- Gods Need Prayer Badly: It isn't their livelihood, usually, but it IS quite literally their currency.
- Jerkass Gods: Quite a few, though they're not all assholes.
- Our Gods Are Different: In the animistic setting of Exalted, they can go from being as lowly as a god of a specific chamberpot to the Unconquered Sun himself.
The Celestial Incarnae
The most powerful gods in Yu-Shan, the ones who created the first Celestial Exalted and helped lead the offensive against the Primordials. They were first created by the Primordials to maintain the structure of Creation while the Primordials played the Games of Divinity. After having it up to here with the fickle and somewhat selfish whims of the Primordials, they empowered the Exalted to fight against the Primordials. Once they were defeated, the Incarnae handed the reins of Creation to their Exalted while they took over the Games of Divinity.
- Authority Equals Asskicking: The Incarnae are about as powerful as it is possible to become without being a Primordial, and have authority over all the gods of Creation.
- Celestial Paragons and Archangels: They're the most powerful gods in Exalted. Whether or not they're good guys depends on whether or not you're trying to get along with Creation, or self-absorbedly using it for your own goals.
- Unstoppable Force Meets Immovable Object: Mentioned repeatedly, usually in the context of Saturn and the Unconquered Sun. To put it in context: The Unconquered Sun can't lose at anything, meaning that his win-streaks last forever. Saturn is the goddess of nothing lasting forever.
The Unconquered SunIgnis Divine. Sol Incarnate. The guy with all the arms. The Unconquered Sun represents... well, the Sun, as well as the principle of Virtue in Creation. Before the Primordial War, he guarded the borders of Creation from the raksha; when the time for war came, he empowered his chosen to serve as the Lawgivers and kings of all the earth. He is a master strategist, a peerless warrior, a representation of all that is right in Creation... and addicted to the Games of Divinity like the rest of his peers.
- The Ace: Part of his nature is essentially to succeed at everything he tries; part of why he's so addicted to the Games of Divinity is that it's practically the only thing that he doesn't win at effortlessly.
- Ace Pilot: Of the Daystar, a giant dirigible/warship- he spent a good part of his early life patrolling it on the boundaries of Creation with brutal efficiency, up to and including using the Daystar's cannons to destroy a planetnote .
- The Anti-God: Morally inverted; He was created by the Ebon Dragon as a cosmic embodiment of honor and virtue, precisely so that the Ebon Dragon could have something to corrupt, betray, and subvert.
- Big Good: The biggest. The Dragon's Shadow — the Primordial that would become the Ebon Dragon — defined himself in opposition to others, so he crafted the Unconquered Sun to be the personification of virtue, heroism and excellence, just so he could define himself as that much more of a bastard.
- Broken Ace: He never forgave himself for what monsters the Solars became due to the Great Curse and the fact that he gave them their power, eventually breaking so badly from guilt and horror that he turned his back on Creation and essentially had a nervous breakdown. That, plus the fact that it turns out embodying perfection and virtue is a lot easier in concept than in reality, and to function at all he often has to suppress significant portions of his own personality/morality.
- Broken Pedestal: The Contagion and the Fair Folk invasion broke the belief of many in Heaven that the Unconquered Sun was at all invested in the affairs of Creation, and not completely obsessed with the Games of Divinity. It didn't help that during both crises none of the Incarnae missed a single turn in the Games of Divinity.
- The Cape: See Big Good. There's a story from the Primordial War of the Primordials taking a human hostage — just one, mind you, as we're dealing with cosmic principles who can and did burn continents with a glance — and the Unconquered Sun willingly switching places with the mortal, as he realized if he couldn't sacrifice everything for just one mortal, he was useless. He then proceeded to weather their tortures and beat them at the Games of Divinity.
- Expy: Of Roman deity Deus Sol Invictus.
- FaceHeel Turn: In the Gunstar Autochthonia setting... though his motives are not expounded on, and this being Exalted, it's likely he views himself as The Atoner (see The Paragon Always Rebels).
- The Fettered: Discussed. He was designed to be the personification and exemplar of Virtue, and his inclination is to be the most virtuous person possible. He has immense power whenever he fulfills his function by exemplifying the Four Virtues of Compassion, Conviction, Temperance, and Valor. For instance, whenever he exemplifies Temperance, he is undefeatable (hence the title of "Invictus"). However, there are circumstances when he must choose one virtue over the other ("do I be valorous or temperate?"), and he has to pick one over the other. This is why he tends to avoid moral dilemmas. Also, he can just choose not to exemplify a virtue. Whenever he chooses not to exemplify a virtue, he loses the corresponding power. For example, if he stops exemplifying Temperance, if he stops being temperate and instead indulges himself (like, say, spending all his time playing the Games of Divinity instead of doing his job ruling Creation), then he stops being undefeatable...
- A Form You Are Comfortable With: Takes the form of a male human with four arms as a mark of respect to humanity after the war with Primordials; before that he usually appeared as a Draconic Humanoid in tribute to the Dragon Kings, who were the dominant species of mortal until humans. His true form is implied to be a golden and pitch-black dragon studded with supernovas, with hundreds of arms, blazing white eyes, and which burns out the senses of almost anyone who sees it.
- God Is Flawed: Despite God Is Good, he's still not perfect.
- God Is Good: He's the personification of all the virtues listed above, as well as general all-around awesomeness. He really is a nice guy, especially as gods go in this setting.
- God of Light: He's the god of the solar orb, and the highest and greatest of the gods of Creation. He is presented as the archetypal hero and the shining emblem of moral perfection, and is Creation's mightiest defender against foes... at least when he can turn away from the extremely addictive Games of Divinity. He forms a pair with Luna, the goddess of the moon, who is the second mightiest deity in the world and the closest thing he has to a peer.
- Good Hurts Evil: The Unconquered Sun uses the Daystar to decide which beings inside and outside Creation are "Creatures of Darkness," and thus prime targets for Holy Charms. Deconstructed in that the definition of "Creatures of Darkness" is based entirely on whether the Sun thinks you seem like a bad dude, not on any kind of objective measure of evil — although the Sun's virtuous enough that he's probably about as close as you can get to an objective arbiter of morality in a universe where no such thing exists.
- Good Is Not Nice: He's compassionate, but he's also rather arrogant. (One might call him a Jerk With a Heart of Orichalcum.)
- He's Back!: After several editions and hundreds of in-universe years, the Unconquered Sun is ready to turn his gaze back to Creation in 3rd edition, though he hasn't done that much yet beyond resuming Exigent Exaltations.
- Incorruptible Pure Pureness: Deconstructed; He's so pure, so virtuous, that he's been burnt out by the stress of trying his darndest to be the perfect ruler in an imperfect world. Also, he's pure in four different ways, and there are times when the different virtues sometimes contradict each other. That's why he withdrew to the Jade Pleasure Dome.
- King of the Gods: He's technically the head of the Celestial Bureaucracy, but his absence means other gods usually act without him.
- Light Is Good: It almost certainly is, but he does have flaws.
- Living Shadow: He has his own dark half, Five Days Darkness, who is a god in his own right. He's not a bad guy, actually, though he's a little pissed that he only has power at Calibration.
- Machine Empathy: Exclusively with the Daystar, since they've got a complex physic/metaphysical bond due to the nature of their creation and purpose.
- Multi-Armed and Dangerous: Appears as a four-armed man, which allows him to hold all his fulcrums of virtue (spear, laurels, shield, and horn) at once. In his Magnanimous Unbound Sun form, he gains twenty-eight arms.
- The Paragon Always Rebels: Which was a very good thing from humanity's perspective, since he rebelled against the Primordials.
- The Power of the Sun: Strongest of the Incarnae, and his chosen share his strength.
- Pure Is Not Good: If in a way that isn't directly harmful to others.
- Puzzle Boss: If fought, he cannot be injured in any way unless he has suppressed his Temperance, and his Magnanimous Unbound Sun form cannot be defeated without the use of multiple weapons to break his arms.
- Superpowered Evil Side: When in Magnanimous Unbound Sun form, the Unconquered Sun cannot relate to the world through his Virtues and exists only to destroy the enemies of Creation, without much concern for collateral damage so long as Creation itself is not threatened.
- Weird Sun: His personal superweapon, the Daystar, is what everyone in Creation perceives as the sun. It's actually a weapons station made of the magical materials, suffused with burning Essence, and possessing enough firepower to make the Realm Defense Grid look like a firecracker. Oh, and it can turn into a Humongous Mecha. That knows kung-fu.
- War God: He's regarded as the highest war god in Heaven, but in practice delegates the bulk of this purview to Mars and the rest of the lesser war gods.
LunaThe God(dess) of the Moon was created to complement and contrast the Unconquered Sun. She is infinitely adaptable, perpetually evolving, the impossible made possible. In the time before the Primordial War, she stood guard alongside the Sun, to handle those threats that bypassed even his perfection. But she had another, hidden purpose, thanks to her co-creator Cytherea: to seduce Gaia and thereby keep her in Creation. It worked slightly too well — Luna fell in love with Gaia and convinced her to side with the gods in the War.
Unlike the Unconquered Sun, Luna has not turned her face from existence. She watches her Exalted, proud of their capacity for adaptability and survival, to see what they will do next. She sends her light out into the depths of the Wyld, in the hopes of one day guiding Gaia back for good.
But even so, she remains bound to the Games of Divinity... for the moment.
- Ax-Crazy: The Silver-Horned Watcher, one of her main personas. She represents the desire to survive at any cost and the willingness to kill to get what one wants. She's rather terrified of that side.
- Crazy Sane: See Mind Hive, Lunacy, Split Personality, and Only Sane Man.
- Gender Bender: In 1e and 2e, Luna is typically identified as female, but freely switches or merges sexes. In 3e, Luna can't be pinned to mortal sexes, and hops across the spectrum as they see fit, being male, female, both, or neither.
- God of the Moon: Luna is the goddess of the moon and the second greatest of the Incarnae, after the Unconquered Sun. She is typically presented as a fickle, mercurial figure who shifts and changes between multiple forms, now male and now female, now calm and now savage, but always as mutable as the ever-shifting moon. Her chosen Exalted, the Lunars, are divine apex predators whose powers are themed primarily around shapeshifting and werecreatures.
- I Will Wait for You: She waits in Creation for Gaia to come back from her pilgrimage into the Wyld.
- Lunacy: She has control over the moon, and is rather insane. She's also fully aware of this.
- Mind Hive: The most powerful alternate moon-gods still exist within Luna, manifesting in her aspects, and sometimes even externalizing themselves enough to talk to her.
- Mister Seahorse: Her Two-Faced Bride incarnation typically manifests as a pregnant man or boy.
- Mystical White Hair: According to the art of her in the core book.
- Official Couple: She's romantically involved with Gaia.
- Only Sane Man: She's implied to be the only Incarna who isn't actually using the Games of Divinity as a mental crutch. Ironically, she's also Crazy Sane.
- Otherworldly and Sexually Ambiguous: She appears as male and female equally often, and will incorporate aspects of both when she wants to.
- Split Personality: She has numerous aspects, of which six — the Bloody Huntress, the Silver-Horned Watcher, the Two-Faced Bride, the Walker at the Crossroads, the White Navigator, and the Chthonic Baara — are the most prominent. One of them tends to dominate at any given time, usually based on the moon phase.
- There Can Be Only One: The story of her origin. Oramus and Cytherea pitted all the potential moon-gods against each other, to see which would triumph. Luna won, seducing or destroying her rivals, and became Creation's sole moon-god(dess).
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: Makes very extensive use of it, and is extremely good at it.
- Weird Moon: Creation's moon, the Silver Chair, is a spacefaring craft, a dimensional control mechanism, a nexus of worlds, and Luna's sanctum, among other things.
The Five Maidens of DestinyMercury, Maiden of Journeys. Venus, Maiden of Serenity. Mars, Maiden of Battles. Jupiter, Maiden of Secrets. Saturn, Maiden of Endings. Together, they are the Maidens of Destiny, who oversee the workings of the Loom of Fate and ensure that everything turns out as it should.
Except that over the eons of their existence, they've found themselves increasingly humanized, and humanity doesn't always sit well with the decrees of Fate.
This may be a problem.
- Bifauxnen: As befitting her purview of Secrets, Jupiter looks like a guy when her hood is up.
- Blessed with Suck: Hooray, they can tell the future! Hurrah, actually doing so destroys their free will.
- Color-Coded for Your Convenience: Each Maiden has an associated color, which they traditionally wear: Mercury's is yellow, Venus's is blue, Mars's is red, Jupiter's is green and Saturn's is purple.
- Don't Fear the Reaper: As is befitting the Maiden of Endings, Saturn is the creepiest. She also ends things like war, sorrow, and disease in addition to lives, and is consistently presented as a natural, and important, part of the cycle of life in Creation.
- Defrosting Ice Queen: How they've developed from the Primordial War to the present day, thanks to exposure to the Exalted. They began as largely emotionless instruments of Fate, but humanity grew on them over time. However, subverting the usual way this trope is used, this might not be a good thing — if they let their emotions interfere with their job, reality itself could be threatened.
- Grandfather Paradox: Their origin. When the Maidens first showed up, the Primordials recognised that they were the Primordials' creations from a future that had yet to happen. For various reasons, not least the Primordials' defeat, that future hasn't actually come to pass and isn't likely to.
- Morphic Resonance: No matter what guise Mars assumes, she's always a redhaired woman with bloodstained hands.
- Prophecies Are Always Right: Deconstructed. The Maidens can consult Samsara to learn what "should" happen in the future — but are then bound to bring that future about.
- Red Light District: Blue, actually, since that's Venus' color and prostitution is within her sphere. They're also blue in Creation (and Autochthonia), although as noted below under Demons, in Malfeas it's Gold, as an insult to the Unconquered Sun.
- Relationship Revolving Door: They're in a situation where, because they see different aspects of the future, Venus routinely proposes marriage to the Unconquered Sun (who always accepts) and then Saturn breaks off the engagement. Nobody involved takes it personally — it's just the way the Maidens are.
- War God: Mars oversees all battle and conflict, from pitched warfare and political struggles to barroom brawls and personal confrontations.
- You Can't Fight Fate: Using their abilities to predict a given future forces them to act to bring that future about. A good example is Jupiter, who knows about the Great Curse but can't tell anyone about it since it's not time for that knowledge to get out.
- Body Horror: They resemble humans stricken with the worst and most disfiguring strains of whatever disease they oversee. As such, while a god of head colds will merely look miserable and pathetic, a god of smallpox or leprosy or syphilis is going to look like something out of a nightmare.
- Large and in Charge: The size of a disease god is directly proportional to the virulence, deadliness and spread of the sickness they oversee. Gods of chickenpox or head colds are often little more than five feet high, gods of smallpox, the plague or cholera stand tall and strong, and the gods of the Great Contagion are said to have towered over buildings.
- Plague Master: As their name suggests, they have power over disease, each specializing in a particular malady. They can control the spread and effects of their plagues, and often abuse this power to run protection rackets where they ensure health on mortals that worship them and strike those that do not with maladies and plagues.
Dogs of the Unbroken Earth
Dog-like gods of the wilderness who exist to protect the wild places of the world from the march of civilization. They do not tolerate attempts to tame or settle their homes, although they generally have no issue with barbarian tribes, hermits or other people who do not harm the wilderness living in their lands.
- Gaia's Vengeance: The Dogs of the Unbroken Earth are the gods and protectors of wild places unsettled by civilization, and will respond viciously and violently to attempts to cut back the wild to make way for roads and farms and towns.
- Savage Wolves: They resemble enormous, dark-furred wolves the size of tigers. They're also viciously aggressive towards anyone they perceive as intruding on or despoiling their lands — and when mortals start cutting roads, farms and towns out of their territories, the Dogs' response tends to be quite direct and involve a great deal of physical violence and mauling.
- Dream Weaver: They are strictly speaking only charged with observing and recording mortal dreams. Most eventually grow tired of their passive roles, and use their experience with dreams to brew their own, which they keep in glass bottles and give to sleeping minds. Their dispositions and preferred dreams affect to whom they give their creations — dream flies associated with romantic or erotic dreams favor passionate lovers, ones tied to dreams of glory and action give visions of victory and battle to the passionate, and ones who weave nightmares spread their works at random or to anyone they find distasteful.
- Our Nymphs Are Different: Dryads are minor deities of individual trees, charged with recording their lives but often driven to actively protect them; this is complicated for them because, as they're supposed to be passive recorders and gods aren't supposed to directly meddle with mortals anyway, they're prohibited from actively harming those who'd cut their trees. They're not bound to their trees and don't die with them, but the loss of their charge leaves them essentially unemployed until they can find another, form a cult or join a spirit court. They resemble women with bark for skin and leaves for hair, and often use tattoos or scarification to emulate wounds left on their trees by lightning or axes.
- Treants: They resemble large humanoid trees and watch over woodlands and wildernesses, ruling over the spirits ad creatures of the wild and protecting them from harm. Like most of Creation's gods, however, they're far from incorruptible; some like to make bets with mortals where they wager the rights to harvest their forests against their own freedom to seed human-cleared fields with trees, while others have been lured from their charges with promises of worship and fine new temples. They don't get along with wood elementals, though — they predate them by quite some time, and don't appreciate them muscling in on their authority.
Guardians of things the Gods want protected for later use. Unfortunately, many of them have turned Dirty Cop out of resentment and boredom, realizing how thankless their job is in the corrupt bureaucracy of Heaven.
- Asian Lion Dogs: Lion dogs are lesser gods who serve Heaven as guardians, watching over certain temples and tombs and things that the gods want protected for later use. However, many have turned Dirty Cop out of resentment and boredom, having realized how thankless their job is in the corrupt bureaucracy of Heaven.
The counterpart to Lion Dogs, Scarab Guardians are placed to keep an eye on things the Gods want never to be found or retrieved, ever. Generally much less corrupt than their counterparts, due to being of simpler tastes (as in, they find the taste of intruders a delicacy).
- The Worm That Walks: They manifest as swarms of black beetles that share a single mind. These beetles can come together to form a humanoid body, which the scarab guardian usually does when it needs to threaten people or warn them away from its charge.
- Vain Sorceress: Will throw storms against ships crewed by females they deem more attractive than they are and who aren't redheads or Tya. Which is everyone not a redhead or Tya, because storm mothers are absolutely repugnant.
- Weather Manipulation: Storm Mothers can control storms, and delight in calling up howling winds, lashing rain and lighting strikes. They will summon storms for any variety of reasons, including in anger at mortal behavior, at the behest of mortals praying for misfortune on their enemies, or simply for their own amusement.
Lytek, the Right Hand of Power
With such an important thing as Celestial Exalted existing, it should come as no surprise there's an important deity overseeing them, and that god would be Lytek. While he cannot control who Exalts, he can effect minor spins on the event such as visions or the exact time, and, more importantly, he prunes their memories and prepares them for their next incarnation — without him, a Celestial would be overwhelmed with memories of his Second Breath's previous bearers, or worst, develop a Past Life (as more than a few Green Sun Princes can attest, since the Yozis value First Age knowledge over their servants' sanity). A master artist and craftsman, he is very much a Reasonable Authority Figure...
... Who would probably be more helpful if he didn't have every other important god in Yu-Shan out for his blood.
See, during the First Age, Lytek, as a side effect of his dominion over Solars, was once the co-director of the Bureau of Heaven, the part of the Celestial Bureaucracy overseeing the gods themselves and conceptual matters such as memory and loss. Then the Usurpation hit, and the Solar Exaltations which had found their way back to his cabinet for cleaning were stolen by Kejak and sealed in the Jade Prison. With a significant loss of his domain came a significant loss of rank, and thus, power. After the former head of the Celestial Bureaucracy (and the other co-director) was disposed of by Ryzala, Goddess of Paperwork, Lytek was quietly booted out and replaced with the aloof Taru-Han, aka "The Only God In Yu-Shan Who Doesn't Want Ryzala's Job To Belong To Anyone Else." Of course, just because Lytek was now irrelevant didn't mean he wasn't a political threat due to his remaining position, and so much of his existence in the Age of Sorrows was spent fending off attempts to get rid of him altogether.
Of course, the Jade Prison was broken. Slowly but surely, Lytek's fortunes have begun to reverse themselves. Unfortunately, his adversaries might get rid of him before then — it's not like there won't be another God of Exaltation if he gets forged into starmetal...
- Absent-Minded Professor: He tends to get a bit pushy with Celestial Exalts when interviewing them about their lives (he wants to see the progress of the Exaltation after all), and sometimes needs to be reminded of something called "personal space."
- Glory Seeker: Like Voice of Authority, it's a secondary motive — he cares about the Exalted as people, but he also recognizes they're an excellent way to show off how good he is at his job.
- Too Dumb to Live: Here's the thing — it's impossible to understand the Second Breath the way Lytek does and not notice the malformations caused by the Great Curse. Before the First Age ended, Lytek thought he could fix it, no problem... so he decided to not tell the Unconquered Sun about it. He's realized that was a mistake, now — but the very fact that he could have stopped the First Age from going to shit makes excellent grounds for capital punishment — and his replacement would probably be chosen by Ryzala, who has been compared to Dolores Umbridge by the writers.
- Troll: When the Jade Prison was broken and the Solar Exaltations were released, he took the liberty of personally notifying Chejop Kejak in writing... several months after it happened, by which time it was already too late.
Parad, the Left Hand of Power
The God of Inherited Power, and so of anyone who gets supernatural power from their parentage. As such he oversees God Blooded and other half-mortals and the Terrestrial Exalted (though not their actual Exaltation, which is still Lytek).
- Always Someone Better: A big issue with him. None of his charges come close to matching the Celestial Exalted in power. This makes him very jealous of Lytek.
- Inferiority Superiority Complex: Knowing that he has a larger overall purview but Lytek is more powerful by way of his domain does not do good things for his self-esteem.
- Super Breeding Program: He's trying to arrange some to get the Dragon-Blooded back to the level of power they had in the High First Age before they started breeding with mortals as well as each other.
Ryzala, Lady of Bureaucracy and Paperwork
Head of the Bureau of Heaven. Well, on paper she's only the head of the Department of Celestial Concerns, equal with Taru Han, and the Unconquered Sun is head of the Bureau, but since Taru Han has poor focus and the Unconquered Sun is addicted to the Games of Divinity she is de facto head. After the Usurpation she worked with the Bronze Faction to have the previous head executed on (probably false) charges of working with the Yozis. She's done everything she can to reduce the power of the other Bureaus and is thus the most powerful god in Yu Shan below the Incarnae.
- Jerkass: Conspired to have her predecessor executed on trumped up charges and helped the Bronze Faction Sidereals overthrow the Solar Deliberative in defiance of the Creation Ruling Mandate. Generally hated by most of Yu Shan because she is trying to reorganize it to place more and more departments under her direct control.
- Multi-Armed and Dangerous: Though she mostly uses her four arms to do more paperwork at a time.
- Obstructive Bureaucrat: Pretty much the god of them.
- Post-Support Regret: Not that she supported the Bronze Faction Sidereals or their Usurpation out of any fondness for either. But the constant conflicts of the Dragon-Blooded Shogunate, followed by the near-apocalyptic Great Contagion and Balorian Crusade have left her convinced that the Sidereals and the Dragon-Blooded are genuinely incompetent. Thus she is less than happy to be stuck with them. Not least because the increasingly barbarous Creation is less bureaucratic than it was during the First Age.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: A close ally of the Bronze faction but she doesn't actually like them or the Sidereals in general one bit. They were just the easiest way to grab power and keep it.
Taru-Han, Lady of Souls
The goddess in charge of seeing that the souls of the dead end up where they're supposed to, either the Underworld as a ghost or going through Lethe to reincarnate. Also, the head of the Department of Abstract Matters in the Bureau of Heaven, putting her in charge of the gods of big abstract concepts, like war, love, beauty and so on.
- Psychopomp: She's the god tasked with ensuring that the spirits of the dead go to their proper fates.
- Your Soul is Mine!: A hobby of hers is collecting extraordinary souls and holding on to them for a while. This is incredibly illegal but she's important enough to get away with it.
Three gods who have set themselves up as the physical rulers of the city of Whitewall in the North of Creation. Gods ruling mortals directly is illegal under the law of Heaven and Whitewall is quite high profile so it's puzzling to many why they haven't been stopped, punished or even publicly identified.
- Have You Seen My God?: They're trying to fix this. Whitewall was built in the First Age as a city-sized prayer to the Unconquered Sun. The Syndics believe that if they can restore it to its former glory the Unconquered Sun will return his attention to Creation.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: Whitewall is actually a very nice and safe place to live since the Syndics took over.
- Shame If Something Happened: When the Scarlet Empress attempted her usual practice of demanding that Whitewall become one of the Realm's subject states, the Syndics revealed to her and Chejop Kejak that they were really the Celestial gods of peace, luck and health. They then bluntly threatened to "reallocate" the Realm's allotment of those things to other nations if she did not back off. She did.
Yo-Ping, God of Peace
The god in charge of overseeing the five directional peace gods.
- Nice Guy: While as corrupt as most high ranking gods, said corruption is based around providing peace and happiness to almost all of Creation. And the only reason it's "almost all" is that he doesn't want to remove all conflict and put the gods of war out of business.
- Odd Friendship: Despite the obvious conflict between their purviews he's actually very fond of E-Naluna, goddess of war.
Luranume, Master of Fivefold Luck
Uvanavu, the Chrysanthemum Shogun, God of Health and Well-Being
Amoth City-Smiter, God of Tumbled Ruins
Arcadelt, God of World-Shattering Events
The god of calamitous events, Arcadelt is a laid back god who genuinely hopes his services will never be called for.
- Apocalypse How: While he is the titular god of this, he isn't responsible for them. Instead, he holds onto the Apocalypse Scrolls, in case they need to be used by Heaven. If an actual apocalyptic event occurs, it's Arcadelt's job to document it, rather than promoting or dissuading it.
- Artifact of Death: Any god that touches one of the Scrolls without permission from the Maiden of Endings, the Sidereal Chair of the Convention on Natural Disasters, and Arcadelt himself, will be instantly incinerated.
- But for Me, It Was Tuesday: So far, the only events that have warranted Arcadelt's attention were the Primordial War, the Usurpation, and the Great Contagion. The disappearance of the Scarlet Empress and the Time of Tumult have yet to become serious enough for him to perform his duties.
- Doomsday Device: Has several Apocalypse Scrolls locked away in his safe. Each is the key to release an imprisoned being of immense destructive power, like the Kukla or other greater elemental dragons.
- The Gods Must Be Lazy: He's lax about the security of the Scrolls, thinking that their ability to light a divine thief on fire is sufficient to keep them safe. Because of the infrequency of disasters of sufficient magnitude, he considers his job to be paid retirement.
- Nice Guy: Despite being in charge of cataclysmic occurrences, Arcadelt typically takes on the form of a kind blind man covered in tattoos.
- What Could Possibly Go Wrong?: Arcadelt is unaware that the Apocalypse Scrolls will only burn gods who don't have permission to touch them. Their defense mechanism doesn't work against Exalted, demons, devas, Fair Folk, or even mortals.
Blue Crest Merchant, God of Naval Trade
Burnished Talon, Daimyo of Mammalian Predators
Flashing Peak, Goddess of the Imperial Mountain
Ghataru, Shogun-Regent of the Seasons and Weather
Golden Reverie, God of Euphoria
Hran-Tzu, the Raven King, God of Decay
Hu Dai Ling, Shogun of the Crimson Banner
Itzcalimon, God of Blackmail
The god of blackmail and a puppet of the Ebon Dragon.
- Blackmail: What he's the god of.
- Dark Secret: He's actually a pawn of the Ebon Dragon, who uses him to operate in Yu-Shan.
- The Worm That Walks: He looks like a humanoid mass of snakes.
Laughing Ragamuffin, God of Smuggling
Livilla, Goddess of Prostitutes
Luxana, Goddess of Recorded Knowledge
Masque of Repose, God of Funereal Arrangements
Nara-O of the Hundred Veils
Ruvia, Captain of the Golden Barque, God of Roads
Scarazan, Goddess of Divine Reallocation
Tara-Kül, Goddess of Prayer Transceiver Modules
Vermillion Ink Silencer, God of Mergers and Liquidations
Verumipra, Ambassador to the Cursed City, Warden of the Exiles
Wayang, the Black Puppet Mask
Wun Ja, Goddess of the Shining Metropolis
Xaos the Hidden, God of Things Undiscovered
Yaogin the Fair, Bearer of the Lapis Ewer
Nysela, Charioteer of the DaystarOriginally the Unconquered Sun's navigator, Nysela is currently the main pilot and guide of the Daystar, the vehicle Creation perceives as the sun, as one of the few gods that has not left its service.
She's utterly devoted to the Unconquered Sun, and works herself to the bone to manage the Daystar in his absence; never the most compassionate of beings, she's become more than a little hardened by all that's happened since the Usurpation.
- Ace Pilot: Became one for the Daystar out of necessity; it's even more impressive considering that the thing was designed to be used by an Incarnae, not an ordinary god, and thus none of the controls come easily or intuitively to her the way they come to the Unconquered Sun.
- All Love Is Unrequited: It's become downright legendary down in Yu-Shan.
- Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Along with the Daystar itself, she no longer exists as of Ex3.
- The Confidant: When they were both still in the service of the Primordials, she was the first person that the Unconquered Sun admitted his feelings of rebellion to. Her complete agreement helped convince him that going against them truly was the right thing to do, arguably setting the whole Rebellion in motion.
- Ignored Enamored Underling: But her feelings aside, she and the Unconquered Sun work very well together as navigator and pilot.
- Ignored Expert: Tried her best to correct (with force, sometimes) the Solars when they started to stray from the Unconquered Sun's ideals, but was ignored.
- The Last DJ: The only one of the Daystar's crew who hasn't abandoned it.
- Undying Loyalty: For the Unconquered Sun, she'll do anything.
- Unlucky Childhood Friend: She and the Unconquered Sun were quite close when they worked together before the rebellion, with it being implied that she was in love with him even then; while Sol's had some Ship Tease here and there with the other Incarnae, there's no indication that he'll ever feel the same way towards her.
- Workaholic: The reason the sun keeps to its course and the world isn't even more screwed than it already is is because she's one.
- Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: No longer exists as of the release of third edition.
Granalkin, Archer on the Silver Pass
Tethys on the Untrammeled Path
Grala, Mistress of the Hunt
- Asian Lion Dogs: They're immense lions made of pure orichalcum. They serve a similar role as the weaker lion dogs but with higher status, watching over the gates of Yu-Shan and of the gardens of the peaches of immortality and acting as Heaven's police force. When they need backup or numbers for a task, they often command squads of lion dogs as well. They're much more dedicated to their honor and do not generally fall into corruption, but have also been greatly disillusioned by Heaven's tarnished state and have for the most part become deeply cynical beings.
Aurichim and Argentim
The creations of Authochthon, the Pattern Spiders maintain the Loom of Fate, ensuring that the threads remain running along the appropriate lines and that causality remains in effect. This being something of a full-time job, the Pattern Spiders haven't had a break in a long time. Because of this, if they're subjected to an increased work load due to Essence expenditure or Astrology, they can get... tetchy. That said, watching through the Loom as the Exalted perform incredible and awesome feats is the closest thing they get to good entertainment, so they tend to give the more awesome feats a bit of a leg up (thus explaining the Stunting rules).
- Butt-Monkey: Between Sidereal Astrology, Verdant Emptiness Endowment, beings Outside Fate, and all the other things that screw up the Loom, one gets the idea the spiders can't get a break.
- Clock Roaches: They can detect your fate strand in the Loom, and they will bite it if you sufficiently piss them off.
- Fantastic Racism: Towards Sidereals, since Astrology forces yet more work on them.
- Expy: They share their name with a class of Weaver creatures from Werewolf: The Apocalypse that protected the Pattern Web.
- Mechanical Lifeforms: They're essentially living robots in the shape of spiders.
- Stalker Without a Crush: Rarely, one will become obsessed with a specific fate strand, leading to this.
- Inferiority Superiority Complex: Being stuck as glorified traffic cops does not agree with them at all.
The Terrestrial Bureaucracy
Spinner of Glorious Tales
Weaver of Dreams of Victory
Shield of Another Day
The Golden LordThe patron of An-Teng and judge of the Solar Exalted.
The Pale Mistress
Ameru, God of Meru
The Ancient of Stone Journeys
Sessen Douji, the Mountain Boy
Plentimon of the DiceThe god of Gambling and Gamblers, Celestial Minister of Gambling, Plentimon is a god who refuses to work in the Bureau of Heaven's Department of Universal Human Affairs, instead spending time in Creation. This is simply because he enjoys watching people risk everything on games of chance, as well as watching truly skilled brave players gamble. Sometimes he goes in disguise, gaining wealth and ruining casinos by playing with his divine skill, other times he travels openly. He has the appearance of a starry void in the vague shape of a man, with four arms. Given his incredible skill, he never cheats but wouldn't even if he had to-as as a result he can be beaten usually for high stakes. One gambler who beat him is one of the sample Exigents in the Third Edition core, while another simply settled for the more mundane reward of minority ownership of one of the god's casinos.
His casino, The Diving Sea Snake, has all typical games of chance, but more esoteric games as well, such as life drinking, where people drink from a tray of wine glasses, one of which is poisoned, and bets with Fair Folk, wagering one's soul against their favors. People who lose games with Plentimon and refuse to pay up don't live very long, but those who seem willing to repay can be given a chance to play as long as they work for him. Given his open interaction with humanity (though Plentimon doesn't openly ask to be worshiped) he straddles the line between law-abiding god and rogue rule-breaker.
- A Form You Are Comfortable With: Played with-even when Plentimon is obviously Plentimon, he appears somewhat human and when he wants he can appear as an ordinary mortal. One chapter comic sees him surprising a gambler with bad luck who blames Plentimon for his loss-he then quietly warns the gambler that he's not responsible for all bad luck, but if he gets mad he can make sure you have nothing else.
- Card Sharp: Averted-Plentimon doesn't cheat, doesn't like cheaters and even considers certain charms (anything that automatically provides success) cheating, backing it up with a power to make using those Charms more difficult in his presence. He doesn't even use them himself, as it offends his pride.
- Defector from Decadence: Plentimon could have a job in Heaven, since he rules over a universal concept, but he prefers to live in Creation, where he runs two casinos most of the year and spends the rest traveling to the great gambling houses of Creation, overseeing games and playing himself.
- Immortality Seeker: Some of the people who visit his casinos. From The Compass of Terrestrial Directions: The WestRich old men frequently bet large portions of their wealth against impoverished youths willing to bet a decade or more from of their own lifespans.
- Multi-Armed and Dangerous: Plentimon is not a war god, or particularly disposed to combat. But his power over luck and bad luck can have all kinds of consequences. And given the Essence and status that result from being the god of a universal concept, he receives a lot of prayers and has a lot of power.
- Mundane Made Awesome: Plentimon owns two magic artifacts that let players wager anything on a game, from their souls, to Essence, to years of their life, to raw Attributes themselves, turning a simple game of dice into a life or death event, and allowing a cunning mortal to even become Exalted.
- Professional Gambler: Plentimon is probably the greatest gambler in all of Creation or Yu-Shan and while he has lost, it's doubtful anyone who beats him in one game could match his skill in every other game he knows. One of his attacks involves enchanting a game piece and throwing it with fairly dangerous force.
- Randomized Damage Attack: Has a withering touch attack that has a base damage, augmented by anywhere from 1-10, depending on a roll of the die.
- Winds of Destiny, Change!: Plentimon can bless with good luck and curse with bad luck-this is explained as attracting the attention of actual gods of fortune.
Burning Feather, Lady of Intoxicants
Gri-Fel, God of the Imperial City
Tu Yu, God of DelhelsenThe City Father of Deheleshen, the First Age city on whose ruins Lookshy is built.
- Large and in Charge: Fitting his status as the god of a major and important city, he's always a head taller than the next tallest person in the room.
- Mad God: Tu Yu maintains a facade of the cultured, polite and charming god he was, but beneath that he is mad — the death of his city broke him, and he spends most of his time aimlessly roaming Deheleshen's buried ruins and doing horrible things to treasure hunters who go poking around where they shouldn't.
- Truly Single Parent: As Deheleshen burned and died around him in the closing days of the Balorian Crusade and the Great Contagion, an ailing and maddened Tu Yu vomited up a load of blood and a living god-child — Tien Yu — to save his city.
Tien Yu, Goddess of LookshyThe City Mother of Lookshy.
- Cast From Life Span: Tien Yu doesn't age, and so using her more powerful Charms causes Lookshy to fall sooner instead. Eclipse Solars, their Moonshadow and Fiend counterparts, and God-Bloods who manage to learn these Charms also reduce the time Lookshy has left.
- Dangerous Forbidden Technique: Tien Yu's more powerful Charms, as using them causes Lookshy's fall to come about sooner. Eclipses/Moonshadows/Fiends and God-Bloods who learn these Charms also accelerate Lookshy's demise, but because they are less linked to Lookshy, the Dangerous Forbidden part is downplayed, if not subverted outright.
- Your Days Are Numbered: An interesting variant. It's Lookshy itself, not Tien Yu, whose days are numbered, and the Pattern Spiders have already decided its fate. To make things worse, Tien Yu's more powerful Charms reduce the number of days Lookshy has left. If an Eclipse, Moonshadow, Fiend, or God-Blood learns any of these Charms, they also erode Lookshy's remaining fate.
Kireeki, Huntress of the Waves
Madame Marthesine of the Lost
The Mammoth Avatar
Rabszolga, God of Slaves
- Dark Secret: He has two:
- First is his friendship with the Deathlord the Lover Clad in the Raiment of Tears, whose fortress he has been visiting increasingly frequently.
- Second is that he captured a Guild slave that had Exalted into a Solar who had sworn to eradicate slavery forever and handed the Exalted to the Lover Clad in the Raiment of Tears, who warped the Solar into a Abyssal. If the Celestial censors found out about this, he would be screwed.
- God of Evil: God of a horrible thing, with every intention of spreading it. Still a proud member of the Celestial Order.
- Too Kinky to Torture: He's mastered the Laughing Wounds martial art style, something he most likely picked up from the Lover Clad in the Raiment of Tears.
Translucent Alabaster, the Porcelain Lady
Vanileth, Shogun of Artificial Flight
- Achilles in His Tent: Since the Usurpation and the near-total decline of his portfolio.
Zhuzhiao, High Princep of the Deep Trenches, Arch-Curator of Fuliginous Depths
Caltia the EternalThe Hunter Queen and patron of the Haltans. Has an intense rivalry with Jorst.
Golden-Eyed JorstA forest god and patron of the Linowan. He has an intense rivalry with Caltia.
- Split Personality: He has a bottle of some sort of liquor which turns him from the genial party-throwing god he's usually known as into a scheming, manipulative Smug Snake. We see the former in Terrestrial Directions: East and the latter in the Sidereals book.
- War God: What the Linowan worship him as.
Arilak the Unseen
Five Days DarknessThe shadow of the Unconquered Sun, as a god. He is bitter over the fact that the calendar gods won't accept a creature of darkness as the god of Calibration, the five day period when all the celestial bodies are absent.
He has since extended that animosity towards the Bronze Faction and the Immaculate Order, whom the Court has aligned themselves with. As part of his campaign against them, Five Days Darkness has made himself one of the few gods to expand his power through personal effort; he somehow became an Immaculate Grandmaster, and very much enjoys beating on monks with their own techniques.
- Dark Is Not Evil: One of the very few examples. He's metaphysically a Creature of Darkness on account of being the shadow of the Unconquered Sun, and he has powers that strip away at virtues, but he's not actually evil, for the most part, and respects the Unconquered Sun even if the two are metaphysically opposed.
- Living Shadow: Both literally and in terms of his form.
- Super Empowering: In second edition, he can empower someone at the cost of them gaining his dark nature. In game terms, this increases the target's Essence by 1 (mortals become God-Blooded related to him) instantly at no experience cost, but they lose one dot of one of their virtues, and the maximum value of that virtue drops by one (usually to 4). They also count as creatures of darkness.
- The Voiceless: Always speaks with the voice of the last person to speak with him.
BadgeruA corrupt city god in the shape of a large badger, usually shown being bullied by Sidereals in the second edition chapter comics.
The Court of Seasons
The Unseen, Gods of Ascending Air
The Divine One, Goddess of Resplendent Air
The Dreamer, Deity of Descending Air
The Cold Roars, Gods of Ascending Water
The Three, Gods of Resplendent Water
The White Terrors, Gods of Descending Water
The Reflecting Silence, God of Ascending Earth
The Seer, God of Resplendent Earth
The Whisperer, God of Descending Earth
The Seven Fangs, Gods of Ascending Wood
The Riddling Tree, God of Resplendent Wood
The Twin, God of Descending Wood
The Golden Stars, Goddesses of Ascending Fire
The Pinion, God of Resplendent Fire
The Desert Noon, Goddess of Descending Fire
Han-Tha, the Ghoul King
Currently, the only named deity of the Forbidden Gods, and generally the Big Bad compared to the rest of them. Han-Tha is the god of necrophagy and scavenging animals, and to a lesser extent political corruption (the "scavengers" of a failing society are corrupt bureaucrats, after all). During the Primordial War, Han-Tha remained neutral, preferring to do his heavenly duties without complaint or malice. However, the other gods, both a little Squicked out by his domain and frightened by his Cannibalism Superpower (indeed, he's become Essence 9 due to it — literally one step away from maxing out the meter) didn't care, instead attempting to starforge him. But as the No Party Like a Donner Party might imply, if there's anything Han-Tha is good at, it's surviving bad odds, and he escaped to the Dragon King city of Rathess.
Embittered by what he saw as a hypocritical betrayal, Han-Tha started his cult among the already decadent and corrupt Dragon Kings, accelerating the fall of their society. When Rathess collapsed, Han-Tha was content to sit back and guide the local Cannibal Tribe that saw him as a patron...
... And then a Solar was converted to his cult.
Now a Big Bad Duumvirate with the Dawn Filial Wisdom (and on occasion, the more moral of the pair), Han-Tha has decided to consume the corpse of the world so that a new one may be born... guided by his wisdom, of course. It's only a matter of time before he begins to make inroads...
- Humanoid Abomination: Looks like a giant mound of grey muscle with what is very much a Nightmare Face in his chest.
- God of Evil: His motivation is literally to eat the entire world.
- Jerkass Has a Point: For all of his egomania and pride, Han-Tha has a point when he points out that the Celestial Bureaucracy kicked him out essentially because they didn't like his purview. This is the same group that contains the Gods of the Destruction of Civilization, Blackmail, and Slavery.
- More Teeth than the Osmond Family: His maw is an endless sea of sharp fangs.
- Our Ghouls Are Different: Han-Tha, the Ghoul King, is a god of cannibalism, necrophagy and scavengers who takes the form of a great eyeless beast with a giant maw filled with sharp fangs. His worship is forbidden, and is only found among depraved cults and degenerate primitives lurking in ruined cities.
Yukino-Takka, the Broken GodThe Balorian Crusade broke more than just a large portion of Creation; it broke a lot of gods, too. Yukino-Takka was one of them, the spirit of a thing so completely absorbed by the Wyld even he doesn't know what it is. He remembers what happened afterwards though; captured by a raksha princess, he was tortured far past the Despair Event Horizon, and mutated into a horrifying form riddled with parasitic fungi as he watched his worshipers slowly consumed by the greedy Fair Folk. Eventually, the only emotion he could readily feel was despair, at which point his Emotion Eater captive lost interest and set him free. He retained his morals, however; he now serves as a guide to mortals lost in the Wyld and warriors against the raksha.
- Body Horror: He's afflicted with Wyld mushrooms that he actively has to trim away with a Cold Iron dagger to prevent from overtaking his sensory organs.
- Dark Is Not Evil: He's been mutated into a partly-fae hybrid monster, but the only Creation-born he poses a threat to is himself.
- Don't You Dare Pity Me!: He is so absolutely convinced his condition is unfixable that he actively avoids Exalted, since some inevitably try to figure out a way to cure his mutations and reintegrate him into Creation. He thinks this is a waste of time and compassion. Deconstructed, in that this is explicitly a terrible idea, and he is outright wrong; it would take some doing, but he is more than capable of having his divinity repaired, he is simply shying away from people who could help him.
- Fantastic Racism: Subverted. He does not like working with Exalted...because those prone to Pet the Dog might "waste" their efforts on helping him, and he doesn't want to be a burden.
- Shell-Shocked Veteran: Of the Balorian Crusade.
- Elemental Embodiment: Elementals of the five in-universe elements — water, fire, wood, air and earth — have a prominent presence in Creation; a few are mindless, but they're generally spirits in the same vein as the gods, using a lot of the same Charms and abilities. They originated from the essence of the five immense, primordial elementals shattered during the between the gods and the Primordials, and can embody an element's qualities as much as its nature — a water elemental may be formed from or control water, or it may instead embody water's tendency to be formless and take the shapes given to it by the world, while a fire elemental may embody fire's power to purify and transform. Because they're naturally material in Creation, and come from the raw elements in the normal world, elementals are considered bumpkins by the actual gods. However, they do enjoy a bit more latitude from the Immaculate Order, because elementals are supposed to be material, unlike gods, as a part of their assigned jobs. So long as they do not solicit worship from mortals of course.
- Limited Advancement Opportunities: Like gods, elementals can grow in power and ability, as reflected by their Essence score, until they become lesser elemental dragons, which is pretty much equal to a rather high-ranking god. Unfortunately, to go any further and become a greater elemental dragon would turn them into collosal monsters which are largely mindless forces of nature that must be imprisoned or put down for the good of Creation. This tends to make lesser elemental dragons somewhat ambivalent, as they cannot progress any further, unlike the gods.
- Our Dragons Are Different: Lesser elemental dragons are elementals who have reached the Essence score of 6 and above, taking on shapes largely patterned after the Classical Chinese serpents in the process. This also catapults them to Rank 4 in the Celestial Bureaucracy — i.e., two steps below the Incarna — a fact that they point out at every opportunity. Greater elemental dragons, the next step up, are unspeakably powerful but effectively mindless entities who blur the line between "creature" and "natural disaster", and need to kept in permanent hibernation to preserve Creation's stability.
The Great Garda
The Wind Master
Elementals of Air
- Fantastic Racism: Air elemental loathe their aquatic counterparts, and a large portion of their kind is engaged in an extensive genocidal campaign against the water elementals.
- Thunderbird: Thunderbirds are air elementals resembling immense raptorial birds who create wind with the beating of their wings and coax lightning out of clouds, and can take on human shape, and are passionate beings who thrive in both love and battle.
Nasri, General of the Aerial Legion
- Morton's Fork: Storm serpents preferentially attack the pure and innocent during their rampages. This is used in some societies to determine an accused person's guilt. When a storm brews, they're left in the serpent's path; if they're guilty, they'll be ignored and afterwards punished as locally appropriate. If they're innocent, they'll be killed the moment the serpent spots them.
Elemental Dragons of Air
The Wind Masters
Blue Skulking Bear
Green Frowning Bear
Black Grinning Bear
Red Stalking Bear
White Venerable Bear
Elementals of Fire
Elementals in the shape of large, beautiful birds with gold, purple or silver feathers (the exact coloration depends on the specific form they are in, as they can take several), known for their wisdom and reclusive natures.
- Divine Birds: Their immortality allows them to amass a great deal of wisdom and knowledge, for which they are revered and often sought out. This is complicated by their habit of leading ascetic lives in remote places such as mountaintops and their tendency towards a haughty and superior attitude towards petitioners, which they take even towards spirit courts and minor deities.
- The Phoenix: They are ageless and immortal — when one dies, it is reborn in flame nine days later. One of the forms they use for combat, a humanoid with six arms and the head, tail, wings and claws of an eagle, is also referred to as the Phoenix form.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: They can take a number of forms, including the "emperor" form (a gold-and-purple peacock-like bird, their default appearance), the "empress" form (a silver-feathered peasant with wicked claws, usually a combat form) and the "phoenix" form (a six-armed eagle-like bird person, another combat form they take when they're genuinely pissed off).
- Our Genies Are Different: Ifrit are humanoid fire elementals of fairly considerable power, and generally given much more respect by the gods than elementals usually are.
Elemental Dragons of Fire
Jealous Saffron Rage, the Underground Fire
Elementals of Water
- Our Nymphs Are Different: Nymphs are water elementals resembling blue-skinned women with pearl eyes. They're extremely beautiful and sometimes take mortal lovers, but these inevitably drown when the nymph takes them to her underwater home.
Elemental Dragons of Water
Ogime, the Frog Queen
Fakharu, Censor of the West
Elementals of Wood
Serpentine elementals with a body like a flexible green vine, a tail branching into a tangle of roots and a head like a Venus flytrap with a long sticky tongue like a sundew. They are typically born from shoots or root fragments in the jungles of the East and the Southwest.
- Man-Eating Plant: Newborn ones have an overwhelming hunger for meat and will devour any that they find, regardless of whether its owner is living or dead — they can even heal themselves by gorging on flesh. They eventually grow out of this, though; their tree-sized elders are content to mind their own business in the deep jungle and to let their neighbors mind their own.
- Multipurpose Tongue: Their tongue, which is basically a giant sundew tendril, is prehensile, and fully capable of wrapping around foes and dragging them into the greenmaw's jaws.
- Swallowed Whole: One of their offensive charms, Thorn-Toothed Maw, allows them to gulp down enemy combatants whole. These are then dumped into the greenmaw's gut, where they must cut their way free or take their chances with the elemental's powerful digestive acids.
Kings of the Wood
- Treants: Kings of the wood are powerful wood elementals resembling humanoid trees. They rule over and protect forests and spirit courts of wood, but do so extremely harshly and tolerate dissent from their subjects as little as they tolerate mortal loggers.
Elemental Dragons of Wood
Joyous Youth Juritsu
Elementals of Earth
These five foot long silver ants are the servants of the Lesser Elemental Dragon of Earth known as the Quicksilver Queen. They are skilled at alchemy, capable of doing many impressive feats, but their greatest feat is the effect their poison has on sexual beings.
- Anything That Moves: One of the downsides of being bitten by one. While the effect of their poison increases the poisoned intellect, it also strengthens their libido.
- Cast from Lifespan: Anyone infected with the Mercury Ants' poison ages three times faster than normal.
- Hive Mind: Subverted, While some savants believe they have this, they actually use silent alchemical signals to communicate.
- Super Intelligence: One effect of their poison. However it also massively increases libido and causes aging to occur three times faster. In game terms, every two weeks the poisoned gains one dice to all intelligence rolls, but loses one dice to all temperance rolls to resist sexual situations. If the poisoned orgasms by any means, both the intelligence bonus and the temperance penalty are reset to zero.
Elemental Dragons of Earth
The Quicksilver Queen
- Hive Queen: She serves as this to mercury ants. She's their creator and progenitor, and the legions of their kind serve her adoringly and unquestioningly — going against or even analyzing her orders is literally unthinkable for them.
The KuklaThe Kukla was the first elemental to ascend to the status of Greater Elemental Dragon. In so doing, it also revealed that this ascension will destroy an elemental's sanity and consciousness, and became a barely sapient apocalypse that needs to be kept sealed far away from civilization.
- Eldritch Abomination: Reading about it is akin to reading a description of something from the Cthulhu Mythos.
- The End of the World as We Know It: This is guaranteed to happen if the Kukla awakens, unless some very powerful Exalted stop it. The Solars of the First Age would unleash the Kukla to help them develop new Armageddon strategies.
- Godzilla Threshold: What it's been kept alive for — its power assimilates the Wyld and purifies shadowlands even as it blasts them to bits, so releasing it is a viable if firmly last-resort way of dealing with scenarios where Creation is lost to the dead or the Fair Folk.
- Kaiju: It is miles long, and its tail can reduce cities and mountain ranges to rubble. Releasing it also lets loose a plume of steam and ash over six hundred miles high.
- Legacy Character: Courtesy of a Series Continuity Error. This is the second Kukla; the first is an entity known as an Apocalypse Dragon.
- Non-Malicious Monster: More of a natural disaster than a true character in its own right.
- Our Dragons Are Different: It's a dragon, as described above... with twelve legs... four eyes, each with two pupils... capable of instantly rendering areas near it into topsoil... and has a tail with a swinging arc the size of a mountain range.
- Restart the World: Waking up the Kukla is Creation's factory-reset, completely starting the world and civilization over again. It will completely purge it of shadowlands and Wyld corruption as it does so, but will also destroy everything else in the bargain and is consequently kept as a weapon of absolute last resort.
The ultimate embodiments of the five elements used to build Creation and exalt the Dragon-Blooded.
- Retcon: In Second Edition they were five of Gaia's Third Circle souls. In Third Edition they are neither deva nor elemental, but their own separate kind of being.
Pasiap, the Dragon of Earth
- Killed Off for Real: In Return of the Scarlet Empress, Pasiap is killed by the Ebon Dragon when Mount Meru is destroyed.
Mela, the Dragon of Air
- The Archmage: The Immaculates credit her with the discovery and spread of sorcery. Whether or not this is true is a matter she has remained rather silent on.
Daana'd, the Dragon of Water
Hesiesh, the Dragon of Fire
Sextes Jylis, the Dragon of Wood
There was just one problem. The Primordials anticipated that Gods might betray them, and geased them at their creation to never directly harm their masters. To get around this, the Incarnae (with help from two relatively good Primordials who had joined their side, Gaia and Autochthon) imbued mortals with their epic cosmic strength to become the titular Exalted, for the Primordials thought Humanity could never pose a threat to them personally. That... didn't work out too well for them.
The Primordials were cut down from Heaven as the Gods ascended to take their place, leaving them undead (the Neverborn) or imprisoned inside their own king (the Yozi). The only ones left unscathed are Gaia and Autochthon.
Tropes associated with all Primordials
- Achilles' Heel: One of a Primordial's sub-souls is a fetich, its heart-soul, which contains most of its self. If the fetich is killed, its overself is transformed, becoming a new and different Primordial. (The true death of a Primordial, turning it into a Neverborn, is not accomplished through fetich death alone.)
- Crippling Overspecialization: Deconstructed in second edition — each Primordial embodies a different concept so completely that they have a hard time understanding anything outside of their paradigm. This is at least one reason why they were overthrown.
- Eldritch Abomination: They're Genius Loci with multiple, self-aware souls that have their own multiple, self-aware souls. What they aren't alien in, however, is their emotions — it's perhaps more accurate to say we have theirs, and each one has a personality that can be understood from a human perspective.
- Genius Loci: Their jouten (bodies) include vast worlds that can be much, much larger than Creation, with their Third Circle Souls often making up various landscapes and other massive features.
- Hive Mind: Soul hierarchies kinda-sorta work this way.
- Idiot Savant: Fans and writers alike favour this term as a description for them. In 2E their Charms make them transcendentally brilliant in areas related to their themes. In anything else... they're rather less capable. Except for Autochthon. He's spent so much time around humans that he has an easier time understanding things outside of his purview due to their influence on him, although he's still far less mentally flexible than them.
- Mad God:
- Come off as this — the Primordials literally think differently from everyone else, including other Primordials. As a result, they can perform the most horrific of acts not out of any actual malevolence, but because they don't see why it's wrong. Autochthon and Gaia are the only ones capable of social empathy due to their purview (or rather, Gaia is, while Autochthon made himself capable of it), but even they can perform Kick the Dog acts while being completely baffled as to why the dog in question is mad at them. The exception to this trend is the Ebon Dragon, who goes around kicking dogs because that is his purview.
- However, their imprisonment has since made the Yozis a different kind of mad. Where they were once happy to just ignore mortal suffering, being cast into Hell by a bunch of puny hairless apes has made that kind of detachment impossible, and now they've grown so bitter and vengeful that most of them are actively malicious toward humanity. (And, of course, the Ebon Dragon was always fairly malevolent as a simple function of what he is.)
- The Old Gods: Both older and more powerful than the gods.
- Our Titans Are Different: They're referred to as titans, and their overthrow is inspired by the Greek myth of the Titanomachia. But on the other hand they're not remotely humanoid, nor strictly divine.
- Soul Jar: The Fetich Soul — the one that contains the Primordial's self-image — works like this. Kill it, and you've basically reset the Primordial's identity.
- With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: Urges and torment are intrinsic to the Primordial condition.
Autochthon, the Great MakerThe inventor of Exaltation and an advocate of humanity in general, Autochthon is the greatest inventor of the Primordials, taking the form of a living machine. Weakest of his siblings thanks to Voidtech constantly draining his health, he was constantly belittled and bullied by his siblings until he finally snapped and sided with the gods in their nascent rebellion.
Unfortunately, he possesses all the foresight of a blind lemming.
- Ambiguous Disorder: It's been implied that a lot of the design ethic behind his characterization was inspired by various versions of autism and Asperger's Syndrome, which fits in well with the writers designing the Primordials after various disorders.
- Ascended Extra: From a meta standpoint; Autochthon was first mentioned in the Old World of Darkness as an extremely obscure entity in the Mage gameline, with little being known or said about him. In Exalted, he's since been redefined into a major part of the setting, a setting in his own right, and a significant chunk of the backstory.
- The Atoner: Compass: Autochthonia reveals that there's a landmark in his body that embodies the guilt he feels over his part in the Primordial War, known as the Monolith Garden.
- Blessed with Suck: It's not quite canon yet, but according to forum posts by the Ink Monkeys, Autochthon's illness, madness and genius (particularly his ability to think outside the box) are all outgrowths of his theme of violating boundaries.
- Capital Letters Are Magic: The first edition adventure sourcebook for the Alchemical Exalted, in an adventure where he is ideally awakened from his sleep, gives him the honor of being one of (if not the first) Primordial to directly be shown speaking, and all his words Have The First Letter Capitalized.
- The Corruption: Voidtech, essentially an Oblivion-fueled cancer that takes the form of various horrific machinery (often fused with organic matter) that spreads throughout his body. When he was awake, he was able to treat it without much difficulty, but now, he's perilously close to death. Interestingly, the precise function of his sickness reads as a inversion of Cybernetics Eat Your Soul with cancerous organic matter defiling and corrupting his mechanical body.
- Ditzy Genius: All that intelligence, all that innovation... and a complete lack of anything resembling the ability to plan in the long term.
- The Dog Bites Back: If the Primordials hadn't treated him like crap while they were free, he wouldn't have created the Exaltations.
- Elemental Embodiment: In a peculiar matter of speaking; while he doesn't take it to the same extremes as Gaia, he thought that her elemental schematic was a good idea and recreated himself with industrial-themed elements that lend themselves well to his steampunk aesthetic: Metal, Steam, Crystal, Lightning, and Oil, with a sixth element of Smoke typically being stated to be an embodiment of his sickness.
- Eternal Engine: His body is the (extremely hazardous) machine-world of Autochthonia, essentially a planet-sized mass of Magitek and Steampunk.
- Expy: He's based quite a lot on Hephaestus/Vulcan, down to being a crippled ingenious inventor and patron of engineering who was bullied by his peers. Made more clearly in the original World of Darkness, where he was implied to be the inspiration for all craft gods. He also has more than a bit of Prometheus in him, being a titan associated with knowledge and technology who betrayed his fellow titans out of fondness for humanity.
- Extra-ore-dinary: Apart from his mechanical themes, he devised Metal as one of his elements, and the Elemental Pole of Metal is where the majority of his human inhabitants reside.
- Eye Scream: Some material suggests that he lost his left eye at some point, and that it may well have since transformed into the nigh-mythical artifact called the Eye of Autochthon.
- Gadgeteer Genius: As with everything in Exalted, taking to the extreme. It's a large chunk of his narrative themes, and supposedly he invented the original means of fashioning the gods and life in general, but didn't have anything to do with the initial design of Creation itself. This aspect of him carries even onto his inhabitants; simply existing inside him inspires humans to greater feats of mechanical ingenuity.
- Horrifying the Horror: Luna has an Intimacy of fear towards Autochthon. Yes, Luna.
- Kick the Dog: We can understand why he had to vivisect various examples of Primordial life-forms in order to create the Exalted, and he did create artifacts which put them back together... but why, oh why, did he leave them in there?
- Mechanical Lifeform: His native bodies invariably take the form of living machinery, and it's implied that his sickness typically takes the form of organic matter infecting his matter. Given how extensively it applies to him in general, he's often considered to be the living embodiment of this trope in-universe.
- My God, What Have I Done?: The end of the Primordial War, and the deaths of several of his Primordial kin, was much worse than he ever planned for; he was so horrified by the consequences of what he'd set up that it was part of the reason for his self-imposed exile from Creation.
- No OSHA Compliance: It's not so much that he doesn't care. It's that machines can't hurt him, so it's never occurred to him that they might hurt other people. The entire concept of "safety features" apparently isn't part of his purview.
- No Social Skills
- Pet the Dog: The Monolith Garden; he was so horrified by the final death of several Primordials, and the creation of the Neverborn, that he created a monument to their memory inside himself, filled with several thousand runes that play out a song of absolute regret and remorse. Additionally, it's filled with statues of these fallen Primordials' creations that pleased him the most, with possible clues on recreating them. Also, his affection for humanity, initially inspired by them using his three favorite inventions: Tools, Faith and Dogma.
- Professor Guinea Pig: Notoriously prone to this, and while it has genuinely improved his life in various ways, it's caused him a fair amount of trouble. Among other things, he's modified his Third Circle devas' capacity to produce Second Circles and remade his devas so that they functioned similar to the Incarna, because he felt that it was more efficient and clean than his original soul hierarchy. Went somewhat further when reconfiguring his fetich, but due to this, he's capable of acting outside his themes and comprehending things he otherwise couldn't, at reduced competence.
- Too Dumb to Live: Autochthon is a shining example of how the Crippling Overspecialization of Primordials can render them simultaneously brilliant beyond all compare (while acting within their themes) and dumber than a sack of hammers (when dealing with concepts outside of their themes). Compass: Autochthonia reveals he actually can work outside of his themes, thanks to some surgery on his fetich (which is essentially Do It Yourself Neurosurgery). He just happens to have no idea how, and he's rather reckless.
- Transhuman: Or Trans-Primordial, as it may be. Compass of Celestial Directions: Autochthonia reveals he effectively replaced his fetich's brain with himself (roll with it), meaning he can comprehend things outside of his themes. He just happens to be really bad at it.
- Ultimate Blacksmith: Another large aspect of his themes. Among other things, he originally devised life and art as thematic concepts.
- World of Symbolism: The Far Reaches — those parts of his body not colonized by the Autochthonians — often become this, reflecting aspects of his psyche and personality.
Gaia, the Emerald MotherYoungest of the Primordials, and an explorer and adventurer. Together, she and Cytherea collaborated to build Creation. One of her bodies, a human-looking woman, remains in Creation; the rest of her is deep in the Wyld, searching for the fabled Shining Answer.
- Beneath the Mask: While her humanoid body's pleasant enough, some of the gods remember the primal force of Gaia in her totality, and fear her eventual return.
- Elemental Embodiment: Created the main elements of Fire, Water, Air, Earth and Wood, and helped design the Elemental Poles to pin Creation into place. It's unknown how integral they are to her exactly. In 2E the Elemental Dragons were fairly minor sub-souls in her hierarchy, but in 3E they aren't her souls at all.
- My Girl Back Home: Luna. Also sometimes a Guy Back Home.
- Official Couple: With Luna.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: At the end of the Primordial War, she convinced the Celestial Incarnae to spare the surrendering Primordials, resulting in them becoming the Yozis instead. Although she had good reasons for doing so, doing this allowed the Yozis (mainly the Ebon Dragon) to discover the location of the Jade Prison, how to corrupt them into the Green Sun Princes, and make a deal with the Neverborn which allowed them to create the Abyssal Exalted. Although if this hadn't happened, the Solar Exaltations would most likely still be trapped in the Jade Prison. Whether this would makes things worse in the long run depends on how effective the Abyssal and Infernal Exalted are, and if any other future threats to Creation could only be stopped by the Solars (after all, a second Scarlet Empress is unlikely)
- Walking the Earth: Well, the Wyld, but still.
Mardukth, Who Holds In ThrallOnce, in distant Zen-mu, in the time before Creation, Mardukth, Who Holds In Thrall, also called the Mountain and the Beast Upon It, was King of the Primordials. When Theion — Malfeas's original incarnation — arrived to rule the Primordials, there was war between them. In the end, the Empyreal Chaos was King, and Mardukth still lived.
And so it was for countless eons, until the Primordial War.
Mardukth is not among the recorded Yozis, but there is a Neverborn called He Who Holds In Thrall, master of the First and Forsaken Lion and the Princess Magnificent. One of his Third Circle devas, Granalkin, survives as part of Luna's entourage.
- Loss of Identity: He had a particularly bad case of this, continually questioning the world around him as to whether he actually was Mardukth. Then again, if he hadn't kept asking, Zen-mu wouldn't have kept expanding.
- Monster Progenitor: He created the Uddshua from his body. They were an ancient race of thin, faceless clay giants that predated the Unconquered Sun and were nearly exterminated in the Primordial War.
- Posthumous Character: He died during the Primordial War, and became the Neverborn known as He Who Holds In Thrall.
- Reality Is Unrealistic: In-universe. The reason for his Loss of Identity. He just couldn't accept that something as immense as himself could exist.
- Suspiciously Specific Denial: None of the extant Primordials will profess to remember Mardukth ever being King, assuming anyone's in a position to ask.
Theion, the Empyreal ChaosMalfeas-That-Was. The King of the Primordials, a being of light without shadow, might without sinew, power without bounds — once, before the Exalted appeared and reduced him to a psychotic, self-obsessed city-prison.
- A God Am I: Having his absolute faith that he was this shattered was what drove him mad.
- Alternate Universe Reed Richards Is Awesome: The Gunstar Autochthonia version of him managed to dodge his Fate Worse than Death.
- Authority Equals Asskicking: What he represents and what led to his current state being infilcited on him.
- Awesome Mc Coolname: Even his powers have them, such as Universe Emperor Shintai.
- Benevolent Boss: To the rest of the Primordials, surprisingly enough. So long as he wasn't challenged, he ruled justly.
- Expy: To Cronus, as the ex-leader of The Old Gods whose attempt to esnure his eternal rule lead him to getting overthrown.
- Fate Worse than Death: What the Exalted Host did to him to turn into the Demon City isn't entirely translatable in mortal terms, but can best be described as combination of a lobotomy and a vivisection. The pain he suffered was made even worse by the sheer disbelief and horror he, the literal personification of Authority Equals Asskicking, felt as he was curbstomped by a group of Puny Earthlings. Which led to him going insane. He's the biggest example on how fetich death (Killing a Primordial/Yozi's Fetich Soul, the very core of their being, will alter them in very unexpected ways) can go horribly wrong.
- Friendly Enemy: He saw the Unconquered Sun as one. Despite his betrayal, Theion could never bring himself to truly hate him. Until Ruvelia died and he became Malfeas, that is.
- God-Emperor: What he was supposed to be. His supreme authority was a law of nature in Creation, so respected and feared that inanimate objects would tremble in fear if they tried to harm him and failed. Nowadays he's a little... worse for wear.
- I Have Many Names: The Empyreal Chaos, the Shining Tyrant, the King of All Kings, the King of the Universe, the Universe Emperor.
- Light Is Not Good: A ruthless bastard to everything who didn't serve him, who deliberately engendered rebellions to crush just so he could cement his identity.
- Machiavelli Was Wrong: Believed this wholeheartedly, since he viewed Compassion as an excellent strategy for building a kingdom.
- No Name Given: His name was unknown until Shards of the Exalted Dream.
- No-Sell: Imperishable Majesty Stance allows him to parry any physical attack that isn't unexpected, while Empyreal Invincibility Declaration makes him immune to the Shaping effects of the Wyld and those of his subordinates and servants.
- It's All About Me: His Urge encourages this kind of thinking — all the presented goals are wholly positive things... but carry the implication that the Urged, personally, must be the one to preside over it.
- Playing with Fire: He wielded white flames to destroy his enemies and anyone that dared to defy his authority. He could also use Ligier's green fire due to the latter being one of his Fetich souls. Angering Theion to the point of wanting to kill someone would reduce the target of his fury to a pile of white ash. Much like his future self, he could also use Green Sun Nimbus Flare.
- Revenge Before Reason: His Torment. If he is pushed to his limits, his Intimacy towards a chosen person or group will be replaced by one of righteous fury for as many days as his Essence level, and he will try to subjugate them and force them into servitude during that period. This also affects any Infernal blessed by him.
- Showy Invincible Villain: His Imperfection made his charms work best with a large amount of worshippers witnessing his deeds. If fighting an enemy with little to no observers around him, Theion and Infernals would have to spend more Essence motes to use his charms.
- Smug Super: Like you wouldn't believe.
- Ultimate Blacksmith: He created the sun, both to illuminate his subjects in Creation and as a gift to the young Unconquered Sun, after the latter proved himself worthy of it. He also created Yu-Shan and the framework upon which Gaia, Cytherea and the other Primordials built Creation.
The YozisThe Yozis are the Primordials who were defeated in the War and imprisoned in the body of their fallen King, with many being mutilated in some way by the Exalts and Gods. They lie in Hell, hating their treacherous creations, and working towards the day when they'll be able to escape. Or, at least, some of them are. They're also insane, backstabbing, and self-loathing monsters, who can often get in each other's way as they make their escape attempts.
- Abusive Parents: To demons. The Yozis aren't given to care about anyone much below their rank, and their psychoses and sadistic urges to act out at the world don't have many targets while stuck in Malfeas, so they content themselves with making their spawn's collective lives nasty, brutish, unhappy and short.
- Being Evil Sucks: Save Adorjan, none of the Yozis find fulfillment and comfort in their spite, not even the Ebon Dragon (there's always something more).
- Bizarre Alien Psychology:
- Since 2e's Yozis are sapient groups of charms themed around certain concepts, they can only view the world through those concepts. Except the Ebon Dragon, as the concepts that define him make him The Sociopath.
- 3e's Yozis don't work the same way, but the human perspective is still very much something they have trouble comprehending — it's like a human trying to understand what an ant thinks. One part of the human experience they do understand, though, thanks to the Primordial War, is feeling persecuted and oppressed, and it's what they look for in Infernal candidates. To an outside observer, this comes off as Moral Myopia with understandable causes; the Yozis don't appear to have empathy for the other side's perspective of the War but, given that they ended up mutilated and thrown into an eternal and inescapable prison, it'd be surprising if they did.
- Dysfunction Junction: In 2e, the personality of each Yozi was modeled on a different real-life psychiatric disorder. That, and all of them possess some amount of ennui and general depression.
- No-Sell: Each Yozi is immune to their own Charms.
- Obliviously Evil: Back when they were free, though they've picked up more than a little bitterness over the years.
- Personality Powers: In 2E, each Yozi could be described as a sentient cluster of Charms that made up their themes and personality, with each Charm's effect reflecting its Yozi's themes in some manner. Since the Infernal Exalted can create new Infernal Charms, each Infernal who does so grants the Yozi who the new Charm is related to that Charm, changing the Yozi itself (although it's not a major change, and it won't change the Yozi's core nature and themes, so there's no redeeming the Ebon Dragon by making some new Charms that are "nice".)
The Ebon Dragon, the Shadow of All ThingsOnce, he was the Primordial known as, The Dragons Shadow. After the war he became The Ebon Dragon, which was exactly what he wanted. If the Prince of Darkness had a teacher, this would be he. The embodiment of vice, creator commentary states that the Dragon is effectively the anti-Exalt — where the Exalted are supposed to be awesome, the essence (and Essence) of the Ebon Dragon is more about denying others their victories. As long as he comes out ahead of everyone else, he could lose everything and still be happy. In Return of the Scarlet Empress, If he dies, he becomes the Neverborn known as: The Dragon That Was.
- And Now You Must Marry Me: He has an odd obsession with this trope, to the point where Infernals can use it to reduce their Limit. (The game mechanic is called "Exquisite Bride Obsession", and was in fact originally suggested as the Trope Namer.) It apparently has something to do with the (incredibly convoluted) terms of his (hypothetical) release via marrying the Scarlet Empress.
- Anthropomorphic Personification: Of corruption and betrayal. So much so that he created the Unconquered Sun in the first place just so he could have something to try to corrupt and betray.
- Big Bad: Of the optional Return of the Scarlet Empress module, and for the Architects of the Reclamation (the five most important Yozis) at large. According to the material of some books, he could even be viewed as the Big Bad for the setting as a whole. Who arranged the creation of the Neverborn? He did. Who created the Abyssal and Infernal Exalted? He did. Who made the Scarlet Empress disappear and threw the Realm into chaos? He did. Indeed, there are very few terrible things going on in the Age of Sorrows that can't be at least indirectly laid at his feet.
- Blessed with Suck: Many of his powers rely on these tropes. The fact that he's the embodiment of failure and vice itself embodies these concepts in and of itself.
- The Chessmaster: If there's a pie, he usually has a claw in it.
- Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: Being the living embodiment of evil, cruelty and dickishness in general, he's so prone to betrayals motivated and non that he's barely able to act otherwise. He can ignore his Urge and make a Torment roll simply by paying Willpower, therefore betraying his very own nature. Even his component souls constantly scheme and politic against each other. This guy is so utterly and irredeemably treacherous, he betrays himself! Further, should his mad plan work, the Ebon Dragon plans to be first out of Malfeas just so that he can seal the other Yozis in permanently and laugh in their faces. Of course, while he tries to do this, his own component souls will likely be fighting him to make sure they get out and the core of the Dragon gets screwed. That's right; his ultimate plan of inevitable betrayal may get screwed because he will be betraying himself at the same time. In Return of the Scarlet Empress, he does exactly that.
- Cold-Blooded Torture: When the Scarlet Empress unwittingly opened a portal into Malfeas in Return of the Scarlet Empress, the Ebon Dragon subjected her to this. Among the tortures she endured were the experiences of all the Yozis when they were defeated and imprisoned.
- Consummate Liar: On a metaphysical level; many of his Charms are centered around deceptions and convincing others of their truth.
- The Corrupter: This is his very reason for existing.
- Devil, but No God: Because this trope was in effect when the Primordials ruled Creation, the Ebon Dragon's previous form couldn't manifest.
- The Devil Is a Loser: The game's writers are very emphatic about this: the Ebon Dragon sucks. Were he brought down to human level, a Stupid Good Compassion 5 Friend to All Living Things would kick him in the balls on principle.
- Dirty Coward: As stated above, all of his virtues are as low as possible, including his Valor. He does not fight fair in the slightest and does NOT have the intestinal fortitude to strike when not absolutely sure he can win.
- Even Evil Has Standards: Completely and utterly averted. The Ebon Dragon is not a big believer in moral standards, to say the least.
- Fatal Attractor: He loves those who are doomed to die, and whose deaths will change the world.
- For the Evulz: As he defines himself as the ultimate nemesis of everything, this is his basic motivation for anything he does (though there are valid interpretations where it's actually somewhat more complicated than that).
- A God Am I: He manages to fit this despite being far above a god to begin with — his wildest dream is to become a shinma, one of the defining forces of the universe.
- Go Mad from the Isolation: When he kills a spirit using Life-Denying Hate, or a living being using an attack enhanced by Life-Blighting Emptiness, the victim is banished to a realm beyond existence and tormented by nothingness for eternity.
- God of Evil: Strictly speaking, there's no absolute and objective good or evil in the world of Exalted. But as the cosmic personification of spite, treachery and corruption, he's as close as you're going to get.
- Heroes Act, Villains Hinder: While he certainly has plans of his own under way, many of his acts of antagonism fall under this trope, due to his nature. He's not allowed to be anything BUT sneaky, underhanded and subtle, preventing him from (personally) taking overt actions against anyone. But should you try to mess with him...
- I Just Want to Be Free: So long as he is restrained in any way whatsoever, he is completely incapable of taking any action that does not have the ultimate goal of trying to free himself. If you think of morality as a kind of restraint, this explains a lot about his personality.
- It's All About Me: To the point that he is physically incapable of doing anything that would benefit someone else more than it would benefit him personally.
- Kick the Dog: Like you wouldn't believe. He is really into "meaningless wickedness that avails him nothing", being literally the sort of guy who would steal toys from children.
- Manipulative Bastard: He likes to play people like a fiddle, fellow Yozis included.
- Nothing Is Scarier: He's so fundamentally hollow on the inside that in a sense, you could say he doesn't really even exist; he's an Ebon Dragon-shaped hole in the fabric of reality.
- Pet the Dog: As difficult as it is to believe, he sincerely loves doomed things - it is for this reason he keeps trying to escape, for he loves his own efforts.
- Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil: The Ebon Dragon had Lillun "assist" with the consummation of his marriage to the Scarlet Empress. What this entailed is not specified, but the ordeal was so traumatizing that Lillun couldn't sleep for five days.
- Satanic Archetype: While the demons of Exalted aren't much like the traditional Western sort, the Ebon Dragon is. He embodies the concept of opposition, bringing to mind Satan in his role as the Adversary in the Hebrew Bible.
- Shaped Like Itself: His previous form, The Dragon's Shadow, is described as being the shadow of himself. His current, post-Primordial War form is supposed to be the Dragon that he used to be the Shadow of.
- The Soulless: Not quite literally, since "soul" is a complicated concept for a Primordial. But he does, in a very real sense, lack selfhood — he defines himself solely in opposition to everything else.
- To Create a Playground for Evil: His ultimate Goal in Life: "Darken all of existence until Virtue and light cease to be, leaving blackened chaos upon which his will alone dictates possibility."
- What You Are in the Dark: The charm Naked Wicked Souls allows him or one of his servants to know when someone has perpetrated an act of deliberate wickedness.
Malfeas, the Demon CityOnce he was Theion, the Holy Tyrant, the Ruler of All, the absolute and unquestioned monarch of Creation. So transcendent was the Primordial King that he existed only as a numinous immaterial Presence, his majesty too great to be expressed by any physical form. Then the Exalted came and cast down the almighty king of everything. Not content with subduing him and forcing him to take on the utter humiliation of a corporeal body, his conquerors went on to degrade and mutilate him further, turning him inside out and imprisoning his siblings within the tortured city of brass and nightmares he had become.
Malfeas is in constant pain as a result of what was done to him, but that's not the reason why, out of all the Yozis, he is perhaps the one most broken by his imprisonment. As the cosmic embodiment of kingship, power and authority, he is simply fundamentally unable to even begin to cope with the concept of having been so utterly defeated. Now a pathetic mockery of his former glory, he rages senselessly at the world, consumed by shame and hatred, dreaming of nothing else but endless revenge.
Oh, he's also an excellent dancer.
- A God Am I: He's fundamentally incapable of grasping the concept that other beings have opinions that matter.
- Alien Geometries: He was turned inside out to be the prison of the Yozi. The city of Malfeas rests at the center of the realm of Malfeas, and is bordered on all sides by an endless desert of another Yozi, who constantly pushes at the borders of Malfeas the realm, constantly expanding his boundaries, while still being confined within him. It seems as though Malfeas and Cecelyne are involved in a higher-dimensional topological arrangement. A simpler example would be a Klein bottle: it only has one surface, and does not pierce itself. Now take that up to 11, and you've got the Demon Prison.
- Asskicking Equals Authority: Malfeas is the cosmic embodiment of either this or Authority Equals Asskicking. Does the once King of All Kings represent power so great that it is able to force everything to serve and worship it, or authority so great that it is able to crush all lesser things beneath its majesty? (While he was Theion, the answer was almost assuredly both.)
- Bizarrchitecture: The Demon City is a rambling, chaotic mass of architecture with form but no purpose, resulting in endless sprawls of towers, walls and city buildings either located with no rhyme or reason, fundamentally flawed in some sense or oftentimes both.Magnificent pillared forums and amphitheaters jostle stark blocks of windowless masonry. Many structures make no sense whatsoever. Vast conglomerations of vaulted stairs and landings lead to nothing but more of themselves. Turrets and balconies adorn huge towers with no floors or stairs inside. Immense triumphal arches cross minor side streets. Long fortified walls zigzag between buildings and across streets, defending nothing. They have the forms of architecture but no function.
- Brown Note: While Demon Emperor Shintai is active, anyone who looks at him gets supernatural radiation sickness.
- Fate Worse than Death: Malfeas is now an inside-out city in constant agony, forced to exist as the exact opposite of what he cosmically embodies.
- Genius Loci: Malfeas the Yozi and Malfeas the Demon City are one and the same. In other words, his prison is his own body.
- God-Emperor: With the caveat that he's far above the rank of "god", he was the unquestioned divine ruler of all Creation and still serves as a twisted version of this for his body-prison's captives. He doesn't have a Shintai called Demon Emperor for nothing.
- Hellfire: Unlike his original white flames, Malfeas wields emerald green fire. It's also combined with Power of the Sun, due to those flames originating from Ligier, his Fetich. Its most common manifestation is in his charm Green Sun Nimbus Flare, which imbues his attacks with them.
- I Love Nuclear Power: Green Sun Wasting, a supernatural disease inflicted by many of his Charms, is rather obviously radiation poisoning. Its partially magical nature makes it hard to heal. It has an even more powerful variant known as Final Viridescence, which can kill even Exalted.
- Inferiority Superiority Complex: Since his defeat and imprisonment, he hates Creation so much that his deepest desire could be summed up as "torture everything in the world to death, forever"... and yet, ultimately, he hates himself even more.
- It's All About Me: He has to suffer an actual psychotic break to even be able to grasp the idea that other people have desires and motivations independent of his own.
- Kneel Before Zod: Has a charm that forces people to grovel before him or have their skin melted off.
- Malevolent Architecture: It doesn't get much more malevolent than a living city with a nuclear sun for a heart that is actively trying to kill you.
- Mating Dance: Five years before the main timeframe, Malfeas, in his Brass Dancer form, danced into the forest of Szoreny, where he met a silver copy of himself (implicitly either Szoreny or his fetich Kagami). They danced until a green and silver conflagration exploded through the forest. Soon after, a plant started growing at the site of their dance, a plant with a woman growing inside of it; in other words, Malfeas got Szoreny pregnant.
- No-Sell: Rebuking Impudent Arms, the weakened form of Theion's Invincible Crown Halo superheats any weapon raised against him or an Infernal that shares the charm. The magical heat is capable of burning fire-resistant creatures.
- Not So Above It All: Dancing is one of the few things that can soothe his wrath, if only temporarily.
- Real Men Wear Pink: He's really into dancing and music, so much so that his Excellency charm (which is otherwise restricted to acts of violence or overkill) enhances any attempt at those activities. Ligier, of course, adds this to the list of things he finds shameful about Malfeas.
- Revenge Before Reason: The other Reclamation Yozis are constantly having to talk him down from making idiotic decisions based solely on his infinite rage.
- Self-Harm: This is what he's doing to himself whenever he makes his layers crash against each other.
She Who Lives in Her Name, the Principle of Hierarchy99,997 crystal spheres rotating around 100 greater spheres, themselves rotating around a single central sphere. Inside each sphere is a flame, and each flame whispers its name — her name — to the world around it. Those who hear that name are brought under her sway. As her title suggests, she literally embodies the concepts of order and hierarchy and wants to impose her perfect hierarchy on all of reality. Free will, of course, is much too chaotic to have any place in this brave new world — in fact, she was against including it in Creation in the first place, and regards the Primordial War as proof that she was right all along.
Nevertheless, so great is her respect for hierarchy that once it was clear the Primordials had lost the war, she willingly surrendered, prepared to submit to a new hierarchy with the gods and Exalted at the top. When she realized that the hierarchy they had in mind had no place for her, she flew into a vindictive rage and smashed three of her spheres into Creation, destroying them along with large chunks of reality and reducing her to her current state.
- Brown Note: If anything weaker than an Exalt or second circle demon hears her true name, they permanently come under her control. Hence her common appellation.
- Emotionless Girl: Mostly. Her Torment causes her to lose all logic and act on long-subdued passion, and she possesses a playful sense of humor. Otherwise yes, it's hard to get a rise out of her.
- Empty Shell: The charm Mind Spider Curse turns living beings into this.
- Evil Gloating: Her Act of Villainy; the Ebon Dragon doesn't like it, but as far as She Who Lives is concerned, he can take his secrecy and shove it.
- The Evils of Free Will: Loathes the very concept, and was only grudgingly persuaded to permit its inclusion in Creation. She regards this as the Primordials' single greatest mistake, and many of her Charms revolve around... rectifying it.
- Expy: Of the Weaver from Werewolf: The Apocalypse. Both are divine beings who seek to impose static order on the cosmos and eliminate free will. Both beings also exert their influence through song (her name for She Who Lives in Her Name, OneSong for the Weaver).
- If I Can't Have You : See: Three-Sphere Cataclysm, ninety percent of Creation.
- My Master, Right or Wrong: In the Time of Glory, she wasn't specifically evil, just loyal to Malfeas above all other things (and not a fan of free will). She even was willing to bow to the Unconquered Sun, once the war was over. That the Incarnae decided that she was to be locked away from Creation, too, triggered the Cataclysm mentioned above.
- Ship Tease: It's implied that she used to be "close" to Theion-cum-Malfeas before their imprisonment.
- Taken for Granite: After hearing Oramus scream, She Who Lives In Her Name was inspired to create the charm Space Monster Scream. Living beings who are incapacitated or killed by the charm are transformed into crystal statutes.
- Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Tossing her into Malfeas and reshaping her into a Yozi led to her turning around and destroying 90% of Creation.
- World of Silence: This is what she wants more than anything else. Given the Genius Loci nature of most Primordials, she may actually be one in one of her forms.
Cecelyne, the Endless DesertOnce, Cecelyne was the lawgiver of the Primordials — until the Exalted rose up and taught her that ultimately, there can be no law that matters other than Might Makes Right. Ever since, her only mission is to share that lesson with everyone else.
Though she still sets the laws of Hell, Cecelyne's laws are now quite deliberately based on nothing more than sheer arbitrary capricious hypocrisy, and are designed to ensure the absolute right of the strong to dominate and bully the weak. Embodying the concept of both spiritual and physical desolation, Cecelyne takes the form of an infinite desert that surrounds the Demon City, serving as the boundary between Malfeas and Creation.
- Alien Geometries: The desert of Cecelyne takes exactly five days to cross, regardless of how fast you move.
- Corrupt Church: Religious hypocrisy is her favorite kind, and priests of Cecelyne enforce the laws of Hell.
- Inferiority Superiority Complex: Views herself with the same bitter cynicism with which she regards everything else.
- Sea of Sand: She takes the form of an endless expanse of silvery dunes surrounding Malfeas.
- Straw Hypocrite: She understands exactly how hypocritical her laws are. That's the whole point.
Adorjan, the Silent WindA case study in why killing fetiches is a bad idea, Adorjan was originally Adrian, the River of All Torments — a sort of living buffer between the Wyld and Creation. During the Primordial War, however, her core soul Lilike was killed completely, causing her to dry up and become a living gale that muffles all sound. The process rendered her completely insane, turning her into a cheerful serial killer who destroys that which she loves and spares that which she hates. Even her fellow Yozis fear Adorjan, and it is for this reason that demons place musicians and musical instruments everywhere, as she despises noise and won't go near it if she doesn't need to.
- Axe-Crazy: Out of all the Yozis, Adorjan is the most clearly deranged.
- Bizarre Alien Reproduction: She came to one Solar in his dreams seven nights in a row, simultaneously taking the forms of a woman and a silent windstorm. She got pregnant from those seven consecutive nights of dream sex and gave birth to seven daughters; three retained their human forms, while the other four shed their human bodies and became living winds like their mother.
- Blue-and-Orange Morality: Even more than the rest of the Yozis. Of particular note is one of her Charms, which allows her to instantly fall in love with someone — and then gives bonuses when she acts towards the subject with intent to aid, teach, express affection... or hurt.
- The Dreaded: She is the single most terrifying thing in all of Malfeas. Malfeas would be a horrifying place even without her, but her nature has scarred the psyche of all demonkind into being unable to comprehend silence without death or love without pain.
- Driven to Madness: Both her, and her Act of Villainy (of the "freeing people from sanity's constraints" motive).
- Four Is Death: The number four appears constantly in her themes. In the words of one of her charms, it is "... the inauspicious count of Adorjans daughters, the numerology of balanced Virtue and the number of secret truths she must teach Creation before The End." Given Adorjan's nature and themes, it is almost directly implied that the final (and fourth) truth she must teach Creation is death.
- Go Mad from the Revelation: What you call insanity, Adorjan calls understanding the world as it truly is. She would love to do you the favor of sharing that enlightenment with you.
- The Hyena: She finds everything funny, including her own defeat at the hands of hairless ape-things. And, as noted, laughter is the only sound she ever makes.
- It's Quiet Too Quiet: If silence ever falls in part of Malfeas, then Adorjan is there, and the living will envy the dead.
- Laughing Mad: The only sound she ever makes, preferring Telepathy for actual communication.
- Love Hurts: She's imposed this belief on all of demonkind.
- Mad Love: As far as she's concerned, she really is doing her loved ones a favor by killing everything they care about so that they can share in the enlightenment that comes from being free of all attachments.
- Sensory Overload: Adorjan has ridiculously sharp hearing. Unlike most entities that develop this power in Exalted, it does not come with the ability to cope with loud — or even regular volume — noises, compelling her to silence them by any means possible. The charm that grants her (and some Infernals) this power is called Hateful Wicked Noise for a reason.
- Stalker with a Crush: "Sometimes, Adorjan falls in love. Her hate is safer."
- Starfish Character: Splintered Gale Shintai allows her to conjure up human puppets embodying aspects of her personality.
- Too Kinky to Torture: After she became Adorjan, she fell for Marus, Lilike's killer, because she was honestly attracted to him, and causing her extreme pain (particularly the Charm Demon-Wracking Shout) is often grounds for a first date.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: She honestly believes that killing people is a way of enlightenment, since it severs all attachments.
- What Measure Is a Non-Super?: Murder is Meat allows her to remorselessly kill mortals regardless of how high her compassion stat is.
- Yandere: Read her description, why don't you?
Kimbery, the Sea That Marched Against the FlameThe great acid ocean of Malfeas, with a personality to match. If she loves you, she'll drown you in her affections. If she hates you, she'll slowly and utterly corrode you and anything you ever cared about. Usually she does both.
- Abusive Parents: Specifically, Kimbery is the kind of bitter and resentful parent who avoids facing up to the problems with her own life by ruining her children's lives instead.
- Acid Pool: Her chief form is an ocean of acid.
- All Take and No Give: Kimbery's the Giver. The second variant — where the Giver is the one in control — is how she relates to others. (The first is how she thinks she relates to others.)
- Body Horror: She has a bit of an obsession with it, to an extent that actually manages to creep out the other Yozis.
- Evil Matriarch: She's a maternal figure who is also very evil and very destructive.
- Hermaphrodite: All the Yozis are, given how they possess both male and female souls, but Kimbery has honed it to a science.
- Hollywood Acid: From time to time, Kimbery floods parts of Malfeas, dissolving anyone unlucky enough to be in her path.
- Human Resources: She makes coral reefs out of people and demons.
- Monster Progenitor: She's the mother of the original Lintha race.
- Mood-Swinger: Kimbery's Torment involves a positive Intimacy randomly switching to a negative one with no warning. Her Overdrive is worse. She can flip any number of Intimacies to hatred for motes of Essence.
- Moral Myopia: When Kimbery hurts you, it's a well-deserved punishment you needed For Your Own Good. When you hurt Kimbery — even if only by failing to live up to her impossible expectations — it's an act of horrific, totally unjustified betrayal that sends you straight over the edge.
- Morton's Fork: If she hates you she'll consume you in a tide of hatred, drowning you in her acidic waves. If she loves you she'll lavish you in a deluge of affection, in the form of her acidic waves.
- Mother of a Thousand Young: In her current state, she can no longer bear or sire offspring in the traditional manner, but she can infect others with her essence, causing her parasitic offspring to grow inside them.
- My Beloved Smother: Her love is genuine in a way, but it's the manipulative, passive-aggressive kind of "affection" that so many abusive parents use to keep their children from escaping their control.
- Never My Fault: Has an enormous martyr complex, which serves to justify all her actions and avoid admitting that she's in any way the cause of her own problems.
- Obliviously Evil: Some of the Yozis simply don't care about anything resembling human ethics. Others recognize and embrace their own hypocrisy or villainy. Kimbery, however, is absolutely convinced that she is an unjustly persecuted victim who never did anything wrong to anybody and all her actions are completely justified.
- Poison Is Corrosive: Several of her attacks combine poison effects with physical damage akin to acid.
- Poisonous Person: Several of her charms, including Sea Within Veins Prana and Spiteful Sea Tincture, inflict poison damage on enemies.
- The Power of Hate: Not only is she entirely capable of individually hating everyone in the world, she can draw upon that hatred to send her Dodge regular and mental DVs into the stratosphere, heal herself, or even spread a Hate Plague.
- Tsundere: A puree of this and Yandere, since she vacillates between hate and love so much... and one's not much better than the other.
- Why Did You Make Me Hit You?: Why must you always be such an ungrateful child that Kimbery is forced to punish you?
- Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?: AGONY-SAVORING MERCY, how she reduces Limit.
- Yandere: She hates everyone she loves and loves everyone she hates. Also, her Urge is "the urge to drown," metaphorically and literally.
Szoreny, the Silver ForestAn obscure Yozi, Szoreny is not actually a forest — rather, he was imprisoned upside-down. Thus, though he originally was The World Tree, now he is a grove of quicksilver-laced reflective trees with a single root system. He's the most coherent and comprehensible of the Yozis, despite his Split Personality problem.
- Alternate Universe: His fetich soul, Kagami, takes the form of a sapient one.
- The Chessmaster: Return of the Scarlet Empress reveals that he has been biding his time amidst the Ebon Dragon's scheming, waiting for ideal conditions to carry out his escape plan. He intends to share plans for the Reclamation with the Yozis' enemies in exchange for his release (as well as that of Isidoros) from Malfeas. Once freed, he plans on exacting revenge on the beings who trapped him there.
- Faux Affably Evil: He's widely believed to be the kindest of the Yozis, thanks to his Act of Villainy. This is a mistake.
- Foil: He reflects the personality of the person he's speaking to, thus he ends up being one for... everyone basically.
- Hall of Mirrors: He is an entire forest made of reflective trees.
- Intelligent Forest: His primary body is one of the great metal forests of Malfeas. Strictly speaking he's actually The World Tree, but he was buried upside-down by the Exalted and his roots now form a vast forest. He's just as fully aware of what goes on within his expanse as the other Yozi, and permits hunting parties to operate within him provided that he's offered prayer and sacrifice beforehand.
- Mirror Match: Has the ability to breathe life into his reflections, resulting in this.
- Only Sane Man: As mentioned above, Szoreny and his sometimes boyfriend Isidoros are by far the least degraded and debased of the Yozis which is why they're planning to stab the others in the back to Escape from the Crazy Place.
- Please Reflect on This Index: If there's a mirror-related trope, he's probably capable of doing that.
- Worthy Opponent: To anyone he's in an antagonistic relationship with.
Isidoros, the Black Boar that Twists the SkiesA sapient black hole who usually takes the form of a colossal boar, Isidoros is the embodiment of unstoppable force, and is the only one who can stop Malfeas from collapsing two layers of himself together. Just don't get under him.
- But for Me, It Was Tuesday: Most of the destruction he wreaks is the result of him taking a leisurely stroll through the area.
- Determinator: One of the places of power in Malfeas marks where he raced up the slopes of Qaf for a time. Eventually, he got bored and stopped, but one hoofprint is still travelling up the slope on its own.
- Heroic Willpower: He embodies this quality, and he really respects it in others — a plot hook in Return of the Scarlet Empress has him sabotaging the Reclamation when the PCs have proven themselves some of the most dogged heroes around, just to give them a fighting chance. Admittedly, this takes the form of offering one of them akuma-hood, but he doesn't fuss if they turn him down.
- Honor Among Thieves: In Return of the Scarlet Empress, if Isidoros learns about Szoreny's plan to reveal the plans of the Reclamation to the Yozis' enemies in exchange for release from Malfeas, he may try to kill Szoreny for betraying their siblings.
- The Juggernaut: He's completely impossible to halt or forcefully redirect once he gets going, unless someone a.) gets his attention, and b.) convinces him that he really wanted to be somewhere else or doing something else in the first place.
- Screw Destiny: Strongly dislikes the idea of Fate, but agreed to its inclusion in Creation in exchange for "other considerations."
Sacheverell, he That Sees the Shape of Things to ComeAnother case study in why fetich death is A Bad Thing. Originally, he was the Lidless Eye That Sees; then his fetich soul was killed and he came back as Sacheverell, who sees infallibly accurate visions of the present or future, depending on whether he is asleep or awake. As long as he's asleep, he sees only the present, and free will is still an option. Should he wake up, all of existence will get to find out what You Can't Fight Fate is like. Absolutely no one wants this.
- Enemy of My Enemy: Pretty much everyone wants him to stay asleep.
- Self-Fulfilling Prophecy: While he sleeps, he dreams of the present. Should he awake, he would see the future and ensnare the universe with the power of his self-fulfilling prophecies.
- Villainous Breakdown: One interpretation (endorsed unofficially by some of the game's writers) says his sleep is really one of these — in the instant of the White Ram's death, he grasped that he's ultimately just a supporting character in the story of the Exalted, and nothing he could possibly do really matters. Now he's essentially too depressed to get out of bed.
- You Can't Fight Fate: Most beings that know of him believe that, should he wake up, his visions will lock the future into a single, inviolable path and prevent anyone from deviating from that course of events.
Qaf, the Heaven-Violating SpearAn endless mountain without summit or base, ensconced in his own pocket dimension within Malfeas, and a literal immovable object. The creator of the concept of perfection, and a bit of a guru.
- Eldritch Location: You can ascend Qaf physically, but the only way to make real progress up his slopes is through spiritual discovery and understanding. Trouble is, Qaf's lessons are innumerable, and hostile to mortal souls (but not to demons). So far, no one has managed to pass the lessons and attain his nonexistent summit.
Metagaos, the All-Hunger BlossomA Yozi with the personality of Audrey II, who takes the form of a sprawling swamp. It's really not wise to venture in. Notably, he's very passive-aggressive; for all the dangers he embodies, he rarely makes a move to do the harm he inflicts.
- Autocannibalism: He eats everything in and around him — including himself.
- Everything Trying to Kill You: Metagaos has an ecosystem that's about as predatory as he is. It's exactly as much fun as it sounds.
- Extreme Omnivore: Mortals, demons, colour, light, time, space... Metagaos eats everything. Even Adorjan's reluctant to go near him.
- Horror Hunger: His hunger cannot be satisfied. Ever.
- Plague Master: In the event you survive a trip through Metagaos, you'll probably end up infected with something that turns you into an outgrowth of him.
- Swamps Are Evil: He's a living, sapient and actively evil tract of swampland that eats anyone who enters his bounds.
Elloge, the Sphere of SpeechThe results of fetich death are unexpected, but not always nightmarish. For example, the rebirth of the Primordial known as He Who Bleeds the Unknown Word was the female Yozi Elloge. She drifts through the layers of Malfeas, taking the form of an invisible sphere made of words and linguistic principles.
- Eldritch Location: Elloge's interior dimensions are defined by linguistics and correspondences. Within her, features of language become real (and often dangerous). Even entering her requires transmutation into a linguistic description of you as a character.
- Gender Bender: Her Fetich apparently contained her masculinity, as its death caused her old male self to become female.
- Invisibility: Because she's composed of words, it's often hard to see her until she's directly interacting with the world.
- Ms. Imagination: Elloge doesn't pay all that much attention to extant reality, preferring to manifest worlds within herself.
- Ship Tease: Elloge is known to wander the world-bodies of her fellow Yozis, absorbing their qualia (the various ways they experience things), and appears to have a particular fondness for the dream-glow Oramus gives off. Given Elloge's Ms. Imagination nature and Oramus's creation of impossibilities, it's not that surprising.
- Thinks Like a Romance Novel: In the 'has a very romanticised view of the world' sense. It's noted that several of her interior environments depict the First Age through a romantic lens that doesn't match the Exalted's fragmentary records.
Oramus, the Dragon Beyond the WorldThe eldest of the Primordials, who defined what would be in Creation and what would not. Fearing that his paradoxical nature would enable him to find a way out of Malfeas, the gods and Exalted caged him in his own wings, the only prison he can't escape.
- And I Must Scream: Worse than Malfeas. At least he can understand the world outside of him, and interact with those within him. Oramus can only go more and more insane.
- Mad Artist: He spawns his own unique creations and inspires others with impossible visions.
- Morphic Resonance: His description says that, in any form he can assume, he always has seven of something.
- Reality Warper: He does this by existing. Even asleep and imprisoned, things get weird around him.
- Sealed Evil in a Can: More so than any other Primordial. The victorious gods feared that not even Malfeas could have held him, and so he was sealed in his own wings.
- Time Abyss: He was the first of the Primordials, the eldest of all living things.
Hegra, the Typhoon of NightmaresA living storm who rains down nightmares, dreams and emotions. A living cloud of chaos in the culture of Malfeas, she regards every form of personal interaction as a form of trade, which is why she dislikes both gifts and thieves (after all, one of the parties is getting absolutely nothing in return).
- Cumulonemesis: She takes the form of an immense living storm that stalks through Malfeas on legs of lightning. She brings with her rain made from the condensed dreams of Creation's sleepers and is one of the few things that can block out the green sun that burns eternally in the Demon City's sky. Her thunder is the loudest sound in Malfeas, and one of the very few things that reliably keeps Adorjan away. As Adorjan kills everything she touches, demons are very fond of Hegra and rejoice at her passage.
- Emotion Bomb: You name it, Hegra can rain it down around your ears.
- Gray Rain of Depression: She produces very literal variants of this, along with every other emotion.
- Happy Rain: Aside from the fact that she can literally rain happiness in liquid form, the fact that her thunder is one of the very few things that reliably keeps Adorjan the Silent Wind away means that demons are very fond of Hegra, and her passage is marked by crowds of demons pouring from their homes, lairs and hiding places and dancing joyously in the rain.
- It Amused Me: She occasionally messes with lesser demons to see what happens.
- Rain of Something Unusual: She rains mortal dreams condensed into physical form, such as cold sweat from night terrors, erotic cloudbursts, and blizzards of whimsical fancy. Anyone touched by this rain experiences the original dreamer's emotions as if they were theirs.
Cytherea, the Mother of CreationAlso known as the Divine Ignition, since she awoke the Primordials after they were born dreaming (apart from Oramus, whose reaction could be best stated as "what took you so long?"). Built Creation along with her lover Gaia, and also had a hand in the creation of Luna and the Unconquered Sun. About her, nothing more is known.
- Riddle for the Ages: Pretty much everything known about her is myth and legend.
NeverbornYou remember that bit about Fetich Souls? Kill it, and the Primordial has its identity completely and irrevocably altered?
With the Neverborn, the Solars went one step beyond. Several, in fact.
Unlike the Yozis, who were merely lessened and bound by a Geas, the Primordials who would become the Neverborn were killed completely — every Third Circle soul, every scrap of dirt from their Genius Loci self, every bit that connected them to Creation. This did not go well. You see, Lethe, the mysterious mechanism by which souls have their memories scrubbed and put in newborn bodies, was never meant to handle a Primordial soul, since they never realized they could be truly killed. However, since Creation was of Primordial design, neither could the Wyld reabsorb them or Oblivion wipe them from reality. So, the metaphysical Essence of creation... broke.
Thus, undeath — and by extension, the Underworld — was born.
This would be bad enough — how would you feel if the god-monster you killed came back with the ability to phase through walls and massively pissed off? — except, for some reason, the Neverborn could not become ghosts, instead becoming massive, oddly-built cathedral-tombs of soulsteel and obsidian. In them, their minds lived on in an endless nightmare, between being and unbeing, knowing nothing but pain...
... at least, until the Black Nadir Concordant had the bright idea to wake five of them up to learn necromancy.
Now aware, their dark will infests the Labyrinth in the form of the Whispers, bending ghosts to their nihilistic will and transforming them into malevolent spectres. What's more, they're practically all-knowing; everything a ghost or a person who rose as one has known filters down to them. While they aren't as much help as they could be, a being with the Whispers can attune their dreams to theirs and learn much of the world... and how to destroy it.
For that is what the Neverborn, mad to incomprehensibility they may be, desire — not out of true malice, but to end their pain by any means.
- And I Must Scream: Imagine what it would be like to have gangrene eat your body... forever. That's not even close to what the Neverborn experience by their mere existence.
- Barred from the Afterlife: Since they couldn't die in the first place, the Primordials never designed the cycle of death and rebirth to handle one of their own. This seriously screwed things over for the Neverborn.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: Spectres, the ghosts who succumbed to the Whispers and now worship the Neverborn as part of a mad pseudo-faith. Thankfully, they have absolutely no organization, and Heroic Willpower can throw off the Whispers of Oblivion. Unwanted Whisper (har har), one of the Councilors of Stygia, has a Whispers rating, but has long since broken free of their influence.
- Cessation of Existence: What they want for everything in Creation, so as to be able to experience this themselves.
- The Corruption: The Whispers — have them, and you can basically read the mind of the most knowledgeable beings in existence. Unfortunately, they come part and parcel with the Whispers of Oblivion, the Neverborn's psychic will. This entices a person to become a raving lunatic, and in ghosts eventually leads to Brainwashed and Crazy.
- Eldritch Abomination: Let's make this clear — they aren't supposed to exist.
- Greater-Scope Villain: Behind the Deathlords. Since the latter happen to be more interesting villains — i.e., individual personalities — they mostly stay on the sidelines in favor of their servants.
- Non-Human Undead: They are the undead remains of Primordials, though apparently not including what used to be their souls.
- Omnicidal Maniac: Destroying all of Creation is, as far as they can tell, the only way to end their eternal torment. Plus they don't feel like owing Creation any favors for putting them in this situation.
- The Power of the Void: Oblivion, which they often utilize.
- Revenge Before Reason: Their utter desire to destroy Creation might actually be binding them to Creation, as in the Manual of Exalted Power: Abyssals it's noted had the Neverborn given up, they may have slipped into the Abyss.
- Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: As evil as they are, they're motivated by the fact that they've been tortured for thousands of years more horrifically than anything else in the setting. Probably more than everything else in the setting, including the Yozis, combined. And destroying Creation is their only way out.
Abhorrence of Life
He Who Holds In Thrall
Perfected Principle of Consumption
Tears of Want
Whose Whispers Chain
These souls are the devas of the Third Circle, and they are of sufficient spiritual magnitude that they typically have seven souls of their own, which themselves have independent existence. These are known as the devas of the Second Circle.
Second Circle devas are small enough, spiritually, that they possess only one soul within themselves. Their offspring, the devas of the First Circle, are not part of a Primordial's soul hierarchy.
The Yozis' devas became demons with their progenitors' defeat in the Primordial War. Most of the Neverborn's devas died with their parent Primordial. Only Gaia and Autochthon have had their devas remain as such, although Autochthon has... tinkered with his soul structure.
GnosisApparently a soul of Gaia.
The CoreFetich Soul of the Great Maker
RunelDivine Minister of Order, Smooth Functioning, Productivity, Efficiency, Cities, Commerce, Life, and Health. Chief Regulator of the Element of Steam.
Kek'TungssshaDivine Minister of Smelting, Craft, Tools, Industry, Mass Production, Fertility, and Reproductive Sex.
Debok MoomDivine Minister of War, War Machines, Violent Paradigm Shifts, Privacy, and Wealth. Chief Regulator of the Element of Metal.
NoiDivine Minister of Curiosity, Research, Exploration, Innovation, Rebellion, and Progress. Chief Regulator of the Element of Oil.
MogDivine Minister of Authority, Proper Functioning, Dogma, Righteous Action and Just Punishment. Scourge of the Lumpen and Chief Regulator of the Element of Lightning.
KadmekDivine Minister of Design, Architecture, Structural Integrity, Biogeomancy, Arts, Wisdom, Strategy, and Prophecy. Chief Regulator of the Element of Crystal.
DomadamodDivine Minister of Reuse, Repair, Recycling, and Cannabalism; Enlightened Guardian of the Eternal Cycle.
KuDivine Minister of the Reaches and the Far Reaches, Seals, and Thaumaturgy. Chief Regulator of the Element of Smoke.
Viator of NullspaceThe Dread Gear. The Bringer of Death. The Minister of Wrath.
All of these titles apply to the Autochthonian spirit called the Viator of Nullspace, a mechanical god — and possibly a forbidden subsoul of Autochthon's — that menaced the Eight Nations just under a thousand years ago. It (like similar weapon-gods, the Destroyers, it doesn't have a gender identity) is an Incarna-level menace, more powerful than a couple Deathlords, a nigh-unstoppable monster the size of a warstrider and a great obsidian beamklave that fuels its own power with the lives of those it has destroyed.
And according to the Viator, it is doing all of this for Autochthon's own good.
You see, the Viator initially desired to extract the Core, the fetich soul of Autochthon (and thanks to some self-surgery on the Great Maker's part, his mind) from his increasingly disease-ridden body, via forging the souls of every human in Autochthon into a great wedge through which it could dislodge the Core from the Godhead. Since no one was particularly keen on becoming a still-conscious component of an artifact, it got into a feud with the nation of Jarish, destroying the Alchemical city of Jast in the process (almost). Through a combination of great heroism and cleverness, the Viator was trapped in its own Node Link, forced to content itself with exploring the place where Autochthon's dreams meet Elsewhere.
If only it was the only one there.
For some reason or another, the Ebon Dragon had found his way to the Eldritch Location in his infinite quest for escape, wherein he encountered the Viator. This... did not go so well for the Dragon (all he managed to do was evade being imprisoned twice over). While the Viator managed to chase off the Dragon, it was not unchanged by the experience — it learned of the nature of the Yozis, and how cruelly they had treated Autochthon (the fact that it learned this through the Ebon Dragon probably didn't help).
Thus, whereas before it planned to merely save Autochthon, it now plans to transform him into the instrument of his own revenge.
When — not if, when — the Viator escapes, it will be with a different plan to save Autochthon; it will kill all humans it can find, certainly, but as an offering to the monster Autochthon will become. Once it has fed the gears with the viscera of the Eight Nations, it will alter the nature of the Divine Ministers, the Third Circle Souls of the Great Maker, into generals of mechanized war. The voices of the surviving Autochthonians will sing praises to their new god as the blood of their sacrifices grease the spiked prayer gears of the Bleeding Engine. The cities will be altered into mandalas of destruction, feeding his darkened heart.
And then the skies of Malfeas will burn, and he shall scream as the great Uran-drills of a new, savage Autochthon dig deep into his flesh, mad with hate... and hunger.
- Cyber Cyclops: It's a towering mechanical figure with a single glowing eye in the middle of its head.
- Enemy Mine: In the Gunstar Autocthonia Shard, the Viator is noted to be a possible, if very risky, ally for the Exalted in their fight against the Tyrant Sun and the forces of the Primordials.
- Eye Beams: It can fire disintegrator beams from its single eye.
- Knight Templar: The Viator's goals are, on an abstract level, fairly admirable — it seeks to save Autochthon from his rapid sickness, save the titan's life, and get revenge on the Primordials who demeaned and tormented him. The issue is that it will go to truly horrific lengths to do this, starting with worldwide genocide and progressing into the smelting of its victims' souls into a still-aware, eternally tormented soul-metal and the physical and mental mutilation of Autochthon and his souls to turn him into a monster he would have no wish to be.
- Principles Zealot: The Viator is so firmly convinced of its righteousness that it is physically impossible for it to be swayed by any argument — all attempts to persuade it away from its actions are treated as hostile mental influence and summarily dismissed.
- Soul Eating: The Viator automatically consumes the minds and souls of any Alchemical it slays, gaining their memories and knowledge in the process.
- Weakened by the Light: Not in the main canon, but in Gunstar Autochthonia he received the Tyrant Sun's judgement when they fought and was deemed a creature of darkness, unable to stand under the Daystar's light.
Ruvelia, His Voice to the WorldFirst Fetich Soul of the Empyreal Chaos
- Mouth of Sauron: He acted as this in Theion's name.
- Posthumous Character: His death turned Theion into Malfeas.
The Heart of DarknessFetich Soul of the Shadow of All Things
- Achilles' Heel: Acts as such for the Ebon Dragon. If slain by the Exalted, it will stop his conquest of Creation dead in its tracks.
- The Blank: Its status is intentionally left as such, so that Game Masters can make their own custom Fetich souls.
- Living MacGuffin: A potential one for the Return of the Scarlet Empress campaign. Hunting it down and killing it is one of the ways to deal with and stop the Ebon Dragon. However, given how badly fetich death can backfire, it should be considered a desperate alternative in case the party isn't strong enough to stop the Yozi themselves.
The White Ram, the Guardian of Yu-ShanFetich Soul of The Lidless Eye That Sees
- Gate Guardian: He was the gatekeeper of the connection between Yu-Shan and Creation.
- Posthumous Character: His death turned his Primordial into Sacheverell. He was one of the first casualties of the Primordial War.
LilikeFetich Soul of the River of All Torments
The other difference? Their personalities.
You see, all demons, besides being descended from beings who now qualify as insane, self-loathing, and emotionally abusive (physical abuse tends to get the demons dead), spend the vast majority of their (theoretically immortal) lives in Malfeas, who is usually planning to commit small-scale genocide at any moment as an extension of his self-loathing. While trying to keep all their limbs attached to their bodies, they have to deal with the screwed-up social system put in place by Cecelyne, which rewards cruelty and callousness and punishes charity. This, combined with a Byzantine and draconian set of taboos — for example, Cecelyne bans demons looking at her sacred color, azure... which is the color of the ink used in her written laws — means that at any practical time, a priest of Cecelyne (who are not demons themselves, but possibly loyalist gods) may choose a demon at random to torment and bully. This, combined with the deliberately anarchic yet corrupt and bloated government...
You get the idea.
That said, few demons, not even Third Circles, are inherently evil. Many are bitter and selfish; most are simply alien thanks to the bizarre Motivations encoded into then. When push comes to shove, the average demon is not altogether different from a god; it's quite possible to ally with them. A Sidereal Charm — albeit currently a Sealed Technique — is specifically made for converting willing demons into gods so that the Yozis cannot use their connection to take them over.
Just don't expect that to be easy, and for the romance fans, keep in mind — demons think Love Hurts, literally.
- Bizarre Alien Reproduction: Demons tend to reproduce in very bizarre ways, when they're able to do so on their own at all. In fact, actual sex is one of the few things that cannot create a new demon, and they tend to find sexual reproduction to be just as bizarre as humans find the demons' own methods of procreation.
- Our Demons Are Different: They're the souls of the god-monsters that made creation, their souls' souls, or their souls' souls' offspring and creations. They're Hell's oppressed underclass, and can resemble anything from spike-covered, red-furred apes to giant spiders to human women with far too many fingers to animated masses of acid to stranger things still.
Third Circle Demons
Ligier, the Green SunFetich Soul of the Demon City
In the skies over Malfeas, a green sun blazes, never setting. This is Ligier, the fetich soul of the Demon City. In his humanoid form, Ligier appears as a handsome young man with auburn hair. He is the greatest blacksmith in Hell, and his Goal in Life is to create works that express his own magnificence so thoroughly that all must celebrate his glory.
Since his defeat, Malfeas has been consumed by utter shame and self-loathing. As his most central soul, Ligier expresses this by being everything Malfeas isn't and wishes he was. Ligier still has the confidence in his own power and majesty that Malfeas has irrevocably lost, and so where Malfeas is all about endless rage and overwhelming force, Ligier is a being of calm, courtesy and restraint. Feeling that to crush a lesser opponent would be beneath his dignity, he holds himself back in battle, and if his opponent unexpectedly manages to get in a glancing blow, he salutes their accomplishment and withdraws.
As you'd expect, Ligier finds basically everything about Malfeas profoundly embarrassing. Especially the whole dancing thing.
- Affably Evil: Not exactly nice, but he's a pretty cool guy as major demons go — he has to be cooler than Malfeas in order to look down on him properly.
- Badass Long Robe: Sometimes wears emerald robes when appearing in a human form.
- Badass Normal: He isn't, but he can be summoned to Creation by a mortal prince leading an army against the Exalted.
- BFS: A vitriol etched infernal brass daiklave called the Sword of the Yozis, which counts as a small army when wielded.
- Foil: Malfeas hates himself so much that his own heart is a foil for himself.
- Infinity +1 Sword: The Sword of the Yozis, an infernal brass daiklave etched with vitriol that turns him into a One-Man Army.
- It's All About Me: His Motivation is "to bring his glories to the world, such that all Creation and Malfeas alike must celebrate the magnificence of the Green Sun," while his Intimacies are all for the things he's created.
- Jackass Genie: Not intentionally, but whenever he takes a commission to create something there's some item that he needs to complete it, usually of some importance to the person the item is for. Ligier can make do without it, but the creation then has a hidden Fatal Flaw that will activate at the worst possible moment.
- Long-Haired Pretty Boy: When he wants to appear as a handsome young nobleman with long auburn hair.
- Mr. Fanservice: Okay, the whole "sexy Ligier" thing is mostly a fandom meme, but he is always portrayed as being very handsome.
- One-Man Army: He considers anything less than a experienced circle of Solar or a small army of heavily armed Dragon-Blooded as unworthy of his sword, and only the most experienced and powerful Exalted would have a chance against him.
- Power Glows: He feels honor-bound to reveal his radiance on the battlefield, and glows green. Unfortunately this light is powerful enough to instantly kill humans, and can blind even the Exalted.
- Ultimate Blacksmith: The best in Malfeas by a wide margin.
- Unholy Nuke: His secret name from the time before the Primordial War is the word of power that triggers the spell Total Annihilation.
- Walking Shirtless Scene: His humanoid form is always pictured without a shirt.
- Weird Sun: That's not just a title, he's literally a radioactive green sun.
- Worthy Opponent: He refuses to face any challenge less than a perfect circle of Solars or a full army of Dragon-Blooded.
Amalion, the Manse of Echoes AscendingFifth Soul of the Demon City
In every layer of Malfeas, there's one manse that surpasses all others in elegance. These are the bodies of Amalion. When summoned into Creation, she takes the form of a handsome middle-aged woman, her skin patterned like marble and her face veiled. Expressing some of Malfeas's less wrathful aspects — his creativity and appreciation of beauty — she is one of the greatest architects in existence, and serves those who summon her by drawing up the blueprints to an exquisite manse in exchange for a unique and beautiful object. So valued were Amalion's services during the First Age that she got on quite well with the Exalted and even married the sorcerer Five Moons, whose memory she still cherishes.
- Reincarnation Romance: Maintains an Intimacy to the current bearer of Five Moons' Exaltation, though it's unclear whether they've actually met yet.
- Token Good Teammate: The gentlest of Malfeas's souls — and she's apparently nice enough by human standards that her marriage to Five Moons was actually socially acceptable; the Solar Deliberative even threw them a wedding party.
- When She Smiles: This trope applies so hard that she veils her face as a courtesy, so that anyone standing nearby when she accidentally cracks a grin won't fall desperately in love with her.
Ipithymia, the Street of Golden LanternsThirteenth Soul of the Demon City
Hell's whorehouse. Ipithymia is a literal street, wherein most of Malfeas's sex trade happens — classy, crude, tame or deviant, it all happens on Ipithymia. She's known to have an ancient agreement with her fellow soul Ligier, with the two of them the only ones who know the details.
- Emotion Bomb: In mortal form, she can create longing or lust in all but the divinely chaste.
- Red Light District: Golden light, reminiscent of the Unconquered Sun, serves as the demonic equivalent of human red light districts. It's also usually an affront to the Green Sun, but part of the agreement Ipithymia has with Ligier allows it.
- Sex Tourism: What it's for.
Suntarankal, the Crucible of Brass and IronFifteenth Soul of the Demon City
Existing as a great dojo within the Demon City, Suntarakal takes all comers who seek to grow stronger. One of the greatest martial artists of any world, he has many who would take him up on his offer. Most don't survive. Those who do exit with their lives have gone through some of the most brutal, terrible regimens he could devise, but frequently having gained martial knowledge lost to much of the rest of the world.
- Drill Sergeant Nasty: Here's one of Sutarankal's quirks: He makes the recruitment office for his Genius Loci self look as inviting as possible... so when those poor fools who fell for the facade and didn't pay attention to his reputation inevitably prove themselves hopeless, he can use them as living training dummies as an example to his more competent students. This guy doesn't mess around.
- Malevolent Architecture: The inside of the 49 chambers of Suntarankal is a series of death traps, each one survivable, but terribly deadly. To graduate, you have to beat all of them.
- Given Sutarankal's attitude, he qualifies twice over.
- Marked Change: Graduates of the Crucible receive a brand that quickly heals away, only to reappear whenever they employ the martial techniques they learned there.
- Old Master: Suntarakal's human form is noted to be nearly the platonic ideal of this.
- Training from Hell: An unbelievably literal version is his specialty. He doesn't allow students to leave unless they die or graduate, and he only allows students who have mastered at least one infernal martial art to attempt his 49 chambers. Is it any wonder people with his brand are The Dreaded?
Orabilis, the End of All WisdomSixth Soul of the Endless Desert
As the Lawgiver of the Yozis and the physical barrier between the Demon City and Creation, Cecelyne embodies the concept of boundaries. Her sixth soul represents the limits of knowledge. Orabilis is a builder of libraries and a patron of learning, but he also defines the secrets that must not be known except by the Yozis. When any lesser demon learns knowledge that Orabilis has forbidden, he lays his hand upon them and casts them into the void between the layers of Malfeas.
- Twinkle in the Sky: If a demon (or very smart and very unlucky mortal sorcerer) learns a secret that only the Yozis are allowed to know, he can do this by laying his hand on them, casting them into the Malfean sky.
Munaxes, the Ravine of WhispersFourth Soul of the Principle of Hierarchy
Munaxes lives inside the fire in her Yozi's 30th sphere, but when she's summoned into Creation, she exists as a massive chasm in the earth. The voices of those who spread rumors against their friends, families, or rightful lords echo in her depths.
- Censorship Bureau: Munaxes can silence words spoken against anything she likes.
Sagarduia, the River of Crystal FireSeventh Soul of the Principle of HierarchySagarduia is SW Li HN's ego, the balancer of her desires. The River of Crystal Fire is exactly what she sounds like, a stream of molten glass winding across the demons city nearly at random, easily moving from one layer to another. She whispers to those nearby, tempting and compelling them to jump into her depths, with predictable results. Sagarduia serves SW Li HN as a messenger, between the Yozi's other souls, and also carries messages from her overself across the demon city.
Jacint, the Prince Upon the TowerEighteenth Soul of the Silent Wind
In every layer of Malfeas there's a black stone tower, and on the tower there's a huge brass statue of a winged man, and on one of the statue's hands there stands a marble pillar, and at the top of the pillar there's a disc of glowing light. On the disc stands Jacint, the Prince Upon the Tower. His passion and purpose is the building of roads.
- Token Good Teammate: The kindest of Adorjan's souls — although, while we haven't met any of her other Third Circle souls, knowing Adorjan herself that may not be saying much. But his basic Goal in Life is essentially creative and nonviolent.
- Winged Humanoid: He looks like a man with wings of basalt.
- Words Can Break My Bones: He builds new roads merely by speaking.
Marsilion, the Eidolon of ShadowFourth Soul of the Shadow of All Things
Erembour, That Which Calls to the ShadowsSeventh Soul of the Shadow of All Things
There is no true night in Malfeas, but sometimes, the Ebon Dragon eclipses the Green Sun and the skies darken. When that happens, the Dragon's seventh soul walks the land, playing on her silver horn a song that celebrates the darkness.
- The Beastmaster: She can command nocturnal animals.
- Blow That Horn: She has a silver horn shaped like a ram that has some nasty effects for anything who hear it.
- When she blows her horn, any nocturnal beast within nine miles is suommoned to aid her. Creatures of darkness are also drawn to her. Sentient creatures of darkness can No-Sell her call, but they sometimes come anyway.
- Her more dangerous power when she blows her horn causes any creature within nine miles and don't have the will to resist her music to be transformed into a creature of darkness, possibly being reduced to a beast. This can even affects the Exalted, if they are really unluckly.
- Brown Note: Anyone who hears her horn is forcibly transformed into a creature that can no longer bear light.
- Dark Is Evil: Theft and murder are among the "things of the night" that she loves.
- Dark Is Not Evil: Her night-born passions also include lovers, beauty, and secrets.
- Little Bit Beastly: It's not obvious, but occasionally one can catch a glimpse of a rat's tail peeking out from under her skirts.
- Professional Sex Ed: She's a highly sought-after instructor in the arts of love
Akallu, He Who Deceives?th Soul of the Shadow of All Things
Sibri, the Rampart of Serpents?th Soul of the Shadow of All Things
Life is pain; pain is change; change is life. So goes the message of Sibri, self-proclaimed teacher of demons, though few seek her wisdom, as her teachings are transmitted in venom and pain. A living mass of serpents over a mile wide and a yard thick, Sibri is nonetheless the kindest of the Ebon Dragon's souls, for while her teachings bring pain, they also bring wisdom. Try not to piss her off, though - some of her poisons are lethal, but others are crueler.
- A Form You Are Comfortable With: When her true form would be too disturbing, she may condense herself into the form of a tall, lean, and dark woman, clad in many-colored snakeskin robes, with venomous fangs and the milky blue eyes of a molting serpent. This is represented mechanically by keeping her Appearance of 5, but losing the Hideous trait.
- Body Horror: A side effect of her and her children's Venom Charms that divests Intimacies is that the people effected shed their skins - and the discarded Intimacy possesses said skin, turning it serpentine, sentient, and obsessed with seeing it through, though they are inherently noncombatants.
- Brutal Honesty: One of her two Defining Principles is "I am the destroyer of ignorance and innocence."
- Cool Teacher: An agonizing one, but Sibri is genuinely kind and invested in the welfare of her students, and has an Intimacy to that effect.
- Cruel to Be Kind: It's right in the mantra; she feels that growth necessitates agony. She at least asks if someone is ready first, generally.
- Dark Is Not Evil: She's a giant wall of snakes that personifies a personality trait of a being who is a living Shadow Archetype to the gods, but she's a genuinely Cool Teacher prone to Pet the Dog. She doesn't even hate the gods, just pities them.
- Familiar: She may give one of her component snakes independent life as an advisor with her unique Bestow the Ophidian Familiar Charm.
- Fan of the Underdog: She favors cripples, the elderly, the impoverished, children, and slaves; she's known to send familiars to answer their prayers for relief, or to break out of Malfeas to serve as a Rebel Leader if truly vast amounts of people pray for freedom.
- From a Single Cell: If Sibri's true form is destroyed, her familiars will molt into facsimiles of her true form; when there is only one left, that one will become the original Sibri.
- Reptiles Are Abhorrent: Inverted; the most snake-themed soul of the Ebon Dragon is by far the most amicable and harmless (relatively speaking, of course).
- Snakes Are Sinister: Played with. She's not a terrible person, but she's very blunt about her Cruel to Be Kind philosophy and the fact that rebellions inherently involve some Dirty Business.
- Worm That Walks: Exaggerated. She's more of a wall made of sentient snakes.
Ululaya, the Blood-Red MoonThird Soul of the Sea that Marched Against the Flame
Madelrada, That Which Wears Down The MountainsEighth Soul of the Sea that Marched Against the Flame
Kimbery's eighth soul is one of the Eight Masterful Demon Generals, the surviving strategists and military commanders of the Primordial War. Her specialty is guerrilla tactics. As inexorable as the tide, she's patient and utterly relentless, gradually and mercilessly wearing down her enemies until no resistance is left.
- Curtains Match the Window: Her eyes and hair are both gray, with flecks of rust.
- Tactical Withdrawal: Never minds losing a battle to win the war; it's often impossible to tell if she's actually retreating or setting you up for the kill.
- We Have Reserves: She'll accept any number of casualties on her own side; victory is all that matters.
Gnimersalt, the Mouthless Eater of AllEleventh Soul of the Sea that Marched Against the Flame
Gnimersalt embodies Kimbery's hunger and other base desires, taking the form of an enormous, disgusting whitish-yellow maggot. He lives in the sewers of Malfeas, consuming all the Demon City's filth and refuse (and, as a side effect, absorbing information associated with what he eats). He's constantly growing, and his size is only kept in check by a team of lesser demons who slice off pieces of his outer layers. These slices are sold to restaurants in the city above, where they're highly sought after as a delicacy — not because of the taste, mind you, but because some of the stuff he knows is contained within it, meaning a lucky eater can discover something very useful by chowing on it.
- A Form You Are Comfortable With: When he needs to not gross people out, he takes the form of a hot, pungent ocean breeze, an emaciated man with extra teeth, or a plump hairless woman.
- Big Creepy-Crawlies: A titanic maggot.
- The Omniscient: He devours the stories of the things he eats as well as the physical matter, as well as some of the memories of anyone close to him. He knows his stuff.
- The Unfavorite: He serves a purpose, but he's not Kimbery's favorite soul. Can you blame her?
Kagami, the City of MirrorsFetich Soul of the Silver Forest
Bostvade, the Quicksilver HighwaySecond Soul of the Silver Forest
Bostvade's title is more literal than that of many demons: he's an actual highway of actual quicksilver, wending its way out of the Silver Forest and into the Demon City. Representing Szoreny's desire for escape, exploration and conquest, he changes his path as he wills, and is responsible for outbreaks of mercury poisoning on a regular basis. He is a parasite of whatever Malfean neighborhood he parks himself in, creating a much better-kept version of it within himself, calling demons who can survive the swim through his essence to him. Over time, the entire place empties of residents, eventually resulting in a Ghost Town, at which point Bostvade moves on to the next town to repeat the process.
- Poisonous Person: Not only is his normal form made of mercury, but in his humanoid form he has quicksilver hair and eyes, can conjure needles of mercury to hurl at enemies, and can summon a spring of quicksilver from the ground.
Saltran?th Soul of the Silver Forest
Ferand, the Chariot of EmbersSeventh Soul of the Black Boar That Twists The Skies
Hrotsvitha, the Spawning ForestNinth Soul of the Black Boar That Twists The Skies
As anyone who has read the Interplay of Sex and Violence page might guess, Isidoros is quite interested in the way lust works, and that interest is shown in Hrotsvitha, who is both hunter and the great brass forest which he dwells. While he's an excellent combatant in his human form, this is actually rather demeaning of his real abilities — specifically, the qualities of his forest-body's vapors and water to drive people to an Unstoppable Rage or Unstoppable Arousal. Demons don't care, of course — as with many native hazards, they can feel the effects but resist them without really trying, but Exalted aren't as lucky; So long as their Compassion or, more hopefully, their Temperance, is low (there's nothing in there about one having to force people to acquiesce to the lustful version of the Spawning Forest's madness), even they can do something they'll find themselves regretting when it wears off — either because it pains them, or it forces them to ask uncomfortable questions (the picture of Hrosvitha working his magic involves a prematurely ended battle between Harmonious Jade and Disciple of Seven Forbidden Wisdoms).
- Horny Devils: He usually isn't involved himself, but he can certainly inflame lust.
- Intelligent Forest: It's a powerful spiritual entity in the form of a forest of living brass, whose nature pervades its expanse and causes those who enter its bounds to feel a strong mixture of arousal and violent urges.
- Love Is in the Air: What happens if your Temperance isn't up to snuff when resisting Hrostvitha's powers. Not towards anyone in specific, mind, just a general need to screw.
- Mundane Utility: How he spreads from layer to layer — female demons who don't like being homeless can service one of his more suggestive branches to impregnate themselves with a sapling which, if properly cared for, can grow into a hut (and don't worry, they give birth before this happens). Not keeping the hut in line and well-treated though, will cause it to fold into itself, becoming the trunk of a new, fully grown brass tree.
- The Wild Hunt: He hosts one wherein the designated prey is set loose for five days — if they manage to evade or fight off the hunters for that time, they're allowed to leave with his blessings. The less adept ones have the hunters enabled to... do what they will... so long as they are sacrificed to him at the end.
KashtaEighteenth Soul of the Black Boar That Twists The Skies
Many demons in Malfeas enjoy Blood Sports, and fighting rings everywhere. Kashta is the greatest patron of gladiatorial games, capable of erecting coliseums anywhere she wants, and when she does so nearby demons (and mortals) find themselves if the stands if they're lucky, or on the field if they're unlucky. Anyone on the field ends up in a fight to the death, and the survivor has the chance to sleep with her, although the winner either gets Kashta pregnant with a behemoth, or becomes a behemoth.
- Blood Sport: Is famous for this, and if any strong warriors are close to her when she decides to throw a fight, they might end up on the field.
- Death by Sex: The last survivor of the battle has the chance to sleep with her, but doing so risks becoming a behemoth.
- Random Species Offspring: If the last survivor chooses to sleep with her and is as strong mentally as he is physically, then Kashta gets pregnant, with the offspring becoming a behemoth.
Lypothymie, the Mask of MelancholyTwelfth Soul of the Typhoon of Nightmares
Living proof that White Wolf is of the opinion that the stranger the antagonist, the better, Lypothymie is not "just" a Demon Princess — she's a sapient emotion, best described as a contagious form of Nostalgia Filter. People in her grip suffer mournful flashbacks to the glories of their culture as they imagine it, with the most lethal stage actually sending them into a mild Angst Coma (mild, because she goes into remission after five days until something triggers her again). During this time, the mind of Lypothymie can communicate through Master of Illusion Charms, or, should she get pissed, assault the sufferer with sorrow so great that they might lose the will to live (she rarely does this, though, on the basis that people who pull through exorcise her completely). If so desired, one can enter her sanctum using her sufferers as a portal, where her mind manifests as different to each person, but always something that inspires a sense of melancholy (demons tend to see her as something akin to an angyalka). Besides the massive amount of information she's picked up from her sufferers over the years (she can read their minds), she also has the ability to turn others into spiritual emotions like herself, immortal but restricted.
Of course, that also means people will literally feel the same way the new emotion-spirit feels. See where this is going?
- Affably Evil: She's depressing, certainly, but she's not really malevolent. Of course, she doesn't particularly care what happens to people in her grip, either.
- Demonic Possession: Infecting people with her essence is the only way she can interact with the world outside her sanctum, and the same goes for her sapient emotion children.
- Emo Teen: Her literal Goal in Life is to share the melancholy of her nature, and she tends to gravitate towards things that inspire it (graveyards, mourners, rain...).
- The Spymaster: Unintentionally. Besides being able to read minds, she can perceive whatever is happening nearby her infectees, meaning she's a veritable repository of information. Not that she uses it unless asked.
- Starfish Aliens: Again: Sapient. Transmissible. Emotion. Who is explicitly female.
- The Virus: Normally people don't feel her, but exposure to someone who currently is in her grip allows her to infect them with herself via...
- Wangst: Causes people to feel this, and indeed how she spreads — paying attention to the poetic whinings of her infected is her vector.
Daendels, the Unfettered HeartFetich Soul of the Dragon Beyond the World
We don't know much about Daendels, but his Yozi, Oramus, is even more trapped than his siblings, without even the freedom to roam Hell. A being of chaos and possibility, Oramus was constrained in a cage of his own wings by the Exalted, who feared that his transgressive power could not be contained in any other way. His fetich soul seems to embody his yearning for freedom, and Daendels wanders the Demon City without ceasing, searching endlessly for a way to free his master.
- Seeker Archetype: He's endlessly roaming Malfeas in hopes of finding something that can free Oramus from his prison.
Remondin, the Misconstrued CounselorSixth Soul of the Dragon Beyond the World
Benezet, the Gardener of IdentitiesSeventeenth Soul of the Dragon Beyond the World
Mursilis, the Skittering JungleTwentieth Soul of the Dragon Beyond the World
A soul spawned by Oramus after his imprisonment, the Skittering Jungle expresses the restless Yozi's constantly frustrated yearning for movement. Strictly speaking, Mursilis only looks like a jungle; there's not a single real tree in the place. Everything within Mursilis is made up of swarms of whirring, skittering metal insects.
- Intelligent Forest: It's a powerful spiritual entity in the form of a forest composed of vast swarms of metallic insects clustering in the shape of trees. Some are its component souls and their progeny, but most are part of the vast Hive Mind that makes up the living forest itself. It's known to rearrange its shape and even move location entirely on occasion, with the entire mass of the forest migrating to a new spot and devouring everything in its way.
- The Worm That Walks: An odd example. Rather than being a hive-minded mass of bugs in the shape of a person, Mursilis is a hive-minded mass of bugs in the shape of a forest.
Demirkol, the Wayward ChildSeventh Soul of the Mother of Creation
Second Circle Demons
Sondok, She-Who-Stands-In-DoorwaysWarden Soul of the Green Sun
Being an Ultimate Blacksmith, it should come as no surprise that Ligier has things he wishes to guard from thieves and saboteurs. This desire for safety is represented in Sondok, an Action Girl with eyes like blood pools filled with stars, and her dog, Biyru (actually an extension of her subconscious — kill him, and she'll be able to bring him back on the next new moon). As her title and purpose suggest, she is the ultimate security guard, able to sense any intruders into the hoard she is set to guard, and if her Harrow the Mind Charm doesn't work in running off potential thieves, her utter and complete mastery of martial arts will. Perhaps unsurprisingly, many of the merchants she's worked with have formed a cult, the Cult of Darkness's Unseeing Eye (of which the Salmalin is a sub-order). While she isn't a manipulator by nature (it's not her job), she recognizes a large group of minions/co-workers is very useful when it comes to making sure none of Ligier's stuff gets in Creation without his permission.
As one might expect, she's one of the more steel-hearted people in Exalted... with one rather large indiscretion. Around twenty years ago, she fell for one of her summoners and had a (Dragon-Blooded) daughter. While the father's status is unknown (it's left up to the Storyteller if she killed or imprisoned him to protect the daughter's identity), drenching Sondok in her daughter's blood will be what removes her Destiny Sponsorship. Not being the Ebon Dragon, she's a bit reluctant to kill her own child, leaving one, critical chink in her armor.
Whether her slayers will be able to forgive themselves is another matter.
- City Guards: Her Goal in Life — preventing things of her current employer's and Ligier's from being illegally tampered with.
- Nigh-Invulnerable: The Destiny Sponsorship literally makes it so that Fate itself protects her until her Kryptonite Factor is brought to bear.
- Ominous Fog: Inverted — Sondok's abilities allow her to dispel conditions that impede searching for thieves, such as fog or cloud cover.
- Pet the Dog: Her relationship with her daughter, and possibly her lover (who may still be alive, at the Storyteller's discretion).
- Scarily Competent Tracker: Well, actually Biyal is, but given how it's literally impossible to permanently kill him while Sondok lives on...
Berengiere, the Weaver of VoicesIndulgent Soul of the Green Sun
A beautiful veiled demoness, Berengiere is unhappily bound to defend the boneyard of a slain fetich. She would much rather be weaving voices. Berengiere steals voices from mortals and weaves the emotions of their words into various magical cloths. Their voices come back, unless they are willingly offered to her permanently, in which case she weaves them into powerful artifacts.
- Dishing Out Dirt: If you remove her veil, an avalanche comes out from underneath.
- The Power of Love: Of all the emotions she weaves into bolts of cloth, cloth of true love is the strongest, nearly indestructible.
Gervesin, the Grieving LordMessenger Soul of the Green Sun
Sometimes Gervesin is a young man with beautiful green eyes, his brown skin covered in tattoos. More often, he's a massive brass spear that blights whatever it flies over. Gervesin needs no wielder, but he likes to have one. Whoever picks him up will never put him down again; Gervesin drags them from battle to battle until their corpse falls to pieces. Once he had no other purpose — but that was before he met Kinnojo.
Kinnojo was a mortal defender of the city of Chiaroscuro. Gervesin was the reason Chiaroscuro needed defending. At the instant the spear pierced Kinnojo's heart, Kinnojo was killed and Gervesin fell in love. Still grieving for his lost love to this day, Gervesin's only purpose now is to protect Chiaroscuro in honor of Kinnojo's memory.
- Bishounen: According to the art in Games of Divinity.
- Blade on a Stick
- Evil Weapon: Subject to the usual caveats about how almost nothing in Exalted is truly objectively evil. But the stuff about dragging people around till they die and being a literal blight on the world — that's pretty nasty, no matter how touching the Kinnojo story sounds. As befitting Exalted, the "not objectively evil" bit comes from a Compassion score of 3 — i.e. the part where his desire to help other people starts affecting his actions. He used to be a lot worse before he encountered Kinnojo, but now, he's mainly concerned with protecting Chiaroscuro.
- Love Redeems: His encounter with Kinnojo pretty much pushed him from a bog-standard rampaging evil weapon to a hellish force that genuinely wants to protect his lost love's home.
Gebre, the Pavane of Dying StarsMessenger Soul of the End of All Wisdom
Lucien, the Guardian of SleepExpressive Soul of the End of All Wisdom
A tall, gaunt man with innumerable tiny holes through his body, Lucien enforces the law of Cecelyne by dispatching those who trouble their betters — in particular, those whose actions threaten to wake Sacheverell.
- Cunning Linguist: He speaks every language that exists...
- Speaks Fluent Animal: ... including all the languages of the animals.
- Evil Weapon: He's happy to consider lending you his ivory knives... mostly because he knows that if you don't keep making the Essence rolls to control them, they'll turn on their wielder.
- Mother of a Thousand Young: He has a lot of First Circle minion species.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: A better shapeshifter than anyone short of Luna.
Florivet, the Whim-of-the-WindReflective Soul of the End of All Wisdom
Once a sage and scholar, Florivet turned his back on his original task to become an explorer. Orabilis disapproved, but chose to be merciful and allow his Reflective Soul to do as it pleased. Now Florivet sails the seas of Malfeas and the edges of Creation, searching for adventure.
- Disproportionate Retribution: He generally takes rejection very well... but if you actually manage to wound his pride, or if you sleep with him and turn out to be bad in bed, he'll conjure acid and throw it in your face.
- The Hedonist: His fondness for booze and mortal women is notorious.
- Lovable Rogue: Uh, sort of. Aside from that whole acid thing.
- Mix-and-Match Critters: He's some sort of wolf-owl-man.
Octavian, the Living TowerDefining Soul of the Ravine of Whispers
Known in the Demon City as the Quarter Prince, Octavian reigns over a full one-fourth of a layer of Malfeas. A massive figure with stony skin and elephantine tusks, he drips with toxic black oil. Octavian once loved the earth, but it rejected his love and now trembles under his touch when he walks in Creation.
One of the most fearsome combatants among the demons of the Second Circle, Octavian can sometimes be called into Creation by a challenge shouted from a mountaintop by a Worthy Opponent for seven consecutive days. Few have even come close to defeating him in direct combat, but among them are his hated foes the Lord of Nine Falls and the Mushroom King, who struck down Octavian with the help of his mighty axe Lentinus.
- The Beastmaster: He has a magic acorn, a gift from a wood elemental, that lets him command any animal that walks on or burrows in the ground.
- The Dreaded: Octavian is a legendary warrior among demons of the Second Circle; he's widely feared, and with good reason.
- Poisonous Person: The oil that coats his body can blind or deafen, sears the ground white wherever it falls, and destroys the taste of any food Octavian eats.
- Tears from a Stone: The earth hates him so much that it weeps when he walks on it.
- Wicked Cultured: Implied. His weapon is a staff with the rather flowery name of "Equitable Resolution", for example.
- The Worf Effect: In one of the chapter comics of the White Treatise, Octavian shows up having been summoned to guard a library. Arianna wants nothing to do with his nonsense, and simply banishes him back to Malfeas.
Stanewald, She Who Surmounted the OmphalosReflective Soul of the Ravine of Whispers
Malfeas is known for the art of dance, and throughout the Demon City, only the Yozis themselves and two other demons are known to surpass Stanewald as dancers. Stanewald loves the sound of shattering stone, and her thirteen Efficacious Dances all have the power to smash boulders or crack open the ground. At one time, her Goal in Life was the destruction of the spirit courts associated with the land; for this reason, her title was "the Answer to the Earth." Seventy years ago, that changed after one of the Yozis commanded her to climb the Imperial Mountain — that is, the Elemental Pole of Earth, also known as "the Omphalos of Creation." It is not known what happened to her at the peak of the Imperial Mountain, but whatever it was, it changed her. Now Stanewald seeks a new purpose.
- Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!: She loves the sound of rocks breaking so much that it can cause this if it happens within her earshot.
- The Corrupter: An unintentional example with the First Age Solar Dancer in Light, as although she didn't intend to corrupt him, she often pointed out reasons why (she thought) the world was better when the Primordials were in charge, and since all he cared about was his dancing, he was close to becoming an infernalist (and if the Solars had bothered to check he might have been considered one), but the Usurpation happened before that.
- Desperately Looking for a Purpose in Life
- Dishing Out Dirt: Although, unusually, she doesn't have an affinity for the element of earth so much as an opposition to it.
- Goal in Life: She lost hers on the Imperial Mountain, and is looking for a new one.
- Magic Dance: Has 13 special dances, which affect either earth, stone or earth spirits/elementals in various destructive ways.
Zsofika, the Kite FluteMessenger Soul of the Prince Upon the Tower
When you summon Zsofika over a dying fire, the first thing you'll hear are the drums. For seventy drumbeats, she turns in the embers, choosing her prey. Then she goes on the hunt. With each drumbeat she takes a step; every ten steps she clashes her swords together; every hundred steps, a standard-bearer appears to march behind her. Atop each standard-bearer's banner is a hollow pipe that catches the wind and plays a haunting tune — the "kite flutes" that give Zsofika her title.
Once she's caught her prey and eaten its bones, she can do whatever you summoned her for.
- Creepy Long Fingers: Each of her fingers has an extra joint.
- Dark-Skinned Redhead: She appears as a woman with ebon skin and bright red hair.
- Rain of Something Unusual: When in Creation, her passage is heralded by storms and rain. In Malfeas, she's followed by rains of blood, hails of basalt, snow of brass and stranger things.
Gumela, the Jeweled AuditorWisdom Soul of the Prince Upon the Tower
Gumela looks something like a man made of gold and silver threads. When he walks in Creation, his approach triggers a loss of inhibitions and ecstatic, orgiastic behavior in mortals. But while he enjoys mortal passions, that's not his purpose. He's looking for Mayoigo, and the fact that no one in Creation or Malfeas has the slightest idea who or what Mayoigo might be will not deter him.
- Bilingual Bonus: Mayoigo is Japanese for "lost child."
- Cloudcuckoolander: It's really hard to follow his thought process sometimes.
- Lack of Empathy: He bears absolutely no malice toward mortals — he just doesn't care what happens to them either, viewing them as simply part of the environment like trees or rocks.
Audegar, the Ever-Open Door? Soul of the Prince Upon the Tower
Makarios, the Sigil's DreamerWarden Soul of That Which Calls to the Shadows
Taking the form of a young man with a rainbow glint in his eyes and fine copper wire for hair, Makarios is a buyer and seller of dreams. When he's able to walk in Creation he can usually be found in the nearest marketplace, but most of his transactions take place within a dreamer's sleeping mind. Come to his alabaster citadel, and he'll offer you a comfortable seat and discuss the wonders he's picked up in other dreams, which can be yours for a reasonable price: trade concessions, help in expanding Makarios' market, unique objects from the mortal world or your own dreams, and for the most expensive items, your promise to set his mark on a certain number of mortals.
In truth, though Makarios is a skilled haggler, the prices usually really are pretty reasonable... you just don't want to fall behind on payments.
- Bazaar of the Bizarre: The Equitable Market, his personal fiefdom in Malfeas. By demonic standards, it's simply a rather large and varied marketplace, but by Creation's standards, it's downright dazzling (a fact which is not lost on certain marketeers, who have a long tradition of selling what is fantastic but common in Hell for massively marked up prices to naive Creation-born).
- Beware the Nice Ones: He's certainly nicer than much of the Guild, Creation's resident Mega-Corp, and he explicitly spells out what his price will be. He can also break out of Malfeas to collect a payment if someone tries to rip him off.
- Bilingual Bonus: Makarios is Greek for "lucky" or "blessed."
- Cannot Dream: Those with his mark on their forehead are unable to dream, and sometimes go mad before it fades. If they die before it's removed, they dream for Makarios eternally.
- Evil Debt Collector: He's not really evil the rest of the time, but seriously, failing to pay him back in a timely fashion is not a good idea.
- Intrepid Merchant: He is excellent at appraisal and bargaining, and is frequently summoned just for personal financial advice.
- Token Good Teammate: He's part of the Ebon Dragon, and yet he's honest, dependable, and generally trustworthy.
Mara, the Shadow-LoverDefining Soul of That Which Calls to the Shadows
Mara's apparent age and ethnicity vary each time she's summoned into Creation, but she is always a beautiful woman, with bright blue eyes and the hooves of a deer. A seductress, she eventually kills most of her lovers by drawing their souls out with a kiss.
- A Form You Are Comfortable With: Takes on the dominant ethnic background of the area where she's summoned.
- Deal with the Devil: It's hinted that Mara gave the knowledge of sorcery to Creation, making it possible for demons to be summoned out of Malfeas. In that case, it's implied by the rest of Brigid's story that this played right into the Unconquered Sun's hands.
- Enemy to All Living Things: Mara's presence frightens all animals except deer, who regard her as one of them.
Alveua, Keeper of the Forge of NightExpressive Soul of That Which Calls to the Shadows
An artist at heart, Alveua knows that if she were allowed to reforge Creation, she could make a better world — a world where the Yozis were free and gods and mortals knew their place. As long as the Ebon Dragon and Erembour are bound, though, so is she, and so there are limits to what Alveua can fix. When a suppliant gets her attention by sacrificing an innocent to her, Alveua takes the petitioner and forges them into a metal object. The mortal doesn't survive, but their spirit lingers on in the object, which is destined to serve the mortal's goals and protect the things they loved for as long as it exists.
- Bare Your Midriff: Her dress leaves her midriff exposed.
- The Blacksmith: Not the Ultimate Blacksmith in Malfeas — that honor goes to Ligier — but she is very good at what she does.
- Drop the Hammer: She carries a massive, permanently red-hot hammer on one shoulder at all times.
- Elegant Gothic Lolita: She appears to be a small, thin, pretty young woman wearing a black metal dress, with little horns peeking out of her short red hair.
- Friend to Bugs: Insects love Alveua, and will attack anyone who hurts her in swarms.
- Little Miss Badass: She's short, slender, and appears rather delicate. This appearance is misleading.
Aetamos, Brother of Brass and IronConstructive Soul of That Which Calls to the Shadows
Emerenzia, the Minister of the Ivory TasselDefining Soul of He Who Deceives
Sigereth, the Player of GamesIndulgent Soul of That Which Wears Down the Mountains
When you summon Sigereth, you'll see a slim, hairless boy holding a small box in his hands. The boy is a mindless puppet; the box is Sigereth. She is a master of all games of strategy, holding all sorts of cards, dice and game pieces within the box. She never plays without wagering something, whether money, property, favors, or even abstractions — emotions, relationships, memories. Those who wager themselves and lose are turned into Sigereth's First Circle progeny, the baidak.
- Berserk Button: Cheating. In 3rd Edition, she literally has a charm that allows her to aim a nearly-unblockable attack at someone who hits the ref (ie, her) or circumvent her rules, and it is only invoked by her rage at cheating.
- Chess with Death: If a life is wagered, literally nothing in the world will affect the outcome of the game.
- David vs. Goliath: Sigereth plays Goliath in an intellectual variant of this trope; she's playing Gateway against Ledaal Kes, with the stakes being Kes's body and soul if he loses.
- Smart People Play Chess: Or Gateway, rather.
- The Strategist: Commonly summoned as a tutor in strategy.
Iyutha, the Vitriolic DragonMessenger Soul of That Which Wears Down the Mountains
Appearing as either a horrifying black-and-purple dragon or an ugly old hag with rusty iron fingernails, Ithuya is one of the most straightforwardly nasty demons in Exalted. The thought of cooperation or social harmony offends and enrages her, and she lives to sow discord, treachery and hatred wherever she goes.
- Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: Actually gains Limit if she goes a full month without betraying someone who trusts her.
- Our Dragons Are Different: She resembles a massive black-and-purple dragon with translucent wings.
Kimbery's Dawn, Dam of the EristrufaProgenitive Soul of an Unknown Progenitor
Janequin, Fortune's FoolIndulgent Soul of the Misconstrued Counselor
Remondin, the Misconstrued Counselor, knows all possible futures. Janequin personifies his delight in the most outrageous and unlikely ones. One of the most unpredictable demons in Malfeas, she has no purpose but to act capriciously on her own whims. Although she's a skilled swordswoman, her luck is her greatest weapon.
- Conspicuous Consumption: She always wears extravagant furs and silks and jewelry, and though she's constantly spending money, she always finds more somehow.
Isary, the Four-Helmed GeneralWarden Soul of the Wayward Child
Nizar, the Unending GlanceMessenger Soul of the Wayward Child
Corr'dal, the Slug MotherUnknown Progenitor
Before reading about Corr'dal, one should know the story of the Invisible Fortress, masterwork of the Properly Paranoid First Age Twilight Kal Bax (and, coincidentally, the mentor of the Solars who became the Deathlords Mask of Winters and Walker in Darkness). Unlike his fellows, he suspected that the Usurpation or something similar would occur, so he built a mighty manse, the aforementioned Invisible Fortress, to hide from the Bronze Faction and the Dragon-Bloods during the political upheaval. Of course, even a master architect like Bax couldn't create something that needed no maintenance, even with the self-preserving power of manses, so he summoned a Second Circle demon and her entire progeny to protect and defend it. That Second Circle demon was Corr'dal, and her progeny the dal'sharr (though the latter call themselves the Founders now).
Unfortunately, Bax and all of his eleven apprentices died before they could get out (or rather, Bax died and the other, more insane Solars killed each other off soon after) and so, Corr'dal and her children ended up stuck in Creation... in what quite possibly is the most miserable part of it, the distant North. Needless to say, she isn't particularly a fan of the Exalted. This would simply be another aside, a story about a miserable demon and her spawn guarding a place that no one would bother with...
... Were it not for the fact that as befitting someone called the Slug Mother, Corr'dal has certain appetites that need to be filled. Since the Founders lack the genitals (or given how she's their mother, the desire) to fill said appetites, they have made a habit of rounding up powerful beasts for her to breed with. Being a spirit, many of these actually impregnate her, making her give birth to the highly-intelligent monsters called ice eaters (so called, because if they don't have fresh food, they'll chew on ice in frustration). As a result, she's become an unintentional bane of the North, and thanks to the mechanics of her binding, she can't permanently die until she's been released from service.
But she's not a dishonorable demon, even if she is passive-aggressive. After all, there might be someone who can free her...
- Anything That Moves: She's turned to this out of desperation.
- Fantastic Racism: She really doesn't like Exalts. Can you blame her? That being said, she's willing to swallow her distaste if she thinks they can free her.
- Gonk: She's called the Slug Mother, what did you expect? That being said, she'd probably get more help if she didn't have such a stubborn and distasteful personality.
- Manipulative Bastard: She isn't now, but before she was bound, she was one of the most adroit speakers in existence, to the point where Kal Bax actually crippled her ability to manipulate. If she were free, her tongue would very quickly turn superhumanly silver again.
- Mother of a Thousand Young: Again: Slug Mother. All of her children are sexless, so she actually has to breed to make each and every one of them.
- Sealed Evil in a Can: Subverted. She'd just like to go back to Malfeas, but her bond of servitude has forced her to remain in Creation, making her more dangerous than she should be.
Rimvidas, the Cancerous CornucopiaUnknown Progenitor
First Circle Demons
Erymanthoi, the Blood-ApesProgeny of She-Who-Stands-In-Doorways
Most Exalted demons, while not peaceful, are rather alien to popular ideas. They aren't ravening monsters, they aren't elemental beings of fury, and they don't kill for the hell of it.
Erymanthoi are the exception that proves the rule.
Carnivorous gorillas with bone spikes sticking out of their joints and reddish fur, Erymanthoi are the cheap muscle of the Yozis, with their fast reproduction process (utilizing painful acupuncture to make a blood-ape scream just so that the sound gathers flesh and becomes a new Erymanthus) making them cheap and effective soldiers to throw at a problem needing to be dead or harried, and great for heavy lifting. Blood Knights to the core, an Erymanthus that is allowed to hunt for his own food is a happy Erymanthus, leading them to be the minion of choice for infenalists everywhere.
- Bizarre Alien Reproduction: Erymanthoi reproduce through pain. When an erymanthus is seared with vitriol and its skin is pierced with iron spikes at very specific points, it emits a howl of agony that transforms into a new blood-ape.
- Blood Lust: It's literally their race's Motivation in general, meaning the average Erymanthus can imagine nothing better to do then hunt and eat the flesh and blood of their enemies.
- Mascot Mook: They're the most common minions used by the Yozis, the Infernals and their cultists and followers, both in stories and in-universe, due to their easy availability and ease of building up their numbers.
- Zerg Rush: Subverted. They're common and easily ordered around, but they're pretty effective soldiers in their own right. They just tend to show up in platoons.
Neomah, the Weavers of FleshProgeny of the Weaver of Voices
Attractive, shapeshifting demons that live to fulfill a business arrangement: negotiable affections in exchange for pieces of flesh from their clients. From these pieces, they create new life, and then move on.
- Designer Babies: They can be summoned to create unique, literally custom-built offspring.
- Evilutionary Biologist: Sort of. They're obsessed with creating bizarre lifeforms and setting them free into the world — they're just not particularly good at it.
- Hermaphrodite: Comes from being able to change gender at will. That being said, the default form of a neomah is a slightly-androgynous female, so neomah traditionally get feminine pronouns.
- Horny Devils: The poster "girls." They don't think of themselves as sexpots, though, but artists.
- Lovable Sex Maniac: Averted. They're pretty nice, and they're good at sex, but to them, it's a profession made to support their real passion, the creation of new life from their fees.
- Mundane Utility: That a neomah can produce a child from any donors, and that one of the ways a neomah can be called to Creation is via the mixing of parents' tears and afterbirth of a stillborn child, cannot possibly be coincidence.
Noresores, the Passion MoraysProgeny of the Weaver of Voices
- Emotion Eater: They feed off of passionate memories. If these are digested by the noresore, they are lost to their original owner.
- Flying Seafood Special: They take the appearance of ethereal morays that float about in midair.
Decanthropes, the Body SnatchersProgeny of the Grieving Lord
Metody, the Malfean ElementalsProgeny of the Grieving Lord
Metody are the "elementals" of Vitriol, a liquid that catalyzes growth and transformation. The hate of Malfeas has turned it into an incredibly caustic acid, but Metody can be instructed to cleanse it into its more useful form.
- Elemental Embodiment: Of a sort. They're demons, not actual Elementals, but nonetheless embody Vitriol and are tasked with its regulation in Malfeas.
- Hollywood Acid: Even in its purified state, Vitriol is still a "transcedent acid," a fact metody use to their advantage. Still, if properly used, purified Vitriol can burn away only the weakness of items immersed in it, given, say, silk the resistance of steel while remaining its flexibility and softness.
Gilmyne, the Dancers at the Saigoth GatesProgeny of the Guardian of Sleep
- Bizarre Alien Reproduction: They reproduce through a particular dance where four such demons circle closer and closer until they merge. A moment later, five demons part and go their separate ways.
Perronele, the Living ArmorProgeny of the Guardian of Sleep
Tinsiana, the Scorpion DemonsProgeny of the Guardian of Sleep
Agatae, the Beauteous WaspsProgeny of the Whim-of-the-Wind
As their title implies, agatae are wasps so impossibly beautiful that even their cruelest summoners can rarely bring themselves to harm one unless their lives depend on it. Big enough to carry two armored men, their purpose is to serve as steeds.
- Big Creepy-Crawlies: ... but beautiful crystalline ones, and quite likable overall as demons go.
- Horse of a Different Color: Their purpose is to be ridden on, and they like it that way.
- Giant Flyer: It's a giant wasp that acts as a riding mount. Check.
- Mood-Swinger: The strange philosophical thoughts they're usually thinking can sometimes trigger bizarre and unpredictable mood swings.
- Starfish Aliens: Agatae are highly intelligent, but in an inhuman way that's very difficult to comprehend.
Naneke, the Readers of Forbidden TextsProgeny of the Masterful Scholar
Gethin, the Harvesters of RaritiesProgeny of the Living Tower
Luminata, the Deer That Hunt MenProgeny of the Living Tower
From a distance, a luminata looks like a beautiful white deer. Up close, you can see it's actually a deer-shaped mass of writhing white tentacles. It'll generally run from humans... until the hunters stumble or tire. Then, the hunt turns around.
- The Hunter Becomes the Hunted: Their main schtick is goading mortals into hunting them, leading them on a merry chase until the hunters tire. When this happens, the Luminata turns around and starts hunting down its would-be hunters.
- Kryptonite Factor: They're burned by the touch of oak, ash or rowan.
Tomescu, the Clamorous Cloud ArsenalsProgeny of the Living Tower
Many species of demon fight, but there are a few who are exclusively meant for the battlefield, and most of these are motivated by loot, glory, or bloodlust. Not the tomescu. The clamorous cloud arsenals are brave in battle not because of their attitude towards it, but because each and every one of them knows that it will die, and has a general idea of how.
It's impossible to tell what a tomescu looks like, because as the title suggests, they're surrounded by a thick cloud at all times (though anecdotal writing suggests they look like a cross between a crab and a praying mantis). What is visible, though, are the dozens of weapons they're holding at any given time — and they're very good at wielding them, to the point where they can counter or parry against all attackers in a given combat. The other part of their name refers to an interesting quirk of theirs — every day, at dawn and dusk, the vast majority of clamorous cloud arsenals scream in dismay at the anticipation of their inevitable doom (and indeed, this is how demons can tell what time it is — thanks to Ligier never setting, the screams of the tomescu are the only way to tell when it hits night or day in Creation). Only one in 10,000 tomescu don't do this, and 99 times out of a hundred, that's because the individual tomescu is mute or insensate, or they've simply come to terms with their death.
The hundredth? He doesn't scream, on the basis that his death is too glorious for him to worry about. Fear these tomescu.
- The Fatalist: Every Tomescu knows how they will die, and is very depressed about this.
- Screw Destiny: They don't actually try this, but thwarting a destiny in Creation occasionally lets one out. Most of the escapees get ganked by Sidereals drawn to the glitches this causes, but there's always going to be a few stragglers...
- Seers: Due to their interesting relationship with Fate, a tomescu often understands how fairly minor actions can advance the cause of the Yozis. As a result, stopping a tomescu is often a lot easier than ensuring her schemes don't come to fruition.
Gallmau, the Hooded LanternsProgeny of the Answer to the Earth
Despite their mother having changed in nature and title, the gallmau are still very much an extant race of demons, still cleaving to the purpose of guiding people through spelunking the Demon City's and Creation's deep places. Serpentine, flexible demons, a gallmau's face is little more than a mouth with a pale blue-white glow shining from it...right up until they peel their lips back like a hood, which reveals the source of the light is a rather large tongue, and the inside of their mouth looks something like an ivory flower.
Guiding people around is not the general Goal in Life of the hooded lanterns, though — no, that would be making more hooded lanterns. And it's pretty easy for them, too — in a place lit only by its own tongue, a gallmau plucks out a dying person's (human or demon — they aren't picky) teeth and tongue, and impregnates itself with them. One hour later, it spits out a larval gallmau, which grows to maturity in a year.
Oh, and if a gallmau is born in Creation, it stays in Creation, free of any sorcerous bindings on its parent. Yeah, they can get to be a problem.
- A Light in the Distance: Gallmau will resort to this tactic if they can — and their Charms make their tongue-light seem even more appealing.
- Face Full of Alien Wing-Wong: Inverted. They're Aliens Full of Other Species' Wing Wong, with the caveat it's not exactly Wing Wong.
- Hermaphrodite: It's arguable whether they even have genders, and in any case, all gallmau can give birth.
- Kill It with Fire: Why explorers of dark places are advised to carry torches — open flame inflicts aggravated damage on hem.
- Typhoid Mary: Their saliva carries rabies. They could not care less.
Angyalkae, the HarpistsProgeny of the Kite Flute
Teodozjia, the Lions Sent Into The WorldProgeny of the Kite Flute
Teodozjia look like big jade lions. Their purpose is to recite and spread their scripture, which teaches the folly of loving mortal things when it is the will of the Yozis that humanity should wither and die.
- Antichrist: The teodozjia attack priests of the gods on sight.
- Cross-Melting Aura: Their presence taints and destroys holy symbols.
- Hive Mind: Every teodozjia shares the same mind and memories.
Amphelisiae, the Teakettle CourtiersProgeny of the Jewelled Auditor
Demjen, the Quickeners of OresProgeny of the Jewelled Auditor
Mermaid (and merman)-like demons with the ability to swim in the air, demjen are one of the Adorjani demon races whose music their progenitor cannot stand, but unlike their anglykae cousins, music is not their end goal as well — rather, it's the magic by which they get their name: by singing at metals, a demjen can cause it to animate and assemble itself into a crustacean-shaped Robot Buddy called a chalcothete, which serve as both minion and occasional food source (though the demjen honestly hate it when they have to do that). While not mean by any stretch (they have a Compassion of 3 and their general Goal in Life is simply to create more chalcothetes from unworked metal), they can be a real pain in the hands of a clever master — any metal is game for their abilities, up to and including that used in weapons. Thus, a demjen able to get within voiceshot of a heavily armed warrior can walk away with a dozen more chalcothetes, and the warrior either naked and/or dead, depending on the quickener's mood.
- Fearless Fool: Not them, but chalcothetes simply don't care if they die, only about the pain. They are also rather stupid.
- Flying Seafood Special: They're merpeople that swim through the air.
- Sirens Are Mermaids: They look like merpeople, and they universally posses a nice set of pipes.
Marottes, the Hopping PuppeteersProgeny of the Jewelled Auditor
An inactive marotte looks like a fist-sized knot of rope covered in disgusting slime. When it's active, several gangly legs extend from the central mass. Naturally driven to alter their environment, they're very handy for construction jobs.
Hopping puppeteers are particularly notable for being very fond of human infants... in more or less the same way humans are fond of flowers. While they really genuinely like the infants, it's in a way that doesn't involve empathizing with them or knowing anything about how to take care of them. Given the opportunity, a marotte will carry around as many babies as it can manage until it notices they've died of thirst, at which point it drops the corpses and wanders off to look for fresh ones.
- Babies Make Everything Better: In the most disturbingly literal way!
- Black Comedy: There's a lot of potential for it in the whole infant obsession.
- Invasion of the Baby Snatchers: They love to carry around babies. They just have no idea how to take care of them, nor interest in learning how.
- Poisonous Person: Their slime is not exactly literally poisonous, but it is addictive, and once the addiction has progressed far enough it generally leads to attempts to ingest an entire inactive marotte, which will kill you.
Chrysogonae, the Crying WomenProgeny of the Sigil's Dreamer
Ever wonder what the Exalted version of a "demonic tempter" is? Well, this is them.
A chrysogona resembles what would happen if you took a tree and carved it to resemble an impossibly old woman with a Tragedy mask for a face, who walks on her long branch-fingers (but not by moving them — rather, when they want to go somewhere they grow new finger-branches while burning the excess ones). Master manipulators, chrysogonae feed on ambition, to the point where an ambitious subordinate overthrowing his rightful (by cultural standards) leader can allow one to escape Malfeas without summoning. They set about this by encouraging people to act on their desires instead of their needs, so a smart summoner sets them to advise their enemies and watches from a safe distance as they self-destruct.
That being said, their common appellation arises from something that actually disgusts them — the crying women despise beauty being destroyed or true love betrayed, and that's what causes them to turn on the water works. But don't be fooled — they won't hesitate if their summoner orders them, and even when they're gone, a piece of themselves remains in those they manipulate — and their crying can be heard in the rain...
- Beware the Nice Ones: They're fairly civil, for demons. But they're still some of the most dangerous off the battefield.
- Emotion Eater: Ambition is the only sustenance they find palatable.
- Obviously Evil: Lampshaded — the text of their Subtle Whisper ability points out it's the only thing that allows a chrysogona to be trusted.
- The Virus: A chrysogonae's bite causes their victims to transfigure into wood. Thanks to their Healing Factor, Exalts can recover, but a mortal killed by this has their wooden corpse quickly turn itself into a new chrysogona. Thankfully, they can't use this to create a Crying Women Apocalypse — they're rather frail.
Bisclavarets, the Shadow EatersProgeny of the Shadow-Lover
Firmin, the Makers of NeedlesProgeny of the Keeper of the Forge of Night
Sesseljae, the Stomach Bottle BugsProgeny of the Keeper of the Forge of Night
Aalu, the Cannibal BureaucratsProgeny of the Minister of the Ivory Tassel
Baidak, the Empty PawnsProgeny of the Player of Games
Radeken, the Madling HellstormsProgeny of the Vitriolic Dragon
Eristrufa, the Mist-DemonsProgeny of the Dam of the Eristrufa
Heranhal, the Fervid SmithsProgeny of the Blood of the Forge
- Bunny-Ears Lawyer: They're damn good smiths, but very obsessed with sex.
- Our Dwarves Are All the Same: Pretty much — they're womanizers, and they're excellent blacksmiths. They just happen to have a wider range of crafts then most dwarves in fiction.
Fulope, the Choral Equestrians
Oldrasek, the Eternal Wheels
Anuhles, the Demon SpidersProgeny of everyone and their mother
If you look hard enough, you can find at least one form of giant spider demon descended from each Yozi, often with abilities distinct from those descended from each other Yozi. Rather than dividing them up individually, savants just lump them all under the heading "anuhle" and call it good.
- Vengeful Ghost: If a deceased person was not buried or was buried improperly, the Po — the "lower soul" that controls a person's passions, instincts, and animalistic drives — will manifest as a ravenous, predatory Hungry Ghost, resting in its body by day and going out by night to cause chaos and attack the living until it is pacified by being given a proper funeral. It is also possible for a Hungry Ghost to be created by a violent or painful death, and necromancers often torture victims to death to purposefully create ghosts to use and control.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: Any ghost who learns any of the Arcanoi (ghost Charms) from the Shifting Ghost-Clay Path can do this.
The Sovereign of Chains
The ruler of the Timeless Order of Manacle and Coin.
The lieutenants of the Sovereign of Chains.
- Token Good Teammate: In an ironic twist, it's actually the now-undead founder of the Guild, who's since realized that maybe the Anacreons should use their power to, y'know, dispose of the Deathlords or something?
Some nihilistic ghosts, whether out of madness, vengeance, or despair, swear themselves into the service of the Neverborn, working towards their agenda of ending all that is. The greatest of these servants are the Deathlords, the souls of the most decadent and vile Solars of the First Age. There are thirteen Deathlords, but only nine are named — mainly so that Storytellers can make up one of the other four if they need a villain.
- Arbitrary Headcount Limit: Only 13 Solar ghosts made the deal with the Neverborn.
- Although that doesn't mean that there couldn't be any more Deathlords. While it would take centuries before the Solars become powerful enough to become a Deathlord in the current age, there are enough elder Lunar, Sidereal and Dragon-Blooded capable of becoming Deathlords, and if one (or more) of them were to die, and be desperate enough to make a deal with the Neverborn and mad enough to be willing to destroy Creation, the Neverborn may offer then the chance to destroy Creation. Manual of Exalted Power: Abyssals states that the Neverborn might have some soul shards left that could be used to create more Deathlords. There's also the possibility that more of the Neverborn could decide to use the ghosts of their 3rd circle Devas to turn elder Exalts' ghosts into Deathlords.
- Turns out, it's actually a hard cap: in Return of the Scarlet Empress if the Empress dies, the Neverborn want her to become another Deathlord, but discover that they have run out of ghosts of their 3rd Circle demons. So they extract them from Princess, shattering her in the process.
- Deadly Gaze: Can instantly kill any mortal they see, turning them into a ghost (which they can then control.)
- Deal with the Devil: They all made one with the Neverborn to regain their power after they were killed.
- Fisher King: Played with. While some of their kingdoms are like this now, this is the end result of the mission, as once Creation is destroyed, the Neverborn will fall into the Abyss immediately, but the rest of the Underworld would take time to follow, so the Deathlords could rule what was left of the Underworld until everything is absorbed by the Abyss.
- Fusion Dance: Each Deathlord is a fusion of a elder Solar ghost and the ghost of one of the Neverborn's Third Circle Devas, the Deva's ghost serving mainly to empower the Solar's ghost.
- Kryptonite Factor: Some savants believe that each Deathlord has at least one of these, but they aren't sure what they are or even if they exist. It's also possible that these tales are lies spread by the Deathlords themselves, to delude their foes.
- Made of Iron: As former First Age elder Solar ghosts empowered by the Neverborn, they're pretty hard to hurt.
- Necromancer: The Neverborn granted the Deathlords immense knowledge of necromancy, and since they were all formerly First Age Solars, some of them already had proficient knowledge when they were alive.
- No-Sell: They can do this to anything that would cause Cessation of Existence to a ghost. Considering the fact that some of these techniques were used to kill the Primordials, it shows just how tough the Deathlords are.
- Omnicidal Maniac: The Deathlords all made a deal to cast creation into the Void. It's implied many have gotten cold feet, however.
- The Power of the Void: On of the big differences between Deathlords and other powerful ghosts is their connection to the Void, allowing them to No-Sell the normal anti-ghost measures.
- Resurrective Immortality: If something is somehow able to kill a Deathlord it just causes them to reform in their Neverborn patron's tomb in a year.
- Right Hand Versus Left Hand: As each Deathlord wants to be the one to finish off Creation, the Deathlords just as much time, if not more so, plotting against each other than they do against Creation. If they worked together, they might have actually finished Creation off long ago.
- Sailor Earth: Four of the thirteen Deathlords are left undefined to give Storytellers the option to make their own.
- Super Intelligence: As former First Age Solars, they know a lot about First Age technology, with some of them knowing more than all of Creation's savants put together, or even the archives of Heaven. Some of them are incorporating magitech into their plans to destroy Creation.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: They can take the form of any animal or human from as small as a dog to as large as a large man.
The First and Forsaken LionOften considered the greatest Deathlord in terms of personal power, resources, and military prowess, The First and Forsaken Lion is often the standard Big Bad for most Exalted games. FaFL is most famous for being spot-welded to his armor by his Neverborn masters after botching the Great Contagion by involving the Fair Folk invasion that is believed to have halted the Contagion in its tracks. He's now banished to a far off mountain range, gathering resources and plotting his next move on Creation, so that he doesn't mess up a second time.
- BFS: Varan's Ruin, a Soulsteel Grand Daiklave that contains the ghost of Varan, a Solar who was able to resist the madness of the Great Curse, and who the Lion forged into the blade without breaking his mind first.
- Big Bad: A favorite of Storytellers when starting a campaign.
- Evil Overlord: The most obvious example in Exalted, though he plays with it since he's supposed to send everything into oblivion instead of conquering Creation.
- Orcus on His Throne: After how he was punished last time, he wants to make sure he succeeds this time.
- Scary Impractical Armor: His trademark. Not that he has any choice in the matter, though.
The Dowager of the Irreverent Vulgate in Unrent VeilsThe discoverer of the Great Contagion, the Dowager is a civilized savage (to the point where some Deathlords think she's an ex-Lunar), and a powerful necromancer. One of the three canon Deathlords that plans to actually destroy Creation (the others want to rule over its corpse), the Dowager is a shameless psychopath and torturer, even worse than some of her contemporaries. See: her orphanage.
- Eldritch Abomination: All of her forms. They have to qualify, seeing as how she keeps asps for fingers and cloven hooves.
- Eldritch Location: The Dowager lords over the Well of Udr, a dimensional nexus where all possible realities collide and disintegrate. Anyone who looks into it without proper protection goes mad. She had such protection, and was able to extract the Great Contagion from the Well.
- Evil Old Folks: Her human form looks a little past middle age.
- Near-Villain Victory: The Great Contagion bumped off ninety percent of ALL life in Creation, including plants and animals.
- Orphanage of Fear: Hoo boy. She steals the children of villages she's killed, raises them with all the love and affection of a mass murderer, furbishes their rooms with soulsteel made from the ghosts of their parents, then proceeds to release them once they come of age... until they have children of their own, at which point she attacks them and does the whole thing over again. She says this is to create the ideal Abyssal, but she's been at it a lot longer then they've been around, meaning that she just has a reason other than For the Evulz now. Or to put it shorthand, the setting's equivalent of Granny Goodness.
- Overly Long Name: Even by the standards of the Deathlords.
- Voluntary Shapeshifter: All the Deathlords are, really, but she's mastered it.
Eye and Seven DespairsSome of the Solars did not do very nice things in the First Age, and Eye and Seven Despairs is testament to being on the losing side of that. He was the youngest in his circle, being the new incarnation of a recently deceased member of the same. This means he was, effectively, their punching bag, and lined up for all sorts of abuse. This culminated in being told that everything was over, his circle mates had realized what dicks they were being, and presenting him with a gift that would make it all up to him — his father's eye. He killed himself right after this, and claims to have been the first Solar ghost to sell himself to the Neverborn.
And what has he accomplished with this? Absolutely dick. He's a genius among the Neverborn, able to do things no one else has. But he hasn't done anything to actually kill Creation because he's busy focusing on tracking down the reincarnations of his old circle and doing hideous things to them, over and over again, for all time. As such, he's the lowest in station among the Deathlords, even compared to Princess Magnificent (who almost got shunted into the Void for her grand screw-up).
- Brilliant, but Lazy: He has made, among other things, a plague that raises its victims as aggressive zombies in a world where corpses usually need to be actively and deliberately raised and then given direction, and Cold House (see below). But he hasn't actually done anything with this stuff because of his obsession.
- Butt-Monkey: This is who he was in the First Age and, given his current interests, who he is among the Deathlords. It's gotten to the point where his only Abyssal servant (who he Exalted mainly to fill a quota) is considering throwing himself behind some other undead master.
- Eldritch Location: His particular manse, Cold House, is both somehow in Creation and overlooking the Void at the same time.
- Gender Bender: In addition to Shapeshifting Squick below, he also has as one of his primary alternate identities the Prioress of Bloody Sands.
- Obfuscating Stupidity: Shrug of God says that it's quite possible for a storyteller to make it so that his Harmless Villainy is really a cover so he can bide his time.
- Revenge Before Reason: His modus operandi.
- Shapeshifting Squick: One of his favorite ways to break the reincarnations of his circle mates is to take on the form of one of their lovers (or someone they'd fall for) and then sow discord from there.
- Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Look at what happened to him in the First Age, and you see he may just have a point. Well, if he tried actually destroying anything besides his old circle.
The Lover Clad in the Raiment of TearsAnother walking testament in Names to Run Away from Really Fast, the Lover believes in both the little death and the big one. She wants to take all of Creation to the limits of pleasure, and by showing them how fleeting it is, instill a cosmic urge for suicide. Her fellow Deathlords mainly think she's using this as an excuse to get off, and don't think too highly of her.
- Brilliant, but Lazy: She hasn't executed her plan to conquer Lookshy yet because she finds war tedious.
- Combat Sadomasochist: She pioneered the Laughing Wounds Style of martial arts, which uses BDSM tools and gear as form armor and weapons and grants the user bonuses based on how much pain they're feeling and increases the target's wound penalties.
- The Dreaded: Most of the Deathlords don't see her this way, because they don't know her from life. The Bodhisattva knows her and fears her, and hopes that eight thousand miles is a safe enough distance from her.
- Early Installment Weirdness: Some of the first descriptions of the Lover describe her as clad in orichalcum plate, as an example of some Deathlords who still cling to the trappings and regalia of their Solar lives. Subsequent depictions seemed to leave this behind and put her in a more Stripperiffic black outfit, although her character wasn't fleshed out until a bit further in.
- Femme Fatale: The Deathlord version.
- The Hedonist: Previously. Running out of things to take pleasure in is what turned her into a nihilist.
- I Control My Minions Through...: Love. All of her Abyssal Exalts are hopelessly in love with her and convinced that she will love them back if they do well. This actually undermines her plots a bit, since they have a tendency to backstab each other in order to hog all the glory.
- Kung-Fu Wizard: A master of at least three Celestial Styles, one of which she invented.
- Lady of Black Magic: The Books of Sorcery place her in opposition to Arianna, as the Black Treatise has her on its front cover and as the co-star of its chapter comics (along with her champion, the Prince of Shadows).
- Nietzsche Wannabe: Even before she was a Deathlord.
- Obfuscating Stupidity: The whole "ditzy hedonist" thing is a deliberate put-on to make others think her less of a threat. She's actually a brilliant necromancer and Magitek engineer and a cunning manipulator.
- Out with a Bang: She takes a lot of lovers... mainly because most of them don't survive the experience.
- Too Kinky to Torture: Again, Laughing Wounds Style.
- Trojan Horse: She deliberately allowed Lookshy to capture her one and only warstrider because it's actually a booby trap that, when activated, will turn most of the nation into a shadowland ripe for the conquest.
- The Vamp: Boy howdy.
The Bishop of the Chalcedony ThuribleOne of the other Deathlords that seeks to destroy Creation altogether (and friends with the final one, Walker in Darkness), the Bishop is also, oddly, the most sympathetic one. Somewhere along the line, he came to believe that existence is the root of all suffering. He took that to its logical conclusion and decided that Oblivion is the only really meaningful thing. What makes him sympathetic is that he... really isn't a jerk about it. Truthfully, he thinks that he can willingly convert everyone to his philosophy of suicide, and while he's certainly willing to resort to blunt means to get his point across, he prefers to be as peaceful as his position will allow him.
He's also the first of the four Deathlords that has the Sidereal known as the Green Lady on staff, though he thinks she's a guy.
- Affably Evil: While he is a Deathlord, and he does have the goal of dumping Creation into Oblivion, he's a friendly enough chap and he would much prefer talking to combat.
- Body Horror: His combat form is a huge, writhing, barely-human thing... that, for some inexplicable reason, has multiple sexual organs constantly growing from and receding into its body.
- Break Them by Talking: Huge fan of this method.
- Eldritch Location: The "Chalcedony Thurible" in his name, also known as the Hidden Tabernacle. Besides being a fairly spooky monastery, it has the ability to teleport anywhere he desires.
- Exotic Equipment: For whatever reason, his combat form has multiple sexual organs.
- Martial Pacifist: He doesn't object to violence, he just thinks it's pointless since most ghosts reincarnate without persuasion.
- Nietzsche Wannabe: He's big on nihilism, and little else.
- Sinister Minister: Buddhist version.
- Tome of Eldritch Lore: The Tome of the Endless Night has been known to cause people to Go Mad from the Revelation, just as he intended.
- Unwitting Pawn: Maybe. He's the most bamboozled as to the Green Lady's real identity (he thinks she's a very male Endings named Ten Thousand Virtues), but only one other Deathlord is aware she's on his staff, and he's (mostly) friends with that one.
The Bodhisattva Anointed by Dark WatersSome Deathlords are keen to preach philosophy, or conquer, or torment and harrow. Not the Silver Prince. He rules openly, and clearly, and fairly. In the Skullstone Archipelago, he oversees a transhumanist religion and government that focuses on fairness in both this life and beyond. The ghosts of the dead are full citizens, and encouraged to provide for the state on both sides of death in return for noble rewards.
This is...mostly true, but it comes with a massive asterisk. The Bodhisattva does believe in the inherent nobility of ancestors, but he also set all this up so that he has a steady stream of souls willing to throw themselves upon his forges so that he can build up an armada of necrotech and soulsteel, a lethal fleet to protect his utopia. He built the religion of the Archipelago, vanished for a few centuries, and returned so that he could claim the rewards. And he has a plan...
... assuming the Green Lady, who is also on his staff, doesn't stab him in the back beforehand.
- Adaptational Heroism: Before 3E, his ultimate plan was to turn 7/8ths of Skullstone's ghosts into soulsteel to create a fleet to conquer the West with. Now, he is entirely honest about the fact that willing ghosts and criminals who deserve a Fate Worse than Death are made into metal to protect Skullstone, which he ultimately plans to turn into a utopia.
- Affably Evil: In 3E, his courteous and peaceful mask really isn't, he genuinely wants to be a good ruler and to win over Creation to his side through diplomacy. He is quite willing to turn nasty to ensure negotiation through superior firepower, however.
- Always a Bigger Fish: As nasty as the Bodhisattva is, he is terrified of the Lover, and hopes that being on the literal opposite end of the map is far enough to be safe from her. Turns out, its not.
- The Bad Guy Wins: In Return of the Scarlet Empress this is the default result of the Western section of the campaign, without intervention by players. The Realm and its infernal allies slowly conquer the West, leaving Skullstone for last. As the Reclamation advances on Skullstone, the Silver Prince reveals his fleet of 71 First Age Warships, which obliterates the Reclamation's forces, and then decides to attack the rest of the West early (he was planning on building 100 warships before doing this) since the Realm destroyed the navies of every other Western country, leaving them powerless to resist as he turns the West into one giant Shadowland.
- BFS: Howler in Darkness, a Soulsteel Grand Daiklave which is more lethal than a normal Grand Daiklave, and can also force anyone struck with it who doesn't die but takes enough damagenote to obey his commands for 100 days, even if someone else was wielding it.
- The Chessmaster: He's been pulling off a very long plot to win over all of Creation to his way of thinking through propaganda and diplomacy, centuries in the making. And it's pretty clear he has everything planned out; when the Scarlet Empress vanished, he was relieved, as that shaved a few centuries off the whole thing.
- Chick Magnet: Has a high powered Charm that gives him this for both men and women, no matter what their sexuality is.
- Even Evil Has Standards: He utterly hates the Lintha family. If you know anything about them, you'd understand why.
- Human Resources: 7/8ths of his followers have their souls forged into soulsteel equivalents of First Age warships. He plans on building 100 ships before starting to actually destroy Creation.
- I Control My Minions Through...: Agenda, via religion. It basically works by saying that all people turn into ghosts after death, and while most go into the cycle of reincarnation immediately, a few stay behind as righteous dead who choose to help the living, who venerate them, and these righteous dead have been integrated into Skullstone's bureaucracy.
- The Necrocracy: Set up something between a Type 3 and 4, and wants to spread his governmental system.
- Path of Inspiration: The religion he set up is more or less an engine of his ultimate plan of turning all of Creation into The Necrocracy.
- Properly Paranoid: He is terrified of the Lover, and fears that she has agents in his court. He is absolutely correct.
- Punch-Clock Villain: Played with. He's a genuine megalomaniac, but it's clear the Omnicidal Maniac deal he made is something he's come to regret, and so he makes token effort to make Creation more deathly while not actually killing it.
- Technical Pacifist: In 3E, he really is not a fan of war; the whole soulsteel fleet thing is more meant for deterrence rather than anything akin to aggression.
- Unwitting Pawn: Green Lady, again. He knows she's a girl, but thinks she's very young for an Exalt (she's an elder) and is named Unfolding Corpse-White Lotus. Again, maybe.
- Utopia Justifies the Means: In 3E, the scary thing about the Bodhisattva is that he means every word he preaches; there might be some (in his view) Necessarily Evil actions involved, but he earnestly thinks rule by the dead is better than rule by the living.
Mask of WintersThe main reason the people of Creation know Deathlords exist, and the only one whose living identity we know (Larquen Quen). Four years before the return of the Solars, he marched out of the Underworld and laid siege to the city of Thorns. Thanks to his army of deathknights and his undead behemoth, he managed to claim the city. He now rules over it with a firm hand, and has even set about reestablishing trade relations with pretty much everyone. He's the "kind" tyrant, the one who rules the conquered city and plans to extend his hand to the rest of the world.
... except in Return of the Scarlet Empress, wherein Her Redness pwns him.
- Abnormal Limb Rotation Range: Remember that scene from Thor when the Destroyer turns around? The Mask of Winters does that based on his mood.
- Contractual Genre Blindness: The Mask acts like a stereotypical supervillain because he's a ghost, and as a ghost needs melodrama in order to keep himself motivated, and thus he lets things go "wrong" so his story is exciting. This is one of his two Fatal Flaws, and the one that's most likely to be exploited by his enemies.
- Cool Mask: It's where his name comes from.
- The Chessmaster: Not as keen on playing the long game as the Silver Prince, but he does have a hand in all the affairs of Thorns and is slowly working his grip outwards, both through his machinations and that ever-expanding shadowland of his.
- Evil Overlord: Somewhat more suave about it than the First and Forsaken Lion.
- Evil Versus Evil: He and Walker in Darkness do not like each other. Which makes sense because he killed Walker's living self (though thanks to Laser-Guided Amnesia, Walker doesn't know that).
- Glory Seeker: He was a huge glory hound in life, and in death, not much has changed. It's his other Fatal Flaw.
- Kaiju: His personal behemoth, Juggernaut, is an undead citadel behemoth that was one of the key parts of his siege engine.
- The Man Behind the Man: Thorns is actually ruled by his Deathknight Red Iron Rebuke, but Mask of Winters is the true power behind the throne.
- Sorting Algorithm of Evil: Ends up on the losing side in Return of the Scarlet Empress, when the Empress's first act upon returning is to grab the reins of the Realm Defense Grid and nuke Thorns right off the map.
- Two-Faced: His title descends from the fact that he wears a mask with two faces — one face is happy, and the other face is displeased. Each side takes up the front or back of his head, and he indicates his mood by reversing every joint in his body so that the side in question is now facing his subject.
- Unwitting Pawn: Yup, the Green Lady's playing him, too — and he's the one who's got the hooks in deepest, as he loved her before he went all Deathlord.
Princess Magnificent with Lips of Coral and Robes of Black FeathersPrincess Magnificent was one of the key figures in making sure the Great Contagion reached all corners of Creation. Resting high on the laurels of her success, she settled in the East and attempted to establish dominance as "the Heron" over three tribes with their own gods. And that's where she screwed up, as the three gods of what would become Great Forks drove her off with a story. A resonant, glorious story, but a story nonetheless. She was forced to flee, and her bosses weren't happy. She was about to be tossed headfirst into Oblivion until the First and Forsaken Lion spoke up on her behalf, offering to take her under his wing. She's been there ever since, extremely bitter and trying to make her own way.
- Butt-Monkey: She's the second lowest in regard amongst the Deathlords, was stripped of absolutely none of her faculties after being shanghaied into the Lion's service, and has spent every minute of her existence since then dreading and loathing.
- Eldritch Location: Her former citadel, the House of Bitter Reflections. When she fled, she cursed it, and mortals who live there tend to die, their souls dragged screaming into the Void.
- Overly Long Name: Her name is the longest of all the named Deathlords'.
- Parasol of Pain: Her weapon of choice is the Umbrella of Discord, woven from the flesh and bones of five dead Solars.
- The Starscream: She's just looking for the right moment to stick the dagger between the Lion's shoulder blades.
- You Have Failed Me: The Neverborn came very close to just annihilating her after her embarrassing defeat to the gods of Great Forks.
Walker in DarknessSome Deathlords do it For the Evulz, for power, for revenge, or for the orgasms. Walker in Darkness does it because he truly, honestly believes that dumping all of Creation into the great cosmic garbage disposal is a good thing. The warrior-priest of the Deathlords, he regularly takes to the field and preaches the word of Oblivion. He's also got a grudge against Mask of Winters, but he'll be damned if he can remember why...
... oh yeah, and the Green Lady is on his staff as well.
- An Axe to Grind: His weapon of choice, the Ebon Spires of Pyrron, is a gigantic grimcleaver that no non-magical creature can ever hope to lift.
- Colonel Badass: Whereas other Deathlords are content to just send their deathknights out with vague orders, the Walker is more than happy to join them on the field, fighting the same fight.
- Evil Versus Evil: It's left unstated if he dislikes Mask Of Winters because of residual memories or because of the latter's recurrent Genre Blindness. Either way, they spend as much time scheming against each other as they do actually pursuing their goals.
- Fantastic Caste System:
- For all his positive traits, the Walker in Darkness believes every Abyssal should be good at every part of their Caste skills, which means he'll occasionally have Daybreaks who specialize in Necromancy and Necromancy alone try to put together soulsteel warstriders.
- This also results in some rather boneheaded position assignments — he gave a Dusk who is quite legtimately insane — and not Ax-Crazy, insane — control of his armies, and his Moonshadow ambassador to the Funeral City of Sijan? An ex-gladiator.
- Much of this derives from his amnesia. Unlike the others, he doesn't remember his time as a living Solar, meaning that he doesn't have the experience they do of how flexible the Castes genuinely are in day-to-day life.
- Genre Blindness: He has a blind spot about the size of the Daystar regarding the ability of Exalts to master skills outside their caste/aspect abilities, meaning that he is completely flabbergasted by the concept of, say, an Eclipse being a better swordsman than a Dawn, or a Zenith being a better crafter than a Twilight; it's just not how he thinks the world works. Needless to say, it is likely to end badly for him.
- Laser-Guided Amnesia: The Walker in Darkness doesn't remember that Larquen Quen, the Solar who became Mask of Winters, betrayed him and murdered him.
- Unwitting Pawn: The Walker believes he wooed the Green Lady away from both Heaven and the command of the Mask of Winters. He is wrong on at least one count there.
The Dual Monarchy
The Timeless Order of Manacle and Coin
Where the Guild (see Exalted Other) are living Creation's premier trade organisation, the Timeless Order of Manacle and Coin serve as the Underworld's. The wealth of mortals, however, is a commonplace in the realms of the dead; what truly matters are souls. And the Timeless Order has had many centuries to become adept in trading — and enslaving — them.
The Timeless Order is far older than the Guild, tracing its origins to the First Age. When the Guild rose to power after the Great Contagion, however, it caught the Order's attention, returning their focus to Creation after centuries concerned with the dead. The Order looked upon the Guild, and decided that it was theirs, now — their anchor and their obsession.
In the Order, the Guild have found something even more predatory than themselves, something that sees the Guild as their special prey...
Or in other words, excellent employment opportunities after they die.
- Living Forever Is Awesome: They are undying, and they are perfectly fine with that.
- N.G.O. Superpower: If they wanted, they could take on the Deathlords. Unfortunately, most of their leaders are solidly neutral about this (the most prominent advocate of anti-Deathlord policies is the founder of the Guild, and he's the youngest so they don't listen to him).
- Shadow Archetype: To the Guild. Which is saying something.