Taki

Demon-hunting ancient spirit in the body of a modern fortune teller

Kara Sesseran

Mental characteristics

Personal history

Kara Sesseran

 

In spring of 2001, Kara Sesseran -- a mostly homeless, mostly illiterate "Blind Fortune Teller" known for using a superhero-themed tarot deck with Braille markings -- so impressed a customer with one of her readings that the customer paid for Kara to attend a four day convention of psychics in the superpowered age. Kara was delighted to get a bath and clean, less worn clothes even if it meant she would have to put up with a bunch of strangers either trying to prove that she is not blind, or else assuming that she is dull-witted along with her disability.

 

It went pretty well, actually.

 

Oh, absolutely, some attendees treated the malnourished, nervous woman like a thing or a potential project. Most, however, were too busy asserting their own veracity to really notice the quiet girl who always managed to be near the snack buffet.

 

One of the seminars particularly hit Kara hard: the speaker taught a practical method of meditation, of using one's psychic ability to examine that same ability's origins and how it best functions for the particular individual. Kara had never listened more intently to anything in her life. She even considered approaching the speaker afterward ... which would have required that she use her eyesight.

 

(Kara has always been able to see. She does not know that she has visual processing disorder, because when she was very young no one in her life had ever heard of any kind of sensory processing disorder. As an adult, she "knows" that she is falsifying blindness by wearing a gauze bandage over her face whenever there is a chance that someone might look in her direction. Also, of course, she refuses to be examined by a doctor even if someone else offers to cover the costs. She is terrified of anyone with the power to inhibit her freedom of movement.)

 

When the convention ended, Kara exchanged what little contact information she could with a few of the other attendees. She then made her way to one of her least favorite hideouts: an empty office in the Kingsbridge Armory. It was cold, drafty, and spooky, but she could expect to be left alone for a few days. Kara made herself as secure and comfortable as she was able, then tried out the meditation described in the seminar.

 

When she awoke, Kara was not alone.

 
 

Taki

 

The woman who now goes by "Taki" had a very different name in a period of time which she would probably call "the Kamakura Period". She has pleasantly agreed with suggestions that she may have lived in the early thirteenth century. On the other hand, she has also pleasantly gone along with people saying that she must be describing "the Sengoku Period" which would place her in the latter half of the 16th centery.

 

Taki does not much care whether other people know who she was, or when she lived. She is not going to help anyone figure out what her "real name" could have been, even though she will cheerfully admit that "Taki" is, in fact, typically a boy's name ... and that she gleefully confiscated it from the video game series called "Soulcalibur" when her descendant wandered through a video arcade.

 

Was she truly a monster hunter? Probably she was some kind of specialist in dealing with metahuman threats.

 

Was she truly something like a samurai or an onna bugeisha? The evidence is in favor: she knows how to use a few appropriate weapons, she prefers a rigorous daily exercise regimen and argues with Kara about whether indeed all fingers must remain sensitive to delicate texture changes (for reading Braille) when she would like to get hold of a proper bow. She is fairly good at accounting. She knows how to cook things Kara had never eaten. She is frustrated that Kara does not know how to read English, nor draw or paint, nor weave nets.

 

Taki would quite like to know what the hell happened to Kara's family, who had a duty to educate her. Kara will not allow the topic to be even lightly discussed.

 

If one of their "clansmen" (meaning the members of the Knights Vigilant supergroup) were to ask, Taki would say that she is here because Kara is her last living descendant. If Kara passes from this world, Taki's connection to it will dissolve, and her legacy ends.

 

(No one has ever asked.)

 

Does that mean Taki had children? It must, but she does not think about such things.

 

Does something bad happen, to the world or to the souls of Kara and her ancestors, if no descendant lives?
Well ... no one has thought to ask Taki that, either.

Personality Characteristics

Motivation

Upholding the Good

KaraSesseran
Species
metahuman
Current Residence
New York City
Eyes
brown
Hair
black
Aligned Organization
Knights Vigilant
Known Languages
Kara can read Braille. Taki speaks and reads Japanese, though her vocabulary is sometimes very off.

It is certainly possible that Taki does not, in fact, exist: that she is a figment of Kara's subconscious imagination, containing all the personality traits which Kara wishes she dared have for herself.

But that would not explain how it is that, when the dominant and passenger personalities get into an intense conversation or even an argument, the rest of the Knights Vigilant can hear the "passenger" woman's voice on their comms network.


The People's Glorious Twenty-Fifth of May

It took me a couple of 404s to Enter the Session, but now here I am!   I noticed when I first read Night Watch by Terry Pratchett that the negotiations to write the new government actually cite the twenty-fourth of May. And yet! Everyone still gets emotionally wrought on the 25th. Which, yes, many things happen on that particular day. Such as the bit with the egg. But I am a little surprised not to see much fan activity on the 24th other than reminding one another to go look for lilac.   Anyway. I think that's about as much as I can say without a gigantic spoiler, which (after all) is not the point of this test. The point is, can I edit this journal while the session is still in progress?   Yes, I can! Time to congratulate Dimitris and close that bug.

Taki

DEX
10

 
STR
2

 
BODY
4

 
INT
6

 
WILL
5

 
MIND
8

 
INFL
5

 
AURA
5

 
SPIRIT
5

 
INITIATIVE
25
HERO POINTS
244

 

 

POWERS (* linked)


 
  • Precognition: 10
    (FC 3; Dice Action; can read up to an hour ahead without being Pushed)
  • Postcognition: 10
    (FC 2; Dice Action; can read up to an hour ago without being Pushed)
  • Energy Blast: 10
    (FC 1; Dice Action; Fatiguing
  • Exorcism: 10
    (FC 1; Dice Action; Fatiguing

 

 

 

BONUSES AND LIMITATIONS


 
Energy Blast and Exorcism are both Fatiguing - Taki tries to use them at less than full strength.

 

 

SKILLS (* linked)


 
  • Acrobatics: 05
    FC 7; Dice Action; all subskills
  • Detective: 04
    FC 3; Dice Action; Clue Analysis only
  • Martial Artist: 06
    FC 6; Dice Action
  • Thief: 05
    FC 06; Dice Action; Escape Artist, Locks and Safes, Pickpocket, and Stealth subskills
  • Weaponry: 07
    FC 3; Dice Action; Melee Weapons only

 

 

ADVANTAGES


 
  • Area Knowledge | neighborhood
  • Connection, Low | Detective Sara Owens, NYPD
  • Connection, Low | Detective Hirokoma Kozu, NYPD
  • Connection, Low | FDNYC Ladder 23
  • Connection, Low | Solar Champions
  • Connection, Low | Bruno, Blood Hellion (who didn't get mutated)
  • Connection, Low | NYC Magic Community
    (varies based on Kara's current reputation)
  • Iron Nerves | +2 CS to my OV/RV vs Aura of Fear, Phobia, or any Intimidation attempt
  • Leadership | FOR GREAT JUSTICE!
  • Lightning Reflexes | +2 to Initiative (already added)
  • Japanese Scholar | -2 CS to OV/RV of an Intelligence check for Japanese, spoken and kanji, slightly antiquated
  • Braille Scholar | -2 CS to OV/RV of an Intelligence check for reading Braille
  • Fortune Teller Scholar | -2 CS to OV/RV of an Intelligence check for fortune-telling traditions and patter, particularly with tarot cards

 

 

DRAWBACKS


 
  • Serious Irrational Attraction | "demon" hunting
    must roll greater than/equal to 11 to overcome Taki's vocation and interact normally, otherwise abandon all other pursuits in favor of chasing down and defeating the "demon". Whatever it actually is.
  • Serious Psychological Instability | absorbed in "self"-arguments (arguments between currently dominant personality and currently submerged personality)
    on roll of less than/equal to 4; to regain composure, must roll greater than/equal to 11
  • Mistrust
    NPCs, especially strangers who are Heroes or law enforcement, and the general public are automatically Hostile
  • Secret Identity | Each personality goes to some lengths to keep strangers from finding out that it's the same body. Only the teammates are trusted with this critical information, as a gesture of solidarity!

 

 

 

OCCUPATION


 
fortune teller

 

 

WEALTH


 
0 ( Appox Annual Income : $1250) ( Appox Annual Income : $12,000,000,000)

 

 

EQUIPMENT


 
  • Sword (katana)
    {Body: 6, EV: 4}
  •  
  • Knife (wakizashi)
    {Body: 5, EV: 3}
  •  
  • Ice Blade (wakizashi)
    {Body: ???, EV: ???, some kind of cold power: ???}

 

 

SUBPLOTS


 
Taki and Kara often dream of a man they can't quite see. Sometimes he's old-school Nipponese soldier, or yoko-metsuke, or bushi. Sometimes he's a very modern Japanese-American cop of some sort (usually either NYPD or US Marshal, as far as they can tell), or high-ranking member of a private security force, or a Customs Agent. Sometimes his clothes and hair and the setting around him are such a mix that the women can't be sure which he is.
(Taki says it's the same soul, reincarnated; Kara says that makes no biological sense, because it's the same body.)
Taki feels that her past is entwined with this man's past to the point of tugging at each others' destinies, and that on the day when they look into each others' eyes again, they will have to decide whether to be eternally sworn enemies or recurrent allies.
Kara thinks that Taki takes that video game entirely too seriously, and cops should be left to their own devices as a general rule.

Speaking of fundamental differences in worldview: Taki believes she's an old soul haunting the last child of her line, trying to preserve her in hope of a reasonably-happy-ever-after. Kara believes that "Taki" is an outside spirit, somewhat bonkers, who has been possessing Kara for several years; Taki is useful for trying to stay alive, at least most of the time, but Kara expects the spirit to eventually become so absorbed by her fictitious identity and history that she rejects reality in a dangerous-for-Kara way. It's not that Kara doesn't like Taki, and appreciate having her around, it's just that all good things have a tendency to go really, really bad at some point.
A third explanation would be that homeless, malnourished, psychic, and somewhat unstable Kara is batshit -- that her mind fractured under the strain of something she foresaw at the Psychic Convention, back in 2001, and invented a separate protector personality in order to cope with the scary thing a-coming. (This last explanation has to stretch awfully far, granted, to explain how illiterate Kara could read Japanese kanji, and speak an archaic version of the language moderately fluently, when she thinks she's Taki.)

Kara lives in a slum. Kara pretends to be blind. Kara's health still isn't fantastic. Kara probably qualifies for some sort of welfare, but is too suspicious of the system to go to the Welfare Office, even though she's fanatical about keeping her busker's permit in good standing. Kara's current quality of life could be wiped away in any given second, by any negative influence to trip merrily along. Kara doesn't file taxes....

Not all of Kara's tarot readings are psychically sourced; plenty are generic enough to blow off as guessing. But some of them are full-blown uses of her ability to read the past and the future, which should eventually come to the attention of the kind of New Yorker who would like to have a true fortune teller at his beck and call. Lately there've been certain readings where Taki has interrupted to firmly demand that Kara screw up, get things wrong on purpose, and generally make herself out to be an ordinary hustler. Doing so makes Kara incredibly uncomfortable, but Taki has better instincts for spotting dangerous people ... right?

Kara has a BIG ol’ crush on Loki. Taki is not sure if she approves but she’s also not going to interfere unless a real danger pops up.

 
 

 

ATTRIBUTE BREAKDOWN


 
Attribute
Benchmark <span class="attr_bench">(based on current attributes above)</span>

 
DEX (Dexterity)
This person possesses the best agility that is humanly possible.

 
STR (Strength)
A normal human that can lift 200lbs over their head.

 
BODY (Body)
The individual is conditioned to withstand moderate damage without great pain. They may withstand blunt attacks as a prizefighter or a martial artist.

 
INT (Intelligence)
The individual has the ability to process information on the level of an industrious college student.

 
WILL (Willpower)
This individual has exceptional self-discipline and can remain calm and rational during a crisis.

 
MIND (Mind)
This person has the mental fortitude to continue normal activities even in persistently painful or stressful situations, such as those experienced by hardened soldiers.

 
INFL (Influence)
This individual can hold and draw the attention of a large audience.

 
AURA (Aura)
This person has a presence strong enough to change the emotional state of an auditorium-sized crowd from a dead calm to electrified frenzy.

 
SPIRIT (Spirit)
This person is so secure in his or her beliefs that he or she is willing to die for them.

 

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