Zodiac

By nature, the winged tend to avoid unity under a single cause.
For the longest time, the winged overworld itself was divided into multiple factions, plagued with infighting and conflicts between separate groups, divided without a single banner to stand under.

To solve such issues, the Zodiac were formed.

A group of twelve archangels that control major parts in the winged overworld, subduing any unruly winged wishing to rebel, and they ultimately submit to the winged ruler as their highest authority. It is these specialists who allow the ruler to succeed in keeping the order of the dangerous winged overworld.

Today, the fourth iteration of the Zodiac continues to serve Princess Cleu, carrying over the same duties from the time of the previous prince, Nile Serpens. As this iteration was assembled by Nile a while before his passing, they were handed down to Cleu upon inheriting the throne from her predecessor. However, like an unescapable curse, the divisive nature of the winged persists even among members of the Zodiac, manifesting in worrisome degrees of infighting and instability.

A commoner winged, Orion Hunter, is brought to Cleu's court one day, and receives a simple request.

"Would you please look after these children?
If you succeed in opening their hearts to you, I shall reward you with whatever you desire."

Cleu Ophiuchus

The princess of the winged, and the current ruler of the overworld.
Well into her reign, her only concern is to be accepted by the Zodiac, whose hearts linger on memories of an old ruler.
The power of an oracle is to foretell one event every year with total certanity.
Title - Angel of Oracles.

Orion Hunter

An outsider carefully selected by the winged princess to observe and guide the Zodiac through a most turbulent time.
Orion readily accepted the task, even if intruding on such winged is nothing short of involving oneself in a game of survival.
It is said there is only success to be found when Orion attempts to conquer anything, and anyone.
Title - Angel of Conquest.

Nile Serpens

The late prince and ruler of the winged. A legendary man who formed the Zodiac.
He struggled in desiring peace, but disliking the bloodshed it required. It is said that he maintained a smile until the very end.
Thanks to the peace he brought, new winged life still forms within the Pillars of Creation.
Title - Angel of Formation.

Kaisei Pisces

Rank #1, the leader of the Zodiac.
Despite all odds, he earned the highest recognition by opposing the flow of the conventional, and doing things his own way.
Although capable, he's easy to offend by questioning his leadership. Naturally, it became something to poke fun at for the others.
But through his eloquence, each of the chaotic Zodiac came to accept him as their leader in their own ways.
Title - Angel of Dialogue.

Phoebe Capricorn

Rank #2, Kaisei's second in command.
A lady who fancies herself a diligent knight, a term she learned from novels in the human world.
Though passionate knightly behavior made her kind and courteous, her absolute dedication to justice is what earned her high rank.
"One with such uprightness surely deserves the glory of standing above the rest - if not for her childish obsession with fiction."
Title - Angel of Honor.

Herja Aquarius

Rank #3, the emissary of the throne, and the leader of the Valkyries.
A young lady who believes in washing sin with blood, inspiring life via ruin.
Loud and boisterous, she'll subdue two warring sides by being louder than both. She also loves gloating over members of lower ranks.
Wherever Herja and her team of Valkyries are deployed, the horn of victory is sure to sound.
Title - Angel of Triumph.

Pollux and Castor Gemini

Rank #4, Monarchy's Messengers.
Annoyingly to both, they are treated as one unit despite their differences, due to their dependency on one another.
As twins, Pollux cannot speak, and Castor cannot see. They usually fill each other's need, but their interests rarely do match.
"A flightless bird once proclaimed that two cannot become one, but reality was made to reject her."
Title - Angel of Axis / Angels of Axes.

Asoriza Scorpio

Rank #5, Disciplinarian.
A tough lady of a highly strategic mind. Holds herself to high standards in order to be exemplary.
Though it fits for her discipline, it also causes plenty of awkwardness in casual settings, ruining her chances in socializing.
"In this world, beauty is born from limitations, not innumerable possibilities."
Title - Angel of Shackles.

Mimas Sagittarius

Rank #6, the Star Former. A young man with the power to breath life into stars, by carrying wishes upon arrows aimed at the heavens.
Mimas stands dead-center in how he's perceived. Nobody in the Zodiac dislikes him, but no one's particularly fond of him either.
To his annoyance, this only made him easy to pick on and order around.
The midworld misinterprets Mimas as a "Cupid".
Title - Angel of Formation.

Merkurius Taurus

Rank #7, the Herald.
A tough man whose job is to carry the princess' messages, as a bridge between the overworld and midworld.
Very fond of his ruler, and very proud of his position, which he often uses as an excuse to stubbornly overstep his authority.
"The Minotaur, born confined in a deadly labyrinth, came to know nothing of the world besides his own anger".
Title - Angel of Wrath.

Nadine Virgo

Rank #8, Caretaker. Quite a green thumb, befitting the role of taking care of and overseeing agriculture food production for the winged.
Due to her uncharacteristic kindness as a winged, she was the weakest member.
Her life was spared merely due to the value of her role - her only hope of survival.
Nadine eventually departed from the Zodiac, leaving behind a vacant spot where Virgo once was.
Title - Angel of Propagation.

Tenbin Libra

Rank #9, the Arbiter. A bookworm seeking limitless knowledge, playfully chasing the light of the truth even if it may burn.
He has a fair mind fit for an impartial judge, but only if he feels like it. He's often vexingly biased and easygoing for fun.
"How shall one pursue the ultimate enlightenment in this world, when some knowledge is forbidden?"
"There is such a thing as knowing too much, but this child will not concede until his self-immolation."
Title - Angel of Light.

Lunalleya Cancer

Rank #10, the Caregiver.
A doctor who believes only in nurturing through self-dependence, breathing life back through harshness.
Though easily annoyed, rumor has it that she isn't acting snappish on purpose. Still, the attitude makes her unsociable.
"You may rid people of malignancy, but do not dream of immortality. Death reaches all corners, even within a chrysalis."
Title - Angel of Malady.

Marzipan Aries

Rank #11, the Undertaker.
A lady who was forcibly made docile in order to withstand the task of enforcing the circle of life through death.
Due to frequent reconditioning, she appears forgetful and unwitting. She is seen as a "walking corpse" by the others.
But deep down, a small desire for fulfillment remains alive in her heart.
The midworld misinterprets her as a "Grim Reaper".
Title - Angel of Death.

Cecil Leo

Rank #12, Slayer.
A man of fierce loyalty, who is strong enough to courageously slay stellar beasts, but not enough to overstep his rank.
To him, being dead-last is the best position to be in for protecting others, even if he's called a coward for accepting lowliness.
"The king of beasts, a majestic and awe-inspiring animal. Indeed, you are nothing like a lion."
Title - Angel of Valor.

Celestials

The embodiments of everything, purest of all beings, retainers of the sun and the moon, and rulers of rulers.
Every living being must obey a monarch above all else.

The Beginning

The first monarch, a wise queen whose gift is a mortal world.
A sun, moon, and stars in the sky, pure as can be, protected by angels on clouds. Thus, all the filth accumulated on the earth.
Yet somehow, this being of divine purity envied the sinful dirt. She shackled herself and every soul with the curse of mortality.
Legacy: "What a beautiful sight" is a comment often heard from beings observing various parts of the world.
Status - Deceased year 500.

The Cunning

The second monarch, a crafty king whose gift is the Grassblade.
The king maintained order with fear, embodied by his blade. He forged it by his own pure hands, and used only the moon's materials.
Though ordinary looking, an object this pure can cut through any mortal filth, purifying the lands and earth as one desires.
Legacy: The Grassblade has seen many masters, but it embodies only the spirit of its skillful forger once unsheathed.
Status - Deceased year 1000.

The Unseen

The third monarch, a solitary king whose gift is the Shadow Blood of Umbra.
Across the earth, war raged. Humans, physically inferior to monsters, quickly dwindled. One human sought the king's mercy.
The king passed on his blessing to the most worthy of warriors. "Until the end of time, let your blood be that of a devoted soul".
Legacy: "Receive my gift, and purify the land. End the war, and pass it on. Let your name be a blessing for humanity forevermore."
Status - Deceased year 1500.

The Reformer

The fourth monarch, a soft-spoken queen whose gift is the Shadow Seal.
"Immortality is forbidden, yet certain humans nearly claimed that impossible goal. Their next step shall be to topple the heavens."
"This is the corruption our First cleansed the earth of. A queen's blood shall purify land again, sealing the corrupt warriors."
"Let us descend and cleanse by hand this little earth."
Legacy: Her rituals of purification remain closely practiced by monsterkind.
Status - Deceased year 2000.

The Merciless

The fifth monarch, a sly king whose gift is Medusa's decapitated head.
At the end of his life, the king hypothesized that petrifying one to stone forever may be less painful than falling in love.
He took the head of a winged princess, whose serpent-eyed gaze could turn anyone to stone.
Judged unworthy of her title, she was slain by the Grassblade, to erase the filth of wicked desires.
Legacy: The king's final act was to eradicate all who walk the earth. With blood, land was purified.
Status - Deceased year 2500.

The Unnatural

The sixth monarch, a childish king whose gift is a newly revived world.
When rulers are killed, noble bloodlines are lost, and the unified world turns to nothingness.
Thus, someone must recreate order. "It is impossible to erase life, just as it is to live forever."
The king's trusted companion softly chuckled. "You do adore those short-lived beings a bit too much, your majesty."
Legacy: Despite all heavenly odds, humans and monsters continue to multiply and reproduce.
Status - Deceased year 3000.

The Herald

The seventh monarch, a solitary queen whose gift is the Song of Sight.
"I dare not wander onto battle, but the little ones leave no choice. How far has corruption risen, to reach even the moon?"
"According to your words, purification is necessary. Not only of heavens, but also of war-ridden earth."
"With your eyes, I would like to see the way."
"Forgive me, but I am too desperate that I would even commit the unthinkable and meddle with your grave."
Legacy: Anyone could see the future if they obtained this queen's knowledge.
Status - Deceased year 3500.

The Merciful

The eighth monarch, an amiable, innovative king, whose gift is the Dewinger.
"Punishments exist to ward evil before it is even thought of, rather than to give any second chances."
"But who could come up with a punishment suitable only for arrogant angels?"
"Why, it is only one whose dealings don't concern purity, divinity, status, or even personal safety."
"There is no crueler fate for a winged than robbing them of their wings, but not of their life."
Legacy: "To have a shape without a fitting mold", a fear shared by all winged.
Status - Deceased year 4000.

The Vibrant

The ninth monarch, a joyous queen whose gift is the Grand Library on the moon.
There was once a little girl who loved sweet fruits, bedtime tales, and was ignorant of destiny.
Later, there was a young woman who walked the earth and collected tales of old from every inch.
And in the end, a queen stood on the moon. With her own hands, she made a building of wood.
She called it a house for learning, and in it, she stored all that she gathered. Trinkets, books, and precious treasures.
"It shall stand to commemorate the past, for the future must learn well from hundreds of failures."
Legacy: "Truly, this library deserves to be called a grand one", is a common observation of visitors on the moon.
Status - Deceased year 4500.

The Prosperous

The tenth monarch, an indefatigable queen who was only recently crowned.
One who will get her way if she so desires. She seeks suitable pawns as servants.
Her will dictates reality itself, just as a pen may write a storybook.
She is consumed by a desire for unstoppable dominion.
"It is my right to make the wrong choice. In the first place, by whose standards do you distinguish wrong from right?"
"If reality itself agrees with me, then it means I remain free of sin."
"This is the outcome I've longed for, my dear reality to make the so-called wrong choice as I wish."
"That's just as important as the freedom to make what you call the right choice, old friend."
Status - Current monarch.

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