Thursday, July 18, 2013

199: Vel Von Voom



ENTRY 199: Vel Von Voom

During her awake-cycle, Vel von Voom is a young face that stands out in the crowd, her face and body a mass of scar tissue, artful brands concealing and incorporating the older, ugler chaotic burn wounds that speak of some horrific fire. So she faces the world through a mask she burnt into her own face, proud and terrifying. Vel has the ambition, but not the skills, and there is no road-map to stardom or happiness. So she works where she can find it, builds her rep in small ways, shares her music with those who will listen, and steals kisses from girls in dark, little-used corridors and maintenance shafts.

At night, she dreams of fire. Reliving the night when They burnt their way in to her parent’s ship, the smell of her mother’s boiling fat splashing against her face, the boneless thing that forced her into its burning, burning embrace… After the first few fire alarms, she started to sleep in water cocoons. Waking up half-scalded from boiling currents was better than sparking a blaze that called station maintenance and security down on her head. Sleeping with lovers turned out to be another bad idea; on the last one her sleep-self had gotten creative, burning a terrible pattern of fine lines in her skin that hurt to look at…

COG
COO
INT
REF
SAV
SOM
WIL
MOX
12
13
12
15
16
10
13
-
INIT
SPD
LUC
TT
IR
DUR
WT
DR
5
1
26
5
52
30
6
45

Morph: Splicer
Skills: Academics: Accounting 28, Academics: Astrophysics 25, Academics: Psychology 26, Art: Branding 34, Art: Singing 28, Blades 27, Deception 28, Fray 26, Free Fall (Microgravity) 30, Hardware: Aerospace 24, Infiltration 26, Infosec 26, Interests: Black Markets 28, Interests: Criminal Groups 25, Interests: Psi 29, Kinesics: 20, Kinetic Weapons: 20, Language: Native Dutch 85, Language: English 72, Language: Korean 46, Language: Cantonese (Swearing) 22, Networking: Autonomists 17, Networking: Criminal 20, Networking: Hypercorps 17, Palming 31, Persuasion (Flirt) 30, Profession: Appraisal 27, Profession: Day Labor 32, Profession: Smuggling Tricks 29, Scrounging 39, Sense 30
Implants: Basic Biomods, Basic Mesh Inserts, Cortical Stack, Gills
Traits: Mental Disorder (Compulsive Self-Branding, Night Terrors, Sleep Firesetting), Pain Tolerance (Level 2), Psi (Level 3), Striking Looks (Level 1), Uncanny Valley
Sleights: Pyrokinesis (see Eclipse Phase, p.372)

Using Vel Von Voom

Some gamemasters will see Vel von Voom as Carrie…in Spaaace. If that’s what works for you, fine. But I challenge you to be more creative. Fire is a weird thing in space, and need not be teenaged refugee from a burn war pointing her finger and letting loose a flamethrower. Imagine instead subtler, more bizarre uses – floating will-o’-the-wisp candle flames floating in the microgravity around her as she shivers in her night terrors, or slow-burning arabesques crawling over the nearby surfaces she touches. The amount of control Vel even has over her abilities is questionable—as is her overall mental state. Vel’s fa├žade is that of an independent teenager, orphaned by the Fall, mostly self-educated, doing odd jobs and finding what small pleasures she can when and where she can. If that’s all the gamemaster wants to portray, fine and dandy. But nobody reaches Psi 3 unless they’ve fully converted to the exsurgent virus—and it remains to be seen whether the Vel that can do that awesome dragon on your arm with a piece of wire and a torch is the real Vel, or just the artificial shell of an ego that’s no longer remotely transhuman.

2 comments:

  1. The idea of an exsurgent variant that is only active in your body when you are not is really creepy and also a wonderful plot hook. Is your ego infected? Do you have a secondary "exsurgent ego" sharing your head? Who knows?!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Also, it would keep a Psi 3-capable character somewhat playable.

    ReplyDelete