The Freedom Five
Mistress of Tooth & Claw
The woman who would one day become Shiarra, Queen of the Enigma Isles and Mistress of Tooth and Claw, started life as a girl named Sybil Broderick-Meyers, scion of two famous English families. Her father, Sir Reginald Broderick-Meyers, was the celebrated commander of Her Majesty’s Flying Knights, an air squadron charged with protecting England. He was also Achilles Stewart’s trusted friend. Her mother was Elaine Ravenshaw, who had a fine scientific mind and was daughter of Baron Ravenshaw, the infamous air-pirate leader of the elite Raven’s Murder squadron. Elaine turned against her father and aided Sir Reggie when she felt that the Baron had gone too far. No longer satisfied with even his daring thefts by air, the Baron attempted to ransom all of London with a doomsday device. While fighting against the Baron, Sir Reggie and Elaine fell in love and were married soon after the Baron’s defeat.
When the Flying Knights accidentally discovered the archipelago dubbed the Enigma Isles, Sir Reggie coordinated the expedition along with Elaine and Achilles. The expedition’s mission simply involved exploration and cartography, as well as diplomacy should any indigenous peoples be discovered. Unwilling to be parted from his wife or five-year-old daughter Sybil, Sir Reggie planned to take them on the expedition. Achilles, not wanting to disturb Ajax’s training regimen, left his son behind. The expedition set off for the isles and was never again seen or heard.
The Primeval Magus, an evil sorcerer claiming to have existed as long as man, was the self-proclaimed protector of the Isles. To defend the Isles and its people, he destroyed the expedition. Everyone was killed, except for Sybil, who managed to escape the mystical wrath of the Magus only to be nearly devoured by a herd of allosaurs. At the last moment, she was saved by a pack of dire wolves, huge prehistoric canines capable of surviving the harsh, primordial environment of the Isles. She was adopted by the matriarch of the pack and lived the next several years of her life with them, learning their ways and becoming a tremendous survivor.
Her parents were the last humans she saw for many years until, while hunting with the pack, she stumbled upon an aboriginal settlement. These were a hardy people who had only recently clawed their way out of the Stone Age, and were eking out a strained existence under the constant attack of the natural wildlife and the unnatural evil of the Magus. Although she recognized the villagers as humans like herself, Sybil’s white skin and ability to command the dire wolves instantly set her apart. The natives named her Shiarra, meaning “wolf maiden,” and she became a bridge between the beleaguered people and her pack. Slowly coming to understand that the Isles’ inhabitants, both human and animal, would never thrive under the thumb of the Magus, Shiarra attempted to unite the natives and her canine brethren into an army to overthrow the Magus. Then Ajax Stewart arrived, seeking his father’s fate.
Even before Ajax came to understand the family connection between Shiarra and himself, the air was electric between them. Though strong and proud, none of the native men had a hope of keeping up with the Mistress of Tooth and Claw. Ajax, on the other hand, was able to match her and more. Similarly, Ajax had never found a woman who could share the dangers of his life; they were kindred souls with a love forged in the crucible of adventure. Ajax aided Shiarra in her coup and saw her crowned as Queen of the Enigma Isles. Her duties as Queen coupled with the Magus’ vendetta against her brought Shiarra home often, but she spent the majority of her time travelling, adventuring, and falling in love with Ajax. Shiarra has since reconnected with her English heritage, resuming her father’s fortune and title. Her dealings with living relatives are strained at best, however. They are not sure what to make of this wild woman that came out of the jungle to claim her birthright. They quietly believe that the Sybil they knew as a young girl might have been better off going to the grave with her parents.