S is for
Scudder was a member of the 1st Canadian
Depot Battalion, stationed in the Ukraine.
While in Europe, his paths crossed with
Lucious Belyakov, an opposing Avatar,
and Ernst Lodz. He tried to pass on his
boon to Lodz so that he could free himself
of the burden of being an Avatar, but
the encounter left Lodz blind instead.
Scudder evaded Belyakov's pursuits by
hiding within the Hyde & Teller Co.
in America, working the Geek Show. By
the time Management had acquired the company,
Scudder had disappeared. In present times,
Ben discovers Scudder's death mask at
The Crone's house, which suggests that
Scudder is dead. Others insist Scudder
"On the heels of the skirmish
man foolishly called The War to End all
Wars, the dark one sought to elude his
destiny and live as a mortal. So he fled
across the ocean to the empire called
America. But by his mere presence, a cancer
corrupted the spirit of the land."
- Gospel of Matthias (201)
T is for Trinity:
On July 16, 1945, 210 miles south of
Los Alamos in a remote corner of the Alamagordo
Bombing Range, The Trinity Test ended
The Age of Wonder and begat The Age of
Reason. It is this moment in history that
Belykaov warns Ben he must prevent. The
elder Avatar does not elaborate as to
why, but modern scholars speculate that
the "false sun exploding over trinity"
marked the end of all Avatars and magicks.
"A weapon. A false sun wrought
by the hands of men. It is the last link
in a chain of events unfolding even as
we speak. You must break that chain. You
can't run from this. Millions will die.
If you try to escape your destiny, the
world will not escape its terrible fate."
- Belyakov (201)
is for The Usher
informs Justin that he must kill Scudder
to receive Scudder's boon and become The
Usher, an especially powerful being that
can only be felled by the precise thrust
of an anointed blade. The manifestation
of The Usher is the first sign of the
Apolcaypse. To Ben, he appears in visions
as a man with a tree tattooed on his chest.
Samhain Necrotus. Khaybet, lord of shadows.
A thousand names in a thousand books,
but they all mean the same: The Usher
"Behold The Usher. A dark heart
dwells where branches meet. Anointed dagger,
plunge thee deep." – Belyakov
V is for Vectori:
According to Avataric texts, children
born within a dynasty other than first-born
males (i.e., any girls) are classified
Vectori. Iris Crowe is a Vectorus. She
has no powers, but she carries within
her Avataric blood. If she ever bore a
son, he would become an Avatar like Justin.
However, like Emma Hilton (The Crone)
giving birth to an Avatar would leave
Iris insane and/or barren. But Iris is
more than a custodian of Avataric blood.
She is her brother's trusted confidant
and guardian. Everything she does, she
does for Justin.
"There were two children. A
boy. A girl. Immigrants from Russia. And
they were traveling with their mother
by train. One night, there was a terrible
accident. A bridge collapsed and the train
went down into the water. There were no
survivors except the boy and the girl.
By God's divine mercy, they survived,
washed up on a riverbank." - Iris
W is for The Wilderness:
Just as Jesus, full of the Holy Ghost,
returned from Jordan and was led by the
Spirit into the wilderness, so too was
Justin led from the ashes of the Dignity
Ministry into his own wilderness. Standing
on a bridge over a river, he remembers
when as a boy he survived a train accident
and came upon an injured man. Afraid,
Justin used his abilities to break the
man's neck. This recollection nearly drives
Justin to suicide, but police pull him
back before he can jump from the bridge.
Justin is committed to Sherwood State
Hospital for observation. The doctor in
charge of his case explains that Justin's
treatments are not intended to be punitive.
Pain is an unavoidable side effect.
"Up and down the Golden State,
one burning question has crossed the lips
of men, women, and children alike... white,
black, brown and yellow. A question that
has been scrawled on water towers, boxcars
and bridge abutments from Crescent City
to Calexico. A question that has become
a rallying cry for the disenfranchised:
'Where are you, Brother Justin?'"
- Tommy (108)
X, Y, Z is for ???
(I couldn't think of anything that starts
with those letters, so here's a gratituous
shot of Libby. Remember, the performance
stops if anyone touches the girls. NO
"Just feast your eyes on this
Northern Italian beauty. This is the woman
all the men in town been talkin about.
She's gonna shake it. She's gonna break
it. She's gonna tear it down to the ground,
because Miss Francesca here is so, so
hot, she's gonna put blisters on your
eyeballs." - Stumpy (102)