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Character Frontier is the twenty-sixth installment of the main-series Character Development Threads.

As the name suggests, it's set in an unnamed wilderness area that is a mixture of several terrain types found in the American West. It is meant to broadly evoke the feeling of a Wild West setting, though it is not specifically based around the Western genre and is open to characters from any type of story. Characters can choose to operate from a small frontier outpost town or to set out on their own.

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Locations

     The Town 
The town is a typical frontier railway town with two major roads laid out roughly in a T- the top of which runs east to west, parallel to the railway line, and the stem of which is the Main Street starting opposite the railway station and extending south. The major roads are each about 120 feet wide (36m)- wide enough for a large horse-drawn cart to turn around -and there are narrower roads leading off each that service the residential areas.

The western end of the top of the T is the "less reputable" area of town where may be found Black Eye Joe's and the "cat house". The eastern end is more up-market and is where The Washington may be found. The main street is the town's centre of commerce where one would find the bank, Sheriff's office, telegraph office, livery, hotel, The Tipsy Toad, General Store, "Doc" Carson's surgery, and numerous other useful stores. The narrower back streets echo the major streets- the houses on the east side of town get progressively better and more expensive the further east from Main Street while the houses on the west side get progressively more run down the further west.

Black Eye Joe's

One of three saloons present in the town, this saloon caters to the more dubious element among its visitors and residents. Poorly lit and with its paint flaking, it's a two-story building located at the far end of town from the train station and other more upscale establishments. Guests typically come more for the somewhat risque stage acts than for the watered-down and overpriced drinks that the surly bartender serves, though the food is surprisingly decent. A number of back rooms exist for sleeping and other purposes, but only the extremely poor or careless would want to spend the night here.

The Washington

One of three saloons present in the town, this saloon is the most fancy of the lot. Its decor is somewhat old-fashioned, but pleasant, with a number of paintings on the walls and many glass windows scattered about that make it much better lit than the other two saloons. The food and drink is not overly high-class, but it is tasty and affordable, and the menu offers a wide selection. The staff are considerably more polite than at the other saloons as well. It does not offer places to stay, as most of the people who would stay at this type of establishment can generally be instead found at the hotel.

The Tipsy Toad

One of three saloons present in the town, The Tipsy Toad is the popular favorite with the various rough-and-tough visitors and residents such as miners. Of all the saloons, it is perhaps the most like the stereotypical image of a Old Western saloon in its architecture and staff, with swinging wooden doors and a bustling atmosphere. Due to its crowded nature, visitors tend to take less notice here than at the other saloons, though they can still be singled out sometimes by drunk locals looking for a fight. Thanks to the general feel of the place and its cheap but strong drink, bar brawls are common here, though the staff takes care to prevent them from becoming too serious. A second floor features a number of small but affordable rooms that are somewhat nicer than those at Black Eye Joe's.

Hotel

This towering building, the largest in town, is where most visitors choose to stay. Although it is somewhat costly, it is generally considered a preferential alternative to renting a room at one of the saloons or small boardinghouses that can be found scattered about. While visitors are not too common at this wilderness settlement, enough come by that the hotel is able to maintain a fine sense of decor heavy on chandeliers and a professional, if somewhat old-fashioned, staff. Stays include a complementary breakfast.

General Store

Although a number of more specialized stores such as a gun shop and livery can be found nearby, the General Store is the place where most visitors planning to explore the wilderness do their shopping for supplies. It is surprisingly large and well-organized, and is run by a friendly and garrulous proprietor.

Doc Carson's

The sole medical practitioner in the town, "Doc" Carson is a somewhat mysterious individual who manages to serve to the medical needs of both the townsfolk and visitors with surprising effectiveness. He seems familiar with treating even the strangest sort of ailments and can generally patch up his patients in a very short time. The doc's services cost very little, but come with the requirement that patients not ask him any personal questions.

Train Station

Dominating the north end of town, the train station is a large red brick structure topped by a clock tower, and is where most (though not all) visitors originally arrive. The trains seem to come from and depart to just about anywhere on a schedule that is a complete mystery to most, but fortunately its employees are able- through equally mysterious means -to provide plenty of advance notice on a large mechanical arrivals and departures board inside the station's main hall. The train tracks themselves are found on the north side of the station, with a long waiting area that has plenty of benches below them.

Sheriff's Office

The town's Sheriff's Department and small jail. Particularly problematic troublemakers will be thrown into a magically durable cell before being chucked back into their home dimension.

Livery Stable

Main Street. Travelers may, for a fee, leave their horses here to be tended to and casual visitors may hire some of the stable's own horses for reasonable rates. Horsecarts are also available for a fee; horses paid separately, of course.

Zeke's Hunting and Fishing Store

Main Street. Here the outdoorsy type may purchase fishing tackle, firearms, ammunition and all the things a fisherman or hunter of the mid- to late-eighteen hundreds might need. The store is spacious and well stocked but the items are eighteenth-century standards: firearms are bolt-action, pump-action, lever-action, revolvers etc. No modern semiautomatics or higher technologies.

    The Wilderness 
Participants are welcome to create more specific points of interest on locations below, to serve a specific narrative purpose or just to liven things up. Just remember to make it not too disruptive for other players.

The Desert

An area of dry arid badlands with numerous gullies and ravines from long-dried rivers as well as mesas, buttes and hoodoos sculpted by the wind. The stratified layers of siltstone, mudstone and shale along with ancient layers of volcanic ash have produced a banded colourful terrain similar to the famous Painted Desert of Arizona.

Towards and into the lower foothills, the desolate "Painted Desert" gives way to scrub-covered desert terrain similar to that of the Sonoran desert. Here may be found numerous plants of the agave, cactus, palm and legume families, sage, creosote bushes, indigo bushes and many others. Wildlife is also common in this part of the desert- numerous species of birds, lizards, snakes, small mammals (mice, bats, ground squirrels, gophers, kangaroo rats etc) and coyotes inhabit the area. Progressing up higher into the foothills, the desert starts giving way to taller trees of the forest.

The Forest

Mountainous region with wind and water-sculpted pinnacles and cliffs, numerous valleys and a few slot canyons. The streams and larger rivers converge to feed a large river that drains into the fertile plains to the East. The upper foothills and mountains are covered in temperate coniferous forest - primarily evergreen conifers with a mix of broadleaf deciduous trees and a wide variety of shrubs. Wildlife includes grey wolves, coyotes (not as common as in the scrubby desert lands), mountain lions, black bear, elk and deer. Features spectacular views and scenery.

The Fort

Located in the Northwestern Desert next to the river and on the other side of a hill from the water tower, this nineteenth-century fort is similar to Fort Sam Houston, and it's currently occupied by only a single platoon to keep the fort maintained and the flag flying.

The Ruined Temple

Located a mere hour's walk into the Southwestern Desert, this odd, dark stone temple gets very few visitors, or in fact people who have seen past its atrium thanks to its diligent guard, a flame-wreathed lion-beast. But is it really guarding just mere riches, or could there be more...?

Hidden Cave

A sizable cave located in a shallow ravine just a little off the beaten path down one of the main southern roads. Innocuous at a glance, but home to untold depths.

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Characters and Tropes

     Active Troper Characters 

Town Outskirts

Railway Street

Bed and Breakfast (Railway St West/Main St North)

Railway St East:

  • John (MasterofChaos): A gun store owner who somehow got lost in the desert. Mostly nice but a little ditzy.
  • James (MasterofChaos): John's fiance. Does not trust most non human things and is more blunt about his feelings.
  • Oswald (Ryuhza): A person with an unusual appearance that bears a loose resemblance to a Minotaur. Found half crazed and starving, now on the road to recovery. click for more info 
  • Mari Dojima (Will De Regio) A tall, mysterious, buxom, red-haired oni who speaks with a Cockney accent.

The Washington (Railway St East)

Railway St West

Train Station (Railway St Centre - Opposite Main Street)

Main Street

The Tipsy Toad

Hotel

Hotel Lobby

Dining Hall

Sagebrush Suite (Rooms 305-307)
The psychic college students had this suite mysteriously reserved for them.

Northern Desert

Ritual Site

Wagon Trail

Northwestern Desert

Fort

The Mission

  • The Order of Moth maintains a presence out here.

Valley of the Dead God and Small Valley

Southern Desert

Hidden Cave

Southwestern Desert

Temple

     Inactive Troper Characters 

First Advocate" of the People's Republic of Zavi. Distant descendant of a philosopher Suela was influenced by.
     Tropes 
  • A-Cup Angst: Petite and flat-chested Yamiko experiences this in the presence of obviously well-endowed Mari. Add that to the fact that both are Japanese ladies with red hair, and you get Yamiko being implicitly envious of Mari's entire appearance.
  • Animate Dead: Zuri does this with her own corpse once the wagon group is back in town. Even though her ghost is still around, it proves to be quite difficult for her - her body moves as clumsily as a zombie and has a hard time speaking or holding things.
    • Before she died, and while she was astral projecting, Nemaforte managed to animate her body for a while.
    • Amanda apparently wishes she had this ability, specifically referring to necromancy.
  • Attack! Attack... Retreat! Retreat!:
    Gon: "Look! Look at that! A real Western general store! Can't we take a peek in there real quick?"
    Ari: "No Gon, we have to go meet up with Vicky and Zuri." (beat) "Besides, haven't you always wanted to see an old-fashioned wagon, with real horses pulling them?"
    Gon: "Oh yeah! I forgot about that! Come on, let's go already!"
  • The Bus Came Back: Zuri was quite obviously out of the story when she died... but then she later came back as a ghost in order to be with her classmates.
  • Call-Back: Rin refers to the idea of carrying people somewhere by having them sit on a bench. Miyuki did just that in Character Capital.
  • Chandler's Law: Things were going very quietly at the Fort with the Lieutenant accepting Henry's story so suddenly a bunch of armed men showed up and started shooting everyone...
  • Chekhov's Hobby: When Nemaforte was first introduced and met Annie and Gregory, she mentioned a class she had been heading towards on the train. Fast forward to the following day, when Iraal asked her about Orenya's history, and she explained it, having Suddenly Always Knew That despite being naive about many other things. Perhaps the class she had been taking was a history class.
  • The Cuckoolander Was Right: When the wagon group encountered the starving and delusional Oswald, most of the group tried in vain to help him, until Nemaforte, who had previously been known to babble on about esoteric magic stuff, sensed that he was actually cursed. It was a purification ritual led by her that finally got him back on his feet... and he might've been fully cured had Zuri not interrupted Nemaforte's spell.
  • Cute Ghost Girl: Zuri's astral projection, though barely visible. Even Zuri herself qualifies despite being alive, as she was often called a ghost because of her pale skin and white hair. Played even more straight after her death when she returns as an actual ghost.
  • Dare to Be Badass: Angered by Arthur's self-loathing remarks and general melancholy, Tsadro attempts to deliver one of these to get the young man to take initiative and be a leader.
    Tsadro: "You are captain and you defected for a reason, so own it."
  • Depower
    • Roscoe Williams suffers this, as well as Blair Winters to an extent. Blair explains it as a case of Your Magic's No Good Here, as they have traveled to a new dimension. He would say that; he is actually the one who depowered both of them.
    • This is also experienced by Annie, who used up her powers of energy manipulation to rescue Gregory from the realm of Jericho.
  • Diabolus ex Machina: Nemaforte's failure to sense that the Dead God was awakening seems to be one of these, contrived so that Zuri, the only other person in the forest/wagon group with Psychic Powers, could die (see Famous Last Words below). The Dead God's "warning signal" manifested as a temporal disturbance among other things, and it so happens that Nemaforte had just ingested a magic mushroom with the effect of slowing down time perception. So she thinks the disturbance is just an effect of the drug.
  • Double Entendre: Inverted by Gon and Merlin as they leave the hotel with the F-word, as Gon uses it purely in the swearing sense, and Merlin implies the literal meaning, which already pertains to sex.
    Merlin: "And I hope it ends with fucking Zuri."
  • Drowning My Sorrows: Emotionally shaken from the possession fiasco over at the wagon heading to the mountains, and anxious about what other people would think about her telepathic powers, Yamiko engages in this at the desert ritual site. Since the first half of the drinks she has are an alcoholic (and mildly hallucinogenic) Mana Potion, she experiences Power Incontinence after adding sake, accidentally transmitting thoughts to whoever she's speaking to. The good news is that the potion's effects seem to keep her possession at bay.
  • Eloquent in My Native Tongue: This is the case with Nemaforte, who, despite Aliens Speaking English being in effect, speaks this "English" as a second language, messing up words and making many grammatical errors (much to the confusion of Scents and her translation software). When she speaks Latorinote , though, she sounds much more confident and consistent in her wording.
  • The Empath
    • Irina senses emotions to those she has made a "connection" with. Her high magical aptitude allows for this, and can sense other magical beings.
    • Subverted with Nemaforte and Lupin- although they both have Aura Vision which allows them to easily detect even traces of emotion in people, they also happen to be The Stoic, which hinders their ability to interpret such emotions. Especially the case with Lupin, who just got that ability in the middle of Day 2 of the thread and thus doesn't have much experience with auras. In fact, the ability itself pressured him to open up a bit more emotionally (thus steering him towards The Empath role), though he still has difficulty doing so.
  • Empty Shell: Doc Carson warns that Yamiko may have become one after reacting to the Dead God.
  • Erudite Stoner: Nemaforte is perhaps a bit too fond of ingesting her more mind-altering herbs... but manages to remain calm and collected (if a bit distracted) and also quite talkative, frequently combining wisdom with magibabble.
  • Exposition of Immortality: Tsadro attempts a subtler version of this by describing people he's met from throughout history, such as a Crusader, kids who died of plauges, and women who were victims of witchhunts, but all this nets him is a mental comparison to The Fair Folk, since Peggy and Finn come from a setting where people get spirited away across time. It's possible he's just not that good at this since everyone back in Aitherion know the Rivari are immortal.
  • Fainting Seer
    • Lupin has a minor instance of this at the ritual site in the desert. When Hazel is remembering a traumatic event from her past, Lupin sees that as a dark presence in her aura, and that in turn causes him to faint. Justified as a panic attack triggered by a Troubled Backstory Flashback.
    • Nemaforte also experienced this a couple of times, when she sensed the presence of the Dead God in the mountains. Again justified - any kind of fear causes Nemaforte to easily lose consciousness due to the curse she suffers from.
    • Taken Up to Eleven by Zuri, who becomes a dying seer after astral projecting to the Valley of the Dead God and witnessing said God's awakening.
  • The Fair Folk
    • Blair Winters, albeit disguised in human form. He’s got all the charm and cunning to match.
    • Tsadro's overall odd appearance, magical abilities, weakness to Cold Iron, and the fact that Earthen humans occasionally find themselves whisked away to his world have netted him some comparisons to the original Fair Folk, the Aos Si.
  • Famous Last Words: Used as a Heroic Sacrifice by Zuri, who had been on the brink of death due to her astral projection being trapped in Blair's detection field. Once she broke free of the field by crossing the Despair Event Horizonnote , instead of calmly returning to her body and having to make a slow recovery in order to live, she focuses her remaining strength on warning the wagon group about the Dead God's awakening.
    • This is lampshaded by Nemaforte as a Bilingual Bonus: the incantation for the spell she uses to loosen Zuri's tongue translates to "you will speak - let us hear your final words".
  • Fantastic Drug: Nemaforte has quite a collection of them, in the form of strange magical herbs and potions. A few of them, like the Cosmic Potion, are beneficial.
  • Four-Philosophy Ensemble: The psychic college students. Lupin is the Cynic, Vicky is the Optimist, Zuri is the Realist, and Yamiko is the Apathetic/Conflicted.
  • "Freaky Friday" Flip: Cyrus and Kito intentionally pull a mind-swap on the morning of the second day, to remind the group that Kito isn't a dumb beast, and that the two are in fact one and the same.
  • Genki Girl: Amy, who's almost always excited about everything, though not everyone approves of it.
  • Glad He's on Our Side: Discussed almost word-for-word by Kito to Cyrus telepathically, regarding Blair, after Blair used Black Magic on a young soldier to make her forget she had found the campsite. (The general reaction was very "What the Hell, Hero?," depending on what one considered Blair to be. There was a silent consensus on that at that moment.)
  • Green Thumb: Nemaforte. Or should we say "white thumb", as the strange herbs that grow on her home planet never see sunlight and thus don't have chlorophyll.
  • Guns Akimbo: "Type 3" - Alpha carries two identical black-and-chrome SIG-Sauer P226s. In the battle at the Fort she does a "New York Reload", drawing the second once the first is empty.
  • Handicapped Badass
    • Samuel lost his lower left leg in a battle and wears a prosthetic advanced for his time. Though he has troubles with it infrequently, he still goes into battle to save Todd.
    • Also Gwion- crude mechanical arm that has seen better days and has been inexpertly repaired; basic prosthetic eye.
  • Has Two Mommies: Not actually, but James and John pretend to be Joseph's parents, due to not being aware of other non human beings at the time. The ruse quickly falls apart, though they still fondly refer to him as their 'son.'
  • Haunted Fetter: The blade of Zuri's ritual dagger contains her soul, anchoring her to the mortal realm. When her ghost first appears, she moves the sheathed knife telekinetically into the wagon, where it slides out of the sheath on its own and releases her ghost. The use of this dagger makes sense, as she held onto it during her life (and used it in the ritual to revive Oswald), having originally belonged to her mother.
  • Heroic Albino:
  • Nemaforte looks like one, but her entire species is very pale due to living in a world where it's Always Night, and she's more Lawful Neutral anyway.
  • How Do I Shot Web?: Happens with the psychic college students when they suddenly gain new powers in the middle of Day 2 - they use said powers rather clumsily. Zuri is surprised at how summoning fire in her palm actually feels, Lupin has a hard time interpreting the appearance of the auras he sees around people (and sometimes getting a spontaneous feeling about what it means), and Vicky accidentally sends multiple text messages to Lupin when she's trying to figure out her technomancy.
    • Yamiko averts this trope, since unlike her classmates, she was actually possessed by the spirit of the donor classmate. She fires her first Agony Beam without any complications... except interference from another character.
  • Humanoid Aliens: Scents is one.
  • Hyper-Awareness:
    • The nature-inclined Blair has senses that can range all around him and exhibits this several times, particularly in the camp overnight and while traversing the Small Valley, but he explicitly uses it to describe the freshly-arrived Baron Verez, Prinem, and Hailstorm without having turned to look at them as a sort of Badass Boast to Acting Commissar Zekarim, whose fear/loyalty was actually turning Blair's magic inside out.
    • Nemaforte experiences a variety of this after ingesting the "Mushroom of Time" herb - time starts moving very slowly for her, and in that time she takes notice of every little sound made by the wagon and the surroundings, is able to understand what everyone is saying even though they would seem to be speaking very slowly, and even is able to sense everyone's presence in the wagon and look at them with her eyes closed. Plus she has more "time" to think about what she says, resulting in her sounding more articulate. It does help that in the wagon, she briefly vaporized an incense that helps with focus and awareness.
  • King Incognito: A prince in this case- Blair is the technical heir to his universe's version of Faerie. He does not reveal this fact until it benefits him, as he is negotiating with the Acting Commissar. Granted, he has a fairly good reason for keeping this to himself.
  • Knight In Sour Armor: Tsadro holds a not-uncommon sentiment among freshly-retired Rivari- he wants to believe, as his instincts as a servant have told him all his life, that humans are great, even as they disappoint him again and again. The fact that Unit Psi has broken the status quo and done something to fix their situation gives him great hope, enough to anger him whenever Arthur bemoans his situation.
  • Large and in Charge: Acting Commissar Zekarim is an interesting case. He is taller than everyone in the Small Valley Dead God group, but is the shortest of the men and women guarding the Dead God.
  • Laser Blade: Cynthia makes her sword into one to collapse the tunnel to keep the vagabonds after her group from following.
  • Magibabble: Nemaforte (and to some extent, the psychic college students) is frequently accused of this by the rest of the wagon group. Iraal in particular frequently asks her to explain things in non-magic terms. It's especially difficult for her to explain it, as she's from a planet whose culture revolves around Functional Magic - a couple of times Zuri (an Earthling with an understanding of magic) played the part of interpreter.
  • Magical Gesture
    • Nemaforte typically extends a palm outward whenever she uses a magic spell, particularly if its effects are difficult to see.
    • Vicky and Zuri also used this when they were determining which of them obtained pyrokinesis from their classmates, trying to generate flames from their hands.
    • Downplayed by Blair, whose only tells are very slight movements of his fingers and, when necessary, a slight change in the tone of his voice.
  • Mechanical Abomination: The Dead God itself; a sufficiently advanced Quasi-Living Ship kilometers wide that, even in its current state, has turned the biome it inhabits into a hellish wasteland where even the flora and fauna are so twisted that magic considers them machines.
  • A Mind Is a Terrible Thing to Read: Especially that of an Eldritch Abomination like the Dead God. When Yamiko accidentally looks at it through a telepathic link with Lupin, she has a very adverse reaction to it, becoming unresponsive and possibly insane.
  • Mind over Manners: Happens with Yamiko, and also Lupin after he gets Aura Vision. When introducing herself in the hotel dining hall, Yamiko uses telepathy to read into tidbits about the person she's speaking to, then "guesses" those attributes when speaking. Naturally, a couple of characters call her out on it or even say it's rude. Similarly, Rip is not pleased when Lupin confronts him about his mysterious stone, based on a strange aura he saw around it.
  • Mood-Swinger: Yamiko, especially after being possessed by Amanda. In the wagon heading to the mountains, she went from snarky to annoyingly cheerful to almost the breaking point of rage to crying uncontrollably in a matter of a few minutes.
  • Obliquely Obfuscated Occupation: Lupin mentions to Rip that he works as a police consultant, but doesn't elaborate on it too much besides using it to explain his tendency to investigate things such as his cursed stone. It's also hinted at when Zuri discovers a taser in his pockets. According to Word of God, he has another secret occupation that isn't even brought up.
  • One Steve Limit
    • Broken by Maya, the supersoldier, and Maya, the deaf girl.
    • There's also two named James- one of them is a part of the Mad Bastards.
    • Both Arthur and Lupin have a teammate named Merlin.
  • Our Ghosts Are Different: Zuri demonstrates this. While alive, her astral projection resembled a ghost, manifesting as a barely-visible spectral form of herself. Some time after her death, she comes back as a ghost; this ghost looks exactly like the real Zuri except transparent. In terms of the trope, she is a Type 17 - she was about to ascend to Heaven with her parents, but decided last minute to stay behind so she could be with her classmates.
  • The Philosopher
    • Suela is one, and worse, a relatively young one with audacious theories and more questions than answers. Give her an excuse, and she will make you suffer those questions.
    • Speculating on Rivari issues, psychology, and the nature of several Big Questions surrounding them happens to be one of Tsadro's main hobbies.
  • Pimped-Out Dress: Yamiko wears a red and black Elegant Gothic Lolita style one with white accents. She even insists on wearing it during a trek through the potentially-dangerous desert, preferring to kick ass in all her finery.
  • Pineal Weirdness: As discovered by Zuri in the wagon heading to the mountains, Nemaforte has a hole in her skull right in the middle of her forehead, which she explains as being her Third Eye.
  • Poke in the Third Eye: Zuri experiences one while astral projecting to the Valley of the Dead God, getting stuck in the magical detection field Blair set up around the area.
  • Power-Strain Blackout:
    • Experienced by the psychic college students after they help Vicky fly Yamiko, Lupin, and herself from the wagon to the ritual site in the desert. Downplayed, though, in that they don't actually faint, but do feel very fatigued and unable to really think straight afterward. Apparently Nemaforte anticipated this, and gave them some of her Cosmic Potion in preparation.
    • Cynthia blacks out after using too much magic in the Abandoned Mine, along with muscle cramps and overloaded nerves.
  • Psychic Nosebleed: Yamiko gets a rather nasty one upon witnessing the Dead God when it rises. Normally looking upon it would not cause such a reaction (Lupin didn't react this way despite his Aura Vision), but since Yamiko was still under the influence of too much Cosmic Potion and had read the image of the Dead God in Lupin's mind, she ended up having a telepathic reaction to it.
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits
    • The group heading out to search for the Dead God: a hyperactive philosopher, a cynical cop, two cybernetic super-soldiers, a weapons designer and his soul-bonded giant wolf, an unscrupulous mage and his human-not-human girlfriend, and a camel.
    • The other group heading out to search for the Dead God: two of the Mad Bastards (the African-Cockney bird and the aging Kiwi bushman), a green-skinned alien and her furry bodyguard and Robot Buddy, four college students with Psychic Powers, a tattooed cyborg, a Russian ex-military bounty hunter and a short elfin witch. All riding together in a wagon.
    • At the Temple in the Southwestern Desert we have two more of the Mad Bastards (the young former Wehrmacht conscript and the pretty young farm girl), an ex-servant-turned chief of staff with light-emitting tattoos, a mute military captain, a Neo-Celtic gang member and a heavily tattooed, rather "punk"-looking woman.
  • Rubber-Forehead Aliens: Iraal and Nemaforte; the former borderlines on Green-Skinned Space Babe.
  • The Soulless: The "animals" of the Valley of the Dead God lack any sort of souls or life energy, existing only in the physical realm, making them very unsettling and tricky to deal with for magic users.
  • The Stoic
  • The Stoner
    • Wolfe views Nemaforte as this due to her frequent "self medication" with strange herbs and her resultant bizarre behaviour.
  • Telepathy / Psychic Link: Used heavily by several characters. Cyrus and Kito share a telepathic link, while Blair and Roscoe's is psychic. Yamiko uses telepathy both to read people's thoughts and send secret messages to her classmates. Baron Verez establishes a psychic link to communicate with Hailstorm.
    • Baron Verez tries to use his telepathy to scan the Valley for lifeforms after teleporting in, only to find that the telepathic signature of the Dead God is strong enough to blind his life sense almost completely to lesser signals. Zuri experiences a similar sensation when scouting the area with her Astral Projection, though to her it feels more like a hard barrier preventing her from going anywhere near the Dead God.
  • Tin Man: Nemaforte manages to invert this trope. When Zuri dies, Nemaforte tells the rest of the group that she feels sad about it, when she is actually incapable of sadness.
  • Trenchcoat Brigade: Lupin seems to be a member, minus the smoking and the facial hair. He's also a police consultant rather than a detective, and that's not his real occupation anyway.
  • What Measure Is a Mook?: Averted by Brin, to the annoyance of others, Suela included.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?: The reason Brin unthinkingly agrees to leave Kito to return on his own when they encounter the task force near the mountain pass, though she's later racked by guilt and apologizes.
  • Wide-Eyed Idealist: Vicky, who is excited and overjoyed about her childhood dreams of having Psychic Powers actually coming true. Lampshaded by James and Kaitlyn, who laugh at or outright berate her (respectively) for thinking that it would be awesome to fight crime with the help of her telekinetic powers, pointing out how dangerous it would be. Kaitlyn even accuses her of living a sheltered life. Vicky's response is basically "Nah, I'm sure I'd do just fine!"
  • Wrecked Weapon: Cynthia ends up reducing her steel sword to molten slag after using it as a Laser Blade.
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