Xhexania (meaning "beloved one" in the Vampire's Old Language, a.k.a. Xhex) is the daughter of Autumn (a.k.a. No'One/Rosalhynda) and an unknown Sympath male. She is half Sympath, half Vampire. She is the current shellan of John Matthew (Tehrror).
Xhex first appears in Lover Awakened. The details of her birth history are told concurrently with John Matthew's mating of her in Lover Mine.
Xhex is described as a rather tall, strong female with hard muscles, like those of a male, only leaner to match her smaller female body. She wears her hair buzz-cut short for most of the series.
She does not tend to wear cosmetics or perfume, and does not usually enjoy wearing frilly or 'girly' clothing, preferring muscle tee shirts, leather pants, shitkicker boots, and a gun belt.
The only jewelry Xhex will wear is a diamond pendant around her neck that her hellren, John Matthew, presented to her (in lieu of an engagement ring).
At the end of Lover Mine, she tells John she wants to get his name tattooed on her back (to mirror John's tattoo and carving of her name on his back). Whether she actually has done this or not is unknown in the current text, although it's assumed Xhex probably did get the ink work done.
Xhex is very masculine in her behavior and in her thought processes. She is quick to react in counter to any physical threat, and has no qualms about using violence to solve problems. She is also incredibly brave, extremely loyal to those she loves, a scrapper, and a survivor (she is very resilient). She is an ultra-feminist, too, believing that females can do anything males can do, and refusing to be set aside or coddled when danger rears its ugly head.
Xhex is not squeamish about killing, but she is a discriminate killer. She is not psychotic, but certainly would be classified as anti-social. She also clearly suffers a touch of post-traumatic stress disorder from her rough life (she's been kidnapped, raped, beaten, and experimented upon by several parties over the course of her life), but she is so in control of her emotions most of the time that she refuses to feel such things. During the rare times she does break down, it is a very poignant moment.
Prior to mating John Matthew, Xhex was a female who did not make emotional connections with her sexual partners. She's had several relationships that we know of from the text, but until John, she had never been in love.
If you need an assassin or someone to hold the line in a fire fight (or stand at your back when the enemy closes in), Xhex is your female. She is lethal with both a blade and a gun, and is trained in some form of martial defense techniques (which she often employs on those who get out of hand at the clubs where she works).
Xhex also knows how to ride a motorcycle.
- Xhex and Rehvenge are both half-Sympath, half-Vampire.
- For the early part of the series (prior to Lover Avenged), Xhex worked as Head of Security at Rehvenge's club, ZeroSum. After the club was destroyed in Lover Avenged, she went to work at Trez's club, The Iron Mask, working in the same capacity.
- Xhex used to control her Sympath rages with the use of cilices strapped to her thighs. She doesn't need to wear these any longer (as of Lover Mine), because the pain of nearly losing John, her mate, is a memory she uses to keep that side of herself in control now.
- Xhex was kidnapped by a Symphath once, long ago (like her mother had been - this is one of J.R. Ward's plot devices, a technique known as 'mirroring', that crops up often in the series).
- We see Xhex use her full Symphath side in Lover Mine during the fight at the farmhouse amongst the plethora of fresh lessers turned by Grady. She burrows into the lesser's mind and uncaps all of his past deeds, all the evil he had done, all of his self loathing and embarrassments and guilts and let's them drive him to involuntary suicide- the preferred murder method of symphaths.
- Xhex has a fear of all things medical (rooms, equipment, doctors, needles, etc.). This was developed after/during her 'first trip through the captivity park' (referring to her being captured and dragged up to the Symphath Colony against her will). Shortly before Murhder went to the Symphath colony, she was sold as a medical test subject to a group of humans who imprisoned her in a medical-type facility. The whereabouts of this facility is not known. Approximately a month after Xhex escaped, she returned to the facility and burned it to the ground. It is generally believed that the most sadistic of her captors was inside the building at the time.
- Xhex was raped by Lash, the only Lesser ever to be sexually functional.
- Xhex is an assassin for hire on the side, although since mating John Matthew in Lover Mine, it seems that part of her life might be over. She still fights the Lessers, however, and is one of two females (Payne being the other) out on rotation with the Brothers in the field.
- Vishous has never forgotten that Xhex and Butch were, at one time, sexually intimate. Although Vishous respects Xhex, there is a part of him that is jealous of her as a result. Consequently, he is usually antagonistic towards Xhex (despite the fact they are all mated to others now and the issue is moot).
- We have never seen Xhex drink alcohol or smoke in the series.
Xhex was conceived after her mother, Rosalhynda (a.k.a. No'One, a.k.a. Autumn) was kidnapped and raped by a Sympath during her first needing. Unlike Rehvenge, Xhex's father was a common Sympath, not of royal or noble lineage.
When Xhex was still in utero, Darius found and rescued her and her mother from the Sympath who had kidnapped then. Darius then helped deliver Xhex into the world, and was given the honor of naming her. Her mother took her own life after giving birth to Xhex, unable to live with the shame and memories of the rape.
At some unknown time, Xhex was involved with Murhder, of the Black Dagger Brotherhood. The depth of that relationship is unknown, but we do know that when Xhex was kidnapped and taken to the Sympath Colony, Murhder went after her to bring her home. He went insane for reasons unknown soon afterwards (Xhex assumes it's because he found out about her being half-Sympath and couldn't handle loving a half-breed, but Murhder's true reasons haven't been revealed yet in the text). Whatever the real reason, Murhder left, and so their relationship came to an end.
Sometime after that, Xhex and Revhenge met and engaged in a one-off affair. Afterwards, they both realized that there was no potential romantic connection between them and they were better off as friends. In contrast to many of the more casual relationships in the series, their one-off intimacy had a positive result - that of strengthening their friendship bond. They both now consider each other as close as boon companions of the heart, perhaps even more like siblings.
After Darius' assassination, he was reincarnated as John Matthew, the vampire destined to be Xhex's mate.
In the current time frame of the series, Xhex and Brian "Butch" O'Neal hooked-up as casual lovers. This happened before Butch was transformed into a Vampire (when he was still an ordinary human working for the Caldwell Police Department). That relationship ended, however, when Butch decided he was in love with Marissa and wanted to seriously pursue her.
When Xhex was kidnapped by Lash, the Lesser King, she was repeatedly brutalized and raped by him. When she successfully escaped his 'non-reality bubble' magic, her uterus was torn. It had to be surgically fixed by Doc Jane, Vishous, and Ehlena once she was rescued. Thankfully, she did not get pregnant with Lash's young as a result of her ordeal, as she has some small control over her needing period as a half-Sympath and so willed herself not to be fertile during that time period. Whether the damaged she suffered under Lash's abuse will affect her ability to have young or not is unknown at the present time.
Mating & Family
Xhex's 'catting around' days pretty much ended when the pre-trans John Matthew entered her life. Their romance was, to say the least, a rough one, but one with a happy ending.
The couple met at ZeroSum, before John went through his transition. Xhex pulled him aside because he was armed in the club, and she then proceeded to frisk-search him for weapons and ID. As John is mute he could not speak in his defence. The issue was cleared up when Blaylock arrived with his Vampire ID and a letter from the Vampire King to the management of ZeroSum. Their relationship continues mostly as glances across the club for a couple of books untill John hits his transition. When he suddenly appears before her all grown up and obviously interested in seriously pursuing her, Xhex's interest shifts from amused curiosity to aroused interest.
John accidentally discovers that Xhex is a half-Sympath when he barges into her office one night, while out with Qhuinn and Blaylock. The next night, John ditches his friends (who are also his bodyguards) and sees Xhex at ZeroSum, where she gives him the key to her small apartment close by so he can have a safe place to relax. John crashes at Xhex's place and when she returns, they have sex. She takes his virginity that night. She does not allow John to kiss her, however, saying 'that's not what this is about'. She then has a shower and leaves him as quickly as she'd arrived. As a Vampire male in love with her (and already half-bonded to her), John is devastated by her casual dismissal. He determines to forget her and embarks on a quest to ruin himself in alcohol and lots (LOTS) of meaningless sex with other women. Xhex silently watches him self-destruct, crushed by his obvious hatred for himself and for her. She is determined never to get emotionally involved with anyone again after the last relationship train-wreck she'd had with Muhrder, however, and does her best to let John go.
At the end of Lover Avenged, she is kidnapped by Lash, who has discovered his role as the Lesser King. He takes her from the Sympath Colony and hides her away in a house he has taken as his own. Using the magic of the Omega, his father, he is able to cloak Xhex's presence (and her energy signature and her scent) from the real world, keeping her in a bubble of dual-phase reality (she exists in a space, but no one aside from her and Lash perceives her there). While trapped, Lash brutalizes Xhex, repeatedly beating and raping her. Fortunately, she never conceives from that incident, and she escapes her incarceration. John finds her at her apartment and takes her to the Brotherhood mansion for medical treatment.
It is while in the mansion's underground clinic that it becomes apparent to all that John has bonded to Xhex. After her surgery, everything changes between them. They share secrets about their pasts, and when she's a little better, John takes her out of the clinic to the places he lived as a pre-trans on the streets. Xhex learns John's most horrible secret: he, too, was a victim of rape. It occurs to her then that they are both survivors.