The White Swan, (a.k.a Princess Tutu.)
Real Name: Ahiru Arima
Age: 14, (as Ahiru,) 20, (as Tutu)
Occupation: art school student, semi-professional dancer and singer
Height: 5' 4'', (as Ahiru,) 5' 6", (as Tutu)
Weight: 115 lbs., (as Ahiru,) 135 lbs., (as Tutu)
Appearance: (as Ahiru,) cherubic face, big blue eyes, red, calf-length hair, left flowing and tied in the back; somewhat on the skinny side: (as Tutu,) same face, eyes and hair, but more appropriate for a 20 year old woman, hair in a bun done underneath a white feather ring that hangs to her neck, giving an appearance of looking like the feathers are her own hair; wears a Mardi Gras style dark pink mask, white drop-shoulder tutu with puffed sleeves, pink trim and lace under the skirt, light pink tights, dark pink toe shoes, with yellow fairy wings at the base of her back, and three strings representing a tail hanging in the back, small gold crown on her head. Her build would be the envy of any ballerina or Olympic gymnast, or even a fashion model.
Plant control: If there is even a hint of access to soil, or if there is even the most primitive of vegetable life growing, she can affect it at her whim. She can grow stalks to lift herself up from one level to another, she can create nets, fences, traps, snares, real thick flowerbeds to cushion falls, and she form vines and mist into an astral barque to use as transport.
Physical enhancements: She possesses twice the physical athleticism of the average ballerina in every respect.
Mind linking: Once physical contact is made, she can then link her mind with her target. She can use this in a hypnotic sense, to subdue an opponent, but she rather use this ability to aid others in coming to terms with psychological problems. She is also quite adept in battling mentally with any who can do the same thing as she. Normally, she dances with whom she counsels, because, (at her confession,) it puts the analysland at ease, and the person is more likely to open up, be more expressive, and more able to come to grips with his or her problem.
Astral attack: This comes in a minor and major form. The minor form comes when she concentrates on her emotions during a desperate situation. She takes the ballet position of refusal, and a white astral form of a swan forms around her, about seven feet tall. She can then use that to empower anything that she would need to do at that point, or, she can project the swan into the target, rendering the target completely helpless. However, this is a physical strain, and this is a power she can only sustain as long as her adrenaline continues to flow. The longer she holds this attack, the more likely she is to pass out once she ceases. If held too long, she might be out of commission for a day or two. The major attack is not something that she entirely controls. If her rage takes over, in addition to all that was said, she begins to glow a gold color, and becomes a vicious fighter. She is not out of control, but, in fact, is extremely focused on the task. A swan is much like a goose in every regard when it comes to protecting what it thinks belongs to it, and worse! In fact, a swan can, in one hard, enraged thrust of its beak, break the arm of a full-grown man! This is called her "mother hen" attack. Woe and dread should be felt even for the worst villain that must face this! If worst comes to worse in any situation, she can then thrust out the attack on her target, and banish that target to any plane she wishes. However, this comes at a cost: she, by doing this, risks turning in on herself, and possibly never reemerging. Banishment, thus, is something that she does with the greatest reluctance, once she realizes that she is in "mother hen" mode. Even if she does not, she will end up comatose for at least three days. Therefore, she only does this if there is absolutely no other choice.
Equipment: In the form of Tutu, the only equipment that she possesses that she does not conjure is her team communicator, disguised as a red cell phone, courtesy of the Justice League of America. The other two things she can call up when she needs them. One is the astral barque as stated before. The other is a pair of white Japanese fighting fans, her "swan wings," with which she is quite adept. If she is in her astral attack, minor or major, those attacks just became ten times worse!
History: When she first became the White Swan, no one would have ever looked at someone like then 12 year old Ahiru Arima as even having the potential to become a heroine, much less a super heroine. She was born to one Colonel and Sharon Arima, in a military hospital located in Tokyo, Japan. She is an American with Italian heritage, and possesses fluency in Italian as well as Japanese. She was indeed the "ugly duckling" in her ways from the start. She waddled when she was learning to walk, splashed in the water for every bath, and gained a hyperactive personality whenever she was nervous or embarrassed. It was then appropriate that her parents named her "Ahiru." This is the Japanese word for "duck" and, to the Arimas; it was prettier sounding than calling her "Duck." Her demeanor, before the events of this story, was very duck-like in almost every regard. However, as a little girl, she picked up a love for ballet, and began to gain a dream of being a prima ballerina. Yet, her parents were not so sure that this would ever happen, considering her duck-like ways spilled over into her dancing. Her parents were friends of the wealthy Kuroah family, who also had a daughter who desired to be a ballerina, and she and Rue were in the same school for about one year. It is interesting to note, however, that the two girls really did not build a friendship at this time, because Ahiru was only six years old, Rue was 10, and really had little in common with Ahiru. Besides all that, Rue was sent to the Kinkan School of the arts, so they really did not have time to build a friendship. On top of that, Rue had a snobbish personality, and looked down her nose at the awkward duck-girl. Yet, Ahiru began to show enough aptitude at ballet to the point where her parents began to see her start to turn into the beautiful swan. The Kuroahs then suggested that Ahiru be sent to Kinkan, because they would be able to best extract the good dancer in her, and help her achieve her dreams, seeing how quickly their own daughter progressed. However, Ahiru seemed to have just as many problems there as she did at home. It became worse when she demonstrated an inability to focus and make classes on time. This was possibly due to being away from home for the first time. She did make friends with Mai and Yuma, both girls her age, and both of whom were coming of age with Ahiru. Since they were also considered a bit oddball, all three had few friends, and Ahiru began to wonder if pursuing a career as a ballerina would ever happen. All this changed the day she met Mytho Schmidt.
She stumbled in on one of his private dance practices when she had thought herself late for class, and saw his beautiful dancing, and yet empty eyes, and lack of expression. She instantly wound up with a crush on him, and desperately wanted to restore his smile to him. Things changed even further the day she first met Edel. Ahiru was passing in front of a new young miss store in the village, and saw a beautiful tutu on display that was about her size. She then began to muse if she would ever be able to wear something like this in her life. Edel had put it out there deliberately, knowing that Ahiru would be by that way eventually, and knew of her want to be a prima. Edel also knew about her Amazon background, (something of which Ahiru was completely unaware,) and knew that, if given the ability to tap into that part of herself, she might be able to restore the pure heart that she desired to sacrifice for the Raven, of whom she was a priestess. Ahiru was lured in, and Edel, at first, acted like a friend and mentor to her. She even gave her a free, carbuncle colored gemstone with white swan wings set as a pendant as a gift for being the first customer ever in her store. What Ahiru did not realize was that this pendant, containing a shard of Mytho's spiritual heart, would tap into the Amazonian genetics lying in a recessive state within her, and transform her into something, and someone, who could restore Mytho's heart. Once Ahiru learned of what she had become, she began with relish to restore Mytho's heart. After many difficulties, (and battling Rue, who was in the form of Kraehe, the Raven Princess,) she had restored all, but one, of the shards. The last one, however, would cost her the ability to be Tutu once again, and render her helpless to prevent the sacrifice of Mytho's heart. However, by certain abilities that Mytho possessed, through his heart, she was allowed to be Tutu one last time, and banish Edel. She was able to rescue everyone, including Rue, and they all became fast friends. It was thought that she would never again be Tutu, until the start of the next school year. If it were not for a chance walk on the campus, mall the first day back, and encountering Billy…
Amazon heritage: Ahiru is actually a direct descendant of an Amazon from Paradise Island, but did not know this until late in this story. She is the direct descendant of a woman who also was known as the White Swan, and who was no less a hero than Tutu. Her actual name has been lost to history. Her Amazon genetics, however, are genetically recessive in her, but the pendant provided by the spirit of the wizard Shazam allowed those traits to be dominant. She also possesses all the abilities and powers of her very great grandmother.
The Black Swan, (a.k.a. Princess Claire)
Real Name: Rue Kuroah Schmidt
Age: 18 (as Rue,) 24 (as Claire)
Occupation: professional dancer and singer
Height: 5'6" (as Rue,) 5'9" (as Claire)
Weight: 125 lbs. (as Rue,) 140 lbs. muscle (as Claire)
Appearance: (As Rue,) oriental in appearance, but she has red eyes, slightly wider, and rare in color, for the typical oriental, with shoulder length raven black hair. She is also fit and shapely. (As Claire,) looks like herself six years older, shapely, but with more defined muscles. Her costume is exactly like Tutu's in every respect, except that, what is pink is gray, and what is white is black.
Powers: Exactly like Tutu with the following exceptions: no astral attack or mind linking, and the following added powers:
Wind Control: she can control the actions of the wind, making a vortex, a forceful push, kick up debris with it, etc.
Teleportation: Wherever she can think about going, if she can see it in her eyes, she can teleport there without issue.
Feather Darts: she has the ability to conjure up black feathers that she can throw as darts.
Equipment: The only piece of physical equipment is her team communicator, disguised as a red cell phone, courtesy of the Justice League of America. The only other pieces of equipment she conjures up, as in the feathers, and also, two black Japanese fighting fans, the same as the White Swan.
History: She was born to a wealthy Japanese couple, and was a child of privilege. She was taught Aikijutsu at a young age, and had the art mastered by her preteen years. She also showed an aptitude for the ballet, and studied it with relish. She was a natural at the art, and a prodigy, though she still had her difficulties as anyone would, (as attested to by Ahiru in the story.) She was at an intermediate level before age 11, and at about this time, she was entered into the Kinkan School of the Arts. However, this was the first time she had ever been away from home, and was unprepared to live a life where there were some things that would be expected of her. In other words, no longer would everything be done for her. She would now somewhat have to make her way. As a result, she began to become snobbish, and looked down on people she considered "below" her. The only exception was a young German boy by the name of Mytho Schmidt. He was handsome to her. However, he also was, at that time, a shell of a boy. He could only do that what was asked of him. However, she pursued him, knowing a boy like that would be easy to deal with: you tell him to say, "I love you," and he would do it. You asked him to get water, he would do it. For her, he was like a play doll, and she did not seem to mind. This raised the ire of his brother, Fakir Schmidt, who, knowing well his condition, tried all he could to keep him from the student population, lest he be taken advantage of. To Fakir, this was precisely what Rue was doing, and resented her approaches. Yet, she was not to be put down so easily, because she had just as hard a head as he, and she was not easily intimidated. While others were scared of Fakir, she had no fear. This went on until all of their junior years, when Rue was approached by one Edel. She had no qualms about revealing who she truly was, and told Rue that, if she helped her, she would transform her into the raven princess: Kraehe. Edel explained that she understood Rue's desire to keep Mytho as he was, and told her all that had happened to her beloved, (that is, all that she cared to reveal.) She told her that there was also a plot afoot from a rival princess who was seeking to restore the heart of Mytho. With Kraehe's help, they found all the pieces of his "heart" represented by red crystal shards, and she told Rue to, as Kraehe, to hide them well. She gave her a black pendant that would allow her to transform into Kraehe, and do the job.
What Rue did not know was that she was being set up. First of all, "Kraehe" was, in reality, a corruption of the name "Claire." Kraehe, (pronounced by some as "kray-hee,") is actually how a Japanese person would pronounce "Claire," ("kray-ah,") who was still trying to gain a hold on the English language. This was a proverbial slap in the face to Rue, due to the fact that Edel knew of the heritage she possessed, and wanted to mock both her nationality and an ancestor she also possessed. The choice of bird was also a mockery of Rue, because she is the direct descendant of an Amazon from Paradise Island named Princess Claire, who was also a sister of the original White Swan, from who Ahiru descended, and this was something of which both girls were completely unaware. Due to the Raven wanting revenge on the original Swan Sisters, Edel though that the way things were set up, (Tutu and Kraehe being at odds with each other,) would be perfect irony. She knew that the hiding of the shards would actually accelerate their restoration, and prepare the heart to be fresh and pure for sacrifice. What Edel did not count on was the tenacity of both girls, nor did she count on Rue become wise to her schemes. Soon, Rue was trying to prevent the heart's restoration to prevent the sacrifice. She would rather him a doll than to be sacrificed. All this changed when Kraehe and Tutu "battled" in a dance-off, trying to prove to Mytho who loved him more. However, Tutu did this by performing a pas de deux by herself, demonstrating to Mytho that she needed him to make her complete. Nothing or no one else would do. Rue learned a great lesson that day, and realized that being selfish, and expecting the whole world to be handed to her, would never pass muster in this world. As a result, she then wanted the heart restored, believing that Tutu could do something to prevent its sacrifice. If she was to have Mytho, she would do so as Tutu had, by proving it though actions and deeds. Kraehe ceased to exist that day. She stopped demanding things of people, and, because of Tutu, began to realize that, if someone was truly "below" her, she should do what it took to bring them up to her "level." After the whole affair was over, the four of them became friends, but Ahiru and Rue were still rivals for the now restored heart of Mytho. Yet, Ahiru eventually relented, feeling that she really did not love Mytho in that way, and realized that all it was was a childhood crush, nothing more. Rue was then free to foster the love she had for Mytho, and Mytho was very willing to reciprocate. He remembered all her doting over the years. Though he did not have emotions, he still understood enough to know when someone wanted to be with him. He just could not describe the emotions behind it, because he lacked those feelings. Now that he had them, even though she had some selfish gains, he still loved the fact that she still wanted anything to do with him, and was not willing that he remain "caged up" as Fakir had done all those years, (though he understood Fakir's reasons and worries.) She was quite content to remain as the "mother hen" that she had become to Ahiru, and all the younger girls. However, her true nature had been stirred by the affair, albeit in a corrupted form, and now she begged for release in this girl that was now acting more like her ancestor than ever before. Thanks to the aid of Tutu, she was able to see that it was okay to be the super heroine that she truly was, and was able to erase all the deeds of Kraehe forever.
The White Knight
Real Name: Mytho Schmidt
Occupation: professional dancer and singer
Weight: 190 lbs.
Appearance: Cherubic face, like Paul McCartney, hazel eyes, extremely blond hair, appearing almost white, left loose and shaggy, with no distinct style. Well-built, but slender.
Powers: Empathy: Mytho is an empath, who can feel the emotions of anyone upon whom he concentrates. He can sense a shift in emotions, change in heartbeat, and thus, is able to detect whether or not someone is lying to him, hiding something, has a need, etc.
Healing: he is a healer who has the ability to heal many kinds of wounds and injuries. However, he cannot reattach amputations, nor is he able to remove a wound that is mortal, although he can keep it from being mortal.
Equipment: He carries his team communicator in the form of a red cell phone, attached to a utility belt, gifted to him by Batman, within which he carries an arsenal of crime fighting tools, as well as his sword: the Swan Sword. Also wears white tights, a late medieval/early renaissance blue tunic with gold trim, a blue waist cloak with a white inner lining, white cowl that allows the hair out to look like the mane of a horse. He also wears a flak jacket that allows him full movement.
History: Mytho is the direct descendant of a knight who had battled the Raven many centuries before, and thus, was the main target for the Raven who was seeking revenge. Before all that, he was an orphan boy, born in Germany, adopted by Charon Schmidt, who raised him as his own son. Along with his foster brother, Fakir, Charon considered them as two knights because of their heritage. Mytho was the knight prince, as his ancestor was just that. As a young boy, he was a happy free spirit, but obedient and good hearted. He had the habit of healing small animals that found their way to him, and getting himself into scrapes in attempting to rescue anything or anyone in trouble, Fakir often saving him from himself in many cases. All this changed one day when he was about ten years old, when the Raven managed to gain a hold in this world, and demanded his pure heart for a sacrifice, to undue what the Amazons had done, and to gain vengeance against his ancestor, who thwarted his attempt to reenter this world. Ravens came out of nowhere and started to attack him. He and Fakir tried to fight them off valiantly; however, they were too much for the boys. When it all seemed lost, and to protect, not just his brother, but everyone from this raven, he took a drastic step. His empathy allowed him to tap into an unknown and somewhat forbidden power, and he wished that his own heart be shattered and scattered to the four winds so that the Raven could never have it. By doing so, he locked the Raven back out again. However, what happened was the shattering of his spiritual heart—his soul—the seat of his emotions. This was physically demonstrated when a broadsword appeared out of nowhere, and appeared to be piercing his heart straight through. When the deed was done, it fell out of him with a clang, and he fell as if dead. However, it did not kill him, nor was there any sign of a wound, (in that instinct caused him to use his own healing power on himself.) As a result, he became an emotionless doll, with no self-will, with no emotions, and only able to do as he was told. Fakir swore from that day forward to protect Mytho. Mytho started ballet with his brother, only so that Fakir could keep an eye on him. Of course, it came quickly to him, for all that needed to happen was for him to be told what to do, and then he would ape the moves perfectly. The only thing was that there was no life in it. Yet, because he and his brother were both quite good, Charon entered them in Kinkan, not only to further their skills, but to get them as far away from Germany as he could, lest the Raven find a way back to seek revenge. This was a futile gesture, as you will soon see. This was about the same time that Rue began school there as well. She was instantly smitten with the boy, although he was only a play doll to her. He was kept as a recluse by his brother, lest she, or anyone, take advantage of him. All this changed when Tutu came on the scene. She also loved him, but knew that love could never be reciprocated without his own heart. To do this, and in order to return his smile to him, she worked with earnest to return his heart to him. As he regained it, he began to remember the good feelings that came with it, and began to desire the return of that heart, despite the fact that this played right into Edel's hands. She somehow helped the Raven to regain a small foothold in this world, and knew that Mytho's heart would bring him all the way in. Despite Fakir's attempts to re-shatter Mytho's heart with the same sword that caused it, (the sword which Fakir kept without Charon knowing,) Mytho and Tutu were able to help him regain his heart. Then, together, they were able to thwart Edel, and get her banished from this realm. Although he had deep affection for Tutu/Ahiru, (due to the heart being restored, and now quite enjoying the ability to love again,) he also loved Rue, who had been the only one there that, for all those years before Ahiru came on the scene, wanted him to be a free soul. When Ahiru realized that she did not love Mytho in the way that Rue did, she happily relented to Rue, and their romance took off. By the end of this adventure, he was wed to Rue in a formal Japanese ceremony, filled with all the pomp that accompanies such a wedding. They now live in the Raven's Nest Theater with Fakir, and hope to be joined by their teammates in the future. There is also hope of a little one in the future, but they want to wait for the time being.
The Black Knight
Real Name: Fakir Schmidt
Occupation: Professional dancer and singer
Weight: 220 lbs.
Appearance: Long, black hair worn colonial style, chiseled face, fiery green eyes, built like an acrobatic wrestler: in a word, ruggedly handsome. Wears an identical outfit to his brother, except, what is blue is black, what is white is gray, except for the cowl, which is black. Also wears a flak jacket underneath that is designed for full movement.
Powers: No powers, but quite a physical specimen.
Equipment: Same as Mytho, except that his sword is called the Loengrien.
History: Fakir Schmidt was an orphan who was adopted by an antique dealer and blacksmith by the name of Charon Schmidt, and he is a direct descendant of knights. Because of his tendency to protect his brother Mytho, Charon called him lord high protector to the knight prince. He was always attempting to pull his brother out of his own adventures of rescuing the unfortunate and wounded. The day that the ravens attacked, he did all he could to protect his brother, but his brother had his own plans. He kept the swan sword, feeling that, someday, it might be useful, but for what he did not yet know. Many years later, as a gift for his son, Charon forged the Loengrien for him, which he now wears as the Black Knight. Fakir then felt a great need to protect the shell of a boy that his brother had become, and kept Mytho with him in all things, including his ballet classes. However, when they got to Kinkan, Fakir quickly deduced that there would be many that might try to take advantage of his brother, and thus tried all he could to keep the two of them as recluses on campus. Because of that, he pick up a reputation of being dark and brooding. Many girls were actually attracted to him, but he would have none of them, because he figured that he either had no time for that, or that they might be trying to use him to get to Mytho. All this was shattered when Tutu came on the scene. He, knowing the danger of Mytho regaining his heart, did all he could to keep this from happening, actually looking on Tutu as just as much of an enemy as Kraehe. He even tried to re-shatter Mytho's heart, which Tutu deduced, (correctly,) would be the same as killing him, because, without a soul, he might as well be dead. All this was delicious to Edel, as it was to the Raven, to see all the ancestors to all the old foes of the Raven now turned against each other, knowing that, if they ever worked as one, all of Edel's dreams would come crashing down. They didn't figure that Fakir and Rue were clever enough to figure out what was going on, and all that Edel tried to prevent happened. He now acts as personal protector to the couple, as well as a member of the madrigal that they formed in school known as the Pas De Six. He currently dates one Mary Batson, and hopes that it may also blossom into marriage. She has managed to help bring out the caring and sensitive side that was always there, and Mary suspected was just underneath the gruff surface.
Real Name: William Batson
Age: (as Billy,) 15, (as Marvel,) 25
Occupation: art school student and semi-professional dancer and singer
Height: (as Billy,) 5'9", (as Marvel,) 6'2"
Weight: (as Billy,) 185 lbs. (as Marvel,) 275 lbs
Appearance: (as Billy,) black, wavy hair, parted just off to the side, blue eyes, cherubic face, with a sturdy, youthful, and athletic build, normally wearing red tee shirts, often with yellow trim, blue jeans and sneakers. (As Marvel,) black, wavy hair, slicked back, chiseled face, with thick, black eyebrows, bright smile, looking like a body builder, wearing a red, side button shirt with a gold lightning bolt on the chest, red tights, a gold sash, gold swashbuckler boots, folded down at the half calf, gold bracers, and a white, waist length, high collar cloak with gold trim, and gold string clovers sewn just inside the trim.
Powers: possess powers that have their sources from characters of history and myth:
Solomon: grants him wisdom beyond his years.
Hercules: grants super strength.
Atlas: grants him complete invulnerability and immortality as long as he holds the form of Captain Marvel.
Zeus: Enhances all his other powers to incredible proportions.
Achilles: grants him great courage.
Mercury: grants him super speed and flight.
Equipment: Has both a JLA warning signaler, and his team communicator. He really has no other need for equipment.
History: His history could not be more disconnected from the others than it is, but it is quite storied in its own right. However, considering the source of the girl's powers, they become quite connected at that point. William H. Batson was born to two wealthy Egyptologists, but there was trouble for them right from the start. Dr. Batson was envied by many in his community, and, when one of his colleagues felt slighted by credit on one dig going to Batson, and not him, he threatened to have him, and his whole family killed. It also seemed that he had the means to do it, as attempts were indeed made on his life. He also found himself father to fraternal twins: a son and a daughter. Due to the danger, he decided that the family needed to split up until the danger was passed. He put his daughter into foster care, but gave each child one half of an Egyptian scarab in order to identify his daughter if the chance ever came to retrieve her. For six years, he and his son lived together, and a bond was indeed forming. However, sadly, this was to end abruptly. Revenge was exacted, and the only surviving members of the family were Billy, his sister, and his uncle Dudley. Uncle Dudley could not care for Billy at the time, thus he was put into foster care until certain inheritance battles in the courts were tended to. For three long years, the fight went on, and Billy found himself in a series of bad homes. Finally, when he was nine, it seemed that he would finally have a good home. Sadly, he was adopted by a monster of a man, who practically enslaved Billy, eyeing the possibility of gaining some of his inheritance. When that was granted, Billy was quickly turned out into the streets of Fawcett City and left for dead when he was just nine years old. He was fortunate that some of the older folks took him in, many of whom were show people that had fallen on hard times. In the interim, he sold newspapers, played an old, beat up guitar that he had been taught to play, even learned tap dancing, in order to make his way in this world. He also had an old Chinese man teach him the art of Tai Chi in order to protect himself. He quickly learned the way of the streets, knowing who to talk to, and who to avoid. He had been using an old, abandoned subway station as his home, along with those that he trusted. The story could have ended there, if the scarab that he wore did not have more behind it than met the eye.
The scarab was actually a scarab that the old wizard Shazam, who had himself had been a great hero many millennia before, and who wanted to pass the mantle of hero onto another. His first attempt was met with disaster, and thus, he pledged that, whichever was the first child to possess that scarab would be his successor. It took many millennia before that would happen, and, oddly enough, it was split between two children. Because Billy was in such straits, Shazam figured that Billy should be the first to receive an offer. One night, a mysterious stranger in a suit and fedora that looked quite familiar to Billy bid him come and board a train that sat on the old abandoned tracks. Billy thought that he was dreaming, and boarded the train without a second thought. The stranger was always in the dark, so there was no way to know just who it was. (In reality, it was the soul of his deceased father, and it is something that Billy will never know.) However, this stranger let him out, and Billy saw that the train sat at the end of the line. It was no longer a subway tunnel, but a cave with pink granite walls, each side of which was lined with statues: the seven deadly sins on one wall, and the seven virtues on the other. At the end sat Shazam, waiting for him with a big, friendly smile. At this, Billy now realized that he was not dreaming. This was really happening! The old wizard explained who it was, and what the scarab represented. It was then that he made Billy, who, in truth, was quite skeptical about the whole thing, the offer to become the next hero, who the wizard would dub Captain Marvel. He told Billy that all he needed to do was utter the wizard's name. When he did, a bolt of lightning, (presumably from Zeus,) struck him, and transformed him into the captain. Billy was actually outraged. He was not sure that he wanted this, and was ready to throttle Shazam for what had happened. He was afraid that he was stuck that way, but the wizard assured that this was not the case. All he needed to do was speak his name again, which Marvel did. However, this time, when the lightning hit, massive boulder dislodged and fell right on top of Shazam. Billy screamed, thinking that he had caused this. His sadness was quickly stifled when the spirit of the old wizard arose from the rubble, and assured Billy that he did not cause this. This was supposed to happen. Billy then realized the great power that he had, and that he must now dedicate himself to all those less fortunate than he now was, being given this great gift that could help him arise out of the ashes like the phoenix. The wizard then took the very boulder that crushed his body to a spot that was extra dimensional, deep in space, and called it the Rock of Eternity. From there, he could best guide Billy until the time came when he would pass the mantle of Captain Marvel on to another that was worthy of it.
He remained on the streets, though, for the next few months. In that time, he became aware that the state had discovered that his foster father had lied, that he was still alive, and that they were searching for him. However, he did not want to go back, lest he be put into another bad home. This all changed when he, as Captain Marvel, encountered and aided Superman on a case the latter had been working on that involved Dr. Savanna. In that time, however, the doctor's henchmen, who sought out Billy for being a witness that would connect him to the crimes, tried to kill him. Billy's best friend was also there that night, and, despite Marvel's best effort to protect his friend, his friend was mortally wounded. The doctors could do nothing. At this, Marvel went ballistic, smashed his way into the police station, and threatened one of those men, (who the police had apprehended,) with his life if he did not confess. All the police could do was stand back and watch. Of course, this was all out of character for the captain, and after busting into Savanna's office, realized that he was abusing his powers, and sought for another, better time, to exact vengeance. However, Superman set out to get an explanation out of Marvel, even if it meant throttling it out of him. Yet, when he found Marvel, he found him in tears. When Superman did not understand, Marvel revealed everything to Superman, including what had happened that night. Now Superman was livid with the one who would dare to place such a mantle of responsibility on the shoulders of a little boy. Shazam then summoned Superman to the Rock of Eternity, explained the whole thing, explained that he needed a good mentor, and that he should do what he could to help Billy off the streets, and gain back what was rightfully his. All of this Superman did, and he was able to contact colleagues in the media who took him in, and started him on his way in broadcast journalism, and in entertainment. By this point in our story, he had been through many adventures, and gained the aptitude for entertainment that he had. He wanted to go into show business, use it to enhance his broadcast skills, or whatever the future held. This is why he even ended up at Kinkan at all. It was because of his meeting the other characters that even gave any of them the chance to rise up to what they were at all, thanks to Shazam.
Real Name: Mary Bumford Batson
Age: 15, (as Batson,) 25, (as Marvel)
Occupation: art school student and semi-professional dancer and singer
Height: 5'7", (as Batson,) 5'10", (as Marvel)
Weight: 125 lbs. (as Batson,) 150 lbs. (as Marvel)
Appearance: (as Batson) a dancer's athletic build, shoulder length wavy black hair, parted in the middle, blue eyes, in reality, similar features to Billy in a female form. (As Marvel,) a more mature look to her alter ego, but with the body of a goddess, wearing a feminine version of the uniform which Captain Marvel wears, with the following exceptions: half-length, bloused sleeves, golden bracers, gold pumps, each with two strings that criss-cross up her calf to tie off underneath her knee, and sporting a knee-length, side button dress in red, with the same cloak and lightning bolt.
Powers: gains her powers from characters in myth that would befit a young lady:
Selena: grants a grace that enhances all her powers like Zeus does for her brother.
Hippotlya: grants her super strength.
Ariadne: grants her skill that grants her the same endurance that Atlas gives her brother.
Zephyrus: grants her super speed and flight.
Aurora: grants her the kind of beauty that gives her courage.
Minerva: grants her wisdom.
Equipment: same set up as Captain Marvel.
History: Unlike her brother, she was very fortunate to have wound up in a good home from the start. The Bumford family took her in, and raised her as if she were their daughter. The only thing they knew about her was that she was not to lose the half scarab, and that it would lead her to someone she would love dearly. She grew up the average child, but she somehow picked up the ability to give good common sense advice to people. If she had not picked up an aptitude for ballet, she may have gone on to become an advice columnist. All this changed when she ended up at Kinkan, and literally bumped into her brother, though they did not yet know of their connection. Everything else has been explained at length in the above story.
Kinkantown and the Academy
In the original anime, Kinkantown, (Gold Crown Town in the English version,) was clearly and prominently set in Germany. In the manga, however, it is never clearly stated where it is located, and therefore, it was fully left open to artistic license, just as much as it was when the creators of the anime told the manga side that it could do what it wanted. By leaving the location of both the town and the academy nondescript, it allows anyone to put it anywhere, which is what I have done here. Regardless of where they are located, the atmosphere of the town is the same. It is very Germanic in nature, and holds a very Colonial era feel to it. One would almost regret any of the modern conveniences being there, and often forget that such exist. However, the old times and the modern world seem to be able to exist side by side here, although the brick roads and some narrow alleys attest to the old feel, as one would not be able to bring a car through them. Yet, modern life is there, and somehow, harmony exists between the old and the new here. In fact, if one were a regular to Fawcett City, and had not come to Kinkantown before, they would find it a quaint and peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of the city. For the purposes of my story, the town was originally named Gold Crown; however, when Mr. Kinkan moved here when he retired, and because he felt that the place would be good for an academy, the town began to adopt his name for their own. Because of the fame that he and the academy brought, the town fathers had little problem with changing the name of the town on the state register, (despite a bit of minor protest from ancestors of they who founded Gold Crown,) to Kinkantown, in honor of its now most famous adopted son. The state it is in is more than likely in the mountain country of northern Pennsylvania, or northeast Ohio. I leave this up to the reader as to where the place is located. The town itself has only one police precinct, and is run by one Constable Phil Brock. He has a crew of about 20 officers, which is probably more than the town actually needs, yet, they are more than capable of handling themselves, even in a big city if need be. Brock was skeptical at first when it came to the Secret Six, especially on that first night during the Great Take Five Smack Down. However, he quickly found out that having a superhero team of concerned citizens can be a great benefit. If it had not been for their help, worse could have happened with Jim Martin, and the gangs could have had a tighter grip on things before they could be finally extracted. His biggest concern is the school itself. He loves all the students, and wants to make sure that they are all safe and happy. They are the biggest reason why the town itself has not been tucked into a corner somewhere and forgotten. The businesses there are as one would expect: clothing stores, restaurants, hardware, furniture, specialty stores, sporting goods, and so forth. However, many of them are geared towards the students. Therefore, having supplies for the creative and performance arts in any of those stores are good for business. It sits not but a half mile from the academy itself.
Because I have a friend that attended an arts high school himself, I was able to pick his brain for information on the things that actually go on in an arts school, and I was able to incorporate that into this story. The differences are that, his was a public school, this one is private; his was looser on certain rules, this one is stricter, including the use of school uniforms. I took some ideas of his activities on the school, and I was able to incorporate that in a special way that fit the flavor and the uniqueness of the academy. The school is quite spacious, with two sections: a living and social area, and the learning area. All the buildings are built in the style of the town itself. The living and social area sits on a rise, and all the dorms, the student union and shops, the theater, and the gymnasium, are all set around a long grassy mall area. The dorms themselves are walled in brick, with arched gates in front of them, just atop the rise, and facing each other. In the back, also walled, (as is the whole campus,) with a creek running in front of it, is the education area. Although assemblies are run in the theater, all the learning is done there. All the buildings are set on the edges of the campus, with a natural depression in it, containing a park for students to sit, work, meditate, or eat lunch on a nice day, complete with gazebos, tables, benches, and a beautiful fountain, built by, and donated by, the first creative arts class that came out of the school. Creative arts were added later, and were not a part of the original curriculum, and thus, do not normally gain attention at the main orientation. Who and what they are, are fairly well recognized, and are usually treated as a separate entity, with their own orientation. However, they are not separated as a student body, and all intermingle with each other, the creative artists sometimes using the performers for models in their work. The arts taught there are the creative, (painting, printing, sketching, sculpting, photography, and the like,) and the performing, (theatre, ballet, tap, modern dance, jazz dance, voice, music, and film.) Though the rules are a bit strict, none of the students are made to feel as if they cannot express themselves fully, in that, since this is a school of the arts, such things are not discouraged. They need to do so in order for them to be allowed their fullest creative potential. The strictness of the rules is there in order that a mindset for being disciplined enough to succeed in one's art is always there.
Out in back of the school are a lake, and a decent sized wooded area. There are several trails back there, and it is often called "The Thinking Woods" because it is quite serene and peaceful. Many students having a problem with one thing or another often go back there to sort out their thoughts and feelings about matters, and sometimes bringing their art with them to express just how they feel. The creative artists often bring the canvasses or sketch books, while musicians bring their instruments to play for no one but themselves, and to vent. However, as of recent days, many go out there in hopes of finding the White Swan in order to help gain counsel, and some have actually succeeded in finding her. In reality, Ahiru now often goes back their when she is not engaged in practice, schoolwork, or hanging out with either her beau, or her friends, as Princess Tutu for expressly that purpose, as well as to sort out her own thoughts. She quite enjoys being able to do that which she loves the most, next to dancing, and her "Rubber Ducky." Also back there now is the Raven's Nest Theater, in which the school celebrities, the Pas De Six, "hold court." There is a sizeable parking area, but not in such a fashion that it takes away from the serene and peaceful setting that the woods provide.
The Pas De Six
This group sprung out of the friendships and relationships that formed amongst the alter egos of the Secret Six. The brainchild of Billy Batson, the leadership of the group was slowly taken over by Ahiru Arima, although she would not acknowledge this, and gives equal credit to the whole team. "Pas De Six, (pronounced "paw-duh-cease,") is a play off a ballet term. It means "steps of six." In other words, it is a dancing sextet, (a duet, for example, is a pas de deux, (pronounced "paw-duh-dew.")) They like to think of themselves as a visual madrigal. A "madrigal" is normally a type of poetry set to a cappella singing from the late 16th and early 17th centuries. As this turns poetry into music, they attempt to turn musical poetry, (songs,) into dance as they either sing as they dance, or dance to their own prerecorded accompaniment. Their attempt is to bring to life the song in the form of ballet. However, there are times when they act strictly as a musical group, and have three hit singles, and their first album, (also a hit,) of covers and original music. They cover all kinds of musical styles, but play them to their folk instruments. Billy discovered their ability to sing and harmonize one day when they were just sitting around a campfire, messing with some songs. He later demonstrated to them that this was no fluke that they could do this, and took a chance at getting them all instruments. This was because of how he was inspired by an encore in their first show together as an act. They did it off the cuff as Billy sang, and that set the wheels in motion. He figured that, if they could also learn to play, they had a great act. As time went by, they all took to this, and everyone seems to have a role in putting the act together. Billy arranges all the music. Rue and their coach, Mr. Gustaph Katt, do the choreography, Mary writes songs, Mytho works out vocal harmonies, and Fakir has taken over as recording master, having a good enough ear to work with the engineer in the post production. Because of what Ahiru does, she often is called the "brains" of the outfit. Often, what she does, is listen to everyone's ideas when they are trying to work out any of the aforementioned, and then somehow manages to drop things in a sensible order. When this happens, normally discussion ends. Ahiru plays a 21-key chromatic autoharp, and dulcimer, Rue plays concertina, keyboard, and accordion; Fakir plays acoustic bass guitar and bass violin, Mytho plays violin and percussion, Billy plays mandolin, banjo, and his 12-string acoustic guitar, and Mary plays six string classical guitar.
They have semi-ownership of a theater set inside a cave called The Raven's Nest. In it are various offices, living quarters for the act, a sizeable natural amphitheater, a recording studio, and a dojo/dance room. This is run by one Mr. Tawny, a family friend of the Batsons that took on management of the group. He is very protective of the group, being sure to always allow them creative control of their act, and always being sure that no one ever exploits them, and makes sure not burn them out. He knows that there is such a thing as too much of a good thing, and therefore does all he can to keep them in the public eye to keep them popular, but not so much as the public grows tired of them. Besides, he knows that the group is creative enough to continue to adapt, and to continue to reinvent themselves, to keep things fresh, and they sell themselves. Thus, he knows when to get out of the way and not bite the hand that feeds him. There is an anthropomorph that lives there named Poe—a raven-man—who was a creation of one Edel, who is now a vanquished foe that can never haunt the group again. He acts as caretaker and butler to the group, with a keen eye for décor, and he often finds himself working on the sets for the show. However, in the back, is a part of the theater only a handful knows anything about. This is the headquarters of the Secret Six, complete with a crime lab, meeting hall, crime computer, and vehicles for those that cannot rapidly transport themselves. This includes a fully armored and equipment outfitted van for the whole team if there is a need for a traveling crime lab and other such crime fighting things, and two powerful Harley-Davidson motorcycles for the Chess Knights—what they call "their trusty steeds." It is indeed a home away from home.