Nikodem Jordan

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Alien from a place called New Kinaan. She is trained in "organic sciences" and has a great love of blood sports.


From across the long hall, he saw a broad face with high cheekbones, large eyes, and dark brows. It was a startlingly open face, as if she was not used to keeping secrets. Her skin was bright and clear and smoother than any he’d seen save for the face of a child. She was old, he knew, by her posture and her height, but the clarity of her skin made him want to call her a girl. It was not the face of a woman who had grown up in the desert or even a world with two suns. Unless she was the daughter of a rich merchant who had kept her locked in a tower in some salty country, hidden from the suns by dark curtains and filters for a quarter century, she was not from anywhere on Umayma.

(six years later)

Nikodem was a small woman, Chenjan in coloring, with a broad nose, wide cheekbones, and gray eyes. It was an arresting face, not so much alien as exotic. She had the smooth, unblemished skin of someone who’d never stood under the suns of Umayma. She was too little and big-eyed for real beauty, but there was some strength in that face—and cunning. It was the sort of face that kept others out, kept secrets. ...

A small dark woman stood at the center of the room, wearing calf-length trousers and a thigh-length green tunic. She turned her face to the door, and Nyx knew her in an instant. Gray eyes met hers—too big-eyed for beauty.