That Man of the World : Holden Banner

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That Man of the World : Holden Banner

Post  IloveFictionalCharacters on Thu Aug 16, 2012 7:33 am

---OOC Information---
Fatal Hotel Username: Rossington
Real life name: Ross Keddie

---IC Information---
Vital Statistics

Full name: Holden Thomas Banner

Titles : Major, although he rarely acknowledges he held the rank outside a close circle of old friends from the war.

Meaning of Name:
Holden is an English name which means "hollow in the valley" , less literally it means from in the valley.
Thomas is a Greek name which means literally "A twin" or part of a pair.
A Banner is a flag, usually seen in a military context, around which people can gather and rally.


Nickname(s) : Speak Easy or The Major.

Sex: Male

Age & Date of Birth: 12th August 1891 (He's 31)

Birthplace: Capetown, South Africa.

Current Residence: The apartments above his bar and club are typically where Holden sleeps.

Lives With :TBC

Occupation: Something of a criminal in as much that he ships booze back to the now "dry" states for a tidy profit. He also deals in narcotics such as opium and won't hesitate to use violence to push through a business deal or collect on a payment.

On the other hand he is a keen supporter of ex-servicemen, who he sees as being dealt a bad hand after the war.

Past Occupations: British Army officer, Dock Foreman and Colonial official.

Birthday: 12th August.

Physical Appearance
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General Description/Facial Features :
Holden enters a room and he typically turns heads. His sharp cut clothes and stubble lined smile instantly light up wherever he happaens to be. Days spent laboring in the sun have tanned his skin and made him lean ,yet muscular. As a result he can generally make girls swoon and men take notice of this eminent business man in their midst. This is how he comes across when he needs to be public. When a subtler approach is required he can dress down to appear like any other worker in a crowd. This gives him a vast advantage over his business rivals who seem to often parade their wealth, even when trying to go unnoticed.

Height & Body Type: 5' 9", Holden is around average height, but pretty built with it.

Eyes: A dull blue, sprinkled with intelligence and guile.

Skin Tone: Tanned due to his time working out in the sun.

Scars: He carries an array of scars from his time in the trenches and his dealings on the wrong side of the law since. He has a weakness in his left shoulder, where he took a revolver round in a trench fight in the last days of the war. In the same melee he lost two fingers on his left hand to a grenade.

Type of Dresser: He likes to use one of two dressing styles. Either classy and slightly extravagant or dressed down to one of the common multitude. When working with other criminals, he has not forgotten how they are all common men so never wears a suit to such clandestine meetings.

Hair Color & Style: A short military cut on the sides, with the top left slightly longer. He usually waxes his hair to slick it over to the side, making for a sharp clean cut image.

Tattoos/Piercings:
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Royal Marines crest tattooed on his left forearm.


Personality & Such

Disabilities: His time in the trenches have left him with a slight case of shell shock, which is very selective in nature. He can stand general noise and anything he knows is going to happen, but if a door slams behind him he'll visibly flinch.

He is also missing two fingers on his left hand, which makes holding some things more difficult.

Mental State: He suffers from flash backs to his time served in the trenches, due to the traumatic experiences there. other than that he is utterly sane.

Talents & Skills:
He has a certain knack for leading people. He has that charismatic flair, and confidence, to lead men into battle, as he proved in the First World War.
He is a sure sighted marksman, from his time spent on the Game Reserves of South Africa and uses his keen eyes to effect. This somewhat clashes with his abilities as a bar room brawler, where technique is nothing and instinct is everything.
Perhaps his most treasured skill is as a negotiator and at striking a deal no matter what. Holden regularly deals with the roughest sort of individual and as such needs to get out of tricky situations with the least amount of resources available to him, and somehow always manages it.

Activities/Hobbies/Pastimes:
The Night Life.
Holden spends roughly 3 to 4 nights a week out partying with friends and associates from his business deals. He often hosts such events at his own club (Bonne Chance) where alcohol flows and cigarette smoke clouds the air.

The News.
Holden ,no matter what the circumstances, always makes time to read the newspapers for the day. Like many foreign residents in Paris he has the papers from Britain ordered in daily by express mail. He takes particular interest in the exploits of the Army and is always willing to give money to the newest service charity to be advertised. (following the First World War an array of charities for injured servicemen were established)


Self-Image : While Holden typically projects confidence and charm, in reality he feels little of his own charm. He regularly has flashes of self doubt and inadequacy that would leave a lesser man crippled with worry. This never stops Mr Banner though, and he continues to exude confidence to everybody but himself. He sees himself as a noble figure who is trying to avoid the worst results of opium and alcohol addiction, by stopping his customers getting to that point of excess.

Weakness : He has trouble raising his left arm above shoulder height, due to previous injuries.
His previous experiences of the trenches mean that sudden loud noises make him uncomfortable and even a little afraid.

Overall Personality:
Holden is something of a contradiction. He believes in the majesty of the British empire, but refuses to accept it's moral restrictions. He sees it as only natural that people will pay for extravagance and he is only too willing to supply it. His face is quick to smile when the times are good, but will set hard as stone if you cross him. Generally an easy going kind of guy, but if crossed on a matter of business he is ruthless.

This clashes with his care for all those who were effected negatively by the war. Any disabled soldier will instantly be accepted and protected by the patriarchal figure of Mr Banner.

Best Personality Trait: Easy going nature. He accepts all people cultures and creeds and never turns his nose up any preference in forms of entertainment or lifestyle. This extends from the aristocracy and society figures of Paris right down to the common dock workers.

Worst Personality Trait: Never forgets. Holden never forgets an insult or slight rendered onto him and will take every action to pay his opponent back ten times as what was done to him.

Fears: Losing everything he has worked so hard to achieve.
Machine guns, due to his experiences with these "hideous machines of death" on the western front.

Sexuality: He prefers to be with women, but is open to everything and anything, so we'll see.

Thoughts on love & Relationships: He is open to the thought of a lasting relationship, if the right girl comes along. But he isn't out there looking for love, he's out there making his fortune.

Relationship History: A bachelor all his life, he has had various flings with women across Britain, South Africa and Paris, but has never settled down with one girl in particular. Too open and free in that regard.

General Likes: People who have fun. Servicemen. People who are open about what they want in life. British values. The french. People who aren't afraid to work for what they have. Alcohol. Writers and Artists of all kinds.

General Dislikes: People who don't have fun. Opium. The Police. The Irish dissidents. The upper classes who are unwilling to help those that fought for them in the war.

Usually Equipped With :
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He keeps a punch grip trench knife concealed in a shin sheath at all times as a last ditch weapon, just in case.

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And he almost always carries his Service issue revolver from the war.


Background
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Mother: Adele Van de Ruit.

Mother's role in upbringing: Holdens mother had little contact with her son. Despite the love she and his father shared, they were worlds apart in South Africa. She was a member of ruling Boer caste in Pretoria, to the North , while he was a the Colonial official for Cape Town in the South. They only met by chance at one of the many diplomatic negotiations held between the Transvaal nation of Boers and the British Cape Colony. During the war of 1901 for supremacy over South Africa, Adele was killed by shelling in Bloemfontein, where she was working as a nurse.

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Father: Charles Edward Banner

Father's role in upbringing: The shaping influence in Holdens childhood. Charles banner never married, and only once deviated from his moral qualms about sex outside of marriage, for Adele Van de Ruit.
While he was in charge of Cape Town, he worked tirelessly to improve the conditions for the colonist Europeans and for the native population. made sure that his son understood what it meant to be British and that he had to keep up the standard of Britishness across the empire.

Family Finances: Relatively well to do, although most of Holdens money has been earned by himself.

Birth Order & Siblings: He is an only child.

Relationships with Siblings: N/A

Education: Privately educated at Eton, in England.

Ethnic Heritage : British/ Dutch.

Accent: A mild English one

History: (Please be as detailed as possible here)

Holden was born into a middle class family in British South Africa. While his mother was a dutch settler, or boer, he had little contact with her, as she was killed during the Angelo Boer war of 1901. Holden spent his first ten years living a life which was half strict and regimented by his father, and the other half utterly free. He was able to wander the streets of Cape Town with his Xhosa minder known as Christopher ( Holden never learned the venerable old mans real name)

At the age of 11, life changed dramatically for Holden. He was told that he must go to England and become a cultured gentleman. This was partly due to the upheaval in South Africa at the time, with Holdens mother recently killed in the conflict with the boers. It was also seen as the only way that the young Master Banner would ever make anything of himself. So Holden was sent to stay with an Aunt in Southern England, which he instantly disliked because of the bad weather.

He attended Eton, where his voice was mocked because it had an evident South African accent. He made to rectify this and soon began to talk with a more subtle english accent than one might expect. But he learned there and then to never forget those that ever did wrong by him. Two years later, Holden was something of a school figure. Intelligent and daring ,he was running a scam of getting food from the kitchens and selling it on to his peers. Due to the favors and friends this industry gave him, he was able to strike back against those who had bullied him years earlier.

Holden graduated from the school with Honors and returned to South Africa. he worked as a minor official in his Fathers agency, and so began to work bureaucratically. This ended with the declaration of war in 1914. Despite the risk to British shipping, Holden immediately departed for England, to sign up in the war effort. He was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Royal Marines, and was soon shipped to the Western Front. He fought in that meat grinder of a war for 2 years, until the new front was opened in Gallipoli. There, by now a Captain, he was among the first troops ashore, although the beach landings resulted in hideous casualties among the British and Empire troops. He was decorated with the Conspicuous Gallantry Cross (The second highest British medal for valour) for his actions in storming a Turkish artillery position with minimal loses, although this empty gesture sickened the young man.

Although the British forces managed to retain a beachhead at Gallipoli , they were able to do little else.
With the new front stymied before any real gains were made, the Royal Marines with which Holden served were shipped back to France. They remained there until the end of the war. Holden despises the British High command for their callous use of man power in the efforts to take so very little ground from the enemy. It is believed that only 7 % of the original men of his outfit managed to make it home after a disastrous attack on a German machine gun emplacement. By the time the war ended Holden had attained the rank of Major, with a variety of stories and war tales right up to the last hours of the war.

Holden decided that Britain or it's holding was no longer the place for him. With the chance of running into the very men who had sent him and his friends to die on the wire at the various gentleman's clubs up and down the empire, the thought stuck in his throat. he opted to stay in Paris and became involved in the illicit trades there.

He was surprisingly moral for a criminal. Mr Banner saw it as inevitable that somebody would supply the masses of Paris with the substances they craved, so it should be an upright person to do it. that way, he could try and repair some of the damage that would inevitably be wrought by his business.

Languages Spoken: English, Afrikaans, Xhosa and French.

Religion: Lip Service Protestant.

Theme Song: Amadus.

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