Protect The Client!
The Drumstick Toting Wyght in Nightlife
Henry Morgan was raised in a simpler place and a simpler time. Alas, things change.
Born to a small-town farming family on a forgotten piece of dirt in Iowa, that seemed the life Henry was destined for, as well. He would have been content for it to be so.
When the outrage at Pearl Harbor occurred, Henry enlisted just like every other true-blooded American. A few years later, Henry hit the beaches at Normandy and saw thousands of his brothers die around him. Henry survived the beaches of France, but his own personal horror was not far off. Only weeks later, Henry was jumped and fatally attacked while scouting out a farmhouse. He never even saw his attacker.
When Henry regained consciousness, much had changed. The army had moved on, but that was really the least of Henry’s concerns. Far, far more immediate issues were the terrible things that had happened to his body, the strange new yearning he was experiencing, the way the sunlight burned his body, and the things he had instinctively done first to the cow in the barn and then to the farmer who came to feed it. Seeing their desiccated bodies – and the way that strange yearning had been satisfied by making them that way – shook Henry more than anything in his life (and death) to this day.
It took several months of hiding and the draining of creatures’ very lives before Henry was able to sneak into the hold of a ship that took him home to America. But no one understands quite like Henry that “you can never go home again.” Henry didn’t dare go home, both because he knew by now that there would be no way to live in rural Iowa without going out by day and because he was afraid to see his family. Afraid to let them see what he had become and afraid for them…because he knew what he had become. Henry made his way to New York City, where there were lots of ways to stay out of the light (literally and figuratively) and where he made the second most stunning discovery of his existence: the Night Life.
The New York City Night Life was a hard and dangerous place to be, but Henry found creatures…they were people, of a sort…that would give him guidance and even friendship. Once you knew how, there were ways to exist that didn’t have to include daily murder. Within a decade Henry had created a life, of sorts, working a series of odd jobs and developing a decidedly strange, but meaningful, social life by night. Still, it was a difficult existence that was unexpectedly eased by an immersion in music. Jazz, sweet jazz could pull Henry away…he could lose himself…and what a great thing that was, losing oneself…just not being who he was. Even better was the avalanche of rock and roll that the young people invented. That was so good, so compelling, that Henry actually began making human friends again.
Henry’s success in creating a life in New York made it only that much more devastating when it all went away. Henry had been aware of politics among the Kin, but boy had he underestimated how it would impact him. Tensions that he had been aware of for only a few years erupted, sweeping through his circle of friends and leaving them dead or simply gone. Henry was away from his home when the first wave of killing occurred and he learned the details as he held his human friends’ bodies on the floor of his flat and discovered that, in addition to the inhuman strength and speed and the ability to see in the dark that had helped him escape Europe, he also had the ability to communicate with the dead and even bring them back. After a few tragic attempts at reviving his friends, Henry knew better than to try again.
The vampires had done it – and they weren’t through. In a matter of weeks they struck and struck again, permanently killing off Henry’s Kin friends, who opposed them. Henry manifested an odd precognitive sense of danger during this time that saved him more than once, but in the end all he could do was flee. He went to Chicago.
In Chicago Henry found a new, yet familiar, scene. A strange ability to perceive people’s auras helped Henry identify friendly Kin and enter the music scene as a professional musician. Word of the continuing progress of an organized vampire conquest of the East Coast trickled into the Chicago Night Life scene with the coming and going of various Kin and a slow, electric tension began to rise as the Kin of Chicago sensed the coming storm. And so, when lightning struck, Chicago Kin were ready – or so Henry had thought.
Once again, the political divisions within the Kin prevented a coordinated response to a very coordinated vampire onslaught. This time Henry’s preternatural sense of danger did not prevent personal conflict and Henry found himself fighting, literally tooth and claw. His body once more responded to the needs of the time and he found himself manifesting both an armored durability he had not known before and the ability, at need, to manifest deadly claws. Henry gave a good accounting of himself, but as before, in the end he had to run. This time to Los Angeles.
When Henry came to LA 15 years ago he had no illusions. The vampires were coming. The Kin he met in the LA Night Life seemed just as politically divided as they had in New York and Chicago and Henry was just as politically incapable. If they could be made to understand the danger it wouldn’t be him that did it. Henry has spent those years immersed in his drums and cultivating what he hopes will be useful connections in the human world among good, wholesome smugglers – you know, people who can get him the occasional fragmentation grenade or latest form-fitting Kevlar body armor. People who might be useful when they come. Because come they will. Henry knows this and, with the ocean at his back, there is no where left to run.
Henry doesn’t sleep at night – or during the day, for that matter. The internet has had an extraordinary impact on Henry’s ability to function during the day. Recently, Henry has been developing some skill regarding issues of high finance. He is preparing to open multiple bank accounts in Switzerland, the Caymans, and other places he has learned of.
Henry has killed many people in his 93 years – and occasionally he still does. Since coming to LA, however, he has taken pains to develop relationships with sympathetic people who work at Animal Control. Hundreds of abandoned pets are euthanized every day in the Greater Los Angeles Metropolitan Area and their deaths don’t have to be in vain. Henry has been particularly successful in this regard with his friend, Heather, who is now a manager at the Animal Control closest to his home. Henry begins most evenings with a visit to Heather.
Henry makes a meager and spotty income drumming under the name Ajax with “Brave Ones”, his friend Parker’s band. Parker is young, energetic, cares passionately about music, and always knows what is going on in the music world.
Henry makes a less meager, but still spotty, income smuggling goods locally. In the past 10 years Henry has gone by the name of Horse, and developed a relationship with Buddy Midget, who always seems to need something picked up or dropped off somewhere. Horse has transported illegal aliens, pirated DVDs, knock-off designer clothes, artwork, cigarettes, crates of cell phones, cheap out-of-country pharmaceuticals, liquor…you name it. Horse has been in a scrape or two during that time and developed a local reputation for being as tough as he is ugly. At the moment a crate of Cuban cigars belonging to one Buddy Midget is occupying a sizeable portion of his garage.