Felicia can be selfish, cynical, abrasive, and arrogant. She feels herself above the constraints of society and perceived responsibility. To her, it's ridiculous to devote yourself to something that you have no belief or choice in. This willful nature causes her to react aggressively when she feels something is being forced on her. She is completely unapologetic about the many crimes she has committed. It's her way of living life to the fullest and sometimes just for getting her kicks. In a lot of ways she's not a very good person at all.
She's not just defined simply by her negative traits though, her selfishness and cynicism does not win out over all matters. While a thief, she's not one that would sell someone out for a quick buck or to save her own life. ... At least not someone she cares about. She understands that companions, real ones, are hard to find and so she values them greatly. She doesn't show her affection very well, because she's just not very good at it, but she tries to be at least a little open to others. When push comes to shove she's there to help and would never betray people she cares about under any circumstance.
She can be civil and downright pleasant to be around too, in the right setting anyway. In most cases, outright warding people away isn't something she likes to do, she can just be very secretive and trust never comes easily. She isn't usually quick to anger and tries to keep a level head about things, preferring to look over a situation before reacting.
- Strength 2, Dexterity 4, Stamina 2
- Charisma 2, Manipulation 2, Appearance 4
- Perception 4, Intelligence 2, Wits 4
- Talents: Athletics 2, Brawl 1, Dodge 3, Insight 1, Integrity 2, Resistance 1, Streetwise 3, Subterfuge 2, Vigilance 3
- Skills: Larceny 4, Marksmanship 2, Stealth 4, Drive 2
- Knowledges: Finances 2, Law 1, Investigation 1, Medicine 1
Expertise and Specialties Edit
- Marksmanship: Pistols
- Drive: Cars
- Dexterity: Fleet-Footed
- Wits: Clear-Headed
- Stealth: Concealment
- Perception: Sharp-Hearing
- Appearance: Glamorous
- Larceny: Theft
Advantages and Backgrounds Edit
- Willpower 6, Gnosis 4, Rage 2
- Backgrounds: Contacts 1, Equipment 3, Resources 3
- Rank 1: Diamond Claws, Impala's Flight, Catfeet
Merits and Flaws Edit
- Double-Jointed 1
- It's in the genes.
- Catlike Balance (1)
- Felicia quickly learned that there's no point in being fast if you spend half the time on the floor. She trains to perfect her balance a little more everyday.
- Code of Honor (1)
- Perhaps there is even a kind of moral code amongst some thieves. While she is surely selfish and has mostly no problem with doing her job, Felicia does not necessarily steal in /excess/ and will not take what people truly need, even the many times the opportunity has presented itself. She will snatch an expensive diamond from a jewelry store, but never rob the place blind so the owner will most likely have to close it down and lose their business. Causing people grief and suffering is never her true intent.
- Severe Phobia: Claustrophobia (3)
- The thought of being trapped and restricted to where she cannot move can make for a very trying experience for her. Cramped, trapped, closed in, no control. More than a few seconds in tight spaces do not make her a happy person. It's usually the worst when she's surrounded on all sides, such as in an elevator, bathroom stall, or in an extremely crowded room. She avoids these things as much as possible, and if not she'll usually be standing very near the exit.
- Cleverness: 3 / 0
- Honor: 0 / 0
- Ferocity: 0 / 0
- Spence the Fence, a middle man she's done business with quite a bit and a very good one at that. He's the one who takes a fair amount of her stolen loot off her hands, sells it for a profit to a client or interested buyer, and gives her a reasonable cut (a little over forty percent). Obviously this isn't his real name, but she knows it's not wise to ask that sort of thing with these kinds of dealings. She trusts him though, for they both agree on one key thing: Money can make a friend for a lifetime.
- The many high-tech gadgets used for her various breaking and enterings. Definitely not the kind of things sold in retail stores. These items can only be used for this purpose.
- Her ill-gotten gains naturally. But she can't go around flaunting this money /too/ much, as people might go asking where she gets it from and then comes greater suspicion, and that might end her up in sing-sing for a very long time (maybe she's a /bit/ too paranoid about this). Most of this is stowed away for emergencies and on-the-job expenses.
Freebie Points Spent:
- Attributes: Increased Charisma by 1 (5), Increased Gnosis by 2 (4), Increased Willpower by 2 (2), Increased Manipulation by 1 (5) = 16
- Talents: +2 Streetwise (4), +2 Athletics (4), +1 Integrity (2) = 10
- Skills: +1 Marksmanship (2), +2 Drive (4) = 6
- Backgrounds: Increased Equipment by 2 (2) = 2
- Merits and flaws: Double-Jointed (1), Catlike Balance (1), Code of Honor (1), Severe Phobia (+3) = 0
Obligation. Duty. Responsibility. More times than not, everytime I heard those kinds of words, it was someone telling someone else what to do and to forget about what they /want/ to do. Choice never seemed to show up in the equation. There are people who let themselves be assigned these roles when they would rather do anything else, without really giving their own wants any thought. Some may say I'm selfish and childish for abandoning responsibility. Yet I find them pathetic for abandoning their own goals and clinging to someone else's. I wasn't someone who couldn't tie myself to anything and I wasn't someone who doesn't know how work hard, I'm simply someone who refuses to let there not be a choice in the matter. What's the point of doing something if you can't put your heart into it? How can you work for a cause you have no belief in and not feel your soul dying? I felt like that was what people were asking of me with those words. I wanted more out of life than a map I was forced to follow. Hell, I just wanted more really, I'd find a way to get it.
I grew up with my father on a farm in Texas just outside of Houston. We didn't have neighbors, just lots of grass really. My mother was long gone, can't say I really thought about that too much. It was pretty simple to understand, my father laid it out pretty simply. "She's gone and she's not coming back". It was first time I asked that, that's when I got that answer and I had never heard such bitterness in a person's tone. They obviously did not part on the best terms. I wasn't upset at her, actually I think understood just why she did leave. When I had become old enough my father expected something of me, and would not take no for an answer. I had to help him with work around the farm, and I mean all kinds of the work. A child was supposed to help him do back-breaking labor on that farm without question and without complaint. It was my responsibility as the only child, not something I could refuse. Until...? Well, until I was buried there seemed to be the idea. Not my idea.
The farm will be passed down to me as it was passed down to him from his father and his father before that, et cetera. Gender had nothing to do with it, I was a MacDonald, and it was my duty. For a while I said nothing except in my head or in disturbingly violent drawings. Or perhaps they were disturbing because I couldn't draw at all, not really sure. Everyone has a breaking point though, the thing that finally gets that quiet person to speak up. One day, while my father was out, I went to fetch the watering can from that old shed. It was so rickety, it seemed like a moderately strong breeze would knock it right over. Not to mention voluntarily stepping inside of it, where things were squeezed in so tightly that you literally only had enough to barely turn, meant you made peace with possibly dying there. I almost did actually.
It sure felt like it anyway. The door stuck sometimes, and the day I decided to get that watering can was one of those times. It was blown closed, and no matter how hard I pushed it wouldn't open. I was trapped inside, I couldn't move except pulling on that door, and even then it was cramped. The wind didn't stop, it kept going, and even picked up too. That shed swayed and it groaned, sounding like it would crash into a heap, with me in it, at any second. It shook and it shook for what felt like hours, things were falling and shifting around, and it shook more. Each time it shook it sounded like it was giving way. It got to the point I was screaming for help, I felt like I was suffocating at that point, and that was when the door opened. My father had finally come home and heard me while he was searching for me. His first words for the 10-year-old who just went through that experience? "You'll be alright, just get some rest and shake it off." Ah, parental love, is there anything else quite like it. I think that was the first time I actually wanted to be physically violent toward him.
It didn't bother me as much later on. His words were .. I guess they didn't really matter in the end. But I came to a decision when I calmed down. I was leaving and there was nothing that was going to stop me. I was not going to die on that farm, whether from some accident with the equipment or the animals when my luck finally ran out, or just growing old without ever seeing what I wanted to see. I was merely a child, but I was one that knew that farm was a place I didn't want to be. So I naively told myself I'd be fine with just some clothes and a lot of food and ran away when it was late enough. I left to the place I had always been fascinated of, the lights of that city. I wanted so much more than the life I had, I felt I /deserved/ more. And I don't know why, but as I looked at the moon in the sky, as I did everytime I could see it, I just felt so much more confident and secure in my choice.
I must say, it was kinda cute how stupid I was as a little gamine. I expected some kind of magical thing to happen when I stepped into that city. Maybe that a limo would drive up and stop right where I was, open it's door so I could climb in, and drive me off to live instantly happily ever after in the lap of luxury. Instead I got to be homeless and live on the street, begging other people for money so I could possibly eat after I ran out of food and sleep in the most comfortable pavement or grass that I could find. Some people did try to help in their own way, but I did not want their help. I did not want to go to their human pound and be picked out if I was the pup that wagged their tail enough. I /could/ have landed a rich family sure, but it was just as possible I never would have. I'd be trapped once again in a situation. Irrational though it may sound, I did not want to do that, if I could have no choice or control then I'd rather be left alone. Perhaps my father was looking for me too, but it was a big city, and there were a lot of places to disappear.
When begging didn't work, and those times were many, I decided to take what I felt I deserved. The old classic of pick pocketing, it never went out of style. Being chased for every slip up sure did though, especially on a usually empty stomach. Fortunately for me I was fast, oddly fast I would say, and I was surprised how far my legs could carry me. It was like I was born to run or something. Otherwise I seemed to do pretty well, people had a hard time noticing a kid, especially a homeless kid. If they did see me I had to put on a little show, chat them up and cause some distractions to make a quick swipe. If they saw through me like I wasn't there as usual, then that was fine with me and all the better to reach in a pocket and then take off running into the nearest busy crowd all around or a labyrinth of alleyways. It only got me a few bucks, if that. All I worried about was the money, anything else I got was useless to me since I hardly knew the worth. Oh, I got caught plenty, and the stuff got taken back, and not always gently, before I usually just got set loose again.
Then there came the day that felt so ordinary, but became something else entirely. I tried to do a run-and-grab on a woman I decided to pick as a target, she looked like she could afford it. That woman was different though, she grabbed me the minute my hand got in her pocket and looked directly down at me. She did not look angry though, she actually looked very amused instead. She calmly asked me why I was trying to pick her pocket. I thought it was kind of an obvious question, I mean it was easy to see from what I looked like. Maybe some would have just lied and some would have cried in terror, but I just told her the truth. I wanted what she had because I was tired of not having it. A very simple reason, but an honest one. She seemed to like my answer but still called me a 'stupid child'. She explained that I was stupid for just sitting there and whining, going on about my lot in life instead of /taking/ what I truly wanted instead of barely surviving off scraps. I told her it was all I could think to do, and she immediately questioned me on what I would do if I had a way to do more presented to me. To take those things, and that life, that I so desired.
It was such an odd question. I had never really heard anything like it before, but when I realized just what it was I couldn't believe it. It was a choice. It was my choice. A real one. I could decide whether or not to ask more or just walk away, I wasn't being forced to do anything. I asked her to tell me how. She told me it wouldn't be easy, and it's not something you could do on a whim. I asked her to tell me how. She told me it would be hard, painful, and that she would just have to deal with it if she really wanted it. I told her to tell me how. She smirked and said to come with her. I was going to learn to literally take what I wanted from others, by taking things from them. I was sick of treading in muck, I wanted to stand up and stand above that. She was going to teach me what she knew, how to be a thief. Dahlia, that was the only name I got from her. I was game though, people were getting a bit too comfortable in that lap of luxury anyway.
Dahlia told me of one other condition. I had to leave my name behind, because that little farm girl was not me anymore. She helped me pick a new one. Danielle was forgotten and Felicia Tolliver was born.
I accepted the life, to be taught the many tricks of her trade, and I had nothing to complain about really because it was my choice. Of course I still did. There were variations thrown out, from 'stupid child' to 'stupid girl' every time I would slip up because of trying to rush ahead or when I slumped back into complaining about how hard things were getting. I was told that without patience and knowledge I wouldn't get anywhere. The daily, grueling training I was put through to be faster, tougher, stealthier and overall push myself to to certain physical limits was not the most important thing. She went on about how being smart, using your mind more than anything and taking a situation in as a whole first, and never taking action before it. Every valuable item I laid eyes upon was /not/ something I should automatically attempt to get. A failure was a sign to retreat, not to continue rushing back in to save face. When you need to run, you should run. Knowing when to take action and knowing when to remain still was necessary or I would never amount to anything she said. Always have a plan, and always be ready to abandon that plan when things don't go as you thought they would. Those are the things she continued to say and remind me of, over and over, and it wasn't easy for me to understand.
Knowledge came in a lot of different forms. The schedules of the owners of a home you planned to hit, a cellphone slipped out of a pocket with messages on it, knowing the right looking people you meet on a corner and saying the right things, and even some of her 'experience' came into play. Homeless people like me really could be seemingly invisible sometimes, and that is not a bad thing if you know how to twist it. People talk, people talk all the time, and sometimes when you're invisible they'll talk about things they wouldn't if you weren't. A flash of some money and you could have your own spies in plain sight, or pose as one yourself. I did have practice at it. Sometimes you can sit on a sidewalk and watch a house all day, and you won't even be looked at twice.
Loathe to admit, I was not book smart either, or any kind of smart really. I needed to be educated in things other than stealing, I needed to be able to sit still and learn. I can't say it was very easy. Other than the basics like history, arithmetic etc. I had to know things like business and law. How much things were worth and how to manage my resources and how to keep myself from cooking in a courtroom, I hope it never comes to that but what if I did get caught and pulling a Houdini out of my restraints wasn't enough to get me out of it? The legal system could be your friend or your worst enemy. I didn't take to all of it as much as I'd hoped though, it was some pretty complicated stuff and one can only take in so much. Besides, there were so many other fun things to learn.
Well let us be honest for a moment. Did I say fun? I meant extremely terrifying, at least the first few.. well it was pretty terrifying a lot really but I guess you learn to get used to it, gets the blood pumping. I mean I had a dog just feet behind me, and he wasn't shy about trying to take a bite of anything he could get his teeth on. You would think the security system wouldn't have been so temperamental with /one/ mistake trying to disarm it but there you go. Oh, and apparently dogs don't like alarms. I swore I could feel that thing got closer and closer by the second. If it wasn't a dog it could be bullets or perhaps an angry home owner with a blunt object. See, if I get spotted, or maybe even if I'm not but make a wrong step.. it's pretty much over. My teacher put it quite eloquently, "Fall and die". That was my life.
Luckily I was allowed to make most of my mistakes under my teacher's supervision usually as I learned the ropes and got better, and at times she actually had to come help me out of bad situations. She let me keep the money I got for my jobs too. But those times were always met with the same response, that eventually it would be Sink or Swim. I had to learn to always be alert on a job and never be complacent with myself, to tackle a situation and get out of it at a moment's notice and listen out for telltale noises. It was amazing really and terrifying all at once.
Of course I couldn't /just/ stay in Houston, that was just another way to get complacent with my surroundings. So I was moved around a lot, to hit different places and subsequently need to know the lay of the land through different perspectives. I've met some interesting characters, fellow criminals, and most I would never meet again. I don't think they'd be too tickled pink about me mentioning their lines of... business so I'll just leave that there. I'll just say that 'interesting' can come in a lot of flavors, from crackpot to downright unsettling. But I was used to it, I was practically one or the other anyway. I think I actually liked traveling so much, I really enjoyed how frequent it got. It felt sort of natural.. but at the same time it felt somewhat empty as well. Something was missing, like there was more to travel than just the ground beneath my feet. More than just the land I could see in front of me. I always had that nagging feeling there was something beyond that, and that it needed to be explored. No matter how much I tried to shake it, it was sort of always there in the back of my mind.
Slowly, very slowly, I understood more and more over the years. Do not steal mindlessly, steal specifically and flawlessly. If I was caught, it was over, I probably had no future ahead of me then and definitely no choice. Being caught meant I was useless, everything I knew and learned would be for nothing. If you were spotted, it was time to run, it wasn't failure unless you couldn't do another job at all. In her own way she was teaching me, perhaps tearing me down to build me back up. She wasn't even really as bad I made her out to be, we didn't train /all the time/. We talked plenty of times, I was living with her after all. A lot of the times it was more of a one-sided thing, so it was rather memorable when she opened up a bit. One time she talked about a city in Colorado, a place called Crystal Springs. Apparently it was a big tourist spot and it interestingly enough was built in the middle of many varied natural terrains, like a fusion of civilization and nature. It sounded like a quirky little place. She told me that sometimes the job should put aside, that it wasn't wise to get lost in the work, to forget who you were, and that there are times when one should step back from it for a while and Be. I'm probably guessing this was to avoid some kind of breakdown.
Then Dahlia was gone. I came back one day and I couldn't find her. No good-bye, no way to reach her, no anything. I guess that was it, it was time for me to really start the life I picked out. Well I got started right away. And what happened on my first real solo mission away from Dahlia? Naturally I effortlessly infiltrated the museum and swiftly made my way to the prize, while all along evading all forms of security and never slipping up once before leaving in record time. Flawless. That would have been nice come to think of it, but then fantasies usually are, and I'm not /quite/ that delusional. As I said before, the big jobs always put you in a state of constant tension, each one is different and anything can happen. It really puts your emotions on a kind of high. It was probably the single most horrible job I've ever done in my life, and I don't know what it was. It was as if my mind would not stop racing, I couldn't sit still. The mood-swings were less than helpful, it was hard to tell /what/ I was feeling half the time, or even why I was feeling it. Usually I could control myself very easily, but it was different this time. It was hard to think straight with that enigmatic feeling, tugging at me from somewhere deep inside and slowly building. Before I knew it, I was surrounded.
Surrounded is not the same as spotted. When you're spotted, the person or group who saw you is probably a reasonable distance away and you have time to run and possibly hide before they can get a really good look at you or have a chance to catch up. I was surrounded, a police car in front of me and security guards behind. I had nowhere to go, no way out, they were too close for me get around if I slipped out of the cuffs they were definitely going to put me in, and besides that I had a hard time imagining they'd miss at /point-blank range/ with those guns. So this was it, it was over, even the small chance of escaping by some stroke of miraculous luck was ridiculous for me to think of. I was done, I had screwed up. The loot was in my hand for all to see, it wasn't just petty theft, it was an open and shut thing. I was going to be locked away, possibly for the rest of my life. That's when it happened, something.. snapped. I was angry, so angry I almost felt as if it was clawing into me, desperately trying to get free. I didn't want to be locked away, I wouldn't /let/ them do this to me. I /refused/ to believe that it was the end of everything.
They never knew what hit them. Most of them screamed I think, ran away in a terrified panic, trying to distance themselves from the large beast that appeared where that woman once was. One of them also screamed, but instead of running he raised his gun to fire at the creature in front of him. He never got the shot off, something /else/ had attacked him before he could. Though he would never know it, that probably saved his life, since I had been about to rake him down the middle just moments before. It was my second teacher, my kuasha, that had finally revealed herself and easily restrained me before taking me away. Then it was time to learn again, about a world much larger than the one I could see. About a world that I still struggle to understand.
How can you put the knowledge of this foreign world into just one year? I don't think it's possible, it, I just could not completely fathom the vast world of the Bastet and the Swara in such a short time I was with my kuasha. I understood some of it, and a lot things started making sense. I understood why I looked up at the moon so frequently and the safe feeling it brought. Others, the cynical side of me could grasp. That the world was corrupt or being corrupted slowly, along with all it's people. I was told tales of wars, culling, massacres, and betrayals that broke even the most trusted of bonds. It was not her intent to simply categorize the world into a single gloomy outlook, but simply to be honest about how dark the nature of others can be. Some of the things I comprehended, I could not agree with all of it, to stay on the fringes of life and society to simply look on just didn't sound like something I could do.
A year had passed by far too fast, then she was gone, and I had still felt like I had taken only a few steps with it all. I learned all I could, and still it really didn't feel like enough. Perhaps it was my duty to learn from experience, but I was lost in even where to start. I had no direction to be pointed in, I knew /of/ others like me, but not where they were. How was I supposed to grasp the secrets of an entire spiritual realm or battle the Unmaker? I could barely keep all of the knowledge in my head! Every attempt was was like trying to trap water in my hands. I was so frustrated by it all, though I wasn't sure if I was frustrated at myself or my culture. I'm still not sure. No one could ever say I did not try though.
My first Taghairm, which was sort of an occasional gathering of Bastet I suppose, enlightened me to how they seem to build rank among each other. Reputation gets you places, it gets you seen and it gets you heard. If you have a story of accomplishment to tell then it will be listened to. It reminded me, a bit fondly, of the streets really. Action spoke quite loudly and it got you respect. Even actions of a thief, though only I spoke only of a few were met with praise, even to the rather small group. But still, it all felt like such a cold and distant thing. Maybe it was just the group I was with, maybe I took it all at face value far too easily because I was-- still /am/ so disconnected from all this. I wanted to leave with a feeling of accomplishment, but I was really only reminded of how lost I still was. Everyone needs a cause to believe in, it's the driving reason why they're a part of something. What was mine with the Bastet?
Did I regret giving up? Trying to push all that I discovered in those two years to the back of my mind and retreating back to my life before it all, the one that made sense to me? I could say I didn't, that I felt no connection at all and I had forgotten it already. I could also say my name was Sally Smiles and that I came from the land of gumdrops and fun-time. No, it's hard to forget a part of yourself, it's hard to abandon it too. I try to stop thinking about it by going on jobs.. but they're starting to feel more and more hollow. I just can't concentrate on the job anymore. I feel like a person without a purpose all over again. Maybe I need to get away from the job for a while, just get away period. To... now there's an idea.
A place to relax and just Be huh? I thought I'd take Dahlia up on that idea, and I know of the perfect place. Here I come, Crystal Springs. Hopefully this trip can clear my head, and help me figure out how to find a place in my other life.
Used for her protection when the situation calls for it, Felicia owns a Beretta 9000 with standard ammo.