Leon Ledford

Basic Info:

Player: TeslaTornado

Position: Radio Surveillance Specialist, Anomalous Audiologist, Farcaster

Demeanor: Tense and nervous, sometimes standoffish and high-strung. Always appears to be on the verge of a conniption fit or panic attack, but somehow never actually in one. Habitual smoker, and tends to speak using a great deal of filler words ("um, uh, ah, er," etc.) and long pauses that lead off into thousand-yard stares. Basically he looks like he's completely cracked in the head. Prone to easily being tipped off the emotional deep end by small, inconsequential things.

Nature: Mentally he is the equivalent of a man tightening a belt around a rolled up mattress, frustrated and desperately hoping that his efforts to keep the mattress bound up don't just speed up the natural process of it coming unrolled, likely in a catastrophic and rapid fashion. He remembers what it's like to be a normal, functioning person, and there's a degree of resentment (of others) and hatred (of himself and his circumstances) that rests in the bottom of his heart. He wants so badly to go back to being an average, everyday man, and his inability to do that further drives a wedge that he does his best every day to leverage out of its cleft.

He's not nice, but it's not his fault; or at least, not entirely. His occasional brusqueness, short temper, frequent emotional outbursts, and terminal flakiness are the result of years of stress compounded by the damage that his encounters with the Russian caused to him both psychologically and physically, and the scarring that that caused is a wound that never fully closed.

Description: Although merely forty-one years of age, he looks considerably older. A perpetual sloucher and floor inspector, Leon dresses in slacks with bracers that are rarely ironed, wearing button-down shirts with uneven buttons or unstarched collars, sloppily-tied ties, and occasionally rumpled or threadbare suit jackets and overcoats. He rarely dresses in a way one would consider 'casual,' but the constant state of dishevelment that his wardrobe exists in doesn't scream "I'm wearing my Sunday best today!" His hair is an indeterminate brownish-blonde, coiffed to the side and kept short whenever possible. His darting, watery grey-blue eyes sit deep within a sallow, delicate-looking face, his mouth always slightly open and turned down at the edges in a perpetual mild frown. Although whether or not he needs them is a subject of debate, he consistently wears glasses, usually horn-rimmed or tortoise-shell.

In short, he's not winning any beauty contests, and wouldn't seem to be particularly amused by the thought anyway.

Stats:

Health
  • Physical Health: 7
  • Mental Health: 7
Attributes
  • Physical Defense: 2
  • Mental Defense: 4
  • Perception: 4
  • Agility: 2
  • Strength: 2
Skills
  • Melee: 2
  • Ranged: 3
  • Survival: 3
  • Sneak: 3
  • Academics: 4
  • Science: 4
  • Engineering: 3
Specialties
  • Ghost Of The Airwaves: 3, Anomalous. Leon possesses a latent psychic ability that allows him to attach his conscious mind to active radio broadcasts, which can be used to various ends:
  • FLAW: "I am Pavel Ilych Pustenkov. And I will complete my mission.": When Leon isn't actively occupying his body, he has an effective time limit before the Russian - the mind of a GRU-P psychic named Pavel Pustenkov - attempts to break free of Leon's mind, causing intense psychological duress.
  • Turning The Tables: 2. Having spent the better part of the Cold War in hiding, alone, scared, and cut off from the world around him, Leon is unaccustomed to the thought of having any kind of external support. But one of the things he has learned to leverage is the kind of confidence that grows from having a team behind you, and the exhilaration that comes from having the upper hand - the moment when the prey suddenly becomes the hunter. When Leon is in the physical presence of all of his teammates and has a perceived advantage over the opposition, he may roll this stat instead of Persuasion or Intimidation (does not apply to Bluff), and gains one additional point of Mental Defense in resisting the same rolls.
  • A Code Is A Lock The Mind Picks: 4. Having served as a cryptographer both during the war and after, in the service of the CIA, Leon has nearly a decade and a half of experience in the field of encryption and decryption of classified data. When encoding a document or decrypting an encoded message using a known cipher, Leon gains a bonus to Academics. When decrypting a document written in an unknown cipher, Leon rolls half of this skill as a bonus to his Academics check.
  • Discretion, Valor's Superior: 3. Leave the fighting to those with the skill and the capacity to fight - this simple credo has gotten Leon out of a lifetime's worth of trouble and danger, although whether or not it came at the cost of the safety of others is a matter of some debate. When Leon is hiding from or fleeing from something that his teammates are fighting or pursuing, he gains a bonus to Sneak. If he is detected by what he is fleeing from, the Sneak bonus is negated.

Gear:

  • A button-down shirt, slacks, a tie, and Oxford shoes
  • Filtered Marlboro cigarettes
  • Notebook, composite bound, wide-ruled
  • Pencil, Ticonderoga, No. 2
  • A paperback book of some kind or another
Mission Gear:

Note: Due to the conditions of his employment, Leon is only allowed access to his mission-specific equipment when in the field. Possession of mission-specific equipment when not deployed can be met with detention and revocation of privileges.

  • CETME Model B battle rifle, Special-ordered, modified to fire 7.62x51mm NATO per personal request, dispensed by Site-77 armorer with three 20-round box magazines
  • Browning Hi-Power handgun, 9mm version, Foundation standard issue, dispensed by Site-77 armorer with three 9x19mm Parabellum magazines
  • M3 Trench Knife, Foundation standard issue, dispensed by Site-77 armorer
  • Foundation-issued haversack, pistol belt and holster, suspenders, rifle sling, and magazine/equipment pouches
  • TL-122 anglehead flashlight, Foundation standard issue
  • SCR-536 handheld radio, Foundation standard issue, modified to resist psychic influence, dispensed by Site-77 armorer only with dispensation from presiding containment authority and mission leader
  • Rope, 30ft
  • Field rations (food and water) sufficient for 48 hours of consistent field operations
Equipment:

Doesn't have any!

Possessions:

  • Various other button-down shirts, slacks, ties, and a pair of combat boots
  • US Army Signal Corps uniform
  • Collection of paperback novels and textbooks about radios and radio frequencies/broadcast science
  • Collection of essays on remote viewing, psychic tendencies, and other subjects

Personal History:

Leon was a bright person from the start. Perhaps that was his biggest mistake. Born in 1916 to a pair of academics (his mother was a schoolteacher and his father was a researcher at General Electric with a master's in electrical engineering), he inherited their innate curiosity and sharp wit, and flew through grade school with near-perfect grades. What he didn't pick up just by listening, he read about, and what he couldn't read about, he asked about - sometimes incessantly. He was active outside of school, playing baseball and participating in forensics and his local Honor Society. He was essentially allowed his pick of colleges upon high school graduation, and chose to study audiology and radio engineering as a university student, where he made magna cum laude.

At the outbreak of World War II, Leon voluntarily enlisted in the Army, and was assigned to the Signal Corps as a radio operator; a posting that saw him rising to the rank of Technical Sergeant. He participated in several active battles throughout Europe, serving with distinction and pride. Although not an effective soldier, his communications skills and innate fascination with radio broadcasting saw him reassigned from the Signal Corps to the Office of Strategic Services in 1944, transferred away from the front lines of combat to specialize in cryptography and code-breaking. It was in this capacity that Leon's cleverness truly showed through, and Leon proved to be an adept cryptographer, earning him a permanent posting within the CIA after the OSS' dissolution.

This 'permanent posting' ended up, much to his chagrin, putting him back in Eastern Europe; namely, in charge of an experimental CIA listening post deep in Soviet-occupied Poland. Here, explorations of the psychic potential of the human mind were performed upon CIA operatives, with the purpose of fostering telepathic abilities within the Agency's ranks to use as remote observers against the Soviets. Although the experiments' success margins were questionable at best, the end result was Leon's development of his present abilities, which were used in combination with a high-powered radio broadcasting unit to perform reconnaissance on Soviet radio broadcasts.

It was in this way that Leon Ledford's and Pavel Ilych Pustenkov's lives became inextricably entwined. During an observation session, Leon stumbled upon a classified GRU-P broadcast being monitored by something that later became referred to in CIA documents as a 'hunter-killer,' a Soviet counter-psychic tasked with monitoring GRU-P facilities for security breaches, tracking their sources, and executing them.

The fight between the two of them is a subject that neither party is willing to discuss and no others are privy to. However, it resulted in the destruction of Leon's observation post and the apparent death of Pavel's physical body, which in turn resulted in his being trapped in the closest available vessel - Leon's briefly unoccupied mind. In the split-second where Leon's mind was ejected, reeling, back into his body, Pavel had control - and then a psychological melee ensued, in which Leon managed to wrest back control of his body and lock Pavel away in, essentially, a psychic jewelry box.

Thence came the dark months. Leon doesn't like talking about those, but it's known through documents retrieved from both GRU-P and the CIA by the Foundation that Leon was in hiding in occupied Eastern Europe for several years before he was acquired in a chance raid by the Foundation. Originally contained as an anomaly, Leon was interrogated, processed, and evaluated; and it was decided that, despite his psychological state and the nature of his psychic abilities, he could be trusted as a field operative on a limited-release basis. By lottery, he was assigned to MTF Psi-7, and was deployed to Site-77 in mid-1957.

Languages

  • English
  • German
  • Russian

Miscellaneous:

Per the terms of his declassification as an anomaly and insertion into active duty as an MTF operative, Leon has been forbidden from carrying firearms or mission equipment with him outside of field operations or designated areas on Site grounds, and must report to a Foundation handler once every three days for evaluation.

Vegetarian.

Likes birds, the color purple, and Hershey's milk chocolate.

XP: 0

Name of Source/Purchase XP Change Date
Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License