The Crimson Cutlass
From Unofficial Handbook of the Virtue Universe
C.C. is a swashbuckling air-pirate character with hints of her personality reminiscent of Errol Flynn's Captain Blood, Kara Thrace "Starbuck" from BSG, and the Dread Pirate Roberts from Princess Bride. The player of the C.C. is not copying the afformentioned characters, they were just used as inspiration.
|( Artwork by http://hugohugo.deviantart.com/ ! )|
|Real Name:||Sierra Haley Hawthorne|
|Known Aliases:||C.C., Crims, Captain Cutlass|
|Occupation:||Air Pirate Captain|
|Place of Birth:||Unknown|
|Base of Operations:||Confidential|
|No additional information available.|
C.C. is not a fundamentally evil or malicious character, despite her constant involvement in unscrupulous deeds. She falls more easily into the category of a free-spirited troublemaker out for crew and self. She is wanted by many shady organizations as well as authorities, mostly for the diversion of their shipments of goods and supplies.
C.C. has a very flamboyant personality as one might come to expect of any true swashbuckler. She is brave, reckless, defiant, and loves a chance to show off whenever possible. She won't back down from a challenge, and since she can't stand losing, she will often find a way to make a daring escape or employ other unsavory actions to swing the odds in her favor.
She is an absolutely phenomenal pilot. If it flies, she can fly it. This comes largely in part from being raised from infancy by her father, the original Crimson Cutlass, on deck of the Airship The Sooty Tern, where she began flying at age 3 with assistance from her father.
She is only loyal to those on her crew, and to them, her loyalty is unwavering. She will never willingly leave a crew member behind, and will do anything in her power she can to help them if they land themselves in trouble. As such, this makes her wary as to who she takes on as crew-members, because once in, they become family to her. She maintains her distance from them professionally, and would rather die than admit to it, but in her heart, loves each and every one.
As a leader, she is firm in her convictions but fair. She believes diversity is strength when it comes to the abilities and backgrounds of her crew mates which has led to a very colorful grouping of individuals she associates with.
The Original Crimson Cutlass
The original Crimson Cutlass was her great great grandfather.
Her father was Evan Julius Hawthorne, born March 3, 1950 in Anchorage Alaska. He took up the pirating trade and the Cutlass name just as his father and his father's father had done before him. Notably he was the first of the family to take the piracy from the sea to the sky.
Evan Hawthorne's heists and adventures during his lifetime were legendary. His Airship, and true love The Sooty Tern carried him faithfully all over the world, until his death.
Despite being from a long line of pirates, Evan J. Hawthorne carried a strong moral code of ethics which he instilled in his daughter while he raised her from infancy aboard The Sooty Tern. Like him, whenever possible she will leave her victims alive, albeit with a nasty headache the next day.
Her mother is an unknown, her father would never speak of her no matter how hard C.C. drilled him for information.
Famous quote: "The great thing about being a pirate is that the world is your oyster. Just don't get caught holding the pearl."
May 23rd, 2002 Approx: 8:43PM - The Tern and crew was on a routine raid off the coast of Rhode Island when several Rikti assault craft appeared. The initial shock at the strange new invaders in their airspace took the crew off-guard, but only momentarily thanks to the naturally quick flying skill and luck of C.C., her instincts kicked in and she was able to avoid a disastrous collision with the ships. Piloting the Tern through a barrage of missiles and energy cannon blasts, C.C. was attempting to fly to safety when her father ordered them to turn about and fight. The Tern was sorely outmatched by the alien technology however and took a critical blow to the port engine. Evan grabbed his daughter and tossed her out of the ship to the ocean below in the hope she would live. As C.C. watched from the water, the Tern was shot down by the Rikti, ending in a massive fiery blast. C.C. still blames herself to this day for not disobeying her father's orders and trying to fly to safety.
Post Tern & The First Rikti War
After the Tern's destruction, C.C. was left alone and hopelessly adrift on the open ocean. Still in shock but using the sky to get her bearings, she began to swim and didn't stop until she neared the the cape of Astoria. Suffering from hypothermia from being exposed to the cold water for so long, she passed out on the beach.
She woke up on a cot 2 days later in a make-shift hospital on Talos Island full of other victims from the Rikti's attack with no idea where she was or how she arrived there. According to the nurses and doctors volunteering, she was found wrapped in blankets outside the building. When asked her name, she gave her real one without thinking, Sierra Hawthorne.
Driven by her lust for revenge, Sierra left the hospital and tried to volunteer herself with the local military forces as a fighter pilot. However, with no records on file for her, she was denied. She took up the next best thing she could get, using her abilities as a pilot flying rescue team helicopters around the war-torn areas looking for civilian survivors. Her heroics, valor, and unorthodox methods of killing Rikti using only the blades of her chopper during the war awarded her with several medals, as well as being given an honorary heroes license.
Abilities & Assets
Acrobatic Reflexes & Fighting Prowess
Spending her entire life flying gliders and fighting alongside her father on the Sooty Tern has fine tuned C.C.'s reflexes. She is both graceful, acrobatic, and deceptively strong. She uses this to her in advantage in her fighting, often turning attacker's moves against them by manipulating their momentum.
Her fighting style is normally best described as being a dance-like freestyle hand-to-hand combat. This style has been left in favor of two blades she now carries on hips. She will still use whatever is available nearby to fight with if it gives her an advantange over her opponent however.
The Bandit's Blades
Crimson is now seen almost always wearing two cutlasses on her hips. One is her fathers, recovered from the wreckage of the Sooty Tern at the bottom of the Atlantic. The other is her grandfathers, recovered from one of the Hawthorne family troves.
Her skill with the blades is lacking, rusty at best, as she quit her sword training at age 18 and hasn't touched a blade since. Her reasons for the change in her fighting style seem to be twofold. The first is that she holds no hope of defeating her rival and superior swordsman Flint Pierce while fighting in her normal unarmed style.
More importantly to her, her father never did approve of his daughters choice in fighting styles, so, in his honor she has begun to train again.
(Work in progress)
A Rogue's Luck
C.C. has always had an unexplainable nearly permanent lucky streak for as long as she can remember. To her it is second nature, and she doesn't seem to pay much attention to it. To others, it often can be quite a fascinating sight once they start to notice the trend. Examples include; guns aimed at her will suddenly jam up, projectiles fired at her will not only miss, but often riccochet off other objects, hitting her attackers, etc.
One of the earliest known manifestations of her strange luck occurred when she was 4. She was wandering around the Sooty Tern unattended when she found the manual release button for one of the bomb bay doors. Finding a big shiny red button irrisistible, she hit it, opening the door while the Tern was flying over Tuscany. A crewmember stepped into the area just in time to see the sudden depressurization suck her tiny body out the hatch. Running over in a panic, the crewmember found her giggling and dangling by her suspenders from a loose bolt on the inside of the hatch door.
After many more such strange occurances, the crew of the Tern began taking notice, starting rumors that Sierra was the result of a union between her father and Lady Luck herself.
( Invulnerability power is RP'd as her luck. )
Piloting & The Airship
Cutlass' skill at piloting aircraft and helicopters is hard to match. It is her passion, and due to her persistent reckless nature, she isn't the least bit afraid to try death-defying aerial stunts. Quite to the contrary, she actually seems to get a kick out of challenges to her abilities in the sky, often goading any in her airspace to spectacular dogfights.
Currently she has in her possession a P-2 Neptune stolen from the Quonset Air Museum in RI.
The airship is a large flying base of operations for any respectable air pirate. C.C. is currently building her own from the ground up. What she plans to actually do with the airship after its completion is still a mystery.
( The Dread Aces base is the Airship. )
The glider is C.C.'s prized possession and primary mode of transportation. Made of lightweight titanium alloy, the glider has twin boosters on the underside, allowing for quick vertical take-offs. The glider allows C.C. to drift swiftly and silently on air currents from place to place. Due to weight restrictions however, C.C. can only carry up to an additional 50lbs without experiencing difficulty staying airborne.
Originally, many of the gliders were manufactured for the primary use of allowing the crew to exit the airship and board their seafaring targets while the main airship hovered out of gun range far above, usually masked in cloud cover.
Also, it is one of the few things C.C. managed to salvage from the wreck of her old Airship. After the explosion, the loose glider drifted off riderless, and on a later return visit to the shore of Astoria to pay respect to the lost, she found it tangled up in the some nearby trees.
The glider is currently most often used for her personal transportation but it plays an integral part for reconnaissance on shipments she plans to intercept.
( Super Jump is RP'd as her using the glider to get from place to place. )
C.C.'s charisma has in the past drawn together a crew of misfits from around the Rogue Isles. Alone Cutlass is not a huge threat, as she does not possess superhuman abilities. The loyalty of her crew is what truly makes her a danger, and she is not often found without at least one or two of them around.
- Human - C.C. doesn't have any apparent super-human powers other than her odd luck. When caught without her crew guarding her, she is considerably easier to deal with. She is also vulnerable to psionic attacks, her luck does not seem to help protect her from such.
- Drinking - Often drinks to excess, she developed alcoholic tendencies as her way of dealing with the loss of her father and friends. She getting better now that she has her own crew to look after, but relapses from time to time.
- Gambling - Loves to gamble, can't resist most wagers. This often leads to her getting in over her head.
- Hatred of Rikti - Due to the loss of her father, she has a blind hatred of Rikti. This has led her to act without thinking of her own safety in the past when Rikti are involved. She will go well out of her way to destroy them. This grudge causes her to distrust other alien races.
Exploits; Past & Present
A brief synopsis of some of the Aces past RP events:
- -C.C. and Jet Nitro stole an arachnos flyer that was on patrol around Mercy Island, and moved it around until they could get it dismantled. Due to her crew still being few, C.C. had to outsource and hire Hellcat Jones and his crew to pull it apart. The parts were transported and stored in the Aces warehouse for later use.
- -As Sierra, C.C. was able to gain a valuable tip on a cargo ship laden with expensive top of the line avionics equipment that would be passing briefly through Bloody Bay. Not one to pass up such a great opportunity, she called on the aid of The Boatswain Gregory Hardy, Dead Eye Jake, and Felis Noctu. They were able to successfully board the ship, overpower the guards, and hijack it. After some deliberation due to noone actually knowing how to operate a cargo ship, C.C. finally took the helm and made an awkward escape while the others fought off heroes topside. The electronics were successfully picked up and moved to the secret warehouse, and the cargo ship was intentionally sunk off the coast of Sharkhead.
- -Since the first heist in Bloody Bay, the Aces had been held accountable for several more cargo jackings in and around the surrounding areas. The local Longbow agents, unable to stop the raiders finally decided to make a call back to Paragon for more hero reinforcements to aid in stopping the thieves. C.C. knowing it is usually a bad idea to continue pilfering from the same place for too long, swore off making any more hits in the area.. that is until she heard of a very interesting set of engines worth billions each laden on a cargo ship that would be passing by off the coast. C.C. couldn't resist such a tempting target and organised yet another raid in Bloody Bay with her crew, Dead Eye Jake, Jet Nitro, Felis Noctu, Nujiru and Sungazer. Concerned about making sure there would be no problems returning to the scene again for, she had Sungazer bring in two powerful outsider allies to help, Fearghas and Kichi.
C.C.'s hunch about the possibility of increased resistance turned out to be correct, much to her surprise however, she recognized some of those who responded to the Longbow distress call as members of The Frontline. As the Aces and allies unloaded the engines on the dock of the bay, the The Havok Brothers, The Nitedevil, SincereAgape, The Black Spector and Celtic Arrow were gathering on the hillside above. The heroes staged several valiant and clever attempts to waylay the raiders, but all was for naught, the Aces had the advantage in numbers, and were able to hold the attackers off while C.C. escaped with her engines in tact.
- -The Aces, in the early stages of construction on the airship, had moved into a much larger warehouse they 'convinced' the Family in St. Martial to let them use. While now on the prowl for large amounts of titanium to begin the construction of the hull, an associate of Cutlass' contacted her with news of a large shipment of titanium docking in Independance Port. Quickly, she made arrangements to have several flatbed trucks left in the Port, and a ship in Siren's Call to transport the goods with.
Cutlass made a point to hire on Kichi again for the missive as her presence on the battlefield alone often turns the tide.
On the day of the heist, the Aces and associates Kichi and her protégé Vexx Vandal met in the Aces Warehouse, after a quick briefing on the mission, they filed out and met up at the coordinates given by Cutlass in Independance Port. Racing against the clock before heroes of Paragon would take notice of their activities, they quickly moved the metal onto their transport trucks and headed out to Steel Canyon. Their movement didn't go unnoticed as feared and a huge standoff between them and the The Frontline occurred as they entered Siren's Call from Steel Canyon.
The fight between the two factions began when the Frontliners attempted to stop the Aces, however, the strength of the Aces and associates was underestimated and they were able to fight the heroes off. Retreating with the goods after scattering the attackers, the Aces blew a flat on one of the trucks and were forced to stop, allowing the heroes time to regroup and attack again. Once again the Aces fought off the heroes, and once moving again they were able to get the goods to the rendezvous point with the transport ship. They were just beginning to load the stolen titanium aboard when the heroes attempted one more last-ditch effort, calling in allied heroes from all over to help stop the thieves. Hopelessly outnumbered, the titanium was lost, and Cutlass was almost taken into custody when her luck caused her to slip on a rock to avoid a fatal bullet aimed at her head. She bashed her forehead on a rock, rendering her unconscious while the heroes swarmed over her to push back her allies. Luckily for her, her crew regrouped and chased the heroes back long enough for Dead Eye Jake to grab her and retreat, leaving the goods behind.
- -In retribution for causing her such a major setback on the construction of her airship hull, Cutlass leaked information to the Rogue Islanders via the Radio Free Opportunity station on an imminent attack by the Frontline on the Arachnos base in Bloody Bay in the hopes enough villains looking for a fight would foul up their plans.
A small army of Rogue Islanders did indeed show to thwart the Frontlines plans. Under the direction of the Aces a small guerilla force gathered in the wooded area a small way away from the Arachnos base and waited in secret for the hero forces to arrive. Sure enough, they showed and while they fought with some of the Islanders, a surprise attack from behind from the Aces hidden force effectively scattered the hero forces, a decisive victory for Cutlass and her crew in the pursuit of revenge.
- - Cutlass and the Aces formed a tentative alliance with Graffiti Samurai and the Neverenders for a short period of time. The two groups were spotted in the Pocket D Monkey Fight bar making wagers and setting up matches between their two crews. This seemed to be a continuing trend as the Aces love a good fight, but eventually the alliance dissolved after clashes in Siren's Call and Warburg over more stolen airship parts.
- - Sierra began suffering from nightly dreams of her father, a vivid remembrance of her childhood long past, when he sat her down and told her the legend of her Great Grandfather's greatest hidden treasure trove. The deeply hidden memory sparked her into action, taking leave from the Aces for a few days to face one of her greatest fears. Visiting the Sooty Tern's final resting place.
She hired a Mr. Tompkins, captain of a small troller to take her out to the location, and donning diving gear she made her to the bottom of the Atlantic to the wreckage. What she saw down there she doesn't talk about, but when she returned to the Rogue Islands, her father's cutlass was slung on her hip.
However, the sword was not to remain with her for long.. not a few days later, the Aces were confronted and attacked by a childhood friend and rival of Crimson's, the traitor called Flint Pierce. Caught off guard, the Aces were at odds and the still unfinished airship took heavy damage. They recovered enough to chase Flint and his men off, but not before Flint had taken her father's sword from her.
Obviously such an attack and theft didn't sit well with Crimson. She was positively livid. She ordered the Aces to spread out and start looking for Flint's base of operations in the Islands. Once found, the Aces planned and mounted a successful attack, resulting in the destruction of his dirigible and a hefty toll of lives lost. The last Crimson saw of Pierce, he was falling away below her on the top of the burning dirigible.
- - After the guilt of the attack and loss of her old childhood rival subsided a little, she began to resume the study of her father's sword. He had told her in the story the secret of the Trove and how to get there was a secret embedded in something she would see with him everyday. As a child she never bothered to think more of it... but as the dreams kept appearing to her night after night, she remembered how he never went anywhere without his sword at his hip.
Sure enough, after studying the design on the hilt, using her training in astrological navigation she was able to draw out a general idea of the latitude and longitude of where her Great-Grandfather's trove might be located.
Taking Professor Morte and Graffiti Samurai with her, they left the next night to search for the treasure. With their help, she was able to find the location of the trove, and after bypassing several traps left by her eccentric ancestors, they were able to reach the treasure and recover it back to the Isles. The loot recovered would be enough to finish the construction of the ship, but also among the stashed items, Cutlass found her grandfather's original sword as well.
After her triumphant return to the Isles, it was not long before another snake would rear its ugly head. This time in the form of Flint Pierce. Alive, well, and full of vengeance for Crimson. He sought her out, sending Kameleon to find her. Crimson obliged Kameleon's request, unaware of who she was being led to see. As a normal precaution, Crimson made sure Jet Nitro cloaked herself and followed along. Flint confronted Crimson, and made a promise that he would not rest until he destroyed her, and everything she's worked for. The threat remains to this day, but Flint has since vanished.
With the Airship finally finished, operational, and properly manned by the crew, Cutlass and the crew finally set sail from the Rogue Isles to begin preying on sea shipping lanes as her father before her did. First stop, England. Once in England, the Aces caused quite the mess. News crews were able to capture footage of the massive accidental battle against some of England's heroes in front of the Buckingham Palace. Luckily for the Aces, Mike, the airship's computer came the the rescue, allowing the Aces time to quickly board and escape. This was the last time the ship or crew has been seen... rumor has it they may have been shot down or captured, but no proof has been offered up to confirm this as of yet...
(TBC - RP Plot in process!)
- Shade Wield - C.C. and Shade Wield have been seen sharing a drink and bantering on several occasions, and currently have a standing wager on who is superior in combat. Neither seem to be in a rush to test the other, however.
- The Nitedevil - Has been seen on numerous occasions turning down Randy Cole's advances on her in Pocket D. She seems to like playing pranks on him. She is particularly fond of the time she managed to get him so drunk off whiskey he passed out, thus enabling her with the help of Jet Nitro, to leave him tied upside down from an overhead beam in the bar with a hefty length of rope.
- Graffiti Samurai - C.C. has met Graff on several occasions, the first he was ridiculously dressed up as a cat - to which she has given him the nickname 'Cat-boy'. His claims to being a sky pirate irk her however, she feels he doesn't actually know what he is doing when it comes to piracy, and is simply a squatter in a derelict sky pirate ship. He revealed to her he keeps the ship in the skies above Paragon, so to throw a monkeywrench into his plans, during one of her routine visits to the Frontline base to check in as her alter ego, she caught up with Kiki Tindersnout and advised the destructive gremlin that if she finds their airship, it is full of candy.
- Jinn anne Tonic - C.C. met Jinn in Pocket D, when an arguement broke out between the Dread Aces and the Neverenders. A challenge to her piloting skills was given to her by Jinn which resulted in a plane race across Bloody Bay as Cutlass is easily goaded into such things. Cutlass feels she proved her flying prowess and won despite flying her slow antiquated P-2 Neptune.
- Hellcat Jones - As Hawthorne, she met Jones. She accompanied the drunken Jones out of Pocket D under the premise of helping him get home, getting him to give her his car keys in the process. She then dropped him off at the wrong hotel and stole his 1949 Mercury Coupe.
- Exadeus - Crimson and The Aces have worked with this egotistical villain at least once. Rumor has it he once challenged her to be the first to leave the Facemaker shop in St. Martial. Pride rendering her unable to refuse such a challenge, she allegedly spent several hours trying to 'out-wait' him.
- Manny de la Locust - Crimson met this friendly insectoid man during an evening of drinking at the Pocket D's club. Overhearing the plight of his people of 'Casa de la Locust' and their lack of "Gore-tex", she quickly hatched a plan and ended his dilemma by having Vexx Vandal slip over to the hero side of the bar and steal a few wallets. Manny at first felt this was wrong, but after C.C. explained that a real hero would gladly give up his credit card to order all the goretex his people would need, Manny caved and accepted her help. She finds him affable, but strange.
- Agent of Discord - Cutlass and her crew have run into this odd character on more than one occasion around the isles. He recently hired the Aces to run a recon job for him under the premise of piracy on a suspicious ship in the Atlantic. Cutlass seems to trust him, and does not seem particularly bothered by his strange mannerisms. It is rumored she once saved his life.
- Unchained Melodie - Mel is someone Cutlass has interacted with on many occasions though they have never really had a chance to talk one on one. Crimson finds her quite enjoyable to be around, and enjoys her interesting pyschoanalysis sessions.. even if she has been coined the Berry-Pirate from the last one.
- Thyra -
- Psyntox -
- Occasionally writes anonymous postcards to her deceased father and friends, chronicling her progress in the present. She drops these from the air over the site of the Tern's crash.
- Her first costume was a modified version of her father's original one, which included her father's actual mask and bandana. When not wearing her first costume, she still carries them in one of the compartments on her belt.
- C.C. is a 5th generation pirate.
- Her 'pirate' accent only comes out when she is highly emotional, fired up for a fight, or completely drunk. Otherwise she speaks normally.