Gideon Parish
Gideon Parish
Bradley James
Bradley James as Gideon Parish
Name Gideon Parish
Status Alive
Age 28
Occupation Criminal for Hire
Place of Origin London
Date of Birth February 29, 1984
Player Parish Gideon Parish
Timezone EST
Notes Notes for Gideon Parish

Gideon Parish is one of the Touched, usually for hire and, in general, a useful person to know. He's familiar with the Watch but is not a member. Rather, he's ambivalent towards the organization and has been known to work alongside its operatives when he and they have a common goal. Gideon can just as easily be a thorn in the Watch's side when undermining the local chapter better serves his own interests.

Background

His mother was twenty and addicted to heroin when she gave birth to Gideon who, due to his exposure in utero, was born addicted as well. The withdrawal symptoms and two weeks of attempted care were all she gave Gideon before dealing with an infant, let alone one that wouldn't eat, sleep, or stop crying, overwhelmed her. She left the baby on the doorstep of a local firehouse, and he became a ward of the state.

A sickly child, Gideon spent his formative years moving between hospitals and foster homes, never in one place for very long. Some homes were unremarkable, and some Gideon will never remark on, because he'd prefer to forget the things that befell him there.

When he was sixteen and living in a particularly wretched household, he tired of waiting to reach his majority, stuffed a duffel bag full of his meager possessions and ran away from (foster) home. He thought he could do better on his own, under the radar, until he was eighteen and legally allowed to be responsible for himself. Gideon fell in with a group of kids who, like him, had struck out on their own. Or, at least, he thought that's what they were.

They welcomed him into their little 'family', made him feel a part of something in a way he never had before. They lived in an empty warehouse where the shadows stretched long and dark, but it was the first place that felt like home. They were a hodgepodge of ages, accents and histories, but they were the closest thing Gideon had known to what he imagined a real family must be like. The thing about the Others is that not all of them drag their victims to the Gloom kicking and screaming, and not all nightmares begin black and terrifying. Sometimes, nightmares start as dreams. Sometimes, a boy can walk willingly into the darkness.

At first, Gideon didn't know where he was, save that it was a different warehouse in a part of London where he'd never been. The others in their little group would come and go, but there was always a reason why Gideon had to remain behind. Sometimes, as he was falling asleep, the hideaway looked different. Slowly, the differences bled more and more into his waking hours. Furniture on the walls or ceiling, instead of the floor. Strange creatures lurking in the corners. Blood that dripped from the pipes and, sometimes, the windows. And strangest of all was how NOT strange Gideon found all of it. How each new, unnatural discovery made him increasingly more certain that he was where he was always supposed to be.

It was never clear to Gideon, even after his escape, whether he entered the Gloom the first time he stepped into the group's warehouse or whether it swallowed him slowly, by inches, in the following days and weeks. He stopped noticing the proper flow of time, and then he stopped wondering why. There was a point, he was sure, when he realized the hideous creatures that walked across the walls and ceilings, and his friends, were one in the same, but it was around that time when everything became a strange and dizzy haze. There was pain and anger. Terror and betrayal as he came to realize he was less one of the gang, and more a sort of meal for them, but threaded through it all, equally terrible in how unshakable it remained, was the sense of HOME.

He doesn't, to this day, know what gave him the strength to make his escape. Gideon's first lucid memory, after the depths of the Gloom, was laying on the cold, wet pavement, chill rain falling on his bare skin, feeling the deep relief one has when they wake from a particularly vivid nightmare. But intermixed, and just as strong, was the sense of loss.

He found a youth hostel and some clothes and discovered that two years had gone by. Gideon was eighteen, no longer a ward of anybody, and entirely on his own. He also discovered that his encounter left him with strange abilities. He could see vulnerabilities in people and things. He could anticipate a sequence of events and know how to turn a small ripple of occurrence into a crashing tidal wave. Perhaps these same powers were the ones possessed by his 'friends' and captors that made it so easy for them to convince a wary and mistrustful boy that he belonged with (to) them. Or, perhaps they were abilities he somehow gathered on his own to make his escape from the Gloom possible. These weren't the sort of skills Gideon could talk about or put on a job application, but they proved themselves very useful for the sort of jobs that were much less than legal and paid much more than minimum wage.

And that's how Gideon got on. He was a fellow for hire when a strange or delicate crime needed to be committed. If the job 'couldn't be done', Gideon Parish could do it. If one knew the right people to ask and was able to follow the trail that led to him, at any rate.

The Watch became aware of him when he was twenty, and despite various offers, invitations and threats, Gideon has never opted to join. He operates alone, and he prefers it that way. He's not opposed to working alongside members of the Watch when doing so serves his interests, but neither does he have any qualms about lying to, undermining or stealing from them, should such prove more useful to his own needs.


Personality

Gideon Parish keeps his cards close to his chest, but you wouldn't necessarily know it to meet him. In general, he presents as a friendly and easy-going sort, quick to smile, buy a drink, bum or give a cigarette. He's a sharp wit and has a way of making people feel welcome.

Beneath the affability, Gideon is independent, intelligent and cautious. His life has taught him that the only person he can ever depend upon is himself, and that's a lesson he doesn't forget. Making friends and relying on them are two different matters, entirely.


Paranormal Abilities

Things have a way of coming full circle when one least wants them to, and Gideon has become what his mother was: an addict. The abilities bestowed upon him by the Gloom are powerful, but they are also volatile, and he cannot stop using them for any long length of time. He has tried, and what comes is pain, sickness, and then an uncontrolled burst of power that is inevitably more destructive than if he had used the 'gift' with intent and control. Gideon has learned little methods and tricks to stave off or manage this need for a time, but ultimately, he must use each ability regularly, and when he does, bad things happen.

Weak Points: Gideon can detect, and instinctively know how to exploit, weak points. What this means depends upon the item or person (or Other) in question. A table may have a loose leg that, when kicked, would cause it to topple. A person may have a bad knee or a weak heart. Another may have a crippling fear of spiders. Gideon must exert effort to AVOID detecting these things, and, once they are detected, must fight to resist exploiting them.

He needs a clear line of sight to use this ability, and he doesn't necessarily need to understand the greater theory behind something in order to exploit its weakness. If, for example, he was trying to find the weak point in a security system, he would first need visual access to the entirety of the system, either in person or as blueprints. Though Gideon doesn't know much in the way of computer programming or electronics, his ability would still make him aware of which wires to pull or what code to press to break it.

Utilizing weak points is always destructive. In the example of a security system, he can't simply deactivate it or point out ways in which it can be avoided. He has to break it. In the examples with people, exploiting the weak points might mean the person with the bad knee would find it extensively damaged, the person with the weak heart would probably not survive and the person with a terrible fear of spiders might never forgive Gideon for whatever it is he says or does to take advantage of that fear.*

Gideon has a few tricks he uses to keep this ability under control. Sometimes he wears dark glasses, which interrupts the direct line of sight. However, this means he's constantly looking at the inside of the glasses which ultimately makes him aware of their weak point and compels him to break them. He also tends to carry a variety of small items in his pockets (toothpicks, cheap lighters, little knick-knacks), because studying and breaking them takes the edge off the need to do so on a grander scale.

When he's awake, Gideon needs to use this ability, in some manner, every hour (this can be a minor as snapping a toothpick). He needs to use it in a significant manner (breaking something the equivalent size or worth of a used car) every week, and the longer into that week he gets, the harder it becomes to resist the urge. If he tries to go more than a week, Gideon enters into withdrawal, experiencing a day of severe cramps and shakes. The following twenty-four hours he has a fever, chills, nausea, vomiting, dizziness and weakness. Within twenty-four hours after that, he will lose control and his ability will activate without his consent, which usually results in something large or important being destroyed at pretty much the worst possible moment for it to do so.

  • (Obviously, this gets tricky in the event it's used on another PC. What Gideon would detect and what would happen if he exploited what he found would have to be sorted out between the other PC's player and Gideon before that portion of the scene played out.)

Probability Manipulation: Gideon can anticipate a sequence of events and the ways in which influencing them in a small way might lead to significant, altered results. For example, in driving down the interstate, he would know that tossing a still-burning cigarette out his window at a particular moment would cause it to bounce off the door of a car driving alongside his. Which would make the cigarette fly, burning-end first, into the hand of a passing motorcyclist. Who, startled, would swerve out of his own lane, making an SUV swerve to narrowly avoid him. Which would make the car now suddenly behind the SUV slam on its breaks. Which would result in a six-car pile up.

Although the end results of these chains doesn't necessarily have to be destructive (it might be a means for Gideon to steal something or slip inside somewhere unnoticed) something IS always broken, hurt or damaged in the process.

Much as when he detects weaknesses, Gideon doesn't have to try to see these things, so much as to work to not be aware of such chains, and their potential outcomes, constantly. The worst part is many of the possible paths he sees result in his return to the Gloom, something he dreads and desires in equal measure.

Gideon's compelled to cause at least one chain of events to come about daily, though it can be small and relatively inconsequential (such as someone stubbing their toe or a door being left unlocked). Once a week, he must cause something of greater significance to occur (no less significant than a minor car crash. An event onlookers could easily notice, even if it didn't directly affect them. The less significant the event is, the sooner Gideon will feel compelled to use his ability again). If he tries to resist, the chains of possibilities become more present and pressing, and by the third day, all he can see and focus on are these threads of what could be. This results in distraction, incoherence and severe headaches. By the fourth day, if he hasn't enacted a series of events himself, the ability misfires and a cascade happens anyway. These tend to be long, convoluted and result in significant destruction and mayhem, usually of a place, item or person(s) of importance to Gideon.

When he looks into a mirror, Gideon sees himself, under the full influence of both his abilities. He's painfully aware of every flaw and failing he possesses, and every way in which he might, ever so easily, cause terrible damage to himself.

When other Touched look at him, what they see depends on how long he's gone without using his abilities. If he's close to experiencing withdrawal and losing control, he's pale and emaciated, with sunken cheeks and dark shadows under his eyes. His arms may have dark tracks on them, though never needle marks. When he has more recently used his abilities, he looks much like a normal person does. Save, regardless of his state of 'wellness', his eyes are always strangely colored with a black sclera and luminous, silver irises. If one watches them closely, it may seem as if some other place is visible within their moonlight depths.


Skills

Friends in All Places: Gideon has lived in London all his life, and he spent the last ten years becoming familiar with the city's underbelly as well as being hired by some of its more influential members (who would probably never admit to it). This means he has a network of connections and favors of the city's residents from all walks of life.

Font of Information: Related to the above, Gideon tends to know what's happening in the city's seedier networks, when, who's doing it and what's for sale. He's a good one to talk to if you want the word spread about something or if you want to know what words are being spread around by others.

London's Ins and Outs: Gideon knows the streets of London, the back ways and the alleys that lead to places, even when they look like they don't. He knows the fastest and easiest ways to get from Point A to Point B, as well as how to get there when you don't want to be noticed or found while traveling.

Well Protected: If you have access to the right channels, you know the name Gideon Parish and that he's a man for hire. But outside of those channels, who he is and what he does cannot be easily found.

Spry: Gideon's not especially strong, but he spent much of his youth learning to duck and run, and he's still a fast, agile bugger, today.

Stealth: Gideon also knows how to move quietly and use shadows, corners and a space's layout to his advantage. This is no preternatural ability, he's just very good at being sneaky.

Motorcyclist: Gideon can ride a motorcycle well and sometimes is in possession of one. Due to the nature of his strange abilities, however, his bike tends to be in the shop quite a lot, and sometimes needs to be replaced all together.

Nice Pipes: Not that he advertises it, but Gideon actually has a very fine singing voice.


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