Free-spirit Mercurian Spacer
Niccolai is a Mercurian of blue-collar heritage. Growing up in orbit, he was always fascinated by the universe around him. His parents worked as part of the Merchants Guild, engrossed in the pursuit of status. Niccolai was sent to the best schools they could afford, though he never enjoyed being looked down on by the other kids who knew only wealth from an early age. When he enlisted into the Merchants Guild, it was out of national pride and a desire to live up to his parents’ sacrifices. He traveled the solar system, crewing a junker called the Flagrant Bishop with two schoolmates, Josiah Levitt and Karen Kross. Though they had ostracized him back at Mercury, they now came to respect his hard-working attitude and ability to meld with everyone he came across. For Niccolai, this was an opportunity to realize a life-long dream.
A couple years saw the three become great friends. Josiah and Karen fell in love and planned to get married, while Niccolai was happy to have reliable people his own age to interact with. His parents constantly pushed him to make friends with the captains of the various ships he encountered, building contacts and his resume. However, he preferred chatting with passengers and other spacers, picking up bits and pieces while making allies among the backbone of the trading system. His friends were never as adept or interested as he, but they always listened to his stories and appreciated his breadth of knowledge.
On the trip back to Mercury at the end of their mandatory service, the three friends talked at length about what they wanted to do going forward. Aside from getting married, both Josiah and Karen figured to follow in their parents’ footsteps and work towards government service. Niccolai just wanted to travel, though with no desire to captain a ship or rise to the seats of power within the Guild. He expressed these sentiments with his parents who were decidedly disappointed. They hammered him with guilt about his “laziness”, how they didn’t work so hard for him to become just another spacer. When he returned home, his parents had made arrangements for his formal acceptance into the Guild, which he couldn’t refuse. He still kept in touch with his two best friends, but it almost always ended in fights with his parents.
One day Niccolai awoke to a message from Karen. It said Josiah had died last night, and that it may have been murder. She was distraught. And confused. When Niccolai tried to reach her, her parents informed him she’d killed herself. This sudden loss hit him hard, and he immediately went about collecting as much information as possible about the incident. While no one would talk openly about the investigation with him, he began to see a pattern. When he confronted his parents about the murder, they were indignant about being accused of such heinous violence. But he could sense they weren’t telling the whole truth. The more he dug into the dealings of his family, the more horrified he became. Rumors of dirty deeds and black market operations sometimes tied themselves neatly around the Lorgalis family. Though he knew his extended family weren’t the most respected folks in the system, they weren’t part of the Guild and weren’t likely the names spoken of with fear. The shock of these realizations burned like bile in his mouth, and one day while his parents slept he grabbed his few belongings and left.
He quit the Guild with no notice, drawing heavy criticism from superiors and colleagues. However, the tragedy of his friends and his amiable, personable countenance earned him side jobs as an extra pair of hands aboard various ships. He has been traveling around the solar system ever since, generally staying out of the spotlight and away from dealings of his parents though always with an ear open for news of what happened to his friends.