Help me. I keep doing this. I don’t know why.
Why Awakening? Because despite the cyberpunk secret war conflict of Ascension being cool, and despite the nagging voice in my head that insists all my favourite characters are Hollow Ones and Hollow Ones are totally a redeemable concept… these characters are way more into each other and their surroundings than shadowy faction war, which makes them a much better fit for the more intimate ‘personal horror’ of the new WoD.
Also, I’m fucked if I can understand old Mage’s spell system.
Hella spoilers for Life Is Strange (and Before The Storm).
You have a lot of potential.
They’ve been telling you that your whole life, usually when they’re trying to run your whole life. It’s not that you don’t agree – you’re not stupid, you just… want to find your own way.
You’ve had to. People leave. Your father left you, when you were just thirteen. Your mother left you, when she let him go, and replaced him with some Veteran’s Association jackass who calls you ‘soldier’ and runs your house like a spell in J.D. Your oldest friend left you – and never mind that you were happy for her up there in hipster heaven. She never even called.
You found solace, once, for a little while, drifting into the orbit of someone charismatic, talented, and did you mention hot as fuck? You had it all planned out. The endless road trip. Pure fuckin’ Thelma and Louise, all over the United States. Everything was coming together. It was magical.
Then she disappeared, and everyone you knew started acting fucked up. You dug deeper, found a strength and anger you knew was waiting for you, and you held on. You looked into her case, found others, did the diligence – you’d dropped out of school, but you could study like hell when you wanted to. You’d lost everyone – but you’d get them back.
Pity you had to die first.
The day you confronted her killer, you took a bullet to the brain that should have killed you. It didn’t. You woke up at a tower, miles high, light strobing from every window and a bass pulse rocking the earth beneath your feet. You tagged it – you tag everything you can reach – and you woke up different.
Your oldest friend was waiting. Time and Fate had brought her back, right when she was needed. You’re back together, and there’s nothing in the world can stop you.
You’re not the best mage in town, but you’re practical – you can turn your hand to anything, and you’re not as dumb as your dropout aesthetic makes you look. Your friends are time-travelling fire-starting superheroes, but they can’t drive, pick locks, swipe wallets, cadge drinks, shoot straight… you can. You’re cool with playing sidekick if it means they depend on you – after all, if they need you, they’ll never leave.
The shit your friends can do? That’s cool. The shit you can do? That’s not. You’re down with the basics of being a Mastigos – face your personal hell and overcome it – but you have real beef with all that mind-reading motherfuckery. Your Path’s just the latest in a long line of destinies other people have mapped out for you, and you have no time for that. You’ve dug in on Matter magic, going hard against your Watchtower’s designs, and you pick up the basics of other Arcana fast – because you’re driven. You envy the Moros, and on your bad days think you should have been one – c’mon, you had the NDE and everything! – but you’ll do this thing the hard way if you have to. Someday, somehow, you’ll get her back.
You’re make things up as you go along. You see things clearly. You find things easily. You fix things with a little elbow grease and a lot of luck. You’re not disciplined, or traditional, and you’re freaked out by ritual and ceremony – but if you’re talked into it, and you have the right crowd, you can go hard and get results. You’ve got a pretty good setup at your Secret Lair (patent pending), and your rejection of high magic bullshit means you stay subtle and avoid Paradox better than most.
You’re edgy, to the point where you grate on your own nerves, never mind other people’s. You pick up habits – especially of speech – from your crushes and run them into the ground. You’re volatile, passionate, and wholesale give a shit – but only about yourself and your (few) friends. Fly off the handle when challenged; backtalk anyone who tries to tie you down; only give an inch for people who love you. Look out for them, even at the risk of your own life.
9mm (stolen) and rounds (hand-decorated with accuracy sigils); barely-functional pick-up; plenty of permanent markers; unpaid spare parts bills/parking tickets; emergency weed; junkyard hideout (complete with background Hallow effect – it’s been the site of at least two Awakenings).