He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss also gazes into you
-- Freidrich Nietzsche
|The son of a Western missionary father and a Lebonese mother, Armin was orphaned as an infant during the internecine fighting between Hezbollah and the Israeli government. Armin's real parents were the dirty streets of war-torn Beirut during the 90's, living by the graces of his local militia who raised him as one of their own. To survive he joined their ranks as a young child soldier, and despite his sharp aptitude and clear intelligence his primary measurement of success became his ability with a gun. In his teens, Armin was successfully saved by a quiet NGO for disaffected Lebonese youth. Recognizing his potential, he was adopted into the houshold of a quiet British professional who stewarded him through school. After graduating from King's College having read for Latin and classical languages, he comes to Fallcoast seemingly to seek a quieter life as a young researcher at St. John's University.|
|While Armin may have left Beirut, Beirut has never left Armin. Frequent travel during his early twenties to the region has enabled him to keep in touch with the militia groups who fostered him in his youth, and through his quiet life in England (and later Fallcoast) he has shown a remarkable aptitude in smuggling illegal goods. Armin traffics in guns, drugs, and other illicit items between Lebanon and the United States. With continued conflict, lots of tacit international aid in the form of war materiel, and a largely ineffectual local government, Beirut is the prime breeding ground for "ghost guns" that are submitted to local fighting groups in a grand proxy war between Israel, Iran, and the rest of the Middle East. Armin is able to tap into this vibrant shadow economy and serves the Scaccia Crime Family - as well as those locally who have the resources and are on good relations with the mafia - as a major local arms and drug dealer. His frequent travels back to the region are done under the cover of his known job as a researcher of classics and antiquities.|
|Armin awoke as an early teenager in Beirut during a traumatic attack by a rival local militia. Surrounded by the streams and nightmares of war, Armin touched the black tower of Pandemonium and looked to the sky to see his shadow name of Asterion carved into the night sky. The youth was discovered soon after and taken in by Mithras, a fellow Mastigos and famed censor of the Mysterium. Asterion suffered a brutal and dangerous apprenticeship under Mithras, but through his trials learned how to combat the horrors spawned from various forbidden sources of knowledge. After nearly a century of service to the Mysterium and exposure to ruinous powers, Mithras was seduced by the corruptive influence of the Abyss. Armin was charged with killing his master before Mithras had the opportunity to use a relic he stole from the local Censorium. The young apprentice failed to kill Mithras (and was greviously injured in the attack), but his valiant effort proved to exonerate him from being in league with his mentor and graduated him to the status of censor. He comes to Fallcoast now to seek a new life - one where he can save other awakened from falling to the lures of forbidden knowledge like his mentor.|
Don't know Latin? How about Arabic? Need something translated or some research on a Middle Eastern topic? Asterion serves as a low level researcher at St. John's by day, focused on antiquities research in the Levant and classical archaeology. He's more than happy to help investigate anything dealing with the Middle East or its deep and rich past.
Any dangerous or forbidden magic afoot? Asterion is a relatively new addition to Fallcoast, having traveled to the region to serve as a censor to the budding Mysterium presence in the area. He is a skilled censor with experience facing and combatting the horrors spawned by the misuse of forbidden knowledge. But his dubious past is frought with controversy, and his expertise in facing and slaying the forces of the Abyss comes from hunting down and attempting to kill his fallen mentor. Asterion pursues his role with zealous passion, having seen what corruption and evil can come from forbidden knowledge. NOTE: When engaging in Mysterium business as a censor, he frequently travels masked with a hood and parkerized metal skull's mask. This is as much for intimidation as it is to keep him incognito, as the nature of his job is dubious and frequently violent.
Need a rifle? Or how about some ecstasy? Asterion's youth and experience has allowed him access to the black market in Beirut, a warren of guns and drugs that's fueled by Lebanon's continuing conflicts and the support of various regional powers who see the country's civil war as a proxy fight for power. The ongoing internecine violence in the country and largely ineffectual government help allow him to funnel illicit goods out of the country, but he is reliant on his relationship with the Scaccia crime family in order to import them into Fallcoast. The Black Market also serves as a venue for him to pursue relics and items of supernal knowledge, and Asterion avidly pursues such items from dubious sources like tomb raiders and fences. NOTE: He conducts all illegal activities locally with the same disguise he uses for Mysterium business: a deep black trench coat, a black cowled hood, and a gunmetal grey/black metal skull's mask.
Are you a Malleus Maleficarum and need someone to pursue? How about an abyssal who wants to settle a score with a mage? After failing to kill his fallen mentor, Asterion is actively pursued by his mentor's abyssal agents and demons. He is also pursued by agents of the Inquisition, who recognize Asterion only as being formerly in league with his diabolical warlock mentor and are painfully aware of said fallen mage's crimes and atrocities.
"We sleep safely in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would harm us."
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