Julia is one of the main antagonists of the Rain of the Ghosts series. A primordial inhabitant of the Ghost Keys, her original name was Guanayoa, but now she goes by many names. Maq and Opie call her Hura-hupia, much to her chagrin, and her involvement in the crashing of the B-17 bomber in 1945 gave her the moniker of Santa Julia, or simply Hurricane Julia. She is also referred to as First Witch in Taíno folklore.
In the First Days
The origins of Guanayoa go back to the early days of Taíno lore. As the most beautiful woman in the cacicazgo, Guanayoa enjoyed the power that her beauty exerted upon everyone else, so she sought more. She made a deal with First Demon to gain his magicks, and thus the First Witch came about.
However, her fledgling magicks and immortality did not come without a price. She lost her beauty and quickly everyone in the cacicazgo forgot she had been beautiful once. Guanayoa became an old crone and came to execrate the beauty of those around her. So, she channeled all her hate and envy to Aycayia. She cozened Aycayia into lying with First Demon, which nearly killed her. Nursed back to health, Aycayia found that she was pregnant.
Fearing that this child—named after the original Jurupari—would grow up to become a man of power like his namesake, Guanayoa cursed him in his mother's womb by coaxing Aycayia to drink human blood. The child was born and became First Murderer. After being exposed and consigned to First Fire, his ashes begot the First Mosquitos and his plague of death endured. Guanayoa blamed Aycayia for her son's doings, saying she had lain with First Demon and was First Witch. Guanayoa got her wish: Aycayia was banished to Punta Majagua to serve her.
Guanayoa enslaved Aycayia and her Six Sisters (who accompanied Aycayia in her exile) and treated them with cruelty. But despite her best efforts, Guanayoa couldn't make Aycayia feel any more miserable than she already did for losing her son. One day, the Witch spotted the Fourteen Warrior who had marooned them on the island and surmised that they intended to extricate Aycayia from her exile. So, Guanayoa enthralled the Warriors into slaughtering each other. Aycayia witnessed the Witch's dead, and when she threatened to tell First Chief and First Shaman, Guanayoa cursed her and her Sisters so that they could not step on any land. The Six Sisters were transformed into dolphins and Aycayia was turned into a manatee. But this spell took its toll on Guanayoa too, as she used all her magicks on her quarries and lost her own immortality to them.
Guanayoa's doings thenceforth remain undocumented, but she eventually succumbed to her mortality and became a ghost. At some point in history, her likeness was engraved into a belt of beaded black and red seeds, which eventually came into Pablo Guerrero's possession and his collection of zemis.
At some point, Guanayoa became a contender in a power struggle and pitied herself against Maq's faction. The motivations behind the two groups involved in this game of sorts have yet to be explained, but the nine zemis strewn across the Ghost Keys play an important, albeit unspecified role.
For unspecified reasons, in 1945 Guanayoa took down the Island Belle to prevent its crew from returning home. The ghost witch intercepted the bomber en route to Tío Samuel, trapping it inside a hurricane. She made the plane plummet somewhere between San Próspero and Tío Samuel. This accident claimed the lives of eight members of the Belle's crew: Billy Zekaris, Pete Grier, Harry Conners, Harry Eiling, William Mitchell, Ducky Simpson, Lance Pedros and Tommy McMinn. On the following day, the storm was dubbed Santa Julia, and from that point on, Guanayoa would be commonly referred to as "Julia". However, thanks to the interference of Maq, Sebastian Cacique survived, which Julia considers cheating.
Sixty-nine years later, Rain Cacique refloated the Belle from the ocean's dept to fulfill the ghost crew's mission, and Julia went after them to tie up loose ends. She attacked the plane with wind, rain and lightning. Rain counterattacked with the bomber's gun, energized with the power of her armband and hit Julia between the eyes. The ensuring barrage of blue fire caused the storm to ebb and Julia was forced into a retreat.
Julia hauled herself onto Tío Sam's shores and assumed the form of a human female. Still determined to pursue her assault on Rain, Charlie and 'Bastian, her intentions were stymied by Maq and Opie, who were on the beach ready to waylay her. Maq and Julia exchanged insults back and forth. He pointed out the frivolity of her trying to bring down the plane again, even though the first time she did it, back in 1945, proved ineffective to stop them. Julia proclaimed that her efforts would have worked then, if Maq and Opie hadn't cheated by rescuing 'Bastian from the sea. Maq warned Julia to accept her defeat and let her preys go for the remainder of the evening. He went on to threaten her with direct confrontation. Julia goaded Maq, but the bum simply stated that this was not about her. Julia stared him down for nine seconds, nodded and left.
On the following night, Julia headed to Sycorax Island and entered an ancient bat cave, where she encountered the Hupia, Jurupari. The creature moved to attack her, but Julia discouraged him with a simple head-shaking. She found a sealed gourd jar, from which the creature had been released, and purposely dropped it into a pool that reached to the ocean. She then enjoined Jurupari to guard the second zemi, assuring him that his own survival depended on it.
On September 12, Julia returned to the cave to commend Jurupari for attacking Isaac Naborías and incited him to do the same to Rain, given the chance. She then attempted to impede Rain from finding the second zemi. She sent her a dream with a spurious account of the First Days, in which Aycayia was depicted as the nefarious First Witch, and created a storm to interfere with the search of the Kimlets.
On September 18, the second zemi was almost within her grasp, but she helplessly watched as Callahan was conned into absconding from the cave with the wrong zemi. She contemplated sinking Bootstrap with him aboard for a moment, but ultimately decided against it, as there were still more zemis to find and Callahan could still get one for her team, or even kill Rain in the process.
On the next night, Julia was summoned by Maq for a conference. After much delay, he finally told her she owned Charlie Dauphin a quarter. Then, he fetched a T-shirt from a garbage bin and proclaimed to be "Manbat". Infuriated with his shenanigans, Julia turned away, cursing her luck for losing to such a buffoon.
Rain of the Ghosts
Spirits of Ash and Foam
- Chapter 10: "Night Moves"
- Chapter 16: "Smitten"
- Chapter 20: "Aycayia the Cursed" (dream)
- Chapter 29: "Off Punta"
- Chapter 41: "Ash and Foam" (flashback)
- Chapter 42: "Stick-up"
- Chapter 45: "Flame and Surf"