Valerie (Velocity) Elizabeth Grey-Lambert

Started by Velocity Grey-Lambert, July 18, 2017, 01:51:56 PM

Cortex Mainframe

July 18, 2017, 01:51:56 PM Last Edit: June 14, 2021, 11:50:26 AM by Lomari Reason: Rework for a new start
Valerie (Velocity) Elizabeth Grey-Lambert
Player: Clare

Date of Birth:  10.04.2486 (33)
Gender:  Female

Primary Occupation:  Pilot
Secondary Occupation:  Entertainer - Violinist
Requested Ship:  Odette
Equipment:  A violin. Not just any violin but a very nice old violin; a wedding present from Bonnie.
Two sets of soft leather "armour", one black, one brown.
Engagement & Wedding rings (worn).
Photo of Bonnie and herself.
Several old-fashioned, rather battered, notebooks, and pencils.
Height:6' 9" (206 cm)
Weight:128 lbs (58 kg)

Velocity is very tall, particularly for a woman. She is impossibly thin which lends an air of physical fragility to her. She is well below the BMI considered to be underweight but she is generally healthy and has only once ever been known to take a sick day. It was the day she fell head over heals for a certain Bonnie Grey.

Her hair is pure white, her skin is freakishly pale, and her eyes are a bright, piercing blue. When she turns her gaze on someone, she cocks her head on one side like a bird and gives the air of a bird considering whether a worm is worth eating.

Velocity is always dressed in tight, body-hugging black or brown leathers that bear more than a passing resemblance to soft leather armour. They accentuate her thinness as well as making it obvious that she is Hur Bao Dun. They are for her protection; her fragile body needs all the help it can get.

Face Claim:  Gigi Edgley

Initial_Personality:  Velocity's initial personality will depend very much on the context in which she is met.

In a social context she will be very quiet and reserved, not participating in any conversation unless specifically invoked. Depending on the topic, her answers will be short, polite but laconic or eloquent, verbose and animated. The latter occurs if anything to do with flying or space navigation is brought into the conversation. At times the more observant will note that there is a faraway look in her eyes and she will seem distracted. It will usually be because she is thinking of Bonnie, forgetting, in her internal reminiscing, that Bonnie is gone. At such times it will be hard to get her attention.

If the context is that of flying, being actually flying, discussing flying, planning flying, debriefing flying Velocity will be forward, articulate and erudite. It is like a switch has been pressed; the shy hesitant wallflower becomes a outgoing and confidant woman.

It usually very quickly becomes apparent that Velocity is always hungry. It is a complete mystery where the food goes because there does not appear to be a gram of fat on her. She might be prepared to work for only a handful of coins but it has, on some ships, become a running joke that she will bankrupt any ship with her requirement for food.

Underlying_Personality:  Velocity is, in a nutshell, crazy.

Velocity was always very different; even as a child her parents could not understand her, something that was accentuated by her orientation. She was either completely at rest, engrossed in her studies or something that had taken her interest, or moving at high speed. Her school friends and later her colleagues joked that she was the only one who could get a speeding ticket while only walking. That trait remains though she has managed to slow down a little in confined spaces.

Now she has trouble with her memory, a condition brought on by the horrors of war, the death of her wife as a consequence of a traitor, and whatever happened while she was in the bug houses. She doesn't speak of it and perhaps she doesn't remember; or maybe she has locked the memories away and they wait, lurking, ready to spring forth at some inopportune moment.

Under intense stress she will break down. This is most likely to be in a social situation, especially off ship, or if she is personally threatened.

Velocity is fastidious in her personal hygiene. If she had her way she would shower several times a day. She never takes a bath, considering them to be dirty but she has been known to enjoy a spa, though she always showers afterwards.

Velocity is demisexual; Bonnie was the only person that she has ever been attracted to and that only occurred after she got to know Bonnie.

It is common for Velocity to wake up screaming in the aftermath of an intense nightmare, usually focusing on the moment of Bonnie's death.

Velocity does not drink alcohol or take drugs; she has enough on her plate already.

Known History:  Summary of Cortex Records

Bonnie Born:2483-12-27
Velocity Born:2486-04-01
First pilot job:2503-03-12
War started:2506-
Joined Independents:"War started" + 5 days
Met Bonnie:"War started" + 6 days
Last saw Bonnie:2509-05-16
Bonnie died:2510-05-18
Put into care:2509-11-23
Sent to the Bug House:2510-03-30
Unification Day:2511-05-??
Released from bug house (Fargone Clinic):2512-08-13
Joined Vixen:2512-08-17
Sent to another Bug House:2513-02-19
Released from Bug House:2517-11-19
Various ships, mostly short term contracts.

Other History:  The real story is more complex than the official records show.

Her family reacted badly to her coming out and her relationship with Bonnie was the last straw. They severed all ties with her and even after Bonnie's death they have refused to have anything to do with her. Velocity has made little effort to get back in touch, fearing rejection again.

Bonnie's parents accepted Bonnie's orientation but they didn't accept her joining the Browncoats nor marrying Velocity. Since Bonnie's death and the end of the war, their attitude has softened; they have even gone to the extent of looking for Velocity (through agencies, not in person) but Velocity has remained under their radar. Velocity doesn't know it but if Bonnie's parents do find her, they will take her in as their only link to their daughter.

Velocity started her working life flying topdressing planes before moving on to space vessels. Her early training was mostly ad hoc and informal but she couldn't get away with that once she moved from old fashioned air-effect craft to the "real thing". While Velocity excelled in the practical, she at times struggled with the theory, not because she wasn't bright enough but because she couldn't translate boring theory into actual flight. Nevertheless she persevered and gained her wings. After that it became easier though she never gained the qualifications to break into the big time.

Then war intervened and her life took a drastic turn. Her upbringing and planet of birth put her on the side of the Browncoats but her dislike of the formal side of her work ensured that she took up arms against what she saw as the mindless, heartless bureaucracy of the Alliance. She enlisted with a few days of the outbreak and that put her on a collision course with one Elizabeth Grey, informally known as Bonnie. Making their way into the barracks on their first day they literally collided and in the aftermath, chose to bunk together, Bonnie taking the upper bunk and Velocity the lower. They were soon inseparable and though Velocity was not sexually attracted to Bonnie in the early days, the same could not be said of Bonnie's feelings toward Velocity. After what seemed an eternity to Bonnie, Velocity's feelings were eventually kindled. Nine months after meeting they married though it was a small affair to suit the conditions and they didn't get to have a honeymoon. They were often separated by their different duties though Bonnie usually managed to get herself assigned to a ship in the same unit when she couldn't wangle her way onto Velocity's ship.

Bonnie's, and thus, Velocity's fate was sealed through treachery. On what was supposed to be a simple and safe delivery trip, Velocity was flying one ship, Bonnie, was aboard another ship in the same squadron. They were ambushed by the Alliance as a result of information supplied to them by a self-serving traitor. Bonnie's ship was hit and Velocity could do nothing but watch it burn. It burned, too, that the traitor was someone that they had admired, trusted, befriended.

Bonnie's death hit her very hard; for several months she managed to keep it more-or-less together but her behaviour, especially off duty, became significantly more erratic and, on duty, when she was flying solo missions, she took ever greater risks. When her behaviour was perceived to be too much of a threat to others,  she was put into a managed care facility but with no stimulation and only limited access to her violin, her condition deteriorated and she was moved to a secure facility. During the war she was cared for but after the Alliance took over the control of the facility her treatment worsened. It was during this time that her physical condition deteriorated and she developed her haemophilia and allergy.

Since coming out of the bug house for the second time, Velocity has drifted from ship to ship, trying to find one that she can call home. Occasionally she has secured work as a pilot ostensibly on perceived merit, other times she has been taken on as a pilot through desperation. And then, when desperate and hungry, she has joined a ship as a general hand. She always ends up in the cockpit. She has been known to busk to earn a crust and somewhere to sleep.

There was one ship she joined, which could have been catastrophic but ended up being comical, except for the fates of the horse and the kitten. It was an odd crew, with more than just Velocity having secrets. The "Doctor's" secret was that he was a vet, not a doctor, and was passionate about looking after animals. So when it was discovered that a horse they were transporting had a bomb inside, she attempted to remove the bomb rather than dropping it on its intended target (a horse race) or allowing the horse to be left at a safe distance. Her arm was embedded up to the shoulder trying to remove it from the horse's bowel when the device detonated. It was designed to prove a point (the horse being an expensive racehorse belonging to someone of significance), not to cause serious damage. The "doctor" was more-or-less unharmed but very annoyed. And smelly. Later, this same person decided that a pet would be in order and having no idea of Velocity's allergy, she got a kitten. Out in space, with the allergens being recycled, Velocity started suffering severe symptoms and went into anaphylactic shock. Even after the adrenaline was administered, because the allergens remained, she was very ill and unable to pilot the ship, and there was no one else on the crew who had any idea of how to fly. Nevertheless, the "doctor" argued vehemently against disposing of the kitten. In the end, the captain sneaked it out the airlock; the filters were thoroughly cleaned and the air refreshed; Velocity survived and thus so did the crew but the "Doctor" never forgave the captain or Velocity and left the ship when it landed.
The above is a summary of events during an actual tabletop Firefly role playing campaign where Velocity first "came to life". The person playing the vet had no idea that Velocity was so terribly allergic to furry creatures.

And somehow, through some weird twist of Alliance Bureaucracy(tm) she never lost her licence. Velocity doesn't dwell on this but perhaps, through influence, it is the one thing that Bonnie's parents have managed to do for their daughter-in-law.

Skills and Strengths: 
  • Very good "seat of the pants" Pilot
  • Adequate Navigator
  • Intelligent (but suffers from self-doubt and lacks wisdom)
  • Strong intuition, especially when it comes to pilotage and flying
  • Good amateur classical & folk violinist

  • Socially inept
  • Leaky brain pan - her short term memory is peculiar; while the memories are there, after a sleep she is not able to recall them without a significant prompt. Even seeing someone she knows well is not enough to recall their name or how she knows them though they may seem vaguely familiar. Hence the notebook that gives her the index to the memories. Her accessible memory more-or-less resets to the moment she witnessed Bonnie's death. Muscle memory, on the other hand, stays.
  • Seriously allergic to furry animals like rabbits and cats (and fur products); not allergic to hairy animals like dogs (but hates them). Velocity has forgotten that she is allergic as somehow, since the first incident, she hasn't come into contact with a furry creature.
  • Velocity bruises extremely easily and suffers from moderate haemophilia; she has managed to keep this more or less a secret; she almost always carries analgesics.
  • Has a hatred of weapons, firearms in particular. If a weapon is forced on her she will usually manage to discretely leave it somewhere.

Note Book One: The DiaryThe following is an excerpt from Velocity's diary to give a flavour of what she records. Velocity will not show the contents of her notebooks to anyone but there is always the risk that someone will find it.


Read this NOW Velocity!

Current Year: 2519
Current Date: Ask someone what date it is; just do it!

Read the latest few days of entries ; you might not be able to refer to it when you need it.

Page 1:

Cover story:
Marooned on supply depot on isolated asteroid after supply ship was damaged by booby trap. The two other crew members were killed. There were enough supplies for Velocity indefinitely but no means of communication or escape. Finally rescued a couple of weeks ago. Has only just learned about Shadow and the loss of the war.

Description of Condition: After every period of sleep, memories between the death of Bonnie and present are short-circuited out. They still exist but they are not accessible in the normal way. You need to take notes before you go to sleep of the important points of the day. They don't need to be detailed, just enough to trigger recall.

Page 2 -3

Important Dates!

Bonnie Born:2483-12-27
Velocity Born:2486-04-01
First pilot job:2503-03-12
War started:2506-
Joined Independents:"War started" + 5 days
Met Bonnie:"War started" + 6 days
Last saw Bonnie:2509-05-16
Bonnie died:2510-05-18
Put into care:2509-11-23
Sent to the Bug House:2510-03-30
Unification Day:2511-05-??
Released from bug house (Fargone Clinic):2512-08-13
Joined Vixen:2512-08-17
Sent to another Bug House:2513-02-19
Released from Bug House:2517-11-19
Various ships, mostly short term contracts.

On each change of ship and/or crew

Captain:James SzeligaSeems distracted and not very in command.
First Officer and Mechanic:Ally Smith
Pilot:Laurie LuxImmature, threatened by me. I need to work hard to get along with her.
Pilot:Velocity LambertJust in case I forget
Ship's Doctor:(Dr.) Robyn LiFriendly. Bonnie would like her.
Cook/General Hand:Lana ValentineFriendly, good food
General Hand:Henry SlaterNo feelings about him
Ship's Parrot (Laurie's):ScottNot large enough to make a meal for me let alone the whole crew

Daily Entries

Vixen Day 1

Woke up disorientated and crying for Bonnie. A young woman came in, one I recognised as Robin, a nice Doctor though the context escaped me. She led me to a crew assignment meeting in the galley where I had some lovely chicken soup. Assumption by Captain that I would be joining crew though he didn't know what I do.

Stole first flight from Laurie. Argument over untethered parrot on bridge. Alienated everyone by bragging that I could have been a Doctor or Nuclear Physicist as a way of scoring points off Laurie. STUPID! STUPID! STUPID. But at least I still have the magic!

Ship had a glitch. Ally could not track it down. Called Ally Bonnie. I think she fears me. Bonnie came to me again. Same Bonnie, trying to look out for me.

Vixen Day 2

On watch overnight. No sign of Laurie. On approach to Persephone.

Lana brought breakfast to me. She is very kind. Landed on Persephone at Eavesdown docks. Ship's registration: 68430294-Vixen.

Laurie left Vixen for a berth on another ship. Left Scotty behind. Went grocery shopping with Lana. Knocked some cans over trying to drive trolley. Cut my arm. Panicked and ran into ship. Helped Lana stow groceries.

Note Book Two: Lament

To war we're called
Two souls diverse
Friends we lose but
Never need to
The one I love is dead

In Common love
United we
No future see
In which I would
The one I love is dead

Between us lie
Both time and space
Time due long past
But still I don't
The one I love is dead

A Judas in
A trusted post
With self-serving
Deals he seals her
The one I love is dead

A missile hit
A raging fire
My lover screams
Over comm I
The one I love is dead

The missile leaves
Her battered ship
A shattered wreck
None live thus I
The one I love is dead

From broken heart
To shattered dreams
All reason dies
In dark despair
The one I love is dead

From top of class
To jacket straight
By missile sent
Time and spare to
The one I love is dead

What's reason worth
And Sanity
What value they
While in this cold
The one I love is dead

Months in a house
Of bugs I flee
A ship to join
In flight can I
The one I love is dead

The joy of flight
For oh so brief
A span of time
Indeed I can
The one I love is dead

Back down to earth
In life mundane
My mind has time
And leeway to
The one I love is dead

No respite in
The hours of dark
Where nightmares haunt
And in sleep I
The one I love is dead

Bruised in body
Bruised in spirit
Unchecked I bleed
In grief in blood
The one I love is dead

To lesson teach
A planet kill
All folk dead and
'Neath enemy
The one I love is dead

To seek my death
I courage lack
Denied its peace
Thus condemned to
The one I love is dead

Of future twin
Dark void of space
No plans, no goals,
No dreams, no hope
The one I love is dead

Worthless, "I should",
Pointless , "I could"
What value might
And could have been
The one I love is dead

I love her still
And in my heart
Remains her ghost
Bitter-sweet to
The one I love is dead

No hope I see
Despair complete
Now that I have
Lost my true love
The one I love is dead

Copyright CSF Robinson 2007-2021


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