Name: Riley Moon
School: Aurora High School
Hobbies and Interests: Student newspaper, photography, anime/manga, cartoons, roleplaying, cosplaying
Appearance: Standing at 5'6" and weighing somewhere around 130 lbs, Riley looks perfectly average, naturally speaking, if slightly on the slender side. With her average height, and being not slim enough to be seen as skinny, nor curvy enough to be either fat or busty, when her naturally flax-blonde hair isn't dyed, Miss Moon has almost no physical attributes to make her stand out in a crowd. Only by studying her face - usually hard to see behind overly long hair - could one pick out her Scandinavian heritage as an unusual feature; she has noticeably pale skin and pale blue, almost grey, eyes, higher-than-usual cheekbones, and an overall oval shape to her face.
Riley likes to be seen, though, and makes up for her ordinary figure with all manner of outlandish accoutrements. Bright coloured clothes make up the majority of her wardrobe, many sporting jokes of dubious quality or the sorts of slogans she agrees with. The rest consists of the very few formal outfits she owns, and a few home-made cosplays. Besides this, her hair is typically worn a little too long to be practical, and it's extremely rare to see it in its natural hue. Regularly seen in red, orange, blue, purple, pink and several others besides, Riley's hair was dyed completely pink on the day of the kidnapping.
Biography: Whilst Riley was born and raised in Seattle, her family had only been there for a few years prior to her birth. Stefan and Kari Kristensen moved there early in 1990, leaving behind their home in Kalmar, Sweden in somewhat late pursuit of the American Dream, following the death Stefan's father. Olaf Kristensen was, besides the young couple themselves, the last member of the dwindling family; he and his late wife had had Stefan at an unusually old age, and until then, Stefan himself had yet to produce any children, and both he and Kari had been only children, and Kari herself had already lost both parents, to breast cancer and a road accident respectively, in preceding years.
Intimidated by cities like New York or DC, but put off by overly conservative ones in the south, and having loved the film Sleepless in Seattle, the couple settled on Seattle. An exciting big city, but not as frightening to move to as others, and with a notably liberal population that would be more accepting of their own largely socialist outlook than others, the place seemed perfect.
Three years later, happily settled and enjoying their new lives in spite of fears that the novelty would be all that appealed, Kari found herself pregnant. The two wanted their child to fit in, and nine months later, alongside naming their new daughter Riley, changed their surnames to "Moon", believing it would seem less outlandish than "Kristensen" in the States.
It worked, for the most part. Though she was taught her mother tongue to speak at home, Riley was perfectly well adapted to American culture, and difficult to tell apart from children with local parents, besides a slight accent that soon faded over years of speaking English amongst friends far more often than with her parents. At home, things were comfortable; having a physics degree behind her, Kari found a technician job early on and brought home a modest wage, enough to support Stefan's continued attempts to make it as a novelist - and indeed stay home to take care of Riley. The small family, although affording few luxuries, never went without essentials. Riley herself had a happy time of elementary school, making plenty of friends with her friendly and outgoing demeanour, and got into no more trouble than any ordinary child could be expected to. A trend she wasn't to keep up later on in her educational career.
As a young child, Stefan and Kari had always taught Riley to be honest, to speak her mind, and not to hide how she felt. So when she started attending middle school, and more importantly, started to formulate her own opinions on things and her own beliefs about the way things should be, she spoke up. And when asked to follow rules that conflicted with what she felt, she refused. When fellow students disagreed with her, she didn't back down, and sometimes, neither did they. Although this lead to several shouting matches and subsequent sternly worded letters home, the girl's parents obviously disapproved, but didn't truly punish her for what they ultimately saw as standing up for herself. The rather strained relationship over those years came to a head when Riley returned home one day with a black eye, to two parents who finally put aside fears of sounding hypocritical, and devoted the next several evenings to explaining precisely what was wrong with the particularly extreme way she'd interpreted their words.
Despite the best efforts of her concerned parents and various figures in the school system, besides not fighting again, only minor improvements to her demeanour were made before she graduated to Aurora High. With the vastly more diverse student body and the worse consequences of screwing up, Riley managed to find people she could get along with again, and reined her contrary behaviour in enough to get by. She found companionship amongst the oddballs and unpopular; she began roleplaying with the D&D kids and found her interest in cartoons lead into a love for the more diverse field of Japanese anime and manga. It took only a few weeks of attendance to wind up spending several hours a week in the art rooms, using their various facilities to put together costumes for the new hobby her new interest gave her; cosplaying. Riley also joined the student newspaper, starting out covering assorted local events in Seattle that were considered relevant to students (or "investigative journalism", as she liked to claim it was), which gave rise to her casual interest in photography, as her articles were occasionally large enough to warrant pictures. More importantly, her unique brand of sarcastic humour occasionally employed, usually to poke fun at how uninteresting she found the subject matter, garnered enough laughs amongst club members and comments from readers to earn her a permanent, though rather small, column in each issue, which proved to be a valuable outlet for the girl.
Home life was, for the first few years, agreeable once again. Riley did her best to keep out of trouble, and her parents did their best to be supportive of her newfound interests and friends, in spite of scarcely understanding most of both. It was early on in her Junior year, when she started dating other more "liberal minded" students, that things once again became strained. With her penchant for the types of boys that drank and partied, Riley too soon started returning home in the small hours of the morning, smelling quite obviously of alcohol, and falling into bed without a word, or at least not a coherent one. The two said nothing about it, and even stopped asking where their daughter had been after a few obvious non-answers, though their silence on the subject and the expressions of disapproval spoke volumes of their feelings. Less obvious to them was what else Riley came to dabble in, as she was wary enough never to bring any boys back home with her. At present, her parents continue to outwardly show nothing more than concern over their daughter's lifestyle, though their thinly veiled disapproval remains obvious enough to both parties.
Moving into her senior year, Riley has found a tenuous balance between the desire to pick apart everything around her and the fear of reprisal for it, leaving her most commonly seen as a bit "off", but not quite a "problem child" any more. She's still very outspoken with her views on just about everything, and is often the first to pull up a soapbox when an issue comes up for debate. Difficult to get along with, but with a few like-minded friends, she's happy enough with her limited social circles. Academically, she's squarely average, with enough natural smarts and token effort to not fail any subjects, but not enough of either to average much better than Cs, or Bs in the subjects she has much of a personal interest in. As for athletics, she has no interest at all, not seeing the appeal of sports or physical contests. Most of her free time is spent at home, where she can usually be found on her computer, researching an article or watching endless episodes of some anime or other, or otherwise working on a cosplay for the next convention the anime club is attending. Outside of this, she still often has nights out with her more rebellious-minded friends (and indeed boyfriends), attending clubs and/or trying not to get caught drinking.
Advantages: Headstrong and stubborn, Riley isn't easily coerced or lead into doing things she doesn't want to do. For the same reasons, she's difficult to dissuade from the things she's set her mind on, and has been known to have determination far outstripping her physical stamina. She's also very imaginative, which, whilst not nearly making up for her middle-of-the-road intellect, could come in helpful.
Disadvantages: Riley has a reputation amongst her peers of being brash, opinionated and generally difficult to get along with, and her capacity for diplomacy leaves a lot to be desired. She's also rather unfit, not taking part in any physical activity unless she absolutely has to, but still often overestimates what she's capable of. And of course, bright pink isn't a colour often seen in most places, so Riley's hair will stand out like a sore thumb, if her inability to shut up doesn't give her away first.
Below is a list of threads containing Riley, in chronological order.
Your Thoughts Edit
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 Riley Moon. What did you like, or dislike, about the character? Let us know here!