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Daimon Winter

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Nov. 9th, 2013 01:26 pm
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OOC Information
Player Name: Becca
Player Age: won't see thirty again
Player Contact: AIM=doctressamnesia plurk=anakimwriter
Player/Character HMD: here
Other characters in game: none

IC Information
Character Name: Daimon Winter
Character Gender: Male Age: 125 Apparent: 30s
Canon Point: Daimon appears here as he does at the very end of his canon, which is based on a novel of mine I'm currently revising. This allows him to be more settled emotionally, have his alcoholism under control and generally helps him be much more pleasant company. :)

Character History
Daimon was fathered by a powerful spirit that was accidentally summoned by his Spiritualist mother in the late 1800s. She was a magician's assistant and a circus performer, and Daimon grew up in that environment, learning stage magic, acrobatics, knife throwing, sleight of hand and all the basics of catching and keeping an audience's attention. As the obviously half-Indian son of an unwed mother in Victorian London, he was looked down on by many, and only found acceptance among the roustabouts and performers. But the circus went bust when he was eleven, and he and his mother found themselves renting a tiny room where she read fortunes and occasionally turned tricks to make the rent. Daimon turned his circus skills to stealing to spare his mum this fate as much as possible, but she was a sensitive woman, and the trauma made her turn to opium based patent medicines for her "nerves".  Three years later she was a heavy addict who had to be coaxed to eat and otherwise cared for by her now teenage son. She could not be convinced to quit, and eventually wasted to the point where her body could not withstand an overdose. Daimon carried his mother's dying body out into the streets and pounded on every door until he found a doctor. But the doctor denounced him as a bastard and his mother as a whore, and then berated him on his ancestry, denouncing him as "less than properly human" even as Daimon's mother was taking her last breath. Something snapped inside of the young boy; his Epiphany happened as much in defiance of those words as from emotional extremis. In a mad rage fueled by grief and disgust with the heartless physician, Daimon told him to go drown himself in the Thames.

The doctor promptly did it.

Daimon was both horrified and thrilled by the discovery of his powers. After using them to get his mother a proper funeral, he secured himself an apartment on the West End by hypnotizing his landlord, and settled in to learn both the extent of his powers and how many uses he could find for them. He quickly established himself as a legendary thief and mystery man who raided the coffers of London's "finest"--and sometimes left the wickedest among them as catatonic shells. But this same mystery man also became known for rescuing people from terrible situations: rape, abuse, assault, homelessness, and even--increasingly, as Daimon's skills with his power grew--addiction and madness.

Eventually however, he stumbled upon a spectacular find while burgling the house of an infamous occultist: a cache of amulets and statues powered by the beings bound into them. These included the powerful Anak queen Lilith, bound in a golden mirror whose holder could command her to dance; an assortment of animal and elemental spirits; and King Ravana himself. Ravana revealed that he had summoned the youth, and that he was his father; betrayal by his relatives had led to his imprisonment in his own necklace. That was a half-truth. In reality, devouring his virtuous brother-spirit Vibhishana had poisoned the King, for evil Rakshasa are as repelled by purity as Daimon is repelled by impurity. In a desperate attempt to expel Vibhishana's energy, he took advantage of the flawed summoning cast by Daimon's mother and impregnated her with it. But the act of reproducing with a human always weakens a spirit greatly, and so Ravana had to crawl off to recover. Unfortunately, upon hearing that their father had begat a child on the hated English, his other children set on him while he was still weakened, devoured most of his essence, and bound what they could not devour into his own necklace. This was then fought over until all but two of his children were dead, and the necklace was lost.

Ravana manipulated his young son skilfully, although Lilith tried to warn Daimon; after having no one else to talk to for decades as their prisons became part of the collection of the now dead occultist, she knew very well how cruel he was. Ravana played on Daimon's loneliness, his longing for family, his alienation from humankind and the thrill of using his powers. He promised to leave a portion of his essence inside the necklace and leave it behind as payment to Daimon. He promised to take Daimon back with him to Sri Lanka, where his family secretly ruled, and make him a prince. And when Daimon half-intentionally released all of the spirits in the collection, Ravana took advantage of the resulting chaos, attempting to possess his son. Daimon fought back--and Lilith came to his rescue, driving the weakened spirit away.

Lilith was in bad shape from her own imprisonment, and seduced the young thief in order to convince him to hand over the Necklace in order to boost her healing powers. Utterly smitten, he did so...and ended up completely wrapped around her finger in months. Enthralled by sex, emotional manipulation and the fact that they both saved each others' lives on a regular basis, he followed her for almost a century as she traveled around looking to unite her scattered--and sometimes similarly imprisoned--children. Daimon traveled under the cover of a professional psychic and illusionist, and she as his "lovely assistant". Eventually however, Lilith's interest began to wane, leaving Daimon working harder and harder to keep her attention.

It was around this time that Daimon developed a drinking problem. In reality he had an addictive personality to begin with: heredity, an addict mom, and gaping emotional wounds that the woman he loved seemed pleased to sprinkle salt into. He resisted for a long time because of the circumstances surrounding his mother's death, but after Lilith started flaunting other lovers in front of him and treating him like a servant in public, he eventually fell. He was not an extreme, messy drunk, not abusive, not given to driving high or any of that. But he was addicted, and he was self-medicating to keep his pain and rage from overcoming him. Daimon would remain a functional alcoholic for decades. 

During the late 1940s, he sought comfort in a brief affair with the succubus Cerise, who eventually gave birth to Morgan, Daimon's son. Lilith, jealous that Cerise could bear a child when she could not, threatened to kill the pair unless Daimon forced Cerise and Morgan to forget that he was Morgan's father and Cerise's lover. Cerise had truly loved Daimon, and as punishment she and Morgan spent the next several decades mourning a dead lover and father who was actually fictional. Daimon, heartbroken, finally shook off Lilith's hold on him, and started scheming to get back his father's Necklace.

In the 1980s, a psychic warned Lilith and Daimon that a powerful organization of hunters would soon begin a large-scale campaign of "cleansing" Europe and the Middle East of all supernatural beings. Fearing for her people, Lilith dragged Daimon and as many of her descendants as she could to the West Coast of the United States, settling in a city that was quite used to unusual people and behavior. She created a haven for her people near the Berkeley Marina, under the cover of an exotic dance club. Daimon continued to help her, since he wished to keep his allies among the Lilim and stay close to his son. But her resentment and general issues with men led her to send him on the most dangerous missions she could find.

Daimon bought a yacht and took on the persona of an international playboy while secretly ferrying as many supernatural beings as he could from Europe to the States. The Adamite slaughter had begun, and he found himself spilling blood and risking his neck more and more while rescuing others. It started to burn him out after a few decades...until he accidentally rescued Lilith's own father, the angel Azrael, from an Adamite spirit-prison. The gentle, deeply enlightened Azrael was badly depowered, and Daimon brought him home for his descendants to care for. Lilith, although secretly overjoyed, publicly claimed this as yet another pathetic attempt of Daimon's to win back her favor--but then Azrael shocked them all by gently but firmly rebuking her.

Since that time the Lilim have been divided in their loyalties between Lilith, their rightful queen, and her father, who is considerably less of an emotionally-unbalanced, manipulative asshole. Daimon pretends to be in the first camp while gathering intelligence for and taking advice from Azrael. The two have become very close. It was Azrael's counsel that prompted Daimon to start studying psychology, use his powers to help himself, and turn his relationship with alcohol back from a codependent marriage to a friendship with occasional benefits. The last part has been a struggle, however, since Lilith's closest allies continue to treat him with petty nastiness even as she herself has started to question her actions. By the beginning of the novel in 2010, Daimon still drinks too much when he is sufficiently upset, but is able to control the impulse much more effectively by the end of the book, after the Necklace is returned to him. 

He still makes forays into Britain to ferry supernatural refugees, but he has grown more wary since learning that the Rakshasa have started actively searching for him. On the advice of Miriam, an unusual mortal ally whom Azrael has asked him to watch over, he has begun offering mental healing services part time under the guise of a hypnotherapist. Helping others in this way has helped him get over some of his own problems in the process.

Character World

In Daimon's universe, superhuman beings exist in secret among humans, but with an unusual twist. Not only are almost all supernatural legends there based on true encounters, but almost all the original encounters are with a single, very diverse race. This race, the result of interbreeding between humans and powerful spirits, is divided into multiple bloodlines, most of which have forgotten their connection to one another. The Anakim (the blanket term used by the Lilim for all such bloodlines) are thus scattered, and as they have been actively hunted they are now very rare. In addition, the same magic that makes humans oblivious to their existence causes young Anakim to believe themselves human, forcing them to go through an intense spiritual or emotional epiphany in order to discover their powers. 

Lilith, mother of several of these bloodlines, has broken free of her prison, and with Daimon's help has gathered as many of her descendants and allies as she can into a stronghold on the West Coast of America.

Though the Anakim are eternally young and difficult to kill, they have an implacable enemy that outnumbers them over ten to one. Tragically, the Adamites themselves are the descendants of one of the Anakim, but they do not acknowledge that, believing instead that their longevity and abilities come from God Himself.  They also recruit humans (including 'sensitives', who show some resistance to Anakim powers and can notice them when normal humans cannot), indoctrinating them heavily and using all but the most useful as cannon fodder. The Adamites believe firmly that they are protecting humanity from the predations of monsters, but do not value the lives of individual humans, and think little of the collateral damage they cause. In the end they end up with a much higher body count than the most vicious of those they hunt. 

Even more sadly, Adamah himself was the dupe of a very powerful spirit known as the Demiurge, which believes itself to be God but is not. The Demiurge has aped the God of all monotheist religions, from Mithraism to Islam, stealing their trappings for itself and polluting the beliefs of adherents through its confusing and often terrifying interactions with them. A cruel, violent being which thrives on slaughter and war,  it views itself as a cleansing force for good, while ignoring its own irrationality and wickedness. Adamah ended up possessed by it, completely subsumed by the spirit's will, his tremendous power harnessed to cause worldwide disasters including the Great Flood. The other Anakim including Lilith managed to subdue and imprison him, but he still speaks to his subject through psychics known as his Prophets.

Finally, there are Anakim, such as the demonic telepath Sammael, and wicked spirits such as Daimon's father King Ravana, who either have vendettas against the main characters and the Lilim, or are simply wicked, cruel and out for themselves. Daimon struggles to help the Lilim gather allies against these threats, with the help of various human, Anakim and spirit allies, including succubi exotic dancers, a semi-retired Angel of Death, and his newly hired human emissary.
 
Character Personality 
Daimon has a sunny personality and a big heart--big enough that it has gotten him into trouble on several occasions in his life. He is however intelligent and pragmatic, which usually balances this. His caregiver nature manifests itself in his urge to cheer people up, provide an ear, subtly aid others with his powers, and provide a pleasant distraction. However, certain things, such as cruelty to people or animals, rape, and racism bring out his vengeful streak. He is a pacifist, and basically a good person, but if he finds out that the guy down the street has been molesting his daughter, that guy is going to spend the rest of his life impotent and paralyzed with fear around anyone female. Not because Daimon considers himself judge and jury, so much as he knows that the legal system is and has always been inadequate to protect innocent people and punish the guilty. It's vigilante thinking, plain and simple, and he's not ashamed of it, even if he does know when to keep quiet about it.

Daimon is lawless, but moral; he ignores or even flouts human law whenever he can, but will also gladly save the life or heal the psyche of a complete stranger. He calls himself "Buddhist, but really bad at it", mostly because of his penchant for hedonism, Robin Hoodishness and vigilante justice. He despises the system, because he has watched for over a century as the rich and powerful abuse it or flout it, protected by their money from the law and by the law from their victims. To his mind, all but a handful of the wealthy are terrible people, both through corruption and because they can get away with it. If a person is so rich and out of touch that they consider not being able to buy a new car every year a terrible tragedy, they deserve to get taken. 

Daimon is straight, polyamorous, and very playful and sweet on dates and in the sack. He works hard on being a good friend, with benefits or not. He's a closet romantic playing the part of a benign and ethical playboy. He does this because he really wants to get to know someone before he gives his heart away again. Problem is, the poor dumbass tends to fall head-over-heels anyway and then go into instant denial about it. (He's a bit silly.)  He is completely OK with hugging dudes, he just has no attraction to them sexually.

He is a recovering alcoholic who is doing fairly well, largely because he straight up uses telepathy to hypnotize himself when he catches himself drinking too much again. He avoids a tobacco addiction by cultivating the most ridiculously picky tastes in expensive shisha and cigars ever. He will sometimes dabble in certain drugs, as he need not worry about ill effects thanks to his regeneration. He is, in fact, susceptible to catnip, especially in tiger form. He lives just a little bit better than he needs to, and keeps his bon vivant lifestyle within relatively sane limits.

He avoids violence as much as possible, preferring to use persuasion, trickery, telepathic slumber or the like to end aggression, but knows martial arts well enough to defend himself physically. In tiger form, he is most likely to knock an opponent down, pin them down, and then sit on them until they either come to their senses or he decides what to do with them. He did spray at one guy, but that dude really deserved it.  He has carried guns before, but actually hates using them or any other weapon.

He is insatiably curious, and loves to learn about people; his sympathies can be played on somewhat easily, and he often has used his powers to help others with no expectation of reward. He's happy enough to have positive company much of the time; in fact his tendency to show off is as much from loneliness as from the habits of a professional showman. Given an audience who can handle real illusionism, he's delighted to give a show, sometimes finding people who really need his help in the process. Cultivating compassion and lots of telepathically-fueled meditation has helped him a lot in setting aside his past baggage, but the basic loneliness, grief, regret and fears still chew on him sometimes, just like anyone. At that point he calls friends, throws a party or finds company for the night. He's really pretty good at coping.

He hates his family, except for his long lost human mother, whom he still misses. His father and the Dark Rakshasa thrive on the blood, filth and suffering that repels him completely, and revel in cruelty where he has a kind nature. They also all want to kill him, and take the Necklace for themselves. Daimon's only real advantage over his kin, besides being a much more competent telepath than most of them, is that he has and can make allies. No one trusts the Dark Rakshasa--they know better. For this reason, Daimon does not even admit what he truly is to most people, passing himself off as a sorcerer and psychic with some unusual specialties.

Character Abilities
Daimon is a fairly effective telepath, considerably less powerful than a 616 Professor X but strong and competent enough to get through to, deceive, communicate with, read, heal, or render unconscious most minds. (He avoids doing permanent psychic damage except in extremis, equating it with a sort of rape). 

He has impressive psychic shields, though he tends to lower them around friends, and stronger telepaths can get through them. 

He is a skilled and subtle hypnotist, often using his voice or gaze to lull his subject into a suggestible trance state, and then implanting suggestions that can eventually heal phobias, neuroses or other nonorganic mental problems, and mitigate things like chronic pain or the symptoms of organic mental illness. He could also drive someone insane, but he hasn't actually done this in years and has to be really pushed to even consider it.

He is a tremendously gifted creator of illusions which affect all senses, which he uses for entertainment as well as deceit and self defense. People who know or suspect that they are facing an illusion, as well as fellow psychics, may attempt to resist his illusions. He has however worked very hard for decades to make them convincing. 

Like most Anakim, he stopped aging around the age of thirty and heals quickly, recovering from a beating in minutes and broken bones in an hour. 

Finally, he can turn into a tiger. Just a tiger. He has tried to turn into something less obtrusive, like a house cat, but all he ended up with was...a smaller tiger. Since most Rakshasa have at least three forms, and he can't shapeshift at all without his amulet, Daimon has a bit of an inferiority complex about his ability. 

Skills: Stage Magic, Parkour, Pickpocketing, Breaking and Entering, Mixing Drinks, Therapy, Hypnotherapy, Vegetarian and Pastry Cooking, Aikido

Weaknesses: Daimon is both young and weak compared to the rest of Ravana's children; even many Rakashasa of weaker blood are considerably more competent (and brutal) with their powers. For example, he cannot shapeshift into other people and telepathically take on their personas in order to deceive others; he cannot shapeshift into any animal but a tiger, he cannot fly, and he's never even tried to make a human into a telepathic slave. This comparative weakness is an Especially Bad Thing because 99% of all Rakshasa want to murder the crap out of Daimon. 

Like all Rakshasa born under the waxing moon, he is repulsed and weakened by many things that Hindus consider "impure"
.  This includes blood, forcing him to avoid prolonged or gory close combat, making him unable to use his bite in tiger form unless he wants to feel sick for hours, and forcing him to avoid surgeries, childbirth (even that of his son), animal sacrifice and slaughter, and even menstruating lovers. He also cannot digest any product an animal died to create, including meat, broth and gelatin; anything beef-based can cause a violent allergic reaction. Bodily wastes or vomit also repulse and nauseate him, forcing him to avoid hospitals, sewers and most public bathrooms. Finally, rotting corpses cause the most violent reaction; prolonged proximity to them can actually put him into a coma.

Character Inventory: Very nice vegan leather jacket, shoes, gloves and wallet, black silk-wool blend trousers and turtleneck, tasteful gold jewelry, silk socks and underthings. Wallet contents include cash, calling cards, condoms and a tiny lockpicking set. Smartphone full of pictures he's snapped of different places on Earth, funny YouTube stuff, legal comics and manga downloads (in Japanese), as well as his recipe database and collection of psych and philosophy e-books.

Daimon's one mystic item is the Necklace of King Ravana, an amulet in the form of a two-inch-long, spectacularly reflective, natural diamond crystal set sturdily in gold and hung from a heavy gold chain. The diamond glows and throws up refracted copies of Daimon's face around his head when used, and he generally only resorts to it in emergencies. The Necklace holds a portion of Ravana's power, and is used as a power amplifier, also giving him access to his shapeshifting ability while wearing it. Daimon is very protective of it and never lets anyone else use it, usually masking it in an illusion to make it look like an ordinary charm. However, it stands out a little to both magic and psychic sensitives. Daimon always knows where the necklace is, and can project his mind through the stone. Touching the diamond, especially when he is wearing it, forces a temporary psychic link between the character and Daimon, which will be disorienting and uncomfortable for both unless entered willingly.

Samples
Daimon, newly arrived and taking it fairly well, takes time out to help a young lion feel a bit more settled.

Daimon sat quietly on a bench in one of the small parks, watching a rainbow of what looked like large fantailed goldfish chase the crumbs he tossed in. Their minds were so simple--their memories short, their emotional needs easily satisfied. A few crumbs of bread put them into an excited bliss comparable to that of a golden retriever puppy with a new ball. Their environment was always new and exciting to them, and every time the sunlight danced on the water or they managed to catch a bug, it was the first time.

Focusing on them, on the low-level mental landscape of fish and birds and the occasional squirrel or roving dog, he was able to get his mind off the dreams that had woken him up that morning. But not for long. He had been here two days, sleeping in that strange bed, and last night he had dreamed of being back home--home, with his duties and fears, and both his friends and those who had hurt him the most. Yet what he had felt most upon waking was not, surprisingly, regret that the dream wasn't real. Instead, it was relief.

Relief to be away from the endless struggle and risk of his work, away from having to deal with Lilith, from having to watch Cerise and Morgan look at him like a stranger. Relief that he had been dragged off somewhere not-too-bad, out of need instead of malice, with nothing asked of him that wasn't natural for him anyway. It felt like a forced vacation. No, it was a forced vacation.

...or at least, that was what he decided he would take it as. A faint smile returned to his face as he tossed the fish another handful of crumbs. Any worry and guilt for being away from his duties, he could deal with. He always did. For now, he would simply focus on making sure the place really was as nice as it seemed. If it was, he'd do his best to see how he could contribute. If not, well. He was very good at taking care of himself.

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