Felis Umbrosus of Merinita-- Zahar to his friends, though he'll warn appropriately smug individuals it isn't his True Name-- is the first to admit he isn't sure of his parentage, but that his father was almost certainly the wildcat equivalent of a pooka. Ever since he was a small child, he's been able to transform from a human (albeit a human with cat's eyes, brown-and-black tabby-striped hair, whiskers, and feet ending in a cat's paws) into a wildcat; lately, he has added housecat and ounce (snow leopard, to you 20th century folks) to his repertoire.

Women find something irresistable about him: the short beard just seems to invite stroking like a cat's fur, the cat's eyes lend an exotic thrill. Zahar suffers from both the Blessing and Curse of Venus-- and is Carefree to boot. (This can lead to a horrifying +12 bonus to attract women who are bad for him.) Most men can't see what the point is, and tend to be bothered by the way he can lounge in positions that look hideously uncomfortable and cause sympathic twinges in the spine-- if not by the way women seem unable to keep their eyes off him!

He possesses a great variety of skills, including a great deal of understanding of all the courtly arts; his command of faerie lore is impressive, and he is well equipped to debate matters ranging from the legends and the occult to Christian theology and Greek philosophy. He seems to ken strongly both humans and animals, and has the Magic and Sight of his father's heritage. He has fluent command of Greek and Latin as well as Rumanian. Those who spend a great deal of time with him will slowly come to realise that his grip on reality borders on the insane: he has no difficulty believing multiple, contradictory things simultaneously, considers certain aspects of formal logic (including the reductio ad absurdum) to be flawed tools at best, and insists that time is a nonlinear phenomenon, with various chunks of the world possessing multiple histories. He deals with such debate in a calm, pleasant-natured manner, and is unfailingly polite to those who do not believe or understand his perspective.

Zahar's spells tend to be of the living world and make free use of faerie magic; his opponents often find themselves attempting to cope with terrible hangovers, sudden corpulence, or even an apparent spate of bad luck. Until the development of the Aristeia, the magi tended to travel on a cloud rendered to a consistency of pillows by his spell, The Billow of Eiderdown; his spells The Avian Form and The Aquatic Form are examples of faerie magic providing adaptation to flight and underwater travel respectively, though the result is different for each subject, with some acquiring wings or a merman's tail, while others become pale or almost transparent like an alven or asrai. To complete the suite of spells for travelers, he has ones for translation and mapping as well. He has a side interest in illusions, and usually disguises his inhuman traits when among mortals.

Zahar is of medium height, and usually dresses in greens and browns, ostensibly for their stealth in forests, rather than to complement his coloration. He is of swarthy Rumanian stock, and speaks in a mellifluous soft baritone; he tends to be extremely polite, and often uses such phrases as "unaesthetic" for describing zombies and torture chambers. He is fond of extremely subtle puns. With his Gentle Gift and a small glamour, he can go freely among mundanes without more than a moderate discomfort when in churches.