The Devout – Bai Zhe
Ying Shan and Bai Zhe were very close friends. As Ying Shan suffered betrayal from his own family in his past last, he was very cautious, paranoid and took great care when looking at everything in the world. He encased himself in such thick armor, for the sake of concealing his pure innocence from everyone. However, his kind and honest nature cannot be concealed by armor, therefore he became the most likeable among the Twelve Zodiacs, with Bai Zhe expressing the most admiration for his pure heart.
Bai Zhe has always been extremely jealous of Ying Shan, as he strongly believes he possesses the wisdom of forgiveness and carefreeness, unlike himself, who has seen countless things in the world of souls. He became extremely sensitive, and exhausted. This strongly ties to Bai Zhe’s ability – Being a man who possesses the immense power to control thoughts. He believed he could cure the world of everything that afflicted it.
Bai Zhe was born into poverty, his origins making it so that he could never have come into contact with any kind of power. Seeing his parent’s cruel death when he was young, he learned to fear bloodshed and death, while at the same time developing an irresistible desire for power. He meditated, trained himself in ways humans could not possibly imagine. He faced immeasurable obstacles and challenges, learning techniques from renowned factions across the land. Eventually, he would discover the ability to give himself eternal life. Having achieved so much, he thought he could live his life without pain. But time flowed slowly. This eternal life gave him a lifetime of endless lapses of pain, draining his soul to exhaustion, with no-one able to kill him.
One day, he discovered the existence of the Spirit Realm, and the power of the Queen of Souls. He again devoted himself to a new cause, remaining near the sacred spot where the Queen may appear, for several thousand years. Finally, his patience paid off and he was blessed with a meeting with her. Upon meeting, they formed a contact, where the Queen of Souls granted him his wish; to experience death and sending him to the Spirit Realm. In exchange, he was tasked to become the Goat Zodiac, and stand guard over the Temple of the Twelve. He agreed to this.
However, upon his death, all that was there for him was a slow, long, endless life. Forever trapped in the contract he took with no ability to escape.
He forever envies Ying Shan, as he understands that the mighty Ox Zodiac is never truly paranoid towards anyone, enabling him to live happily. With a broken soul, Bai Zhe believes he can not live as happily as his friend does.
“I no longer want to open my eyes. I am too exhausted. I only wish for sleep, so I no longer need to be awake.”
Liberty – Qian Lin
Qian Lin grew up with his Grandfather, who was a wise and powerful sage. In his youth, they lived together, living a life isolated from the rest of the world. As a result of this, Qian Lin never experienced the cruelty, fraudulence and dishonesty in the real world. This led him to possess a pure soul and great energy, as if he could never get tired.
Upon reaching adulthood, Qian Lin, under his Grandfathers instructions, left to study the outside world. Having not experienced this before, he immediately became too attracted to it, completely forgetting about the studies his Grandfather instructed him to do. He made use of the skills he inherited from his Grandfather to traverse the world, looking for things he’d never experienced before. This resulted in him wasting his youth with no achievement.
As he was too curious towards the world, Qian Lin could not restrain his own desires and chose to abandon his Grandfathers orders completely, using his power where he is not supposed to in order to reach the Spirit Realm. Upon reaching the Spirit Realm, he quickly discovered his powers were nullified, as if he never had them. While Qian Lin suffered with his existence after this, by sheer coincidence, the Queen of Souls came across him on her travels.
She was seeking Twelve Guardians for the Zodiac Temple. As the first person to meet the Queen, she forced him to guard the Temple for 10 years as punishment for trespassing in the Spirit Realm, before granting him freedom.
Assuming the mantle of the Horse Zodiac, Qian Lin diligently stood guard for 10 years. He witnessed the Queen of Souls’ determination, watching as she retained lost and strong souls, reforming their bodies in response to guard the sacred device of the Spirit Realm. He gradually became attracted to the Queen, with a strong sense of admiration, requesting to stay in the Spirit Realm to guard the Temple of the Twelve for her cause. Everyone knows of Qian Lin’s feelings towards the Queen, but he did not mind such, as in his own heart, she will always be the holy Queen, with a figure that will always be beautiful.