You can never have too many character lists, right? So here’s a little cheat-sheet on the main characters in Pasithea’s City. There are others, including a lot more gods, that will be posted about later, but these are the most important ones. Character images made with dollmakers over at dolldivine.com and azaleasdolls.com. Because you don’t want me to try to draw them, trust me.
Andreas never saw much of a future for himself, beyond being a petty thief. Run out of the city of Neos Apollonia when he was a child, his future was left to the gods, and so he made it his own. Only stealing what he needs to survive, he has managed to survive and escape from the more dangerous gangs who live around him in the ruins the city leaves behind as it moves deeper into the desert.
He was taken in when he was ten by Jaran and Ghesi, two tribeswomen from the northern tribal lands who had left their tribe some time earlier. They gave him protection and love when no one else would.
He is Greek by birth, and speaks only Greek, but is unable to read and write with any level of functionality, given his education was cut short as a child. His parents, and his siblings, were left in the city, and he has not seen them since he was cast out.
Andreas has a simple faith in the gods. He always made sure to offer a portion of all that he successfully stole to Hermes when he got home safe before a herm he had built in front of his house. Simple divination with dice before a theft has kept him alive, and he keeps them with him always, along with a pair of amulets he has absolute faith in. As long as there is Hermes, he’s fine. He harbours a deep distrust of Apollon and His seers and oracles because of the way he was treated, and how the fate given to him by the gods was considered inescapable.
Jaran comes from the Masrai tribe, who live in the northern region below Cyrene in Libya. They claim to be the oldest tribe in the region, whose ancestors once came from southern Egypt in the time of the gods, when Masrai Herself was expelled by Ra and His court for daring to challenge Him.
The tribe itself is matrilineal, with a female semi-divine King, known as the Nisuwer, who rules by right of conquest, who can be challenged. The King is considered the son of Masrai, and at coronation, they become more than human. A Nisuwer never loses this status, and former Nisuwer are well-respected within the tribe. Women hold places of power, and all are trained to fight and hunt. The men generally take care of the children and raise them, and support the work of the women. The tribe has a strong reverence for their ancestors, and remember them regularly in their work. The Temple of Bones is set up for this purpose, and only the women may enter and care for the dead.
Jaran is a fierce warrior and hunter, and once ruled the tribe as Nisuwer as a young woman. She is bonded to Ghesi through their initiations into adulthood, and they have been friends since they were children. Jaran has a quick temper, but it burns out just as quickly, though she can hold grudges if she loses a battle. She is smart and strategic, and can often see the best line of attack. She can also be stubborn and hard to argue with, but she is fiercely loyal to her family, and will defend them with everything she has.
She was challenged as Nisuwer a few years into her rulership, and she was defeated by Kharatje. Unwilling to swallow her pride and stay to be ruled by her usurper, she left with Ghesi, and found her way to Neos Apollonia, where she and Ghesi made a life for themselves as traders and hunters and trackers. They refused to give up their own gods to worship the Greek gods, so they lived outside the walls. Jaran’s chosen weapon is a spear.
Ghesi is Jaran’s wife, lover, and partner. They have known each other since they were children. They lived in a small village on the outskirts of two different tribal lands, and when a sandstorm came and buried their village when they were young children, they were the only two who survived. They found their way to the Masrai tribe and were taken in. They have lived there ever since.
As the partner of a Nisuwer, Ghesi served as the Iryete, the Queen. She has a natural talent for prophecy and spirit work, as well as being a fierce warrior in her own right. She chooses to fight with bow and arrow, and is adept at hunting with birds.
She has deep connections to the landscape around her, and the gods and spirits that reside there. This natural talent was empowered at her coronation, and opened her up to the world in a more permanent way. As Iryete, she was head of the prophets and oracles and seers, and led their training and initiations. The Iryete works closely with Inyi, Masrai’s twin, and goddess of oracles, the night, and the ancestors.
Given to the Hermitage, where the seers live, when They were seven years old, Nystos has lived most of Their life in isolation from the rest of the city. They began Their training young, and grew up being turned into the Seer and Oracle They are today.
They were chosen to be the Oracle of Apollon several years ago, and this opened Their head to the gods, leaving Them constantly connected to Olympos so They can speak for Apollon with clarity and honesty. They have a close relationship with both Dionysos and Apollon. They were also the seer that proclaimed the fate of Andreas, and this has not been forgotten by Andreas.
As Oracle, They were responsible for proclaiming the New Year’s oracle before the people, a mostly thankless task that didn’t go wrong until Apollon possessed His Oracle to proclaim the destruction of the city. Nystos, accused of betrayal and treason, was exiled from the city, the only reason They were able to survive.
Nari was also chosen to become a seer when he was seen years old. He generally liked the work, but could see the abuse and rot at the heart of it the higher he rose in the ranks. The way it became politicised, and how the fates were not always dictated by the gods.
Cautious and wary, but with certain faith in the gods over the faith he has in those in positions of authority, he became close friends to Nystos, and served Them as one of the three Mousai, second in command to the Oracle, and responsible for the care of the Oracle and the staff that served Them. Nari is very protective of the Oracle, and is wary of anyone who challenges what they did, as if they are speaking against the gods.
Nari, and the other Mousai, were exiled along with Nystos after the proclamation of Apollon’s oracle. They were left beaten and dying on the outskirts of the city, where the heat, and the criminals with grudges against the seers, would take care of them. Nari, and Nystos, were lucky to escape. The other Mousai perished before they could be rescued.
Meri is one of the last survivors of their tribe, who lived on the Green Mountain. A patrol of Roman soldiers came after them as they were celebrating a fishing festival on the coast, and many were slaughtered. Meri managed to escape with two other children, but only Meri survived.
Meri was picked up by the caravans as they tried to make their way south, looking for shelter. They travelled with them for many months, learning their language and customs, before they were adopted by the Masrai tribe. There they have lived ever since, feeling like an outsider. Meri also considers themselves to be neither male nor female, and this makes it hard for them to find a place in the tribe, where the women and men both have very distinct roles. Generally, they keep their own company, and do their own thing.
Meri’s people came from different ethnic stock, and they find themselves much shorter and stockier than the rest of the Masrai tribe, who all seem to be tall and slender and very fine warriors. The tribe’s language is their fourth language, and even though they were never ostracised within the tribe, they still went through their initiation into adulthood alone, without a bondmate, because there weren’t enough to pair up.
Indeed, Meri did not acquire a bondmate until Andreas arrived, and they were initiated together. The experience, and the sacred bond they share, has changed them both, and the journey they both thought they were making.
The current Nisuwer of the Masrai tribe, and the one who deposed Jaran for the title many years earlier. She has ruled over the tribe with grace and strength, and it has been a time of plenty and peace.
Incursions by foreign armies, mostly Roman, who have come looking for conquest and land and slaves, have brought an end to the peace, and while they have managed to fend them off so far, there is always the fear that one day, it will be more than just patrols, and an army of any significant size will overwhelm them and they will be defeated and taken from their lands.
She lost her bondmate and Iryete in the fighting, and while she is a strong and worthy warrior in her own right, she does not feel prepared for war, and worries that she is not the Nisuwer for such a time of strife.
Greek God of thieves, traders, merchants, and communication, among other things. Generally prayed to and offered to by many thieves who live around the city, including Andreas.
He places dice with Apollon to win the right to rescue Andreas, his mothers, and the Seers, and save them from the city, much to Apollon’s annoyance.
Taking on corporeal form to lead them through the desert, Hermes guides them on their journey to a new place, and slowly begins to show Andreas just what he’s capable of, teaching him to read and write to while away the endless days of sand and walking.
He is quick-witted, a peacekeeper, and has inter-pantheonic connections to other gods that help him do his work. Generally harmless, but like all gods, has his own agenda, and people that he likes, and he will take away his protection if his charges don’t learn to get along.