The major characters, in order of appearance…
Anthem, a human
When a ritual meant to heal Vasgol failed and brought Darumatha, an elder dragon, into the world, Anthem viewed her life as forfeit. Alternating between despair and rage, she stole the introductory letter of a dying traveler and presented herself as an accountant for the Inn of Silver Leaves. But she cannot hide from what she has done, and powerful agents of change and transformation are starting to view her as their agent in the world. This could be the second chance Anthem hoped for, or a further opportunity to damn herself.
Darumatha, Demon-Dragon of Broken Hours, a dragon
Dragons–the result of inert matter rising up through motility and at last consciousness in contravention of the world’s natural order–are always dangerous, but the Dragon of Broken Hours is a creature of malicious chaos exceeding even its peers. Brought to full consciousness by Anthem’s botched ritual, Darumatha works to establish a stronghold for itself on the island of Zaiapan. From there it plans to unmake the philosophical underpinning of the world–the principle of Tamantha–and challenge the gods themselves.
Maresh, a human
Nearly killed in a failed ritual that brought Darumatha into its full power, Maresh now serves the cause of the slain tyrant-god Yamra. He fears that Anthem’s attempts to “heal” Vasgol will result in the freeing of a malevolent and furious goddess, and works to stop the catastrophe he imagines. Simultaneously, he dreams of restoring the glory of Yamra’s empire, and seeks out a worthy heir of the great kings that ruled the empire in its golden age.
Barabbon, a pleroma of Gurahl
For ten long years Barabbon, once the general of Yamra’s armies, skulked in a cave, defeated, too weak to confront those who bested him. But when he found a young man savaged by the Dragon of Broken Hours–Maresh–he saw his opportunity. Rebuilding Maresh with the secrets of Cultivation, Yamra’s old gift to humanity, Barabbon aims his new weapon at the heart of Vasgol, to destroy his old enemies.
Gilgam Eskamushi, a wyrd
Unable to return home at the end of the last war, after suffering imprisonment and torment at the hands of Yamra’s followers, Gilgam is trapped in Vasgol, a place he hates, slowly going native even as the nation unravels around him. After drifting from one menial job to another for ten years, Gilgam at last settles at the Inn of Silver Leaves as a part-time carpenter and bodyguard, where he works hard to avoid putting centuries of life to any useful purpose.
Vish, a pleroma of Ailari
Vish began his existence representing Ailari the patroness of hospitality, but he grew in spiritual stature even as Yamra withered. He is determined to restore the damaged world but uncertain how. With his power, he could interfere directly, but he fears that such a display of naked strength could turn him into another Yamra. But he also fears that if he works subtly, by the time his pieces are in place it will be too late. A rogue emanation of a goddess of rogues, Vish finds himself with few allies and many problems.
Dosh Ai-Nalyitta, a human
A Hadrakahn aristocrat whose family lost its fortune after Yamra’s defeat, Dosh studied in the northern gymnasia, mastering the arts of battle, until he fled to escape creditors. Turning to vagabond treasure-hunting, Dosh now plans to make his fortune amidst the old wyrdish ruins of Vasgol, but his aristocratic background and prediliction for believing any damn fool thing told to him has made him the target of Maresh and Barabbon, who see a pawn for their schemes.
Varaxunax Doto, a human
An Esgavi sorcerer, Varaxunax lost his seniority in the Kepteriad (the sorcerous society of Chalt) after a misadventure involving a nymph and a giant metal centipede. (The details are murky, and perhaps horrific.) Reduced to renegade status while not important or powerful enough to kill outright, Varaxunax has joined with a Hadrakahn aristocrat to seek wyrdish treasure in Vasgol. But in his heart he desires the return of his lofty status, and makes plans with shadowy agents to recover his position.
Momba Kawunei, a yig
One of House Momba’s most influential retainers, Momba Kawunei joined the battle against Yamra when most other Yigs wanted only to pick over the ruins after the war had ended. Nominally loyal to Dreadlord Yoth, Kawunei has bucked against the dreadlord’s authority for years, not moving against him directly only because he fears Yoth knows some of Kawunei’s dark secrets from during the war.