Ace of Cards
Name: Ace of Cards (aka Ace of Diamonds, Ace of Spades, Ace of Clubs, Ace of Hearts)
Concept: Nobody Trusts The Smiling Man
- His face is molded into a permanent, rictus-like grin with his teeth exposed, regardless of his actual mood or emotions.
- He wears bright, cheerful-colored shirts with flower patterns, and a slightly misshapen fedora-like hat with a playing card stuck in the brim.
The man who would be ace was born in the early 1900's. He grew up and effectively raised himself on the streets, and swiftly mastered the art of the con and swindle. He thrived on other people's desperation and misery when the Great Depression hit, cheating with abandon and fleeing retribution, but eventually fell afoul of a strange, well-dressed man who caught him in a con, and kidnapped him away to Arcadia to perform in the Keeper's deranged Fey carnival.
Someone who smiled was friendly, and friendly people were more trustworthy and more likely to pull off a scam. So the Ringmaster molded his new carny showman, giving him a grin that would never fade and fingers extra-long to better conduct sleight of hand. Then he chained him to his games booth and forced him to run endless carnival games of all sorts for guests and other captives. The games were always rigged, but rigged against the house, and Ace was beaten whenever the 'marks' won a game they couldn't lose.
Driven to desperation, he plotted an escape, and made allies amongst the other carnival captives. When his shell game was ready, he fled in the company of an Ogre strongman named Olaf and an Elemental living chesspiece named Anna, bolting through the Hedge while the cannibal clowns that served the Ringmaster as guards giggled at their heels. All of them remembered Philadelphia as a home, though from different points in time, but it served as the beacon to draw them free of the Hedge, emerging in the fall of 2011.
Ace makes a living as a gambler, wielding unnatural luck to make just enough money in casinos to survive without looking suspicious, and stands in the Liberty Freehold of Philadelphia as one of the few Spring courtiers the other Courts - particularly the politically dominant Summer - don't view as flighty and unreliable. He's always friendly, always looking to make deal or bargain, and always - always - smiling.
- Olaf Bonesplitter, Ogre of Summer
- Anna Stone, Elemental of Summer
- Luciana Nightingale, Fairest of Autumn
- Conner O'Reilly, Elemental of Summer
- Finlay O'Reilly, Elemental of Summer
- Red O'Reilly, Ogre of Winter
- Silas Grey, Fairest of Winter
- Tess, Wizened of Winter
"Life is a game, a game that They have rigged. The only winning move is refusing to play."
"Ace, you're the only person I've met who wears as much color as I do!" DJ Radix, after a show in Philadelphia.
"The Others all take things from us. Sometimes the scars can be seen - other times they cannot. Sometimes their greed almost looks like a gift, but it never is. They did not give him a smile; no, They took away his ability to ever express anything else." - Cilia
"When he took the El Dorado Casino here in Reno for a ride, some of our members remarked on a smiling gambler. I don't wish ill for him, but I am awfully curious about his luck. Mark one for the Must Be Watched List." - Professor Mercury
- Ace is terrified of clowns.
- When Ace led his motley-mates to escape The Circus, part of his plan set up other would-be escapees as a distraction for his group.
- Ace never sleeps, staying awake with Spring power and Wakefruit binges.
- The playing card in his hat changes of its own accord to reflect his mood.
Player: Phillip Riviezzo
MES Number: US2008113267
Location: Philadelphia, PA