the Eidolon Empress
The enigmatic being known only as the Eidolon Empress has a grab bag of origins for her many super-human capabilities. She was born a mutant, having the power to cling to various solid surfaces in spite of gravity. She was later transformed into a vampire, which has led to her extended existence. And finally, she has begun to develop natural psionics as a member of the Anthropy Society.
Agelessness (s): as one of the undead, Eidolon is close to immortal. As long as she continues to prey upon the living for their blood, and isn't slain by direct violence perpetrated against her person, the Empress may persist in her unholy existence indefinitely. In fact, if at full Health, she will generally retain the appearance she possessed upon her demise - though admittedly, in a slightly more pale state.
Biological Vampirism (i): the classic, blood-sucking vampire has a strongly limited form of this power, which allows them to derive sustenance solely from the living blood of animal creatures. On contact with a potential target, Eidolon may begin to feed upon him or her if she can pass an easy difficulty Biological Vampirism (willpower) action against them, which isn't too difficult with her intensity of 10.
This assumes that the Empress has managed to access her target's bloodstream, of course, which involves either opening the target's skin (most often with her fangs) or by clamping her mouth onto an already open wound. In a single exchange, Eidolon may draw out up to ten ounces of blood, which is enough to render a normal human dizzy - but won't actually inflict lethal harm in and of itself.
Unless such a singular attack would remove all the victim's Health, that is. Eidolon may continue to drain blood from her victim after this initial attack, though this furthers the risk of killing the victim (thus creating more vampires), as well as the possibility of the victim shrugging off the attack and gaining immunity to her draining ability (thus becoming a potential nemesis).
At any rate, the Empress may use the drained blood to replace her own, lost Health. If at full Health when drinking her power intensity in ounces of blood, Eidolon will experience a +1 boost to her Strength and Willpower scores, as well as all her power intensities save for this one, for the duration of the encounter. An additional boost of like power requires another infusion of fresh blood (after the first expires).
On the other hand, the Empress will suffer a -1 penalty to the aforementioned ability scores and power intensities for each day she abstains from feeding (whether voluntarily or otherwise). If Eidolon's ability scores and power intensities slip to zero (0) from an extended lack of blood, she will not die so much as slip into stasis - at least, until someone is foolish enough to wander into melee distance of her...!
As an undead creature, the Eidolon Empress cannot defeat her dependence on blood - he literally need it to survive.
Clinging (a): one of the world's oldest (sort of) surviving mutants, the Empress was born with the ability to walk on walls and ceilings, as can an insect. This power functions for her at intensity 16, allowing her to cling to most standard surfaces. While this power isn't related to her vampirism, she has proven capable of passing it on to her 'children', as she has with Armula.
Environmental Independence (s): as anti-life monstrosities, vampires only need to satisfy the limitations of their vampiric power to subsist. In other words, while the Empress must feed upon the blood of others to live, she no longer needs - nor can she derive sustenance from - ordinary food or water, and no longer need breathe to maintain her bodily functions. Eidolon still sleeps during the day, however.
Fangs (s): Eidolon is equipped with retractable fangs, which are slightly different than the 'classical' portrayal of vampires in the media, as all of her teeth can grow into needle-like fangs. The Empress may bring these physical weapons to bear to inflict +2 slashing damage. Mind you, she often causes just enough harm with her fangs to access her target's bloodstream (the better to avoid killing her lunch outright).
Regeneration (s): Eidolon has the ability to rapidly repair damage inflicted upon her person - assuming that she has recently dined upon an unwitting human. As long as the Empress is not suffering a penalty due to a lack of blood, she receives the benefit of intensity 8 regeneration. This allows her to heal a card of lost health on a non-negative draw of less than eight each exchange.
Resistance to Physical and Vampiric Attack (s): classical vampires are notable for their considerable resistance to conventional injury. While not quite immune to such, the Empress can easily shrug off attacks that would readily kill a normal human, their applied force being reduced by -3 (intensity 12). This damage reduction applies to both physical and vampiric attacks used against Eidolon.
Transformation / Self (a): though she cannot change into animals, the Empress can transform into eerie mist with intensity 6 ability. Her gaseous form provides an additional +2 resistance to physical attacks, as well as intensity 1 flight (thirty miles per hour). In this form Eidolon may force herself into a foe's lungs, gaining control over their body per mesmerism (easy difficulty Transformation / Self (strength) action).
Believer Psionics (Superpsi Powers):
Self Awareness (s) (w): acquired naturally through years of deep introspection, this intensity 15 superpsionic substitutes its intensity for Eidolon's Intellect where memory is concerned, her Agility for initiative purposes, and her Willpower when attempting to resist mind control. Since she lacks a soul, however, the Empress seemingly cannot develop her Anthropic abilities any further.
Natural Psionics (Empathic Powers):
Empathic Hammer (t) (w): awakened via the power of Alabaster Jackson-Jones' belief, the Empress has developed this talent into a regular ability. She can now rapidly and randomly alter the emotions of an opponent, inflicting intensity 13 karmic damage with each terrible attack. She worked hard to maintain this talent in her mind, to better keep her various vampiric minions in line.
Hindrances / Augmentations:
Vampiric Weaknesses: while immortals are permanently slain only by total body disintegration, destruction on their home plane, or being killed by a fellow immortal, traditional vampires are instead beholden to a completely different set of weaknesses. Eidolon is no exception to this rule, and is subject to a large number of character hindrances that came along with her impressive vampiric powers.
* Aversion and Susceptibility / Running Water: Eidolon has an aversion to crossing running water, such as a river. She must pass a challenging difficulty Willpower action to do so. Furthermore, if the Empress is submerged in running water, she'll lose one card of Health each exchange, which isn't countered by her regeneration any, until she either gets out of the water or dissolves within it.
* Originator's Onus: while many vampires (such as the Eidolon Empress) lack mesmerism in a general sense, all vampires possess this ability, or are subject to it, in regards to their progenitors or descendants. In other words, a vampire can use this power at their Willpower intensity to command undead they are responsible for creating, and resist commands from their creators as if her Willpower was zero (0).
* Requirement / Home Soil: the Empress requires a touch (several pounds) of her native, Mongolian soil with her for some unknown reason. If such soil isn't adjacent to her while she sleeps during the day, Eidolon cannot heal damage inflicted to her body that night - either using her regeneration power or by dint of the consumed blood of her many, many victims.
* Requirement / Permission to Enter: while many vampires of the traditional variety do not possess this psychological barrier, the Empress definitely does. Suffering under this constraint, Eidolon may not, under any circumstances, enter a private space without explicit permission. Doing so will cause her to lose one card of Health on each exchange during which she continues to trespass.
* Susceptibility / Direct Sunlight: if exposed to direct sunlight (not mere daylight conditions but actual rays of light from the sun, whether directly or via a reflected surface), the Empress will lose a card of Health in damage each exchange. This is more than enough to turn her to dust in short order - which is why she typically rests in a darkened underground vault during the day.
* Susceptibility / Wooden Stakes: if Eidolon is ever pierced in the heart (with a killing blow) via some wooden object, she will instantly lose all of her remaining Health. Unless she can pass a daunting difficulty Strength action immediately, the Empress will crumble to dust in rapid order, the anti-life which sustains her undead existence fleeing her now-uninhabitable corpse all at once.
* Susceptibility and Weakness / Garlic: many classical vampires, like the Empress, have showcased an inability to function in the face of garlic. When within close combat distance of the substance, Eidolon will be reduced to zero (0) in all her ability scores, and cannot use her supernatural powers. If forced to ingest garlic somehow, the Empress will immediately lose one card of Health.
Business / Finance (w): having started from nothing twice now, the Eidolon Empress has built vast criminal and financial networks from scratch. While her second is nowhere near as large as her original, the fact remains that building up these money structures is almost like second nature to her. As such, she should receive a reduced difficulty on all actions concerning financial knowledge.
Crime (i): having first-hand knowledge of crime and criminals for almost eight hundred years, the Empress can be considered a mastermind of such. She excels in the formation and management of illicit enterprises, and has a singular knack for keeping her law-breaking minions in line. No matter what aspect of illegal activity she engages in, Eidolon should receive a reduced difficulty on any applicable card play.
Manipulation (w): you don't build a massive secret empire over the course of almost a thousand years without knowing a thing or two about pulling others' strings. The Empress excels at getting others to do her bidding, whether with promises of reward or the threats of violence. She should receive a reduced difficulty on such efforts, greatly improving her odds of getting what she wants at all times.
The Eidolon Empress has many contacts in various circles, for she is trying to worm her way into power over the entire planet. She has numerous criminals, politicians, law enforcement officials, and even super villains in her pocket. This on top of her own, personal staff of servants, who she has conditioned to blindly follow her, and her amicable association with Anthropy Society founder Alabaster Jackson-Jones.
World Domination, sprinkled with a helping of Greed: after her horrible upbringing back in the days of the Mongol hordes, the Eidolon Empress refuses to bow down to others - and similarly refuses to be denied anything she wants. As such, she strives to worm her way into a position where she can rule the world, behind the scenes if necessary, and intends to do so by literally buying the earth wholesale.
The Eidolon Empress has worn a variety of costumes, uniforms, and other ensembles over the centuries, usually those that identify her as a member of some ruling class or another - it's how she perceives herself, after all. Her current look tends to primarily involve exquisitely tailored business suits, in varying colors, since it's the financial industry that has pretty much purchased the world outright.
One might consider the Eidolon Empress cold, calculating, and detached. But then, that's the persona she goes to great lengths to project. No, ever since her upbringing in Mongolia so many centuries ago, reared in abject poverty and practically starving, she has coveted all the wealth of the world. So much so, in fact, that he can't help but slip 'out of character' when denied anything she wishes.
Real Name: unknown, even to herself
Occupation: criminal entrepreneur, would-be world dominatrix
Legal Status: citizen of the United States currently, with no known criminal record
Marital Status: widower
Alias(es), if any: various, though currently Jacqueline Wu
Group Affiliation: the Anthropy Society
Height: 5' 6"
Weight: 115 lbs
Other Distinguishing Characteristics: the Eidolon Empress appears somewhat pale, but otherwise normal.
Long, long ago, during the rise of Genghis Khan, she who would grow to become the Eidolon Empress grew up in abject poverty, her tribe overrun and subsumed into the Khan's. Treated as little more than property, she was forced to perform menial labor to secure the minimal fruits of life, her parents having long since been slain. Her prospects looked dim, but then, it can always get worse.
As they tend to do in times of great conflict, vampires flocked to the scene of Khan's many and various battles, because the man made it easy to secure a meal. One of these undead in particular tired of feasting on the dead and dying, however, and targeted several of the serving girls supporting the horde's advance. And as it turned out, the very first of these happened to be the future Empress.
Her vital bodily fluids drained by this monster, she was left for dead along with several others. Luckily for her, however, the future Empress awoke anew well before others realized what was going on, and made her escape before the Mongols purged the rest of the sudden undead as they began to rise and attack. Watching from afar, she saw all of her undead 'siblings' put to death against overwhelming odds.
Making her way elsewhere, the future Eidolon quickly learned the benefits and constraints of her new existence. Most importantly, she found out that her will was somewhat beholden to that of the vampire who created her... as well as those who, in turn, caused it to come into being. Vowing to never be subject to the rule of anyone else ever again, she then went underground - and began to hunt down her progenitors!
Doing so through human mercenaries and later, vampire hunters, the Empress required resources to wage her war against those who could conceivably control her. Acquiring the small amounts she required to get started was easy enough, though as her efforts and reputation grew, she slowly became known to the criminal underworld as the Eidolon Empress, a phantom crime lord who never stayed in one place long.
Seizing what resources and manpower she could from her more experienced, more entrenched forebears as she went, the Empress quickly grew fantastically rich. By the time her war ended, since she could trace her undead lineage back no further, Eidolon had more resources than anyone else would know what to do with. Of course, the Empress' ambitions were great, indeed, being aimed at domination of the world itself!
Over the centuries, the Empress has worked hard to worm her way into the pockets of many criminals, politicians, and soldiers, and could readily influence world powers by the beginning of the twentieth century. Things seemed to be moving along nicely for her plans, however, until a chance encounter with a particularly ancient vampire robbed her of all her hard work. The worst part was that she didn't even see it coming!
Left alive, so to speak, Eidolon was forced to suffer the fact that all her effort was for naught. Despondent, she pondered ending her existence, but happened upon a chance bit of human philosophy that intrigued her. Reading up on the propaganda of the so-called Anthropy Society, Eidolon thought she should at least investigate its claims before voluntarily ending her otherwise endless existence.
Gaining an audience with the group's founder, Alabaster Jackson-Jones, Eidolon tried to feel him out, see if he was some sort of con man. Most who claim to help others find meaning in life are, after all. But as it turned out, Jackson-Jones was much better at manipulating others than Eidolon ever was, and was able to suss out her true story - not to mention what it was that was holding her back.
Though he was leery of aiding an undead creature at first, Alabaster found himself inexplicably smitten with Eidolon, and thus worked with her to help her find her true self. Through years of inward meditation and constant vigil about the state of her own mental well-being, the Empress finally had a breakthrough. Becoming one with her true, inner self, she then asked Alabaster to help her achieve her goals.
Using his rarely-wielded ability to awaken the psionics inherent to almost all sentient beings, Jackson-Jones indeed activated a potent empathic capability within Eidolon. She then set about gaining revenge for the indignity her vampiric ancestor had inflicted upon her. Using Jones' contacts in the super-human community, she was able to locate the psi known as Ultra Xiang, and tipped him off to about her former empire.
Before she knew it, the vampire-obsessed youth rained down a terrible demise upon the ancient vampire who had stolen what belonged to her, doing so along with his compatriots in the Variety Show. Though the vast, vast majority of her resources was lost with the death of the vampire who started her very line of undead, the Eidolon Empress is not without skill, and has slowly begun to rebuild her criminal network.
Though these days, she does so with super-humans in mind. They are, after all, as dangerous as they are useful!
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