Before giving birth, Elektra Everlock was a renowned, but secret enchantress. Before that, she was the heir to House Everlock, one made up of distrust and thievery. Elektra had a mindset and a theme for her life- to not live up to her parents’ legacy. Her parents were brutal tyrants in the city. Their rule expanded a large part of Ridgewood and they were very, very wealthy. Their hearts, however, were as black as the night sky in this smoke-ridden pit. Their daughter was restricted from anywhere outside of their mansion. She was to restlessly learn all that she can of business, for she would eventually inherit her father’s iron fist. She was a well-behaved girl and did as told, but when she became a young, teenage woman, she secretly began to learn other, more... delicate arts.
Elektra’s interest in enchantments began with her parents’ employees. Every one of them bared exquisite faces and beautiful forms, but withheld dull, cold, and rock-hard cores. The guards were all armor-clad; not a single one could be looked in the eyes. If one could peer into their soulless eyes, they would see nothing but a black abyss. Elektra never saw another child in the mansion. The only person who appeared to truly care for her was her mother’s handmaiden and Elektra’s nanny, Gertrude. Gertrude had soft features, visibly and physically. She bled, unlike the others. She truly had a heart.
It was odd for Elektra to see more than just a few foreign visitors each week. Her parents were by no means xenophobic- they welcomed each visitor with open arms. Elektra was able to hear the words their visitors said behind her parents’ backs, though. They spoke of undying tyrants. They spoke of how these people had ruled over this land for many centuries, like never ending pontiffs. Their words were sharp, like from a serpent’s tongue. They stung Elektra’s ears and made her beg the question to Gertrude: “Why do people hate Mommy and Daddy so much?” Gertrude simply smiled, patted Elektra’s head, and shooed her away.
Elektra, one day, found a book on enchantments in her parents’ vast library. In it, she learned of something called ‘mana,’ a spiritual source for spells and incantations. In another book, she learned of magic as a whole. After days, then weeks, then years of learning, Elektra slowly, but surely, became skilled in the magical arts. Her expertise lied in enchantments and illusions. She played tricks on visitors by making them think the door closed on its own behind them or by making them hear cat calls from seemingly nowhere. They were her playthings because, as it seemed, the employees in the mansion would never bite on the illusional tricks.
Elektra’s first enchanted object was a quill. It had the ability to float and write purely based off of what Elektra commanded in her mind. It was by no means extraordinary, but intriguing for a teenage girl to have such capabilities. It was not until Gertrude found this item that Elektra felt oppressed because of her abilities. She learned in secret and this was a bad omen, it seemed. Gertrude confiscated her items and books and proclaimed that Elektra would not continue to learn as only horrible things would come of her magic. It seemed like a warning rather than an order.
This angered Elektra greatly. She claimed that her parents used magic all the time, which was not entirely false. Her parents did show unordinary abilities sometimes, like being able to sit completely still for long periods of time or reforming their bodies when parts of them crumbled. Gertrude scolded Elektra, commanding her to quit shouting lies. This only frustrated Elektra more as she fled the room and escaped to the main foyer. Her parents had already heard and were at the top of the foyer’s stairs, watching their daughter from above.
Elektra walked right up to a nearby maid and knocked the platter out of her hands. Nearby visitors gasped and glanced up at the tyrants, waiting for a brutal reaction, but they merely watched as the maid simply knelt over to pick up the fallen platter. To this, Elektra raised a hand. From it, a long, golden blade protruded. Gertrude had stopped pursuing and kept a good distance from the eccentric Elektra with a hand to her heart. The visitors let out screams as the blade fell down to meet the maid’s neck. What happened, however, ceased their screams.
A loud *clang* was heard and upon looking, the blade sat against the back of the maid’s neck. Elektra let the blade dissipate, to which the maid stood straight up again with the platter. She proceeded to smile at Elektra and offer a treat. Elektra turned to the stairs, but found herself face to face with her father who had descended the steps. Elektra looked up at him with a begging face. “They’re fake, aren’t they? Will you teach me, Father?”
Elektra’s father glared down at her, then winded back a hand, as if going to slap her. Elektra flinched, then involuntarily let loose a magical kinetic blast around her. The blast shook her father’s body and it ceased to move, twitched, then crumbled away to a pile of ashes and clothes. Elektra looked to her left at the maid who, coincidentally, had also fallen to dust. She stood and watched in horror as each and every maid and butler in the foyer crumbled to nothing. Tears fell down her face as her mother, who had begun a brisk walk down the stairs, crumbled into pieces to fall at her feet.
Save for the door slamming behind, surely the guests fleeing, the sound of a pin dropping could be heard. Quickly, however, Elektra’s sobs filled the mansion. It was all a lie. She was alone. However, not all alone. The soft, familiar hand of Gertrude fell on her shoulder. The next that Elektra remembered was standing outside her parents’ mansion as authorities flooded it. She heard the biting words of the bystanders:
“Monsters of stone.”
“A single heir of a non-existent throne.”
“Dead for decades.”
Elektra, having lost everything, fled the mansion. There was a bright and new world around her; Gertrude’s calls would not stop her. The shouts of the authorities didn’t make her slow a single step. She ran off into the crowds of people until she couldn’t run anymore. Through the night, Elektra slept in alleys. Through the days, she sat in libraries reading all she could about the magical arts. When she couldn’t read anymore whether from being kicked out or from being exhausted, she took to the streets to perfect her arts. She made money by placing small enchantments on objects for people. She even earned a name for herself: 33, translating to EE for Elektra Everlock. She was not known as an Everlock, however. The name had died with her parents for the time being.
Elektra made many good friends, but also made some enemies along the way. She had a huge bounty on her head. The final heir to the Everlock throne was surely worth quite a bit of money to the Emperor of the city and the kingdom. The unaware Elektra made her way into a marketplace to find it being ransacked by High Knights, the corrupt upholders of the law of the Emperor. Upon spotting the unhooded Elektra, they quickly pursued her.
Elektra was able to slow them down a bit by a few enchanted items: a sphere that released a smoke cloud, a brick that expanded to form a wall, and a string that extended to a large, easily tripped over rope. These items, however, merely slowed the Knights. They continued their pursuit, shoving citizens and guards alike to the ground. Soon enough, it had become clear who they were pursuing. The bystanders, all with different reasoning, began to slow her down. Eventually a ring of common folk halted Elektra’s escape. It was inevitable, after all.
Elektra spun to meet the Knights who, with swords and glowing shields in hand, approached her slowly. She tried offensive magic, but it all seemed to glance off their shields. She tried dodging, but it wouldn’t do any good as they were very persistent. Elektra reached an end of the ring to drop down to her knees, waiting for her fate. It was deserved as she was the true heir to House Everlock, one of brutal corruption.
She was lifted off the ground by the hand of a larger Knight. It was apparent, however that the Knights were no longer alone. From the far side, the ring was breached by hulking suits of armor showing the crest of House Everlock. Red spheres glowed from where their eyes would be. Their movements gave away a thin, faint, but wispy black fog behind them. They were the essence of dark, evil spirits. Behind them, a much taller suit came into view. This one wore a crown and had a real, seemingly iron face shaped just like Elektra’s father's. Its eyes glowed red and gave off the same ethereal, black fog as the others. With a low rumble, the steps of the Everlock Guard slowed to a halt. There were numerous suits, going on farther than Elektra could see.
The standoff lasted approximately fifteen seconds. A gulp from the crowd could be heard; quiet whispers sprang up here and there. The Knights’ shifting armor was soft, but confident. Elektra felt herself being whipped around and placed over the shoulder of the head Knight as the chaos began. She watched the skirmish while being carried off towards the keep. She could see the Knights doing nothing to the suits of armor; it was like fighting a boulder. She kept quiet as she witnessed the iron figure of her father push through the crowd, uncaring of the people in its way. Blood was spilled, cries rang out, and screams echoed through the streets.
Elektra was dropped on the floor of the stone keep. She looked up to the guards who had scrambled to appear in line for the Knight who had arrived. She kept quiet as the Knight left the room. She knew that she would certainly be struck down if she tried anything, judging by the crossbows aimed at her from the balcony. She could still hear the chaos in the distance. It was torture to know that this was because of her. If she had only behaved, this never would have happened. It was all her fault.
Elektra was ushered off to another room, then a smaller one. They were all decorated with beautiful and ornate scenery. It seemed as if they were made to comfort those who they held. It was apparent, however, that Elektra was no cordial guest. After many eyes peering into hers and after many closed-door, hushed conversations, Elektra was sat in something like a bedroom. After a few hours, the door opened. A man in elaborate and bright clothing entered. He kindly took her hand and led her out of the room and down the halls of the keep. It seemed to Elektra that she would not be staying long at all.
She was taken out a back exit of the keep into a covered cart. She was sat down in padded seats of a carriage with a door. The sounds of chaos echoed around as the horses led the carriage through the streets. The man seemed oddly calm, as if he had been through this before. Elektra was shaking, completely frightened.
“Do you know anything about serving others, child?” The man asked without looking at her. Elektra didn’t respond, and it seemed like that was the right answer. She met his eyes, then looked away before the man showed an evil grin. The carriage headed out of the city center and kept rolling along for what seemed like forever to Elektra. Eventually, the sounds of chaos withered away. Once it seemed as if the cart had left the city, it halted. The man opened up the door and led Elektra out onto the chiseled stones below.
She looked up from the stone to see a wondrous sight. Marble pillars stood up a vine-twisted balcony. Stained-glass windows lined multiple stories of the building. It was like a glowing oasis in a darkened and dull desert. The man led her up to the brilliantly gold-painted doors. They were swung wide open by city guards. The inside was even more beautiful than the outside. There were hanging chandeliers, fountains in circled rooms, and padded seats and couches everywhere. It was a haven, to say the least.
Elektra looked about the place in wonder, then began to feel a bit uncomfortable. She saw the guards and the man, but all of the women she saw were different than she’d ever seen before. They were dressed in very skimpy and degrading clothing. Makeup was plastered on their faces, plenty of it smeared on each woman. Some had foundation puffed over their arms or legs. Almost none of them wore anything on their feet, either. Some had torn clothes while some merely didn’t have some articles of clothing. It was all very odd to her.
Elektra was pushed into a small, dingy room by the man. He told her that this place, the Silver Panther, he called it, would be her new home. He told her how she would have to pay rent, either with money or with work. Elektra had no money, as she was wrongfully stolen from the streets. To this, the man gestured to the small drawer in the room, proclaiming that she already had her uniform - she just had to find whatever fit. With a close of one door, new, non-physical doors opened.
Before the end of the first day, Elektra was given bracelets and a necklace to wear. These pieces of jewelry held black gems that made her feel weak, but she was told that if she took them off, she would be punished again. Elektra knew better than to let herself get in trouble again in this horrid establishment.
A week later, Elektra cried herself to sleep. The same happened over the next few months. Within a year’s time, she was unwillingly pregnant. The first signs began to present themselves as she vomited over a balcony into the watery depths below; the same waters that Elektra dreamed of just jumping into. She wouldn’t have cared if she didn’t come back up; anything was better than this place. It was no place to raise a daughter and she knew this, but she couldn’t leave. No matter what, her magic would not work. She knew the bracelets and necklace repelled her mana, but knew that it would be bad if she took them off and was caught... so she did in secret.
Elektra practiced little bits of magic here and there when pregnant. She was not aware of the effects of magic usage on an unborn child, so she didn’t think twice about doing it. She practiced making fake black bracelets on her wrists, then practiced making this a passive spell. In a bit of time, Elektra was able to walk around with these fake items over herself without getting caught. This didn’t, however, stop her from having to do her job. This continued for the next few months leading up to her daughter's birth.