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Characters / First Salik War

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This page lists characters that appear in the First Salik War Sci-Fi series by Jean Johnson.

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Jacaranda "Jackie" MacKenzie

  • All-Loving Hero: Jackie takes her responsibility has a Representative and later an Ambassador extremely seriously. She cares deeply for all of her constituents and wants only the best for them, even when that includes every Terran in existence. Do not mistake this for naiveté.
  • Ambadassador: Ambassador of the Terrans. High-ranked telekinetic, telepath, xenopath, and omniglot. Fully capable of stomping flat entire groups of enemies with her mind.
  • Famous Ancestor: While psychic abilities are heritable by default, Jackie's power as a telekinetic specifically harkens back to her ancestor Jessie James Mankiller, who walked barefoot on the moon.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: With Li'eth, though their being Mindlink Mates means they might actually have a chance at making things work.
  • The Ace: Talented in all the areas required of a civil servant and also won the Superpower Lottery with her telekinetic and telepathic abilities. Her temperament is also uniquely suited to smoothly guiding the Terrans through First Contact.
  • The Clan: Since three generations in a row won Population Control's third-child lottery Jackie's family is considered one of these by future standards. They don't really have a hat, though the Hawai'ian half does love surfing.
  • The Fettered: Absolutely adheres to the PsiLeague's code of ethics in the use of her abilities. Will risk her career, reputation, and even her life if her personal code of conduct OR the Oath of Service she swore to the Council demands it.
  • Turn the Other Cheek: Never once responds to Brad's insults and provocations in kind, though she doesn't hesitate to verbally reprimand him.
  • Uneven Hybrid: Her psychic powers indicate a Feyori ancestor somewhere down the line.

Brad Colvers



The Accidental First Contact Team in general:

Ba'oul Des'n-yi

  • The Navigator: Officially the Pilot of the captured V'Dan ship, he is also a skilled astronavigator and largely responsible for helping the Terrans locate the V'Dan homeworld in the vastness of space.

Dai'a Vres-yat

  • Nice Guy: A little shy and an absolute sweetheart, her temperament is a nice contrast to the more... extroverted members of her team. It goes a long way toward winning over the Terran population during their first press conference.

Li'eth Ma'an-uq'en (Kah'raman Li'eth Tal'u-ruq Ma'an-uh'en Q'uru-hash V'Daania)

  • Forbidden Friendship: With V'kol. He's determined to remain friends even after they return to V'Dan.
  • How Do I Shot Web?: He knew he had talents in pyrokinesis and biokinesis but because the V'Dan simply acknowledge psychic abilities as "holy gifts" and leave it at that he received no training before encountering the Terrans. His first serious teacher describes his mental "touch" as "that of a fumbling thirteen-year-old".
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: He's the Empress's third son and an excellent Captain in the V'Dan army. Enforced trope since every member of the royal family has to serve in the military for at least one year.
  • Sheltered Aristocrat: Used to be one, but thankfully underwent Character Development before the start of the series when his first CO put him to work scrubbing decks to humble him, and some more when he discovered that a low-caste janitor was a better programmer than his ship's entire IT team put together.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: With Jackie. Quite aside from their many cultural differences, the fact that she (like all Terrans) lacks jungen marks means his society will view her as a child and their relationship as paedophilia. He himself struggles with this at first, but thankfully Jackie is very much female-shaped and he's quickly able to overcome the Squick factor.
  • The Captain: And by all accounts a good one.
  • The Reveal: Pulls one in the middle of his crew's first interview with the Terrans to undermine Shi'ol's attempt to seize control of the negotiations.
  • Uneven Hybrid: There's only one way to get psychic powers in this Verse and that's having a Feyori ancestor.


  • Alpha Bitch: 373rd Countess of Something-Or-Other and will never let anyone forget it.
  • Jerkass: For someone who spends as much time as she does trying to manipulate and exert authority over people she's exceedingly bad at it. Pretty much everyone who encounters her learns to dislike her within a single sentence.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Connections!: Actively makes use of the V'Dan's Fantastic Caste System to try to order around people who are not under her authority or even outrank her.
  • Royal Brat: Though merely aristocracy rather than royal, she fits this Trope to a T.
  • The Navigator: A skilled one. This and the fact that she's actually quite competent at her job as a logistics officer are the only reasons Li'eth hasn't booted her off his crew (yet).

V'kol Kos'q

  • Forbidden Friendship: With Li'eth, though he's not aware of it while the friendship is forming. Before returning to V'Dan they have a (for Li'eth) highly upsetting conversation where V'kol explains that on V'Dan they won't be able to stay friends due to their caste difference.
  • No Such Thing as Space Jesus: He's an atheist in a world filled with aliens and quite happily categorizes anything "miraculous" as alien, time travel, or psychic influence. Readers of Theirs Not to Reason Why will know that where the prophecies and miracles of the Sh'nai faith are concerned he's quite correct.
  • The Strategist: His military role was that of a tactical and gunnery officer.


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