And now, just in case you thought Blackwood had died. My Skype-turned-into-play-by-email game is still going, a little slow, but dealing with life and work has slowed the game considerably…but it is still going. Below is a character I recently introduced to the player.
Jake, a local street urchin
Thin and wearing torn clothes, Jake seems to know everything that happens on the streets of Chicago. He seems to know everyone, at least a little, and knows all the seedy characters in all the back alleys. He is young, maybe around thirteen, but no one could really tell you with any certainty. Most cannot remember the day they first met Jake, they just recall him always being around, in fact most would have trouble remembering a time when Jake was not around.
Jake doesn’t really remember his younger days, only remembering hard days on the streets. He learned to scratch a life on the scraps of the city and managed to build up quite a reputation and a strong will to live. His energetic and likable personality has endeared him to people across all walks of life.
Energetic and charming street urchin with a mysterious past(4)
Social butterfly with friends on both sides of the tracks (3)
A quick, dexterous and thief known to be of exceptional talent (3)
Jake has managed to gather up a small stash of tools he uses in his less than legal activities. He also has a skeleton key that he found near a murder scene, he is unclear as to what door the key is connected to.
Magnus “Blackbeard” Bloginikov. Claims to be a magician, but is certain to have some connections from the dark side. Owns a shop at the end of a crooked alleyway, inside is a wide array of unique and strange items that would bewilder the average person.
Energetic and charming street urchin with a mysterious past: Climbing things, escaping things, finding food from scraps on the streets, getting someone to do your bidding, knowing a back-alley shortcut, bending people to his ways, seemingly able to run forever without tiring, meeting strangers who seem to know too much
Social butterfly with friends on both sides of the tracks: mingle within any social group, knowing just the right person, knowing just what to say to calm an agree group, able to BS and make you believe it, knowing the right lingo to fit in
A quick, dexterous and thief known to be of exceptional talent: picking pockets, opening locks, throwing knives, using a lasso or grappling hook, tightrope walking, jumping across rooftops, opening a safe, quick on the fast draw, can throw a dart better than the next guy
CHARACTER GENERATION & WORLD-BUILDING NOTES
I searched around for a few hours looking for a run down, young man to represent Jake. I wanted someone that was clearly not ‘clean’ and could easily be seen to be living on the street but I also wanted someone who looked innocent and very likely could move in and out of crowds without raising too much concern.
I don’t know really why I picked the name, just sounded everyday average joe..and that sounded perfect for this character who will probably become a large part of Dirk’s investigation.
I added this character based on the relationship between the two main characters in the book “The Alienist” by Caleb Carr, Stevie and Dr. Kreizler. I loved the relationship they have in the book and thought it might be neat for Dirk to have a young friend who could help him seek out answers and explore areas that he cannot.