Hey, folks. I understand there's still a couple spots left open in this game, and after chatting with EM for a bit I decided to toss out a CS and see how it sails. I'm looking forward to playing with all you guys.
Name: Trent Barnett
Race/Symbol: Marked Human - Sword
Weapon/Ability: An unnamed, unusually large, black-bladed switchblade knife (See below)
Appearance: Trent is rather tall at 6'1, and a bit on the lanky side with the lean, whipcord build of a runner (or a street rat). He's not really the sort of fellow to spend much time in daylight (or decent company), so he often has a somewhat pale, slightly gaunt complexion. Dark brown eyes sit beneath thick, bushy brows and a shaggy mane of almost black hair that in direct light sometimes shows faint streaks of red. On the inside of his left wrist is a small, dark birthmark in the faint shape of a spade. He's usually seen in faded, tattered denim jeans, an old T-shirt, light running shoes and a heavy leather jacket with so many rips one wonders how it's still stitched together.
Personality: Trent is a pretty relaxed guy, but there are moments when his outwardly serene appearance gives way to a cunning and ruthless nature, and heaven help those who try to order him around. He never graduated high school, but he's spent enough time in public libraries to educate himself well into college-level territory, on myriad subjects. Soft-spoken and congenial, Trent can make friends with just about anyone, but earning the full measure of his trust is next to impossible. Only two people have ever accomplished that, and once the achievement was strictly posthumous. Trent flips back and forth between calm and chaotic, compassionate and cruel so often, he's often wondered if he would qualify as schizophrenic. Given his history, he wouldn't be too surprised.
Biography: Trent was born in a little nowhere town in southern Mississippi, and promptly left in the care of a local Christian-run orphanage. Many of the orphanage's wards were from similar circumstances, and the nuns who ran the place were ferociously strict with their young charges--attempting, they claimed, to ensure that the children would not stray from the path of righteousness as their worthless parents had. That the boy managed to grow up with even an ounce of defiance in his spirit was a miracle (of the Devil, the nuns would often whisper among themselves after hours), but defiant he was. Wherever there was a rule, Trent was bound and determined to see it broken, and his rebellious nature only grew stronger when he felt that someone else was being oppressed. He became something of a hero to many of the other children in the orphanage with his reckless and daring behavior, and a living curse to the staff and faculty. Perhaps that was what made her fall in love with him so deeply.
Mary Ellen Bannister was another child at the orphanage, only a year or two younger than Trent. The daughter of a local prostitute, the nuns were especially strict and judgemental toward the young Mary Ellen. Seeing their abhorrent treatment of her drove Trent to become her unofficial protector, and the day he turned eighteen he snuck her out of the facility, stole one of the janitors' trucks, and the pair ran away to New York together with nothing but a bag of peanuts and the clothes on their backs.
Upon arriving in the Big Apple, the couple began bouncing from homeless shelter to shelter. Trent managed to acquire an old, beat-up guitar from a kind old man he met in one of the city's soup kitchens, and he spent weeks on the street corners, busking for change; it was one of the only times he could remember being grateful for the nuns' insistence on music lessons. The coins he collected in his hat were rarely enough to see them through a day, however, and Trent and Mary Ellen took to small-time grifting to survive. He proved to have a natural talent for deception, one that she sadly lacked. Sadly, it was her propensity for virtue that proved their downfall.
Trent had managed to secure them a cheap, shit-hole apartment, little more than a rented coffin in Hell's Kitchen, and had gone out looking for odd jobs, an easy mark, anything that would bring in a enough for tomorrow's groceries. After a fruitless day of beating the streets, he returned to the apartment to find a man in a dark suit standing beside a sobbing Mary Ellen. An enforcer, working for a small time outfit whose courier Trent had conned out of nearly $1000 the week before. The very same money that had gone to pay for the couple's rent. The man demanded the money back as he brandished wicked-looking switchblade against Mary Ellen's throat. Trent fell to his knees, begging for mercy, pleading for her safety and promising to return the stolen money, but to no effect. The man with the knife grinned, a thin-lipped, evil smile that seemed to split his face apart, and like the gentle brush stroke of a master painter he dragged the blade across Mary Ellen's throat.
Trent screamed in rage and sorrow as her blood spurted onto his chest in thick, crimson gouts, and he launched himself at her murderer with no thought in mind but revenge. The goon easily side-stepped his clumsy attack and rammed the blade into Trent's chest, piercing his broken heart. As he fell to the floor clutching at the knife, the voice of the building's landlord rumbled outside in the hall, threatening to call the cops. The thug abandoned his knife and ducked out onto the fire escape, leaving Trent for dead.
And dead he most certainly would have been, if the knife had been any ordinary weapon. As Trent writhed on the floor in the pool of Mary Ellen's blood, sparkling glimmers of light danced in front of his eyes. His vision was darkened, there was no sound, and yet he heard as clear as church bells a voice telling him to remove the knife from his heart. His failing eyes fell on Mary Ellen's corpse, and with the last of his strength he jerked the blade out of his chest and passed out.
Almost a day later, he awoke with no more than a dull but fading ache in his chest and a faint, dark scar where the knife had punctured his skin. His mind was clouded, his thoughts hazy, but as he again took in the sight of his love's deathly pallor, a single instinct exploded inside of him. The need for vengeance. For justice. With the knife still in his hand, he fled the gruesome apartment and followed a phantom trail of anguish and bloodlust to a small warehouse on the outskirts of the neighborhood. Stealing a glance inside, he caught sight of no less than five men, seated and standing around a simple card table. Two of them he recognized: the man whose bankroll he'd lifted, and the man who had been tasked with retrieving it. The weasel, and the murderer. Unlike the others, one of the men seated at the table wore a plain white suit. From the demeanor of the other men, he was most likely the boss.
Trent had no idea how he'd known where to come, or why the knife felt so natural in his hand, and at that moment he didn't care. With a speed and a ferocity that he'd never suspected in himself, he rushed inside and slaughtered all five men before they could unholster their pistols. Mere moments later, he stood among the carnage and listened to a voice in his head that wasn't there. The knife, telling him that what he'd done was right, that this scum had deserved no mercy. The knife, telling him that he would have the chance to again bring justice and death to the wicked, if he so chose. The knife, telling him that it had found its rightful master once again.
The Unnamed Blade
The Devil's Courage: Those who dare to meet the Blade's true master in combat will find themselves faced with an opponent of unrivaled ferocity and reckless disregard for his own life. The knife offers powerful protection to its wielder, but that protection comes at a heavy price. Any damage Trent suffers during battle, no matter how grave or severe, will be shrugged off as little more than a scratch; however, when the fight is over, the full debt of his pain will be visited on him and it will take him far more time and effort to heal his wounds than usual.
The Angel's Fidelity: The Blade will never be separated from its rightful owner by any means other than willing surrender. Should the Blade ever be lost or stolen, reality and random chance will bend itself to impossible configurations until it is returned to its master's hand--often precisely when it is needed most. This effect is passive, and is always active.
Atropos' Aim: The Blade can cut through absolutely anything. Anything. In the hands of its master, when fully attuned, the Blade can even slice through the intangible, and is said to be capable of cutting the distance between two points, or cutting thoughts or knowledge from the minds of others like a surgeon removes shrapnel from a wound. Perfect concentration, an intimate knowledge of its target, and an unbreakable will are required to activate this power at its zenith.