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Sapphire Styx (Wolverine enemy) (Marvel Comics) in white

Sapphire Styx


Power Level:
Game system: DC Heroes Role-Playing Game
  • While she is a very minor character, she received unusual exposure by being in a famous Wolverine story in 1988.
  • She is also an archetype – the life-draining femme fatale – and can thus be useful for GMs who want that archetype in a story.

Background

  • Real Name: ’Sapphire Styx‘ is likely a pseudonym
  • Marital Status: Unrevealed
  • Known Relatives: None
  • Group Affiliation: Former employee of Roche
  • Base Of Operations: Madripoor
  • Height: 5’5” Weight: 110 lbs
  • Eyes: Unrevealed Hair: Red (possibly dyed)


Powers and Abilities

Styx is a mutant lifeforce vampire. Her kiss drains life (that is, BODY), and if her victim is tough enough to survive this he will likely be weakened, disoriented and dizzy (Numb). One kiss nearly finished off Wolverine, and left him too weak to fight off Razor-Fist II.

At one point she appears to draw life force through her palms on Tyger Tiger’s face, but I have assumed that was to avoid depicting Sapphire kissing a woman.

Furthermore, Styx can capitalise on the extra lifeforce she gains to make herself look very healthy, sensual, magnetic, attractive, etc. giving her significant power over men by gaining Attractive and some extra AUR. She can also gain superhuman strength and regenerative durability after ’feeding‘ – to his surprise, Wolverine discovered he could not break the grip of the petite Sapphire.

She arranges to always be beautiful, and seems to enjoy having superhuman STR, perhaps to gain a sense of security and power in the mean Madripoor streets.


History

Sapphire Styx (likely a stage name of sorts) is a femme fatale, moll and mercenary working within the Madripoor underworld. She was first seen in the late 1980s, when she had thrown her lot with the then-dominant crimelord of the Asian island, Roche.

Heart of the Wolverine

When Wolverine started becoming a thorn in Roche’s side, he sicced Sapphire and Razor-Fist at him. Ambulating in the sordid Madripoor streets in a slit dress and high heels, Styx accosted Wolverine, vaguely passing herself as some sort of prostitute or escort and trying to hook him in. When he attempted to brush her off and get away, she forced a kiss on him.

Wolverine became one of the very few people to ever survive Sapphire’s kiss (possibly the first), though he was left so dazed and weakened that he was an easy prey for Razor-Fist, who beat him up and captured him. Wolverine was held on a rack and tortured for a while by one of Roche’s men.

Fascinated by Wolverine’s superhuman regenerative durability (a limitless font of lifeforce) and the feral quality of said lifeforce, Styx repeatedly kissed him whilst he was held prisoner (which also freed her of the likely daily chore of having to charge up), helping weaken him for torture sessions.

Razor-Fist, respecting Wolverine’s warrior spirit, eventually facilitated his escape to give him a clean death, and the seeming corpse was thrown over a cliff. Wolverine, of course, survived.

Eye of the Tyger

He then allied himself with up-and-coming crime boss Tiger Tyger, and together they stormed Roche’s estate to free an ally ; bursting into the torture cell, Tiger Tyger shot Sapphire in the back with her M3.

Re-channeling the extra life force she had Vampirised, Sapphire recovered from the attack and started manhandling Tiger with her still-superhuman STR, but her opponent resisted and bit her throat as Styx started draining her life force.

Tiger then clubbed her with a burning poker to the face, but the delayed shock from the lifeforce drain then took effect. Roche’s torturer helped Sapphire leave the room, and she thus escaped the downfall of Roche. Sapphire then likely used her lifeforce-stealing abilities to fully heal the damage to her face.

Sapphire Styx continued operating in Madripoor – at one point she stole something from Tiger Tyger, who sent Wolverine to recover it. Wolverine easily succeeded and brought back Styx and the box ; Tyger said ’arrangements’ had been made for Styx, but declined to specify.


Description

On some panels, Sapphire looks like an Asian female with dyed hair ; on some others she looks white. Her height is hard to tell – she always look slightly shorter than most men she’s seen next to, from Wolverine to guys with a more average height.


Personality

A fairly cruel and selfish criminal and parasite, with a debased sense of fun. It is possible she was driven to crime due to her apparent need of victims to feed off of. She tends to assume no one ever resists her charm – even with Wolverine, though she was probably jonesing for another sip of his unique lifeforce.


Quotes

“Stranger, this doesn’t seem to be your night. But who can tell, perhaps your luck’s about to change ? You know what they say about nothing ventured, nothing gained.”

“Such a pity Sapphire Styx doesn’t take ’no’ for an answer.”

“Oh lordy, it’s such a waste to leave you at Roche’s tender mercies. I’ve never tasted such a powerful, primal essence. If I dared defy him, I’d steal you for my very own.”

Roche: “Sapphire, I leave our ’guest‘ to your tender mercies.”
Styx: “Roche, you *do* know the way to win a girl’s heart.”


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Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

Tell me more about the game stats

Sapphire

Dex: 04 Str: 02 Bod: 04 Motivation: Mercenary
Int: 04 Wil: 04 Min: 05 Occupation: Mercenary, vamp
Inf: 04 Aur: 04 Spi: 04 Resources {or Wealth}: 004
Init: 012 HP: 015

Powers:
Invulnerability: 04, Numb: 14, Power Reserve (see below): 10, Regeneration: 01, Vampirism: 10

Skills:
Charisma (Persuasion): 04, Detective (Legwork): 04

Advantages:
Area Knowledge (Madripoor)

Connections:
Underworld (Low)

Drawbacks:
Styx may have a physical need (or addiction) to drain lifeforce to sustain herself


Transylvanian concubine

Sapphire’s energy draining kiss is quite potent, and she gets to use the ’overflow‘ RAPs in interesting ways through her Power Reserve. The offensive part of her power works as follow:

  • Vampirism and Numb are Combined, with Vampirism as the primary Power within the array. However, this is her kiss, which can only be a non-combat action (though she can, and will, kiss people by surprise. Use the Difficulty Table to assess the penalty to OV for the target, depending of the amount of surprise and resistance of the target – most straight men are likely to have an hefty penalty, especially if she has Attractive on).
    A willing, or completely surprised (GM’s call) subject will be attacked against RV/RV rather than OV/RV, and in this instance Sapphire gets to use her three Powers as their own AV – otherwise she uses her straight DEX.
  • Neither Vampirism nor Numb has Range, obviously
  • The primary Power in the array – Vampirism – is able to pump the ’overflow‘ RAPs into Power Reserve. For instance, if she has taken 1 RAP to her BODY but then drains 5 APs of BODY using Vampirism, she heals her BODY RAP then gets 4 ’overflow‘ RAPs in her Power Reserve. Her Power Reserve does the following things:
    • Its normal level is zero – it has to be fed via overflow RAPs from Vampirism. The APs in her Power Reserve last for about 12 hours until they fade.
    • The APs can be pumped into any Physical Attribute, but there are caps – no more than 1 extra AP in DEX, than 5 extra APs in STR, than 3 extra APs in BODY. Note that the APs can also be pumped into BODY to replace lost RAPs if she is wounded – just as if they had just been absorbed through Vampirism.
    • The APs can be pumped into any Mystical Attribute, with a cap of 2 APs for any one of those.
    • The APs can be pumped into Invulnerability and Regeneration – however when she does so it ’burns’ those APs within a single Phase – whilst anywhere else they would last for the normal 12 hours.
    • Power Reserve can even be used to gain the Attractive Advantage – this takes up two APs from her Power Reserve, and lasts for the normal twelve hours. This is usually the first thing she does when she fills her Power Reserve.

Sapphire usually operates with 6 APs in her Power Reserve (she’ll vamp a few schmucks before she starts working, I suppose – probably prisoners kept by her employer) – which she uses for Attractive and a STR of 06.


Design Notes

Her Powers array looks more complicated than expected once written down, but it’s actually quite straightforward.

The Charisma and Detective stuff is here for people with house rules about Unskilled Character Interaction.


By Sébastien Andrivet

Source of Character: Marvel Universe

Helper(s): Darci, Chris Cottingham (for knowing how to use the Powers I designed better than I do…), Gareth Lewis

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