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WHISPER
WHISPER
Taj Saubel
Cost Characteristic Value Roll Notes
5 STR 15 12- Lift: 200.0kg; HTH: 3d6; END: [1]
30 DEX 20 13- OCV: 7  DCV: 7
20 CON 20 13-
0 BODY 10 11-
3 INT 13 12- PER Roll: 12-/16- (Hearing)
2 EGO 11 11- ECV: 4; Mental Defense: 0
4 PRE 14 12- PRE Attack: 2d6
2 COM 14 12-
4 PD 7   Total: 12 PD (5 rPD)
3 ED 7   Total: 12 ED (5 rED)
10 SPD 4   Phases: 3, 6, 9, 12
0 REC 7   Running: 6" / 12"
5 END 50   Swimming: 2" / 4"
7 STUN 35   Super Leap: 28" Forward / 14" Up
 
WHISPER | Summary
Real Name: Taj Saubel Hair Color: Black
Concept: Energy Blaster Eye Color: Brown
Affiliation: The Sultans Height & Weight: 5' 11" (1.80 m) / 159 lbs (72.00 kg)
Played By: Ben Langdon Date of Birth: December 6, 1985
Created By: Ben Langdon Place of Birth: Brooklyn, New York, USA
Cost Powers END
40 Sound Manipulation: Multipower, 50-point reserve, (50 Active Points); all slots Powers Do Not Work In A Vacuum (-)
3u 1) Instinctive Reduction Of Sound: Hearing Group Flash Defense (20 points), Usable Simultaneously (up to 8 people at once; +1) (40 Active Points); Other People Must Remain Within 6" Of Whisper (-) 0
4u 2) Shout: Hearing Group Flash 13d6, Does Knockback (+) (49 Active Points) 5
3u 3) Shroud Of Silence: Darkness to Hearing Group 5" Radius, Selective Target (+), Reduced Endurance (0END; +) (50 Active Points); No Range (-) 0
4u 4) Sonic Boom: Energy Blast 10d6 (50 Active Points) 5
3u 5) Sonic Jump: Leaping +25" (28" forward, 14" upward) (Accurate) (30 Active Points) plus +20 PD (20 Active Points); Only To Protect Against Damage Incurred During Super Leap (-1) 3
2u 6) The Shattering: Tunneling 2" through 15 DEF material (49 Active Points); Extra Time (Full Phase, -), Instant (-) 5
4u 7) Ultrasonic Blast: Energy Blast 4d6, Invisible to Normal Hearing and Sight (+), No Normal Defense (Flash Defence (Hearing); +1) (50 Active Points) 5
2u 8) Volume Switch: Hearing Group Images Increased Size (16" Radius; +1), +/-6 to PER Rolls (23 Active Points); Only To Increase Or Decrease Existing Sounds (-1) 5
15 Whispering: Elemental Control, 30-point powers
15 1) Don't Make A Sound: Invisibility to Hearing Group and Radar , No Fringe, Reduced Endurance (0END; +) (37 Active Points); Lockout: Cannot Use Any Other Powers (-) 0
7 2) Reflexive Shielding I: Energy Damage Reduction, Resistant, 50% (30 Active Points); Only Versus Sound-Based Attacks (-1) 0
7 3) Reflexive Shielding II: Physical Damage Reduction, Resistant, 50% (30 Active Points); Only Versus Sound-Based Attacks (-1) 0
15 4) Rippling Effect: Force Wall (14 PD/10 ED) (60 Active Points); Concentration, Must Concentrate throughout use of Constant Power (0DCV; -1), No Range (-), Limited Coverage (Front) 180 Degrees (-) 6
10 Reflexive Shielding III: Hearing Group Flash Defense (8 points), Hardened (+) (10 Active Points) 0
3 Sensitive Hearing I: Ultrasonic Perception (Hearing Group) 0
8 Sensitive Hearing II: +4 PER with Hearing Group 0
9 Sensitive Hearing III: +6 versus Range Modifier for Hearing Group 0
8 Biker's Jacket: Armor (5 PD/5 ED) (15 Active Points); OIF (-), Real Armor (-) 0
Cost Talents
3 Human Synthesiser: Perfect Pitch (+1 with Music-Related Abilities)
Cost Skills
1 AK: Seattle, Washington, USA 8-
3 Breakfall 13-
3 Combat Driving 13-
0 Everyman Skills
AK: Brooklyn, New York, USA 11-
Acting 8-
Climbing 8-
Concealment 8-
Conversation 8-
Deduction 8-
Language: English (idiomatic)
Paramedics 8-
Persuasion 8-
Shadowing 8-
Stealth 8-
TF: Small Motorized Ground Vehicles
12 Jack of All Trades (Musician)
PS: Music Composer (2 Active Points) 11-
PS: Musician: Guitar (4 Active Points) 13-
PS: Musician: Piano (2 Active Points) 11-
PS: Musician: Singer (4 Active Points) 13-
PS: Single Parent 11-
PS: Street Kid (2 Active Points) 11-
2 KS: American Criminal Legal System 11-
2 KS: Independent Music Scene 11-
4 Language: Spanish (idiomatic)
3 Lockpicking 13-
2 SS: Psychology 11-
1 SS: Sonics 8-
1 Security Systems 8-
3 Stealth 13-
1 Streetwise 8-
2 Survival (Desert, Urban) 8-
0 TF: Two-Wheeled Motorized Ground Vehicles
175+ Disadvantages
20 Dependent NPC: Lily Saubel (six-year old daughter) 11- (Incompetent)
10 Dependent NPC: Mara Saubel (aunt) 8- (Normal)
5 Money: Poor
20 Normal Characteristic Maxima
5 Physical Limitation: Migraines (Infrequently, Slightly Impairing)
10 Physical Limitation: Nosebleeds (Frequently, Slightly Impairing)
15 Psychological Limitation: Hero's Code (Always Fight Fair, Save Innocents) (Common, Strong)
20 Psychological Limitation: Will Not Kill (Common, Total)
1 Quirk: Afraid He Will Lose Custody Of Lily
1 Quirk: Armchair Psychiatrist (Wants To Be Like His Mom)
1 Quirk: Can't Help Eavesdropping On Nice Rich People, Especially Families
1 Quirk: Finds Himself Playing Country And Western Music To Make Money Even Though He Hates It
1 Quirk: Secretly Wants To Be The Next American Idol
15 Social Limitation: Secret Identity (Frequently, Major)
0 Experience Points
WHISPER | Points Summary
Characteristics Cost: 95 Base Points: 175
Powers Cost: 162 Disadvantages: 125
Talents Cost: 3 Total Experience: 0
Perks Cost: 0 Spent Experience: 0
Martial Arts Cost: 0 Unspent Experience: 0
Skills Cost: 40 Total Points: 300
Background

Taj Saubel thought he was a tough guy around the streets of his home in Brooklyn. While his mother worked in Manhattan he was left alone to grow up among the other kids who seemed to spill out onto the streets every morning, and by the time he was fifteen he was among the most influential and well-liked of his neighborhood. The girls hung off him and the guys listened when he spoke.

But then his mom brought her work home with her.

She was a psychiatrist who specialised in court testimony, particularly in organised crime cases. Taj didn't pay much attention to her work and she didn't have much time to watch her son, but when his mother somehow got on the wrong side of a hitman all chances for a happy family were shot to pieces.

Taj woke up to the sound of gunfire. It was like a thunderous applause at a monstrous concert. Each bullet seemed to thud into his walls, the sound lodging in his heart. The gunfire was followed by shouts and screams and agony, but everything seemed to fade, to simply melt away...

Taj hid under his bed. He pulled himself into a ball and prayed to God that he wouldn't be found. His bedroom fell silent. Too silent. He couldn't even hear his own breathing, or the door as it was kicked open. But Taj scrunched up his eyes and kept praying.

When he opened them, he realised he had survived.

He ran out of the apartment, not even waiting to see his mother. He had to see Carrie, the girl who had been closer to him over the past year than his mother, and he had to see Lily. It was all he knew.

The hitman had waited. And the hitman followed the distressed teenager.

Taj Saubel thought that he was in control of his world, that everyone woke up each day just to see what he was going to do. His mother had woken most mornings with a smile for him, and Carrie had been his girl for over a year. There had been others, but Carrie had been the one. When she got pregnant, Taj felt panicked, but she talked him around. She was older than him. She said she could handle it. Taj knew she would make everything okay. Carrie had that way about her.

But all he brought Carrie was death. Seconds after he burst through her door, pushed passed her aunt and barged into her bedroom, gunfire was spraying around the apartment, seeking him out. The hitman cut down Carrie's aunt and then cornered Taj in the bedroom. Gunfire erupted. Taj shut his eyes.

Again.

Carrie screamed.

Lily started to cry.

And then silence.

Taj opened his eyes and saw bullets spraying through the room. He had Lily in his arms and the air between him and the gunman was shimmering. Bullets were bouncing away. He looked to the left in the unearthly silence.

Carrie was shot.

Taj shook his head and shouted but no sound came out. He backed up to the wall, felt the window and jumped. Lily was against his chest, his arms protecting her, and as he fell it seemed like the world was just waking up.

Noise returned.

Horns. Birds. Arguments from next door.

And then the sound of broken glass as he landed on a discarded window in the dumpster. Pain shot up his back, but he shook it off and rolled out of the dumpster, already running for his life from the Mob.

He didn't stop running for two months. He read about his mother and Carrie in the newspapers, but he dared not go to the police. He remembered his mother telling him that the mafia-types owned anything in a uniform. Every time he saw a police man or a fire man, Taj saw corruption. Every time he saw a man in a dark coat he saw a gangster.

He took buses and hitched rides, all the while keeping Lily safe. He told people she was his little sister and they were going home... home to a family.

The bus line ended at Seattle and Taj realised he couldn't keep running. He knew they would take Lily away, take her to an institution and leave him at the bottom of a river. Everything seemed hopeless. Death seemed imminent, although it had taken nearly two months to catch up with him.

But then the Outsiders found him. Instead of running away he realised he had been running towards them all that time. They were young and lost kids, just like him. They had no family except themselves, and they had no trust in the authorities to make sure things worked out.

And they were a little more than your usual street kid, too.

Like him, the Outsiders were ubers, and for the first time he truly realised how much he had changed from the confident young Hispanic kid from Brooklyn.

They called him Whisper.

___________________________________________________________________

Six years later, Taj lifted his motorcycle helmet and sighed after a long ride down from Los Angeles. He looked around at the reservation, his eyes drawn to the Morongo Casino where a limousine had just pulled away. A woman walked towards him, her skirt billowing in the hot wind as she held her hair steady with one hand. She was smiling at him.

"You must be Taj," she said, and he realised her smile reminded him of his mother. "I'm glad you could make it."

They shook hands.

Tamara Saubel was his mother's sister, her secret sister. Taj never knew his mother came from California, nor that she was Cahuilla as well as Hispanic. It seemed that his mother had run away from Riverside County after a fight with her father and she never looked back. New York City drew her in with its promise of a better, more anonymous, life. Taj looked at Mara and she let him, keeping quiet as he reconciled himself with a previously unknown part of his heritage.

"Satisfied?" she asked after a while.

He shrugged.

Since turning eighteen he had left Seattle and worked his way down the coast, picking up work where he could and playing gigs where they let him. He and Lily had always had enough to eat and they usually had a roof over their heads, but life was still not turning out to be as lavish and romantic as promised. Taj sang and strummed his guitar, but he hadn't cracked the music scene, and he was finding it more and more difficult to ignore the part of him which tried to convince him that he never would. 

Mara had tracked him down somehow.  It was all very mysterious or convenient - Taj couldn't work out which. She said something about seeing a poster with his name on it at UCLA, advertising a concert where he was the fourth act - only one song while the support band went and shot up heroin. It wasn't glamorous, but Mara had seen his name and her curiosity was piqued.

"So here we are," Mara said, almost as if reading his thoughts.

He looked around again. It was warm, the sun was high in the sky and everything looked so big and so wide open. The San Bernardino range framed the reservation and he couldn't help but think that he was lost in another world.  The air actually had a different taste - almost like freedom or hope. Memories of his life in the tunnels beneath Seattle flashed through his mind, the darkness and uncertainty lurking just below the surface. This was almost the opposite world: no walls, no dark corners where dark things dwelt.

He thought, too, of Lily. She needed to start school. She needed stability, an education.  A real shot at life.

"Are you sure we can stay, I mean for a while," he asked.

"You're part of us, Taj. You're my nephew.  You're Cahuilla, family. If you didn't stay we'd feel insulted."

He tried to smile.

"I don't want to impose or anything," he added. "I'll work."

"And you'll work hard," Mara added as she slid her arm around his waist and turned him to the 4WD which was parked on the side of the driveway. "You and Lily will stay with me until we work out a better arrangement. And play your cards right, we might even get you up on stage singing to the tourists."

"What sort of music?"

"Have you heard of Keith Urban?"

Personality

When he first started running, Taj had been traumatised by death and the ensuing paranoia that people were trying to kill him and take Lily away. He had withdrawn into himself, changing from an outspoken and cocky young kid from New York, into a quiet and watchful young father.

He is still cautious, but he has grown into a strong and capable young man, perhaps even a hero of sorts. When he is relaxed, usually in his own company, he returns to the Brooklyn kid he was before. And while his dreams are still as wild and unattainable as they were when he first arrived in Seattle, now that he is in his early twenties he finds that most times when he is asked to play music it is country and western, rather than the alternative scene which he so desperately wants to be a part of. He does it for the money of course, but hates it and finds it very uncomfortable up on stage wearing a cowboy hat.

Since arriving in southern California he has come into contact with the Cahuilla reservation. The news that he has family here has shocked him and for the first time in six years he is living with a blood relative, an aunt who looks so much like his mother. Whether he will embrace his Cahuilla heritage remains to be seen, but he is thankful for Mara, especially as she helps to look after young Lily.

Quote

"Let's keep this quiet, okay?"

Powers

Whisper is able to manipulate the sound in his immediate area, whether intensifying it or dampening it. When his powers first manifested, he was able to completely turn the sound off thrusting him into absolute silence. Since that time he has also shown the ability to restrict the silence field to just himself which enables him to walk silently. He has also been able to generate almost solid constructs of sound such as barriers which have served to protect him from gunfire.

Normally he uses his powers to keep his illicit activities quiet, enabling him to bypass security checks and cover the noise of breaking and entering. He also used to employ his powers occasionally to dampen Lily's cries, although every time he did that he felt intense guilt. He found it difficult raising a baby, especially in the hard world of the Outsiders.

Taj has been incredibly fast at learning new ways of utilising his powers and since joining the Outsiders as a teenager, and came to realise that his powers really are a gift. He enjoys using them and marvels at his growing power - but at the same time he is also incredibly frightened by the idea of coming across other, more powerful ubers - or of losing control of his powers.

Recently he has begun to have frequent blood noses when he uses his more aggressive powers, and at times he has also bled from his eyes and ears. This has worried him and he has contemplated giving up using his powers once and for all rather than risk permanent damage to himself. Of course, given his background, Taj hasn't seen a doctor about the problem.

Appearance

Taj is a young hispanic man in his early twenties with short black hair, usually shorn to a crewcut. He wears a leather jacket over a white singlet top, and sometimes an open-buttoned flannel shirt. He wears hardy trousers and red and white basketball shoes. His material possessions rarely add up to more than his motorbike, a faded and torn satchel, and his guitar.