CHECKERS IS Offline
soka hoku pelekai
twenty-one - stitch - ashley stymest - hero
The number of couches he’s crashed on the past week. Half of them are little more than thin canvas stretched across thick springs, but the discomfort hardly registers against the persistent ache in his chest. He seeks affection from the chaos and disorder that spiral through his life. (From the one night stands and part-time acquaintances he imagines could be friends if he weren’t so difficult. So destructive.) Breathes them in deeply until he’s lightheaded and suffocating.
Days pass beneath a blissful haze of ignorance. Of illegal substances and bottles that all but vanish beneath the insistent press of his mouth. (Expensive hobbies that fade memories to even darker shades of black and disregard autonomous movement for autopilot.) Between the steady tedium of intoxication and backlot brawls, he revels in the abyss of his own decay. A tormented labyrinth of cognizance that leads him toward instability and destruction. (Words echo in his ears, clear despite the distance. “You are built to destroy,” they say. “You can never belong.” But he remembers ohana. Remembers that his last name once held meaning – though, now, it holds little more than water through a sieve.)
Years he’s lived in this city. (But it’s not his home.) Without purpose, without motivation. Without love. His existence is empty and searching. An endless parade of foster homes and adults who pretend to give a shit about his wellbeing. His perfect recall is a curse, frustrated by the reality of amnesia that accompanied his crossing the portal. He strains to remember, but the breeze off the ocean and faceless, fragmented kaleidoscope of activity are all that come to mind. (His mind is fickle, and he no longer recalls the detail of his previous world. Sees, feels, and tastes only impenetrable darkness.)
The memories are faint and dwell at the periphery of his consciousness like dreams. Linger like nightmares. They flash beneath his eyelids in a flurry of forgotten faces and colors he associates with warmth and affection. Pain him, like phantom limbs or the myriad of stitches persistent across the angular planes and deceptive curves of his soft, acquired form. He comes from no home, and a broken one. Two realities, both distinct and both true, which compete for the near infinite space of his mind. This city is not his origin, but his birth escapes him. A raw, engineered emergence that left him little more than a number. (But, here, he is also a number. Nine digits and a name that isn't his own.)
Months have seen eight tattoos and more. They’re meaningless distractions. Bright colors and sharp lines that speak to a feral aesthetic. They curl along his arms and stretch across his chest. Kiss his cheek like a secret.
Days after the Grand Councilwoman left Earth, something else came. Something darker. His family scattered on the wind and, though he searched, he never found them. (And, now that he’s forgotten them, he still searches. It’s an action that haunts his dreams. Reaching and grasping and crying out into unyielding darkness. There’s light on the horizon, a faint dawn that bleeds to grey, but he can’t see it through the wetness on his lashes.)
Months he’s lived on the streets. He ruined his apartment. (A haphazard slip of fingers and fascination with fire.) Watched the kitchen burn and catch and spread to neighboring rooms. There were no deaths, no injuries, and, for this, he is neutrally grateful. He both wishes and does not wish to harm. Longs for a quantifiable indicator of the destruction he is capable of.
Times he tried calling his last foster mother before she blocked his number. It’s also the number of partners during any given week. He doesn’t feel any attraction, but the attention is worth the exchange of fluids and deep-seated sense of shame that settles firmly against the base of his spine.
Members of his family, himself included. He recalls dark eyes and kind faces. Lopsided smiles and hands that readily hold tight his reaching claws.
Jobs he just barely maintains.
Times a month he visits the portal, though it does nothing to restore the portions of himself that he has lost. His form, blue and compact, on the other side is familiar and strong. But, lacking purpose, he never remains. Drinks in the power that seeps into his bones and wonders at the unimaginable chaos that replaces once familiar landscapes. Something like an itch tickles the border of his mind, but still his memories evade him. They’re delicate, he imagines, and he’s never had the patience to coax them near. His personality is full of vices, his behavior full of sin. He’s temperamental and stubborn. Inflexible and prone to disorder. He replaces street signs at random. Habitually collects the left shoe of a pair and scatters them about the city like some personal scavenger hunt.
Word that hangs, suspended in freefall, at the forefront of his consciousness. Ohana means family, but family is something that evades his desperate grasp.
The number of fucks he wishes he could give.
Note: Having primarily lived in the real world for nine years, Stitch suffers heavily from amnesia. This leads to the confusion and darkness within his personality. He knows he has the capacity for good, but his original purpose of destruction is largely overriding any remnant influence from the family he once had.
Soka’s name draws from several influences – primarily the Tantalog and Hawai’ian languages, as well as film canon. Despite his knowledge of languages and ability to learn new ones with ease, Stitch is noted as having a preference for his native tongue – Tantalog. In that language, soka means “sorry”. This was chosen in recognition of the character’s regression from loveable and mischievous to destructive following his journey through the portal and subsequent memory loss. Hoku, Soka’s middle name, means “star” in Hawai’ian. This is in reference to Lilo’s observation of a falling star – which, in reality, was Stitch’s spacecraft. Pelekai is, of course, Lilo and Nani’s surname. Soka has adopted this for himself, though he no longer recalls a personal connection to the name.
I’m presenting here a character who has largely reverted to his “pre-ohana” behavior. He doesn’t remember his family. Just has the vaguest of sensations that something is missing. Something important. He’s constantly seeking affection and affirmation, but is frustrated by the impetus since the origin escapes him. He doesn’t well understand his own wants and needs. Feels only a slight tickle of remembrance. He’s inadvertently drawn to destruction and chaos. (Often causes it on his own.) Any jobs he holds are fleeting at best. (A stint in a kitchen here and there. A week of deliveries or other, meaningless errands. A handful of clinical trials that leave him shaking and confused by their terrible familiarity.) The only constant thus far has been his presence in the underground fighting rings. His superior speed and strength, despite his slight, unassuming form, warrant victories with relative ease.
Though he tends toward destruction, Soka often fights this impulse for reasons beyond his own ken. He knows he can be a better person – wants to be one. As such, his outwardly destructive nature is often curbed by self-destructive proclivities. He drinks and dabbles in illegal substances to ease the void that’s settled against his heart and avoid truly damaging actions to his current home city. Despite the nature of his design, Soka is unbelievably tenderhearted. He loves easily and openly. Guards his heart with sarcasm and skepticism, but is quick, albeit begrudging, to allow others into his life. He’s hopeful, even though he’s known pain, and perpetually trying to please and protect.
Ashley Stymest was chosen as Soka’s face claim largely due to his somewhat stereotypical “bad boy” and “alternative” aesthetic. Stitch is an outcast, even in his own world. Genetically engineered and inherently misunderstood. Throughout the film, many negative impressions about Stitch were formed solely based on his outward appearance. I wanted to give Soka an appearance more conservative types would be repelled by, as well as offer him an outlet for his energy and a means of self-expression. Ashley Stymest’s build is also rather unassuming. As far as size is concerned, Stitch is not a very large creature – he’s also rather young and innocent looking – so his face claim would ideally encompass this attribute, as well.
Due to an acquired human physique, Soka’s human body is undeniably weaker than his true form. However, several abilities do transfer, albeit to a lesser extent. Soka’s skin, though soft to the touch, is surprisingly resilient, being fireproof, bulletproof, and shockproof. Despite the resiliency of his skin, his bones are not as dense in this form, and so are more prone to breaking. (He’s also less liable to sink like a stone in water, though he does not know how to swim and has no intentions of learning.) His lack of sensitivity, as well, has manifested in this form as a high tolerance to pain. So high, in fact, that he is completely indifferent to physical pain and has been diagnosed with congenital insensitivity to pain, or congenital analgesia. Other physical attributes of note are enhanced strength, speed, hearing, flexibility, and vision.
Despite his myriad of physical modifiers, Soka’s true ability lies in his hypercognition and ingenuity. He was designed as a genius. An exceptionally intelligent creature with the ability to solve problems, he’s demonstrated this prowess via engineering, language intuition, and a certain destructive flair. He has a true photographic memory, and as it relates to other senses, records every moment of his life flawlessly. (Though passage through the portal did corrupt his earlier memories.) He’s an encyclopedia of all topics related to his home universe and learns – and retains – new information with frightening speed. He’s also brilliant in the kitchen and at guitar.
about CHECKERS !
Hello! Checkers reporting for duty. I’m twenty-six and currently located in EST – though will shortly be moving to CST. I’ve been writing for a while now, though haven’t ventured to a Disney-based site in ages. (Feels good to be back at one, though!) I’m a huge nerd when it comes to history, mythology, and the science behind the universe – as well as a handful of other things. I love video games – and totally wish I had more time to play them! – as well as a bunch of Disney- and non-Disney-related fandoms. Looking forward to writing with you all.
spiffy details !
Lilo & Stitch.
birthday: June 26th.
nickname(s): So, Soso.
powers/abilities: Physical enhancements including: vision, speed, strength, flexibility, and hearing. His mind also has the processing power of a super computer, and he’s well-versed in combat and engineering.