Ibis Ward is, more officially, Tutmose Ward. Born to an Egyptian mother and an English land-owning father, he has grown up between both cultures knowing that as the oldest son he would inherit obligations for the family holdings in England. He has three younger siblings: his middle brother and sister are in Egypt with their mother, while his youngest sister Hypatia is a student at Schola from 1922 to 1927. Ibis did well during his time at Schola, but largely kept to himself during his time in Seal House (led by Richart Hase). After he graduated, he apprenticed in archaeology and research, and was doing Intelligence work in Egypt during the Great War thanks to his language skills and knowledge of the country. Ibis is a devotee of the Kemetic (Egytian) deities Hetheru and Djehuty. Hetheru (also known as Hathor) is a goddess of love, beauty, and pleasure, while Djehuty, often known as Thoth, is god of scribes and writing.
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Ibis has kept one secret very close for much of his adult life - early in his adult life, he learned to shapeshift. Hedgehogs are both a classic Egyptian animal and a classic English one and as Pross says, can you imagine anything else he'd be? Shapeshifting in Albion has several possible sources: some people have the ability to learn it, others are born with it, some are cursed with it. Ibis learned through repeated practice. It is not illegal in Albion, but it is socially stigmatised and often abused by others (as Ibis notes, it has a lot of implications for espionage work but also a great many risks.) Ibis shifts both in Magician's Hoard and in Chasing Legends.
At the end of Magician's Hoard, Ibis has accepted a new position teaching Materia at Schola. When Pross and Cammie join him and the other staff for holiday festivities they are drawn into a challenge from an ancient being out of legend that leads them deep into the mysteries of Schola in Chasing Legends.
(Click on the title above to learn more about Ibis's role in that book.)