So the other night, in an online/live action X-men game that I play, my character set about comforting another PC who had been to emotional and mental hell and back during a live game session a few days before. And I have to admit that dear little Delilah did a pretty good job at comforting her distraught classmate without a single set of dice being thrown for skills or anything. *is rather proud of this fact* The scene was incredibly fun to run and was with someone with whom I do not get to play very often, which is always fun. 🙂 The player also gave me noms (nominations) for the scene: “Noms to Cheshire. It is almost insane how good a mom you’ll make someday.”
That made me feel nice. I do try to transfer my own mothering instincts into the character of Delilah/Cheshire, as not many of my characters actually end up embodying that trait. She has walls, she can have a very prickly, cold nature if you’ve crossed her, but for those who manage to get through (over) the walls, if she has come to care for you, woe betide anyone who falls afoul of you and therefore afoul of her. Delilah is also one of those characters who embodies her fair share of bitterness. Almost all of my characters have a bitterness seed somewhere; something happened or been done to them that they will be working for years to overcome. Some of my characters have a seed of fear because of what they have done in the past or because of what they have lost. I almost cannot bear to have a character for whom all is perfect and hunky-dory, because then the character feel flat and false to me. Incomplete, as it were. I want my characters to be round and dynamic.
Now, my Hogwarts character, my little Ravenclaw, has had a better life than most of my characters and why not? Her generation hasn’t had to deal with the evils and terrors of Voldemort and his Death Eaters. They have become nightmare tales for her, told to her by her uncle Kingsley when he trips across the pond to visit her and her parents. That doesn’t meant that I’m going to leave my little Dulcet so porcelain perfect. Oh, no. She’s a teenager; things are bound to happen, as we all know.
The hubby and I were having a conversation the other day about roleplay characters and how people create them. I was getting fed up with something and he commented to me, “You know, I think we all create the same characters over and over again, just with different quirks to them.” That we all have essentially one idea that we are in love with and, no matter how many times we create characters and try to make them different and unique (thought they are), they will carry a bit of that beloved idea with them. Because that beloved idea is a part of us or perhaps something we wish was a part of us or that we could be.
Some people denegrate roleplaying as merely escapism and, yes, it can be a method of escapism, of getting away from the real world into one where you can do impossible things from time to time. But that is not all it is, I can assure you of that. For me, roleplaying games are a blessed opportunity to create a beautiful story with other people. And I have done just that. I have created beautiful, heartbreaking, uplifting stories with friends, my husband, and even new acquaintances that make me cherish characters and hold them to me long after their stories have ended. For me, much as for Jo March, it is the story that is the thing. I will put my characters through the worst I can think of, if it serves to create a wonderful story. Ask just about anyone that I have rp’ed with in the past and they can confirm my claim. If I can create a beautiful story, whether happy ending for my character or no, then I have served my purpose and my joy in roleplay.
And, what can I say? I’ve got a few more years of this left in me, at least. ^_~