"For war with forest people, or pleasing greedy goddess, we care not! Fixed on the heavens, our eyes are!"
Chief of the Ehcatl Nine. A notorious delinquent, Sezul was fifteen when his attempt to steal a war balloon and fly off into the night was foiled by the engineer Dezul Qualan. Though it necessitated several disciplinary beatings over the course of their next few encounters, the master artisan persisted in teaching Sezul the value of a life lived with purpose. The repentant youth eventually pledged himself as Dezul's apprentice, and proceeded to take his first steps in the world of balloon construction.
It was two decades ago now that Sezul's friend and mentor climbed inside the basket of his latest vessel and disappeared into the distant clouds, leaving his apprentice with but the vaguest of commands: to follow his dreams. From that day forth, the young Ixal threw himself into his work with unbridled zeal. Sezul's unmatched passion attracted other artisans, and he brought them together as a crew called Ehcatl Nine, vowing on the eve of his forty-first nameday to continue the progressive legacy of his vanished teacher.