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Ananke-spoiler "Once again, we return."

This article contains spoilers for Issue 22 of The Wicked + The Divine. Read at your own risk.

"Once again, we return."
—Ananke[src]

Ananke is an enigmatic figure somehow connected to the Pantheon, and the Greek Goddess of inevitability, compulsion and necessity. She has guided the gods of the Recurrence for many years. Although her physical body died millenia ago, she has taken possession of each cycle's Minerva, wiping out their memories and experiences. She considers the 13th goddess, Persephone, the personal deity of her sister, a problem, and is shown to have obliterated every Persephone each Recurrence unknown to the other Gods.

HistoryEdit

Beginning Edit

Ananke has been a part of the Recurrence since pre-historic times. 6000 years ago, Ananke went around the world killing various Gods and gathering their living heads, which she carried in a bag on her back. Eventually she sewed their lips shut to prevent them from talking. Chasing down her sister and her sister's grandson, she catches up to her sister in the desert. The two establish the rules for future Recurrences. Ananke establishes herself as "maiden" and "crone" while her sister establishes herself as "mother". Her sister establishes that each Recurrence must have twelve gods and they all must be gone by the end of the two year cycle. Ananke reserves the right to choose which gods are incarnated and in whom, save for the fact that her sister's God must be incarnated in each cycle, but is incarnated last. After a plea from her sister, Ananke kills her, but not before her sister utters the words "And ... Four ..."

450sEdit

Ananke arrives in Rome during the events of the 450s Recurrence to talk to Lucifer, the last god remaining of the current Pantheon, and who claims to be a reincarnation of Julius Casear. As she attempts to explain why Lucifer must sacrifice himself, he attacks her, claiming he will survive. Ananke retreats, allowing Lucifer to run his course. When he dies, Ananke comes and drags him from Jupiter's temple to the banks of the Tiber River, where she cuts his body up and flings the pieces into the Tiber, giving him a pagan burial.

1830s Edit

By her own admission, Ananke has been killing gods for thousands of years. She certainly acted suspiciously during the 1830s Recurrence, as she offered Inanna divinity in exchange for her help in killing Woden and Morrigan's newborn children. She later killed Hades with a sacrificial dagger, and then, for reasons yet unknown, gave his severed hand to Lucifer, who attempted to resurrect him. The result of this was the creation of a new Creature, which went on to outlive the other gods of that Recurrence. It is unknown to what extent Ananke was aware of the eventual outcome of these events, and to what extent they were engineered by her. However, she did remove Innana's head at the conclusion of the Recurrence, most likely as the last head needed to complete her ritual.

1920s Edit

Ananke arrives on the island of Lucifer, observing to herself that unusually at this point in the Recurrence, all twelve Gods are still alive. Ananke serves an Agatha Christie like figure in the events that follow. She is aware of the plans of Set, Baal, and Woden to prevent the coming of the Modern Era. She removes the head of the Morrigan and is present with the final four Gods of this era, instructing them they must sacrifice themselves to stop the Great Darkness. The building explodes, but Minerva emerges from the wreckage unharmed, stating she has the final head. The two of them descend into a cave beneath Lucifer's mansion, where the heads of The Morrigan, Set, Persephone, and Susanoo are. Ananke shows hesitation at completing the ritual, but Minerva insists that it must be done to stop the Great Darkness. Ananke is then killed by Minerva, who takes on the persona and memories of Ananke, who was the previous Minerva in the 1830's recurrence.

In the 1940s, a drunk Ananke spoke about her life to Robert Graves, inspiring him to write The White Goddess.

Synopsis Edit

The Faust Act Edit

During the 2010s Recurrence, Ananke was present at all the gods' incarnations. She instructed them not to use miracles in public, but Lucifer disobeyed and was arrested. While Lucifer was in court, Ananke killed Judge Holmes and framed Lucifer for the crime. Lucifer, not realising that Ananke was responsible, asked Amaterasu to get Ananke's help. However, she did not visit her in prison. Meanwhile, Ananke worked together with Woden, the only one of the gods who was aware of her plans. He built Valhalla at her request, and grew Ragnarock into an 'epic statement'.

When Laura began investigating the gods, Ananke summoned her to a meeting at Woden's Valhalla. She thanked Laura for helping Lucifer, but told her that the imprisonment was for Lucifer's own good, as if the humans turned on the gods, this may be the last Recurrence, and the gods would never be able to reincarnate.

After Lucifer's escape, Ananke sent Baal and Sakhmet to force her back into jail or kill her. When Lucifer evaded them, she arrived in person, and killed Lucifer by exploding her head. She then announced her existence to the press, and asked the world to respect that gods police their own kind. In order to ensure their freedom to do so, she spoke with the government and stressed that she was their only hope of controlling them.

Fandemonium Edit

Ananke was concerned about Baphomet's fear of his own mortality, and told him that the Prometheus Gambit would work for death gods such as himself, in order to prevent him discovering this himself. She said she would hold him accountable for any gods murdered.

When she realised Cassandra was investigating the events around Lucifer's death, Ananke offered to give her an interview explaining her view of the Recurrence, resulting in Cassandra's incarnation as Urdr.

When Baphomet attacked Urdr at Ragnarock 2014, Ananke condemned him and sent Baal and Sakhmet after him. Later that night, she went to talk to Laura and caused her transformation into Persephone, then attempted to kill her unknown to the other Gods, as she had done in all previous cycles. However, she was stopped by Baphomet and Inanna, who had just arrived at Laura's house. Ananke killed Inanna instead but Baphomet and Laura managed to escape. When Laura's family witnessed this, she exploded the house, killing them. She subsequently framed Baphomet for Inanna's murder.

Commercial Suicide Edit

Baal and Woden captured the Morrigan on Ananke's orders. Ananke then held a meeting with the rest of the gods, including Tara, to discuss the situation. Later that evening, she killed Tara at her request, but destroyed the suicide note she had left behind. She framed Baphomet for her death, and told the other gods that there may be a demon influencing him, warning of impending war.

Rising Action Edit

Ananke ordered Woden to create a mysterious device for Minerva's birthday, refusing to explain what it was for. Woden asked if Minerva was going to be the fourth death, which Ananke denied. They then received word that there were sightings of a new god in Highbury & Islington (actually Persephone, returned to take revenge on Ananke). Ananke gathered the gods to inform them that 'The Destroyer' had returned, and commanded Woden and Sakhmet to accompany her. Amaterasu and Baal were to stay behind and guard Valhalla, despite Baal's protests.

They sent a bomb Woden had created to the bar Persephone was performing in, with the intention of pinning the crime on her. They then appeared there themselves and started to fight. However, Persephone proved more powerful than they expected and she managed to escape. Ananke and Woden realised that it had been a diversion and returned to Valhalla, where they found Baphomet, Morrigan and Minerva trying to escape. Persephone showed up once more and helped them get out of there, to Ananke's fury.

Following this, Ananke stormed into Minerva's room to find out she had been deceiving them with an illusion projected by her robotic owl. She examined the device Woden had built, and confessed, in full view of Minerva's owl, that she intended to kill Minerva as part of a ritual to complete the "core sacrament" and stop the "Great Darkness". She justified it to herself as necessity, at which point she was interrupted by Woden, who wanted to start the meeting. She then manipulated the remaining members of the Pantheon into turning against Persephone and the others. She used Minerva's owl to locate the missing gods, and sent Baal, Sakhmet and Amaterasu after them.

Although they returned with Minerva, they were pursued by the other gods, and a battle ensued. During the chaos, Ananke killed Minerva's parents directly in front of Minerva, Amaterasu, and Beth and her camera crew. Amaterasu teleported away in panic, enabling Ananke to drag Minerva with her to the machine. She lost a hand along the way dealing with Baphomet. She then threatened Woden into helping her and revealed that she planned to murder the entire Pantheon after she had sacrificed Minerva, which she implied would increase her powers. Before she could do so, however, the rest of the Pantheon appeared, ready to fight her. Once captured by them, she was killed by Persephone.

AppearanceEdit

Ananke is an elderly white woman with white hair and pink/violet eyes. She typically dresses all in black, and wears a mask and/or veil which partially obscures her face. However, during the 1920s Recurrence she wore a mixture of black, gold and red. When she performs a miracle, or is present at an incarnation, her eyes glow pink.

RoleEdit

Ananke acts as advisor and guide to the Pantheon, training them in the use of their powers. She is the one who informs them they are gods and begins their incarnation. She is also a god in her own right, and can perform miracles if she wishes. She appears to care a great deal for the other gods, but prioritises continuing the cycle of Recurrence over the life of any individual. She frequently deceives the gods and has extremely dubious motives.

PowersEdit

Ananke has shown immense power and control over her abilities, displaying feats very few gods seem to be able to challenge:

  • Immortality: Unlike other gods, she does not seem to follow the two year limit. Instead she has shown to be immortal, having guided the Pantheon for centuries.
  • Divine Incarnation & Power Bestowal: As the guide of the Pantheon, Ananke is tasked with beginning their incarnation and ascension to godhood. As such, she is able to seemingly find the godly potential of the individual and access it, granting them divine powers, and what appears to be a new sense of identity. This was at one point was thought she didn't choose the Gods to be reincarnated, but now we know she can, with the status of their godhood in her hands.
  • Energy Projection: The nature of such an ability is unknown, but she has shown to be able to create mass amounts of energy for a variety of effects, the most notable being the explosion of heads (later suggested to be pinpointed teleportation, specifically allowing her to teleport the God's heads to a destination of her choosing). Her level of control seems to allow her to change the amount of harm her energy will do, as she seems to be able to make such power fatal or simple knock an opponent away. Her energy is typically pink and yellow, with her eyes also turning pink on occasion. Her power has proven strong enough to be capable of atomizing humans.
  • Tolerance to Pain: When facing Baphomet her hand began to burn and tear away against his fire, but she seemed to not feel any pain.

MythologyEdit

In Issue 2, Laura is seen reading the Wikipedia page for Ananke (mythology) on her phone, from which we learn that she is the 'personification of inevitability, compulsion and necessity'.

QuotesEdit

By Ananke

"Do you know what a miracle is? It is beyond explanation."
—Ananke[src]
"I love you, Lucifer."
—Ananke[src]
"You have no idea what I've given up. I gave up my divinity for you. I am no god of death. I am no god at all. I am necessity. And "life" is the last thing I have, boy."
—Ananke to Baphomet[src]
"It is a poor critic who says that a lack of effect on them implies all others are insincere in their love."
—Ananke[src]
"Some murders are necessary. Others are not."
—Ananke[src]
"Hmph. It never ends."
—Ananke on killing Minerva[src]
"There is the Great Darkness. Defeating it is all that matters."
—Ananke[src]
"You think you were in hell, Persephone? Hell is you children, forever!"
—Ananke[src]
"You are selfish brats and you will destroy the world. I am old and tired. I tried for so long. You don't deserve me."
—Ananke[src]

Dialogue

Minerva: "Tell me. Tell me it's going to be okay."
Ananke: "It will be, sweet child. It will always be okay."
―Ananke comforts Minerva[src]
Cassandra: "If you're going to go all high fantasy on me, you should know I'm a China Mieville girl."
Ananke: "Do you want to be smart or do you want to know things?"
―Cassandra and Ananke[src]
Woden: "I think you've mistaken me for your serf."
Ananke: "I have lived long enough to have known actual serfs. You are not a serf. You are considerably lower than a serf. You are but the pet of a god. We both know exactly what you are. And as long as I know what I know about you, you'll obey."
―Ananke and Woden[src]
Woden: "Have to say, this isn't a good time to start talking to yourself."
Ananke: "I like intelligent conversation. Given the available options, you cannot be too surprised if I choose to talk with myself."
―Woden and Ananke[src]
Baphomet: "How did you know about...what happened with Persephone and me?"
Ananke: "Two teenagers alone in the dark? For months? It hardly required prophecy."
―Baphomet and Ananke[src]
Woden: "Minerva?! You said she was too young."
Ananke: "Yesterday she was. Today's her birthday. Now she is not. If you are to play this game, Woden, you should pay attention to what I'm actually saying."
―Woden questions Ananke's murderous impulses[src]

AppearancesEdit