Appearance: Dame Michelle Blake is a woman of fine Scots-Irish pedigree, with an aristocratic turn to her face. Her face is fine boned with high cheeks, a narrow nose and large hazel eyes. Her eyes are a prominent feature as they do invite people to look into her face, making her seem both innocent and somehow knowing. Her hair is a very fiesty color of red, and most expect her to be a hellion to match. This is not the case, she is born and raised a lady, of noble blood and not unfamiliar to the company of the Royal Family. She favors the color purple and lavender in her dress, with contrasting accents in gold or pale green. When traveling, she affects dresses better suited for travel, but should the call of adventure make dresses impractical she will mix daring trousers with a corset so that there is no mistaking her figure for anything other than that of a woman.
Dame Blake has a demeanor that leads people to underestimate her, something that she encourages. It suits her purposes for people, especially men, to think her a delicate and nigh incapable fancy lady. She is in truth an accomplished rider, and schooled in self defense. She has a keen eye, and a firm understanding of how people work, and think. However, she is sometimes hindered by her love of fashion and jewelry, and she has in the past found herself in situations over her head by overestimating her own abilities.
Background: The Argyle-Blakes are an old aristocratic family of landowners tracing their blood back centuries to the highland clans and kings. In the modern age, they retain a good portion of land and the wealth that generally goes hand in hand with that. Michelle grew up in an honest to goodness castle, and summer vacations were taken 'on the boat' where they would travel to various ports such as New Amsterdam, Port Au Prince, Malta, and even once to the distant Kingdom of Hawai'i. Once she finished out her schooling, Michelle found herself and a few others involved with Madam Blavatsky and her nascent Theosophical Society. While that organization would falter and fade in Europe, it was replaced by the much brighter flame of the Royal Theosophical Society. It would seem that the Queen of England had an interest in things mysterious and paranormal.
After joining the RTS, Michelle delved into a great deal of paranormal and metaphysical lore. The world around her was filled with brass and steam, while hers was filled with papyrus scrolls, hoary books, and weathered clay tablets. Her time in training with the RTS is a matter of secrecy, and something that she will not discuss with other people. But during those years she studied extensively the writings and runic magic of the Druidic traditions, the Shamantic traditions of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, and the Egyptian Mystery schools of magic. To the public, Dame Blake is a debunker of fraudulent mystics and hunter of charlatans. While she does do this on rare occasion, she is in truth something very much different. In an age of steam, she is a magician in the ancient sense.
Special Equipment: While seldom being burdened by specific gear, Dame Blake is still a noble woman, and as such travels with an extensive wardrobe, associated accessories, and at least a single woman in waiting. Typically she has a single manservant and a pair of women in waiting to tend to her and her material needs. She does have access to extensive libraries through the Royal Theosophical Society, and at any given time has a book or three on her person as well as a similar number of amulets, charms, and other trinkets. These magical knickknacks can range from easily concealed pieces of jewelry to small idols stowed in her luggage. If pushed to defend herself, she is capable of handling a dagger, a hunting rifle, or utilizing a limited defensive form of judo adapted for women wearing often large dresses. Another side effect of being a noble, Dame Blake has extensive funds, and can generally procure vehicles, horses, passage on ships and other ventures and purchases requiring large sums of money.
Roleplaying Notes: Let other people underestimate you. Wisecracks are for commoners and soldiers and retainers are who is supposed to do the fighting. Magic, the great art, is very important. It is possibly more important that no one knows that you are indeed capable of weilding the formidable eldritch powers of magic. Always have a private room when traveling, and maintain a suitable air of mystery (Lady's business gentlemen, do run along)
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? Responses (3)-3
You know, what we have little of are PC-material character submissions (many of those submitted in days past were Mary Sues, hence frowned upon). Thus, added value right there. A solid write-up, ready to use.
(Player Chracter submissions should have their own tag, imho)
I agree with Echo, a PC write up section could be fun and useful. I have a run a lot of games with pre-gen character concepts for the players to choose from. And more mainstream role-playing (i.e. Solve the murder parties) generally work from pre-gen character system. So I think Echo has made a good call here.
As I read this I thought the character seemed immediately familiar and thus accessible. Of course that is what you get with genre fiction, is derivative character and plots. I am not a literary scholar but I would bet that the scholars have at least agreed that one of the signatures or inventions of gothic/Victorian literature was the empowered yet elegant woman. (Not liberated mind you, but at least empowered) It would be interesting the chart the evolution of this archetype. In that same vein I suggest adding the character a habitual correspondence with a confidant of some sort: a sister or aunt. A player needs to find a voice, and in a character with such manner and reserve the spoken lines are only going to be the surface of a much deeper thought process. She needs an audience for inner thoughts, it could be a sister or an aunt or in this case even a spirit or bound demon.
For example when the Dame meets the other members of her team say the smarmy South American hypnotist, the “savage” tracker from Greenland, and the young disheveled French expert on “wireless” electricity, it would give the player something to latch on to if instead of just thinking of the Dame’s opinion try to imagine how the Dame would describe these characters to her sister.
This is a good character - the picture it paints in my mind is clear and complete.