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Shoshanah

Page history last edited by Anonymoose 5 years, 1 month ago

Shoshanah is an anubis, a daemon that appears not so different from a member of the greater beastman family. As a semi-divine being she is a conduit for the God Anubis who watches over the afterlife. As such, she possesses divine powers which manifest in an array rituals and spells in addition to hexes and curses. Anubi do not appear naturally in the wild. They are divine beings which only exist in specific locations. Those areas are constrained to tombs and temples dedicated to a pantheon of ancient gods. They are seldom seen elsewhere, but only due to a deep sense of duty which keeps them shackled to these places. They are now far and few between, but these lost and hidden places are starting to resurface and their dormant inhabitants are rousing from their slumber.

 

There is one such place; it is a blighted land beyond the northern most reaches of The Empire's frontier. It's a scar upon the world. The remains of something that existed long before The Empire so arrogantly named itself after all the other nations were in ruins at the feet of the Demon Lord, Ulrik'el'Shemsalar. Wind and time swept mountains buffer the lands to the west, wastelands herald its coming to those traveling up from the south-east and tundra hills lie to its north till the snowy lands of the northern pole. There is never a cloud in the sky and it never rains. A harsh and brutal sun boils the sands below and at night a polar wind rakes over the dunes. Nothing grows there. Nothing lives there. Except for one.

 

Deep beneath the sand dunes and hidden away in the rocky catacombs of the gaping scar-like canyon were the tombs of ancient kings. The world has changed over thousands of years, but not this forgotten kingdom; it has remained stagnant and unchanging for ages. One tomb houses the last son of the last dynasty. When he was murdered, that was when the land was cursed by an evil god. The young pharaoh thought he was saving his kingdom and doing the greatest good. His rebelling minsters thought they were doing the same by intervening and preserving the status quo. Each was fooled by this god with ill intent.

 

The Pharaoh Amenenofru sought to free the slaves. His minsters panicked and they made a hasty pact with this god. They killed the Pharaoh, quickly performed their ancient rites, and buried him in a tomb. Then they handed over a treasure with value and with magics that they did not comprehend. Only the royal family knew the true value of the gem they traded away: It gave the waters of life to the entire kingdom. They were fooled into handing the gem to Seph, the god of destruction. Seph was jealous of his brother's kingdom ever since the first men arrived at the glimmering oasis and worshiped him. He struck back against his mortal descended, Amenenofru, and dried up the river which ran through the kingdom.

 

There was despair as the land dried and everything descended into chaos. They raided all the old tombs for all their wealth and fled the encroaching realm of death. Scholars are still baffled to why a desert would exist so far north. They would be further baffled to have witnessed it in its day of splendor. If only they knew the truths of the world that eluded them. But those answers are lost to them, the lethality of the area (and failure of any expedition to discover anything of value) eventually stopped any further exploration. Everyone knew it was suicide to wander into the desert. The Forgotten Kingdom would remain shrouded in mystery till the end of time. It is a subtle irony that every tomb except Amenenofru's was plundered and stripped of all its valuable. A time capsule from an age long gone. That is where that blight upon the earth kept its sole survivor: Shoshanah.

 

The metamorphosis which altered the monstrous races also changed the spiritual desert inhabitants. It is not known if the animal forms that the gods and daemons took were natural or were merely appropriated the form that humans worshiped them as, but what is certain is that their forms are now a perversion of how they were recorded on monument walls. In ages past, the Anubi appeared as jackals or men and women with the head of a jackal, but those bestial features have migrated significantly. Shoshanah sports a pair of black canine-like candle flame ears (tipped with white) upon her head. These blend seamlessly into her thigh length, hime cut and silky jet black hair. Shoshanah's skin is dyed a dark olive tan, her radiantly beautiful face houses a pair of eyes which burn with bright red irises, a hybrid of human and canine teeth hide behind her lips. The beastman appearance have manifest elsewhere. Jet black fur grows from below her elbows and knees (which have tufts of white at the tops of each), down to her hands and feet which have become paw-like. Her 'hands' have three digits and opposable thumb, but still retains the soft pads and claws of a canine origin. From the end of her spine a bush black wolf's tail (also tipped with a dash of white) sways and is no different from that of a dog's.

 

Unlike the other races of beastmen, the anubi are calm, cool, intelligent and dignified. This is also true for Shoshanah, but she far more irritable than she would care to admit. She is quick to anger and quicker to argue. It is not uncommon for her to forget herself and throw herself headlong into a melee of words. The slightest provocation can set her off which includes something so simple as calling her by a nickname. When she loses her temper, she hardly gives off an appropriate and expected amount of maturity an ancient daemon should. This may at times cause someone to forget the girl also has a keen intellect in excess of 160 IQ (which is unique to her and not all anubi). She reads, learns, retains at an astounding pace. It helps her a great deal in the complexities of spellcraft in both application and studying the magics of others. All other times she does give off an aura of quiet melancholy, the kind you'd expect from a very lonely girl. 

 

Shoshanah was chosen to be Amenenofru's guardian and tasked to safeguard his tomb. She would guard him in body and her spirit could protect him on his journey to the Sea of Reeds. When the Pharaoh's tomb was sealed, the daemon was locked inside as well. That was about the time when Seph's curse was draped over the land. The afterlife was separated from the land of the living and thus Amenenofru was forever lost in limbo. As all the other tombs were stripped of all their gold and precious stones, Amenenofru's tomb remained undisturbed. After a hundred years, there was not a soul left in entire Forgotten Kingdom except for Shoshanah and a slew of mummified servants. This remained unchanged for thousands of years. When the new Demon Lord assumed control about two centuries ago, that was when the anubis first became self-aware.

 

The mummies are a unique product of anubi. Not only do they watch over the dead, they also preside over the embalming and mummification process of the recently departed. There is a more sinister application of these skills. It is magical in nature and a powerful curse. Undead servitors can be summoned by use of The Mummy's Curse. It is a curse that binds the soul and body together and fuses them together if channeled for long enough. Its properties have changed since the power of the new Demon Lord has taken over, but is still effective all the same. Someone afflicted by the curse will experience both pleasure and pain several times more intensely. Women afflicted by this curse also risk being transformed into monsters themselves. They enter a constant state of arousal at the slightest touch and weak wills may lose part of themselves to that feeling. What remains could very well be one of the shambling and mute undead: mummies. Shoshanah has a distaste for this side effect and thus reserves it for solely for the harshest punishment she can dole out.

 

The anubi had been nothing more than spirits in the distant past, but had become monster girl, a corpreal being of flesh and bone. Shoshanah lingered inside that tomb, alone, for all those years. Her only company were the mummies who had also been altered by the Demon Lord's magics, but they remained mute and hardly intelligent at all. All she could do was protect her Pharaoh's tomb and wait. The solitary confinement wore her down, but she remained resolute by virtue of her unshakable dedication to duty. But that only dulled the pain of her loneliness. It wasn't until someone bumbled into the tomb almost two hundred years later when her monotony was broken. She passed judgment on the intruder and condemned him to spend eternity with her, but the nature of that sentence changed.

 

She judged the intruder's soul to be light, lighter than most by far, so she was lenient and trusted him with her company by making him her servant. What she would never admit is that looking into his heart would stir her own. He gave up his life to save hers. It was the choice with the most utility and would stop the evil man who chased him, but she could not bear with it. The anubis was terrified at the thought of being left alone again. With that fear in her heart, she destroyed her own tomb to defeat the other intruders and save themselves. She broke several taboos and brought him back from the dead. In the realm between the living and the dead, her soul witnessed something and her attitude toward him veered dramatically. The consequences of this transgression, if there are any, have yet to be seen. Shoshanah does not fear the rebuke of her superiors nor peers anywhere near another two centuries of isolation - especially not after meeting Laven.

 

Since she was the only survivor Shoshanah inherited the title of Head Priestess. The girl claimed the man was a reincarnation of her pharaoh and pledged her services to him. Neither would be a servant. She was to be the Head Priestess and he would be the king. Both as equals; she would be as much responsible for his well being as she would be for rebuking him and keeping him on the straight and narrow. Shoshanah bestowed upon Laven the title and divine right of the entire kingdom. Since the land was cursed and useless they could only rule in absentia and move on. Something she felt free to do; so long as she traveled with Laven. The Forgotten Kingdom was left behind so that it could truly die. She still wears the clothes of her title and position as priestess. It doesn't appear to bother her when curious gazes are thrown her way. Maybe it is only a force of habit. Perhaps it is out of respect for heritage. Even after her kingdom's last gasp she retained her powers with an added boost knowing she had been promoted to the top since she was the only one left.

 

A divine judge is the most important role that the anubi have been trusted with. Anubi have a special ability invested in them by the god they serve: the ability to read the hearts of others. They weigh someone's soul and determine if it is just or foul. The golden staff Shoshanah carries with her has a golden chain and scales for just that purpose. It also serves as a symbol of her authority in addition to a focus for her divine magics. As a gatekeeper to the afterlife, she swells with hubris and pride and is perpetually judgmental of others at all times. This is hardly ever directed inward in self reflection and always adds any fuel to the fire when her irritable nature causes her to lash out at other and they fight back. This divinely ordained title of judge also gives Shoshanah her second unique ability: the ability to discern the laws of the land. If there exists a written or oral tradition of law which holds authority where she stands than she is able to recite each law by rote. An invaluable tool for avoiding trouble - or twisting the law and finding loop holes to exploit before getting into trouble.

 

Of all Laven's companions only Shoshanah appears to realize he was indeed marooned here from another world. She is curious about that world and thus listens in rapt attention whenever she manages to coax him into talking about what he does remember. Twenty-first century knowledge fascinates her even if she often lacks the context to truly make heads or tails of it. The girl sympathizes with Laven because she understands what it feels like to wander out of one world and into a completely different one. The world is no longer what it was before being sealed away inside that tomb. She is almost as much an alien in this world as Laven is. That is why she is dedicated to helping him solve the mystery surrounding his presence in their world and perhaps even find a way home. Thus the divine judge has pledged herself to the man and claims him to be the old pharaoh born anew: Amenenofru from a different reality. Whether Shoshanah truly believes that, or merely says that to mask how she truly feels while maintaining professional dignity, is something only she knows.

 

Stats

 

Eyes: Red

Hair: Black

Skin: Dark olive tan

Fur: Black (with spots of white)

Height: 179 cm

     (tail length): 67 cm

Weight: 61.5 kg

B:W:H: 89-57-89

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