Last Saturday we had a look at some of the villains used in webfiction. This week, it’s the turn of the heroes!
10. Action Survivor: Liam Wheelwright
A skinny, gentle, yet surprisingly resilient 21 year old college student, Liam has aspirations of becoming a doctor. Having been abandoned by his parents in his youth, he’s wary of relationships and keeps most people at a distance; the only exceptions to this are his roommates, who are his replacement family.
Now that his parents are dead, he hopes to discover why they abandoned him and who killed them by working at a shop that serves as his link between the magical and ordinary worlds. Of course, he’ll discover more than he bargained for.
He could be categorized as an Action Survivor, the ordinary person. While he does have a somewhat-special ability, the ability to smell and identify even the faintest scents including spells, he never would have realized this was special if he hadn’t been tossed into his odd situation.
9. Lovely Angels: Kat and Mouse
Sometimes heroes (or heroines!) come in pairs, as in the case of Kat and Mouse, two characters who are the very antithesis of helpless females.
Kat is a meter-ninety and eighty kilos of dark haired Amazon in black biker leathers, who sports a pair of .45-caliber hand cannons. Mouse is a petite fireball in a black leather trenchcoat, who favours Japanese short swords and other pointy toys.
And that’s not all! Kat and Mouse are ronin, or guns for hire. Both are fitted with adrenaline stimulators, bone reinforcement, dermal armour, and other assorted biomod goodies. Both are just trying to earn a living in the near-future metropolis of Bay City, California Free State. And both tend to bite off more than they can chew.
They usually resolve the situation. But they do it their way, which tends to involve gunfire, explosions, high body counts, and adult language.
8. First Person Smartass: Nathan Baker
In true style for this trope, the character speaks for himself:
“My name’s Nathan Baker and you could say I’m your typical First Person Smartass. I could have stumbled out of some detective story but instead I find myself in the middle of an interstellar mess—and that’s been so for more than half a millennium.
Because, you see, I don’t age. Don’t know the reason, really. And that’s about the only thing special about me, if you overlook the general cuteness/smugness mix that has been my signature for about as long as I can remember.
To earn a living (and to piss off the Church), I run the only night club in the galaxy: Madilon. It’s an old research space station I’ve redecorated a bit, so to speak. But of course, the Pope and the army won’t let me be. They try to hunt us down and blow us into the ether.
Luck’s been on my side so far. But you never know… As I say: parties are illegal, Madilon’s illegal-er! That’s a pretty good incentive for those self-righteous bastards to come after my little business.”
When he is first introduced, Demetrius is a simple Sicilian slave with familial devotion and a touch of power hunger.
Then he is changed. He becomes a Shadow and takes the name Decentius, as he has ‘descended’. Dark haired, pale skinned, with icy blue eyes, his physique seems thin and unthreatening, but he is stronger than he looks.
Of course, not all of that strength is natural. Having risen to Immortality as a Shadow, he can touch minds, become one with the shadows around him, and he also possesses supernatural strength and speed.
In his heart, Decentius wishes to regain that which he has lost: his family. In his mind this means protecting the mortals of Sicily from the depredations of foreign conquerors.
Sadly, he stands second to the sleeping Signore Umbrae, whose servant Maggiordomo Theophilus uses his own resources and manipulations to block Decentius’ grabs for power.
6. The Paragon: Fourth Chevenga Shae-Arano-e
“He was always burning to do things; long training every day barely sated him. He was very good with a sword, could be impetuous if he didn’t care, thought and moved fast, spoke honestly, loved wholly, lusted frequently, slept badly, was obsessed with time since he knew he would die soon, and needed a hot bath every night” (Lion’s Soul, New York: Baen Books 1991). Not to mention his military brilliance, courage and general cheerfulness, his quirky and often black sense of humour, plus the erudition and law-geekiness that his position requires.
His average height, athletic build, curly black hair, and brown eyes hardly scream superhero, but that is exactly what Chevenga is. For he was raised to be totally committed to serving the people of Yeola-e, even if it means performing the ultimate sacrifice. Eventually, he reaches the point when he starts to question his purpose in life, and his motivations shift towards personal survival. It helps that he has the ability to weapon-sense, that is to know where weapons are without seeing them.
Amongst his other abilities is an unreliable prescience that is more a curse than a blessing, for Chevenga has the foreknowledge that he’s going to die before he turns thirty. But darker obstacles lie ahead of him; terrible discoveries, not to mention invasions, captures, tortures, and more….
5. Action Survivor: Faith
It was more due to luck than skill that Faith survived the end of the world. Thrown together with a group of strangers, this ordinary girl has been forced to step up in order to keep on breathing. She never meant to end up leading the Seekers, but no-one else offered and now she doesn’t know how to back down.
She doesn’t have any special abilities beyond an old first aid certificate, a desire to help everyone, and a reflex to rant when angry. She feels her way through various struggles, from searching for food and water, to battles with rival gangs and shambling undead. Adjusting to the new world is changing her, something which Faith resists for fear of losing who she is in the scramble to survive.
Inclined to care about those around her, Faith has grown close to her group over the months since the world ended, and she protects them fiercely, if not always wisely. She is bruised from those she has loved and lost, but she keeps pushing forward anyway. She fears that if she stops, she’ll find there’s no future for any of them anymore and that will be the end of them. Most of all, she fears becoming one of the nameless dead, forgotten along with all that came before.
Through all of this, Faith keeps a journal of her struggles and trials, telling the story of her group in the hopes that someday, someone will read it, and know what happened.
4. Nature Hero: Ketrin
A human boy raised by striped lupinoids in the jungle, Ketrin returns to human society at about 18, where he learns interesting human customs like wearing clothes, and then removing them again for sex. Adopted by the widow Mavrida, who names him Ketrin after her long-lost son, he earns the enmity of the unscrupulous chief hunter Borvinn, and the undying love of the young hunter Sherinel, one of Borvinn’s former victims.
His main aim is to protect friends and family, whether two- or four-legged, something which isn’t always easy when the humans attempt to exterminate lupinoids.
But Ketrin is not just any ordinary boy: he can communicate with lupinoids telepathically, learn language and other skills quickly, heal rapidly, and combine lupinoid tracking and hunting skills with human intelligence.
With suspiciously inconvenient timing, Ketrin suffers a debilitating illness and has to recover as best he can before trying to outwit Borvinn and his hunters. And it won’t be easy, for Borvinn has a spell crystal which can paralyse Ketrin. But Borvinn may not have taken Ketrin’s lupinoid telepathy into account….
3. Badass Bookworm: Shane Myers
On the surface Shane’s an ordinary-looking workaholic who’s the head of the genetics department of the mega-corporation Triptych. He loves his work and generally keeps to himself. His only social interactions outside of his department are working out in Triptych’s gym and trysts with lovers. Few people know about the abilities granted by his alien side: healing, telekinesis, and limited telepathy. Shane never knew his non-human parent, so he figured out what he was and what he can do on his own. He grew up isolated, and has a hell of a temper, too. If you’re familiar with the Myers-Briggs personality types, he’s an INTJ from hell.
Shane’s slightly more at home at Triptych, where psionics are known and accepted. At the start of SLB he’s happy with his orderly, self-contained world. Then another psychic (Addison) and his son crash through Shane’s carefully erected walls. The results aren’t pretty.
2. Anti Hero: Takun
Takun is tall, has white and black hair, blue-gray eyes, and lion-like ears. Despite his looks—or perhaps because of them—Takun is not your average hero. To be perfectly honest, he’s a certified jerk.
Takun is obnoxious, rude, and a womanizing, drunken cheater, interested solely in getting drunk, getting laid, and eating. He throws violent hissy fits when things don’t go his way, and his friends aren’t even sure why they are friends with him. It doesn’t help that Takun gets away with his behaviour because he’s rich and can buy his way out of trouble.
But his behaviour is the least of your worries, for Takun is a cursed wolf, capable of harvesting people’s souls and thereby turning into a monstrous creature. It’s hardly surprising that the villains want to recruit him, but the question remains: will he join them?
1. The Chosen One: Tefia Rypal
Tefia doesn’t have it easy. Chosen by the Gods, Tefia must first prove her worth by locating four holy items, then pass a holy trial, only to be sent to the realm of Satan to defeat the demon lord.
To make matters worse, the demon lord’s minions are willing to do anything to stop her from collecting the holy items, not to mention all the other criminals and lowlifes that get in her way!
But Tefia is not a helpless damsel: she is an S-grade sorceress—meaning she has mastered all types of magic—and on top of that has strong fighting skills. And she comes heavily armed: Tefia wears a stainless steel robe, and carries a rod, ifnarisis, that can double as a knife, lance, spear, cannon, and rocket.
Enemies of Tefia, beware!
Thanks again to all the authors for their submissions!
I hope you enjoyed last week’s villain and this week’s hero round-up. It’s been interesting to have a deeper look into what webfiction has to offer, and I hope you’ve come across something new to read. I know I have!
Last of all, I sincerely apologize to anyone who has ended up spending several hours of their life on TV Tropes. But you’ve got to admit you enjoyed every minute of it!
[Note: Yes, I may write subsequent similar posts, but not in the immediate future, for I fear it would be the same authors submitting again. But I am addicted to TV Tropes now, so never fear, another blog post is near….]