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Deathlands Companions

Modified on 2014/06/01 19:49 by Kerrick Categorized as Characters, Deathlands
   The seven people listed below have traveled the Deathlands together as a group for the better part of the series. There have been points where one or more of them split off for a time, but those people always seem to rejoin their companions.

   Ryan Cawdor: Ryan Cawdor is the undisputed leader of the group. He was born in Front Royal, Virginia, the second son of Baron Titus Cawdor and his first wife, Lady Cynthia, who died a year after Ryan was born. When he was 14, his older brother Harvey killed his other brother Morgan, making it look like a bandit attack. The next year, Harvey and his sec men tried to kill Ryan directly. Harvey himself attempted to blind his brother with a knife, destroying his left eye, but when he tried to gouge out Ryan's right eye, he missed, leaving the aforementioned scar. Ryan managed to escape, though Harvey killed their father.
   He ended up wandering around Deathlands for several years before joining up with Trader somewhere out west. He rode with Trader for ten years and worked his way up to war captain before the events in Pilgrimage to Hell.
   Ryan is nothing if not pragmatic. Very little matters to him beyond himself and those he names friend; he doesn't kill indiscriminately, but will never hesitate if doing so means saving himself or his friends (though due to Krysty's influence, he is gaining a sense of compassion for those being exploited). He never leaves a live enemy behind him if he can help it. He has a quick temper and doesn't tolerate incompetence, stupidity, or backtalk, even from his companions.
   Ryan fathered a son, Dean, during a short fling with Sharona Carson shortly after joining Trader's convoy. He didn't even know about the boy until Dean was 10, when he went to Newyork and a friend of Sharona's, who was taking care of Dean for her, told Ryan about him (Seedling). He rescued Dean from an army of scalies, and the boy joined the group.
   Ryan is 6'3", about 240 pounds, with a mop of curly black hair, a single ice-blue eye (the other is covered by a patch), and a muscular build. He has a long scar running from the corner of his right eye down across his cheek nearly to the mouth; it gets white when he becomes angry.
   Ryan has gone through several weapons over the course of his career; he started the series with a LAPA machine pistol and had an H&K G-12 caseless rifle for a time, but gave up the rifle with much regret due to the difficulty of finding rounds for it. He now carries a Steyr Scout rifle, a Sig-Sauer P-226 pistol with a baffle silencer, a panga (a machete-like weapon), and a flensing knife.

   Dix, John Barrymore: JB Dix was born in Cripple Creek, Colorado. Little is known of his past before he joined Trader's convoy. He is one of (if not the) foremost authorities on firearms, munitions, and explosives in Deathlands; this knowledge earned him the nickname "The Armorer". (Trivia note: Jack Adrian originally called him "The Weapons Master"; when Laurence James took over to finish the book, his nickname was changed to "The Armorer".) He is one of Ryan's oldest friends and companions - he joined up with Trader two years after Ryan did - and the group's second in command.
   JB is slight of stature (5'8", 140 pounds) and short on words - he'll never use two words when one will do - but is always handy to have in a firefight. He usually wears a leather jacket and is never seen without a large satchel - which holds grenades, spare parts and ammo, detonators, and a myriad of other items - a fedora, and wire-rimmed glasses (a rarity in Deathlands). His weapons of choice are a Tekna combat knife, a 9-mm Uzi, and a Smith & Wesson M-4000 12-gauge combat shotgun. His favorite expressions are "Dark night!" and rarely "Black dust!"

   Lauren, Jak: Jak Lauren was born and raised in the Louisiana bayou, where he learned how to be a premier hunter and tracker. He is the youngest member of group besides Dean, at 17 years old; the two are close friends. He is also an albino. There are few in Deathlands deadlier with a blade or in hand-to-hand combat, despite his small stature. He carries a number of leaf-bladed throwing knives hidden about his person (no one, not even his companions, knows how many or where they are) and wears a camouflage jacket with bits of metal and glass sewn into the collar, designed to slice the hands of anyone trying to grab him. While he has trouble seeing during the day, his night-sight is nearly equal to that of an animal's, and his hearing and sense of smell are similarly sharp from his woodscraft training.
   Jak joined the party when they traveled to Louisiana and helped kill Baron Tourment (Neutron Solstice). He briefly settled down with Christina Ballinger after the companions killed her abusive father and brothers and she took over their farm (Latitude Zero). They lived there for about a year and even had a child, but bandits showed up while he was away one day and killed Christy and the baby. He moved to a farm farther north and spent some time there with Doc, Mildred, Krysty, and Dean while JB and Ryan tracked down rumors about Trader, but they were forced to leave when a pair of travelers arrived carrying a leaking nuclear warhead in their wagon (Genesis Echo).
   Jak is 5'6" and about 120 pounds. He speaks broken English, though he is far from stupid (he knows how to read and write). His chosen weapons are his knives and a .357 Colt Python revolver with a 6-inch barrel and chrome finish.

   Morales, Ricardo: Ricardo "Ricky" Morales Goza was born and raised in Nuestra Senora, Puerto Rico. His father was a trader who ran a store in town; Ricky was a wild child, so his parents apprenticed him to his uncle, who was a tinkerer and armorer. He found a great aptitude for machinery and weapons, and flourished under his uncle's tutelage.    When Ricky was 16, an army of coldhearts led by El Guapo arrived in town; he wanted to conquer the island, but the leaders wouldn't pay allegiance to him, so he destroyed the town. Ricky's parents and uncle were killed, and his sister kidnapped and sold to slavers. Not long after, the companions arrived, and he joined forces with them in the hopes of finding and saving his sister.
   Ricky is the youngest member of the group, at 16. He has a quick mind, however, and became fast friends with Jak. His skills have also endeared him to JB, who has taken him on as a pupil of sorts. His weapon of choice is a De Lisle rifle, which he and his uncle built from scratch. He also carries a Para-Ordnance 14-45 pistol.

   Tanner, Doc: Dr. Theophilus Algernon "Doc" Tanner was born Feb 14, 1868, in South Strafford, Vermont. He holds doctorates in philosphy and science from Harvard and Oxford. He had a wife named Emily and two young children, Rachel and Jolyon.
   In November 1896, a portal opened in the street in front of him when he was on a walk with his family in Omaha, Nebrasks. He was grabbed and taken through; his two children were killed by the energy of the portal, and Emily, deprived of her entire family in an instant (not to mention a horrific manner) had a nervous breakdown and was commited to an asylum for a time. There is no further record of her life.
   Doc Tanner was the only successful subject of Project Chronos, though others were time-trawled forward from the late 1990s into the future. He was brought forward to 1998 and spent two years in the company of modern scientists, learning a good deal about the Totality Concept and its sub-projects while the scientists studied him. All the while, though, he made a nuisance of himself and refused to work with them, constantly begging to be sent back. Finally, in December 2000, the scientists tired of him and sent him forward in time another hundred years, where he ended up in Redoubt Bravo.
   Ryan and his friends found Doc in Mocsin, a "guest" of Baron Jordan Teague (Pilgrimage to Hell), and brought him along since it was apparent that he knew something of the redoubt. He has since proven himself to be a valuable companion and friend, though his mind tends to wander at times (see below).
   Doc is 6'3" tall but skinny as a rail, and has long white hair and (oddly) perfect teeth. Due to the strain of the time trawling, he was prematurely aged; while he is only about 34 years old physically, he appears to be twice that. His appearance belies his physical abilities, though - he is quite strong and capable of holding his own in most situations. The double-time-trawl also played havoc with his mind; he is only semi-lucid at the best of times, falling into near insanity when placed under severely stress or injury. At these times, he tends to hallucinate, hold conversations with people long dead (especially his family), and/or drop into a semi-catatonic state. He, out of all the group, bears the greatest animosity for the whitecoats and what they did, both to him and the rest of the world.
   Doc he wears the clothing he had on when he was originally trawled - a frock coat, breeches, and black leather knee boots that have seen better days. His weapons of choice are an ebony cane that hides a rapier of Toledo steel and a reproduction LeMat pistol, which fires nine .44 caliber bullets and a 20-gauge shotgun round (he had a Civil-War-era version that fired .36 slugs and a 16-gauge grapeshot round, but he lost it in Kansas and later found a replica that he used for several years (Cold Asylum); he upgraded to the newer version because bullets would be easier to come by). His favorite expression is "By the three Kennedies!" (which, incidentally, comes from a book he was reading shortly before his final journey through time, a biography about John, Robert, and Teddy Kennedy.)

   Wroth, Krysty: Krysty was born and raised in Harmony Ville, Colorado. Her mother, Sonja, died of cancer when Krysty was young, and the girl went to live with her uncle Tyas McCann. Before Sonja died, though, she taught Krysty of the ways of the Earth Mother - how to control her body, to drop into a deep trance, and how to channel the power of the earth. This last ability grants her incredible strength for a short time, but it bears a high cost - she becomes weakened in proportion to the amount of power she gains and the length of time she uses it; using it too long can put her into a coma, while a short burst of strength merely leaves her wobbly for a few minutes. Sonja and Tyas also gave her a broad education - she can read and write well (and often corrects Ryan's and Dean's grammar) and knows a good deal about plants.
   When she met Ryan, she and the other people in Harmony had left in search of a rumored paradise somewhere in The Darks (Redoubt Bravo, though they didn't know this at the time). Their caravan was ambushed near Mocsin by mutie raiders and everyone but Krysty was slaughtered; she was taken prisoner by their leader. Ryan and JB rescued her, incidentally destroying the muties' camp, and took her back to Trader's convoy. She left the convoy after Ryan and JB went into Mocsin, intending to go on her way alone, and just missed being killed along with the rest of the convoy when Cort Strasser dropped nerve gas on them. She was later captured by Strasser and helped Ryan escape, then accompanied him and his companions to the redoubt (Pilgrimage to Hell).
   Krysty believes that, somewhere, there is a place with clean water, blue skies, and green grass where they can settle down and make a life for themselves, and believes that they will eventually find it through the gateway network. She and Ryan sensed a connection with each other upon their first meeting and became lovers not long after; they have been together ever since.
   Krysty is 5'11", 150 pounds; she has green eyes and long, dark red hair that has a life of its own - it moves even when she is still and curls close to her neck if there is danger nearby. Cutting or pulling her hair causes her intense agony. She has a "doomie" sense - she can sense the presence of living beings nearby, as well as danger. She usually wears coveralls or a jumpsuit and blue cowboy boots with falcons etched in silver across the toes, along with a bearskin coat. Her weapon of choice is a .38-caliber Smith and Wesson Model 640. Her favorite expression is "Gaia!", but she rarely swears.

   Wyeth, Mildred: Mildred Winonia Wyeth was born December 17th, 1964, the daughter of black activists. Her father was a minister who was burned alive in his church by the KKK; her mother participated in marches in the '50s and '60s. Mildred is a crack shot with a pistol and participated in the 1996 Olympics, where she won a silver medal. She is also a medical doctor and was the leading expert on cryogenics before skydark.
   In December 2000, she was admitted to the hospital for routine exploratory surgery to examine an ovarian cyst. She had a freak reaction to the anaesthetic, which sent her into a coma. She was flown to the Shelley Cryonic Institute near Duluth, Minnesota, where she was put into cryonic stasis until further measures could be taken. Unfortunately, World War 3 struck not long after, and she remained in stasis for nearly 100 years.
   She was awakened by the companions and joined their team (Northstar Rising), and has since proven to be a valuable member. She later fell in love with JB (Seedling) and has been with him since. She maintains a love/hate relationship with Doc; they constantly snipe at each other, but when the chips are down, each can trust the other to watch his (or her) back. She has a take-no-prisoners attitude and a strong will, and has quickly adjusted to her new life in Deathlands, though the casual callousness some of her friends often displays still has a tendency to shake her composure.
   Mildred is 5'4", 136 pounds, with long hair arranged in a multitude of small braids tied with beads. Her weapon of choice is a Czech-made ZKR 551 target pistol chambered for .38-caliber rounds. She often makes predark pop culture references that leave the others mystified.

DEATHLANDS, OUTLANDERS, EARTH BLOOD, and JAMES AXLER are all the property of Gold Eagle / Worldwide Library, and are used here strictly under Fair Use guidelines.
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