Motivation: Understand the human condition
Anima Banner: Dark purple glow that conceals more than it reveals.
The venerable Akiva Dulanga, Chosen of Saturn and chair of the Convention on Deathlords, forecast that her Exaltation would soon pass to a young man of Ghost-Blooded parentage, whom the Bureau of Destiny would name Black Ice Shadow. Her Convention devised a daring plan to train her replacement as the Viziers’ special agent in the shadowlands and the Underworld beyond. The Sidereals abducted Black Ice Shadow soon after his birth, and small gods of death anddecay raised him in an Abyssal manse within a shadowland.
Sure enough, Shadow Exalted with an unusual affinity for the necrotic power of the Underworld. He even managed to initiate himself into necromancy.
Then, the Mask of Winters conquered Thorns and revealed the existence of deathknights… who seemed very much like what the Bureau hoped Black Ice Shadow would become. Suspicion fell on the young Reckoner and everyone connected to the project. Had the Deathlords somehow fooled the Bureau of Destiny into creating a traitor to Creation?
The Division of Endings’s director Wayang took responsibility for Black Ice Shadow. The young Exalt now acts as a special assistant to the God of Silence while he continues his training. No one in the Bureau of Destiny will act as Shadow’s sifu, but Wayang found a replacement who inspires further suspicion: the ghost of a Dragon-Blooded swordsman who remembers the Fire Dragon Style.
Wayang believes that the Bureau of Destiny can use Black Ice Shadow’s peculiar, death-tainted background and Essence. With the right Charms and equipment, he might be able to infiltrate the Deathlords’ organizations. Shadow can already deceive mortals and ghosts who lack experience with real deathknights, as he summons ghosts at will and destroys zombies with but a touch.
Much of Black Ice Shadow’s training, however, deals with the enigmas of life and death: when and why to end a life, and how to become a fully human creature.
The young Exalt knows that he isn’t good with the living. His shyness emerges as a sort of grim brusqueness.
Nevertheless, Shadow has a kind heart, in his fashion; he abhors unnecessary pain and fear. He views his missions for the Bureau as opportunities to watch and learn—which unnerves fellow Sidereals, who don’t know the reason for his close, silent observation of them.
Neither the Gold nor Bronze Factions try to recruit him.
Black Ice Shadow is a young man of medium height with pale skin and short, spiky black hair. He dresses in black leather, a starmetal breastplate, a purple scarf and tattered purple cloak, with twin short daiklaves belted at his hips. Shadow often pulls the scarf over his mouth and nose. Though the effect is rather sinister, he usually does this to avoid inhaling small insects or ash. Black Ice Shadow looks most frightening, however, when he uses Fire Dragon Charms: Instead of the warm, yellow-to-red Essence flares that normally mark this martial arts style, ghastly greenish flames flicker about his hands and weapons, resembling the unholy pyre flame of the Underworld.