Characters: Kushiel's Legacy
The series has Loads and Loads of Characters. Here are some of them.
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Includes the novels Kushiel's Dart, Kushiel's Chosen and Kushiel's Avatar
Phèdre nó Delaunay de Montrève
- "That which yields is not always weak."
Tropes applying to Phèdre:
- Bi the Way: Like all D'Angelines
- Bound and Gagged: Happens to her a lot.
- Brains and Bondage: She's made of this trope.
- Brainy Brunette: Phèdre is a very smart brunette.
- Brown Eyes: But with a red mote in her left iris.
- The Chosen One: She is Kushiel's Chosen.
- Compelling Voice: A few times Kushiel has made his influence known through her. Generally simple things like getting people to stand down and listen. Also taken to the max when she learned the name of God.
- Cunning Linguist: Both meanings.
- Daughter of a Whore: Her mother was an adept of the Night Court.
- Diamonds in the Buff: Melisande gives her a sheer dress studded with diamonds and a matching collar with a diamond to wear when they attend the Midwinter Masque together.
- Ethical Slut: She has other lovers, such as Nicola, but Joscelin is okay with it and he's still her official consort.
- Even the Girls Want Her: Has female patrons as well as male ones. This is perfectly normal in Terre d'Ange.
- Famed In-Story: Becomes famous as a hero of the realm and one of the top courtesans in Terre d'Ange. 100 years later, Moirin is very familiar with Phèdre's story.
- The Fashionista: She does care quite a bit about clothing, and eventually becomes a fashion trendsetter.
- Friends with Benefits: Phèdre and Nicola L'Envers y Aragon are essentially this.
- Good Thing You Can Heal: She heals quickly, an added bonus of being an anguissette.
- High-Class Call Girl: She's one of the top courtesans in all of Terre d'Ange.
- Hooker with a Heart of Gold: She's a kind person and will go out of her way to help those less fortunate, such as when she paid Favrielle's marque.
- I Just Want to Be Normal: Phèdre goes through a stage in Avatar when she wishes she were no longer Kushiel's Chosen. There are also other times in the books when she hates the fact that she's an anguissette.
- Indentured Servitude: Was sold into indenture by her mother when she was four years old.
- Lady in Red: Wears red dresses on several occasions, most notably at the Midwinter Masque in Chosen. There's also her sangoire cloak, made of a special shade of dark red that may only be worn by anguissettes.
- Made a Slave: Sold to the Skaldi in Dart by Melisande, and to the Margkhagir in Drujan in Avatar.
- Mama Bear: To Imriel. To the point where in Avatar, she offers herself in Imriel's place as a sacrifice after Imriel accidentally spills blood on the island of Kapporeth. To spill blood is death, and Phedre is completely willing to take Imriel's place in this if it means Imriel's survival.
- Meaningful Name: Phèdre mentions that hers is an "ill-luck" name but says her parents were likely unaware of this connotation.
- Ms. Fanservice: Many of her sex scenes definitely qualify as fanservice.
- Omniglot: Learns many languages over the course of the series. She has a talent for them and often picks them up quickly.
- Parental Abandonment: Her parents sell her into indentured servitude because they're broke.
- Parental Substitute: Is one to Imriel.
- Pimped-Out Dress: Wears a lot of these, usually to an assignation or at the Midwinter Masque.
- Rags to Riches: She starts out as a "whore's unwanted get" and ends up the Comtesse de Montrève.
- Raven Hair, Ivory Skin: Less so on the covers, but describes herself as this in the books proper.
- Really Gets Around: Causes Imriel no small amount of angst when he realizes she's slept with quite a few really important people, including a decent chunk of the D'Angeline aristocracy. Curiously, Phèdre tends towards monogamy when Kushiel grants her peace.
- Sex for Services: Phèdre offers herself to the Duc de Morhban in exchange for passage across his lands.
- Sex Is Violence: She craves this due to her nature as an anguissette, but can enjoy sex that doesn't involve pain.
- Sex Slave: Is sold as a sex slave to the Skaldi and the Mahrkagir. Melisande also wants to keep her as one.
- Sexy Backless Outfit: To show off her marque.
- Slave Collar: Melisande puts a leash and collar on Phèdre when they spend the Longest Night together.
- Too Kinky to Torture: She says in Dart that she cannot be forced to reveal secrets through torture. This is proven true when Waldemar Selig tries skinning her alive to make her talk.
- Whip It Good: She frequently gets whipped during assignations.
- Yuri Genre: Most notably with Melisande and Nicola.
Liliane de Souverain and Pierre CantrelThe biological parents of Phèdre nó Delaunay. Liliane de Souverain was part of a long line of women who served Naamah as adepts of the Night Court, namely Jasmine House. Due to the exotic tenets of Jasmine House, she is honey skinned, dark haired and black eyed. Pierre was the third son of a merchant of blond hair and blue eyed persuasion. Liliane ran away to elope with Pierre Cantrel because the Dowayne of the House forbade her marriage to Pierre on the basis that a child from their union would not fit the standards for Jasmine House and because Pierre could not afford to buy her marque. Phèdre was born as a result of their union, but was "too pale for Jasmine House and too dark haired and dark eyed for Cereus House". Before the discovery of Kushiel's Dart, the mote in her eye is seen as a blemish and thus made Phèdre unfit for any of the Houses in the Night Court. When the two are too poor to settle their debts, they sell Phèdre as an indentured servant to the Dowayne of Cereus House.
Tropes applying to Pierre and Liliane:
- Hot Gypsy Woman: Liliane. One of the reasons Phèdre as a child noticed Hyacinthe was because he resembled her mother complexion wise. Most adepts of Jasmine House are rumoured to have Bhodistani (analogous to Indian) ancestry in their heritage.
- Parental Abandonment: Phedre's parents sold her into indenture in the Night Court, just so Pierre would be able to regain money which he had squandered in his attempt at trading in Caerdicca Unitas.
- "All knowledge is worth having."
Tropes applying to Delaunay:
- All There in the Manual: His full backstory and relationship with Prince Rolande was revealed in a short story called "You, and You Alone."
- Anyone Can Die: Did anyone see his death coming?
- Batman Gambit: Uses these on several occasions, such as when he told Barquiel the identity of Isabel's poisoners, knowing he'd take revenge and thus remove them as threats.
- Bi the Way: Has relationships with both men and women, but his most important ones are with men.
- Bury Your Gays: He and Alcuin die in the first third of Dart.
- The Chessmaster: Patiently works behind the scenes to protect Ysandre.
- Declaration of Protection: He swore a vow to protect Ysandre and her claim to the throne of Terre D'Ange.
- Devoted to You: Was completely devoted to Rolande, so much so that he refused to marry and ended up being disowned for it.
- Enemy Mine: He decides to make peace with Barquiel L'Envers, who's been his enemy for years, since they both have an interest in protecting Ysandre.
- Hot-Blooded: Very much so, in his youth. His rash decision to write the poem which labelled Isabel L'Envers a murderess (caused in part by grief and rage, as well as a sense of justice needing to be done) had drastic and bitter consequences for him, as his poetry is banned and burned and he gains the enmity of L'Envers and House Courcel. It seems that this is partly why Rolande was so attracted to him.
- I Have No Son: Was disowned by his father when he refused to marry and have children. This is why he's known as Anafiel Delaunay instead of Anafiel de Montrève.
- Love Triangle: Between Delaunay, Rolande, and Isabel L'Envers. A second one occurs between himself, Alcuin and Phèdre, though he's largely unaware of it.
- Mentor Occupational Hazard: Dies during Dart.
- Mysterious Past: Phèdre, Alcuin, and Hyacinthe spend a lot of time puzzling over Delaunay's past. Eventually they learn the truth.
- Parental Substitute: Is this for Phèdre and Alcuin. Until they both fall in love with him.
- Redheaded Hero: Delaunauy is described as having auburn hair.
- Second Love: Alcuin is his.
- Star-Crossed Lovers: He and Rolande, due to Isabel L'Envers' jealousy.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: See Enemy Mine example above.
- Warrior Poet: He was one of the most skilled poets in Terre d'Ange, to the degree that the King's Poet thought he was better than her. He's also a capable warrior.
- Wife Husbandry: Unintentional example. He adopts Phèdre and Alcuin and raises them, thinking they see him as a father figure. Instead they both fall in love with him.
- Yaoi Guys: He has long-term relationships with Rolande and Alcuin.
Alcuin nó DelaunayAlcuin is Delaunay's other pupil. As with Phèdre, he teaches Alcuin to listen and observe and uses him to spy on his enemies. But unlike Phèdre, Alcuin hates working as a courtesan and does it all out of love for Delaunay. He and Delaunay become a couple once Alcuin has made his marque.
Tropes applying to Alcuin:
- Bury Your Gays: Dies alongside Delaunay at the hands of Isidore d'Aiglemort's men.
- Even the Guys Want Him: Has male patrons as well as female.
- First Guy Wins: Delaunay adopted him first. They end up together.
- Love Triangle: Both he and Phèdre are in love with Delaunay. He wins.
- May-December Romance: He and Delaunay.
- Second Love: For Delaunay.
- Yaoi Guys
- "In Cassiel's name, I protect and serve."
Tropes applying to Joscelin:
- Berserk Button: Do not, DO NOT try to harm Phèdre near him. Imriel's also off limits.
- Can't Stand Them, Can't Live Without Them: His relationship with Phèdre.
- Celibate Hero: Is this until his first time with Phèdre.
- The Comically Serious
- Declaration of Protection: He vows to protect Phèdre.
- Duel to the Death: See Crowning Moment of Awesome.
- Even the Guys Want Him: In-universe inversion: the Skaldi men think he's a pretty boy and not a real man because he doesn't have a beard, but the Skaldi women certainly find him attractive.
- Get a Hold of Yourself, Man!: Phèdre does this to him when they're enslaved in Skaldia.
- Honor Before Reason: Especially in Dart. He gradually relaxes, though.
- Interrupted Suicide: Joscelin is about to kill himself and Phèdre to save them from Waldemar Selig when Barquiel L'Envers charges in at the last minute to rescue them.
- Knife Nut: He typically fights with a pair of daggers. Cassiline Brothers are only supposed to draw their swords to kill.
- Let's Get Dangerous: When he gets his sword out, especially if Phèdre is in danger. The same is true of all Cassilines.
- Made a Slave: Being sold as a slave to the Skaldi nearly kills him, until Phèdre snaps him out of it.
- A Man Is Not a Virgin: Inversion. He's a virgin before his first time with Phèdre, but she isn't.
- Master Swordsman: Though he relies primarily on his daggers and only draws his sword to kill.
- Mercy Kill: He comes to do this for Phèdre when Selig is skinning her alive. Fortunately, he doesn't need to go through with it.
- Mr. Fanservice: Many women in the series find him attractive. Has plenty of fangirls in the fandom.
- My Girl Is a Slut: At first, Joscelin is disgusted by what Phèdre's chosen occupation. They nearly break up when she decides to resume working as a courtesan. However, he comes to terms with it eventually.
- No Accounting for Taste: How most D'Angelines see Phèdre's relationship with him.
- Conversely, this is how he feels about Phèdre's attraction to Melisande.
- Parental Substitute: Is one to Imriel.
- Undying Loyalty: To Phèdre, especially after Chosen. He willingly followed her into Drujan when nobody else would.
- Unresolved Sexual Tension: It gets pretty thick between him and Phèdre, but then it gets resolved.
- Warrior Monk: All Cassiline Brothers are basically this.
- Weaksauce Weakness: Gets seasick ridiculously easily.
- You Are Worth Hell: He goes to Darsanga, the Kushielverse's equivalent of hell on earth, for Phèdre.
HyacintheA Tsingano (Roma) who is Phèdre's oldest and dearest friend. Hyacinthe and Phèdre meet as children and stay friends well into adulthood. Hyacinthe has the ability to see the future (called the dromonde), which his mother taught him despite it being forbidden to men by Tsingano law. Towards the end of Dart, Hyacinthe takes Phèdre's place to become the new Master of the Straits so that the Alban army can reach Terre d'Ange. Phèdre spends the next two books searching for a way to free him from his curse, which she eventually does in what is both a Crowning Moment of Awesome and a Crowning Moment of Heartwarming.
Tropes applying to Hyacinthe:
- Black Sheep: He ends up being rejected and disowned by his long-lost family when he speaks the dromonde in front of them. The dromonde is strictly forbidden to men in Tsingani culture.
- Child by Rape: His mother was raped and impregnated by a Bryony House patron who paid to seduce a Tsingani virgin.
- Curse: Inherits the curse of the Master of the Straits. He has power over the sea, but he is bound to the Three Sisters and can never leave.
- Elemental Powers: His are water/air.
- Fate Worse Than Death: But he gets better!
- Fortune Teller: His mother was one. She passes her skills on to him.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Taking Phèdre's place and becoming the new Master of the Straits, condemning himself to a miserable and lonely existence.
- In-Series Nickname: The Prince of Travelers
- Long-Lost Relative: He meets his grandfather and many other family members while traveling to Alba. They welcome him into their midst, but it unfortunately doesn't last long.
- Loveable Rogue
- Oracular Urchin
- The Power of Friendship: He takes Phèdre's place to become the next Master of the Straits. She spends years of study and faces countless dangers to find a way to free him.
- Romani: The Tsingani are a Fantasy Counterpart Culture to the Roma.
- Screw Destiny: Phèdre saves him from his destiny as the Master of the Straits.
- Second Love with the second of Drustan's sisters
- Seers: Uses the dromonde to see the future.
- Take Me Instead: He offers to take Phèdre's place and become the next Master of the Straits.
- True Companions: Him and Phèdre.
- Unlucky Childhood Friend He and Phèdre end up being this to one another.
- "Elua cared naught for mortal politics, nor did Kushiel."
Tropes applying to Melisande:
- Affably Evil
- Beauty Is Bad: Melisande is exceptionally beautiful, even among D'Angelines.
- Big Bad: Of the first two books.
- Brains and Bondage
- The Chessmaster
- Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: Later in the series, Melisande starts claiming that she always keeps her promises. Like many things she says, this statement should be taken with a pinch of salt.
- The Corrupter: She excels at manipulating powerful people around her into committing treason.
- Depraved Bisexual
- Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Imriel.
- Even Evil Has Standards: She won't stoop to blasphemy and claims to always keep her promises (though both statements should be taken with a grain of salt and then some. Also, she really loves her son.
- Even the Girls Want Her
- Evil Plan: Most of her plots can be categorized as this.
- For the Evulz: When Phèdre asks her why she did it, she replies, "Because I could."
- It's a little bit more complicated than that. Melisande describes herself as being incapable of caring about the pieces in her games, while simultaneously loving the games she plays. Why does she play? She's D'Angeline.
- Freudian Excuse: Its a minor excuse, but in the second trilogy she appears to have some remorse for her actions and its suggested-that the reason she is the way she is-is because of her father Casimar.
- Girls Love: With Phèdre.
- Heel-Face Turn: Debatable, but she does appear to have some remorse for her actions later on in the series. And she does help save Terre d'Ange in Mercy.
- In the Blood: It's implied that her father's method of raising her deeply affected her character. As seen above its a minor excuse.
- Jedi Truth: Melisande claims she'd never commit blasphemy personally, but looks the other way when Marie-Celeste corrupts the Serenissiman priestesses. She's also forbidden by Kushieline doctrine to kill the bearer of Kushiel's Dart, but has no problem sending Phèdre into dangerous situations where she'd be indirectly responsible for her death.
- Karma Houdini: Manages to escape all punishment, and gets to live out her days in a villa on a Mediterranean isle. Although it is implied that Imriel's torture at the Mahrkagir's hands is Kushiel's punishment for her.
- Lady Macbeth: Melisande manipulates both Isidore d'Aiglemort and Prince Benedicte into committing treason in order to further her own ambitions.
- Likable Villain: A large portion of the fandom loves her despite her actions.
- Loophole Abuse: See the Jedi Truth section.
- Mama Bear: Do not attempt to harm her son.
- Manipulative Bitch
- Pet the Dog: She loves her son.
- The Quisling: Collaborated with Waldemar Selig to orchestrate the Skaldi invasion. If it had succeeded, she would've married Selig and ruled as Queen over a united Terre d'Ange/Skaldia.
- Raven Hair, Ivory Skin: Like all Shahrizai.
- Romanticized Abuser
- Sadist: Naturally
- Sex Is Violence: That's how she likes it.
- Woman in Black: Wears black when she attends the Midwinter Masque with Phèdre.
- World's Most Beautiful Woman: Not explicitly described as such, but her beauty is constantly commented on in a nation full of beautiful people.
Persia and Marmion ShahrizaiBrother and sister pair who help to bring Melisande to trial for treason at the end of Dart.
Ysandre de la Courcel
- "Steel beneath a fragile bloom."
Tropes applying to Ysandre:
- Big Screwed-Up Family: Other members of House Courcel attempt to take her throne twice.
- Bodyguard Betrayal: One of her Cassiline guards, David de Rocaille, tries to assassinate her to avenge his sister, who was killed by Ysandre's mother.
- Celibate Hero: Ganelon forbid her from visiting the Night Court so he could make her a foreign alliance through marriage. Justified in that while Terre d'Ange is very liberal about sex, other countries are not. Naturally this trope no longer applies once she marries Drustan.
- The Chains of Commanding: Ysandre has to fight to retain her throne on multiple occasions and the strain begins to show in later books.
- Defrosting Ice Queen: She uses a cold & icy front as a defense mechanism to mask her true feelings. With those she trusts she's much warmer.
- Fragile Flower: Appears to be this, but she's actually a case of Silk Hiding Steel.
- God Save Us from the Queen!: She is generally a wise ruler and beloved by her people, but in Mercy she declares war on them while under Carthage's spell.
- The High Queen
- 100% Adoration Rating: She is well-loved by the D'Angeline people.
- Ice Queen: Can be this at times.
- Long Distance Relationship: She and Drustan only spend half the year together because his duties require him to spend the other half in Alba.
- Offing the Offspring: While enchanted during Mercy, she declares war on Alais.
- Perfectly Arranged Marriage: Her engagement to Drustan started out as a political match, but they happened to fall in love.
- Politically Active Princess: She sat with her grandfather during Parliament sessions as Dauphine. She also rules as regent when Ganelon is dying.
- Purple Eyes: Inherited from her mother, Isabel L'Envers.
- Raised by Grandparents: Her grandfather, King Ganelon, raised her.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something
- Ruling Couple: She and Drustan rule their respective nations side-by-side.
- Silk Hiding Steel: Ysandre is made of this trope (see: quote).
- Winter Royal Lady: Wears white at the Midwinter Masque in Chosen.
- The Woman Wearing the Queenly Mask
Rolande de la CourcelCrown prince or dauphin to the throne of Terre d'Ange in Phèdre's trilogy and father of Ysandre. He was killed during the Battle of the Three Princes twenty or so years before the main action of Dart. He and Delaunay were lovers.
Tropes applying to Rolande:
- All There in the Manual: His relationship with Delaunay is fully explained in the short story "You, and You Alone."
- Death by Origin Story: Rolande is this for Delaunay.
- Disappeared Dad: Dies when Ysandre is a baby.
- Heroes Want Redheads: Fell in love with the redheaded Delaunay.
- 100% Adoration Rating: He was well-loved by the d'Angeline people.
- Love Triangle: First with Edmee and Isabel, then with Isabel and Delaunay.
- The One That Got Away: For Anafiel Delaunay
- Posthumous Character: Most of what we know about him comes from other characters, mainly Delaunay. We only officially meet him in "You, and You Alone."
- Warrior Prince: He was a capable warrior, but dies in battle against the Skaldi.
- The Wise Prince: Everyone thinks he would've made a great king.
- Yaoi Guys: He and Delaunay. He would've made Delaunay his official consort if it weren't for Isabel's jealousy.
Isabel L'EnversSister of Barquiel L'Envers and wife of Prince Rolande. Isabel had the girth of Edmée de Rocaille's saddle tampered with before a hunt, causing her to fall to her death. Delaunay wrote a poem implicating Isabel in the incident, which led to her being called a murderer by some. She and Rolande had one daughter, Ysandre. She is poisoned by Dominic and Therese Stregazza.
Tropes applying to Isabel:
- Betty and Veronica: The Veronica to Edmée's Betty
- Blondes Are Evil: While not exactly evil, platinum blonde Isabel doesn't come off very well from the limited information we get on her. Even Barquiel, who doesn't respond well to anyone insulting his sister, admits she was responsible for Edmee's death.
- Clingy Jealous Girl: Was very possessive of Rolande
- Green-Eyed Monster: She was bitterly jealous of Edmée because Rolande chose her.
- Love Triangle: First with Rolande and Edmée, then with Rolande and Delaunay.
- Missing Mom: To Ysandre, who's only 7 when she dies
- Murder the Hypotenuse: Accidental example. She had the girth of Edmée's saddle cut as a means of petty revenge on her rival, but Edmée ended up falling off her horse and snapping her neck as a result.
- Posthumous Character: Most of what we know about her comes from other characters.
- Purple Eyes: Like all of House L'Envers.
- The Rival: To Edmée and Delaunay, her competitors for Rolande's affections.
- "Didn't you enjoy my largesse in the Khalif's court? I heard I sent you to Khebbel-im-Akkad after paying you to betray your master."
Tropes applying to Barquiel:
- Ambadassador: Served as ambassador to Khebbel-im-Akkad for several years and won the respect and admiration of the Khalif.
- Animal Motifs: Is frequently described as "cat-like." Phèdre compares him to a leopard numerous times.
- Awesome McCoolname: Barquiel comes from the Hebrew Barkiel, meaning "Lightning of God."
- Badass Grandpa: He is this in later books, once he has grandchildren.
- Big Brother Instinct: Barquiel doesn't take kindly to anyone insulting his sister or writing poems accusing her of murder.
- Big Damn Heroes: Joscelin is about to mercifully end his and Phèdre's lives when Barquiel charges out of besieged Troyes-le-Mont at the last minute to rescue them.
- Deadpan Snarker
- Declaration of Protection: He became the oathsworn protector of Imriel and Sidonie's firstborn.
- Enemy Mine: He agrees to make peace with Delaunay for the sake of protecting Ysandre. Also, he and Imriel work together to defeat the Carthaginians in Mercy.
- Evil Uncle: Phèdre thinks he's one, but he's actually a subversion. Instead of plotting against his niece, he's one of her most loyal supporters.
- A Friend in Need: Phèdre bids him to hold the City of Elua against the traitors using the password of House L'Envers.
- Going Native: He does this during his time as ambassador to Khebbel-im-Akkad. He is frequently seen in a turban or burnouse and is quite fond of Akkadian furnishings.
- Heartbroken Badass: In Mercy. He says that seeing Ysandre twisted by Carthage's spell broke his heart.
- Hero Antagonist: In the 2nd trilogy. His hatred of Imriel comes from a fear that he is involved in his mother's plots & wants to steal the throne.
- Hidden Depths: On the surface he appears to be a coldly ambitious snarky jerkass, but there are moments throughout the series which hint there's more to him than that. He really does love his niece and cares deeply for his family in general.
- Horse Archer: Barquiel loves these, and is one himself.
- Jerkass: Especially to Delaunay and Imriel.
- Master Swordsman: He impressed the Proud Warrior Race Akkadians with his skills.
- Only Sane Man: He is the only great lord who isn't in the City of Elua when the Carthaginians put their spell on the city.
- Parental Substitute: To Ysandre.
- Poisonous Friend: Is perfectly willing to get his hands dirty & use amoral methods to protect his niece, such as his assassination of Dominic Stregazza.
- Purple Eyes: Like all of House L'Envers.
- Revenge: Once he finds out who poisoned his sister, he has him assassinated.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: With Delaunay in Dart and then again with Imriel in Mercy. He comes to respect Imriel during their time working together and realizes he misjudged him.
- Unresolved Sexual Tension: Between him and Phèdre in Chosen. He insinuates that he'd make a proposal for an assignation if he weren't so wary of her. Phèdre contemplates the possibility, then promises Joscelin she won't accept if he offers.
Nicola L'Envers y AragonCousin of Ysandre and Barquiel. Nicola is married to an Aragonian nobleman, but she frequently visits the court of Terre d'Ange. She becomes a patron of Phèdre's, and they have a Friends with Benefits relationship.
Tropes applying to Nicola:
- Bound and Gagged: She likes tying people up.
- Brains and Bondage
- Even the Girls Want Her
- A Friend in Need: In Chosen, Nicola gives Phèdre the secret password of House L'Envers which compels any member of the house to give aid if it is spoken to them. She does this even though Phèdre does not trust her.
- Friends with Benefits: She and Phèdre.
- Girls Love
- Perfectly Arranged Marriage: It doesn't seem this way at first, but she and her husband do love each other.
- Purple Eyes: Like all of House L'Envers.
- You Are Not Alone: She tries to convince Phèdre to trust her during Chosen and accept her aid.
Drustan mab NecthanaDrustan is the Cruarch of Alba and husband of Ysandre. In Kushiel's Dart, his throne is usurped and he fights to regain it. Afterward, he leads an army to Terre d'Ange to fight the Skaldi. His army, along with Isidore d'Aiglemort's, breaks the siege of Troyes-le-Mont and defeats the Skaldi. He typically spends half the year in Alba and half in Terre d'Ange. He and Ysandre have two daughters: Sidonie and Alais.
Tropes applying to Drustan:
- Big Damn Heroes: He and the Albans come to the aid of Terre d'Ange during the Skaldi invasion. They defeat the Skaldi by joining up with Isidore d'Aiglemort's army to relieve Troyes-le-Mont.
- Facial Markings: Has woad patterns tattooed on his face.
- Famed In-Story: He asks Phèdre to make sure the deeds of the Albans are remembered.
- The Lady's Favour: Phèdre gives him a ring from Ysandre, which he wears into battle.
- Long Distance Relationship: He and Ysandre spend half the year apart because his duties require him to split his time between Alba and Terre d'Ange.
- Love Ruins the Realm: Inversion- his love for Ysandre actually saves the realm.
- Obfuscating Disability: Has a clubfoot, but it doesn't hinder his fighting ability.
- Noble Savage: D'Angelines see him as this due to their tendency to look down on non-D'Angeline peoples.
- Perfectly Arranged Marriage
- Proud Warrior Race Guy: The Albans are a proud warrior race, but Drustan is quiet and thoughtful rather than bloodthirsty.
- The Quiet One
- Rightful King Returns: Has his throne usurped by his cousin. He regains it with the aid of Phèdre and the Dalriada.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something
- Ruling Couple: He and Ysandre rule their respective nations side-by-side.
Grainne and Eamonn mac Conor of EireThe twin rulers of the Dalriada, a tribe in Eire. They are allied with the Alban rebels and later help Phèdre, Drustan and the d'Angelines against the Skaldi invasion.
Tropes applying to Grainne and Eamonn:
- Fiery Red Head: Grainne
- Polar Opposite Twins
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Hot tempered Grainne is the red oni while the calmer more rational Eamonn is the blue oni.
- Sibling Yin-Yang
NecthanaSister of the former Cruarch and the mother of Drustan and his sisters.
Isidore d'AiglemortDuc of the province of Camlach and a skilled warrior. He plots with Melisande to betray Terre d'Ange to the Skaldi by letting them in the mountain passes of Camlach. He later learns that Melisande double crossed him, and joins up with the Alban army to defeat the Skaldi and get back at Melisande. He slays Waldemar Selig in battle, but dies shortly afterward, thereby redeeming himself.
Tropes applying to Isidore:
- Ambition Is Evil: Melisande was able to use Isidore's ambition to push him into committing treason.
- The Corruptible
- Death Equals Redemption: Phèdre informs him that he's dead no matter who wins the war, which leads to his Heel-Face Turn.
- Death Seeker: He knows he's dead no matter who wins the war, so he chooses a hero's death to avoid being remembered as a traitor.
- Defeating the Undefeatable: Selig was believed to be immune to weapons. Isidore killed him anyway.
- Disappeared Dad: To Maslin.
- The Dog Bites Back: After finding out Melisande betrayed him, he switches sides in order to get back at her.
- Duel to the Death
- Dying Moment of Awesome: Manages to kill Selig before dying himself.
- Fallen Hero: Was a war hero before he turned traitor.
- Heel-Face Turn
- Heroic Sacrifice
- In-Series Nickname: The Skaldi call him Kilberhaar in reference to his silver hair.
- Master Swordsman: One of the most skilled in the series. Being descended from the angel of war definitely helps. He's so good that he managed to kill Waldemar Selig after fighting through hordes of Skaldi to get to him.
- Meaningful Name: Aiglemort means "eagle death" in French. Isidore's standard is a silver eagle.
- New Child Left Behind: Left behind a pregnant lover when he went off to war.
- Proud Warrior Race Guy: Subversion. The Camaelines are a proud warrior race, which leads everyone to downplay Isidore's intelligence due to the belief that they all "think with their swords." As a result, everyone underestimates him.
- Redemption Equals Death: He duels and kills Selig, taking his death wound to do it, atoning for his role in orchestrating the invasion.
- Silver Hair, Black Heart
- Taking You with Me
- Toxic Friend Influence: Melisande is this to him, encouraging his ambitions and ultimately leading him to commit treason.
- We Used to Be Friends: Betrayed Baudoin de Trevalion, who'd been his close friend for years, by exposing his treasonous plans.
Waldemar SeligA Skaldi warlord who is able to unite all of the various Skaldi tribes under him. In addition to being a fearsome warrior, he is also a cunning leader. He tries to invade Terre d'Ange. It doesn't go well.
Tropes applying to Selig:
- Barbarian Hero
- Braids of Barbarism
- Duel to the Death: Has them with both Joscelin & Isidore d'Aiglemort.
- Famed In-Story: The Skaldi have many songs about him.
- Genghis Gambit: Uses one to unite the Skaldi.
- I Have You Now, My Pretty
- Master Swordsman: Manages to disarm Joscelin in the heat of battle, but is killed by Isidore d'Aiglemort, another master swordsman.
- Proud Warrior Race Guy
- "Ill thoughts, ill words, ill deeds."
Tropes applying to the Mahrkagir
- Alas, Poor Villain: Despite the horrific things he does, Phèdre still feels pity for him when she kills him.
- Bad Is Good and Good Is Bad: The religion of Angra Mainyu is based on this, as illustrated by the quote above.
- Blood-Splattered Innocents: His backstory reveals that he was the only member of his family to survive a particularly brutal massacre.
- Dark Messiah: The followers of Angra Mainyu believe he is this.
- I Have You Now, My Pretty
- Rape Is Love: His idea of love is to rape Phèdre with a spiked rod.
- Religion of Evil: The religion of Angra Mainyu, which the Mahrkagir is head of.
- Torture Technician
- Would Hurt a Child: He abuses Imriel in some very horrific ways.
Thelesis de MornayThe former King's Poet to Ysandre's grandfather, King Ganelon, now Queen's Poet to Queen Ysandre. She has a beautiful voice and her poetry is famed throughout Terre d'Ange.
Tropes applying to Thelesis de Mornay:
- Always Someone Better: Despite being seen as the most skilled poet across the kingdom (and possibly in-universe too) she is said to have always thought that Anafiel Delaunay was the better poet.
- Ill Girl
- Mrs Exposition
- Odd Friendship: She becomes one of Phèdre's closest allies after the events of Dart.
- Plain Jane: One of the very few examples in the whole of Terre d'Ange. Phèdre notes that her voice however makes up for her lack of beauty.
Quintilius RousseAdmiral of the Royal Navy and a good friend of Delaunay.
Tropes applying to Quintilius:
Miriam BouscevreThe Dowayne of Cereus House early on in Phèdre's trilogy. It is she who introduces Phèdre to Anafiel Delaunay.
Tropes applying to Miriam:
Cecilie Laveau-PerrinA widow and former adept of Cereus House and friend of Anafiel Delaunay. Anafiel hires her to teach Phèdre and Alcuin how to be courtesans in the first trilogy.
Tropes applying to Cecilie:
- High-Class Call Girl: Was one of the top courtesans in Terre d'Ange in her heyday.
- Professional Sex Ed: Teaches Phèdre and Alcuin Naamah's arts
- Silk Hiding Steel: Like many Cereus adepts.
Favrielle no EglantineDressmaker and designer. She fashions most of Phèdre's clothes during Avatar and Imriel's trilogy. By the time of Moirin's trilogy her business Atelier Favrielle is the most popular dress maker in Terre d'Ange.
Tropes applying to Favrielle:
Includes the novels Kushiel's Scion, Kushiel's Justice and Kushiel's Mercy
Imriel de la Courcel
- "I will try to be good."
Tropes applying to Imriel:
- Angst: Especially in Scion.
- Arranged Marriage: He agrees to marry Dorelei out of a sense of duty despite being in love with Sidonie. It doesn't end well.
- Being Tortured Makes You Evil: He tries hard to avert this, and succeeds.
- Break the Cutie: Undergoes a Break the Cutie process in Drujan.
- Coming-of-Age Story: His trilogy is very much one of these.
- Determinator: Oh so much. When he was fourteen, a Priest of Elua prophesied that he would 'find love and lose it, again and again'. This was proven true repeatedly through the course of the trilogy, and with each loss Imriel matures and never gives up. When Sidonie is abducted by Astegal of Carthage, and the City of Elua is put under Bodeshmun's spell, Imriel swears that he will do whatever it takes to rescue Sidonie and not lose her and her love for him, for, having lost love so many times before, he is not willing to let it slip away from his grasp again.
- Earn Your Happy Ending: And boy does he ever.
- Enemy Mine: In Mercy, Imriel is forced to seek the aid of Barquiel L'Envers who he hates (and who hates him right back) to defeat the Carthaginians.
- The Evil Prince: Subversion. Some people think he is this and that his relationship with Sidonie is a plot to get the throne. It's not true.
- Family Relationship Switcheroo: Imriel actually meets his mother once as a child without knowing she's his mother. Phèdre tells him the truth later on.
- Frame-Up: Is framed in Scion by Barquiel L'Envers who is determined that he be outed as a villain. Though Queen Ysandre, Phedre and Joscelin don't believe it, many people do and it results in Imriel's reputation decreasing rapidly among his peers at Court. This also leads to Bernadette de Trevalion attempting to assassinate Imriel in Tiberium as she believes that Imriel is finally following in his mother's footsteps and plotting treachery similar to what brought her family down. She is understandably distraught and guilt-stricken when she realises the truth of the matter.
- Grey and Gray Morality: After his experiences during the siege in Lucca and the things Galladus did to protect that city, Imriel eventually decides that nobody is entirely good or entirely evil. This finally convinces him to set aside his anger for his mother and read her letters.
- Happily Adopted: By Phedre and Joscelin at the end of Avatar. Imriel is ecstatic at the outcome.
- Hope Bringer: Fills this role in Mercy.
- In the Blood: Many D'Angelines fear that he will take after his mother. However, it is quite clear that Imriel is not his mother's son.
- I Will Find You: Imriel's silent promise to rescue Sidonie from Astegal in Mercy.
- Kissing Cousins: Him and Sidonie. No one minds, being D'Angeline. The only thing they care about is that Imriel is the son of two traitors, and that his loving Sidonie may be a part of a plot to take over the country.
- Likes Older Women: If his affair with Claudia in Scion is anything to go by, Imriel does occasionally have a thing for older women.
- Love Triangle: With Sidonie and Dorelei. A secondary one occurs between him, Sidonie, and Maslin.
- Manchurian Agent: Becomes one of these in Mercy. The trigger is a kiss from Sidonie.
- Mommy Issues: Imriel has a complicated relationship with his mother, Melisande. After realising that she is the most famous traitoress in D'Angeline history and responsible for the deaths of millions of people, Imriel hates her and refuses to acknowledge her as his mother. He also resents the pall her actions cast on his life in the D'Angeline Court, as most of the peerage are waiting to see him turn out like her and tear the realm down. After his stay in Lucca, however, Imriel realises that no person is objectively black or white (or good or evil) and finally reads his mother's letters to him, getting to understand her better in the process. By Mercy Imriel accepts that Melisande is his biological mother and no longer hates her for her actions. However, he is still wary of her and her charm, and cannot forget the pain and bloodshed she caused toward her victims, even if Melisande now regrets her actions and how they effected Imriel.
- Mr. Fanservice
- Mysterious Protector: Canis is this for Imriel in Scion. He later learns Canis was sent by his mother.
- Only Sane Man: Becomes the only sane man in the City of Elua (by being made temporarily insane) when the Carthaginians put their spell on the city.
- Orphanage of Love: Had a happy childhood in the Sanctuary of Elua.
- Parental Marriage Veto
- Psycho Serum: Gets a dose in Mercy.
- Rags to Royalty: He grows up herding goats, with no idea that he's actually a prince.
- Really Royalty Reveal: Happens to him in Avatar.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something
- Secret Relationship: He and Sidonie, in Justice. Eventually they get found out.
- Star-Crossed Lovers: He and Sidonie.
- Stern Chase: His search for Berlik in Justice counts as one of these.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: See Enemy Mine. Also, the time he teams up with Maslin.
- Tell Me About My Mother Phèdre saves letters Melisande sent to Imriel, knowing he'll want them someday.
- Tranquil Fury: His reaction to Berlik murdering Dorelei. While recovering from his wounds, Imriel calmly decides to hunt Berlik down and kill him like an animal.
- Troubled, but Cute
- Wedding Day: The trilogy ends with his and Sidonie's wedding.
Sidonie de la Courcel
Daughter of Queen Ysandre and Drustan mab Necthana, Dauphine of Terre d'Ange. Sidonie first appears to be very haughty and unlikable. However, she gradually becomes more likable and less haughty as Imriel starts to fall for her. Once they are no longer able to hold back their feelings for each other, she and Imriel begin a relationship. Together they struggle to win her parents' approval.
Tropes applying to Sidonie:
- Betty and Veronica: The Veronica to Dorelei's Betty.
- Bodyguard Crush: Minor example- she begins sleeping with Maslin, the captain of her guard, after Imriel marries Dorelei and goes to Alba.
- Defrosting Ice Queen: Sidonie is very cool toward Imriel initially, but eventually warms up to him.
- Fighting from the Inside: She struggles against both spells the Carthaginians put on her, eventually throwing off the love spell (with Imriel's help). She does succumb to the other one after a long struggle, until she manages to break through just enough to say the word that breaks the spell.
- Girls Love: With Amarante, the priestess hired to teach her Naamah's Arts.
- Hope Bringer: Fills this function along with Imriel in Mercy.
- Hypnotize the Princess: What the Carthaginians do to her in Mercy.
- I Have You Now, My Pretty: Although Sidonie is completely willing to sleep with Astegal while she's under the Carthaginians' love spell.
- Kissing Cousins
- Love Potion: It's not an actual potion, but the Carthaginians put a spell on Sidonie to make her fall in love with General Astegal.
- Love Triangle: Between her, Imriel, and Dorelei. A secondary one occurs between her, Imriel, and Maslin.
- Missing Time: While under the spell the Carthaginians put on her, she has no memories of anything related to Imriel.
- Naughty by Night
- Parental Marriage Veto
- Pimped-Out Dress: Wears one during the Midwinter Masque in Justice.
- Politically Active Princess: Attends Parliament sessions with her mother regularly. Ysandre also names her regent at the end of Mercy.
- Rebellious Princess: Has elements of this.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something
- Save the Princess: Needs Imriel to rescue her in Mercy.
- Secret Relationship: She and Imriel are forced to keep their relationship a secret.
- Sibling Yin-Yang: Her and Alais. Sidonie is more D'Angeline in appearance and feels more connected to that side of her heritage. Alais looks more Alban and doesn't fit in at the D'Angeline court. Sidonie behaves more like a proper lady while Alais is a tomboy. Despite these differences, they are very close.
- Star-Crossed Lovers: She and Imriel.
- Well, Excuse Me, Princess!: Her early relationship with Imriel can be described as this.
Alais de la CourcelYounger daughter of Queen Ysandre and Drustan mab Necthana. Alais and Imriel become close as children and remain so as they get older. She feels more of a connection to her Alban heritage than her D'Angeline heritage. At the end of series, she announces that she wants to stay in Alba and become an ollamh.
Tropes applying to Alais:
- Arranged Marriage: Is supposed to marry her first cousin Talorcan, but decides against it because she's not in love with him.
- Canine Companion
- Dreaming of Things to Come: She has prophetic dreams, but doesn't always interpret them correctly.
- Easily Forgiven: She does forgive her parents rather easily for declaring her a traitor and nearly attacking her while under Carthage's spell.
- Kneel Before Frodo: Happens to her at the end of Mercy.
- Like Brother and Sister: Her and Imriel.
- The Magnificent: Later becomes known as "Alais the Wise."
- Offered the Crown: Steps up to become the temporary ruler of Terre d'Ange while Ysandre is enchanted. Afterward, she decides that she doesn't want the responsibilities of ruling a country.
- Parental Betrayal: While under the influence of Carthage's spell, Ysandre declares war on her.
- Purple Eyes: Inherits the L'Envers eyes from Ysandre.
- Rebellious Princess: Alais takes after her Cruithne heritage, which tends to run counter to the decorum and customs of court life. And, as noted below, she is rather tomboy-esque.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something
- Sibling Yin-Yang: Her and Sidonie. Sidonie is more D'Angeline in appearance and feels more connected to that side of her heritage. Alais looks more Alban and doesn't fit in at the D'Angeline court. Sidonie behaves more like a proper lady while Alais is a tomboy. Despite these differences, they are very close.
Dorelei mab BreidaiaDrustan's niece and Imriel's later wife. She is killed by Berlik of the Maghuin Dhonn in order to prevent a prophecy that her son with Imriel would grow up to destroy the Maghuin Dhonn.
Tropes applying to Dorelei:
- Arranged Marriage: Between her and Imriel.
- Betty and Veronica: The Betty to Sidonie's Veronica.
- Death of the Hypotenuse
- Love Triangle: Between her, Imriel, & Sidonie
Maslin de LombelonBastard son of Isidore d'Aiglemort, who dies before he can acknowledge him. Maslin serves as a foil to Imriel, since they are both sons of traitors but they are treated very differently. Because of this, Maslin holds a lot of resentment toward Imriel. They eventually do become friends when he shows up in Vralia to rescue Imriel during Kushiel's Justice.
Tropes applying to Maslin:
- Bastard Bastard: Starts off as this due to his resentment/jealousy of Imriel.
- Better as Friends: He and Sidonie.
- Dead Guy Junior: Was named after his grandfather, Maslin d'Aiglemort.
- Declaration of Protection: He becomes the captain of Sidonie's guard.
- Don't You Dare Pity Me!
- Fire-Forged Friends: He & Imriel become friends during their time together in Vralia.
- Foil: To Imriel. Both are sons of traitors, but Imriel is welcomed into the royal family while Maslin's parentage went unacknowledged. Imriel is a prince and Maslin works as a servant on the estate he was supposed to inherit.
- Green-Eyed Monster: Maslin is very jealous of Imriel due to the differences in their circumstances.
- Heroic Bastard: Eventually becomes this.
- In the Blood: Like his father, he's a skilled swordsman.
- Love Triangle: With Imriel and Sidonie.
- Master Swordsman: Inherited his father's skills, though he started learning late.
- No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Imriel gives Maslin his estate of Lombelon and Maslin deeply resents him for it.
- Put on a Bus: Chooses to stay in Vralia and serve as ambassador at the end of Justice. He isn't seen again until the very end of the trilogy, when he shows up for Imriel and Sidonie's wedding.
- Rags to Riches: Starts out as a laborer in the orchards that were supposed to be his inheritance, ends up ambassador to Vralia.
- Reassigned to Antarctica: He's sent to spend time with the Unforgiven after beating Raul L'Envers y Aragon badly in a duel.
- Relationship Upgrade: He and Sidonie begin sleeping together in Justice after Imriel marries Dorelei and goes to Alba.
- The Rival: To Imriel, though it's rather one-sided since Imriel would rather befriend him.
- Romantic Runner-Up
- Tell Me About My Father: Maslin is very interested in his father and eagerly listens to any memories of Isidore anyone shares with him.
Mavros ShahrizaiImriel's other foil, Mavros is a Shahrizai, and is utterly unapologetic of this fact, and the ramifications and desires that come with it. While Imriel's past experiences initially cause difficulties with their relationship, as he becomes more comfortable with his sexuality, they bond. Mavros eventually fills a roll somewhere between Imriel's at-home Lancer, and a big brother figure, providing advice and support about both politics and relations. He has a rather one-sided infatuation with Sidonie's lady-in-waiting.
Tropes applying to Mavros:
- Anything That Moves
- Bi the Way
- Brains and Bondage: Natch.
- The Casanova
- Depraved Bisexual: While not malicious, Mavros is a Shahrizai.
- The Hedonist
- Lovable Sex Maniac
- Really Gets Around
- Token Depraved Teammate: Is, easily, the kinkiest member of Imriel's immediate circle of friends at court. He rather delights in this.
AmaranteDaughter of the head priestess of Naamah whom Mavros Shahrizai has an unrequited crush on. She is hired in the 2nd trilogy to teach Sidonie the arts of the bed chamber.
Tropes applying to Amarante:
- Fiery Red Head
- Girls Love: With Sidonie.
- Meaningful Name
- Professional Sex Ed: Teaches Sidonie Naamah's arts
Eamonn mac GrainneSon of Grainne and Quintilius Rousse. Imriel befriends him when he comes to Terre d'Ange.
Tropes applying to Eamonn:
- Boisterous Bruiser
- I Will Find You: Falls in love with Brigitta, a Skaldic woman in Imriel's trilogy and after she leaves for Jutland with her brother, Eamonn vows to find her.
Conor mac GraineSon of Grainne with an unamed lover, later revealed to be of the Maghuin Dhonn. The third trilogy reveals that he later married Alais de la Courcel.
General AstegalThe Carthaginian general who tried to make Sidonie his wife via means of a magic spell cast over Terre d'Ange.
Ptolemy Solon aka The Wise Ape of CytheraMelisande's lover and governor of the Hellene island of Cythera. Imriel travels to meet him in Kushiel's Mercy.
- ChekhovsGunman: his study of magic is essential to Imriel being able to change his face to look like Leander Maignard and enter Carthage unknown.
- Detractor Nickname: The Wise Ape
- The Smart Guy
- Ugly Guy Hot Consort Cytheran opinion of his relationship with Melisande, to the extent that they compare it with that of the [in-universe] Greek god Vulcan and his wife the Greek goddess Venus.
Leander MaignardA kinsman of House Shahrizai, albeit a few generations removed. He is living with the rest of his family in Cythera with Melisande as her retainers. Imriel meets him in Kushiel's Justice.
- Wild Mass Guessing : Fans theorised that Melisande used a shapeshifting magic to use his form to go to Terre d'Ange and see Imriel (her son) get married, as she is in exile. Jacqueline Carey has flat out denied this on her blog, saying that it was "a good idea", but that " Melisande is the sort to see her games to the end and that she would rather show her face than hide in the shadows".
Includes the books Naamah's Kiss, Naamah's Curse, Naamah's Blessing This trilogy takes place 100 years after the events of the first two trilogies.
Moirin mac FaincheThe protagonist of the third trilogy. She begins the story as something of a Wild Child, living with her Alban mother in the wilderness. She discovers that she is half Alban and half d'Angeline and that her heritage has given her access to powers outside of the Maghuin Donn. In the first book she travels to Terre d'Ange to find her father and as a result finds herself torn between her desires and her duty.
Tropes applying to Moirin:
- Babies Ever After
- Bi the Way: Most of her relationships in the Naamah novels involve women but her two most recurring paramours are both men.
- Cosmic Plaything
- Declaration of Protection: Becomes Desiree's oathsworn protector
- Ethical Slut
- Fish out of Water: Her status during Kiss.
- Girls Love: Has notable relationships with several women, most importantly Jehanne & Snow Tiger
- Green Eyes: Inherited from her father.
- Green Thumb: One of the abilities her bloodline gives her is the ability to talk to plants and make them grow.
- Heroic Seductress: What her powers from Naamah give her. Every time she feels the pull of her diadh-anam towards a certain person she will end up having sex with them.
- Hot Witch
- I Gave My Word: She cannot break an oath sworn on her diadh-aman without losing her powers & connection to the Maghuin Dhonn.
- I Will Find You: With Bao in Curse & Thierry in Blessing.
- Invisibility: Can make herself invisible by summoning the twilight, but can't do it if someone's watching her.
- Lineage Comes from the Father: Inverted. In Alban custom children inherit through the female line. This is why her surname is mac Fainche, meaning "from Fainche". However, her father's lineage is just as important as it's the source of her powers from Naamah and Anael.
- Magical Girl: Compared to Phèdre at least. Moirin has a lot more access to magic than the former.
- Memory-Wiping Crew: Becomes the Ch'in emperor's one-woman memory wiping crew at the end of Kiss.
- Mixed Ancestry: Half Alban and half D'Angeline.
- My Diadh-Anam Made Me Do It: This is often the reason for starting a quest.
- Naïve Newcomer: When she leaves Alba for Terre d'Ange to find her father in Kiss, she's bewildered by d'Angeline customs and almost makes a fool of herself at court.
- Psychic Link: With Bao after his resurrection
- Rags to Riches: Spent her childhood in a cave, then becomes the Queen of Terre d'Ange's lover.
- Raven Hair, Ivory Skin: Her looks are commented on as "exotic" by the d'Angelines and supernatural by the Albans, due to her mixed blood status.
- Really Gets Around: And how. Lets put it this way. Phèdre and Imriel from the first two trilogies were either a magically induced to enjoy pain courtesan or an issue-ridden, angsty prince. Both encountered problems directly related to their attitudes about sex (more on Imriel's side). Moirin has no such hang ups. She may possibly be the protagonist that has the most sex of the three. Judging by the theme of Moirin's trilogy this is probably because her gifts come from Naamah rather than Kushiel.
- Romantic Two-Girl Friendship: Her relationship with Jehanne develops into this by the last third of Naamah's Kiss.
- Super Power Lottery: Her mother's line is descended from Princess Alais of the second trilogy, giving her the powers of an ollamh a type of combined seer and priestess. On that note, she also has descent from fallen angels Elua and Naamah through Princess Alais' own combined Courcel/L'Envers heritage. Her father's line is descended from Anael, the fallen angel who gave d'Angelines their farming skills. This gives Moirin the power to turn herself invisible, talk to plants, incite lust in other characters and access the powers of the Maghuin Dhonn or "bear-witch" in the Alban language.
- Talking to Plants
- Wild Child: At the beginning of the first book.
BaoThe apprentice to Master Lo Feng and a former slave. He and Moirin do not get along at first and he spends the first book being a Jerk Ass. Later on readers learn his tragic backstory and he becomes more sympathetic. Serves as Moirin's protector and later her lover throughout the Naamah trilogy.
Tropes applying to Bao:
- Badass: Most fans agree on this.
- Back from the Dead
- Body Guard Crush
- Can't Stand Them, Can't Live Without Them
- Child by Rape
- Chinese Boy
- Dark and Troubled Past: Was sold into a circus by his parents when he was 3.
- Distressed Dude: In Curse, when he is held in Kurugiri by Jagrati.
- Earn Your Happy Ending: Boy does he ever.
- Grumpy Bear
- Jerk Ass later develops into a Jerk with a Heart of Gold
- A Man Is Not a Virgin
- Mouthy Kid
- Psychic Link: With Moirin after his resurrection
- The Quiet One: Hardly says a word in Kiss. He begins to talk more from Curse onwards.
- Sex for Services: Offered himself as a sex slave to a man in the circus in exchange for stick fighting lessons.
- Simple Staff: Is a very skilled staff fighter
- Star-Crossed Lovers: Again, with Moirin.
- The Stoic
- Unwanted Revival: Is none too happy about being brought back from death, but eventually comes to accept it.
Master Lo Feng
Tropes applying to Lo Feng:
Queen JehanneKing Daniel's considerably younger second wife and step mother to Prince Thierry. She was once a famed courtesan in Cereus House before giving up her profession to become queen. At first at odds with Moirin due to a shared rivalry over Raphael de Mereliot, she later becomes a friend and trusted confidante as well as lover to Moirin.
Tropes applying to Jehanne:
- Death By Child Birth: Dies giving birth to a baby daughter by Daniel de la Courcel, named Desiree.
- Everyone Loves Blondes
- High-Class Call Girl: She was an adept of Cereus House before marrying Daniel and becoming queen.
- The High Queen
- Hot Consort
- Girls Love: With Moirin
- Gold Digger: Averted. Some of the citizens in the City of Elua think this of her but she and Daniel truly love each other.
- In Love with Love
- Love You And Every Body: She even states that she follows the Elua's precept to the letter, in that she loves as she wilt but cannot continue to do so after getting pregnant for Daniel, as per their arrangement.
- Manipulative Bitch: Less of a bitch than the trope suggests, but she is skilled at using manipulation to get what she wants.
- Ms. Fanservice
- Second Love: For Daniel
- Sexy Mentor: Becomes this for Moirin during Kiss.
- World's Most Beautiful Woman: Said in Kiss to be the most beautiful woman in Terre d'Ange of the generation.
- Your Cheating Heart: On arrangement with her husband no less!
- Yuri Genre: The first book in the third trilogy is all about her relationship with Moirin with several detailed sex scenes between the two.
Raphael de MereliotThe Big Bad of the third trilogy and a former lover of both Jehanne and Moirin. He is a d'Angeline nobleman and the brother of the current Lady of Marsilikos.
Tropes applying to Raphael:
- Ambition Is Evil
- Big Bad
- Dark and Troubled Past: Lost his parents in a boating accident as a child.
- Demonic Possession
- Evil Former Friend
- A God Am I: Convinces the Quechua that he's a god.
- God Emperor: Tries to make himself one.
- Healing Hands
- Hive Mind Gains the power to control ants in the final book of the trilogy. Seemed like a lame power at first, but then he gets creative...
- Hoist by His Own Petard: His final fate in the jungles of Terra Nova.
- I Just Want to Be Special: Implied by Moirin to be the reason behind his actions. Always second best to his sister who would become the next Lady of Marsilikos and not being especially important in Marsilikos due to being male, his plan to summon fallen angels was so he could give himself power and be able to take over the kingdom
- "I Know You're in There Somewhere" Fight: Moirin tries this on him.
- Lethal Harmless Powers
- Manipulative Bastard: Falls short of being a true Magnificent Bastard so he's here.
- Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: Developed a smallpox vaccine, saving the Nahuatl from being wiped out by the disease.
- Not-So-Harmless Villain
- Rage Against the Heavens
- Rich Bitch
- Sanity Slippage
- Smug Snake
- What Kind of Lame Power Is Heart, Anyway?: Is given the power to speak the language of ants as a joke by an annoyed spirit. It's useless in Terre d'Ange, but in the Amazon it's another story.
- Who's Laughing Now?
- Willing Channeler: Plans to summon Focalor's spirit so it can fully take over his body, making him all-powerful.
- You Could Have Used Your Powers for Good: His creation of a smallpox vaccine, thereby saving the natives of Terra Nova from decimation, shows what he could've achieved had he not become evil.
King Daniel de la CourcelThe king of Terre d'Ange at the beginning of the trilogy and a descendant of both Imriel and Sidonie de la Courcel from the previous trilogy.
Tropes applying to Daniel:
- Death by Despair
- Despair Event Horizon: Hits it when he learns of Thierry's supposed death
- Driven to Suicide He was devastated by Jehanne's death and hearing a (false) rumour that his son had died drove him to commit suicide.
- Parent with New Paramour
- Parental Neglect: Is unable to bear spending time with Desiree due to her strong resemblance to Jehanne.
- Puppet King: Becomes this as he cedes more and more power to the Duc de Barthelme.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: Supports his wife's extra-marital affairs by way of an agreement made before they married; that she could keep her lovers for the first few years of marriage until they both agree to have a child. He even comments that her relationship with Moirin made her a better ruler.
- Second Love: Its stated that Jehanne is this for him after the death of his first wife and Thierry's mother. However he is still deeply in love with her and Thierry even notes that courting Jehanne helped bring him out of his depression in the years after his first wife died.
Thierry de la Courcel.Son of Daniel de la Courcel and his first wife; he is the Dauphin to the throne of Terre d'Ange during Moirin's trilogy.
Tropes applying to Thierry:
- Awesome Moment of Crowning: At the end of Blessing.
- Better as Friends: He and Moirin.
- Bratty Teenage Son In the first book he comes off as this. Luckily he mellows out considerably by the end of the trilogy.
- Distressed Dude
- Gentleman Adventurer
- Precocious Crush On Jehanne, which soured his relationships with both his father and his step-mother.
- Prince In Rags: Is forced by Raphael to work in the fields, growing food for his army of ants.
- Rightful King Returns: Reclaims his throne from Rogier de Barthelme at the end of Blessing.
- Royal Brat: During Kiss. He eventually grows out of it.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something: His desire to be one of these led him to embark on his quest to Terra Nova.
- Took a Level in Badass
- The Wise Prince: Becomes this by the end of Blessing.
Duc Rogier de Barthelme
Tropes applying to Rogier:
- Ambition Is Evil / Evil Chancellor: Wants to take power by betrothing his young son to Daniel and Jehanne's daughter Desiree
- Number Two: For King Daniel.
- Regent for Life
- Yaoi Guys: With Moirin's father when they both were younger.
Snow TigerThe daughter of the Ch'in Emperor who is believed to have been possessed by a supernatural creature. If she sees her reflection in anything she goes on a killing spree. On the day of her wedding to a Ch'in nobleman she went on a rampage and killed her betrothed and most of his party. Since then she has been locked away in a tower by her father in the hope of keeping her violent sprees under control.
Tropes applying to Snow Tiger:
- Badass Princess: Can casually bend steel bars as if they were made of rubber.
- Chinese Girl
- Demonic Possession: What everyone thinks happened to her. This is only half right, she was possessed by a mythical dragon.
- Girls Love / Les Yay With Moirin when the latter travels to Ch'in.
- Girl in the Tower
- Lady of War
- Raven Hair, Ivory Skin
- She Is the King: Was raised as a son due to her father's lack of a male heir & will rule Ch'in after his death.
- Yamato Nadeshiko was this before getting possessed by the Celestial Dragon.
The Rani AmritaThe Rani (aka queen) of Bhodistan. Moirin travels to meet her in Naamah's Curse.
Tropes applying to Amrita:
TemilotzinA Nahuatl warrior from Terra Nova, (analogous to undiscovered North America)with whom Moirin meets during her travels in Blessing.
Tropes applying to Temilotzin:
- Ambadassador: Travels to Terre d'Ange as an ambassador at the end of Blessing.
- Proud Warrior Race Guy
Balthasar ShahrizaiA close friend of Prince Thierry. He declines to join Thierry on his first expedition to Terra Nova, but insists on going with Moirin to find him when he learns that Thierry's alive. Moirin is initially wary of him, though she eventually comes to like and respect him after their experiences in Terra Nova.
Tropes applying to Balthasar:
- Agent Peacock: Despite appearances, he's a skilled swordsman.
- Depraved Bisexual: He is a Shahrizai, after all
- Fire-Forged Friends: He and Moirin
- Hidden Depths: Moirin initially sees him as a idle pretty boy, but comes to like and respect him when she sees the depths of his loyalty and courage.
- Hidden Heart of Gold
- Idle Rich: Moirin's initial impression of him. She learns there's much more to him than that.
- I'm Not Hungry: Refuses to eat bugs, even when there's nothing else available.
- I Will Find You: He's determined to find Thierry.
- I Will Only Slow You Down: Tells the others to leave him behind when he becomes so ill from malaria that he can barely stand.
- Must Make Amends: He feels guilty for not accompanying Thierry on his voyage and insists on making amends by leading Moirin's expedition to find him.
- Sarcastic Devotee
- The So-Called Coward: Describes himself as a coward numerous times, but as the journey goes on it becomes clear that he's not a coward at all.
- The Team Benefactor: Organizes and finances the expedition to find Thierry.
- Took a Level in Badass
- Undying Loyalty
- Working Through The Cold: Continues on the quest despite contracting malaria, but eventually becomes so ill that he tells the others to leave him behind.
Phanuel DemarreMoirin's father and a priest of Naamah. She gets her power to make plants grow from his side of her heritage.
Tropes applying to Phanuel:
- Conflicting Loyalty: In Blessing. He is torn between his loyalty to Moirin and Duc Rogier. He chooses Moirin.
- Friend to All Living Things
- Green Eyes
- Green Thumb: His bloodline descends from Anael, one of the companions of Elua.
- Mysterious Parent: Was this to Moirin. Her reason for traveling to Terre d'Ange is to find him.
- Really Gets Around: Part of his job as a priest of Naamah.
- Yaoi Guys: Was the Duc de Barthelme's royal companion when they both were younger.
Fainche mac EithneMoirin's mother and a seer of the Maghuin Dhonn tribe of Alba.
Tropes applying to Fainche:
Blessed Elua and his Companions
Elua and his CompanionsThe deities of the D'Angeline pantheon. The people of Terre d'Ange are descended from them. Blessed Elua is the misbegotten grandson of the One God of the Yeshuites, born from the mingled blood of Yeshua ben Yosef and tears of the Magdalene. His eight Companions are angels of God who came to earth to join him in his wanderings.
- Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: Elua and his Companions departed Terre d'Ange to enter a new heaven, which D'Angelines call the Terre d'Ange-that-lies-beyond.
- Divine Parentage: All of the noble families of Terre d'Ange are descended from Elua and his Companions.
- Fallen Angel: The Companions
- Fantasy Pantheon
- Interfaith Smoothie: D'Angeline religion contains both Pagan and Christian elements.
- Our Angels Are Different
- Founder of the Kingdom: Together they founded Terre d'Ange. Seven of the Companions also founded their own provinces within it.
- Sacred Scripture: The Eluine Cycle
- True Companions
EluaChief god of the D'Angeline pantheon. Elua was born from the blood of Yeshua ben Yosef and the tears of the Magdalene nurtured in the womb of the earth. After his birth Elua began wandering the earth aimlessly until being captured by the King of Persis. His distress caught the attention of eight angels, who decided to come to earth and aid him. Eventually they came to Terre d'Ange, where the people welcomed them. Elua claimed no territory for himself, but founded the City of Elua. He gave the people of Terre d'Ange one commandment: Love As Thou Wilt.
- Fertile Feet
- Fleur de Lis: His symbol
- Flower Motifs: Is associated with flowers, especially lilies.
- Friend to All Living Things
- Love God: His sole divine attribute is love.
- Our Founder: Founded the City of Elua in the only place where he paused during his wanderings.
- The Power of Love
- Walking the Earth: What he did before coming to Terre d'Ange.
AnaelCompanion who taught D'Angelines agriculture and animal husbandry. He is commonly known as the Good Steward.
- Friend to All Living Things
- Green Thumb
- How Do You Like Them Apples??: Is associated with apples. His descendants even smell like them.
- Talking to Plants: Made an acorn sprout by blowing on it, which he and Elua planted to become Elua's Oak.
AzzaCompanion responsible for teaching D'Angelines about ships and navigation. The Yeshuites identify his sin as pride, a trait that is consistently associated with him.
- Father Neptune: The closest thing to a god of the sea in the D'Angeline pantheon.
- Magic Compass: Is usually depicted holding a compass or sextant.
- The Navigator
CamaelCompanion who taught D'Angelines the art of war and created the first D'Angeline armies. He chose to found his province on the Skaldi border because it was the area most in need of his martial hand.
- Flaming Sword: His symbol.
- Proud Warrior Race Guy: The progenitor of a Proud Warrior Race
- War God
- Warrior Monk: His priests carry swords.
CassielKnown as the Perfect Companion, Cassiel joined Elua in order to take up the duty of loving him that the One God neglected. He remained by Elua's side throughout all of his wanderings. He was only one of the Companions to obey the One God's laws by claiming no territory and fathering no children. He has no temples and is not commonly prayed to. The Cassiline Brotherhood was founded in his honor.
- Black Sheep: Of Elua and his Companions.
- Celibate Hero
- Conflicting Loyalty: Stayed by Elua's side, though he believed he was damned for it. He was the only Companion to look back in regret as they ascended to the Terre d'Ange-that-lies-beyond.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Elua
- Knife Nut: Carried a dagger, which he loaned to Elua at one point. This is the origin of the Cassiline Brotherhood's dagger-based fighting style.
- Undying Loyalty
- Warrior Monk: The Cassiline Brotherhood, who serve as his priests.
EishethCompanion associated with healing, music, and storytelling. In addition to being the goddess of healing in general, Eisheth is particularly concerned with womens' health. In order to become pregnant, D'Angeline women must light a candle to Eisheth and pray for the goddess to open her womb.
- Fantasy Contraception
- Harp of Femininity: Usually depicted with one.
- Healing Hands
- Medical Monarch: Was this when she was ruling in Marsilikos. Many of her descendants in House Mereliot also qualify.
- The Storyteller
- Women's Mysteries: The candle-lighting ritual is forbidden to men.
KushielGod of justice and punishment. Kushiel was once the One God's punisher, charged with administering punishment to sinners. He understood that the chastisement he gave them was an act of mercy. They came to love him for it, so much that when given a chance to repent they refused out of love for their lord. Kushiel joined Elua because he felt Elua understood what he did. He will occasionally mark a mortal as his own with a red mote in his/her eye. These are known as anguissettes, Kushiel's Chosen who are cursed to feel pain as pleasure.
- Brains and Bondage
- The Chooser of The One: Will mark a mortal as his own in order to redress an imbalance in the world.
- Compelling Voice: Occasionally makes his will known by speaking through Phèdre.
- The Conscience: It tempers his sadistic side.
- Cool Mask: Is depicted wearing a bronze mask. His priests wear them as well.
- Cruel Mercy: Kushiel is made of this trope.
- The Penance: Delivers penance to the souls of D'Angelines in the afterlife.
- Sadist: Though tempered with a conscience and compassion. He believes that imparting suffering without compassion is an abomination.
- A Taste of the Lash
- Whip It Good
NaamahGoddess of sexuality, prostitution, and desire. Naamah was the first of the Companions to join Elua. She gave herself to the King of Persis for a night in exchange for Elua's freedom. While traveling in Bhodistan, she lay with strangers so that Elua might eat. It is because of this that prostitution is referred to Naamah's Service and considered a sacred calling in Terre d'Ange. The thirteen houses of the Night Court are considered the most elite of these. Her clergy practice sacred prostitution.
- Anything That Moves
- Heroic Seductress: She slept with the King of Persis in exchange for Elua's freedom
- Hooker with a Heart of Gold
- Living Aphrodisiac
- Love Goddess
- Really Gets Around
- Sex for Services
- Sex Goddess
- Unproblematic Prostitution: Naamah's actions are the reason why prostitution is sacred in Terre d'Ange.
ShemhazaiGod of wisdom and knowledge. He taught D'Angelines how to write. He is associated with knowledge of all kinds as well as engineering. A common phrase associated with Shemhazai is "All knowledge is worth having."
The Court of Night-Blooming Flowers
Court of Night-Blooming FlowersAn elite cadre of prostitutes known as Servants of Naamah that are the highest ranked courtesans in Terre d'Ange. Prostitution is considered a religious act for adepts of the Court, as it is elsewhere in Terre d'Ange, and adepts make offerings to Naamah during their service. All thirteen houses are based in the City of Elua, the d'Angeline capital in the district known as Mont Nuit. Each house has its own motto which both serves to provide their unique theory as to why Naamah offered herself to the King of Persis in d'Angeline folklore and to describe the tenets conveyed by each house.
- Band of Brothels
- Flower Motifs
- High Class Call Girl/Boy: All adepts are this.
- Red Light District: The hill all of the houses are located on is known as Mont Nuit.
- School of Seduction
- Sex as a Rite-of-Passage: A visit to the Night Court is a typical part of a D'Angeline noble's sixteenth birthday celebration.
- Unproblematic Prostitution
- Work Off the Debt: Adepts pay off their debt to their house by making their marque.
- With Eyes Averted
- Rest and Be Soothed
- Happy Ending Massage
- Healing Hands
- Intimate Healing
- Sex for Solace: Imriel visits Balm House for his first trip to the Night Court, where an adept helps heal some of the scars left by his experiences in Darsanga.
- Wealth Seeks Company
- The Bet: The first rule of Bryony House is never bet against its Dowayne. Also, Bryony adepts are the only ones in the Night Court willing to wager for their favors.
- The Casino: The house has a casino-like atmosphere.
- Gold Digger: The house caters to those who are attracted to money.
- Money Fetish
- Professional Gambler
- Strip Poker: Naturally
- Without Fault or Flaw
- The Beautiful Elite: Camellia adepts are extremely beautiful, even among D'Angelines.
- Hired for Their Looks: While other houses require adepts to have particular skill sets, all Camellia requires is that its adepts be physically perfect.
- All Loveliness Fades
- Everyone Loves Blondes: Blonde hair is the canon of Cereus House.
- Fragile Flower: Cereus House runs on this trope.
- Masquerade Ball: Hosts the Night Court's Midwinter Masque every year.
- Plenty of Blondes
- Silk Hiding Steel: Some Cereus adepts possess an inner core of steel despite their delicate appearance.
- Winter Royal Lady: Cereus always provides the Winter Queen for the Night Court's Midwinter Masque.
- Upright and Unbending
- To Create is to Live
- Truth and Vision
- Dream Walker: Adepts are skilled in dream interpretation.
- Higher Understanding Through Drugs
- Intimate Psychotherapy
- Psychic Dreams for Everyone
- Thou, and No Other
- For Pleasure's Sake
- Belly Dancer: Some adepts are this.
- The Hedonist
- Royal Harem: The house has an Eastern-inspired harem atmosphere, to the extent that the adepts actually dress up as harem members for the Longest Night.
- Sex God: Jasmine adepts are known for their stamina
- Yield All
- All Women Are Doms, All Men Are Subs: Averted, as the house has both male & female adepts.
- Brains and Bondage
- Sex Is Violence
- A Taste of the Lash
- Whip It Good
- Joy in Laughter
- I Yield
Other Characters and Groups
The Unseen GuildThe Guild does not directly appear in the novels, but references to them and members of the Guild turn up throughout the first two trilogies. They are based in Caerdicca Unitas and were the ones who taught both Anafiel Delaunay and Melisande Shahrizai their skills. Imriel encounters them in Kushiels Mercy and Kushiels Justice.
The TsinganiNotable Tsingani:
AnasztaiziaHyacinthe's mother, a former Tsingani princess who was cast out of the nation when her cousin Csavin gambled away her virginity to a D'Angeline nobleman when gambling in the Night Court. Hyacinthe was born as a result.
The YeshuitesNotable Yeshuites:
- Pyotr Rostov
- Leba Rostov - Pyotr's wife
- Valentina Rostov - Pyotr's sister, mother of Aleksei
- Aleksei Rostov - Son of Valentina, nephew of Pyotr