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Literature / Sekhmet

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Sekhmet is the first book in Legends Of Panthera: The Champion's Chronicles, a 2019 young adult fantasy series, found on Archive of Our Own by PantheraQueen.

This story tells how the current champions came to be founded. Bastet comes to a young princess named Kalima who is told she needs to gather the other champions before the world is destroyed and she needs to test the wards in Set's prison world. Along the way, she comes to terms with her place in the world, along with finding out what happened to her disappeared cousin.


The first chapter can be read here.

Tropes present in this work:

  • Adult Fear:
    • Myra was sent to the Hyena Island, a place where the crown sends the most dangerous prisoners, while she was pregnant with Kalima and grieving the loss of both her parents. She escaped from the island and challenges Anastasia, her sister, for the queenship. Anastasia is turned to stone and Myra has to take care of her niece, Caterina. Then five years later, Caterina disappears.
    • Imagine how Akela must have felt coming back from his Father's funeral to find his wife missing and his sister-in-law on the throne. Then he can't spend time with his daughter unless he pretends to be a guard.
    • Frey spent months away from his pregnant wife as she was imprisoned and he couldn't even visit her to make sure she was alright. Then his wife returns and he gets to meet his young daughter. He couldn't even be there for the birth. Then many years later after trying for all of those years to have any child, they managed to finally have one. Then she is kidnapped, maybe even killed, by a goddess and your only child is now dead set on fighting that goddess.
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    • The children taken by the Rouges are sacrificed and left to rot in the sanctuary of their temple.
    • Kalima considers herself at fault for what happened to Caterina. Being around water triggers a panic attack in her. It doesn't help that she became even more isolated after the incident with only Delta and Keira being her friends.
  • The Alcoholic: Lady Serena is never seen without a drink when she appears.
  • Aerith and Bob: Names run from Aleksandr, Kalima, Delta, Rekasha, Jinx, and Nix to Lyra, Caterina, Vera, Kisa, and Henry.
  • Amazon Brigade: The Champions. Aside from Kieran, Nix, and Aleksandr, the token guys, they are mostly women. The Volcanic Plains is mentioned to be mostly woman and is shown to be a warrior culture.
  • Amazon Chaser: The Volcanic plains as a whole is said to favor strong women. Frey is most impressed when Myra acts queenly.
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  • Amazonian Beauty: Rakasha. Mentioned to be both ripped and gorgeous in the text.
  • Ambiguous Disorder: The story is set in a medieval fantasy world that seems to follow There Are No Therapists.
    • Delta and Kalima have symptoms of PTSD while Jinx has signs that point to ADHD.
    • Kalima has an anxiety attack in one of the early chapters and has difficulty talking to people.
    • Vanessa has manic episodes that can last for days.
    • Cassandra has anti-social tendencies and caffeine addiction.
  • Ambiguously Brown: All of the darker kanji have darker skin tones.Of course, they don't say their ethnicity while in the human world.
  • Animal Naming Conventions: Teacup dragons are named after their color and a gemstone. Most mountain griffins have a two part name aside from Volcanic Griffins as they are named after weather. The Volcanic Plains receive kit names when they show magic then get a longer adult name at Naming Day when they turn fifteen.
  • Asexuality: Both Fay and Keira mention at several points in the story that they have no interest in either sex or dating. In fact, this is how Delta realize something is wrong. Keira starts talking about getting some from one of the guards.
  • Badass Family: Kalima's family. Myra and Frey talk about the days they fought in wars, Kalima is a champion though she is still learning, her grandmother leads her family to battle against a god. Freya and Set have thirteen children. Seraphine and Kieran are champions. Eliza used to be a champion.
  • Beast Folk: The world of Panthera is filled with anamorphic species ranging from the feline Kanji to the canine lupians.
  • Berserker: Fay and Doe are said to be this. Though in this world, it seems to mean they are born without magic rather then the typical portraits.
  • Berserk Button: High Priestess hits Kalima's when she insults her parents.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: Myra and Frey display a tendency towards this by teasing and arguing with each other in nearly all of their appearances they also share a deep love for each other. They are even expecting another child or two during the story.
  • Beyond the Impossible: Aleksandr manages to hack a spell that uses people as power sources.
  • Big Bad: Sekhmet tries to take over the world in this story though she merely casts a few illusion spells and leaves without much of a fight.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Marigold according to Delta's POV. The worst she is shown to do is make a few catty comments to Delta and be slightly condescending.
  • Butt-Monkey: Aleksandr. Everyone seems to delight in taking shots at him.
  • Beyond the Impossible: Aleksandr manages to hack into a spell using a computer he brought from home. It may have been justified since Sekhmet was already losing interest in the battle.
  • Blood Knight: Downplayed. Delta, Seraphine, Kieran, and most of the rest of the volcanic plains are this.
  • The Caligula: How Panthera thinks of the Zonyian kings.
  • Cats Hate Water: Kalima hates water after she watched her cousin be sucked down the world pool as a kitten.
  • The Chessmaster: The Icy Mountains are said to be this though they are not shown in the story. To a lesser extent, Delta and Keiran. Delta is mentioned to have plans though this may be part of her disorder. Kieran has several plans in motions at any time and wants to get out of the prison world, so he can put them in order.
  • The Clan: Volcanic Prides is separated into prides lead by Jarls. Kalima's father's pride is said to have two hundred members.
  • Clingy Mcguffin: Set has one that is currently working its way into his body. Vanessa is working on a way to undo the enchantment on it.
  • Deity of Human Origin: This is what happens to champions that pass on in rewards for their service.
  • Demigod:
    • Kieran and Seraphine are this as well as their siblings. Their father and mother are both gods, though they are not gods themselves. They have immortality and strong magic, but that seems to be it. They a
    • Kalima, Fay, and Doe are descended from a past champion of Erica, but don't seem to have any special magics because of it.
  • Doorstopper: It has twenty-five chapters and 14502nn7 words.
  • Doesn'tLikeShoes: The Kanji as a species doesn't wear any type of foot covering. Though Seraphine is mention to wear shoes.
  • Deadpan Snarker:
    • Kieran uses snark as a coping mechenism.
    • Fay tends to snark at the things she sees around her.
  • Dragon Hoard: Mentioned as a thing, but not shown. There are several jokes told about it.
  • Dragon Rider: The Volcanic Plains get dragons to ride as part of their right of passage.
  • Easily Overheard Conversation: Kalima heard her parent's conversation from the floor above her as she is sleeping.
  • The Empire: What the Volcanic Plains was mentioned to be named. Though the text doesn't state how far it expanded it the past.
  • Everyone Is Related: The Volcanic Plains are all related to each other through a system of intermarriage of the prides. Plus, most of the protagonists have some manner of family to each other. Keira's older brother is marrying Kalima's cousin, Flora. Caterina is dating Lyra who's brother is dating Sofia. Fay mentions that she is descended from the past queen of Panthera who banished Set, Kieran and Seraphine's dad, along with Kalima being her descendant to.
  • The Exile: Kagura, Fay and Doe's mom, is mentioned to have been exiled from the clan for cowardice.
  • Exact Eavesdropping: Kalima managed to hear her parent's conversation from the floor above her through a layer of stone.
  • Exotic Extended Marriage: Mentioned as the norm in the Volcanic Plains due to more female kits being born.
  • Feathered Dragons: Teacup Dragons are small, feathered dragons that hoard books.
  • Fiery Redhead: Lyra, literally in her case as she is chosen by the goddess Phyrra. Her brother is averted as he is more easy going and Book Dumb.
  • Functional Magic: How magic is presented in the series. Each person has a natural talent for a certain type of magic.
  • Furry Reminder: It is mentioned that Kanjis go into heat every month. They are anthropomorphic felines and they express displeasure by hissing or growling. They also smile without showing their teeth as it is considered a threat gesture. They also mention that they have litters.
  • God Couple: Freya and Set are the immortal rulers of the Eternal fields of Punishment. Sol and Bastet are immortal and together. Though they don't get much page time to act as such. Phyrrah and Artemis are together and immortals to boot.
  • God-Emperor: Freya and Set ruled over the Eternal Fields of Punishment and the Volcanic Empire. After their return, they are referred to as the Empress and Emperor in narration.
  • Good Parents:
    • Most the parents, but averted with Keira's mother who is said to be neglectful. Though it is not shown on the page. Surprisingly, Sekhmet seems to be this to her daughter.
    • Set is shown to play with Henrik and Frey teaches Kalima how to sword fight.
  • Girly Girl: Doe likes the color pink, is only shown to wear pink, has a mountain of stuffed animals, and writes poetry. Ayala makes dresses and stuffed animals for Doe.
  • Girly Girl with a Tomboy Streak: Doe wears a lot of pink and mountains of stuffed animals, but she is a trained warrior. Ayala is mention to wear dresses and plays sports.
  • Happily Adopted: Delta and her cousin, Damian. They were adopted by Kisa and her sister, Vera while Delta is shown to happy with her Mama, Damian is only mentioned until book two.
  • Happily Married: Frey and Myra though they bicker more than is common for this trope. Freya and Set are said to be this. Eliza and Ragnar are mentioned to be this though it is not shown as they get very little page time.
  • Heroic Bastard: Caterina was born before her parents mated. Delta, Jinx, and Nix were Child Of Rape. Doe and Day were born of Kagura outside of any mating. All of them are members of the champions and on the side of good.
  • Has Two Mommies: Delta was raised by her Mom and her Aunt. Caterina was taken in by Lady Sarafina when she stumbled into the human world as well as Myra who raised her for five years and Anastasia, her birth mother.
  • Immortality Bisexuality: Ragnar is immortal and has had at least one male lover as well as being married to Eliza.
  • I Just Want to Have Friends: Seraphine wants to have friends even though she has a hard time making them because of her isolated upbringing.
  • Ladykiller in Love: Allister is mentioned to have slept around a lot before he got together with Henry though as they are only slightly older than Kalima this paints a horrible picture of his life.
  • Lipstick Lesbian: Seraphine likes girls and dresses up in Gothic styles. Doe wears a lot of pink, write poetry, and is in a relationship with Ayala. Ayala is an aspiring dressmaker who is in a relationship with Doe.
  • Love Goddess: Erica. Strange for this trope, she seems to be the goddess of family love.
  • Long-Lived: Kanji tend to live a thousand years. The oldest mortal character is a teacup dragon named Rose Quartz who is five thousand years old.
  • Massive Numbered Siblings: Keira's family overlapping with the clan. Her mom has over sixty children, her ten grandmothers had fifteen children who have four to twenty children each.
  • Matriarchy: Panthera is this with a queen passing the crown to her daughter.
  • Motor Mouth: Jinx is described to talk a mile a minute in the story.
  • No Social Skills: Jinx is a motor mouthed girl with no sense of personal space. She also tends to misunderstand what people means. Seraphine is this to a lesser extent, she mentions learning to smile from books. Though it is described as she is bearing her teeth in a threat display.
  • One Steve Limit: Averted, Keira mentions having both a brother and a cousin named Craig. There is also a goddess and a lady named Erica.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: They are telepathic and come in many different shapes and sizes. From the mountain sized Bull Reds to the feathered teacup dragons. The purples have the build of an eastern dragon, but no if the abilities. They are also mentioned to eat a lot.
  • Our Griffins Are Different: They have super-strength and come in two types: City and mountain griffin. Mountain griffins are pretty standard for the race: four legs and wings. City griffins go on two legs with wings.
  • Our Sphinxes Are Different: One Spinx shows up as a guardian if The Eternal Fields of Punishment, but it is a machine and asks for puns.
  • Proud Warrior Race: The Volcanic Plains are mentioned to be this. They are mentioned to be the army of the Panthera. They hold cowardice to be a mortal sin and exile people for it as mentioned by Fay.
  • Pregnant Badass: Averted. Myra is mentioned to have fought in a war before the story and is currently expecting another child, but she doesn't take part in the actual fighting
  • Physical God: Freya, Set, Artemis, Phyrrah, Sol, Bastet, and Sekhmet are gods in Panthera Mythology and are a big part of current events.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • Kiera is a blind girl in a medieval kingdom that hasn't discovered braille yet, so she is illiterate.
    • Sekhmet reached a breaking point and is now in therapy to improve her faults, but she still is struggling.
  • Ruling Couple: Freya and Set though not shown in the book mentioned as part of the backstory.
  • Royal Inbreeding: Zonyia's government as mentioned in the story. It's joked that you marry your cousin and mate with your sister in Zonyia though it isn't shown to be true in the current generation.
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: The Champions are this. They consist of a sheltered princess, a blind huntress, a ditzy mind reader, an Action Girl Lady Apprentice, a pair of demigod twins, a jokester, a lost princess with an interest in mythology, a Fiery Redhead, a hunter, a deaf huntress, a poet, and a dragon worshipping inventor.
  • Seer: They are high respected as Priestess of Freya in the Volcanic Plains.
  • Shapeshifter Default Form: Tiamat seems to prefer reptiles while Sekhmet spends the most time as a Siren.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Shrinking Violet: Nathaniel squeaks when Kalima talks to him and runs off. He is only mentioned after that and he doesn't speak to anyone. Kalima is this to a lesser degree, she tends to stick in the background and only really talks to a few people.
  • Stepford Snarker: Kieran uses sarcasm to mask the fear and pain he feels. During Kalima's visit, he shows her carrion flowers that are popping up in the prison world that he thinks are his family's way of mocking them.
  • Talking to the Dead: Kalima has a talk with past commander, Theodora.
  • Taken for Granite: The fate of Anastasia, Caterina's mother, before the beginning of the story. It is mentioned in the final chapter that she was turned to stone while Myra was under Sekhmet's control.
  • Telepathy: All dragons are naturally telepathic and the dragon trainers are also telepathic.
  • The Stoic: Fay is mention not to show most of her emotions.
    • Notso Stoic: Fay shows a wide range of emotions in her POV.
  • The Medic: Healers serve as doctors and priests of the god of healing and peace. Kieran is shaping up to be this for the Champions as the Champion of Sol.
  • The One To Wear Shoes: Seraphine is mentioned to wear shoes when all of the other protagonists don't.
  • The Voiceless: Henrik, Cassandra, and Nathaniel never speak in their appearances on screen.
  • There Are No Therapists: Averted. Kalima mentions that she is going to have to see a therapist after the events of the story. In the second story, she mentions going to a therapist named Mimi.
  • Vague Age:
    • It is not said how old the gods are though they were made soon before the last battle of the old world.
    • Henry and Allister are older than Kalima though it never said how old they are.
    • Damian isn't given an exact age.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: Sekhmet changes her form often when she appears. She goes from a siren to a Kanji woman to a child. Tiamat also changes her shape.
  • Undying Loyalty: The Volcanic Plains have this to such a ridiculous degree that they are mentioned to die if they don't have loyalty around them.


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