'Cross''s page

270 posts. Alias of Han Del of the Web.


Human - Cored


Ghost Operative 2 | hp 13/13, sp 1/14, res 5/5 | KAC 16, EAC 15, Fort +1, Ref +7, Will +4 | Perception +7 (low-light, darkvision 60ft), Sense Motive +0, Init +5





Strength 10
Dexterity 18
Constitution 12
Intelligence 12
Wisdom 12
Charisma 9

About 'Cross'

1. What's your characters economic situation, and the economic situation of their family? A desperately poor character with a rich family tells a very different story than a desperately poor character with a poor family.

Frankly impoverished, Cross's emancipation from Hashima Heavy Industries left him with little in the way of funds. Recently, he had to pawn his beloved bike to be able to afford a system upgrade and stave off the encroaching obsolescence of his hardware. Considering the price he was sold out at, his family probably had a few years as middle class Hashima wage drones before their vices caught up to them.

2. What does your character look like? Describe their fashion sense, their hair, their eyes and skin. Is there a reason they dress or act the way they do? How do they carry themselves when they don’t think anyone is looking?

Cross, the human, is a central nervous system with a couple of choice organs packed into an environmentally sealed polymer and alloy sheath. His body is a Hashima General-Purpose Humanoid Chassis Model 19. Model 19s are known for system flexibility and have become standard issue for the average e-man re-entering the civilian world. The GP19s resemble a humanoid form of matte-black color save for the head, which is a fair enough approximation to human to avoid the uncanny valley effect.

Regardless, Cross compulsively keeps his head and face covered while in public for personal reasons. Usually he relies on his riding helmet, giving him a blank reflective visage, but anything will do in a pinch.

ref image

3. Where was your character born? A Space Station? Old Earth? An offworld colony? The Moon? If they aren't from Old Earth (which is most likely if they are an alien) why did they move to Old Earth? Feel free to do some invention here. There's a whole galaxy out there, and a whole range of places to be from.

Cross was biologically born is a slum somewhere on Earth. He was reborn in a Hashima owned platform in geosynchronous orbit over Tibet. That's where they cored him and installed him in his first chassis.

4. How did your character become whatever class they are or learn the skills they have?

Deep space mining operations. Cross learned piloting and basic engineering on the numerous operations meant to keep the engines of human industry supplied with metals, isotopes, and water ice. His competence with firearms came from out there too. Attacks by pirate operations were common enough on the edges of human territory.

5. What does your character do for a living? How did they get into doing that?

Cross works as a low-end mechanic and programmer for people interested in getting gear worked on by someone discreet. Before he had to hock his cycle, he had been something of a name on the street racing circuit. E-men like him, especially a core, have a hard time finding legitimate work. Small businesses are scared off by the stigma of mental instability and criminal reputations that hang over most e-men. On the other hand companies like Hashima Heavy Industries that have large indentured and augmented workforces pressure other large corporations away from hiring any emancipated in order to keep their indentures depended on them and reluctant to buy out their contracts.

6. What is their personality like?

Cross is understandably reserved. From a young age, a lot of the bits of humanity the rest of us take for granted had been systematically stripped from him. The deep space chassises his core had been loaded into were built for utility rather than comfort or socializing. Simply put, he got used to not having a face. Now to be loaded back into a body with a face, one that was designed based on age projections from his original face, has led to a difficult transition.

That is not to say he is asocial, much to the contrary. Deep space is an unforgiving environment, even for a bunch of properly equipped cores. Despite Hashima regs, Cross and his fellows were a very tight knit group that supported each other, it was them against a cold and uncaring universe. Of course, just why Cross came back and none of them followed is another matter.

Still, Cross tries to stay close to the people that have attached themselves to him, even if he has his quirks.

Notable Quirks:
-Keeps his head and face covered whenever he can
-Does not like being touched by other people
-Does not like being around people eating

7. If your character is religious, explain why and how. If not, there may be a reason for that as well.

Cross varies from agnostic to atheist to nihilist depending on his mood. He does not believe in souls or anything spiritual as he has personally experienced being reduced down to the very core of his being and knows just how much of the human experience is solely caused by chemical reactions in the brain. Hashima was liberal with exploiting what they could to control their indentured cores and it has left Cross quite jaded.

8. Explain what your character’s alignment means to them. Something like “Jessica is lawful good because she wants to stamp out evil and eradicate it. She would sacrifice herself to attain her goals.”

In an alignment system, Cross could be considered True Neutral. He is more concerned with making it through the day and is content to let others do the same so long as they do not target him or his.

9. How does your character feel about technology? About trans-humanism? About other races? Some people will always be conservatives, but some embrace technological advance wholeheartedly.

Having seen the rough side of humanity's progress towards apotheosis, Cross is remarkably accepting of many things. It is not out of some high-minded idealism but rather than him and his fellow indentured cores witnessed just how far a person can be stripped down before they cease being a person. In the light of this rather intimate understanding of the furthest edge of humanity, a lot of methods people previously used to define the human experience is like hollow artifice to him. It all seems to be thinly veiled attempts by the old powers to try and limit just what constitutes a 'person' in order to retain power.

The human race always advances by redefining the world around them. They did so back in the 21st century when racial and gender issues finally boiled over and forced change. No doubt the conservative giants in power will try to restrict the next big leap in humanity out of a reactionary desire to retain their power.

Four operations, five years training and rehab, nine years transit in cold sleep, fifteen years out on there, six years back thanks to the better engines, one year of negotiations, quarantine, and paperwork. That is all of the life Cross cares to remember.

No doubt there is a proper name listed for him somewhere, the kind that means family and connections to humans and a human life that means something close to what we all grow up expecting.

Cross does not much care for it. All of the cores in his cohort gave each other new names when they reached their destination. It was a small act of rebellion, cutting away a past that had already taken so much from them. Cross got his from the impact of an atypical micrometeoroid into his first deep space chassis. His crew was not very creative with the names, really, but the distinct cross shaped scoring became an emblem for him and most of the chassises he used back then were painted with it.

The work was hard, unpredictable enough that using drones was not an option but dangerous enough that full human bodies were inadvisable out there and the exact wrong combination of resource intensive and delicate for anyone to sign off on. Thus the cores were used. Made from indentured minors as high neuroplasticity is key for the coring process, cores are a human stripped down to the very minimum needed for continued life. A brain, key portions of the spinal column, and a few choice organs, all wrapped in an environmentally sealed polymer and alloy sheath with supplemental processors and life support equipment.

The technology is solid, allowing a core to easily 'pilot' any number of cybernetic bodies. The reduced mass of organic components makes it easier to supply them with resources and protect from hostile environments. Advancements in rehabilitation and VR environments have reduced the psych-failure rate to a mere fifteen percent.

So kids like Cross and the others were snapped up by Hashima Heavy Industries and other corporate bodies. Their parents were pressured into signing them over, all perfectly legal. Indentured to Hashima, Cross was trimmed to fit the role they had planned for him. A person made into a tool at the whims of those in power. He does not like to think of those first days, no core does.

Out on the edge were there was only the work and marginal oversight from the head office, things were different out there. Cluster, Gauge, Tosser, Cross, Gunk, and countless others worked and laughed and played. They had a limitless VR environment to tinker with, linked to other deep space operations and, more importantly, other cores. Hashima did not much care what went on out there as long as the cost and profit margins stayed inside the projected ranges.

An outsider might have thought it would be a soul-grinding slog of work and danger. They would be partially correct, the work was hard and there were dangers, but between the VR and the access to deep space mining and construction equipment there was also art, and games, and so much more. For instance, somewhere out in deep space floats a photo-realistic likeness of the head of Carl Marx licking the side of Ayn Rand's face carved from a surplus nickel-iron asteroid. The culture snobs and trendsetters of human-space have nothing on the wild whims of a bunch of transhumans freed to explore sensation and expression in ways most would only dream of.

The cores talked about returning, about buying out their contracts and starting up a private mining operation of their own. They had the training for it and experience. When it came to deep space, no one was better than a veteran core at getting the job done. Gauge was clever and set up a fund for the cores, using their meager paychecks to make clever investments. They were essentially using insider trading, since all the cores out on the edge were linked up despite belonging to a hodge-podge of corporate interests and shared information where they could. It was going well, some of the older cores even got emancipated.

Then... Then Cross came back from the edge alone. He does not talk about what happened out there at the end but it is clear he does not expect any of his old companions to rejoin civilization. They pried him out of his deep space chassis and put him in a GP19, the standard for a core reintegrating with the civilian population. Since then he had mostly drifted. He is a gifted racer and made a name for himself on some less than legal circuits, the only ones that would not consider his condition an immediate disqualification.

People have started to collect in his gravity again. He would not call them a 'gang' really, they are not quite hard enough for that but nothing else really fits.

Bonus Campaign Fear:
Deep Space Core - Whenever Cross makes a Physical Science or Engineering skill check relating to the operation of mining devices or a Cultures check relating to mining practices, he treats the DC as 5 lower than it is. In addition, Cross is proficient with the cargo lifter, and using one draws power from his own internal reserves and so does not require a battery. If Cross ever becomes proficient in heavy armor, he becomes proficient with powered armor in addition. Once per week, when Cross fails a driving check, he can instead choose to succeed.

Stat block and link:
Cross Android Ghost Operative TN HP 13 / 13 RES 5 / 5 STAM 14 / 14 Speed 30ft Init 5 KAC 16 EAC 15 Fort 1 Ref 7 Will 4 CMB 24 BAB 1 Survival Knife +5 (1d4, )
Semi-Auto pistol, Tactical +6 (1d6, ) Str 10 (0) Dex 18 (4) Con 12 (1) Wis 12 (1) Int 12 (1) Cha 9 (-1)