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De Sorel, Phillipe; French Navy, frigate captain
Topic Started: May 20 2013, 12:26 AM (408 Views)
NPC

Civilian
[align=center]NPC BIO[/align]

Name: Phillipe de Sorel

Aliases: Pip as a small child
Age: 26
Gender: Male
Occupation: French Navy officer
Current Location: captain of "Amazone"

Character PB: Henry Cavill

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General appearance: Phillipe is a man of average height, not short by any means but not strikingly tall either. Taller than his father, certainly and he does seem to tower over his sister who is short in stature. He has dark, wavy hair and clear blue eyes set in an honest face often framed by the beginnings of a beard he never seems to allow to grow. Sometimes he might appear stern and serious, not unlike his father but in the right circumstances he has a ready, generous smile that includes all those around him.

With a father like Leon de Sorel, appearance means everything and that means ensuring that his offspring dress well and in keeping with their social status. As such Phillipe is often dressed almost formally at most times, however he is not unfamiliar with manual labour and is not afraid to ‘strip down’ so to speak to his shirt sleeves when the need arises. He has a sword, hand-crafted entirely for his own use but he only wears it as his side on more formal occasions. It’s not something he carries with him all the time.

Personality: When he was a child some thought Phillipe a dreamer. Like his sister, he enjoyed the outdoors and nature but he loved to be indoors as well, reading and he had a voracious appetite for such things; something of which his mother indulged, as well as music although he wasn’t given the chance to learn an instrument. His mother ensured he learned other things, like swordsmanship and horse-riding alongside his brother.

Of course sometimes there were times when he couldn’t be reading books or sharing interests with his mother and sister and he couldn’t tag along with his brother and father, so Phillipe developed a healthy sense of achievement and work ethic by making a pest of himself as a child, be it around the stables, in the kitchen, or anywhere else where there appeared to be activity. It was impossible to chase him away so the servants and other workers put his eagerness to work.

He prides himself on his ability with the sword, his skill in riding a horse, his strength and his knowledge but somehow he knows that it will never be enough for his father. Phillipe tries so very hard to be noticed by his father and he strives to be the man his father wants him to be but he knows that no matter how hard he tries, his father will always find something to be disappointed about, or some fault with him. It does not stop Phillipe from trying. He seems to possess an unshakeable belief that one day his father will suddenly see the man his second son has become and Phillipe hopes his father will be proud.

As a Naval Officer, it took Phillipe a little while to work out the sort of officer he wanted to be. Arrogance didn't work for him, reminding him too much of his father and he just couldn't carry it. Being friendly didn't work either because it only invited ridicule behind his back. Phillipe found a balance though, stern and fair when it was required, able to joke a little during more relaxed times. With his fellow officers he was companionable, making at least one close friend although he he got a sense that there was resentment from one officer simply because Phillipe's family had purchased his commission, regardless of how competent Phillipe had shown himself to be.

While Phillipe seems like the sort of son any father could be proud of, he does have some attributes that might disappoint a father. Forgivable attributes, for most fathers, but perhaps not for Leon de Sorel. Phillipe likes women, not necessarily women of his social class though. Along with women of course, there’s drinking. He wouldn’t be French if he didn’t drink and it doesn’t matter that it was his older brother who introduced him to such enjoyment. Bastien, unlike Phillipe, could do no wrong.

History:

Family:
Father – Leon de Sorel (French Governor)
Mother – Helene de Sorel
siblings – Bastien de Sorel (decd.); Christine de Sorel
spouse, children, anybody else – none

Birth place: Paris, France

Phillipe was the second born son of Leon and Helene de Sorel, unaware that it was days after his birth before his father even appeared to see that he was the father of a new son. A stoic, implacable and formidable man was Leon de Sorel, and Phillipe grew up only knowing him as father by name but not by affection. He could not play loudly in his father’s presence; he couldn’t speak in his father’s presence, his mother always shushed him and took him from the room. As he grew he tried and failed repeatedly to garner the attention from his father that the man lavished on his older brother, Bastien.

Yet there was no ill-will towards Bastien. If anything, Phillipe hero-worshipped his older brother who got to do so many more things than Phillipe did. Bastien, after all, was allowed to go on journeys with his father while Phillipe had to stay at home. He learned as a child to be infinitely patient when his brother returned home and then, when his brother had an opportunity they would steal away together in some corner of the house where Phillipe would ask endless questions and Bastien, as stoic as his father but not quite so implacable, would calmly and quietly answer them all.

There were times when they shared lessons together. Tutors for their education; instructors for riding and swordsmanship. If their father arrived to supervise, Bastien would be asked to demonstrate, Phillipe never was. Bastien would be praised for everything he did; Phillipe was often faulted for even the smallest thing and Phillipe learned quickly that if Bastien was asked a question that required book knowledge it was better to let him try to answer it wrongly and let his father provide Bastien with the correct answer than it was for Phillipe to jump in with the correct answer. He would not be praised for knowing the answer, he would only be upbraided for interrupting and likely given some difficult if not impossible task to carry out that was beyond his age and ability to complete.

Reaching his teens was about the time that Phillipe really began to understand that his brother was his father’s favourite. In fact his brother seemed to be the only one of the three siblings his father ever seemed to realise existed. Phillipe didn’t resent his father or his brother for that. He thought that’s simply how it was. Bastien was the first born, the important one in the family, the heir to everything and Phillipe was well aware that when he was old enough he’d probably be expected to make his own way in life. Of course it was in those early years that his little sister started to get interesting.

With Bastien being groomed to be the man to step into his father’s footsteps, that left Phillipe to be his little sister’s protector. He watched out for her; if he could he went with her when she explored the gardens, always there to pick her up if she fell. If he came across a new plant sprouting or a bird’s nest with hatchlings or the like, he would find his sister and tell her. He did not know what he needed to do to make his father proud of him. He had book knowledge and could carry on a conversation in any sort of social setting but his father regarded that something of a woman’s skill; men only needed to speak of manly things, not music and books and nature. He could work hard but physical labour was for peasants, not the likes of somebody of Phillipe’s social status. No matter what he tried, if it was what his father wanted, it wasn’t good enough, he wasn’t good enough and if he did those things his mother had taught him, he was too good for them, they were beneath his social status and his station in life. That lasted for as long as it took for Bastien to join the military. Phillipe saw how proud his father was and as soon as he was old enough, he joined the military as well, thinking his father would have to be proud of him for that. He saw an opportunity to step out from his brother’s shadow by switching to the Navy but it made no difference at all.

Then Bastien died.

It was perhaps the only time in Phillipe’s life where he felt he understood his father. He grieved long and deeply for his lost older brother, withdrawing into himself and becoming distant with all those around him but he was young and resilient and though he knows he will mourn the loss of his brother for the rest of his life, Phillipe had a life of his own to live. He immersed himself in his studies with the Navy. He’d shown a particular interest in astronomy and mathematics during his education, excelling in them and he used this passion to help him learn and then pass the Naval exams. Since he came from a well-to-do family, his father’s money was able to buy him a commission. Phillipe became a third Lieutenant and was given his first position on a frigate. He wanted to be seen as equal to his brother, he did not want to be better than his brother so in spite of working hard he never tried hard enough to advance his career too quickly and then the war finished while he was still at sea, serving in the West Indies.

His father eventually accepted a governor’s post in the Caribbean and it surprised Phillipe to get word many months later that his entire family had moved. He had no sweetheart he was going to be returning to (none had ever been good enough for the family of course) and perhaps this new place meant something new for him. He would, in time, be reunited with his family in Port-de-Paix when he was able to take shore leave. Things had not changed much between himself and his father but it wouldn’t stop Phillipe continuing to try to appease the man and be the son the man wanted.

Anything else: Made by Andi, then become NPC when she left. Given the captainship of the frigate "Amazone" in October 1719'
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