• Flame of the Secret
- Characteristic: Rún (Secret Wisdom, “Rune”)
- Ability: Sight
- Description: One of the seven peculiar “Ascending Flames” with abilities that include precognition and the ability to manipulate the reality within a set territory. This power also extends to the ability to use mirrors for enhancing illusions and even using them as doorways for quick transportation—though this ability is actually physically exhausting to the user. But the characteristic of “Sight” may also assault the user with a usually irrepressible gift of sight, causing constant and often cluttered visions.
• The Hidden People: On the far edges of society, for over eight hundred years, a secret ‘coven’ of sorts has hidden behind the whimsy of fairytales. They are the silent watchers of humanity and keepers of dead gods united under the archaic pagan beliefs of the Nordic and Celtic people by a mysterious Swedish monk known only as ‘Vandraren’. Their goal is simple—they will deal in antiquities, they will seek out and collect and use whatever means necessary to gather and protect knowledge as their patron god, the All-Father Odin, had. In their efforts, they can only hope to one day “turn darkness into light”.
Levon was born in the town of Dungarvan, Ireland to young working-class parents, Jack and Abanelle O’Connel. Though they were far from a picture perfect family, overall they seemed contented. But, even though he would never intentionally harm his family, Jack suffered from a violent temper that only got worse with his increasing consumption of alcohol. The harder his job became, the more he drank—which only led to more unpredictable anger.
Because of this, Levon developed an early hatred for alcohol. When he saw his father drink, Levon believed it turned him into a monster. But Levon was never alone. His mother, Abanelle, was a steady, ever-gentle presence in his life and she and her son were rather close. When Jack’s temper flared, Abanelle was always there to counter him, calm him down and set him straight.
Unfortunately, by the time he was seven years old, Levon learned at an early age that one moment, one act can change everything. One night, in the midst of a heated argument, Jack had violently shoved Abanelle, causing her to accidentally bump her head against the wall. Almost immediately, after registering what he had done and out of fear of his own temper, Jack stormed out of the house to cool down, leaving his wife and young son alone.
Neither Jack nor little Levon had any way of knowing of Abanelle’s preexisting condition. In that one act of violence, Jack had accidentally triggered the rupture of an aneurysm in Abanelle’s brain.
Not even Abanelle, herself, knew. Suffering from a terrible headache, she decided to lie down for the night, resulting in her suffering from a stroke and slipping into a coma during the night. It was seven-year-old Levon who discovered her the next morning. Too young to truly understand just what was happening, little Levon desperately tried to wake his mother up before finally calling for help.
Abanelle was rushed to the hospital. Upon hearing of his wife’s condition, Jack was immediately wracked with guilt. But scared, confused and angry little Levon instantly turned the blame on his father, accusing him of hurting his mother… and going as far as wishing his own father would die.
Then Levon ran away. He didn’t go far, just to the park, not too far from the hospital. But he left without knowing just how hard his own words would hit Jack—especially when Jack had learned that poor Abanelle’s condition may be irreversible.
On his own, little Levon’s own fear and anger got the better of him. He began to cry and upon seeing a collection of empty beer bottles left behind in the park, he took it out on them. He threw the glass bottles, breaking them—and accidentally hitting a passerby in the head with one.
Little did Levon know; he had just assaulted the Twelfth Generation Grand Master, Aiden MacReive, of the secret society that Levon would come to know as the Hidden People. Rather than be mad (though he had, at first, scolded the boy), Aiden soon saw how heartbroken the little boy was. He spoke gently to the boy, learning of Levon’s situation. He soon returned the boy to the hospital, where Jack was nowhere to be found.
Out of concern for the lonely little boy he had met, Aiden returned the next day to check up on Levon and Abanelle where he learned that Jack had never returned to the hospital and had, in fact, left his young son to spend the night alone with his mother. But upon talking to the boy again, Aiden learned of Levon’s strange ‘dreams’. Levon revealed that he tried talking to his mother through his dreams, but he could never reach her because she was always “too high”.
Instead of shrugging this off as a child’s method of coping, Aiden began testing the boy, therefore discovering that little Levon had untapped abilities. His curiosity getting the better of him, Aiden found himself spending a majority of the day with little Levon, playing little ‘games’ with him to see just how powerful those latent talents would be. He believed he saw potential.
But as the day passed and Jack remained missing, Aiden began to grow concerned. Having been mistaken for Levon’s grandfather by a nurse, he soon learned that, in a drunken grief, Jack had committed suicide. Levon was alone.
Though Aiden had tried to explain in a way that a seven-year-old boy may understand, Levon seemed to know just what had happened. He blamed himself, believing his own words killed his father.
Sinking into despair, little Levon turned to Aiden, begging him to save his mother with his “magic tricks”. Aiden sadly told Levon that there was nothing he could do. He did not have the power to pull Abanelle back to consciousness. But in his own desperation for a successor, Aiden decided to strike up a deal with the boy. He would save Levon’s mother from the hospital and put her under the care of the Hidden People if Levon would agree to become his apprentice.
When Aiden promised him the power to save her, little Levon couldn’t refuse. It was then that his new life amongst the Hidden People began. But Levon was not the most popular choice in a successor to the title of Grand Master. Having been born outside of the society and soon known for the temper he had inherited from his father, he soon became known as the ‘Changeling Prince’.
But Levon began working his heart out—his life revolved around his studies and the honing of his own abilities. He struggled to learn how to suppress that horrible anger and, with the help of the Twelfth Generation Serpent Guardian and Levon’s most dedicated tutor, Tobias Wroth, he soon channeled his frustrations into learning how to play the violin. But it soon became clear that he was not learning at the pace that was expected of him. He wasn’t a prodigy, but the Hidden People had little choice in who would take Aiden’s place.
Aiden’s age was finally catching up to him and by the time Levon was twelve years old, Aiden had to step down and allow Levon to take his place as the Grand Master of the Hidden People. Unfortunately, young Levon was considered nowhere near ready for his position, even if he had become more accepted and even admired for his perseverance. So, for a majority of his life, even as Grand Master, Levon had been tutored, trained and refined.