Alizé / Ashna Nerei
Alignment: White/Lawful Neutral
Power Rating: B
Tall, though not overly tall, with a grim smile, long blonde hair. Solid gray clothes, including a bartender's apron. Two flashy rainbow scarves twirled around her neck, an air helmet with a crimson-dyed horsehair crest, a charm bracelet on her right hand and a wedding ring on the left. A pendant with a living flame in the center hangs on a long chain around her neck.
A large black horse, with burning blue eyes, armored, including a horse-hair crest on the helm. She often doesn't cast a shadow.
Backstory: Just trying to help people. Retired from being a soldier-type.
Oh, you wanted the whole story?
"Ashna was from another world, lived in a place called Drohma. She was a great concern to her parents, along with her older twin sister, when they were chosen by great spirits of elemental fire to be their link to the mortal world. This was the third breakthrough of the thirteen elements, and savants would have been a lot more worried about it if they weren't all busy with their Great War. On the 'Last Day', in a deployment of superweapons, almost all the residents of her continent were wiped out, leaving in Drohma, the hardest-hit region, not a single mundane survivor, just a few thousand powered or cursed individuals scattered across the countryside.
She lived in a large log in a mountain pass, using her pyromancy to hunt small animals. It was years later that people tried to even explore the wasteland, and Ashna killed every one of them that came into her woods. She was eventually captured by a team of Etran Templar who were sent to clear the woods and make them safe for explorers, and though they lost many people, she was finally caught in a fireproof net and taken away for study. Through a long process which I'll leave for another day's story, (I've gotta go teach a class on morphic fields right after this) she ended up earning her freedom, destroying a fleet of airships, and joining the Templars herself. I think it was mainly that in the face of the lycanthrope outbreak, they needed everybody willing to fight, especially if they happened to be able to burn things clean of the disease. She was a hero (or war criminal, depending on your view) of the conflict, and after ten years with the Templars, retired to seclusion in the woods. Not too out there for a fantasy story, right?
Then she came to the Nexus. Well, actually this was before my time; she came to ACRONYMIA. Followed a flock of cockatrices through a portal, and ended up at the Good League of Good, they were different back in those days. Most of their members were robots, and they were a lot more militant. Had a magic spork and jail cells. Anyway, she spent some time there, got bitten by a werewolf and saw it as a sign, fell in love with another member, broke into the MagCave and ended up rescuing people. She even tried to protect the old HQ, before being driven away by a grand sonic giant. But then eventually she died.
And on the third day she rose again, as a blood-drinking terror of the night, a vampyre! Luckily for the good people of ACRONMYIA, she was kept in seclusion, mostly, for her vampire queen was trying to drive her mad. She was rescued later by her love and a few others, who defeated a lich-lord in trade to the vampyre queen for Ashna's freedom. And after that, ah, well, I'm all out of time. Go ask."
SpoilerIt was very bright. And then it was very dark. An immense silence gave way to a deafening wind. My eyes were shut tight, but I felt myself flying away (weren't there walls?) and would have screamed if only I could have drawn any breath.
The air returned as I hit the ground, hard. Then I could yell and cry with the pain and confusion. I was just a little kid then. Eventually I realized there wasn't anyone coming, and I opened my eyes.
It was a nightmare. Everything was in ruins, trees ripped up, streets torn to component stones, the sky filling with smoke from something burning. There was blood on the ground a ways ahead, and a pair of empty shoes. The normal green of the sky was now a tattered red, and far away the wind still howled, made bearable only by the distance.
Now, about that something burning. Wait, was I okay? I remember being very concerned that we'd gone out like a blown candle. But no, the flames danced merrily around me, like always. Like always? People aren't supposed to be on fire. But I knew I was. I was even named like it. A...what was my name again? Like fire. A... Ash. Ashna. Like the story. Yeah. I felt really calm when I realized that I didn't remember, like, if it were bad, I would recall it. I hadn't heard the word 'amnesia' then. I was only confused. What had happened?
We got up and walked a little way, exploring the area. The smoke was from a field of grain and a house, both blazing merrily and burning away to nothing. For all the day long we walked, fear mounting as we saw the sky remain that broken color, as we saw no living thing, only desolation and ruin. There had been a road, maybe to a town? And we followed the scattered pathstones hoping to see something. Nothing. After a while the stones came less and less often, and we could not find the path. By then I was tired and hungry and thirsty and we had nothing and nowhere to stay and the sun must have been setting. A fog was rising, we were the only source of light left around and now we heard voices in the fog.
That first night was the greatest horror I've yet faced. When the first faces came out of fog we burned the whole area for thirty meters around in panic, but there was no end to the restless dead that now haunt the Droman nights. Three hundred million lives undone in an instant, with no one to put them to rest, no one even to remember them. We ran through that blank, mist-shrouded wasteland until I could run no further, and we crawled into a fallen log and hid until day came.
I was weak when I awoke late in the day, but my other half sustained me and kept me on the track to survival. I was too exhausted mentally to keep panicking or do anything but follow their direction. They found me food and water as we ranged, and told me when the cold air meant we should return to the log.
For months this went on, seeing no other person. Occasionally we came across some small animal that had survived the devastation, and ate them when we could. I was young and hungry, but we both grew skilled at hiding from the supernatural horrors of the night and hunting the living creatures of the day. After a while I did not need the tricks of my other half to stay alive, did not need to draw the heat of the fire into my protesting muscles. I was a lost kid, but not one that was going to die out here, helpless.
A long time passed. I had no way to measure it or any idea that it should be measured. One day my flame spoke up, sensing something like it nearby, so we went to find it. It was one of the megamoebas that had sprung up since the Last Day. Useless as food, but not big enough to eat me without our burning away. But this one, it burned like me, without being consumed. We walked up slowly, offering a bit of food to it and my other soul danced in joy when it took it, when it stayed and regarded us, when pulses of light were mirrored back to us. We had lost so much, but now we had found something good, for the first time since our memories went.
Elemental Bond: Ashna's shadow is a fragment of a whole other character. It can manifest as a solid thing and drain away the strength of others, as well as new random effects as the plot demands, now including cold heat-draining flame. A sufficiently illuminated space may kill her.
Holy Knight: Ashna has minor healing and protective magics, which can occasionally surge to perform stronger effects.
- Dawn Aura - An aura of calm and fulfillment, lessening hunger and fatigue.
- Twilight Bolt / Twilight Blast - A projectile or explosion granting Stillness, unto death, for both the living and the undead.
- Haste - Gotta go fast!
Scarf of Lordly Time: This brightly colored scarf allows Ashna to travel through time, subject to the one restriction that she cannot be in the same time twice.
Scarf of Scintillating Brilliance: This sleeker silken scarf can catch projectiles and energy attacks and deflect them as harmless but flashy lights.
After two kidnappings and a couple of murder attempts, has a friendly grudge against Lord Magtok.
Anyone who gives her food is a friend in her book.
Agoraphobic, slightly. There are Callers out there, in the sky. Much better to be inside, or curled up in the hollow of a tree.
Can be found at her home Inside.