IVANOVIĆ, AUNIKKA URSULA Jun 25, 2013 21:30:14 GMT -5
Post by NIKK on Jun 25, 2013 21:30:14 GMT -5
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Aunikka URSULA Ivanović
Nikk is an efficient sort, tomboyish in style and wary in nature. There is a part of her that fears her bear form due to past, not to mention a large polar bear is much harder to feed than the slight of a girl her human form takes. Nikk is largely distrustful and although she possesses sharp skills with throwing knives, she has been underestimated before, especially because she never shifts. At least, not on purpose.
It is a popular assumption by strangers that her shift is less spectacular than a massive predator like the Polar Bear, but when pushed over the edge she shifts whether she desires to or not. The lack of control scares her, so she does her best not to engage with others.
In truth she is a kind person, not one to turn away when someone is in need – however she is not one to be taken advantage of either, and can spot a faker a mile away. Attachment is not her style. She is a distant person, and getting to know her does not always change that. It is difficult to rattle Nikk, and often she will get angry before anything else. Aware of her abilities, she does not like to fight, but will do what she must. Above all, she will do what she has to not to hurt or kill needlessly - and will run if she has to.
Among the Menagerie she is not super communal; she keeps largely to herself as many tend to do - though unlike many she keeps a good balance between her social and introverted time, and does what she likes when she likes without much care.
She never knew why her parents had settled there, not really. Pevek was the northernmost city in Russia on the edge of the Arctic Circle, and while once in its early years there had been a population of over twenty-five thousand it had dwindled over the centuries to less than one. Pevek was a white wasteland, the warm summer being 'balmy' 40°F during the day and below 20°F at night. Winter weather was another story entirely; often, the nights were so long and frozen it seemed as if sun was banished forever.
As a girl, her otets often spoke of being an orphaned soldier to an ‘absent Mother’ but it was a long time before she understood he was speaking of Russia. Her mama was a stern woman without much joy; an odd contrast to her affectionate father who even in his late-night drunken stupors would tell her fairytales and sing her to sleep with vodka on his breath and pipe-smoke filling the air. Aunikka did not remember much of her girlhood spent there, but she remembered the snow. The snow, otets’ stories and pipe smoke … and the ice bears. The ice bears were magical creatures. Strong and white and wondrous.
When Aunt Natalia whom long ago had relocated to Canada offered to help her sister’s family move, mama seized the opportunity with frantic starvation, relocating their family within the month. The journey was hardest on otets who had no interest in leaving his country; but to make his wife happy and give his daughter better opportunities - they left. Aunikka could barely contain herself though the trip, having never been outside of Pevek let alone Russia and the anticipation of a new place had her vibrating with excitement.
Churchill, Manitoba, Canada, they had moved from one remote city of snow to another – however there was one huge difference. These people were strangers to her. No longer did she know each family they passed on the street; no longer could she speak freely and comfortably without the self-consciousness that came with learning a new language. English was easy enough for Aunikka to pick up; however, it proved more difficult for mama and impossible for otets to learn.
Starting school was difficult at first, but through the years her Russian accent dropped and she spoke perfect, unblemished English. It became a wall she hid behind, setting the language barrier out before her and away from her parents. Otets no longer told stories, and he no longer laughed. He did keep the bottle, the bottle and the pipe-smoke and the glassy, sad eyes of a damaged man. Whether their distance was because of the move, that she had spared less time for him as she grew older, or he had retreated even further into himself she did not know. It could have been all, or none of them.
After graduation, her mother made it perfectly clear she was going nowhere on her parent’s dime. As most small-town raised girl, Nikk had ideas of where she wanted to go. Immediately the summer after her last year of high school, she found a job waitressing at the Moose Hut, one of the town’s few restaurants. Over the years (and multitude of regulars) the Moose’s good food and drink had turned into an all-night bar after hours, and as the new waitress Nikk got the late shift.
It had been a busy evening, but the night would be slow as it usually was on Tuesdays. Jorge had to pick up his wife from work, so Debbie (who had worked for the Moose for forever) and Nikk sent him off for the night.
An incident at the bar caused Nikk to shift for the first time, sadly killing both Debbie and the man that attacked them. Horrified, she ran – and kept running. Down through Canada she headed for the states, and along the way met Paul.
It was Paul that taught her how to make it on the road, how to defend herself, and how to trust. They traveled together for a year or more. Another incident, another death … and alone Nikk reached New York. It was there that UNIT took her.