Post by James Jesse on Apr 12, 2021 15:05:46 GMT -5
Full Name: Giovanni Giuseppe
Aliases: James Jesse, Agent Jesse
Marital Status: Single
Affiliation: N/A; formerly the Rogues, the FBI
Meta-Human Abilities: James is an ordinary human with no augmented abilities to speak of.
Standard Abilities: Acrobatics - Before debuting as the super-criminal he's more well-known as, James was an acrobat in a traveling circus. He's not at the Olympic-level by any means, but he's far and away above the average person's capability in this area.
Deception - Self-proclaimed greatest con-artist alive, James has been known to hide his intentions from supposed "higher powers," and pull off schemes that any other person could never hope to.
Charisma - A subset of his con-artistry; James can talk circles around a person and corner them without their even knowing it in casual conversations.
Prestidigitation - Yet another subset; he's highly skilled at sleight of hand. He even managed to swap out items of grave import right in front of watching people.
Escapology - It's really, really hard to keep James somewhere he'd rather not be.
Inventor - Trickster designed, manufactured and perfected the broad array of objects he uses in his costumed antics. He's consistently improved them and is always tinkering at new tech, or advancing his existing arsenal.
Paraphernalia: Anti-Gravity Boots - His most iconic accessory gives him the ability to "walk on air" and assimilate a form of self-sustained flight. One shoe provides lift, the other descent, making them inoperable if not together.
Bag of Tricks - The term that James uses to encapsulate all of his gimmick gadgets. These change based on his needs for a given situation, what he has on hand, and what he's made recently. It includes, but is not limited to: specialized explosives (flashbang, tear gas, sleep gas, acid, flash-freeze), rubber chickens (with blowtorch and bomb-laying capabilities), inflatable rubber duck life raft, rubber handcuffs (much harder to break than metal), exploding bubble solution, itching/sneezing powder and an electro-neuron disruptor gun that paralyzes the targets.
Subject Weaknesses: Mortality - James is a mortal man with all of the frailties and weaknesses that that includes. He's susceptible to disease, illness, aging, injury and death.
Whimp - He can famously not take a punch, and is pretty easy to KO if things come to blows.
Enemies In All the Wrong Places - Having played both sides of the law, James has his fair share of people - heroic or villainous - who have a beef with him and would actively plot his demise.
For My Final Trick - James relies almost entirely on his specialized gadgetry when in-costume. Without them, he's even less of a threat.
Fool Me Once - He's already tried to trick the Rogues that he's not so reformed, and it ended disastrously. Lethally, even. With this second chance at life, there's pretty much no chance he can pretend that he's not reformed.
James was born into a family of famous circus performers called The Flying Jesses. The problem was, he was acrophobic: he was afraid of heights. To counter this, he developed his own anti-gravity technology, housed in shoes, that enabled him to walk on air and conquer his fear. This lead him to make his group into international sensations based on his "daring" feats.
The excitement and acclaim fed into James's adoration of a fictional western criminal, which hatched the idea of turning his inventions toward a career in masked crime. As the Trickster, James landed a spot in the Rogues and regularly clashed with the Flash, who was always thwarting his grand cons.
Following Barry Allen's death, James relocated to Hollywood, where he dabbled with applying his genius to the world of special effects. He attempted to steal Dan Cassidy's Blue Devil's super-stuntsuit, but was unsuccessful, and even came out on the other end with Cassidy as a friend who helped him with his sporadic attempts to give up the life of super-villainy.
Later, James accomplished the greatest sting in the history of humanity when, after finding himself in Hell before Neron, who was planning on tearing the world apart, he used Captain Marvel's help and defeated the fallen angel without anyone knowing he had. This was a turning point for James. Having been in a version of Hell first-hand, he saw a possible destination for the life of a criminal, and also realized he was more or less a good man at heart, given his undoing of Neron's plans.
James started working on "the side of the angels" and put his skills to use collecting and safeguarding the hi-tech gadgetry of incarcerated super-criminals to keep them out of other hands. Next he found himself again opposing Neron - with the help of the Pied Piper and a twelve year-old named Billy Hong - in a small mountain nation called Zhutan. Not only did James and his allies succeed, but he demanded Neron forget about the Rogues, who were begrudgingly grateful. He also learned that Billy Hong was the agent of the Saravistran god, Meshta, called the Majee, sent to observe and weigh mankind's progress; and also his son.
Back in the states, James continued using his mantle as the Trickster for mostly noble causes, including a brief team-up with the legendary Catwoman. He was then recruited by the FBI. The Top appeared not long after, brainwashing several former Rogues to incite the Rogue War; in his part in the manipulated conflict, James gathered the reformed Rogues to battle Captain Cold's group. However, when the Top formally revealed his hand in everything, he undid the brainwashing, leaving James's reformed team scattered and underground. The Trickster, along with the Pied Piper, took a very long time trying to sort through the Top's hypnotic suggestions to see what were their own motives and memories.
Next, after Captain Cold called a meeting of the Rogues, James talked his way into the group, claiming that his heroic stints were a result of the Top's manipulations. He and Pied Piper resumed their uneasy friendship, both in the awkward place of trying to convince the Rogues that they were criminals at heart and not turncoats. Captain Cold and the other Rogues's murder of Bart Allen threw James's world upside-down. He'd, in fact, been trying to undermine the Rogues, which meant he was forced to go on the run with Piper from heroes and villains alike.
Together with Piper, James attended Bart Allen's funeral in secret, but afterward they were captured by Deathstroke and Multiplex and locked together with handcuffs that would explode if any attempts to remove them were made. They managed to escape, and found themselves in Gotham, where they ran into a whole parade of chaos: the Penguin, who offered them sanctuary only to call the FBI for the reward of their capture; their escape of the Penguin, only to fall into the lap of the Suicide Squad; their escape of the Suicide Squad only to fall into the lap of Batwoman and the Question (the former of whom broke James's nose).
From Batwoman and the Question, the pair ended up ensnared by Poison Ivy, but were interrupted by Deathstroke (who broke James's nose a second time), who abducted them and planted a bomb on them as bait. From there, they encountered the Batman, who turned them over to Wally West. The Flash interrogated them, but believed them ultimately (not without breaking James's nose for the third time) and removed the subcutaneous bombs Deathstroke had planted in their necks. They were confined during Green Arrow and Black Canary's wedding and, when Deathstroke interrupted it, stole a car and escaped with the unknown stowaway, Double Down.
Following another run-in with the Suicide Squad, who captured Double Down, Trickster and Pied Piper set about releasing all of the villains that the Squad had been capturing, starting with Two-Face. The pair hitched a ride on a freight car and, for the first time in their entire forced partnership, James started opening up to the other man, even calling him "Hartley." Just then, James noticed a laser sight on Hartley's brow and threw himself between Piper and Deadshot's bullet, and was killed instantly...
From there he remembers a brief, jumbled mess of images - memories that don't feel quite like his own - of being forced to move at the will of another; Nekron. Then nothingness, again. And? Now? Sudden, inexplicable, new life. James wound up spat from a Boom Tube on the Flash's doorstep, miraculously alive. Following extensive tests from the Justice League and all of their resources, James was cleared with a clean bill of health for his second life.
"Y'know... Wouldn't've been my number one guess that the first time I was in the Hall of Justice, I'd be naked."
James couldn't help but run his mouth. He was told to strip down into just a skimpy hospital gown (or the Justice League equivalent of one) and lay in a machine that looked like it could cut him into a hundred pieces and vacuum pack him if it wanted. Or, like, even do his taxes, he was pretty sure. "Stay still," the Leaguer in the observation room had told him, and James knew better than to argue with someone who rubbed cowls with the Batman.
"Sure, it's on the list. Just not number one." He shivered involuntarily as one of the beams rolling over him made his skin tingle. He could feel the glare from the superhero managing the readings, thought about smiling apologetically, then realized that'd probably just make matters worse. "Who'd have thought coming back from the dead would have so much red tape?" he asked, more quietly, almost to himself.
Forty-five minutes of varying degrees of awkward later, and James was just finishing lacing his shoes, grateful to be fully clothed again. "So, what's the prognosis, doc. Am I gonna make it?" The Justice Leaguer looked a little more even-keel now that the official business was done. James took that as a good sign. He was good at disguise the kind of worry and paranoia clawing at his stomach, but he wanted to know. One way or another.
"All tests have come back negative," they said. James fixed them with a scrutinizing glare, wearing his wariness plain. The Leaguer rolled their eyes. "That's a good thing, in this case." He let out a sigh of relief, smiled and laughed. "Maybe word it a little better next time, yeah? Does that mean I'm... free to go, then?" He was just as uncertain about what this answer would be. "Yes," the hero said with a nod, "but we'll be in touch."
The Trickster pursed his lips and nodded. "Yeah, that totally doesn't sound ominous at all, thanks." The Leaguer escorted him to the private exit for the Hall of Justice and suddenly he was on the too-bright, sunlit streets beyond. Blinking against the glare, he sighed, weary, but glad. No alien parasites, inter-dimensional voodoo or evil god claims on his soul. That was good. Now he just had to start... Living again?
"Don't worry, guys," he said to the closed door behind him, now totally indistinguishable from the shrubbery it was disguised as. "I'll find my own way home. No problem."
Player Alias: Di
Other Characters: Diana Prince
How did you find ARFD?: Creator/founder