Name: Robert Jacob "R.J." Lowe
School: Bayview Secondary School
Hobbies and Interests: Baseball, Hunting, Motorcycles
Appearance: For someone who's 6'7", R.J. doesn't stick out in most crowds. He has an average build for his height, a little on the lanky side at 195 pounds, but padded out with some muscle from his time playing baseball. His hair is shaggy, hanging just past his ears, and is just dark enough to be called black, while his Irish heritage is evident in his pale, easily sunburned skin. His brown eyes are set deep in their sockets, and his left eyebrow is, on close examination, slightly lower than his right. He has a sort of ovalish face, ending with a patch of stubble on his chin. Regardless of the weather, he wears some sort of neck covering, usually favoring a scarf, to cover an inch-and-a-half long scar across his throat. On the day of the trip, he was wearing a red t-shirt, brown cargo pants, steel-toed shoes, and a black scarf.
Biography: Born November 11, 1989, in Juneau, Alaska, Robert Jacob Lowe is the third of five children born to David Lowe, owner of a small accounting firm, and schoolteacher Melissa Lowe. His childhood in Alaska was rather pleasant, if slightly uneventful, having been raised in a typical upper-middle class environment. His mouth would get him into trouble at school every once in a while, but he managed to get by on mostly Bs, with the occasional A or C sprinkled in. His father would take him along hunting moose from an early age, as a sort of bonding activity between the two. His two brothers, Ryan and Richard, would join David as well, but only R.J. ever took an interest. Normally, he'd just watch and help gather his father's kills, of course. He wasn't quite old enough yet to handle a rifle on his own.
Other than this, however, Alaska never offered much to do, so when he was twelve and his father's work took the family to St. Paul, he was considerably excited. He got an opportunity to join a little league baseball team for the first time, and once he got the hang of playing, his height provided his pitches with a good angle on hitters, and he developed into one of the best arms in the league, at least for his first year in town. The change in scenery did him well in school, as well; his quick wit and natural kindness made him plenty of friends right away, once people got past his intimidating stature. Then, in March, 2003, all of that changed.
He doesn't remember exactly what date in March it was, and frankly, he prefers to forget. No one else was seriously hurt in the crash, fortunately, and his broken arm even healed well enough for him to pitch again, though he's still bitter that the driver that broadsided them was never charged with anything. That's thanks largely to the piece of window glass that lodged itself in his neck in the accident. The resulting laryngeal damage was very much permanent, and he's been unable to speak since. People wished him to get well soon at first, but after not too long, his disability left him ignored in favor of people who could keep up a conversation. People who weren't just damaged goods. He quickly fell into depression, even giving up on the idea going back to playing ball once his arm healed. David, picking up on his son's depression before it became self-destructive, decided that something had to be done.
They hadn't gone hunting together since they were in Alaska two years ago, so for old time's sake, they got the rifle back out, and took a trip out to the woods for the weekend. This time, however, the now-high-school-freshman would be given the chance to fire the gun himself. There were probably better, more legal parenting methods, to be sure, but to his credit, it paid off: months of pent-up frustration were released with that first bullet alone. For a moment, he had an escape. The two would make the trip an annual event, one weekend out of every summer, when R.J. could have a release from the built-up bitterness of living with his handicap, and with that, he was finally able to tolerate it.
Despite his bitterness, R.J. puts on a smile around others, knowing he can seem unapproachable otherwise. He does most of his communicating via text and the internet, not going out of his way anymore to socialize in person, having never learned sign language, but if he's approached, he's not averse to offering a nod and a handshake. He enjoys social contact, being a naturally friendly person, he just accepts that as he is, it isn't bound to be easy. He's had to learn that the hard way; miscommunication has gotten him into more than a handful of scuffles in the past. He's not the pitcher he used to be, but not for lack of talent. Rather, he plays more for fun than to win these days, figuring he's not going to make a career out of a hobby anyway. He's found other ways to pass the time as well, having recently acquired a license to drive a motorcycle, tinkering with the machine in his spare time, which he finds helps him think. He's not a genius, either, getting only average grades these days, but to his credit, he's smart enough to know his strengths and weaknesses.
Advantages: R.J. can hold his own in a fight, even if he's unarmed. He has a high tolerance for pain, and doesn't go down easily, while his size alone is enough to overwhelm an opponent. Should he acquire a firearm, his experience with hunting would make him a legitimate threat.
Disadvantages: Obviously, being unable to speak poses serious communication issues, and with only a handful of friends to fall back on, will make forming alliances difficult, if not impossible. His size can be a curse as much as a gift, as it makes him a sizable target. Likewise, shooting a person is much different from killing deer, and R.J. is, generally speaking, not the type to harm others, unless he lives long enough for the pressure to get to him.
The above biography is as written by Stark. No edits or alterations to the author's original work have been made.
Designated Number: Male student no. 119
Designated Weapon: Shepherd's Crook
Conclusion: This school has its fair share of giants, doesn't it? Unfortunately, I'm afraid to say that B119 seems to be a bit of a broken toy; perhaps he'll be broken the rest of the way by any students who want to play with him!
Handled by: Stark
Killed by: Complications from untreated appendicitis.
Mid-Game Evaluation: Prior to his first on-camera appearance, R.J. presumably awoke in the woods, and his first instinct was to scratch the itching scar on his neck, coming to his senses and stopping himself before he could accidentally detonate the collar. From there, he stumbled his way through the woods, using his issued weapon as support, before coming to the residential area and encountering his first classmate, Simon Fletcher. The two negotiated a brief alliance, before Kris Hartmann arrived on the scene, vomited, and passed out. Panicking when they noticed her gun, despite the lack of immediate threat posed by the girl, the two ducked behind a building to figure out what to do. However, they were spotted by Sammy Franklin and Zach Jamis, who arrived not long after. Lying about having a plan, R.J. asked Simon for his gun, to which he complied, before the two stepped out to issue Kris what medical attention they could.
When Kris awoke, she did so angrily, startling R.J. and Sammy into drawing their weapons on her. When she left peacefully, R.J. felt guilty for his actions, and, after punching Zach in the face for mouthing off, followed after her on his own, leaving his issued weapon in favor of the handgun, silently hoping for Simon to stay close to the group for safety's sake.
After losing her trail, he found himself in the southern felled forest, where he came upon Joshua Krakowski crying over the remains of Everett Taylor. As he prayed for the departed, the first announcement sounded, alerting him of the deaths of nineteen of his classmates, including those of a friend and one he believed he could have saved. This motivated him to take action against the students who had given in to the desire to kill, Staffan Kronwall and Kris Hartmann in particular at the top of his list. Before such action could be taken, however, Eva Lancaster fired in his direction, which he responded to with two shots, one of which pierced her heart. As she passed away, he prayed for forgiveness, then moved on to carry out his work.
From there, he moved north, stopping to rest at the sawmill. Fate would not give him any such satisfaction, however, as he once again encountered Kris. Ultimately, the encounter ended with no shots fired, and he decided not to linger too long before continuing north into the felled forest. Later, after he was awoken in the middle of the night, he found himself reunited with Mary-Ann Warren. Using a pad and pen, he confessed what he'd done, and, deciding he might not get another chance, that he loved her. As she chose to stay by his side, he vowed to himself that he would protect her, before they headed back into town in search of shelter. They found none, however; only an armed Aaron Hughes. They didn't stay long before seeking shelter elsewhere.
Memorable Quotes: "TAKE THIS, DON'T DIE" - R.J.'s written message to Joshua, left next to Eva's crossbow.
R.J. is a full self-insert of his handler. The only changes besides his name are his hometown (St. Paul instead of Portland) and favorite baseball team (the Twins rather than the Mariners), both altered to match the setting. Even his death was inspired by Stark's appendectomy at age 18, at the time of year the game takes place.
Like his handler, R.J. has a recurring tendency to forget people's names. Throughout V4, he has demonstrated this with Mary-Something Something, Ivan Kuzen... Kuzna... Kucinich, Simon Welch, Kris Herman, Asshat, This Fucking Guy and V3's Neil Simmons.
R.J.'s motorcycle is a 2005 Benelli TNT. Her name is Elizabeth. Any similarities with Loretta are purely coincidental.
R.J. is named for one of the starting four soldiers in the 1995 Atari Jaguar game Cannon Fodder.
Originally, R.J. was intended to go insane and believe himself to be a vessel of the Archangel Michael, but this was changed when he reunited with Mary-Ann, and because it was a "stupid fucking idea." Foreshadowing of this can be seen in his earlier threads, after the death of Eva Lancaster.
- 1st roll: Swap card used, Charlotte Cave dying instead.
- 2nd roll: Hero card used, MurderWeasel's Isaiah Garvey taking his place.
- 3rd roll: Hero card used, Hollyquin's Vivien Morin taking his place.
- 4th roll: Was not saved.
Below is a list of threads that contain R.J., in chronological order.
- A Pit Stop of Sorts
- Mad World
- Clap For The Killers
- The Cries of the Voiceless
- Where Do You Go From Here?
- It Knows Nothing of Whim
- Keep Yourself Alive
- They're Made Out Of Meat
- Feral Intelligence
Whether you were a fellow handler in SOTF or just an avid reader of the site, we'd like to know what you thought about R.J. Lowe. What did you like, or dislike, about the character? Let us know here!
- Aaaaand I'm 0 for 3 in making worthwhile characters. Alas, here's to V5. - Stark
- I talked about R.J. at greater length in my list of my favorite characters in SOTF, so I'll try not to repeat too much here. Basically, what struck me about R.J. was he was a super realistic character without being normal or boring. He had great personality, and he made mistakes. The narrative copped to that, but he didn't let it destroy him. His whole time, he was trying to do what was right for him and Mary-Ann, and their dynamic was wonderful, even over several changes in handlers. I had a very small list of characters I was willing to Hero in V4, and had decided I'd save the first that seemed unlikely to get a save otherwise. I do not regret Heroing R.J. at all. He was a great, unique read, and I wish every character could live up to his standards. I don't care what Stark says; R.J. is one of the great characters of V4. - MurderWeasel