I have been using a sort of character summary to keep me honest and consistent as the story advances, thought you might like to take a look at it. There are a few spoilers in it, also some thoughts about possible future development. Hope they don't detract from the remaining story. (pictures are the work of the talented Lyn Daniel.)
Teenaged boy, about sixteen, thick shock of black hair, brown eyes, slim but sturdy.
Wears unbleached white blouse and pants, sandals or boots.
His 'sacred form' is that of Machita, activated by hot or very warm water.
Teenaged girl, about sixteen, short black hair, brown eyes.
Wears: whatever Ramon was wearing; otherwise, Estrellita's dresses and flamenco/vaquero outfits.
Long tall skinny drink of water with sandy blond hair and blue eyes.
Freckled, sunburns easily. Also easily embarrassed.
Wears dusty blue homespun or 'linsey-woolsey' shirt and canvas breeches. (denims were introduced in the mid 1800's when gold-hunters in California discovered that the canvas used for ship's sails made very durable pants, perfect for panning for gold in rocky streambeds.)
Can wear a matched brace of flintlock pistols which have seen much service before he acquired them, but he knows how to use them.
Slim attractive Azuma Indian girl.
Wears her hair unbound when around home. When traveling, she wears hair in a maiden's knot.
Wears wool skirt and blouse, beaded moccasins or calf-length buckskin boots.
Usually carries a bow of moderate pull, a knife at her belt, and a sling.
Her 'sacred form' is that of a jaguar.
Don Pedro's granddaughter.
Fairhaired, hazel eyed, with moderate tan.
Tomboyish, but has a crush on Ramon.
Detests feminine mold with dresses, laces, and housework, prefers to wear pants and ride horses. (vaquero outfit)
One of the cowboys riding with trail boss Calpern.
A dangerous person to cross.
Carries a knife or two. Or three.
Has a soft spot for horses and puppies.
Old grizzled trail boss/leader of the cowboys.
Stubborn, obstinate, profane. And those are his good points.
Likes playing cards, preferably One-Eyed Jacks.
Wears worn plaid linsey-woolsey shirt, chaps.
Vaquero foreman working for Don Pedro.
Mid thirties, married, wears leather chaps with silver buckles and conches, gaudy sombrero.
Keeps scattergun (shotgun) in saddle holster.
Vaquero working for Don Pedro.
Past middle-age, balding.
Wears woolen blouse with buckskin pants, good boots but very worn.
Ramon's grandfather and resident brujo.
While most people of the community are conservative and polite, Alboro is a drinker, noisy and a troublemaker, besides being impolite.
Nevertheless, he is a sweet old man... sometimes.
Calls himself an herb doctor, but dabbles in stuff which he cautions others to stay away from. Think 'Carlos Castenada', the writer who popularized brujos in paperback.
May have other abilities, including shapeshifting, but he is cautious about allowing others to see. If he does have a sacred form, he does not require hot or cold water to activate it.
Horse-trader, a profession which allows him to travel and gather information to share with Don Pedro - a man who he loves and respects.
He is part of a cult which attends the 'spirits of the hot spring'.
His 'sacred form' is that of a badger.
Sturdy but well maintained, retaining much of her beauty.
Was married before, during the revolution, had a daughter who was lost when they were captured by Comanches.
At first, she is not as upset about Ramon's curse as she might be, after all, she gets a daughter out of the deal. However, because she has already lost one daughter, Ramon's curse fills her with apprehension since it opens up some memories and brings up an interesting quandary: if Ramon is not convincing enough as a girl, someone will take him/her away and she will have lost another child. Therefore, she sets out to teach Ramon how to be a good girl.
|The Doll Maker:
Old, old, Azuma medicine woman.
Red Cloud's great grandmother.
Crafts dolls for ceremonial purposes, also likes to give them to children.
Does not like Ramon, does not understand Machita.
|Wolf Walker, Wolf Walker:
About two years older than Ramon, he is an Indian boy with a (large) degree of arrogance.
Jealous of Red Cloud's interest in Ramon.
Develops a scar across his back from saving Apache boy during 'battle of the puebla'.
His 'sacred form' is (or will be) that of a wolf. A fierce, indomitable, slavering, hideous wolf... cub.
Mexican boy about Ramon's age, Ramon's boyhood pal.
Once chubby, he has lost his baby fat and is now growing tall and slender.
Usually wears unbleached white pants and blouse, but has a growing desire to escalate into more 'manly' attire, such as the vaquero full dress 'uniform'.
Plays the trumpet.
Favorite weapon is 'El Toro', a formidable knife with blades on each end of the handle.
|The Aztec priest (Kaliche):
Sorcerer, about thirteen hundred years old (plus or minus several centuries).
A stout bald man wearing a worn robe decorated with red and blue hummingbird wings, with embroidered Aztec symbols on the hem.
Flat, expressionless eyes.
Plucks eyebrows, eyelashes, as well as hair, for that really chic bald look. After all, after he rips the hearts out of several hundred people a day he can get very messy and he doesn't want to have to spend a lot of time cleaning up.
|The Warrior (Machack)
Companion to Kaliche, linked somehow to Espuma.
Husky, very strong, dangerous person. Knows warfare forwards and backwards. Likes to test other warriors... if they fail he destroys them... come to think of it, everyone he has tested has failed... hmmm...
Companion to Kaliche, linked somehow to Machack.
Not a nice person. Likes to hurt people, but unlike Machack he prefers helpless victims.
|(no picture yet)||Don Pedro de Muerte:
Once a big, strong man.
Crippled, back was broken when his wife Mercedes shot him in an attempt to end his suffering at the hands of torturers.
Hair once reddish but now almost all gray.
At one time owned the rancho, but now serves in a caretaker function while son Estebon plays politics in 'La Capitol', Mexico City. Estebon is 'criollo', which means that he was born in Mexico and thus eligible to remain in Mexico, own property, and participate in running the country.
Calls Mercedes his 'angel of mercy'. Mercedes means 'mercy' in Espanole.
Calls Estrellita his 'little star angel'. Estrella, of course, means 'star' in Espanole.
|(no picture yet)||Dona Mercedes de Muerte:
A leather-tough slip of a woman, once beautiful and still striking in appearance.
Wears her hair tightly rolled into a bun.
Hair dark, but graying.
Dark dresses with only a little lace at the neck and wrists.