By the year 2589 Terran Standard, humanity has left the homeworld and spread across hundreds of planets, some of them naturally suitable for mankind and others terraformed to fit our needs. Everyday, exploration teams push our frontier further and further, claiming more solar systems or discovering new intelligent lifeforms, some of which rival us in technology and power. Faster-then-light jump drives allow vessels, ranging from bulky cargo freighters to sleek warships, to travel between the stars in a matter of weeks, rather then years. Rare materials flow into the heart of human civilization, even as it fractures and splits into new directions.
The most powerful government in human space is the Terran Union, a multi-planet federation of the Core Worlds, the oldest and richest of humanity’s possessions, governed from Earth. The majority of humans live within the Belt, former colony worlds which have developed enough to gain independents. The Belt is filled with planetary nations, ranging from monarchies to military dictatorships to social republics. The last section of human space is the Fringe, the frontier, filled with barely explored planets and small colonies. Often the home bases for religious or political extremists, corporate own worlds or scientific missions, the Fringe is a place of horror stories told in the Core. Tales of workers laboring to death on toxic or otherwise hazardous world, mingle with stories about unregulated and unethical biological experimentation and wild rumors about settlers developing deformities and mutations.Alright, I know most of you are wondering, is this about some sort of Sci-fi war epic, some story about mutants, a tale of worker’s rights, maybe a yarn about experimentation? Well those are possible roleplays and may come into this narrative but this is about the circus. A space traveling circus, zoo and freakshow in fact.
Cooper’s Grand Traveling Menagerie and Circus appeared about twenty standard years ago, when a one Cooper Smith purchased a failing zoo on the Core planet of Aries, which was filled with Earth animals. Instead of trying to fix up the place, he had cargo pods modified into enclosures for the animals, turning each into a little piece of Earth and stored them about his freighter, The Traveler. Setting out, he began touring around the Belt and the Fringe, allowing the folks living out there to see animals that still filled humanity’s myths, folktales and wise sayings.
At each planet, he would collect some more animals, adding to his menagerie and he began to collect performers, venders and all manner of folk. By the time eight years had passed, he was at the helm of a full-blown circus, traveling zoo and freakshow. Rarely shipping into the Core, where regulations and inspections led to several arrests and seizers of more then a few of his animals, Cooper became somewhat of a major interplanetary celebrity in the Belt. More often then not, governments would declare system wide holidays, when his heavily loaded freighter would exit jumpspace on the edge of their star system.
His shows generally follow the same pattern, although the length of stay various. Once The Traveler gets into orbit above a planet, Cooper takes a several days to shuttle his people, equipment and animal dirtside and set everything up. Once they reach opening day and start selling tickets, everything falls into place. During the day hours on the planet, the circus and zoo is in full swing. When the sun sets, the freakshow takes over. Once the late night hours come around, the purely adult entertainment begins. No act is too extreme for the show, unless it involves children in a sexual manner. Sometimes the show runs for a standard week, others run for over a standard month and then everything gets pack up and The Traveler jumps out of system, ready to start all over again.
But things rarely go as smoothly as that. As has been mentioned before, Core planets tend to come down hard with regulations and often have activist groups who would rather see the Cooper’s Grand Traveling Menagerie and Circus disbanded. Belt planets tend to suck the show into local politics, that or have wars and rebellions erupt around the show. Fringe planets are just plain dangerous and rarely turn a profit.
The show must go on!
[b]Age[/b]: (human standard (365, 24 hour days) years please)
[b]Profession[/b]: (acrobat, fire eater, animal trainer, ect)
: Cooper SmithSpecies
: male Age
: Known only to a few, appears somewhere between his late thirties, early forties.Appearance
: Cooper is a tall and well-built man, standing four inches above the six-foot mark. Broad of face, with a square jaw and a strong greek nose, he’s not a bad looking man, maybe not the best looking in the trope but handsome enough. His eyes have been replaced, with optical implants, which look rather like pools of quick silver and you can’t really tell where he’s looking but it feels like he is always watching you, and you alone. Because of the replacement of his eyes, how well he treats his body and the advances in medical tech, its very hard to pin down just how old he is, by just looking at him. Thick black hair covers his head and is cut down to four inches in length, then slicked back. A great black mustache, curled at the tips, complete the look.
When he is working in the show, he dresses the part of Ringmaster, from the days of old. Form fitting black trousers, tall black boots, a white silk shirt, a gold waistcoat, a bright red topcoat with tails and a black top hat. When not playing his part, Cooper tends to wear loose fitting jeans and cotton tee shirts, forgoing shoes whenever possible.Personality
: To describe Cooper as charming and charismatic would be like describing the ocean as wet and a sun as warm. The truth is, he relies on those skills a great deal, both when working a crowd and when talking with officials (to get his people out of jail or to through customs). Otherwise, he’s a cheerful and upbeat, always seeing the future as golden, the present as an opportunity and the past as fond memories.Sexuality
: Heterosexual, dominate, with a taste for bondageProfession
: Owner of Cooper’s Grand Traveling Menagerie and Circus and it's ringmaster Act(s)
: None but is always willing to help outExtra Talents
: Very handy with a whipBio
: Cooper Smith, for all intents and purposes, appeared twenty years ago from no where, with a titian class cargo hauler, when he bought a failing zoo and in eight years turned it into a wildly successful traveling circus. He claims to be a trueborn, which is to say a human born on Earth but no proof seems to exist to back up the claim. Any attempt to back track him pasted 2569, ends with false trails and corrupted data. His ship was built in Union space and has been owned by several firms in the past before disappeared from records. It appeared with him, along with a legal bill of sale from it's last owner on record but slightly modified. Because of this, rumors about him breed like rabbits.
One of the more rampant rumors is that he is a Union spook, spying on planets in the Belt or at the very least, he’s a spook handler, using his traveling show to collect reports and then send them back to Earth. The fact that he is rarely within message drone range of any Core planet is seen a proof that he’s a spy. Perfect cover. Other rumors make him out to be part of the underworld. They claim that he uses his traveling show as cover for smuggling weapons, drugs, animals or slaves for the various mafias, mobs and cartels. After all, how can any police agency or customs office inspect everything in a traveling circus? Perfect cover.
Whatever the case, Cooper’s not talking about his past, claiming it only adds to his allure.