Notes on the main players in the Disenchanted comic. (Articles will be added regularly.)
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(AKA “Tibby”, “Tibs”, “Grammer Tibs”, etc).
Ancient matriarch of the Leveret family and “Eldest” of Vermintown’s resident Fey population: a role of de facto spiritual seniority predicated on her extraordinary longevity.
It’s a peculiarity of the Fey lifecycle that the “everyoung” stage – roughly analogous in vastfolk terms to one’s adolescence – can be theoretically sustained indefinitely; interrupted only by death, disease, or (as it most common) the decision to procreate. In Tibitha’s case a tendency towards optimism and mischief prolonged her everyouth for a truly exceptional period: she’d lived well past 700 “halfseasons” (for comparison: her grandsons Fig and Tael are roughly 16 halfseasons, or two vastfolk “years”, old, at the time of our story) before settling down to build the family she has today. She’s quite possibly the oldest Fey who ever lived, and far beyond any need to justify her position as the pre-eminent Elder in Vermintown’s Fey ghetto, “the Mound.”
Ironically – given her childlike disposition – the position of “Eldest” carries with it an assumption of conservativism, a responsibility for the community’s spiritual needs and a dedication to the histories, traditions and cultural practices of Feykind’s collective past. In public Tibitha performs these duties with enthusiasm and dedication, and is much-loved by the community for her commitment to fostering “the old ways” in a fashion sympathetic to the needs of a modern city life.
In private Tibitha faces a deep and profound crisis of faith, precipitated by exposure to the complexities, moral greytones and social temptations of Vermintown. Moreso even than the Fey youths whose spiritual purity she supposedly oversees, the realities of the Urban Century have left her questioning the Old Ways, with their seemingly redundant emphasis on a life spent dabbling in the tiny details of Vastfolk lives. Knotting hair, fixing shoes, casting dew onto cobwebs, stealing teeth, etc. She questions their point, their truth and above all her own place within the whole bizarre mix. Outwardly dignified, Tibs therefore stands on the verge of a secret spiritual revolution which must either carry the community with it or leave her isolated and broken.
Only her daughter SAL knows about her rebellious streak. She puts it down to creeping senility and worries the old bat is going to get herself into serious trouble in the course of self-medicating, sleeping around and partying hard. She has no idea Tibitha’s penchant for breaking the rules predates her current role by 96 years…
Tibs’s defining secret is that she and her sisters, now long since dead, were among the famed “Cottingley Fairies”: photographed by two vastfolk children in 1917. She’s therefore responsible for the most heinous breaking of the “SeeLaw” – the existential code shared by all the Glamoured Races, which forbids any from revealing themselves to human eyes – ever knowingly committed.
Perhaps by association, Tibitha is convinced she’s doomed to be eaten by a scrawny fox whose jaws she evaded on the same day the crime was committed: an hallucinogenic terror which has pursued her ever since she and her family emigrated to Vermintown.