The Remorseful Rogue
From Unofficial Handbook of the Virtue Universe
((The inspiration for the Remorseful Rogue is simple - I'm a long-time (and long-suffering) mistress of original characters (read: mary sues) of all sorts of subjects, and I felt like sneaking inside City of Villains for a little while. Ro's powers borrow a dash of Rogue from the X-Men, her Arachnos background a smidgen of Eliza Doolittle, and the rest of her personality is a mixed bag of God knows what. This page is still under construction, and probably always will be, so feel free to send me a /tell and ask about anything still not completed. Thank you for reading! @electrablue))
"Let's just say I stepped on a spider... and he came back to bite me."
|Ro in Port Oakes, standing with the Arachnos posters.|
|The Infamous Tortured Remorseful Rogue|
|Real Name:||Rosemary Cline|
|Known Aliases:||Ro, the Rose Widow|
|Hair Color:||Dark brown|
|Place of Birth:||Boston, MA (Raised in Paragon)|
|Base of Operations:||Etoile Islands, specifically Mercy Island and Grandville|
|Known Relatives:||Mother and father, both deceased|
|Mercenaries / Dark Miasma|
|Absorption of others' abilities, including marksmanship, acrobatics, and use of the dark arts. She is also mildly empathic and telepathic.|
|Arachnos-issue assault rifle, soldiers to command.|
|Character is a work in progress.|
The Remorseful Rogue has a pale complexion, dark eyes surrounded by circles, and long dark hair that is often pulled back in a low tail or put up in a smart bun. During her first days in the Isles she was usually seen wearing an old khaki-colored trench coat, a dark red bustier, blue skirt, black tights, and knee-high stiletto boots, which were badly dyed a garish magenta. The latter were rumored to have been taken from a defeated Fortunata Seer or Night Widow.
The Rogue's dress appearance has changed drastically since then, but a few facets remain constant: she always wears a spider web pendant, the web itself made of hematite and the small red stone in the middle most likely garnet. She also carries with her a large Arachnos issue automatic rifle at all times. The rifle is branded with an Arachnos symbol which immediately marked her as a defector when she was running from the Spiders. Whether this was foolishness on her part - or some kind of unspoken message about where she wanted to be - is still unknown.
As far as her demeanor goes, she usually appears quiet and sullen around others. She occasionally displays a look of superiority around those who challenge her. For some reason, she is also sometimes inexplicably amused by unpleasant things.
Early Biography: Before, During, and After Arachnos
"Missing GIFT Darling Rosemary Cline Dubbed 'The Remorseful Rogue' in Botched Bank Job!"
Follow this ill-reckoned villainess from her home in Atlas Park to her year in Grandville and Mercy Island as a prisoner-slash-Pygmalion-project: read of Rosemary's oddly charmed life as Ghost Widow's charge (and Lord Recluse's seeming pet), then fast-forward and see her back to Atlas where she earned her moniker holding up a bank after a sudden, perplexing escape from her new home and its "hosts." Finally, hear of how she was sent to the Zig - where she felt no one could touch her - and was just as quickly spirited back to the Rogue Isles by Arachnos - the very forces she was trying to evade.
Rosemary Cline led quite a life of intrigue before she was thrust out into the hostile streets of Fort Darwin, and she and her creator would be very flattered if you'd care to read all about it.
- Main Article: Early Biography
Allies in the Isles: Making and Breaking Associations
Precious Bounty and the Dread Aces
Shortly after arriving back in the Isles and her last escape from Arachnos after the Zig, Rosemary met Precious Bounty, having escaped to Aeon University as a safe point. A young woman in a sailor dress was working at an inventions lab when Rosemary noticed her, took a chance, and asked if there was a place to stay near the safety of the University for sometime. The young woman, who introduced herself as Amelia, seemed skeptical but willing to help, and after hearing of Ro's story she let her stay in and out of her dorm room for several weeks. Amelia, an inexperienced sea witch, was only staying at the University until her pirate crewmates - from which she was separated, and so was thrown into the Isles by herself much like Ro - resurfaced and she could reunite with them.
After a life-threatening medical problem arose with one of Amelia's crewmates in the Dread Aces, Rosemary stepped up to help, feeling indebted to Amelia for her trust and aid. The crewmate in question required something that Rosemary felt sure that only she could provide: the blood of an Incarnate, which she carried with her on an old handkerchief. Alas, the plan was carried through without her and she was not needed at all, even after going through a lengthy induction into the Aces followed by what Rosemary felt was nothing short of an interrogation by their leaders. Having been prepared to betray Lord Recluse so deeply, Rosemary felt incredibly unappreciated by the new group. She was still grateful for the security, though, and the friendship of Amelia.
One of her closest allies during her time with the Aces was Mick Hawkeye, who was inducted (with his gang) into the group the same night as Rosemary, and he seemed to take well to her when the others didn't. He helped her on several missions, assuring her on her goal to raise her threat level. Mick was on good terms with Seer Pia Marino, who Rosemary had known from before her escape, and when Rosemary was called on to assist Seer Marino, Mick's advice - and future actions - would lead Rosemary to question her beliefs against Arachnos. (See "Cordial: A Return to Arachnos.")
When Amelia's mentor Eve Galley - a pirate sea witch like Amelia, but older and much more experienced, and the sister of the pirates' Captain - appeared in the Isles, she secured a safe place for the two witches to live on their own in Nerva Archipelago. Amelia left her dormitory at Aeon University, and, now without shelter, Rosemary considered sleeping at the Aces' warehouse. But she realized the setting (and roommates) would likely prove unwelcoming, so she moved into Amelia and Eve's small cave-house while it was still being worked on. Ro was again grateful for the arrangement, and Amelia and Eve were very welcoming, but all three of them knew it wasn't convenient for her.
Hollow Victory, or Lydia
It was around this time that Ro began to associate with Hollow Victory, a mysterious lady who was met by Eve at a magic shop in Sharkhead Isle and shortly later was saved by her. Though also a witch, Lydia was far different from Ro's friends - more into dark magic than white, and also claiming to be displaced from the late 18th century and tossed into the Isles with no idea of how she got there. Carrying an automatic rifle instead of a wand, Hollow Victory proved to be a force with which to reckon (and also capable of quick adaptation to her new environment, it seemed). Ro and Hollow Victory were introduced by Eve and Amelia and began working jobs together around September 2007, and while their personalities were and are still in contrast, they get along well and work together even better.
Lydia settled in Port Oakes shortly after arriving in the Isles, paying her rent with a fortune that inexplicably came with her. After learning about Eve and Amelia's still unfinished cave-house - and their compassionate but unfortunately spatially limited accommodations for Rosemary - invited Ro to move in after their working relationship had been established. They made good roommates as well, and when Rosemary began to feel homesick for the comforts and protections of Arachnos, Lydia did not condemn Rosemary. Her relationship with the Dread Aces was already strained, and Lydia's acceptance of Ro would prove to make the women even closer friends in the days to come.
((These villain associations are discussed quite a bit in "Cordial: A Return to Arachnos," as well as other bits of the page.))
"Cordial": Rosemary's Return to Arachnos
((New Developments are from September 2007 on.))
After her harrowing escape from the Spiders months before, why in the world would Rosemary Cline - "The Remorseful Rogue" - return to Arachnos? Is it for the chance to double cross them and make them pay for what they did, or is it for a more personal reason that not even Rosemary is able to pinpoint? Or is she just plain tired of running?
Click the link to read about Ro's appalling discoveries about herself (with the help of Dr. Shelley Percey), her rescue of Wretch and her reunion with Ghost Widow, her superstitious belief in the visions of the Fortunata and the future, the pardons she receives from the lady spectre and Lord Recluse himself - her two former tutors in the ways of the Spiders - and her choice of whether or not to remain in the Dread Aces... and whether or not to betray Arachnos just as she has been accepted by them again.
Come learn how the word "cordial" can be used to dodge anything, especially the things you're trying to conceal!
- Main Article: A Return to Arachnos
((Another long article, which is a lot more florid than the former. Again, if you want to keep reading - and you're really nice if you do - everything after this may seem a little murky unless you at least skim the article. This little summary doesn't do it much justice.))
((Transitions are from September 2007 on.))
The Pseudo-Night Widow
She knew she had been told - by the highest authority in the land - to be quiet, to be demure, to work villainy little and to practice . And Rosemary, eager to appease him, had obeyed - for a time. But Ro did not get her assignment right away after being a reinstated Arachnos citizen, and working as a mercenary for so long had instilled in her a restlessness. Besides, she and Hollow Victory were ready to advance to Threat Level 30. She told Recluse she would curb this after her reinstatement, but now that no vocal dissent of Arachnos was involved, it was easier to hide what she was intending to do.
It was then that Ro decided that she should attempt to combine her two sides - future Official Arachnos business and unofficial mercenary work - to reinvent herself in a sense. Using Hollow Victory's skill at sewing, she created a new costume to reflect her new position, which she termed "Pseudo-Night Widow." It irritated her Dread Aces friends, but she had already explained - or tried to explain - her unspoken feelings, and had already promised to resume helping them with her new position. It was an agreement that would be dissolved only months later.
Dissolution of the Dread Aces
((Beginning Spring of 2008.))
(Line from "Cordial: A Return to Arachnos") And so Ro's reinstated "cordiality" with Arachnos - and her ever-changing rapport with her always suspicious Dread Aces crewmates - took her into deeper territory within the Rogue Isles and her own ideas of loyalty.
As said in that article, this loyalty Ro felt was mostly in gratitude for only two of the Dread Aces' members: Precious Bounty and Eve Galley, who had unconditional feelings of friendship for her, and who had helped her during her first days in the Isles without suspicion. It would prove to Ro that her worries about the other Dread Aces weren't worth it when the pirate crew would inexplicably dissolve just weeks later. Now, only beholden to Amelia, Eve, and Hollow Victory, Ro could get on with her new life inside Arachnos again, and begin to focus on her new - or, rather, resumed - activities. She had received her work orders from Recluse just a month or so before and hadn't even been asked to help them once. Now she could use her position to help those who she chose, and not those who she felt were unkindly toward her.
The Worker Bee: Rosemary's Desk Job
Around early-2008 Rosemary finally received her official orders: writing propaganda in the office buildings within Ghost Widow's Lonely Tower and Fort Cerberus in Mercy. It sounded like just the job for Rosemary, who enjoys both desk work and "creative writing."
She currently spends about 4-5 hours every week day writing, editing, and organizing Arachnos propaganda material. This is all good and fun to Ro, but it's using her mag-card to get into "office supplies" she really relishes - not just actual supplies (such as bottled water, toiler paper and tissues, envelopes and stamps, even coffee and creamer) but also things like medicines from the infirmary at the base, strong boxes, and official paper which can be used for forgeries. This is what she would have offered the Aces, had they stuck around long enough - and placed enough trust in her - to accept what she had to give.
((Added February 2009: Since the addition of Day Jobs, Rosemary has begun work on both the Arachnos Agent and Demagogue badges. Considering I dreamed up her desk job at Arachnos as being in charge of propaganda, it seems as though the Demagogue badge was created just for her. We're really looking forward to getting Web Weaver as well!))
Helping Amelia and Eve
The first secret job Ro undertook was one of which she was immensely proud, and one that was very important - bringing medical supplies to a sickened Amelia, who had suffered a long bout of influenza (seemingly resistant to both her regenerative abilities and Eve's natural and magickal health remedies) and was now into a full-blown case of pneumonia. Abandoned by the Aces, Eve and Amelia had no one else she could count on to help the sickened pirate.
Rosemary placed enough trust in Recluse and Ghost Widow that, were she to have taken Amelia to an actual hospital, she was sure she could have gotten Amelia the best care without any unfortunate consequences. But Eve and Amelia were still hiding from Arachnos, considering it was the Spiders who took their ship and separated their crew, and so Ro obeyed their wishes. (She did not want to bring any undue attention to herself, either.) Braving Nerva Archipelago, she and Hollow Victory brought broad-spectrum IV antibiotics for Eve to administer to Amelia, as well as standard medical supplies and "staple" medications. Amelia recovered fully after her course of antibiotics and Eve's remedies.
((Beginning in late 2008.))
After tending to Amelia's illness earlier in the year, Rosemary's job became very routine for her, and she rarely needed to purloin anything at all. She took a break from mercenary work for a time, along with Hollow Victory, and in her off-hours there spent a lot of time in the company of the training Widows and Fortunatas. She began to notice that her empathy and mild telepathy was growing stronger, and wondered whether or not the women (and now men) training to become Seers. Hollow Victory assured her, however, that she had seen the changes coming long before Ro's official position in Arachnos was finally assigned to her. Frustrated, Rosemary began to work as a mercenary again, hoping it would ease her frustrations. Hollow Victory accompanied her, worried about her friend but enjoying resuming working.
But some new gained powers and a conversation with Ghost Widow would change things for both of them.
((More coming soon.))
Powers and Abilities
- Inherent: Mutagen
- RP'ed: Absorption, Empathy
Most of Rosemary's powers are absorbed from others who were experts in their fields. The initial absorption is what caused her to become able to improve them on her own. Eventually, all powers that Rosemary absorbs, and which seem to stay absorbed, become hers. The only one that she can completely call hers is a mutagenic compound taken from her blood.
Rosemary, exploring an Arachnos lab shortly before her escape, found several vials of her own blood marked with notes about some kind of mutagenic power. Having stolen the samples, and the notes, Rosemary is able to convert small samples of her own DNA into thrown attacks that explode upon impact, weakening foes. She does not use this often as the blood extraction process, while not terribly unpleasant to her, is lengthy and delicate. Ro learned more about this when Shelley Percey agreed to help Ro in return for Ro's helping her.
To learn about her RP'ed powers, please read "Early Biography" above.
- Mercenaries: Summon Soldiers, Equip Mercenary, Spec Ops, Commando, Tactical Upgrade
- Leadership: Assault, Tactics
- Inherent: Supremacy
Rosemary has always had a very influential personality, probably from having been overlooked at home or in social situations - especially class. It gave her the ability to surprise others with her odd brand of charisma and her no-nonsense, yet quirky intelligence. So far, Rosemary has gathered six Arachnos dissenters to protect her in her escape from the Isles. She knows most of them from her days in Grandville and Mercy Island, and they dissented around the same time she did. Her two soldiers are named Operatives Thorne and Mandrake, her medic is Operative Sage, her Special Operatives go by the names of TacOps Broom and Sumac, and her most dangerous commando is called Huntsman Castor. As their threat level rises, Rosemary is able to better equip them to fight for her, and, due to her unique command ability, she can encourage her soldiers and others around her to do even more damage and to fight more accurately.
Since Rosemary's return to Arachnos, her soldiers have come to support her - some grudgingly, but most with unwavering support for the Rose Widow.
((More individual information on Ro's soldiers coming soon.))
Marksmanship and Fighting
- Mercenaries: Burst, Slug, M30 Grenade
- Flight: Air Superiority
- Inherent: Brawl
While Rosemary's father was an expert sharpshooter during his brief days in the army as a young man, it's widely believed that Rosemary gained most of her knowledge of marksmanship from being around Wolf Spiders in Mercy Island. Some of her technique may be inherent.
She is not a particularly good hand-to-hand fighter, but has learned to knock foes - including flying ones - to the ground quite easily, making them easier to attack. She is also able to rifle-butt her opponents when ammo is out of reach or in need of reloading.
Physical Prowess and Defenses
- Leaping: Combat Jumping
- Fitness: Swift, Health, Stamina
- Inherent: Sprint
Not typically an active or acrobatic person, Rosemary has greatly increased her defenses, and her especially jump height, by absorbing these powers from someone with phenomenal physical prowess. It is suspected, since her work with Dr. Shelley Percey, that Ro was either unknowingly infected with the blood of Lord Recluse during her stay in Grandville - such as the Arachnoids were, but without the unpleasant side effects - or was around Recluse just enough to siphon this ability from him without his knowing.
Rosemary is not a terribly good runner, but is able to sprint away from danger when the time calls for it. This is likely inherent but may have been improved through her jumping ability, too. Her body also seems to repair and replenish itself at a very fast rate as of late; likely another of her absorptions.
Dark Arts and Preternatural Powers
- Dark Miasma: Twilight Grasp, Shadow Fall, Fearsome Stare, Dark Servant
- Flight: Fly
It is not unknown how, in the beginning, Rosemary became able to steal life force from her enemies and transfer it to herself and those around her. It is known that before her escape she was a close confidante of Ghost Widow. By being around her, like she was with Recluse, she was probably able to absorb and retain some of the Widow's dark power. In addition, shortly after saving the Ghost Widow's guardian Wretch, Rosemary seemed to have been gifted with being able to blend into her environment and deceive those around her with dark shadows, and given her great defenses against her enemies. Also, her ability to levitate herself also developed around this time, giving her the power to travel with the help of the air. Later, after she became accustomed to her dark powers, she became able to control foes with only her stare, which can inspire tremendous fear in her enemies. Afterward, Rosemary was confronted with the darkest of her powers yet - a dark servant to do her bidding, attacking her foes and healing her allies. ((Read more about this above in "The Faux-tunata."))
A Cliff's Notes Guide to Ro
((If you've come here through the tinyurl in my profile, welcome! This entire page has been a labor of love, but even I know how incredibly packed and wordy it is. So here's a quick overview of The Remorseful Rogue's life and exploits, letting you get to know her without having to read everything above this point. And if you do get interested and decide to take on the rest, then thanks! - @electrablue))
A Quick Recap of Ro's Past
So, if you have read all of the above, it may seem obvious to you by now that Ro's unfortunate and strange life circumstances, such as...
- Her father's assassination by Arachnos when Ro was seven;
- Her mother's neglect of her throughout her formative years;
- Her unexplained growing mutation, which made her feel both abnormal and superior;
- Her kidnapping at 20 and the witnessing of her mother's murder by Lord Recluse;
- Rosemary's strange "adoption" by Recluse and Ghost Widow as their own Eliza Doolittle, "the Rose Widow";
- Her sudden, unexplained escape from the bonds of Arachnos after one year;
- Her rejection from Paragon, her lifelong home, and their denial of sanctuary for her;
- Ro's being branded "The Remorseful Rogue" after her deliberately botched bank job...;
- ... And her trip to the Zig, the one place she thought she could hide;
- Arachnos' absconding with her from the Zig and her second escape, going into a lone life of mercenary work;
- Her difficult relationship with the Dread Aces and their ever-present suspicion of her;
- Making friends with strange witches such as Precious Bounty (who brought her to the Aces), Eve Galley, and especially Hollow Victory;
- Her reuniting with Ghost Widow just as her loneliness for the Spiders was at its worst, and the Widow's pardon of her in exchange for rescuing Wretch;
- Ro's learning of her possible future with Arachnos again from Mick Hawkeye;
- Lord Recluse's strangely nonchalant pardon of her, granting her a renewed citizen's ID;
- Her agreement to Recluse to stop her vocal dissent and visible mercenary work, while still wanting to help the Dread Aces (mainly for Precious Bounty);
- "Cordial" becoming her new term to reply to her sort-of-relationship to Arachnos;
- Her weak agreement to the Aces to double cross Arachnos for them, while still secretly wanting to remain loyal to the Spiders;
- The sudden, unexplained departure of the Aces, leaving Ro without worry regarding the ungrateful pirates;
- Ro's new job, by Recluse's order to keep her out of trouble, where she writes propaganda in a cubicle (and steals supplies for her witch friends);
- Designing her own pseudo-Night Widow and Faux-tunata (tm) outfits and wearing the Arachnos symbol during continued mercenary work, while simultaneously denying working for the Spiders;
- (She's not working for them, but she'd sort of like to now);
- And her deep, dark wish to quit mercenary work, move up from her desk job, and become the Rose Widow again...
... Might all have contributed to making her somewhat anxious, depressed, confused, bitchy, paranoid, and kind of broken thanks to all of this. And even though she can still carry on a decent, even lively conversation in Pocket D, it's still not all better, even though things are looking up.
Have fun chatting with her, or trying to dissect her thoughts. Either one. She likes the attention.
More About Ro's Personality
- As has been stated before, Ro is somewhat of an empath. She can't really read minds, but she can guess how someone is feeling, and if dealing with another empath or telepath, can also catch snippets of thoughts. Sometimes it becomes part of her absorptive powers, and her mood will change to match that of the person she is near.
- When she was a dissenter and still running from Arachnos, Ro would display a look or attitude of complete superiority when challenged. It was the visual or empathic equivalent of "I could have had you executed two months ago for that."
- If she is broaching a difficult subject to anyone, her normally nonchalant or dismissive tone changes to a deferential and guilty one. It's a weird personality change, like she's a totally new person or something. (She isn't, but still.)
- She is somewhat lazy, having been accustomed to being waited on in Grandville and Mercy. Her partner in mercenary work, the witch Hollow Victory, in in charge of teleporting her lazy ass all around Nerva, but doesn't seem to mind.
Did you know...? (Random facts!)
- Ro's theme song is "Don't Dream It's Over" by Crowded House.
- An alternate theme song would be "Don't Fear the Reaper" by Unto Ashes.
- She is also fond of the original "Reaper" by Blue Oyster Cult, as well as Billy Idol's "Eyes Without a Face."
- Yael Naim's "New Soul" is another song she likes. Ro enjoys music, but not as much as Precious Bounty does.
- Her favorite scent is Bath & Body Works' Moonlight Path.
- Ro's favorite alcoholic drink while living under Arachnos was a champagne cocktail made with Hennessy V.S. cognac.
- Since returning to Arachnos, she's enjoying them a lot more.
- Ro's favorite restaurant is La Voglia Matta in St. Martial (at the Golden Giza). She enjoys their spicy calamari.
- Has often seen Johnny Sonata play at the Golden Giza, and refers to him as "a douchebag ripoff of the movie Angel Heart."
- She has an annoying habit of referring to Grandville as "G-Ville."
- Before leaving Arachnos, Ro was a semi-regular at Pocket D. If she seems familiar to you there, she probably is.
Badges Most Often Used
- Widow (default) - Obvious, right?
- Agent Provocateur - n. a person who provokes trouble, causes dissension, or the like; agitator. This was a favorite of hers during the end of her days of dissent, probably to convince herself she'd be able to shake off feelings of homesickness for Arachnos.
- Arachnos Rising - Ro started using this one after her pardon, and wears it occasionally while in either of her Arachno-Bitch outfits.
Badges Ro hopes to achieve soon:
- Arachnos Agent - She's currently halfway to attaining her this Day Job. She and her creator are enjoying the extra XP bonus.
- Demagogue - Considering Ro's been at this for over a year now, being a propaganda writer for Recluse for over a year (in character, at least), she wonders why she hasn't just gotten this Day Job badge automatically. It's as if it was created for her!
- Web Weaver - Ro thinks this one is kind of sexy, for reasons best left unknown.
- Arachnos Official - The Rose Widow wishes she were made "official" already. This has a meaning no one will want to guess, but probably can anyway.
- Spider's Kiss - Completing her Patron Arc is something she's looking forward to, mostly for this badge. Okay, so that's what her creator wants most.
- Servant of Recluse - She's not likely to ever achieve this one, considering her creator hates Strike/Task Forces. Too bad. I think she'd probably take to wearing this one as much as "Widow."
- Ro's Creator: Ruth
- Global Handle: @electrablue
- Email: email@example.com
- AIM: amurderofprose