"The man who believes that the secrets of the world are forever hidden lives in mystery and fear. Superstition will drag him down. The rain will erode the deeds of his life. But that man who sets himself the task of singling out the thread of order from the tapestry will by the decision alone have taken charge of the world and it is only by such taking charge that he will effect a way to dictate the terms of his own fate." - Cormac McCarthy, Blood Meridian
|Full Name:||Desmond Richter|
|Theme Song:||Headful of Ghosts - Bush|
Young Desmond Richter never was what the world would consider normal.
He was born amongst a small clan of his people; his father was a kinfolk, and his mother a warrior of the Dawn Aspect, of the second rank when he was born. The small Clan, consisting only of a few kin and a handful of shifters, had settled in Ontario, Canada, and when the child was born he was not taught right away; he learned of things in tales and vague hints, but the child went to school normally for his first years.
From the beginning, it was painfully obvious Desmond was gifted; his intelligence was made obvious at an early age, and from the age of four he began telling others he could see ghosts. This fact didn't scare him; it drew his interest like a moth to a flame. To the Ajaba, this drew interest and intrigue. To other children, this brought about mocking and teasing, shunning, and other cruel childhood things. To his teachers, this drew quite a bit of concern, as well as encouragement for psychiatric evaluation and possibly medication. He did terribly in school, despite his brilliance; he actively ignored much of what the teacher taught, instead choosing to deviate to things that interested or challenged him more. He showed an early aptitude for learning and remembering, and he had a remarkable ability to recall with nearly flawless clarity anything he had read or seen.
By the age of ten, his parents (or, well, his father, as his mother had left most of the child-rearing to his devices) withdrew him from school. He was coming home beaten and bullied, and the teachers there didn't know what to do with him. Under homeschooling, he flourished. The Ajaba encouraged his connection to the spiritual world, even bringing the child with them to see and talk to realm-bound ghosts.
His firsting eventually came at age fourteen.
His firsting was fairly untraumatic, as far as they go. He and his mother had never gotten along particularly well, as though he respected her, they didn't understand each other at all. Arguing with her was a frequent cause for tension, and he finally snapped. She put him down quickly, and their local metis took over his training.
Cubhood came and went. He took to learning about the spirits with a thirst for knowledge such that even his teachers grew weary of his demands for more. He spent much time in the umbra; at first they told him not to go alone, but after frequent punishments upon finding him there (and him subsequently promising not to do it again, and then being found there soon after) and after it became obvious that he was not to be dissuaded, they grumpily acquiesced to letting the cub spend time there. His father worried.
His Rite of Passage was a breeze, by his point of view; he had to bargain without the use of spirit speech, and find a way to communicate to get some information. They had required him to find a spirit to get some information on some supernatural activity within the city; he chose a cat spirit, who served as the watcher of alleys and shadows. He had to find a way to communicate without having spirit speech, and to get the information he sought. Appropriate chiminage was devised, and the young Ajaba soon had what he wanted by way of guessing, theorizing, following the cat's clues. He discovered a growing infestation of the Wyrm corrupting some Weaver spirits enough to have a reflection in the realm, and he brought this information back. He was brought in as an adult, and was even brought along to help deal with it and reclaim the area.
During this time, he had slacked off in his ghost-hunting duties; adulthood brought it back full force. Without the need to be in full-time learning, he once again strayed towards his fascination. Previously, he had only talked to them, and perhaps made minor deals; however, now, he began wondering if he could do things to help them return to their proper world. His first attempt was met in failure; he tried, and the ghost (who had actually been in the place for some time, and was anxious to get free) grew angry at him at his failure and began haunting him instead, following him around and being a horrible pest and not listening to reason.
This actually had something to do with his Fostern Challenge; as all of his attempts thus far had ended in failure, the person he challenged bid him to make one a success. This was partly expected to fail; they wanted to prove to him that he needed to refocus his efforts elsewhere. Unfortunately (or, if you asked him, it was fate), this was to be the time it succeeded. It was difficult, the chiminage of sorts was long, and the task the ghost sent him on involved finding something that had been lost. It wasn't easy, but he managed it; it involved some finagling with other spirits, as well as killing a corrupted one. The ghost was allowed to pass on, and they granted him Fostern.
At this time, he was about nineteen years old. It would be some time before he ventured to challenge again; the years between were spent learning Rites, performing them, and becoming more in touch with the spiritual world. The spirit haunting him was also a problem; he eventually made up his mind to settle it, and he divded his time and energy into working with and cajoling this spirit into forgiving him. It took many, many years, but eventually the grudge faded and a friendship formed. The spirit has proven to be a grumpy though valuable resource (and also still wants to find a way to be released).
It was only after he managed to do this and everything felt settled that he dared challenge again. This challenge was far more difficult, but more geared toward success than his first; by this time, the rest hadgrown to have a wary respect for the eccentric Ajaba, as his uncanny ability to bargain with the spirits was an invaluable resource. He had proven himself to be wickedly intelligent, and he studied, read, and devoured knowledge as quickly as it was given, forming theories and ideas based on anything under the sun. They couldn't understand him, but they could respect him.
His challenge was to make a fetish that would allow another to speak to a ghost as he could. At first, this was something he balked against - however, his innate thirst for wanting to know if something could work caught up to him. He set to work.
It took awhile, as fetishes tend to. First, he had to find an appropriate spirit; a death spirit worked nicely, but death spirits are never pleasant to bargain with. Chiminage was high; sacrifices were required for every time the fetish was to be used, and a high chiminage was set for the bargain to even be completed. This was not something that could be done alone; he had to lead others in assisting with the ritualistic side and with dealing with the spirits and the chiminage. However, he finished it in due time, and returned it and was granted the rank. He is not necessarily proud of this fetish, but it serves its purpose.
Eventually, his dealings with the undead reached a point where they backfired, as they have a tendency to. While working with one to free them, another grew savagely jealous; no amount of cajoling or offers could settle it, and the spirit proved to be a wrathful one. It placed a curse on the mystic, banishing him from his own kind and forbading him to be near them again, for the reason: "If I have to be stuck away from my people with no help, so do you." A bastard of a spirit, to be certain.
Thus, he began traveling, at first morose and begrudging, though he took to the roads. There, he met other supernaturals; some Garou, some other shifters, some Mages. Predictably for his kind, he has no love lost for the Bastet, particularly the Simba; he distrusts and loathes them entirely, and while he is not likely to engage them in combat, the wrath of an angry mystic is a very scary thing indeed...
He ventures to Crystal Springs due to rumors of the Springs and recent events (he heard tale of weird things from a Strider he met on the road). It interests him, thus he is heading that way. As for garou, he has not had extensive relations with them in general, though he considers them as a division of his own, in a way. Not the same, but similar; he harbors no ill wills against them. As for Mages, he knows they exist, and suspects he may have met a few from time to time, but otherwise has no personal experience.
He sells some of his services; people will call him, ask him to come talk to the ghosts around their place, most of the time a dead relative or the like. People pay money for this! Most the time, he gets nothing. But he's decent at lying about it. His racket is mostly built up online; he has a bit of a good reputation.
Dez is, quite frankly, a bit of a nut. He'll be nice to you, but leave you wondering if he's out to get something...whether he is or not. He's devil-may-care, absent minded when it comes to common social things, and he's maddeningly intelligent. He's got a brain that works far too fast, and a personality and an agenda that doesn't leave enough hours in the day to get it all finished. To some, he seems half-mad; some see the brilliant bouts of clarity that sometimes surface. He's mercurial and can swing from perfect jovialness to doom and ominous portents in the blink of an eye.
He's also a highly skilled mystic, focused intently on spirits and the umbral worlds and shunning the healing side entirely. He bargains with spirits. He seeks out remnants of the soul left behind; he does favors for them, and sometimes helps them find passage and be released from the physical realm. He's a ghost hunter, a seeker of the supernatural, and will often go to great lengths to get what he wants; some may call it pure obsession. Hell, he'll even call it obsession; however, he sees nothing wrong with this.
- Stuff goes here
Friends, Acquaintances, and Contacts Edit
- Interesting girl. Interested in me for ...reasons I can't really understand, but reasons I'm not going to argue with, not yet. Fun to be around, to be with. She Understands, too, I think. It's rare to see that, nowadays...
- Tightly wound, but no more so than I'm used to. Unused to Umbral things, afraid he might get stuck; remember to not make him cross over anymore than necessary, I don't want to have to go dragging him out of the Gauntlet.
- I never thought I'd see a Mokole, much less here. Then again, I guess I'm not...common?...here, either. I want to talk to this guy more, he knows Things.
- Interesting. It's been a long time since I've seen another who can talk to the other side. Will need to talk to her more.
- They say he's wolf-born. I shouldn't be surprised; our feral-born are just as weird. He's smart. Though I'm not sure I would trust him with important things, though at least he knows the world on the other side pretty well.
- A Simba, here? I... don't know what to think of him. I see him, especially when he shifts, and just see all the damn stories coming back to stare me in the face. I should hate him, I should want to kill him, to avenge everything. But god damn it, I have better things to--but damn him he's such a bastard. ...I'm not above finding a spirit to harass him. He won't, won't, disrespect me.
- Upstart, disrespectful kid. A cub, and she's still acting like she's in charge; I have to keep reminding herself that she's just a child. Heh. My people would have never let her get away with how she talks, even to the other Fera.
- Don't know a lot about him. Seems honest, at least.
- The leader, the alpha of this place. Haven't spoken to him much, but probably need to. Seems alright.
|Master of Fire|
|Sight From Beyond|
|The Spirits' Displeasure|
|Rite of Talisman Dedication|
|Rite of Cleansing|
|Washing the Spirit|
|Rite of Contrition|
|Communion with the Storm|
|Rite of Becoming|
|Rite of Spirit Awakening|
|Rite of the Fetish|
|Enter Dark Umbra|
Linguistics: Glyphs (extensive). Human languages, aside from English: French (from living up in Canada), German, Spanish. He picks up languages well, assisted by his Eidetic Memory.
Addiction: Cigarettes, particularly awakened tobacco. He gets cranky if he runs out. Also, to a lesser extent, caffeine, both awakened and not.
Contacts: Ghosts, a couple minor city spirits. He watches over them and offers them tidbits for information.
Fame: Mostly online. He has a racket built up. Niche ghost hunters or people who follow the supernatural may know his name.
Spirit Mentor: It's a bit of a fickle thing, easily aggravated and easily made jealous, but Dez knows how to mollify it. It mostly guides him with interactions with the undead, serving as a bit of a liason to those that are harder to speak with or harder to reach. 'He' (because, really, ghosts don't have much of a definable gender) is named Wickett. He claims to be from the early 1900s.
Curse: The curse does not necessarily prevent him from speaking with others of his kind, but rather prevents him from being near them. How this presents itself is almost like the Rite of Ostracism; to his people, it's as though he doesn't exist. He may be there, try to speak with them, and they simply do not appear to notice or realize he's there, or if they do his presence is immediately forgotten. If he tries to stay around them too long, his ability to shift and his connection to the spirits starts withering away.
Character Advancement Edit
- Current +learn
- Current +teach
- Approved By:
- Explanation goes here.
- Advancement History
- Gnosis 7 - finished Nov 1, 2009.