The Princess Prominent
|The Princess Prominent|
The Princess Prominent |
|Date of arrival||circa FNORD|
|Owner(s)||Anaconda With Sword|
The Princess Prominent (The Ravager, The Life-Bringer) is the Thirteenth Hour of the Fansus, created by Anaconda With Sword. Her aspects are Grail, Knock, and Lantern in decreasing order of importance. The Princess Prominent was born at the split between the Unrealized Moth and the Ashen Edge, where one History shattered itself in war and another smothered itself in peace. Hers is the tongue that licks life from the desolate wastelands, and hers the fangs that crush the mightiest works of man.
Her tarot card is the Hanged Man.
The Princess Prominent appears as a great, black feline with the night sky in her fur. All the stars and galaxies spin as she moves, and their lives and deaths play out as she washes herself. A rusted collar adorns her neck, and a deathly-white vine in full bloom wraps itself around her tail. As the Princess Prominent, her form is that of a sleek and well-fed housecat, if a housecat grew large enough to block out the sky. As the Life-Bringer, she is a pregnant wildcat, perhaps a serval or ocelot, and her decaying collar is diamond-studded. As the Ravager, her collar is made of rusting chain, and she bears the shape of a starving panther, with saber-like fangs.
When artists wish to depict the Princess Prominent in all her faces, the typical artistic conceit is to depict her as a three-headed cat, the left head the Ravager's, the center the Princess Prominent's, and the right head the Life-Bringer's. It sometimes comes as a surprise to the naive occultist that the Princess Prominent does not indeed have a three-headed form. However, the Princess Prominent is first and foremost a cat- why would any cat need to improve on perfection?
As the Life-Bringer, the Princess Prominent presides over births and beginnings, and new growth. This is the face which may heal a fallow field, if the proper invocations are made, and the proper protections put in place. However, the Life-Bringer is a contrary creature, and is just as likely to strangle a metropolis with an unrestrained jungle as she is to encourage a good harvest. The sacred places of this aspect of the Princess Prominent are lushly-growing fields in volcanic soil, abandoned cities being retaken by forest, and all places which were once barren and now teem with life. After the peace treaty of the Ashen Edge, certain rites were ceremonially burnt, the ones which could garner the full attention of this face amongst them.
As the Ravager, the Princess Prominent devours life, from the greatest beast down to the littlest seed. This face consumes the crop, leaving drought in her wake. The Ravager has sometimes been invoked in times of siege, but she is equally as contrary as the Life-Bringer, and it can never be certain whether she will spoil the food behind the walls of the castle or simply send the tsunami to wash it away. For this aspect of the Princess Prominent, fallow fields, broken cities, and dead lands are sacred to her. After the great cataclysm of the Unrealized Moth, the rites to gain the full attention of this face were lost, and only broken shards of that knowledge might still be found amongst the ruins of that history.
The primary face of the Princess Prominent is the one which this Hour is typically known by. This face is the only one which has been known to speak, although she is never particularly helpful. If properly invoked, and properly compensated, the Princess Prominent has been known to provide revelations and secrets, although her price is steep, and she can only be invoked three times, regardless of whether or not she chooses to help the petitioner. At the fourth invocation, petitioners are taken by the Princess, and none can say where they have gone nor what has become of them. Assistants not taken are driven mad by the experience, and have no useful things to say.
- The Storm-Tossed: Recognition, but more for its bird-like shape than anything else. She makes clawless attempts to bat at it if she sees it, but otherwise ignores it.
- The Spirarch: Like a mundane cat, the Princess Prominent has been known to climb the Spirarch, bounding about from branch to branch. Using the Spirarch as a scratching post is strictly prohibited, after the last few incidents. It's unclear if she actually recognizes that the tree is the Spirarch, and hence an Hour, or if she sees it as just another sort of toy.
- The Perennial: It is beneath the dignity of the Princess Prominent to go down to the tide and hurt her paws on broken glass. She recognizes that it is a kindred spirit, another Hour of many faces, but she simply does not care.
- The Faceless King: Dislike, yes, but also mockery to the extreme. What a stupid Hour this is!
- The Hunter: Dislike, almost turning to hatred. The Princess Prominent enjoys the hunt as any cat or cat-shaped being must. She does not, however, approve of the Hunter's infallibility, nor is she unaware of her own beastly form. The face of the Life-Bringer is the only one which will even tolerate his presence.
- The Masquerade: When the Princess Prominent views this Hour as anything more than another piece of the Mansus' landscape, she probably will not let anyone know.
- The Bright Tapestry: Webs are toys, obviously. Anyone who weaves without making allowances for the threads to be used for their proper purpose is not anyone the Princess Prominent cares about.
- The Die-Cutter: Aloof recognition. Sometimes she bats at the dice the Die-Cutter leaves behind him. Sometimes such things are far beneath her dignity. Even she knows better than to interfere with one which is being rolled.
- The Mother Bear: Perhaps this is an Hour that the Princess Prominent actually likes. If nothing else, the Princess Prominent will sleep by (or atop) the Mother Bear. It's a level of affection she does not show to other Hours.
- The Maw Consuming: Aloof tolerance. The Maw survives, the Maw consumes, the Maw does not end. The Ravager recognizes that it has some kinship with this Hour, but the other two faces of the Princess Prominent typically ignore it.
- The Knife's Edge: Curious recognition. This was the Hour present at her birth, and the one presiding over the split between the two Histories which might claim her as being born from them. She thought to follow it, once, but eventually grew bored with that.
- The Succulent Glow: With her feline nose, the Princess Prominent is more than aware of the stench that the Succulent Glow hides with its liquid and its spores. She refuses to go near this Hour, for to her it reeks beyond human imagination.
- The Warrior Maid: In her face as the Ravager, the Princess Prominent is visibly friendly to the Warrior Maid, as long as the edged weaponry stay where they belong. Even when they fight, the Ravager does try to avoid causing harm, as long as the Warrior Maid does likewise. The Princess Prominent and the Life-Bringer faces give this Hour a wide berth.
- The Ferric Brand: Is that almost amusement that the Princess Prominent feels for this Hour? A secret she has spilt is that felines would have no use for such augmentation, even the ones without legs or tail. Still, she has never been seen near this Hour, perhaps for good reason.
- The Partisan: No cat, anywhere, ever, has given or will give anyone a straight answer. Nor will any cat in any existence share its power and secrets with anyone. The face of the Life-Bringer finds the Partisan's drive admirable, but no face will yield to his goal. If he wants her power, he'll have to kill her for it.
- The Monument: Like the Spirarch, it is unclear if the Princess Prominent actually recognizes the Monument in its form for the Hour that it is. Certainly she bounds amongst its ruins like any other cat, and cheerfully sharpens her claws on the rotting wood and porous stone. Of all Hours besides the Spirarch, the Monument might have the most grounds to take offense to her.
- The Cub: Recognition, although it is hard to say what feelings the Princess Prominent has about this Hour. The fractures it introduced into the Histories would one day lead to her birth. And yet, the Cub prevents her from engaging in catlike behaviors, such as sharpening her claws on the Spirarch. She seems to be resigned to its "meddling" presence, if nothing else.
- The Ink: The Princess Prominent races to and fro inside the Scriptorium, terrorizing the Secretarians and causing catastrophe and chaos wherever she treads. But maybe she doesn't dislike the Ink. Maybe. No one can prove anything.
- Flint-and-Steel: The Princess Prominent has spoken of its crafting abilities with respect. With the Flint-and-Steel sparking often, and the Princess Prominent being made of fur, she is often nervous when in its presence. However, it makes her toys, and when she has been denied permission to play on the Spirarch or inside the Monument, the Flint-and-Steel's toys please her greatly.
- Our Lady Betrayed: The Ravager has often been called upon to wreak vengeance on humans for the sake of other humans. All the faces of the Princess Prominent know Our Lady Betrayed, but only the Ravager will seat itself in her lap and demand that she scratch behind its ears. Still, even the Life-Bringer will sit near her feet, patiently listening to her.
- The Fool Unrepentant: What an excellent Hour! The Princess Prominent will watch every story the Fool wishes to share... and maybe even the ones that it doesn't. They might not share the same taste in stories, but isn't that how better stories are made to begin with? And if people didn't have differing and even objectively wrong preferences, there would be no need for dogs.
- The Worm Funktastic: Saxophone music hurts her ears terribly. She does not dare enter the Foundations, not with that "horrid instrument" being played. When the Worm Funktastic leaves the Foundations to seek out new audience members, the Princess Prominent makes herself scarce in the Woods and other places.
- The Rotted Ox: If cats could roll their eyes, the Princess Prominent would do so. The Rotted Ox is a reeking, depressive Hour that demands stagnation for the sake of stagnation. If the Princess Prominent was a tomcat, she would pee on it. As the face of the Life-Bringer, she does indeed pee on anything it likes that she can get near.
- The Morning Star: What larks! The Princess Prominent is delighted that this, too, backfired on the Succulent Glow. It should be fun to see what comes next. Has the Fool performed this story, too?
- Our Lady's Resolve: The Princess Prominent gathers secrets, and sometimes, when the moon is full and certain constellations have travelled behind the sun, she visits Our Lady and sits at her feet. Sometimes, sometimes, she might speak a secret or two to that Hour. The Princess Prominent will deny everything, of course.
- The More-Opened: No. The Princess Prominent does most things because she can, but the "because I could" that the More-Opened represents disgusts even her. She will have nothing to do with it.
- The Unending Worm: When the Worm Funktastic serenades the Unending Worm, the Princess Prominent will have nothing to do with it. She recognizes its patterns throughout the Histories, and she recognizes its construction of the Mansus. She does not want to brave the "horrid instrument" of the Worm Funktastic to learn more.
- The Clavier: A yawn. Can the Princess Prominent really not see this Hour? Or does she just pretend not to be able to in order to show her disdain for the false-Hour? Whatever the case, the Princess Prominent and all her faces actively ignore the Clavier, as if the false-Hour does not at all exist.
- The Trickster Princes: ...Really? Really? They're too loud, too boisterous, and they simply aren't worthy of her presence or her deliberations. But if they try to pull her tail or cut her whiskers, she'll bite off their hands.