by Max Barry

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The Order of the Ink Heart

The Order of the Ink Heart

Order Device:

Estimated number: 100,956,000

"Sometimes stories need a helping hand."

To the Order of the Ink Heart, the multiverse is their playground. Where other Tethysi treat their narrative powers as a heavy responsibility, they see it as their natural state. Its members will scatter across galaxies to find the most interesting worlds, and use their powers to guide the narratives they find to a pleasing conclusion - whether that means taking the role of hero or villain, champion or pawn. Though they interact most often with other cultures, they do so usually in secret. This has avoided tarnishing their nation's name with their interventionism, but has given them an ill reputation among civilisations who know of their proclivities.

Political stance
They prioritise freedom above all else, but also care deeply about culture and the environment.

Capricious, eccentric, changeable, theatrical

Order Commander

Valead Draccardsspawn

Age: 41

Height: 168cm

Villain, Matchmaker

Personal Device:

With their wit, temperament and skill, Valead could have distinguished themselves within such august orders as the Pun Crown or the Silver Lantern. However, there are few who are a better fit for the Ink Heart. Valead achieved notoriety from a young age, their first deed shaking the power balance of a galaxy by infiltrating the court of the largest empire within it, befriending the emperor's son, manipulating him into falling for the heroic princess of his greatest rival - and vice versa - before faking their own death at the emperor's hand in a tragic display that caused the two new paramours to rise up together and overthrow their parents. This immediately marked them for great things with the Ink Heart, but drew attention to them as a problem child, prioritising their own amusement over any concern for the damage they may cause. Over the years, their tastes changed, and many would say for the worse. After befriending the dragon Chuimoshulong, an immigrant to the nation, the two began working closely together on what became their favourite and most infamous pastime - establishing themselves as terrifying villains and kindapping defenceless (and often royal) innocents, so that a true hero might defeat them and rescue the victim, resulting in the start of a grand romance.

Valead wears Half-Plot Armour and eschews a Wing-Weapon, instead donning a half-cape of quills to create tools from, with their preference being the light and elegant Quillrapier.

They are cheerful, pleasant, garrulously exuberant and excessively theatrical, often posing as the most ineffectively dastardly of villains. Their preferred genres are fairy tales, romances and high fantasy.

Valead is considered an eccentric and sometimes a nuisance by others, but is very popular within their own order and beyond.