Lady Catarina Caito, of Nocturnis II, The Celestial Kingdom
”Even if the whole world cheats, that doesn't make it right.”
Catarina Caito was created a Cheshire: tricksy while being honorable, saucy while deferential, clever and dexterous while still stumbling all over both her words and her feet. She was born in a grey mist, that strange place between the meanings of words, where the mind's eye is the only intruder. She spent a long time there, learning the ways of people, of the natural order of things, of the unnatural orders as well. It took her quite some time to learn how to materialize, to be WHERE she is. Even now, Catarina has trouble staying WHEN she is, popping between timelines faster than you can say "scat."
Eventually, Catarina solidified. She was astonished to find herself in a world without magic. It troubled her, this strange place, with these strange people who knew nothing of the unnatural realms. She grew up there, unhappy, laughed at, stuck in her physical form with no place to hide. Time did not function the way it should. It was purely linear, no backtracking, no skipping ahead. She needed both to sleep AND to wait. Her impatience with that and with the mantra of "There's no such thing as magic" eventually faded, leaving her sorry for those in that realm.
Catarina formulated a plan, a plan to take herself out of this drudgery, out of this place where she did not belong. She created a portal. Copper, glass from the sea, melted sand, moonstone, connected by amber, upheld by fire, surrounding a mirror of hematite. She inscribed symbols into the powdered amber, creating magic where there was once none, and waited. When the time was right, when a storm heralded the coming of spring, as the last beam of sunlight mixed with the light of the moon, she jumped through the mirror-
When Catarina looked up, the first thing she saw was a wizard, dressed in white. This cheered her [i]immensely[/i]. Finally, a world with magic!!
Catarina enjoyed her time on Krynn. She adored kender, even with having to gently remind them to give her things back if they found them in their tiny pouches. She admired gems with dwarves, danced with elves, compared spells with wizards, practiced fighting with ogres, debated honor with knights. Catarina made many friends, laughed in many inns, told and listened to stories. She traveled, wandering all over the little ball in the starlight sky. She enjoyed being mainly an observer, though the occasional adventure poked its head into her business. For example, a blue youngling dragon had amusingly believed she was dinner. It tasted a lot like chicken.
Eventually, the Cheshire tired of the world obsessed with loyalty to its gods. She had no problem with faith, of course. Being utterly loyal to a being that was not necessarily loyal to [i]you[/i] made her frustrated, however. And their gods rarely had such loyalty. She kept her own god to the standards which she kept for herself. However, these beings simply were loyal because the god was more powerful than they, because they were afraid or merely blind to their gods' faults. That was highly irritating. However, the thing that was the worst was that every place she turned, they asked her what her god was, and they did not recognize the name which she gave, nor even his description. These beings, too, laughed at her. It drove her to near sanity. Yet again, "what you believe in does not exist."
'Fie on this blasted world, it is the same as the last!' she finally snapped, jumping through another portal.
This was her experience on world after world. Even Wonderland, birthplace of the very first Cheshire, repeated this mantra. Catarina became jaded and lost, weighted down with loneliness. Was there not a place where she truly belonged?
She almost did not bother to jump through the last portal. What was the point? All worlds, with their many differences, were the same in the end. Catarina mostly hopped through the last out of sheer boredom with her current particularly repetitious world (Pern). The thump of landing bored her. Nothing new. She looked up, naked of her tail and ears, but wearing her stripes at least. Blasted wizards, stealing her appearance all the time to sell it to the highest bidder. Perhaps this time she would hunt the wizard down. Perhaps not. Maybe, this time, it just wasn't worth her while.
Cat popped into this new world amidst a battle forming. Two factions faced each other across a field, one headed by a half-demon king with darker elements accompanying him, the other a paladin, garbed in bright green, a glowing white bird emblazoned on his chest. When the paladin asked, "Do you fight alongside the light?", Catarina naturally joined him, generally hating the creatures of evil. To her chagrin, this particular fight was [i]not[/i] based on good and evil, but whether monsters should be treated as second citizens - and she was on the side of "registration" and "control!"
Cat was never so thrilled to have lost a battle in her life (though it [i]was[/i] rather satisfying to have taken a life off the demon king's quota). She was pleased that "monsters," pretty much defined as "anything not human," were shielded from the crazed king, who was frightened of the power that monsters commanded. Apparently, he did not realize that humans, in their great strengths of numbers, could easily defeat a monster who became too powerful.
Fights over any difference were terribly common, however, and therefore terribly boring. Wonderland's Cheshires had a significant fight over whether your animal stripes were green/blue or blue/green! So, while Catarina was pleased that the side of freedom had triumphed, she was not terribly invested in the outcome. She presumed that the demon king would take over, humans would be slaughtered, and monsters would reign for a while before the counterattack by the human king. To her surprise, the paladin simply accepted the demon's ruling and agreed to defend monsters who were acting within the law otherwise. The demon king agreed to allow the paladin to rule that small land. And things peacefully went completely back to normal - with both sides working together.
Now [i]this[/i] was unusual. No lasting factions? No hatred? Just a community that worked together, no matter what threatened? And they accepted her with pleasure and admiration and indulgence instead of derision and fear. Perhaps this... Nocturnis... was where she belonged.
Before she was quite prepared for it, leadership in this little shire swept her up, snagging her into first recordkeeping and moneykeeping, then trying to make the game fun for her populace (as she now thought of them), and finally taking over from the previous ruler. These wonderfully normal people accepted who she was and what she believed without necessarily agreeing with it. The populace seemed to [i]enjoy[/i] a Cheshire within their midst, even ruling them. The goblins that threatened the land had to be pushed back occasionally, the usual political movements had to be dealt with, fires had to be put out, but these wars and bickering were part of all worlds. It would have weirded her out if things had been [i]too[/i] utopian.
She gained a family, with members both formally bonded to her and informally so, twining across multiple lands. She used her shapeshifting abilities to take many forms, including that of a "normal" catfolk, a sphinx, a ghost, and her most popular Pink Unicorn of Nocturnis. She unabashedly showed her full mercurial side, stabbing her enemies with deadly poison one minute, healing the injured the next. Yet, with all these outward flexibilities of form and attitude, her comrades' loyalty to her did not change. Catarina settled into this wonderful, comforting place, determining that finally, finally, she had found her home.
The Brotherhood of Steel
- Grand Duchess Dame Aurora Selene
- Countess Dame Maigread Mezzie Mezzelette
- Lord Sir Nella "Gekko" Darkblade (Flame 2013)
- Sir Lailoken Du-Urden Lavedre (Flame 2014
- Hertogi (Duke) Sir Darius Llewellyn (Crown 2017)
- Lord Squire Psy Verrukt
- Lady Squire Bridgette
- Lady Squire Torra Silvatine
- Lord Squire Requiem Darksun
- Squire Dovahyol
- Squire Gallienus Trueheart
- Squire Indrid Coal (Ragnar Bjornsson) (Inactive)
- Lady Squire Mirrim Mac Cambuel (Inactive)
- Lady Squire Mindblast Cassi (Inactive)
- Squire - Lady Xandryia Whitewolf Wyngarde (Inactive)
- Woman-at-Arms Domina Ellistrae Avur
- Woman-at-Arms Rosewin Darkjester
- Man-at-Arms Cain (Inactive)
Seneschal of Nocturnis
Regent of Nocturnis
Baroness of Nocturnis