(Hm, okay, maybe my character can have some sort of background with like aspects of magic and witchcraft, but nothing super insane. Like aura reading, tarot, crystals, maybe some more peaceful stuff? Bc I know some covens were not as powerful and it was more like their own culture/traditions…but perhaps the pastor and the rest of the town turned it into something more hysterical?)
(Yeah sure! That makes sense :))
(Perfect! Is your character going down a more shy/reserved character path…just so I know not to make a character that is too similar :) )
(Hmmm probably lmao. Working on finding a good name for him right now)
Name: James Edward Asher
Gender and Sexuality: Male. Probably gay, but he would never admit that, especially not to his father
Looks: Jamie is of about average height, and slim. He is White, and pretty pale, with freckles scattered around his body, especially on his face and arms. He had reddish brown hair that is more of a dark auburn, and shines gold in some lights. His hair is a little long, to about the middle of his neck, and curls just a little bit at the ends. He ties it back in a low ponytail when he needs it out of the way, but otherwise just lets it hang loose, sometimes tucking it behind his ears. He has light grey-blue eyes, that seem a little more blue or a little more grey depending on what he's wearing and what the lighting is. He typically wears breeches and a long sleeve shirt, along with a waistcoat. When he needs to be more formal, he'll add a nice jacket over top, and maybe a tie or cravat as well. He has slim fingers made for playing instruments, and the pinkie of his right hand is slightly crooked where it was once broken. His hands are also flecked with small scars from where he's accidentally cut himself. He walks with a slight limp, since he broke his leg when he was younger while falling out of a tree, and it didn't quite heal properly, leading to one leg being just a little shorter than the other. It isn't visibly noticeable, but it does affect how he walks.
Personality: Jamie is a rather quiet boy, but is intelligent and observant. When he does choose to speak, his words are usually well-thought out and carefully considered. He is especially quiet when around his father, not wanting to get in trouble for saying the wrong things. He has a lot of internalized homophobia, a lot of it directed towards himself, due to the way his father raised him and taught him. He can recite passages of the bible from memory, and even teach a sermon, just from hearing his father do so so often. He can read and write, but his main passion is for music. He can play the violin and piano, and loves to sit and play for hours. He can sing as well, but is far shier about that, not liking to sing in front of people. He doesn't really play in front of others either, but has done so for church services when his father wants him to. He's very gentle, especially with children and animals.
Backstory: Jamie's father is the reverend Edward Asher, and his mother was Mary Asher. His mother was the one who first taught him to play, teaching him as soon as he was old enough to learn. Some of his earliest memories are sitting at the piano in his mother's lap as she taught him to play some of her favorite songs, and he treasures these memories. She died when he was six, giving birth to his younger sister, Elizabeth. His mother died in labor, and his sister died two weeks later, leaving just him and his father. After the death of Mary, reverend Asher began to grow more and more stern with the young boy, hammering bible verses into his head and not allowing Jamie to play on the piano or on his violin anymore. As Jamie grew older, the reverend grew more and more physical, often beating the boy if he couldn't remember a verse that the reverend had wanted him to memorize. As Jamie grew, he found himself daydreaming of strange things that he knew he shouldn't want. Of other boys, and of wanting them in ways that he knew a boy shouldn't want from other boys. He told his father, hoping his father would know what to do, and his father beat him half to death for it, breaking the pinkie of his right hand in the process. After that, everything grew even worse. The reverend's sermons became full of dire warnings against being a sodomite, warning of hellfire and wrath for those who dared to sin in that manner. At home, behind closed doors, he would hit Jamie if he heard even the faintest hint that the boy was having these feelings. So Jamie buried it as deep as he could, trying to be the perfect son, trying to be what his father wanted him to be. He poured himself into his music, hoping that if he could be good enough, his father would be kinder to him. He has grown up like this, burying his sexuality under bible verses and fear, and trying to shield himself from his father's anger.
Family: reverend Edward Asher, father, alive. Mary Asher, mother, dead. Elizabeth Asher, sister, dead.
(Hopefully he's fine, I haven't written too many character templates lately!)
Name: Smith Joan Bishop
Nicknames: Not many, most simply call him by his last name.
Age: 19 years.
Sexuality: He has never thought about this, or enjoys to, simply labeling himself as straight. He has never been quite attracted to women at all, though absolutely tries to keep his eyes off of men.
Appearance: His hair is dark and usually unkempt, falling in softer waves since it has grown so long over the last couple years. Some strands dip in his eyes and can be easily tucked behind his ears. His skin tone is pale, easily flushing with pink undertones across his cheeks, neck, collarbone, shoulders and knuckles, he bruises quite easily and has quite noticeable under eye bags. Smith's features are quite angled and startling across his pale tone, with a slim, narrow face shape, thick, dark brows, his gaze usually in some far off, hooded shape, constantly narrowed in a calmed glare. His eye color is warm and dark, though unfortunately his left eye is more of a milky grey tone from an infection that rendered him sightless in one, his nose is a strong, slim shape, lips usually pulled into a bored or tight expression. His build is quite spindly and lanky for his taller height, reaching around 6'2, his shoulder's small and rounded, knobby knuckles and knees, large, calloused hands that seem much more gentle from his rougher appearance. He enjoys to cover up as much as possible, wearing many layers no matter what the weather is, ranging from dark trousers to heavy overcoats and sweater, paired with the occasional button up. He leaves almost all his family jewelry at home.
Personality: Reserved to almost all he meets, unintentionally intimidating, does not trust easily. He's honestly quite shy and gentle, though comes off as a harder person, does not get fazed often, softly charming, introverted by nature. He feels and thinks deeply, with much more turbulent emotions, though enjoys to channel them artistically or through his family's traditions. Careful with who he speaks to, heeds everything, rarely enjoys sharing facts about himself, tenses easily. Enjoys to take care of himself.
Backstory: Smith's family had always been quite sensitive to disease and flu's, his parent's both having passed away from travel in his early years. Since then, finding a home had been quite difficult for the young boy, being constantly bounced around from home to home in search for people that could actually provide for him…though he barely had much of an opportunity for that. This upbringing forged his dependency on himself and lack of parental love. He had worked from quite a young age, cleaning households, tending to animals for richer family's, and taking care of shop. When he had been around twelve years old, Smith fell into the hands of the Bishop family, whom he took care of their house for, watching their children and tending to the house. They had always been kind folk and eventually took him in as the years went by. Never have been supported by a family or much less parent's, Smith fell into their traditions and culture, much of which included odd passages from book's he had never seen before, like aura reading, herbology, crystals, rituals, new gods and symbolism. At first, he had been extremely hesitant, but soon turned to these new ways for comfort, and partly to feel like he was a part of this Bishop family. He could not risk being shunned from yet another family. Overtime, Smith became full indulged into this way of life, but was heeded to keep it only in the household. Threats had already begun to arise in neighboring towns…odd sigils of witchcraft rampant in homes.The Bishops are a well-kept family in the town, known for being the owners of an apothecary in which Smith works, bringing in certain herbs, medicines, and making the occasional house calls.
Family: Bridget Bishop; adoptive mother, George Bishop; adoptive father, Constance "Effie" Bishop; adoptive/step sister.
Other: Some mannerisms; uses a lot of filler words, touches their face a lot when nervous.
(Jamie is SO good, wow)
(ooo stalking this, if that’s alright!)
(1. Smith is amazing and I love him already. 2. Thanks! 3. You can totally stalk, Ladybeetle 🙂)
(Literally just opened the app to you responding wow. Should we try and figure out plot and then try and start?)
(For plot maybe the town is starting to hear rumors as to other neighboring towns having witches, which definitely alarms your character’s father. Then maybe there’s accusations happening in the next couple days of the rp…and perhaps as we continue Smiths family does something that raises superstitions?)
(:D great timing, then!)
(Mmm yeah I think that would work!)
(We can always change the plot, just a lil starting idea so we can incorporate both Smith and Jamie’s lives. Did you want to post the starter?)
(yeah of course! It would be interesting if Smith's family maybe didn't go to church all that often, and so suspicion naturally fell on them? And I can post the starter, yeah! It'll just have to wait until a bit later, I got stuff to finish up)
(Yes, that's a good idea. Maybe Smith has to attend the church more often then, or Jamie is told to keep an eye on the family?)
(yeah! Here's a starter, btw)
James Asher slipped into his home, hoping his father hadn't noticed his absence. The house hadn't felt like a home since his mother died, and the only place he could find solace was in music. The bible made him feel ashamed, and his father wouldn't tolerate his son reading anything else but the bible and the newspaper. He swallowed quietly, glancing around. He spotted his father sitting at the table, the bible open before him. The newspaper sat to the side, open.
"Father?" He said quietly, biting his lip a little and catching the hem of his waistcoat in one hand. "Is…is everything alright?"
"No." His father growled, not looking up. "There have been reports of witchcraft in neighboring towns. Witchcraft. Sometimes I this world deserves to burn." Jamie could see the anger printed in his father's face, and he started to tremble a little, wondering if this would lead to a beating. "James, if you hear anything of anyone in our town committing such heinous sins, you will tell me." His father looked at him, and Jamie nodded quickly.
"I…yes, of…of course." He said in a quiet voice, taking in a breath. He knew what his father thought of sins like this. Knew that in his father's mind, there were three sins that were the most terrible: murder, witchcraft, and sodomy. "Of course I will, father."
His father studied him. "Good." He said. "I will not allow anyone in our town to fall victims to sins this horrible."
Jamie only nodded, stuffing his hands in his pockets to try and hide the shaking. "Yes, father." His voice was quiet, hardly a breath.
"Now, tell me, Jamie," his father said. "Can you think of anyone in our town that could be more susceptible to this?"
Jamie paused, knowing that his father expected an answer. "I…the Holland family?" He suggested slowly. "They don't attend church very often."
His father studied Jamie for a moment, and Jamie felt his heart stop. Did his father not believe him? And then he spoke: "Yes, I've noticed that too. You'll be keeping an eye on them, then, to ensure our town remains free of such a blight."
Jamie nodded, glancing to the door. He wanted to leave, wanted to not have to talk any longer. Every time he spoke with his father he ran the risk of being hurt. "Yes, of course. Shall…shall I go look now?" He asked. His father nodded, waving a hand in dismissal as he turned back to his bible.
Jamie all but fled out the door again, heading down the main street and towards the Holland's house. His hands were trembling by his sides, and he wanted to bury himself in music again but he knew he couldn't. If he let his father down…no. He couldn't do that. He wouldn't.
(ughhh your writing is so good)
It was still weeks until the next lunar eclipse, yet Smith found himself unable to sleep, restless in his small, shambled bed. He attempted to stay as quiet as possible for the sake of his younger sister deep in slumber nearby, dusted quilt pooling at his knobby ankles, hands fussing with one another tiredly. The crack of dawn didn't even seem to burst through his thoughts. The warm, pale light coated his dismal expression, yet all he could focus on were the rumors he had heard earlier in town.
An accusation of witchcraft in Lynnfield, a nearby town. A sin.
Smith had been on the search for the hemlock Mrs. Bishop had bid for yesterday, waiting restlessly at the nearby trading post near their own town. Steeled lips and quiet looks began to whisper in the broken down shack, and luckily he had been able to catch a few words. The Wildes, execution by hanging, drowning, sin, witches…death. These phrases continued to play through Smith's mind like a poisoned lullaby, coaxing him out of the rest he so needed, under eyes bags seemingly darkening by the minute against his pale complexion.
He had offered this information the Mr. and Mrs. Bishop's quickly, careful that his sister was out of earshot. With her golden hair, soft smiles and innocent gaze, he hoped that she would not have to hear the terrible things that were happening in such proximity to their home. He could only wonder what their own pastor would do with this information.
"You are a Bishop, Smith," his father had told him sternly, dark eyes not quite matching up with his words. "We are a family of apothecaries, nothing more, nothing less." Mrs. Bishop seemed to tense near him, her usual coy smile replaced by an emotionless expression as she cut the vegetables that Constance had brought from the garden. Smith had already lost his appetite.
That night, his father had carefully tucked away any sort of leather bound books they had resting on the table.
Nothing more. Nothing less. A Bishop. Smith reminded himself, though the phrase was seemingly lost in the murk of his thoughts as he pushed himself up from his bed. There was no use in staying cooped up anymore, unable to sleep. As long as the news hadn't reached their pastor yet…he had nothing to fear. Right?
With that final thought, Smith hurriedly got himself ready, slipping on heavy clothing in order to hide most of his slim, tired physique. If he was supposed to play out this part of the perfect Bishop boy, he might as well begin now.
(:O thank you! I love yours too! Also I'm about to go to bed, so I probably won't respond again until morning)
Jamie studied the Bishop's home for a moment, lips slightly parted, and his fingers twitched at his sides. He wanted a violin in his fingers, to feel the cool wood beneath his hands, to feel the strings hum as he stroked a bow over them, coaxing a sound from it that was both mournful and beautiful, all at the same time. Or to have a piano, feel the ivory beneath his fingers, smooth as silk. To hear the music, slowly swelling to a crescendo. He wanted to get lost in his music, not…not spy on his neighbors for not going to church.
But if he didn't, if he went home or went somewhere else…his father would punish him for it. His father would find some way to make him pay for daring to disobey. And he couldn't do that.
Besides, it wasn't like he was doing anything that would get them in trouble. He was just watching. Maybe inviting them to church as well. But nothing more. They weren't going witchcraft, that was preposterous. He hoped.
(see you tomorrow!)
Smith grabbed his coat as he clambered down the staircase, long legs making clumsy noises as he reached the door. It was a struggle at times to move quickly with only one properly working eye and the inability to see peripherally, but it had just taken some getting used to. At least he had made it to the door and not fallen down the steps this time.
He was a bit overdressed in dark wools and sweaters as he exited the Bishop household, though the weather had been getting colder, much to his delight. Unfortunately, the stark colors drastically contrasted with his pale complexion, drawing out his tired gaze and mussed hair, which he had once again forgotten to fix up. Smith looked quite content with his appearance, even if he appeared quite the mess at another's gaze.
Nimbly readjusting his coast, the young, Bishop boy made his way down the household path, clutching a leather satchel that seemed filled to the brim. He had nearly made it to the end of the weeded garden until his gaze landed on a petite boy in front of him…one he did not recognize well.
"Uh, hello," Smith called out, clearing his throat as he approached the smaller man, studying their freckled skin and auburn toned hair. Hello? Say something more intelligent! "Er, um–good morning? Can I help you?" His gaze narrowed back to his usual reserved expression, clutching his leather bag protectively.
Jamie startled a little, looking up at Smith with round eyes, like a deer startled. "Oh! Uhm…I'm James, ah, Asher. M-my…my father is, uhm, the reverend, and…he…" he fidgeted with his hands a little, grey eyes still wider than normal, framed with long, almost feminine lashes. He took a deep breath, telling himself to pull it together. "He wanted to invite your family to church, since there have been reports of witchcraft in nearby towns and he doesn't want anyone in this town to fall prey to such a sin." He sounded nervous, but he sounded like a reverend's son, through and through. Sounded like someone who actually believed what he was saying, even though he still looked a little nervous. He once again yearned for a violin in his fingers, because music always soothed him. His fingers tapped lightly against each other, as if trying to play the violin right then and there.
Smith visibly tensed at Jamie's mention of the church, quickly followed by a pursing of his lips at the sound of witchcraft. The news had already reached the pastor. What would happen now?
He caught his strange reaction, choosing to downplay it quickly. A timid, reserved smile was forced upon his features, one that almost looked real, though he doubted the scared, doe-eyed boy in front of him would notice.
"Witchcraft? How strange." Smith hummed stiffly, cocking his head to the side as he watched the man in front of him. He words came out forced, lilting strangely against his soft voice. "Sadly, my family has some apothecary business to tend to at the Wardwell household, uh, but I could attend?" He added quickly, nimbly readjusting his overcoat as if the temperature had cooled by a view degrees.
Smith's comment was a blatant lie, yet he dreaded walking back into the Bishop home and tell his family that they had been summoned by their very own pastor. Rumors were on the loose and he was not going to drag them into it. He couldn't.
"Oh! Ah…church isn't…quite yet. It's being held later today. There are two services. I'm…I'm sure your family could make one of them, yes?" he said, chewing on his lip a little bit as he looked up at the taller man. He didn't know much about Smith Holland, other than that Smith was adopted or somesuch thing. "We would be…happy to see all of you with us. My father says that in times like this, it's…even more important for everyone to gather and praise the Lord. Witchcraft is…is caused by those whose ties to the devil are stronger than to the Lord, and…" he trailed off, scuffing his shoe on the ground a little bit, eyes flickering a little. "A-and since your family doesn't come to church all that often…my father just wants to keep everyone safe, is all." his voice faded a little bit towards the end, remembering how his father had drilled into his head just how sinful Sodomy was, how God hated men that felt that way. How if Jamie wouldn't repent, God would send him straight to Hell, to burn for all eternity. He swallowed faintly, pushing away his thoughts. He wasn't like that anymore. Jamie wasn't. He wasn't.
Smith listened quietly and intently as the smaller man continued to ramble, brushing his fingers against the morning scruff that had begun to already reappear against his jawline. He tensed at certain words yet tried his best not to reveal his discomfort, instead nodding painfully in forged agreement. Witchcraft, sin, death. Was this what the world had become? The words continued to replay in Smith's mind until he was unable to stand it, cutting through the other boy before they could continue.
"We'll be there." He answered gruffly, fingers readjusting themselves on his leather satchel in an attempt to stay calm. "Mr. and Mrs. Bishop, er, my parents are just very busy people…especially with the, uh, measles in the county. We wouldn't want to be getting others sick at Church or in town, that's all." Smith explained carefully, weaving a story line as he spoke.
It was very believable, there had been a sudden outbreak in the nearby towns, which the Bishop's and other apothecary families were tending to carefully. There were several sides to the term–witchcraft– that the pastor spoke so negatively on…and not all sides were bad. Smith had even seen it heal and fix…even experiencing it first hand.
"I'm actually on my way into town right now," the Bishop man added, brushing a hand through his mussed hair in an attempt to fix it. "Um, to get herbs and whatnot. Supplies."
Jamie nodded quickly. "Of course! We…wouldn't want to spread the measles. It's just…my father…worries for people. And I wouldn't want him to get worried, when he's got so much to take care of already…it's not too much to ask?" his voice tilted up a little bit at the end of the question, and his eyes flickered to Smith, then away again. At the other man's words about getting herbs, he inhaled softly, nodding quickly. "Oh! Yes, I…I did not mean to waylay you, I'm sorry." he stepped out of the path, fingers still tapping very faintly. Strands of auburn burnished hair fell across his face, and he chewed on his lower lip for a moment. He had no real idea what to do now, not about this. What could he say now? To Smith? About this? He didn't know.
Smith watched the way the man scurried as he spoke, almost pained to see the way they nearly flinched when their father's name was brought up. What was happening between the two? He didn't want to pity the other man, but it was almost…strange to see how drilled he was in putting the Church's foot first. It seemed forced. Forced to believe in something.
"It's not too much. I'll make sure my family and I attend one of the services," Smith answered in clipped, direct words, his tone much more quiet in order to calm the man in front of him. "Were you making your way into town as well…" He paused his question, realizing that he had not even caught the other man's name.
He nodded a little bit. "Ah– James Asher." he supplied his name quickly, trying to flash a smile. "And…I suppose so?" he did need to pick up the groceries eventually, and that would maybe help keep his father more content. Less likely to punish Jamie for misbehavior or sin, irregardless of whether or not it had really happened. The reverend seemed firmly of the belief that Jamie needed to be constantly reminded of what sin would bring. Fear and pain and hellfire. The older man would quote scriptures while beating his son, as if this somehow made it alright. As if the scripture justified the pain that reverend Asher put his son through for something he couldn't help and would never act on. Never. Not when he knew that acting on it would bring worse than a broken pinkie finger. He fidgeted a little bit, eyes flickering around again, like an animal cornered.