Jun 2, 2017 11:10 PMCS: Harold Mackenzie
Full Name: Harold Mackenzie
Last Edited: 11:17 PM
Approved: 11:37 PM
This character has been marked as inactive
As a sannrjarfr, he closely resembles an anthro eurasian badger, tall and thick of body. His head is long and flattened, with a broad snout, and the characteristic black and white stripes. His stance is plantigrade and his tail is short. His digits are stubby and strong, with broad claws about 2" long.
He wears a kilt, a broad belt, a suede jacket, and a set of boots that leave his claws free. Curiously, the boots have latches down the side, instead of laces, sort of like snowboard boots. He usually carries what looks like a large guitar case, modified so that it can be carried vertically on his back. His belt and the guitar case are both chock full of travel stickers, pithy buttons, and various marker or painted symbols.
Around his neck is a lanyard with a wheel of life, a cross, and a Thor's hammer, though he switches up the combination sometimes. Hanging from the case strap by a carabiner is a bizarre dagger-like weapon, marked with letters by a sharpie, though from its appearance, it is clear that it's a plastic facsimile of an odd weapon. His suede jacket has four aluminum bracers, two for each wrist. Each is imprinted with a national flag. One of Scotland, one of the USA, one of Canada, and one of Norway. Aside from those, he does not appear to carry any weapons or armour.
Skills & Abilities
- Language Fluency
- Vocational History
- Education History
- Comb Training/Skills/Experience
3P world, an earth in which various gods of old have returned to the world to stake out territories
Hugr was born a human, on January 1st, 1951, in the township of Newport-on-Tay, Scotland. He was the youngest of four children, and originally named Harold MacKenzie. His parents were of modest means, but the family was tight-knit, and so he grew up in relative security with his two older brothers, and his older sister. Fresh out of primary school, he moved with his family in 1963 when they relocated to Manitoba. His father had ambitions of moving from the little family farmstead out to a bigger plot of land, so that he would have enough to divide amongst his three sons when they were ready. And so his father took up work on a pig farm near Brandon, while Hugr went back to school again. In 1965, the family relocated to a farm near Swift Current, Saskatchewan and settled in to farm grains and raise kids. Harold was a C student all the way through, but proudly graduated high-school before turning his attention outward. While his brothers were groomed to take over the farm, Harold really didn't see a future for himself in wheat and oats. He instead packed his bags to take a job as a derrick hand out in the oilfield, living near Calgary. He'd been clumsy on an old guitar in high-school, but began expanding his talent on the instrument with the lonely evenings away from his family.
He worked the blue-collar life in Alberta until 1974's oil shortage brought him an offer he couldn't refuse. Twice the pay to move to a different company. The only hitch was that he had to get himself to Texas to take up the job. His resume expanded as he gained more and more oilfield experience as a machine operator. He took a job with Exxon that had him up in Alaska in 1983, and was soon a supervisor of his own crew. In 1989, he suffered a severe shock to his commitment to the industry he'd been working for 20 years, when he was sent to take part in the Exxon Valdez spill cleanup. Afterwards, he took a year to go home and travel from Saskatchewan, visiting sites all accross North America and doing some volunteer work and quietly hoping to meet a woman that he could maintain a relationship with. At 39 years old, he was getting rather late for starting up a family, and was starting to feel left out of the holiday excitement as he watched his nephews and neices grow year by year.
In 1991, restless to get back to doing some work, he swallowed his reservations about oil and went to work on an offshore platform in the Gullfaks field, in the North Sea, since the spill-prevention regulations there seemed to be very much more stringent than those of the USA. Since he still had his UK citizenship, and wanted to reconnect with his Scottish roots, Harold took up residence in Aberdeen when he was off-rig. Finally, in 1992, he met a Scottish woman who seemed to be everything that he was looking for. She was a little younger than himself, but still old enough to have been through a failed marriage, with a 10 year old son in her care. Moving in together after a year, they married in 1998. Spending two weeks 'on' and two weeks 'off' makes for an interesting home life, but they kept it healthy and he took a great interest in raising his stepson.
August 2001, something truly bizarre happened. The rig shut down. All of the electricity was out, none of the launches were working, and all of the plastic seemed to be falling apart. Even worse, they had no way to contact shore. After a week of uncertainty and eating the non-perishables, finally a wooden sailboat arrived to take the rig crew to shore 40 at a time. The crew was a strange lot, dressed and speaking in odd ways, but after a week trapped on a rig with nothing working for absolutely no reason, Harold wasn't asking many questions. He awoke from a sleep in an alien body. After the initial period of panic, it was made clear by their rescuers (priests of Thor) that survival was not yet assured, and that in order to come through the following months without starving, and to obtain a chance at regaining their humanity, there was a lot of work to be done.
It took weeks to learn the truth of the situation, but once he knew that his family hadn't been subjected to the arrival of gods and the failure of technology, he did his best to adapt to his body so that he could do the work required to earn his own body back from Thor. But the work got incrementally less and less palatable. He was reminded over and over that these were only acts of desperation, that as long as he kept at it he'd regain his human body, as he began to clash with the footsoldiers of Loki and Fenrir over ownership of towns and stockpiles of tools and food. He rationalized to himself as best he could as he saw progress being made to re-gear the industries to working without electricity or combustion. The first winter, he relied heavily on the temple to provide for him, and Stockholm syndrome was setting in quite deeply. He was being rewarded for doing well, punished for disobedience, made to feel a kinship with his comrades-at-arms and a connection to the adaption of the local community to their new circumstances. His new body was young and tough, and the wardance was sublime. But he was still a soldier against his will, where he'd been a productive roughneck before. He trained obediently all winter, and in a particularly heated battle in the spring, he ended up killing two human men. The shock and grief of taking human life drove him away from the temple. He made his way to Bergen, and sent a message home. Days later, he received the reply, not from his wife, but from their lawyer. His wife had thought he was dead, but regarded the reality as even worse, there was just so much fear and disgust worldwide for the monsters that had invaded parts of Europe. The borders had opened again and he could return to Scotland if he chose, but he would not be going home to his wife, and he certainly wouldn't find work until human rights were ratified to become people rights.
Faced with the prospect of going home an outcast to face a culture of fear and a collapsed economy, or continuing his new life in Midgard, Harold returned to the temple that he had abandoned, and took on the title of Thorsveinn MacKenzie. He allowed the priests to counsel him, and began training and working with far more vigour than before. He was no longer doing this out of desperation because he was a prisoner, he was now a volunteer. He began learning the doctrines of Thor, and how to fight very proficiently with his sannrjarfr body using sannrjarfr techniques. He endeavored to be accepted by native sannrjarfr so that he might learn even more from them and accelerate his climb up Thor's ranks. He even earned the honour of being taught the Norse language with divine magic instead of struggling through years of subfluent learning. Months, and then years began to slip past. He earned more gifts, such as additional resilience to disease, and magically enhanced armour, and further improvements to his ability to wardance, as he continued to do his duties as a sort of enforcer-soldier-policeman. Killing in the name of Thor became much easier, both physically and mentally, as time went on. He increased his prestige considerably by recruiting and capturing unmarked humans to bear Thor's mark. By chance, in 2008, he met a human woman, a traveller whom he developed feelings for over the course of a few weeks. She was just so kind and exotic, a Buddhist who had come to the realms to see for herself what these new gods were all about. When she asked him to come with her when it was time to move on from Thor's territory, he of course refused. His work was here, with his unit, for his god. She had quietly disapproved of his 'work', but had learned enough about him to know that a great opportunity to save a lost soul was in front of her. He had not expected to see her again, but she returned after a month with 'a friend', and gifted a parcel to him. It was full of letters and photos from his brothers, his sister, his parents, his nephews, and even his stepson. He'd been without contact for almost seven years, and here they were pleading with him to return home, forgiving him his sins and promising that he was still their Harold no matter what he'd done or what his vain ex-wife had said.
Her 'friend' was revealed to in fact be his sister, having come all the way from her home in Saskatoon to find her lost little brother. To his great shame, he hadn't recognized his own sister. In the highly emotional hours that followed, she convinced him to 'take a break' from Thor, and come home for awhile. Turning in his weapons and his armour for the temple's use, MacKenzie left midgard and caught a flight home to the farm for an extensive reunion. Of course he was initially a curiousity, and readjusting to modern life in the new body was bizarre at times. But being back in that environment really gave him the support that he needed to analyze what he'd been doing for Thor and why. He entered additional therapy and helped on the farm, as the trip home slowly turned from a vacation from his 'real work' into a soul-wrenching retrospective of it all. He lived with his brother for almost 3 years, politely declining each of the requests by the temple of Thor to come and return to the important work. A turning point occurred during a phone conversation in which he was reminded of how close he was to earning a transformation back to being human. This had been a promise for 7 years. It was always just a little further away. When his rage (largely over how long he had allowed himself to be led into doing so much wrong with this promise) had calmed, he swore an oath: He would never inflict harm on another person again. He had been placed into a body meant for war, but would never again use it in that way.
Inspired by the woman who had jolted him out of the destructive path he had been on, he began exploring Buddhist beliefs, and found to his surprise not a dogmatic religion, but a philosophy that was as intriguing as it was exotic. Returning to Europe in 2011, he began to travel with her, learning how to meditate and how to view the world through the buddhist lens. Money was no obstacle. Between his careers, he had accumulated a very large reserve, which had been managed very well in his absence. Living very simply, he was able to use just the interest to support himself. Together, they hitchhiked and backpacked and occasionally took trains back and forth accross Europe and Asia. Gradually, he embraced the philosophies, and his companion, more and more. He became first a vegetarian, and then vegan. He adapted his martial training to a passive mode consisting solely of evasion, disarmament, and non-resistance. His wardance was already so well-honed that this new method developed rapidly, and he found a new joy in fights in which he was able to win without inflicting any blows, in keeping with his vow to do no harm. There were many places to help the poor and the sick, there were many places to just enjoy beauty, and there were many places to play a song for his companion and enjoy close company. Together, they even went to Midgard and Hellas, and he challenged himself to take on the good of Thor's teachings, without blindly following the dogma and organization. Neither of his names were appropriate any longer, so he took the name Hugr, because of its many meanings in Norse, all of which were fitting for the journey of redemption that he had undertaken.
In 2015, after a year of philanthropic work in Kazakhstan and the Balkan nations, he and his companion parted ways. His father had passed away, and she meant to take up residence in India, and he simply could not, as a creature built to withstand cold weather but not that sort of hot. While their relationship had been intimate, and they would stay close friends, things had just not seemed right for marriage or beginning a family together. MacKenzie returned home to Canada again to help his family through the loss, and took up residence with his sister for awhile. It was important to spend time with his family for long periods when he could, since his siblings were growing old, and as his mother deteriorated and passed away in the year following his father's end, they'd been forced to confront just how old they were getting. Hugr had been reset by his forcemark to being a young adult, and was now physically in his mid-thirties, but his siblings had not had such a benefit, and were approaching 70 years old. His neices and nephews had an array of children of their own. After two more years back in Canada, Hugr grew restless once again to return to Europe and Asia, and crossed the ocean once again to resume doing what he could to continue the atonement for his sins under Thor. It was not the same without his companion, and what had begun as a mission to relieve suffering through kindness, instead lost steam and became a quest to find what was missing from his life. Still travelling, he began meditating more, busking with his guitar to pass time between talking to psychologists, chaplains, priests, judges, soldiers, police, and anyone that seemed like they could offer a valid perspective on how it is that he could remove the stain of the horrible things that he'd done, and leave only the good that had come from the hard work and philanthropy and duty to his family that had been part of his life. The following year, he is nabbed by a migrant while hitchhiking from Simferopol to Sevastopol (Ukraine, December 2018).
Jun 2, 2017 11:37 PMRe: Harold Mackenzie
|Approved, with the standard boilerplate warning|