In the early 1900s, the nation of Aetheri came out of its long interdimensional isolation and revealed to the humans of the Symphony Archipelago that they were not alone in the multiverse. Things swiftly got ugly after that.
In the early 1990s, Aetheri's leadership changed, and in the Archipelago, a tiny broken family of half-siblings banded together in the face of the bile and hate that was boiling up between the humans and the non-humans.
In the early 2000s, that family was split apart. Hawk Press and his sister Liya Kiski both begin a long and exhaustive journey towards understanding the difference between friend and enemy--and between the family you're given, and the family you make.
HAWK PRESS Birthday: April 4, 1986
Height: 6'6" and growing
Species: who even knows
Hair: its natural color, he swears
Cursed with a terribly appropriate name and a permanent frown. The middle child of the Press-Kiski siblings, Hawk is if nothing else extremely determined and enduring. Probably he is also on a wanted list now.
LILIYA KISKI Birthday: September 27, 1990
Least favorite food: mushrooms
Special ability: surprise uppercut
The youngest of the Press-Kiski siblings, and ostensibly the most sensible. She asks a lot of questions. Despite being an admirably well-grounded teenager, she's having a little trouble adapting to her new home in Aetheri.
EMRY PRESS Birthday: old
Favorite pastime: 8-bit video games
Weakness: Classic folk-rock
Secret: former nerd
The oldest of the trio of siblings, and Hawk's senior by thirteen years. He brought his siblings up from toddlerdom on his own, and is responsible for almost everything that they are, for better or worse.
TEIGE CARROLL Birthday: May 1, 1981
Family ranking: favorite child
Former ambition: school counselor and/or horror film screenwriter
Pet peeve: It's like 'tiger' not 'beige' and not 'teeguh' and you're spelling it wrong just look
A pooka, apparently, who seems a little too cheery given his circumstances. He somehow ended up in Port Siena with nothing but a wallet full of cash and the clothes on his back--all the way on the other side of the country from where he intended to be.
HELYGEN (aka HELLY) Birthday: Sometime early spring, possibly over 2000 years ago
Occupation: semi-retired healer and nanny
Favorite hobby: reading fantasy novels (completely unironically)
Helly is a semi-retired healer and a longtime friend of Cynn Numair and his parents. Ne has traveled long and far in nir years and seen a lot of strange and sometimes terrible things, but ne is still a gentle old soul who really just wishes everyone would get along.
YOSHI Birthday: December 8, 1988
Construct name: Huukuu (it was a gift, he insists)
Special talent: bookbinding
Place of birth: they think it was Illinois
Despite seeming like just a rather shy stablehand, Yoshi apparently knows a lot of higher-up people around the Palace at Escalus. He's from Earth originally, but left too young to remember much of it.
CYNN NUMAIR D'ESCALA OF AETHERI Birthday: October 10, 1689
Degree: Artifact Studies and Construct Engineering
Ruling philosophy: Sense over law, people over wealth, innovation over tradition
Known languages: Fluency in Aetherian, English/Archipelagan, French, German, Russian, and Italian; competency in Lait, Japanese, Spanish, Alian, Barish, and Makan
Cynn Numair has been on the throne since 1989, and in that time has been the subject of a lot of rather ugly propaganda directed at him from the Symphony Archipelago (and also, sometimes, from Aetherians themselves.) He suffers from a lot of things, not the least of which being working too hard and being entirely too philosophical about people who are out to kill him.