18 (First appearance: 17)
Unnamed Mother (birth-mother)
Moku the Earth Snake (grand-father) (deceased)
Lightfoot (nest-sister) (deceased)
Ramirez Bloodeyes (nest-brother)
Rhea Snaketail is the main protagonist of Slightly Damned. She was an approximately 18-year-old Jakkai who was murdered shortly before the story starts with her being judged by "Death" in the Afterlife. She is judged to be slightly too far south of neutral to qualify for Purgatory so she is assigned to the Ring of the Slightly Damned, outside of Hell. Once there, she meets the friendly Demon, Buwaro, and his slightly less friendly siblings, Sakido and Iratu.
After many months in Hell, she escapes with Buwaro and is resurrected. The pair go on to encounter the oddly shy Warrior Angel, Kieri Suizahn and travel across Fragaria together searching for Kieri's brother, Kazai.
Rhea appears much like most Jakkai, but with a tail that is much longer than normal, earning her the name "Snaketail" when she was born. Her eyes are yellow/gold like a cat and the fur patterns on her cheeks have a jagged triangle pattern. She wears a long-sleeved white shirt under a blue vest, light blue shorts and is mostly seen with cloth padding wrapped around her lower legs (metatarsus) using a thin strand of rope. Her hair color is brown/grey like all Jakkai but styled into a ponytail with a blue hair band.
During the winter she wears a red winter coat with wool cuffs and a wool zipper line. She seems to wear it even while having her winter fur coat.
Her golden yellow eyes are described by her biological father, Moonshade, as "eyes like the sun" and to be a trait Rhea has inherited from her biological mother.
Rhea is often kind, but sometimes can be cruel; she is always self-centered. She has a dark sense of humor that often involves teasing and laughing at other people's faults or mistakes, perhaps to draw attention away from her own. As part of this, she is reasonably good at reading people and can use that to manipulate them; however, she can still become frustrated by other people's ignorance or stupidity. Despite appearing cynical and brash, she has a good heart and can usually be counted on to always do the right thing when the stakes are high enough.
Rhea has natural leadership abilities and takes her responsibilities seriously, sometimes acting like an overprotective older sister. As the unofficial leader of the group of her, Kieri and Buwaro, she always tries to keep them on track, motivated and moving as fast as possible, even if she has to use unethical means to do it (like hiding that they are being hunted by a crazed Demon bent on revenge from their travelling companions). She becomes annoyed with herself when she, herself, slows them down by falling ill after doing a good deed.
Rhea has an almost pathological tendency to keep secrets. She always holds her cards close to the vest, even from her immediate friends who may find the information useful, or would help share the burden. She seems determined to keep her thoughts and burdens to herself unless forced to reveal her hand by circumstances. The reasons for this can vary between, perhaps misguidedly, trying to avoid spoiling other people's good moods with bad news and just hiding her own insecurities from being judged the same way she judges others.
Unlike most Jakkai in her village, Rhea is not very religious and also considers the place to be boring. Rhea experienced a traumatic event where one of her nest-sisters died when she was young, it wasn't her fault but she blamed herself and it broke her faith in religion when praying didn't help prevent it. This attitude left her at constant odds with Stonepaw, one of the village elders, as Rhea stopped caring about the village traditions and ceremonies.
Initially, Rhea was afraid of Demons since arriving in the Ring of the Slightly Damned and traveling to the inner parts of Hell, even after meeting Buwaro before hand she would be hesitant into going into areas where Demons or other dangerous beings would be. Overtime she seems to have become desensitized to the idea that all Demons are as scary as some she encountered and while she'll still be spooked on occasion by even friendly Demons like Sahne, she'll be quick to relax after a brief moment with them. It has gotten to a point where some of the things that Demons do, while terrifying, she now finds underwhelming given everything she has seen or experienced in her life.
Rhea clearly prefers Human culture over her own, probably because they seem less judgmental and conformist. Her favorite food is rabbit.
Powers and Abilities
Earth Magic: Rhea is capable of using Earth Magic, albiet one spell. Jakkai are not very proficient in magic and she is no exception. Early on the amount of effort it takes to muster enough power to cast spells was somewhat taxing, however when angered she seems to cast spells with little effort. Lately her ability to cast spells has extended to being able to use a standard variation of Terra Spike during a fight and then use a weaker version of it during the same fight. It's possible though that Rhea may have more magic power in her than normal Jakkai according to how Meeros described his explanation of the average Median and their magic powers.
- Terra Spike: By punching into the ground (usually with both hands) the caster is able to cause a barrage of rock spikes to erupt from the ground. The spell can only work on solid ground as the spell is useless on frozen surfaces (such as a frozen lake).
Guardian Magic: As a descendant of a Guardian, Rhea is able to access various abilities that normal Medians would be unable to utilize. Due to her lack of skill in magic she was unable to take advantage of this gift, especially after her death by the hands of Moonshade. After drinking a vial of the Yellow Potion, her connection to the power of the bloodline was restored meaning she could potentially use this power for herself.
- Partial Snake Transformation: As with all descendants, Rhea is able to transform into the animal form of whatever Guardian she is related to. However, unlike with Moonshade or Cliff, her transformation was shown to be incomplete as only a few parts of her body were changed during her first time obtaining it. Her eyes, while glow bright-yellow, also become snake-like. She grows two small snake fangs, her mouth becomes fork-like as with a snake (which in turn give her a lisp) and most of her tail loses fur in place of green-scales.
Blue Potion-Induced State: After consuming a certain amount of the Blue Potion from the Rainbow Reverie, her speed is increased depending on how much she ingests. While in this state, her eyes glow blue.
- Immense Speed: After ingesting a vial's worth of the potion, Rhea's speed is increased to the point where she can outrun Buwaro while in his Berserk State. She is also able to catch Demons off-guard if they are unable to react fast enough, including veteran Demons like Dakos. It can be assumed that after a short amount of time the effects will wear off, leaving her drained of energy.
- Improved Strength: While naturally stronger than most Humans, with the increase in speed it is possible for any physical blows she causes to inflict more damage if they are not able to brace for such an attack; as first demonstrated when she punched Lazuli in the chest at high speed which left her coughing for a bit due to the impact she felt without any guard.
Yellow Potion-Induced State: After consuming a certain amount of the Yellow Potion from the Rainbow Reverie, her magic power is said increased depending on how much she ingests. Upon drinking it however, she started having some strange side-effects happen to her. Side-effects that, based on how Moonshade said shortly after feeling her magic power, involve her reconnecting with the power of her bloodline.
- Improved Magic Potency: As per the effects of the potion, Rhea's magic power and overall potency increases exponentially, beyond what she normally is capable of, thus improving whatever spells she knows.
- Enhanced Terra Spike: Rhea's most commonly used spell increases in power where it no longer causes just one rock pillar to form, but a multitude of spikes that are the size and scale to that of what Moonshade can create in his Guardian form. It's strong enough to severely injure a large Berserk Demon like Lazuli.
- Immense Magic Power: After ingesting a vial's worth of the potion, Rhea's magic power is increased to a point where her Terra Spike spell appears roughly on level with that of a Guardian-powered being like Moonshade, and even then it's a considerable large leap in power for any Jakkai.
Hand-to-hand Combatant: Rhea has shown to have some proficiency in close-range combat, whether it involves having to get up and bite someone, be able to punch or even kick in mid-air. Her strength is better than that of most Humans and with enhancements can even harm Demons.
Sewing: Rhea has shown some skill in sewing, as she helped Sammy in creating hand puppets of Buwaro and Kieri. She even started making one for "Death", though the eye kept popping out.
Overall Abilities: While she considers herself to not be a fighter, she will often force herself into the fray if her life or the life of others depend on it. At best she is most useful for hunts or if she is needed to take on another Median in some instances. Against Demons she is mostly ineffective head-on, unless of course her abilities are enhanced through certain means; however she uses her intellect to manage her options at least in aiding her friends.
Enhanced Strength: As a Jakkai, Rhea is naturally stronger than most Humans. Despite her size she is capable of overpowering most Human-sized beings, including Demons if she is able to catch them off-guard (though easier with weaker Demons like Buwaro). And with Rhea's tail being the way it is, it enables her to lift heavy objects or even cause harm to others.
Enhanced Flexibility: With her long tail, Rhea is able to hang from trees and it is very prehensile and strong, working like another arm. True to her name, she can use it to constrict or grab like a snake does with its coils, and she can even stand on her tail to look taller than she really is. This usually places her at around Kieri's height, about 5'3. It is even strong enough to hold off a tail swipe from a Water Demon. Another use for the tail is that she can wield weapons, such as a scythe or a sword, and use it to attack should she need to from behind.
Enhanced Durability: Despite her size she is shown to be able to take a lot of damage, even from a Demon (so long as they are not in a Berserk State). She has been cut or scratched by such like Abyset but still be able to cling onto him without exhaustion. She also took a blow from a Berserk Demon like Lazuli (and just after losing energy from the aftereffects of a potion), tumbled about and survived to still be able to move a bit.
Enhanced Magic Power: Rhea appears to be a descendant of Moku the Snake, given recent revelations by Moonshade that she is his daughter and their bloodline is that of a Guardian. While she has always displayed the average skill and proficiency that a Jakkai has in magic, Meeros has found her to be quite different from the "average run-of-the-mill Median" and nearly compared her to Cliff. It is likely that despite her limitations she maybe capable of achieving a higher degree of magic versus other Jakkai and because she had a major boost in magic power (thanks to a magic potion) she has reconnected with the power of the bloodline and likely giving her access to Guardian Magic.
Keen Senses: As a Jakkai, Rhea is born with sensory capabilities that make her a natural-born and experienced hunter. Thus she's capable of tracking someone by scent, as shown when she was able to pinpoint the location of Jake using his scent despite not seeing him for a long period of time. Rhea is also to track someone from a far-off distance through sound (such as the sound of Kieri crying) by closing her eyes which increases her hearing greatly. She was also able to hear the sounds of crying coming from the egg Cliff received (though while not aware it was the egg at the time) while it was still far from hatching. Because of her relations to one of the Guardians, she is able to feel disturbances in the magic of the world whenever something happens to one of them. Furthermore, after returning to life, it would seem she is able to see 'Death' while in Medius as he is normally invisible to them.
Scythe: Rhea received a scythe from a farmer she helped while Demons were attacking St. Curtis. She was seen carrying it by her tail and had wanted to use it in case of any fights, such as during a confrontation with Lazuli in which she was able to cut her with it. It was broken after getting caught in a free-for-all with the Demons.
Ramirez is one of Rhea's childhood friends and nest-brothers. They chose their names from the same fairytale of a pirate Ramirez who fought a monster Gal'Rhea. When they grew up, they moved into the same house together. During a celebration honoring Fuzen'Ro the Bat, when Rhea got into an argument with the Village Elder, Rhea stormed off after the Elder threatened to banish her, and only Ramirez went after her to try and persuade her to come back.
Ramirez likely witnessed Rhea's murder and was deeply affected by it, since he was the one who gave her a coin to pay the ferryman into her afterlife. Perhaps feeling responsible for Rhea's death, Ramirez left their village and went off to study medicine.
Jake Thorndyke, known as Jay to his friends, was another of Rhea's childhood friends due to her village being nearby Jay's hometown. She, Jay, and Ramirez got along well, and despite Jay not being allowed into the Jakkai Village, Rhea and Jay were close friends and seemed to have gotten into trouble together.
After leaving with Buwaro and Kieri on a journey, Rhea and Jay kept in touch through letters until they met up again in St. Curtis where Jay confronted her about her death and how she didn't tell him. Despite this little lie by omission, Jay didn't hold it against Rhea and they went out to party during the Flower Festival.
Rhea and Buwaro have a rather dynamic relationship that soon grew into a sibling-like bond, especially after Sakido's death. Buwaro was originally assigned to be Rhea's demonic supervisor, but his klutzy and somewhat stupid personality, as well as his hugging often rubbed Rhea the wrong way.
Even so, they became very close and consider each other family. Rhea cares for Buwaro deeply and feels responsible for him, but she still likes to tease him every now and then.
Rhea met Sakido not long after she was sentenced to the Ring of the Slightly Damned. Rhea helped Sakido become closer with Buwaro while Sakido helped Rhea adjust to her afterlife and understand Buwaro better. Despite this closeness they developed, Sakido was not above killing Rhea for her criticizing her poetry (being in Hell Rhea just came back to life the next day).
Sakido risked everything to get Buwaro and Rhea out of Hell, including her life. Rhea honored Sakido's sacrifice by promising to look after Buwaro.
Rhea didn't have much interaction with Iratu when they first met in Hell, partly because Iratu was drunk the first time they met. When they met again in St. Curtis, Iratu threatened to kill her if she got in his way.
When they first met, Kieri was in the form of a snow rabbit due to being cursed by Guardian Toski the Rabbit, and Rhea thought Kieri was just a rabbit until she saw her transform into her true angel self. After helping her when they were confronted by Lazuli and Talus, Rhea got Kieri's full story and chose to help her find her brother Kazai.
They share a dynamic relationship similar but different to the one she has with Buwaro. but they have both grown to care for each other, Kieii once stating Rhea was like a sister to her.
Moonshade is a Jakkai with an unusually long tail just like Rhea, and he is her killer (or at least involved with her murder). Even more stranger is that they are relatives and supposed Descendants of Moku the Snake, and Moonshade's motive for killing Rhea was to insure "the bloodline ends with [him]". It was later revealed that Moonshade is Rhea's father.
They had their first face-to-face meeting (not including Rhea's murder) at the Coiled Cobra Bar where Azurai asked Rhea if she knew him. Moonshade was sleeping and did not actually see Rhea but she felt a strange familiarity from Moonshade as well as something that made her very wary of him.
|Members||Buwaro Elexion • Kieri Suizahn • Jake "Jay" Thorndyke|
|Pets||Crunky • Fritz • Sugar • Thadius †|
|Allies||Sinclair Family • Tamis Family|
|Members||Rhea Snaketail • Buwaro Elexion • Kieri Suizahn|
|Locations||Riverside City • St. Curtis|
|Retired||Heathcliff "Cliff" Sinclair • Duster (unofficially)|
|Notable Jakkai||Rhea Snaketail • Moonshade • Lightfoot • Stonepaw • Ramirez Bloodeyes • Thunderheart • Riverside Jakkai Shopkeeper|