Author Topic: August Flare  (Read 348 times)

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August Flare
« on: February 03, 2020, 02:47:28 AM »
CHARACTER

Name: August Flare

Age: 17

Species and Gender: Human Male

Symbol:  N/A

Occupation: 1st year Beacon Student

Appearance: August is relatively unremarkable, physically speaking. He stands at an average 5'9", has short brown hair, and he has a fit and slender body shape. Due to his lack of funds, even his best clothes are shabby and patchwork at best. As such, he tends to wear his Beacon uniform at most opportunities if at all possible, because he wants to present himself as well as possible. Unfortunately, this means that he has to clean his uniform more often, thus leaving it looking more and more worn as time goes on, just like the rest of his clothes. If he must go out without his uniform (either because it would get ruined or if he needs to keep a low profile for whatever reason), he instead wears a patchy coat that's well-worn and even threadbare in a few places as well as a ragged pair of pants with a few rips and tears in places.

However, despite all these traits, there are two details that make August stand out against the masses. Firstly, he has a "presence" about him. When he moves, it is with clear purpose, and when others meet his gaze, they more often than not unconsciously step out of his way. When he engages in conversation, those around him may find it difficult to step away until he dismisses them. Whenever he looks at someone, it is difficult to ignore his gaze.

This leads to his second notable feature: His eyes display an unusual bright orange color that shine with the ferocity of the sun. His gaze is intense, almost always giving off the impression that he's silently judging whatever he's watching. At the same time, his eyes betray nothing of his own thoughts, even as they seemingly bore into the very souls of those he's looking at. 

History: August's first memory is filled with fire. His nostrils are filled with smoke, his tongue can only taste hot ash, his skin only feels the heat licking off the flames. His is vision is blurred from tears as they try to wash away the smoke, and his ears deafened from a cacophonous mixture of roaring flames, distant howls, and his own screams. Everything he might have had--family, wealth, opportunity--is burning down all around him, leaving him with nothing but his name, his body, and the remains of the clothes on his back.

The next thing August knew, he was in a place called "Vale", surrounded by people he didn't know whose voices he couldn't understand. He had only just learned the very basics of language, and lacked the vocabulary needed to describe what he felt. He was confused: he didn't know where he was, he didn't know how he got there, and he didn't know where he was supposed to go or what he was supposed to do.

At first, the child cried. He wanted someone to hold him, to tell him he was alright. But no one ever did. He wanted someone to leave a light on at night, to keep away his fears. But the door was shut and locked tight, and the windows were drawn closed. Not even a night light was left to keep little August safe. And as crying proved less and less effective, August's eyes, which had once stared out into the world with brilliant intensity, slowly faded and darkened. The only thing left in the young child's mind was a single question: why?

"Why am I here?"

Because he had no family.

"Why?"

Because they were killed by Grimm.

"Why?"

Because they hunt people.

"Why?"

No one knew.

That left August unsatisfied. There had to be a reason beyond that. But the Grimm's menace and their animosity went unexplained no matter where he went. When he asked how they survived, he was told about their undying nature and their endless hunger for mankind. When he asked where they come from, he found no known origin. He asked why Grimm refuse to hunt animals, and was given no satisfactory reason. He grew older, and his eyes regained the emotion of frustration.

Eventually, he asked a new question, "What's the difference between mankind and other beasts?"

They didn't have the capacity for creation, they couldn't think, they acted on instinct; there were many answers, but the theme was the same: they were less than than humanity.

"Is that really such a great difference?"

Indeed. No animal could build such great walls or make such magnificent works of art. No beast could master the elements of science like man. No creature that crawled on its belly could wield such destructive weapons of war, no could such beasts resist the temptation to use them like man could.

These answers gave young August a sense of awe. He looked around him and saw the buildings, walls, clothes, and everything else that could only be created by man. He learned of the stories of great men and women who advanced society by leaps and bounds and wondered if he, too, could be like them. He was inspired, and for a brief moment forgot that he was alone in the world. His eyes filled with the feeling of pride.

He asked, "Are Grimm capable of such things, too?" Perhaps that was why man struggled against the Grimm so much.

No. A resounding answer.

"Then, if mankind is so great, why do we struggle against Grimm?"

Because they are many. Because they are unknowable. Because they defy logic. Because they are unnatural.

"Is mankind working to defeat them, despite these obstacles?"

Yes, humanity was united in this aspect, and August was pleased to hear this.

But then, he saw how mankind fought each other in what seemed like pointless, fruitless conflicts. He saw the White Fang perform their terrorist acts, and he heard the reports of people being killed. He asked those around him, "Why do people fight each other?"

He received many responses. Their ideals demanded it, or maybe they just wanted to be heard. Maybe there was no reason at all, or maybe the reason was something that couldn't be explained with mere words.

"Was this conflict necessary?"

No, many would say. The conflict was avoidable entirely.

To those, he asked, "Was the conflict meaningless?"

Yes, many would say. Because it was avoidable, people lost their lives for no reason.

"Is conflict with the Grimm necessary? Does it have meaning?"

Yes, on both accounts. The Grimm had to be stopped, or they would destroy everything. Stopping the Grimm meant saving lives.

"Then why are we not all fighting the Grimm? Why do we continue to fight each other?"

They fight because neither side will put down their weapons. At this answer, August's eyes filled with anger. Why fight pointless conflicts? Why kill people when Grimm already do that enough? Why point weapons at others when there are creatures far more deserving of lead?

But the minority opinion offered a different outlook: Conflict was necessary. If one side does wrong, it is proper to rebuke them. If one side oppresses, it is the others' duty to rise up in rebellion. If one side was weak, the strong must take over lest more succumb to the Grimm.

As such, conflict was meaningful. It honed our wisdom by teaching right from wrong. It taught equality, showing that every man is capable of fighting for a cause. It gave strength, and ensured blades were sharp and ready for any danger on the horizon.

"But does conflict not drive mankind apart?"

Perhaps it does, but perhaps that is the way it is meant to be.

"Would unity not be better to face the Grimm?"

Is it possible to unite such a fragmented people? Surely, it would be better to fight off the Grimm, but would it last long enough to properly finish the job?

August did not like that answer. However, he could not refute it. His eyes had gained reason, and as he grew older, he thought over his conversations through the years. He came upon 4 fundamental truths about the world he lived in: "Grimm were unnatural and deserved extermination", "Humanity was greater than Grimm", "Humanity was divided", and "conflict is meaningful". This, however, left him in an unsatisfactory state. If humanity was divided, then it is likely the Grimm will never be exterminated. Thus, the truth that "Humanity was divided" must be fallacious in some way. If Humanity could not unite, then Humanity could not exterminate Grimm, thus invalidating the truth "Humanity was greater than Grimm".

While he was contemplating this one day, August came across a man with a knife. The man was not there for chatting or friendly conversation.

"Why do you have a knife?"

Because he was going to hurt August if the boy didn't do what the man said.

"Why should I do what you say?"

Because the man was bigger and stronger than August.

"You must be pretty small and weak, if I am the biggest and strongest you can take."

The man wasn't weak, and August better shut up and get on his knees. August did no such thing. The man cut August.

August was scared. Perhaps he was terrified. But more than that, he was angry. This conflict was not necessary. Both his life and that of the man's would have been better off if they had never met. And then August came to a terrible realization: "Humanity divided itself pointlessly, and thus killed itself pointlessly". This made August upset. He did not want to die pointlessly, but, if he did, it would be this man's fault.

"You're pathetic."

Shut up. August did not.

"You should be ashamed. You pick on the weak to make yourself feel strong."

The man wasn't weak. August disagreed. The boy saw a trembling man, barely able to hold onto his knife.

"You'd be better off begging everyone everywhere for forgiveness for living such a squalid worthless life."

The weak-willed man fell to his knees, staring into August's eyes and unable to move or speak. The moment was silent, the man kneeling in fear, the boy staring with righteous anger. The man then begged for forgiveness and ran away.

August thought for some time on that encounter, and on his amended truths. If Humanity pointlessly divided itself, then they needed someone who could unify them. But who could do such a thing? He looked at the old politicians, who had succeeded in careers that relied on Humanity's separation. They were not suitable to the task, for while they had the experience and knowledge, they had benefited far too much from the previous system. He looked to the youthful huntsmen and huntresses, with starry-eyed dreams and with flocks of fans. Perhaps they were suitable, but they were too naive. Their vision was too short-sighted, scaled down to the safety of a single village or the rescue of a single person. They could not wipe out all the Grimm. He looked to the civilians, the everyday man and woman who made up the rest of society. They lacked the ability to lead, and could not secure Mankind's dominance. But there was no one else that in the world left to fill the role, save for one.

It was then August realized his final truth: "The only one who can unite the world is me"

Personality: To say August has a dominant personality would be an understatement. Whenever he speaks, his voice carries throughout a room and bears with it an extraordinary sense of arrogance. He openly challenges authority, questioning policies, opinions, and even orders of those who have the audacity to claim to be his superiors. To those under him, his orders offer no room for dissent or negotiation. While he will listen to the opinions of others before making a decision, once his word has been given there is no longer any hope for discussion.

Yet, in spite of this arrogance, August's words and actions always carry some air of respect. In debates, he never attacks a person's character, only their ideas and arguments. In conversations with others, he definitely gives the impression that he looks down on others as inferiors, but at the same time genuinely seems to believe average people are capable of achieving incredible things and should aspire to higher purposes.

August enjoys the Arts, especially those of language. Whenever possible, he will find time to read both classic and modern literature, especially works of great speeches given by those throughout the ages. He is a proponent of the idea that mankind's ability to craft art is the primary difference between man and Grimm; while the creatures are capable of innovation through their various and sundry forms, they will always be ugly, inferior creatures compared to the majesty and supremacy of mankind.

Speaking of supremacy, while August holds a very, very high opinion of himself, he is not a human supremacist. In fact, he is a strong advocate for faunus rights, and encourages political reform to end abusive practices by exploitative entities. At the same time, he condemns the actions of the White Fang as a divisive terrorist group that hurts its own cause through its actions.

August's arrogant personality can be quite abrasive to others, so there are very few that grow close to him. However, when people do take the time to understand him, August will take great pains to inspire loyalty in them. Through discussion, dialogue, debate, and shared training, he encourages those around him to aspire to better themselves, while instilling in them the idea of a possible world without Grimm.

When dealing with detractors and enemies, however, August takes a much different approach. If loyalty cannot be inspired, he instead chooses to instill fear. He truly believes he has the right idea in his thinking, and will not hesitate those that oppose him as examples to everyone else. "If you do not stand with me, then you have two choices. If you stand out of my way, you do the world a service by not slowing down progress. If you stand against me, you do the world a service by acting as a stepping stone for the world to enter a new age," to put it in his own words.

Aura and Semblance: August's aura takes on a stark orange hue, and he has an above-average quantity. However, due to his lack of prior training before getting accepted to Beacon, he has not learned any techniques or gained any particular proficiency in using it. He intends to change this, but for now he is left with nothing more than basic defensive aura.

August's semblance is not all that impressive: it's little more than a single-target fear effect that, at best, can stop an opponent in their tracks. To activate it, he only needs direct eye-contact with his target, though distance is a factor in how effective it is. In short, the closer August is to the target, the stronger the effect, with the strongest effects taking place at around a conversational distance. There are also many other factors that determine how effective his semblance is, such as the target's mood, disposition, tactical situation, moral standing, and potentially many more. In general, though, the more superior August's position is compared to the target, the more effective the semblance is. On top of that, once he has used it on a target, he can't do so again on the same target for at least ten minutes. Furthermore, the effect only lasts so long as he maintains eye-contact, and can only use his semblance for about a minute at a time on any one target.

The degree of effect of August's semblance can be divided into stages.

At Stage 1, the minimum stage, the target feels a sense of foreboding. If the target is trained in Aura detection, it might feel like the ping of a particularly dangerous enemy. There is otherwise no other effect.

At Stage 2, August becomes an object of fear for the target. While the target maintains eye-contact, they cannot willingly approach August, though they can otherwise move freely.  They can willingly break eye-contact at this point, but it takes a conscious effort to do so.

At Stage 3, the target suffers the same effects as above, but can no longer easily break eye-contact without outside influence and movement is slowed to the pace of a nervous walk. The target can still otherwise move about and defend him/herself, so a clever victim could try to move to a place that breaks the line of sight (such as behind a rock or tree) or fling dirt into the eyes of either themselves or August. 

At Stage 4, the target suffers the same effects as above, but can no longer willingly move. The only things the target can do of their own accord at this point is stand and speak.

At Stage 5, the target can no longer even stand, as the fear becomes so great that their legs turn to jelly and are forced to kneel before August. This is the most severe stage, and it is not easily achieved.

His semblance can affect Grimm, too, but they don't suffer the effects in the same way. If August uses his semblance on a Grimm, they generally will pause in confusion, possibly even stopping in their tracks. If they were in the middle of making an attack, they'll "think twice" before committing, possibly even choosing a different target to strike. This confusion generally doesn't last more than a couple of seconds

Spoiler: ShowHide
This portion of the semblance is something August keeps from people as much as possible, hence the spoiler tags. Read at your own risk, with the knowledge that most characters won't be aware of this true nature.

August's semblance is the ability to dominate people beneath him. When he uses his semblance, his aura literally tries to embed itself into the soul of the target. If he maintains this contact for a full minute and the target is in a sufficiently submissive position morally or spiritually, August can force a connection that binds the target to his will. When this connection forms, August can send telepathic communication to the victim, but the victim cannot respond in kind. This telepathic communication is not bound by distance. Whenever August gives a command, either spoken or telepathic, to the victim, the victim must follow the command or face consequences. The command can be literally anything, though August can choose whether to enforce the command (For example, August can ask for the salt at the dinner table from a victim without invoking his semblance). That means August can issue suicidal commands, or even physically impossible commands.

However, August's semblance does not restrict free will. Any individual under the effect of August's semblance can refuse August's orders, but it comes at a cost, and the cost is determined by what stage of submission August implemented the semblance under. Whenever the consequences for disobedience are about to be invoked, the target in question will feel a severe sense of dread as a warning. The earliest stage August can impose his true semblance on someone is Stage 3, and any individual under the effect of this semblance without the protection of aura will most likely die if they disobey.

Those with aura, however, will experience adverse effects as a result of disobedience. At Stage 3, a hefty chunk of aura is damaged as August's semblance literally rips into the soul, and if the individual has unlocked their semblance, they will lose the ability to use it for about 30 seconds. At Stage 4, a much larger chunk of aura is damaged, and semblances are locked from use for an hour. At the highest stage, Stage 5, disobedience is highly likely to result in death, unless the victim is particularly hardy. If they do survive, their semblance will be lost to them for the day.

On the bright side, punishment for disobedience can only occur once per day, and, unless August is watching, he won't know if someone has disobeyed his orders. While disobedience can result in a hefty handicap, it is still entirely possible to ignore August while under these effects. Furthermore, the connection only lasts for 30 days, unless August resets it.

There is one exception to a target's free will: they cannot willingly directly attack August or knowingly cause him harm while under the effects. There is no punishment for attempting, however they will be unable to follow through on any attempt, as if they were physically restrained by an invisible force.


Combat Behavior:  August's training is minimal and basic at best. He can handle direct combat with most common forms of Grimm, such as Beowolves, Boarbatusks, and the like, and can survive long enough against the more dangerous Grimm for backup to arrive. However, he's at a severe disadvantage against other thinking opponents, due to his lack of nuanced fighting capabilities and a semblance poorly suited to direct combat. And while he might be more suited to a commanding role, his lack of experience can still easily lead to a tactical misstep, potentially leading any team he's leading to their deaths.

His best attributes by far are his charisma and intelligence. His biggest strength is his ability to critically analyze the moral and practical positions of different groups and find weak points in ideological thinking, while at the same time communicating those flaws in such a way that's easily digested by a layman. As such, he's very skilled at demoralizing the enemy, to the point that he can even inspire some members to drop their arms or even switch sides. At the same time, August holds such a conviction in himself that he can inspire the people around him to take up arms and fight for him. If given the opportunity to play politician, August can potentially draw enough of a force to make any plan work through sheer manpower.

The only danger to this is when he's matched by someone with equally powerful charisma, who can attack his own points and reputation. If he loses a moral debate, especially publicly, especially if he loses in combat as well, August's public support will wane and his biggest strength can be turned against him. At the same time, this can work both ways; if August wins in a public arena both in a moral case and in the battlefield, the potential gains could be tremendous. Furthermore, August's semblance acts as an ace-in-the-hole, allowing him to "win harder" if he manages to start successfully eroding his opponent's case.
 
WEAPON

Name: N/A

Primary Form: August's weapons consist of a simple long sword and pistol. It's all he can afford.
(Hexcode = FFA400)
Smokey Emberstone Beacon 1st Year and the Immovable Gunslinger of Team DASE "I've got more than enough firepower to beat you" "You've only got one bullet!" "Like I said, more than enough"

Aurelia Lumen Beacon 3rd year and the Warhorse of Team (TBD)  "Lay down your weapons, lest you wish to taste my steel!"

Wabul "Toast" Paka Shade 1st year and the Acrobatic Swashbuckler of Team (TBD)  "Hey, I'm gonna go jump off a bridge, who's with me?"

Lucas Meridiem Haven 4th year and the Hermit of Team (TBD)  "What's so great about 'bittersweet'?"

Clara Meridiem Beacon 1st year and the Blast Magician of Team (TBD) "No one likes just plain ol' bitter"

August Flare Beacon 1st year and the would-be ruler of the world "Join me, and witness the Brightest Future!"

Hexcodes:
515151
FFD700
E55812
CCE9AE
Cyan
FFA400

Metroidhunter

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Re: August Flare
« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2020, 07:03:42 AM »
+1
Isabelle Aozora - The Scaredy-Cat
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Iris Anahi Isoba - The All-Seeing Eye [Soon™]

Aegis

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Re: August Flare
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2020, 05:00:18 PM »
Approved and moved