Full-time flight attendant, part-time sorceress with gypse blood and a remarkable ability to stay sane under even the most bizarre circumstances. Occasional X-Institute instructor and even more occasional X-Man. She accepts all comers without judgement (until they prove to be evil) and takes life as it comes.
Hypnotism: 7, Illusion: 7, Levitation: 2, Magic Bolts: 7, Teleportation: 6, Witchcraft: 5
Acrobat: 6, Hand-To-Hand: 4, Performer: 5
Flaws: Attunement Siphon, Complicated Family, Cyclical Power, Spoken Word, Unknown Parentage
Languages: Ancient-Greek, Ancient-Norse, Egyptian, English, French, German, Hebrew, Latin, Romani, and Russian
Power: Hypnotism (7)
Limits: This power will always be limited by player consent and discussion.
Where most of Amanda's other powers come from her witch and gypsy heritage, her ability to hypnotize people is entirely a gift of the mutant x-gene. She can bend people to her will with her own force of will and convince them to do things for her they wouldn't normally do.
That said, she can't make people do things that are entirely out of character for them. Thus, she can't make someone kill or commit suicide via hypnosis -- except in those exceedingly rare cases where the target was already predisposed to such actions. (And, ethically speaking, she's greatly opposed to imposing such a directive on people.)
Similarly, she can't make an honest person commit a crime, though she may be able to get them to justify a misdemeanor or social faux-pas. (Thus, while they might lend her their key, seeing it as a favour for a friend, but they won't steal the files themselves.)
Power: Illusion (7)
Limits: 1. Amanda's illusions can be broken by an act of will, if the target becomes aware of it. Generally, this happens only if the target is sensitive to magic or is otherwise jarred by a mistake in the sensory information being projected. 2. While Amanda can cast an illusion on someone else to make them appear different than they really are, she cannot transform their shape as she can her own.
Amanda has the ability to create realistic illusions that can trap or deceive her targets. The complexity of these illusions is limited by her familiarity with the image and environment she's attempting to mimic as well as the amount of power she has at her disposal. Projecting a single-sense illusion (especially sight or sound) is relatively simple and costs only a small amount of energy. Each sense added to the first, however, causes a greater strain and gives a higher chance that the target will detect it. Also complicating the casting is the distance she is from the target. The greater the distance, the more difficult it is to maintain the illusion. She requires a line-of-sight for all but the simplest illusions.
Futher, Amanda can change her appearance and physical shape by casting a spell on herself. She must be very clear about the details of the shape she wants in order to assume it, which makes it exceptionally difficult for her to mimic someone else's appearance. Once the spell has been cast it will last until either she or a more powerful magic user dispels it.
CAVEAT: There is a difference between the illusion magic Amanda casts on others, and occasionally herself, and an actual shape-changing spells she can use to physically transform into a different person. This is important simply because her actual natural appearance is that of a petite, dark haired, dark eyed gypsy, while her accepted natural appearance is that of a willowy, blond English woman. In this regard, she has actually changed her body to be that of the blonde English woman. Even unconscious and unable to maintain an illusion, she is still the English woman. It is an actual state change, not an illusion. Effecting such a state change, however, consumes an enormous amount of energy during the initial casting. Thus, she is more likely to cast a visual illusion over her current appearance rather than actually change her shape again. It's just so much easier.
Power: Levitation (2)
Using her magic, Amanda can levitate herself (and to a lesser extent other people or objects) to achieve a low-speed form of flight.
If she's carrying others with her, her energy expenditure rises commensurately, tiring her faster. (So, carrying one extra person would tire her twice as fast, two extra people would tire her three times as fast, etc.) Additionally, if she's levitating an object, as opposed to herself, she is similarly hampered by size and weight.
Further, she can use her levitation to throw objects (i.e. move them very quickly across a space), but is limited in much the same fashion as she would be throwing them by hand. (Thus, the heavier the object is, the shorter the distance she can 'throw' it, without tiring herself out far quicker than normal.)
Power: Magic Bolts (7)
Limits: 1. Amanda must have line-of-sight to her target. 2. Amanda's maximum range is about 1 mile.
Amanda can shoot bolts of mystical energy at her targets, causing them damage. The maximum strength of these bolts is dependent on the strength of her energies according to the cycle of the Winding Way.
Power: Teleportation (6)
Limits: 1. The greater the number of people Amanda teleports with her, the shorter the distance she can reasonably handle. 2. The further the distance she must go, the more power she uses to accomplish it. Terribly great distances will leave her drained, and vulnerable until she has recovered her strength.
Amanda can teleport from one spot to another using a spell she's learned to cast. The stat associated with this ability represents the average maximum distance with which she's comfortable as opposed to the maximum distance of which she's actually capable. Generally, it helps if she's familiar with her destination, but if she has a decent picture to work from (e.g. a Google satellite image or a video feed) that will work, too. If her destination is an unfamiliar alternate or magical dimension (Limbo or similar), she will more typically conjure a portal (which is harder for her to do) than teleport in blindly. Otherwise, she risks colliding with a local object at her destination and causing severe damage both to it and herself... and possibly a good portion of the surrounding environment.
Power: Witchcraft (5)
Limits: 1. She can only channel so much power at any given time. The more complex or powerful the spell, the faster it drains her because of the personal energy she must expend in controlling it. 2. Any potions she makes take time to mix and require a certain amount of spellcasting to work. Thus, their production is entirely subject to the same limitations as her regular spellcasting. Further, the more complex the effect of the potion is, the shorter its duration is.
As a student of magic, Amanda has a fairly healthy arsenal of spells at her command. Most of them, however, are defensive in nature -- things like healing spells, summoning spells, simple shielding, and astral projection. She can also create simple potions of limited duration or affect.
She draws her spellcasting energy from her surrounding environment and is particularly attuned to urban environments, thus performing much better amidst concrete and steel than she does flowers and trees. However, she requires a certain level of familiarity with any environment from which she pulls her energy or else her spells are likely to fail or to have horribly unpredictable effects. Without that familiarity, she must rely solely on her own personal life energy, which is far more limited.
NOTE: She is most greatly familiar with four specific urban environments -- Berlin, Paris, London, and New York.
Skill: Acrobat (6)
Limits: While Amanda's acrobatic abilities can and do augment her combat abilities, she is only an average combatant when compared to most other X-men or related agents.
Amanda started out life as a circus acrobat. Her agility is remarkable and her flexibility even more so. She can perform feats and twist her body into positions most people wouldn't even think about. She's also extremely adept at tight-rope walking, trapeze flying, and other similar tricks. This makes her very light on her feet and allows her to traverse spans that would otherwise be exceptionally difficult to negotiate.
Skill: Hand-To-Hand (4)
Amanda's skill in combat is almost entirely from on-the-ground experience. She has some formal training -- including time in the Danger Room from her stint with the X-Men up until a couple of years ago, and can thus hold her own. She won't, however, be competing in (never mind winning) any MMA tournaments any time soon. Her style of fighting is defensive in nature, concentrating on dodging and using her opponents' own momentum against them.
Skill: Performer (5)
Amanda's not afraid of the spotlight. She spent her formative, adolescent, and early-adult years a circus acrobat. She knows how to put on a show, how to read a crowd, and how to manipulate their emotions by playing to them just right.
Stat-Related: Even-Keeled (6)
Related Stat: Willpower
Amanda has an exceptionally level head and, thus, is very hard to fluster as a matter of course. This is more important as a magic user, who's inclined to encounter all sorts of bizarre and unmentionable things, than anything else. It allows her to stay sane amidst the madness that magic usually brings and hold on to her reason when other magic users have gone off the deep end.
Amanada speaks several different languages, both current and dead or antique, as well as a variety of magical, demonic, and celestial tongues. Additionally, she learns new languages quickly, simply because she has such a broad pre-existing lexicon to draw from for similar examples.
Flaw: Attunement Siphon
When in a familiar urban environment, Amanda can draw upon the city's energy to help power her spells or replenish her magical energies. Doing so, however, risks adversely affecting the area she's in and -- more importantly -- the people within that area, if she's not careful. If Amanda is in an unfamiliar urban environment, she can't draw more than 25% of the amount of power she normally might until she takes the time to attune herself to the new environment -- a process which requires deep meditation over a period of two or three days at the very least. Because what she's doing is essentially drawing life energy from the area, if something goes amiss, people can end up hospitalized or worse. Further, she can only attune to urban environments, not wilderness areas. Thus, even were she in an industrial complex somewhere, if it's sat in the middle of farm country or the hinterland, rather than a big city, she's sweet outta luck.
Flaw: Complicated Family
This is probably a greater difficulty for others than Amanda herself, but the fact remains: She has a very complicated family.
Her mother, Margali, is a power-hungry witch whose ambition is to become the foremost magic user along the Winding Way and who'll do anything -- including betraying her own daughter -- to accomplish that goal. Her brother, Stefan, was killed by her adopted brother Kurt (a.k.a. Nightcrawler), who's a completely other issue entirely.
Amanda is fiercely loyal to her family and their competing goals can sometimes create conflict for her. She wants to help them, but she also doesn't want to put innocents at risk. So, sometimes (particularly where her mother's concerned) it's a delicate balancing act.
Flaw: Cyclical Power
Amanda's primary ability is her facility with magic, a gift of her gypsy heritage. The magical discipline she studies is called the Winding Way, or Winding Road, its practices handed down generation by generation from her matrilineal Romani ancestors through her mother down to her, today. The strength of its mystical energies are cyclical, waxing and waning much like the moon -- although they're not governed by the moon in any way. Because of this, the levels of Amanda's magical energies fluctuate with the vagaries of the "Road". Consequently, she's sometimes much weaker than normal, while at other times much more powerful. This affects every single one of her mystical abilities and, thus, she's inclined to reserve herself during the low ebb, withdrawing from situations that may require magic in order to preserve her energies and keep herself from becoming a liability to any team mates.
Flaw: Spoken Word
Amanda needs to actually be able to speak to cast spells. It also helps if she can gesture appropriately, but not being able to gesture isn't nearly as debilitating as not being able to speak.
OOC NOTE: This flaw is added as a logical extrapolation of the art of spellcasting, not because there's any canonical evidence for it.
Flaw: Unknown Parentage
Although Amanda knows her mother is the sorceress Margali, she's not so sure who her father is. Rumours abound, back in Germany in the area where she was born, but there's nothing conclusive. Some of those rumours even claim her father was a demon, though there's no real evidence to support this. When questioned, not even Margali could give Amanda a clear answer as to who he really was.
OOC NOTE: Technically, in comics canon, Amanda's father is Azazel -- Kurt's father. I've chosen to suppress/ignore that fact in this incarnation, however, in order to make that relationship just a little easier to play. Future players may choose to change that, but I prefer to leave her father as unknown for now.
Amanda Sefton was born Jemaine Szardos, daughter of Margali Szardos, a powerful Gypsy sorceress and the owner of Szardos Family Circus in Bavaria. She had one brother by blood, Stefan, and a de facto foster brother by choice in the person of Kurt Wagner (a.k.a. Nightcrawler), whom Margali took in after finding as a babe abandoned in the wilderness. The trio grew up as part of the circus, learning the ways of travelling performers and acrobats. Theirs was a fairly carefree existence, an attitude Amanda still embraces today, until a Texas millionaire took over the circus and the family moved on in different directions.
Stefan went on a killing rampage in rural Bavaria. He was stopped by Kurt, his neck unintentionally broken, killing him. (Stefan had, in fact, asked Kurt to kill him if his own thirst for blood ever got too out of hand, which it had.) Consequently, the fuzzy blue elf fled to America to join the X-Men. Jemaine, unwilling to believe Kurt had intentionally turned on Stefan, transformed herself from a swarthy, dark-haired gypsy girl into a blonde, blue-eyed English-woman and followed him.
Soon after arriving in the US, under the alias Amanda Sefton (a.k.a. Daytripper), she hooked up with the X-Men (and Kurt) for a period of time, though she left the team (and the States) about two years ago (circa 2010) to pursue some pressing matters back in Europe. Recently returned to America, she has rejoined the X-Men, and picked the life she had left behind once more.
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Blue claims to be Amanda's daughter, with Kurt, from an alternate timeline. Amanda really isn't quite sure how she feels about that.
Jocelyn is a student at Xaviers whom Amanda has taken to instructing in the way mystical energy works.
He leads the X-Men; she helps out when she can and sometimes lends a sympathetic ear.
Doug is the X-Men's communications officer, a primary instructor of the Young X-Men, and someone that appears to have a serious crush on Amanda. He makes her laugh.
Amanda and Domino met, and bonded, as a direct result of Kurt's inability to stay out of trouble. Together, they teamed up to rescue him from the machinations of his mother, Mystique. That was an adventure.
Bobby is an X-Man, which makes him a friend and sometimes colleague.
A student at Xaviers' and a Young X-Man, Jubes has struck up a light friendship with Amanda, who occasionally teaches her a little about handling herself in the field.
He's an X-Man. She's an X-Man (or has been). That's about it.
Amanda was Illyana's mentor when the Russian girl returned from Belasco's limbo a full ten years older than she was when she left. They're still friends -- after a fashion -- and will, when the situation is dire enough, go to each other for magical support. When the situation is dire enough.
Amanda and Mystique... don't get along. At all. In the first place, there's the fact that Amanda's mother adopted Kurt, thus denying Mystique the ability to raise her own son (though, it's highly debatable that the metamorph actually would have done so). Then, there's the fact that Amanda tricked Mystique with a very nasty illusion that made her believe Amanda's own mother, Margali, killed the fuzzy blue elf in a horrible and gruesome manner. It took some digging, but, eventually, Mystique figured out the truth... and that Amanda was behind it. She wreaked her own revenge by transforming into Kurt's likeness, stabbing Amanda through the back with his tail, and leaving her to drown in New York Harbour. (Thank God, Kurt and TJ weren't too far away.) So, no. They really don't get along.
Kurt is technically her foster brother... or, at least, he's Jemain Szardos' foster brother. He's also her on-again, off-again boyfriend (though more 'off' than 'on') and ultimately, her "anyfriend" -- anytime, anyplace, anywhere.
TJ is technically Kurt's daughter, from an alternate timeline... but Amanda has accepted the girl into her family as if she were her own.
Pete and Amanda have worked with each other, largely in Europe, as part of England's equivalent of the X-Files division. They're former colleagues and more-or-less acquaintances, now.
The Cheshire Cat of Superheroes, Vorpal's a bit of a lost soul Amanda's taken under her wing. She provides training. He provides occasional backup.
Amanda doesn't quite know what to make of Zatanna, but they've collaborated on a couple of mystical investigations, nonetheless.
|Amanda Sefton's Wanted List|