Hex is a demon minken. He has a cat-like face, a simian body, bat-like ears, opposable thumbs, retractable claws, and a 12 inch long prehensile tail. He's only 9 inches tall, not including his tail, obviously, with black skin, platinum fur, beautiful lynx-point markings, and violet eyes. He's Locksley's best friend and a highly skilled rune sorcerer. His magic is shaped through the symbols he draws. All manner of symbols can be used; it's the intent behind the symbols that truly matter, but Hex prefers to create magic using the language of the gods: mathematics, geometry, to be more specific. His spells are built out of intricate geometric designs that are both beautiful and powerful. Unfortunately, they're also time consuming.
Hex was born and bred in a reputable shop specializing in exotic familiars. His mother died while giving birth to him, so Hex was hand raised by the shop's owner, Phinbar McCorkle. Phinbar was a young man with a kind heart, poor eyesight, and a shock of red hair that stood straight out from his head despite liberal applications of pomade.
When Hex was two years old, Phinbar placed him with the rest of the familiars available for adoption. Although Hex was just one among many familiars, he wasn't like the others. He wanted more out of life than simply being a repository for witchcraft knowledge or a conduit for sorcery. He wanted to practice magic on his own, like the sorcerers from the stories Phinbar had read to him when he was little. The other resident creatures, even the few other lesser demons, ridiculed him for his outlandish notions, browbeating him whenever he spoke about his desire to learn magic.
When a gossipy civet informed Phinbar of the little minken's bizarre aspirations, Hex was taken aside and scrutinized. It quickly became clear Hex's dreams of becoming a sorcerer were far more than just the passing fantasy of an imaginative tyke. Phinbar declared Hex certifiably bonkers, but otherwise perfectly healthy and absolutely harmless. He separated Hex from the other familiars and moved him to the book section of the shop.
Hex spent the next three years pouring over the shop's magical tomes, beginning with histories and working his way across the book section. His only creature contacts were two other familiars deemed unadoptable. One was a female pine marten with a deformed front paw and a perfect grasp of sarcasm. And the other was a male demon twocan with a personality disorder. Although one of the bird's heads seemed perfectly normal, the other head believed himself to be the reincarnation of an infamous airship pirate. Needless to say, the two heads rarely got along.
After an early, unsuccessful attempt to chat up a mage looking for a how-to book on building self-dusting shelves, Hex learned it was best not to mention his interest in learning magic to the customers. He also learned it takes three months for his fur to grow back after being hit with an epilation spell.
After reading everything he could get his paws on describing the various kinds of witchcraft, magery, and sorcery, Hex decided it was time to move on to practical applications. He began scouring textbooks, trying to figure out which type of magic would work for him. But after months of research, he still couldn't find any magic that seemed to fit.
He was beginning to lose hope, until he discovered a small, dusty book that had fallen, forgotten, between two shelves. He came across it while hiding from the mage who had evaporated his fur. It had been nearly two years since that incident, but Hex decided not to test his luck. The book sharing his hiding spot was a beginner's guide to rune sorcery, an exceedingly rare type of magic. Something about the elegant simplicity of using symbols to shape magic resonated within him, and he knew at once he had finally found what he was looking for.
Hex read and reread the rune sorcery book several times, dog-earing the pages and filling the margins with notes in his small, precise handwriting. When he finally felt ready to try an actual spell, he gathered the necessary supplies and retreated to a secluded corner of the shop. After carefully copying his chosen spell onto a piece of parchment, Hex attempted to levitate a salt shaker.
Much to Hex's disappointment, the salt shaker did little more than quake and shudder. Hex was so absorbed in his task, he neglected to notice he was being observed. So when someone behind him began clapping enthusiastically at the salt shaker's gyrations, Hex executed his own form of levitation. He shot straight up into the air as if his tail was a spring coil. Clinging from a gaslight fixture, Hex turned to find a petite witch with a mess of ash blonde hair smiling up at him.
The witch coaxed Hex down from the wall, insisting she was quite impressed with Hex's first attempt at magic. She treated Hex to a cup of hot chocolate and introduced herself. Her name was Coralai Wu, but she insisted he call her Auntie Cora. She was the matriarch of a large band of enterprising, if criminally minded, orphans. Admiring Hex's determination to learn magic on his own, she thought he would fit right in amongst her own youngsters.
Excited, Hex agreed, and Auntie Cora approached Phinbar to discuss adoption. Phinbar explained the young minken suffered from delusions of grandeur and was unfit to be a familiar. Auntie Cora promised she already had a familiar and had no intention of using Hex as such, declining to mention her intent to help him become a sorcerer instead, so Phinbar acquiesced.
Hex was the only orphan under Auntie Cora's care who wasn't human, or at least humanoid, but he was treated no different than the other children. In fact, the majority of the children delighted in the cute, clever little minken's company. Even Auntie Cora's familiar, a large, antisocial wombat named Mister Toffee tended to be less gruff with Hex.
As a witch, Auntie Cora's magic differed greatly from Hex's rune sorcery, but she helped him in his studies whenever she could. She kept him well-plied with sorcery books, and he joined the other children in their regular studies. Early on, Hex showed a great proficiency in math, and soon he was helping Auntie Cora with the accounting books for her businesses, both legitimate and otherwise.
A few years after Hex was adopted, another unusual orphan joined their little family, a seven-year-old girl named Locksley. Descended from a Fury, Locksley had manifested powers at a surprisingly young age. Auntie Cora and Hex put their heads together and came up with a spell to bind Locksley's powers until she was old enough to learn control. Hex etched a rune spell on metal bracelet, and Auntie Cora fastened it around Locksley's wrist. It was spelled to require the combined efforts of Auntie Cora and Hex to remove it, which they only did briefly whenever the bracelet required expansion as Locksley grew.
At the time, Hex wasn't exactly thrilled with the sudden arrival of a rambunctious immortal girl. Engrossed in his studies, he had been spending more and more time by himself. But Locksley immediately took a shine to him, constantly dragging him away from his books and experiments to play. They quickly bonded over their shared love of books, discovering they were both fans of a quirky series about a brilliant, inquisitive demon monkey named Mischievous Maximus. Soon he was willing participant in her mischief, finding the time to remain dedicated to his sorcery and have fun too. They spend hours discovering Leviathan Street's secret routes while clambering in and around the buildings. After a while, Locksley's shoulder seemed bare without Hex perched on it. When the Bone Scythe assassin guild came for Locksley, Hex went with her, unwilling to be separated from his best friend.