Jan. 31st, 2016 01:08 pm
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Comments about how I play Brienne go here, or PM me if you'd prefer!
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Name: Hannah
Other characters: Emily Finch ([personal profile] conifer)

Name: Brienne of Tarth
Alias: Brienne the Blue
Fandom: A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones (TV verse)
Canon point/AU: Shortly after her fight with the Hound, after briefly finding and then losing Arya Stark
Journal: [personal profile] ursas
PB: Gwendoline Christie
Age: 30
History: Here and here!

At first glance, it's difficult to tell that Brienne is a woman at all. She's a tall, hulking figure, not lady-like at all, and used to being thought of as ugly and brutish. She's most comfortable when in full plate armour, when she can focus the job at hand and her duties and conduct as a knight, and is visibly awkward and uncomfortable in a dress. Brienne takes great efforts to be courteous and honourable, though she can often come across as blunt and believes that actions speak louder than words. She can become flustered when embarrassed. Brienne is very strong and proficient in hand-to-hand combat, being certainly one of the strongest combatants seen in the series. She can be vicious when fighting and is not above playing dirty - the only way she considers herself as breaking the rules of chivalry she tries to stand by, both because she's desperate not to be at a disadvantage in combat and because she feels that the vows she's trying to uphold in having to fight at all trump the honour of the fight itself (e.g. trying to protect Arya Stark being the priority rather than fighting fairly with the Hound to ensure her safety). To those who befriend her, Brienne bestows her loyalty and love freely, dedicating herself to them and not expecting them to do the same for her. To her enemies, she is a dogged pursuer and holds a mean grudge, and will not stop until she has obliterated them.

All her life Brienne has been scorned and mocked for her appearance, being tall and broad-shouldered and having very unfeminine features, and in some ways her vocation as a knight allows her to wear those features almost as a badge of honour in a role where appearances are unimportant rather than simply continuing as the daughter of a lord in dresses and finery, where her looks are an immediate sharp contrast to the role she's expected to play. However while at first glance Brienne seems to fit perfectly in her armour, as soon as people get close enough to realise she's a woman, she's objected to the same scorn - in this role, while her physical build and strength suit it perfectly, her gender is the cause of the ridicule. While her armour is a protective shell against one variant of mockery, then, she's very aware that it invites another strain in itself. However, she's able to reassure herself somewhat by knowing that at the very least, she's chosen this strain and is able to better defend herself against it - if nothing else, she's stronger and fiercer than any who'd seriously challenge her. She tries hard to ignore slights as far as she can, wanting to prove that she's above them and doesn't need to rise to them, but it's hard for her, often visibly so.

As well as the sword and armour suiting her, Brienne is drawn to the life of a knight because of the honour and chivalry attached to it. As someone who's suffered a great deal of unkindness, she adores the idealised chivalrous concept of a knight and strives to live up to this herself - partly this is an attempt to rise above the cruel comments hurled at her and have an ongoing reminder that people can be better than this, and partly it's because she rationalises the kindness of others toward her as in keeping with this code (which in itself betrays her own lack of self esteem, as she attributes it toward them being 'knightly' rather than wanting to show genuine courtesy to her as a person). When people are kind and courteous to her, she responds in kind by clinging to her role as a knight, offering her service instantly to Renly and Catelyn when they've done nothing more than treat her fairly. Brienne's loyalty and love are like those of a dog, latching onto those who are kind to her and dedicating herself to them. While her greatest strength comes when serving and protecting, she can often get tunnel vision with regard to those she dedicates herself to - it's difficult for her to see situations objectively, and once she's set on a task she commits herself to it wholeheartedly without seeing the bigger picture a lot of the time.

Rebellion Role: Soldier

Rebellion Motivations: Brienne's primary motivation in Panem is to protect Sansa Stark, and if the Rebellion persuaded her that Sansa would be better off with them than in the Capitol she'd work for them willingly. Otherwise she would have to be forced, possibly with threats toward Sansa's wellbeing.

Capitol Role: Soldier

Capitol Motivations: The same as above - Sansa is a hostage in the Capitol and Brienne would work with them to ensure her safety/freedom.

Preferred side: Either!

First Person Thread:
[Brienne finds this all distasteful. Was it not enough that they'd ripped her from the grave to continue to serve, without making such a spectacle of it as well? She focuses on her contempt, letting it distract her from the vulnerability that shook straight through her both in knowing that one man should not have that power to resurrect and essentially control another, and in how her surety in killing her own enemies back in her own world was now shaken. How could she fight, how could she protect, how could she avenge, if those she battled were only going to rise again almost as soon as the final blow had been dealt?

She doesn't feel she's the right person to make this sort of broadcast. She doesn't belong here, doesn't see herself as any part of this war, and certainly does not believe in the cause of the Capitol she's been brought to fight for. Brienne decides she needs to say something, just to get it over with, but she's never really had a poetic way with words. Her usual brusque manner will have to suffice - maybe it would make them think twice before trying to force her into this role again.]

I expected a little more permanence in my demise. I suppose I should thank the Gods ... and the Capitol ... that I have another chance to prove myself. Still, I hope for a swift end to this conflict, so that both the dead and the living can rest peacefully.

The blast knocks Brienne off her feet, and it takes her a good minute to recover, the dust stinging her eyes and the screams of the wounded muffled by the ringing in her ears. She's heard plenty about wildfire, especially in the aftermath of Blackwater Bay, but it's something else to witness such an explosion up close. She's irritated with herself for how slow she is to react, knowing that every second here is crucial, and realises it's not so much the explosion itself that she's jolted by but rather the sharp reminder that combat here is so different to what she's used to in her own world. There's no way she can prepare for this.

As she recovers her senses, she takes stock of the wounded writhing on the ground around her. It's not just her own comrades; she recognises men and women who not five minutes ago were trying to kill her, now desperately clinging to life by a thread. The one closest to her has his guts spilling out from his uniform, but he still reaches for Brienne, grabbing at her ankle. It doesn't take much to despatch him, just a precise swing of her sword to separate his head from his body.

It only occurs to her afterwards that she'd probably be regarded as very cold blooded for acting so drastically and efficiently. She was merely doing what the poor man needed to be done. Just as she does a moment later, when she almost trips over one of her team in a similar condition, and despatches them just as swiftly. She'd probably be regarded as subversive for that, but the woman wasn't going to make it anyway. Just because she was forced to play in the war of this land, it didn't mean she was going to be cruel about it, or show any loyalty beyond that which she grudgingly had to in order to save her own life and that of her charge. The only code she could follow here was her own, devoid of both King Renly and Lady Catelyn to adhere to, and her own code told her that she could at least give these people the dignity of a quick death, whichever side they were on. That dignity, that honor, is the only thing she'd be able to ask for herself now, after all.


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Brienne of Tarth

February 2016

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