"I've been through all this Hell before
Your soul is screaming
|Faith:||3||Perm. Torment:||5||Temp. Torment:||7|
|Enhanced Social Traits||HT: Claws|
|Lyrical Voice||HT: Casts No Reflection|
|Enhanced Senses||HT: Venom (Sta vs. 7 resist)|
|Enhanced Intuition||HT: Regeneration|
|Demon Lore:||3||Wyrm Lore:||2|
|Ability Aptitude (Performance)||Near-Sighted (Correctable)|
Laurel's Resources come from her inheritance she got from her parent's death. It's in the form of a trust, paid to her monthly.
Laurel is severely near-sighted. It is correctable; she used to tend toward glasses rather then contacts, but Melioth is currently on the look for a good contacts manufacturer. He doesn't like the glasses.
The girl is best described as "cute"...the all-American girl next door sort. Tall and thin, with shoulder-length, dark chestnut hair and cool blue eyes, one would imagine that if she gave a big, bright smile, she'd light up the room, and then some. However, she doesn't much seem to be the type to give those wide smiles...her expressions are a bit more muted, softer. A pair of simple, unadorned glasses rest on her nose. The rest of her is fit, and well-proportioned enough...certainly not so much to be voluptuous. More athletic, though she seems to have a more scholarly look to her then a sporty look. She gives off a general feeling of being quite approachable, even if there is a keener, more discerning look in her eyes.
His true form is that of an incredibly beautiful being, more so then anything that's probably ever graced this world...darkly so. A little bit...sinister, even, perhaps. His hair, golden-blonde, goes in waves down to his shoulders, his facial features perfectly formed, as if it was a mold upon which man was idealized. They're sharp, though...like an edge just hides just below the surface. His eyes are the greenish-blue of the sea, with shadows around the edges, like something hides beneath them and fathomless depths inside them.
Millennia ago—before the world existed—there was Melioth, one of the Nereids, the Fifth House of angels. Melioth was responsible for the creation of art, more specifically, the creation of song. His duty was his passion, and he longed to build and inspire something that would in turn inspire mortals in their own lives. In this task he was successful, and as such, he found joy in humanity, and the task with which he was charged.
However, where there was joy, there was also despair. Melioth found himself deeply saddened that humanity, which he had helped inspire and seen inspire each other, could never know what inspired them. Others felt the same as he did—people like Ahrimal and Belial, and of course, Lucifer, the Morningstar. In what was quite truthfully a moment of egotism, he decided that if mortals knew of their creators, they would be able to lift themselves to even further heights, and thus he joined with Lucifer’s legion, plummeting toward Earth. Melioth was one of the first to join Asmodeus’s Silver Legion, to teach humanity how to unlock their potential. During the Age of Wonder, he helped foster that which he helped create, becoming a patron for musicians in Taba’et’, home to the Silver Legion. He also wrote several epics himself, proclaiming the glory and duty of the Legions.
However, some things cannot last. The murder of Abel and subsequent Siege of Sagun horrified Melioth, and planted a small seed of hatred within him for humanity, that they could take what he and the rebels had given them and turn it into atrocity. He turned away from his patronage of humans and became a scout for the Silver Legion, running reconnaissance on the enemy. Of course, this isolated him from those which he once loved so, and allowed the seed of hatred to grow when he truly saw his brethren suffering in order to protect the mission for which they had borne God’s wrath.
Fostered as he was by his burgeoning hatred of humanity, Melioth was greatly opposed to the Great Experiment. He felt that humanity had done nothing with what they had already been given…to give them the secrets of Heaven was unthinkable. When the traitor suggested the
creation of the Nephilim, Melioth was only too happy to comply, and though he despised the idea of joining with a mortal, he did so, and so helped in his small way to bring about the downfall of the Great Experiment.
Then came the Shattering, and the buckling of mankind under the weight of their revelations. Mankind’s ability to comprehend the One language was fragmented, and they no longer understood what they saw of angels. The Host of God descended on the rebels, and though Melioth fought, he knew they were doomed. The rebels were rounded up, and they were condemned to the Abyss. At that moment, Melioth had a revelation—he realized that his hatred for humanity was unfounded. It was the rebels who were responsible for what humanity had done, for they had forced divine knowledge a race not yet ready for it. With this knowledge, he threw himself into the Abyss.
The Abyss was torment like Melioth never knew it could be. Not only was he trapped in Hell, quite literally, the plaything of demonic Archdukes who could use his True Name to involve him in their petty struggles, but he knew it was the torment he deserved. There was no hope of him getting out, or ever seeking redemption. And even worse, he could feel humanity seeping in from the edges, and though he reached out to them, he could never reach them. It was an unending torment of indescribable proportions.
Then, the Archdukes vanished. Melioth, surprised as he was, counted it a blessing, that these monsters were not around to drag him into their schemes. Though some spoke of hope that Lucifer had freed them, and their imprisonment was to end, Melioth did not believe it. When those like Zaphoriel were summoned by mortals for our secrets, many despised the idea; Melioth prayed to be called. To be able to speak to humans again would be a brief respite from torment, even if abject humiliation came with it. Alas, he was never called.
Finally, the sixth Maelstrom came. The gates of Hell were cracked, and Melioth, for the first time in millennia, was filled with hope. On his prince’s command, he threw himself heedlessly into the storm, crawling past the spirits of the dead and climbing back out of the Abyss. He found himself in a world filled with more humans then he could imagine, all of them suffering in their own ways. As he tore himself away from the flayed, screaming souls of the dead, he found himself searching for a way to remain here, away from the Abyss and free from it’s terrible pull.
Enter Jarod Freeman.
Jarod Freeman was born in Upstate New York in 1976. A lifelong dreamer, his parents were upper-middle class people, living comfortably in their home in Albany. Jarod was taken with Hollywood at a very young age, and his dream was to act. He loved to perform, and throughout his primary school career, he was perpetually involved with the theatre. It was only natural, then, that when he graduated from high school that he moved (against his parent’s wishes) to New York City. He got a job as a waiter in a diner, and began auditioning for any role he could find, on- or off-Broadway.
Unfortunately for Jarod, he was missing something…something called talent. While it was true that he was moderately successful in high school theatre, that was mostly due to the fact that he was blessed with incredibly good looks and popularity…when it came to actual acting ability, he came up something short. No one came calling…no one offering legitimate roles, at least. At 24, after six years of trying, Jarod was about ready to give up when he got a call from a man offering him a role in a low-budget movie. Jarod jumped at the opportunity, and he didn’t even mind that much when he found out it was for a pornographic film. At least it was acting. Not capital-A acting, but hey…if Traci Lords was able to make the jump from porn queen to an (admittedly tenuous) legit career, so could he. Or at least, so he thought.
Unfortunately, thinking doesn’t always make it so. Jarod soon got trapped in the negative aspects of the adult film industry, including a fairly crippling cocaine and heroin habit. Worse still, his “career” quickly spiraled out of control, to the point that he was making fetish films that were barely a step up from snuff. It didn’t take too long until Jarod’s spirit died, and on a cold February night in 2004, Jarod purposely overdosed on heroin, attempting to end his life.
Desperate to get free of the Abyss’s pull, Melioth was in the general vicinity when he felt Jarod’s despair. Intrigued, he investigated, and found a man much like those he used to inspire…only he was without inspiration, and without hope. Melioth found a man who’s passion reminded him of what he used to be, and he moved in to take control.
Of course, in doing so, his life was forever changed—which is, of course, what he wanted. He found, though, that his life had changed in ways he hasn’t expected. He knew for millennia that he had made a grave mistake in learning to hate humanity; however, he wasn’t expecting that when he returned from exile that he would end up living in a mortal who’s depraved lifestyle made him remember why he hated them. His love and hatred for mortals had tempered each other, and he was resolved to continue the work that originally made him rebel, and make mankind inspire themselves enough to replace God at the helm of the universe. Jarod quit the porn industry and cleaned himself up, and with a sudden boost in acting power, started doing shows off-Broadway, and getting pretty good reviews for them. Meanwhile, he found a source of Faith in Cynthia Potter, also known to the porn subculture as Charity Duchet, a former “co-star” who he helped pull out of the abusive adult film industry and given a new lease on life with enough force of will and stamina to kick and stay off her heroin addiction.
Things happened in New York. Loves gained and lost. Thralls gained and lost. Allies...well, you get the gist. It all ended for Jarod in the home of another Defiler, Emariel, at the hands of her abusive boyfriend, Gunther Berg. Who knew the little miscarriage-causing shit was so tough, to take down a Demon in it's True Form? He fled away as he heard Nia's death cry, his emotions hardening in the face of the pull of Hell and the experiences he'd had. Fuck God. There would be no return. He damned this world, and damn him, too. Melody had made him soft. Made him care. That was a mistake he would never make again.
Laurel Hensley was a nice girl. Everyone said so. Born in 1983 in Woodbridge Township, New Jersey, a city fairly close to Jersey City and Staten Island, her parents were bankers. Not fabulously wealthy, but wealthy enough, Laurel was born into the semi-upper middle class, and as such, she had a good life. She went to a decent school...private, of course, not the public school mess that exists. She had decent friends...if you ignored the fact that they were all catty little bitches. Laurel, on the other hand, wasn't. She was the nice girl that hung out with the popular folks, because they made her feel popular. They, on the other hand, tolerated her...but that was enough for her. Being tolerated was okay. Because she was popular.
She had one other thing going for her. She was pretty. She wouldn't ever be called sexy, per se...she didn't have that femme fatale look to her. She was the girl next door...the really attractive one all the nerds wanted, and thought maybe they could get, if they just got to know her. That would never happen, though...all of Laurel's friends just wouldn't allow it. "What, do you want to be a social reject like them?" they would ask. "You're already in that whole band...thing. You want this to be the nail in your social coffin?" She'd say no, of course, and would give the boys friendly smiles and nods when the others weren't looking. Meanwhile, she was hanging out with the jocks and the student body president, all of whom got a turn on the Laurel Hensley merry-go-round. She needed to do so to be popular, you see. And it all went smoothly, according to plan.
Then she got pregnant.
It was just after graduation, and it was Steve's, the starting tight end for the football team. She didn't love him, but she wanted to keep the baby. He didn't. Her parents? REALLY didn't. They were furious with her for the whole thing, and they did what they abhorred...they went to drive her to an abortion clinic.
The car hit them after came through a red light. There was no drunk driver...there was no high speed car chase. Nothing that dramatic. Just a guy who was on his cell phone, not paying attention. He struck the front of the car on her mother's side, killing her instantly. Her father was thrown through the driver's side window of the car...wear your seat belt. Don't make the same mistake he did. He hit the road head-first, and that was that. Laurel herself...the doctors called her lucky. They said it was a miracle that she wasn't badly injured. Somehow, Laurel didn't see it as a miracle. The fact that she lost her baby due to the stress didn't help. The grief counselor was a Catholic minister. He told her that God had a plan. She gave up on God that day. From that point on, she only had her music.
Laurel had always loved music. She loved to perform. Her dream was to be a cellist for the New York Philharmonic. Her friends always teased her mercilessly, but for her, drawing a bow across the strings was like magic. It was the time she was most alive, when she didn't have to think about the taste of Steve's cum in her mouth or the sinking feeling in her heart when she saw her friends pick on some poor kid because he was asthmatic. She studied music like a geek studied Star Trek episodes for minute details to debate with their friends. She absorbed everything she learned and put it in her head. She was a bright girl...graduated second in her class. And when she recovered from her accident, she took what she had and left Woodbridge Township, enrolling in Mercy College and their music program. She would be a performer. It would happen.
Sadly, it would not. She wasn't good enough. No matter how long she practiced or how many lessons she took, she could never make par with the other musicians. The best she could ever hope for was sitting forth chair to a low rung volunteer orchestra. What's worse is, once she hit Mercy, she realized it. She had to get better. Somehow, anyhow, she just had to get better. She would figure it out. Somehow, she would manage to make herself better. She didn't know how...and deep down, maybe she knew it was impossible. But still...she was going to try.
Niel Maxwell was her saving grace...she knew it. An instructor at Mercy, he took a liking to Laurel...or seemed to. She was a nice girl. And she was quite attractive. Maybe he wanted more...she could delude herself into believing he did easily enough. And she did. Even better, he was trying to help her become a better cellist. Unfortunately, his method of teaching seemed to involve more berating her about her inability to follow time properly then anything truly worthwhile. And meanwhile, she shared his bed...or rather, he shared hers. He was in love with her...she knew it. She certainly was with him. And together, they'd pull through.
And then came the day when she showed up to class to find Niel talking with a woman. She was his age, obviously not a student...and was that a ring on his finger? He'd never worn it before. She asked one of her classmates, and he told Laurel it was Alison, his wife. Her jaw dropped, and she quickly got up and slipped out as the tears began to form. It was the final straw for her. Her already terminally low self-esteem took an even greater plunge.
Heartbroken and dream shattered, Laurel sank into a routine existence. Wake up, go to class, sleep with Neil, nod at his insults and go to bed just to repeat the same things tomorrow. A living void. And finally, one May night in 2006, just before Memorial Day Weekend, she was in a late-night insulting session with Niel. Trying harder, and failing as always, when she just gave up. And at that moment, Melioth slipped inside.
It was a surprisingly hard-fought battle. The woman, despite not having anything to live for, held on hard. But in the end, she lost, and Melioth rose as Laurel with the sounds of Neil's panicked steps echoing in the distance. Her eyes narrowed, and she picked up her cello, putting it away. She had things to do. And a Defiler to contact, to let her know he--she...was okay.