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Valhalla
Apr 17, 2022
In Character Blogs
"What am I doing here?" I ask that question more and more all the time. No matter where I am, what am I doing here? It's the question I asked myself when the answer was get the hell out of New Vegas. Which was hard; I was born there. My family is there. Was there. Depends on which family members you mean. The family were the kind of New Vegas locals whose job it is, is to remove all the excess credits from every visitor. If the tourists aren't utterly broke by the time they leave NV, something went wrong. I was born and augmented with the standard neural interface, but I always had a knack for numbers. I was enrolled in a school for the "gifted" and passed with honors. I could have gone off to university at eighteen, but events didn't work out that way. My father ran a club, not a monster casino like the Sleazy or the Palace. It was a small electro-jazz club off the main strip, which got its share of locals as well as tourists who wanted something different. My mother was a singer, but that seems like too plain of a description. Her voice wasn't an aug either. It was natural. You can always tell oscillators and autotuning. She had a voice that could sing sweet and pure, or growl like a cat. Mom sang with *attitude*. She used to tell me, anybody can sing a note, Val. Singing a note is 20 percent. 80 percent is the attitude you sing it with. For me, it was keyboard lessons as soon as I could reach an octave on a keyboard. My teacher, Ms. Carmichael - I called her "Miz Carbunkle" - was a rehearsal accompanist for many of the clubs' musical shows. The kind of gig you end up with when your dream of hitting the big time doesn't pan out. She was a bundle of pinched resentment, and I was right there for her to torment. But I did learn to play! Besides singing, my mom - Elvana, she was called, just by her first name - also had a fortune telling side gig during the New Vegas festivals, and there were a lot of them. She had a tent construct - very old school, very spooky - to put on a show for the marks, because they expect it, but her readings were for real. She told me the cards were like a dictionary of words about the human condition, and that never changes. Laying out the cards was writing sentences with those words. Tap with your subconsciousness into the waves and patterns of reality as you shuffle the cards and the Universe will speak to you. She believed it. When I was old enough to play in the casinos - sixteen by corporate law - I would accompany my mother on keyboards for her signing gigs. She sang not only at my father's small club, but at some of the bigger casinos too. She started to get a following. So I grew up playing keys with my mother, but the money was not that good. Performers are ruthlessly exploited by the corps and gangs that run New Vegas. We worked all the time, not only to support ourselves but to keep my father's club from going under. He loved the place, he had put his whole life into it and mom couldn't bear to let him lose it. Eventually, some corpos from MGM offered to sign her to a holo-recording contract. It seemed to be too good to be true, so of course it was. ...to be continued. ((All OOC information, of course, unless Val has revealed it to you IC.))
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