Character: Rachael Krasinski
Blood: Crispin (sire), Maeve (“sister”)
Disciplines: Auspex (preferred), Celerity, Presence
Player: Brit aka PaperFaces
Bio: Rachael Krasinski was born in the state of Connecticut on January 29th, 1957. The daughter of a highly successful trial lawyer and an ex-model, she never was in want of luxury growing up. But despite the cushy comfort of a large home in a well-bred neighborhood, life wasn’t always cherries and roses for Rachael. While she got on decently enough with her socialite mother (despite being unavailable 90% of the time), her father was a different story. Over-bearing, authoritarian, and wearing his socio-economic status like a badge of pride; he often drove his artistically-inclined daughter to the edge. He could never understand nor appreciate the interest she had in the arts, and actively discouraged such “silly nonsense” at every turn. More so, given that Rachael’s tastes ran a bit unconventional, preferring the abstract and surreal over the linear and traditional. She had dabbled in painting as a child (much to her father’s dismay), but her real true passion came upon entering junior high. Photography.
From her very first assignment with the camera, Rachael was hooked. She began taking pictures of everything around her – friends, trees, flowers, her lunch, her school books, etc. As she gained more skill with photography, she began to take it to the next level. What would start as a regular shot of a lone soccer ball on a grassy field, would become something ethereal and perhaps haunting when the lighting was shifted, or manipulated in the dark room during development. Her friends and classmates would pose as subjects for her from time to time as well. Her father was naturally put-off by her “camera obsession”, and expressly forbade her from using it unless it was for a graded assignment. While she complied, in secret she continued to take pictures for her own pleasure and satisfaction.
The years went by, and soon it was time for Rachael to attend college. She badly wanted to enter a fine arts or photography program, but her father demanded she pursue a more respectable and realistic career-path – law, business, accounting. She reluctantly agreed, despite the fact that she’d be attending school away– living in the dormitories. In 1976, Rachael enrolled for her freshman year at Columbia University in New York. At first it was liberating, being on her own away from the stifling atmosphere at home. However, that glow was steadily chipped away by being forced to take courses she hated or had no interest in whatsoever. That, or have her financial lifeline cut by dear old dad. Since Columbia was far from cheap, the only option she had was to suck it up and obey his wishes. Despite the constant drudgery of civil law and business mathematics, Rachael continued her photography as a hobby when she had the time. Unfortunately, her unhappiness continued to build, until it reached the point she couldn’t take it any longer. Financial support be damned, Rachael let it all out on paper – sending a letter back home to her parents that she was DONE with courses she despised, and switching into fine arts studies. As expected her father was absolutely livid and cut her off entirely. She wasn’t to expect a single cent from him for ANYTHING ever. Her mother proved sympathetic enough to slip her daughter some money now and then when her husband wasn’t looking. The secret support continued for a while, but ended abruptly the second he got wind of it.
While she finally got the chance to pursue her passion fully, Rachael was having an increasingly difficult time paying for her tuition and supplies. On top of that, the severe recession in America during the late 70s made it hard to get even a minimum wage job to help with expenses. She managed to snag an on-campus gig ringing up students and staff members in the cafeteria, but that still wasn’t enough. She was damn near throwing in the towel and bailing on her education, when she had a breakthrough of sorts. It was during a lesson on drawing negative spaces that they brought in a live model as a subject to work from. Curious, Rachael had stayed afterwards to chat with the lady. She had claimed it was a non-profit favor to the instructor, nonetheless it gave Rachael a potential new avenue to earn a bit more cash. A “muse model” for lack of a better term. At first, she offered her services out to fellow art students. Posing (even nude for a slightly higher fee) for drawings, paintings, photographs, sculpture, etc. Last minute end of term project? No problem, Rachael’s got you covered! It was enough of a success on campus, that she soon began expanding her modelling services to the local community. When she wasn’t studying or handling lunchtime crowds, she was off posing for this artist or that – most of whom were amateurs or hobbyists more than thankful for the assistance.
It wasn’t all glamour and excitement, as she had to contend with the occasional creep that was looking for an affordable peep show – but for the most part it was making her money that she desperately needed for her tuition. That, and it furthered a cause near and dear to her heart. What she didn’t account for was the strange turn her life would soon take from walking down this particular path. It was during the autumn of 1978 when she met him. She had gotten the call one evening in her dorm, same as any other assignment she had taken on until then. She was to meet with him the following evening at his place, so they could get started immediately on the project. The artist in need was a man by the name of Crispin. While he had come off as pleasant via their brief conversation on the phone, Rachael was not prepared for how utterly captivating he was in person. Charming, brilliant, insightful, and with a touch of eccentricity that she found highly attractive, it was difficult not to take an instant liking to him. And far more difficult, she’d find later on, to say no to him. He genuinely seemed to adore her as well, engaging in long thoughtful conversations with her, even while she posed for him in nothing but a sprinkling of dried out, expired flower petals. Aside from their usual lengthy discussions on art and philosophy, Crispin also had a very keen interest in Rachael herself – often wanting to be kept in the loop on her activities at the university, even if much of it seemed trivial or mundane. Rachael naturally explained her ongoing financial troubles, to which he was all too happy to compensate her with generous amounts of cash. Far more that she had ever made with all her previous clients and her cafeteria cashier job combined.
Though their initial arrangement had been for one project only, Rachael found herself agreeing to a second project Crispin had in the works. In order to better accommodate his only being available during evening hours, he requested that Rachael move out of her dorm and into his place for the time being. Once again, Rachael complied, taking up what was understood as a temporary residence in one of the bedrooms. Knowing how passionate she was with her photography, Crispin had set aside a small working studio in his home for her to use when she wasn’t aiding him with his own artistic endeavors. To further streamline her time, Rachael quit her cafeteria job, and continued on with her classes as she had before. For once, she felt a sense of happiness and fulfillment she hadn’t really before. Or at least, she was certain she did -although there was an odd sense of haziness to the days and nights she spent residing with Crispin. In truth, it hadn’t really crossed her mind; that is until she received a phone call one afternoon. Crispin was out like always, and Rachael busily working in her studio when the telephone suddenly rang. It was her former roommate from the university, asking if everything was okay. There was a sense of urgency in her tone, almost as if she expected that Rachael was in some sort of trouble. “Oh no I’m fine—Fantastic even……why”? A pause then, “It’s June now, the semester is ending – literally ending…as in next week”. Slowly, “Okaay….not that I don’t appreciate you checking in, but I don’t see what that has to d-….”. “Rachael, the last time you were in class – any class – it was March”.
It took her a good couple minutes to process that; and nearly dropped the phone out of shock when she did. Not since March? How could that be? Had she been so tangled in projects, both hers and her patron’s, that she had literally lost all sense of time? Her friend went on to explain that she hadn’t bothered once to visit, phone, or even send a letter since her unannounced dropout, which wasn’t like her at all. Still stunned, Rachael apologized, and spent the better part of the afternoon catching up with her old roomie. Her mind was still racing, as she finally hung up the phone. The more she reflected on it…all of it, the stranger it seemed. Then there was her ever-gracious host and patron himself. The only time she ever saw him was at night…always at night. He would often tell her that he had business during the day – meetings with clients, gallery owners, art dealers, financiers, and the like. That might very well be true, if not for the fact that she had never seen nor heard him leave or enter the house after these so-called bits of business. Whatever the case, she had the growing sense of it all being very wrong; and resolved to confront Crispin once he made his usual mysterious night-time appearance. At first, he dismissed her concerns as unfounded. He assured her that his daytime activities were perfectly innocent, and tied to getting his own work financed, showcased, or purchased. Nothing more, nothing less. As for her slipping away from her on-campus life, well, that was the price of being caught up in one’s passions; and never something he had purposefully encouraged. Nonetheless, she had made up her mind. It would be best for the both of them if they parted ways. She’d move back into her dorm and continue with school, while he’d no doubt find others that’d happily assist him with his work.
It was then that Crispin changed. Gone was the geniality and charm he had always displayed towards her, and in its place unadulterated fury. While Rachael was certainly no stranger to being yelled at, this was something far more alien and terrifying. Bland panic seized her, as she bolted down the stairs for the front door. She didn’t get very far, however, as she was slammed forcefully against the nearest wall. Her vision was already blurring, as she felt a sharp sting pierce her throat, followed by the taste of something thick and sweet, then ultimately nothingness. When she came to, she found herself in one of the hall closets – the door latched firmly shut. There was an uncomfortable tightness in her veins that she had never felt before, and her throat was beyond parched and begging for liquid. Desperately she began banging on the door, until Crispin’s voice sounded from the other side. He explained to her what had happened – what she had become. A re-animated corpse that required living blood to sustain her immortality. A vampire, or more precisely kindred. She was also to remain shut away in the closet as punishment for ruining what he had planned as a “grand soiree” and special surprise for her siring. That she, in her defiance and impudence, had earned this all on her own. In the meantime, she was to receive packets of blood slipped under the door – just enough to keep her nourished. Everything else was completely denied her. Rachael honestly had no idea how long she had remained in that god-forsaken closet, but it seemed like an eternity. Only once did she hear Crispin’s voice again, after she had nearly torn the door off its hinges – angrily threatening to extend her punishment if she continued to interrupt his concentration. His ire had cooled enough to finally let Rachael out, and re-grant some of the privileges she enjoyed before her forced embrace. Crispin began his duties as sire proper, instructing her about kindred society, the Camarilla and their traditions, the various clans and other supernaturals that shared the night with them. He also taught her how to successfully feed from kine; and introduced her to other members of clan Toreador – including an elder childe of his by the name of Maeve. But regardless of his teachings and how genial he could still prove at times, Rachael actively despised and distrusted him.
Her chance to become “unchained” from Crispin came in the form of an east coast faction of Anarchs at the time. The particular group in question was less of a political revolution, so much as a like-minded coterie of sorts that freely roamed along the eastern seaboard of the US – many being bikers and other vehicle enthusiasts of some sort. Most were fledglings and neonates looking to get out from under the thumbs of their sires, if not the Camarilla as a whole. Most fulltime members were die-hard anarchists, while others used it to blow off the stress and drama that rife within kindred society. Regardless, Rachael was more than happy to keep them company on their many road trips and retreats if it meant 0 Crispin. It wasn’t long either before she had fallen for one of the group’s regulars – a young biker kindred by the name of Jax. The two became fast lovers. Knowing that she was a photography-fanatic, Jax had gifted her a Polaroid camera to capture the world around them as they traveled from city to city. It was no full-studio, but nonetheless she was extremely grateful to be able to take pictures again.
Rachael spent the majority of the 1980s with Jax and the other east coast Anarchs. But like any good thing it all came to an end…a very bloody savage end in their case. Their party was making their way across upstate New York, high up in the Adirondacks, when they were ambushed by a pack of Garou. Most of the members ended up shredded and subsequently dusted, while a very few lucky ones were able to escape (or so it appeared). Among the fallen was Jax himself – the motorcycle they had shared literally demolished to bits of scrap metal. Rachael had sustained some fairly nasty wounds from the attack, but luckily she was still able to pump enough celerity to get away from the infuriated Garou. Since that fateful night, she had realized that for all the romanticism and freedom of the open road, came a whole lot of danger. Too much for a neonate like herself, and so she returned to the relative safety of urban New York City. And of course, what security the Camarilla doled out to the kindred population of the city.
From then on Rachael remained in New York. She still had to deal with Crispin on a fairly regular basis, but even that began to wane over the years – as other unfortunates had attracted his ever ambitious attention. She still had plenty of money saved up from her muse-modelling, and used it to buy a small personal gallery with an attached studio to do her work in. While not internationally acclaimed, it has however, became quite the local success in recent years. Many of Rachael’s best photographic works are displayed there, as well as a few of her dabbled in drawings and paintings. As of late, Rachael has been using a temp studio rented out to her by Balthazar Pearce, while her own studio gallery undergoes renovations. In return, she has promised Balthazar a few of her most exclusive works for use at Club 20th Century.
Unfortunately, his constantly being MIA has thrown a bit of a monkey wrench in their little business arrangement. On top of that, Rachael’s relationship with her older blood sibling Maeve has become ever more awkward and strained, hinting at petty jealousy which she most definitely does not have the time for.