The Main Cast
The Paragon. The Lioness of Elysium. The one who pursues the fight against the Reapers despite the fact that the rest of the galaxy thinks that she's crazy. The sister of John Shepard. She is patient, professional, courteous, and determined to help her brother confront the many demons that torment him.
Provides Examples of:
- Armor-Piercing Question: Every now and then, Jane Shepard can pull one of these off that leaves the recipient bowled over. Take, for example, her response to Zaeed insisting that watching out for his own back has worked out for him in the past.Shepard: And what has that gotten you?
- Came Back Strong: As a result of Cerberus' reconstruction, Jane is noticeably more ripped and stronger than she was prior to her death. John notes that while it's nice to see that she's alive again, it's somewhat intimidating to see just how powerful they made her.
- Determinator: She's Commander Shepard. Just try to tell her something is impossible.
- The Hero: No shit.
- Not So Above It All: In public, Jane Shepard is a very reserved and near-regal figure. Whenever she has free time or thinks that she has some degree of privacy, it's not uncommon for her to start dancing while making food or geek out about wrestling or other sorts of minutiae.
- Religious Bruiser: Jane expresses knowledge of the King James Version of the Bible, and John notes that any time she is in a church she remembers to cross herself. note
- Wrestler in All of Us: Jane is no slouch in hand-to-hand combat, but over the course of the story demonstrates that she might be a bit of a WWE fan: at one point, she deadlift suplexes a Harbinger-Collector on its head to break its neck.
Everything that Jane Shepard is, John Shepard is not. She is elegant and graceful in person; he is caustic and flippant. She is absolutely a hero; he's far more unscrupulous. She is the Lioness of Elysium. He is the dreaded Butcher of Torfan. Through a series of coincidences, he has wound up on the Normandy and is now a part of his sister's battle for the fate of the galaxy. And along the way, he might just remember to learn how to live again but only if he can learn to confront the demons of his past.
He serves as the "narrator," of sorts, of the story.
Provides Examples of:
- Badass Boast: His speech to Morinth is loaded with this.
An aversion of sorts considering he is deliberately boasting to Morinth for the sole sake of getting her to come home with him so Samara can kill her.
- John: I am child of war, prostituted by the sons of liberty to fight in all manners of conflict across the galaxy, in places you have never heard of for people whose names are not real. I have seen explosions, blood, and death surround me. I have shot men, conquered planets, and captured critical data and elements that the vast majority of sapient life will never understand the significance of. I have watched and felt men die. And I discovered something. An uninformed mind would think that this violence is the greatest expression of power. But I think differently. What makes power is power. Violence is merely a means to an end. And those that recognize the difference they are the ones that hold power.
- Beard of Sorrow: He's gone from begin a clean-cut Alliance boy to a shaggy-haired drifter.
- The Big Guy: John is considerably bigger than most of the people around him. Joker at one point remarks that he looks like a Krogan that is wearing a human meat-skin for disguise.
- Combat Pragmatist: He has zero scruples with fighting as dirty as possible in order to win. His tendency to kneecap his enemies is practically a signature move, at this point.
- Deadpan Snarker: While Jane is capable of a few snarky lines, John is clearly the more sarcastic member of the family. Though this might be a coping mechanism above everything else.
- Expy: His long hair, facial scars, melancholy disposition, and bizarre insistence on use of an iDroid bring forth many comparisons to Venom Snake.
- His penchant for wearing a leather duster, dual-wielding and even spinning pistols in his fingers bear a marked similarity to Revolver Ocelot.
- Good Scars, Evil Scars: He notes that his sister has a few tiny scars as a result of her post-op surgeries. John has grown a beard to hide the supposedly hideous scars that cross his lower jaw and cheeks.
- The Gunslinger: Over time his style of fighting has transitioned from the highly-trained and precise nature of an Alliance shock trooper and more of a "space cowboy," as Zaeed puts it. He even prefers to dual-wield Carnifex hand cannon pistols.
- Gun Twirling: Every now and then, John is prone to spinning his pistols on his fingers as a neat trick to imply his skill or to impress someone. (Though he makes a point to unload the gun before doing so, to avoid the obvious danger. note ) His sister calls it out as a phenomenally stupid and pointlessly flashy trick.
- Knee Capping: This is John's favored move to get people.
- Meaningful Name: John Shepard dual-wields Carnifex pistols. "Carnifex" is Latin for Butcher.
- Shell-Shocked Veteran: Big time.
- Straw Nihilist: If his narrations of the story are any indication, John doesn't really think much of anything anymore. However, his times with his sister is slowly starting to thaw out this mindset into something more positive.
The Executive Officer of the Normandy SR-2. A high-ranking member of Cerberus, Miranda was genetically engineered by her father to genetically superior in all facets. Having abandoned her life of luxury for the life as a Cerberus operative, Miranda's goal in life is to help Commander Shepard note investigate the disappearance of human colonies in the Terminus Systems, as well as stop the return of the Reapers by any means necessary. She also takes it upon herself to keep the Commander's brother, the volatile John Shepard, from coming apart at the seams and jeopardizing the whole mission.
Provides Examples of:
- The Ace: She's faster, stronger, smarter, prettier, and more deadly than just about any human in the galaxy
- Broken Ace: And yet she is crippled by feeling of self-doubt, believing that every advancement that she has in her life is due to her genetics that her father paid for, and not her own accomplishments.
- The Comically Serious: Some on the Normandy wonder if she even has a sense of humor, considering how cold she is to others. However, as John notes, this just makes her even funnier.
- Deadpan Snarker: Deadpan seems to be her default setting. The snarkiness just comes naturally.
- Iron Lady: She is a no-nonsense woman who is in charge of a suicidal mission.
- Not So Above It All: It does not take much for her to get flustered or annoyed by John's devil-may-care attitude. Especially when he's doing it on purpose.
A weapons specialist on the Normandy, and a good friend of Miranda's. Calm, unassuming, and overall well-rounded, Jacob Taylor serves as a dependable hand in Commander Shepard's mission to destroy the Reapers.
Provides examples of:
- Out of Focus: He doesn't get much characterization in this story, due to the fact that he isn't a terribly neurotic fellow or wracked with problems like some of the others on the Normandy. Time will tell if his loyalty mission brings out anything more.
- The Straight Man: He serves as this to the rest of the ship.
A centuries-old Asari who serves as part of an ancient order of monastic knights called the Justicars. Samara is quiet, reserved, highly-intelligent, quite set in her moral beliefs, and is dedicated to the preservation and carrying out of justice across the galaxy. She has taken a particular interest in John Shepard.
Provides examples of:
- Awesomeness by Analysis: Having spent over four hundred years as the Asari equivalent of a consulting detective, Samara is very capable at figuring out information, often with the littlest of detail to help support.
- Odd Friendship: With John Shepard.
- Also with Thane Krios. You wouldn't think that a professional assassin and an Asari Justicar would be such good friends, but it's clear that Samara admires Thane for his professional conduct and code of honor.
- Older Than They Look: Samara is a very beautiful woman, but is also close to a thousand years old. note
- Religious Bruiser: The Justicars have a sort of religious zeal that motivates their justice and actions, though Samara is somewhat reserved about her own religious beliefs. She does tell those that she is about to kill to "find peace in the embrace of the Goddess," so if nothing else she's got the formalities down.
- Seen It All: Being a a centuries-old Asari has given her a somewhat calm reaction to just about anything she sees. It weirds John out.
- Warrior Poet
- You Are Better Than You Think You Are: This is the crux of her relationship with John. She knows the horrors that he has gone through, and will always seek to keep him from doing something that he will regret.
A grizzled mercenary who survived a gunshot wound to the face, only to come back pissed off. He was hired by Cerberus to serve as some added muscle for the suicide mission, though it doesn't take long for him to insinuate himself into the group as a weapons specialist, as well as providing a near-encyclopedic knowledge of the ins and outs of the criminal underworld as his line of work has caused him to dip into that world frequently.
He strikes up quite a friendship with John Shepard.
Provides Examples of:
- Badass Bookworm: Would you believe that Zaeed Massani has not only an opinion, but an educated opinion on why it's a travesty that Elmore Leonard wasn't included in humanity's literary output to the rest of the galaxy? note
- Eye Scream: As has been noted numerous times, he is blind in one eye because he was shot in the face and survived.
- Handicapped Badass: Only in theory. There's no sign that being blinded in one eye has slowed him down in the slightest.
- Hidden Depths: Zaeed Massani might be one of the greatest examples of this in the story. He devours classic literature, is knowledgeable about types of music, and treats chocolate chip cookies as serious business. Multiple characters, especially John, are stunned to see that he's got such eclectic tastes. He is also quite sweet to Miranda when she goes to meet her sister.
- Nominal Hero: He's on the side of the good guys, but he's definitely a bit shady.
- Odd Friendship: He's quite good friends with John Shepard.
A Drell assassin that is terminally ill with Keprel's Syndrome. He joins Commander Shepard's suicide mission as a means to atone for the bad things that he has done in life, as well as go out with one last major job before he dies. Over the course of the mission, he begins to bond with John Shepard, the highly volatile brother of the Commander.
Provides examples of:
- Cultured Badass: He's well-read, a gentleman, and unfailingly polite to those that he meets. He's also got no scruples about killing his targets without remorse.
- Handicapped Badass: He is literally dying. He should have been dead months ago. He's showing no signs of stopping.
- Hidden Depths: Apparently, Thane is quite the fan of baseball. He picked up an interest in the sport while tailing a target, and has maintained a loyal fan hood ever since. note
- Professional Killer: He's been an assassin his entire life, since childhood.
- Religious Bruiser: As most Drell are religious, it's little surprise that Thane is as well. He offers prayers to those that ask and does not hesitate to explain the basics of his faith to others, like John.
- He also knows the nuances of human faiths as well, such as Buddhism.
- Wicked Cultured: Though a reader (and his fans!) might disagree on the "wicked" part, Thane himself has no illusions over the nature of his profession. He prays to his gods after every kill for mercy and forgiveness.