Campaign: Poe

Character: Paula "Poe" Stackhouse
Game: Monsterhearts 2
Episodes: 1
Keywords: Human, malleable, tempted

We had our first game of Monsterhearts 2. I knew I had written a complicated character, but woof, did I not realize how much Poe was afraid of people disliking her and had zero social graces. There was no bite to back up her bark and well, I failed every social move that I rolled.

This means, Poe basically flailed at people and had no recourse. At every turn, she was being manipulated or pulled in a direction and rather than stomp off and get angry, she just... did what people told her to. She was used to being on the losing end of any discussion, and has, on some level, just resigned to being the person that's mostly invisible.

No amount of changing her face, getting piercings and tattoos and blue hair will change the fact she's a nobody. She's not important. She's the girl who says yes to whatever because maybe someone will notice her for it and then she'll be liked. The only person, so far, in game, that has seen her as a person or asked how she was is her demon, Dan.

Now, Demon Dan is also kinda... a creeper. The Gm and I talked about having Dan be a little too touchy, a little lingering because he's partially grooming her and partially ready to have a relationship with her. Poe doesn't seem to notice, or she ignores it, because she's so happy that someone finally pays attention to her. It's a really gross relationship and it's really intense and awful, but at the same time, someone loves her.

In this session, the Mortal, Leon, is into Poe and had drawn her naked in his sketchbook. Another student posted them on tumblr. When she confronted him about it, he talked about how upset he was about his book being stolen and Poe said she'd get it back for him. Later, he told someone they were engaged, and she tried to be mad but he just brushed her off by turning her on. And she bought it. Hook. Line. And sinker.

I've really liked that she failed all the social roles. It made her feel really invisible and not powerful at all, which I actually dug more than I thought. Despite the Infernal being a volatile character, I've only used that high stat to run away. Poe's not violent. My goal is to only unleash that when it's a horrible moment and she'll regret it forever.

Her relationship with the vampire escalated to a terrifying peak when she gazed into his eyes and saw his history, realized he was a mass murderer, and ran the fuck away from him. How she feels about the soulless monster? I don't know. I do know she's afraid of him and wants to keep away from him, but also feels worried that she'll turn out like him, not because she's a vampire, but because it's his lack of soul that makes him a monster.

Going forward, I'm interested to see how the relationship with the mortal goes, because right now he's much more the abusive one than the infernal that's his lover. I'm interested in riding that out, and seeing how it goes. My goal is to make Poe the most human of all the characters, even though she's the one lacking a soul. I want her to be the sympathetic one. And so far? I think I'm pulling it off.


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