes who felt sorry for him) got her to marry Huitzilopochtli – and was rewarded with his body, manhood, and retention of the additional spirit-powers he’d been granted as an intermittently material bodyguard. Currently 13, the leader of his own small pack of youthful werewolves, and a father: werewolves hit adolescence around 9-10.

Subordinate Werewolves: The members of Vasilko’s pack include:

   Amara, Michel, and Dulcine are actually only 3 1/2: they were genetically-modified force-grown clones, programmed as agents, assassins, and seductresses, packed with lethal cyberware, and decanted as beautiful, pubescent, girls of about 10-11 years – all the better to take out the targets their creators, the killing machines of the Silver Twilight, assigned. When the heroes captured them, they weren’t sure what to do – and there wasn’t much time to spend on the decision in the middle of the Darkstorm War. The group eventually decided to have Vasilko bite them: werewolf regeneration would expel their cyberware without killing them, it would break most of their programming, it would put them under his control instead of the machines – and it would help keep Vasilko out of the middle of the war.

   They didn’t realize that Vasilko was already pubescent as well – and they had said that they were his now. It did keep him busy and (even if it didn’t expel the nanotach components of their cyberware), it got rid of the major stuff and the control implants. They’re currently 13, albeit a very well-developed 13. Amara and Dulcine have recently borne Vasilko a son and a daughter respectively.

   Hayley (now 12), Mina (now 10), and Theodore (now 8 ) were 10, 8, and 6 when they were severely injured and trapped in the ruins of a collapsing apartment building during the Darkstorm War. Vasilko could easily reach them by passing through the unstable ruins in spirit-form but, with no one else available to help, couldn’t get them out or keep them from dying of their injuries except by biting them – so he did. For what it’s worth at that age, they prefered being subordinate werewolves to death.

   Stefen (now 16) had his latent werewolf abilities brought out by the Darkstorm, and eventually wound up at the orphanage. He formally challenged Vasilko for the pack leadership, and possession of Amara, Michel, and Dulcine, when he was 14 (and Vasilko was 11) – and lost badly. He’s been very quiet and subordinate since then, although he’s presumably another Master (not Secondary like the other followers) werewolf.

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