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Oliver Tatum AKA Oddball Ollie

"Some call me a genius while others say I'm lunatic. Who do you think I am?"

0 · 445 views · located in The Mojave

a character in “The Desert Pilgrims”, as played by Harper



Name: Oliver Tatum AKA Oddball Ollie

Age: 45

Gender: Male

Description: Ollie is a thin man compared to most people that are 5’10”. Add in the factor that he has gangly arms and legs as well as a thin angular face, he appears to be someone quite long compared to his width. His dark, wire thin hair is usually partially hidden underneath his blue cap that he obsessively wears as often as his old, nearly worn out leather jacket. Even though he can usually be found mumbling to himself around the town or acting a little erratic, he is rarely found without a warm and friendly smile on his face while he isn’t working. The only distinguishing mark on his body is a long, four lined scar that reaches across his left shoulder towards the midpoint of his back.

Background: No one is really sure when exactly Ollie became the eccentric person that he is or if he was born as a half-crazed man but it is known that he was born into a broken family with a father that suffers with schizophrenia and a mother that was often away from home stating she was out of the house due to work. However, he and his older brother by three years knew it was so that he could escape her husband through an adulterous, drug filled lifestyle. He and his brother Eric did their best to protect and keep their younger sister, or half-sister to be more accurate as they presume her to be the offspring of one of their mother’s illicit lovers. Either way, the duo did their best to care for Abbey.

As the two grew older, they schemed up a plan for Eric to take custody of Abbey as well as Ollie once he turned eighteen. The duo worked their butts off with preparing for a legal battle and had a job and even housing prepared for them once Eric turned eighteen. However, their plan never became fruitful as a horrible accident happened that took the life of Abbey. Ollie was heartbroken and even to this day blames himself for Abbey early death.

Even with his past struggles, Ollie seemed to be a man that would be able to go far with his life as he was accepted to a university and flourished quite well within the classroom but after receiving a PhD in engineering and working at the school for a few years, Ollie was starting to get bored of the sedimentary lifestyle with no excitement. On a whim, Ollie gathered a few of his belongings and left his home state of California on a motorcycle, stopping in random towns or cities or a few days, weeks or even a few years as he picked up odd jobs along the way.

Things changed for him during his stay in Topeka, Kansas when he met Bella. Due to his mother, Ollie was never one that was interested in getting into a relationship with another person but he fell head over heels in love with this woman. He stayed for five years in Topeka and during this time his relationship with her grew until one day the aliens that they heard through the news were in their city. The duo fled south, barely making it by as the aliens seemed to only be one step behind them wherever they went. Upon reaching Texas, the duo reached the apex of their journey while in an abandoned school with a handful of other survivors. The group was attacked in the middle of the night and there seemed to be a very slim chance for escape. Ollie and Bella were lucky though, they made it through the halls and was about the reach the brink of freedom when a Stalker got in between Ollie and freedom with Bella. With teamwork, the two of them probably could have escaped together but instead, Bella fled leaving Ollie to the fate of the Stalker.

Ollie was lucky to survive but was wounded on his back, a scar that he carries to this day. However, the biggest pain wasn’t an external one but the broken heart he received from Bella. No one is really sure what would have happened to him if he didn’t find John, his son and a few of their followers as they were making their way to west. He might have died from his injury or maybe he would have lost his will to fight but instead, he was able to find a new purpose as he joined John and became one of the twenty that trekked and found Sanctuary. Some however were not as accepting of Ollie as some of the people in the group and worried that he was a crazed man that would bring danger to himself and to the group, or even a worse fate was that he was a Sleeper. Some still holds this belief of Ollie even to this day.

Skills: Even though Ollie has a few screws loose in his head and it can be hard to distinguish between fact and fiction with the jumbled mixture he often spews out, he is quite intelligent. He has a mind of an engineer and a tinkerer and can be quite savvy when it comes to building inventions, tools and nearly any mechanical work. While the town’s resources are scarce, with the right equipment, tools and maybe even a few alien weapons, he could offer much more.

So begins...

Oliver Tatum AKA Oddball Ollie's Story


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#, as written by Harper
"Hey Ollie, I thought you were going with Paul today to work on the irrigation system?" A woman with graying blonde hair asked as she reached across the table to grab the used dishes from breakfast with her left hand as she balanced a baby on her right hip. While not the best made nor the most furnished house in Sanctuary, the three bedroom house was a cozy home for those who lived there. Caroline and her husband Howard used the bedroom that was upstairs while Ollie used the room downstairs which was stationed close to the garage in which Ollie spent a decent amount of time tinkering around while at home. Emily, who is a young nurse recently moved in after her husband died from an unfortunate accident took the master bedroom with her five year old son and her two year old and six month old daughters.

"Busy." Ollie said as he stood up from the dining room chair and placed his blue hat on him head. Giving a slight nod to Caroline to show his appreciation for the breakfast she made, Ollie started to head out the door as his concentration was already fading from Caroline and moving towards his inner monologue, muttering a few words aloud every so often. "Yes, yes... much more important... much more fun."

"Yes, you say that you are busy. However, with what? You can't just be living in your own world all day, we all need to do our part for the town if we was Sanctuary to succeed."

"Yes, a success. A success it would be." Ollie said with a nod, though it was obvious that he was barely listening to what the woman was saying and was likely not going to heed to her words. "Yes, it would be a shining star compared to my past endeavors. Yes, a star."

Leaving his house, Ollie started to walk down the street. As he started to walk, a familiar tune came to him as he started to hum as he walked. It didn't take long before he added words to the tune. However, it was quite obvious that he changed the lyrics from the original Twinkle Twinkle Little Star as he quietly sang multiple times, only pausing to take a breath.

"Twinkle twinkle plasma staff,
Such a wonder is your blast,
All across this bore-some land,
Like a present in their hands,
Twinkle twinkle plasma staffs,
Such a wonder is your blast."

This wasn't the first time that he thought about the plasma staffs that the aliens had, rather it was something he has been thinking of quite often the past month. He knew that Partisans already used it for weapons but Ollie had a better idea. Knowing that the aliens used plasma as an energy source, he knew that harnessing the power was possible if only he could figure out exactly how to do it which seemed to be harder done than said seeing that he hasn't heard any news about someone being successful as of yet.

However, the first thing he needed to do was to get his hands on a plasma staff or any useful alien technology that could further his work. Maybe even a Sleeper if he was lucky enough to come across someone that has been afflicted or better yet a live warrior that has been captured. All he had to do was to get John and Yolanda to side with him and help him get such materials from a Partisans or any other means. While he couldn't exactly see it from their point of view, Ollie knew that some of the people in the town would be against him having such a weapon. Maybe they were worried that it would attract aliens or maybe that he would blow the weapon up accidentally while tinkering around and cause a big and dangerous explosion.

"Yes, I''ll be on a rampage of mass destruction." Ollie said a slight chuckle midway through his song after tenth or so time singing it as he imagined himself strolling through town with the weapon and causing havoc, knowing that it was something he would never do. His sudden outburst was met with a few stares intermixed with looks of confusion from those he passed by but not heeding to explain his outburst, Ollie continued to walk.

He knew that going to John was probably not the best choice at the moment since he was suppose to be working on the irrigation system with is son instead of being in town thus making Yolanda a better option which seemed fine by him. . He was a bit excited as he thought about how he would be able to teach Ms. Songbird the new song he made up so that she had a new song to sing since she enjoyed singing. Maybe she would even like his song as he hoped she would and maybe would even preform it in front of others.

"Yes, a song fit for a songbird." Ollie muttered as he passed by two men with fear written in their eyes as picked up bits and pieces of their conversation about a man named Jack and a woman name Marina.


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#, as written by Harper
As Ollie progressed down the street, his tune slowly started to loose its words as he continued singing by mumbling bits and pieces of the lyrics. However silence came as he paused in front of the bar. A small smile crept on his face as he formulated an alternative plan if Lady Songbird and the Mayor both declined his wish on getting a plasma staff.

"Yes, the Spider could be of help. Yes, a wonderful help the Spider could be in finding the present." Ollie mumbled in reference to his song, hoping that Gary could be the solution to his problem. While Ollie wasn't too sure how far the Spider's resources and power reached throughout the town and outside its border, he was quite sure that the Spider's web was sticky enough and would have at least a few threads within his massive web that would make a plasma staff accessible.

"Yes, Yes. The Spider's web might be able to get the twinkle twinkle or at least know where Ollie can find my present in their hand"

With a slight nod, Ollie continued down the street. As he neared the Mayor's office, he could see the Mayor and Ms. Songbird from the window. He was half- hoping that the Mayor wouldn't be there so that he had a chance to speak to Ms. Songbird since she was normally more open to listen to what he had to say compared to the Mayor. However, from the appearance of their discussion it appeared that getting their attention might be harder than he thought since the two both seemed to be heavily occupied on another issue. He looked at the two with a curious glance before he headed towards the door.

"Yes, something has arisen. Hopefully not on a trifling matter. Yes yes, an entertaining one would be much more pleasant." Ollie muttered before walking into the lobby.

A sigh was heard as the secretary looked up and saw Ollie. It was quite evident that Zoey wasn't very fond of Ollie, especially since he came to talk to Mr. Callum or Ms. Gunn nearly on a weekly basis as he often goes off on a random, incoherent tangent. Before Ollie could make his way too far into the building, she got up from her chair and quickly headed towards the man. "I'm sorry Ollie, but this is a bad time to visit the Mayor and Ms. Gunn. They are both busy discussing some important matters right now. You can either come back and see them at a later time or leave them a message for them to look at when they are done."

"But the twinkle twinkle is of more importance than on a trivial and dull discussion. Yes, they must know about the present, the wonderful twinkling present." Ollie said with a slight nod as he started to take a few steps forward.

With a slight look of confusion on her face, Zoey tried to figure out what Ollie was talking about this time. "Twinkle twinkle? As in something shinny?" Zoey asked which was responded with a nod. Remembering that Ollie and the Mayor's son was working on the irrigation system today, she wondered if Ollie came back in need of more supplies. "Is the twinkle twinkle a tool or something? Do you guys need a tool or something to finish your work?"

"Yes, a tool. A wonderful and beautiful tool. With it I can start my work on capturing the beauty of the twinkle twinkle."

"Look, if you need a tool, go see if we have it somewhere in the town. If you can't find it come back and maybe Mr. Callum and Ms. Gunn will be free."

With a nod, Ollie headed towards the door. "Yes, Spider will know where to get the tool."

With a sigh, Zoey headed back to her desk. She was a bit concerned about what Ollie was planning and decided that she would tell one of the two that Ollie came once the situation died down.


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Yolanda Gunn Character Portrait: Oliver Tatum AKA Oddball Ollie Character Portrait: Theodore Daclaveon Character Portrait: John Callum Character Portrait: Gary Lane Character Portrait:
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"Oh, you're an old flatterer, John Callum," Yolanda trilled, leaning further across the desk and slapping the old man on the shoulder. He was little more than bone underneath the faded, but still respectable, suit jacket he wore almost as a uniform of office. Briefly the thought crossed her mind that he might be sick, what with the willingness to undertake an arduous an dangerous journey, not to mention the rare allusion to the heartache of his bereavements. Yolanda and John were friends, she felt - at any rate, they worked well together - but this was one subject that had remained off-limits. In one sense, Yolanda was glad. She'd never had children, and her relationships never lasted more than a few years, so John's hidden pain was alien territory to her. She knew better, too, than to try and dissuade him from going on this diplomatic mission. For whatever reason, he'd made up his mind. He'd only see further argument as a waste of time, an annoyance.

Her train of thought was briefly interrupted by the sight of Ollie Tatum passing outside, his head bumping up and down in his distinctive walk, almost as if he was on puppet strings held by a child. The engineer was a law unto himself, his slightly unhinged mind pinwheeling from one idea to the next, but the novel creations and solutions that sprang out of that chaos had served Sanctuary well and often. Yolanda gave him as much time as possible; when not baffling her with scientific terminology that seemed almost a language of his own making, he could be charming company.

John used the distraction to move the conversation on from his hints at Yolanda's temporary elevation. "But, I won't be going alone. I'll have to take along some protection, for the trip over to Garland, if nothing else. You know the people of Sanctuary best. Do you have any recommendations?"

"Well now," Yolanda murmured, drumming her fingernails on the desk as she ran through a mental checklist of the town's inhabitants. This really was the kind of work she was best at, partly because she loved it. She had a miniature biography of every person in Sanctuary memorised, with their history, family - living and dead - their personalities, strengths and weaknesses, hopes and dreams. She updated as she went about the town, listening to problems big and small, doling out advice, giving assistance and succour. Immediately her mind lit on one name.

"Well now, if you won't take Paul, and I know you'll want Moses to stay here, you couldn't do much better than taking Teddy Daclaveon."

John raised a spiky white eyebrow.

"Teddy. Hunter, survivor-type, makes his own bows and arrows," Yolanda explained. "Used to be Special Forces. Not a lot will get past Teddy on the road."

Moreover, Yolanda had the feeling Teddy had things on his mind he didn't want on his mind. Teaching Sanctuary's children to fire bows and arrows was a worthwhile pursuit, and Teddy appeared good at it - patient, fair, approachable - but some men needed to be busy, to keep moving. Otherwise, they moved to the bar and stopped there, another good man, another able body, gone to waste. Yolanda often thought the aftermath of the Invasion was harder on men than women, their failure in the role of protectors writ large on the changed landscape across the world. Even guarding somewhere like Sanctuary or Garland from bandits, they were still just fighting for second place. She drummed her fingers on the desk again and unfurrowed her brow, pushing the though out of her mind.

"You could take Luke off sentry duty too. The trip out might do him some good." The younger men, the ones who had come to adulthood after the Invasion, sometimes needed to blow off steam; sentry duty and irrigation projects weren't exactly the bright lights of the big city. "But you'll have Garland's men too. Take many more of your own, and they'll think you don't trust them. That's a bad start to a trade mission."

John steepled his fingers and nodded. Yolanda knew he didn't know Luke from the rest of Deacon's sentries, but it was no harm for him to see that she did. If nothing else, it would set his mind at ease about Sanctuary being in good hands while he was gone.

"But," she continued, this time rapping her knuckles on the desk, emphasising that this was her final opinion on the matter, "you could always take another negotiator.

"Not that you're not capable," she said hurriedly, cutting off the objection that seemed to be coming. "But two heads are always better than one. Makes it harder for their talking heads to gang up on you."

He pursed his lips. In the quiet as he thought, they could both hear voices - Zoey, the secretary, and... yes, those were Ollie's unusual inflections - and then a closing door and silence again.

"And you would suggest?"

"My first thought was Bobo." Again, the eyebrow peaked in query. "I mean Barbara Bowery. She used to be a businesswoman - Wall Street, not washtub," she explained, laughing self-deprecatingly. "Mergers, acquisitions, all that high-falutin' stuff. She's bound to have something interesting to say."

"And your second thought?" asked John, playing his part in their little dance to perfection.

"Mr Lane. And his morals. He's crooked enough to think through a corkscrew, and I'm pretty sure he only has his own interests at heart - not that I'd ever let on to him - but why not make that work for us, John?"

"Mr Lane and his morals," he repeated. "How interesting."

"As for Mister Lane and his morals, well, that's why I came to see you," Yolanda said, pushing herself up from her informal perch on John's desk. He'd baited the hook earlier, but she'd known better than to go jumping feet first into the delicate subject. Now that John had dispensed with his own business, Yolanda knew she had his full attention.