"Stranger" is the blanket term used by Heretics to describe magical creatures. All of them, regardless of race or sapience. As far as they're concerned, all Strangers are Always Chaotic Evil monsters who seek nothing less than the total destruction of mankind. This is, of course, utter nonsense. In reality Strangers are just as widely varied, complex, and nuanced as human beings. Technically more so, since the term refers to magical animals as well as sapient races.
For Nocen, Strangers that actually are as evil as Heretics say they all are, go here
For the Seosten Empire and their minions, go here.
- Adult Fear: A species wide one. While Akharu who were alive when the blood plague was cast are still free of Vestil control, purebloods born after that point get the full package: total slavery to the Vestil.
- The Ageless: Vampires can be killed, but their immortality is complete enough that it's really hard.
- Cursed with Awesome: Human vampires are this. They can't survive the sunlight anymore, but they also get kickass superpowers and an immunity to the Bystander Effect.
- Daywalking Vampire: Pureblood Akharu are unaffected by sunlight. None of them understand why human vampires are killed by it.
- Fate Worse than Death: The original purpose of the Blood Plague was to permanently enslave all Akharu to the will of the Vestil. The watered down version they actually got paralyzes them unless they feed on the blood of others.
- Half-Human Hybrid: The primary form of Akharu reproduction at this point, because half-Akharu babies like Asenath are free of the curse unless they choose to become vampires later on.
- Human Aliens
- Our Vampires Are Different
- The Undead: Averted. Heretics assume that vampires are undead when in reality they're immortal.
A pureblood Akharu warrior who was one of the explorers that found earth after millennia of searching for a cure to the blood plague. There he met Jiao, a dying Chinese woman who he saved by turning her into a human vampire. They soon had a daughter they named Asenath. In 1803, when Asenath was eight, Tiras was forced to return to his homeworld to once again combat the Vestil, who were preparing another curse that would wipe out everyone that had Akharu blood (which by then included Jiao and Asenath). He promised to return as soon as possible.
- Disappeared Dad
- Interspecies Romance: With Jiao.
- I Shall Return: He promised Senny that he would return when the Vestil were stopped, even if it took him a thousand years. So far it's taken him more than two hundred years.
- It's Not You, It's My Enemies: Specifically, the Vestil. But Tiras has also been on the receiving end of this message, from Virginia Dare.
- Parental Abandonment: He left his family to stop the Vestil from wiping out all who had Akharu blood, promising that he'd be back as soon as possible. He made that promise in 1803 and still hasn't returned.
- Parental Substitute: To Virginia Dare, who he trained and raised for a decade. She considers him her second father.
The half-human, half-Akharu daughter of Jiao and Tiras born in 1795. Asenath took her father's blood to become a vampire when she was around twenty years old and has spent the time since traveling, helping people, getting Journalism degrees from various universities, and was part of Joselyn Atherby's revolution for decades before it was ended.
She's set on Ammon's trail by the mother of one of his victims and catches up to him on the same night he makes his move against Flick. After Flick's traumatic encounter with Fossor, she promises to help her deal with him in any way she can. For the time being, that means protecting Lincoln Chambers from Fossor, Ammon, or anyone else that might seek to harm him.
- Big Damn Heroes: Enters the story proper by busting in through a window and saving Flick from Ammon.
- Big Sister Instict: Asenath hasn't seen her younger sister since Reathma was a baby, but still remembers her scent and drops everything to speak to and comfort her when they reunite.
- Cool Big Sis: To her half-sister when they meet again. And to Columbus, because being Shiori's brother makes him Senny's brother too.
- Daddy's Girl: Even though she hasn't seen him in over two hundred years, Asenath loves her father deeply and eagerly awaits his return.
- Dodge the Bullet: Even at extremely close range, Asenath is simply too fast for guns to be useful.
- Embarrassing Nickname: When Twister calls her "ol'Assy."
- Fake Memories: Asenath's memories of the decades she spent in Joselyn Atherby's revolution have been erased or censored by the spell that wiped Joselyn from general knowledge.
- Fire-Forged Friends: With Flick.
- Friendly Address Privileges: Her friends and family call her Senny.
- Friendly Neighborhood Vampire
- Genre Savvy: Asenath quickly guesses that the odd Recurring Dreams she and Twister start having are actually memories they can't quite recall, and that meeting Flick is what set them off.
- Secretly replaced much of the kitchen knives in a client's home with silver in case werewolves attacked.
- Good Is Not Soft: Asenath is one of the nicest, most heroic characters in the story. That doesn't stop her from eating unrepentant criminals. Or stabbing a nine year old Serial Killer in the chest. Ambiguous Innocence or not, she has every intention of killing Ammon for what he's done.
- Immortality Begins at 20: Justified. Asenath waited until she was a young adult to take her father's blood and become a vampire.
- Lethal Chef: Asenath can't cook. At all. In her own words, she doesn't get along well with stoves.Twister: Or toasters, microwaves, blenders, those little toy ovens that make brownies with a light bulb...
- Living Forever Is Awesome / Who Wants to Live Forever?: While Asenath mostly enjoys her immortality, she exhibits signs of both these tropes. On one hand, she's amazed by all the wondrous things she's seen over her long life and can't wait to one day tell her father about everything he missed. On the other hand, she's tired of outliving her friends.
- Long-Lost Relative: Asenath has a much younger half-sister named Reathma who their mother gave up for adoption. But she has no idea that Reathma was recruited by Crossroads under her new name, Shiori Porter.
- Virginia Dare could also be counted as Senny's sister, as her father Tiras was Dare's Parental Substitute.
- Noodle Incident: She met Seller in Texas once. She claims that he still owes her for whatever happened and he'd rather not talk about it.
- Occult Detective: She spends a fair amount of her time investigating supernatural occurrences on behalf of those who can't help themselves. She mentions that she's earned journalism degrees from three separate universities over the past century as a way of keeping her detective skills up in a changing world.
- Pay Evil unto Evil: Asenath will do revenge assassination jobs if the targets are sufficiently deserving. Like rapists.
- Recurring Dreams: Soon after meeting Flick, Asenath begins remembering her time with Joselyn's revolution in her dreams.
- Really 700 Years Old: She's over two hundred years old.
- Speed Blitz: How she fights. Anyone without a countermeasure of some sort has no chance against her.
- Vampires Are RichYou think Ive been around for a couple hundred years without having a pretty damn sizable savings account or two?
- Vigilante Woman: A lot of Asenath's jobs veer into this territory. She's not shy about killing unrepentant murderers or rapists.
- We Help the Helpless: It doesn't matter to Asenath if you're a kidnapped boy in need of rescue, a grieving mother who needs justice for your murdered daughter, or a teenage Heretic who just had your entire world turned upside down. She'll help you. It's what she does.
A Chinese woman Tiras met in the eighteenth century. She was on the verge of death when he saved her by sharing some Akharu blood with her, turning her into a vampire. They went on to have a daughter, Asenath.
Jiao later had another daughter with a different man over two hundred years later in 2000. She gave her younger child, Reathma, up for adoption for her protection, going so far as to have the man she entrusted Reathma to change her name (to Shiori) before placing her in the foster care system.
- Absurdly Youthful Mother: Not really, because she's a 200+ year old vampire who appears to be in her twenties. But this trope comes into play because her daughters look close enough to her age that they look more like her sisters than her children.
- Adventurer Archaeologist: She's basically vampire Lara Croft.
- Beware the Quiet Ones: Asenath describes her as being quiet, dignified, polite, and soft-spoken.Asenath: She doesnt talk while she fights, she doesnt mock them, she just shes a quiet force of nature.
- Daddy Had a Good Reason for Abandoning You: Jiao has enemies (such as Heretics) that wouldn't hesitate to hurt her child to get to her, which is why she gave Reathma up for adoption. She was so worried about the possibility that Reathma would get hurt that she had her renamed to erase anything that could possibly link them.
- Turns out to not precisely be her enemies she was worried about. The actual threat was that Reathma might be kidnapped to be used as a pawn in power games among Chinese Heretics.
- Drinking Contest: She can drink a troll under the table.
- Give Him a Normal Life
- Gun Kata: Asenath explicitly compares her mother's gunplay to Equilibrium.
- Guns Akimbo: She typically fights with a pair of pistols.
- Interspecies Romance: With Tiras. Also with whoever fathered Reathma. Jiao was born human, but she's a vampire now while Reathma's father is human.
- Polyamory: She loves Reathma's father just as deeply as Asenath's.
- Senseless Sacrifice: Not only was Gaia able to ascertain Shiori's biological relatives in spite of the steps Jiao took to hide that information, she had Shiori recruited specifically because she's part-Alter. This could easily place Shiori in the very danger Jiao sought to protect her from.
- As it turns out, getting recruited by Crossroads is actually very good protection from what she was worried about.
- Break the Cutie: A species wide example.
- Gentle Giant: Most Meregan are this, as they usually grow to be around nine or ten feet tall and tend to be peaceful.
- Pacifism Backfire: The Meregan were a highly peaceful society that was totally unprepared for a threat like Fossor, who nearly wiped them out.
- Taken for Granite: They have a method of inducing "long-sleep" that turns people into statues for long periods of time. It's mostly used when traveling in space.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Many Meregan have bright hair colors.
- Wide-Eyed Idealist: The surviving Meregan are still alive because they were on-board Binsayeac, which means "Friend-Finder." It's purpose was to seek out other races and worlds and form an intergalactic community.
Gavant is a Meregan, an Alter race capable of space travel. They grow to be around nine feet tall. He appears to be a leader, or at least an influential member, of his people. And he's a good friend of Flick's mother.]]
- A Friend in Need: Is always willing to help his friends, even when he has problems of his own to deal with. He tries to help Tristan Moon while his people are in the middle of a crisis and immediately promises to help save Joselyn from Fossor when he hears what happened (while still facing the same crisis).
- Berserk Button: Fossor. He pushed the Meregan people to the brink of extinction to obtain their corpses. Gavant is furious to learn what happened to Joselyn.
- Bold Explorer: Gavant and his crew were exploring space before they were called back to their homeworld to help fight Fossor. By the time they made it back, he had already destroyed their civilization.
- Nice Guy
- Mr. Exposition: Very knowledgeable, and is much more comfortable explaining things to people than he is threatening them. He quickly falls into this role when Flick and Shiori wake him up.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: What does Gavant do when he finds strange humans in his ship after being woken up from long-sleep? Calmly give them the chance to explain themselves, that's what. Although he keeps weapons trained on them, just in case. It helps that they're there because of a beacon meant to call for "Friend-Joselyn Atherby."
- And what does he do when a strange child appears on his world? Tries to send him back home of course! Then when it doesn't work, Gavant provides a safe place for Tristan to live while they work to figure out the problem.
- Strange-Syntax Speaker: He hasn't quite mastered English, but he's perfectly and consistently intelligible.
Another Meregan, specifically their "master of explore," (the guy in charge of recon). He maintains the Klecnahn vehicles the Meregan use to travel.
A female Meregan who maintains their ships beacon technology, what they use for communication and teleportation.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Her hair is green.
Purin's son, one of the Meregan children taken by Nicholas Petan .
- Translator Buddy: He speaks for the other children, apparently having a greater mastery of English than the rest (or maybe he's the only one with a translator).
Werewolves don't appear to have much of a society beyond arranging themselves in packs, which run themselves differently depending on what pack you're talking about.
- Healing Factor: A very fast and effective one.
- Kryptonite Factor: Wounds dealt to werewolves by silver weapons will not heal right away.
- Long-Lived: According to Word of God, werewolves can live to be around 150-200 years.
- No-Sell: Werewolf regeneration also lets them shrug off even extremely powerful poisons.
- Our Werewolves Are Different: Heretical Edge werewolves are pretty standard, for the most part. Wolf transformation? Check. Vulnerable to silver? Check. A single bite won't turn someone into a werewolf, though, as they have to consciously choose to infect someone else.
- Painful Transformation: The very first time a new werewolf transforms is excruciating.
- Sliding Scale of Anthropomorphism: Werewolves have three forms: Human, wolf, and wolf-man hybrid.
- Super Strength: After killing one, Flick becomes strong enough to lift 1000 pounds.
Mateo is a Colombian werewolf who leads a small pack in Bogota, the nation's capital. He's also Sean Gerardo's uncle. Not by blood, but because he's in a long and committed with relation with Sean's biological uncle, Sebastian Gerardo.
He later brings Roxa Pittman into his pack after Lemuel turns her into a werewolf and she's forced to leave Crossroads.
- Badass Gay
- Cool Uncle: To Sean. Not by blood, but he and Sebastian are close enough that they might as well be.
- Cure Your Gays: Mateo was the victim of a group of crusaders that saw it as their duty to "cure" sinners and transform them into werewolves.
- The Dog Bites Back: Escaped the aforementioned crusaders after convincing them he had been "cured" and then ripping his recruiter's throat out when they turned him.
- Older Than They Look: He looks like he's in his early thirties, but he's about twice that.
- Papa Wolf: Bonus points for being an actual wolf. One day when his nephew was a kid, Mateo found him about to be tortured by a gang who had mistaken him for someone's brother. Mateo promptly went wolf and tore into the bastards.
- Supreme Chef: Mateo makes some of the best food you will ever eat.
- You Are Not Alone: He's brought in by Gaia and Seller to help Roxa Pittman after she gets turned into a werewolf. He immediately offers her a place in his home and with his pack.
A werewolf in Lemuel's pack. He looks kind of like David Spade.
- Didn't See That Coming: He's quite surprised when an opponent of his pulls out a silver knife. To be fair, said opponent didn't have one until a monkey brought it out.
- Sadist: Valentine is the type of guy who gets excited at the notion of crippling a prisoner he knows will heal and survive.
- Underestimating Badassery: He spend his fight with Flick assuming it won't take him much effort to win.
- We Hardly Knew Ye: He's killed by Flick soon after his introduction.
An enormous Samoan man who's real name is Rangi, but only answers to Fezzik. He's part of Mateo's pack.
A black South African woman in her early twenties and part of Mateo's pack.
A pale, red haired man in his early twenties who was born in Texas.
- Last-Name Basis: Nobody calls him by his first name, just Corson.
Real name Nicole, Hasty is a Colombian woman in her late twenties and another werewolf in Mateo's pack.
The Fomorians are another inter-dimensional powerhouse on par with the Seosten, their most hated enemy. They're bio-engineers that field armies their monstrous creations. They tried to invade earth in the late nineteenth century, at roughly the same time as the beginning of the Spanish-American War. It lasted a few years until Gaia Sinclaire, working with an independent Heretic named Joshua Atherby, managed to seal them off from earth at the cost of Joshua's life.
The human race as a whole is one of their experiments, designed to be capable of taking on the traits of other races and interbreeding with them. They want the human race back.
- Ancient Astronauts: They created the human race, and a traitor brought them to earth.
- Bio-Augmentation: They tend to augment both themselves and their victims.
- Body Horror: The only term that can adequately describe what they do to their "experiments."
- Fantastic Racism: Played with. The Fomorians think human beings (and their abilities to take on traits of and interbreed with other races) are awesome. But they still look down on humanity, considering them tools to be used.
- Named by Democracy: They don't actually call themselves Fomorians, that's just a name the Seosten gave them. But even other Alters use it to refer to them, and the Fomorians themselves don't seem to have any problem with the name. The Fomorians of Irish myth are based off of them, and humans THINK we named them after those myths.
- Organic Technology
- Slave Race: Not them, but humanity was created to serve as their slave army.
"Grandfather" is a traitor to the Fomorians who stole some early biological prototypes many thousands of years ago and destroyed all the data that led to their creation. He is hated and reviled by his people to this day.
- Been There, Shaped History: All of human history happened because the traitor brought the earliest humans to earth.
- Defector from Decadence: Abandoned their people to save some early experimental subjects.
- Doting Grandparent: He adores humanity and will fuss over any human he meets.
- Genius Ditz: He's a friendly goof that really wanted to give one of his projects thirteen fingers (across two hands) and momentarily forgets that his colleagues settled on ten.
- Genius Bruiser: See the above entry on his personal power. Now consider that the entire plot comes back to people fighting over who controls his greatest invention as a weapons scientist.
- HeelFace Turn: Used to be a Fomorian weapons scientist.
- No Name Given: "Grandfather" obviously isn't his real name, it's just how he introduces himself to humans. Other members of his species only refer to him as a traitor.
- Parental Substitute: Apparently to Bastet, who he named.
- Turncoat: The first Fomorian we meet speaks of him with pure hatred.
- Time Abyss: Literally older than "natural" animal life on Earth. Because he made it.
- The Big Guy: About eight and a half feet tall, and heavily muscled. He's a troll, what would you expect?
- Dumb Muscle: He's not very bright.
- Funetik Aksent: Buddy's got a Russian accent that inserts "Z's" into his dialogue.
- Gentle Giant: Has a chipper, upbeat voice even while he carries a broken off telephone pole with a spike driven through it.
- Nice Guy: He's really friendly towards people that aren't enemies. Even Heretics, as long as someone he trusts vouches for them.
- Rummage Sale Reject: His clothes are way too small for him.
A Lavinsi who works as Buddy's partner in security at Wonderland. He holds a grudge against Heretics for the deaths of his family, but he's willing to let them be if ordered to.
- Knife Nut: He carries a lot of bladed weapons.
- Inspector Javert: He's highly suspicious of Flick and Shiori for being Heretics before they actually do anything.
- My Country, Right or Wrong: Will follow the orders of the Sept above his own misgivings, even if that means letting Heretics walk around.
- Sherlock Scan: A standard power of Lavinsi. They're highly adept at reading body language.
- Super Senses: He has the extraordinary eyesight of all Lavinsi. X-ray vision, telescopic, thermal, the works.
- You Killed My Father: Quing lost most of his family, including his son, to Heretics.
A Heaphestical Pixie, currently the student of Seth Dozeran.
- The Apprentice: To Seth Dozeran. Many see this arrangement as his idea of a joke, but Namythiet herself goes all out.
- Cool Sword: A tiny one she calls "Cataclysm." She's tinkered with it.
- Gadgeteer Genius: It's kind of her thing as a Heaphestical Pixie. Most pixies are attuned to nature, Namythiet's attuned to technology. Look no further than the van she tricked out with ballistae and an apartment.
- Genki Girl
- Wide-Eyed Idealist
Namythiet's animal companion, an emerald tiger kitten.
- Cute Kitten: He's adorable.
A Bebarlang who recently inherited his position after his father's death. He's also Flick's old boss, the one she busted for dealing drugs.
- Complexity Addiction: Flick says his feeding plans are too complicated to go smoothly as she's telling him she knows about his drug dealing.
- Dirty Old Man: Checks Flick out minutes before she has him arrested.
- Dream Stealer: As a Bebarlang, Cal feeds off the psychic energy given off by people's dreams. Or drug-based hallucinations.
- Emotion Eater: Strong emotions (typically fear) make the dreams taste better.
- Everyone Has Standards: He doesn't like Flick, but he more or less decides to leaves her alone after learning about all the shit she has to deal with. He later speaks up in her defense after Lemuel's pack's assault on Wonderland at least partially because he can taste her horrified reaction.
- Evil Redhead: Has red hair "sticking out in every direction". Deals drugs to teenagers in order to feed off their hallucinations.
- Jerkass: Calvin isn't a Nocen, but he is an asshole.
- Klingon Promotion: Implied to have murdered his father in order to inherit his position as Sept.
- Screw the Rules, I Have Connections!: Uses his position as a Sept to get away with murdering his father to inherit the position.
- Small Name, Big Ego: Before coming in to take his father's position, Cal owned a large chunk of businesses in a small town. He liked playing bigshot while he was there.
- Wants a Prize for Basic Decency: Wants a pat on the back for feeding off relatively harmless drug trips instead of causing people nightmares.
A human vampire who was originally turned by Tiras around the time of the American Revolution. He's the current Tie-Breaker of the Septs.
- Asskicking Equals Authority: Big time. He can kill multiple werewolves with little effort.
- Brutal Honesty: Very blunt when telling Flick and Shiori how much Alters fear Heretics like them.
- The Dreaded: A bunch of revenge-maddened werewolves would rather flee than face him after he kills three of their packmates.
- Honorary Uncle: He describes himself as being "practically family" to Asenath, mostly to mess with her. He also alternates between describing Shiori as a little sister and a niece.
- Jerkass: Seth's not the most pleasant person in the world.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Nonetheless manages to treat Namythiet and Shiori with kindness.
- Jerkass Has a Point: The point he raises to his colleagues against allying with Flick, that doing so could attract dangerous attention, is entirely valid.
- Nominal Hero: Seth is pretty firmly on the side of the protagonists, but only because it's where his family is. He's still a largely amoral dick, at one point admitting flat out that he's only saving a group of humans because Shiori would be upset if he didn't, and he would be fine with letting them die otherwise.
- Also ties into Pragmatic Hero. He's eager to weaken Alter beasts so Shiori can kill them for their powers.
- Oh, Crap!: Has a marvelously understated one of these when he has an unexpected encounter with Gabriel Prosser.
- Troll: He likes messing with people, especially Asenath, who doesn't appreciate it.
- Obstructive Bureaucrat: He's by far the Sept that that's most resistant to opening contact with possibly friendly Heretics.
- Dark and Troubled Past: Limnoreia speaks of Fossor as though she's encountered him personally. She obviously did not enjoy the experience.
- Reasonable Authority Figure
- Small Role, Big Impact: The seeds of Joselyn Atherby's revolution were planted when Joselyn overheard a very young Limnoreia and her friends fleeing from mobsters while her team killed their wearbear protector in 1919.
- True Blue Femininity: She's blue, and noted to be quite beautiful.
- Call a Smeerp a "Rabbit": Slightly mundane example, Fennicus has a habit of using horse terminology to refer to humans, like when he refers to Flick's "dam."
- Guttural Growler: Flick thinks he sounds like he's auditioning to play Batman.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: He's quick to dismiss the possibility that Flick and Shiori are trying to engage the Septs' compassion by pointing out that such a plan would require their superiors to believe the Septs are capable of compassion.
A pooka, a type of Stranger that can shapeshift into various animals. Twister's default form is that of an eleven year old girl with fox ears and a tail. She works as a bodyguard and is an old friend of Asenath's, who hires her to protect Lincoln Chambers in the daylight hours. She was also a part of his wife Joselyn's revolution before it was ended.
She's also known as Esevene.
- Bears Are Bad News: Can transform into a bear.
- Fake Memories: As a former member of Joselyn Atherby's revolution, a lot of Twister's memories have been modified by the spell that Un-Personed Joselyn.
- Genre Savvy: Realizes that she and Asenath are being affected by Heretical Magic when they both start having weirdly realistic Recurring Dreams.
- Hired Guns: Twister is a mercenary, generally not working without payment (part of which she sends to her son). She mostly limits her contracts to bodyguard gigs, but is willing to kill in certain situations.
- Like rapists. Twister has no problem taking revenge assassination jobs aimed at rapists/murderers.
- Older Than They Look / Younger Than They Look: Twister is both at the same time. She was born in the early twentieth century. But the way her immortality works is that when she dies, she gets a new, biologically nine year old body with all her memories remaining in the back of her head. When her body is biologically eleven, that means it's actually only two years old while her total lifespans add up to 107. Confused yet?
- Pay Evil unto Evil: Twister can get somewhat sadistic with targets she's hired to kill if she thinks they deserve it.
- Recurring Dreams: Soon after meeting Flick, some of Twister's memories of her time with Joselyn's revolution start coming back when she's sleeping.
- Resurrective Immortality: When a pooka dies, they resurrect in a younger body. Twister starts over at the biological age of nine.
- Supernaturally Young Parent: Gave birth to a son in one of her previous lives. She sends some of her earnings to him.
- Supreme Chef: Over the course of her life, Twister has studied cooking under three world famous chefs. Flick compares her cooking to her post-stranger killing reaction.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: Twister is a pooka, meaning that she can shapeshift into a number of animal forms.
- Action Pet: He and Hannah used to "wrestle" when he was a fawn and she was thirteen.
- Only the Chosen May Ride: He's selective about who gets to ride him. Mostly Hannah.
A half-human, half-Reaper woman that lives with the Fomorian known as Grandfather. Her Reaper kill-aura is gold.
- All Your Powers Combined: Ancient Reaper Hybrid. It comes with the territory. Known powers include forced teleportation, umbrakinesis, super speed and super strength and more.
- The Archmage: Considers her mastery of magic to be on par with Grandfather's knowledge of genetics.
- Berserk Button: She gets very irritated when people call her a Heretic. She does not like being compared to indiscriminate murderers.
- Curtains Match the Window: Her hair is a blue as her eyes.
- Good Is Not Nice: She's not the most personable woman. After saving a group of Alter children she notes to herself that she isn't capable of comforting them or helping them grieve.
- Human Mom, Non-Human Dad: Human mother, Reaper father.
- Icy Blue Eyes
- Karmic Death: Likes to inflict these when making a point. For instance, forcing her enemies to kill each other or killing them with their own weapons.
- Mistaken Identity: Those within Crossroads are quick to attribute her actions to Joselyn when she kills eleven Heretics to protect Alter children.
- My Significance Sense Is Tingling: Her Reaper heritage allows her to sense when people around her are near death.
- One-Woman Army: Is able to butcher numerous veteran Heretics trivially while holding back much of her power. When fighting all out she's on the same order of power as Fossor, the literal One Man Extinction Level Event.
- Parental Abandonment: Was young enough that her parents didn't even have the chance to name her when she was separated from them.
- Pay Evil unto Evil: She draws out her Curbstomp Battle of a group of Heretics to make them feel the same kind of fear and terror they inflicted on all the Alters they had just finished massacring before she massacres them in turn.
- Undeathly Pallor: Her skin is almost as white as snow.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair
A Native American werecrow who has a history with Grandfather and Bastet.
- Really 700 Years Old: Were-creatures usually only live two or three times longer than humans, but Sonoma is in the neighborhood of five-hundred years old.
- Small Role, Big Impact: Her were-ism led to her father Liwanu seeking help from a "witch" (Bastet) who crafts the Ring of Anuk-Ité with Grandfather for her.
- Kill and Replace: Their MO. Fetch can take time to copy someone's identity and powers very thoroughly. But they have to kill the victim to get the full package. This Fetch does it to Paul Calburn.
- Killed Offscreen: By Avalon.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Averted. Manakel believes Fetch is too valuable to be killed or even punished over failures.
- Canis Major: They're big and they are wolves.
- The Needless: To a degree. They need one hour of sleep at the most and never get tired.
- No-Sell: To just about everything, including sniper fire directly to the eyes and attempted impalement.
- Normal Fish in a Tiny Pond: Apparently they're basically just wolves on their home planet because everything is supersized.
- Savage Wolves
- Super Strength: They're extremely strong, even taking their size into account.
- Super Toughness: Most attacks don't do much more than annoy them.
- Cephalothorax: They lack heads, while two eyes and a vertical mouth cover the front of their torsos.
- Blade on a Stick: They're quite fond of spears.
- Full-Frontal Assault: None of them wear clothes and they're apparently "heavily endowed". Flick is not happy about this.
- In the Back: They're not above trying to stab you from behind before you even realize they're there.
- Overly Long Tongue: Two of them, which they use to drag foes into their many teeth.
- Mix-and-Match Critters: Half bird and half dog.
- Our Genies Are Different: They can only create physical objects or alter existing ones rather than the nigh unlimited power of most portrayals. If it's a particularly large item or change, it requires physical contact with the target.
- Slave Race: Most Djinni are bound to a master, trading hands like property.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: They can change their own appearance at will. One speculates that this is because of the overlap between their "objects only" power limit and the slave nature of their race.
- Weaksauce Weakness: Besides the aforementioned limits on their power, all changes they make are temporary unless they've been claimed by a master.
- Anti-Magic: Magic only works on Dragons if they allow it.
- Bizarre Alien Biology: Dragon eggs incubate in stars.
- Faster-Than-Light Travel: They have this as an inherent ability.
- Living Weapon: Created by a nearly dead race as weapons against the beings that destroyed them, from fragments of said beings.
- Nigh Invulnerable: Immense power is required to hurt a dragon. And it had better be the right kind - direct magic will achieve nothing.
- No-Sell: Basically nothing works on them, between raw durability and immunity to magic.
- One-Man Army: The oldest dragons are at least as powerful as capital warships the size of a large city.
- Color-Coded for Your Convenience: When Heretics kill other Alters, they briefly glow with a brightly colored aura that only other Heretics can see. The color denotes which Reaper or Hangman the Heretic is connected to. Colors we've seen (as well as the Heretics who have them) include:
- Gold: Flick, Joselyn, Gaia Sinclaire, and Bastet.
- Pale Green: Avalon Sinclaire.
- Red: Shiori Porter
- White: Columbus Porter.
- Pink: Sands, Scout, and Larissa Mason.
- Bronze: Haiden and Tristan Moon.
- Pale yellow: Stephen Kinder.
- Orange: Paul Calburn.
- Combo Platter Powers: The reason they're so feared by other Alters. Against any other Alter you know what you're up against, but Heretics could have any number and combination of powers.
- Heart Is an Awesome Power: Many of the powers they get are useful only in niche situations but can become deadly with the right preparation and access to the type of equipment Heretics have. Others are useless in direct combat but extremely useful in other situations.
- Kill Em All: The prevalent attitude of Heretics against Alters.
- Victor Gains Loser's Powers: Heretics made from Reaper blood gain the abilities of anything they kill. A species of Alter may give different powers to different individuals, but the same individual will almost always get the same power from the same species.
- Super Prototype: Originally Heretics were created by exposing a human to Alter blood and burying them. The powers awarded varied depending on the Alter used but they were more numerous and powerful than the powers initially awarded to modern Heretics. This came at the drawback that, unless the Alter used was a Reaper, they wouldn't be able to get any more powers than what they originally got.
- Tomato in the Mirror: Despite their crusade against Alters, most Heretics consider themselves fully human.
- Was Once a Man: All were once humans before being exposed to some Alter catalyst that gave them their powers.
- Asteroids Monster: Though limited to one spawn at a time.
- Bizarre Alien Biology: Rather than one set of large organs, they have many smaller sets which are located inside their bones. The large organ cavity instead holds a large sack containing a smaller copy of themselves. As they grow, so too does the copy. Once the copy reaches the size the original was it creates its own smaller copy. This process repeats with no known limit, creating a living matryoshka doll.
- Born-Again Immortality: Despite appearances, they don't have this. Each "layer" is its own entity, with the smaller version contained within a completely separate creature.
- Breath Weapon: They shoot blasts of lightning.
- Chest Burster: How the smaller versions emerge.
- Full-Boar Action: They can grow to immense proportions, enough to trample trees with ease.
- Demonic Possession: They possess inanimate objects, moving them if they're small enough and hiding inside them if not.
- In-Series Nickname: Flick calls them skeleblineist, short for skeleton-goblin-poltergeists.
- Intangible Man: A variant. They can move easily inside of any object they possess but they can't phase through attacks.
- Our Zombies Are Different: They're rotting flesh and bone but also their own species, not some other creature raised from the dead.
- Poltergeist: They're the source of these stories.
- Infrared X-Ray Camera: They can see thermal signatures, which stacks with their ability to se through walls.
- Living Lie Detector: They're so good at reading body language they were once believed to be telepathic.
- Super Senses: They have lots of vision-based senses.
- X-Ray Vision: One of their powers.
The Reapers are a highly secretive Alter race capable of absorbing the memories of those who die in their presence. Or, if they're responsible for the death, they also get the abilities and powers of said victim. Those that indulge this secondary ability are called Hangman Demons instead of Reapers by the Heretics.
- The Assimilator: Just like Heretics, Reapers absorb powers and abilities from those they kill (this is because the Heretic version of the ability is derived from the Reapers). Unlike Crossroads and Eden's Garden Heretics, Reapers also absorb the memories of those they kill.
- The Dreaded: Absolutely no one wants to make Reapers as a whole angry at them.
- Dying Race: There were never very many of them, and Heretic attention has caused their numbers to dwindle further.
- Genetic Memory: The standard use of the absorption ability is to pass memories from parent to child.
- Insistent Terminology: They do *not* like the term Hangman. Mostly because the Reapers that word applies to are only kill-crazy because of encounters with cursed weapons.
- With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: A Reaper who kills too often will eventually be overwhelmed by their memories of their victims, which is why Hangmen Demons are classified differently than Reapers and tend to be a lot crazier.
- When Trees Attack: They look like people made of wood.
- Achilles' Heel: Outside of a body, they don't have most of the advantages that make them so dangerous.
- Anti-Magic: Most spells bounce right off them when they're in a body.
- Deadly Upgrade: The bodies they possess disintegrate after only a few hours, leaving the revenant vulnerable.
- Demonic Possession: Limited to dead bodies.
- Dying Race: There's very few of them left on Earth and that number is constantly shrinking. Very few people are upset over the potential extinction of the super-zombie making ghosts.
- Feels No Pain: Their host bodies feel no pain, though they themselves may or may not have such an immunity.
- Super Toughness: Their host bodies are very hard to damage.
- Animal Eye Spy: One of their primary uses.
- Animal Motifs: Each theriangelos takes the form of a specific animal determined by which created it. It's not known for sure whether the form they take means something about the creator, but that doesn't stop people from using it as ammunition.
- Summon Magic: Essentially how they're created.
- Barrier-Busting Blow: With enough zombies and time, they can batter down any obstacle.
- Deadly Lunge: They typically shamble towards prey, but put on a burst of speed in the last few yards in order to catch prey offguard.
- Mega Manning: Zombies created from bog standard corpses specifically avert this. Heretics can slaughter thousands of them without getting a single drop of power, as they are closer to magical tools than monsters.
- Mooks: Zombies are commonly created to serve as dumb muscle.
- Our Zombies Are Different: Zombies formed when someone animates a corpse act like the typical shambling monsters. The more dangerous ones are those prepared before death or killed by certain causes. Those return from death automatically, forming packs and acting more like predators than mindless drones.
- The Swarm: Zombies tend to act in large groups in order to overwhelm opponents.