W a k a k o
Tomakomai, Iburi Prefecture, Hokkaido, JapanPhysical Description
Wakako is a very ungirly girl. She is distinctly muscular, possesses broad shoulders and is well beyond the average female height (6’1). She tends to have her hair short and reasonably well kempt. Her uniform is always neat and tidy, but whenever she can get away with it, she prefers to wear casual clothing, anything that wouldn’t be considered too “prim and proper”. She also likes to be a little showy if she can manage it.Characterization
Although it will not be immediately apparent when her midriff is not exposed, an extendable cannon barrel is built into the centre of Wakako’s stomach region, around where her belly button would be (although significantly larger). The recess the barrel sits in is circular and made from a steel alloy.
Wakako is the daughter of Sanae Tanegashima, a hero known for travelling around northern Japan by sea, and for being a graduate of Ishin Academy. Wakako’s father, Kenta, played the role of stay-at-home dad and raised Wakako during her formative years as Sanae did her work. Wakako was raised on tales of her mother’s heroism and of a romanticised life on the sea. Wakako naturally had two goals growing up as a child; become a hero, just like her mother, and sail on the sea, just like her mother. She wanted to be nothing less than one of those swashbuckling heroes that swooped and and beat the bad guys, and then party on a boat afterwards. When Wakako turned 10, Sanae, during one of her visits to her own house, offered to take Wakako on her boat as an apprentice. She wouldn’t be doing any fighting, she’d just get to experience sea life and do a little work here and there. Wakako enthusiastically agreed.Character Development & Conceptualization
It was not long after stepping on board her mother’s boat that Wakako began to deeply regret her decision. Far from the romanticised sea life she’d always imagined, life on her mother’s boat was harsh and cruel. Having only met her mother every so often, Wakako had never really gotten to know her as a person. Being under her direct care, Wakako quickly learned that she was an extreme disciplinarian. As she put it, life at sea was about absolute obedience to the captain of the vessel, and a failure to follow instructions required correcting. All Wakako was expected to do was haul things around, swab the decks and help with the rigging, but even the slightest failure on these parts was met with harsh scrutiny from her mother. She never spared a moment to tell Wakako that her father had been far too lenient with her, and it was about time this all changed. Wakako’s illusions were thoroughly shattered, and while she remained a largely obedient girl, she grew to resent the life she once idolised.
While Wakako had in fact been planning to become a hero since she was a small girl, Sanae had never intended to give her a choice in the matter. Her daughter would be made in her own image, as that was what was best for her. This not only meant instilling in her a regimental lifestyle, but also physical development beyond typical means. Sanae Tanegashima is well known for being something of an amazon; both tall and obscenely muscular for a woman. Wakako had long since inherited her genetics as far as her height went, but now she began to grow her mother’s musculature too. Only a few years back, a younger Wakako would have relished the idea of being just like her mother. Now she hated what she saw in the mirror.
On her thirteenth, Wakako quietly made a resolution. She would not become her mother. While she never once openly rebelled against her, she would take any opportunity to distance herself from her image. Where her mother was cold and distant, Wakako tried to be more warm and welcoming. While her mother preferred conservative, modest attire, Wakako preferred casual clothes that were brightly coloured. While some of these traits she had already possessed as a young girl, now she employed them as a means of quiet resistance. Her mother was no fool, and she saw the growing trend. She dismissed it as a youthful fancy. It was just a phase. The foolish girl would soon realise that no amount of contrarianism would mean anything to her plans to make her a better person.
The clincher to her plan was, as she had always planned, for Wakako to attend Ishin Academy. Sanae was sure that her old school would quash any remaining foolish thoughts in her daughter’s head and turn out a proper, civilized hero. Wakako, with little choice but to follow the path her mother had set her upon, prepared herself mentally and physically for the rigours of studying at Ishin. Wakako would not be a rebellious, petulant student, but she would never be a “perfect” one. If they sought to make her an automaton, she would not be broken. She resolved to always be her own person.
Taking some inspiration from Etranger, I decided to create a character that in some ways fit the culture of the school, but not necessarily in a willing fashion. Wakako is a girl that has had obedience and discipline forced upon her, and she is not the type to go around committing wanton acts of disrespect and delinquency. However, she neither likes nor wishes to model herself upon the culture of the school. She may be a giant of a girl, but she has a little girl’s heart, and she still wants to be the light hearted hero she imagined being as a child. The school may yet try to break her, but she will resist it passively to the end.
I initially considered making her more sullen and cynical due to her experiences, but not only do I feel like there’s enough of those types of characters around, and the idea of her being almost deliberately cheerful just to passively spite her mother appealed more to me. Technically speaking, a lot of her characterisation is based on spiting and resisting her mother and rigid cultural values, but at the same time, to be a cheerful, loving hero like All Might (direct inspiration pending confirmation of his existence).
Abilities & Talents
Navel Artillery – This quirk involves the person having a battleship-esque cannon built into their stomach area. The cannon barrel can be extended and retracted at will for whatever purposes suit the user. The ammunition is generated inside the user’s body and funnelled into the cannon by muscle movement. Despite their biological origins, the shells are exactly what you might expect from a naval gun; possessing a metal shell and exploding on impact. The cannon presently has a maximum range of 24 miles, dependant on environmental factors.Other Talents & Attributes
Not being magically immune to their own explosions, the user must avoid firing in a manner likely to have their shells explode in their own face, unless they’re feeling suicidal. Firing the cannon also creates a large kickback effect, which can have creative applications, but is likely to be a liability depending on the person’s user’s surroundings. The user must ingest ingredients conducive to creating artillery shells in order to maintain the viability of their quirk, and while the user has a biological tolerance to the presence of such substances in their body, ingesting them is by no means a pleasant experience.
-Raw Physical Power: As part of her mother’s campaign to make her in her own image, Wakako was pushed into a brutal physical training regimen. She got enormous muscles and a big lifting capacity out of it at the expense of looking like an absolute ogre.
-A Tolerance for Tedium: Wakako has lived the last five years of her life toiling on a boat, lifting things and cleaning. She has developed a tolerance for being subjected to boring tasks and doing what she must in order to avoid belligerent shouting from overbearing authority figures. It also makes her great at maintaining an exercise routine.