Characters: Anansi

Real Name: Kweku/Anansi

Occupation: Agent of Chaos, Trickster, Keeper of Stories and Teller of Tales, Usurper

Identity: Most of the world believes Anansi to be a mythological character

Legal Status: Member of House Aduana

Place of Birth: Cityship of House Oludumare

Known Relatives: Nyame, the Supreme (father); Asase Ya, the Earth Mother (mother)

Group Affiliation: None

Powers and abilities: As side effect of the vast cosmic and interdimensional energies he was bathed in at the moment of his birth Anansi possesses the ability to warp reality (make any thought or desire come to fruition via rearrangement of the molecular structure of matter) on a limited scale. This ability is extremely taxing and is dependent of Anansi's level of concentration and physical strength.

Anansi is one of Earth's most powerful magic users able to manipulate and control esoteric (sometimes called magical) energies for a variety of effects. He possesses extrasensory abilities and is capable of astral projection and casting his thoughts across great distances. He can project immensely powerful force blasts using magic and manipulate many forms of extra-dimensional energy by invoking entities or objects of power existing in dimensions tangential to Earth's through the recitation of spells (sequential sonic vibrations).

Anansi is an accomplished shapeshifter and can change into animals (real or mythical and varying in size) or impersonate other people. He is also adept at casting illusions vast and convincing enough to fool thousands of individuals at a time.

Anansi possesses a keen mind and is an expert at determining the desires and weaknesses of others. This makes him an expert manipulator and schemer. He is also a competent hand to hand combatant having studied from House Oludumare and House Aduana warmasters from a young age.

Brieft Personal History: Most of the populace of Earth is unaware that many of the beings that have been revered as gods throughout man's history are in fact the ruling houses of incredibly powerful beings that took refuge in this reality to escape the death of their own dimension. One such ruling house was House Aduana; allies to House Oludumare, who escaped destruction aboard House Oludumare's dimension travelling cityship. The two Houses had long shared bonds of friendship even though House Aduana was thought by many to be in decline, losing much status and power. House Aduana was led by Skyfather Nyame and Mother Asase Ya -- who was about to give birth to a child just as the ship entered the portal between dimensions, headed for their new home, Earth.

As House Oludumare's cityship emerged from the breach a royal son was born and named "Kweku" in honor of the last day of their old home and the first day of the new. Kweku; first of an old race to be born in a new dimension -- Kweku, who was bathed in extradimensional energy at birth, which added to his already long list of powerful abilities.

House Oludumare built its new home in an area of what is now West Africa (other Houses landed on and colonized other areas of the planet) and House Aduana became a ward House under Oludumare's gracious patronage. As a side effect of the rift in the fabric reality the newcomers opened in near Earth space, the planet became a target of creatures from dark and terrible dimensions. These creatures had long mastered the manipulation and use of "esoteric energies" and it fell to House Oludumare to learn those disciplines and use their mastery in Earth's defense. This was how House Oludumare of West Africa became masters of magic -- and worshipped as gods.

Kweku grew up as a "godling" in House Oludumare's grand citadel and would often go out among the surrounding humans and delight them with his ability to change bodily form -- his favorite form being that of a giant spider. His ability to project another's consciousness into illusions he cast made him a much sought after storyteller. He was a prankster and a trickster who loved the attention and adulation of others. The cheers helped him forget that he would never be as favored as children of the Oludumare. The applause helped to block out the words of the Oludumare godlings who jeered him for his love of spiders. Mockingly they called him "Anansi" -- the Spider.

As the years went on Kweku and the Olodumare godlings began instruction in magic. Kweku excelled faster than most of his peers and became even more knowledgeable and skilled than his instructors but kept that information a secret. At night he would sneak out and practice his skills on the poor humans who had cheered him as a child. His natural ability for magic and secretive nature earned Kweku no friends among those his age and presented him with a rival -- the young and gifted human student Apara (who would grow to become the hero Oba). Kweku played many secret and vindictive pranks on his classmates with Apara being his most frequent target. As the years went by his resentment and malice grew.

When Apara was saved from death by Olodumare, Olorun and Olofi and given the rank of Emissary and Protector, Kweku was so angered that he went to his father Nyame and tried to convince him that it was time for House Aduana to strike out on its own and find a place in the world away from the shadow of Oludumare. Nyame agreed that House Aduana should find its own place but did not think it was time. This enraged Kweku, leading to a rift that led him to the next phase of his life.

When Kao declared war against all humanity he split the pantheons of gods asunder and many flocked to his banner. Kweku joined Kao's army and changed his name to Anansi. As Anansi he was one of Kao's most notorious generals and finally allowed the world to see the powerful and fearsome magic user he truly was. He also used his shape-changing abilities as a spy and saboteur, crippling the enemy's offensives. During the war Anansi actively sought out members of House Oludumare on the battlefield and slayed many of his former classmates. He became so infamous that many Houses placed a bounty on his head and his clashes with Shango, prince of the Oludumare, and his former classmate Oba, became the stuff of legend.

Eventually Kao and his followers were defeated and Anansi was imprisoned within the citadel of his childhood. With the war over, Nyame successfully petitioned for House Aduana's liberation and accepted responsibility for Anansi's continued punishment. House Aduana left the Oludumare citadel and moved north where they eventually attached themselves to migrants who had settled in the area of what is now called Ghana and were worshipped as gods by those who lived there.

Anansi played the role of the penitent prisoner and was freed by his forgiving father. The Spider promptly repaid his father's mercy by usurping the throne and inciting war between neighboring nations. Forces loyal to Nyame helped the Skyfather regain the throne and thus began a centuries spanning cycle of battle for control of House Aduana. In the tales told of this struggle Anansi became a trickster hero (this is because many of the stories were started and spread by Anansi himself).

Around the 1300's, Anansi convinced fellow former Kao devotee Eshu (of House Oludumare) to join him in a plot to punish their respective Houses and those who worshipped them. Together they pooled their incredible mystical energies and trapped both pantheons in a pocket dimensional prison that sapped their life forces and forced all into a state of living death. The timing for such a victory could not be worse as it left those who worshipped the imprisoned gods defenseless when the Transatlantic Slave Trade began.

Makeda the Warrior Woman led a coalition of other gods of the African continent to exact vengeance on the perpetrators, leaving both on the brink of death. Anansi and Eshu fled and were not seen for centuries. Presumably both gods were recuperating from their near mortal injuries.

Anansi resurfaced in the 20th Century and although he has mostly played the part of the errant playboy, he is believed to be the instigator behind much instability and strife on the African continent, playing governments and factions against each other for his own entertainment. When the Houses of Oludumare and Aduana were freed in 1970, Anansi produced an ensorcelled Eshu, who "confessed" that the betrayal of both Houses was his doing and produced "evidence" that Anansi was his unwitting pawn and victim.

Once again Anansi escaped justice.

Recently Anansi has turned his attention to T.A.S.K. as his longtime foes Oba, Makeda and Django (the son of Shango) are all members.

Written by Damion Gonzales
Character design by Sean Isaakse