Kemet is a male Exekian. Over four hundred years old, he is a former imperial soldier who briefly rose to prominence in the later years of the Old Exekian Empire, attaining the title of hunyadi before being disgraced and forced into exile.
After the collapse of the Empire in the First Exekian War, he went into hiding, living alone in a mountain cave for the next century and a half. During this time, he maintained numerous artifacts from the imperial days, including a copy of the Mandorlin written in Old Exekian. These documents formed the basis of Dagda Vormund's translation, which Kemet aided him in creating. After the dissolution of the Cult of Vormund, Kemet was forced to flee. His current whereabouts are unknown.
Kemet is described as having delicate, chiseled features, pale skin like marble, golden eyes which glow in the dark, and long white hair in loose curls. He usually wears a black cloak with a large folded collar.
Kemet was born in 245 BYZ in the city of Tyr. His earliest memory is of waking up in a makeshift nursery constructed to accommodate the influx of newborns during kluuda. He never knew who his parents were, as his mother abandoned him after his birth.
He spent much of his youth as an orphan on the streets. At around the age of fourteen, he was adopted by Matta, a scholar and alchemist. Matta financed Kemet's military career, all the while reminding him that he had adopted him and raised him up for a specific purpose, though he would not say what.
Eventually, Matta approached Kemet with his plan to incite the slaves to rebellion. Kemet was reluctant to participate, despite Matta's attempts to emotionally manipulate him. He finally agreed to move his men away, believing it would allow the slaves to escape to Dardanos.
Matta went on to lead an infamous slave uprising, Matta's Mutiny, in which they killed the Emperor's heir, Caspar, and attempted to assassinate Emperor Rokanan. Kemet was unaware of this aspect of Matta's plan, having believed the slaves would flee after they killed their master. Interrogated under torture, several slaves who were involved in the uprising confessed that they were able to escape because the soldiers guarding them were ordered to move. Suspicion fell on Kemet.
To save his own skin, Kemet betrayed Matta, tracking him down to the ruins of an old fort. As an act of mercy, Kemet granted Matta a swift, painless death and brought back his body, claiming he acted in self-defense. Despite a full pardon by the Emperor, the damage to Kemet's reputation had been done, and he resigned from his position as hunyadi.Matta's estate, Casca Dun, including his vast library, fell into Kemet's hands. The former soldier abandoned public life completely and became increasingly reclusive. He spent much of his time reading through the endless tomes in Matta's library. That was how he came to discover a copy of the Mandorlin which was vastly different from the one touted by the fellinar...
During the First Exekian War, the world Kemet knew crumbled around him. He lost everything - his wealth, property, position and influence - and was forced out of Tyr.
Heading south, Kemet eventually took shelter in a cave burrowed into Arza Kell, a mountain near the southern border. He stayed in hiding, but was occasionally attacked by humans while out foraging for food and other supplies. He encountered increasingly few members of his own kind, but heard rumors of feudal warfare among the Exekians who escaped to the southern wastes. He chose not to follow them in order to avoid becoming a soldier again. He buried the books and manuscripts he managed to save from Matta's library within the caverns, including the mysterious copy of the Mandorlin.
The Cult of Vormund
In 162 AYZ, Kemet was badly injured during a scuffle with a group of human farmers. He was found and nursed back to health by the prophet Vormund and his followers. They gradually gained his trust and he allowed them to continue living in the caverns even after he had recovered.
Vormund convinced Kemet to dig up the buried Mandorlin manuscript and help translate it into Apicartan. One of Vormund's followers, the ex-prostitute Clara Richter, befriended Kemet. The two began a romantic relationship and they eventually married in a double ceremony with Gavin and Melissa. After Melissa died in childbirth and Gavin was forced to return home, Kemet and Clara agreed to take care of Gavin's daughter Laura until he returned.
The new cult member Leon Gorrister sought Kemet out, but the Exekian was reluctant to show himself. He eventually agreed to meet after Leon accidentally saw him during a strange incident. The two spoke of the Mandorlin, with Leon becoming convinced the book was the most important thing the cult had to offer.
The group left Kemet behind with Clara and Laura as they traveled to Hiberia. Approximately two weeks later, Clara heard about the death of Vormund while visiting a nearby village for supplies. Fearing that their lives were in danger, Kemet and Clara fled the caverns and hid in the woods, taking Laura with them.
Gavin and Leon arrived not long after, accompanied by a disguised Selca Ducani. Selca revealed his true identity and forced them to give up the Mandorlin, which he then destroyed. Though Selca discovered Kemet and Clara hiding amid the rocks and threatened to kill them, Gavin managed to save their lives by convincing Selca to honor his half of their bargain.
That night, Kemet returned Laura to Gavin, and the friends split up for the last time.
After crossing the river Antoi, Kemet and Clara snuck across the Apicartan border into the free territory of the Lowlands. The couple rebuilt an abandoned cottage they found, adding extra structures and repairing the house. They lived there in secret as husband and wife for the next several years.
Dissolution and Unity
In search of other members of his kind, Kemet traversed the southern wastes, which had become known as the country of Exekia. He swiftly learned of the situation among his people in the south; two rival factions had formed, one led by an Empress that claimed to be a continuation of the Empire, and the other an alliance between the former hunyadi Zimreon and his lieutenant Nechtan, who called themselves the Clan.
Kemet recognized that the Clan would never seek peace with the humans, but the Empress might. His attempts to gain an audience with her were rebuffed, however, and while he spoke to numerous Exekians, he failed to convince any of them that peaceful coexistence with Apicarta was possible.
At some point he began a correspondence with Gavin, who kept him up to date on the situation for the Vormundists in Apicarta. It was in these letters that Kemet promised to help Gavin's family if anything ever happened to him.
In the year 183, the first Exekian kluuda since the fall of the Empire occurred. Kemet began experiencing symptoms of the fever earlier than most, and quickly returned home. As his condition worsened, Clara began to fear for his life. Against Kemet's wishes, she arranged for the two of them to travel over the border into Exekia. The cool, wet climate improved Kemet's health considerably, but the locals were distrustful of Clara and the region became highly dangerous as King Aldous mounted an invasion, beginning the Fifth Exekian War.
Forced to head deeper into the south, Kemet was vilified and Clara was increasingly harassed by the Exekians, who were angry that Kemet was refusing to help propagate their dying species by mating with a member of his own kind. News of his rejection reached the Empress herself, and she sent her agent, Rasvan, to make a deal with Kemet. Rasvan intimidated Kemet and Clara into agreeing to move to Heliobas, an ancient fortress which the New Empire was using to house and protect newborns and pregnant females from the invaders. In Heliobas, Kemet was made a commanding officer and placed in charge of managing the fortress, which was rapidly becoming a major target of Aldous' troops.
- Depending on who is addressing him, he may be referred to as "hunyadi Kemet". This is generally only a rule when he is conversing with other Exekians, as they tend to place titles in front of names.
"Vormund carried him in from the forest, where he had been beaten by vengeful villagers. He refused to speak for several days, watching them with sleepless suspicion, but eventually he gave them his name, Kemet, and admitted he had been attacked for stealing food. None of them asked what he was doing in Apicarta, but it was generally believed that he was in a kind of exile."
—Gavin meets Kemet
The character's earliest known incarnation was as "Prince Caspar of Thun", and he shared many traits in common with Matta. "Caspar" appeared in a short story called Entropy, which was published on Wattpad as part of the anthology The Old World Lives Anew! In later drafts, he was named "Apollo", before his name was finally changed to "Kemet", from the ancient name for Egypt, meaning "black land".