Just started a new WOD game last night. Basic premise is that the characters are the cast and production of a cable TV show that investigates the supernatural. The shows are faked so the twist is that in the first session, the characters come face to face with the real thing. The three characters in the game so far are Ryan Skybourne (actor and host), Joe Johnston (Director). My character is detailed below.
Born on the 14th August 1980, Ryan is a Mi’kmaw from Scotchfort Reserve 4 on the outskirts of Charlottetown, the provincial capital of Prince Edward Island. Scotchfort is a Mi’kmaq reservation and is part of the Abegweit First Nation. The Mi’kmaq are an indigenous people native to the North Eastern regions of the Atlantic Coast and are the original inhabitants of the island. Abegweit is also the Anglicization of Epikwetk, the original Mi’kmaq name for the island meaning “Land Cradled on the Waves”.
Prince Edward Island (or P.E.I.) is the smallest province in Canada both in terms of size and in terms of population. With a population of 137’900, there are 31 towns and cities in Canada with greater population than the entire province. 13 in Ontario alone. The economy of P.E.I revolves around the three seasonal activities of Agriculture, Fishing and Tourism. The province currently accounts for a third of Canada’s total potato production and is a major producer of seed potatoes exporting to more than 20 countries worldwide. In recent years, tourism has eclipsed fishing as the provinces second largest source of employment. Despite a buoyant local economy, population growth has slowed, with only a 0.5% growth on the last census as the province experiences increased youth outmigration.
Ryan has three brothers (Michael 14, James 17 and Sean 28) and two sisters (Sarah 7 and Alison 24). Ryan did have a second older brother called Robert who was only a year older. However, when Ryan was 10 his father took him, Sean and Robert on a hunting trip. During the trip, Ryan tripped and accidentally shot Robert in the back with a hunting rifle. Because of the remoteness of the location of the accident, Robert tragically died before they could get him to a doctor. Despite the fact that the accident was not his fault in any way, Ryan has blamed himself ever since for his brothers death. Since then Ryan has not touched a firearm. The Johnson’s are not a traditionalist Mi’kmaq family despite living on the reservation. Henry and Margaret however did try to instil in their children a sense of their heritage and the family is active in tribal activities. The children were brought up to be fluent in both English and Lnui’simk, the Mi’kmaq dialect of Algonquian and by the time he was in high school Ryan could read and write the traditional Mi’kmaq hieroglyph alphabet. Ryan is proud of his ancestry and has made an effort to understand what it means to be a Mi’kmaw. Ryan however doesn’t believe that being a Mi’kmaw should define him as a person. Technically, Ryan is a Catholic. His family was never devout and the only reason he was baptised along with his brothers and sisters because it was expected. Ryan himself has not been to church since elementary school. Although the reservation is inland, Ryan’s father owns and operates a fishing boat that sails out of Charlottetown harbour. Fishing being the family business, Ryan spent much of his early teen years working on the boat with his father and older brother. Although he didn’t hate the work he never really enjoyed it and always wanted more from life than an adulthood with his arms deep in lobsters and fish entrails. His father, although disappointed, understood and supported Ryan in going to university and eventually moving away from the island to find work. He is still on good terms with his family and never misses a Christmas, Canada Day (July 1) or Treaty Day (October 1) celebration at home.
After graduating high school, Ryan attended the University of Prince Edward Island to study Media Technology. While there played on the hockey team with the UPEI Panthers. Although talented, it was clear he would have not career in the sport beyond university and Ryan played mainly for his own enjoyment. He is still an avid support of the team (as well as the other Panther teams) along with the PEI Rockets, the local hockey team and part of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.
Straight out of college, he landed a position at CBC, the Canadian state broadcaster. Employed as a news cameraman, Ryan quickly worked his way up the ladder. However, it all came to a crashing halt during the coverage of Hurricane Katrina. During a live broadcast from New Orleans featuring the stations premier on-the-scene reporter, Ryan spotted someone struggling in the water. Without a moments hesitation he dropped the camera (nearly breaking it) dived in and helped the person to safety. He became a minor celebrity over the event although the first he heard of this was when his father send him a clipping from the local paper (The Cadre, a UPEI student paper). For a brief period every other incoming call on his cell was from a newspaper, radio station or television programme asking for an interview. Ryan turned them all down not wanting the sudden attention for doing what he thought was the right thing. He did frame the newspaper clipping though and it is a source of private pride. Three weeks later, Ryan was forced to leave CBC for “unrelated reasons”.
After leaving CBC, found getting work in the industry was difficult. He was forced to take part-time work wherever he could find it. Working in convenience stores and gas stations, whatever would pay the bills. Eventually he was able to purchase some second-hand equipment. He began to do a little freelance work for the local cable station.
Ryan is just over 2 meters (~6’ 6”) tall and weights 91 kilos (~200Ibs). He has a muscular build and his hands and skin are rough from working outdoors when younger. Clean-shaven, he has blue eyes and short spiked blue hair. His skin colour is slightly darker than Caucasian and is indicative of his Mi’kmaq origins.Ryan has a tattoo of a Panther on his upper left arm, a remnant of a drunken night out after winning a significant hockey game at college. Although initially regretting it, he later got a second tattoo (a sunburst) on his right shoulder and upper arm. He also has two gold earrings.Clothing wise, Ryan prefers loose fitting garments that are easier to move around in. When on the job, he often wears a light waist-jacket that has a lot of pockets for extra batteries or tapes/memory cards for the camera and other equipment.