High Stakes - A Whedonverse Campaign
Infiltrator, Shapeshifter, Troublemaker
Member of the ancient civilization of Atlantis, Alaric was often a discordant voice in the choir of the hivemind. Despite sharing most of his brethren’s convictions, he always felt a strong compulsion to investigate things by himself, get at the bottom of things, and try everything “just once, to see what happens”. Those traits weren’t common in the flock that followed the ancient teachings of the Lightbringer, a mythical figure that led them into their “enlightment” and helped them escape the eternal wars of Earth, into a peaceful faraway world.
Traditional methods to solve such arduous problems as investigating the strange ripples across reality emanating from Earth certainly didn’t include anything as rash as going there. Instead, all perspectives looked bleak: endless debates, brainstormings, and meetings (which are very hard to dodge when one is a shard of an ubiquitous hivemind).
While traits such as adventurousness weren’t common, they weren’t unheard of either: several Atlanteans had gone back to the motherland in the past, and a device allowed entities to incorporate into a Morph, a very resilient and malleable envelope, in order to explore other worlds. Alaric did so, without consulting any of his peers: doing so wasn’t necessarily forbidden, as laws weren’t really seen as necessary. It was, however, a major social faux-pas, an offence almost rivaling the dreaded use of sarcasm.
Highly enthusiastic at the idea of seeing the homeland again, after an absence of several millenia, Alaric set out with childlike glee. However, his illusions faded quickly. The world had changed quite drastically, or perhaps his nostalgia had tinted it in a much nicer shade than reality. Everything was greed, deceit and delusion. Outstretched, friendly hands turned into avid claws. In less flowery language, it was a bit of a shithole.
After working alongside the High Stakes agency for a while, and sometimes behind their back a bit, too, he started to question his reason for coming to Earth. The entity he had made contact with, under the impression that he was speaking to the Lightbringer, had quickly made apparent that it was manipulating him.
Constructing a gateway back was easy enough, with the help of Gabriella; however, another nasty surprise was expecting him, as the entity known as the Morningstar hitched a ride alongside him. Realizing his peers wouldn’t be much help, and realizing some of them may have known more than they would admit, he set out to stop the invader alongside the Agency. A few arduous battles later, the enemy was undone.
He made a few uncommon friends along the way. An obsolete Demon God named Gozer, who spent millenia raging impotently in separated shards of stone, that happened to be pretty handy trinkets. Alaric offered him freedom in exchange for cooling his jets a bit, and giving up part of his power to banish the Morningstar. He also started collaborating with a bookish demon by the name of Davos, who kept up an unsettling reputation but mostly cared about collecting rare artifacts and books. Kelsey, a slayer, agreed to keep up some appearance of friendship as long as she got paid enough to feed her alcohol habit, probably impressed by Alaric’s knife-dodging skills. And finally, Cap’n Doughnut, High Stakes’ local cop informant, andSharon, who after a short career as an all-around liability and annoyance, appears to be a vampire somewhere out there and should probably be avenged, slain, rescued, or a mix of the three.
Now working part-time for High Stakes Production Company as an “External Field Investigator”, Alaric decided to go trough a bit of a rebranding, obtaining an official alias as “Al Gibson”. His job mostly involves going around in fancy hotels, submitting outrageous tabs to corporate, and sometimes showing up on camera. At least, that’s on paper. His talents are put to good use as the eyes and ears of High Stakes out in the field, getting into places and acquiring info. He also performs the occasional sidejob for Davos, as treasure hunting has quite a unique thrill to it.