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Lilith (The Secret World)

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This Article Contains Spoilers - WARNING: This article contains major spoilers. If you do not wish to know vital information on plot / character elements in a story, you may not wish to read beyond this warning: We hold no responsibility for any negative effects these facts may have on your enjoyment of said media should you continue. That is all.

I promised you my name. There are so many names. Once upon a time, a profit forced me to admit the seventeen names I used to sow mischief. Say my name. Abeko. Abito. Amizo. Say my name. Batna. Eilo. Ita. Izorpo. Kea! Kali! Say-My-Name! Kokos! Odam! Partasah! Patrota! Podo! Satrina! Talto! I did tell you lies, but I AM a mother. You've faced the descendants of some of my children. Every monstrous silhouette that haunts every legend, every myth, every night terror- they all trail umbilically back to between these legs, and I dissolved entire civilizations in the sizzling afterbirth. My body is a temple that outlasted all temples. Gods have worshiped here in blood and semen. Through me you enter the population of loss. No things were before me not eternal; eternal I remain! Can you guess my final name? Lilith.
~ Lilith

Lilith is one of the primary antagonists in the Funcom MMORPG The Secret World. First introduced in Issue 7 after spending much of the game in the shadows, Lilith quickly emerges as a major threat to the players and the stability of the world at large. Known as the Mother of All Monsters - in more ways as one - she appears human, but in reality, she is much more alien and much more powerful than any of the mortals she associates with.

History

The First Age

Born in the earliest days of the world, the being known as Ki-sikil-lil-la-ke was one of the first humans given life by the divine biocomputer Gaia; though records of the First Age are scarce, the Bees claim that she still remembers the Garden of Eden - and the first sin. During those times, the world was still governed by the angels of the Host: having reportedly created Gaia and the technology that gave her divine power, they ensured that their creations remained undisturbed by conflict or danger. However, as time went on, the Host began disagreeing on how they should manage the world they had constructed: one group, the Grigori, wanted to go on protecting their creations; the other, known as the Nephilim, wanted to exploit Gaia's power for their own ends. When the Host finally erupted into civil war, the first humans naturally allied themselves with the Grigori, recognizing them as protectors. However, driven by an ambition that her fellows lacked, Ki-sikil-lil-la-ke chose to ally herself with the Nephilim.

When her true allegiance was discovered, Ki-sikil-lil-la-ke was exiled from the Garden and condemned to wander the barren expanse beyond the Grigori's paradise for the rest of her days. However, she didn't remain alone for long, for the Host had their exiles as well: a Nephilim known as Samael had forsworn the company of the rebel angels and struck out on his own; before long, the two outcasts finally met on the wastelands outside Eden. Admiring the young human's ambition and independence, Samael offered Ki-sikil-lil-la-ke an alliance, offering her the chance to tear down reality and claim ultimate power; fascinated by Samael's passion and strength, Ki-sikil-lil-la-ke accepted the angel's partnership and the betrayal of all humanity it represented.

Through Samael's magic and technology, Ki-sikil-lil-la-ke was empowered almost to the level of the Host: made immortal, her intellect and strength grew tremendously, and she came to exist on multiple dimensions simultaneously, each version of herself capable of group cohesion or independent action. As her education in the arts of the Host continued, she also mastered the sciences, developing a great love of biology and genetics in the process - to the point that she gladly made use of her own DNA in pursuit of her experiments.

Eventually, she abandoned her human heritage altogether, and renamed herself Lilith.

Initially, the alliance between the fallen angel and the ascended human was one of convenience: Lilith was to be Samael's catspaw, little more than a tool to be used and discarded in pursuit of his ambitions. However, as the years went by, Samael came to care for his minion, even taking her as a lover - much to the consternation of his fellow angels; Lilith rose as his equal, and Samael found himself respecting her intelligence and her decisions. In the end, the two of them married and continued their efforts to dominate the world, this time as a loving couple.

The Mother Of Monsters

Throughout their marriage, Lilith and Samael's union produced many children, the overwhelming majority of them monstrous hybrids of human and angel. Loving them in her own twisted way, Lilith went on producing offspring, sometimes by literally giving birth to them "from a bloated, termite-queen abdomen," sometimes engineering them in a lab. In one such experiment, the first werewolves were formed through the fusion of wolf demons and humans, though they ultimately emerged as useful but otherwise disposable failures, left to their own devices in favor of more intelligent children.

More successful were her creation of vampires: developed through experiments on captured humans, she fused them with demon DNA and achieved a hybrid of immense strength, longevity and hunger; she also managed to distill the transformation process into a blood-borne disease, ensuring that her army would spread far and wide when released. Though already immortal, she deliberately dosed herself with her own infectious agent, becoming a symptomless carrier of the plague - free to create new soldiers simply by feeding humans her blood.

Through methods such as these, Lilith not only gained a powerful army of monsters and abominations, but also one of her most popular titles - "The Mother Of Monsters."

The Nephilim rebellion eventually concluded with an apocalyptic disaster that brought an end to the First Age, forcing Gaia to reset the world to "factory settings" in order to repair the damage. Too advanced to be effected by the temporal restoration, Samael and Lilith continued their efforts to take over the world - "Bonnie and Clyde blasting eternity," as the Bees put it.

In the Second Age, while living islands traversed the oceans and sacrificial pyres stained the moon red, Lilith's own ambitions began to expand. Though she remained a gleeful ally of Samael, she secretly dreamed of her own accomplishments; perhaps as a result, she began egotistically seizing upon whatever PR she could acquire during their various attempts at conquering the world, regardless of whether their attempts resulted in any measurable success or not.

Having already changed her name once, she began collecting the titles and epithets she was labelled with over the course of the Ages that followed, eventually emerging with a grand total of seventeen, including her main one: Abeko, Abito, Amizo, Batna, Eilo, Ita, Izorpo, Kea, Kali, Odam, Kokos, Partasah, Patrota, Podo, Satrina, and Talto. Behind these names, she hid her original name of Ki-sikil-lil-la-ke, for fear that those with sufficient magical power might be able to control her with it. In the end, the names took on psychological connotations of their own, having devastating effects on the human mind and body if spoken by Lilith in the right way: hearing the name "Lilith" spoken by Lilith herself is enough to drive a human listener into an instinctive fit of panicked convulsions, having been etched into communal memory by Lilith's many atrocities.

Eventually, the Second Age ended as well, and so began the Third Age.

Treachery In The Whispers

The Third Age is widely regarded as one of the greatest eras of human technological achievement, with Anima-powered clockwork granting the civilizations of this time oceangoing cities, casual interstellar travel, and even time travel. In turn, the Third Age is regarded as the prime of Lilith's life: between conquests, she ascended to the throne of a great and powerful city-state, the perfect launching-pad for the two partners-in-crime to continue their conquest of the world.

Eventually, Samael and Lilith hit upon the Gaia Engines as the perfect means of achieving ultimate power: ancient First Age devices scattered across the world, the networked Engines formed a prison for the entities known as the Dreamers, keeping their consciousness suppressed and their powers carefully harnessed. Over the course of their research, Lilith and Samael realized that these artifacts could be used to provide theoretically limitless energy to cities and weapons alike, thanks to the power they drew from the captives; however, Lilith - ever the more ambitious of the two - realized that the Gaia Engines could also be used to warp reality, even create new worlds, provided that the imprisoned Dreamers were properly shackled. Enthralled by this new possibility, she pressed on without heed to the dangers.

Uncovering an Engine, the two came close to achieving their ambitions; though anxious to claim its power, they proceeded carefully, doing their best to avoid disturbing the mechanisms of the antediluvian device. However, Lilith herself was psychically contacted by one of the Dreamers: as Lovecraftian beings of primordial domination and destruction, the Dreaming Ones had been yearning to escape their prison for eons, and now begged Lilith for release, promising her infinite power in exchange for helping them break free. Of course, Lilith knew that the voice in her dreams couldn't be trusted, but went ahead and tampered with the Engine anyway, believing that she would be able to betray the Dreamers once she'd gotten what she wanted from them.

Instead, one of the Dreamers awoke from its slumber; no sooner had Lilith realized her mistake, the entity's power annihilated human civilization, bringing an end to the world "under tentacular skies," before the Dreamer gently lapsed back to sleep as if nothing had happened. Once again, Gaia was forced to restore the world to factory settings, drawing upon the Engines to harness the power of the Dreamers and rebuild reality from scratch.

Thus, the Fourth Age began with Lilith and Samael back to square one.

From Rome To Romania

In the years following the dawn of the Fourth Age, Samael grew weary of the constant struggle for power, and eventually decided to achieve world domination through commerce instead of violence: selling weapons to the reborn human race throughout history, he could afford to retire from the carnage of his younger days while the profits rolled in. Puzzled and more than a little disappointed by her husband's change of heart, Lilith decided to continue her plans alone for the time being, hoping that Samael's retirement would only be temporary. Separated, their relationship began to cool from its heights of passion, until the two of them almost grew accustomed to pursuing their agendas alone.

For the next few thousand years, Lilith continued her life of violence and conquest, once again searching for methods of controlling the Dreamers: beginning with the earliest known Fourth Age civilizations in Mesopotamia, she acquired lovers among kings and queens alike, sparked intrigue in the palaces of the Roman Empire, manipulated the Popes of the Catholic Church, inspired the rise of cults across the world, and even led the occasional army of demons to war. She served as a scientist, a sorceress, lover, a priestess, a rapacious nightmare, and even a goddess from time to time: both inspiring deities and posing as them, she went by the names of Ishtar, Athena, Juno, and many many more. History holds her accountable for numerous atrocities: one fragment of lore suggests that she was responsible for the brotherly feud that turned the Templars and the Phoenicians against one another; another claims that she had Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart assassinated by the Phoenicians, supposedly for an unflattering portrayal of her "Queen Of The Night" persona in The Magic Flute. Though the full extent of her activities in the Fourth Age are still not entirely known, it's clear that her deeds were grand enough to get the attention of the three major secret societies; even today, the Templar Old Guard and the Illuminati Talking Heads regard Lilith with fear and suspicion.

More than once, Lilith set her sights upon Transylvania, apparently drawn to the emergence of the Filth in the Carpathian Mountains - a sure sign that a Gaia Engine was nearby. On the first occasion, back in 100 AD, she followed the stream of outcasts and embarrassments departing the Roman Empire for a tiny outpost in the Land Beyond The Forest: there, in a cavern fed by hot springs, the exiled Romans had built a decent replica of the bathhouses they had enjoyed back in the heart of the empire. Unfortunately, the water they'd drawn was contaminated with the Filth: as the infections continued, the Dreamer-worshiping cult of Deus Sol Invictus rose to prominence at the baths, rallying the infectees to the service of their monstrous deities. Lilith was apparently able to infiltrate the cult, evidently intending to use its members to help unearth the Gaia Engine nearby. However, an aging centurion by the name of Octavian realized the danger the Filth posed, and set out to stop his former compatriots among the cult - eventually resorting to killing them all. Unable to continue her plans in the area, Lilith cursed Octavian with a particularly painful form of immortality and left in disgust.

Mara (TSW)

Her Majesty Mara Dracula

In the 15th century, Lilith tried again: ingratiating herself into the court of Prince Vlad III (AKA Dracula), she seduced the famed warrior-prince's wife, Mara, and transformed her into a vampire. It was hoped that Mara would be able to seduce Dracula himself in turn, presumably so he could serve as a puppet king for Lilith's ambitions, turning over all the laborers and resources she would need to excavate the Gaia Engine in the Carpathians. Unfortunately for Lilith, Dracula proved more resilient than expected: Transylvania was immediately plunged into civil war, with Mara's growing brood of vampires trying to take the throne and Dracula's army trying to repel them. The odds were stacked against the Prince, however, for not only were vampires stronger than humans, they were also joined by Lilith's other forces in the region: ever the Mother of Monsters, Lilith had spawned several cults devoted to her worship, converting many to her side with the offer of immortality in one form or another, transforming her worshipers in Iazmăciune into the entities known as the Deathless.

Eventually, Dracula was forced to briefly retreat from his territory, leaving Mara - and by extension, Lilith - in charge of the country. For perhaps a month, the entire country was subject to the ravenous attentions of the vampire nobility, with settled citizens and Romany alike slaughtered wherever they were found. However, Dracula eventually returned with allies of his own in 1462: the Templars had given their support to him, as had the sorceress Cucuvea, the benevolent supernatural creatures of Transylvania, and even the weary Octavian himself. Together, the united forces were able to destroy Mara's army and restore power to Dracula, eventually forcing Lilith and her daughter out of the country. Though the Deathless could not be destroyed, Cucuvea was able to seal them within the ruins of Iazmăciune, ensuring that they would never be able to join their mistress in her continued mission, nor would their mistress ever be able to retrieve them.

Centuries passed, and Lilith became subtler and more elusive for a time, gradually retreating from public life. However, in the 1920s, the disappearance of polar explorers Roald Amundsen and Nicholas Belmont piqued her interest; after perusing his final notes and communiques, she learned that he had apparently discovered an ancient city entombed somewhere in the depths of Antarctica. Over the course of the next several decades, she looked for ways to investigate without revealing herself, and eventually settled on manipulating Belmont's granddaughter Aveline into doing most of the work - eventually discovering a Gaia Engine buried in the ice.

Subterfuge and Betrayals

However, over the course of those intervening decades, Lilith found her relationship with Samael stretched to breaking point. He had already grown comfortable in his role as a facilitator of humanity's drive to self-destruction, but in 1949, he took his enjoyment of mortal profits to the next level by forming the Orochi Group, a multinational corporation quickly renowned for its success and innovation. Initially hoping this was just another stage in a plan for the violent conquest of Earth and the enslavement of the Dreamers, Lilith was shocked to discover that Samael no longer had any intention of carrying out either objective: he had gone native, seduced by the mundane luxuries his role as a CEO offered him.

Outraged and grief-stricken that her husband had betrayed the very goal that had united them, Lilith lapsed into furious brooding. Outwardly, she gave no impression that Samael's "betrayal" had upset her; she even accepted his eventual invitation to become Lily Engel, Chairwoman of Orochi's Board Of Directors. Inwardly, however, she was plotting against her husband's objectives at every turn, looking for a method of achieving her ambitions even if it meant abandoning him.

For the time being, the Gaia Engine at Antarctica was beyond her reach: Samael still had a vested interest in drawing limitless energy from the Engines, and once he had retrieved the one in Antarctica, he was careful to keep it well-hidden from all but a select few. So, Lilith sought out others for her intended purpose, secretly commanding Orochi R&D programs to that end: her husband's "Prometheus Initiative" served her well in this regard, having been established specifically to seek out Gaia Engines and harness their power for the good of the Orochi Group. Out of all possible candidates, they were the only ones capable of finding her precious targets and unearthing them safely. However, Lilith knew she would also need servitors to retrieve and control it once it had been unearthed - and the Orochi research teams at her command were still loyal to Samael.

So, she set out to create armies of her own: to begin with, she contacted Mara and ordered her to seek out an alliance with the infamous Red Hand, a Soviet organization devoted to harnessing supernatural power for the Russian government; at the time, the Hand had been attempting to create an elite fighting-force of vampire super-soldiers, and Lilith saw the perfect opportunity to sew and harvest an army of her own. After making a spectacle bloody enough to get the attention of Nicolae Ceaușescu's infamous securitate, Mara eventually lured in a messenger from the Red Hand and (after draining the unfortunate emissary dry) secured a partnership with them: in return for regular blood and playthings, she gave them her lesser progeny for use in their experiments. Establishing a major laboratory in a bunker deep in the Carpathian Mountains, the Hand created many powerful and vicious hybrids, unwittingly expanding the ranks of Lilith's future army; though a series of catastrophic accidents ultimately forced the Soviet government to seal the lab shut, the "Slaughterhouse" had become self-sustaining by then, allowing the scientists (all vampires by now) to continue their experiments for decades after the Soviet Union had collapsed.

While Mara waited for a signal from Lilith, the Mother of Monsters also applied her efforts to creating a different sort of army: having witnessed the panic that had emerged when some of her vampires had escaped the Slaughterhouse, she knew she would need infiltrators; no stranger to creating cults, she rewrote the doctrine of Deus Sol Invictus, tracked down a suitably malleable prophet in the form of Philip Marquard, and founded the Morninglight. A hybrid of New Age religion and self-help group, the Morninglight was taught to worship the Dreamers and obey Marquard without question; as Marquard took orders exclusively from Lilith, the cult was effectively neutered and little more than footpads in her plans.

Meanwhile, Lilith's investments in the Prometheus Initiative continued to bear fruit: having realized that they would need special sources of power to excavate and control the Gaia Engines, the Orochi researchers had begun a search for magically-talented individuals with the ability to project raw Anima, eventually finding their prize in the form of Emma Smith. For good measure, the researchers had also followed the trail of evidence back to Gaia Engine hidden in the Carpathians, ensuring that Lilith could finally claim it on her third try. So, while the Orochi Group went about tearing into the mountains with Emma's powers, Lilith quietly drew on her contacts among the Phoenicians to keep Emma under surveillance, ensuring that the child would be secured unharmed when it was time for Mara's army to attack the area.

Unfortunately, Lilith had gravely underestimated Philip Marquard - and the power of the Dreamers: the slumbering deities had psychically contacted the Morninglight prophet and tempted him with the promise of omnipotence, converting him to their loyal agent. Under their guidance, he rewrote the cult's doctrine and slowly turned his followers against Lilith, slowly erasing all the means by which his ex-patron could have controlled them. Eventually, he felt confident enough to end his "partnership" with Lilith once and for all, ordering a suicide attack on Lilith's facilities at Orochi Tower: securing John Copley from the Morninglight's Tokyo branch, he was able to mold the impressionable young man into the suicide bomber he needed. However, he also explained a little about Lilith's seventeen names and the horrible things those names could do to him, believing it would convince John to avoid any mistakes that would allow their target to escape.

On the day of the suicide, John was equipped with a Third Age Class-1 device and sent into the Tokyo subway. However, he was stopped some distance from the Orochi Tower by a rail security guard, and in a blind panic over what Lilith might do to him John detonated the device early. Though Orochi Tower was untouched by the ensuing chaos, the Filth was unleashed on Tokyo, resulting in hundred upon thousands of casualties and infections alike.

Suddenly without the cult she'd been intending to use and left with a trail of evidence leading all the way back to her, Lilith was forced to improvise: signalling Mara, she ordered her to release the super-soldiers from the Slaughterhouse and rally her progeny across Transylvania for a massive attack - on the Orochi researchers in the mountains, on the Draculesti vampire hunters in the forest, on Cucuvea's allied forces in Harbaburestii, on everyone who could possibly pose a threat to her plans.

It is at this point that the game begins.

Mortal Sins

Regardless of whether they work for the Templars, the Illuminati, or the Dragon, the player will be dispatched to Transylvania during the third chapter of the main story arc. Having noticed the vampire army gathering in the region, the Council of Venice calls for action against the growing threat, and each of the Big Three complies - each for their own reasons: the Templars seek to continue their alliance with Dracula's vampire-hunting descents, the Dragon want to know why so many forces are converging in the area, and the Illuminati have gotten wind of the Orochi's project in the Carpathians and hope to gain an advantage on their new rival. One way or another, players of all stripes find themselves in the village of Harbaburestii to confront the threat.

Throughout this time, Lilith remains unseen, but her influence is felt everywhere: Cucevea alludes to her hunt for Lilith that led her to Harbaburestii in the first place, and senses that Mara is acting in the service of Lilith once again; Octavius also makes mention of the role Lilith played in history - while reluctantly providing the player with a talisman that he believes can bring an end to Mara's power. Up in the mountains, records left by Orochi scientists Winston and Julia Smith discuss the events of the attack on their research facility at the Breach, claiming that they were able to rescue Emma and their most important files from the invading vampires before activating the base's self-destruct mechanisms; however, the sequence was cancelled at the last minute, an act that could have only been capable through the access-codes and biometric data of a high-ranking Orochi executive - indicating an inside job.

Investigating areas formerly managed by the Red Hand will lead players to an outpost of Lidiya, a Phoenician spy. While watching her through the outpost's two-way mirror, Lidiya is seen being visited by a mysterious client - addressed only as "ma'am" and effectively unseen due to the super-soldier bodyguards positioned in front of the mirror. However, Lidiya seems more afraid of the client than the vampires: hesitantly, she admits that "the girl is gone." Soon after, emergency broadcasts confirm that the client is, in fact, Lilith; the girl is, of course, Emma, having mysteriously vanished from the area just before the Smiths were evacuated.

With the aid of the talisman and the aid of the vampire penitent Callisto, the player is eventually able to defeat Mara in single combat, summoning the ghost of Vlad Dracula to purge her of vampirism just long enough to kill her once and for all. Soon after, Emma reappears to usher the players into the Breach, guiding them through the now-defunct Orochi defenses and into the warped cavern housing the excavated Gaia Engine. By now, vampire super-soldiers have completely overtaken the facility, and now stand guard across the scaffolding, waiting patiently for further orders. Once the player has either killed or outmaneuvered the guards, Orochi comm channels transmit Samael's voice into the Breach: after hurriedly interrogating the surrounding area in the hopes that someone might be able to answer hum, Samael quickly realizes that Lilith has betrayed him, and demands to know why - and how she could hope to profit from the disaster.

Some distance away, players notice a mysterious figure standing at the very edge of the precipice, listening intently to Samael's broadcast; however, before players can get a good look at her face, she teleports herself away. Soon after, Emma vanishes as well, apparently dragged into the abyss by something lurking below.

A Dream To Kill

Long after the conclusion of the main story arc, Issue #7 sees the players return to Transylvania: at the prompting of Council agent Carmen Preda, players discover that something has been preying on the werewolf auxiliaries from Mara's army, sending the survivors fleeing in terror. Following the trail of bodies leads them deep into the forest surrounding Harbaburesti, where the monster responsible for the slaughter resides; a boss fight follows, in which the beast is finally burned to death with a flamethrower. Moments later, however, the dead creature reverts to its original form - that of a dead child.

Council Agent

Council spy girl.

Eventually learning that Orochi researchers have been kidnapping local children, players follow the trail of clues to an abandoned research facility hidden beneath Hatchet Falls. Inside, they are met by another Council agent, immediately distinguished by her white catsuit and strong Russian accent: though she doesn't give her name, she claims that the Council of Venice was unable to uphold its neutrality in the face of the mass-abduction and mutilation of children. To that end, the Russian Agent begins a temporary alliance with the players, teasingly promising to tell them her name if they survive the mission - a suitable incentive from her point of view. Meanwhile, in after-mission reports, both Richard Sonnac and Kirsten Geary can only express surprise that the Council were somehow able to send an operative into the field without either the Templars or the Illuminati knowing about it.

After studying the base's files, the players learn that the base was merely a way station, with the children having already been transported to another Orochi base known only as the Nursery. Recognizing the kidnappings as part of a project to harness and accelerate the powers of gifted children through immoral methods, the Russian Agent is temporarily overwhelmed by emotion, admitting that she was once a mother "a long time ago." However, the Nursery is currently in lockdown, so she sends the players ahead to find another way in while remains behind to examine the data.

As the lockdown can only be lifted by high-ranking Orochi operatives, the players seek out Dragan Dzoavich, Emma's former bodyguard and the only living Orochi agent left in the Carpathian Mountains. Dragan agrees to help unlock the Nursery, on the condition that the players find Emma and return her teddy bear to her; providing the means to lift the lockdown, he sets them up with a snowmobile so they can outpace and destroy the Orochi backup now heading towards the base. After a lengthy chase across the snow, players finally end up on a bridge overlooking Lake Solomonari, where they meet up with the Russian Agent under heavy fire from the surviving backup troops: having left a bomb on the bridge, the Agent hastily dons a parachute before providing the player with one of their own; while the two escape into the gorge below, the bomb explodes, destroying all remaining Orochi backup.

Entering the Nursery via an entrance hidden in the Lake Solomonari Dam, the players and the Russian Agent explore now-abandoned facility, investigating the horrific experiments conducted on kidnapped children: along with the disturbing results of the tests on lycanthropy and the Filth, it's also revealed that the Nursery's chief scientist, Dr Schreber, was sending the results of said experiments to Orochi Chairwoman, Lily Engel. Notably, one of his most recent emails reported that the Nursery had managed to recapture Emma Smith.

Council Agent finds Emma

Council Agent finds Emma.

Below Dr Schreber's lab is a small holding chamber: here, Emma is safely secured, her powers and consciousness suppressed by the Nursery's soporific lullaby. Anxious and excited, the Russian Agent asks the players to wake her - only to stab them in the back with a tranquilizer the moment they turn around. As the players collapse, the "Council Agent" gloats triumphantly at being finally able to drop the curtain on her current identity, promising that "the best is yet to come."

Upon regaining consciousness, players find themselves strapped to an operating table, minus their gear and clothing. Now dressed in a silk suit, the agent finally reveals her name to the player as promised - all seventeen of them, in fact. At long last, Lilith is formally introduced, having been posing as a Council operative solely for the sake of tricking the players and capturing Emma. This is later revealed to be a consequence of the finale to "Mortal Sins": with Samael having learned of her betrayal, most of the resources she could have drawn upon in the past were cut off, requiring Lilith to trick the player into opening the way for her.

For a time, Lilith just rants grandiosely on her monstrous nature, until she is interrupted by the arrival of a small child: one of the Nursery's only surviving test subjects, she has been subject to debilitating possession over the course of Dr Schreber's experiments, and is instinctively drawn to Lilith. Humming the Nursery's lullaby, Lilith moves as if to stroke the child's cheek - before promptly snapping her neck, having no use for Schreber's left-overs.

However, the players are not so easily dealt with: because they are effectively immortal and will only return from the grave unharmed and unimpeded if killed, Lilith opts to keep her ex-partners immobile in the most brutally direct manner possible - namely by having a laser slice off the players' legs. As the lasers slowly go about carving up the players' kneecaps, Lilith departs with the still-unconscious Emma, keeping her suppressed with by humming the lullaby. However, as she leaves, Emma stirs for a moment - and a tiny Bee flies back into the room and gravitates towards the legless players.

Healed of their wounds, the player is physically drawn into Emma's dreamworld: here, they learn that Emma is actually a powerful servant of Gaia - perhaps even an avatar of the Immaculate Machine herself. Her real name is Anima, another name for the life-force of Gaia and the world, and the direct antithesis of the Filth - not that she knows it herself; Orochi had intercepted her shortly after she manifested and brainwashed her to make her a more malleable pawn. Only by spelling out her true name inside Anima's dreamworld can players awaken her from the Lullaby and catch up with Lilith: immediately afterwards, players find themselves in Agartha, just as Lilith is about to enter a portal to her headquarters in Tokyo.

Lilith and Emma

Emma confronts Lilith.

Using a magical ring, Lilith is able to imprison the players in a force-field, preventing them from interfering directly. However, Anima is now awake and struggles free of Lilith's grasp; seemingly fixated on keeping her prize suppressed, the Mother of Monsters once again turns saccharine, trying to talk "Emma" into joining her, claiming that she can love her more than Gaia can. Anima refuses. This time, Lilith loses her temper, ranting that she won't see "Emma" choose Gaia over her as Samael chose Gaia over her, and advances on Anima, threatening to "hug the boiling viscera out of her." But Anima only unleashes her powers, sending Lilith flying through the Tokyo portal without her.

Stymied for the time being, Lilith chooses to remain at her labs in Orochi Tower, where she can marshal her forces.

Reaping The Whirlwind

Upon arriving in Tokyo, Lilith found herself beset by problems on all sides: though Samael was nowhere in the vicinity, the city's infestation had almost completely consumed Kaidan and was already beginning to infest the neighboring district, showing no signs of stopping in the immediate future. Along with the thousands of Filth infectees now prowling the streets in search of new victims to kill or corrupt, there were also the wrathful ghosts of those killed in the explosion, the vampiric Kyonshi of Japanese folklore, and even a legion of Oni. Even the Filth had developed it's own unique strains in her absence: John Copley had survived the bomb blast and became the Black Signal, a living Filth infection carried by radio waves and a new voice in the Dreamers' earthly collective; and though Lilith had it within her power to kill the "little dream" thanks to her mastery of magic and Third Age tech, John always remained out of reach, too afraid to approach her, content to turn the Orochi drones against the company. As if to add insult to injury, countless Morninglight cultists had survived the disaster, too.

However, Lilith was able to address this insult very quickly: with Tokyo mainly beyond her husband's reach, she was still capable of commanding resources within the quarantined city, and one of them was Uta Bloody Valentine - one of Lilith's own creations. As soon as the cultists left in the city were identified and location, the assassin triad was sent after them, killing dozens of Morninglight bureaucrats, missionaries and administrators over the course of the next few weeks. Lilith herself remained at Orochi Tower, conducting further experiments and plotting revenge on the rest of the cult - Philip Marquard in particular. She knew that there were methods of cleansing Tokyo of the Filth, but the most effective of them could only by achieved by combining the power of a Gaia Engine with the powers of Emma; the Engine, as it happened, was in the Tower's basement levels - but Emma was still beyond her reach.

It is here that the players arrive in Tokyo, having been tasked with investigating the situation on behalf of their employers. Thanks to Lilith's activities in Tokyo and her conspicuous immunity to the Filth, she is already considered a suspect in the Tokyo disaster; unfortunately for her, Lilith's enemies only worsen her image. Over the course of the next three issues, players make contact with Morninglight handler Naonomi Tanaka, who informs the players that a high-ranking Orochi executive was funding their activities and giving the orders - taking care to ensure that the blame falls on Lily Engel even as she gloats over the cult's victories. She is quickly gunned down by Uta, but not before providing directions to the Dream Palace Love Hotel: imprinted on the hotel's A/V suite are the memories of John Copley - just ambiguous enough to paint Lilith as the mastermind of the Tokyo Incident. John himself is impressed at the fact that players were brave enough to follow Lilith to Tokyo despite what she did to them on their previous encounter, and elects to open the way to Orochi Tower - allowing them a chance to kill her.

Following the massive attack on Orochi Tower, players slowly ascend the tower, fighting their way through countless research projects gone awry, through Samael's Mitsubachi, and even through the combined members of Uta Bloody Valentine - before finally emerging on the Penthouse balcony, where Lilith is waiting for them. Greeting players with a mocking purr of "How are your legs?" Lilith manages to diffuse the incoming hostilities by explaining things to them in as clear and concise a manner as possible: after bitterly musing on her collapsed marriage to Samael, she's halfway through explaining the Gaia Engines and the end of the Third Age, when John loses patience and attacks her with a Bird of the Zero Point Pathogen; irritably shrinking it down to a more manageable size, Lilith orders the players to deal with it if they want to hear the rest of the story. Once the bird has been disposed of, she continues explaining, this time detailing what she intended to do with the Gaia Engines and Emma; unfortunately, she gets sidetracked by her need to vent her frustrations over the player's rescue of Emma, and John once again takes advantage - this time by transmitting a geyser of Filth into Lilith's phone and manifesting an army from it.

Once John's army has been destroyed, Lilith explains the Mornihglight - only to be interrupted one last time by John, who manifests a mouth from the molten puddle of Filth left by his army just to taunt her over her inability to control the situation, claiming that "Everything but everything but everything wakes up." Lilith sneeringly prods the Black Signal's fear of her, demanding to know if he really thinks he's capable of defeating her; John admits that he can't... but he doesn't have to: all he has to do is to keep her distracted until his backup arrives.

A moment later, the Nephilim descend from the skies: sharing Lilith's goal of harnessing the power of the Dreamers but unwilling to tolerate competition from "a talking ape," they move to restrain her. Lilith tries to fight back, only to be overwhelmed by the powers of her attackers; by her seventeen names, the Nephilim bind her, completing their spell with her hidden eighteenth name, Ki-sikil-lil-la-ke. Unconscious and imprisoned in a cage of magic, Lilith is swiftly removed from the scene by her captors.

She hasn't been seen since.

Personalities

I do apologize if I was a touch... melodramatic last time. Bad day. When you cross from Age to Age, you tend to create new versions of yourself, and I have been so many mes. A scientist. A priestess. A ravening monster. Did I seem bad last time? I've been much worse!
~ Lilith

Lilith has re-invented herself in each new Age, and as she functions on multiple dimensions separately, her self-identity has been mutilated and rebuilt several times. Even if the world is cleansed with her on it, her extra-dimensional selves just rebuild her on the material plane, making her from the same psyche' but with the pieces perhaps slightly different upon reassembly. Because Lilith literally reinvents herself, she often loses herself to any given moment in time. When she is going through a bad or trying day she will revert to whatever personality is most easy for her to get through it. She has described herself alternatively as a scientist, priestess and a ravening monster. Lilith makes monsters; On some dimensions she literally gives birth to them on others she biologically engineers them and on still others she builds them. All of these methods are interchangeable to her, so she considers herself a mother to her creations and they consider her mother as well. Over the course of history she has changed herself to appeal to different cultures, she worked under aliases to Ishtar, Sumerian goddess of love and Athena, Greek goddess of wisdom. She is the Biblical figure of Lilith, the first woman, who refused her place as a woman, to be objectified. While these personality changes are intense and she gets carried away with them, she is not controlled by them. All her personalities are just that, personalities, feelings and mannerisms, not separate minds, morals or prerogatives. All Lilith's selves are controlled by the same will.

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