Meline several months after the Battle of Bazuur.
- Kasmari Rebellion (formerly)
To say Meline is quiet and withdrawn is to make a vast understatement; extreme paranoia of being hurt even more by others than she already has been causes the scout to hardly ever open her mouth, spending most of her free time sitting by herself and endlessly maintaining her weapons. The only living being who Meline has any true loyalty to is Bonnie; the blonde has found herself under the protection and even occasional affection from her fellow deserter, with most people understanding that any attempt to even remotely harm O'Dower will have immensely painful consequences.
Meline's face is fairly easy to recognize, with her elongated facial structure and upswept brown eyes, set against the backdrop of wavy black hair that cascades down to her slender shoulders. A weary expression of unamused misery constantly graces her face, betraying years of pain and suffering forced into hiding beneath her cold, uncaring soldier's shell. Shortly after the disaster at Bazuur, she followed through on the odd urge to adopt a dragon tattoo on her left arm as a odd memento of the tragic battle.
Mel's 37 years alive have been defined by one thing above all else-pain. Pain that began with her horrific childhood, tumultuous you g adulthood, and traumatizing career in the military up to the modern day. Agony has been her sole companion through it all, a bitch of a compatriot that she's been consistently unable to shake off over years of suffering.
Life for young Meline was rough, to make a vast understatement; her homeworld of Kainoss was a despicable desert world, barely able to support life and unbearably hot on a daily basis. The small population of the world, numbering under two million, was split into two military groups more or less identical, differing only in which power-hungry madman was leading their armed forces.
Children were forced by both into serving the army the moment they could walk. Boys were the lucky ones; their sole job was to kill and die for the sake of bloated warlords uncaring for anyone save themselves. Girls such as Meline were given double duty, both fighting on the front lines and satisfying the more... carnal needs of the more disturbed soldiers on each side of the conflict. Needless to say, Mel's treatment as a child was devoid of the love and support conducive to a healthy adulthood; all she knew up until the age of fourteen was death, abuse, rape, pillage and suffering.
It was as a young teenager that Mel received a chance at something more that few young people on her homeworld would ever know. Members of the COFS, attempting to mediate the dispute between the two psychotic warlords, negotiated the buying of dozens of underage soldiers as slaves on both sides, with names being picked out of a figurative hat. By a stroke of luck that seemed downright divine, Mel's number came up; in an instant the battered teen was suddenly propelled from life as a hopeless fighter to an indentured servitude she was immediately released from. Freedom was Meline's for the first time in her short, terrible life.
A problem soon presented itself in her lack of knowledge as to what the hell to do with said new found liberty. Mel's entire life had seen her be treated as property, forced into unspeakable acts and never shown any sort of comfort later on. Her mood proved to be a series of massive mood swings, constantly jumping back and forth from quiet, meek and uninvolved to furious, bordering on psychopathic rage. No amount of counseling proved sufficient to overcome or even suppress her violent behavior, and if soon became clear that more drastic methods would need to be taken if she would ever have a normal life.
Luckily, those measures took themselves.
Five years after coming into this 'free' new world, a lonely young adult Meline drug herself to a crappy social fiction honoring some age-old holiday she cared nothing about. In the midst of joyful celebrations and holiday cheer, what must have been the most beautiful girl in the whole galaxy seemed to storm through the crowd and right into Mel's sight; perfectly proportioned features, tall, lithe body, inviting blue eyes, shining blonde hair and legs that we t on forever had the beaten young woman enamored before the beauty's angelic voice said hello for the first time.
Karen Harper was exactly what Meline needed; a sweet, simple girl who just wanted to make someone who'd been through a painful life happy as best she could. Despite the long line of suitors already available to her, Karen saw something in Mel that stole her heart right out of her well-endowed chest; a scared, lonely little girl, crying out for the comfort and love that had been denied to her for so long, clawing in the dark for confirmation that she was a human being, not just property to be abused and discarded. The pair was into a conversation with two minutes of their first meeting; ten was required for them to sneak into a back room and spend the hours left before the party ended tenderly exploring each others' mouths with their tongues.
The next seven years would become the sole time in Meline's life that she felt truly happy. Married to the drop-dead gorgeous Karen within six months, the couple settled into a fairly quiet life on Huron, Mel becoming a doting homemaker while her wife finished college and pursued a fairly successful career in fashion design. It was an almost idyllic life, one that helped Mel to forget the pain of her youth; only the scattered night waking up from horrific dreams in a cold sweat, quickly comforter by the woman of her dreams, remained left over from her childhood.
Yet as they often do, the good times ended, an quieter tragically. While offworld marketing her latest clothing line, less scrupulous members of the Kasmari staged an attack in another part of the city Karen was visiting. Vuldok forces laid down the law with their typical iron fist, shooting down anyone who seemed to be a member of the rebellious group; an innocent young fashion designer who happened to disapprove of the brutal methods employed by the empire was 'mistaken' for an insurgent by armed patrolmen; her identity was confirmed by her battered, dark-haired wife on Huron a week later.
The loss devastated Meline far more than any child hood trauma ever could have. The one person who had made her feel loved, like she was worth something more than the highest bid at a slave auction, gunned down like a dog by the people who were supposed to protect her from harm. Depression overtook her life once again, and with it came anger, nay, rage at the universe, or God, or whatever powers that be. How dare it bring her out of the muck and show her happiness, just so she could have it taken away from her? Wasn't it enough to know what suffering was like without knowing what she was missing out on?
In her frustration and emotional agony, Meline abandoned her comfortable life on Huron and ran away to do something she'd never want to relive; the military life. With nothing to live for without Karen, Mel decided she was better off dying fighting for the Kasmari to get revenge than to rot on Huron for fifty years. It was all she knew how to do; fight, run away, fight more, run away more, die.
Quick, agile fighting proved her strong suit. Meline excelled at being out on her own, moving with a speedy stealth that ended in noticeable pain for Vuldok soldiers. It was out of necessity, really; she needed the time alone, sneaking through jungles, deserts and God knows what else to think, to clear her head after the pain of losing a spouse.
Alone and distraught, the further years of violence took a terrible toll on Mel's sanity. Slowly, her thinking became twisted, reasoning warping piece by piece as the hell of her life finally made her snap. Through twisted logic, Meline came to blame Karen for her pain; how dare that woman make her fall in love? How could she be so evil as to put her through this? Didn't she know it would just cause turmoil for Mel if she died? What kind of sicko gets killed after the declarations of being soulmates?
For a time the sick logic comforter Meline, but that too was limited in it's lifetime. The flame in her heart could never be extinguished all the way; Mel would always love Karen no matter what happened in her twisted little mind. That undying affection drove Mel to hate herself in a way; it was simply unacceptable that she could blame her one true love for all this agony. A new hatred for Karen grew at that fact, more blame for the agony in her life, and new fuel for her burning self-hatred.
Time became irrelevant, years were no longer counted, causes no longer a concern. Life was no longer a concern. The only thing left for Meline was perpetuating hatred and a desire to spread her pain to anyone who stood near her. Love, happiness, freedom-none if it mattered anymore. All that defines Meline's life is the same senseless killing that she grew up with, and would most certainly die with. A rather worthless existence up until, ten long years after losing Karen, Mel's life took a dramatic turn.
What began as a fairly standard defensive action on the Kasmari-controlled world of Bazuur ended up as a life-changing event in Meline's life; the first was a pretty young lieutenant named Bonnie O'Dower who just happened to be a dead ringer for Karen. Serving under a woman seemingly identical to her long-lost soulmate stirred such an inordinate amount of turmoil in her gut that her carefully crafted uncaring outside finally began to crack.
The second was the betrayal by her own forces that turned the battle into a free-for-all as the jungle burned and she shot at one-time comrades while desperately trying to escape with Bonnie. After barely managing to jump on a dropship exiting stage the hell out of Dodge, Meline and Bonnie became a nigh-inseparable pair, Mel acting as a loyal guardian and friend to a woman who had shared in their betrayal as they found themselves on the run from both major powers in the galaxy.
Nearly a year later, Meline and close friend Bonnie were contracted by a Phayboan leader named Savanto as part of an effort to unite the tribes on Phayboah's mysterious eastern continent under a single banner. The fairly standard expedition work became quite critical in the development of their relationship-it was during a lull in the fighting that Meline finally admitted Bonnie's incredible similarities to her long-lost wife. The officer responded far better than Mel had imagined she would, forgiving her quite promptly and returning a deceleration of deep, affectionate caring for her friend.
The following day, both women were involved with the defense of Samuscal from a massive siege by Vuldak forces attempting to seize control of Phayboah. Within minutes of arriving at the city, Imperial troops began to overrun their position, forcing Meline and Bonnie, with the aid of fellow Bazuur survivor Turok Vashegro, to fall back for evacuation. While ducking behind with Bonnie to avoid an RPG blast, Meline finally caved in to feelings that had been growing for a year and passionately kissed her best friend, to the understandable shock of both allies fleeing with her.