Concept Art for Mark of the Champion, by Anni Icarus Corax
Keoki meets a friendly creature on a far-off world, courtesy of Tor.
The Prince leads his troops into battle.
I always though Anakin Skywalker and Tor Partellan could be best buddies. They both know how to fight, and they both have magic.
Even warriors need a break. Sheila loves her boba tea, while Keoki sticks with his favorite, a pineapple slushie.
Character Art by Riley Schroeder
Sheila, age 25, is a mixed-race graphic artist with a plus-size body, a taste for fantasy, and an aversion to gore. But when her friends are kidnapped, Sheila's only goal is to rescue them, despite her squeamishness. Just one problem - due to a loophole in an ancient prophecy, she is also marked to become the warrior that will save the universe. (No pressure or anything.)
Roman, age 30, is Sheila's good friend and co-worker. He's a dedicated and ambitious city government worker during the week, and a charismatic medieval re-enactment jouster on weekends, with several championship titles under his belt. Unlike Sheila, he radiates self-confidence - perhaps a bit too much.
Sarah Jardine, Nick Awitan, and Brittany (Tinny) Liddel
Sheila's friends since high school; in Tinny's case, since grade school. When she's not helping out with her parents' business, Sarah (at left) is the Cosplay Queen. Nick is pursuing his dreams of performing live or onscreen, while Tinny (at right) writes website code during the workweek and dons faerie wings on weekends.
Keoki is a half-Hawaiian, half-Scottish warrior with a gravely voice, a tragic past, a sailor's vocabulary, and a heart of gold. His unwanted psychic connection to a malevolent entity drives him to seek solace from the flask on his hip. Currently he serves as Ambassador for the Unified Realms, and as a guide for Sheila.
Her Royal Majesty, Queen Toria Partellan
Toria is the duly-elected Queen of the Unified Realms and the Dimensions of the Crossroads. The half-Fae, half-human social worker agreed to assume this role after so many Fae peoples lost their own queens during the Elemental War. Toria insisted that the Realms be a constitutional monarchy.
His Royal Highness, Prince Tor Partellan**(call him Tor)
Tor is Toria's elder brother by four years, and like his sister, is half-human, half-Fae. He has been a journalist since the late 1800s. Tor understands why Toria became the ruler of the Unified Realms - somewhat - but he absolutely hates being a Prince, and would rather be "just a regular bloke."
Also known by his Craft name, Lord Fire, Eadric is descended from the Iceni tribe members who were granted sanctuary in the Hollow Hills after fleeing the Romans. He learned to use his flame powers while attending the Iceni Magic Circle. Trained for a destiny he could not fulfill, he is strong, fierce, honorable, and very serious.
Like her fiancé Eadric, Gale is one of the Iceni people. Her Craft name is Lady Gale, the only member of the Iceni Magic Circle to use her given name. Gale, blessed with wind powers, is a tough, no-nonsense woman who pushes her combat arts students to fight ever harder and faster - but not at the expense of kindness, encouragement, and empathy.
The partially-Fae leader of the Iceni Magic Circle, Koris also goes by her Craft name, Lady Temblor. True to her title, she likes to shake things up. Koris taught the Circle how to work with magic and access their strongest gifts, including Prince Tor, or Lord Torrent, and Queen Toria, or Lady Nettle, the most powerful magic wielder besides herself.
Ross was Keoki's cellmate in prison. Born and raised in Hawai'i, he has one sister. Ross was arrested for dealing drugs to help with her medical bills, but upon his release, neither could escape their abusive father. Ross fell into despair and turned to heroin to cope. He was rescued by Keoki and Tor, and later became an auxiliary member of the Elite Protection Squad.
Kildare, Demon of the Shadow Mages, is a composite of one hundred demons. The Archmage of the Shadows and his followers combined them into a single being, with one mind controlling the others. The Demon then slaughtered the mages, possessed the Archmage's body, and wreaked havoc for centuries. He chose the name Kildare after a meeting with William Shakespeare.
The scheming Agmor is the lead general of Kildare's forces. He specializes in strike teams, information extraction, and sneering. His face changes constantly, due to a magical boon bestowed by Kildare that gives him some powers, but also some of the demon's shapeshifting affliction. He is brutal, ruthless, and beset with delusions of grandeur.