The A Crew (Trace and co.)
Trace was born into a poor family of farmers, but his talents in magic were quickly recognized and he was recruited into the Templar at a young age. He rose through the ranks and eventually took over the organization as Grand Templar following the death of his first wife. He quickly became known as a tyrant, feared by Humans and Keidran alike. His incredible power allowed him to dominate all those who opposed him. Then his memories were stolen along with his deep-seated hatred for Keidran. He now travels alongside Flora, a Keidran he befriended in his ignorance. However, his memories are slowly returning, and with them a past he would prefer remain forgotten.
- Amnesiac Dissonance: The man he is now is a perfectly nice Magnetic Hero. The man he was was a psychotic, paranoid Evil Sorcerer who everyone was scared of. Interesting in that the only person not aware of his past is himself; nearly everyone else is well aware of who he is/was and openly terrified of him. It's gotten to the point that Trace has decided that he's better off not knowing who he was.Trace: The more I learn about my past, the more I've come to realize how better off I am now without it. I used to want to remember. But being told just made me realize the terrible person I'd been. I understand now that losing it all was the best thing to happen to me. So I've decided I'm not going to do anything to put us at risk anymore.
- Anime Hair: Trace's pointy hair... thing, commonly called Idiot Hair in Anime fandom. Notably, it's only present when he's in his nicer persona, but when that hair falls, it's the first sign that Templar Trace has come out to play with people's entrails... though Templar Trace has his "pointy hair... thing" here.
- Awesome Mc Coolname: Trace Legacy.
- Berserk Button: Hurting Trace's love interests is the last thing you'll do, period, as his revealed backstory makes very evident — the murder of his wife pushed him over the edge into using Black Magic, which from there drove him into a genocidal fury. Even after his mental reboot, hurting Flora in his presence causes him to instinctively lash out with murderous Black Magic spells.
- Black Magic: He tried to master this to bring his dead wife back, and is probably one of the most skilled users of it in the world. Unfortunately for everyone, black magic has detrimental effects on a practitioner's sanity...
- Black Speech: Anytime Templar!Trace wakes up, of the creepy-as-hell scrawling font variety. Bonus points for having elements of Zalgo in there.Templar!Trace: Kill my wife, Will You?
- Break the Cutie/Corrupt the Cutie: "Templar!Trace" is actively trying to perform this on Trace, presumably to regain control of his body again on a permanent basis. He recognizes Flora as an obstacle in this goal, so he's trying to break them apart, currently favoring fostering doubt of the Mama's Baby, Papa's Maybe variety. It helps that Trace and Flora's unborn Half-Human Hybrid is (so far as they know) the first one in a long time, if not ever.
- The Chosen One: He is the chosen champion of the human god. Mind you, what he has been chosen for involves genocide against the other races to maximize the human god's power.
- The Dark Side Will Make You Forget: Trace began studying Black Magic to find a way to bring his beloved wife back from the dead. Somehow, his goal turned from that to "become leader of the humans and turn them into an instrument of Keidran genocide".
- Enemy Within: Trace's Super-Powered Evil Side has recently proven capable of communicating with him, and is in fact trying to turn him against Flora by suggesting she's been unfaithful to him and is now pregnant with someone else's child. Trace initially laughed it off because it was clearly lying, as he tells Flora... but he's just been told she really is pregnant... which it doesn't waste any time trying to use to its advantage.
- Expy: His backstory shares more than a few similarities with that of Darth Revan- a powerful magic-user who was leader of the enemies of all that is good, and was corrupted by dark powers, until his mind was wiped by another powerful magic user. At this point he ceases working for the villains and seeks to undo the evil he caused in his past life, even taking a female companion as his mate (and having a kid with them). The Superpowered Evil Side even is themed around black and red, which are traditional Sith colors. It's not helped that the comic started three months after KOTOR was released. That said, Trace is his own character now and while the basic plot is similar, it in no way decreases the enjoyment of the comic.
- Superpowered Evil Side: Has TWO of these.
- Facial Markings: A blue triangle on the lower side of his left cheek. Hilariously, he wasn't aware that he had a tattoo on his face until Keith asked him about it.
- Fallen Hero: Trace was shown to be a fairly nice guy, before his first wife is killed by a Keidran highwayman, which causes him to... snap. He tried to bring her back to life and failed, warping his mind with dark magic in the process, and then slaughtered the Master Templars, replaced them with his hand-picked acolytes, and became the bane of the Keidran race. The fact that he was also experimenting with dark magic before his wife was killed would likely not have helped.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: As a child, Trace's master quickly realized he was Brilliant, but Lazy, performing his duties faithfully but never really pushing himself, but she also realized that if he ever had a reason to try, he might be capable of damn near anything. They were right; give Trace someone to love and he'll love unconditionally. Take that person away and you have a holocaust on your hands.Grand Templar: He is strong. There is no doubt. But he has no heart. He does as we say, he follows our orders. But I don't think we've seen what he can really do. If he were to have some real goal... Something or someone to really care about... Then we'll see real power.
- To really drive this home, the reason he has no memory? a Goddess battled him in an all out fight and barely won, the moment she thinks her plan might be in danger because of Trace, she creates an Avatar and attacks him to ensure her plan goes right.
- Glowing Eyes of Doom: Evil!Trace.
- Idiot Hair: Trace fits the letter of the trope, not the spirit.
- Interplay of Sex and Violence: Trace tends to sport a lot of scratchmarks after he and Flora have sex, due to the combination of her claws, his lack of fur, and their general enthusiasm. Trace accepts them as Worth It.
- Interspecies Romance: With Flora. Which has recently made him the father of an impending Half-Human Hybrid, though he's only just learned this as of comic 738.
- Just One Man: On the receiving end in comic 921, until the town's guardian dragon shows up.
- King Incognito: He tried with some modicum of success. Then a group of templar extremists came along and tried to torch the town he's in, in his name. He chose to blow his cover to rescue the town. At least one of those he saved is actually grateful.
- Laser-Guided Amnesia: Trace, after a particularly nasty magical duel.
- Lethal Chef: In chapter 15, Trace attempts to cook a nice breakfast for Flora:Trace: Unfortunately... either my cooking skills were lost with my memories... or I never had any to begin with.
- Hilariously, when he doesn't care about the quality, he's somehow able to produce a restaurant-worthy meal.
- Love Makes You Evil: Not a straight example; 99.99% of the time, Trace is the sweetest guy you've ever met. Introduce him to someone equally as sweet and it's Sickening. Hurt (or worse, kill) that person, and he will do horrible, horrible things. If someone doesn't calm him down fast, he will drive himself to insanity trying to make things "right". Point of fact, all he did when a Keidran brigand grazed his wife with an arrow was track that single thug down and arrest him. It was only when he returned home to find that that arrow had been poisoned that he shoved the whole world into the express elevator to hell; he attempted to resurrect his wife with a Black Magic Dangerous Forbidden Technique, and succeeded only in driving himself completely, utterly, genocidally insane. He promptly clawed his way to the top of the Templar hierarchy and began directing them in blatantly genocidal plans against the Keidrans and Basitans. Admittedly, his mania was intensified by studying the Black Magic; the death of his wife was what pushed him over the Despair Event Horizon and start studying Dangerous Forbidden Technique in hopes of bringing her back from the dead.
- MayflyDecember Romance: He knows Flora is rapidly approaching middle age for a Keidran and it bothers him. A lot.
- Meaningful/Punny Name: Trace Legacy lost his memory; with a name like that, he really should have been expecting something like that.
- Mugging the Monster: On the receiving end of this. The captain of the guard, Keiren, who tried to have him arrested upon entering the town where his estate resides realizes once his identity is revealed that Trace Legacy is his boss.
- Necromantic: Trace's backstory. He uses Dark Mana to try and resurrect his dead wife. It backfires. No, not Came Back Wrong, it instead flashes back through his brain, nearly killing him and driving him mad. And on top of that, The Dark Side Will Make You Forget.
- Omnicidal Maniac: Post-Dead Wife, Pre-Amnesia Trace.
- Oops! I Forgot I Was Married: Amnesia Trace. His wife, Saria, did not forget.
- Person of Mass Destruction: Trace was this, to the extent it took a god to bring him down. And if Flora is in danger, he becomes it again.
- Pet the Dog: Even when the Black Magic drove him insane and sent him on a genocidal quest against the Keidran, he at one point saved a Keidran from slavers because she reminded him of his wife.
- Red Right Hand: As of the May 5, 2010 comic, Trace's left hand has turned black due to an overuse of black magic. He keeps it hidden with a glove.. Take a look
- "Templar!Trace", the psychotic side of him that ruled his body before his Laser-Guided Amnesia. It acts as his Enemy Within; capable of influencing his thoughts, and sees Flora as the main obstacle in it's path towards regaining control. Later in the comic starts actively talking to Trace in the form of Hallucinations.
- Berserk!Trace (or "Black Mana Trace", as its sometimes called) is what happens when he starts channeling Black Mana or his Berserk Button gets hit too hard (or both). In this state he regains most of his old power and displays a similar level of Bloodlust that Templar Trace had. The main difference is that unlike Templar!Trace, he's still amnesic and is extremely protective of Flora; attacking anyone he thinks is threat to her be it Human, Keidran, Basitin, dragons, or even his own friends.
- Underestimating Badassery: Frequently. Many can't wrap their heads around the fact that this nice, meek individual is Grand Templar Trace, and those who do, seriously underestimate what he's capable of when pushed too far. The two most notable examples have to be during the Basitin Island arc when a human supremacist wing of Templar try to use Trace as a battery to enslave the Basitin, and then start harming Flora. The second is when a group of Templar extremists try to torch the town he's in, and claim that "The Grand Templar must be dead, and he's just an impostor." They quickly realize how wrong they are when he demonstrates a taste of his power and skill, but their leader thinks they can still take him down. Also, at the start of the comic, his officially "wanted" poster listed him as harmless.
- Willfully Weak: He's reluctant to unleash his true power because he fears being taken over by one or both of his Superpowered Evil Side. Even so, he's quite dangerous when provoked.
- Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: The Black Magic turned him into one before he became amnesiac; a genocidal, power-hungry, and bitter man who hated the entire cosmos for taking his wife away from him, in particular Keidrans. His Templar Trace persona (or as Trace calls it, "Evil Black Smoke Hallucination") is the part that remains that way.
Flora was born in the southern rainforests but her tribe was attacked by raiders when she was three. Her parents were killed and she was sold into slavery. Flora was lucky enough to be purchased by a friendly human family who treated her more like a daughter then a slave. Thus, Flora recalls her days of slavery with an unusual fondness. She has no memory of the day her tribe was attacked. Flora eventually was allowed by her human family to return to her people. Due of her knowledge of human nature and language, she was chosen to be a representative of the Tiger Clan and a marriage was arranged between her and a prince of the Wolf Clan. The arrangement fell through, though, when her caravan was attacked. She was saved from the human attackers by Trace, who had just recently lost his memories.
- A-Cup Angst: Flora is very petite in terms of bust-size, and she really doesn't like it much. She does not take it well when this is pointed out.
- Cat Girl: Flora, although with fur, ears, tail, claws, and muzzle, she is much further down the scale than most. It helps that she looks a lot like Tigra, who has an internet paradox named after her.The Tigra/Flora Paradox: If you'd hit it you're a furry; if not you're gay.
- Everything's Better with Princesses: Flora, who was put into an arranged marriage with a prince of another tribe. She decided not to go through with it. Unfortunately, this means there will not be a Keidran alliance to oppose the humans, but then again, Templar Trace is no longer there to lead the humans, and Flora and Trace's falling in love has screwed everything up, plan-wise. In other words, princesses screw up the plan.
- Fat and Proud: When she gets pregnant, she thinks she's put on weight. She muses that while keidrans think fat is sexy, "humans are backwards for some reason."
- Half-Human Hybrid: She's currently pregnant with one of these, though she takes a while to accept she's pregnant, and doesn't reveal it to the father until comic #738.
- Idiot Hair: Flora fits the letter of the trope, not the spirit.
- Innocent Fanservice Girl: Flora, to the point that the author has complained on the forums that he wants to clothe her, but she keeps slipping out of her clothes. Less "Innocent" and more "Not really needed since she has a built-in fur coat", however. Interestingly enough, Flora was Raised by Humans, meaning she should have human modesty, and Natani (indeed, most other Keidran shown, outside of the feral and tribal ones) has no real interest in undressing. Perhaps it is a way of rebelling against her human upbringing.
- Interplay of Sex and Violence: Trace tends to sport a lot of scratchmarks after he and Flora have sex, due to the combination of her claws, his lack of fur, and their general enthusiasm. Flora does feel guilty about it, but they just tend to keep happening.
- Interspecies Romance: She originally had an Arranged Marriage with the Prince of the Wolf Keidran, and she's now in a sexual/romantic relationship with Trace, a human.
- Longest Pregnancy Ever: It's taken over 5 years of real-life time for Flora's pregnancy to advance a few months in-comic.
- Mama's Baby, Papa's Maybe: She's initially terrified that Trace will accuse of her of being unfaithful when he discovers her pregnancy, because humans and Keidrans have never had children together before. Not only is it not supposed to be physically possible, but there's also the matter of Keidrans being known for non-monogamy and more than a little promiscuousness, which makes it harder to believe when she says "The baby is totally yours and not the result of me chasing some tail." So far, he shows no signs of disbelieving her, but everyone else around them is skeptical, which means she's still worried about this.
- Ms. Fanservice: Not normally. But then again, cake...◊
- Obvious Pregnancy: Subverted. Flora's only just starting to show and so her bulge is still quite subtle; the largest it's been so far is in the chapter 16 title page.
- Raised by Orcs: Flora was more-or-less raised by humans, and counts as this to her kind.
Keith was born on the Basidian Islands, a large landmass located near the mainland. His father was a General, his mother was a soldier, but she sheltered him from military life for much of his childhood. Like all Basitins, he did eventually join the military, but at 8 years of age, late for most Basitins. Keith was blamed for his parents death at the age of 13 and banished from the islands. He was ordered not to return until he brought back the Grand Templar.
- Action Hero: He was able to fight Alaric to a near standstill, although Alaric was starting to gain ground before his untimely demise.
- Ancestral Weapon: The armor that Keith initially wears once belonged to his father. In an interesting twist, it's actually a mark of dishonor rather than family pride; he wears it as a condition of his banishment, and is eager to get rid of it after the Basitin Isles arc is done.
- The Atoner: Ironically, for things that weren't his fault. Even killing his father was arguable, as he had discovered his wife murdered, likely suspected that the Intelligence General was responsible, and even Keith himself admits he couldn't have beaten his father if his best day fell on his father's worst and it was like the man "fell on his spear."
- Cartwright Curse: Every time someone falls in love with him, and he reciprocates, it does not go well. He was about to be married to Laura, until she cracked under pressure of her family and peers, and ran away, on the eve before their wedding. They reconcile on the Basitin Island only to have her die in his arms because the same "family friend" that killed his mother and drove his father to Suicide by Cop blasts her with magic. He was forced to duel Alaric to the death. Natani is in a coma due to the backlash of his connection with Zen being severed (Natani gets better after reconciling with their feminine side). Madelyn.... It's probably best that Keith doesn't know about her crush right now.
- Closet Key: To Natani, more or less. Although one could argue that Natani is really bisexual but in denial of his attraction to men, it works out the same.
- Dark and Troubled Past: He and his dad were at ends for most of his childhood, he came home one evening to find his dad had apparently murdered his mom, then he accidentally killed his dad whilst defending himself. For this, he was exiled from the island until and unless he could bring the leader of the Templars back to the Basidian Islands. He was taken in by a female fox keidran, Laura, and was going to give up on going home and get married... and then she ran away in fear and stress before the wedding, so he left her and went on in search of his quest.
- Doom Magnet: Aside from the one time where he found an amnesiac Trace who was perfectly willing to travel with him, nothing's ever gone right for him, at least not for very long, and people close to him tend to have much shorter life-spans.
- Fantastic Arousal: Like all basitins, his ears are very sensitive, and so it's easy to turn him on by touching or kissing him there.
- Word of God also proclaims that foot-fetishism is effectively universal amongst Basitins, hence the reason why bare feet are considered obscene. It's unclear if Keith still has this fetish, or if spending so long amongst keidrans, who run around bare-pawed all the time, has caused him to lose any sense of eroticism to them.
- Fighting Your Friend: He and Alaric were forced by The Intelligence General's actions to fight to the death.
- If It's You, It's Okay: Made clear in Comic #809; he does genuinely see Natani as "one of the guys", but despite that and his own heterosexuality, he is attracted to Natani as well.
- Impossible Task: Keith was set the impossible — perhaps even suicidal — task of "bring back the Grand Templar" as a condition of his banishment. He was just as surprised as anyone when an amnesiac Trace cheerfully accepted his invitation.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: His East Basitin heritage means that he isn't supposed to show emotion, but his feelings run extremely deep due to his mother's West Basitin blood and influence; as a result, he comes off as a Tsundere/Sugar-and-Ice Personality. This may be common among even "normal" Basitins such as Alaric, based on how quickly Keith realized he was playing a trick on him.
- Killer Rabbit: He's the smallest member of the group, with even Flora being almost a head taller than him. He's also incredible strong and tough, immune to poison and heals a lot faster than a human does. He's also the only one besides Natani and Red who remembers his training, as Trace is an amnesiac.
- Incompatible Orientation:
- Invoked. Though he does have feelings for Natani, he doubts anything will come from it, since he knows and respects that Natani's female-to-heterosexual-male transgender and is, as far as he is aware, either asexual or only interested in women.
- Zigzagged: after Natani makes the first move, although he admits the fact he sees Natani as One of the Boys makes it a little weird for him, Keith is still ultimately happy to return Natani's feelings.
- He is also strongly implied to be on the other end of this with his Unlucky Childhood Friend Alaric.
- Interspecies Romance: Used to have one with Laura, a fox keidran, and Ship Tease with Natani the wolf keidran ultimately turns into them becoming a second Official Couple.
- Love Dodecahedron: Where to begin? Prior to the Basitin Isle arc, Keith had his ex-girlfriend Laura, who he tried to forget about, and then he and Natani started developing something. Then, on the Basitin Isles, said ex-girlfriend comes back looking to start things up again, a random female guard (Madelyn) becomes infatuated with his fighting skill, and it's strongly implied that his best buddy Alaric is a gay man with a crush on Keith and a perfect willingness to flirt. It then seems to boil back down to a Love Triangle when Laura and Alaric end up dead, and Madelyn joins the crew... only to finally resolve itself into a straight-up Keith/Natani pairing.
- Love Hurts: After being exiled from the islands, he fell in love with a fox keidran and almost married her... but then she went and slept with someone else before the wedding day, so he wandered off heart-broken. Then he starts running around with Trace and Flora, a human/keidran couple who initially bring back bitter memories of his unfaithful lover, causing him to be quite hostile towards them. Then he gets involved with a wolf keidran who is FtM transgender, with hints of a mutual crush forming between them. Then his old fiancée returns and reveals she was drugged before the wedding to trigger her heat... but, before they can sort things out, she gets killed. Then Natani, the aforementioned wolf keidran, offers to help him get some closure with a spell... but he can't bring himself to end it, despite the fact that he knows it's an illusion that's sapping his life-force... But, finally averted when he manages to get past her death, Natani comes clean about his crush on him and they start a tentative relationship. And then Natani gets put in a seemingly near-fatal coma, leaving Keith an emotional wreck until the wolf recovers from the broken Mental Fusion.
- Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: Natani and Keith's relationship sits somewhere between this and a Yaoi Guys version of Sensitive Guy and Manly Man, in both cases downplayed. Even beyond Natani's outright thinking of himself as a guy, at least prior to his Journey to the Center of the Mind, Natani is rough, brash, hot-headed, aggressively chases after women (until he hooks up with Keith), and very macho-acting. In comparison, Keith is quiet, refined, level-headed, actually rather shy when it comes to romance, smaller than Natani by almost a foot, and delicate-featured enough that Natani outright calls him "girly-looking" (if partially as a joke) repeatedly. And, in fact, he does actually look rather feminine in comparison, unless Natani is deliberately showing off his breasts. It's downplayed in that, even if Natani is definitely the aggressive one in their relationship, Keith is still a strong, capable fighter and in many ways it's a meeting of true equals.
- Mistaken for Gay: First by Flora, then by Maddie, both times due to his interactions with Natani. Just how well this trope applies is highly debatable, due to the confusing and somewhat self-contradictory nature of sexuality when it comes to Keith and Natani's involvement.
- Naked People Are Funny: Poor guy is a victim of this trope in most bonus art, not that anyone besides him is complaining. It doesn't help at all that he's very body shy, so his reaction to his own nudity is almost always humorous.
- Our Orcs Are Different/Our Dwarves Are All the Same: Basitins seem to be based a lot on tropes often applied to both Orcs and Dwarves. They're a small but immensely strong and tough species, very warlike, naturally inclined to military service, resistant to poisons, and with no natural affinity for magic, even compared to Keidrans.
- Prone to Tears: He cries a lot. But don't think that doesn't mean he can't kick ass with the best of them.
- Relationship Upgrade: He and Natani actually go through several of these over the course of the stories; from captor and prisoner to genuine friends to romantically attracted to secretly together before finally becoming an outright couple.
- Secret Keeper: He's the only one aware of the fact Natani is transgender and has a mental-connection with his brother, preserving the secrecy of these facts for Natani's sake. He then adds their relationship to the list of secrets they're keeping together.
- Averted: as of Comic #943, both Natani's transgender nature and their relationship is out in the open.
- Self-Made Orphan: Keith killed his drunken father in self-defense, but got the blame because the father was a war hero and the best friend of one of the Basitin Generals.
- Tiny Guy, Huge Girl: Though Natani might object to the "girl" part, the two of them together come off as this; the keidran is 6'3" tall, whilst the basitin is only 5'4" — that makes Keith a good eleven inches shorter than his boyfriend.
- Trauma Conga Line: See the Dark and Troubled Past entry above? That's Keith's backstory. And then there's what's happened to him since the story started: he found out Laura had been drugged to make her sleep with someone else and that she'd been looking for him to try and reconcile, only for her to get killed saving him. And then his best friend from when he was a kid got killed. And then he found out his mother had been murdered by an old "friend" of his father's because he thought she was no good for him, implying his father had basically committed suicide on Keith's spear. And then Natani cast a spell to try and help him come to terms with Laura's death, but he almost died from the strain of it.
- You Can't Go Home Again: Keith learns this the hard way. He survives, but loses what little left he holds dear; he finds out that not only can he no longer fit into Basitin culture due to his experiences as an exile, but also he never really did due to his mother's blood, influence, and the fact that the Intelligence General hated them both and wanted them dead just for even existing, let alone associating with his father. And that most of Basitin culture agreed with him - to the point of not only attempting to re-exile him, but execute all of his friends. Keith has an even worse case of this than Zuko.
Natani is a wolf keidran who was forced to live homeless with his brother after his parents and tribe were destroyed by human Templar. Born a girl, he originally disguised himself as a male to join an assassins guild with his brother, Zen, in order to make ends meet. Due to an accident during an assassination mission, Natani became magically and permanently linked to his brother, and much of his brother's male personality overpowered Natani's own, causing him to start identifying himself as a man.
- Armored Closet Gay: He retains enough of his original identity that he does find men (or at least Keith) attractive. Acting on that attraction, however, is mentally repulsive to him, since the bulk of his mentality is transplanted from Zen, a staunchly heterosexual male. Until Keith ultimately acts as a Closet Key for him.
- Big Damn Kiss: Lays one on Keith in Comic #465. They don't have time to talk about it until Comic #806 onwards, over 340 comics later.
- And then he does it again in Comic #809 after Keith admits he does see him as one of the guys.
- Big Eater: Implied: In comic #972, multiple empty bowls, a ravaged roast bird, a large slice of cake, half a melon and several bottles can be seen in the background as Natani chews on a drumstick. In comic #987, when he comments about wanting to head to breakfast, Keith playfully feigns disgust at the thought and asks how Natani can think about more food after all they ate the previous night. Natani simply says that he's a wolf, then exhorts Keith to get up and dressed, as he can smell bacon cooking in the kitchen.
- Boomerang Bigot: Despite being female-to-male transgender (because of externally-induced mental trauma), it's made clear during his Journey to the Center of the Mind that he considers "woman" synonymous with "weak", and that he's appearing in female form as a subconscious reaction to his present weak state. The mental healing he undergoes is implied to have helped him resolve this flaw, to some extent.
- Cannot Keep a Secret: Ironically, despite trying to hide his physical gender from everyone, Natani is really, really bad at it. Over the course of the series, he inadvertently reveals his body first to Keith (who tries to become his Secret Keeper), then he accidentally reveals the fact he has breasts to Mike & Evals (trying to cover it up with an incredibly pitiful story about "Basitin Black Magic"note ), then he accidentally gives Flora hints that he and Keith are keeping a secret from the rest of the party (though Flora believes the secret is that the two are gay interspecies lovers), then he accidentally reveals the truth to Kathrin... Ultimately, he ends up showing off his female body to the whole of the main cast, by which point (with the aid of some Character Development) he just says screw it and admits he's a female-bodied guy.
- Can't Spit It Out: Natani initially cannot bring himself to admit his feelings to Keith. Justified due to the fact he's still struggling to admit his attraction to him to himself and the fact that, by the time he can admit it to himself, Keith has just lost his former lover.
- Character Development: Undergoes a lot of it throughout his sub-arc based on his interactions with Keith. This leads first to their Relationship Upgrade and then culminates (so far) in his Journey to the Center of the Mind, which seems to have given him a more "balanced" perception on his masculinity and his femininity. Exactly what that entails is yet to be discussed in detail, but it's worth pointing out that, having inadvertently revealed his bosom in Comic #942, Natani's reaction is to maturely admit that he's always looked this way, he just prefers to be thought of as a guy, instead of desperately trying to hide it or explain it away or getting upset about The Reveal.
- Take Up to Eleven in the next comic, where the keidran who originally wanted to hide they were together because he "couldn't handle" admitting he was in a relationship reveals that he and Keither are together to the rest of the crew by kissing Keith in front of them.
- In the comic for April 13, 2017, despite initially freaking out when Kathrin gives him a set of very feminine "smallclothes" (the In-Universe equivalent of frilly panties), he also forcibly refuses to give them back. Although he's quick to come up with an excuse for it, the obvious inferral is that there's a part of him that likes the idea of wearing them now, a sign of the ongoing reconciliation between his masculine and feminine aspects.
- Discussed in Comic #972, where he states outright that the healing of the rift hasn't completely changed him back to a female in his head — years of experience and the initial soul-link have left their mark — but he's much more comfortable with who and how he is as a mixture of male and female. Promptly played for laughs in the next comic, where said comfortable acceptance is used to screw with Keith's head by flirting with him, before Natani then offers a sincere, casual invitation for Keith to touch his boobs.
- Seemingly finally put to bed in Comic #1036, when Natani flatly states despite being more comfortable in a female body, he still identifies as male.
- Eye Colour Change: The color of his eyes reflects the state of his soul and the mind link with his brother. He was born with two brown eyes, but after he underwent the mind link with Zen, his right eye switched to grey, reflecting the damage his soul had taken. When Zen uses the link to speak to Flora and Keith through him the right eye goes brown again, as it's Zen's (un-fractured) soul looking out through Natani's eyes at that point. When the mind link was severed due to Zen being placed in a magic-suppressing shackle, both eyes went grey as his soul crashed without the support of the link. They remained that way during his Journey to the Center of the Mind, where his feminine-aspect younger self still sports two brown eyes. When he wakes back up after reconciling with his other half, his eyes have gone back to the normal one grey one brown, reflecting how, despite his still-fractured soul, he's learned to stand on his own even without the link.
- "Freaky Friday" Flip: He offers, perhaps seriously, to do this permanently with Kat if he ever learns a spell for it, even though it would mean both of them switching species. The reason being that because of the soul-bond between him and Zen, Natani mostly identifies as a heterosexual male, but has a female body which still goes into estrus (heat), during which he feels a female's biological compulsion to mate with a male. Meanwhile Kat was specifically bred to be barren (and has never experienced estrus) but wants to have children and therefore can't.
- If It's You, It's Okay: Eventually admits his attraction to Keith... and that he really wants to be with him. Initially doesn't want to outright call it a relationship, though, because of how hard it is for him to wrap his mind around it. It progresses to the point of them being able to sleep together (actual sleep, not any sexual liason) without Natani being bothered when he wakes up with Keith's head pillowed on his breasts. However, he does have a mild freakout when he feels Keith's morning wood pressed against...let's just say that, considering their position and the height differential, things could have progressed quite easily from that point.
- Incompatible Orientation: Zigzagged. As explained under Armored Closet Gay, despite his professions of only liking women, he is very strongly attracted to Keith. This, understandably, leads to a lot of frustration on his part... especially when it turns out that Madelyn, a female Basitin with a crush on Keith, is also on-board the ship with them. Eventually, he forces himself to admit his attraction to Keith to the Basitin.
- Jedi Truth: In a flashback, he's shown chatting up a female wolf by telling her that the dark mage he and his brother were sent to assassinate took one look at them and killed himself. He leaves out the part in the middle where the mage cast a Black Magic spell with fatal consequences at the two, flaying Natani's soul but causing feedback that killed the caster.
- Journey to the Center of the Mind: After Zen's link with him is unwittingly severed, Natani goes into a coma that ultimately leads to him undergoing one of these, where he confronts his prior self as an adolescent girl.
- The Lad-ette: Possibly the best descriptor of Natani after his encounter with past!Natani and the subsequent mental healing. He accepts that he has a female body and a mental image that is at least partially female, but sees no particular reason that means he has to act more feminine. Perhaps the best example of this is in comic #973, where Natani casually asks if Keith would like to touch his boobs.
- Laser-Guided Amnesia: Somewhat literally; during the Journey to the Center of the Mind, past!Natani explains that a lot of present!Natani's memories are effectively "fake", being sublimated versions of Zen's memories and perspectives of those events, as a side-effect of their Mental Fusion.
- Love Triangle: During the Basitin Isles arc, Natani begins developing a crush on Keith, who has had his own First Love return to him. However, it resolves itself by comic 815, at which point said First Love is dead, Keith has gotten over her death, and Natani has confessed his feelings and had them reciprocated.
- Mental Fusion: Natani only survived the Black Magic attack in her youth as a result of spell that did this, creating a permanent telepathic link between the Magi siblings. His being transgender was an unfortunate side-effect of the process.
- When Zen gets placed in magic-dampening shackles in Comic #846, it seemingly undoes this effect. It almost kills Natani, but he does manage to survive. What effects this will have on his already rather scarred mindscape is the big question at the moment.
- During Natani's Journey to the Center of the Mind, his past self confronts him over how much of his present identity is really Zen's influence (less than he thinks) and how much is actually his own personality (more than he realizes/admits). Accepting this as true is implied to have had a beneficial effect on Natani's psyche, although details are still developing.
- Comic #972 and #973 touch upon the details in brief; Natani is a lot more accepting of his female aspects, and the rift between his male and female sides has healed significantly, which makes him much more comfortable with his body. However, he hasn't completely gone back to being all-female, because he spent too long thinking of himself as male to do so, and his mind is still a "little" fractured, such that past!Natani is still an active presence in his head.
- Mistaken for Gay: Both Flora and Maddie think Natani is a gay man in love with Keith. The truth is... rather harder to describe.
- Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: Natani and Keith's relationship sits somewhere between this and a Yaoi Guys version of Sensitive Guy and Manly Man, in both cases downplayed. Even beyond Natani's outright thinking of himself as a guy, at least prior to his Journey to the Center of the Mind, Natani is rough, brash, hot-headed, aggressively chases after women (until he hooks up with Keith), and very macho-acting. In comparison, Keith is quiet, refined, level-headed, actually rather shy when it comes to romance, smaller than Natani by almost a foot, and delicate-featured enough that Natani outright calls him "girly-looking" (if partially as a joke) in some comics. It's downplayed in that, even if Natani is definitely the aggressive one in their relationship, Keith is still a strong, capable fighter and in many ways it's a meeting of true equals.
- Master of Illusion: Natani's magical specialty is casting illusions, though he can use other kinds of spells as well.
- Mundane Utility: Makes particular use of his magic to help himself present as male, from wearing what is essentially a Bag of Holding as a bra to experimenting with an easily sustained illusion so he can go around barechested.
- The Nose Knows: One of Natani's problems is a purely visual disguise won't fool other Keidran; he has to fool their sense of smell as well.
- The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: For an assassin, Natani is a pretty lousy fighter. Even the comic's author notes that the "famous Magi Brothers" owe much of their hype to a combination of luck and their own boasting.
- Relationship Upgrade: Undergoes this repeatedly with Keith over the course of the comic. Initially his angry prisoner, they become friends through training together and talking on the way to the Basitin Isles. His playing Secret Keeper for him whilst he's in heat starts a romantic attraction on her part, and after they leave the Isles, this ultimately blossoms into a secret relationship. In Comic #943, after undergoing a strong amount of In-Universe Character Development as a result of his Journey to the Center of the Mind, he casually reveals that he and Keith are together by kissing him in front of the rest of the team.
- Sarashi: Uses a chest wrap to tie down his breasts and thus disguise himself as male. When it was pointed out that Natani's sheer bustiness makes this rather implausible, a tie-in comic explains he uses enchanted wraps to shunt his breasts into Hammerspace.
- She's Back: To Keith's surprise, and possibly eternal joy, Natani shows up, asking what he's missed, after Keith watches the ship they were on go down in flames.
- Statuesque Stunner: Natani is 6'3" (an early size chart listed him at 6' even; a later chart listed him taller). He's the tallest member of the core cast by far, and at Size D has the largest breasts of the cast (when he's not binding them to hide them).
- Tiny Guy, Huge Girl: Though Natani might object to the "girl" part, he is this with Keith; the keidran is 6'3" tall, whilst the basitin is only 5'4". That's almost a foot's worth of difference.
- Tomboy: According to Natani's past-self, she didn't originally mind being a girl, but she also liked being seen as a boy when young, meaning Natani was at least this before the Mental Fusion.
- Transgender: One of the most convoluted aspects of Natani, and the source of no little fan debate. Originally a female, although conversation with past!Natani reveals he was always a tomboyish girl, the incident in which part of Natani's soul was destroyed required mages to save his life by pasting copied fragments of his brother Zen's soul into the gaps. This turns out to have had the side-effect of plastering some of Zen's perceptions over Natani's own. This led to Natani spending many years thinking of himself as a male unfairly trapped in a female body, fueling a spiritual and mental rift in the keidran's psyche, something that was actually strengthened by the active presence of Zen in Natani's head via their mental link. When this link is ultimately severed, Natani undergoes a Journey to the Center of the Mind, which is called out as helping him to heal from this "assimilation" and make peace with himself. This hasn't reversed what he went through all those years, but has made him less mentally fractured, with the precise result still being in development.
- In summary, Natani has, through the aid of magic, gone from "tomboyish girl" to "self-loathing man in a woman's body" to "comfortably gender-fluid", and that seems to be where he's settling.
- Incidentally, one of the issues with this trait and how it has been handled is the constant edit warring over whether to use masculine or feminine pronouns when referring to Natani.
- Wholesome Crossdresser: This is what Natani originally was when the Magi Brothers were first training as assassins. After Natani's near-death and Mental Fusion with Zen, this stopped being quite the case.
Madelyn "Maddie" Adelaide
A young female Basitin who has developed a massive crush on Keith, despite (or perhaps because) of his Dark and Troubled Past. Originally appeared as an overly energetic guard who acted as a witness to the duel between Alaric and Keith, she later sneaks on-board Erik's ship as they leave the Basitin Islands, becoming the Tagalong Kid.
- Abomination Accusation Attack: Falsely accuses Eric of coming on to her in order to trick Trace and Flora into helping her stay on the ship, when they are understandably outraged to find that Eric is apparently a pedophile in addition to his other perversions. No wonder he hates her...
- Animal Eyes: Madelyn has the same eyes as Flora: gold and slitted like a cat. Do note that she's also the only Basitin whose drawn with visible pupils.
- Berserk Button: Karen calling her shrimpy earns her ire.
- Cat Girl: She acts like one despite being a Basitin: Curious, energetic, and has a knack for mischief.
- Child Soldier: Like all Basitin she was enrolled in the army at a young age, and looks to be around 13 or 14. Subverted, as she's actually 17 Years old, practically an adult.
- Fragile Speedster: Maddie is very stealthy and preternaturally fast, but Word of God is she'd be pretty much useless in a stand-up fight because she's primarily trained to be a scout. Lampshaded by her in strip #1055, where she bitterly admits to Karen that no matter what she accomplished, the Basitin high command were always disappointed in her because she wasn't a carbon copy of her mother (who's practically a giantess, and an extremely powerful warrior).
- The Gadfly: Maddie enjoys playing pranks and practical jokes, then vanishing before she can be accused, preferably so that the blame falls on someone else.
- Genius Ditz: Madelyn can act very silly and juvenile one minute, clever and intelligent the next. Kind of like any young teenager, actually, but it's not clear how much of it is just an act.
- When Maddie slips a note to Natani (who can't read it) Natani assumes it's just an adolescent girl's juvenile love note to her crush because Maddie covered it with cutesy decorations. Turns out it's actually a vital report on Keith's battle with Alaric... even if it is written in the phonetic equivalent of a Valley Girl accent.
- She's one of the five officers presiding over Keith's trial.
- She somehow escapes from the brig of Eric's ship despite being locked in a cell. Twice, even when it was double-padlocked.
- She manipulates Flora and Trace by making insinuations about Eric, who is, after all, a Handsome Lech.
- She builds an elaborate structure from random junk because she's bored in 746.
- She then instantly realises that the best way to summon everyone quickly is to disrupt her sculpture, which she does by removing one key component in the next comic.
- Hormone-Addled Teenager: About as much as any Basitin can be, apparently, though it may just be because she's being allowed to indulge in her adolescent sexual curiosity outside of the rigid confines of Basitin society. Her first thought upon seeing the Adrakist take massive Clothing Damage was "So that's what a human's [breasts] look like. Neat."
- King In Cognito: She's actually King Adelaide's daughter. No one in Trace's party knows this until she admits it to Karen in Strip #1055.
- Love Triangle: Maddie clearly has a crush on Keith. Keith and Natani have a rather complicated relationship developing already. However, it's ultimately averted in that once she notices how they are around each other, she's all business with Keith.
- Metaphorically True: Maddie doesn't lie, exactly, but she certainly likes to shade the truth, telling Keith that she "wouldn't leave without informing my superior officer" when she actually just left a note for her mom, who is not happy when she finds it.
- The Napoleon: Channels a bit of Edward Elric when Karen calls her short. Possibly linked to insecurity about her height compared to her mother at the same age. Of course, that's compared to her seven-and-a-half-foot-tall mother; compared to the rest of the population of her people, she's of average height.
- Rebellious Princess: Turns out she's actually the daughter of King Adelaide of the Basitins. Except for Karen, the others don't know this yet.
- Sherlock Scan: She immediately realizes that Natani and Keith have gotten together upon first meeting them because she spots Natani has looped his tail with Keith's.
- Stealth Hi/Bye: While she is a master of this trope, she lampshades the possibility that Lynne might be even better here.
- Squick: shows up in her expression In-Universe as she listens to a Primal Scene while hiding under Trace and Flora's bed.
- Tagalong Kid: To the rest of the main gang, so far. That doesn't mean she's dead weight, as she's a trained scout.
- Wounded Gazelle Gambit: Tells Trace and Flora that Erik tried to molest her in order to avoid being sent back to the brig, but her smirk while hugging them implies this may be less than true.
Keith's majordomo after he is named Ambassador, Lynn's title of "messenger" carries an important connotation, as it means Lynn is asexual in a rigidly gender-segregated society and thus allowed to act as a go-between the sexes, though Lynn implies messengers receive more pity than honor from most Basitin.
- Asexual: As he makes clear during a conversation with a human woman who relies on her sexual Charm Person talents in battle, he has absolutely no sex drive whatsoever, and this is the essential requirement for any messenger. Which gives Lynn a perverse degree of freedom, as messengers are not subject to the stringent gender segregation that characterizes Basitin society. They're even exempt from curfew. It's not made clear if he's naturally asexual, though, or if he was made asexual, as gelding males to make them into messengers is just the kind of thing that Basitins would be capable of from what we've seen of their culture.
- Badass Bureaucrat: Despite the fact that he is (probably) a Non-Action Guy, he's still a Basitin. He's badass in his own way.Sealeen: Hey, wait! Wasn't that burned?Lynn: Oh please, my dear. I'm a bureaucrat. All my documents are in triplicate, naturally.
- Crazy-Prepared: He seems to have a document for any occasion. Or tea and coffee cake. And those documents? He has them in triplicate, in the unlikely event they encounter a crazy dragon-worshipping lady who torches them.
- The Jeeves: Anticipating Keith's needs appears to be second nature.
- Not So Stoic: Seeing Natani and Keith kiss in Comic #943 shocks him so much that his ears shoot up with enough force to slap Madelyn and Katherine in the face.
- Something Else Also Rises: There's something very suggestive in the way his ears spring up after seeing Natani kiss Keith. Which is amusing/ironic, given he explicitly has such low sex drive it helped him evade a sex-based Charm Person spell.
- Stating the Simple Solution: To prevent a riot because the town they're in is at war with a tribe of Wolf-Keidran who just moments ago set numerous major fires, he suggests Trace "arrest" Natani to be taken to the Legacy estate rather then risk coming to blows with the town guards.
- Talking Is a Free Action: Parodied. Him talking with his opponent during a fight ticked her ally off.
The B Crew (Red-Hair Guy and co.)
Karen is the hyperactive younger of the Taverndatter sisters. She doesn't care about races or wars or religions. She just enjoys interesting stuff, and if nothing interesting is happening, she tends to cause it. Karen's set of Keidran ears were given to her as a curse by Trace, whom she was annoying. The curse backfired, however, when Karen decided she loved the ears and wanted to keep them.
- Cloud Cuckoo Lander: She can go into some really strange trails of thought at times. Like, after confirming that changes between Raine's forms carry over, she asks what would happen if Raine got pregnant by Sythe in wolf-form and then changed back to human form; would the result be human babies or wolf Keidran puppies?
- Cat Girl: Much higher up the Sliding Scale of Anthropomorphism than Flora is — she's got cat-like ears and that's it.
- Keet: Everything excites her. She is so adorable when she is happy about her village being destroyed.
- The one time she visibly seems to loose some of her perkiness is when she's told she almost died in comic #841.
- Shipper on Deck: Given she asks if Raine mating with Sythe would produce human or Keidran offspring, she may well be hoping for them to hook up. Or else she might just have been having one of her ditzy moments.
- Happens again in page 1074, where she teases maren and sythe, possibly as a reference from all the patreon sketches of the two being drawn together.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: It's a very vibrant green.
Maren is the bossy elder of the Taverndatter sisters. She's one of Trace's current "girlfriends," though Trace and her were never seriously involved. They met at her tavern as Trace was passing by during his missions. She knew Trace still loved his wife, who had passed away years before; and she knew she was really just being used by Trace as a momentary distraction. But she stayed with him, nonetheless.
- Cloud Cuckoolanders Minder: As the saner, elder Taverndatter, she's generally responsible for trying to keep Karen from doing anything too stupid.
- Defrosting Ice Queen: When it comes to Raine. She may not be perfect yet, but she's willing to talk to and interact with her, even brushing her fur coat.
- Fantastic Racism: If you wanted to know how an average human villager acts around other species, here you go.
- Although she is slowly getting better about it. Slowly.
- Hidden Buxom: It normally doesn't show due to her loose fitting peasant shirt, but as this Patreon sketch shows, she's got some hiding under it.
- Ship Tease: With Sythe, especially on patreon sketches.
- Tsundere: If patreon sketches are anything to go by, she seems to have developed romantic feelings for Sythe, but is heavily in denial, though anytime sythes pet squirrel nibbly shows affection, she shows clear jealousy.
- Ungrateful Bastard: After hearing that Raine saved her life, her only reaction is an "eh, whatever" because she realized that Raine has a Keidran form. At least that's better than she was before hearing that, when she tried to kill Raine when she surprised Maren in Keidran form.
Red-Headed Guy (a.k.a. "Database Error")
He was one of Trace's friends from the Templar Academy. However, he dropped out after a few years when he showed little magical development. He later joined the local militia of his hometown. He hates and distrusts all Keidran, which causes complications when circumstances force him and his friends to make common cause with Sythe. He's also developed a crush on Raine, which rocks his whole world when her true nature is revealed.
- Asskicking Equals Authority: He and Sythe take the role of leader when it is clear an assassin is after them.
- Battlecry: "In the name of meaningless battle!"
- Blood Knight: Again his war-cry is "In the Name of Meaningless Battle!!!".
- Fantastic Racism: Probably the worst Human Supremacist of the main characters. When consoling Raine, it basically amounts to "Don't worry, Keidran are monsters, but you're not really one".
- However, he's becoming increasingly tolerant as the strip goes on-even becoming friendly with Sythe, and actively trying to cut down on his automatic slurs. He retains some of his racism, but it amounts to lingering condecension as opposed to outright bigotry now.
- Hidden Depths: He is quite clever when he wants to be. He is good at deception and used to be an actor in the Templar Theatre Troupe. When Sythe lampshades it, Red tells him that he better not be dissing the theater.
- Hypocrite: He's disgusted at how some Keidran take human slaves. Since he was a templar, he must know that humans take keidran slaves, so he either didn't think of it, or considers it acceptable.
- I Didn't Mean to Turn You On: Red starts playing with Raine's tail after she swats his face with it. He then begins to touch and rub it, with panels showing her humorous facial reactions and blushing.
- He then recieves a very physical reason why you should never touch a lady's tail without her permission.
- Imagine Spot: Red freaking out here due to the revelation that Raine is secretly a Kiedran, making him wonder if ''he's'' a secret Kiedran. The April Fool's joke involved that actually being the case.
- Noble Bigot: His hatred is always expressed as a desire to protect humans.
- No Name Given: [Database Error].
- The only info on what his name is in the background of the fourth panel in this strip. Apparently, it's a plant-based name (i.e. like Oakley, etc.)
- Only Known By His Nickname: So far, the only name we have for him is "Red", mockingly applied to him first by Zen and later by Sythe. A background conversation between him and Trace in strip #1008 clarifies that his name, whatever it is, is similar to an as-yet unnamed plant.
- Open Mouth, Insert Foot: "Red" has run afoul of this with his current traveling companions. Pretty much instantaneously jumps to Digging Himself Deeper territory. Heck, ''this'' page is even called 'Keep diggin' that hole'.
- Running Gag: His nickname "Red" and the fact that he is never referred to by his real name which is still a mystery.
- When All You Have Is a Hammer...: A sword in this case. It gets him into trouble when Raine turns into her Keidran form. He attacked her thinking she was trying to hurt Maren. To be fair, after realizing the truth he was horrified by what he'd nearly done, and felt incredibly guilty about it. He's mellowed out a bit since, and has even been nicer to Sythe.Red: I'm so used to solving my problems by hitting them until they go away, but... this time it was a mistake. I'm sorry.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Blood-red hair. Also the basis of the only "canon" name we have for him so far.
The daughter of Trace's predecessor Grand Templar Mary Silverlock and High Templar Euchre, a male wolf Keidran shape-shifter unknowingly accepted into the Templar ranks. Raine has a powerful magic potential but no formal training, so her results tend to be erratic. Like her father she has a human and a Keidran form. Unlike her father she has little control over her transformations between them because her mother hid this ability from her using a series of increasingly powerful magic artifacts. Losing control over her emotions means losing control over her form. Raine currently only retains her human appearance due to the powerful spell on the metal cuffs she wears, but as that spell only works while the cuffs are closed she constantly risks exposure.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Her powers might be a little random due both to lack of training and her own reservations about using magic, but as strip 996 shows, it is not a good idea to piss her off. Just ask Carver...it was a lot further than 10 metres...
- Blessed with Suck:
- Yes, she can freely transform between human, Keidran or hybrid forms, more or less, but since the two species are at war with each other, that's not really a very valuable ability. To say nothing of the personal pain caused by her ability. Additionally, if she's upset, it's harder for her to transform from one to the other.
- Her Involuntary Shapeshifting has currently stuck her with a wolf right arm and left leg on an otherwise human frame, which not only makes her even more embarrassed over her condition but also has to make it hard to walk!
- Sythe tells her that her Keidran form is pretty cute but Raine, who doesn't want to be a Keidran, doesn't want to hear it.
- Chained by Fashion: She has to wear enchanted shackles because without them her ability to control her form-shifting is too unstable and she reverts back to Keidran form.
- Cute Little Fangs: In her human form. She also has yellow eyes and shaggy fur-like hair.
- Cute Monster Girl: In comic #811, she manages to partially shift back into human form, leaving her with a form that has Keidran ears, tail, forearms and legs with a human torso, upper arms and face.
- Cursed with Awesome: Raine suspects that her Involuntary Shapeshifting is a punishment from the gods for her parent's transgression of (unintentionally) exploiting Euchre's shapeshifting abilities to create the first human/keidran hybrid. It's more likely that Mary's hiding of Raine's heritage meant she never received any instruction on controlling her powers.
- Half-Human Hybrid: Her father is the Keidran shape-shifter High Templar Euchre and she has inherited his shape-shifting ability, along with a human transformation spell; she shifts from human to keidran uncontrollably. Her mother is Mary Silverlock, Trace Legacy's predecessor as Grand Templar. When she is calm and her limiter breaks, she transforms only half-way. This may or may not be her "true form". It's hard to tell with shapeshifters.
- Interspecies Romance: Raine is the Half-Human Hybrid result of one of these, and there appears to be a mutual crush between her and "Red". Sythe also thinks she's cute, but there's no sign that Raine reciprocates.
- Involuntary Shapeshifting: Her emotions can cause her to shape-shift from human to Keidran.
- Logical Weakness: Changes made to one of Raine's forms are, as far as she's aware, carried over between forms, so injuries aren't fixed by shapeshifting.
- She may have strong native magical ability, but when in her wolf form she's still subject to the Keidran limitation of needing mana crystals to cast spells. Whether she needs crystals to use magic while in her half-way form is unknown.
- Long-Lost Relative: Is actually the first cousin once removed of Roselyn, the sensechal at the Legacy Estate, though she doesn't know this until strip #1064.
- Most Fanfic Writers Are Girls: As a gag, there's a story she wrote about "Mrs. Nibbly" in the character section where she claims Mrs. Nibbly is a widow who wanted something more. She further claims that is why Nibbly was brave enough to join the two-legged beasts.
- Multi Boobage: In comic #951, Sythe claims that as a Keidran Raine actually has several rows of nipples continuing down her stomach underneath the fur, which presumably would only grow into breasts if she got pregnant. Of course, he's probably just lying to mess with Red.
- Mystical White Hair: In both forms, though she's got a lot more hair in her wolf form. She inherits this from her father, who is a white wolf Keidran in his natural form and a white haired Bishōnen in his human form.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Puts Zen in her magic-suppressing shackle so that her friends won't have to kill him due to being unable to trust him. This severs the soul link Zen has with his sibling, Natani, throwing Natani into a long coma.
- Nonhumans Lack Attributes: Of the "fur explicitly covers up what's there" variety, as discussed in comic #951.
- Our Werewolves Are Different: She's the daughter of a wolf Keidran who had the innate ability to shapeshift into a human form and she can shift shapes as well. She even references the trope.
- Sarashi: Binds her breasts for modesty even while in wolf form.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: Raine can change her form but this ability has been suppressed her whole life so she never developed much control over it. Rose, who possess the same ability, begins training her to control it in strip #1065.
- White-Haired Pretty Girl: In her human form. In keidran form... well, technically, she's still one, if you're into anthro wolves, but she's got a lot more hair.
- Windows of the Soul: Red initially believes she's been replaced by a Keidran but one good look into her eyes convinces him she hasn't.
Prince of the Wolf clan and Flora's former fiance. During a raid on the human village Sythe is forced to choose between his loyalty to his people and killing humans he actually knows. Unfortunately for him he hesitated just a bit too long and was forced to throw in his luck with Raine, [Database Error], and the Taverndatter sisters to seek a place where Keidran and Human can live and let live.
- Asskicking Equals Authority: He and Red take the role of leader when it is clear an assassin is after them.
- Awesome Mc Coolname: Zigzagged, he's named after the scythe but he misspelled it, so it looks more silly than awesome.
- Category Traitor: Thanks to Karen, he is now considered a race traitor and Zen believes his punishment for it will be death. He is equally horrified to learn that a Keidran is working with the Templar.
- Cloudcuckoolander: He shows signs of them when he's shown to be Not So Above It All. Antagonized by Red for so long and under the threat of death by the assassin, he snaps a bit and pulls his weapon on a squirrel (he thought it was the assassin trying to sneak up on him) which he then adopted and started calling "Mrs. Nibbly". Red points out that he's started to refer to the squirrel as a person and that it's weirding both he and Raine out.
- Deadpan Snarker: Notable even among the "B" crew, who tend to be fairly snarky as a group. It causes problem with Red when he rejects all of his plans outright.
- Foil: He is this mutually with Red. He is a non-racist Keidran who is a lot more snarky. He is also smarter or at least more in control of his thoughts whereas Red verbally digs himself into holes. He also plays the part of warrior, but is really the Non-Action Guy, at least compared to Blood Knight Red. Their whole subplot involves them fighting whereas Raine has to be the mediator.
- Friend to All Living Things: He is, surprisingly, one of the few non-racist cast members and adopts a squirrel despite being a wolf Keidran.
- Multi Boobage: Assuming he's not lying about it and wolf Keidran really do have multiple breasts, then he's technically got this, although as a male he's only got nipples.
- Non-Action Guy: Sythe was raised to be a diplomat, not a warrior. He still tries and all it does is lead him to kill the Author Avatar and pull a weapon on a squirrel which he proceeds to adopt instead of eat.
- Ship Tease: With Maren, especially in patreon post.
- Spell My Name with an "S": Invoked In-Universe; he wanted to name himself after the scythe, because he thought it was really cool-looking and because that's the closest human equaviliant to his Keidran name, but due to not being that good with the human language and the near-silent "c" in the word, he didn't realize it wasn't spelled S-Y-T-H-E.
- Troll: In comic #951, he sneakily "mentions" to Red that Keidran!Raine has Multi Boobage hidden under her fur, teasing that he just thought the human might like to know "the perks". Red angrily hisses back that he's certain Sythe is just lying to mess with him.
Zen is a wolf keidran who was forced to live homeless with his younger sister Natani after their parents and tribe were destroyed by human Templar. As a result he is very protective of his sibling, the only family he has left. He joined the assassin's guild to try to make ends meet, only to have Natani disguise herself as a male and follow him into the guild. Due to an accident during their first assassination mission, Zen and Natani's minds became permanently magically linked, leading to no end of trouble for the siblings down the line.
- Big Brother Bully: Somewhat downplayed; Zen obviously cares deeply for Natani and would do anything to keep his sibling safe, but that doesn't stop him from teasing Natani relentlessly. Some of that can be put down to harmless sibling banter, but his habit of teasing Natani about any apparently 'feminine' impulses or behaviors comes across as a bit mean-spirited given Natani's situation.
- Big Brother Instinct: In spades towards Natani, to the point where it's arguably his most defining character trait. Somewhat justified given the surrogate parent role he was forced into after they were orphaned and Natani's later near-fatal run-in with Black Magic and resulting mental dependence on him, but despite his good intentions he has some trouble recognizing that Natani is more than capable of standing on his own these days.
- If You Ever Do Anything to Hurt Her...: Delivers one of these to Keith, practically verbatim, the first chance he gets after Keith and Natani's Relationship Upgrade. Immediately played for laughs - since he was speaking through Natani using the link at the time, Natani's feelings for Keith leaked through in his speech, turning a sincere threat into something significantly more comedic. Natani is amused; Zen, less so.
- Mental Fusion: Was forced to undergo a spell that permanently telepathically linked his mind with Natani's, in order to save her life after she was hit by a Black Magic curse that shattered her soul. This link and its side effects are the source of most of the character drama between the siblings.
- The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: Zen hasn't had a particularly good on-screen track record as an assassin. Presumably he and Natani have been more successful off-screen, but the comic's author still notes that the "famous Magi Brothers" owe much of their hype to a combination of luck and their own boasting.
- Promotion to Parent: Was forced into this role to take care of his little sister after they were orphaned by the destruction of their tribe. Given that he was only a year older than Natani it can't have been easy, and it's obviously left its marks on his psyche.
- Sad Clown: His projected attitude towards life sits somewhere between this and The Pollyanna or Stepford Smiler. Outwardly he cultivates an optimistic lighthearted devil-may-care persona - the 'charming rogue', cracking wise, flirting with girls, and seemingly never taking anything seriously. Catch him in a more serious moment, however, and it's apparent just how much his childhood trauma and the stresses of his perceived protector's role towards Natani weigh on him.
- Siblings in Crime: Zen and Natani's life together in the assassin's guild, where they were referred to as the "Magi Brothers". They're portrayed sympathetically rather than as evil, but 'assassin' still isn't a nice occupation.
- Secret Keeper: Zen is one of the few people who knows about Natani's physical gender, and helps Natani conceal it from the rest of the assassin's guild, who would be ...rather less than pleased to find a woman in their ranks.
High Templar Euchre
A male wolf Keidran unknowingly accepted into the Templar's ranks thanks to his innate mystical ability to flawlessly transform into a human man in every physical detail. Raine's father, he also mentored Flora during her childhood in his guise as a Keidran indentured servant. Is he an infiltrator or a race traitor? Either way, he appears to be playing a deep game of his own.
- The Chessmaster: He's the Master Strategist of the High Templars, so it's a given.
- Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Supported Trace's coup against Mary Silverlock on the condition that neither Mary nor Raine be harmed.
- Hot for Teacher: Mary Silverlock was the head of the Templar academy
- Interspecies Romance: Had a sexual relationship with a fellow Templar, future Grand Templar Mary Silverlock, which resulted in Raine.
- Our Werewolves Are Different: He's an anthropomorphic wolf who has the ability to shapeshift into a human form.
- Pet the Dog: Allowed Mary and Raine to escape when Trace wasn't looking.
- Sadistic Choice: Euchre tells Mary he believes the debacle with his cousin Rose was a deliberate attempt by Sirius to force him to become The Mole within the templar ranks. Mary is not impressed.
- Smug Snake: Raine describes her father, as described to her by her mother, as being "manipulative and self-serving" by nature. He never even confessed to Mary about what he was until she confronted him on it, having learned by reading the mind of his cousin... who he was willing to let another Templar hang in order to preserve his secret.
- The Mole: you'd think he'd make a perfect mole for the Keidran but so far he's only been shown to be out for himself.
- Trickster Mentor: to Flora when she was little.
Raine's mother and Trace's predecessor as Grand Templar, Mary has spent much of her life trying to protect her daughter Raine by concealing her and suppressing her powers.
- Hot for Student: Euchre. That didn't work out so well
- Interspecies Romance: Had a sexual relationship with a fellow Templar, the Keidran shape shifter Euchre, which resulted in her Half-Human Hybrid daughter Raine. Probably counts as an aversion as Mary didn't know Euchre was not human, and learning it broke their relationship, though it's possible that it was the circumstances of the revelation—and what it said about his character—that broke their relationship rather than the revelation itself.
- Karmic Transformation: Trace turned her into a wolf Keidran and enslaved her after he overthrew her as Grand Templar.
- Knight Templar Parent: A Patreon sketch revealed that when Raine was born, the midwife present wanted her killed and was about to alert the Templars. Mary put a curse on the woman that would kill her if she tried to tell anyone, and also threatened to kill her family afterwards.
- Old Shame: In-Universe, her secret half-keidran daughter, Raine.
- Missing Mom: Was alienated from Raine throughout much of her childhood, then became separated from Raine while they were attempting to escape to the hidden village of Lyn'knoll, a place where humans and Keidran live together in peace.
- My Beloved Smother: Not in the usual sense, but her habit of using magical artifacts to suppress Raine's powers in order to conceal her shapeshifting prevented Raine from developing much control over her magical abilities.
A white dragon allied with Euchre and tasked with watching over Trace's group.
- Big Damn Heroes: Shows up to defeat the black dragon Trace summoned.
- The Older Immortal: She is one of the older dragons around and has seniority over most of them.
- Our Dragons Are Different: She is a white dragon with powerful magical abilities.
- Monster Progenitor: Most dragons can trace their lineage back to her in one form or another.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: Transforms into a cat to... "distract" the Templars' Animal Eye Spy tomcat, much to the traumatization of the girl controlling him.
A renowned eccentric trader and owner of Keidran slaves, Eric becomes an ally to the main characters early on. In exchange for some opportunities to have Flora model for him, he provides transportation to and eventually from the Basitin Isles.
- Bunny-Ears Lawyer: He's a very good trader, very well read on a variety of subjects, speaks fluent Keidran and Basitin, and is an expert on Keidran anatomy and physiology. He's also a serious lech whose expertise in Keidrans is due to his lustful attraction to them.
- Child Hater: Sees Madelyn as a Small, Annoying Creature to be gotten rid of and/or kept in the brig even before she accuses him of being a pedo.
- Chivalrous Pervert: He is very much a lech, and loves drawing Keidran erotic pictures, but he's fairly polite and affable. The "Mutiny" story arc, however, casts some sinister suggestions as to just how "chivalrous" he may be towards the Keidran he actually owns...
- Everyone Has Standards: a pervert he may be, but under-age is off limits.
- Furry Fandom: Is an In-Universe furry fan, well-known for his fetishistic love of Keidrans. He loves to have sex with them, and fills his home with various erotic portraiture and sketchwork, most of it self-done. He has expressed similar interests in Basitin women as well, but three things (their tendency to avoid human territory, their far more prudish culture, and the fact nobody deals in Basitin slaves) has stymied his efforts there.
- Like Brother and Sister: To Kathrin, ironically, despite the fact she genuinely loves him and she's a sex slave.
- Lovable Sex Maniac: The initial assessment/portrayal of him, but after the "Mutiny" story arc, this became a lot more controversial.
- Playing Doctor: He admits that he and Kat "fooled around" out of curiosity when they were kids.
- The Pornomancer: Somehow talks a Basitin into posing for one of his nude portraits. Basitins are very conservative and xenophobic; although artwork is exempt from their decency laws.
- Would Hurt a Child: Has no problem marooning Madelyn for stowing away on his ship.
Kathrin "Spots" Vaughan
Eric's most loyal and dedicated slave, the attractive Kathrin is a selectively bred feline/canine hybrid. Very optimistic and happy-go-lucky, but somewhat naïve, due to being brought up in shelter as a slave.
- Blessed with Suck: A lineage of selective breeding makes Kathrin very physically attractive, and her erotic appearance makes her very valuable as a slave. Thing is, as she explains to Natani, it also causes people to pigeonhole her, because they can tell on sight that she was bred to be a sex-slave. Furthermore, canine/feline Keidran hybrids like her are infertile, which she finds personally painful because she would have at least liked the choice to be a mother.
- There's also the fact she has the sincere affection and love of her master, which causes him to give her plenty of freedom and respect... but also means he won't touch her sexually, since he sees her like a sister, even though she herself is deeply in love with him and would welcome sex with him.
- Bi the Way: Maybe, based on the Les Yay she and Flora had on the ship. Essentially confirmed as of page 883
- Brain Bleach: She's clearly wishing for some after Natani explains Zen got to experience his first heat after they were linked.
- Cartoon Creature: She doesn't quite look like either a dog or a cat; it's eventually explained that she's a carefully engineered crossbreed of both Keidran strains.
- Cat Girl: Notably, she was specifically bred to be far, far higher up the Sliding Scale of Anthropomorphism than most Keidran... At the cost of her fertility.
- Innocent Fanservice Girl: She's a well-endowed and passively sexual cat-girl that was the result of breeding for a perfect Keidran sex slave. Despite being bred to be a sex slave, she is, as her character page entry notes, very naive about sex. Eric treats her more like a little sister than anything. Add this to the fact that she's poorly dressed or naked a majority of the time. These are a few examples of this.
- Ms. Fanservice: Kathrin was specifically bred to be appealing to human males, so she's basically a walking sexpot with a penchant for casually acting sexual and spewing out Innocent Innuendo comments. Amusingly, Flora has flat out questioned if anyone who says the things Kathrin says could possibly not understand the innuendo. All hints as of this time point to yes, meaning that Tom has managed to write a Ms. Fanservice who ALSO is a complete innocent. Amazing.
- The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: She's a sex slave who never has sex. Justified because her owner is very fond of her, but sees her as a sibling and not a sexual partner, despite his general Keidran fetish.
- "Reading Is Cool" Aesop: loves reading ever since Eric taught her how.
A young black dragon who is helping the Templars with security. Is not exactly the most dignified and proud of them.
- Adorkable: In contrast to Nora, Reni is a huge (in all senses) dweeb who cannot control her Telepathy well at all, leading everyone to see exactly how her mind works to have the most embarrassing thoughts in any given situation.
- All Love Is Unrequited: Reni is totally open to the idea of having a relationship with a human as one of her ancestors is human so she is pretty okay with having a crush on Captain Keiran. Based on the captain's thoughts, he isn't okay with it in turn or just never considered it and wasn't ready for the nature in which it was revealed. Mind, all she said was that he was cute, but she freaked out and bolted for even revealing that much. Why he isn't comfortable with it hasn't been revealed.
- A Mind Is a Terrible Thing to Read: Upon diving into Trace's memories for intel, she discovers this when she stumbles across the memory of Trace and Flora's first time.Reni: No no no! Nevermind! Next!
- Animal Motifs: Monarch butterflies.
- Authority in Name Only: The "princess" part of her name was given to her by the humans she works with but she is actually fairly low on the draconic pecking order.
- Badass Adorable: She may be an incredibly awkward dragon, but she's still a dragon. As the wolves attacking Trace's hometown discover, she's a lot better with her fire breath than she is with her mental powers. And as the Alt Text points out, even when her fire is blocked by magic, she still has about five tons of punching force.
- Bag of Holding: She carries pouches on her sides that expand internally to fit whatever is inside of it.
- Did I Just Say That Out Loud?: Justified. Reni is trying to merely think, but since she communicates over telepathy, sometimes people hear her private thoughts.
- Large Runt: She is far larger and stronger than any mortal but still young and small for a dragon.
- Logical Weakness:
- Her bags only expand enough for whatever is in there to fit, nor do they lower the mass of whatever is inside them. This makes them highly uncomfortable to use as passenger seats and it's tiring for Reni to fly with too much weight.
- Telepathy ignores language barriers, simply communicating intentions between minds. This means that dragons don't have to actually learn the languages of the mortal races if they don't want to. However, if they don't, while mind-reading they can't understand anything said in a memory - the people in memories aren't actually there and don't have minds to read, so all they can hear is the sounds. Reni knows human, but not keidran, and therefore has difficulty interpreting the memories of the captured wolf attacker.
- She also can't actually speak any language we know off (though it's possible that a draconic language exists), since she, as noted below, doesn't possess vocal cords to produce the necessary sounds.
- Power Incontinence: She has a hard time separating her Internal Monologue from what she actually wants to say over her telepathy. See Did I Just Say That Out Loud?
- Uneven Hybrid: The exact ratio hasn't been specified, but she has a human grandmother and a dragon grandfather in her bloodline. She herself doesn't know how they bred beyond "magic".
- The Unintelligible: She (and by extension all dragons) is this when attempting to speak the human language due to lack of proper vocal organs. This is also why dragons speak using Telepathy.
A white wolf Keidran, Roselyn is the Seneschal at the Legacy Estate. She's also high Templar Euchre's cousin Rose, the one he was willing to sacrifice to protect his secret. She later became the servant to Trace's lost wife, Saria, and thus ultimately Trace himself.
- Accent Slip Up: She was portrayed as something of a country girl in her younger days, with accent to match - she was captured by the Templar due to her "strong rural Keidran dialect" giving her away, and in the present day her cousin remarks how odd it is to hear her speak "without your drawl". She's trained it out of herself since then as befits the prim and proper Seneschal of the Legacy Estate, but has a tendency to slip up when she forgets to be formal, such as when Trace blindsides her with his intention to propose to Flora.
- Beneath the Mask: Wears the persona of the proper, cool, dignified Seneschal of the Legacy Estate like a mask, both as expected of a noble's retainer and necessitated as a keidran servant of the notoriously keidran-hating Grand Templar Trace Legacy. Underneath, however, is a much warmer and earthier personality, hidden behind the defensive shell of her Seneschal role. When Trace gets her to open up a bit she admits that she does take a certain mischievous amusement in playing the "stern old lady", as one of the only ways she can find some fun in her current situation.
- Butlerspace: Shows a distinct ability to suddenly appear at opportune moments, often after her name is mentioned. It might just be Rule of Funny, but circumstantial evidence (such as her apparently not having heard what people had been saying before she popped up) suggests she actually may be teleporting, presumably via some aspect of the mansion's magical amenities. This is all but confirmed in strip #1058, where she says that Templar Trace had used magic to give her control over the mansion's interior, allowing her to be aware of everything going on inside its walls and even having some ability to physically affect it.
- Cool Old Lady: Keidran have shorter lifespans than humans, so Rose is already a cool old lady despite being about the same age as Trace.
- Deadpan Snarker: In spades, to anyone she feels deserves it.
- Funetik Aksent: Any slips into her youthful "rural" accent are marked by replacing "I" and "I'm" with "Ah" and "Ah'm" in her speech bubbles, along with ending words with "in'" instead of "ing".
- Long-Lost Relative: Is actually Raine's first cousin once removed, though she may not have known this until strip 1020.
- Old Retainer: Roselyn was Saria's servant. Somehow pre-amnesia Trace allowed her to live and keep her position even as he launched a genocidal war against all other Keidran in revenge for Saria's death. However, he did use magic to keep her out of some areas of the estate, as revealed in strip #1054.
- Prim and Proper Bun: Wears her hair neatly tied up as part of her cool and distant Seneschal persona. Notably, when she can't restrain herself from breaking out in laughter at Trace's revelation, the change in mood is reflected visually by strands and curls of her hair breaking loose of the bun and hanging freely around her face.
- Not So Stoic: Breaks out in disbeliving and relieved laughter when Trace tells her he's intending to propose to Flora.
- The Starscream: Invoked in conjunction with Drunk with Power when she tells Trace that she could easily arrange his death despite not being able to directly harm him. Trace nervously asks if she would do so, and she only says no after a lengthy pause, telling him she had to think about it when he asks why it took so long to come to that conclusion.
- Strong Family Resemblance: A portrait of Rose painted in her younger days reveals a noticeable family resemblance to Raine. She's even shown making the same "hair wringing" gesture that Raine uses when she's nervous.
- Tragic One-Shot Character: Somewhat zigzagged. Played fairly straight in her initial appearance, being a new character seemingly introduced solely to be killed off in a Tear Jerker moment, and even though she didn't actually die she wasn't seen again. But people liked her, so Tom decided to give her a minor role in a side comic, and then much later shocked everyone by re-introducing her into the main comic in her current role as Seneschal. And yet, despite being averted in two different ways by her not dying and not actually only appearing once, this still is the narrative role she played in her initial appearance.
- Troll: In strip 1058, after finally being granted full control of her powers over the mansion, she tells Trace that while she can't harm him directly, she wouldn't have any difficulty arranging his death by "accidental" means. Trace nervously asks if she would, and after a lengthy pause, she says no. When he asks why she hesitated, she just smirks and says "I had to think about it."
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: Reveals to Raine in strip #1064 that she can shapeshift between keidran and human form as well. Strip #1065 has her comment that it's a family trait, though usually one that has to be powered by mana - Euchre and Raine have the ability naturally.
A Keidran wizard with a mercenary streak a mile long. The person who designed Natani's soul transplant, and interested in the B team for unknown reasons.—-
- Card-Carrying Villain: Calls himself the Prince of Greed.
- He-Man Woman Hater: He has a fairly low opinion of women (or at least keidran females) due to his father being a wolf keidran which are known for their male-dominated culture.
- Only in It for the Money: His core motivation for anything, according to Zen and Natani.
- Non-Human Humanoid Hybrid: Half fox keidran and half wolf keidran.
- Karmic Transformation: In The Dragon Masquerade, Lady Nora turns him into a woman for abusing Zen and Natani, not to mention his loathing of women in general. The transformation is such that he cannot refer to himself as a he anymore.
- Third Law of Gender Bending: Averted. Clovis uses magic to disguise his appearance and binds his breasts, but secludes himself during the summer because he cannot cover up his female heat cycle.