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Embala

In my opinion these shadow figures were already members of this survivor group. The story simply concentrates on the Circle of Nine as Vojira pointed out already. The others are literally background. It makes even sense for me besides "for story's sake" only. Those nine had a special function for the ship, they had a special connection with one another - they were and are in charge for the others. They will stick closer together, being more active - the leading group.

About the resemblance between Haken and Rayek that you find so irritating - it is not the only one! Sefra/Skywise - Kaslen/Redlance - Kalil/Strongbow ... I can even see Leetah in Aerth and Tyleet in Deir. They are archetypes, most probably for story's sake - not the story told to Rayek, but simply the story told to the reader.

Two short issues had to tell the story about a genesis ... there was not much room for character developement. The characters look similar to well-known elves to make the reader feel familiar with them and their function. And honestly - in my eyes it would have been forced to "change colors" - combine bad temper with white hair, a treeshaper with black tresses, a silent blond guy, the stargazer with a red crest ... think about it. In a two issue storyline this would have been only confusing.