Also known as the Old Man, Artax is a wizard of unknown-but-darned-considerable power who runs the magic shop in Kate's part of town, a store rather whimsically called Spells 4 U. His true age is uncertain, but he appears to be in at least his late sixties or early seventies. He's relatively short -- around 170 cm -- and has long, white hair and beard, piercing blue eyes with bushy eyebrows above them, and a slightly crooked mouth that smirks and smiles frequently when he's feeling positive (and glowers impressively when he's not). Since many of his customers are non-mages looking for small charms, curios and other oddities, he plays the "wizard" look to the hilt, dressing in a blue robe covered with gold moons and stars and a huge pointed hat that is ludicrously tacky by a modern mage's standards.
Artax's mottoes are emblazoned on a large sign above the cash register: "Always
follow the directions. Let the buyer beware." The Old Man is only too willing
to provide reckless customers plenty of rope to hang themselves with, though
he won't knowingly let such idiotic clientele walk off with something that's
going to get them (or someone else) killed. He does have a wickedly mischievous
(and lascivious) sense of humor, though, and he has given more than a few patrons
the means to turn themselves into oversexed bimbos. As long as they follow the
(usually straightforward) directions, though, his spells and magic items will
work as advertised, and any amusing side-effects they may have will only be
Artax is more open in his dealings with real mages. Anyone who presents their
magic license can purchase most of the reagents, potions and magic items in
the store with no questions asked. Some particularly rare or dangerous items
will require a release form and other government-mandated paperwork, and there
are some items that the wizard will only sell to people he knows personally.
Kate is a frequent visitor to his shop, and sometimes stays to chat with him
for a while over tea and scones. She once went on a date with him on
Daedra'kema, mostly because Morgan dared her into
it; while he looked very dashing as a tall, muscular man in his mid-twenties,
and behaved like a true gentleman during the whole outing, Kate eventually decided
it was just too weird an idea for her to let the relationship go any further.
It was fun, but she hasn't forgotten that this old man has a penchant for turning
men into nubile, willing women -- and while the men in question undoubtedly
deserve it, Kate has decided that's not something she wants to get too close
Artax has apparently had some ugly brushes with serious danger in the past. He has occasionally made mention of being involved in wars -- when asked which ones, he says he isn't sure because they all run together after a while. He was apparently a combat wizard for many, many years, and reached a very high rank before he quit. He's never said exactly why he left the military, or even which nation he fought for -- but he has said many times that there are things he wishes he could forget, and actions he took that he wishes he could undo. He lost something of great value to him in one of those wars, a loss that haunts him to this day -- but what that may be, he will say to no one.