A New Creation
Anima: Arcane Seal
Motivation: Rebuild the infrastructure of the First Age
Attributes: Strength 2, Dexterity 3, Stamina 3; Charisma 2, Manipulation 4, Appearance 4; Perception 4, Intelligence 5, Wits 3
Abilities: Awareness 1, Bureaucracy 3, Craft 5 (Fire – 2, Magitech -1), Dodge 3, Integrity 3, Investigation 4, Linguistics 3, Lore 5, Martial Arts 4, Medicine 2, Occult 5 (Alchemy – 3, Geomancy – 2), Presence 2, Resistance 4, Socialize 3, War 3
Backgrounds: Allies 2 (Gherin Zen), Allies 2 (Elephant Speaker), Allies 1 (Copper Hound), Artifact 1 ( Hearthstone Amulet), Artifact 1( The Black Treatise), Artifact 1 ( The White Treatise), Backing (Guild) 5, Contacts 2 (Onyx Nomad, Karal Triumphant Horizon), Cult 2, Followers 3, Influence 2, Manse 2 (Hearthstone – Jewel of the Lawgiver’s Authority), Resources 5
Bureaucracy: First Bureaucracy Excellency
Craft: Second Craft Excellency, Craftsman Needs No Tools
Investigation: First Investigation Excellency, Judge’s Ear Technique, Courtier’s Eye Technique
Lore: First Lore Excellency, Harmonious Academic Methodology, Immanent Solar Glory (Bureaucracy),
Martial Arts: First Martial Arts Excellency
Occult: All-Encompassing Sorcerer’s Sight, Ghost-Eating Technique, Spirit-Cutting Attack, Spirit-Detecting Glance, Terrestrial Circle Sorcery
Resistance: Durability of Oak Meditation, Iron Kettle Body
Spells: Death of Obsidian Butterflies, Demon of the First Circle, Emerald Circle Banishment, Emerald Countermagic, Raising the Earth’s Bones, Stormwind Rider
Weapons: Hook Swords Spd 5, Acc 7, Dmg 5L, Def 6, Rate 3
Virtues: Compassion 2, Conviction 3, Temperance 4, Valor 2
Virtue Flaw: Irrational Saintliness Limit: 8
Pools: Personal 20, Peripheral 57, Committed 1
Dodge DV 6
Parry DV 6
Dodge MDV 7
Parry MDV 5
Nefvarin Kalanthes is one of the brightest disappointments ever produced by his dragon-blooded house. Claiming descent from the founder of Lookshy, the ever-thinning blood of the House had turned their stock-in-trade from Dragon-Blooded warriors to historical scholars and hagiographers before Taimyo Nefvarin Gilshalos was in the ground for a century. While the family would never be shunned by the great and good of the city, they would also never be a major Gens – military power had to be wedded to commercial power in the new order.
In RY 712, Kalanthes was born, and his mother, who was an Earth Exalt, employed an astrologer to predict the fate of her second child. The astrologer predicted the boy had a grand destiny, which the family took to mean that he would a dragon-blood. No expense was spared on his education and the boy proved a precocious and diligent student, learning alchemy, engineering of all sorts, and, of course, the family’s vast store of history more rapidly than his tutors could keep up with. His mother taught him to use his introverted nature in his own defense against the labyrinthine politics of the dragon-blooded. His mastery of such esoteric subjects as motonic physics drew more and more of the hopes of the house onto his shoulders.
But time kept passing and no Exaltation was forthcoming. The various benefits showered on the young man began to take on a desperate quality as his 20th birthday, the traditional date by which hopes for an Elemental Exaltation are given up, approached. The family even arranged Kalanthes’s marriage to his school sweetheart, Maheka Alia. Six months before his 20th birthday, the couple had a daughter, Gilasa. When his birthday came and went and he was still a mere mortal, the trappings of his life vanished like so much dust. Gens Maheka annulled his marriage, Alia and Gilasa left and never saw him again, the family cut him off from any allowance, and he was summarily expelled from the Valkhawsen Academy. Bereft and penniless, Kalanthes enlisted in the Seventh Legion just to earn an income. He was ridiculously overeducated to serve as a Sorcerer-Assistant, but it was that overeducation that saved him as he descended into drink and drugs. He could show up to work with the worst imaginable hangover and still repair and refurbish artifacts and Shogunate-era weaponry. He mastered alchemy and learned geomancy in order to assist on projects that kept him out of everyone’s way for days, if not weeks. Shops he worked in took up betting pools on the circumstances and date of an early death.
But he somehow managed not to die. When his ten years of service was complete, it became clear that the Legion’s technician staff wanted little to do with the overeducated junkie that vacillated between barely able to function and knowing far more than any of them did about the machines they were working on. Kalanthes’s discharge was a catalyzing moment. He cleaned up a bit, constraining his binges to non-working days, and built a private business as a thaumaturge and magitech repairman. Six months into his new profession, he was hired for the first time to explore a Shogunate-era battlefield. The various pieces of technology the team brought back earned a pile of jade from the Lookshy Procurement Office and Kalanthes saw the other side of the military economy – the Seventh Legion, barely able to keep much of their most high-value technology working, depended on scavengers to find parts that took months to make themselves, if they could make them at all. Most scavengers, however, couldn’t tell an empty essence battery from a glove box. He replaced the “Thaumaturgy and Technology” sign over his small shop door with “Expeditions and Explorations” the next day, and he was off on the second act of his life.
For five years, Kalanthes earned more money than he had seen since being cut off from his family, but also earned that family’s scorn as he began to embody the moniker, “Scavenger Lord.” He moved from hiring whomever was available to keeping a regular staff of excavators, scouts, and guards. In RY 752, his team was trapped in the city of Mishaka when the forces of Thorns laid siege to it. When a trebuchet barrage killed most of the sorcerer-engineers in the city, the commanding Taizei, who had known Kalanthes from his time in service, also guessed how to motivate him and offered him a field commission as a shugan-junai, or Sorcerer-Technician. The offer would never have flown outside of siege conditions – such rank was almost never offered to thaumaturges, and certainly not to discharged civilians, but the Taizei needed someone to keep the weaponry operable while Thorns pounded on the city walls. Kalanthes took the job and was even assigned an Armiger, Gherin Zen. Some of the dragon-blooded seethed that a genetic failure was walking around with an officer’s rank, but Kalanthes did his job and did it well, even saving Zen from a malfunctioning essence cannon that took out an earthwork just inside the city wall. When the siege was broken, the revocation of his commission was swift in coming, but Kalanthes had finally had enough of Lookshy and their views on how disposable he was. He offered to make his Armiger a rich man, gathered his team, and packed his entire operation to head further out into the Threshold.
They passed by Nexus and settled in Nathir, at the far eastern end of the Confederation of Rivers. Kalanthes built a business that indulged his broad and eclectic education. He was still a Scavenger Lord, but also worked as a savant and crafter, his facility with magitech and arms manufacture being far rarer so far from Lookshy. In the winter, he made and repaired swords and armor, in the spring and summer, he and his crew explored ancient ruins, earning a fortune in the trade of ancient artifacts. He used the funds to build himself a craft workshop to rival any in Lookshy, even as he could barely use some of it without exorbitantly expensive essence batteries. It was a good life and, as he approached 50, Kalanthes considered how best to pass it on to someone else and finally find time for some leisure in his life.
And then there was the temple. Exploring a ruin northeast of the rivers, Kalanthes and his company encountered a strange sort of cage that exploded within moment of them laying eyes on it. The explosion, and the presence of a Teodozjia within, should have meant an instant and unpleasant death for all of them, but in that moment, Kalanthes received what he had expected three decades ago: Exaltation. It did not, however, come from his elemental bloodline, but from the Unconquered Sun. His exaltation also unveiled to him that events in his life had brought him along the stages of sorcerous initiation, and he burned with magical power. He banished the demon back to Malfeas with barely a second thought. His scavenging team was alarmed that their lord seemed to have become one of the Anathema, but they all knew him well by this point, and, when he did not begin tearing out souls or eating children, it was agreed that the stories of Anathema probably needed reconsidering.
Since that day, Kalanthes has become one of the wealthiest men in the Nathir region and has made allies with fellow Solar Exalted, as well a Lunar and Sidereal Exalted. He has seen technology and writing from the First Solar Age, has helped put down an insurgency in his adopted home, and has fled an alien threat growing in the forests to the east. At times, the power he has accrued frightens him; at other times, he dreams of remaking creation itself.