Bremerton: A Study in Grey
Geneviève du Plessis
Geneviève du Plessis is in the mold of traditional du Plessis. She was born in the Biscay region to some of Napoleon’s new aristocracy in 1812. She had very common looks, and was constantly overshadowed by her older, much prettier sister, Josette, as well as Pierre-Andre, the oldest living child and a boy. Genevive’s favorite companion was Grand-mère Valérie, her mother’s mother. Grand-mère Valérie was very old by the time Geneviève was born, so most of Geneviève’s memories revolved around sitting by the fire, holding Grand-mère Valérie’s wool, and listening while the old woman told her stories of the days in Paris before the Revolution, of the Enlightenment, of salons, of science and philosophy. Geneviève virtually marinated in the Enlightenment’s ethos, growing up extremely well-educated, extremely Deistic, and extremely curious.
Adriaen du Plessis, the head of the family at the time, came to fetch her in 1826. He slipped himself into the household as a new valet, and taught Geneviève the basics of controlling her magic in a series of furtive midnight sessions. He arranged for himself and Geneviève to “die” of cholera, and whisked her away to begin her apprenticeship in earnest.
Geneviève had an artist’s hand and eye, and became very adept at both magical and non-magical illusions. Because of her ability to create excellent forged documents without any magic at all, Geneviève became the chief counterfeiter of the White Council and the Shadows. And due to this, Geneviève spent very little time ensconced in towers of higher learning, and quite a lot of time in the world, making sure to keep up with the ways and mores of the world. She provided many of her non-magical services to various criminal entities throughout the world, giving her both a number of mundane contacts as well as a broad base of knowledge very useful to the Shadows.
Geneviève had always had an interest in languages, and when Falcon told her that she needed to take a sabbatical, she decided to truly enjoy herself. Under forged papers, she enrolled in the University Paris Descartes to perform graduate work in linguistics. After a century and a half of working in the mundane and the supernatural black markets, Geneviève practically exulted in her time in the sun. She excelled in academia, even while giving herself enough time to also enjoy living in Paris. Her wild times culminated the night after she successfully defended her thesis, when she and some of her fellow graduate students went out to spend a night on the town. They hooked up with some American servicemen, and Geneviève’s memories are few and far between after that point.
Geneviève had planned to teach for a few years; being pregnant merely added a spur to her search. Eventually, she gained a post at UC Berkeley, and settled down to raise her child. She was thrilled that Edith was able to spend approximately a week out of every month in California. For the first time in her life, Geneviève could live with Edith as wife openly, and did so happily.
Geneviève has had five live births, although Vivienne is the only one who was not immediately given up for adoption or given to the father. She loves her daughter, and is very proud of her, but doesn’t really know how to relate to Vivienne, which tends to lead to things like not actually listening to her or not giving her the full story. Geneviève takes her duties as head of the family very seriously, and has provided a few sudden windfalls to various twigs to ensure that the women of the family continue to breed. But, above everything else, she’s been dealing with very dark corners of the mundane and supernatural worlds for almost two centuries. If she didn’t have her lifelines (Edith, the White Council, and the family) to hold on to, she would be a much darker, much more bitter person today. As it is, she should probably retire. But there’s always one more crisis, one more problem…and so, once more into the breach.