Close to six foot, Calder is lean but all muscle. Long dark blonde hair is often pulled in a ponytail, braided in a plait or pulled up into a topknot. He sports a scruff beard, growing it out a bit longer during winter months but always meticulously kept. Expressive eyes are unusually light, matching his moods and picking up the color of whatever he’s wearing; they can shift anywhere from greens, to blues and grays.
Clothing is utilitarian, button ups over sleeveless shirts in the summer, Navy pea coats, henleys and Irish sweaters in the winter. Every once and a while he can be in a tee shirt, jeans and barefoot on his houseboat. On the rare occasion he does dress up, it suits him; manners so refined they seem to contradict a well-kept blue collar appearance.
He has several tattoos earned from various events in his life, and often wears talismans on cords that he finds interesting and remind him of his former life.
Compressed, intense, yet oddly easy going.
Calder is a formidable warrior and magic wielder, and with that came fierce confidence and presence. He commanded the power of water, and was unbeaten in the raging wars that were tearing his world apart. Through storms and vicious ocean, he controlled his fate on any ship, any high sea. Wind, rain, hurricane, he could rip the storm clouds from the sky to fill his sails. Any ship, any distance, he always seemed to know the way.
Now, the skill of his hands is all he possesses and he is lost. Still unmatched in as many forms of fighting styles as he can collect, anger pushes him forward; searching for a way back to finish the wars he could not afford to lose. He knows the people in this world are not to blame, he treats them with as much kindness as he can muster. Still, he is reluctant to build relationships in case there is a chance he discovers a way to return home.
Hiding who and what he is, there is an inkling of his old ways; playing with the rim of his glass and making the water move, parting raindrops in his path, it's still an embarrassing demotion to who he was before. He focuses on his physical skill in hopes when he returns there will be a fight in his hands no one has ever seen before.
He at the core has a good heart, but has no problem rising to the occasion of violence when something he deems just is threatened.
Collection of master swords and fighting weapons from various cultures.
The native clothes, weapons and leather armor he was wearing when ripped through the Nevus.
Modern small freight vessel (with human npc crew) capable of making coastline and small gulf trips. It was moored in the same dock where he worked, later convincing his 'boss' to allow him to return it to service and eventually purchased the smaller vessel through his work. When the 'company' went belly up, he retained it and now works freelance.
Modern houseboat docked in the 79th Street Boat Basin.
"Draugr Atgeirr", the Ghost Spear, his Outworlder ship that passed through with him. It is made from traditional wood of his realm, a beast of an "evergreen" only growing in the northern realms similar in size to the Earthen Sequoia. Enchanted by the properties of the tree, it is able to reflect the water once polished and made watertight into the longship hulls- giving it an invisible appearance until it nears land and hits shore. After breaking the Veil, it seemed to retain the ability regardless of where it was; it grew stronger as he had grown weaker. It is essentially a ghost ship, taking its namesake to heart. It is moored on a beach just north of the city.
Since the onslaught of Outworlder hate, Calder has become a ferryman of sorts for those that refuse to conform and be branded. He discretely collects, protects and relocates any that come to him seeking help.
Logically, he has close ties to any underground "smuggling" operations, ear to the ground with great ease to move things and not be seen because of his shipping capability. The open water has no rules, even in the budding rebirth of law and order.
STAFF APPROVED ABILITIES/SKILLS/HISTORY
Appearing around thirty years old, he is much older. At his entry into this world, he was fifty two, roughly twice his appearance. He has come to the reasonable assumption he ages in that ratio.
Once possessed substantial water manipulation skills, now they have been muted by the rift he was yanked through with no hope of return. On a good day, he can move rain drops around him in gentle patterns or play with water in a glass. Parlor tricks. It takes intense focus but most of the time there is nothing.
He can hold his breath for an extraordinary amount of time underwater, a physical characteristic of his mariner "species". For a little over a half hour, he can dive freely- which he finds useful for repairs on his boats. Never having "found out" why, he assumes from studying this world that his lungs are larger than Earth's human species or that the rate of his oxygen replacement upon inhale or exhale is larger. After inadvertently finding out humans didn't have this skill, he is very guarded about who and how he asks/researches.
Extreme tolerance to cold, a characteristic of his Outworlder race- mostly for water or swimming purposes but it transfers to weather related temperature as well. In contrast, he has low tolerance of extreme heat.
Incredible swimmer. Strong, agile and fast- it's also a physical characteristic of his Veil Crosser "species". No frills or magic, just the power of an Olympic swimmer or Navy free diver. It's not endless, tiring just as any physical ability would.
Unassisted deep diver. His physiology is resistant to the water pressure that causes normal humans' buildup of gasses in the tissue and blood, allowing the descent to deeper depths with no decompression needed to return to the surface. He is able to swim freely within the one to two hundred foot human threshold with no consequences. Below that, he will develop the same toxicities if he remains down for the capacity of his breath, so on and so forth. Currently, he doesn't know how deep that may be and could conceivably go much deeper than a human with "weight-sled" or ballast dive assistance, but considering the length of time he can hold his breath the results could be catastrophic. As a child he became fluent in understanding where his limitations lie, just like a normal human learning how much weight they can lift or fast they can run without consequence. He has never attempted a weight assisted deep dive to test his limitations, and given the inequitable nature of the length of time he can hold his breath versus speed of weighted descent, he most likely never will. It seems an arrogant flirt with certain death.
Mechanical/engine maintenance knowledge developed over his time in New York working the docks.
High IQ, was able to learn English fairly easily. He still has a significant accent which seems to be diminishing over time- sounding similar to the Earthen Danish or Dutch.
Can navigate and pilot any sailing vessel, larger ships require crew and he is able to captain with immeasurable experience. Has an acquired large working knowledge of engine driven boats, and is able to learn as he goes.
Combat. Any. Sword, knives, axes, blades of any kind, bows. Physical hand to hand, random objects. Firearms are a growing knowledge base, still limited but gaining skill. He was most skilled in hand to hand, knives and bows before crossing through the Veil. Since arriving he has developed an affinity specifically for the katana and wakizashi. A sharp contrast to the Viking-like brute force he was raised on. He finds them elegant and effective.
BEFORE EARTH MAY 2010
It was all the blood that made the Haugbui warrior pause. Cleaved armor shed halfway through the battlefield, torn shirt filled with the scent of salty battle blood and seawater. The pause brought a heaving chest and the creaking grip across a metal wrapped hilt. Field had been razed in an exquisite dance of battle skills and magic, the synthesized expertise an art. Water still receded from the field, some of the fallen enemy with it to be swallowed by the sea. Terrible, terrible talent. But this, the dead in the tree. It was at that moment he realized his reputation preceded him. Another blood sacrifice, this time hanging by their feet from the branches high front of him. It wasn’t a warning, it was an offering. The army just decimated by himself and his kin had beaten and held this city. He’d taken it back. His city, and they were with him. He’d seen it before on his hammerfist sweep of his father’s coastline to pull it back from the jaws of the Grosugr southern kingdoms again. Sacrifices, to his father, now him. First criminals hung from the trees, now this. These were not criminals. This was not acceptable, and this was not respect. This was fear. Ghosts. They called his kind the undead, never seen coming. Appearing from the sea only to disappear into it again. They were worshipping a false god. He was not a god. He was just a man with terrible power, a passion for his people, and an absent father that pointed to the next battle from on high instead of picking up a sword.
Regardless, he kept pushing south, rekindling the already hot blood feuds that had raged for centuries.
Borders moved back and forth, villages and cities caught in the raging lines being broken and retaken. It was all barreling toward a horrible end and a new beginning. The ice storms not far off, the Otherworld was a trail of ash and blood. So close, so close to retaking their homeland. Storms came early, the sea raged and with them the tolerance that the southern tribes couldn’t withstand. Victories came swifter, the storms fiercer, until a blizzard so dark the skies turned purple. Even the water mage couldn’t hold back the tide of lavender that seemed to blur the horizon and become the water.
AFTER EARTH MAY 2010
The man thought he was dead, lying alone on the deck of the ship that had carried him halfway around his world in battle. Consistent bumping opened his eyes. His hull was rocking against something, bringing his consciousness around. A half sunken modern steel goliath towered above his own ship, groaning with warning every time Draugr Atgeirr's side was bumped against it by the ice chunked waves. It's frayed bowlines and shredded square sail were tangled in the ugly beast's slack anchor chain, and the weight of his longship was pushing at its rusted hull's tolerance.
The bow was threatening to collapse on top of both of them. For once there was fear, not from death or perceived defeat, but the sheer size of the thing that towered over him. It brought a bruised body to its feet, a hand to toward the waves to tell them to move, and a brow downward when nothing happened.
Nothing. Quivered breath tried again. Again nothing. Fatigue? Pulling a knife from his belt he scaled the mast, spending near an hour cutting themselves free, all the while telling the waves to push them off... then asking... then begging.
After substantial effort, he beached the longship, swimming back out to the dying freighter to climb its height- skyscrapers of New York visible in the distance, and a livelihood on the docks and harbor waiting for the stranger from another world.
Role Play Sample
In the silence of her garage, all she could hear was noise. It was all noise, the sound like a hurricane crushing at her skull. Jacob was right on her tail, speaking to her, glitter of perspiration in his peppered high and tight… his words warped and unintelligible. Stepping off the ramp, she heard her name shouted before she fell, the sound of pounding military boots toward the ramp safely out of view of the crowd back in their personal prep garage.
“Reid!” Gav scooped her up, the completely limp woman’s eyes flickering under her hummingbird’s lashes. “Jacob! Doctor now!”
“No, no!” the large man was old but he could move, trotting down the ramp after her from above, “no doctor.”
“What?!” Gav’s normally gentle voice was incredulous, turning back to Reid as he patted her cheeks. “C’mon, Reid… wake up… why are we not getting a doctor?!”
Jacob hurried past him, brushing through to the workbench to pick up her mouth guard and making it back in record time. Stuffing it in her mouth, he reached behind her ear, flicking the iridescent buttons hard with his fingernails. Her surge was painful, enough to make Gav jump, back arching as her gloved fingers clutched his biceps enough to leave bruises.
“Let her go,” Jacob stood, pulling the stunned Sergeant back away from the seizing woman, “or she’ll rip your skin off…”
Gav's light eyes furled in horror and disbelief, tearing off his fatigue green battered jacket and rolling it up to place under her head to protect her skull from the seizure. Flail sent him backward, her gloved fingers locked on the railing of the ramp, clutch so hard her body trembled.
“That would have been you…” Jacob said under his breath.
“Reboot,” Jacob’s cigarette bobbed in his lips, “happens sometimes. Usually not after a hard shut down like tonight was.”
Brow downward, Gav knelt next to her, holding her head until the muscles spasms passed and pulled her hair back when palm hit the metal grate to push up the battered body and wretch nothing over the side of the ramp, the mouth guard clinking on the floor.
“Is this what happens after fights in the dressing room?”
“Not usually this bad,” Jacob nodded once before his footfalls clanged slowly downward to fetch her some water. “She doesn’t want anyone to see it.”
Gav pulled her up, holding her head up as he checked her pupils.
“You can’t get me dressed after a fight… you’ll look at my ass,” she murmured.
His smile was tepid, exhale relieved. Her large pupils still worried him, they usually were almost normal by now. Helping her up, she drank the entire glass of water, holding it out to Jacob for another as he walked with her down the ramp to a bench.