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Richard Jay

Sir Richard Katz Jay

Suppose you try a different tack,
And on the square you flash your flag?
At penny-a-lining make your whack,
Or with the mummers mug and gag?
For nix, for nix the dibbs you bag
At any graft, no matter what!
Your merry goblins soon stravag:
Booze and the blowens cop the lot.

  • "Villon's Straight Tip to all Cross Coves," William Ernest Henley, 1887
  • Physical Description

    General Physical Condition

    Sir Richard's fireplug body bears the marks of a man who may well have sampled too richly of many of life's pleasures. What can be seen of his face, below his lined brow and above the cloud of his beard, is slightly sallow and pockmarked.

    Facial Features

    Though his whole face seems to sag at times, it is never defeated. His smile drags the whole machine upward in a way that is infectious in its delight. Conversely, his glower seems to come from a heavy brown thundercloud of beard and eyebrows.

    Special abilities

    Sir Richard is one of the greatest sleight-of-hand artists of the age. One talent that sets him apart from his fellow tricksters is his capacity to hurl cards at a speed and distance that seems improbable at best, and, upon consideration, perhaps dangerous to be in the path of. He has also shown a talent for hurling a card into the air in such a way that it flies back to his hand, in the manner of the Australian boomerang.

    Apparel & Accessories

    He dresses as a man born to the highest classes, with brilliant white shirts beneath rich silk ties and fine suits - the dark of his waistcoat is broken by a watch chain, and his coat is slick with its silken collar. When he can get away with it (that is, when not visiting royalty) he wears a fine bowler hat - a reminder that, whatever moneyed class he currently occupies, he did not begin his life there.   He has previously stated that he carries at least four decks of cards on him at any time, usually more.

    Mental characteristics

    Personal history

    Sir Richard's story is never the same twice. On the day he received his knighthood, several London newspapers dedicated themselves to discovering the magician's history. Although four papers did eventually publish glowing biographies, they had differing details on his birthplace, education, what his parents did, and whether he had ever been married.


    He speaks as though he has been educated by the most erudite of Oxford Dons, but his only known mentor is the Eastern European magician, Max Malini, who visits Sir Richard any time he is in town.


    Sir Richard quite clearly has the income to live as a gentleman, judging by his home and library, but there is some dispute as to where it comes from - although he does private performances, and a stage show every few years, such intermittent work could never sustain the lifestyle he demonstrates.   A few card sharps in the East End declare that he won several fortunes in card games, though the telling always seems to swap out years, how long the run was, and the famous criminals/actors/royal by-blows that he busted out of games of draw poker.

    Accomplishments & Achievements

    Like his mentor, Sir Richard has performed for the crown. King George V knighted him as part of his birthday honours, after Jay somehow caused a different playing card to appear each week in a room the King was in, producing an entire deck of hand-painted cards over a year's time.

    Intellectual Characteristics

    Sir Richard never uses one word where a baker's dozen of multi-syllabic, mildly anachronistic congregations of morphemes could add to the erudition of his audience, generally taken to be anyone within earshot and willing to pay some attention to the goings-on.   He is an unabashed bibliophile, collecting any and every book, monograph, poster, pamphlet, or newspaper clipping about his chosen profession, as well as about the strange carnival figures that always seem to find themselves in a magician's orbit.

    Morality & Philosophy

    Sir Richard is dedicated to the principles of stage magic and chicanery - he is a gracious performer and a polite audience member. He never gives away the secrets of his work, nor does he ask others the secrets of their own performances, preferring that everyone luxuriate in the wonder of a world that is not perfectly understood.


    Sir Richard never reveals how his tricks are done, though there are rumors that he takes on apprentices from time to time.

    Personality Characteristics


    To leave the world a little more mystified than he found it.
    Year of Birth
    1884 50 Years old
    Current Residence
    12 Farm Street, Mayfair, London
    Brown and able to slide from shifty sparkle to suspicious squint in a second
    Brown, and receded to reveal his whole forehead, though it makes up the space by swallowing his jaw in a thick beard
    Known Languages
    Sir Richard commands most of the languages of Europe, and occasionally surprises the members of his set with a mastery of obscure tongues.

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