Heroes of the Sky
Helmsman of the Skystrider; Human Psion
Claudia Regina Aspiria was born in 328UA to Richard and Emily Aspiria of Faulken, Acktavia. The Aspiria family are merchants by trade and Richard in particular was in charge of the family’s marine trade, and as such spent much of his time riding his vessel from the coasts of Acktavia island up and down the coastal cities of Seraph. Claudia was fascinated by ocean travel, but her father only let her aboard the boat while it was safely in port.
Claudia’s quiet life came to a close shortly after she turned 12 when her Psionic powers awoke. She started to notice she could ‘feel’ something new about the people around them, and it was something vulnerable, something she felt she could mold or manipulate. Subtly, she tried to manipulate her parents in slight ways, working it in with other forms of persuasion to see if it had more effect. At first she met with no success, but eventually she convinced her father to let her go with him on one of his sailing trips. She loved the experience, learning all she could about how the ship worked.
Things went awry when they stopped in a port in Riddel however. Claudia allowed herself to get separated from her father and a group of pirates stole off with her. They had intended to hold her for ransom from her family, but when they learned of her powers (the hard way), they thought they’d sell her off to another captain who could use her services. They met with little success as everyone who tried to buy her found out that even locked in a cage, and bound by hands the teenage girl was a threat. Though her mental might was unfocused at this time her powers weren’t quite lethal, but her uncontrolled assaults on the mind were terrifying to those who didn’t understand them. Eventually they gave up on selling her and just abandoned her on the streets of another port with nothing but her tattered clothing, hoping she’d die of starvation for the hell she’d caused them.
Claudia instead grew confident in her powers from the experience and set to work of finding a ship to stowaway in to get back home. After a year of living on the streets she found a vessel heading for Faulken and hide aboard the ship’s hold. When she was inevitably found, she was brought before the captain whom she intimidated into letting her stay aboard with her psionic powers. The captain begrudgingly agreed until the ship was assaulted by pirates, who she scared off with her powers when they boarded the vessel. From then, she was allowed to work and live as one of the crew.
Claudia actually stayed with the ship for three more years, finally returning to Faulken at age 16. Her parents, convinced she was dead, were beyond happy to have her home. Claudia spent the next four years living with them, free to relax and hone her powers in the privacy of the Aspiria retreat in the nearby hills. In time this allowed her to return to her cheerful, fun loving self over the dire survivalist she’d become on her adventure. She even had a steady relationship for three years of it before they ended it when disagreements over politics resulted in him joining the Acktavian military and leaving her behind.
As happy as her parents were to have her back, they knew deep down these abilities would draw her away from them again. That day came when she came home one night with an injured man in her care, barely alive. This man was Kenneth Raptor.
Claudia heard Ken’s unfortunate tale of how he had been manipulated and wanted to help. To date she doesn’t know what compelled her to want to help him. Perhaps after four years of living a normal life again she missed adventure, and Ken gave her the opportunity. Together they set in motion a plan to get back and Duke Fiddler and regain control of the Skystrider.
Today Claudia uses her experience sailing the high seas to be the helmsman of the Skystrider. She was the ship’s first mate when they first set sail, but she really loved the act of piloting the ship over giving commands to others and gladly handed over that title to Letharyis Skyedge when she joined the crew. Claudia still acts as Ken’s trusted adviser however, and she fills this role for most of the crew. She is often the ‘face’ of the crew, using her telepathic powers and knowledge of rituals to communicate with possible contacts while the ship is still in transit.
In 361 UA she married Kenneth “Raptor” (Peters). Currently she serves as his helmsman aboard one of the Aspiria family merchant ships – the result of a compromise between the two.