Name: Tobias Toby Underwood
School: George Hunter High School
Hobbies and Interests: Magic: The Gathering, track, gardening, game shows, babysitting
Appearance: A 511 male weighing 160 pounds, Tobys overall build is reasonably fit for a male his age. He has long arms and legs, making him appear a bit gangly, but because of his lazy posture and slouching habit he is easy to miss and unremarkable in a crowd. He is quite fit, but as a distance runner his arms arent very muscular, and his body is very lean. Tobys chestnut-brown hair is slightly wavy and usually a bit over medium-length, giving it a naturally ruffled appearance. Toby has upturned, large brown eyes, which are dark in color and stand out prominently in his face, contrasting with his light skin. Though he spends a decent amount of time in the sun, his Caucasian features rarely get much darker until they eventually become sunburned. With a heart-shaped face and a slightly crooked, roguish smile, Toby is physically appealing and has a definite charm. His nose is short and straight, with thin, expressive eyebrows and thin lips with an average-sized mouth.
Toby keeps up with normal standards for hygiene. His hair is washed routinely, and he has long become a practitioner of good dental hygiene. Though somewhat self-conscious of doing so, he is diligent about moisturizing and tends to have dry skin that even cracks in the winter. He trims his nails too, especially his toenails, to avoid discomfort during long runs. Tobys facial hair is almost entirely limited to his upper lip and sideburns, but he finds it sloppy-looking and is always clean-shaven. His good habits stem from regular prompting from his mother in his youth, such that it has become normalized.
Toby has a simple style of dress, one which he rarely deviates from, not wanting to spend time or money on new clothes. He is usually seen in solid-color t-shirts and jeans with a few different overcoat pairings, depending on the weather. Most of the time he will pick between a neutral-color windbreaker, a heavy, dark brown leather jacket, or an unbuttoned plaid shirt in red or brown, depending on if it is cool, cold, or warm out. He usually wears plain ankle socks, and favors comfortable running shoes in almost all cases. Toby recently turned 18 and so his mother treated him to getting his ears pierced and get a tattoo. As a result, Toby now has two black stud earrings, one in each earlobe, as well as a stenciled tattoo on his left ankle featuring a depiction of the Magic: The Gathering color wheel, with the five-pronged Planeswalker symbol in the center.
Biography: Toby is the only child of businesswoman Angie Underwood, a financial manager at an up-and-coming retail supply chain in Chattanooga. As a successful professional in her business, Angie was well-off but had begun feeling like she was stuck in her day-to-day life, and ultimately determined that she wanted to start a family. After a brief but unsuccessful series of relationships, partly due to her difficulties compromising her career, Angie reconsidered her goals and felt that she would be willing to be a single mother. She decided to attempt artificial insemination, hoping to experience life raising a child while still being able to pursue her own goals.
One major challenge of single motherhood appeared, however, when Angies maternity leave period neared its end and she could not find caretakers for her son during the day. Lacking close friends with the available time and uncomfortable with the idea of regular daycare or a stranger nanny, she decided to call on her own parents. Fortunately, though they were reluctant to leave their lifelong home in South Carolina, the offer to live with their only daughter and only grandson was ultimately one they did not want to pass up. Toby was born in mid-November, and named after his grandfathers middle name, though the nickname he uses now was quickly found more suitable for him.
Toby did well spending most of his childhood with his grandparents as his primary caretakers. Stuart Gramps was an active and lively man even given his relatively young age as a grandparent, and Melissa Gram was just as energetic. The family was very close, and though her parents often fretted about Angies scheduling, she was usually able to maintain the balance between her work and being home with Toby as frequently as possible. As a little boy, Toby was cheerful and charming, but though he often tried to push his luck in getting toys or gifts, his grandparents were firmly against spoiling him, and quick to give a disciplinary talk when he got into trouble. Angie was a bit more susceptible, but Toby usually didnt go to her very often, since his grandparents would confront her if she relented too often.
This boldness would carry into elementary school, where Toby was well-liked by his peers for his friendliness and confidence, though even as a youth he did poorly in academic pursuits, being at the slower end of the reading spectrum and becoming easily distracted during science and social studies lessons. He enjoyed math a bit more, finding the logical methodology easier to process, but his grades would never progress beyond passable. This was when Tobys first and greatest passion appeared, during his lunchtime periods in 4th grade, when he and a number of other adolescents became involved in playing various trading card games, with Magic: The Gathering quickly becoming Tobys favorite. Though many of his peers struggled with the more legalistic and math-reliant rules of Magic, Toby was quick to pick up on the nuances and wordings, and soon became very successful at the game. Though he partly succeeded by using misunderstandings to his advantage when playing with less-experienced kids, getting caught a few times made him eliminate this tactic.
As a young adult, he quickly amassed a large collection of cards, and soon became a regular participant in Friday Night Magic tournaments and other casual local games in his area. Toby has had a good deal of success in most competitions, though never beyond the state area or any major tournaments. He favors white and blue cards, since they give him more options and flexibility in responding to situations. He dabbles in standard construction format, but usually sticks to modern or limited, since he feels keeping up with the constantly shifting metagame is a hassle. His tactical play is usually good, though his biggest mistakes come when he underestimates his opponent or, more often, when one miscalculation causes him to overthink his moves and make mistakes.
Entering middle school gave Toby an outlet for his energy. Though his behavior had mellowed out considerably, he often found himself feeling restless and antsy, unable to sit still for very long, albeit not to such a degree that his family were concerned. He had found that gym class helped him expend this energy, but organized sports were unappealing to him, requiring greater hand-eye coordination than he had and a degree of tactical thought he didn't care to put into athletics. He decided to apply for the track team early into his first year, hoping it would be suitable to his needs, and was happy to find a great deal of enjoyment in the activity. Toby's stamina was naturally good, and he was skilled at conserving energy during long runs, so he quickly focused his efforts on distance running. He had modest success at competitions, but ultimately never viewed track as more than an enjoyable recreation, and was content to simply attend and perform without truly dedicating himself.
Because of Magics expensive nature, Toby found himself in need of money after his 12th birthday, when his grandparents talked Angie into reducing his allowance to encourage him to develop a stronger work ethic. Toby acted quickly to make up the difference, and was fortunate enough to discover that a nearby family had two toddler-aged children and frequently employed babysitters to watch said children while the parents went out. Toby was fortunate to find that, though the two boys were rambunctious and hyperactive, he had a knack for predicting their actions and keeping them entertained and well-behaved, and he had endurance to spare to keep up with them. He enjoyed the chance to spend time with kids, finding them refreshingly direct and earnest. It didnt take long for Toby to begin approaching other community members offering his services, finding it a fulfilling and low-effort way for him to make money.
Even as early as the start of middle school, Tobys lackadaisical attitude and sense of humor had earned him a sizable circle of friends, though many were more casual acquaintances than anything particularly close. Because his mother was still permissive of him so long as he didnt get into serious trouble, he frequently had friends over, or treated them to trips or lunches in his early teens. His easygoing charisma added to his popularity, and Toby enjoyed the company of all sorts of people. Toby tends to take a secondary role in groups, simply enjoying the conversation and offering an occasional quip. He is a good mediator, and his playful humor often helps to diffuse conflicts. Because he takes a more passive approach, he is prone to react slowly, and has adopted a wait-and-see attitude to social situations, which alternately works for and against him.
This mindset describes Toby's demeanor even more broadly than just among his peers. He lacks drive and ambition and is content to simply accept what comes to him, reacting rather than working proactively. He is good at conversing with many different people, though he generally prefers people with eclectic interests to talk to, finding their experiences interesting. Toby is laidback and even-tempered, rarely becoming more than irritated or snippy at the worst. As a result, he responds to most situations with a level head, and is never known to panic even in crisis. He has a strong streak of laziness in him, and though he usually keeps up with responsibilities he is also wildly inconsistent in doing so.
Academically, Toby has poor-to-middling grades; he maintains a low-B average, but this often fluctuates between near-or-outright failing on work, and recovering with extra effort to avoid failing. He finds English class droll and science and history overly complicated, but he usually manages a low-A grade in math, appreciating the straightforwardness of the subject. His family is unhappy with his poor performance, but have ultimately accepted that Toby is not a gifted student and are at least content as long as he passes his classes, which he does.
Though he spends a lot of time out with friends, Toby does make an effort to be at home. His mother has always enjoyed a close relationship with him, though not necessarily a nurturing one, and when she's not working they will converse while doing something in the same room, sometimes for hours on end. Toby has actually managed to teach Angie the basics of Magic, though she is far from fluent and has little interest in becoming more competitive. Toby's grandparents have always been closer to parental figures for him. His Gram is his closest emotional confidant, who he will approach on the rare occasions when he feels lost or is struggling with an issue. Sweet but witty, she is someone he admires greatly, being relatively active despite being in her mid-eighties and having been a young factory worker in the last years of World War II.
Tobys mother has had a flourishing vegetable garden since before he was born, having been fortunate enough to possess home with a sizable backyard. Toby has only begun helping out with it as of two summers ago, however, as until now Angie maintained most of it. Because Tobys mother has begun having slight issues with the amount of kneeling required for much of it, Toby felt obligated to support her in this. To his surprise, not only was the work inoffensive, but he actually began to enjoy it. Angie ultimately phased out the majority of the physical labor, which Toby took up, though she stayed and conversed with him during the routine. He doesnt mind the work, being fit and flexible enough to not become uncomfortable, and he finds the repetitive nature of planting, weeding, and harvesting to be a relaxing affair. He also gets satisfaction out of eating the greens and vegetables they gather, and he has also begun his own, smaller flower garden in a different plot of the yard, simply to try his hand at a different style of the activity.
Also of notice is Toby's relationship with his Gramps, who has had perhaps the closest familial relationship with Toby since his early teens. Though he had existed as a paternal figure in Toby's childhood, he was quick to transition to a rapport more akin to peers, chatting about his life history and experiences and sharing his sense of humor. Not only was Gramps the most frequent attendee of Toby's meets, he also introduced him to what became his favorite TV genre, game shows. Though most television bored Toby and left him restless before long, the fact that this genre and other such competitions had slightly more interactivity kept him engaged. He would spend much of his time watching these shows with Gramps, occasionally joined by Angie and Grams, but never really found interest in other variants of reality TV, finding them overly dramatized. Toby mostly watches quiz shows, especially ones with unusual twists, recently becoming interested in 'Ellen's Game of Games', and has long been a fan of 'Family Feud', since the zany nature adds to the fun. He is bored with shows that are entirely obstacle course-based or too gimmicky like 'Wipeout', since they often run stale after too long and he loses interest.
As his final year approached, Toby was encouraged by his family to find a goal after school, even though they recognized and acknowledged that college was probably not for him. Though he continues to babysit frequently, usually taking at least two nights a week, he has found that other jobs are difficult to stay motivated for and require too much obligation for him to maintain. After considering some options and speaking to his grandparents, Toby decided to take a gap year to travel, either as a volunteer in a foreign country or simply to backpack somewhere. He is aware that he is somewhat directionless, and though he isn't overly invested in becoming tied to a specific ambition, he recognizes that he needs something to dedicate himself to, if only for financial stability so he can support his true passions. He hopes that leaving Chattanooga and seeing new things will give him that purpose.
Advantages: Toby is likable and has a magnetic appeal, being able to get along with many different people and good at diffusing conflict. Though he isn't stoic to the absolute, his levelheadedness will help him act quickly and decisively. Distance running in track has given him a high level of endurance, and though he isn't as fast as a sprinter he can still manage above-average speed if need be.
Disadvantages: Toby tends to be passive in interactions and is liable to lack initiative; while he can make smart choices, he may not realize the necessity to do so right away. Similarly, Toby has difficulty taking things seriously and lacks commitment to pursuits that don't grab his interest. Though it will be one of his strengths, being sociable is also a weakness, since Toby tends to be well-acquainted with many of his peers and being familiar with the killers and victims will take a hard toll on him.
Hey, Espi. Toby's looking pretty good but he's temporarily DENIED on this pass pending a couple things I'd like to see clarified.
Is Toby still babysitting? Has he ever sought other work? How much of his time does this job take up now?
I'd like to see Toby's interest in game shows expanded. This is a very broad category; what kind of game shows interest him, and what sort if any is he definitely not interested in?
Post here once you've worked on these notes and I'll give him another look!