”Rise and shine, Mr. Freeman. Rise and shine..."
—Scrin, Telling Freeman the Revolution has only just begun...
Scrin The Chi-Man is a mysterious and enigmatic character encountered several times in this RP. Referred to as a "sinister interdimensional bureaucrat", he is known to display peculiar behavior and to wield powers far beyond those of any chimian. His identity and motives remain completely unexplained. His allegiance also remains unknown (Except for the Forgotten) to this day.
He plays the role of an overseer and eventual employer, watching over Scordon Freeman and other characters as the RP progresses, at times helping or hindering them – he controls player-characters insertion to or extraction from the RP world on several occasions, and his monologues with Freeman or other characters reveal his importance in the RP's overall narrative. He claims to answer to some unseen higher authority which he refers to simply as his "employers". His mysterious nature has made him an icon of The Forgotten, with his identity and motives remaining almost completely unexplained. He is, in fact, the Actual |G-Man From the Half-Life Series.
"Cleverly done, Mr. Freeman, but you're not supposed to be here. As a matter of fact, you're not. Get back where you belong, and forget about all this, until we meet again..."
-Scrin telling Scordon that he's not supposed to be in this universe, really...
The story begins with Scordon being greeted by the Chi-Man around 20 years after the Aperture Mesa Incident while seeing a dream-like montage of images such as the Aperture Mesa test chamber, and interior areas of the Scorpion Citadel. In his speech, the Chi-Man hints that he put Scordon into stasis for his own safety and that an opportunity has now arisen which will allow Freeman to begin his campaign against the Combine forces in chima. He continuously refers to Scordon Freeman as "Mister Freeman" throughout the introductory sequence, forgoing Scordon's proper title of doctor. However, during the ending sequence, he refers to Scordon as "Doctor Freeman".
The Chi-Man is briefly visible at various other points during the events of the story, including along the different vehicle sequences, but these are only from a great distance or as seen on video terminals until the story’s finale. After an uphill battle in the Citadel, Scordon causes critical damage to the structure's Chi Reactor, resulting in an explosion that might have caused his death, had the Chi-Man not seemingly stopped time in order to extract Scordon to safety to await further "employment offers" (while apparently leaving Spalyx Vance to perish in the explosion). The story ends with travel through the same emptiness that was the ending of Freeman’s first adventure, and with the Chi-Man stepping through some sort of doorway portal, though not before fixing his tie.
The Chi-Man, at this point, makes it clear that he will once again be placing Freeman in stasis while he entertains some "interesting offers" for Scordon's services, this time making no mention of his "employers," as he had in his first adventure, justifying that the current situation is "extraordinary" enough to contemplate taking up any of these offers. Before their final showdown, Doctor Breen also asks Scordon, "Did you realize your contract was open to the highest bidder?", probably a reference to the "contract" Scordon has with the Chi-Man.
"...time, Dr. Freeman? Is it really that... time again...?"
-Scrin saving Scordon's life during the Citadel's explosion, showing off his temporal abilities.
The Chi-man has done many things, and seems to be in numerous places at once, mostly out of sight from everyone else due to his semi Chi-Ghost/non-being from Chima, he can appear to select individuals and the few that are "tagged" by him indeed. Scrin has appeared several times in the RP, often just idly standing by, wandering very secure areas that seemingly nobody else can get through, or vast open spaces, blending into crowds like nothing.
Throughout the entire outland series, the Chi-Man has a tendency to appear in an out-of-the-way or hard to reach location and then walk away and vanish without a trace once the roleplayer arrives. He was seen twice using portals, perhaps explaining his ability to appear and disappear apparently randomly, behind hammerspaces and whatnot. What's more, one of the portals that he used appeared shortly before he entered it and then disappeared after he left, suggesting that the Chi-Man can somehow create such entities.
The Chi-Man also seems to be able to control time, as he briefly stops the Citadel reactor explosion at the end of The Uprising and transport individuals (With Bratta as a case) into and from stasis through different dimensions. This, however, may simply be the Chi-Man teleporting individuals to safety and putting them into areas where things are a little more private, creating the illusion that the world around them bends to his will.
He also can have the power of psychokinesis and the ability to resurrect the dead, as seen when King Scorm was brought back to life as something to... possibly recreate the Crawler Empire? In few areas featuring the Chi-Man, there are several sequences when the Chi-Man is talking at close range to the roleplayer, and various areas can be seen in the background, including areas from Aperture Mesa or even areas the roleplayer will visit later into the roleplay.
In these sequences, the Chi-Man talks to the roleplayer (the roleplayer's character never responds or reacts in any way) and can be seen quickly appearing in different portions of the screen, in dream-like sequences. He also appears on TV screens and Breencasts dotted around the environment; Chi-Man also seems to have technopathic or telepathic abilities of some sort, as the roleplayer will occasionally see his face on things such as unplugged televsions.
Physically in his main disguise, the Chi-Man appears to be a middle-aged Caucasian-like Stomper Scorpion with a tall, thin physique, pale skin (used in another concept art of Scrin). His other forme sports a prominent widow's peak, black hair styled in a crew cut, and pale green eyes. In all appearances, he is seen dressed in a gray-blue suit and is almost always seen carrying a briefcase. However, there have been rumors going about the Forgotten that do detail on Scrin's... otherworldly apperance, only few people had saw his more... |humaneness-appearance. Bratta and Leonard for instance was one of them.
The Chi-Man speaks in a slow, commanding manner, with a certain accentuated low-key moroseness to his tone, bordering on the cryptic. Most notably, he has an odd habit of placing unusual stress on syllables, stressing the wrong parts of words, making unnecessary pauses and awkwardly changing the pitch of his voice. He also has a tendency to elongate consonants, especially the "S".
Personality and Skills
"...You've done so well, in fact, that I've received some interesting offers for your services... Ordinarily, I wouldn't contemplate them. But these are extra-ordinary times...mm-"
-A reference of said personality.
The Chi-Man is an almost complete enigma. In a Scorpion Audio Script, he is referred to as followed;
"The cryptical bureaucrat, mystery man with a briefcase. He appears in the shadows, disappears when you chase him down dead-end corridors. He leads you into danger and guides you to safety, as the whim strikes him. His motives remain mysterious, but at the end of the day, when you have extinguished an alien civilization, he offers you a job with whoever it is he works for."
The Chi-Man possesses a calm, almost disinterested demeanor, particularly apparent in wherever he may go. He can often be seen calmly straightening his tie or brushing his suit lapels with his hands, regardless of whatever chaos may be surrounding him. Even when angered, he maintains a decidedly restrained demeanor. He also does demonstrated a dry sense of humor.
He has stepped in directly and rescued Spalyx Vance before the destruction of Aperture Mesa, suggesting that he is capable of mercy, though it is more likely that he merely did this for his own interests. The Chi-Man seems to occasionally take an interest in certain individuals, using his powers and skills at manipulation to guide them down certain paths. He has made pawns of Scordon Freeman, Spalyx Vance, and as well as perhaps countless others. It is also implied that he orchestrated the Aperture Mesa Incident, meaning Dr. Breen was also under his influence.
The Chi-Man mentioned to Badrian that he has great respect for people who can survive against incredible odds, citing that such people remind him of himself. His message to Spalyx mentioning "unforeseen consequences" and the subsequent revelation about the threat to chimian-kind posed by the Black Overwatch and acquiring the technology on New bat Island (before it was colonized by the bats at the time) could imply that the Chi-Man might secretly be sympathetic to chimanity and its fight for survival and control for Mt. Cavora. Alternatively, these actions may be more self-serving in some unknown way than sympathetic. The Chi-Man appears quite skilled with technology and is capable of operating a very wide range of machinery, ranging from simple cell phones and sealed steel doors to complex weapons and experimental teleports and portals.
Chimians aware of the Chi-man
"The right man in the wrong place can make all the diff-er-ence... in the world..."
-Scrin's idea on how a hero is...
The Chi-Man is seen talking to various people, and yet at times it seems that only the roleplayer is able to see him. However, a few characters other than Scordon Freeman and the entierty of the Forgotten seem to be aware of his existence or have interacted with him. Besides the many unnamed security, military, and science personnel in Aperture Mesa seen interacting with the Chi-Man, the characters include:
- Barney Balhoun: Saw the Chi-Man at Aperture Mesa, but never directly interacted with him.
- Scortica Breen: From various statements given by Breen at the end of The One Free Man, such as Scordon having "proven himself a fine pawn for those who control him" and his "contract is open to the highest bidder", it would appear that he was well aware of the Chi-Man's influence over Scordon Freeman. However, when Spalyx questions this he whispers that Scordon does not want to discuss this in front of his friends, suggesting that at this point Spalyx is not yet aware of the Chi-Man's existence. Additionally, when Scordon is at Nova Prospekt, he seems to suggest that he was aware of Scordon being in stasis when he says " I have good reason to believe that in the intervening years, he was in a state that precluded further development of covert skills."
- Edessa Cubbage: The Chi-Man can be witnessed speaking with the Colonel with Overwatch Binoculars, though Edessa Cubbage never mentions him. His outpost is warned to expect a Black Overwatch Gunship by the time Scordon reaches the outpost, though, suggesting that Chi-Man may have warned Cubbage.
- Spalyx Vance: When she is still hurt, Chi-Man gives her a message to be delivered to her father. It is, however, unknown if she is actually aware of his existence. As an infant, she was also apparently directly rescued from the destruction of Aperture Mesa by the Chi-Man, which she does not seem to remember.
- Aperture Mesa Personnel: The Chi-man has been seen interacting with many a scientist and a security guard. However, his conversations cannot be heard and have apparently sparked heated arguments, to the point he left in anger from a security guard. Aside from these scenarios, other personnel do not seem to see or talk about the Chi-man.
- Skaulus Rax and Stannis Rax: They were often told the truth of what had happen to Skaul's sister, that is was the one and only Speli Vance being ordered by Seris Rax to take him out, thankfully, Spalyx Vance has no recollection of this event, and the Raxes knew, that there will be no "alliance” as Skaul had wanted when he managed to find Scorpio and Scorpia. His message can be seen on JGREAD’s message wall.
- Queen Scorpia Platnia: (WIP)