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Shining Knight (Ystina of Camelot) (7 Soldiers) (DC Comics)

Shining Knight

(Ystina / Justina)


Power Level:
Game system: DC Heroes Role-Playing Game

Never was there once nothing
And everything once was
Not dead but still and ready to be born anew
Looking back now it all
Seems so clear
Like staring so long unseeing for someone to light inside a
Darkened room.


Context

Seven Soldiers was an epic Grant Morrison metaseries for DC Comics, in 2005-2006. It features a motley ensemble of minor characters who find themselves in a position to save humanity without quite knowing it. The themes of this series would continue in much of Morrison’s DC work, up to and including Final Crisis .

Not that much is known about this bearer of the Shining Knight “position” at DC’s version of King Arthur’s Round Table. Which in a way is convenient, because this story came with tremendous revelations about the history of humanity on New Earth. We’ll discuss those here, of course.

Like most of our Seven Soldiers- related material, this profile:

  1. Has ugly S P O I L E R S to a fantastic series.
  2. Assumes that you are reading multiple Seven Soldiers profiles. The information about the overall plot is *way* less scattered and cryptic than it is in the series, but it still has to be presented only in the profiles where it is the most relevant.

Both spellings (Justin/Ystin or Justina/Ystina) are used interchangeably in this profile.


Background

  • Real Name: Ystina (often spelled Justina), knighted as Sir Justin (or Sir Ystin) the Shining Knight
  • Marital Status: Single
  • Known Relatives: None
  • Group Affiliation: Former Knight of Camelot (or Knight of the Broken Table), student at the H.S. Johnson School for Heroes
  • Base Of Operations: H.S. Johnson School for Heroes (which looks Californian in architecture)
  • Height: 5’8” Weight: 128 lbs
  • Eyes: Blue Hair: Black


Powers and Abilities

“Justin” comes from a mythical age of man. As a result she is stronger, tougher, fiercer and better coordinated than any normal human of her age. Even as a teenager she could snap a pair of modern handcuffs without too much trouble. She also learned to use handguns within seconds (the game stats assume she could do the same with other unfamiliar weapons).

The adult men of her time were huge. Thus, she likely will grow well above 6’ and acquire Amazonian proportions.

Though “he” was but a squire, “Justin” trained in secret for years to be as proficient as a real knight. She demonstrated superior, err, swordsgirlship and meleeing ability. She managed to superbly hold her own against Gloriana Tenebræ herself.

Ystina also seems to be highly intelligent. Before the ghost of Ali Ka-Zoom magically taught her English, she managed to figure out a lot of things from context (the function of policemen, for instance). She generally coped with everything just fine despite being a feverishly idealistic teenager.

Mythical

The Knight seems to have superior recuperative power. She could withstand, and recover from, a Sheeda poisoned dagger being thrust into her abdomen quickly and without complications. However, it is possible that it didn’t penetrate her armour much.

Ystina came from a time when the rule of Arthur was so absolute the virii and bacteria obeyed his royal orders and left people alone. Apparently this pact is still active for whoever survived from that era. Since Justin did not immediately succumb to a host of diseases her body couldn’t possibly have any immunisation against.

Shining Knight (Ystina) (DC Comics) face closeup fist raised

I’ve assumed she is also exceptionally long-lived. You know how it is with mythical ages of man.

Coming from an age of glorious myth and humanity at its best, this young woman is both pure of heart and a perfect warrior. As a result, she will likely meet similar mystical requirements under most circumstances (such as, say, wielding the Marvel version of Thor’s Mjolnir).

She also might count as magical. She once touched the ghost of Ali Ka-Zoom, who only ever seemed solid when interacting with magical items and the dead. This last part is thoroughly hypothetical, though.

Lastly, the Shining Knight likely has the potential for truly epic deeds and quests. In DC Heroes RPG terms, one gets the impression she’ll be able to get past the 150 Hero Points  level in the Hero Points hierarchy.

Horsefeathers

Vanguard seems to have been the warhorse of sir Galahad. Since the surviving knights gave their last charge on foot, Galahad left it in care of the newly knighted Sir Justin. Justin asked the horse if she could ride it into the final battle on Castle Revolving. Vanguard agreed, becoming her mount.

These horses are the descendant of the mythical Pegazeus (with a “z”). Their species are one of the few things that survived from the Camelot Ystina knew. They can be found in modern times on the “world’s battlements” (also known as the Himalaya).

The horses live in the ruins of the mythical city of Glorias. Glorias was harrowed by the Sheeda, along with its global empire, 42,000 years ago. It was the Camelot of its time. But having been sired by Pegazeus, the magical winged horses precede even Glorias.

As an apparent homage to Comet the Super-Horse, those horses can shoot laser eyebeams. Vanguard described his kin as being “much swifter than the fastest of your air boats” (which from the stories is an accurate description). Its kicks were powerful enough to affect Neh-Buh-Loh.

Somehow, the horses can protect their rider(s) even when flying at hypersonic speeds. They negate the friction, cold, lack of air, etc.


Additional context

Human civilizations in the DCU

In the DCU, humanity has been around for a looooong time. I think it was Gaiman  who introduced the notion that some great human civilisations predated the dinosaurs. We have known of distant Atlantises for quite a while, with anatomically modern humans populating one Atlantis a million years ago.

Yes, this may seem to clash with what we know about biology. But most of these modern-looking human in impossibly distant ages are the result of time travel, divine intervention, alien intervention or the like.

Shining Knight (Ystina) and Vanguard

One such intervention was both alien and divine. It took place when the New Gods of the Fourth World uplifted Neanderthals 40,000 years before Christ. The champion of that civilisation, Aurakles, is thought of as the first super-hero on DC Earth (excluding time travellers, obvs).

The Seven Soldiers series answers the question of why so little is left of the many great civilizations that existed during those millions, if not billions, of years. So it’s kinda like Mass Effect for Earth.

Seven imperishable treasures

Seven gifts were given to Aurakles by the New Gods, and the Shining Knight interacted with several of them. The destiny of the items seems controlled in small part by the Seven Unknown Men. Yet, they couldn’t do much about the Queen of Terror owning most of them.

As divine gifts to Earth’s heroes, the Treasures were meant to play an important role, symbolically and practically, in the history of mankind. In pratice they were largely confiscated and defaced by the Sheeda. Many – perhaps all – iterations of Camelot through mankind’s history involved some of the Treasures and attempts to reclaim the rest.

The Imperishable Treasures are:

  • The Sword. Gloriana Tenebræ took this sword from Aurakles (though she could not use it, and no Sheeda could). But the Shining Knight took it back and wields it as Caliburn. That’s short for its full title of Caliburn Ex Calibur.
  • The Cauldron (the Cauldron of Rebirth, the Undry Cauldron. the Crucible of Dagda, etc.) was also looted. It then stayed in Castle Revolving as a key artefact for the Last Kingdom of Man. The Shining Knight kicked it into the timestream and it landed in Slaughter Swamp at an unclear point in time.
    Its Waters of Life leaked out and later helped create Solomon Grundy. It was then found by Melmoth who used it to replace his own blood, but it was eventually stolen by Vincenzo Baldi (formerly Kid Scarface), who became the Undying Don. It is quite likely that the Cauldron was also the Holy Grail in some or all versions of Camelot.
  • The steed Pegazeus. Pegazeus was killed by the Sheeda during the Harrowing of 40,000 BC. But some of its descendants survived, finding refuge in the ruins of one of the four great cities of that time. Those horses and/or their descendants became the warhorses of the knights of the Camelot of 8,000 BC. Vanguard, the steed of the 8,000 BC Galahad and later of the 8,000 BC Shining Knight, is one such descendant.
    It is likely that Winged Victory, the horse of the first Shining Knight (of the Camelot of the VIth century in Britain), is a descendant of those horses. Perhaps it was a crossbreed, since Winged Victory was less powerful, not sentient or could not shoot eyebeams.
  • The Merlin sprite, made of living language. Merlin was the key to the powerful Spell of Seven. It was conjured and defeated by Zatanna, who later used it to seal the Spell of Seven.
  • The Spear wielded by Aurakles. The name of this weapon meant both “love” and “vengeance”. It could strike across time itself and fell a target many millennia in the future – because its blows would be carried out by the descendants of Aurakles. As it names implies it was both a physical weapon and an attribute of Aurakles’ bloodline.
    The Spear was thrown in distant prehistory by Aurakles, and the Spell of Seven made it possible for it to strike in 2005. The blow of the Spear was unwittingly carried out by the Bulleteer, a distant descendant of the world’s first super-hero.
  • The all-knowing Fatherbox. It existed in the form of two dice that form Croatoan, a super-computer that became the god of Limbo Town. One of the die laid in the subsecret portions of the New York subway network, on the Foundation Stone of the entire city. It was eventually found by the pirate kings of the subway and later fell into the possession of Klarion from Limbo Town.
    The other ended up in the possession of Misty Kilgore, the amnesiac daughter of the Last King of All Time.
  • The Hammer. Nothing is known about it. It may never have appeared in any DC Universe story.

The Round table in the DCU

In the Camelot of 10,000 years ago (8,000 BC), the seven knights who survived Arthur’s assault on Castle Revolving and later manned the last stand against the Sheeda were :

  1. Gawain the Silent Knight.
  2. Lancelot of the Long Arm.
  3. Caradoc the Strong.
  4. Peredur the Blind.
  5. Bors the Laughing Knight.
  6. Galahad the Giant Killer.
  7. Tristan the Fair, who died before the last stand could be made.

Since there were only six of them fighting, they could not realize the Spell of Seven. This, in some perverse way, gives weight to the regrets of Justin that she could not save them all. Had a seventh knight fought for Arthur, things may have dramatically changed.

Shining Knight (Ystina) (DC Comics) Last knights of the Broken Table

The last surviving Knights of the Broken Table.

Note that in the DCU, the Silent Knight (accompanied by a falcon) and the Shining Knight (riding a winged horse) seem to be “core” or “near-core” figures of Camelot. They presumably have appeared in most iterations of it just as Lancelot or Gawain did.

This makes the existence of two Shining Knights, both named Justin and riding a winged horse, and embodying fairly similar virtues, unsurprising. It is likely that the Arthurian literature in the DCU, including the best-known tales such as Chrétien de Troyes’s  work, include those additional knights.


History

Camelot is one of the Earth’s key myths, in one form of another. Like most such fundamental myths it occurs over and again.

The last known occurrence, the last known Arthur (ignoring the small echo around Aquaman, the King Arthur of an undersea mini-Camelot), was in the sixth Century. Survivors of that era include Jason Blood and the first Shining Knight, Sir Justin. This VIth Century Camelot seems to have been one of the small ones, at least in geopolitical terms.

No Camelot is known of between this one and the one 10,000 years ago.

The 8,000 BC iteration of Camelot

The 8,000 BC Camelot was much bigger. King Arthur ruled over all of Avalon, and Avalon encompassed all of Earth. It was a mythical time of men of great power, barrow-men tending their forges under the Earth, and winged horses.

The Sixth Century Camelot seemed to reflect what was described in Le Morte d’Arthur (itself a compilation of French and English texts), and was primarily a Christian myth. But the Camelot of ten millennia past was much more steeped in the Celtic myths.

Many of the knights seem semi-analogous to Celtic deities. For instance their Lancelot was called Lancelot of the Long Arm, and is quite reminiscent of Lugh Lámhfhada (“of the long hand”).

The Arthur of 10,000 years ago reclaimed several attributes of Aurakles’s kingdom. Guided by Merlin, they climbed up Mount Everest and found the ruins of Glorias. There they allied with the winged super-horses, bred of Pegazeus. Arthur found Caliburn Ex Calibur, and drew it from the techno-anvil in which it had been plunged. But he was too callow yet to guess at the riddle of the Spear.

The fall of Camelot

Years later, the King of the World and his Knights of the Broken Table even led an expedition to the unwhen. It was a daring attempt to reclaim the Cauldron of Dagda from the Queen of Terror.

But the three assaults of their mightiest forces against Castle Revolving, the flying palace of the Sheeda Queen, failed. The Great King himself found death, and but seven of the Knights survived and retreated to Camelot.

Shining Knight (Ystina) (DC Comics) with Excalibur and Vanguard

Despite this disaster, this civilisation was mankind at its apex – fair, prosperous, unified, ruled by wisdom and courage. Thus the Sheeda chose it for their Harrowing, as they likely had done for other Camelots before. The clash was brutal and truly epic.

But even the bravest and most legendary knights could only fare so well against the likes of Neh-Buh-Loh and an army wielding weapons of mass destruction and rayguns from the unimaginably distant future.

Assault on Castle Revolving

Ystina, having disguised herself as a boy for years, was the squire of the most perfect of knights – Galahad the giant-slayer, whom she secretly loved. As Galahad and the other Knights of the Broken Table were readying for their last charge, she asked to be knighted. “Ystin” wanted to fight in the name of King Arthur and not as a mere squire.

Galahad granted this seemingly last request and knighted “him” Justin, the Shining Knight. In the clash that took place minutes later, most of the Knights of the Broken Table were heroically slain.

Meanwhile the Shining Knight, riding Vanguard (Galahad’s flying warhorse), managed to sneak into Castle Revolving. Making her way through what seemed to be the sewer systems, she encountered a group of undead warriors. Their leader claimed to be Arthur – but those corpses may also have originated during the Harrowing of a *previous* Camelot.

After dispatching the dead men, the young knight stumbled upon one of the Imperishable Treasures, the Undry Cauldron. In the Cauldron she found a young friend, Olwen, seemingly gone mad from torture and abuse. Gloriana Tenebræ, likely alerted by watcher spells, then came to confront the intruder in her sanctum sanctorum.

Nothing went as expected during the ensuing conversation and fight. Gloriana carried the sheathed Imperishable Sword on her belt – though its enchantments meant no Sheeda could wield it, it was a trophy. The Queen of Terror hoped that Sheeda science could one day break its spells. That turned out to be a mistake, as Justin unexpectedly lunged and easily drew the sword.

Caliburn Ex Calibur

Capitalised in the Queen’s surprise, and trying to do whatever damage she could, Ystina pushed the heavy Cauldron into the water flowing around it. She was unaware this would result in it falling through time and space. Her brief advantage vanished when “Olwen” was revealed to be a fetch, a changeling guardian and a Sheeda actor.

The impostor plunged a poisoned dagger into Justin’s torso. As Justin staggered off, it was Vanguard who picked her up and dove into the timestream to escape from the Sheeda. However, the brave horse was fatally wounded as he crashed through glass plates to get its rider out.

Meanwhile, on the slain Earth

Meanwhile (in the loosest sense of the word), in ruined Avalon, three of the Knights of the Shattered Table had survived the battle at Camelot. As they escaped Arthur was, of course, replaced by Mordredd the Dead, an undead tyrant without a shred of mercy.

Mordredd would rule for five centuries, until there was nothing left to rule. He turned men into zombies, elves into cannibals. The dead were unearthed and turned into undead servants. Camelot was replaced by a city of despair with reeking iron walls.

The three surviving knights found refuge in the mythical city of Ysse, and underground among the smiths of the Barrow Men. Peredur the Blind, Bors the Laughing Knight, Galahad the Giant-Killer were reduced to the most desperate of measures. Sundering matter itself on the anvils of the dwarves, they resorted to atomic warfare against Mordredd.

This further plunged the land into darkness and invisible death. Peredur and Bors passed on from the perils of the age, one or both men committing suicide in despair. Galahad the perfect knight was either captured, or killed and reanimated, as a thoroughly brainwashed servant.

(In our world, 8,000 BC is roughly the beginning of the Neolithic era and the development of agriculture, as well as the end of the Ice Age. Things were very low-tech, but there were primitive human settlements worldwide. In the DC Universe, this state of affairs likewise corresponds to human civilisations rebuilding after the fall of Mordredd the Dead).

(Agriculture likely was rebuilt after the catastrophe rather than discovered, and stone tools likely were used since metallurgical knowledge was lost along with the dwarves. The great wizard Shazam, alledgely born four centuries after the fall of Camelot and some decades before the defeat of Mordredd, may have been instrumental in humanity eventually regaining its freedom and recovering from the disaster.)

Out of time knight

Sir Justin and Vanguard reappeared high above Los Angeles in the year 2005. In his dying moments the horse managed to control their fall and saved Justin’s life again, though he crashed in an uncontrolled manner and broke his neck.

Justin was taken in by a blasé LAPD patrol. Vanguard’s body was taken to a LAPD morgue. But from there cops on the take almost immediately took it to Crazyface, the lieutenant of the Undying Don, L.A.’s chief mob boss.

Shining Knight (Ystina) swears vengeance

Identifying the cops as law enforcers, Ystina did not initially resist arrest. But eventually fearing betrayal she escaped from the cruiser, incapacitating two officers and taking back Caliburn.

She fled to the streets, but soon ran into a Sheeda weapon – a Mood 7 Mind Destroyer. This semi-material robot that constantly followed her around and started destroying her with words, constantly whispering horrible truths to her ears.

Her spirit eroding under this assault, Justin stumbled upon a seemingly brain-damaged vagrant on a bench. A pair of hooligans were contemplating burning alive.

Shrugging off her despair, and suddenly speaking English without realising it, Ystina interposed herself and chased the chavs away. She reaffirmed her knightly vows and duty to protect the weak and to enforce virtue, justice and civilisation. This regained focus and purity dispersed the Mind Destroyer.

The young lady’s own Merlin

Approaching the aged homeless man to make sure he was OK, Justin had her first indications that the vagrant was actually the ghost of Ali Ka-Zoom. He was the one who had magically taught her English. He also transmogorified  her armour then created modern, loose clothing for her to wear over her altered chainmail.

Telling her this age of darkness needed a shining knight, he sent her on her way and told her he would help her further.

Meanwhile the Undying Don resurrected Vanguard. Years — if not decades — before, he had come into possession of the Everfull Cauldron. The Cauldron had drifted in the timestream after Justin pushed it in the waters of Castle Revolving. Thus, it had returned to Earth in an era well before 2005.

Using the Imperishable Treasure’s mystical properties, the Don nursed the fabulous winged horse back to full health. Beyond his fascination for the supernatural and his general liking for horses, the Don was at that point looking for whatever small shreds of redemption he could achieve. He was struggling with his actions to achieve his bloodstained reign over the underworld.

The Harrowing of la-la-land, part 1

Ystina decided that the LAPD were fellow knights, as the LAPD badge depicts a shining golden building that looks a bit like a castle. She went to a police station to rally them and gather champions. However she had lost her ability speak English.

That was the result of Sheeda sabotage. Though the Mood 7 Mind Destroyer could no longer affect her, it could apparently still track her. This allowed for Sheeda forces to position themselves to kill the Knight.

Queen Gloriana Tenebræ herself, magically disguised as an aged archaeologist, stepped in as a police-accredited expert. The expert had been called in to provide linguistic and cultural translation to help the LAPD communicate with Justin. The “archaeologist” was paired up with FBI agent Helen Helligan.

However, after the interrogation reached an end, Gloriana taunted Ystina with clues about the fate of Galahad. She then reverted to her form as the Queen of Terror. A Sheeda strike team descended on the police station, killing most of the cops. Justin was captured and dragged back to Castle Revolving.

There, Gloriana had the Shining Knight confront the thoroughly broken and brainwashed, but physically more powerful, Galahad the Accursed. The fallen paladin  had been in her service for ten thousand years. The degenerate, possibly undead brute toyed with Ystina, who was in shock over seeing him in this state. He easily overcame her.

He was about to kill her when the Queen of Terror, with her inhuman senses, smelled the blood from Ystina’s menstrual period. She ordered Galahad not to kill Justin but to rape her, break her and make her into a slave instead.

Holding Ystina in a Byrne hold, the gibbering fallen knight was about to comply. But the Shining Knight, unexpectedly grabbing his two swords, forced herself to kill him.

The Harrowing of la-la-land, part 2

Meanwhile, the fully recovered Vanguard served briefly as a steed for the Undying Don. They rode out to confront the same Sheeda forces that had invaded the police station. These were now looking to recover the Undry Cauldron. Vanguard was the only one among those fighting for the Don to escape, and the Sheeda repossessed the Cauldron.

They took it to the Miracle Mesa. Reality there was soft enough for them to easily bring Castle Revolving in and load the Cauldron.

However, during that seeming triumph, two of the Seven Soldiers were closing in.

  • Justin smuggled herself right in the Cauldron as it was brought aboard Castle Revolving. Hidden in the relic, she waited for the Last Queen of Man in ambush.
  • Meanwhile, unknown to the Shining Knight, Frankenstein also sneaked in. He patiently waited for Castle Revolving to shift back to Summer’s End so he could strike.

The fall of the Queen of Terror

At Don Vincenzo’s villa, Vanguard allied with Zatanna and her new apprentice Misty Kilgore. This allowed them to escape from Sheeda agent Neh-Buh-Loh. The two magicians then rused to New York City, where a Sheeda invasion was now taking place.

The winged horse then flew to the ruins of Glorias. He brought back a herd of fellow super-horses to fight against the Harrowing along with the Manhattanites.

The fearsome Frankenstein destroyed most of the Sheeda forces at Summer’s End. This cut off the forces who had already been unleashed on the XXIst century. He then confronted the Queen and commandeered Castle Revolving, forcing it back above New York City during the initial stages of the XXIst century Harrowing.

In the confusion, Ystina emerged from the Cauldron and engaged Gloriana in a duel.

Though she did her best and badly wounded the Queen, the Shining Knight was eventually overwhelmed. She thrown from Castle Revolving to her death. However Vanguard, who was leading his fellow winged chargers in New York, sensed her. He flew up to her and caught her in time.

Seconds later it was the Queen herself, still standing at the very edge of Castle Revolving from which she had pushed Justin, who fell off. The undead archer I, Spyder unbalanced her by shooting her into the mouth. Though the Queen survived even that, she was then mortally hit by the Bulleteer’s uncontrolled car. The reluctant heroine was the embodiment of Aurakles’s Spear.

Camelot, and countless other civilizations, was avenged when the metaphorical spear of the world’s first super-hero struck down the Queen of the Sheeda.

Le temps dégagé

Ystina (still with her faithful Vanguard) became a high school student at the H.S. Johnson School for Heroes. She was still haunted by the fate of Galahad, and longed to accomplish her knightly duties instead of studying. But her friend, adviser and Merlin, the ghost of Ali Ka-Zoom tempered her ardour by telling her she would later have great adventures.

He also recovered Caliburn, which had been lost in the fall above New York City. Ali gave it back to the Shining Knight.

Ali further revealed that there existed an antediluvian monument telling of a golden age. This monument had been erected for the glory of the Queen who had ended the age of death – Queen Ystina the Good. He did not specify which Flood he was referring to. But the Shining Knight likely will play an important role in the (possibly distant) past or future of the DC Universe.

Ystina is presumably still a high school student. There have been sightings of the Shining Knight in times of need, fighting along with the world’s heroes. That was the case during the Infinite Crisis , and later during Black Adam’s worldwide rampage (the so-called World War III ). Ystina was part of a large task force of heroes that engaged and defeated the powerful madman in China.

She also was present among the heroes trying to destroy the Superboy from Earth Prime as he came back from his forced exile.

In 2009, the Teen Titans approached Ystina as part of a recruitment wave. They thoughtlessly sent Red Devil as their recruiter. Reacting with hostility to the young man’s stereotypical demonic appearance, the Shining Knight lost sight of Red Devil as he sprinted away for dear life.


Description

While she looks like an ordinary (albeit very lean and muscular) teenager, Ystina’s eyes seem completely black under certain angles. She has very small breasts, and usually kept them compressed with bands of cloth around her chest to pass for a boy.

After she became a high school student, she started wearing skirts, polo shirts and a bra.


Personality

Ystina is a thoroughly pure knight – virtuous and dedicated to the highest ideals of mythical chivalry. Her paladinhood consumes and transcends her entire personality. She can almost be entirely described as, well, a knight in shining armour. She exhibits such un-XXIst-century-like behaviour as assuming that cops are fellow knights, and taking care of random vagrants.

Since we chiefly witnessed her in times of total war and on a mission of vengeance and justice, her peacetime behaviour is unrevealed. But it presumably matches Arthurian chivalric ideals with a Celtic twist.

At 16, Ystina is considered to be a fully grown adult in her own culture, and behaves largely as such. Going to school and being treated as a teenager is an odd and somewhat frustrating experience for her. Yet her exalted idealism does have teenager-like qualities.

Coming from a different time and culture and having passed herself for a male for much of her life, her behaviour is short on modern stereotypically feminine qualities.

The one bit of personal life she indulged herself was her secret crush on Galahad. Seeing him debased and corrupt, and having to kill him, devastated her. Even weeks after the deed, she still felt blue, vulnerable and terribly guilty and sad about it. This scar might take years to heal. In fact some PTSD  was evident, though Ali was helping her work through it.


Quotes

Shining Knight (Ystina of Camelot)

“Sir, I would not dare be so bold but the hour is dark, and final. Make me a knight.[…] Let me fight in Arthur’s name.”

Vanguard: “Keep your eyes on the dead, Justin !”
Justin: “I… I don’t think I have that many eyes, Vanguard.”

(Suddenly taking the Sword from Gloriana Tenebræ) “[Drawing the blade] is easily done. There is not one soldier in all of Avalon whose heart is less than pure !”

(Trying to communicate before being taught English): “Y llamin arach arwyr ! Arwyr y Roi ! Arach Avallach, Ystin !” (Rough translation : “ I am looking to join the champions ! The champions of the King ! I am Justin, at the service of Avalon !”)

“Arach ex Lloriana Sheeda ? Y da llamfada du arach ! Llamfada !” (Rough translation: “Are you serving Gloriana of the Sheeda ? I am a follower of Lancelot of the Long Arm ! The Long-Armed One !”)

(Kneeling with her sword held in front of her) “No. Not while one knight of Camelot endures.”

(Approaching the ghost of Ali Ka-Zoom) “Forgive me, old man. Mine own trials did blind me to your distress. Are you sick ?”

(In a LAPD precinct house) “Tell the blue knights I saw their crests and shields, and knew they were guardians of some human law. Tell them I came to this, their castle, to gather champions against the unstoppable plague that is coming.”

“This world is under my protection. Camelot lives !” (picks up a pistol and empties the magazine into Glorianna’s chest)

(After being forced to kill Galahad, seething with cold rage) “Red am I in battle. Red the ravens that follow at my heels. Gloriana. I am your death.”

“Galahad is dead. He was the bravest, the finest… and… she… she made a monster of him… I couldn’t save him. I loved him and I couldn’t save him… none of them…”

Vanguard the winged horse

Ystina (As she and Vanguard plunge into the timestream): “Vanguard ? Are you mad ?”
Vanguard: “Justin. I’m a horse. Who ever heard of a mad horse ?”

“Y llamin Ystin. Ystin arach Avallach.” (Rough translation: “I belong to Justin, he who serves Avalon.”)

“Wait ! I sense my knight nearby. Sir Justin lives ! I must go !”

“Did you think I would ever let you fall, young knight ?”


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Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

Tell me more about the game stats

Ystina the Shining Knight

Dex: 08 Str: 06 Bod: 06 Motivation: Paladin
Int: 07 Wil: 07 Min: 08 Occupation: Last Knight of Camelot
Inf: 07 Aur: 07 Spi: 09 Resources {or Wealth}: 001
Init: 026 HP: 075

Powers:
Cold immunity: 01, Regeneration: 02, Systemic antidote: 04

Bonuses and Limitations:
Systemic antidote only vs. disease (-2)

Skills:
Animal handling (Horses and winged horses): 07, Martial artist: 07, Thief (Stealth): 05, Weaponry (Melee): 09, Weaponry (All but Melee and Exotic): 05

Advantages:
Expertise (Lore and knightly customs of the Camelot of her time), Language (Language of Camelot, which sounds somewhat close to Welsh), Lightning Reflexes, Pet (Vanguard), Slowed Aging

Connections:
The ghost of Ali Ka-Zoom (High)

Drawbacks:
Age (Young, at least in the XXIst century), Exile (the Camelot of her time). Formerly had a Dark Secret (her gender).

Equipment:

  • ARMOUR [BODY 08, Skin armour: 02, Limitation: Skin armour only vs. blades and bullets]. This armour was previously chainmail over a scale mail foundation (which likely required tremendous strength and endurance to wear). It was transmogorified by Ali into a skintight, very light and thin micro-chainmail armour that is just as efficient. It can be worn under loose clothes.
  • CALIBURN [BODY 35, EV 05 (07 w/STR, 08 w/Martial Artist), Sharpness (EV): 07, Detect (Evil magic): 06, Note: The sword cannot unsheathed by one that is not pure of heart – it will use its BODY as OV/RV to resist being drawn]. Agent Halligan commented that this awesome sword was extremely light. She also heard a weird ringing noise, which I assumed was due to an ability to detect evil magic, since Gloriana was present when it was drawn.
    Caliburn Ex Calibur is one of the Seven Imperishable Treasures (see below), and likely has other abilities, most of which may only kick in when the wielder is the rightful king of the land.
    One Sheeda had his arm torn off just by *sheathing* Caliburn ; what happened is unclear. Maybe Claws: 12 attacking evil beings touching it at the end of every Phase, and serving as its own AV.
  • During her first invasion of Castle Revolving, Justin had something called a true lantern. It shed a light that stunned and repulsed evil creatures and the dead (up to and including an undead King Arthur, and Gloriana Tenebræ). But she lost it when Vanguard plunged into the timestream.

Vanguard

Dex: 04 Str: 07 Bod: 06 Motivation: Uphold Camelot
Int: 02 Wil: 02 Min: 03 Occupation: Warhorse
Inf: 02 Aur: 02 Spi: 03 Resources {or Wealth}: N.A.
Init: 008 HP: 015

Powers:
Analytical Smell/Tracking Scent: 03, Claws (Hooves): 08, Cold immunity: 02, Detect (Its rider): 06, Extended Hearing: 03, Flight (Winged): 14, Laser beam: 06, Regeneration: 01, Running: 05, Ultra Vision: 04

Bonuses and Limitations:
Claws can inflict bashing Damage if desired (+1)

Skills:
Accuracy (Claws, Laser beam): 06

Advantages:
Slowed Aging (if not Immortal), Misc.: Those horses seem to require very little air — they lived on the highest peaks of Himalaya for millennia, and Vanguard could dive and swim underwater (!) for at least as long as a human.

Connections:
Super-horses (High), the Shining Knight III (High)

Drawbacks:
Misc.: Vanguard did not initially speak or understand English (yeah, I know most horses don’t. Shaddup.) but seemed to be able to do both during the battle in Manhattan, presumably as a result of Ali Ka-Zoom’s ghostly magic.


Design Notes

Due to the lack of material, the stats involve quite a bit of guesswork.



Game Stats — DC Adventures RPG Print Friendly

Tell me more about the game stats

Shining Knight (Ystina of Camelot) — Averaged PL12.2

STR STA AGL DEX FGT INT AWE PRE
05 04 03 04 07 03 03 03

Powers

Mythical stature ● 4 points ● Descriptor: Biology
– Immunity 1 (Half-effect Environmental cold, Half-effect Ageing)
– Regeneration 2
– Impervious Fortitude 4 (Limited 2 to diseases)

Devices

Light chainmail ● 3 points (Removable) ● Descriptor: Magical armour
– Protection 3, Subtle (it is much lighter and concealable than ordinary chainmail)

Caliburn Ex Calibur ● 8 points (Easily Removable) ● Descriptor: Magical sword
– Strength-Based slashing Damage 7, Increased Critical 2
– Feature 1 (Excalibur is even more indestructible than most indestructible things)
– Senses 1 (Magic Awareness)
– Feature 1 (Caliburn can only be drawn by the pure of heart, and seems able to several hurt the wicked who sheathe or try to unsheate it)

True lantern
During her first invasion of Castle Revolving, Justin had something called a true lantern. It shed a light that stunned and repulsed evil creatures and the dead (up to and including an undead King Arthur, and Gloriana Tenebræ). But she lost it when Vanguard plunged into the timestream. Speculative stats would be some kind of no range, Area (Burst) Affliction.

Combat Advantages

Close Attack 4, Defensive Attack, Defensive Roll 4, Improved Initiative, Power Attack, Ranged Attack 3

Other Advantages

Extraordinary Effort, Language (Language of her Camelot, which seems close to Welsh), Leadership, Sidekick 19 (Vanguard)

Skills

Athletics 4 (+9), Close combat (Unarmed) 1 (+12), Close combat (Knightly weapons) 3 (+14), Expertise (Squire) 5 (+8), Expertise (Equestrienne) 7 (+10), Insight 5 (+8), Perception 6 (+9), Persuasion 4 (+7), Stealth 4 (+7)

Offense

Initiative +7
Unarmed +12, Close, Damage 5
Knightly weapons +14, Close, Damage by type
Caliburn +14, Close, Damage 12, Crit 18-20

Defence

Dodge 12 Fortitude 12
Parry 12 Toughness 04*/08/11**
Will 12

* Without Defensive Roll
** With Defensive Roll and her chainmail

Complications

  • Paladin The Shining Knight is as noble and altruistic as her title suggests, if not more.
  • Lost in time Ystinia is a stranger in a strange land, coming from a very different world.
  • Guilt and PTSD After the fall of the Camelot of 8,000 BC.
  • Eeek a girl In her original time Ystina had to conceal her gender. In modern times she’s held back by her youth.

Powers Levels

  • Trade-off areas. Attack/Effect PL 13, Dodge/Toughness PL 12, Parry/Toughness PL 12, Fort/Will PL 12
  • Points total 166 Abilities 64, Defences 31, Skills 20, Powers 4, Devices 11, Advantages 36. Equiv. PL 12.

Vanguard

STR STA AGL DEX FGT INT AWE PRE
06 04 01 -4 06 01 01 00

Powers Ranged laser Damage 5, Flight 13, Growth 4 (Permanent, Innate), Immunity 2 (Environmental cold, Half efefcts from Ageing and Suffocation), Regeneration 1, Senses 5 (Detect (His rider), Extended vision, low-light vision, scent, ultra-hearing), Speed 4
Advantages Defensive Roll 3
Skills Close combat (Hooves) 3 (+9), Insight 1 (+2), Perception 4 (+5), Ranged combat (Laser vision) 13 (+9)
Offense Init +1, Kick +9 (Close, Damage 7), Laser vision +9 (Ranged, Damage 5)
Defense Dodge 6, Fortitude 9, Parry 5, Will 2, Toughness 7
Totals Attributes 14, Powers 53, Advantages 3, Skills 11, Defenses 14. Total: 95

By Sébastien Andrivet

Source of Character: Seven Soldiers metaseries

Helper(s): Gareth Lewis, Roy Cowan

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