El has been with the site for nearly two years now and has continued to prove her value. Currently, she is heading up our site event, Battle for Liberterram, on top of keeping up with her own personal plots.
Lux's posts are all wonderful to read. She has done a wonderful job of grasping the new universe and incorporating Peggy into it.
It's good to see Spidey back on the site. Watching him deal with the universe shift in his own snarky way has been nothing short of entertaining.
Eight O'Clock on the Dot!
El and Lux are making magic in this thread. Straight up fireworks, and the way they've played with drawing out the reveal is top class.
[PTabbedContent][PTab=GENERAL INFORMATION] CHARACTER INFO:
NAME: Charles Bernard Barton ALIAS: Barney AGE: 44 OCCUPATION: Ex-Military, ex-FBI undercover agent, currently freelance criminal MEMBER GROUP: Villain POWERS AND ABILITIES: No supernatural powers. Has excellent hand-eye coordination like his brother PLAYBY: Anthony Starr
PLAYER NAME: Jo AGE: 35 GENDER: Female TIMEZONE: London, UK OTHER CHARACTERS: None
1. Gambling. Whether that be a big, organised game or just small wagers between people, Barney finds them irresistible. He has taken on a few assignments as a result of a bet, and ran a betting ring when he was in the army during some of the tours. Anyone who fails to pay up is a marked man.
2. Sex. When you’re a wanderer there’s not much else to focus on other than the pleasures you can obtain on the road. Women and possibly men depending on the circumstance, Barney seeks out some sort of emotional connection during these brief moments. It’s one of the few times that he can accept someone’s word as being truthful
3. Hidden wealth. Barney’s a bit of a dragon in that respect. He has no real possessions but he needs to know he has money whenever he needs it as a security blanket for whatever turns up. He has a number of different accounts under different names, fake passports and several locations with a fair bit of money stashed away ‘just in case’. He is always interested in well paid positions simply because he recognises the fact that there will be an age where he is no longer able to work.
4. Dogs. Dogs are loyal. They never let you down. There is no such thing as an unfaithful hound and they don't judge
5. Cities. There’s a buzz about a city, constantly moving, working, brisk and businesslike. You could be in the same place and be in several different worlds, protected and surrounded. No one knows your name and in the city, no one really cares either. There’s a level of honesty that Barney appreciates.
1. Religion or any other group that maintains ‘a greater good’ or ‘peace’ or a number of variations on the theme. Barney views it as a cover to make people believe there’s some great goodness out there, that everything’s done for a purpose and shields them from the true extent of the world. To him, it’s like assuring a child that the cliff they’re about to step off contains a fake invisible bridge.
2. Family, or at least talk of family. He hates the larger commercial things such as Christmas or New Year or anything that’s supposed to ‘bring families together’, and will often drink more during Nov and Dec when the stores are full of Christmas cheer and annoying songs.
3. Politicians. Be a liar if you must but at least have the common courtesy to recognise what you’re doing when you’re doing it, if nothing more than for the people that get destroyed afterwards.
4. Heroes. Barney hates the mere concept of heroes, the ones standing in shiny suits looking noble and getting the credit when the only reason they’re there is down to the backup support of an army. His opinion of this grew in the military, faced day to day by ordinary soldiers who died in horrendous ways for ‘noble’ reasons but who never even warranted a piece in the media. Captain America is a significant example of this; a figurehead that has his own line of merchandise.
5. Open spaces, especially out in the wilderness. Out there you can’t deny how completely insignificant you are, and although it’s fine to know that, it’s quite another to see it in front of your nose. Also the squirrels are bastards.
1. Force of character – If Barney wants something, Barney gets it. Give him a target or a goal and he will achieve it without hesitation, doing what needs to be done in order to gain that target. He has a roguish charm about him, a lazy lopsided grin and has a good level of persuasion; as a result, he had a remarkably good networking system behind him, and the ability and knowledge to vanish off the radar both officially and unofficially.
2. Peak physical fitness. Scarred and bruised, Barney has spent most of his life fighting in one way or the other and continues to adapt with each fight he enters. Given his low expectation of others, he is constantly on the look out for behavioural flaws and possible weaknesses and alters his own behaviour to fit. He is still extremely flexible and regularly uses the acrobatics taught to him within the circus, although granted not exactly for the same intention as they were originally intended.
3. Dead shot. Trained with guns and, at a later date, the bow, Barney has a similar natural ability to aim as his brother although his lesser dedication means that he rarely meets his full potential within archery. He also is extremely well versed in explosives and has a reasonable affinity with Macguivering a solution out of spare parts if necessary. He creates all his own trick arrows, not least because there is no way in hell that Barney trusts anyone else to produce them
4. Escape artist. Barney has hung around criminals since an early age, and has applied the skills gained through the carnival to assist them. Getting out of handcuffs, acrobatics, sleight of hand, he has deliberately picked up everything that could possibly get him out of a scrape.
1. Bitter & jealous – Barney does not possess the drive nor enthusiasm to easily stick at something. As a result, the successes of the more easy going Clint have been hard for Barney to witness, feeling overlooked time and again which simply enforced his habit of failing to put in the effort. His frustration that Clint has never really appreciated what Barney had done for him in the family home and the protection he had given his brother afterwards – often getting into fights to save his baby brother, teaching him how to properly throw a punch – has grown over the years to a little bitter ball of jealousy, especially now that Barney has realised that Clint is, in fact, the mysterious 'Hawkeye' who is god near on his way to being canonised with the rest of the Avengers for saving New York. As far as Barney is concerned, Clint had it significantly easier.
2. Cynical & untrusting – Life is shit and people are out for all they can get. As far as Barney is concerned there is no such thing as doing something out the kindness of your heart, everyone has a motivation, everyone has a target and everyone will shove a knife in your heart if there was any profit in doing so. As a result, he doesn't work well in a large team or anything that relies on others to cover your back, and is constantly expecting something to go badly. Many of the skills that he has picked up have resulted directly from Barney's expectation that someone is after both him and his brother, a strain that has affected him throughout his life.
3. Not naturally disciplined. Although Barney can focus if he really puts his mind to it, he often needs a good solid emotional reason to spend time and effort improving. He cannot simply train for hours at a time 'just because', he requires some essential reason to keep it up – this may be revenge, a job or even simply a known threat against his life that's likely to turn up at any moment. On the other hand, Barney is particularly good at picking up threats to his life.
4. Drink. There's a lot of his father in him, despite his failure to recognise it. Although he would never admit it to himself, if he is under stress then he will often resort to a bottle of alcohol. It is only his high tolerance level and permanently suspicious nature that keeps him from being a true alcoholic.
5. Thug. Although Barney is pretty charming when he wants to be, this is not Plan A. If he wants something, Barney will generally go for the physical route to obtain it rather than a sneaky manipulation. This can get messy.
1. To knock his brother down from his shiny pedestal. There is no real desire to kill Clint, but there is a grim satisfaction of dragging his brother back to where he should be, to demonstrate that despite Clint’s position he isn’t any better than Barney is.
2. Finding a hole/group. Barney’s no longer young and his cynical nature has noted the fact that if he wants to survive to an older age then he’s going to have to find somewhere to shore up. The FBI and official groups are no longer possible due to his criminal record, and the criminal gangs are often overly political and unstable. If he can claim a little bit of the credit back from his brother then he will do so, and he would easily consider one of the ‘professional’ groups such as the Thunderbolts as that kills two birds with one stone.
1. Isolation. Barney is used to being alone, but this is solely down to his background. He is not a natural loner, just a sensible one, and will often frequent bars and other areas just to feel as though he belongs somewhere. The fact that he can see Clint, happy in his new heroic ‘family’, doesn’t help. He is also terrified of acknowledging this vulnerability, and will become angry and aggressive to stop any conversation commenting on the fact that he has absolutely no one.
2. Becoming his father. Barney is a thief, a thug and dangerous to know, but he still believes that he is significantly better than the man they left behind. There is a small part of him that recognises the same habits that his father held but this is violently shoved away in the back of his mind.
Barney is one of life’s survivors, but thanks to his chaotic and violent upbringing he has a strong negative viewpoint of the world and the human race. He has natural talent but often wastes it unless there is some strong ulterior motive to use it, whether that be a threat or a direct benefit to him. He has a ‘bad boy’ air to him that tiptoes the line between charming and aggressive, but can easily move between the two depending on what mood he’s in. Although Barney can work as part of a team, he will not trust anyone other than himself to get things done regardless of whether he thinks the other person is genuine in their desire to assist.
He’s also something of a ladies’ man, but sexuality is all the same to him and he is happy to make a casual bond with them in order to have a backup plan in place. Sometimes all you need is someone who thinks kindly of you and a sofa.
Barney is conflicted on the subject of his brother Clint. There is a large part of him that holds a great deal of anger towards him, feeling as though Clint had taken advantage of Barney’s assistance when they were younger only to sneak his way up the ranks. However, he does still hold a strange type of loyalty and occasionally the hit of protectiveness for his younger brother - Barney is quite happy to make Clint suffer, but if he sees someone else doing the same then he may well step in. Bar fight? Yes. If it’s a massive space army of aliens taking down Manhattan.. well, let’s not be idiotic about this.
There is a level of vulnerability within Barney which occasionally demonstrates itself. His drinking is increasing to deal with the solid underlying tension that has followed him since childhood, and there is a growing need within him to find a place to rest. There’s only so long the drifter can drift without becoming exhausted and every so often it gets too much for him to bear alone.
BIRTHPLACE: Waverly, Iowa
RESIDENCE: Currently Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn. He owns a small, beaten up apartment there which he has obtained through a gambling debt and has kept it in a separate name. This is mostly a passing through residence though.
PARENTS: Harold and Edith Barton . His father was a drunk and abusive man who often used his sons as a scapegoat whenever anything went wrong. Barney was slightly horrified to find he was relieved when they died. He also did not have a good relationship with his mother, blaming her for never standing up to their father
SIBLINGS: Clinton Francis Barton, “Hawkeye”, his younger brother by a couple of years. Barney has a strange relationship with Clint; both protective and infuriated by him, Barney spent much of their childhood with the heavy responsibility of trying to look out for both of them. As a result he often took things personally whenever Clint decided to ignore whichever decision Barney made and has increasingly become bitter over his younger brother’s success.
Jacques “Swordsman” Duquesne: Although the man favoured Clint out of the two brothers, he was instrumental in both brother’s development and training
Buck “Trick Shot” Chisholm: Another mentor of the carnival, who taught Barney later on in life as part of a business deal - at that stage Trick Shot had severe medical issues and Barney had the money.
Harry Sharpe (original NPC background character due to lack of info in the comics!): Sharpe acted as Barney’s immediate supervisor within the FBI, giving him his assignments and collecting any information that was gleaned from his work. In Barney’s mind, Sharpe acts as the ‘face’ of the FBI, smooth, knowledgeable and out for what they could get, and although he has no immediate anger against him he does not trust what the man knows. Out of everyone, Sharpe has the best chance of linking Barney’s past behaviour and profiling his current location based on their previous work history.
IMPORTANT PERSON: No one and nothing
Barney grew up in a non-conventional home, the family unit punctuated by increasingly frequent acts of violence and abuse by his father towards himself, his brother Clint and to a lesser extent their mother. He learned the ability to assess a room before entering from a very early age, always relying on what his observations told him rather than the words that fell from people's lips and acting accordingly. Several years older than his brother, Barney took the brunt of the abuse until he was old enough to start fighting back, at which point his father started to turn on the younger of the two boys. Barney tried to defend his brother as best he could but he had to take small jobs to keep the family afloat and often returned to find Clint either in hospital or sporting a new injury. He had a love-hate relationship with their mother, a fundamentally kind but weak woman who Barney blamed for failing to protect them like a mother should.
Still several years too young to take full legal responsibility, they were sent to a home together where Barney grew increasingly disenfranchised with society in general. Taking the view that no one was going to look out for them, he convinced Clint to run away to the Carnival of Travelling Wonders where they were taken on to help with the animals. Although Clint settled down well, Barney found that he could never truly relax and was always looking over his shoulder for any possible attacks. He also found the work in the circus tedious, despite his role eventually increasing to include acrobatic acts and other performances.
As time went on, Barney grew increasingly jealous of Clint’s success. His younger brother’s fight with the Swordsman was the last straw. Irritated by his brother's increasing moral code and frustrated by the way the younger man failed to stand by the mentor who had made him, Barney had a blazing row with Clint in the hospital and walked out on both his younger brother and the circus to join the army. He had asked Clint to join him countless times but the younger man had always refused. Feeling betrayed by his younger brother, Barney made up his mind to start as a clean slate and leave Clint to finally fight his own battles.
Having trained for many years and been a part of several tours, Barney began to get a name for himself in difficult circumstances often due to his 'death wish' attitude. He was often willing to be the first person into a site and began to train in the bomb squad until his less than obedient attitude meant that he was reassigned, much to his annoyance. During one of his last tours he was approached to become an agent within the FBI, realising Barney's aptitude for solo undercover work, and Barney took to the job well. Barney's life was essentially deleted from official records as part of his undercover work, which suited him down to the ground. As part of this work he was shot by his own brother while Barney was posing as a bodyguard for a criminal called Marko, resulting in a permanent scar. Although Clint was horrified what he had done, Barney did not miss the fact that the younger man had clearly entered into the criminal world that they had argued over in the past.
At a later time, Barney suffered severe injuries while posing as a racketeer, ending up on life support in a hospital and all but being left alone by the FBI. This was the turning point within Barney’s career, feeling as though he had been abandoned, and therefore decided to fight for himself using the criminal underground network he had carefully crafted within his work. Throughout this period he was aware of his brother’s professional advancement and the already present sense of bitterness began to increase. Barney entered into rehabilitation with a renewed anger and focus, intending to “out Hawkeye” his brother, and located their previous mentor Trick Shot to train him. With a focus to guide him, Barney grew extremely proficient with a bow, enhancing his athleticism and targeting and harnessing the low burning fury to achieve the discipline he had previously lacked.
Finally unable to ignore the fact that he was one of the criminals he had fought so hard to defeat, Barney began to take to drink just like his father. With no home, no honour, and no real job other than the wits and skills he had, Barney is now searching for a place to vanish. If he can get back at his younger brother for all the wasted years trying to save him, all the better.
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