Godfather Auteur was a skinless Homeworlder. After joining Faction Paradox, he declared himself the Homeworld's "Observer Effect" wrought flesh and took the title "Author of the Spiral Politic", believing that everything he wrote really happened and that anything he hadn't written about which did happen was "not valid". (PROSE: A Bloody (And Public) Domaine, Going Once, Going Twice)
According to rumours, Auteur was a Mapper of early Great Houses history who was driven insane following being forced to watch the outside Spiral Politic from an office on the Homeworld and map it via the observer effect. Before even sprouting a second heart, he realised that he could abuse the Observer Effect to make anything real if he looked in the right place. Similar to other renegade Mappers, he took a name which was a variation on the word "astrolabe". (PROSE: Going Once, Going Twice) Notably, the Sixth Doctor repeatedly faced a Renegade Time Lord known as Astrolabus, who resided in a tall tower-like TARDIS, claimed to have mapped out the stars, (COMIC: Voyager) and had his skin ripped from him during his last face-off with the Doctor. (COMIC: Once Upon a Time-Lord)
Intrepid believed that this rumour had been started by Auteur himself and his "drinking buddies" in order to give his Observer Effect-based abilities "some more gravitas", and that he had later started believing it himself out of habit, whereupon it became valid history for him due to the Observer Effect. The official word from the Eleven-Day Empire had simply been that Auteur had been one of the Homeworlders drawn away from the Great Houses by Grandfather Paradox in the early days of the Faction. (PROSE: Going Once, Going Twice)
When Auteur was banished from the Homeworld for his beliefs, he left with his House cousin Gideon. (PROSE: A Bloody (And Public) Domaine) However, the two grew apart; Gideon eventually left Auteur to join Faction Paradox. (PROSE: Going Once, Going Twice)
Joining Faction Paradox
At some point prior to joining the Faction, Auteur became a wizened old man with a greasy beard and two clumps of white hair on either side of his bald head. He had a propensity for saying phrases in French and once scribbled into a grimoire by candlelight. (PROSE: Going Once, Going Twice)
In his final incarnation, Auteur attempted to cheat death by stealing star charts from an agent of Life. (PROSE: Hark! The Herald Angels Sing) He was then found by the Faction, skinless and dying in a "crumbling reality bubble of his own" where he had been hiding from the Houses. Laughing madly despite his injuries, he claimed that "Life itself" had stolen his skin from him. One of the Faction members who had found him was his own cousin Gideon, who pleaded with his compatriots for Auteur to be allowed to join the Faction. (PROSE: Going Once, Going Twice)
Taking the name "Auteur", he replaced his missing skin with shadow-skin. Instead of having a conventional ceremonial mask, Auteur allowed the shadow-skin to peel off at his head and reveal his own skull. (PROSE: A Bloody (And Public) Domaine)
The Faction eventually got annoyed with Auteur and his beliefs and imprisoned him at the top of the Shadow Spire, (PROSE: A Bloody (And Public) Domaine) ruling that even though his beliefs were incompatible with Great House orthodoxy, they still involved "mastery" of history, and were therefore anathema to the the Grandfather's dogma. Mother and Father were assigned as his wardens. (PROSE: Going Once, Going Twice, The Story So Far...)
Even then, Auteur continued writing and scheming as he listened to the whispers of the loa that teemed around the tower. He incorporated what he learned into his writings and home videos of history and alternative histories. (PROSE: A Bloody) During his imprisonment, Auteur wrote an Abecedarium. It was later was found on the Cupid Homeworld during Christmas, 2020. The inhabitants, the Crew of the Copper-Colored Cupids, regarded it as a Christmas miracle, despite Lord Thymon suspecting that there was something wrong. Celebration-665 gave a reading of the abecedarium to the other Cherubs, but partway through, he read a warning message broadcast over a metamedial network, which warned not to let Auteur to have access to their reality's story. Celebration-665 dismissed it as part of the story. Celebration was left baffled, and the other Cherubs without words. Bibliophile-962 confiscated the book, storing it away in the restricted section of the Cupid Archives. Celebration then won back the Clockwork Cherubs with offers of cake. (PROSE: Auteur's Abecedarium)
Gideon sometimes visited Auteur, but as time passed their relationship grew more distant and the visits became less frequent. On the day of Gideon's final visit, Auteur was inspired by a recording of Morlock (and the usual loa whispers) to write a story about Lolita manipulating Count Dracula into becoming the Enemy. Auteur took delight in the premise, angering Gideon. After Auteur finished the story, Gideon left the Spire and was consumed by Auteur's loa. (PROSE: A Bloody (And Public) Domaine)
The Family of the Shadow Spire
After the destruction of the Eleven-Day Empire, Auteur's prison became a haven for surviving members of Faction Paradox, (PROSE: Hark! The Herald Angels Sing) who took on the name of Family of the Shadow Spire. Although nominally still a prisoner in the lantern room of the Spire, Auteur was one of the leaders of the Family, with Mother and Father having, by then, degraded into mere shadows of their former selves who acted like fanatical loyalists to the Faction's propaganda, but were easily manipulated by Auteur.
At the time of the Armistice, Auteur attempted to free himself from the Spire and ascend beyond time to become the indisputable author of history. Having already written the narrative of things to come, Auteur waited in the Spire with Mother and Father as Kifah and Gustav obtained the Unanchored Osirian Apep in the First Auction in Heaven. Once Apep was in his grasp, Auteur ordered his loa to kill Mother and Father and began a ritual to bond his biodata with Apep's.
However, Apep had already been snaking through Auteur's narrative and altering its outcome; in the last moment, Apep sucked Auteur's shadow-skin away from him. After he began painfully falling apart, Apep snapped his jaws around him, seemingly killing him. Due to the temporal disturbances caused by Apep's arising, an echo of Auteur still managed to speak to Intrepid for a few moments more. Aware that "this wasn't [his] story anymore," Auteur spent his time taunting Intrepid, speaking in his true voice ("gargled shards of glass, more like the crunching of arthritic bones than voice") with no French or other eccentricities.
The Sanctum of the Heretic
In the end, however, Auteur resurfaced. Without his shadow-skin, he had been reduced to a "tangle of blackened biodata" inhabiting his own battered, badly-repaired skeleton. Auteur put together a new plan and used a "Noble-woman" to alter the structure of history, creating a twisted parallel world. However, the woman rebelled, restoring the proper course of history despite Auteur's attempt to stop her by "vandalising a sad and ancient thing".
Because he'd physically followed the woman into the altered timeline, rather than simply projecting his mind backwards like she had, Auteur remained trapped in the parallel world even as it faded away, collapsing into an empty oxbow timeline. Although he was lost and dying, Auteur rejected this ending for his "story". He cried tears of ink and used them to write down a message on the pavement which would ensure his eventual survival: "This is only the beginning".
After several centuries passed, during which Auteur's consciousness became dormant, his salvation came in the form of three Retconning Crocodiles, who came to inspect the oxbow timeline in the hopes of making it into a new base for their organisation. They found Auteur and recognised him. To speak to him, they temporarily regressed his body to an earlier state, that of the bearded old man. The Crocodiles then offered him a more lasting resurrection in exchange for his helping them to attempt to defeat the Crew of the Copper-Colored Cupids.
Auteur accepted the Crocodiles' deal after making them swear on their own canonicity that they would uphold their end of the deal. The Crocodiles thus retroactively allowed the version of Auteur trapped in the Spire to write a cursed Abecedarium with which to "destabilise the Cupids' story". He then woke up back in the "present," finding that his shadow-skin and vitality had been returned to him, as had his old grimoire and his favourite quill. However, he was still trapped in the oxbow reality, as a mocking message from the Crocodiles highlighted. Scholars later dubbed this reality "the Sanctum of the Heretic". (PROSE: Resurrection of the Author)
Auteur appeared as a character in a BBC TV series whose title was made up of two words, beginning with F and P respectively. His skeletal "thirteenth reincarnation" was portrayed continuously from 2067 and 7898 by a single performer, (PROSE: Auteur's Abecedarium, Resurrection of the Author) except for the 200th Anniversary Special of 6267, where he was portrayed by the actor David Bradley wearing a rubber mask. (PROSE: Resurrection of the Author)
Behind the scenes
- Auteur is as heavily implied to have once been Astrolabus, a recurring antagonist of Doctor Who Magazine's Sixth Doctor comics, as can be achieved without impeaching on the character's copyright. However, this was never explicit due to Observe Books not having the license for the character of Astrolabus, which lies with Steve Parkhouse, writer of COMIC: Voyager.
- The character of Auteur, licensed from his creator Jacob Black, made some crossover appearances in the 10,000 Dawns series, not held at present to be valid on this Wiki. PROSE: White Canvas featured a new female incarnation of Auteur as its main antagonist and also went back to Auteur's origins, depicting Auteur's original escape from death and transformation into the iconic skeletal Auteur, while PROSE: The Gendar Conspiracy put him at the centre of the titular conspiracy, helping create an impossible civilisation on the planet Gendar. Auteur had a minor appearance in PROSE: Birthdays are Made for Memories.
Information from invalid sources
A Better World
Auteur once was in a crowded street in Shan Shen when he noticed a woman, Donna, who seemed to have time itself converge around her. Sensing an opportunity to create a world without the Renegade, he told a fortune teller (who was a puppet of a Beetle) to feed Donna to the Beetle. His plan was successful, and a new timeline was created, and Auteur followed Donna into it. In this world, the Renegade quickly died, and Auteur wanted to tell Donna what he did, but a "Wolf-girl" stopped him. The only thing Auteur was able to do was sabotage a Timeship. (NOTVALID: A Better World)