I am myself. I am canny, brutal, experienced. I laugh at the gods. I delight in life. My foes meet death swiftly.
I am a former master-assassin with memories of deep and disturbing magics. I am short and swift, with dark hair and contemplative eyes. My superior knowledge of mechanics and clockworks can be readily inferred from the devices of death I carry. A seeker on my way I am, driftwood on the seas open before me.
I have arrived to The Scarlet City, back to my home that once was. To the city where death lurks amidst the flamboyant. I have come to find my way and cause. A purpose big enough to atone my spirit and quench the nightmares of deeds past.
Chrysal is an independent prostitute in the Scarlet City. Her real name is Dina-Kimbe, indicating birth into the servant (slave) class of the Magocracy. She’s abandoned her brothel recently in favour of maintaining her own clientele; surprising her acquaintances, she’s kept her life together pretty well despite the challenging situation.
Chrysal carries herself confidently and values control over her own life highly. She’s been living together with a younger woman, a painter by name of Phryne, but as she has recently attracted the attention of a virtuous client – a rich merchant prince – Chrysal may be on the brink of breaking through as a courtesan.
Vansittart Gabaldon is an ambitious merchant prince intent on breaking the glass ceiling and entering into the ranks of the virtuous citizens – the senate of the Scarlet City. Vansittart’s dynamic, even reckless habit gives him a dangerous edge oft ascribed to his Longaxi heritage. He is a ruthless sociopath, willing to do anything to achieve his goals.
Vansittart has long had his eye on Derak the Puppet, the man he believes to be the pre-eminent assassin in Scarlet. Being a man impossible to refuse, Vansittart has decided that Derak will play a part in a ploy that will culminate in his ascension to the loftiest social and political heights in the greatest City in the world.