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 Meridian, Marlee Shepard
 Posted: May 16 2018, 05:07 PM

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Celebrity Claim- Rachael Taylor

Full Name- Marlene Shepard
Nicknames/Aliases- Marlee (to most people), Fey (former codename as a New Mutant)
Age- 32
Date of Birth- December 25th, 1985
Faction- Supernatural (former New Mutant from April 2001 - July 2005)
Occupation- Adventurer, Novelist (soon)

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Personality- Despite her mutant powers not having to do with cats, many have described Marlee as "catlike" as far as her personality goes... while others have used "mildly sociopathic". She's relatively laid back most of the time,aside from the occasional sass, but when she sets her mind on something she's incredibly direct about it and sometimes pursues goals to the point of obsession. She's generally all smiles and sass and fun, but can shift to cold seriousness or aggression without warning. She also has a tendency to be disproportionately vicious to those who wrong her or hurt others - she has no problem utterly ruining someone's life if she feels they deserve it, especially those who take lives.

Marlee is a fairly empathic person, though the jury is out on whether it's due to her being biologically in tune with the life force of the world around her. She feels for most people and genuinely likes to help those around her, and is more than willing to put herself in danger to do so. She cares, and when people she cares for are hurt, she takes it very personally. This also results, frequently, in extreme stress. Despite being a relatively strong-willed and assertive person, she is pretty bad at handling emotional stress since she is rarely willing to burden other people with her problems. As a result she tends to bottle things up, and can be prone to mood swings when overly stressed or put under pressure, something that has been substantially increased since her father's death. She is doing a good job faking keeping it together, but at this point Life is all starting to take its toll.
Thankfully her hair is already white.

  • Cats
  • Antique firearms, particularly "Western" and Police revolvers
  • Martial arts movies
  • Braiding hair
  • Mint flavored foods / candies
  • Bullies, and anyone similarly abusing authority or privilege
  • Hot weather
  • Spicy foods
  • Disrespecting legitimate authority or law, vigilanteism included
  • Pointless death or suffering
  • Extremely quick and analytic mind, making her good at puzzles and riddles and learning new things quickly, particularly languages
  • Empathic
  • Practical and resourceful
  • Bad at handling emotional stress in a healthy manner
  • Afraid of spiders, bees, and "bitey" insects in general
  • Allergic to several synthetic/chemical dyes such as those found in modern cosmetics and even processed foods, necessitating a picky lifestyle

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Power Name- Life-Energy Channeling
Description- Marlee has a mutant power to tap into and channel the collective "life force" of the world around her through her own body - Chi, Qi, Ki, and many other esoteric energies with other names, it's all the same. Marlee herself calls it "The Flow", due to seeing it as something which "flows" through all living creatures using her life-sight. Marlee is a natural conduit for such life energy and normally is in permanently good health, allowing her to be almost supernaturally resistant to poison and disease (though not immune). She also has the power to channel this ambient life energy directly into things, which produces different effects depending on what she pushes the extra life energy into:

Normal Humans: In most circumstances, channeling extra life energy into a human being causes them to have heightened physical abilities such as strength and endurance, to a factor of about 150% of their normal. This effect lasts for about a minute after Marlee stops actively channeling life energy into them. This can also be used to increase a resting target's natural healing rate tenfold, allowing them to more easily and quickly recover from injuries with proper rest and care.
Mutants/Superhumans: In addition to the benefits granted to normal humans, Mutant powers with primarily physical components are also improved by an equivalent amount, such as superhuman strength or healing factors. This effect also applies to superhuman or supernatural powers that directly base off life energy of some kind, such as Iron Fist's chi manipulation. Purely mental powers such as pyrokinesis would be unaffected. Otherwise her power works the same on mutants as humans, including duration.
Animals: Animals receive the same physical benefits as humans, with one additional effect - animals currently being channeled by Marlee actively view her as an ally or kindred being, and unless provoked will aid Marlee as much as she can communicate with them. She cannot directly control them, but she can suggest things to them in a general sense, rarely more complex than "attack that thing" or "these are friends". Animals otherwise still follow their own natural instincts and cannot be forced to do things they wouldn't normally do.
Nonliving Objects: Channeling life energy into a nonliving object, such as a sword or a computer, allows Marlee to animate the object and effectively grant it an equivalent of life. Its life energy simulates the five senses to varying extents depending on the object, and it gains a limited form of sentience. Most objects animated this way are simple beings with only enough intelligence to attempt pantomimed communication and follow direct verbal orders from Marlee, though machines retain an awareness of all of their normal functions and under some circumstances can still control them. Computers and other modern digital devices have a tendency to "learn" if left animated for too long, depending on how complex and how much processing power they have, and can learn to disobey or reinterpret commands. Marlee can grant an object only between one and five days of life energy at a time (depending on the size of the object), after that it will simply "turn off" if she does not give it another dose, which takes several minutes. She can also pull the life energy back out of an object she has animated by simply touching it and willing it to.
Dead: A living being that has experienced true, genuine death, is completely unaffected to Marlee's powers. She cannot bring back the dead or even animate them. Even creatures that have died and somehow have their life force naturally restored in some sort of genuine resurrection remain cut off from her powers.
Undead/Constructs: If a creature is animate but does not possess a natural life force of its own, such as supernaturally or magically animated corpses, vampires, or constructs, channeling life energy into them is usually harmful. Channeling life energy into them will begin to destabilize the source of their unnatural life and "turn them off" within seconds, leaving nothing left but a slightly smoking dead body. This usually also fries the "wiring" of such creatures and prevents them from being reanimated again... though as with all things supernatural, there's no such thing as impossible. This is the only use of her power that doesn't disrupt the environment, as the moment the creature is destroyed the used life energy will return to the surrounding world.

Finally, though she has never actually done it before, Marlee has the power to drain life force from an individual living creature and return it to the ambient life force of the area around her. This requires intense concentration and about 10 seconds of unbroken physical contact with the target, meaning it is essentially impossible to do in active combat with most enemies. The power is mercifully painless to the target, but the strain of this deadly power will cause Marlee partial paralysis and extreme fatigue for a few minutes afterwards. Marlee is aware that this is something she can probably do, but given her general empathy and value of life, she is not likely to ever be willing to outright murder anything in this way outside of the most severe circumstances.

Limits- Marlee's power is entirely based on where she currently is, as it taps into the collective life energy of the surrounding world. The 150% boost listed above is the standard for most locations in the continental United States, given the population and generally good environment. In a desolate desert or arctic wasteland, or any other place where there is little plant or animal life, she's more or less powerless. In a dense rainforest where every square inch is full of life, she could instead push that 150% up to as much as 200%.

While Marlee gets the benefit of the life-energy boost while she is channeling life energy into a target, channeling it requires nearly all of her focus and attention. As a result, while she would gain the improved physical abilities and healing rate, she cannot do much else besides talking while doing it, including defending herself. While targets retain the benefits of an augmented life force for the above durations after she stops channeling them, Marlee loses all benefits the INSTANT she stops actively using her power, as she is merely a conduit.

Because of her genetic, passive link to the life energies around her, she is incredibly vulnerable to other effects that involve the same energies. There is little she can do to stop these effects being used against her as she cannot close off her connection to the collective life force around her. This also means that sudden shifts in the life force (such as by sudden, large amounts of death) can cause her pain or even put her into shock due to a sort of empathic feedback.
While she believes her allergy to synthetic dyes is a product of her mutation's connection to the natural world, it's simply a normal human allergy.

Finally, life energy is a finite resource. The more Marlee uses her powers in a given area in a short time, the weaker that area's life force will be. Living things will be less healthy, plants will wither quicker, food will spoil faster, and so on. She is aware of this fact from her studies and experiences, and makes sure never to overstress the environment. As a result she is rarely willing to channel life energy more than once a day in any one location as that is her best estimate of how much won't cause any adverse effects to the surrounding world.

Power Name- Life-Sight
Description- Marlee can switch her vision to instead see into a spectrum of life energy rather than the normal visual spectrum. While using this form of vision, all living things will be viewed as glowing green while nonliving and dead things are a black void. The more life energy something has, the brighter green it is. Most forms of unnatural life, such as that of supernaturally animated dead, instead appear as a deep red. Living things that have died and been somehow resurrected to true life will appear a visibly different shade of green, though Marlee has never actually encountered this.

Limits- Nonliving things are completely invisible to her while using life-sight, and she cannot really discern details of individual sources of life energy beyond their general shape. For example, most humans would essentially look the same. She couldn't accurately pick a single person out of a crowd of people, and if she looked at a forest she would just see a giant featureless mass of flowy green.
Life-sight is also blocked by a foot of most any nonliving matter, such as a thick concrete wall.

Skills & Abilities-
- Between training as a New Mutant, a couple years as a police officer, and now years of traveling and studying the ways of various martial arts, Marlee is extremely skilled in combat by human standards (as her powers give her no combat benefits except against magical animates). She is best in hand to hand combat but also very good with handguns, particularly revolvers.
- Marlee has a natural talent for learning languages through reading and firsthand conversation, and finds it to be a puzzle that is fun to solve. She can typically be dropped into any modern society with little more than one of those cheap translator guides and pick up enough of the language to function effectively within a day or two, though it'll always be clear she's a tourist. Due to her travels she is currently is functional enough with Japanese, Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean, and has smatterings of several other languages typically spoken in various parts of southeast Asia.
- Marlee is a skilled practitioner of acupressure, which she often uses in conjunction with her power to amplify its effects and also hide her being-a-mutant, given there is no visual effect to her powers.

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Height- 5'8"
Weight- 135lbs
Eye Colour- Green (slightly outside normal human color ranges)
Hair Colour- White-Gray

Appearance- White hair, bright green eyes... Marlee stands out a little. Her white hair and vibrant green eyes are a cosmetic mutation, and it shows. Despite this, she has always vehemently insisted that she just grayed early and adamantly refuses any further comments on the topic. She usually keeps her hair in a ponytail or braid at about mid-back length due to liking her hair long, and often wears a hat or sunglasses to conceal her eyes.

Given her father was former military and her mother was sort of a shut-in, Marlee was raised wearing utilitarian clothes rather than typical womens' fashion. She feels uncomfortable wearing dresses, skirts, heels, and the like due to simply never really growing up wearing them... and if forced to do so it will show. She often just outright wears men's clothes when possible due to the relative flimsiness of most modern women's clothing and her active life. You can most often find her in some variation of sweaters, jackets, sweatpants, or jeans, alongside the occasional region-appropriate clothing on her travels.

- Marlee has kept a 2013 PDA "awakened" by her powers since getting it. She calls it "Psion", after its manufacturer, often shortened to "Psi". At this point it essentially functions as a rudimentary AI that she often uses to dictate notes to, as its limited memory and processing power limits it from becoming much more complex than modern day smartphones.
- Typically carries a handgun on her person at any time, usually a snubnosed revolver of some kind for easy concealment. She owns a few different ones.

Additional Information-
- Anyone who was at Xavier's around Christmas 2001 is welcome to reference (and joke about) the one time she dyed her hair black and had a SEVERE allergic reaction because of it, which ended with her having to shave her hair off to prevent further harm. Despite that she very nearly died from it, she has since laughed it off.

Hometown- NYC, NY
Immediate Family-
Jack Shepard - Former Army sergeant, later respected NYPD officer, and eventually the Chief of the NYPD from the mid 90's through most of the 00's. He retired in 2012 and died of natural causes in March 2017.
Marlene Shepard - A loving mother and longtime writer of cop drama and spy novels, and the occasional children's book. Somewhat of a shut-in. Lives in Queens.
- Barry Cavanaugh (friend) - Former partner on the NYPD when she was on the force, and the only other person but Marlee's father to know she was a mutant (he's a normal human himself). He was forcefully retired two years ago due to an electrokinetic mutant he was apprehending permanently causing minor nerve damage from a powerful shock. He has since been traveling with Marlee more or less as her cameraman due to hitting a similar "don't know what to do with my life now" paradox as she did years before.

Marlee had a pretty typical life, all things considered. Her father was a dedicated cop, her mother was a writer, and there were never any major issues. Marlee planned to grow up to be a cop like her father, and despite the dangerous line of work, they were a happy family. Her powers rapidly got in the way of her life once they manifested in her early teens, unfortunately, as she begin to "tune in" to the natural world and lose track of herself in the process. Her parents believed her to be suffering from periodic bouts of catatonia, never quite putting together the abundance of animals that began to congregate around their house at all hours of the day.

Thankfully, after little intervention from the Professor, she soon found herself transferred to a new school - Xavier's, as one of the first new students after the First Class and the Magneto incident. While she was happy at the school and never avoided New Mutants training, the activities of the X-Men left a bad taste in her mouth for reasons she had a hard time putting into words at that age. While she did see the X-Men as "the good guys" and dearly liked many of her classmates, Marlee's strict upbringing in a military / police household made her still see them as "vigilantes" and not just "heroes". It was NEVER a point of hostility towards them and she trained with them for years after without complaint, but when she graduated from high school she made it very clear that she never wanted to be an X-Man herself. She remained at the school for a year or so afterwards, however, as she still didn't know what to do with her life.

Eventually she followed in her father's footsteps and enrolled in the police academy. While she had the drive and skill to excel, her career never went far. From the moment she joined the force she was always held to higher standards than other officers around her, primarily due to her own choice - she'd made it clear from day 1 that she never wanted special treatment due to her father being the Chief at that point. She never got promoted out of her role as a beat cop as a result, and by 2008 she was utterly frustrated and burnt out with it all, especially the police's poor handling of things when it came to Mutant Town.

She quit before she really had any idea of what to do next, but eventually came to the conclusion that she didn't know where in the world she belonged. She decided to learn more about her own powers, she began traveling the world to study the beliefs other cultures around the world have towards "life energies". Her travels have taken her so far to several parts of Asia, speaking with all sorts of martial artists, monks, gurus, and other practitioners of esoteric energies, learning what she can and comparing it to her own knowledge... and along the way having all sorts of adventures and misadventures. She's currently writing a book on the topic, but her worry about accidentally outing herself as a mutant in the process has always kept it from going anywhere.

As of this year, now accompanied by an old friend named Barry, she had begun to look into legends of the fabled land of K'un Lun while staying with a Kung Fu school in Hong Kong that supposedly knew about it. Before she could discover any concrete evidence of the place, however, she received word from the States that her father had passed away. She has returned home to New York to help with the funeral and, perhaps, give the book an honest try. And maybe say hello to anyone still at the school who remembers her.
But given her luck she's sure Adventure will follow her home too. It always does.

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Player Name- Moogle
Age 31
How Can We Contact- PM or Discord
Time Zone-
How did you find us? Dragged here kicking and screaming by Jamie. Possibly exaggerated.
Other Characters- Noivern, Abra, Legion, Spider-man, Honeybear

Role Play Sample-
No matter how many times the strange and occult happened around Marlee, she could never shake the thought that she'd imagined "travel the world and study esoteric energies" to be more "meditate with gurus" and less "fighting weird supernatural things". It made the mundane threats seem so... mundane.

Such as the one she found herself in. Just sitting back, enjoying a nice bowl of soup at a street shop by the water in Kowloon City, talking about philosophy with a man she'd just met there, when a trio of thugs approached them. "<Chao, we told you, you aren't welcome in this part of town.>" The leader of the thugs growled in a thick Cantonese drawl.

"Friends of yours?" Marlee asked, knowing the man she'd been talking to was their target. 'Chao', as he'd introduced himself, a teacher at a local martial arts school just starting up. He'd been having issues with one of the other local schools that had been in the area longer... case in point, it seemed.

"Remember when I said that Berjin guy doesn't like competing ideals?" Chao replied, before jerking a hand back over his shoulder at the thugs. "This is the second time this week. I've already gotten the blessing of the other local schools, but this guy's rather insistent." Neither Marlee nor Chao seemed too bothered by the thugs being there. The cook on the other side of the counter, however, was sloooooowly ducking under the counter.

And in the reflection on the glass, Marlee could see the glint of one of them pulling a knife. That was what changed her mind - she wouldn't have jumped into a fight over turf, but these thugs meant to kill. That, that she couldn't allow. "Think these ones are going to insist as well. You need a hand?" She asked, setting her bowl down and giving a sigh.

"No, but I won't refuse it either."
The lead thug rushed Chao first, only for the man to twirl in his seat and let the stab sail past him. He brought his elbow down hard on the man's hand to disarm him of his knife the hard way, before turning and chucking his soup right into the face of Kung Fu Jackass #2. He didn't take it very well, falling to the ground and clutching his face in pain.

Marlee decided to handle #3 for him. She didn't like getting into these pointless fights, but this man seemed to know of the fabled land of K'un Lun. Perhaps she could impress him enough to be willing to let on a few hints. As the third thug rushed in, Marlee scooted off her stool and picked it up in one fluid motion, before cracking it upside Kung Fu Jackass #3's head. He took the blow and moved back, but she followed suit. The two briefly exchanged a flurry of punches and parries, but the already-dazed thug soon ended up taking a knee below the belt. Marlee stepped in with a decisive hip-toss, launching him into a nearby garbage can.

The other two, however, had fared decidedly worse against Chao. One of them was still enjoying first-degree burns to his eyes, while the other had added an arm and several ribs to his list of broken bones.

The calm lasted only a moment more, however, before she heard the telltale beep of an email on her phone. After reading the words her mother had sent, however... her expression changed. It took all that she had to not let on the kick in the gut she'd just taken. "Jóutáu" Was all she said, and after placing a few bills on the counter to pay for her food, she headed off into the city to meet back up with Barry.
She had a flight to book for home.
Charles Xavier
 Posted: May 19 2018, 08:59 AM

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