Artwork by Shi
Some more background material for Makiwa - by Mak's Still Unpaid Rambling Narrator.
Old as the hills and young at heart. More precisely - as old as his toes and a bit older than his teeth.1)
Size: Smallish. Not that he's small, it's just that the world is big.
Appearance: Short and wiry. His skin almost the colour of Mopane wood, if a little darker.
Personality: Mostly charming and polite. Given to occasional profanity under the influence of incredulity.
- Wordy. Likes words and usually has too many around to fit in any given space
- Has discovered alcoholic
beverages on the Island and likes them. A lot.
- Will mix 'cocktails' without even being given an excuse to.
- Suffers fools gladly, as long as they're buying drinks.2)
Physical Traits: Creaky knees that sometimes make loud cracking noises, usually at the most inopportune moment.
Makiwa becomes a Joker. An odd Joker to be sure. Instead of the usual Victorian type gentlemen, his Witch Doctor persona has emerged. He is a Muti Man. 'Muti', he explains with a vague wave of his hand, means medicine.
The white of his right eye is now permanently tinged green. The pupil of his left eye occasionally flashes green when he is aroused, angered3), adrenaline pumped, seriously amused, or drunk.
On becoming a Joker, Horatio saw fit to reunite him with his knobkerrie. It is made of Mopane wood. It is as long as a walking cane. He's not sure whether they were there before but it has strange intricate markings snaking it's length. He has no idea why this polished cane with a knob on the end was returned to him but is most glad of it. It was always with him, before this place and time. It is a part of him, an old friend and a formidable weapon.
As a Joker his manner remains friendly, open and polite. He holds dear a firm belief in manners and etiquette, notions that he understands are slightly old fashioned. He finds it difficult to converse with people without knowing their names and so, most often, will initiate proper introductions.
For a time he habitually wore a leather loincloth, fashioned from the hide of a velocaraptor. Clothes, he used think, are so restrictive. After a couple of visits to Soup and Pants he now wears a pair of baggy trousers with yellow and red diamond patterns, as he no longer needs to be as agile4) as he once was. He also found a burgundy coloured waistcoat with two small pockets at the front. The new attire helps a lot as mad Dan keeps sending him to Cyber City where the cold does not suit him at all. He owns a suit5) and will wear it when occasion demands. Recently he has also been seen making use of a pale blue mohair poncho, which doubles up as a cushion when folded just so. He'll wear the poncho over his head only when the cold becomes unbearable because, he says, it makes him itchy, irritable and angry for no apparent reason. Don't ask6)7).
Perpetually slung across one shoulder is a battered leather satchel stained with who knows what from who knows where and probably best not to ask. If you were to look inside it's improbably spacious interior you would find a pristine bowler hat, only ever been worn once8). A neatly pressed white suit, the sort that might be worn to a wedding, worn once9). A box of green tea. A small animal skin pouch containing some silver bone shaped items. A pair of dice which seem to glare at him balefully whenever he looks into his satchel. A deck of cards, slightly used. Various twigs, leaves and roots. A shiny green marble, traded from Maria. A small red flask. A fine 'raptor skin bound notebook made for him by Mister Sir Nuke. And, sometimes, a paper bag with some humbugs. Proudly displayed and pinned to the strap is his SAVOR clan badge.
On the thumb of his left hand he wears a smooth silvery white ring made of Lanthanum because, well, that's the only digit it fits.
He sports three tattoos all of which have recently faded into his skin and are rarely visible. Covering almost all his back is a tree with the words Stand Sure underneath. A star covers his heart and a snake winds around his right forearm, its head on the back of his hand. Currently it is sleeping.
He keeps a pen in his nose because he likes to keep it handy for writing notes.10) It also acts as a reasonable filter for the foul smelling ointment that he regularly applies to his knees.
Makiwa remembers everything that happens to him on the Island despite, or because of, his changing race.
Although dimly aware that he has endured a number of former life spans before the Island, he finds no memory of them at all. Until his race changed to that of a Joker that is. Since becoming a Joker some things are gradually returning. Memories. Not memories only of people or places but actions, reactions, disastrous recipes, botanical chemistry and certain skills. And smells. Bloody awful stinky pong, ghastly, obnoxious, eye watering champion supreme kind of smells11)
He also awoke with the realisation the he was a Witch Doctor. Caster and remover of hexes. Spellbinder in matters of love, luck and loss of memory. Applicator of herbal liniments, tinctures and ointments for curing everything from Quester's Foot, abnormal sweating, wart curing to sprained wrists of those who have been loving themselves a little too much, and many other things besides. It occurs to him that he may also have been a personal physician to witches.12). He has begun experimenting with elemental magic. To his chagrin, he is acutely aware that he is utterly hopeless at most of the above.13) Except for the warts. He's good at warts.
He is attempting to make a brew which he vaguely remembers making before. A beer, of sorts, with healing properties. He is calling it Chibux which, he knows, is not the proper name but fits well enough for now. His success with the brew is thus far limited as he is still experimenting with unfamiliar ingredients. As yet it has no healing power that he is aware of and is only marginally palatable. But he perseveres. He now has a box of green tea given to him by clan leader Shiloh. He suspects that this might be a missing ingredient needed to make a successful brew and is eager to try it out.
After his first encounter with The Drive he discovered a small animal skin pouch in his satchel. Opening it he found a small shiny silver object shaped like a small bone. After each subsequent Drive Kill the pouch contains another bone. If he shakes the bag and holds it to his ear an eerie ethereal song can be heard, indistinct and just out of reach of his understanding. As the number of bones in the bag increase the clearer the song seems to become. He sometimes sits and ponders the meaning of the bag with the small bones, shaking it and listening. Inevitably he'll just shrug and put them away again, until the next Drive Kill.
Makiwa is inducted as Mage Knight and joins the other Knights at The Dectagonal Table.
So, there you are and there, if you will, have it. If you find yourself wandering the jungles at night and come across a small camp fire, you may find the Witch Doctor Makiwa sitting by that fire brewing his beer potion. Introduce yourself and he may offer you a drink, providing that he feels it won't make you violently ill, turn your skin purple or make your hair fall out. Alternatively he may just share some friendly conversation and a humbug or two and also, if the need arises, cure your warts.