Graham and Colette Nichols had, at first, agreed never to have children. An American woman, and a native Briton, both were all but married to their careers, more so than to each other. Both worked in the financial field, pulling in a hefty salary on each of their ends: money was good, free-flowing, and they never planned for anything to interrupt that, much less a bouncing baby brat of a boy. It took Colette some time to realize her dizzy spells and bouts of vomiting and nausea were the dreaded symptoms of pregnancy; by the time the revelation hit, she was nearly six months along. Resigned to the fact that they were both about to become parents, Graham relocated the family to his childhood home in Staffordshire, opting to continue his work from Birmingham while Colette stayed at home.
The birth of Hunter had been long, tiring, and remarkably excruciating: horribly scarred both physically and mentally after hours of labor, Colette demanded Graham get a vasectomy. Neither of them never particularly cared for children, but Colette was hell-bent and determined to make motherhood work for her. She settled quickly, if not somewhat awkwardly, into the role of motherhood: recalling a unit about basic child development from one of her early Psych 101 classes, plus the loads of parenting books gifted to her by Graham's well-meaning mother were all she really had to go on. Her knowledge of children was rudimentary, but she knew enough to ensure that her baby boy had a stable, stimulating environment, as much as one could possibly provide for a child. While Graham worked long hours at work and frequently spent nights 'at the office', Colette was content to spend most of her time with Hunter, taking him on walks, trips to museums and libraries, teaching him the basic fundamentals of language and mathematics at a young age.
Young Hunter proved to be very intelligent indeed: by year four, he was reading at a year eight level, easily. His teachers were impressed, and had him enrolled in the International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme once he turned 11. School presented a small hurdle for Hunter. He excelled in his studies easily in secondary school, though once he reached upper school, his interest began to dwindle. He was still enrolled in the IB Diploma Programme, and although the work was stimulating enough, his focus was beginning to slip. All throughout school, Hunter had been dubbed something of a loner. Fussy, occasionally aggressive, and unwilling to work well with others, Hunter always had difficulty making friends: his loneliness compounding his annoyance and anger at his peers. Most of them, he felt, were below him, a revelation that dawned on him once he hit twelve years of age or so.
Life at home was also proving to be strenuous on Hunter as well. As he grew older, it became increasingly apparent that Colette and Graham's marriage was falling apart. Colette had come to embrace motherhood completely; Graham, however, remained distant and disinterested, to say the least. He thought life pre-baby was good enough for him, and though he willingly complied with Colette's requests for him becoming sterilized, he did not want his life to change. He liked work, he liked his job – what he didn't like was having to come home to a squalling baby each and every night after a long, 12+ hour day at the office. Therefore, it came as little surprise when the never-present Graham finally came home one day while Hunter was off to school, and announced he wanted a divorce. He had taken on a girlfriend out in Birmingham, a woman whom he stayed with on nights he was too tired to commute back to Stoke, or whenever he simply needed to get away from Colette and her baby fanaticism. At this point Hunter was a teenager, and so it was far too late to demand that Graham stay on for fathering duties. Colette settled for a speedy divorce and a ridiculously generous sum monthly for child support.
After that, life seemed to be relatively normal in the Nichols household, as close to 'normal' as they could possibly get. Hunter appeared to be doing well in school, and when he wasn't there, he was either shuttered away in his room, or was simply out. Left with little to do, Colette picked up a job at a local bank, solely to have something to do. This suited Hunter just fine: after Graham had left, Hunter lost most of his interest in school. Sure, he attended every day, and did well enough on his work to scrape by, but he no longer cared about maximizing his potential. As long as his marks were good, there was no reason why he couldn't get into a decent enough university, right? With his afternoons wide open and mother-less, he took to wandering the streets, getting into mischief here and there, though nothing major. His final years in school were rather unremarkable, at least academically; when it came to his social life, however, he had finally found his niché in a small group of tight-knit friends with like-minded interests. It was with these friends that Hunter developed a budding interest in the occult, heavy metal, and plenty of drugs and alcohol. It could be argued that these were the friends who sent Hunter on a long, downward spiral, but he was delighted by these new-found hobbies. They actually interested him, and Hunter was a young man who was restless, easily bored. He was never satisfied with superficial pursuits: unlike most boys his age, he never really took an outward interest in girls- at least, the girls that took an interest in him. His reputation seemed to precede him wherever he went, annoyingly enough, and any number of girls in his classes had their interests piqued by the fact he was labeled as one of the bad boys. Over the years, he went from being a quiet, sullen teenager, to a snarling, angry, foul-mouthed young adult. Hunter never kowtowed to anyone, much less his teachers.
The final teenaged years were spent under a haze of various narcotics and whiskey; Hunter was living the life the way he saw fit. High school ending gave him more time to party, and there was enough money to do so, by way of both of his parents who were seemingly fading out of the picture. Hunter had always been an independent individual, but he was also money-minded- and he'd never turn down free money. Thusly, he continued to live the good life after high school, even packing up and moving to the heart of London with his girlfriend at the time, plus a few of his mates. It did not take long for things to go wrong. After all, man cannot survive on chemical cocktails of cocaine and whiskey for very long, especially day in and day out. His girlfriend was still fully immersed in the party lifestyle, and his friends had delved headlong into a world of black magick, having taken the works of Aleister Crowley and Anton LaVey a bit too seriously. Before long, Hunter found out two things: not only at twenty-three, he was not able to keep up with this lifestyle, but what was more, he realized that he bought into the very lifestyle he proclaimed to be against. Stunned at how easily disillusioned he had become, he packed up what few belongings he had as quietly as he could, and left the flat in a fly by night move.
The next few years of Hunter's life found him crashing on couches of friends and family alike that were scattered around Europe. Outside of going to Wales, Ireland, and the occasional pilgrimage to the States to visit his mother's family, Hunter had done very little traveling. If he was going to spend the rest of his twenties alone and in search of something more, he was going to do it his way. At the age of twenty-seven, he finally made the leap his mother had been waiting for him to make: Hunter returned to college to complete his education. At first, it was difficult adjusting – he had spent the past several years working his way through all of Europe, on his own time and schedule, completely unrestricted; now he found himself back in England, busting his hump to earn his degree. It was a smart move, he reasoned, even if it didn't fit him quite right. Though Hunter was undeniably intelligent, school had always been more of a burden than anything. Much to Hunter's surprise, however, his coursework came to him naturally, and over time he found himself enjoying his classes. Initially, he had gone to school to follow in his parents' footsteps in finance. Over time, however, it became rapidly apparent that banking and other such matters did not hold his interest, though he was quite adept at it. Much to his mother's chagrin, he announced a change of plans: he would be earning his degree in History.
While History was something of a lifelong interest to Hunter, what he truly enjoyed as a hobby was writing. Writing, surprisingly enough, came natural to him, considering he began to write considerably late in the game. Before long, he found himself keeping a journal at first, then two: one for every day notes, thoughts, reflections, and the second for various creative anecdotes, character ideas, plot lines that always seemed to materialize out of nowhere, and often at the worst times. The next four years flew by before he knew it. At thirty-one, he began to take his work seriously; by thirty-three, he had several short stories, and one novel published. Encouraged by his success, he set to work on his second novel, working as a library associate on the side to earn a little extra cash – not that Hunter needed it, of course. Life for Hunter seemed to be on an upswing, and he was flying high – but only for the time being, of course. It became increasingly apparent to friends around him that he had difficulty controlling his moods, and was frequently unstable; though as to whether he was suffering from a legitimate mood disorder, or was just completely insufferable was anyone's guess. Regardless, Hunter found himself in therapy and on medication, though he abandoned both quickly after a period of time. His second novel was well-received, and work was plentiful. Even so, he made a momentous decision: he would leave England for good.
Before long, he had more incentive to make the trip: there was an American publisher that was very interested with having Hunter on board. It certainly did not help that said publisher was, at one time, UK-based, as well. It was only a matter of time before he had everything packed up and sent overseas – with him to follow just a few short weeks later. Making the leap from the middle of London into downtown Los Angeles was relatively easy; his mother's family was from the suburbs, and he had made several ventures into the city before. In spite of his nature, Hunter adjusted remarkably well. Living in the city was exhilarating and inspiring; he was writing more than ever now. Better yet, he had met a woman who was more than just a pretty face. She was a kindred spirit, and inelegantly and beyond his control, Hunter fell head over heels in love with her. Slavishly devoted to her, the relationship lasted a remarkable amount of time. Alas, what goes up most come down. After a time, Hunter reverted back to his old ways: he was moody, he was irritable, and he was completely insufferable to live with. The love of his life left him after a monstrously huge fight that left him utterly devastated; though Hunter will never, ever admit to it, he can be very delicate. The loss of his girlfriend sunk him into a deep depression, and he found himself creatively stunted. To this day, he still cannot write.
All seemed lost. He drifted through any number of jobs listlessly until one day he received a curious package in the mail. It was from an old friend of his from England, sent by way of NYC. The contents of the package included a frighteningly large amount of paperwork and an extraordinarily long letter; summed up, Hunter's old friend was fleeing back to England after any number of charges filed against him for a string of white-collar crimes that had to do with a sizable sum of money. He was leaving Hunter ownership of two properties: a small yet lovely brownstone in Hell's Kitchen, and a tiny used bookshop called Pageturner Books several blocks over. Stunned, Hunter made the trip north to survey his new properties. At first he rejected the idea of becoming a business owner, especially of a bookstore. Eventually, though, he warmed to the idea. Perhaps running a bookstore would kick-start his creativity – at the very least, it would be a job he could be in control of. Being in control appealed to Hunter, and so he left behind his high-rise condo and made the move to New York City.
And now, over a few years later? Hunter wouldn't say that he's happy, exactly. While he's intelligent enough to run a business, it's much more work than he had anticipated. But he likes his staff well enough, and the store makes plenty of money for him to live on. While life could be better, he can't necessarily object. He still can't write fiction, much to his chagrin, though journaling is becoming easier for him. He's made a few friends here and there, he likes his regulars, and he can still bang on his guitar and bass late into the night with no one to object. For now? He'll take it.
full name: Hunter Damon Nichols
birthdate & age: 18 July 1968, 47.
birthplace: Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, England
residence: Hell's Kitchen, Manhattan, NY
occupation: Owner and proprietor of Pageturner Books (located in Hell's Kitchen, Manhattan)/writer/freelance musician.
out of character
pb: Johnny Depp
writing: Third-person storybook and threading; custom friendly. Contact me at anytime here.
credit: Coding by ~candace.
Thoughtless, blunt, and stubborn: three words which describe Hunter to a T. He's neither bad nor good; on the alignment scale, he would register as a true neutral. Perhaps he's just misunderstood, or maybe he truly is as rotten as he wants people to think. Either way, the point is this: Hunter may be an ass at times, but he will always be honest. He does not believe in lying, and he does not believe in playing games with people; part of his temperament is because he dislikes the way the majority of society live their lives. He wants to remain true to himself and live his life the way he sees fit. Unfortunately with his mother's passing, this is no longer quite the reality for him, and he is making due. Some days, he is even-tempered and almost oddly kind. Other days, he can be sulky and ill-mannered, prone to snapping at the smallest offense.
At his best, Hunter is insightful and sensitive, keenly aware of the people around him and their emotions. He is excellent at sensing whether or not someone is in a bad mood, and if it is someone he cares about, he will do anything to cheer them up. He is thoughtful and honest, he believes himself to be a 'realist' rather than a 'pessimist' – the glass may be half-empty or half-full, but there's always room for more booze, right? He is a peaceful drunk, oddly sedate – when drinking socially, he tends to be a happy (if not sometimes sloppy) drunk. When stoned on weed, he's often quiet yet introspective, prone to rambling. At his worst, Hunter has a short fuse and a vicious hot temper. When he is angry, it is best to treat him like a boil: you push him to the point where he explodes, so he can calm down and relax again. When he is going through his mood swings due to his Bipolar disorder, he will usually isolate himself which means that he will disappear for days, only being seen occasionally at Pageturner to make sure everything is up and running smoothly without him.
Hunter is an expressive creature. He will often respond with grunts and nods, not to be rude, but because he's not one for wasting words. He's also rude. On the other hand, he can be extremely talkative and at times impossible to shut up – sometimes chemically induced, sometimes not. It all depends on his mood for the day or the hour. He enjoys debate immensely, ranging on the topics of anything from politics to pop culture. Expresses himself eloquently when he wants to, but often resorts to mumbling vaguely and cursing a lot. Sometimes, he will utilize strange and elaborate descriptions for every day things, such as: “Would you be so kind as to nudge that pane of glass over on the east wall open just a smidge? I greatly require oxygen.” Things like that. He does this frequently when he is stoned and claims that he does it to force others to look at the world differently, but really he just enjoys being verbose for no reason. He also gesticulates a lot with his hands, primarily with a writing instrument for emphasis. Lastly, he tends to shout at random. Employees have reported him sitting quietly at his desk in the back office of Pageturner and suddenly shouting, “FUCK. NO.” Typically followed by a silly noise, an angry groan, or throwing things. Hunter likes to throw things, perhaps a little too much, not to mention his awful ability to cuss like a sailor..
Cannot cook for the life of him. Hunter's always relied on the women in his life to keep him fed; otherwise he subsides mostly on tea, whiskey, take-out, and cigarettes.
Has bad posture (he slouches), and dislikes his teeth. Every once in a blue moon he can be seen with gold caps. They make him happy -- and oddly, much more confident.
Most of his clothes are either old and from the back of his closet, or have been thrifted. He is quite dedicated to thrift shopping, and has been known to go once or twice a week to the local Goodwill.
Is an exceptionally talented guitarist. His love of music started at quite a young age, and he took private lessons for years. Nowadays he isn't as serious about playing; when he was younger he was in any number of bands and loved to perform. These days, he plays for himself.
Klutzy as hell. He's broken several bones over the course of his lifetime and is constantly running into thing and bruising himself, much to his great dismay.