Gin Okami was part of a nomadic clan of bards, actors, and storytellers, wandering the countryside, bringing what entertainment they could to whoever welcomed them.
In truth, the family is a small Sect called the Sentinels of the Umbra. They believe themselves to be wardens of an ancient and mysterious entity that dwells beyond the fabric of Creation. It is a primeval force that seeks to enter the physical realm and bring forth its own idea of existence – that of pure domination, or maybe destruction, or, perhaps, simply to ingest the physical realm as a mid-morning snack. (Stories vary on this point, depending on the teller and the mood of the audience.)
The Sect possesses no physical object or artifact that represents the entity. The family guards no gem, stone, or weapon that houses its presence. Rather, the entity dwells in the physical being of each member of the Sect. Furthermore, it is the family bloodline that prevents the primeval force from taking root within reality. Each family member is bonded to the entity upon creation within their mother’s womb, and forever hold communion with it.
How their family came to be the Sentinels of the Umbra is told through multitudes of folklore and legends, most of which is not very consistent. No one in the family truly knows the story of how he or she were formed as each retelling is always a bit different. But there are always two elements to all the different stories that stay the same:
Daciana was the first of the Okami Clan and mother to all in the family. She was the one to open the doorway between this reality and where the ancient entity exists. She was the first to establish the bond, learn of its great and horrific secrets, and discovered its single weakness.
It is through the family’s use of performing arts, such as storytelling, poetry, singing, acting, and dancing, that the primeval force is held at bay. For unknown reasons, whenever any of the family performs, the entity is satiated and passive.
Some family members have a stronger bond than others. Some members can actually communicate with the entity’s presence and harness its secrets to create great magical effects, similar to the legends told about Daciana. Usually, there are only one or two individuals within the family that possess this power in any given generation. This individual tends to be the family leader in that generation. At his birth, the elders of the family discovered that Gin Okami was to be one such leader when he grew up.
On the day of his initiation, when Gin was to establish the communicative bond with the entity and begin the training as a family leader, the Okami Clan was attacked. A large horde of undead horrors surrounded the family’s encampment. There was no escape. The attack was well-organized and precise.
In the midst of the ensuing slaughter, hidden in a tent, Gin’s grandfather, Wolfgang, forced the bonding connection between the Gin and the ancient entity. At first, the entity ignored the hasty and untraditional bonding ritual. But then Wolfgang bargained with the entity to save his grandson’s life in exchange for his own. With that, the entity consumed Wolfgang (from Gin’s perspective) and the Pact between Gin and the entity was forged.
During the attack, the undead killed everyone except for Gin. The entity had hidden Gin from the notices of the undead horde. They could not see, smell, or sense his presence while they slaughtered his family. They couldn’t even touch him and they walked right through him like a ghost. And there was nothing he could do but watch his family die in horrific ways.
When the attack was over, Gin’s body returned to normal and he was all alone….except for the presence of the Great Old One that would be with him for the rest of his life.
Through his pact, Gin’s eyes have turned into a moving whirlwind of fiery and intense ember-colored flames – flames that are always moving, molding, and flickering about. His pupils have altered into the shape of a vertical slit, much like that of a cat’s pupil. There is a hint, ever so subtle, of smoke that emits from his eyes though it gives no smell.
In addition, his eldritch blast has taken on a distinct tentacle-like quality.