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Welcome to Brook Haven!
Welcome to Brook Haven Ranch! We are a 18+ premium role playing community set in Trader's Bend, Montana. Our concept is the culmination of twenty years of plotting and planning. We feature a rich, developed program in which many troubled characters thrive. Our community is one of the best on jcink and we look forward to you becoming a part of it!
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Not every teenager has the benefit of growing up in a loving, happy home. Some are victims of abuse, neglect, a system that shuffles them from foster home to foster home. Brook Haven Ranch was established in 1995 as a refuge for abused and neglected horses -- and teenagers who needed a second chance in life and the opportunity to become something more than society expects of them.
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 from the second i was born i've had a loaded gun, 17 / TENDERFOOT / TOMASZ PASTYRCZAK
samuel anderson
Student • 17 YRS
INTJ
Occupation
Student
Nickname
Sam
Pronouns
He/him
Sexual Orientation
Heterosexual
Status
Single
Partner
N/A
Riding Style
Western
Honey
is
Sweet as Honey

Breed
Paint
Gender
Gelding
Age
14 Years
Disciplines
Pleasure Riding
Application
is Offline


Age
25
Pronouns
She/her
Timezone
GMT-5
Contact
pm
42 Posts
350 Points
Tenderfoot
mustang
Samuel Anderson
TW:anxiety, bullying, self-harm (cut and burn), depression, suicide ideation, and suicide attempt

Basics


Full Name: Samuel Benjamin Anderson
Nickname/Alias: Sam
Date of Birth: September 1st 2000. Going into his Junior year come September.
Current Age: 16
Gender: Male
Pronouns: He, his, him
User Group: Tenderfoot
Sub-Group: Student

Appearance


Eye Color: Green
Hair Color: Brown
Height: 5’11”
Weight: 160lbs
Scars or Marks: A plethora of thin, parallel horizontal scars litter his left and right forearms and are more concentrated on his right. Two fresh vertical scars that extend from the wrist to the elbow. An array of cigarette burn marks on his upper right arm. A fading scar on his lower right hip from an emergency appendectomy last summer.
Tattoos or Piercings N/A
Face Claim: Tomasz Pastyrczak

Personality


MBTI Type: ISFJ
Likes: Being an older brother, his large family, running, big dogs, hiking, the outdoors, mid-spring, rain, black coffee, being with friends.
Dislikes: Himself, being bullied, confrontation, being stupid, being mollified by his parents, cold weather, new experiences, hospitals, group and individual therapy.
Strengths: Extremely hard working with a strong work ethic, high-achieving, inclusive, patient, supportive, loyal, non-confrontational, caring, manual labour, carpentry, time management.
Weaknesses: Slow-learning, poor student, unrealistic expectations of himself, overloads himself and works himself into the ground, fearful, anxious, stubborn (though he doesn’t recognize it yet), poor coping mechanisms, low self-esteem
Fears: His prescribed medication turning him into a different person, new experiences, letting everyone down, being singled out.
Aspirations: Not joining the family business and proving his naysayers wrong, finding his place in this world, becoming an operating room nurse.

Psychology


Divergence: General Anxiety Disorder, Major Depressive Disorder. Undiagnosed social anxiety.
Risk Factors: A self-ingrained deep-rooted inadequacy complex and a perfectionist approach to most things in life. Bullied extensively for having an individual education plan in school. No other familial or external factors.
Current Treatment: Prescribed but doesn’t take 150mg venlafaxine once daily (secret). Refused individual and group therapy in hospital.

Brook Haven Referral


Referred by: Dr. Atticus Davidson, family doctor
Referred for: A near successful suicide attempt. After he refused conventional individual and group therapy, and after Sam admitted to a nurse he intended to try again his doctor felt he had no other choice.
Problem Areas: Became distant the moment he woke up in hospital and refuses to talk to anyone. Quickly deflects from himself in conversation. Still should be considered at a high suicide risk.

Relationships


Romantic Orientation: Heteroromantic
Sexual Orientation: Heterosexual
Relationship Status: Single
Significant Other: N/A

Lifestyle


Career/Occupation: Student. Has worked unofficially as a lawn care attendant for a relative’s business
Education: Sophomore
Dream Job: Operating Room Nurse
Home Town: Bonzeman, Montana
Religion: Raised Protestant Catholic but doesn’t know what he believes

Equestrian Life


Preferred Riding Style: Watching, not riding. Will ride Western style.
Disciplines: Yet to be determined.
Riding Strengths: Yet to be determined.
Riding Weaknesses: Has never physically been on a horse.

A NEW PATH

From when Peter Anderson was a little boy he was told he, along with his three younger brothers, would one day take over his father’s carpentry business. As the ‘smart’ one of his brothers, he was expected to take on the role of bookkeeper and general manager while Nathan, Michael, and Travis took on the more physical roles. His father tried to groom him into have an affinity for the family business, but Peter was determined to make his own path. He wanted more than the poor man’s life that was being offered and he resented his younger brothers for not thinking for themselves. He worked his way through a prestigious college program allowing him to break the cycle and become a software engineer. It was in college that he met and dated his wife Mary, and less than three years following graduation they were married and welcomed Samuel Benjamin Anderson to the world.

IT ALL STARTED WITH A BUTTON

The event that set him on his current path happened a few weeks before he started kindergarten, on the day where he was to meet his classmates. Sam was apprehensive and was chewing on the sleeve of his sweater when he accidentally dislodged a button. Before he realized what was happening he swallowed it. Most children would remain blissfully indifferent to swallowing a button, but Sam was panicked. He’d heard his mother say he was what he ate, and he ate a button. He was inconsolable the remainder of the day. What Sam remembers is not how upset he was over the event, but how his father looked at him the same way he regarded his brothers. Like he was some half-wit. He never wanted to see his father look at him the same way again.

TOUGH TIMES AHEAD

As Peter had expected Samuel struggled his very first day in school, much like his brothers had. A few months after his peers had progressed to reading short books and he was still having trouble learning his letters, Sam was placed in a special education class with a few ESL students. His father was insistent that he get checked for Dyslexia and other learning disabilities but all the tests came back normal. Peter then took it upon himself to teach Sam at home and get him back to grade level. Much of their time together ended with Peter growing frustrated with his son and throwing something and then Sam bursting into tears. He hated how disappointed his father was with him and so he started staying in during recess to try and catch up. Gone were the activities he enjoyed, like playing with his younger twin brother and sister. He had a new purpose: show his father he wasn’t useless.

With his hard work he eventually he got put back in normal classes, albeit with a special education plan. He was immediately targeted by a few of his classmates for receiving a little extra time on his tests. Sam didn’t realize that was why he was being bullied though. He grew convinced that he was showing his idiocy through other ways. Perhaps he smiling too widely, or his voice cracking at an inopportune time indicated he was stupid. He must’ve walked stupidly too. Samuel grew conscious of every word he said and every action he made. Simple things like getting into an elevator with a stranger became near unbearable as he believed the way he breathed was stupid too and the stranger would see him that way too.

His parents didn’t recognize anything was wrong until he started in High School and a teacher-parent conference alerted them to a risky behavior that they’d noticed. A well-meaning professor mentioned he’d seen Samuel smoking a cigarette and suggested they curb the behavior before it became a bad habit. Sam confessed he’d started when a friend offered him one, and he only did it when he got nervous over upcoming tests. His parents took him to see his general GP who listened to his troubles for no more than fifteen minutes before prescribing him venlafaxine for anxiety. And so he stopped smoking.

At least that was what he told his parents – he simply got better at hiding it. In truth by that point he was lying about many things like how late he was staying up to try and understand course work, and how much coffee he was drinking to stay awake longer. He lied about going out with his friends being cancelled, all so he could spend extra time with his teachers after school study further. He’d gotten himself into a vicious cycle. Earning a good grade made him feel good about himself and validated his hard-work. On the other hand earning a bad grade made him feel like an absolute failure that couldn’t accomplish anything. When his mind started rattling off all the reasons he was stupid Sam’s anxiety and self-loathing would intensify until he could take it no longer.

The first time he harmed himself had been an accident. He’d been clipping his fingernails a little too short and accidentally clipped a little flesh off the top of his finger. It hurt yes, but it numbed him. The self-hate faded, for at least a little while. And he could study again without hating himself. He started using a razor every time the self-deprecating thoughts running through his head prevented him from learning quick enough to his liking. He would cut himself on his wrist until the bad thoughts faded. At first it took only one to two cuts a couple times a week to quell his anxieties, but that too grew ineffective, especially when he was unable to do cut himself in school. He turned to burning his upper arms with his cigarettes, which not only hurt much more, but tinged with pain for far longer.

SOMETHING HAS GOT TO GIVE

It had to happen eventually – Sam met his match in a complex trigonometry test. He went into the test with his usual state of exhaustion and not being confident with the material and came out with a failing grade. Convinced that his parents would be upset he was hesitant to show them the test. Much to his surprise his mother was not only fine with his grade, she tried to reward him with fresh baked cookies.

At first it had been a little relieving to know he didn’t have to deal with perpetual exhaustion. Maybe he could divulge how he was harming himself. He tested the waters with his mother and told her how he was struggling with school and trying to keep himself from being anxious. Instead of showing him the support he desperately wanted she asked him if he was still taking his medication. It was then he realized what his family truly thought would become of him. They thought he was too stupid to get into college, and it didn’t matter how hard he worked, or how much effort he put in, they knew he would amount to nothing. This was never going to be a fixable problem. Sam dropped the conversation immediately. He wouldn’t disappoint them again.

Samuel feigned illness the next day and waited for his parents to leave for work. He filled the tub and sat fully clothed and submerged in the water until it was like ice. Then he dragged a razor down from his elbows to his wrists and watched as the water around him grew a deeper red until his vision clouded over and darkness descended upon him.

He hadn’t intended to wake up. If his mother hadn’t come to check up on him he would’ve died in that tub. Instead he woke up later in the hospital with his mother weeping at his bed side. His parents bombarded him with questions shortly after awakening- why did he try to kill himself? He can’t remember all the questions they asked but one burned in his mind – Was it an accident? In a combination of fury and absolute shame of what he had done kept his mouth shut and refused to answer why he did what he did.

He was placed in individual and group therapy but he refused to open up there too. The people in his group had real problems – he was just a stupid kid who failed a math test who didn’t want to be a carpenter. When he admitted to a nurse that she shouldn’t bother checking up on his stitches because it was fruitless because he’d ‘be successful this time’ his doctor felt he had no choice but to send him to a place where he could get the treatment he needed, away from his family to heal.

And so Samuel was sent to Brook Haven to a program he doesn’t believe will help him, to get healing he doesn’t feel he deserves.

I'll rest when I'm dead

“I’ll rest when I’m dead” is a phrase he heard once when he was younger and thought was both clever and oddly suited him. His greatest motivation in his life is to prove to his father that he isn’t like his uncles, and to do that he needs to not settle for mediocrity and fall into the family carpentry business. He’s set himself the likely unattainable goal of becoming an operating room nurse and spends much of his time trying to earn the best grades he can. When he was younger keeping up wasn’t as much of an issue and he was able to keep up with a few hours beyond homework. Now that’s morphed into spending near every waking moment with his nose in a textbook, repeating the same information in his head until it starts to make sense. Hobbies, interests? He partakes in them mainly in the summers when he has time, but even then not as often as his peers would. Samuel works himself into the ground and ignores his body’s basic needs like hunger and sleep to keep up with his class, and he’ll only rest when he’s forced to.

Find where I belong

This is a motivation that he isn’t aware is guiding his life. Sam has always been the odd kid out in his family. He’s the eldest of his cousins by a wide margin, and while his siblings are closer in age they’re twins and each other’s best friend. He was also isolated from his peers when he didn’t pick up on reading like the rest of them and thrown into a ‘Special Education’ class during a crucial social skill-building period of his early childhood. This all translates into an awkward teenager who is desperate to find his place in this world. He feels like an outsider looking in to his peers. He sees his classmates laughing over who kissed who at the last party, and he knows he’s missing out on those vital experiences. But of course he puts the blame on being stupid and that he doesn’t deserve to have fun like them when he gets bad grades.

... But it ain't here

Instinctively Sam knows this isn’t where he’s meant to be. Now that he’s had a chance to look at his schedule and scoff at the lack of time he has to study he’s absolutely mortified. He’s absolutely furious that instead of being able to keep up with his class that he gets to waste his time taking care of a ‘stupid horse’. He’s terrified that the control he has in his schedule is long gone and that inevitably get poor grades. He’s upset that the pool of electives he’s eligible to take is thoroughly limited and will look inadequate on a college application. Needless to say Sam is not happy being at Brook Haven and has zero intent on changing.

Along the same vein he doesn’t think he deserves to be here. From the brief research he managed before being shipped off he’s seen the full extent of the teenagers Brook Haven helps: sexual and physical abuse, drug and alcohol therapy, eating disorders, kids that have been abandoned and have never had a real meal. Real problems. In contrast he’s got two supportive parents who love him very much and has never gone to bed hungry. He’s just a kid who wanted to kill himself because of an unfixable problem – he’s stupid and nothing is going to change that. He feels he doesn’t deserve to be in the same support groups and feels that he is taking the spot of someone who would benefit from being here.

About Sam

Samuel is a seventeen year old Tenderfoot student with deep rooted insecurity issues regarding his lack of intelligence. He was born the first child to a pair of computer programmers and was told by his father from a young age that the only barrier to success is himself. What his parents hadn’t anticipated was that he would struggle in school from the beginning, much like his father’s brothers. His father has never talked highly of his brothers, and Sam made the association between him and his uncles that has stuck ever since. He doesn’t want to disappoint his dad and unintentionally made that his life’s goal: to make something out of himself and not fall into the carpentry business.

The problem has always been there though – he’s incredibly slow learning and he’s never shown a natural aptitude towards any subject in school. He needs to put in triple the effort to get the same result. As such he’s spent much of his life to date trying to prove that he’s better than that. When he realized that sometimes it doesn’t matter how much you try he took a razor to his wrists and tried to kill himself. He woke up ashamed and knowing it’s only a matter of time before he tries again.

At his core Samuel is a kind person that is his tormented by his own ‘great weakness’. Socially he’s a little awkward but he can always find something to say about anyone but himself. He’s likely the hardest working person you’ve ever met, caring, incredibly organized, and inclusive. He’s also incredibly anxious and is insecure about himself and his abilities. He can’t imagine anyone beyond his immediate family tolerating him, let alone actually liking him.

Platonic

Sam desperately wants a friend or two but believes he’s got nothing to offer them in return. Because of his lack of confidence, making friends is a difficult task for him. The other person would have to reach out to him first. I see someone loquacious that knows how to properly guide a conversation through their first few interactions while he sputters out a few words. Female, male – doesn’t matter. He’s not picky as long as they’re nice to him. He tends to befriend ‘nice’ people, or at least people that appear nice at first.

Because he’s got a general lack of experience in true friendships I think he’s fairly easy to manipulate. Whether that be for good or bad is up to you.

He’s looking for a few study buddies (patient and understanding he struggles), maybe someone that guises themselves as a friend to manipulate him, and a friend or two that would try and encourage him that it’s okay to be mediocre.

Romantic

Samuel is basically a unicorn in today’s day and age – a single heterosexual male who is still a non-platonic hugging, kiss-less virgin. He’s never had the time to focus on going after girls and the thought of being alone with one for that purpose leaves him tongue-tied.

He’s both naïve and oblivious when it comes to any attention he receives from girls that goes beyond friendship. For this reason I’m offering him for any girl who would like to use him for their own purposes.

I’d also like him to have a puppy-love crush on a girl that he ends up becoming decent friends with. Extra brownie points if she doesn’t share the same sentiment.

Honestly I don’t think he’d do well in a true relationship at the moment. He’d be awfully clingy and requiring near constant validation. I’m not looking for an OTP, or anything long term in the future for him, but if you think you’ve got something that works throw it at me!

Antagonistic

‘Enemies’ in the traditional sense isn’t a thing that Sam would have. He’s anti-confrontation unless he’s being mollified by an adult, and unless he’s really having an off day he wouldn’t be hostile. His reaction when being comforted is to glue his feet to the floor, look away, chew his bottom lip, and pray an authoritative figure comes by to rescue him.

A victim for a bully on the other hand is a perfect fit. Sam is ideal for anyone with a spine that is looking for someone to vent out some anger with few ramifications. He won’t tell – he doesn’t want to upset anyone.

Familiar

Once boasting an incredibly close bond with his family Samuel has closed himself off from them completely. He's utterly embarrassed that he failed in his suicide attempt, and hates how much he's hurt them for it. He's praying that by ostracizing them from his life now, it might not hurt as much the next time he tries and succeeds.

Other

Counsellors and group leaders are the big ones in this category. He’ll do the chores he’s assigned and take care of the horse he’s in charge of, but good fucking luck trying to get him to open up during any group or individual therapy. He still hasn’t told anyone why he attempted suicide and that isn’t changing any time soon. He’ll be a challenging kid to deal with because he so strongly believes that he isn’t worth a moment of their breath.

I’d love an antagonistic relationship that starts off bad right from the get-go – maybe during his intake (unless those are still closed) – and continues to agitate him into action. Maybe the counsellor recognizes he’s stubborn and uses that to influence how he acts?

First Impressions

”What is wrong with him?”

Is likely the first impression one gets when they are first introduced to Samuel. He greets everyone with an awkward half smile before breaking eye contact and getting a little fidgety. His voice will start involuntarily cracking and he’ll answer questions with as few words as possible without extending the conversation further. He becomes quite anxious meeting new people and never knows how to strike up a conversation, so he relies on the other person to guide him through it.

Stranger Impressions

”Samuel Anderson? Who is that?”

Sam is quite adept at avoiding conversations and people he hasn’t met and doesn’t make a memorable first impression. He’s used to people forgetting that they’ve met him before and will quietly reintroduce himself without bringing that fact to light. He is of an average height and on the thin side, so he can quickly maneuver through crowds relatively unnoticed – a well-honed skill.

”Is that the idiot that tried to kill himself?”

The news of his suicide attempt spread like wildfire through his school. When he went to clear out his locker of his personal effects with his mother the hushed whispers about him focused on the potential reasons he tried to kill himself.

Friendly Impressions

”He’s nice but…”

One commonality of his friendships is that most of them developed over a class project or studying together. He rarely meets with his friends outside of school for a non-school related reason. Therefore many of his ‘friends’ are not true friends at all, and are merely study buddies. They don’t particularly know him all that well.

”I thought I knew him better.”

Sam is very quick to deflect conversation from himself by redirecting focus on a concept from class he’s having trouble grasping. His friends that were close to him were very shocked by what happened and are now questioning whether they missed something - but came to the realization that although they hang out with him in class, and sometimes after school, they know virtually nothing personal about him.

Familiar Impressions

”He’s a good kid – I just don’t understand why he won’t play to his strengths”

Sam has been – for the most part –a model child. He never engaged in fights or causing trouble in class. He’s known for being quiet and keeping to himself. He is also quick to help his family around the house and in the family carpentry business when it’s needed. The biggest fight they ever had was when they discovered he was smoking, and even then Sam apologized profusely and promised he’d stop. His mother specifically doesn’t understand why he’s so driven in pursuing a career outside of his abilities. She’s supported him in it, as any mother would do, but has gently suggested he look into things he’s good at.

”I had no idea that anything was wrong.”

A phrase that his parents like to reiterate whenever their nosy neighbours inquire about what happened. They knew he has struggled in school since day one, and they knew he wasn’t fond of meeting new people. But beyond smoking there was a distinct lack of telltale risky behaviours that would suggest he was struggling with depression. He invited schoolmates over all the time to work on projects and help him out and he didn’t break any of his well-established habits. The fact he had been cutting and burning himself for years came as a complete shock to his entire family.

Rival Impressions

"What rivalry?"

Sam can't have a true rivalry, friendly or otherwise, because it wouldn't be a fair fight. He would always lose.

Enemy Impressions

"Fucking idiot needs to grow a brain."

It takes a special kind of person to bully someone solely for having an independent education plan. Because Samuel hates any form of confrontation he tends to freeze and let the few that have bullied him rip him apart without a word. He doesn't partake in being antagonistic himself and is much more of a people pleaser.

Authority Impressions

How authority figures perceive Samuel depends entirety on how they approach him.

”Polite kid, but quiet.”

His teachers have always had the most difficult time during parent/teacher conferences because Sam is an unremarkable student in every sense. Most of his teachers commend him for his achievements in school in spite of his individual education plan, but rarely find much else to talk about. He is a student his teachers forget of the next term.

”I don’t know where that came from…”

In the case where a teacher approaches him and encourage him to open up or settle for less lofty goals Sam’s stubborn side will emerge, his expression will sour and he’ll turn bitter. Regardless of the teacher’s intentions Sam will let venom lace every word and sardonically thank them for their unwelcome advice. He has a knack of making people feel bad for suggesting that he settle for mediocrity. Depending on his mood he might lash out angrily and refuse to follow orders. Eventually he’ll come back and apologize for his words, but not until he’s had time to cool down.

Coworker/Partner Impressions

”Damnit not that kid…”

Unfortunately the first thought when someone gets partnered with Samuel for a school project is how they’re going to have to do all the work or deal with his continual questions. They all know him for the kid that takes far longer to understand even the simplest concepts and the one that gets extra time on his tests for his IEP. They’re heavily reluctant to even consider him as a partner.

”Okay I guess he isn’t too bad, even if he was annoying.”

This is typically the impression he leaves a partner with after they’ve completed the project. Sam might be slow in learning but he works his ass off to understand, and works even harder to get the best grade he can achieve. This translates into a perfectionist approach to every project, which can be annoying, but he insists on pulling his own weight and won’t settle for a moderate grade if he knows he can do better than that.

Lover Impressions

"You were fine, I promise.

Though he's never been in anything remotely like a romantic relationship, his lovers' impressions would be the same as any friend who witnessed him beating himself up. They would try and reassure him that he was fine and pity him a fair bit.

Self-Impressions

”I’m so fucking stupid…”

He's been treated like an idiot long enough that he believes it to be true. He pins the blame of everything that goes wrong in his life to some stupid action he took. To Samuel everything circles back to him being an idiot, and his whole life would be drastically different if he were smart.

If I were being completely honest with myself there isn’t a single thing that I wouldn’t change.”

If he tried really hard to come up with a list of things he liked about himself Sam would come to find that his list is shorter than he has fingers on a single hand. If he had the ability to change himself permanently there isn’t a single thing that would remain the same. What started as a yearning to be better than what people thought he was capable of has morphed into hating every aspect of himself.

Post-Mortem Impressions

"Poor kid. He should've reached out..."

Rather than being remembered for the little he's accomplished, or being remembered by his family with fondness, Sam's headstone would instead be met with solely pity. A deep sorrow combined with the nagging feeling of what they could've done differently to save him.

Mun Impressions

Sam is interesting to me because all of his conflicts are versus himself. He has virtually no external factors beyond some teasing that everyone gets when they’re in school that explains why he is at Brook Haven. His parents have been supportive of him, even to the point where they are okay with him not achieving as much as he does in exchange of enjoying his life a little bit. Prior to his suicide attempt his worst experience involved an emergency appendectomy. One hundred percent of his issues go back to him struggling in learning, and attempting to prove he’s capable of being better than what everyone expects of him.

Friends

Enemies

Lovers

Family

Peter Anderson • Father

Though he recognizes some of the same traits in his eldest that he does in himself, Peter was a bit disappointed to learn how Sam struggled in school from an early age. He didn’t want Sam to follow the same track as his three brothers, all of whom were content with falling into the family business (Carpenters). Therefore he always stressed to Sam that he alone set his own path, and the only obstacle in front of his goals is himself. He can be a bit short in patience, especially when Sam is having difficulty in learning a new concept, but he’s proud of what he’s accomplished. His suicide attempt came as a complete shock to Peter and his wife.

Mary Anderson • Mother

Sam is a huge mama’s boy and will miss her desperately when he's away at Brookhaven. Of her three children Sam is the one worries for the most and she can’t for the life of her figure out why he is so insistent in becoming a operating room nurse. She can be excessively mollifying and would be happy if Sam played to his strengths and joined the family business. She has recruited Sam’s siblings into making sure he doesn’t work himself into the ground, and tries to encourage him to take some time for himself. Sam’s fondest memories of his mother involves when she used to play the ukulele at night and sing him and his brother to sleep.

Oliver Anderson • Brother

Typical older brother/younger brother relationship. They tease the ever-loving crap out of one another but will step in front of a bullet for one another. Sam tries to get his brother to pay attention in school all the while Oliver tries to get his brother to not burn himself out and relax a little. Unfortunately as he is a twin, his sister is his very best friend and they would go off on their own adventures and leave their elder brother behind.

Sophie Anderson • Sister

They used to have a fantastic bigger brother, little sister relationship until she started becoming unsure of herself when she hit puberty. Sam recognized how she started recoiling from her friends and depending more on her brother so he asked his mom for advice. His mother, being the extremely mothering type, instead reached out to Sophie to ask how she was feeling. Sophie felt that was an absolute betrayal of her trust and has since kept their relationship superficial. They both miss how their relationship used to be but Sam is struggling to bring it back up again, especially because she gets so angry when he tries.

Other

Habits

RUN WITH LAVA

When he didn't display a natural affinity for any sport Sam's parents encouraged him to try track and field. He came to find shortly thereafter that not only was he good at running, but he enjoyed it too. Nothing compares to the sense of peace he feels when he goes for a run at the crack of dawn before his family wakes up. He then finishes his run with a travelling coffee mug to dull any residual exhaustion.

HOMEWORK - WHY WAIT?

One thing Sam has never understood is why his peers wait until the last possible second to start their homework and assignments, and then inevitably hand in something that is half-assed. Sam always starts his work the day he receives it in case he needs further clarification from a teacher. This is an unintentional positive feedback loop that helps to quell his anxiety by at least lessening the burden of his workload at any given time.

SMOKING

It started so innocently - a single cigarette offered to him by a friend between classes. Now it has proceeded to a half-pack a day habit. Smoking is one of the poor coping habits he's developed to lessen his anxiety. He's not looking forward to losing his cigarette breaks now that he's coming to Brook Haven.

A STRICT SCHEDULE

Virtually every minute of Sam's life is planned. He keeps himself on a very strict schedule and gets upset when he 'loses minutes' over little things, like hitting an extra red light on the way home from school. He remains thoroughly occupied and multitasks to keep his minutes in check. He doesn't sit down for dinner to converse with his family - he's got a textbook open on one side and his study notes on the other while he scarfs down what he can.

Quirks

SELECTIVE HEARING

When he starts reading, getting into a task, or thinking about something he gets ‘selective hearing’. He can be mid-conversation and he’ll zone out, his mind in a completely different place. His friends and family now know when he starts looking away without acknowledging the conversation that they’ve lost him and that they’ll need to say his name to bring him back. It can get very annoying when it happens during the middle of a story and the conversation needs to backtrack.

SITS CROSS-LEGGED

Sam sits cross-legged whenever he can, including under the dinner table. This goes back to his primary schooling when he had trouble sitting still for extended periods of time. His first teacher realized he became much more settled and less fidgety the second he started crossing his legs, so she encouraged him to continue. Its stuck since ever since.

SELF-HARMS TO STOP HIS BRAIN

When his brain starts on a self-deprecating spiral he takes his razor and starts cutting himself. Five to six slices in he is no longer stressed about the amount of work he needs to accomplish or how much he hates himself, but is now focused on the pain emanating from his arm. What started in desperation has now become a near everyday part of his life.

ALWAYS EXHAUSTED

In attempt to keep up with his classmates in school Sam stays awake quite late trying to understand the course material. It is not uncommon for him to get four to five hours of sleep because of this, though he aims for six on weekends. As such he always looks utterly exhausted and has dark circles around his eyes.

ALWAYS WARM

Working against him is the fact Sam always feels like he’s ten million degrees and he radiates heat. If he had his way he’d have the AC on in the middle of January. This is an unfortunate quirk given the extent of his scars running up and down his arms. He does a remarkable job of hiding them and wears full-length clothing that extends far past the palms of his hands, adding to his heat problem.

PLAYS A RIGHT-HANDED GUITAR UPSIDE-DOWN

Being the only left-handed person in his family, his parents wouldn't get him a left-handed guitar. Instead he's learned a handful of songs by playing a right-handed guitar upside-down. This made it very difficult to learn because he’s a hands-on, sight-based learner and the strings are on the opposite side to what his brother would be strumming. He can't read music, only play a small handful of songs.

Hobbies

Hiking with his dogs

Being away from the world and alone with the two Labrador Retrievers that he knows love him unconditionally is perhaps his favourite thing to do in the little spare time he manages to find. On weekends he wakes up far before his family and forgoes his normal run. Instead he takes the dogs to a creek near his house for an hour long hike.

Gaming

Another hobby he barely finds the time to enjoy is gaming on his young brother's PC. He likes playing quick-paced first person shooters the most as they prevent him from thinking beyond basic strategies. He can get lost in the game and for however long he plays he doesn't remember how much he hates himself.

Learning

Just because he isn't in school during the summer doesn't mean Samuel gives himself a break. He learned early on that he wouldn't ever be satisfied lounging in the sun for hours on end. He prefers having a fire lit constantly under his ass, and with that he takes it upon himself to try and learn something related to nursing. He picks out a non-fictional book from the bookstore related to a human organ system every summer and tries to learn the whole thing cover to cover before heading back to school.

Skills

Carpentry • Excellent

As much as he would hate to admit it, Sam's greatest skill is the innate ability he has in carpentry. He helps his uncles in the family business whenever they get a large order, and he's got a fine eye for the most minute artistic finishes. He has absolutely no interest in this skill and would prefer if he didn't have it.

Time Management and Organization • Advanced

Considering his perpetual exhaustion, time management and organization doesn't seem to be a skill he has. On the contrary almost every minute of his day is allocated to learning topics in class he doesn't fully understand. He has an ingrained ability to mentally prioritize the order of tasks he needs to complete and manages to keep himself from forgetting about uncompleted assignments. When the schedule he's mentally created gets shifted he gets worried and will try and compensate - typically by shaving time off of his sleeping

Handy • Above Average

Again a skill he dislikes having, Sam is naturally adept to a variety of general handy skills including construction, fixing pipes and plumbing, assembling furniture, cleaning the gutters, etc. Whenever there is a leaky faucet in his house his parents know to skip out in hiring a handyman and instead come to him directly.

Interests

Working Out

He's interested in learning a program for working out. His dad has hinted that should he hit the gym more than a few times to him. Sam is too worried that he'll be judged for going without a plan in place.

Human Anatomy

When he awoke from his appendectomy the very first thing Sam asked for was a copy of the tape of his surgery. Human anatomy, specifically fixing it through surgery, is boundlessly interesting to him. He's interested in the mechanics of the human body and how everything so intricately works together.

Biology

If he wasn't so intent on being a nurse, Sam might've considered a career in some form of biology, perhaps working in a laboratory. Almost every strand of the science of life is utterly fascinating to him, from cell biology to conservation sciences to developmental biology. He could watch documentaries on the subject for years and never get bored.

Desired Plots

If at first you don't succeed try try again

Samuel has no belief that this system will actually work and is actually detrimental to his chances of getting into a decent college. Therefore he thinks that all of his effort in attempt to keep up has been in vain and that he’ll be forced into manual labor anyways. Brook Haven has solidified his fate and he has no intent in doing manual labor. It is not outside the realm of possibility that he’ll try to commit suicide again while at Brook Haven. Obviously it won’t be a successful attempt but I’m looking for someone to sneak him a razor, and then someone to find him and get help.

Mollified no more

This one is for a counsellor or an adult. Nothing pisses Sam off more than being told its okay to be mediocre by a well-meaning adult. He’s lived his entire life where adults talk down to him and encourage him to do things he’s good at instead of what he wants to do. Even after his suicide attempt his parents tried to pacify him with comments about being too stressed with school. I’d love for an adult character to have a well-meaning but antagonistic relationship, one where they’ll give him the kick in the ass that he’s been looking for his whole life that will agitate him into action. I imagine Sam would be pretty pissy about it at first but deep down appreciate them. We can work out further details together.

Someone to believe in me

I’d love if someone could actually believe he’s capable of what he’s set himself out to do and encourage him to pursue his goals. Not just encourage him in spite of believing it is outside of his reach but truly believe that he’s got the ability somewhere.

About Squirt


Age: 25
Pronouns: She/her
Time Zone: EST
Native Language: English

Preferred Word Count: I aim for 500
Likely Triggers: Mentioning of the cardiovascular system makes me squeamish - so blood, needles being inserted.

Your Other Characters: Nada


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emily schuster
English III Teacher • 27 YRS
ESFJ
Occupation
English III Teacher
Nickname
Emily
Pronouns
She/her/hers
Sexual Orientation
Homosexual
Status
Single
Partner
Riding Style
Western
Raggedy Anne
is
Raggedy Anne

Breed
American Warmblood
Gender
Mare
Age
9
Disciplines
Reining
Application
Ben
is Offline


Age
35
Pronouns
He/him/his
Timezone
GMT-5
Contact
PM
64 Posts
370 Points
Brook Haven
Teacher
Sam & Emily
Emily is Sam's English teacher. She thinks that what she expects of her students is something everyone can do if they just try hard, but when she sees a student working hard and not making it, she'll step up and try to help them. So I could see her taking some time outside of class to work with Sam and help him through the class. That might be a mixed bag for Sam: on the one hand, she will believe in his potential, and on the other hand, she won't discourage him from overworking himself trying to do everything.
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nick fisher
Student • 16 YRS
ENTP
Occupation
Student
Nickname
Nick
Pronouns
He/him/his
Sexual Orientation
Pansexual
Status
Single
Partner
Riding Style
Western
When people look at Nick, they tend to see a big dumb bully. For all most people experience of him, they might as well be right. At heart, Nick is a smart, sensitive kid who’s learned to act tough because it keeps him safe, but that’s buried deep enough that plenty of people will never encounter that side of him.
Eater
is
Peter the Pumpkin Eater

Breed
American Quarter Horse
Gender
gelding
Age
9
Disciplines
Pole Bending
Application
Ben
is Offline


Age
35
Pronouns
He/him/his
Timezone
GMT-5
Contact
PM
126 Posts
665 Points
Wellwader
Mustang
Sam & Nick
Nick is one of the resident bullies. He would definitely see Sam as a target. They won't have much time together, because they're in different groups, but if you want a thread where Sam gets bullied, we can surely find a way to get them together.
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rachel vanderbilt
Student • 16 YRS
INFJ
Occupation
Student
Nickname
Rae
Pronouns
She/Her
Sexual Orientation
Heterosexual
Status
Single
Partner
None
Riding Style
English
Rachel came to Brook Haven on a referral from her brother. She served eighteen months in juvenile detention and upon her release, her parents relinquished their parental rights to her entirely. Her life looks like one bad decision that influenced the everything, but the truth is that she's made a lot of mistakes, from having a baby at the age of twelve to holding up a liquor store when she was barely fifteen. At the end of the day, what she wanted the most was her parents' attention, and they were never capable of giving her that.

The ranch only knows part of the truth about Rachel; That she was arrested for holding up a liquor store, that she was difficult in juvy, that she was prone to fights with other inmates, that she was difficult to control (or just plain "difficult"). Her parents and the authorities never revealed the truth of her pregnancy or the child she was forced to give up for adoption, the circumstances of her family or the fact that her parents didn't treat her very well.

She's come to Brook Haven Ranch with no hope or expectations of something good coming of her experience with juvenile detention. Her natural reaction is to buck the system and to fight back, but Rachel is exhausted by her experiences and all she wants is a better life for herself.

A tried and true "horse girl," this is exactly the right place for Rachel, who has missed being around horses while she was in juvy. Their presence has surprised her, and they've given her an outlet for a lot of what's going on inside of her (because despite it all, she's less angry and more hurt than most people seem to realize).

Thor
is
Lord of Thunder

Breed
Warmblood
Gender
Gelding
Age
6 Years
Disciplines
Show Jumping
Application
is Offline


Age
37
Pronouns
She/Her
Timezone
GMT-5
Contact
PM or Intro
115 Posts
945 Points
Ridgerunner
Paint
Rachel & Sam
I was out today for twelve hours -- which is about eight hours longer than I planned to be -- and I am tapped at the moment. That being said, I had so many ideas for Sam last night that I didn't want to let that go to waste by forgetting that I owe you some ideas. It's rare that I see a character who will work with so many of my characters while also being so well developed. You really did an incredible job here, Squirt! Anyway, with that out of the way, let me introduce you to Rachel. Her app is a bit all over the place because I have a sort of love affair with this headperson. She's one of my oldest and one of my favorites and she's special to me. What I'm trying to say is that her freeform is sort of all over the place. I think that she and Sam could be friends -- good friends, potentially -- because she shares his general lack of ability to excel. Her IQ is down on my spreadsheet as 124, which is above average, but she's a kinesthetic learner, and a lot of teachers don't teach to this type of student. She's always struggled, and she generally views herself as less intelligent than her classmates and groupmates. She'll be able to relate to Sam, and that's what I think most people look for in friends. Like him, she's not had a lot of them -- even in the many years that I've been playing her. I would love for the pair of them to be friends. He's a bit older than her (though she's about to be seventeen) so the two of them won't wind up doing classes together (I need to double-check his student record, actually), and I don't think that they'd wind up doing a study group together because they're in different groups. So then the challenge is to figure out where they might fit together outside of schooling. I'm wondering how he would take to somebody who is very keen on her horse. Rachel's been riding for years and I'm getting that Sam thinks that the whole horse thing is stupid. I can't guarantee how Rachel would react, but if she was to bump into him saying something about not liking the horse part of the program, she would probably step up and give him a list of the reasons that the horses are the best thing for them xD
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isabella curry
Student • 15 YRS
ISTJ
Occupation
Student
Nickname
Bella
Pronouns
She/Her
Sexual Orientation
Bisexual
Status
Single
Partner
Owen Dorsey
Riding Style
English
Nearly two years ago, the barn that housed Bella's five horses burned to the ground. The fire was set by carelessness during one of her twin sister Ronnie's wild drinking parties. Ronnie has always kept the wrong sort of friends while Bella stayed in her hole and wrote in her journal or drew in her notebooks. While both girls were equally abused by their stepfather, they responded differently to the abuse.

And they responded differently to the fire as well. Two of Ronnie's horses made it out of the fire, but none of Bella's did, and though Ronnie's horses have since been sold by their stepfather as retribution for what she did (and because Ronnie refused to interact with them after the fire), Bella suffers the loss of her animals acutely. She saw them die, and she cannot imagine anything worse than that.

Half of Bella's body -- as is Ronnie's -- is covered with burn scars acquired when she struggled to pull her horses out of the blaze. The scars have made Bella self-conscious to the point of aggression. She won't allow people to get close to her and sometimes refuses to participate in group activities as a result of the scars.

It's making a lot of trouble for the people on the ranch, and the fact that Bella's been put into the group that her brother leads hasn't made things any easier on her. Nate's been strict and demanding with her, with high expectations of excellence when all she wants is to lay in bed all day.

The last thing that she wants is to bond with another horse. It's too difficult when she loses them. But the ranch has given her a "special" horse, a damaged thoroughbred that some have said only a real horse whisperer can handle. Will a broken girl be able to heal a broken horse?

Tokyo
is
Lost in Translation

Breed
Thoroughbred
Gender
Gelding
Age
8 Years
Disciplines
Eventing
Application
is Offline


Age
37
Pronouns
She/Her
Timezone
GMT-5
Contact
PM, Shipper, or Intro
66 Posts
525 Points
Wrangler
Mustang
Bella & Sam
Bella is (currently) in the same group as Sam. She might wind up going back to Wrangler, but for now she's in Tenderfoot. While he's attempted suicide, she's never actually reached the point where she was able to attempt. At the current moment she's in a thread where she's considering it -- again. Her reasons are obviously different. Bella was severely burned attempting to rescue her horses from a barn fire that killed them. She's been depressed for longer than that due to a lot of abuse, but the point is that she understands the feeling of wanting to end it all because you don't see another way out -- and you feel like you're inconvenient to the others. Bella doesn't relate to a lot of people, but I could see her relating to Sam. I could definitely see her being the girl that he's crushing on, depending on what exactly he's looking for. It definitely won't be reciprocated. She's a lesbian (homoflexible).
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rachel vanderbilt
Student • 16 YRS
INFJ
Occupation
Student
Nickname
Rae
Pronouns
She/Her
Sexual Orientation
Heterosexual
Status
Single
Partner
None
Riding Style
English
Rachel came to Brook Haven on a referral from her brother. She served eighteen months in juvenile detention and upon her release, her parents relinquished their parental rights to her entirely. Her life looks like one bad decision that influenced the everything, but the truth is that she's made a lot of mistakes, from having a baby at the age of twelve to holding up a liquor store when she was barely fifteen. At the end of the day, what she wanted the most was her parents' attention, and they were never capable of giving her that.

The ranch only knows part of the truth about Rachel; That she was arrested for holding up a liquor store, that she was difficult in juvy, that she was prone to fights with other inmates, that she was difficult to control (or just plain "difficult"). Her parents and the authorities never revealed the truth of her pregnancy or the child she was forced to give up for adoption, the circumstances of her family or the fact that her parents didn't treat her very well.

She's come to Brook Haven Ranch with no hope or expectations of something good coming of her experience with juvenile detention. Her natural reaction is to buck the system and to fight back, but Rachel is exhausted by her experiences and all she wants is a better life for herself.

A tried and true "horse girl," this is exactly the right place for Rachel, who has missed being around horses while she was in juvy. Their presence has surprised her, and they've given her an outlet for a lot of what's going on inside of her (because despite it all, she's less angry and more hurt than most people seem to realize).

Thor
is
Lord of Thunder

Breed
Warmblood
Gender
Gelding
Age
6 Years
Disciplines
Show Jumping
Application
is Offline


Age
37
Pronouns
She/Her
Timezone
GMT-5
Contact
PM or Intro
115 Posts
945 Points
Ridgerunner
Paint
Rachel & Sam
In response to your question, she probably would not tell him that he doesn't have what it takes to be a nurse because a) it's subjective and b) she doesn't want to believe that she doesn't have what it takes to go to college. She's not qualified to decide whether or not he has the capability, since hard work can get you a lot of places that even intelligence can't. Sorry, I'm working on Everett, so he might be chiming in here. I'll add a thread for them meeting at the barns to the list of starters, but it might be Wednesday before I get to it with the pile that keeps accumulating!
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nick fisher
Student • 16 YRS
ENTP
Occupation
Student
Nickname
Nick
Pronouns
He/him/his
Sexual Orientation
Pansexual
Status
Single
Partner
Riding Style
Western
When people look at Nick, they tend to see a big dumb bully. For all most people experience of him, they might as well be right. At heart, Nick is a smart, sensitive kid who’s learned to act tough because it keeps him safe, but that’s buried deep enough that plenty of people will never encounter that side of him.
Eater
is
Peter the Pumpkin Eater

Breed
American Quarter Horse
Gender
gelding
Age
9
Disciplines
Pole Bending
Application
Ben
is Offline


Age
35
Pronouns
He/him/his
Timezone
GMT-5
Contact
PM
126 Posts
665 Points
Wellwader
Mustang
Sam & Nick
Thanks! Indeed, Nick came about because I felt like there weren't enough bullies around, and there seemed to be a need for some. There are limited opportunities for characters from different groups to be alone together, but more than zero, so we can definitely make that happen. Nick's preferred style of bullying is mostly emotional - he teases people, trying to figure out what they're most sensitive to - using his size to make people feel less safe (often positioning himself to seem threatening, or to block exits), but he usually won't outright physically bully someone until they attack him. There's plenty of variation, though, depending on the situation, so if something else is more interesting for Sam, we can find a way to make that more likely.
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everett jeffries
student • 16 YRS
infp
Occupation
student
Nickname
Rhett, Evie
Pronouns
he/him/his
Sexual Orientation
homosexual
Status
single
Partner
n/a
Riding Style
Western
Gus
is
Augustus Waters

Breed
Andalusian
Gender
Gelding
Age
6 Years
Disciplines
Dressage
Application
is Offline


Age
37
Pronouns
she/her/hers
Timezone
GMT-5
Contact
PM Me for Discord!
24 Posts
220 Points
Wellwader
student

Everett & Samuel
Oh I am looking forward to this. Let me start by saying that like Nick, Everett can be a bully. The difference between the two is that Everett literally doesn't realize that he's doing it, while Nick does it on purpose. The reactive attachment disorder, combined with some really poor social skills, has resulted in Everett having a difficult time relating to other people in a social environment (why he was originally diagnosed with autism) and so sometimes he pushes people around without realizing that's what he's actually doing. It makes no sense to him that he doesn't have a lot of friends. I wanted to lay this part out for you mainly so that it is understood, because there is an underlying plot here that stuck out to me the first time that I read Sam. I remember thinking "Everett's going to like this!" So the "thing" is that Everett is not ridiculously intelligent. He's smart of course, but he's not in the genius range. Definitely above average, but not a genius. However, he applies himself so thoroughly to his studies that he manages to maintain good grades in spite of very poor relationships with his teachers and other educators. People tell him that he's intelligent, and he insists that he just works harder than everybody else. So here comes Sam, who works harder than everybody else and only achieves the minimum range of "acceptable" by the ranch's standards. It is going to baffle Everett. His first instinct is to say "You're clearly not trying hard enough if you can't make a B here of all places!" but over time I think that he is going to come to accept -- through Sam -- that he's smarter than he had thought that he was. There's a lot of potential here. Obviously Sam has signed up for tutoring with Kade, so he won't be taking Everett on as a tutor (I need to discuss with Ava if Everett's even going to be allowed to tutor at this point), but there are various ways that the two of them could wind up interacting. School's nearly out for the year, but there's a potential thread in Everett overhearing Sam complaining about his grades and him saying "Work harder, get better grades." End of school is on the 26th. Are you up for something like this?
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nick fisher
Student • 16 YRS
ENTP
Occupation
Student
Nickname
Nick
Pronouns
He/him/his
Sexual Orientation
Pansexual
Status
Single
Partner
Riding Style
Western
When people look at Nick, they tend to see a big dumb bully. For all most people experience of him, they might as well be right. At heart, Nick is a smart, sensitive kid who’s learned to act tough because it keeps him safe, but that’s buried deep enough that plenty of people will never encounter that side of him.
Eater
is
Peter the Pumpkin Eater

Breed
American Quarter Horse
Gender
gelding
Age
9
Disciplines
Pole Bending
Application
Ben
is Offline


Age
35
Pronouns
He/him/his
Timezone
GMT-5
Contact
PM
126 Posts
665 Points
Wellwader
Mustang
Sam & Nick
This sounds great! If you're up to writing the starter, feel free to; otherwise, I'll put it on my list to write one once I'm back.
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blake gilbert
student • 16 YRS
estp
Occupation
student
Nickname
Blake
Pronouns
he/him/his
Sexual Orientation
pansexual
Status
single
Partner
Riding Style
English
Scarlett
is
An Affair to Remember

Breed
Arabian
Gender
mare
Age
17 Years
Disciplines
Endurance
Application
is Offline


Age
37
Pronouns
she/her/hers
Timezone
GMT-5
Contact
PM for Discord
17 Posts
160 Points
Trailblazer
Mustang

Blake & Sam
I definitely like this. Blake doesn't have an issue with other people's families. It's his own that is the trouble for him. While some adoptees experience jealousy, he's too self centered, for lack of a better term. The presence of Sam's family won't bother him because he is separated from his biological family and more that he wishes that he had the stability or consideration that Sam does. I love the suggestion about the marks on his wrists though! Can you start something?
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katelyn yu
Social Worker • 32 YRS
ESTJ
Occupation
Social Worker
Nickname
Kate
Pronouns
She/Her/Hers
Sexual Orientation
Pansexual
Status
Engaged
Partner
Josh Tanner
Riding Style
English
Kate grew up as the only daughter in a semi-traditional Korean-American family. Her mother pushed her to study the piano until Kate thought her fingers (or her ears) were going to bleed, while her father encouraged her to follow her dreams. AS a result, she left the piano behind and became a red and white belt in Judo (6th dan) and a black belt in TaeKwondo (5th dan).

She went to college to be a social worker after she helped her best friend in childhood escape from his abusive parents. He survived because of her, and the feeling that it was possible for her to make that big a difference in the lives of people she cared about drove her to do something bigger with her life, to continue to put that effort into "saving children."

It was through her job that she met her current boyfriend, Josh Tanner. He is a police officer who helped her on a couple of cases, a man who had already adopted as a single father and who would later do so again. He inspired her, and the two of them have been together for the past ten years. Kate doesn't always agree with what he does (he's a struggling drug addict who may also have an alcohol problem), but she loves him nonetheless, and therefore she is strongly committed to Josh.

Kate is what she likes to refer to as a "badass social worker." She rides a Harley Davidson (two, actually -- her Softail and her Lowrider) without sitting behind a man to do so; She is a master of Judo; She has taken control of her own destiny without expectations from other people. She does very well for herself in the general sense of the word, and she believes that everybody has the opportunity to make the most out of their lives, and therefore that they should push to be the best that they can be.

Dew
is
Mountain Rush

Breed
Andalusian
Gender
Mare
Age
6 Years
Disciplines
Show Jumping
Application
is Offline


Age
37
Pronouns
She/Her/Hers
Timezone
GMT-5
Contact
PM or Discord
23 Posts
180 Points
Tenderfoot
Leader
Kate & Sam
I'm sorry that it's taken me so long to plot the rest of my Tenderfoots with Sam. It seems strange to me that I haven't gotten to this yet and I beg your pardon. I've been in a weird place emotionally lately and just now catching up. Kate's Sam's (female) leader. She is 100% grade-A hardass when it comes to adults, but with struggling teens there is definitely a softer side to her. The main thing about her is that she is entirely unwilling to allow Sam to fail. She's going to be challenged by him though, because her automatic response to him is going to be to try to find alternatives to academic success where academic success isn't possible, and since he has thus far been unable (I'd say "unwilling" but it doesn't feel like that to me) to change gears in this way, it's going to leave her confused as to how to help him. For Kate, this means that she will push harder and harder and harder until she gets the results that she had previously hoped for. Or she learns better, but she's a stubborn thing and in this case it really is Sam who needs to open his eyes and learn something different. Since she is all about discipline, that's what she's going to want to focus on with him. One thing that she will stand by is that it's only stupid if you keep making the same mistake over and over again, and by pushing himself at something that he's not good at doing, he is essentially repeating the same mistakes. She'll try to get him into a track that will help him to overcome this tendency and reach for something different. I could totally get behind an event thread for them where he's struggling with something and Kate shows him a different way to do the thing that has proven difficult for Sam. Are you down for this? If so, would you mind starting?
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william jenkins
Student • 16 YRS
ISTP
Occupation
Student
Nickname
Will, Billy
Pronouns
he/him
Sexual Orientation
heterosexual
Status
single
Partner
none
Riding Style
English
Polly
is
Pollyana

Breed
Irish Sport
Gender
Mare
Age
16
Disciplines
Hunter/Jumper
Application
is Offline


Age
37
Pronouns
she/her
Timezone
GMT-5
Contact
PM for Discord
59 Posts
600 Points
Tenderfoot
Mustang

Will & Sam
I'm struggling a little bit with these two. On the one hand, Will is going to understand the academic struggles that Sam faces, but on the other, he's not going to understand his drive. Most of Will's life has been about survival and not about impressing people, so this is a foreign concept to him. He also has two distinct sides to his personality. There is the side of him that is absolutely, without a doubt, a fighter. He's been through so much and he had had to fight every step of the way just to survive. But on the other hand with Will, he can be very sweet. When you combine sweet with determined, that's the real person, but a lot of the time you only see one side to this personality at a time, and so he comes across either as a victim or as a bully -- but rarely the in-between that is really his person. There's no reason that Sam would trigger the bully in Will, but there's also no reason that Sam would be interested in the sweetheart in Will either, so this leaves me conflicted on the potential relationship that the two of them have with one another. Will's not the sort to act out just because, though he will get into trouble. It seems that Sam isn't either. So the feeling that I get here is a sort of no-man's land of relationships, where they probably tolerate one another as group mates, but otherwise don't really like one another. The best that I have, therefore, is the idea that the two of them might be forced to figure their shit out for the sake of the group -- not because they are fighting, but because with such a non-relationship they aren't making forward progress within the group and therefore must be forced to interact in some meaningful way -- which could feel like a punishment? This feels very jumbled and disjointed, so let me know if you have anything better!
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thomas montgomery
Student • 17 YRS
ISFP
Occupation
Student
Nickname
Tommy
Pronouns
He/Him/His
Sexual Orientation
Pansexual
Status
Dating
Partner
Nadia Grisham
Riding Style
English
Cherish
is
Cherish the Moment

Breed
Shire Horse
Gender
Mare
Age
16 Years
Disciplines
Jumping, XCountry
Application
is Offline


Age
37
Pronouns
she/her/hers
Timezone
GMT-5
Contact
PM for Discord
29 Posts
265 Points
Tenderfoot
Mustang
Tommy & Sam
I see a ton of potential for these two. Tommy can be a bit difficult to plot because he's such a particular type of person, but I love him to pieces and I want him to have as many opportunities to play as humanly possible. So first of all, I think that Thomas is going to understand Sam better than most of my other Tenderfoots will. While he has a brilliant mind, he feels that he's only been able to be the thing that his parents perceived him as, and he understands what it's like to see yourself differently than your parent(s) sees you. For Thomas it was just him and his mother, but his mother saw him as a child well into his teen years, and she treated him as though he was the one who could save her world. Of course she died before he had a chance to, and he's still grieving her. So he understands what it's like to be close to your family and to not be abused. That's definitely a point of connection in a setting where most of the students don't have this sort of relationship with their parents. Thomas doesn't open up about his mother -- and definitely not about his father -- very often, but I think that he'd like to be able to with Sam, if that's something that you think would work for Sam. I'm not sure the setting and setup for a thread like this though. Do you have any ideas?
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flynn tyler
social worker • 36 YRS
ESTP
Occupation
social worker
Nickname
Flynn
Pronouns
he/him
Sexual Orientation
hetero
Status
single
Partner
n/a
Riding Style
Western
Flynn has been working with the ranch for the last ten years. They were the first employer to give him a real shop, following his time in prison, and as a result, he's stood by them through all of the struggles the ranch has been through.

He's a hard guy, and an even harder group leader. He holds his kids to high standards, and doesn't accept anything less from them than 110%. He's known on the ranch for being a hard ass who doesn't always follow the ranch's rules about physical proximity with the kids, especially the ones in his group.

Recently, however, he's discovered that he's fathered a child, and that has him scratching his head. He's been a father figure to the kids on the ranch for years, but the idea of having a daughter out there has caused him some distress as he attempts to do the absolute best by her that he can.

Hall of Fame
is
Champ

Breed
AQH
Gender
gelding
Age
12
Disciplines
trail riding
Application
is Offline


Age
26
Pronouns
she/her
Timezone
gmt-5
Contact
pm me | discord
14 Posts
145 Points
Tenderfoot
leader

Flynn & Sam
Sorry it took me so long to get back to you! I thought I had the topic tracked and it never alerted me. Oops! Anyways, I'd absolutely love it if these two had a sort of "tough love" kind of a relationship. I mean, this is just how Flynn is most of the time, especially with his kids, and he's not going to be the type to put with Sam just hanging his head and pushing through -- he's going to have to work for it, he's going to have to try harder, and he's going to have to (eventually) accept that there is a reason that he's here, and that it's not "just because". I'd love to do a thread between these two. Not sure if you'd be up to something between these two where Sam "finished" his chores, but sort of skated by and did the bare minimum (not for the first time that week?) and Flynn called him out on it? If that's something you'd be interested, I think it would make for a neat thread for them both, and if that doesn't work for you, I'm sure we can come up with something else. <3
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Dawn Barnes
Counselor • 31 YRS
ENFJ
Occupation
Counselor
Nickname
Dawn
Pronouns
She/Her/Hers
Sexual Orientation
Homosexual
Status
Single
Partner
None
Riding Style
English
Rosco
is
Journey to the Start

Breed
Dutch Warmblood
Gender
Gelding
Age
10
Disciplines
Hunter/Jumper
Application
is Offline


Age
22
Pronouns
She/Her/Hers
Timezone
Central
Contact
pm
25 Posts
185 Points
cliffhanger
Counselor
Dawn & Sam & Tanner
First off I love this character! Really a great job writing him out. I would love to see Dawn and Tanner interact with him. I don't think she'd quite fit in your antagonistic plot, but I saw that he enjoys pups and I want to be able to have Tanner and Dawn interact with residents together. Let me know what you think!
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Skin coded by Devin exclusively for Brook Haven Ranch.