This is a story about the heroes' return journey from defeating the big bad. Only four of the band of seven have survived. Frequent flashbacks and hallucinations establish the presence/absence of the dead three. Very much plays with the idea, "Well, we killed the Dark Lord. NOW what do we do?"
Silent (Real name: Suigami Kouhei) - female - 22
The resident sneakthief, who trained as a ninja from the time she could walk. Her stealth and combat skills are actually quite impressive, though outside of battle, she downplays both those assets as well as her level of intelligence. She admits to being born in the town of Yuufei, but will not state either of her names, not only because people knowing your true name is dangerous, but because apparently, she's fairly well-known. Or at least, she is in her hometown. Her nickname does not come from her speech habits (she's actually quite talkative and energetic), but from her movements, which are virtually indetectable to all but Gray. She is the fifth person to join the Band of Seven. She has stated that she will never marry and there were odd, nearly sexual tensions between Silent, Eden, and Archer. Silent may be attracted to women. She doesn't get along with Dirk or Gray--Dirk because she feels threatened by him (he's the other witty thief) and Gray because she thinks he's a self-righteous pretentious asshole.
Gray (Real name: Dante Freidano) - male - 30
The aloof and mysterious figure. He says little and reveals less; the only things about himself that he has stated for certain are that he is thirty years old, there is no better swordsman than he, and he is from the Isla Del Sol. He seems like a very hard and unfeeling man, but the truth is, he feels things deeply. He simply neglects to reveal his feelings to others. Part of this comes from the fact that he is a disillusioned idealist. The rest is simply his nature. He is the sixth member of the Band of Seven. In the past, he was drawn to Eden's idealism. Her ability to believe fascinated him, even while he realized that if she survived, she was in for a hell of a shock. There is a peculiar tension between Gray and Silent; just as he was drawn to Eden's idealistic nature, he is both repulsed and fascinated by Silent's vitality. Nicknamed for the fact that he wears all black with gray borders on his cloak. He has picked up a tag-along, whom they call Dollie. Dollie is the only person who can draw more than six words out of him at any time.
(His tragic tale, BTW? There's two of 'em. When he was back in the Isla Del Sol, before he came to the continent, he essentially re-enacted Romeo and Juliet, only it was all HIS fault. The girl killed herself because she thought he was going to go through with his arranged marriage [they were supposed to switch her out with the bride], and he fled the country. Then, when he arrived on the continent, he fell in love with a temple maid who wound up being chosen by the Dark Lord as his next Sahieve. Gray has really bad luck with women.)
Archer (Real name: Fa Ming) - female - 25
Named for the fact that the group found her hammering arrows (literally. As in, with her fists) into a bunch of corpses. She's technically the first person to join the Band, as the Band was a completely different unit, comprised only of Eden, Oath, and Spark, when she joined. Eden made her the Keeper of the Names, and Spark bound her with a spell, that she never reveal the names of the group members until she must speak for the Voiceless (in other words, until the Dark Lord is dead). Archer is an expert in close-quarters melee combat. She is what the people of Yuufei call a "xia," a trained warrior hired out to various people, and comes from a family of such. Therefore, there are few Yusheng weapons she cannot wield. Long distance combat (archery and other ranged weapons), however, she's full of fail at. She is about as taciturn as Gray, and very hard to rattle. Her life as a xia has showed her quite a lot of gruesome sights. When she DOES get angry, it's a sight to behold. Has an odd tension with Silent and is DEFINITELY attracted to women. She's very much the person who keeps things running smoothly.
Dirk (Real name: Akamichi Kenji) - male - 28
The final member of the band and the other sneakthief. A knife-wielding silvertongued psychopath. He's witty and far too clever for his own good. He's extremely well-educated, despite his pretensions otherwise. He never revealed his real name to Archer, and he was very briefly under the control of the Dark Enchantress. The tensions between Dirk and Silent are only sexual on his side; she's the one woman he's never been able to seduce, and that really bothers him. While Silent will brag, Dirk gives the impression of being all talk. He wasn't born to stealth the way she was, and so his talents are hard-earned. He's also very fastidious, which drives the rest of the Band crazy. Of the Band, he's the only member who was absolutely never attracted to Eden, though he did try (and succeed exactly once) to sleep with Spark. He never got along with Oath. Apart from Gray and Archer, Dirk is Dollie's other "favorite" person... a dubious blessing, considering how creepy the kid is. Because he's so vocal about his attraction to women, few suspect that Dirk is also attracted to men.
Dollie (Real name unknown) - female - 6
The tagalong. In any other story, she'd be the mascot, but quite frankly, the Band don't WANT her for their mascot. While Eden was alive, she was conjoined at the hip, but Gray's somewhat traumatic actions (forcing Dollie to view the body and telling her, "Remember this. Carry her name.") have for some strange reason caused her to imprint on him. She seems to thrive on his attention, even though much of it is neutral to negative. Paradoxically, she is the only person who can get him to talk, and the only person he willingly touches. Dollie herself rarely speaks to anyone who is not Gray or Archer, though she clung to Eden and now clings to Dirk if Gray is unavailable or unwilling. She has a tendency to stare at people for long periods. Named for the dirty, broken porcelain doll she carries everywhere. An amnesiac. NO HIDDEN POWERS.
Eden (Real name: Bahar Indu) - female - 26
Eden is this world's version of a White Mage. Her magical talents lie in healing; she is known as a Pain-Bearer in Haniyya. Because of this, she is forbidden from carrying a bladed weapon. In the final battle, use of her talents to keep the others alive exhausted her, and still the Dark Lord wouldn't die. After Spark and Oath died, she picked up Oath's sword and stabbed the Dark Lord in the heart, sacrificing her soul to do so. Her body could not sustain itself without her presence, and she died of magical asphyxiation as soon as her fingers left the sword's hilt. She was a strong, strong idealist, believing the best in everybody, believing that the world would change without the Dark Lord in it. Her passionate nature was extremely charismatic, which was enhanced by her kind heart and strong empathy for others, no matter their walk of life. To know Eden was to love her. She was bisexual, and was attracted to both Silent and Spark. Little known fact? She's actually Oath's second wife, though she doesn't envy Spark her status as First Wife, and is actually in a commited relationship with both of them.
Oath (Real name: Ajit Indu) - male - 27
Oath is a skilled swordsman, though perhaps not as skilled as Gray. He married Spark when he was roughly twenty. Oath is an honest, honorable man. Very much a paladin type. The only room for complexity in his life is his relationship with his wives. He was the second to fall, in direct combat with the Dark Lord. When he was small, his village right outside Haniyya was burned as an example; the experience was so traumatic that to this day he despises fire, and that was the seed of his resistance. He pledged his life to protecting Spark when he discovered that she was a natural Enchantress. Named for the fact that he never breaks a promise. Very good-natured, jovial sort of guy.
Spark (Real name: Indira Indu) - female - 26
Spark is named for the fact that the air around her shimmers. She's an Enchantress, which means she is perpetually surrounded by a magical field that makes others attracted to her. She actually spent most of her life celibate, because she could never be sure who really wanted her, and who was under the influence of the glitter. She's a very saucy personality, just as passionate as Eden, but directed in a much more aggressive manner. To know Spark is to either bend knee or get the hell out of her way. She'll easily stomp flat anybody who stands up against her, either intentionally or unintentionally. She'd rather sway people because of her arguments, but she knows there's a strong possibility the glitter distracts them. And she can live with that, so long as she doesn't feel she's outright stealing the others' ability to say no. However, in heated situations, she will often back down completely rather than risk destroying the will of others.
The Dark Lord - male - who the hell knows
The Dark Lord's real name is unknown. Truth be told, he may have renounced his name, which would mean the name he answered to -was- his real name. Mages throughout the past two centuries have conducted countless furtive searches for his name, but nowhere in the historical record is anything remotely related to him. He is the first unifying government the continent of Kagekuni has known since the Del Sol invasion roughly eight hundred years ago. Given that his armor, the title he prefers (Imperator), and the fact that he built roads and named them in Latin, he may actually be FROM Isla Del Sol. In life (and possibly unlife... after all, he's been around for about three hundred years, which shouldn't be possible, even for a skilled magician), he stood in direct opposition to the Dark Enchantress and the White Lady. Eventually, he enslaved the White Lady and the spirit she represented, and the Dark Enchantress wasn't a big enough threat.
The Dark Enchantress - female - really fucking ancient
The Dark Enchantress is actually of no relation to the Dark Lord. In fact, she's the highest powered opposing force. She is a natural Enchantress, only she has used dark magic to stay alive for far, far, far longer than she should have, even for such an unusually long-lived magician. Most of her skill lies in enslaving people attracted to women, and stealing the youth and beauty of others. She is also a skilled manipulator. Dirk joined her, thinking she opposed the Dark Lord for ethical reasons. However, she mostly just wanted to be the one to rule the world, and the Dark Lord was impervious to her charms. Dirk had a hell of a time quitting her service... in fact, Gray had to kill her (Oath, Eden, and Spark, were ensnared, while Archer was simply injured and thus far, far away [hidden, being taken care of by Silent]).
The White Lady - female - really fucking ancient/16
There's something paradoxical about the White Lady. She was supposed to guard the world from the peak of the Frostfang. Technically, she's a reincarnation of an avatar; every White Lady is offered to the mountain spirit, Sahieve, at the age of sixteen. They leave her naked on the altar, and if Sahieve likes her, the spirit will possess her, rendering her temporarily immortal and something more than human. Three hundred and twenty-five years ago, the Dark Lord captured the White Lady of the time, killed her, and then replaced her with a young woman completely in his thrall. And he does this every time his White Lady dies... which is actually kind of frequent, because people keep killing her to get to him.