Stormwing; Soul of Wakį́yą; Last Shaman
Jeremy’s Native American heritage is easy to spot thanks to his bronzed skin and his raven black hair. Standing around 5’10", he is in excellent shape thanks to spending most of his childhood roaming around outdoors on various Native American reservations. Jeremy was always very athletic, but ever since his powers have awakened, he moves with the grace of a natural predator. His hair has a tendency to be messy and tousled and is normally kept relatively short. Jeremy’s eyes are storm grey and change colour slightly depending on his mood. When manifesting his powers, lightning can be seen dancing in his irides. All of this combines to give Jeremy a striking appearance.
Jeremy normally wears t-shirts and jeans, but can just as easily be found wondering around in just his boxers as he is rather at ease with his body and has no sense of shame. Due to his high metabolism he does have an animalistic appetite and never passes up a chance to eat (a side effect of this appetite is that he has learned to cook rather well). Anyone spending some time around Jeremy will notice that his natural scent seems to be that of the air after a thunderstorm. When shifting from one form to another the scent gets muskier and more animalistic.
Jeremy Black was born on 15th August 2017 during what has become known as the worst storm in a century. Jeremy’s parents, Lily and Julian Black, were out on a potentially ill-advised nature hike when they were caught off-guard by a storm that every single meteorologist in the country failed to predict. As the forces of nature raged outside, Lily went into labour four weeks ahead of schedule and so Jeremy was born in a cave high up in the northern Rocky Mountains. While his parents were rather concerned, Jeremy himself slept through the storm and turned out to be a very healthy, if somewhat premature baby.
The storm caused mostly property damage and minor injuries, though there were some casualties across the country. Unbeknown to Jeremy and everyone else, among those casualties were twelve shamans from various Native American tribes across the Americas. Officially, there is nothing that links their deaths: some went missing while out on hikes, others were declared dead after spending days in a coma, etc. It would take a lot of digging to figure out that they all died at the exact same time, the moment Jeremy drew his first breath. All twelve of the shamans were the last of their tribe left with any powers and all of them had a part of Wakį́yą, an ancient spirit that legends refer to as Thunderbird, hiding inside of them. As they died Wakį́yą’s fractured essence reformed inside Jeremy, making him the most powerful shaman to ever exist (if he lives long enough to realise his full potential, that is). Along with the essence of Wakį́yą, Jeremy has also inherited the souls of the twelve shamans, now minor spirits in their own right. Neither Jeremy, nor his family have any idea about this.
Jeremy is of mixed Native American descent, but most closely related to the Crow Nation. He was lucky in that both of his parents are Native Americans who have escaped the hell of the reservations and found success and acceptance (to a certain degree) within normal society. Through both sides of his family Jeremy can trace his lineage to a number of tribes, as neither of his parents are pure-tribe Native Americans.
Lily Black is a civil rights campaigner, historian, and children’s book author, while Julian Black runs a small, but very successful biotechnology company focused on clean energy and environmental sustainability out of Boston. Jeremy has inherited a deep love of the earth and a keen sense of justice from his parents. He has two younger siblings, Harry (13yo) and Tamara (9yo). The family divides their time between Boston, Washington DC, and Montana.
Despite his parents’ worry, Jeremy has turned out to be incredibly healthy and robust, which is good as he loves being outdoors and has gotten his fair share of scrapes and bruises from spending most of his childhood going for hikes and exploring the wilderness.
During the early stages of his life, nothing made Jeremy stand out, except maybe his great love of storms (as a baby he always seemed to sleep best with a storm raging outside). He grew up to be polite and friendly, with a sunny and helpful disposition. Only rarely would his temper flare up, revealing a wilder (stormier) side to Jeremy’s personality.
All this changed with the onset of puberty around 11 when Jeremy’s temper would get the better of him more often. His parents enrolled him in an elite high school in Boston, where he soon earned the nickname of Nature Boy, due to his love of the outdoors and at times feral behaviour. As Jeremy had a very active childhood he grew up strong, fit, and healthy, which spared him from being a target for bullies. Others at the school were less fortunate, especially a boy named Kaidan who was often singled out for being from a poorer background and only being able to attend the school due to a scholarship.
Jeremy tried to protect Kaidan as much as possible, out of a sense of justice and because he had a crush on him, but one fateful afternoon Todd Buchanan, the head bully, and some of his buddies managed to lure Kaidan into a trap by pretending that Jeremy had asked for a meeting/date. To this day Jeremy has no idea why he stayed behind after class and why he went to check the back courtyard. All he can remember is seeing Todd and his buddies bully and beat Kaidan and a sound that was a strange mix between a thunderclap and a pair of giant wings unfolding. The next thing he remembers is being dragged off Todd’s unconscious and bloody form and everyone staring at him with fear. By all accounts Jeremy was like a wild animal, attacking Todd and two of his friends who tried to help the bully. Most accounts also mention that Jeremy’s face was not entirely human, that Todd had a number of claw marks, and that an unnatural storm appeared out of nowhere, damaging parts of the school. What would normally have just been treated as a part of high school life came under special scrutiny as people started to mutter about Jeremy having powers and because Todd’s father is Rodney Buchanan, Senator for Arizona (Rep).
Thankfully for Jeremy and his parents, Daniel Morgan showed up on the scene and offered to smooth things over in exchange for Jeremy “transferring” to a new school i.e. come live with him. Somewhat ashamed of his overreaction Jeremy agreed and has been living with the Morgans for almost three years now. He has learned to keep his temper in check, which so far has only failed once, when Eli arrived.