Slouching Toward Yathrib
Father Gaius Quates
Eskatonic Priest with a secret
Father Gaius Quates
All natural skills at base except Dodge
Dodge 3 *6
High Tech Redemption 8
Mech Redemption 1
Read Latin 2
Read Urthish 2
Read Urthtech 2
Stoic Body 1
Think Machine 4
Volt Redemption 1
Clerical Rank: Philosophus 9
Assets (Good, 3000/300) 3
Grease Monkey 4
Retinue (Adamantine Order knight)Combat able (3), Fanatically loyal(+1) 4
Dark Secret -2
Vow of Celibacy -1
Gaius was a Freeman born on Criticorum, born to Guildsmen parents. During his early years in the planet’s exceptional public education institutions, he demonstrated an aptitude in the sciences and with technologies, and as a result was enrolled in a training program that would prepare him for entry into the Engineers.
During a practical field lesson at an old terraforming facility, there was an incident. The instructor had opened parts of the machinery to provide the students a closer look at a 2nd Republic High Tech device that was no longer operational, but something the instructor had done caused the device to activate unexpectedly, and an explosion occurred as a result. In the rubble, Gaius was the only survivor, and when he was found mostly unharmed and babbling incomprehensible nonsense he was handed over to the inquisition by the conservative Orthodox priest that was first on the scene.
Under the questioning of the Avestite inquisitors, he was unable to reveal much, since he honestly did not fully understand what had occurred, and described the visions he had seen. They kept him incarcerated under the pretext of misuse of proscribed tech and suspicion of antimony, and during the time of his incarceration attempted to get him to confess and recant. Gaius was convinced, from what little he remembered of his visions during the accident, that he had been saved by the pancreator, and did sincerely come around to a reverance of the Pancreator, if not necessarilly the formal ideals of the temporal church as demonstrated to him by the Avestites. He had repeats of the spell which followed the explosion, which deepened the Avestites suspicions, but an Amalthean eventually saw to him and pronounced his spells to be a medical condition, a form of epilepsy. She went over the heads of the Avestites, and given his earnest declarations of Faith and her testimony on the nature of his episodes, he was released into her care. The Amalthean helped to lessen the severity of his condition, and they parted ways. To this day they keep up correspondence, and their travels intersect every decade or so.
After parting ways with the Amalthean he accepted what work he could, redeeming tech to pay his passage as he searched. His searches eventually led him to Pentateuch, where the wonders of the labors Doramos had accomplished triggered a merging of his former understanding of technology and his new found faith. He petitioned for entrance into the Eskatonics, and met some resistance. He was a little older to come to the faith, and did not possess any of the mystical aptitudes that would make an appealing candidate, but he persisted. After being denied 3 times, he found a Brother and engaged him in a series of conversations, each taking turns asking the other questions at length. After several days of returning to have similar conversations ranging from ontology to the ethics of environmental alterations, the Brother vouched for Gaius and he was admitted to an Eskatonic monetary.
At the Eskatonic monetary, Gaius continued in his efforts to synthesize the science he had mastered with the higher mysteries of faith and the occult the Eskatonics pursued. He developed with increasing dread an understanding of the coming Eskaton and its relation to his visions, and like his Brothers was driven to the pursuit of ensuring there were those who had grown their internal flame enough in the end. It was in these pursuits that he encountered in a book on Doramos a footnote about the worldshaper heresy. The heresy was mentioned mostly in proscriptive terms, but the possibilities intrigued Gaius, and rekindled memories of the visions he had during his accident. The worldshapers believed that planets, like the stars themselves and individuals, contained some fragment of the holy flame. The energies of the planet could be manipulated by altering naturally occurring ley lines through use of terraforming. This manipulation could affect the nature of the planet’s holy flame, refining and enhancing it. The books derided the views of planets having holy flames as animistic and heretical, but this did not ring true for Gaius. The other Eskatonics were considered with the Light of men and aliens, but were any considering the planets themselves? What if in their struggles to refine the souls of men, they were ignoring a larger battle ground in the war of Light and Dark? What if they were missing the forest for the trees? Years of careless terraforming without concern for the planets’ holy flames could have done monumental harm. The Dark also may not share the Light’s compunctions about viewing the planets as possessing holy spirits, and may even now be working to corrupt them.
Gaius was now convinced that this would be his purpose, and the reason why he was spared and sent his visions. He would need to be cautious in how he proceeded, but his certainty helped steel his resolve. He progressed through the ranks of the Brotherhood, accumulating what knowledge he could, and would volunteer scientific insight and technical skills to aid his Brothers and Sisters where he could. He was able to acquire some knowledge on geomancy, but the necessity of secrecy limited what he could learn. Once he had achieved the rank of Philosophus, he exited the monastic life and was sent out by the Ekstatics to act as an advisor to nobility.
The al-Malik in particular found desirable a priest that could serve as a confessor for the sake of appearances, but would be able to be more usefully deployed and consulted as a technical expert. His first posting was to the al-Malik on de Moley. A particular concern of the al-Malik there was the life support for their domed cities. During the Emperor Wars, the life support facilities, particularly those that regulated breathable air, were covertly sabotaged by the Decados. The al-Malik did not want a repeat performance should hostilities once again escalate, so Gaius was set to the task of providing a solution.
Gaius performed some upgrades to the machinery dedicated to that purpose, and created multiple smaller scale machines at different locations to act as redundancies, but then decided to employ other techniques. He examined native flora and fauna, and decide to employ them in his planning. He created cultivars and hybrids with native Urth plants to produce offspring which could survive in either the heavier atmosphere of the domed cities or the harsher thin atmosphere outside, and began an effort to spread them throughout the domed cities, on rooftops of buildings where necessary. The efforts were moderately successful, and reduced the energy requirements of the atmosphere regulating machinery. The plants could not entirely replace the machinery, but his holistic approach lessoned the potential impact of future sabotage of one or even several of the machines being sabotaged. He conducted similar studies and applied similar techniques for other Life Support needs of the cities, using these opportunities to subtly influence where buildings were placed and geological formations were modified to positively influence the geomantic energies of those areas.
His efforts and the positive effects were noticed in the capital city, and this brought Gaius to the attention of a few parties. Since the first colonizing of the planet, the atmosphere had proved a hindrance to economic and military pursuits on the planet. The mountain formations and thin atmosphere combined to make horrible winds which rendered landing ships impossible 13 days out of 20. The thin atmosphere also hindered labor efforts outside of the domed cities. In the interest of the economic and tactical needs of de Moley, Gaius was contacted by Adept Gilbert Erail and Director Starr. They appreciated his efforts in the cities, but were looking for something on a global scale. The possibility excited Gaius greatly, and he had many ideas, but was limited by the information and technological resources of the planet. He would need more information from some other worlds, and would need to find salvageable 2nd republic era terraforming tech that he would be able to retrofit to accomplish his goals. His benefactors were pleased with the possibility, and agreed to aid him in these efforts should he be willing to pursue them to fruitful ends. They arranged for him to be transferred off world to another al-Malik’s service, to a planet he could search for potentially appropriate tech and information. While Shaprut is slightly removed from their sphere of influence, they may be able to provide some aid should Gaius be targeted by institutional inquiries that could prematurely end his search.
Gaius continues to have seizures that vary in presentation. Most aren’t noticeable by others, marked by a vacant staring off into space or repetitive movements, petite mal seizures. It is during some of these episodes he has created some of his more advanced works. He was roused from several of these episodes only to have the designs or tools he had been working on taken by his superiors for further examination. Some of the episodes are more violent, although those are rarer and usually exacerbated or caused by outside forces. Shaking, feinting, and speaking nonsense. Visual and auditory hallucinations usually accompany these episodes, in which Gaius attempts to find meaning and insight into the challenges he faces.
Gaius keeps thorough notes and journals on his work and travels. Where necessary in regards to his geomantic studies, he usually couches his notes in terms of esthetics or the effect on the flame of the inhabitants of the planet, enough vagueness for plausible deniability. He also does not disclose his parishioners confessions or their related penances, finding it safer to commit those details to memory.
Gaius is accompanied by a member of the Adamantine Order, his protector and student Alex Laforet. Alex is the only other person Gaius has trusted with the details of his research, and it is Gaius’s hope that should he perish prematurely, Alex will find others that can assist in continuing the work. Alex is young and lacks Gaius technical acumen and experience, but makes up for it with a practicality that his teacher lacks at times.
Gaius is in his 40’s, but looks older due to the strain of years and his personal grooming choices. He is bearded and tonsured, and prone to wearing bulkier covering robes with pockets large enough for a personal journal and other odds and ends. Under his robes he is covered with scars and burns, both from the explosion he was in and the ministrations of the Avestites. He does not wear hair shirts, but when he realizes he has made a misstep, or failed by not acting, he will sometimes perform an immediate penance of some form or another, usually enough to cause pain, but no permanent damage. The pain from these penances is a teacher, a reminder not to make the same mistakes or commit the same sins again. This does not take the place of his confession or assigned penance, its more of a voluntary supplement. His preferred penance for his flock varies, but he tries to adapt the penance to his parishioner and the circumstances of the confession.