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A Character Sheet for the members of the Vigil and its allies and enemies, as shown in Death Vigil.

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The Vigil

    Vigil in General 
  • Came Back Strong: Being part of the Vigil means having this happen. The members were usually human in life, but came back as significantly more.
  • Death by Origin Story: In order to join the Vigil, one needs to die and be called by the Reaper.
  • Mystical White Hair: A component of being part of the Vigil. Sam calls it the Dye After You Die Club. Evidence throughout Issues 1-8 indicate that it's connected to having a Veilripper.
  • Red Baron: Common among older members.
    • Sam Lewis is "the Digger".
    • Hugin is "the Raven".
    • James is "the Cardmaster".
    • Bernie is "the Reaper".


The Grim Reaper, who is actually not so grim at all. Team Mom and Big Good to the Vigil.

  • Ambiguously Brown: When Bernie's connection to the Scythe is severed — both when Maria takes it from her, and later when she exhausts her power destroying the Thorn — her body reverts back to its natural appearance, with dark tanned skin and very dark brown or black hair.
  • Ambiguously Human: There exists a ritual that severs her connection from her scythe, allowing anyone to take it and take her powers while her hair turns black and skin turns Ambiguously Brown. However, it is never expressly stated if she was ever human before becoming the Grim Reaper or if she is a benevolent entity that can be turned into a human.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Bernie can hold a grudge for a rather long time and transform into what is basically what people expected her to look like when she reveals herself to people.
  • Big Good: To the Vigil.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Whenever one of the Vigil is in over their heads, they can call for Bernie and she'll be brought to their aid. In fact she literally can't refuse the call because of her connection to the Scythe, and how it is bound to the Vigil's veilrippers.
  • Black Speech: Bernie both understands and can speak the native tongue of the primordials beyond the Veil.
  • Cool Old Lady: She doesn't look very old, but she is very nice to the members of the Vigil, and even rocks out to Nightwish in her free time.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Bernie wears dark robes, carries a Sinister Scythe, and is, well, the Grim Reaper. However she's also the Big Good of the series, leading the eternal struggle against the primordials beyond the Veil.
  • Don't Fear the Reaper: She's a Psychopomp, but she explicitly says she guards lives, and does not take them.
  • The Dreaded: Downplayed, in that, as Sam explains in his narration, Bernie is so far beyond most Necromancers that she's not a tangible threat (in fact the nature of the Scythe actually prevents her from harming a Primordial below a certain threshold). However her presence is nonetheless sure to elicit an Oh, Crap! from any of the Enemy nearby.
  • Facial Markings: Subdued, but Bernie's eyes are surrounded by a muted violet or pale gray shadow. It's much more consistent and prominent for her than in the other Vigil members, and they're gone when she reverts to her natural coloring whenever separated from the Scythe, suggesting this is actually her appearance and not the result of lighting.
  • The Fog of Ages: Bernie is ancient. She has forgotten much of her past, and who she was and where she came from before becoming the Reaper. However she does make a point of remembering every member of the Vigil who died while serving her.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: The source of much of Bernie's humor.
  • Game Face: Bernie normally appears as a beautiful, though pale and white-haired, woman with youthful features. However when it's time to get down to business her features become skeletal, and much more akin to the classical image of the Grim Reaper.
  • Godzilla Threshold: Invoked by the Scythe itself: Bernie is unable to so much as damage a Primordial below a given power level.note  As a result, she can only step in when the threat is sufficiently powerful.
  • Good Wings, Evil Wings: Bernie can sport a pair of great black wings, usually when she travels through the Veil, but also for flight in the real world.
  • Grim Reaper: Bernie is, effectively, the Angel of Death. Although she's quick to note that she doesn't take lives, but instead guards them. Normally she subverts the classical image by taking the form of a tall, beautiful woman, even specifically pointing this out to Clara when she freaks out after being killed by her boyfriend. She's also friendly and compassionate, with a penchant for terrible jokes. However when dealing with a powerful enough abomination, she also has a Game Face where her beautiful facade cracks, and she looks every bit the cruel and merciless Reaper people expect.
  • Her Boyfriend's Jacket: During the final confrontation with the Thorn, Bernie alters her appearance so Sam's skull and crossbones logo appears on her robes, and the Scythe takes the form of his shovel and pick veilrippers.
  • Heroic BSoD: Although she doesn't show it, it's made clear she often teeters on the edge of one of these. Especially in the beginning of the first issue, when she arrives to warn Sam of Cranston's and Wen Lao's deaths. She may be The Stoic, but Sam recognizes that she's struggling to hold it together. Their first kiss happened some years earlier, in a moment when she actually did break down.
  • In the Hood: Typically has a hood up when out. Puts it down when she's at home with her "family".
  • Invisible to Normals: Bernie can't be seen by mortals, and her image can't even be picked up on camera. She briefly becomes visible at the end of the first series after she exhausts her connection to the Scythe during the effort of taking down the Thorn.
  • A Mother To Her Men: The relationship she has with the Death Vigil is commonly compared to that of a mother and her children. She dotes and fusses on them and will come to their beck and call whenever they feel they are outclassed by whatever monster they were sent to fight, routinely chastising Sam for not doing so. Whenever they fall in battle, it grieves her to no end, remembering everyone she has ever been taken into the Vigil and never forgives those who did it.
  • Office Romance: With Sam, along with a Big Damn Kiss.
  • Perky Goth: She's the Grim Reaper, pale skin, dark clothes, listens to Nightwish, yet she's also a friendly and generally upbeat (when not having to deal with the rigors of the long war) woman with a goofy sense of humor.
  • Purple Is Powerful: Bernie's color palette is almost entirely white and purple, with both her eyes and robes being shades of violet. Even the Scythe has a purplish coloration. And while most of the Vigil's veilrippers have a whitish energy signature when used, the Scythe's is isntead brilliant purple.
  • Psychopomp: Played with, in that she doesn't actually do this to many people. The closest she gets is bringing people back to be part of the Vigil.
  • Red Baron: The Reaper.
  • Sinister Scythe: She wields one, which appears to act like her own personal Veilripper, and is also a Morph Weapon. It is also the source of her power and her immortality as the Reaper. Without it bound to her, she reverts to a black-haired mortal woman. Maria also indicates there's far more to the Scythe and that even Bernie doesn't realize its true purpose, while Alicia calls it "The Shard," and is outright dismayed when Bernie reclaims it.
  • The Stoic: As leader of the Vigil in their fight, she can't afford to let others see just how heavily the millennia of conflict weighs on her. As a result, it's not unusual for people like Allistor, Maria, and Wulf to accuse her of being cold, heartless and uncaring, despite the how deeply she truly feels. Sam is one of the only people she lets her guard down with.
  • Technicolor Eyes: Bernie has violet eyes, which fits the color palette of her robes.
  • Time Abyss: Bernie is old, and has been the Reaper for at least 3000 years. She remembers very little of her life before she claimed the Scythe.
  • Troll: You don't convince someone you're going to resurrect them naked (when that's not your S.O.P.) without at least a streak of this.
  • Winged Humanoid: Bernie occasionally sports a pair of bird-like wings, both when she travels through the Veil, or when she's flying in the normal world. Especially when she wants to invoke her appearance as an angel of death

    Sam Lewis
The Digger

"The Digger" Samuel Lewis died protecting a woman from a robber. He acts as the First-Person Peripheral Narrator of the story, and is the main character.

  • Battle Strip: A Running Gag is Sam's annoyance with how Necromancers (even allies like Allistor) always take their shirts off when calling on their powers. Guaranteed that if a Necromancer strips down, Sam will be there to make a comment about it. Justified in the fact that Necromancer's source of power is intensely uncomfortable when covered with clothes.
  • The Big Guy: He's one of the biggest and strongest (human) members of the Vigil. Sam himself notes that while the other Knights usually use their veilrippers for something clever, he just hits things. Word of God confirms that being the Big Guy is his veilrippers' power.
  • Deadpan Snarker: As with much of the Vigil, Sam's humor tends towards cracking wise and snarky remarks. Especially noticeable in the way he teases Mia about visiting James. See also Ho Yay below.
  • Determinator: Sam is tough, resilient, and stubborn, and refuses to give up. Sometimes it gets him into trouble, as he has a tendency to not call for Bernie's help when he really should, but he refuses to stop when his friends are in danger. Highlighted when he shrugs off multiple hits from a Banshee in an effort to protect the rest of the incapacitated Vigil in an ambush. Word of God confirms this is his Veilripper's special power in action.
  • Establishing Character Moment: The first time he died, Sam attempted to protect a couple women he saw being mugged in an alley while heading home from a costume party. Having dressed as a policeman, he decided to try bluffing the mugger with a toy gun, only to be fatally shot himself. The scene immediately establishes Sam as someone willing to stand up to be a hero and protect others, and that while his heart is in the right place, he doesn't always think things through before acting. Both of these traits are on display throughout the first volume.
  • First-Person Peripheral Narrator: He narrates most of the story, but the actual plot revolves more around Clara.
  • The Hero: If any one character can be consider the main protagonist it's Sam, since he's the point of view character, and possesses most of the traditional heroic traits.
  • Ho Yay: Often invoked by Sam as a taunt whenever a Necromancer does a Battle Strip around him. He also has a lengthy exchange of banter of this nature with a Necromancer in issue 4, until the latter's partner decides to shut it down by killing Sam.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Sam has a tendency to rush into a situation without thinking it through first, and often delays calling Bernie for help until long after he really should have. Which exasperates and scares her to no end. That he's badass enough to often pull it off just fuels it even further. Ironically, it began even before he joined the Vigil; his first death came when he took it on himself to try bluffing a mugger with a toy gun while walking home from a costume party.
  • Office Romance: With Bernie, complete with a Big Damn Kiss.
  • Powerful Pick: One of Sam's veilrippers is in the form of a pickaxe. Besides using it as a weapon, he can also use it to summon Gunnar and the other Vikings, by hauling their longboat out of the ground.
  • Red Baron: The Digger.
  • Shovel Strike: His other veilripper is a shovel, which he typically uses for bashing things.
  • Summon Magic: Sam bound a boatload of draugr to him during an excursion with Wulf, and he can now summon them to fight at his side.
  • Sleeves Are for Wimps: Sam's usual attire lacks sleeves. He's also one of the physically strongest and toughest members of the Vigil.

    Clara Jenkins

Killed by her boyfriend, a necromancer, at the start of the story, Clara serves as the primary focus of much of the tale.

  • Alliance with an Abomination: Played with: Clara turns out to host a Primordial — one of the five oldest and most terrifying Eldritch Abominations in existence — as a result of a necromancer's botched attempt to sacrifice her for a summoning ritual. However neither she, nor the rest of the Vigil are aware of her possession yet, and the Primordial seems, for whatever reason, very keen on keeping her and her compatriots alive. So it's more like a Mysterious Protector scenario, than a full-on alliance.
  • Audience Surrogate: Is the newest member of the Death Vigil at present time, and the entirety of the story's lore and mythology is explained to her and by proxy us.
  • Came Back Wrong: We learn from Mia that the ritual her boyfriend was performing was used to bind primordials to a mortal body, as that's what Allistor did with her in the 13th Century. She also has a necromancy tattoo on her back which no one (even Clara) seems to know about. Lord Asrah senses something is different about her, and she twice unwittingly releases a Super-Powered Evil Side when she's knocked out to save her life. Although the book itself never comes right out and confirms it, it's made blatantly clear that Jon succeeded in binding one of the True Primordials to her.
  • Mirror Shows Your True Self: A variation is in play here. It isn't mirrors but whenever she is photographed, Clara's eyes have a red tinge to them as she is currently the host to a True Primordial.
  • Horror Hunger: When her Super-Powered Evil Side takes over, she probably devours lesser primordials like Mia does. Otherwise, she can channel the hunger more constructively by removing primordial energy, thus healing Sam's wounds and sealing Necromancers without turning them into empty shells.
  • In the Hood: Her outfit incorporates a hood.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: After being killed for a ritual by her boyfriend, her eyes glow red whenever she's very angry. This is a hint that she's been possesed by a True Primorial.
  • Paradox Person: She is capable of performing many acts that would require necromancy despite being a member of the Vigil. This is because she has the fourth of the four True Primordials locked inside her.
  • Super-Powered Evil Side: Unknown to Clara, and likely the rest of the Vigil, she is bound to the last of the four True Primordials. The Primordial awakens on her twice: The first when she is attacked and nearly killed by Lord Asrah, and the second in the finale when she's attacked by Wulf. Clara herself has no memory of these incidents, as she appears to lose consciousness whenever it emerges. The Primordial may also be a part of why Clara demonstrates some of her abilities, such as reading memories and sealing Necromancers without destroying their souls, and her ability to purge Sam of the Primordial essence killing him after he was stabbed by Wulf.
  • Thinking Up Portals: Her primary use of her Veilripper is to draw up portals, first by making one in one location, then making the opposite end somewhere else.
  • Took a Level in Badass: She becomes an excellent fighter soon after realizing what her real power is in her Veilripper.
  • The Watson: As the newest member of the Vigil, she serves as the focus through which the readers learn much of how it operates.

    Grace Willow 
Grace is one of the older members of the Vigil — both her physical age and her time as a Death Knight — and has largely assigned herself the role of helping to take care of the rest of the members.
  • Never Mess with Granny: Grace doesn't go into battle as often as the other members, but can still hold her own in a fight against the Necromancers.
  • Older Than They Look: While Grace does look older than the rest of the Vigil, she's even older than that. In a Blink-and-You-Miss-It moment it's clear that Grace has been with the Vigil at least since Heinrich's Rebellion; she was one of the Death Knights Bernie took with her to confront him over Mia.
  • Team Mom: She primarily takes this role, helping new members settle in, keeping up the house, and taking care of the others. She even treats Bernie like one of the kids.

The Raven

The most powerful member of the Vigil as well as its elder, Hugin is a raven who can transform into an allosaurus.

  • The Big Guy: Even bigger than Sam in his allosaur form.
  • Creepy Crows: Well, a raven, but the idea sticks.
  • The Dreaded: Sam explains it well in his first appearance.
    Sam: Necromancers cringed with fear at a mere mention of "the Raven". Oh sure, they feared "the Reaper", but it was more of an abstract fear. As my friend James "the Cardmaster" liked to say, Bernie was way too high-level to fight them. Hugin on the other hand... he was a tangible, powerful threat... I taught the necromancers to respect "the Digger". But oh yes, they feared "the Raven".
  • Never Heard That One Before: He absolutely hates Poe references.
    James: "Quoth the raven-"
  • One-Winged Angel: Can transform into an Allosaurus to fight.
  • Red Baron: The Raven.
  • Shout-Out Theme Naming: Named for one of Odin's ravens in Norse Mythology. Given the nature of the universe, and that Beowulf himself was once a member of the Vigil, Hugin could easily be the very same raven, or perhaps even the inspiration for the Norse Myth.
  • Talking Animal: Can speak English perfectly well.
  • You Wouldn't Like Me When I'm Angry: Invokes this in the battle of New York while Clara is giving her Badass Boast to camera, and he has two NYPD cops pointing guns at his Allosaurus form.
    Hugin: You fire that gun and it won't hurt me, but I will take it personally!

The Cardmaster

Also known as "the Cardmaster," James is a member of the Vigil who is older than Sam, though apparently not by much. He is also a very close friend of Mia.

  • Arch-Enemy: James has one in the form of Slippery Simon, with whom he's clashed multiple times, but has never been able to pin down due to the Necromancer's penchant for escaping.
  • Badass Adorable: A sweet kid who can fight off Lovecraftian horrors.
  • Fight Like a Card Player: His Veilripper is a deck of cards from what appears to be a trading card game. This is what seems to place his age relatively young.
  • Gamer: James is fond of games of all sorts; card games, RPGs, video games, you name it. His veilripper is a Magic: The Gathering-style card deck, and he frequently speaks in gaming terms. Such as telling Gunnar and his Vikings their role in the final battle is DPS.note 
  • Interspecies Friendship: Despite him being a Vigil member and Mia being a Humanoid Abomination, they seem to get along very well, to the point of being pretty much best friends.
  • Mr. Exposition: He tries to be this to new Vigil members, but his showy means of doing so with his cards leaves something to be desired.
  • Older Than He Looks: Likely older than his Vigil form suggests, given he was able to be Mr. Exposition for both Sam and Clara during their respective inductions to the Vigil.
  • Red Baron: The Cardmaster.
  • Summon Magic: James himself isn't much of a fighter. Instead he relies on summoning creatures with his card deck to handle the fighting for him.
  • Toy Ship: Joked about In-Universe by some Vigil members between him and Mia.

Marlene is an experienced member of the Vigil, whose veilrippers are in the form of sickles. She appears to carry several, or she can split them apart at need.
  • Camera Fiend: Downplayed Trope. She's only really seen working on her camera on the Vigil's off time, but her hobby seems to be an attempt to make a camera that can actually capture Bernie's image.
  • Deadpan Snarker: She's one of the Vigil, so...yeah. Her delivery tends to emphasize the deadpan.
    Marlene: Blink one eye for yes, two for no. Beat No really, any eye will do.
  • Gadgeteer Genius: Downplayed, but she's working on a camera that can actually capture Bernie's image.
  • Sinister Scythe: Her veilrippers take the form of small sickles.
  • Super Speed: Marlene's special power through her veilripper. Stopping can be a problem, however...
  • Too Fast to Stop: She can have some difficulties with stopping. Thankfully, other Vigil members like Grace can make up for this.
  • Troll: Her reaction to Clara complaining that her friend thinks she's in a cult? Taking her phone mid-phone call and talking about what Clara has to do at that point in a way that sounds exactly like someone in a cult, then hanging up.

    Vlado and Chiyoko
The Kill Team

Hungarian and Japanese, respectively, members of the Vigil, who primarily operate in Europe. As is typical for the European branches, they operate as a pair on their own, and have been dubbed the "Kill Team" due to the lethally effective combination of their powers.

  • Applied Mathematics: Sam's description of Vlado and Chiyoko, and how their powers complement one another to lethal effect.
    Sam: She is a girl with goggles that can see through walls. He has a gun that can shoot through walls. Do the math!
  • The Cavalry: When the Pale Court attacks in the middle of New York City, Bernie calls them in to reinforce the main group. The problem faced by the Vigil is that with so many innocent people at hand, they can't afford to unleash Mia, their most powerful weapon (aside from Bernie herself). However Chiyoko is able to use her veilripper to survey the situation, and confirm that enough people have fled (or are already dead or had their minds twisted by the horrors swarming the City) that Mia can safely enter the fight. They remain with the main group for the rest of the story, and ultimately inflict the fatal blow on the Thorn in the climax.
  • Cool Guns: Vlado's veilripper is a Luger P08 that shoots through walls.
  • A Date with Rosie Palms: One of the Necromancers during the battle in New York goes into Large Ham mode. Vlado tells Chiyoko that he thinks he's a wanker with a gesture to this effect.
  • Goggles Do Something Unusual: Chiyoko's veilripper is a pair of goggles that lets her see through walls.
  • Hand Signals: Vlado is Hungarian and Chiyoko is Japanese, and neither of them speak the other's language, so almost all of their conversation is like this. It doesn't slow them down at all.
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Chiyoko is a rather short, slender Japanese woman. Vlado is a hulking Hungarian man at least One Head Taller than her.
  • One Head Taller: Vlado is at least a head taller than Chiyoko. If not more, considering he often stands slouched.
  • Symbol Swearing: When Chiyoko sees the Thorn for the first time, she swears in Kanji.
  • The Red Baron: Dubbed the "Kill Team" because of how effective their powers are when they work together.
  • Those Two Guys: The practices of the European branch of the Vigil invokes this: While the American group lives together at the house and frequently collaborate, elsewhere the Vigil operates independently in groups of two. Vlado and Chiyoko therefore always work together, and are never apart from one another.


Allies to the Vigil

     The Draugar 

Gunnar and his crew are a literal boatload of dead Vikings Sam bound while on an excursion to Norway with Wulf. They now serve him as a summons he can call upon with his veilripper if he needs low-level backup.

  • Boisterous Bruiser: They're undead Vikings. Gunnar and his mates love a good brawl, and in the first issue is disappointed that the pending blood bath wouldn't even reach to his armpits. When James calls them "D.P.S." in the final battle, describing it as, "kill as many as you can as fast as you can," they gleefully charge into battle screaming "D.P.S.!" as a battle cry.
    Sam: Damn it, James! You broke my vikings!
  • Everything's Deader with Zombies: Surprisingly in this setting, Gunnar and his crew are pretty much the only actual undead in the story (excluding the spirits of the dead Bernie approaches to recruit into the Vigil).
  • Ghost Ship: Sam typically summons them by using his pickaxe to drag their boat out of the earth.
  • Good Thing You Can Heal: Considering they're already dead, there's not much that can be done to actually kill them. Gunnar and his crew are summarily torn apart by a Greater Banshee when they ignore Sam's warnings to take cover, but he assures Sam they'll be good as new after about a week to pull themselves back together.
  • Horny Vikings: They don't have the helmets, but tick off the boxes for the longboat and savageness.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Fittingly enough considering who they work for. Gunnar and his crew are just as prone to recklessness as Sam himself, and heedlessly throw themselves at a Greater Banshee. It...doesn't end well, but Good Thing They Can Heal.
  • Literal-Minded: They have a bit of difficulty understanding figures of speech.
    Sam: One at a time, men! There's enough bloodbath for everyone.
    Gunnar: You talk nonsense, Samuel! There's barely enough bloodbath here to wash my armpits!
    Sam: Good to know, Gunnar. Gross, but good to know!
  • Our Zombies Are Different: They're draugar, which Sam describes to Clara as Viking "super zombies."note 

Mia's father, a former French peasant who joined the Necromancers in the 13th Century, only to turn against them when he learned the truth about them. More reluctant to help the Vigil than his daughter, he is willing to provide them information on what the Necromancers are up to.
  • Badass Bookworm: Part of what led the Necromancers (or the Seraphim Order of the Inquisition as they called themselves at the time) to induct him into their ranks. According to his daughter, he was "a Renaissance man before the Renaissance".
  • Battle Strip: As is typical of Necromancers, Allistor tends to take off his shirt when he's using his powers (much to Sam's annoyance). Dialogue suggests it's a matter of comfort, as Allistor remarks at least once about his itchy sigils putting him in a foul mood when he's drawing on his power while fully dressed.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Goes through this in his backstory. When Mia contracts a terminal illness, Heinrich desperately tries to convince both sides to help him save her. The Necromancers refuse him because Primordials won't bind to the dying and Bernie brushes him off (he assumes) out of anger over his past lies to her. In desperation, Heinrich sacrifices Mia to fulfil a ritual that will allow him to bind one of the Primordials to her soul to save her life, turns her loose on the Seraphim to feed her new hunger and essentially blackmails the Vigil into letting them go by threatening to let Mia do the same to them.
  • The Exile: Part of the deal he made with the Vigil for his and Mia's lives; they could go free but they would never cross the Vigil's path again.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Allistor's backstory. He and Mia lived in France during the 13th Century, and when he reported the sighting of a demon in the streets of Paris to the church, he was arrested and taken to the Seraphim (Necromancers), who recruited him with claims they were fighting a fallen angel. However, as he worked on translating the documents and tablets they requested of him, he learned the truth and sought out Bernie's help. They struck up a friendship, but this fell apart over her discovery of a veilripper Allistor kept as a trophy from a Death Knight he had fought and killed before learning the truth about the Seraphim. When his daughter, Mia, was dying of illness he turned to the Necromancers but they refused to act to save her, and Bernie also rebuffed him. Instead, out of desperation he took it upon himself to use the Dreamer's Sigil and sacrificed Mia to forcibly bind one of the Primordials to her to save her life. Mia showed an appetite for other Primordials, so he turned her loose on the Seraphim. Bernie later came to deal with them both, but Allistor essentially stalemated her by threatening to turn Mia loose against the Vigil and their families, so she backed down and departed warning him never to cross her path again. Since then, Allistor and Mia have been staunch allies of the Vigil, though not members themselves. Mia and James are close friends and she's very well-liked by the rest of the Knights, while Allistor is at least respected. His relationship with Bernie remains frosty, however.
  • Morality Chain: After bonding Mia with the Beast, it was largely the result of his influence that helped preserve her humanity and keep her from turning into a full-fledged monster like the Abyss and the Thorn.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Goes through one of these in Issue 7 after he allows Wulf and Maria to steal the last remaining Veilrippers and summon Bernie into a trap. When Heinrich argues that Bernie brought it on herself by refusing to restore Maria and Wulf's daughter to life the way she did Mia, Samuel angrily reveals the truth; Bernie never refused them, there was nothing she could do because the girl was already brain-dead. When Heinrich calls this a lie, Samuel shows him his memories as proof, as well as showing that for all her anger with him, Bernie always intended to save Mia from her illness before Heinrich took matters into his own hands. His face after seeing all this is this trope to a tee.
  • Papa Wolf: To Mia.
  • Restraining Bolt: This sigils serve this function, allowing him a measure of control over Mia. While she still has free will, (such as siding with the Vigil rather than him after Wulf's ambush) she's unable to unleash the Beast without Allistor allowing it.
  • Token Heroic Orc: He was a Necromancer, but allows his daughter to hang out with the Vigil, supplies them with information and even fights with them when needed.
  • We Used to Be Friends: He originally befriended Bernadette in the 13th Century, looking for information on translating the Dreamer's Code. Unfortunately, their friendship came to an end the day he invited her to his home; Bernie saw a veilripper he'd kept as a trophy from a Vigil member he'd killed some time before learning the truth about the Necromancers and refused to have anything more to do with him (as well as holding a grudge over the matter for 800 years).


A former Necromancer from Chicago who is sealed by Clara (and comes out the better for it), and provides the Vigil with crucial information over the course of the story.

  • And I Must Scream: Upon realising what she thought was her mother's ghost really is...
  • Came Back Strong: After being sealed by Clara, Lana is much better (unlike most Necromancers who are left braindead husks by the sealing process), as it frees Lana of both her unwanted necromantic powers and her guilt and bitterness over her poor relationship with her late mother.
  • I See Dead People: Thought she was in the form of her mother. Also warns Clara and Sam that other new Necromancer recruits like her think the same, which only makes them more dangerous.
  • Living MacGuffin: Becomes one of these in Issue 7 when by reading her memories, Clara is able to learn the location of the Necromancer base where they are holding Bernadette prisoner.
  • Motivational Kiss: Gives one to Clara before the Vigil heads off for the final battle. Supposedly, it's "just for luck".
  • Smitten Teenage Girl: She's not a teenager, but she does act a bit like this around Clara.
  • Squee!: Essentially does this when she sees Clara mounted on the back of Hugin in dinosaur form, delivering a Badass Boast to the Necromancers attacking New York on national television.
    Lana: [watching Clara on TV] Well look at you! You do know how to make a flashy entrance.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Goes through one after realising the Necromancers lied to her about being able to call her mother back from the dead, causing her to promptly go berserk and lash out at everything in reach. She's cured of this by Clara sealing her.
  • "Well Done, Daughter!" Girl: Pretty much Lana's motivation for joining the Necromancers. She and her mother had a major falling out when Lana came out as a lesbian. Lana's bitterness over the matter ended up being cancerous to all her other relationships and her mother died before the rift between them could be mended. When she was approached by a Necromancer recruiter, Lana agreed to join under the belief she would be able to summon her mother back from the dead so they could reconcile over what happened. Unfortunately, this turns out to be a lie...

A little girl who is seemingly James' biological age, Mia is actually one of the most powerful of the Vigil's allies. Her father bound her soul to one of the true Primordials (essentially a dark god) to save her life from a terminal illness.
  • Alliance with an Abomination: Mia is bound to a True Primordial — the oldest, most powerful, and most dangerous of the Eldritch Abominations that inhabit the setting (just seeing Mia in her Beast form would kill a normal human being) — called the Beast, with the two sharing a body and existence as essentially one entity. The process saved Mia's life when she was dying from an illness, and allowed the Beast into the world. However Mia's human soul also keeps the Beast in check, and has taught it to value humanity.
  • Came Back Strong: A byproduct of being bound to a Primordial after Heinrich killed her.
  • Creepy Child: She's cute, friendly, and quite personable, but she's also centuries old, and highly knowledgeable about parts of the conflict and the abominations lurking beyond the veil in ways that even members of the Vigil aren't. Those moments of maturity and gravity comes across as incredibly off-putting.
  • Deadpan Snarker: She fits right in with the rest of the Vigil.
  • Did We Just Have Tea with Cthulhu?: The Vigil's interactions with her amount to this.
  • Eldritch Abomination: The Beast, one of the four True Primordials, and the second to have been bound.
  • Family of Choice: Allistor may be her father, but Mia makes it abundantly clear that she considers the Vigil her family. After he betrays the Vigil to Wulf, Mia refuses to leave with him, and angrily chooses to stay despite her Restraining Bolt.
  • Godzilla Threshold: The Beast is one of the four True Primordials, incredibly powerful Eldritch Abominations who the very sight of can make people drop dead. As a result, Allistor and the Vigil are very careful in choosing when and where to unleash her, and it shows just how desperate the situation in New York is when they're forced to risk the collateral damage her presence may cause.
  • Humanity Is Infectious: A big part of the equation as to why Mia can be both a Cosmic Horror and a cute, perky, kind-hearted teenage girl. Allistor's efforts after her bonding with the Beast helped Mia retain her humanity, while it was James' influence that allowed her to reclaim her lost childhood. The fact that Mia still had her human soul has also helped to tame the Beast. By contrast, the Thorn chose Alicia in part because her soul had already departed, leaving her body an empty shell it could inhabit without the girl's influence.
  • Humanoid Abomination: An Eldritch Abomination with the mind and body of a little girl.
  • Interspecies Friendship: She and James are very friendly, likely best friends. They play a lot of games together, video games or otherwise. She even admits that he's a major factor in her resurgent humanity.
  • Monstrous Cannibalism: Her response to eldritch threats is Eating the Enemy.
  • Morality Chain: While her father began as hers by keeping her from slipping over the edge after her bonding, the situation has effectively reversed in the present day. It's especially evident after Allistor nearly underwent a Face–Heel Turn when Wulf explained his motives, gaining Allistor's sympathy. Mia's determination to stand with the Vigil was a significant part of why he ultimately sided with them against Maria.
  • Nice Girl: Definitely this, but do not anger her.
  • Older Than They Look: Even moreso than most of the cast. She looks no older than about 16 or so, but her human form is centuries old. The Beast, the Primordial to which she was bound, is even older.
  • One-Winged Angel: She can transform into her Primordial form to deal with serious threats.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Her human self was born in the 13th Century, 800 years before the story takes place. It's unclear exactly how old her Primordial form is, but the Beast is even older still.
  • Restraining Bolt: Allistor controls Mia via his sigils. This helped her recover from the process of being bound to the Beast when he performed the ritual on her back in the 13th century, and also prevents her from unleashing the Beast at will in the present day. This bites the Vigil hard when Wulf ambushes them after the battle in New York, and Allistor forces her to stand down and let him take the veilrippers.
  • Toy Ship: Joked about In-Universe by some Vigil members (mainly Sam) between her and James.

Primordial Enemy

     The Abyss 

The leader of the current incarnation of the Pale Court as well as the first living being to bind to one of the Primordials.

  • Affably Evil: Is polite and respectful to all its minions.
  • Batman Gambit: The Abyss goes along with Maria's plan to openly attack the Vigil to enable Maria to obtain the last six Veilrippers she needs to entrap Bernadette and take her place as the Reaper so as to obtain control over the scythe to bring her daughter back to life. The Abyss is counting on her doing this because it knows full well that Maria is being manipulated by the Thorn, another True Primordial, taking the form of her daughter that will come through in its pure form, far stronger than either the Abyss or Mia. The Abyss explains to Gallows that Maria's obsession with bringing her daughter back to life will blind her to all else until it is too late.
  • Eldritch Abomination: Its present form is a Body Horror consisting of an emaciated, bifurcated and bioluminescent human torso sat in the mouth of a huge skeletal demonic serpent where its tongue would be, joined together by his intestines and brainstem.
  • Just as Planned: His opinion of the events at the end of Issue 8 invoke this. Though the Vigil has succeeded in slaying the Thorn and destroying their current base of operations, the Necromancers have a complete and translated copy of the Dreamer's Codex and can easily start their plans again.
  • Magnificent Bastard: He lets Maria carry out her plans. despite knowing all along that she intends to turn on him once she has the Scythe and has bound the Thorn to her daughter, because not only does it get him what he wants, (the Codex translated) but because it also means bringing the Thorn into the world unrestrained by a human soul. In the end, the Vigil has handily taken care of Maria and Wulf for him, and although the Thorn has been slain, he still got what he originally wanted out of the whole deal to begin with. As he tells Gallows: the Thorn may be dead, but having an intact translation of the Codex still makes it a victory for the Pale Court.
  • Slasher Smile: Gives one to Gallows after explaining how Maria's ambitions play directly into his Evil Plan.
  • Wham Line: "There never was a girl to begin with".


A high ranking member of the Pale Court who serves as a go-between who mediates between the Abyss and outsiders.

     Maxim Chernov 

A Necromancer encountered by Sam and Clara, and one of a pair assigned to train Lana.

     The Pale Court 

The Pale Court are the highest ranking members of the Necromancers, the first servants of the Primordial Enemy, and fanatically loyal to the goal of bringing such entities through the Veil into the world.

  • Badass Beard: One of the Pale Court, Lord Mechah invokes this.
  • Eldritch Abomination: With tentacles, shark-like teeth, clusters of eyes where there really shouldn't be any, insectoid limbs and all other things beside, the Pale Court really have this covered. Sam even states that some of them have been bonded to the enemy for so long they're more beast than human.
  • Religion of Evil: Consider Allistor's below quote laying out the Pale Court's history;
    Allistor: They were the first ones. Most Necromancers seek to use the strength of the Primordial Ones for their own purposes: Power. Immortality. These are motivations for many to take on the cursed sigils. But not the Pale Court. They are loyal to the Enemy; they are both its servants and its priests. They were the first ones to receive the knowledge of necromantic sigils. And their goal has always been the bring forth their gods, the Primordial Ones, the ones you call the Enemy, and be forever united with them.
  • Power Tattoo: Like all Necromancers, they possess powerful sigils that allows them to summon big bad nastiness from beyond the Veil.

     Slippery Simon 

A minor Necromancer and long-time enemy of James. Simon earned his name for his ability to escape time and time again, often by fleeing into a crowd where the Vigil couldn't risk pursuing him.

  • Arch-Enemy: To James. The pair have had multiple encounters in the past, and Sam remarks James' determination to finally seal him was bordering on personal.
  • Bald of Evil: Simon's head is completely shaved.
  • Dirty Coward: Never particularly powerful, Simon lasted as long as he did precisely because of this, and running the moment he realized he was in over his head.
  • Eyes Do Not Belong There: Typical of Necromancers, his sigils are filled with eyes when using his powers. In Simon's case, they appear all over his head.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: As usual, James uses a lot of gamer lingo during their battle. Simon tries to one-up him with not so spectacular results.
    Simon: Well, since you are so fond of games, I got a game we can play!
    James: It's gonna be "Simon Says" isn't it?
    *Beat as Simon glares.*
    Simon: Simon says die!!!
    James: Called it!
  • Meaningful Name: Simon's ability to slip away led to his nickname. After his upgrades he decides to rename himself Simon the Vigil Slayer. James doesn't want to lose the alliteration.
  • Smug Snake: The entire reason James and Marlene are finally able to put him down for good is because Simon's recent power upgrade made him overconfident.
  • Villain: Exit, Stage Left: James remarks he was a master of being able to escape whenever he was in over his head.

     The Thorn 

One of the True Primordials masquerading as Maria's dead daughter Alicia to induce her to bring it through the Veil.

  • An Arm and a Leg: Rips off Maria's arm, and the necromantic sigils on it, at the elbow to free itself from her control.
  • Fantastic Racism: The Thorn is disgusted by the existence of "impure" Primordials like Mia and The Abyss.
  • A Form You Are Comfortable With: The Thorn openly states that it took the form of Maria's daughter to make the task of convincing her to help bring it into the real world even easier.
    The Thorn: We are the things reaching out from the abyss, unable to climb out by ourselves. All we need is some help, a hand to pull us helps to put on a familiar face...
  • Faux Affably Evil: Mockingly continues to refer to Maria as "Mother" even after ripping her arm off.
  • Restraining Bolt: Much like Mia, the Thorn had one in the form of Maria's sigils. Emphasis on had. Once Alicia tears off Maria's arm, there's nothing to hold her back.

Maria and Her Allies

     Maria Benes 

An archaeologist working with the Necromancers to translate the Dreamer's Codex for them in exchange for the power to bring her deceased daughter Alicia back to life.

  • Alas, Poor Villain: Despite her arrogance, and all the things she's done and lives she's put at risk (if not outright destroyed), it's still hard not to feel sorry for Maria Benes. She's ultimately a broken woman sent Sliding Down The Slippery Slope by her daughter's death, only to be swept up into events she didn't truly understand, and was so misguided she genuinely believed what she was doing was right. It makes the means by which "Alicia" betrayed her and revealed that Bernie had been telling the truth all along that much more heartbreaking.
  • An Arm and a Leg: "Alicia" rips off Maria's arm — and with it the sigils controlling her — in order to free herself.
  • Berserk Button: Do not tell her her daughter is truly dead. Even if it happens to be true.
  • Back from the Dead: The end of Issue 8 implies this...
  • Bodyguard Crush: With Wulf. After discovering she wasn't a Necromancer and was merely translating the Dreamer's Codex from an academic standpoint, Wulf started hanging out at her museum in case any actual Necromancers showed up. However, they started getting to talking (Maria was fascinated with his stories about his time with the Vigil, and Wulf was glad to finally have a new audience who wanted to hear them). Two years of this (and Wulf taking on the role of a surrogate father to Alicia) caused them to become even more close.
  • Came Back Wrong: Maria's entire plan was intended to bind the Primordial called the Thorn to Alicia's body, which is this trope all on its own. Unfortunately, Alicia's soul was already gone when Maria bound her, meaning that Alicia's body was just a shell and the Thorn took control of her body entirely, making her a Monster from Beyond the Veil. "Came Back Wrong" doesn't even begin to cover it.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Crosses this with Alicia's death and Bernadette's refusal (in truth, inability) to bring her back to life.
  • Dragon with an Agenda: Unfortunately, the Abyss knows it and is willing to go along with it because it suits the Pale Court's purposes...
  • Heel Realization: Maria fights tooth and nail against one during the news broadcast reporting on the appalling casualties her plans cause in New York City, insisting over and over again the lives lost are irrelevant. She finally has one in the finale, when "Alicia" reveals her true colors, and Maria realizes too late that Bernie was right all along.
  • I See Dead People: Or at least she thinks she does...
  • Love Makes You Evil: Her obsession with bringing her daughter back to life makes her willing to commit major atrocities (such as unleashing the Primordials in major population centres) with no regard for the high levels of civilian casualties sure to be incurred.
  • Love Makes You Stupid: Her obsession with bringing her daughter back to life blinds her to the fact that she is playing completely into the Abyss's hands.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: After having her arm torn off at the elbow by the monster she brought through that had been masquerading as her daughter and having it confirmed that Alicia was always dead. The last thing she does in her final scene is tell Wulf to save himself.
  • Mystical White Hair: When she gains control of the Scythe her hair bleaches the same as Bernie and the rest of the Vigil. She muses it's an effect of the Scythe itself.
  • Villainous BSoD: Has one of these when "Alicia" rips her arm off, realizing Bernie was right all along. It runs in direct contrast to Wulf's Villainous Breakdown.
  • Wowing Cthulhu: The Abyss is deeply impressed with her ruthlessness.


A former member of the Vigil who formed a relationship with Maria, Wulf defected from the Vigil after Bernie's seeming refusal to raise Alica as one of the Vigil and assists Maria's plan by providing tactical information on the Vigil.

  • Bodyguard Crush: With Maria. After discovering she wasn't a Necromancer and was merely translating the Dreamer's Codex from an academic standpoint, Wulf started hanging out at her museum in case any actual Necromancers showed up. However, they started getting to talking (Maria was fascinated by his stories about his time with the Vigil, and Wulf was glad to finally have a new audience who wanted to hear them). Two years of this (and Wulf taking on the role of a surrogate father to Alicia) caused them to become even closer.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Is seemingly torn apart by the Primordial bonded to Clara.
    Wulf: I will make you feel my pain!
    Clara: [Develops Black Eyes of Evil, Scary Teeth and an Evil Laugh] PAIN?! You have NO means to cause us pain!
  • Defiant to the End: He refuses to face reality and accept that Bernie was right all along, blindly insisting that Alicia was still the Thorn and that the Vigil spooked her into a rampage. He continues this even up until the moment he's torn apart by Clara.
  • Face–Heel Turn: He abandoned the Vigil after Bernie was unable to raise Maria's daughter, claiming that she refused to help.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: After spending 800 years fighting for the Vigil against the Necromancers, he ultimately joins their ranks and shows little compunction about killing his former comrades.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: This is Wulf's preferred method of dispatching enemies. He successfully does this to Sam with his necromancy-enhanced veilripper in issue six (he gets better), and he tries to kill Clara with Spider Limbs this way in in issue eight.
  • Never My Fault: Maria apparently realizes just how big she screwed up right around the time "Alicia" tears off her arm to free herself from her Restraining Bolt. Wulf, however, refuses to believe what he's seeing, and assaults Clara while insisting that Alicia is merely scared and confused. He simply can't accept that they were wrong.
  • Public Domain Character: Implied, and then in issue 8 finally confirmed to be Beowulf.
  • Papa Wolf: To Alicia.
  • Rewarded as a Traitor Deserves: It's hard not to feel satisfaction when he's apparently devoured by the Primordial bound to Clara after everything he's done.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Degenerates into ranting and raving about how none of what is happening is because he was wrong by the time he is finally killed.

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