“Yeah, all those things, responsibility, pressure. It's a bit stressful. I try and come to terms with it by not thinking about it.” ~Joe Strummer
birth name :: Colin Gabriel Shaw alias :: Many, but none of note nickname(s) :: Nothing appropriate age :: 34 calling :: Watcher sexuality :: Hetersexual status :: Single occupation :: Watcher (Independently Comfortable) origins :: Buffy the Vampire Slayer
eyes :: Blue hair :: Brown height :: 5' 7" build :: Slim Athletic distinguishing marks :: Numerous Scars on Body play-by :: James McAvoy
- - - - [Colin's]likes
Real Scotch Whisky or a Proper Pint
Tombs, Crypts, and Catacombs
Magical Artifacts and Relics
Old Punk Rock Music
- - - - [Colin's]dislikes
- - - - powers
Relic Magic: While Colin has no real magical aptitude of his own, his time spent focused on the artifacts of the past, and the power they hold, has led him to be able to, on occasion, harness the power within an object to his benefit. This isn't always successful, and as such Colin has experience with fixing unintended consequences.
Eidetic Memory: His memory, while impressive, suffers a bit by being somewhat selective. Given a bit of time to study something, Colin can replicate almost anything he's seen perfectly. He can also recite conversations verbatim. This ability only really applies to things he considers important to him, which is often with the relics he's pursued and researched over the years. Being able to recite Ancient Sumerian Prophecy from memory isn't as impressive when you can't ever seem to remember the doorman's name.
Watcher: While some may not consider it a power, the level of knowledge and understanding that the Watchers have of the world beneath the apparent makes them acutely adept at handling the various breeds of vampires, werewolves, demons and whatever else goes bump in the night. Slayers may be the hand, but the Watchers are the brains teaching and telling that hand how to act, how to slay.
- - - - strengths
Adept Researcher and Archeologist: Colin's life is about hunting down relics, and he's quite good at it.
Linguist: Colin speaks half a dozen modern languages fluently as well as can speak and/or translate dozens of ancient and supernatural languages.
Grifter: Unlike some of his former, fellow Watchers, Colin is a rather charismatic individual when it comes to his work. There is little he won't say or do in the pursuit of whatever he's set his sights on, and as such there have been many lies, and many different names over the years.
Survivalist: Even before the fall of the Council, Colin had been forced to live a constantly uncomfortable life. Even in the most harrowing of circumstances, the man has always found a way to make it through alive. The scars adorning his body are evidence of how close he's come to death on more than one occasion.
Hand-To-Hand Combat: Part of the training of all Watchers is the various aspects of combat that they must know to the level to not only defeat monsters they encounter, but to train young Slayers to do the same. As such, Colin is quite adept at hand to hand combat and some forms of weaponry such as swords and stakes.
- - - - weaknesses
Undisciplined: The Watchers of old would never put up with the man Colin has become now. Those years away, traveling the world, changed him from the proper Brit to something far less concerned with appearances. Some would call him a ruffian, but mostly it's just the result of Colin spending far too long out on his own, 'Going Native' as it were.
Power: Colin has a thirst for it. Since his first encounter with a magical item, feeling that force, that power within it, the man has been captivated with finding more and more of that power.
Drinking + Women: While normally quite careful and cautious when it comes to others, once Colin has gotten a healthy amount of drink going, he becomes a terrible flirt that often ends up going home with someone. This has led him into some situations he wasn't wanting or prepared for.
Cowardice: Colin's intelligence supersedes his bravery in most cases. Even if he's fought monsters and been to some of the most dangerous places on the planet, the man has no issue with retreating if that be the most logical course of action. He likes living.
Lightweight: While great for spelunking, at 5' 7" and barely 150 pounds Colin has never been a physically threatening man. It doesn't matter how intellectually intimidating one can be when it comes to monsters and imbeciles. While the man can take a punch, he's not going to be purposely trying to get into fights.
- - - - secret
Relic Hunter's Vault: Has a flat in Paris where he hides everything he's collected over the past few years since the Council's end.
- - - - dreams
A Life Without Fear: Colin isn't daft enough to think that there will ever be an end to the war, so instead he dreams of a day when death isn't a constant fear. While there are plenty of evils out there that promise some lesser form of it, Colin seeks out only that which will grant him the power to have, at least, personal peace.
Return to Glory: Upon learning of the new Council, and Colin's return to the fold, the man hopes to prove himself as being more than what the previous Council thought of him. Useful for finding things, but not trusted enough to be assigned a Slayer. With the activation of so many, and with so few Watchers, Colin doesn't see a way in which his particular style couldn't enforce a different way of thinking within this new Council, and perhaps give young Slayers another quiver of skills to pull from when brute force isn't the way.
- - - - fears
Death: It goes without saying that most fear this, but with Colin's particular life lived, the reality that is Death has always been something he was far too familiar with. He'd been particularly close to his own death a couple of times, and that's just not a thought or a feeling he much enjoys. But in a world where there are far more things that want to eat you than align with you, Death is a constant that can't be ignored.
Helplessness: Since those first few fights against minions of darkness as per his Watcher training, and truly realizing the scope of what he would deal with being out on his own, Colin has always pursued the tools necessary to keep evil at bay and more importantly keep himself safe. That feeling of being helpless in a situation is not one the man wishes to feel or could forget. The instances may be few and far between, but that doesn't make them any less impactful.
Born to a single mother in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, Colin wouldn't know the sheer impact his absentee father would have until he was a young boy. Around the age of ten, when Colin was just starting to be a real headache for his mother, his father popped back into the picture and was given the boy from his mother. Colin would learn later that it was much more a business transaction than a true transfer of custody. His mother had been compensated for her willingness.
Colin's father had been a Watcher, and as there seemed to be the tradition, the boy was expected to follow in the same footsteps. Even from a young age, two qualities of the boy shown through: his intelligence and his independence. While the former was certainly a boon for the Council, the latter proved to be one of those qualities not easily diminished. It certainly left the old Council in a quandary about what to do with the young man once he neared adulthood. He was a proficient student and seemed to grasp anything with ease. On the other hand, with Colin's particular streak of rebelliousness, the idea of him being in charge of any young, impressionable Slayer was seen as a mistake waiting to happen.
Upon reaching the age of seventeen, despite passing every test put before him, some in rather unique ways, the Council still felt unsure about the young man, but continued on regardless. With there being only a single Slayer in the world at one time, and the wealth of other, less damaging options out there, there was always going to be some way that Colin could be of use. It was how he managed to attend Oxford for all of those years, gaining his PhD in Archaeological Science, while also continuing his training and studies. By the time Colin was ready to face the real world beyond the halls of the Academy and Oxford, an opening had come up.
While identifying and training the Slayer was one of the major roles of the Watchers Council, the collection of information to better prepare the Slayer had always been one of the major functions of the organization. As such, Watchers were sent out to study and collect lore and items, with the latter being a specialty placed on the young man. Being an Archeologist was a good cover from all that he did. Colin was much more Indiana Jones than Howard Carter, following the legends all the way until their source, and then delving head first into whatever and wherever it took him.
Funding the man's adventures, as they would end up being for him, was the Watchers Council thanks to a very healthy expense account. With all of the old money running through the place, not only did Colin have enough to handle all of his travels, but also plenty of money to make bribes and purchases should the need arise. Even if the Council was somewhat stuck in the old ways, they at least understood the power of cash. For the effort he put into his work, minus the string of celebratory drunken nights, Colin acquired some new piece every few months. He was one of the best relic hunters the Council had had in recent memory.
But that all changed with the fall of the Watchers Council, and the death of his father among them. Even if he knew how to, Colin wasn't a fighter. He had no interest in hunting down those that murdered the Council. If they had the power to do that, then he really had no business tangling with them. Another dead Watcher wasn't going to make any difference. So he ran. He hid. He took the money and used all of his old contacts and tricks to disappear. He even got a Sudanese jailer to say he died in their prison.
But one could only hide for so long, could only deny everything about them for so long until it just boiled over and forced you to move your feet. The urge to track down those powerful objects lost to history, to find those devices created by hellish demons and secure them away from the ignorant was too much. Colin found himself turning to old books of ancient lore for comfort, but it would only lead him, time after time, down the same rabbit hole he'd been down for years.
Paris wasn't just a place he stashed his loot, but a home for the man. The city with all of its history, with its art, it twas but a dream for the man. Mornings spent sipping coffee while eating fresh baked goods as he toiled over whatever the next item on his list was. There was once a dream of enjoying the simple life, of just finding treasures, selling the mundane and sipping coffee. It had been a simple dream, but not one that was destined for the man, no matter how much he wanted it.
It's been years since the fall, since the last time he'd spoke to a fellow Watcher or heard about Slayers from anywhere besides his books. A particularly interesting legend had led Colin to the Tian Shan, "Mountains of Heaven", in Central Asia. Hiking his way through, through a deep cavern that one could easily get lost in, instead of finding the ruins of an old monastery lost to time, the man found something very different.
As the story went, the monks had saved a few children from an avalanche centuries prior, and raised them within the monastery. A boy and a girl, the former would go on to be a great leader within the monastery, with the latter being his closest confident, and a 'Mother' within the cloistered society. Generations later, there was a whole secret people hidden back in the mountains, seemingly happy to go on with life without interference from the outside world.
If it hadn't been for the symbols and sketches in the man's books, Colin was pretty sure they would have kept him as a captive until they either killed him or something worse. Even though there was no common language to really speak of between the two, Colin's grasp of Chinese limited to the more modern styles, it seemed that they shared an understanding of the supernatural. Furthermore, it seemed they had their own legends of a 'Slayer', and somehow, someway managed to land the Chosen One.
The girl was no more than sixteen, and certainly seemed quite content to live the life she had been born into. As weird as it was for the archeologist to live with the ancient society, to feel what it is to live in times of past, Colin couldn't help but wonder if he was supposed to do something with this information. As lucky as it was to find the one Slayer in all of the world, tucked back safely in a monastery wasn't going to do the world any good. Colin didn't want to care, didn't want to think like a Watcher anymore, but it was in his very bones.
After spending a couple of weeks with the monastery, living with them, sharing information and going through all of the testing he could given his limited supplies of the Slayer, Colin set back out towards civilization to regroup his thoughts and try and decide what to do with all he had found. Regardless of anything else, he knew he had to keep the existence to himself. But after regrouping and setting out a month later with more supplies, to perhaps take up his duty and be the guidance the young woman needed, Colin found himself lost.
One thing that Colin was particularly good at was not getting lost. Working back the way he'd returned, the man was sure he remembered everything just as it was, but after weeks spent looking, the man could never find the monastery again. He almost starved in his search. The man couldn't explain it. It became almost an obsession, even going as far as trying to charter a helicopter to take him to search. Never could he find it though.
Every night he was away from the monastery, his memory of the place seemed to fade. Not something that ever happened to the man, in his desperate search for the actual place, the details of his discovery began to become muddled. Names were lost at first, then facts. When frustration finally overcame him and he'd believed he'd run out of other options, all Colin was left with was this belief that he'd been there, to some monastery, and knew it was important. He just felt it in him.
Believing that there had to be some magic at play, the man found himself with really only one option if he was going to reverse whatever was afflicting his brain. Returning to England was not easy, nor was it coming to the decision to treat the old ruins of what he once called home as a tomb he'd dug his way into. It was what he'd have to do. There had been no better repository of legend and lore in the world, and no where better to find some counter spell to the magics upon him. Even if all he could find was scraps, it might be enough…
There really was no place like London. The man had sighed as he stepped off the tube into the heart of the city. It had been entirely too long since he'd been home to the isles. He'd nearly forgotten what it felt like to be there, to have that taste in the air be something more than a memory. He'd started his trip with a few, innocuous visits to haunts of old, but at no point did Colin forget why he was back in the first place.
It didn't take a genius to discover the site of the New Watchers Council headquarters, the symbology was all the same, so clearly this wasn't some young upstart like himself that was making the attempt. There was a bit of curiosity at first about who could be in charge, who could have survived the culling? Spending a day just watching the place, calling on that tried and true Watcher skill of observing without being seen, there was a decided lack of activity at the place. Colin was almost convinced it was abandoned.
That evening, he hadn't concerned himself with worrying about what might be waiting for him inside. Even if he'd been in the wind for years, he was still a Watcher. If any of his old brethren still lived and thrived, they might be able to help him. Sadly, that's all that Colin had left. He needed help with something, and only the Watchers Council had the answer. It was purely a feeling, something in him driving him, even though he couldn't for the life of him remember why.
Walking up to the large doors, Colin had decided to look the part, just in case any were to question. Having to find a suit hadn't been easy, nor inexpensive, but it had been imperative, just in case. The man had no clue what or more importantly who he would find behind all of this, but he was at least not going to walk in looking anything less than what was expected while in the Council's house. Standing there looking at the handle, Colin was just brazen enough to try it, not expecting it to be unlocked, and not finding it as such anyway.
With a shrug of a shoulder and a mumbled, "Worth a shot," Colin reached into his inner jacket pocket and pulled out one of the few tools he probably relied entirely too much on. A scuffed and dented silver pocket watch, nothing seemingly special or fancy my any means, was produced. Pressing it to the center of the door in front of him, the man flipped open the clasp on the cover and gave the key a couple of turns.
The face of the watch began to glow a dim blue as the hands began to spin in opposing directions. This continued for a few moments, the hands crossing one another, but never stopping. Colin's brow drew together as he stared at the watch and murmured, "What's taking you so long?" as if the magical instrument would somehow answer him. Finally, with a relieved sigh from the man, both hands came to a sudden halt with a click on the twelve. "Thank you," the man said as he closed the cover and quickly tucked the pocket watch back into his jacket.
Stepping through the door with confidence, Colin's face turned slightly with a clear look of approval for the choice of decor. It certainly wasn't the place of old, but it was certainly not without that particular feel either. Loitering around the foyer, the man's eyes studied every piece in sight. His feet carried him in soft steps as he studied this and that. Whoever it was that had done all of this certainly had been busy. Especially when it was considered how much had been lost with the original Council.
Colin always knew that he wouldn't be able to be inside long before he was approached. The man had just casually infiltrated one of the most secure buildings in all of London. Even with the tricks up his sleeve, he'd known all along that there were just some locks you could crack, so here he was, back turned towards who approached, listening to their footsteps as they approached. Not looking over his shoulder, Colin called back, "I like the new place better than the old. Seems less dusty…"
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