This time we're not giving up
Let's make it last forever
We'll make it last forever
- “Hallelujah” Paramore
Cyrus Westergaard Lyng is 32 human years old. His hair is thick black brown, beginning to show streaks of silver. He stands 5’11” with broad shoulders and thinly - yet solidly - built. The casual observer would think he might be a pushover (figuratively and literally) but a second glance reveals that he carries himself with confidence (based on what, who knows?) and indicates a strength not readily apparent.
Cyrus’ skin is on the dark end of Caucasian, almost as if he has a perpetual tan.
His most striking physical characteristic is his eyes, which are dichromatic: green on the left and grey on the right. He does not try to hide this feature.
Before the Story
WARNING: THIS SECTION CONTAINS MASSIVE SPOILERS
This event triggered the First Rage/First Change in Cyrus, and in a blind fury he drove the attacker away. The tragedy caused a mental breakdown in his father (Clayton), and his mother (Heather) sent Cryrus to America for his training/Rite of Passage in the hopes of providing him enough time to prepare for inevitable future attacks.
Heather herself has devoted her remaining years to hunting down the assailant, spending more and more time in her wolf form. The killer is currently still at large, out there, somewhere.
In America, Cyrus came into his own.
His Rite of Passage was the hunting of [redacted], but the task itself was almost nothing compared to the infighting of the “pack”. This internal strife nearly caused the destruction of the cohort, and it was only thanks to Cyrus’ intervention and advice (which lead to cooperation) that they were not only able to set aside their differences and focus on the common goal but also succeed, returning as recognized adults in the Garou Nation.
Over the years in New Orleans, Cyrus became a respected go-between among the Kindred, Fae, and Garou in New Orleans and the surrounding environs. Though most would stay with their own kind, Cyrus has made use of his gifts of Speech of the World and Citizen of the World to both keep the peace and keep what loose alliances are in place. For this he earned the Deedname “Oathkeeper” and is a trusted advisor in both politics and strategy.
Thanks to his gifts, Cyrus is able to communicate with those not of his language and culture, and though he speaks foreign languages with an obvious accent, it is clear he is being respectful of those he is talking to and means no disrespect or offense.
Some have likened Cyrus to James Bond, but Cyrus is a Bond from the other side of things. He is not a womanizer and prefers diplomacy to violence, though he is skilled in both words and sword.
Like Bond, Cyrus has his own demons. He suffers from terrifying nightmares and as a result has developed a severe phobia to sleep, which he attempts to alleviate with sleep aids to varying success. Cyrus will therefore sleep alone, and after several non-fatal “incidents” he now often restrains himself in an attempt to avoid hurting others. There are times when, due to his phobia, he will forgo sleep, though this has proven an ineffective strategy in the long-term.
As a Galliard, Cyrus has found a solace in music, the theatre, and the arts - and often has a song, lyric, or quote to for the situation, and often makes a connection with foreigners/outsiders by finding common ground in these things. However, there are times that Cyrus’ gifts work against him, and he finds himself the unwitting and unwilling vessel of a Bard’s Tongue.
Cyrus attained Rank 2 and the Deedname “Shouts of Triumph” in the recent coordinated attacks against the Kindred, Fae, and Garou in NOLA. The battle was going poorly for Cyrus and his comrades when, noticing a gap in the attackers, he roused them with a slightly-altered line from Shakespeare:
“Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more - or fill up the wall with our Garou dead!”In recognition of his skills as both ambassador and strategist, Cyrus was sent by Caden Ash Heart to meet/aid the diverse group of . . . defenders . . . lately assembled in NOLA.
In the Story
At the Hotel Provincial
Cyrus found the group (Ollie, Rosalie, Andi, Aya, and Nyx) in the Hotel Provincial in the French Quarter. Briefly introducing himself to Ollie as the one Caden sent to help, Cyrus offered his services in whatever matters might arise. After listening to Cardinal Valdis and Tobias Wren announce a new partnership between Autumn Health and the Tulane Medical Center, they watched Cardinal Valdis circulate through the crowd with Wiskey Van Rensselaer on one arm and a drink in his free hand. Cyrus was clued in they intended to drug the Cardinal’s drink, and suggested they simply give him a new, spiked one.
As the Cardinal approached, Rosalie met him in her capacity as a reporter and asked a few questions. Ollie’s nerves began to get the better of him, and after a brief exchange of words with the Cardinal (since they both work for the Church), Ollie found Cardinal Valdis reaching for his hands. Cyrus took the roofied drink, and after another short exchange, Ollie offered the drink to Valdis on the pretense Cyrus was allergic to citrus. The plan worked, and within five minutes it was obvious he was feeling its effects.
Unfortunately for the party, several things happened at once: the lights dimmed, vehicles surrounded the hotel, and some guests inside began to have coughing fits – the result of a supernatural infection. Teams in biohazard suits began to cordon off the hotel, and as the party watched through a large window, they saw the rooftop collection tank come crashing down, spilling its contents and landing on three tourists: woman in her twenties as well as a father and his young daughter.
The infected individuals began attacking those around them in a zombie-like fashion, though it was clear they weren’t actually zombies. Whiskey caught up to the group with the knocked-out Cardinal over her shoulder. Thinking quickly, the party started to head to the basement, where they hoped Aya and/or Ollie would be able to purify the water and remove the stain of the worm from those infected. Nyx held the line with her parasol in front of Ollie’s parents, allowing everyone time to get into the stairwell. She was the last one through the door.
In the stairwell, they were met by Serg coming down from the roof. He was with a kid of some kind, who appeared to know the party, but the party didn’t know him. Working together, the party was able to successfully use the fire suppression system to cure all but two individuals of their malady.
Then, from the corner, the Cardinal spoke with his own voice, asking to be tied up before “he returned”. Now, the decision had to be made about how to both leave the hotel – with the cardinal – and repair the masquerade breach.
While newcomer Vassily (unmoored and Hunter of Lucifer) went to find blood for the vampires (and others who needed it), Cyrus, Andi, Nyx, Ollie, and Aya found a conference room with a long table and other accoutrements. [The others stayed in the boiler room.] Ollie and Andi found the laundry and - using sheets and pillowcases - constructed “Fort Kickass” under the table. Nyx and Cyrus found some chicory coffee; Cyrus and Andi established the “shave and a haircut” knock as the password to the conference room.
While Ollie and Aus slept, and then as Nyx and Andy fell into torpor, Cyrus stayed awake thanks to the coffee.
When everyone was once again awake, it was decided to take the cardinal to Elysium.
The lockdown/quarantine now ended, they group made its way to Elysium - and found Prince Hastings engaged in conversation with a group of werewolves that Aya, Ollie, and Cyrus recognized by reputation as The Silver Pack.
The three stood in silence as they introduced themselves and others (and Ollie when spoken to) filled in everyone on what had happened. When Serg told of his killing Banner (in part because he viewed Banner as a threat to the caern), Ekaterina named him an official friend of the Garou Nation. Cyrus made a mental note to remember Serg’s new position to the Garou.
Cyrus finally moved when Mia/Sister told the three to follow her.
Rank and Trial
Cyrus, Ollie, and Aya followed Sister out behind the absinth bar, where, pulling out a mirror, Sister opened a moon bridge to the Umbra. Sister changed into lupus, and the trio followed her to the only hill in all of New Orleans: a thirty-five foot manmade rise in the city zoo. As they settled themselves, Aya received a message via her spectral hound: she was being called away to her mentor. Sister bade her go, acknowledging Aya’s mentor as being more important at the moment.
Sister then set the two Garou their test of rank: choosing to work together, she set them with three riddles. Though they only needed to answer two correctly, the pair was able to pool their knowledge and sweep the set.
White bird, featherless. Flying out of paradise. Flying over sea and land. Dying in my hand. What is it?
I can flutter and take your breath away.
I can take a beating, but do not bruise.
If I stopped you would be sure to lose.
All day and night, I am with you.
What am I?
A: your heart
You can carry it everywhere you go, and it does not get heavy. What is it?
A: your name
Ollie and Cyrus were officially made Fostern and were given additional deed names, including an extra one each for working together on the task and for answering all three riddles. Cyrus’ new deed names were: Sentinel of the Derelict, Sings the Advocate Refrain, The Gentlemen’s Lycan, and Wise as the True Heart.
The task now over, they each shifted into lupus to follow Sister back out of the Umbra, rolling down the hill with delight and changing back to Homid before entering mundane New Orleans.
They only had a few minutes to make themselves presentable before they were approached by Maddi, who now revealed herself to be an archon of one of the justicarscoming to preside over the impending trial. The entire group was taken to a trio of cars (Cyrus rode in the middle car with Serg and Rosalie) and driven for an hour outside the city. They were then led into the backyard of a large southern house where the justicars were seated in a half circle and their archons standing behind them. In front of them was a podium of piled stones, to the left of which stood a large pot filled with white bones. They were seated on three stone benches; Prince Hastings sat Cyrus and Ollie to her left, placing them in a place a protection.
The trial was called to order, and Justicar Anastaz made it known this was a trial of Prince Hastings and not Serg - something Cyrus had suspected and tried to mentally prepare for. Garou testimony being considered lesser in this situation, Cyrus and Ollie were called on first, and though Ollie made to move, Cyrus beat him to the moment and stepped forward. He followed the instructions given him to the letter: approaching the podium and taking a bone in his hand (which would turn black and cause him great harm if he spoke false). Asked for his testimony, he earned looks of shock, surprise, respect (and even humor) when he correctly addressed the justicars:
Your Most Esteemed Excellencies - I am Cyrus Lyng, Fosters of the Garou Nation. If offer myself and my memories as witness.
He willingly gave his memory via telepathic link, but when asked for his words his mind blanked. He said something, but though he couldn’t remember what he said, it must have been honest and respectful as the bone stayed white, the justicarsthanked and dismissed him, and the group looked at him encouragingly.
The others gave their testimony in similar fashion, though there was some hustle and bustle around Cock Robin’s prior association with Ollie, and Justicar Pascek’s familial relationship with Andi. According to law and tradition, Prince Hastings gave their testimony to the justicars in private, the group being led back into the house. Her testimony lasted fifteen minutes; the justicars debated another thirty.
In the end, Justicars Robin and Pascek were forced to abstain, Justicars Marzanna and Lucinde voted “not guilty”, and Justicars Anastasz and Guil voting guilty. The verdict declared a tie, Justicar Anastasz invoked his right as head of the council to break the tie and voted guilty. However, Justicar Marzanna reminded him of Clan Malkavian’s right to declare the punishment, and declared that Prince Hastings would be removed as Prince of New Orleans for one month, at which time Justicar Marzanna would revisit the issue. Justicar Guil deemed this punishment too lenient, opining that Prince Hastings should – in their opinion – burn.
The justicars nearly came to blows with each other as the situation escalated and were only stopped by the intervention of their archons. Several of the archons and Justicar Cock Robin whisked the group away and back into the city to the Hotel Hilton.
As the group discussed what had happened and what to do now, Archon Jean-Marc d’Harfleur revealed that the archons themselves were in favor of finding Prince Hastings not guilty, and that Justicar Guil’s vote of guilty was just the latest in a series of out-of-character actions they had taken in recent months. Rosalie deemed it safe and prudent to share all the events that had led to this moment, but when she shared the information telepathically with Jean-Marc, he fell to the ground - - bearing stigmata of Lucifer.
Pack It Up
As the vampires continued to talk about what had happened, Ollie approached Cyrus about forming a pack with him and Aya and Asher. As the two wondered where Aya could be, she stumbled out of the bathroom – deposited there by her mentor via moon bridge. And then Asher spoke up from underneath Ollie’s chair, and said he’d been there for about five minutes - - showing just how observant the two werewolves had been.
They talked briefly about the intended pack, with Aya needing some convincing.
Rejoining the conversation with the vampires, it was decided that – all things considered – the group would repair to the cairn, where Caden would offer them safety. Asher sweetened the deal by offering a cork board with red thread and pushpins, as well as paper and pens, so that they could plot and plan their next steps.
Ollie opened a moon bridge for the first time using the mirror Sister had given him, and the core group traveled from the hotel to the cairn with ease. The Silver Pack was there, and Caden himself was cooking as if for a large group of firefighters.
Cyrus grabbed the weapons he had left behind, namely his firearm and Helios’ Blessed Blade, and then rejoined the others in the basement. While the others brainstormed their concerns, he took it all in; this was mostly new information for him. However, he was able to offer two of his own: The “Fake Tobias Wren” and Vassily (who he pointed out wasn’t necessarily a problem, but neither did they know how he fit in).
Listening to the others talk, he was able to use his gift of hidden meaning to connect some unseen threads, arriving at the name of Helena d’Argeneaux in connection with the statement “find the Baron” and Serg’s left hand.
Of all the concerns, two stood out: finding the Baron and helping Aya’s mentor in Japan.
It was decided to aid Serg first, and the group found themselves on the way to a very proper tea room on the very edge of the French Quarter, with Cyrus helping outfit the group and talking their way inside with his etiquette.
Seated in the library, the party found themselves an audience with Madame Helena, who to Cyrus appeared as a Nosferatu, but was decidedly not Nosferatu. She had a connection with Baron Samedi, but when, through Cyrus and Serg, she came to understand what the party needed, she explained that the Baron would not meet with them.
However, Sergand Rosalie were able to give more information that narrowed down the search for the site of the last of the Saint Murders and earn the gratitude of Madame d’Argeneauxand the respective Barons and earned each party member an answered question or a small boon.
Gifts & Fetishes
- Falcon’s Grasp
- Hidden Meaning
- Master of Fire
- Global Citizen
- Perfect Recall
- Speech of the World
- Helios’ Blessed Blade - The history of this fetish, and how Cyrus came to possess it, is currently unknown. What is known is that the weapon is currently corrupted, and that Cyrus is working to cleanse it.