Memory Option: Deteriorating AU.
Established Status: Yes, 5 years.
Canon Point: After restoring her lover's body and realizing she cannot return him to life.
Citizenship: Authorized Immigrant
Job: Composer and songwriter
Red has no supernatural abilities as magic and the like doesn't exist in her world. The Transistor she has in her possession and the powers it possesses are detailed below under her Inventory section.
In terms of personal skill Red has an incredible singing voice. In Cloudbank Red was ranked in the top percentile of Cloudbank's contemporary performing artists for five years running. Her music has been known to have incredible impact: in one instance an altercation erupted during one of her performances (the very first altercation in four years across the city), and the individual banned blamed Red's for being an instigator and provocateur.
Although she has never been formally trained in fighting Red is able to wield the Transistor as a weapon to defeat both the Process, and ultimately, Royce Bracket who initially discovered and used it. So while a great deal of that is due to the Transistor and the individuals they collect on their journey, Red is also a bit adaptable. She literally runs around dragging that thing for days yo.
"You always have a plan."
Red is a character who is not easy to define at first, primarily because so much of who she is and built herself up to be is stolen at the start of the game by the Camerata: her voice.
Despite the fact that Red attended Traverson Hall, primarily a technical institution which boasted grooming some of the most ambitious civic planners, she showed an interest only in music and became the first to select two non-traditional disciplines. Red spent most of her time building up the nascent arts program until she hit the spotlight five years prior to the game's start. When interviewed about her history and what influenced her work Red always insisted her "work spoke for itself." Red's passion for music, for expression through lyric and melody was the driving force behind all of her Selections up until the events of Transistor. In Cloudbank Selections define who people are, what they will become and where they will fit into society: they are a rite of passage, made during one's studies. And Red purposely chose to follow her passions despite how unprecedented it was. She struck out against the tide to forge her own path because it was was she cared about, what she wanted.
Which is what makes the loss of her voice on the night of her comeback concert such a profound blow for her. As she and The Transistor make their escape from the events which led it into her possession they stumble upon promotional posters for her performance: her return to what she loved after her lyrics drove a man at one such event to start an altercation--the first in four years of Cloudbank's history. She spends a long time looking at the poster even as the Transistor urges her to "Let's just go. C'mon just go, just...yeah." Red has to mourn the loss of her voice, her life, and her lover all in the same moment, and for once she can't express herself the way she's always been able to with words. Her actions become her primary method of communication from that point on.
Red is determined: The Transistor himself ("him" being her lover who was absorbed into it) notes that Red always has a plan. When they escape the Camerata's attack and he urges her to flee, assumes they're going to escape and lay low Red instead heads back to where it all happened looking for answers: why did they choose her, what's going on? Is the Process following her? There's so much she doesn't know and wants to understand, but more than anything she wants to find a way to restore her lover to the way he was. To this end she fights her way through the city of Cloudbank against the volatile Process, against the monstrous Spine and the Camerata themselves. Red does this because she wants to, not because it's what anyone wants or expects her to. She has always followed her own desires and this holds true throughout the game:
The Transistor wishes to escape, Red instead heads back into the city to undo what's been done and uncover the truth. The Camerata expects her to seek revenge but instead Red is almost amicable...as much as anyone in her position can be. She ends Sybil's suffering after being Processed rather than let her continue on in her monstrous existence, and even tells Asher that if he wants her help stopping the process he's going to have to tell her the truth. When Royce offers a truce in order to stop the Process Red listens to him and acknowledges the need for collaboration to stop what the Process is doing--to stop everything from being wiped out of existence. And finally at the end of the game, despite being given the virtual key to Cloudbank, the power to reshape and reform it in any way she sees fit...red chooses only to restore as much as needed to reach her lover's body in the hopes of reviving him.
When she realizes the limits of the Transistor and that it can't bring the dead back to life, Red chooses to end her own life with the sword and live inside of it with her lover despite how he begs and pleads for her not to do it, to live on because he's okay with how things are for him now. She doesn't need to do this--they're already together.
But again Red is determined and only does what she wants to do. Red follows the tune of her own song and doesn't allow her choices to be swayed or influenced by the assumptions or expectations of others. For her the only thing that truly mattered was understanding what had happened and finding a way to save her lover from being trapped inside the Transistor forever; "You're all I have," she tells him. When it became clear that entering it was a one-way street and there was no hope of reviving him, Red chose to do the one thing that would guaranteed she could be with him the way she wanted for all eternity.
What's important to note is that this is not an impulsive decision for Red. She doesn't act rashly or without thought and this can be seen in the comments she posts to the OVC network on Cloudbank throughout the game. red is often seen typing out several drafts of what she wants to say and what she decides to say, only ever posting when she's satisfied with what's been written. The same was true when the instigator at her performance accused her of being the reason for his outburst. When she finally understood the potent effect her music had she decided to take time off from the stage to reflect--not to quit, not because she was discouraged, oh no; it was very much the opposite. She imposed precautions by herself and composed in solitude until she had grounded herself once again and was ready to return.
Red openly admits that she never wrote her music with the intent to stir controversy, and the same can be said about her attitude and manner in general. Several times she has the opportunity to make provocative statements and accusations via the OVC terminals throughout the game, but each time she chooses to delete the reply in favour of something more controlled and collected. Red is not inflammatory and does not desire conflict; she doesn't want to incite others to action. Her music is simply a way to express herself and convey emotion.
What is obvious about Red is that she is a lover, someone who is passionate and cares deeply for the strange man who wandered into her life. The man she lost inside the Transistor, and the only thing she cares about as the world around her is steadily destroyed. Red only ever wavers or doubts when it seems she might lose him when The Spine makes its appearance, or when she must release him back to the Cradle in order to stop the Process.
Red is her own person, and never wanted the power to create or control as city as she fit. She never wanted to get revenge, to be a voice of dissent or become the city's saviour. All she ever wanted was to be with the man she loved, even if that meant ending her own life to accomplish it.
Red is a set and thoughtful individual, but she is not without enjoyment and humour and happiness. Some of her most beloved memories are of meeting the man who would win her heart or challenging herself to compose despite the fallout. She likes to order pizza even when the world is ending all around her to share in that calm, familiar moment. She gives wry smiles on her way to the powder room as her digitized lover tries to be collected and sensible about it. His awkwardness and tendency to babble and carry on are what make him wonderful, and there was never a time she could keep a smile from her face when he was around.
Red was born into a well-off family of status in power far beyond the reach of the Nine and the Quad. She was heiress to the mantle of some of the finest civic planners her city had ever known; her parents were famous for their ability to serve the people and facilitate their whims and desires for architecture and development. Their prowess and power put them at the forefront of affairs both political and others in the city, but for this Red had no longing or desire; her only interests laid in music and composition, of lyric and expression...and the strange sword-shape artwork that hung in her room. It was her dream to make this her career, to follow her heart rather than the whims and wants of others.
As she entered higher education she went against the expectations of her peers and family and pursued the fine arts. She made a name for herself as a composer and songwriter and was met with renown and success. But all was not well in her life: her parents insisted on a marriage for political purposes, for her to give up her career and walk the path of security and civic duty. Her marriage to the heir of a powerful administration would ensure good relations among their families and provide for the citizens an image of peace and power, of reconciliation and the continued prosperity of the city.
Red refused. Her suitor was kind, but she did not love the woman her parents wished for her to marry. She apologized, told them that it was not where her passions laid and she would follow her heart, but it did not appease those who wished to orchestrate her life. They moved ahead regardless of her wishes and made every attempt to plan and conduct what was to be...until one day Red took the sword-shaped piece of art she considered her muse and left without saying a word--not out of spite or anger, but because it was what she wanted: to move on and see where else life could take her, to follow her own path and see where it would lead her.
Years later it would lead her to the Quad and Leith, a system ruled by the iron fist of The Nine and the Company. Its conflict and turmoil held no sway for her, but the people: the places, the atmosphere and its centre stages...all of it called to Red, and there she decided to stay in order to continue composing and writing music.
And then ya'll went and started a dang civil war which was uncool. Red has been in the Quad for the last year.
Original History: Red's history, as well as her involvement in the game's plot.
The Transistor is the sword-like weapon Red wields in game. No one knows exactly what its origins are, whether it hails from the world/reality of The Process or if it was sent to Red's by them. Regardless, it is the one thing capable of combating and controlling The Process which is why Red's entire city of Cloudbank got hella screwed up when the Camerata lost control of it (and therefor the Process itself).
Besides controlling The Process (which doesn't exist in OJ obviously) the Transistor is capable of several things, most notably of which is the ability to download an individual's trace data (essentially them, their consciousness, skills etc) when they are struck by it. This is a one-way street however and leaves the downloaded individual dead in the physical world, (because they just got hit by a giant USB sword. so.) trapped for all eternity within the Transistor as data that can only be heard by the Transistor's owner, should they know them. If they don't...they may as well just be data; the wielder will not be able to hear them nor know they exist.
Why would you want to murder people just to download their consciousnesses? Besides having access to any information about them one could want, another handy function of the Transistor is that it turns the trace data it takes from people into abilities it can use. One good example of this is the ability derived from absorbing Red's trace data at the beginning of the game: Crash() strikes enemies and stuns them. A full list of all the functions the Transistor has at her current canon point can be found here.
In-game Red has the Transistor as it is, but considers it a piece of art she somehow always had. It currently has no abilities or powers and just sits there.
Red is mute but can somehow still hum because #videogamelogic