Shadowrun - Diamond Pulse
A shaman and former revolutionary from the other side of the pond.
Weight: 180 lbs
Corbie is usually seen wearing his old and rather dirty gray duster jacket, and carrying a tattered black umbrella which he’s had for many years and which he considers a “good luck charm”. Under the armored jacket go black armored jeans and a black armored roll-neck sweater. Usually tucked away inside the sweater is a necklace made from crow and raven feathers, small teeth from various animals, and the sinews of a badger. His voice is low and melodic, with a back-country British accent and a hint of sardonic laughter in everything he says. He peppers his speech with british-isms, and enjoys hamming it up when he thinks he can bamboozle an American audience. His brown eyes can be by turns flatly cold or twinkling, and he smiles easily although his face at rest seems vaguely sad. He’s not built like a weight-pusher, but instead has the lean muscles of someone who has done hard work on the land and seen lean winters. He moves like an outdoorsman too – always sure of where his feet are placed and with a quickness of reflexes or watchful stillness which are themselves crow-like in their speed and intensity.
“My name really is Corbie y’know. Just that, no last name. It means “crow” in old Scots. I was brought up in a Rainbow Traveller convoy, y’see, and we didn’t hold with paternalistic traditions. Back in the West Country in Merry England, the land around Glastonbury that changed after the Awakening – least so’s I’m told – and became the wild misty, mystic wetlands and hills they were back in Arthur’s time. ‘Least ways, that’s how one of me old Mams told it to me. Yeah, Mams. I had three, and two fathers. It was a commune, and we four kids all had all the adults in our home – a converted double-decker bus – as parents. It worked pretty well as it ‘appens. I learned how to live orf the land and how to cook what I’d caught, how to shoot and how to stay ahead of the bailiffs or the rozzers. And from my Scottish Mam Marget I learned the ways of the spirits of beast and elements, how to see omens and twist the magic of a place to me will. It’s all in the mental twist, yer will is a fulcrum and ye can move the whole world, if’n ye will it hard and right.
“’Twas a good life, the convoy. Travellin’ from place to place all summer, stopping at festivals and Esbats to trade, have fun, get high, get laid. I almost got married at sixteen, to a lovely lass from up North Wales way by the name of Arianrhod. But she was banged up for sedition by the Government, and I think she might have died before the Big March in London because I never ‘eard from ’er again. That’s what turned me into a revolutionary meself, like. I was so angry, just full o’ hate and bile. I left the convoy and eventually ended up in Leeds, fell in with a cabal of chaos magicians who were waging magical war on the New Druids and their fascist lackeys. I was with them for four years and I learned a thing or two my old Mam hadn’t taught me, bless her heart she was always for the Light. But I learned I was like my namesake – for the gray, the edges, the transitions between places, between states of being. For the chaos that is the very stuff of life and death and rebirth.
“After that, I was a liason between groups, always on the run, hiding from the police and the worse ones the fascists sent after the likes of me. I learned how to move between the edges of things in a new way, then. How to blend into a street like I could already blend into a wood. How to live on what I could scavenge from the slums, and make a comfortable nest in a concrete wilderness. I was one of the ones who put together the march of ’71, and once even saw The Pendragon, and spoke to him.
“But it all got too hot for a Corbie in a world full of hawks and eagles, so I scarpered, didn’t I? Over the water, to Tir na Nog first and then to America. Me and a handful of others. I’m only in contact with one, still. And now I’m beyond the sea in the New World I get to turn the things I’ve learned to keeping myself and making a future for myself instead of making for others. It’s me time. I’ve done a few small jobs for Johnstons, nothing major, and still looking for a big score, or a run of big scores.
“So, d’you know of anything fun and interesting going down?”