Yuki Winterbourne
Yuki Rowena Winterbourne
Anna Tsuchiya
Anna Tsuchiya as Yuki Rowena Winterbourne
Name Yuki Rowena Winterbourne
Status Alive
Age 21
Occupation Homeless Drifter
Place of Origin Muswell Hill, North London
Date of Birth Friday, March 1st, 1991
Player Copper
Timezone EST
Notes Notes for Yuki Rowena Winterbourne

The gray ceiling on the earth, well it's lasted for a while.
Take my thoughts for what they're worth, I've been acting like a child.
In your opinion, and what is that?
It's just a different point of view.

Background

Yuki's story started with her parents, two complete strangers from opposite sides of the world who fell into The Gloom and happened to meet through sheer chance. Running from the nightmares there, they took comfort in one another, and in each others company when they were able. Yuki was conceived to two Touched parents, neither of whom associated themselves with The Watch.

Being Touched, their relationship was strained from the start, and tried to make a relationship work for the sake of their growing child. It almost seemed to be working. Yuki had what appeared, on the surface, to be a normal household as she grew up, until she started school. It was her first day of school that started her own life in the direction it would stay on.

Walking home, she noticed a lot of police cars and tape outside her apartment building, and one of the officers turned her away, explaining there was a murder. She tried to explain it was her home. When her parents could not be contacted, it came to light that it was her home where the murder happened. Her mother's remains were scattered all around the living room, as though she had exploded. Her father was nowhere to be found.

Yuki was to be placed in the care of her aunt, her mother's sister, but instead she ran off, driven by some calling. She did not know where she was going, never noticing when the buildings gave way to forest, or the forest to The Gloom. She did not stop running until she came to a thick wall of dead trees so thick she could not run between them.

When she tried to run back the other way, she ran into more of the same. She was trapped. She spent her first day crying, until the crying attracted the Spiders. Or rather to say, the warmth she brought with her attracted them. By the time she noticed she was being swarmed by small carnivorous spider-like creatures, they were already all over her left leg, biting and tearing at it. She screamed and swatted them away as best she could before running off again.

She grew up in The Gloom, every minute of every day spent running and hiding, avoiding those same creatures. She gave up the comfort of warmth, hiding in the coldest places she could find, the only places they never came for her. Even then she could not stay long, barely finding time to rest or to eat what food she could scavange. Other dangers lurked in the cold and the dark.

She was in The Gloom for twelve years. How she escaped she does not know. She was running scared from a misshapen man-like beast when she heard a loud noise. She looked up just in time to see the car screeching to a halt in front of her. She was back on the last street she'd ran across twelve years ago, outside the Coldfall Woods. She was reappearing on that street twelve years later.

After an arrest for public indecency, as she had no source of clothing in The Gloom, the police came to the conclusion that they had no idea who she was. The girl she claimed to be was considered dead, and she had no living relatives that they could contact. Her father had never even been found. She did her brief time, was given some clothing, and she entered a life of transience in a world alien to her.

In the four years since, she's managed to learn enough of the world to get by. Libraries and other public information terminals have done a lot for her lacking education. But even now she has spent more time in The Gloom than not, and unlike many, she remembers some portions of her stay there. It is not a perfect memory, but being the larger portion of her life she remembers larger chunks of it than most. It's life before she entered that she no longer remembers. Her parents faces, experiences, these have been, for the time being, lost.

Her life in those four years has been lived mostly in transience, moving from one shelter to the next, or an abandoned home she had to break into, or an empty garage or warehouse. Wherever she could find to lay her head when it was raining. She has been unable to adjust well to settling in one place for too long, and has lived by scraping by whatever food she could scavenge, or what money she could find to put towards food. Though she plays nice, she has never known company and is largely feral in that regard, viewing the world at a safe distance as she slowly readjusts to society.

It was in one particularly warm restaurant only two months past that The Watch found her. It was sheer chance, as she had eluded the radar since she'd first popped up on her return from The Gloom. Warm rooms do not chill over that fast, not to the point that other people start freezing. Her 'true' form gave her away, and so The Watch learned of her whereabouts and plans were made to approach her.


Personality

Yuki is probably more cheerful than she should be. Most of the time. With a whole new world around her, she's always finding more things to learn and to enjoy. Again, most of the time. At other times, she crawls into whatever nook or cranny she can find to hide in, still having that fear of warm places.

She has her stubborn streak, never liking to give up without a good reason to, but she also has a sensible side that is able to be talked down with good reasoning. She's always curious about new things and places, but notably avoids the dark if she can help it.

Among other things, her lack of social upbringing has left her a bit maladjusted socially. She is friendly with everyone, but has a hard time actually making friends or approaching anyone if she feels scared or shy. She has a tendency to talk at great, sometimes inappropriate, lengths with people she hardly knows, while also having a hard time saying anything to friends and confidants.

This maladjustment has also stunted her ability to function as a normal productive citizen otherwise. It is part of the reason she has never held a steady job, and why she has such a hard time socially. It has, however, helped her catch up with the world in a small way, as this social isolation has given her plenty of time for reading books. She still has a ways to go, though. This social disadvantage is slowly eroding with time and environmental adjustment, but Yuki is still slow to trust despite her cheerful demeanor.

With no proper schooling she has a notable lack of related smarts. She's not unintelligent, but she never had a chance to properly learn subjects like math or science. She did, at least, learn the basics of reading and writing at home as a child, which has been her sole saving grace in learning of the world around her.

One last side-effect of her trip to The Gloom has been an irrationally-strong fear of spiders. Yuki will seize up if she happens to spot one. She will not scream, but she will not approach it either, no matter how wide a berth she can grant it. Until it is dead, or she is in another room, she will do little but back or run away. On a lesser, but related, note is the aforementioned fear of dark places where anything could be hiding.


Paranormal Abilities

Yuki's stay in The Gloom gave her name a meaningful twist, as she's developed an affinity for the cold.

Cold Comfort: She displays little regard for temperatures down to subfreezing, and even seems fine when dressed inappropriately for it. She does not stick to frozen surfaces like others, and does not slip as easily either on icy walkways. This also manifests in her body temperature, which anyone coming in contact with her will likely note as being cold as ice.

Cold Snap: When in an enclosed space, a room for instance, Yuki can lower the temperature to freezing levels. It starts immediately around her, and slowly drains the heat from the room outward from herself. It has no effect outside, however, as the world is quite capable of warming itself far faster than she can freeze it. The most use it has outside is to trap the cold in insulated clothing, should she be wearing it. Though it was mentally draining to use constantly at first, Yuki has developed a knack for maintaining it in warmer climates.

Cold Touch: A much more local, and more powerful and mentally-fatiguing, variation of Cold Snap is Yuki's ability to freeze anything she touches. Though any part of her body could be used, and in moments when she has trouble concentrating often are, she is able to best focus it through her hands. She can cause damage ranging from frost-burn to frostbite on skin, and in wetter climates can leave ice on touched surfaces.

Cold Step: When in cold areas, even just in a particularly cold creek, Yuki is capable of making short, instant, jumps within her clear line of sight. Anything beyond a point where she can make the surroundings out clearly is beyond her ability to move to. The instant effect is disorienting and even nauseating, and the action fatigues her, but it is only limited in use by her willpower to continue.

Cold Blooded: When cut, Yuki's blood does not spill, as if frozen in her veins or otherwise kept from normally bleeding out. Attempts to draw blood via syringe are difficult, and will find the blood quickly forms ice crystals, and chills over the container until given time to warm.

In perfect contrast to her cold nature, Yuki suffers a great discomfort, even fear, of warm and hot environments. Even with Cold Snap, she is greatly discomforted in hotter weather, and direct exposure to the Sun during the warmer periods between Spring and Autumn will result in burns. The longer the exposure, or stronger the heat, the worse the burn. Even room temperature can be uncomfortable to her.

To this end, she often wears insulting clothing during the summer, using her powers to try and negate the worst effects. The weakness is environmental, however. Eating a hot sandwich will not directly affect her, but if the heat it gives off radiates on her skin it becomes a different story.

Along with the aversion to heat, Yuki's powers also present the constant danger that somewhere, sometime, something may just become attracted to their use. As she actively uses her powers, beings from The Gloom could tap into it, following after her as her power usage lights up like a blip on a radar screen. A small blip, but a blip nonetheless.

Despite her fear of dark places, for her memories of The Gloom, Yuki also has an aversion to direct brightness. Though peripherally fine, any light shone directly into her eyes will momentarily blind her until her sight clears back up. This could take anywhere from a few seconds to a full minute depending on how bright the light was.

Lastly is her fear of spiders, again, which can render her unable to even use her powers in their known presence, or to at least lose direct control of them. Coupled with a heat wave, this indirect weakness could be potentially problematic.

Yuki's reflection is almost identical to her normal self, minus her eyes and mouth. Her empty eye sockets, and lips hanging open, seem filled with an endless black void, staring into which warms her, or chills any others that look into it, as if sucking out the soul. Looking away or only looking indirectly reverses and negates the sensation. In all, it is as a lifeless, empty shell, or doll, unmoving and unbreathing. Unliving. Bad enough in a mirror, but anyone watching true forms on a street will see it simply standing there, moving only between blinks of their eyes. Yuki, however, is oblivious to it altogether. Having known nothing but The Gloom, that she can remember, her 'true' reflection is the only one she knows, and she has no control over changing it, or discomfort over seeing it.


Skills

Breaking and Entering: Yuki has spent time on the street, which has made the art of picking a lock or breaking a window a necessity to pick up. She has only rarely turned it to criminal means, however, usually utilizing it on empty or abandoned places to find a place to sleep.

Scavenger: Her time in The Gloom taught her a lot about finding her food when and where she can. She is capable of eating meals that most could not, be they overcooked or not cooked at all, without getting sick.

Improvised Combat: Never formally trained, and certainly of little use against a professional, Yuki still learned how to throw a punch and kick when she needed to, and can usually improvise a weapon or use terrain to her advantage in a pinch.

Writing: Doing as much reading as she has to catch up with the world has left a subtle mark on Yuki. Not only has she had to learn to read half the words she sees in the books, but she's learned to spell them, and to use them, to degrees almost professional.

Japanese: Not fluent. She can not read it, and only knows a few short phrases that she remembers from her father teaching her, but she does know just enough for asking directions and making short introductory pleasantries.


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