Esperanza Rameriz (18) is from the Mexican city of Guadalajara. She once lived a happy upper middle class childhood as the only daughter of the city’s newspaper editor. She attended private schools. She and her parents even traveled to Disney World for her 15th birthday.
THE CALL TO ADVENTURE
Her sheltered life fell apart when her father’s newspaper attempted to expose political links to the drug trade. Esperanza was placed on a bus headed North to stay with her Aunt in the United States until the danger passed.
During the desert border crossing Esperanza’s group of travelers is attacked by Cartel’s enforcers.
Suddenly an Old Woman riding a giant wolf appears. It’s the Red Ryder. A legendary bruja (witch) who has patroled these mountains for centuries. Esperanza is brought to a small cabin deep in the forest. The bruja’s powers have been passed down from generation to generation. She explains that Esperanza too has this blood in her veins.
As the Old Woman passes on her knowledge she grows weaker and weaker until she dies in Esperanza’s arms. And a new Red Ryder is born.
Esperanza’s power is connected to the Earth. For example: when she comes upon a group of immigrants being robbed by drug smugglers she can turn loose brush into shrapnel. Or, she can use tree roots to dislodge boulders that roll down a mountain pass and block pursers. Or she can use thick grass to cover a trail.
She also has a unique form of travel: her spirit animal, a giant wolf. Esperanza is the only one who can interact with him. He keeps her company. Warns her of danger. And riding on his back she’s able to travel great distances along the “spirit path.”
Finally, Esperanza’s cloak is also a powerful tool. Inherited from the bruja it’s been stained red by the blood of thousands of fellow travelers. It’s bullet proof. It insulates from the cold. It can also provide camoflauge.
The Red Ryder's power exists in only one bruja at a time. The power also has limits. 1.) It only works when she is helping to rescue a person in need, i.e. refugee or traveler. 2.) It also only works when surrounded by nature. For example, the remote border regions of the world. The closer she comes to civilization her power diminishes. She’s completely helpless standing in the middle of a city.
There is also a cost to her power. The pain and fear of the travelers haunts her dreams. If there is a traveler in need their cries will literally drive her mad if she doesn’t move to help them.
FRIENDS AND ENEMIES
The Cartel is her nemesis. She’s determined to shut down their smuggling routes and drive them out of business.
Friends: Billy Bantam is a young Border Patrol Agent. He’s a Texas cowboy who served in Iraq and returned home to help protect the border in his home state. When she finds herself in a situation she can’t handle - he’s the only person that she trusts to do the right thing.
Her other love interest is Carlos Montega a young man from Mexico who works as a line chef in Dallas but returns home every 6 months to visit his sick mother. He’s an expert border crosser and becomes Esperanza’s guide in this murky world.
Esperanza’s goal is to wipe out the drug cartels’ smuggling routes so that peace will return to the border region. And she will be free to return to her old life and pursue her dream of becoming a journalist like her father.
Until the drug trade in Mexico is halted there will always be refugees streaming North. And Esperanza will always be haunted by their cries.
And more importantly, her beloved home country will never be free of the accompanying violence, pain and corruption.