Pañcama was born in poverty as an untouchable dalit. The 2061 SURGE transformed her into a nartaki, and she was venerated alongside her sister Tahajīp. She chafed against life as idols and left to travel around India, where she came in contact with Neo-Naxalite insurgents. She returned to promulgate their message of equality but was censured by the establishment. With the Neo-Naxals help, she escaped the confinement and joined their insurgency. It didn’t take long for her to fall disillusioned with the group, driving her to fake her own death and escape abroad, continuing her solo career as an avenger for the downtrodden.
Born to Tamil parents, Mohini’s early life was utterly unremarkable. Both of her parents were of the stigmatised dalit caste — not of the modern, progressive, confident variety, but of the traditional, humble, self-loathing kind. They lived in the sprawling slums of Chennai eeking out a living with “unclean” manual labour.
Their lives changed dramatically in 2061 — the Year of the Comet — when both Mohini and her sister Tahajīp underwent a sudden metagenic SURGE. They became a duo of ruby and sapphire-skinned nartakyaḥ, sprouting pairs of what came to be known as Shiva arms. They were immediately recognised as favoured of the gods and idolised as objects of veneration. The elevation in social status came with a boost in their economic status, as votive offerings poured in. All the sudden, their lept from the ramshackle mud huts to the lap of luxury.
Of the two sisters, Tahajīp was easily the better holy person. Warm and confident, the sapphire-skinned girl readily took to her place on the pedestal. She admonished the lapsed and bestowed blessings as the faithful expects. Mohini, on the other hand, never quite fit in the role. Despite encouragement and coaching from Tahajīp, Mohini remained cold and aloof, ill-at-ease with her worshippers. Her discomfort is often mistaken as divine haughtiness, and the faithful happily indulged it. As eager as the worshippers were to indulge, there was also no shortage of unscrupulous people who would gleefully exploit their faith. Behind her impassive face, a sense of wrongness slowly grows…
When she came of age, she went against her family’s wishes and went on a trip around India. Away from her sheltering protectors and sycophants, she directly witnessed the poverty-stricken conditions of the masses — the same condition of her nearly forgotten childhood. She met Ajita Akka, a community organiser and dalit rights activist. Under her influence, Mohini came to loathe the opulence she had become accustomed to. When she returned, she devoted herself to advocacy for the poverty-stricken.
• Going rogue
Alas, her efforts inevitably came in conflict with the interest of the entrenched powers. She was seen as a misguided troublemaker. With the connivance of her own family, she was sequestered away from the public eyes. Shocked at what she considered a personal betrayal, Mohini reached out to Ajita Akka. Her cohorts staged a kidnapping and spirited her away from her gilded cage.
In the intervening years, Ajita had herself been radicalised and is now a member of the Maoist Neo-Naxalite insurgent movement. She tried to recruit Mohini to their cause. Mohini was initially attracted by the ideology and found herself well-suited to the violent insurgency. But before long, she began to see the similarities between their party cadre and the corrupt Hindu clergy. Disillusioned, she staged her own death and fled Indian Union to the Bangla Commonwealth.
In the following years, she moved from country to country and flirting with the local activist groups. Finding them either too passive or too hypocritical, she was invariably disappointed by the would-be revolutionaries. As she grew cynical, she also became more and more of a solo avenger, operating alone or in small ad-hoc groups to against specific targets. To gather resources for her vigilante activities, she took on jobs from those who can afford her skillset. She was not blind to her own hypocrisy: she drew the line at never acting against the weak and helpless, and she often used her jobs as means to learn about her oppressive adversaries — her Mr. Johnsons often ending up the targets of her personal vendettas.
- Mentor Spirit: Berserker
- Strive for Perfection
- Allergy (uncommon mild): meat
- Favored (common biased): outcasts
- Prejudiced (specific outspoken): clergy
- Signature: tilaka
- Short-term: Survive the Barrens; accumulate better gears.
- Mid-term: Defend the defenceless; master a martial art.
- Long-term: Bring down the corrupt.
Appearance and Style
Pañcama is of typical Indian build. Her striking red skin darkens to a ruby hue toward her lower arms. In her previous life in India, she used to wear fine sarees and jewellery draped over her four arms. These days, she prefers simple athletic clothes, and usually tuck her second pair of arms under an overcoat.
• Matrix Persona:
An unkempt peasant dressed in tattered, undyed khadi, with a mandala at her feet.
|10 October 2018||Masquerade||Pulsante|
|12 October 2018||Corps, Drek, Gangers & and more Synonyms||Gun Hand|
|3 November 2018||Grabbing Grabbers, pt. 1||Go Go|
|3 November 2018||Grabbing Grabbers, pt. 2||Go Go|
|9 November 2018||Lost and more Lost||Assault Bunny|
|13 November 2018||Right Time, Right Place. But you gotta know the time and the place for that.||Smogg|
|16 February 2019||Making Lead Rain||Eclipse|
|18 March 2019||Baking the cake||Pañcama|
|2 April 2019||All it took were 3 dollars||Pañcama|
|7 April 2019||Get to da Choppa!||Pañcama|
|25 February 2080||Quarter Sized Kill-Shot||Callistria|