Jul. 10th, 2015 01:04 am
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How's My Driving?
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Mun Contact:
Plurk: [ profile] Gingeyweasel
AIM: gingerveer
PMs on this account work, too!

I'll backtag as long as you want to! Feel free to poke me if I seem to have dropped something you want to continue.
Threadhopping: I love threadjacking, so I'm almost always up for it.. If it seems to be a serious/important thread and you're not sure, just ask first.
Fourthwalling: in situations where it's possible, go ahead I suppose
Offensive subjects: I'm probably okay with it. Ask if you're not sure.

Hugging this character:
Go for it.
Kissing this character: That's the sort of thing I'd usually like to plan out beforehand but I'm certainly not opposed to it ever happening. Keep the fact that he's gay in mind, though.
Flirting with this character: Go for it
Romantic interest toward this character: Totally fine, just don't expect automatic reciprocation.
Fighting with this character: Go for it! Though I'd like some OOC communication here if possible to make things go smoothly.
Killing this character: that's something that warrants discussion first.
Using telepathy/mind reading abilities on this character: Generally gonna be a yes! Just ask me first, please!

Power Opt-Out:
Piper can hypnotize others through his music. Luckily, he's not the type to abuse this ability too much...nowadays, anyway. He's a reformed villain, thank you very much!

However, this is obviously the kind of ability that requires a lot of communication to play with! I'll always ask before I do anything, but if you don't want it to happen ever or have specific things you'd like to avoid, feel free to leave a note here!
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NAME: Gingey
AGE: 21
JOURNAL: [personal profile] speedster
IM / EMAIL: gingerveer on AIM
PLURK: [ profile] Gingeyweasel
RETURNING: yes! I play Sera([personal profile] wasnever)

CHARACTER NAME: Hartley Rathaway
CHARACTER AGE: Somewhere in his 30s.
CHRONOLOGY: Post Final Crisis: Rogues' Revenge
CLASS: Mostly-Reformed Supervillain. It's Complicated.
HOUSING: idk just somewhere in Heropa would be cool

Hartley on the DC wiki

Hartley Rathaway was born to rich parents who were less than pleased when they realized that their son was completely deaf. After millions of dollars were poured into fixing his ears, a young Hartley found himself not only finally able to hear, but with enhanced hearing caused by the implants he recieved. He immediately fell in love with music, and as he grew up not really fitting in with his family or much of anyone he was exposed to as a rich kid with a heavily controlled life, he buried himself in his obsession with sound. Upon reaching adulthood his relationship with his parents only worsened as he got himself kicked out of every college they tried to send him to and eventually came out as gay to them. This finally led to him stealing from them and running off to try to make a living building instruments.

That's when Hartley mastered the art of musical mind control, having accidentally figured out how to create instruments he could use to hypnotize others. Of course the logical application of this discovery was to dress up in a polka-dotted outfit and begin a life of crime to revel in the control over his life he had now and get attention, carrying out dastardly schemes like holding the city hostage with a flock of ostriches. He came in frequent conflict with Barry Allen(the Flash) and eventually joined a group of his adversaries known as the Rogues.

His supervillain career ended after a nervous breakdown led to an unpleasant mental hospital stay and Hartley found himself instead wanting to devote his time to doing good. Though he didn't always consider legal "right," and at the beginning of this turnaround still broke the law pretty often in his pursuits of justice and compassion for those he determined needed it most--the homeless and poor. During this time he had many encounters with Wally West, now the Flash in his uncle's place, and the two eventually grew to be close friends. Though Hartley preferred to devote most of his time to volunteering at the soup kitchen and being a social activist, he also teamed up with Wally to fight supervillains on numerous occasions and used his technological genius to support Wally's efforts as well. When Wally's eventual wife Linda Park came into the picture, Hartley quickly grew very close to her, too.

Unfortunately, Hartley's relatively happy days after his reform came to an end when he was framed for the murder of his own parents. After a stint in a metahuman prison where the prisoners were notoriously mistreated and the warden had it out for him in particular, he broke out of prison followed by an army of rats he'd befriended while he was there and sought out a way to clear his name. After some difficulty Hartley ended up working with other former Rogues for the FBI to take down the current set of Rogues--their old friends. The events of this conflict are extremely convoluted but the plan ultimately failed, and Hartley's allies actually returned to their lives as criminals in the end. Hartley himself thought he'd gotten his life back, but then Wally disappeared and he got the bright idea to pretend he was rejoining the Rogues so he could take another shot at ruining things for them.

Needless to say, that plan went disastrously when Hartley ended up being in the general vicinity of the murder of Bart Allen(the Rogues were tricked into it by Bart's evil clone/Reverse Flash equivalent, Thad), and thus was once again being hunted for a death he wasn't responsible for--this time with his closest friend among the Rogues, James Jesse, handcuffed to him and suddenly much less friendly towards him. Because they couldn't separate from each other without being electrocuted and dying, they were on the run together until James took a bullet for Hartley, who was forced to flee into the desert dragging James' corpse behind him. Eventually, he severed James' hand to make things easier, but his situation didn't look any better after that. In fact, he eventually gave up and ended up sitting around waiting to die.

Hartley was rescued from the desert when he was transported to the planet Apokolips, where a lot of shit was going down. Hartley, though, was pretty far removed from most of the chaos there, and after all he'd been through just assumed he was in Hell at first. It didn't take long for one of the New Gods, Desaad, to approach him, claiming to have purposely caused all of his recent suffering specifically so he could drive him crazy and manipulate him. Desaad claimed that Hartley possessed the Anti-Life Equation in his brain and that was what allowed him to mind control others, not just his prowess as an inventor. Thus, if he could control Hartley, he could have access to it. He tried to convince Hartley to use it and promised him that with it he could have anything he wanted in life as a god, but Hartley was less than interested. In fact, upon realizing that James was dead because of Desaad, Hartley used his music to blow up his head. Already having resigned himself to death in the desert, Hartley decided to play one last song and be done with it--the Show Must Go On by Queen, which he used to blow up a good portion of the planet.

With absolutely no explanation for it, Hartley later woke up in Gotham. He then made his way back to Keystone City and stole James' will, which contained hidden information on the Rogues that he could use to try to take them down...again. Third time's the charm, right? He actually would've had them this time, if he hadn't been stabbed from behind by a villain visiting the neighborhood to recruit for his own supervillain team after he had all of the Rogues under his control. This whole mess got even worse with the Reverse Flashes showing up, and Hartley ended up using his music to restrain Thad so the Rogues could kill him as revenge for tricking them into murdering Bart. Because this time he legitimately had blood on his hands, the Rogues threatened him with his crime to keep him out of their business and Hartley actually ended up turning himself over to the police.

Hartley harbors intense disdain for his cushy, privileged upbringing, and it drove him straight into the arms of socialism--with political views that are said to make Green Arrow look like a conservative. As he is now, helping the downtrodden is his #1 priority--he spends more time on volunteer work than superhero business if he can. He has over the course of his career as a social activist been involved in a lot of different efforts to help the homeless and poor, and also involved in plenty of LGBT stuff in the area as well. He's happy to give up always having new clothes or a nice place to live for his cause--he's lived on the streets to try and personally protect the homeless on at least one occasion. And he doesn't just quietly do all of this either--he looks for every opportunity to educate the more privileged people around him, often teaching Wally West important lessons. And going on long rants about classism and the joys of socialism to anyone who will listen. His contempt for those that don't care and especially the majority of the rich causes him to pick fights--verbal or otherwise--with people who won't listen to gentler snarking he gives people like Wally. He can honestly be pretty self-righteous about it.

As a former supervillain, Hartley is used to having his morality questioned. It's hardly unprecedented when he spent years not only robbing things but definitely not above the idea of killing Barry Allen or the mayor--the fact that he later defends himself from all the murders he gets framed for with "I've never killed anyone"(which was the time) is really not for lack of trying. But now that he's not so young and no longer getting off on the power he has after feeling like he'd never had any growing up, he's certainly grown as a person. He's one of the few villains that successfully managed to legitimately clean up his act for years, with no relapse back to a life of crime--he only ended up supposedly switching sides again because of crimes he never even committed and desperately wanted to reclaim his reformed status. Being a better person is deeply important to him, he says he feels like he was born cursed and is fighting an uphill battle trying to be good, but he still struggles to keep his life turned around no matter what gets thrown his way.

When Hartley's around other villains is when his growth as a person really shows, though. We see him fondly remembering an old supervillain ex-boyfriend only to find he really didn't like him anymore when they encountered each other again--at first he goes on about his ex never used to be that bad, but it ends with him reaffirming how he's grown to prefer being on the heroic side of things now. Even pretending to be a villain again among the Rogues, he stood out a goody two-shoes among them, making it very difficult for them to buy his return to crime. His attempt to convince them that he really wanted to be a villain again consisted of stealing from a man who made his fortune ripping off the elderly and supposedly making him commit suicide, but actually hypnotizing him to swim to safety after he jumped into the ocean. And he donated the stolen money to charity, when he would've definitely kept it for himself in the days of his initial supervillain career.

Not to say that Hartley's made a complete transformation into a saint or that he always follows the rules. What he considers right isn't always what's legal, he's certainly done plenty of law-breaking for the benefit of the homeless and has no problem with breaking out of jail and running from the law when he's been framed..though he does turn himself in when he thinks he legitimately belongs in jail. Even after his reform he's not opposed to the idea of killing someone he really believes deserves it--he attempted to assassinate a presidential candidate at one point because he believed him to be a dangerous supervillain in disguise and was angry at Wally for trying to stop him because he was only doing what needed to be done for the good of everyone, obviously. He's certainly not above killing as a form of revenge, either--he blew up Desaad's head for what he did to him and James Jesse and contributed to the Rogues killing Thad Thawne after Thad tricked them into killing Bart Allen. He also wouldn't be opposed to killing Mirror Master after he killed Hartley's parents and framed him for it, though that's not something Hartley's made a priority. He'd certainly do it if provoked and he takes a moment to viciously kick him in the face when he has all of the Rogues at his mercy. Even when he's nowhere near the point of murdering anyone, he can be very rude and snarky and petty with people he doesn't like--be they villains or just snooty rich people.

As a friend though, Hartley's snarky side can get very playful--he certainly spends a lot of time teasing Wally. He's very supportive of and loyal to Wally(and later, Wally's wife Linda), and this continues even after Wally cut ties with him out of a belief that he'd really been a willing part of Bart's murder. He can rag on Wally on his own all he wants but he's quick to defend him when James says less than favorable things about him, for example. He's not the type to let any Wally's behavior that actually bothers him slide, though. He's more patient with his friends than he would be with anyone else, but he'll still lecture them on social issues and sarcastically correct them when they say something ignorant. There are a lot of comics where Hartley forces Wally to learn his lesson when it comes to homelessness or saying ignorant things about sexuality. He only came out of the closet in the first place to put Wally in his place when claimed you can always tell when someone's gay and used the Joker of all people as an example.

Hartley spent a lot of his life as a loner, and this certainly shows. One of the things that factored into his decision to become a supervillain in the first place was getting attention and he'll readily admit that. He looks back on his time with the Rogues and notes that he seemed more openly interested in befriending and growing close to them than any of the others--the Rogues overall do have something of a strange, close familial bond, but a lot of it is left unspoken most of the time. He does eventually find himself very close to Wally West and Linda Park, but when he's separated from them and eventually left on bad terms with them and has no one to turn to...he ends up befriending rats and comes to take their companionship very seriously.

Hartley is obviously a fairly eccentric person, looking at his fixation on music and the way he treats his rats, but he's also a very high strung one. He's had at least one major nervous breakdown before, which was likely part of what pushed him into trying to change his life as it's the last thing that happened before his reform. People tend to see him as a bit of a nag, and it's not uncommon for his friends to brush off some of the things he gets worked up over. Even when he has a point he can be a bit melodramatic about it, which is apparent in some of his social justice rants.

Master of Sound: First and foremost, Piper is best known for his music-based abilities--being able to hypnotize others through playing music as well as occasionally doing things like causing explosions and temporary paralysis. Basically, outside of the brainwashing, anything soundwaves can do in the right circumstances has been incorporated in at some point. Typically these abilities are explained as him being a genius with sonic technology(he also builds things like sonic cannons in his spare time, no big deal), but it's also dubiously canon that he's actually been a metahuman the entire time on top of his prowess with sound-based technology--according to the mostly retconned away/ignored clusterfuck that was Countdown to Final Crisis, Piper's abilities come from him having the Anti-Life Equation in his mind, and while that was pretty much dropped afterwards he has done things that really don't make sense unless he has some kind of superhuman ability. Either way, I'd like it to count as an ability here.

Rat Whisperer: Hartley has been shown talking to rats on numerous occasions. He seems to actually gain information from his conversations with them, making it look more like an ability (that is never explained or commented on) than him just being crazy. Whatever it is, it's an ability here.


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Hartley Rathaway | Pied Piper

July 2015

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