5. What was the first time you really connected to this character, if ever? Why do you think this moment made the character special to you?
This sounds like it’s just one question but for me, it’s kind of two. The reason it’s two is because I connect with all my NPCs, and that’s how she started - a NPC, a temporary companion to the party. I kept reminding myself of that quite forcibly when she was first running with you guys, just to teach Darvin how to use Thieves’ Tools. But if you want a moment … funnily, it wasn’t exactly when you guys brought Alisaie back. Not quite. I was keeping as much distance as I could even after that, even when she’d basically decided to go along with you guys, just in case, I guess? Some part of me still figured that Alisaie was on borrowed time with the party. DM PCs Aren’t Done, after all. I think the first moment when I really, really let her be a character was during the Coryvel fight, when Froseth spent an action pouring his single greater healing potion down Alisaie’s throat when she got knocked unconscious (again).
8. What’s one weird personal headcanon you have for the character that’s not addressed or that you haven’t found a way to share yet?
Those teeth and bits of bone from things she kills? Aside from the ones that she gives you guys, and some she sets aside for trade? There’s another reason. See, the People don’t really do musical instruments any more than they do singing, but they do make music of a kind; those who take their storytelling-dance seriously collect bits of their kills and wear them like charm bracelets and anklets, the size and thickness of each hollowed-out bone creating a different tone that provides something of a musical accompaniment to their dancing. She lost her original set with everything else she owns and hasn’t quite collected enough to make new ones yet.
11. Who or what was your inspiration when creating this character? How does it show? This can be visual, backstory, personality, anything.
Honestly, I have no the hell idea. I put together a few ideas - mostly “unexpected!barbarian in a brothel” (doesn’t look the type, ice-themed in a desert, looks human enough but isn’t really … I wanted there to be layers even in a few-session throwaway character who would have been left in Al-Zorhai had Hazel not opened her mouth) and Alisaie was the result. Turned out well enough, I guess.
Cinnamon: Describe your aesthetic
Books. Dice. Books. Purple. Books. Impressionist paintings. Books. Quasi-androgynous clothes that never entirely left the grunge era. Did I mention books?
Fruit cake: Favourite Holiday?
I’ve kind of gone off the holidays. Any of the ones that involve dinner with family I’m kind of ambivalent about, Easter in particular because I’m not Christian. We don’t do Thanksgiving in this country. Halloween’s a little more popular now than it used to be but still not the Big Deal that it is in the US. So I guess I’m going to have to say Christmas on the basis that it’s an excuse to give my friends nice things.
Coffee: Book that reminds you of your childhood?
Oh gods. Books were my life as a child (that has not changed) so it depends on what stage of my childhood we’re talking about. But for an overarching picture, it’d have to be Anne of Green Gables, for I too was an overimaginative child with a sense of the dramatic and an overly large vocabulary. (That has not changed either.)
Victoria sponge: Favourite accessory?
Another one that has two answers. See, there’s the one I wear all the time - as in, it never comes off, not even when I’m sleeping or in the shower or anything but, like, if I absolutely have to for doctor’s appointments. That one’s a simple teardrop-cut 2.5 karat amethyst in a basically nonexistent silver setting, on a silver chain, and I mostly wear that because a) I like purple, b) I feel weird if I’m not wearing something around my neck (it used to be a moonstone), and c) it was a big-deal birthday gift from my mother. But if you want accessories that I can and will take off, I’d say the ace-themed scale pendant that @vehlr gave me a long time ago. I put that one on a much longer chain so I could slip it on over my head whenever I felt like, and when I’m not wearing it, it has pride of place hung on my bedroom doorknob. I love that one because it was one of my first pieces of anything that declared my sexuality to the world plus it was an unexpected gift from someone I’m proud to call friend and I nearly cried when I picked it up at the post office, so it has a very special place in my heart.
5) ‘Most romantic’ is kind of subjective but if you want Big Meaningful Gestures, how about “basically fucked over the entire Illuminati and broke every rule about what information should never be given to an enemy faction just so that he wouldn’t lose something that really mattered to him, all the while never saying a word about how she felt because she knew he had a girlfriend at the time and didn’t want to complicate his life in any way”? Does that work? She loved him enough to fuck up her entire life with, as far as she saw it, zero hope that it would ever be reciprocated.
6) For Mychae, the most romantic thing Chris ever did was to modify and rethink his ideas on what constituted “the kind of romantic gesture my angel deserves” - when he realised she was uncomfortable with castle getaways and luxury stuff and started taking her to corn mazes instead.
9) Mychae’s favourite ‘small’ way to show her love (and for her, it seems small) is blending their occasionally varied tastes and interests. He likes cooking and wants to feed her stuff that didn’t come out of a toaster or microwave? Okay, sure; she’ll buy him kitchen equipment and make it extra geeky. He likes ancient texts and translating? She’ll build him mechanical ravens to sit on his shoulders, transcribe his notes, and occasionally shout “WHO DO VOODOO WE DO FUCK YOU!” at any Jawa who dares interrupt him while he’s working.
10) Every so often - entirely at random but always in public, Mychae will declare it “My Husband Is Awesome Day”. Always when they’re on a day out. She’ll shower him with confetti at intervals, tell anyone with whom she ends up interacting (shop clerks, waiters, bus or taxi drivers, whoever) exactly how awesome she thinks Chris is, and shouts things like “I have the best husband; prove me wrong! Actually, don’t, because you can’t! It’s science that my husband is the best!” She will do this all damn day, while taking him to the kinds of places he enjoys most.
28) Mychae/Chris ‘date nights in’ are always a little unconventional by the standard definitions. She considers it romantic when Chris lets her pick the menu and entertainment options - doesn’t fret about her eating habits when she orders in pizza and keeps her company while she plays Fatal Frame while cheering her on with “You’ve had ample practice with dealing with this kind of creepy nonsense by now" and having inspiration-thoughts about how a camera might work for dealing with the Gaki in various Kaidan parking garages, then curls up with her to watch horror movies until they fall asleep on the sofa, usually using Chewie as a pillow.
Past 4) Srina and her family didn’t actually argue. There were occasional debates, but more on specific points of detail than of overarching differences.
Present 14) What matters to her most right now? Same thing as always matters to her: doing the job in front of her, and doing it as perfectly as it’s possible to do it.
Future 4) Something they thought would happen in their future but didn’t, in a hypothetical future based on current events… She kind of figured she’d have been killed as a traitor, rightly or wrongly, by someone by now, or be obliged to disappear to prevent such from happening.
Past 10) Jallira didn’t really dream of doing anything growing up. There was a period just before she left for Coruscant where she wanted to be a Jedi of the travelling, adventuring, diplomatic sort … but then the Sacking happened and Ylsavis Garr happened and she had wanting to do much of anything beyond ‘what she was told’ beaten out of her for a very long time.
Present 8) Most important hobby / pastime is always going to be cooking, for her. It’s a way to help people through big problems and small ones, it’s a first look at understanding other cultures, and it makes people around her happy. Medicine is always going to be her calling, but cooking comes a close second.
Future 2) Jallira wouldn’t actively change anything, since she knows that changing one thing can have unknown repercussions in other areas, and she wouldn’t want to risk the happiness she’s found in any way. However, she regrets every life that was lost in the wars; the people she couldn’t save.
Past 13) As far as Alisaie’s past goes, the really big life-changing moment was that day on the airship docking tower. She found out … well, just how bad her parents were then (one assumes they got worse later, given how they ended their lives) and, while she didn’t find out exactly what she was, she did find out about the wings and the healing, and thus the ‘not human-standard at all’. And then of course having to exile herself to keep from getting the whole ‘snitches get stitches’ treatment.
Present 10) It’s ‘wear’ more than ‘carry’ for most of it - because obviously her swords and a certain ring and bracelet - but also a pouch of spices, a pouch of coffee, a bag of those cranberry-apple sweets for Hazel, a significant amount of money (because she can’t just leave it lying around and never got around to asking Froseth to stash it in his Bag of Holding because honestly she’s still not quite at giving up on complete financial independence yet), cookies for Flitty, and Flitty himself.
Future 9) Alisaie doesn’t think much about the ‘getting old’ part, mostly because she’s died twice in the last couple of months and she’s not entirely convinced that old age is on the cards. But the couple of times when she allows her mind to go that way, she looks at Twilly and Miranda, and imagines them a few decades older, and figures she and Remi will be a lot like that, and maybe Healing Hands and Healing Light will mostly get use in easing the pains of arthritis … and one day their time will be up and it’ll be Ziriel to guide them to their well-earned place on the Celestial Plane - hopefully not for a very long time, and hopefully together, so neither has to grieve.
18) Does she have a ‘type’? Nnnnnnnnno. She’s been so many people with so many interests that anything like a ‘type’ gets lost in the shuffle. She’s perfectly happy to leave her thing with Aranar as a mystery to absolutely fucking everyone.
27) Whatever analog the GFFA has for Valentine’s Day is not spent on Port Knowhere. It’s usually a good time to reinforce her call girl alias. She’s very much a ‘that kark is just a made-up situation by various industries anyway and I’ll use it as is beneficial to me but it has no meaning’.
9) Favourite small way to show her love? Hot breakfast in bed and caff every single morning, timed perfectly to still be warm when Harridin’s starting to be ready to wake up.
24) How does she determine she’s attracted to someone? Well, it sure as hell isn’t physical appearance; that means absolutely squat to her. In all fairness, Jallira has only ever been attracted to one person in her entire life, and the ‘why’ of it is complicated. On the face of it, it was that he made her laugh, but it was more than that. He was kind and calm and had worked very hard to get a long way past his own tragedies. He was what she wanted to be, and what she wanted in her life, and because he’s a sentient being, that meant he was who she wanted in her life. No one else has ever even been on her radar, and I don’t think they ever could have been.
12) What do I personally love most about Alisaie? …part of me wants to say “how she takes zero bullshit”, but … that’s not true. What I love about her is that she is loveable; that the characters and their players enjoy having her around. Yes, that encompasses her flaws and her merits all at once, but it means that I made a person - one who can stand with all of your well-developed and awesome characters. No character stands alone; their development and loveability depends on them interacting with others.
4) What ‘romantic gestures’ does Alisaie hate? …Pet names. You’ll notice that beyond a couple of very specific and very hard-earned terms, she uses profanities as terms of endearment (for instance, always calling Darvin ‘asshat’). It’s a thing with the People; they don’t throw words around lightly, and likening someone to food items or infants is just rude.
🌐 - English (fluent), French (moderate), Spanish (minor), Japanese (learning)
🎙️ - Everybody can sing, whether they’re good at it or not. I’m okay; I can carry a tune, though my range is a bit iffy.
📝 - I don’t have a specific favourite quote (quotes are linguistic accessories; the right one for the right moment), but I’m particularly fond of one from Seanan McGuire’s ‘In an Absent Dream’ - “No one serves their friends by grinding themselves into dust on the altar of compassion”.
38. How does she relax? Any specific activities? Why?
See, therein lies the problem. Alisaie actually really likes to read. Thing is, she hasn’t really had the opportunity since leaving Al-Zorhai because she owned, like, four books (a couple of books of poetry, an largely non-fictional diary-esque thing from a wyvern-rider in Belarys, and a thing about the evolution of Equitas fashion) and those were left behind like just about everything else she owned when she went after the red dragon that she died killing. She hasn’t bothered to mention this, of course. And the last time they hit a bookstore, she was way more focused on gifting others. Remi might have caught her looking speculatively at some of the shelves but since she was also focused on gifts for others … yeah, she doesn’t generally get to do her preferred relaxation activity anymore, which she generally likes because she likes looking at the world from a different perspective now and then.
65. If she could have one new superpower, what would it be?
I’m really looking forward to her getting access to Magnificent Mansion. She would build quite the palace for her friends. But then again … if either of the bards should have Resurrection, it’s probably her. (Her choice would be either Resurrection or permanent wings, probably the former because she’s selfless like that but gods damn it, eleven minutes aren’t enough for her, flight-wise.)
70, What about her lifestyle would she change if she had the ability?
Nothing. Nada. I mean, yeah, she’d like a permanent home, a place to call hers, but she doesn’t know what it should look like yet any more than Remi does, and all she knows for sure is that she wants it to be with Remi, and since neither of them are going anywhere until the world is properly saved and looking set to stay that way for five minutes, she’s happy with her lifestyle as it is.
71: What weapon does she go to for offense?
Force telekinesis. It’s the only thing she trained in for basically all of her time as youngling and padawan; it’s her default. She only took to Niman so well because of how it incorporates Force-TK.
91. What’s her posture like?
Well, it used to be kind of huddled up on herself - shoulders up around her ears, not slouched (that’s disrespectful) but trying to take up as little space as possible. These days she’s a lot more relaxed in her posture, though she still stands quite straight and it’s not like she’s ever going to take up a whole lot of room.
92. What trait does she admire most in others?
That’s a toss-up, and depends on the situation, but at root it’s probably the whole “being comfortable in one’s own skin” thing. She knows how hard that is to come by, how few people have it naturally and how hard they’ve had to work at it, so she very much admires those who can walk that path and come out the other side successful.
7. Does your OC collect anything?
The closest she comes to collecting anything is usable idents for if she or someone around her needs to be someone else at short notice. And she considers that more ‘tools of the trade’ than an actual collection. It’s like building model ships, but useful.
12. How well would she handle being placed in a leadership position?
Well, given how she pretty much pulled everything together for getting Jallira out of the facility on Utapar, I’d say she’d handle it pretty damn well. She’s got the authority, she knows what she’s doing, and she’s seen enough commanding officers on both sides of the line to have a pretty good idea what’s going to work.
26. How does she sleep?
Very still, more or less one eye open, more or less one hand on the blaster or knife (depending on circumstances and location) that lives under her pillow. She doesn’t often share with Aranar because he’s a snuggler and that would be an impediment to getting up quickly if she has to, but when she does she stays on her side of the bed and him migrating to her side gets him an elbow in the kidneys.
You Sophie’s Choice me so hard with this!!!!!! But to make life a little easier, I’ll go with the one I more or less play - Alisaie Featherfall, my accidental D&D PC.
10. What are some of your OC’s pet peeves? How do they handle it when the annoyance doesn’t stop?
Alisaie’s got a few pet peeves. Bad puns and undue self-deprecation, she’ll grab someone by the face and smoosh so they just stop. Anyone runs down her friends and they’ll wind up with an aasimar bard-barian in their face going, “You wanna say that again?”
16. How affectionate is your OC? How do they convey their affection? By being touchy? Or through more subtle ways?
Alisaie’s pretty damn affectionate for her, but she’s not generally touchy-feely about it - more so when it’s romantic affection, but not a whole lot because she’s mindful of boundaries. Mostly she’ll hair-ruffle when circumstances dictate, but that’s about it. Generally she’s not very verbal about it either. If she likes you, she’ll tease you like a sibling, she’ll ensure you have your favourite things when she’s the one responsible for the getting of the things, and she’ll offer the things she enjoys in order to share her world with you.
29. If a perfume was going to be made to represent your PC–
Yeah, I’m not even bothering with the whole of a question. Might as well just rewrite it “Scent of a Warden your OC” and have done with it. I’ve given this a lot of thought, actually. Alisaie’s bergamot and icy winds and steel with undercurrents of myrrh, ginger lily, cinnamon, mango and the tiniest hint of raspberry champagne - the cold winds of her adoptive homeland, the godly radiance that is her birthright, and the hints of exotic luxury she still carries around after her last job. (She was ‘entertainment’ at a fairly high-end brothel.)
I got tagged by @nerdcute to tag 9 people to catch up with or get to know better so here we go:
Last song: Rell, The Iron Maiden by Ecca Vandal, from the League of Legends OST, apparently. My Discover Weekly on Spotify throws some interesting shit at me.
Last movie: Actual feature-length? Hamilton, I believe. It’s been awhile.
watching: A rewatch of American Horror Story: Hotel (it’s basically my favourite season) and bingeing Kitchen Nightmares on YouTube. Also recordings of the Deadlands sessions I’ve run for my smaller gaming group in preparation for when we pick up that particular episodic Thing on the 23rd.
Currently reading: The World of Critical Role at home (hardcovers are a bitch to commute with), a re-read of Seanan McGuire’s Toby Daye series (currently on Ashes of Honour), some D&D books (poking at Mythic Odysses of Theros because of Reasons), Shakespeare and Democracy: The Self-Renewing Politics of a Global Playwright, and a short story anthology titled “Nevertheless She Persisted” - a bunch of woman speculative fiction writers doing stories centred around that quote. (I read a lot.)
craving: Hot chocolate. I can’t have it because chocolate gives me migraines, but I want it anyway.
Tagging: @lindira, @hyperewok1 (for the codex), @depizan, @bi-ace-mess, @raceofhearts, @mayaminamoto, @maybethings, @salty-barbarian, and @chyrstis
13. What color do they think they look best in? Do they actually look best in that color?
Alisaie thinks she looks best in red, and she’s close to right. White is probably better, but she doesn’t wear it as often (at least not unrelieved) because a) she’s seen enough plain old white to last her awhile and b) it seems a little too on-the-nose.
21. Why do they get up in the morning?
Well, if it’s a choice between getting up and staying in bed with a certain girlfriend until lunchtime, that’s a tough call. Or if you want a different kind of snark, I could go with ‘usually because Hazel’s shouting about cakepans again’. But mostly she gets up in the morning because there’s shit to do and see, people to entertain and protect, and a world to explore and she’s not going to miss it. (Well, not unless there’s the potential for aforementioned ‘staying in bed with girlfriend until lunchtime’ thing.)
28. Would they prefer a lie over an unpleasant truth?
Nope. Nuh-uh. No way. Two reasons. First? Alisaie has had enough of lies from her parents, and the unpleasant truth of what they were was probably even worse for her for finding it out on her own the way she did. Second? After the criminals, her upbringing was handled by people who don’t lie well simply because of how they communicate, so she kind of lost the knack, if she ever had it. Particularly if she trusts you? Don’t lie to her. She’ll know, she’ll rescind her trust completely and it will take a very, very long time for you to earn it back.
A) Why are you excited about this character?
Because you the players are letting me play her, despite my being the DM? Because half of you bent every rule in the PHB to oblige me to play her? I mean, I love how she’s developed for her own sake, but nothing is quite as exciting as someone loving your character so much that they’ll throw out that kind of Hail Mary, especially when I was kind of sad to have killed her off. (I had reasons of the angst-and-object-lesson variety but what you guys came up with was so much better.)
3. How do they put themselves to bed at night (reading, singing, thinking?)
Thinking. Always thinking. Well. Insofar as she sleeps much, and honestly, she kind of just goes, “Okay, thinking done, sleep now” and just … sleeps. Unlike so many of my other characters (and, y’know, me), she doesn’t have that much in the way of conscience or anxiety to get in the way of the rest she needs.
7. What triggers nostalgia for them, most often? Do they enjoy that feeling?
Srina has exactly one tradition, which is the only nostalgia she allows herself - a sweetberry float after she’s done a particularly good job, which was her first reward for a job well done when she was approximately Ami’s age and has been her personal reward for things ever since. She doesn’t really like the nostalgia element of it, honestly - while she did have affection for her father, she did also kill him rather than let him interfere with her life after she defected, so for a more emotional person, that’d be a struggle. She’s not overly emotional so it’s just a nuisance. She still has the float every time she does a really, really good job, though. It’s tradition.
31. Who are they the most glad to have met?
Ironically, Mychae. Yes, Mychae significantly dented her career prospects by setting her up (which resulted in her Fixer getting killed by a disappointed Darth), but that set the stage for a defection that led her to a role where she actually gets a chance to shine, working with people who respect her, and who she actually legitimately respects in return. (Mostly.) Srina’s an expert at the long game, and she’s willing to gloss over the messy parts and focus on the favourable outcome that wouldn’t have been possible without the messy parts.
C) Did you have trouble figuring out where they fit in their own story?
Entirely the opposite, actually. Srina was a throwaway NPC, someone to throw at Tyron when he needed a scapegoat in his own personal plot where he screwed over both the Republic and the Empire over radio-controlled rakghouls or some shit. When I wanted to give Aurrin’s player something to do, I needed a solid antagonist to throw his way; someone that’d challenge him in ways suited to his character. The semi-disgraced Cipher was perfect. I just didn’t know how perfect until Aurrin suggested that defecting to the Marran would be better for her employment prospects and long-term survival than sticking around. I still don’t know who was more surprised when she said yes; Aurrin, Aurrin’s player, Srina herself, or me. Plus, honestly, I don’t really so much fit characters into their own stories as I do throw the core of them into the mix and let them build their story around themselves with what’s available, like making cotton candy. (Except that, to turn simile to metaphor, Srina is fibreglass wall insulation masquerading as cotton candy and will slice you up if you try eating it, but y’know.)
The day after Alisaie’s unprecedented resurrection was, it goes without saying, a far quieter day than the day that came before it. The Cupcake Coterie still had a ways to go before they found the temple they were looking for, so mostly it was travelling. What was odd, at least to Remi’s mind, was that the rest of the group was ranging fairly far ahead - still close enough to be within decent line of sight, but more or less out of earshot unless someone started screaming. It didn’t make a lot of sense on the face of it; Alisaie had travelled the desert wastes before, and if anyone should have been taking the lead to make sure they didn’t run into more of the sentient cacti or burrowing maws or any of the Alama-Ver Wastes’ other horrors, it was their aasimar companion.
Alisaie put their reasoning into words after about a half hour’s silent tromping through the desert sand: “They’re giving us privacy to talk. You know that, right?”
“Yeah, I know.” Remi wasn’t entirely lying. Given some of Hazel’s reactions to Ziriel’s appearance and all that came of it, it made sense, somewhere deep down. It was just that talking wasn’t exactly Remi’s strong point; not about things this deep, anyway. Non-confrontational unless swordplay was involved, Remi had little experience with, and even less enthusiasm for, situations that might end up getting as … fraught as the previous day’s discussion about the state of their relationship. People getting into her face with swords or sharp pointy teeth, Remi could deal with. People firing words at her and expecting her to fire them back … that was something else altogether. So she’d been ignoring it for as long as she was allowed.
Apparently, a half-hour was about what she was going to be permitted - though what Alisaie said next was a bit of a surprise. “Look, some concepts, I don’t put into words well either, so let’s get this over with so I can stop Nai pitching headfirst into another burrowing maw, okay?”
“Okay,” said Remi, with far more conviction than she actually felt.
Alisaie took a breath and began with, “I know I was tired and kind of … I guess overwrought? But you know, back from the dead, sacrifices made in my name, that’s some scary shit. Anyway, yesterday afternoon was a lot of yelling and flailing. But … you know I meant it. Right? I mean, I’m really hoping you did too, because otherwise I’m going to undo all of what you did yesterday by dying of embarrassment, but–”
Remi stopped, stretching her hands out towards Alisaie in what was partly an attempt to grasp her hands but was mostly just a slightly panicked flail. “No!” When she finally had Alisaie’s hands held firmly but not too tight (mindful of her gauntlets), she said it again, a little quieter: “No. I meant it. I want to be … talking … with you. And … other stuff. And seeing where it goes sounds … I want to. Yes.“
This was new ground for Remi. She’d had partners of sorts, yes, but it hadn’t got quite this … the only word was much … before. A fond farewell before shipping out after spending a week’s leave with some charming individual or other wasn’t quite the same as some of the feelings that had come to light during the whole resurrection incident. Admissions like this one were difficult and awkward, Remi decided.
She also decided that the difficult and awkward were worth it when Alisaie’s face lit up, quite nearly literally. “Cool,” she said, and as joyful as it was, her smile was also understanding, which made things a little easier. “We can work stuff out as we go. But I guess there should be another kiss to seal the bargain. I mean, unless you were after a handshake or something. I mean–” She wiggled her hands slightly, enough to flag up the hand-holding without suggesting that she wanted it to end. “–maybe the companies do handshakes differently, I dunno.”
Whether it was the idea of kissing Alisaie when it was ‘sealing a deal’ of that level of depth, or having the fact that Remi had initiated hand-holding highlighted in such a matter-of-fact way, or just the mental image of the look on the face of the minotaur member of her old company if she’d tried a ‘handshake’ like this with him, or just a release of the tension she’d been feeling since the resurrection, Remi burst out giggling.
Alisaie’s smile somehow got brighter, and before Remi could do much else, Alisaie pulled her hands free from Remi’s, bent to tuck her newly-freed hands behind Remi’s knees, and lifted, taking Remi clear off the ground, armour and all. Remi, obliged to either wrap her arms around Alisaie’s neck or fall over backwards in a most undignified way, chose the former, and the proximity of Alisaie’s face to her own just fed the giggle-fit.
“You are adorable,” Alisaie told her. “But if you keep giggling like that, they’re going to hear you, and that’ll blow your rep. So I guess I’m just going to have to help with that by muffling things a bit.” With that, she leaned forward and kissed Remi, ‘sealing the bargain’ as much as stifling Remi’s giggles.
It didn’t entirely help, at first. With Remi giggling at the ludicrous adorableness of the moment, and Alisaie catching the giggle-fit a little as she sipped relieved, giddy laughter from Remi’s lips like fine wine, they traded that cleansing, bonding moment back and forth between them long enough to nearly lose sight of the rest of the party. But it was only nearly, so that was alright. Starting a relationship with giggly kisses under a bright desert sun was just the grounding required for a couple who started their relationship the way Remi and Alisaie had begun theirs.
A religious headcanon for Alisaie: Half the reason Alisaie pays attention to Auril’s specific worship is because people have, in the past, kind of mistaken her for Auril’s avatar upon the earth and she does the formal worship thing as an apology.
A love headcanon for Jallira: She still skirts around the word - with friends, family, husband … even daughter, at least ‘verbally’. Her love language is very quiet, and subtly demonstrative … and, for Mae and Ami, goes beyond words in a very deep way. She’s only managed to show Harridin the once, when she let him ‘see’ himself through her metaphorical eyes, so all she can do is hope that her leaving him breakfast and caff every morning and seeing to things that make him comfortable and happy before he even consciously recognises that he wants them is enough.
A work headcanon for Srina: She will never, ever admit it … but this particular role is Srina’s favourite of any job she’s ever had. She can still do what she’s best at, and she’s entirely indispensible, which is all she’s ever wanted (she doesn’t care about the scale; she just wants to be the person that people can’t do without), and she’s given the freedom to do what makes sense within the context of her orders … it’s a constant game of dejarik and balances her on-point planning skills with her developing skill at planning ‘on the fly’, thinking three moves ahead even when things are still happening around her.
1. How does your character sleep? Peacefully, fitfully? What position do they sleep in? What is their typical bedding like?
How Jallira sleeps largely depends on how much ambient emotional noise is in the area. She’s not much of a tosser and turner, but she’s picked up enough typical sighted mechanisms that she’ll pull a pillow over her head if it’s too emotionally ‘loud’ while she’s trying to sleep, and curl herself into as small a ball as possible. It doesn’t help, but it’s a reflex now. On an average day, though, she sleeps peacefully enough, and tends to eschew a pillow because she prefers using Harridin’s chest for that purpose. (Also means she doesn’t steal covers because she’s curled up too close to do so.)
29. If your oc was in a video game, what would their idle animation be? (When the player stays still for too long, the animation that plays.)
…Jallira kind of is a video game character, but we’ll gloss over that. It’d be either a head-tilt like she’s listening, or a quick dig through her medical bag like she’s cataloguing and assessing the contents.
40. Are there any habits your oc has picked up from people around them? Do they know where they’re from? Does your oc try to stop themselves from doing it?
The only habits Jallira’s picked up from other people are … well, generally actively encouraged by those around her. Regular meals, for a start. Honestly, because she doesn’t ‘see’ people, those little fidgets and things that most people pick up from those around them kind of pass her by. The most she does is mimicry of the sighted people around her, and that’s more or less deliberate.
2. Does your oc have dreams or nightmares? What are they like? Is there a recurring one?
I mean, everybody dreams; it’s all just about whether you remember them. Srina is probably one of the more lucid dreamers you’ll ever meet who isn’t a Force-sensitive. Her brain uses the down-time to go over scenarios in her head to figure out the best way of dealing with them. Srina’s brain is a very efficient place.
20. Does your oc have any pleasure that embarrasses them so they keep it secret? Or are they open about all the things they enjoy?
Srina doesn’t let anyone know she enjoys anything. It’s not about embarrassment, though; it’s just that that’s giving away way too much. Her pleasures, like everything else, are held loosely, ready to be discarded if such becomes necessary, and people knowing them would bind them to her tighter than she’d like. The closest she comes is the occasional micro-hint. But I think the only one that’s a total secret even to the empath of the party (because it doesn’t come up much given they live on a desert moon) is that she likes polar sunbathing. She won’t let anyone know that one because Aranar would insist on taking her to do some and he drools enough over her in her usual gear and doesn’t want to deal with his reaction to her in a two-piece.
38. What signs tell that your oc is nervous? Do they fidget, is it in their expression or the way they say things? Or are they very skilled at hiding it?
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA no. There are zero signs that Srina’s nervous because Srina is basically never actually nervous. Tense, yes, but in that predatory coiled-spring way. Having a minimum of three ways out of every situation, catalogued in order of the likelihood of blowing an ident and the size of the dry-cleaning bill, helps with that a lot.
6. which party member do they relate to the most?
Mychae’s kind of been pulling back emotionally from people for a long time. She still wears her happy jovial chill-face in company, and she likes everyone well enough, but … well, last time she really related to someone they kind of vanished and she’s decided that’s not happening again. But after some thought … I figure at this point it’s a toss-up between Srina and Nyomi - “I just want to do my job without it getting complicated and stupid, and yet here we are again”.
7. which party member do they understand the least?
Again, Mychae tends to be good at understanding where people are coming from on an intellectual level, but on the basis of, “Okay, I get it but I don’t get it” … probably oddly, but X’antho. I mean, on a surface level she gets where he’s coming from but she’s occasionally has moments of, “…How are you still alive?”
17. what do they dream about, when their dreams are their own?
She doesn’t. Or rather, she tries really hard not to. She still has night terrors from that mess with her biological father so at one time it was mostly as-needed tranquilisers and dream suppressants but now she’s actually figured out that she can use some of her abilities to at least let it be a lucid enough dream that she can remember that it’s not real, and that it’s long over, and that she can wake up whenever she wants.
59. what is a quiet passion of theirs?
Mychae has never been quiet about anything she’s been passionate about a day in her life. But the one that really stands out is the dancing. I mean, she spent a year under cover on Dromund Kaas as a professional ballerina. You don’t manage that unless you’re damn good. She does also maintain an alias specifically for signing up to Core World dance competitions, because she didn’t spend three years perfecting her Corellian Tango to wind up only using the training to kick someone in the head.
If I recall correctly, Remi’s first impression of Alisaie was entirely physical, given. Sort of, “Wow, okay, yes, she could be fun to spend an evening with” followed closely by, “She’s from my home city and has a brain, even better”. Alisaie’s was, “Ooh, I’m a fan of the dark-haired butch ones” followed by, “Successful adventurer; this is going to be fun whatever happens; wonder if I can travel along with them? I still want to be a Brass Arrow and travelling with her would be WAY more fun than it would have been with that last bunch of sexist jackasses”.
First kiss was, depending on Remi’s contribution to it, searching. Some prostitutes don’t kiss on the mouth, but Alisaie tends to use a kiss to find out as much about a person’s proclivities in the moment as possible. So searching and experimental and very, very thorough, learning the shape of Remi’s mouth with lips and tongue and the occasional very light nip of teeth.
Alisaie’s contribution to the wedding? Oh, she’d petition hard for it to be at Hearthhome (because Twilly and Miranda, understanding how hard it can be for some parents to let go because of Miranda’s own family issues, could help keep a leash on Corri), and petition even harder to have Hazel perform the ceremony no matter what potential flail might ensue. (There’s a nod to Sune in wedding ceremonies in most places, but generally it’s all about decorating the ceremonial space and looking as nice as possible and generally luring the eyes of a love-and-beauty god to the place so she can see the love about to be celebrated and bless the union, rather than speaking vows to her; Pelor’s the sun-and-life god, so the vows go to him.) Mostly because, “C’mon, Ree; it’s basically family and since when has anything we’ve ever done been that solemn? We need some silly and flail or it doesn’t reflect us properly.” Also, her being a bard and being pretty up on various cultures’ marriage traditions, she’d insist that some local flavour from the place they’ve been be thrown into the ceremony - not the desert waste tradition of wearing matched brands (the rings will substitute for that) but Anbir’s shared family sigil presented on an item of clothing for the first time, Egref’s tradition of timepieces that start running when the ceremony ends to show the couple how long they’ve been together and chime once per hour on their wedding anniversary, the shared Goldendale / Cedargrove tradition of presenting a carved knotwork wooden spoon (like the Welsh do) … all that as her way of saying she wants to be married in every tradition. But she’d totally teach Remi the very seldom-done Pair-Bond Dance of the People (because the People do not pair-bond much; most hunting bands are polycules, and marriage usually only happens up north when people really want kids), which involves, in early stages, beginning with the newlyweds dancing with their parents (if any survive) before sort of weaving together with new spouse and leaving the family members to bond in a separate aspect of the dance. Jenna and Lanark would offer to serve that role for Alisaie. Corri would cry. A lot.
How does Alisaie fit into her ‘story’? Heh; you guys tell me. She just does shit. From what I’m able to pick up from you lot, she’s the common sense, the one who keeps things more or less moving because she’s the only one who’s got both the right words and the personality to cut into the stress-flail and bad ideas and guide it to more productive conversational channels.
Alisaie could be represented by a number of cards, but if I had to choose one for a base card around which to build a reading, it’d be The Star: balance, hope, purpose.
Alisaie is bad at: staying the hell out of trouble, keeping people at a distance, and sewing. (She loves clothes; she can’t make them worth shit.)
Judgment - what moment in your character’s life history matured them the most? Their “coming of age” so to speak.
I don’t know there was a single moment for the biggest change in her of the ‘coming of age’ sort. Alisaie’s big ‘coming of age’ maturity moment was truly embracing her celestial nature, and that came slowly. Finding out that there was a word for what she was - that she wasn’t just a really weird variant human - was the start, but every little moment where she stood between someone else and harm (not just physically, either; a good example of a non-physical bit of protection was when she hugged and comforted Ava when Farideh was resurrected, both protecting Ava from her own bitterness and renewed grief and protecting Froseth from potential fallout he hadn’t earned by making sure it was handled before he came out with his little big sister), every opportunity she had to fly and thus to find out how much she loves it and how much a part of her it is, every acknowledgement of Ziriel as her ‘father’… There was never a big moment. There were just a lot of little ones that built on a structure. But then again, that’s what maturity really is. It doesn’t just come; you build it, slowly, through work and thought and the little things.
Nine of Cups - when was the last time your character felt on top of the world?
Tough question. She feels that way a lot … though surprisingly, the exhiliration that ‘feeling on top of the world’ suggests doesn’t happen as much with Remi because there’s so much trust and guard-dropping there that it’s more utter contentment. Weirdly, probably everyone - Remi included - letting her do their makeup for the nightclub thing. Yeah, fine, protecting in combat, all that, but that comes with added levels of guilt that spoil the ‘they really like me’ joy. But when someone as high-strung as Ava can get, and someone as no-nonsense ‘I don’t primp’ as Remi just generally is, turning around and going, “Look, you’re obviously enjoying this and you’re good at it so yeah, I’ll go against usual inclination and let you do paint my face if only just because of how much fun you’re having” … she would have made the Hazel-squee if she was that sort of person, honestly.
Ace of Wands - from where do you derive inspiration for your character?
Your guess is as good as mine. I’ll let you in on a little secret - one I don’t generally talk about much because just about every writer I’ve ever known turns various shades of green with envy when I do: characters … just … happen, in my head. Not just the ones I intended to be characters, either. Every NPC, no matter how small, has a voice and a history and a reaction to things, and I could write you a day in their lives with nearly no prep whatsoever. Alisaie started as a throwaway NPC - she would have asked you guys if she could come along on your adventure even if you hadn’t had Remi interested her in a Tipsy-Pixie-Staff sort of way. I built the base structure - there was one skill she needed to have (she had to be able to use Thieves’ Tools, so she could teach Darvin), and the rest was just because I thought it’d be fun. Hell, I didn’t even really register that Alisaie was the anti-Yasha until the character sheet was done. Even then, though, it didn’t feel like a sort of subverted plagiarism because whatever part of my brain serves as … I dunno, Character Orphanage had her talking in it, so to speak. So … honestly, I don’t derive inspiration for characters in any conscious way, though I imagine I pick stuff up along the way and use them for building materials without realising it. As far as I’m consciously aware, characters just happen in my head. They develop their own voices and mannerisms and I know that on some level I’m making it happen; I just don’t know how.
🙊 - What would Alisaie say her biggest flaw is? “I try too hard and I jump in feet-first with little concern for anything bad happening to me in the process.”
⧱ - What is Alisaie’s actual biggest flaw? See above. She’s very up-front about her flaws. She knows people don’t like it when she takes the slings and arrows meant for them. She’s gonna do it anyway.
(There really isn’t any way to appropriately fic this that I haven’t already done, so…)