An isolationist nation living on a secluded archipelago. War-mongering invaders who have taken control and oppressed its peoples. The nations' kings have for two decades maintained an agreement that satisfies both of their interests, keeping a military presence from the power-hungry Sama on the hijir's homeland, while the Hijir nobility act to keep their invaders content enough not to influence their lives more than needed.
But not all of the Hijir people are so happy with their king's pact. Vigilante groups of Hijir have cropped up, running a small rebellion against their Sama oppressors, while in the background, subtle political power-plays take shape to fight back as well
- Aristocrats Are Evil Played with. There are many examples of this being played straight and subverted throughout the story. Every noble featured does something at least questionably evil.
- A lot of what Saymette and Nayli do under their father's orders including spying and attempts at manipulating the hijir royal family.
- A lot of what Thaeodas does including back ally surgery so he can fight off the sama should he need to.
- Things that are resorted to during the war.
- Band of Brothers
- Blue and Orange Morality This is turned up to 11 or so with some characters.
- Body Guard Crush This is apparent in many of the relationships among the hijir. The pair spend an extensive amount of time together and thus bonds deepen and an attraction remains on at least one side.
- Body Horror As part of their rituals when a child is born, hijir children's backs are sliced open and gemstones are implanted there. This is to influence the child's personality and life path. It is a religious ceremony and rite that the hijir have used for generations.
- Color-Coded for Your Convenience The gemstones of the archipelago.
- Red- grants melee combat capabilities and aggression
- Orange- magic use and bookish tendencies
- Green- ranged combat skills and logical problem solving
- Yellow- protection abilities and serenity and other calm personality traits
- Blue- stealth capabilities such as deceit and perceptiveness and hyper vigilance
- Purple-political discourse and mediation abilities
- Brown- crafting and creation inspiration
- Grey- maintenance and perfection
- Clear- interpersonal energetic personality traits
- Black- interpersonally attractive and charismatic
- White- reserved personality
- Metal- appreciation of tradition, hard work and dedication
- Courtly Love This is the expectation with the saol garda regardless of gender, sexual orientation and so on and so forth. Except nobody gets mad if their relationship deepens.
- Decoy Protagonist With the revolving door of characters covered who is actually doing what and how is not exactly on the nose obvious. Thanks, Riki! And thanks, Pramod!
- Fantastic Racism Both sides see the other in a negative light. The sama think of themselves as superior, refined and more attractive than the other races and they prefer seeing sama marry other sama. They believe other races to need refinement to appreciate the gods and to worship the gods as they do. The hijir think the sama are horrific, warmongering monsters with no empathy for others. And many want their traditions and birthrights back without the interference of a foreign government.
- Functional Magic The gemstones and ores implanted in the backs of the hijir children upon their birth. They are believed to influence personality and the abilities the child will develop throughout their lives.
- Living a Double Life
- My Country, Right or Wrong Both sides embody this and many believe it wholeheartedly.
- Occupiers out of Our Country The hijir rebels' end goal.
- Prevent the War Why the king of the hijir capitulated to the sama in the backstory.
- Rebel Leader A few options for who the leader of the rebel hijir making guerrilla strikes against sama soldiers are present.
- Rescue Romance
- Royally Screwed Up Basically, any royal family member or noble for that matter.
- Shiptease The saol garda and their undying, unquestioning love for their charge, during combat rescues, some and characters practically Flirting Under Fire allow for plenty of opportunities.
- Starts Stealthily, Ends Loudly The first combat scene.
- Two-Person Love Triangle
- Thicker Than Water
- War is Glorious This is how the sama see war and conflict in general.
- War is Hell Shown throughout including
- Underhanded tactics are used by both sides during the war. This includes Productive Use of Alone Time
- Eneco develops PTSD after one of his attacks takes too long to kill enemies and he is scarred by their dying screams as they burn to death.
Riki of the house of the occultist spies
- Abusive Family Hazing He arguably shows shades of abuse when it comes to the training he expects to inflict upon his children. It is tradition in his family.
- Adults Are Useless Subverted. He is one of the most active characters in the series.
- Blood Magic He does use it in contracts.
- Blue Blood: Many of the characters are from the nobility of both sides.
- Curtains Match the Window: He has teal hair and teal eyes.
- Casting a Shadow He uses chthonic magic.
- Good Parent He tries to be this. He loves and supports his children, showers them with affection and gifts and is incredibly understanding.
- Siren's Gambit He uses this and voices his intent to teach Eneco.
- Implied Death Threat He tends to leave these to the imagination of whomever he is making a business deal at that moment.
- The Casanova This is not an artifact from his pre-marriage days. He has adult children and under age children and is still open to bedding women. He even has a few out of wedlock children.
- The Hedonist
Ryshkin of the house of occultist spies
- Always Someone Better He sees both of his brothers as this, but his frustrations and thoughts are centered on Eneco.
- Badasses Wear Bandanas In his night to night attire.
- Can't Act Perverted Toward a Love Interest Despite having ample opportunity to do so he is unable to even steal a glance at naked Arete who is cuddled up to him.
- Combat Pragmatist Most of his handling of the sama is quick, efficient killing or crippling strikes including back stabs, throats cut and chest stabbing. He also has a stomach for it and the removal of gemstones from the sama's backs while they are dying or dead.
- Double Consciousness Because of who he is as a rebel fighting a guerrilla war and who he is in his day to day life, he has two separate identities. His is more pronounced than everybody else who simply compartmentalize the two lives they live.
- Insecure Love Interest He experiences this a fair amount. Some of that is related to his masquerade and Double Consciousness mentioned above.
- Teal-Eyed Monster He is jealous of Eneco (and to a lesser extent Eryx) and he worries that Arete will fall in love with one of them when she meets them.
- LEGO Genetics He has his father's eyes and his mother's hair.
- Long-Haired Pretty Boy
- Noble Male, Roguish Male He is the both parts of the trope and being compared to himself because of his two identities.
- Rapunzel Hair His hair is down to at least the small of his back.
- Strong Family Resemblance He, Eneco and Eryx have the same facial features, height and build as their father. He and his brothers all also have the same color hair and Angst ensues.
- Stuck in Their Shadow He worried this would happen if his brothers joined the rebellion.
- Successful Sibling Syndrome He really wants to be remarkable despite knowing that Eneco and Eryx are both skilled mages and that he lacks the orange gemstone needed for magic usage.
Eneco of the house of occultist spies
- Big Brother Bully He mostly taunts Ryshkin, but he derives some amusement out of flustering his younger brother (closest to him in age).
- Big Brother Instinct He is insanely protective of his siblings, including Ryshkin. And he does love and dote upon his younger siblings including Ryshkin.
- Break the Haughty His general attitude changes after he begins humanizing the sama. His pride and flamboyance are toned down or outright absent.
- Defrosting Ice Prince He warms up over time...
- Hidden Depths He does have a gruff exterior and can be off-putting at first. But, he gets better.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold While he is often brash and insensitive to others, he does have a noticeable soft spot for his siblings. And when his guard is down he has shades of self-awareness, is reflective about the world around him and his impact on it and the people in his life.
- Playing with Fire
- Scarf of Asskicking He wears one and he wears it to cover his face.
- Strong Family Resemblance He and his brothers do look a lot alike. Different hair styles is the shortcut in telling them apart. He seems not to mind that they share a strong resemblance to their father or that they could arguably physically pass for one another.
- Sour Outside, Sad Inside He acts like a jerk, but, you find out later that a lot of clashing emotions including sadness, hopelessness, ennuei and overprotectiveness of Ryshkin are what he really feels and what drive his behavior.
- Taking the Bullet He does this for Ceri, but receives only minor injuries.
- The Gadfly Tormenting Ryshkin is his hobby.
- Unresolved Sexual Tension With Ceri.
Eryx of the house of occultist spies
- Adjusting Your Glasses This is a tick of his he often does while thinking. He pushes them into place via the bridge.
- Aloof Older Brother He is this to Eneco and Ryshkin. He is not intentionally cold, but mostly keeps to himself.
- An Ice Person He is a cryomancer.
- Badass Bookworm A lot of his free time is spent studying.
- Stoic Spectacles He does wear glasses and he is often the cool, calm and collected type.
- Strong Family Resemblance He and Ryshkin look the most alike. But, he wears glasses. He never remarks on anything about their similar appearances and seems unaware of Ryshkin's strong dislike of it.
Arius of the house of noble warriors
- Dogged Nice Guy When he isn't taunting his cousin he is gentle, kind and he completely lacks prejudice.
- Mighty Glacier
- Oblivious to Love
- Secret Keeper By chance, he sees Ryshkin and his brothers outside their rebellious actions. He confronts Ryshkin and he agrees to keep the secret that Ryshkin and his brothers are actually nobles because Arete not knowing is all the better for his amusement.
- Strong Family Resemblance He and Arete are practically twins, but they are cousins. The same hair color and skin tone, but with other differences aside from gender.
- The Gadfly
- Vitriolic Best Cuz He and Arete poke fun at one another and they are happy to annoy the other for no real reason.
Arete of the house of noble warriors
- All Girls Want Bad Boys She shows shades of this with her friendship (and later crush) with/on Ryshkin.
- Female Gaze When she and Ryshkin are alone, she gets a good look at him without his armor and padding on...
- Hair-Trigger Temper She has a very short temper and is prone to angry outbursts on occasion.
- In Love with Love She starts off like this.
- Loving a Shadow She is smitten with the boy from her past. She idealizes him and what he would have grown up to be. But, he has no real substance in her mind. And She doesn't seem to realize this.
- Spoiled Sweet She is a noble and she can be selfish, bratty and short-sighed at times, but, she is also ultimately a sweet and naive person.
- Strong Family Resemblance Again, she and her male cousin could pass for siblings if not twins.
- Sugar-and-Ice Personality She does have both ends of this. In spades.
- The Gentleman or the Scoundrel
- What Is This Thing You Call "Love"? Her reaction after meeting the stranger in the tunnel. She is confused and has no grasp on the things she is feeling despite her hopeless romantic tendencies.
Odele of the house of the saints
Iforid saol garda of the house of the saints
- Blow You Away She is predominantly a wind mage.
- Cute But Psycho She has shades of this.
- Gibberish of Love When she gets it, she gets it bad...
- Cute But Psycho She shows a lot of unusual psychological traits including a short fuse and a specific method for killing her enemies.
- Fiery Redhead She does have a short temper and she is quick to speak her mind most times.
- Hooker With A Heart of Gold She does sleep with others for money which she uses on food for herself and her friends.
- Unresolved Sexual Tension With Eneco.
- Whip It Good She usually uses her whip like a garrote, but, still...
Vaaru of the house of the star readers
Theodas of the house of the saints
Tamir saol garda of the house of the saints
Myodanaas of the house of the saints
- Daddy's Little Villain She does not start off like this, but instead gets sent down a slippery slope of wrongdoing.
- Genki Girl She begins the series as this. She starts off as happy, enthusiastic and glad to be seeing more of the world.
- Royally Screwed Up To say this about her is a severe understatement.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair
Aylin of the house of occultist spies
Chanda of the house of noble warriors
Magnaas of the house of the saints
Daffyd of the house of the saints
Illia of the house of the saints
Ulla of the house of the saints
Alita of the house of the saints
Eerynn of the house of the saints
Rana of the house of the occultist spies
Eir of the house of occultist spies, formerly house of magical records
Arden of the house of noble warriors
Tais of the house of noble warriors
Paeie of the house of the star readers
Valdis of the house of the star readers
Gwynn of the order of noble knight servants
Aerinus of the house of the saints
Arvis of the house of noble warriors
Neci of the house of noble warriors