Name: Damien Brand
Description: Damien is pretty plain. He wears mostly plain t-shirts and jeans with a plain old pair of sneakers. His years of playing sports have left him with a slim, yet muscular build, and he is always wearing a sweat wristband on his left wrist. When he's not cracking jokes and smiling while talking to others he seems distant, as if something is bothering him. If he is around others, he will never remove the wristband or his shirt, even while swimming, because he wants to keep his scars hidden.
Personality: Damien's personality is somewhat difficult to pin down. Depending on where he is or what he's doing, he can seem like two different people. In the presence of others is the life of the party. His quick wit and excellent sense of humor are enough to keep any encounter with him incredibly amusing and he's always quick to put a smile on the face of someone who's having a bad day. He's very laid back and relaxed and doesn't seem to have a care in the world.
But that's only when he's around others. While he does enjoy the jokes, the laughter, and being friendly; he uses that side of himself to hide the other side. The depressed side. When he's alone he often just stares off into space, his expression somber and his eyes full of emptiness. He prefers to keep the pain he feels on the inside hidden from others so as to not burden them with his own suffering and because he hates pity parties. In his mind, he must suffer alone.
History: Life started out pretty well for Damien. His parents didn't have a perfect marriage, but they loved each other to keep it together. Thanks to being an only child, Damien got all of their attention, so he was well cared for and perhaps a bit spoiled. In school he got good grades and was a star player on the school's soccer team. He was even eligible for a scholarship. To top it all off, he had even managed to score a date with the girl of his dreams. However, it was not to last.
It was prom night went everything went downhill. While he had a driver's license, Damien did not own a car, so he begged his parents to let him borrow their car so that he could pick up his girlfriend and take her to prom. His mother refused. His father on the other hand had always been a bit more lenient and let him take the car without his mother knowing. You only get one senior prom after all. Filled to the brim with anxiety and excitement, Damien hopped in the car and headed off to pick up his date. He would never make it.
On his way to his girlfriend's house, Damien got into an accident. A drunk driver hit him going around a curve and sent his car off the road and down an embankment. The driver who had hit him made a hasty retreat so as to not be held responsible, so Damien was left where he was out in the woods. Thanks to being at the bottom of an embankment, no passing cars were able to see him. It was a full two hours before his mangled car and mangled body were discovered by an elderly man who was walking his dog. The man immediately called 911 and pulled Damien from the wreckage. It was another half hour before the paramedics arrived due to the remote location of the accident.
Despite having spent two and a half hours without medical assistance, Damien was miraculously still alive by the time he arrived in the ICU at the hospital. Surgery began immediately to piece his battered body back together as much as possible, but the damage was severe. By the time it was over, the doctor's determined that he would most likely survive, but he spent the next three months in a coma. By the time he finally awoke, everything had changed. The doctor told him that his spine and been fractured in two places and that he would never walk again. If that wasn't enough, his parents had gotten divorced, the soccer team had replaced him, and his girlfriend had moved on. He had lost it all, and he hadn't even been awake for it.
The idea with never walking again did not sit well with Damien. There was no way in hell his life was going to end this way. As soon as he was able, he underwent twelve months of intense therapy. By the end of it all, Damien was on his feet once more and set off to piece his life back together. First, he would talk to his parents. However, his mother was far too stubborn. She blamed his father for his accident because he allowed Damien to borrow the car and she said she would never forgive him for it. Talking to his father was just as fruitless. He had already even found another woman. It was clear that his parents' marriage was well and truly over, but perhaps some aspects of his old life could still be scavenged.
Damien's next step was to talk to the soccer coach. Despite his skill and despite how many times and had brought the team victory, Damien was turned down. The coach told him that they were simply too close to the regional championship to risk accepting someone back on the team that had spent the last year learning how to walk again, let alone run and kick. He also missed out on his scholarship. Because of how much school he had missed, he would have to repeat his senior year and then hope he would be offered the scholarship again. Nothing was working out how he had planned, and his optimism was quickly fading. He only had one more stop.
The final destination of his quest to rebuild his life as the home of his girlfriend. Unfortunately when he arrived, she politely informed him that she was now his ex-girlfriend. She had met someone else and even gotten engaged. It was over. Everything was gone. His family, his future, his successes. All of it was gone, and he hadn't even been awake for any of it. Damien sank into a deep depression and immediately began to wish that the car accident had killed him. Death would have been far less painful than having his life collapse around him like this.
With nothing left, Damien decided to end it all. He headed off to the very same spot where that fateful accident had taken place and on the very same day. Taking out his knife from his pocket, he sat down in the grass and sliced open his wrist. As fate would have it, the same elderly man that had found him after his accident found him again. Damien quickly passed out due to blood loss, but when he awoke his was lying on a couch in a strange house. The elderly man, who introduced himself as Charlie, had taken Damien to his home and saved his life a second time. The two began to talk, and Damien poured his heart to this strange old man that he had just met. It was perhaps the best thing he had done since the accident.
Damien and Charlie became good friends. Charlie became a surrogate grandfather for Damien, and he would visit him often just to talk. As it so turned out, Charlie was a retired comedian. Though his lifestyle did not reflect it, Charlie was incredibly wealthy and took it upon himself to pay off all of Damien's medical bills. When Damien asked him why he would do such a thing, Charlie explained that he had been saving all that money for all those years for something that he felt was a worthy cause, and saving someone's life most definitely seemed worthwhile. Charlie taught Damien that living life was like listening to joke. In order to understand a joke, you had to listen to the whole thing or the punchline wouldn't make sense and you wouldn't understand what the point of it was. If you didn't live out your life, then you would never know why you had even been living it in the first place. You would have to stick it out for everything to make sense in the end.
Life with Charlie wasn't all super serious life lessons, though. The old man taught Damien how to laugh, and how to make others laugh. It's impossible to be sad while you're laughing, so if your laughing then you're not sad. Damien took these lessons to heart, and he found himself able to smile and life again way more than he did even before his accident. He learned not to take life too seriously, because no one got out of it alive. Charlie was as wise as he was funny, and he was hilarious. However, Charlie was old, and he was not long for this world.
Six months after having saved his life the second time, Charlie passed away. He had gone peacefully in his sleep, but he had no family to speak of. Damien attended the funeral and even gave the eulogy. It was the least he could do for his old friend. A few days later Damien got a phone call from a lawyer. As it turned out, Charlie had left everything he had to Damien along with a message: "Here's a little something to get a whole new life started. One that's even better than the last." Damien was without words. In an instant he now had a house, a car, and a lot of money. Despite all this, he still felt empty. He was certainly grateful, but he didn't know where to go from here. What life was he supposed to build? Damien guessed he would simply have to wait and see. After all, if he didn't stick it out then he wouldn't understand the punchline.
Elemental Alignment: Air
Crystal Form: The crystal hangs from a simple leather strap that he wears around his neck.
Other: His torso bares scars from his accident and the extensive surgery that followed on both the front and back. He never takes off his shirt around others in order to keep them hidden from view. Beneath the sweat wristband on his left wrist lies the nasty scar left behind by his attempted suicide when he cut open his wrist.