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Heather Mason ([personal profile] foolishwren) wrote2013-04-12 07:37 pm
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Montauk Application

Name: Kit
Personal DW: [personal profile] phantastus
Email: psychologyseaurchin(at)
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AIM: Phantastus
Plurk: Phantastus

Character name: Alessa Gille-- Cheryl-- Heather Mason
Character Journal(s): [personal profile] foolishwren
Canon: Silent Hill (3), the game series. The movie canon, comics, Silent Hill: Shattered Memories and other spinoffs/alternate universes are not part of her continuity.
Point of Origin: 3-4 months post-game.
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Heather is seventeen and looks it. Although not terribly tall (about 5'3" by rough estimate), she's got that scrawny, stringbean look of a classic tomboy-- lightweight and speedy, but with a certain stockiness to her as well. She might be lanky and short, but there's nothing fragile or delicate about her build. Even if she's not all that muscular, what she does have is sturdy.
She keeps her hair cut short in a messy, flyaway fashion that's sort of all over the place, rarely doing anything fancy with it beyond making sure it isn't a total bird's nest. As a result, it's frequently full of split ends and her black roots (she's a bottle-blond) are usually visible.
Her eyes are on the browner end of hazel, even looking orange-ish or amber in certain lights, and frequently are tender-looking, puffy and shadowed due to poor sleeping habits.
Her skin is fair but prone to blemishes, with a healthy smattering of freckles (and zit scars) splotched across her cheeks and shoulders. Joining those are an impressive number of scars of more violent origins, scattered across her body. Nothing particularly leaps out as WHOA MAMA THAT'S ONE UGLY STAB-MARK, but anyone staring straight at her flesh might get the impression that she's either seen her fair share of scuffles, or spent her childhood jack-knifing off her bike all the time (which is actually also pretty accurate, so there you go). Silent Hill was kind enough not to leave evidence of the many times she died horribly in its boundaries (fortunately having a twitchy, grotesque guardian angel revive her from getting torn apart by monsters involved arcane magic more than it did literally stitching her back together like Frankenstein's monster), but it certainly did leave her plenty of physical reminders of the many bumps and bruises she took in the Otherworld before finally getting to leave.

Background: Heather's complete history is told pretty thoroughly between this Wiki article on Alessa, her past life self, focusing on her role in the events of Silent Hill(s) 0 and 1, and this article focusing on Heather's reincarnated life and the events of Silent Hill 3.

The Book of Lost Memories is another good resource for the history if the Wikis aren't sufficient.

If a written history would work better, let me know and I'll write one!

Personality: Due to her post-game canonpoint requiring a little bit of extrapolation, I'll be splitting this into two parts!


On the surface, Heather is a sublimely perfect example of your average attitude-laden modern teenager. Bright, but disdainful of school. Hard-working when it comes to things she cares about, but also prone to youthful irresponsibility and lack of foresight. Frequently moody and sarcastic, but a funloving goofball at heart. She's the sort of kid you'd expect to see loitering around a mall with a gang of friends, giggling over ugly clearance-rack stuff in Macy's or scarfing down pizza in the food court. She's rowdy, sharp-tongued, fiercely independent, and has a short-tempered chip on her shoulder the size of a brick. As hotheaded as they come, she can be prone to rushing headlong into situations that might land her in hot water, but fortunately also possesses the creativity, resourcefulness, and quick-thinking that allows her to get back out of it most of the time. At age seventeen, she straddles the fence between childhood and adulthood, forced by life (and... you know, the hideous horror canon she belongs to) to have grown up far too fast in some ways, but still distinctly a kid in many others.
To someone meeting her for the first time, it would be easy to write her off as a wild, slightly-airheaded tomboy.

As one might expect, this is not the whole story.

A childhood spent moving from place to place with a loving but paranoid single father who preached constant caution (for a very good cause, it turned out, considering they were on the run from an insidious cult that was primarily after her) crafted Heather into a very wary creature, her daredevil nature in direct conflict with (or perhaps partially because of) the secrecy and perpetual stranger-danger lectures she grew up with. Heather perpetually see-saws between a thrill-seeking YOLO mindset and the wariness hardwired into her. Despite being a brash and impulsive individual at heart, she is usually much more aware (and avoidant) of potential dangers than she lets on. Unless she's the one in control of it, danger ain't a thing she's fond of--and she got pretty good at controlling it, at least enough to keep herself out of any hands she didn't want to be falling into. She's been up and down the "stupid rebel kid" route, picking up a lot of unfortunate habits-- she makes references in canon to being something of a troublemaker, with a history of underage drinking, smoking cigarettes, and even shoplifting. Due to an incident in her early childhood in which her father was treated as a murder suspect (for having saved her life by shooting a home invader looking to kidnap her, no less), she mistrustS authority and is likely to sneer at anything with a badge.
Relatedly, long-lasting childhood friendships were a thing that just didn't happen due to the constant moving (which began after the shooting incident, an unfortunate reality check to her father, who now realized that the cult he was sheltering his daughter from was more than capable of hunting them down), and although Heather didn't tend to have much trouble fitting in, her relationships with her peers were frequently shallow, not extending past chatting at school or after-hours hangouts spent mostly being Disgruntled Youths (tm) rather than connecting on any truly personal level. Having fun with a gang of increasingly-wrong-side-of-the-tracks pals was all fine and dandy, but although she tended to act out in rebellion of her father's worrywartness as she got older, deep down she took his teachings to heart and as a result rarely lets anyone get too close. Although she covers it up with a brash, playful nature, her trust was, is, and frankly probably always will be a difficult thing to earn.
That said, the few who show her genuine kindness (after, you know, proving they're not just doing it to get something from her first) are people she cherishes, mostly because genuinely well-meaning individuals besides her loving father turned out to be an absolute rarity in her life. Her affection is freely-given without a second thought to people she cares about, and characterized by playful aggression and tough love-- if you manage to worm your way into her heart, expect bearhugs, spontaneous wrestling matches, and merciless teasing, because under the deep-rooted trust/intimacy issues, Heather is still a goofy kid who likes to have fun. Anyone who gets past her built-up defenses will find her to be high-energy, playful and potentially even a little obnoxious.

But unsurprisingly for a survival-horror protagonist, there's even more to it and not all of it is pretty. Underneath the peppy exterior, Heather has an inner hardness that accompanies a hotbed of suppressed trauma and emotional scarring-- her wariness, streetsmarts, and trust issues run far deeper than just the upbringing she had with her protective father. Her aversion to showing vulnerability is, at its core, a desperate and terrified bid for survival that began long before even her birth, stretching all the way back to her past life as a girl named Alessa Gillespie. Many of Heather's internal fears and aversions come from the suppressed memories of this life. Direct carryovers are a generalized fear of fire, dogs, hospitals, anything related to infants/pregnancy, maternal figues, and rape/sexual assault. Alessa's entire life was spent being heavily manipulated by adults and as a result, Heather is extremely reluctant to give anyone control or sway over her. The cruel bullying she endured in her past life, both from her schoolmates and her biological mother, left her with a tangled web of lingering self-worth issues that she hides behind a clowny, often-cocky facade. Heather copes with trauma and upset first and foremost with humor, trying her best to hide her troubles behind a steady barrage of jokes and sarcasm.
Because Heather hates to show fear. As Alessa, she was more prone to lashing out mentally, protecting herself primarily with her psychic fortitude. As Heather, these abilities were significantly watered down, making them a poor thing to rely on, even subconsciously. Instead, where humor fails, she channels her fear into anger and physical toughness, because puffing up and barking at the bad things is more likely to scare them off than showing how scared and tiny she feels inside.
Which brings us to... that little issue.
The fact that Heather is a good kid has already been established. After all, she inherited her father's heart of gold, even if it occasionally gets a little hidden under the dirt and grunge. But despite her strength of character, she doesn't always act like a good kid. Even before being dragged back into the horrors of Silent Hill, she carried a switchblade on her at all times (stating that she just "liked to for some reason") and was generally quick to snap. Anger as a coping mechanism can lead down dark roads, and Heather possesses an innate, bloodthirsty hunger for vengeance when wronged. She is not crazy (at least not as much as one might expect for someone who has been through the abuses and horrors that she has), but she has experienced many a dark, hideous thing and that changes a person. She is easily provoked to violence, and although she considers the harm of innocent human beings to be reprehensible and horrifying, she can and has killed before. Flat-out murder is off the table (... well, she hopes it's off the table, anyway), but she is quick to pass judgment on people who she sees as monstrous, even telling a man in canon "Well, I guess you're not a human anyway." as justification for killing him in the ensuing fight to the death. Justifications like that are a very slippery slope, and although Heather avoided falling into violence past the point of no return, the potential is there.

TL;DR: Heather is a decent, if rough-natured young woman trying to make the best of her second chance at life except HOLY SHIT KIDDO YOU GOT ISSUES


Silent Hill 3 ends with Heather leaving Silent Hill, weary but triumphant. Her father's death is about as avenged as it can be, and the world has been saved from its impending destruction, the cult's God once again slain (until someone else decides to try and birth it again, anyway. LOOKIN @ U, WALTER. She and her sole ally, a private detective named Douglas, are the only survivors of the ordeal.
Needless to say, despite the fact that she lived, Heather's life is now profoundly altered. There is no going back to the way things once were, and she is now one very traumatized orphan facing her final year of high school directly after hitting just about every option on the Wheel of Misfortune. So here's some details on how I'll be playing her given the development she received in canon, and what she'll have been dealing with in the interim between canon and her arrival in the game.

HER FATHER'S DEATH AND THE LAW: It happens every time. You have fun partying and saving the world, but then when you get home you have to deal with the fact that your father's eviscerated corpse is still in the apartment. :( Bummer.
Needless to say, in the "normal world", life carries on and Heather unfortunately did have to deal with the fact that her father was brutally murdered and that she had not only moved the body, but also fled the crime scene and disappeared without a trace. Being the immediate go-to source of suspicion, Heather spent about five seconds being a suspect in the crime. Fortunately, Douglas held some sway by vouching for her, and the second body located on the roof (belonging to a monster called the Missionary, implied to be an actual person in reality but transformed into a monstrosity by the Otherworld. It carried out the actual killing of Harry Mason, and was slain by Heather directly after she discovered her father's body) was determined to belong to the real murderer. Heather's interference with the scene of the crime and subsequent running away was excused as the understandable reaction of a terrified and emotionally-unstable teenager.
Although it was kind of understandable given the circumstances, being treated with even the SLIGHTEST bit of suspicion for her beloved father's murder only increased her deep-rooted bitterness towards the law.
LIFE AFTER SAVING THE WORLD: HIGH SCHOOL: Heather already had a rather poor track record when it came to school. Given her tendencies towards delinquent acts and her established lack of respect for authority, she was already considered something of a problem child. Prior to his death, her father had managed to get her somewhat back on track, but then Silent Hill 3 happened and needless to say, Heather found herself entering her final year of high school-- already a difficult time for many kids-- freshly traumatized and suddenly lacking in any support pillars.
Although obviously the world at large had no idea what the true circumstances behind Harry's death were, the fact that her father had been murdered and that she'd been briefly suspected spread like wildfire, making things even tougher. Heather started going to required counseling sessions that had been foisted onto her with the intent of helping her deal with everything, but because she can't exactly TELL THEM THE TRUTH, she finds these sessions close to unbearable and hates the way everyone is treating her like some bomb about to go off.
Dealing with her senior year on her own is extremely stressful, and although she has NOT fallen back into her old, trouble-making ways (she's genuinely trying to do her best, like she knows her father would want her to), frequently the stress is a little too much. Already a moody teen by nature, Heather now deals with extremely volatile emotions that she can't really confide to anyone about and is now more prone to lashing out in frustration than ever.
REGAINED MEMORIES: One of the major developments Heather goes through in canon is regaining all the memories of her past life that she had previously repressed for her own safety. Although they had still influenced her subtly (many of the fears and anxieties she experienced that were seemingly unfounded were in fact carryovers from Alessa's life), now they are crystal-clear, forcing her to confront many of the painful things she had previously been suppressing, like the memories of brutal abuse. Alessa's life was very different from the one she lived as Heather, and being able to clearly recall all of those experiences alters her world-view a little bit. Not dramatically, but still.
It's not all bad, though. Obvious trauma aside, being able to accept Alessa as part of her identity is a source of security and strength for Heather, as is understanding where she comes from, even if it's painful. Although it doesn't make ALL her insecurities disappear, having a fractured, 'incomplete' identity was always an unconscious source of frustration of confusion for Heather, so feeling 'whole' and having that understanding is actually helping her cope better.
SURVIVAL MENTALITY: Although she had always been resourceful, being thrust into a period of direct, prolonged mortal peril dramatically altered Heather's way of dealing with the world around her. Being forced to pay more attention to things like escape routes, defensibility of shelters, and supplies resulted in her looking at things a little differently. Map-making and careful hoarding of supplies and useful odds and ends in the event of emergency is now something she does on a regular basis, devoting a lot of energy to being prepared in case something like what happened to her on the night of her father's death happens again.

Bravery/Determination: At her core, it's Heather's courage that gets her through most of the considerable adversity she faces. Although far from fearless, she is very good at pushing it back to tolerable levels until she can safely break down somewhere she doesn't have to worry about something EATING HER-- there's always time to have a nice cry later when it won't be interfering with your ability to stay alive. Heather is a survivor in every sense of the word-- she's been through some seriously bad shit. The fact that she made it through it all not only in one piece but also without winding up in a straightjacket is testament to her mental fortitude, and her ability to persevere through hardship.

Athletic: Heather grew up running around like a wild child and this did not change as she got older. She can run like the wind and she packs a hefty punch for a scrawny teen. Although she has no professional training, her fighting experience is considerable and she can not only hold her own reasonably well in a scrap, but is prepared to kill monsters without a moment's hesitation.

Parkour: Surviving in the Otherworld of Silent Hill requires a combination of fitness and creativity. Between her time spent being a bit of a hoodlum in high school and having to escape bloodthirsty monsters by any means possible, Heather is damn good at getting out of scrapes and dead ends in unconventional ways. After the events of her canon, Heather became even more interested in the art of The Floor is Lava than before, because all that fancy footwork can mean the difference between living to fight another day or becoming monster chow.

Good with weapons: Whether it's sort of a power trip or whether they just make her feel safer, Heather likes weapons. She spent most of her teen years carrying a knife on her person at all times, and she's comfortable enough with fire-arms to snatch them up in a second's notice and blast away if she has to.

Intelligence/street smarts: Heather's pretty bright. She's no prodigy, but she's got a lot of common sense-- not to mention a decent amount of book smarts and chemistry know-how. So, you know, if anyone needs to know how to make some gnarly compounds out of household cleaning agents, she's your gal.

Precognitive/Telekinetic Abilities: Although the powers she had in her life as Alessa are now extremely watered down, they were at one point frighteningly powerful (Alessa could, according to Heather herself, "kill a person just by wishing for it"). In Heather, these abilities are virtually completely dormant, manifesting in little more than the occasional prophetic dream. There's the possibility of them re-emerging in dire circumstances but this is extremely unlikely in any setting outside of Silent Hill.


Heather is Alessa is the Mother of God is the Daughter of God is God? SILENT HILL, ARE YOU HIGH?
Being the direct reincarnation of Alessa Gillesipe, who is referred to as a saint, the mother of God, and even GOD HERSELF in some implied cases, Heather is a being of questionable humanity. She is so deeply tied into the roots of Silent Hill as we know it that, even AFTER the expulsion of the dormant god fetus inside her, it's hard to say whether or not she can truly be considered separate from it. She is a product of forces beyond explanation, both a parent AND child of the Otherworld.
Although this has little bearing on what 'powers' she might display in a setting outside of Silent Hill itself, it may influence her behavior somewhat, in dire situations. Her origins are monstrous in nature, and although she triumphed over her supposed 'destiny', there's no real escaping that. "You can take the tiger from the jungle, but not the jungle from the tiger", after all.

-1 switchblade: "It's a switchblade for self-defense. I've never used it, but just in case used it a lot." Not a good weapon, but it's better than nothing.
-1 handgun: "Holds 10 rounds of ammunition. Small and not powerful, but easy to use." Holds ten bullets in one clip. Good range, but will become useless the instant ammo runs out.
-1 katana: "This is a short blade, about 2 feet long. Pretty powerful and easy to handle." A strong melee weapon, this blade became Heather's beloved companion during her ordeal in Silent Hill. In addition to its sentimental value, she's more comfortable using it than most other weapons.
-1 necklace (locket): "Dad gave me this pendant on my birthday. It's one of my most treasured belongings." The locket previously held a round jewel made from crystallized aglaophotis, a substance of powerful magic properties. Because Heather used it to save the world, the locket is empty now.
-1 flashlight: "It's in my chest pocket. A must-have in darkness." Used to light up dark areas. This will become useless once the battery runs out.
-2 first-aid kits: "This will help me patch up my wounds fairly well, I think." Holds the basics-- bandages, a little peroxide, materials for stitching if necessary.
-3 health drinks: "It's full of nutrition and should help me recover at least a little of my strength." Exactly what it says on the tin.
-2 boxes of handgun bullets: "Bullets for a handgun." Enough to reload a couple times, but not enough to last very long...
-The clothes on her back. This includes her vest, a pair of jeans, undergarments and a sleeveless turtleneck.

Why do you want to play this character in this particular setting?
I. Love. Survival horror.
About a year ago, I had Heather in another game that I had initially hoped would involve a lot of that-- fighting for survival and resources in an abandoned city, defending against both other characters AND creatures... hobo adventures with terrifying monsters thrown in, basically. That is so far up my alley it's not even funny. Unfortunately, the game's genre turned out pretty different from what I'd expected-- I wanted to play Heather slowly becoming a paranoid streetrat with secret stashes of supplies squirreled away in all kinds of ridiculous locations, sleeping somewhere different every night and locking antlers with rival gangs for territory, and maybe even eventually making some other hobo friends, but the other characters were busy claiming apartments with pools and having parties. SO IT DIDN'T WORK OUT.
Montauk looks MUCH closer to what I'd been hoping for.
I love settings full of hardship, and Heather is a tough cookie who can handle one. She's already stared into the abyss, so she can handle getting knocked down and kicked to Hell and back without being rendered unplayable.

Writing Samples:
2. In which Heather explains the events of Silent Hill 1 via an elaborate extended metaphor involving coffee and silverware. Point of interest: this explanation is being offered to an agent of the FBI.
3. In which Heather Mason and her arch-nemesis Claudia Wolf settle their conflict in the way it was always meant to be settled: by Pokemon battle. And also Heather is on fire the whole time.
4. In which Heather and Father Vincent find something they can actually agree on, and that thing is matricide. True friendship.