The Nephilim Glossary
Angel-born: Those with angelic blood who have powers beyond those of mortal men. Most become either Nephilim or Shemyaza, though a few have slipped through the cracks and been lost. When an unknown angel-born is found, both sides will attempt to recruit him or her.
Angel-born come in different varieties, named after their powers: Angelus, Azar, Cambion, Chameleon, Incubus/Succubus, Knight, Legionnaire, Malachi, Oracle and Seris. Angel-born are not immortal, and often lead normal human lives.
Angelus: A winged Neph or Shem who has the powers of flight and invisibility, Angelus make excellent scouts for both sides. Mortal eyes cannot see an Angelus in flight unless he or she wishes it, and they are capable of masking their auras for brief periods of time. Most, but not all, Angelus use ranged weapons, taking advantage of their maneuverability to stay out of the way of the stronger melee combatants. Those that fight hand-to-hand tend to favor quick, light weaponry, as Angelus are some of the most agile of the angel-born.
Shem Angelus lose their light; their wings become shadows that embrace their prey, feeding off their life force in an agonizing death that leaves the victim twisted and broken.
Seth (Neph) is an Angelus.
Azar: Azar have the ability to heal both physical and spiritual wounds, and are the only angel-born who can stop an Incubus-induced death by repairing the subject's spirit (so long as any remains to be healed). They also have the ability to inflict wounds, a tactic they use in battle against other angel-born. The name Azar derives from Azarias, son of the great Ananais, the name the Archangel Raphael (the angel of healing) traveled under in the Book of Tobit.
Shem Azar feed off of the flesh of their victims, and are often mistaken for cannibalistic serial killers. It is speculated among the angel-born that Jack the Ripper was a Shem Azar, but no one knows for certain.
Rafe (Neph) is an Azar.
By-Blow: One of angelic blood who has not developed any of the traditional powers. Oftentimes they are unaware of their angelic heritage. Their children may or may not develop the powers that skipped their parents.
Cambion: A Cambion has incubus or succubus-like powers, but unlike Incubi they do not need to kill as they feed. However, a Cambion who does kill during a feeding will Fall, becoming a true Incubus/Succubus. Thus Cambions, even though they are technically Neph, are often looked upon with suspicion.
Cambions live off of human passion, often using intercourse as a means of feeding. They can detect the emotions of those around them, and often can tell if someone is lying to them. They can use their abilities to make others easier to persuade to their point of view, or incite violence, lust, or any other emotion the Cambion desires. They do not, however, possess the shape-changing abilities of an Incubus unless they Fall.
The stronger the emotion the Cambion feeds from, the stronger they become, until they can match a Legionnaire for strength and endurance, but a hungry Cambion is among the physically weakest of the angel-born.
A Cambion who finds their One, the person they can soulbond to, can be nigh unstoppable and is incapable of Falling, as they will die when their human partner does.
Piotr Romanov (Neph) is a Cambion.
Cell: Both Shemyaza and Nephilim operate as a "cell" organization, meaning that each location has its own groups with their own leaders, or cells, and are mostly autonomous, following the laws set down by Gabriel (Nephilim) and Ivan (Shemyaza). Gabriel Viator runs the entire Nephilim organization from the Northeastern United States, coordinating each cell as well as his own and making sure they remain Nephilim. Ivan Romanov does the same for the Shemyaza; he operates out of Moscow.
Chameleon: A Chameleon is a specific type of Shemyaza or Nephilim, one who can change their shape at will. The basis of legends about changelings and dopplegangers, the Chameleon uses his or her power to imitate specific people. Chameleons cannot become animals or non-living things. Chameleons make excellent spies, appearing human to all but the most acute angel-born senses, as they are adept at hiding their auras. Chameleons are the most rare of the angel-born.
Shem Chameleons feed off of the fear they generate when they become an imitation of a person their victim either cares about or is terrified of. In the case of caring, they act in such a way that the prey is terrified; if the victim is already terrified, they use that to their advantage. They are also able to cause night terrors in their victims, prolonging the feast until the prey succumbs to either a broken mind or death.
Fallen: Angels who have fallen from grace, they still retain their powers but are unable to return to their home. Some Fallen are locked away for the safety of humanity; others work with the Neph or the Shem, following their own paths. Fallen retain their angelic beauty, but hide it behind human masks. They usually have some blend of the angel-born powers, making them fearsome, and unpredictable, opponents.Fallen do not need to feed, but those who follow the path of Shemhazai often do so. They may feed off of whatever they wish-blood, flesh or souls-and be refreshed.
Micah (Neph) and Shemhazai (Shem) are Fallen.
Incubus: A male succubus, an Incubus takes on the form of a specific person's preferred lover in order to feed from them. Their form will be dictated by their prey's inclinations rather than their own; when they decide to feed, they have no control over their appearance the way Chameleons do.
Unlike a Cambion, an Incubus will feed until the person's soul is utterly consumed, meaning Incubi are exclusively Shem. A person who has been fed on by an Incubus will either slip into a coma and pass away, or become a human monster thanks to their soulless state, preying on the weak.
Ivan Romanov (Shem) is an Incubus.
Knight: A Shem or Neph who has the ability to call forth weapons. They have uncanny abilities with their weapons (some can coat them in fire, some in ice, some are ethereal, etc.), and can pick up mortal weapons and wield them within moments of handling them.
Knights are often front-line combatants, as they are powerful warriors; they rarely resort to ranged weaponry, preferring hand-to-hand fighting that utilizes their abilities to the maximum. Those who do use ranged weaponry are considered some of the best marksmen in the world, and often act as snipers for both sides.
Gabriel will give Knights a reprieve when they marry and have children, allowing them to retire early. Knights are among the most common angel-born.
Shem Knights feed off of the blood of their prey. A Shem Knight who has not fed will eventually lose their ability to call their weapons until they feed.
Seth's father, Joseph van Licht (Neph) and Sasha (Neph) are Knights.
Legionnaire: An angel-born whose main power is inhuman strength and endurance, Legionnaires are right up there with the Knights in terms of the war between the Shem and the Neph. They are notoriously difficult to kill, but each has a weakness that can be exploited (Samson and his hair and Achilles and his heel are prime examples). Legionnaires are among the most common angel-born.
Shem Legionnaires feed off of the life energy of their prey, gaining strength as the prey weakens. A crafty Shem Legionnaire will find more than one target, dragging out these feedings to make it appear that the person is dying of a mortal wasting illness.
Zeke (Neph) is a Legionnaire.
Malachi: Named after the Malachim, the messengers of God, Malachi have the ability to speak any language they see or read, making them incredibly effective interpreters and computer programmers. They can sense angel-born within a few miles of their location, giving the angel-born they team up with enhanced tracking abilities. They also have the ability to teleport, both themselves and others, but that teleportation is limited to somewhere they've seen before and no more than five miles from their current location. The strongest Malachi can see the sins in the auras of the ones they hunt, or the purities if they are Shem. Malachi are among the rarest of the angel-born.
Shem Malachi feed off of the souls of their victims, consuming them in fits and starts. It often appears to the mortals around the victim as if the victim is becoming senile; it is can be mistaken for early onset Alzheimers, or paranoid schizophrenia.
Damien (Neph) is a Malachi.
Nephilim (aka Neph): Genesis 6:4 states "The Nephilim were on the earth in those days --and also afterwards-- when the sons of God went to the daughters of men and had children by them. They were the heroes of old, men of renown."
Nephilim are the children of angels, who descended from Heaven to teach humans, and mortal women. They are often referred to as giants, and are also seen as the biblical monsters of old, such as the Emim (Terrors), Rephaim (Weakeners or Dead Ones), Gibborim (Giant Heroes), Zamzummim (Achievers), Anakim (Long Necked) and Awwim (Devastators). Goliath is said to have been of the Rephaim. The terms they use for themselves have changed over time, however, and these old ones are rarely used and barely remembered.
The leader of the angels who'd come to earth was named Shemhazai. He became Fallen, refusing to give up his consorts. According to legend, the Nephilim became aggressive, believing themselves better than mankind, and some of them even began feeding on them. God, seeing what the Nephilim were doing, sent the Archangel Gabriel down to earth to deal with the situation. In Jewish mythology, Gabriel caused a war between the Nephilim that destroyed them all. In The Nephilim series, he saw how some of them were worth redeeming, creating a schism that exists to this day.
Shemhazai was banished and bound away from the world, becoming Fallen, and those who followed their ancestor took the name Shemyaza in his honor. Those who followed Gabriel kept the name Nephilim, the children of angels.
Oracle: An angel-born who has visions of the future. Unfortunately, the visions are often obscured or clouded, their meaning unclear until the actual event occurs. Neph and Shem born with this ability, if not found by another Neph or Shem, will often be misdiagnosed as schizophrenic or suffering from some other hallucinatory disease. The Oracle of Delphi was always a true Oracle.
Shem Oracles are drawn to those who have talent, ambition and the shining light of one who will go far in the world, feeding off their bright futures and leaving the victim a broken husk of the person they used to be. The victims will often suicide in despair, knowing they will never live up to their lost potential.
Eli (Neph), Seth's brother, is an Oracle.
Seris: Angel-blooded who have power over fire, the Seris derive their name from the order of angels known as Seraphim, which literally means "burning ones", and the Latin word for fire, ignis. Seris cannot be harmed by mortal fire, and have resistances to angelic and demonic fire. They also wield their fire as a weapon, in cones, balls and rays that burn their victims. Seris are often employed to burn to ash the remains of an angel-born, thus hiding the death from the authorities.
Shem Seris feed off the life energy of their victims, their "inner fire", until the person dies. The victim will often complain about being cold, and can never get warm enough, shivering right up until the end.
Dante (Neph) is a Seris.
Shemyaza (aka Shem): Angel-born who have given themselves over to their baser desires, becoming demonic in appearance and temperament, and who are the basis of legends about vampires, werewolves and the evil creatures that feast on human flesh.
Their devotion to their leader has caused physical changes in them, though they are able to hide this the same way all angel-born can, by assuming a human form. Shem have an aura that is a dirty yellowish color, visible to other angel-born, though some can hide this better than others. Their bodies change, growing claws and oversized fangs. Their skin becomes pale and blotchy, their lips blackened. Their blood becomes a viscous green, and they are no longer able to utilize human medicine.
The civil war between the Nephilim and the Shemyaza continues to this day.
Succubus: A female Incubus (see above).