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Sampson Yates
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In-Character
Full Name: Sampson Yates
Nicknames: Sam.
Birthdate: 9th June, 1865.
Current Age: 25 Years
Occupation: Footman at The Sanditon
Reputation: 9
Perfectly respectable on the surface, if with a bit of a bad attitude downstairs.
Residence: Staff lodgings, Sanditon Inn.
Hogwarts House: Slytherin
Wand: Walnut, 10 1/4”, dragon heartstring, bendy. (It was previously used, but works fairly well for him.)
Blood Status: Muggleborn
Social Class: Working
Family:
Sampson hasn’t bothered to keep in close contact with his muggle family, because if they knew where he was he’s sure they’d be asking for money.

John Yates | Father | Muggle | 18xx
Susan Yates née Smith | Mother | Muggle | 18xx
Edward Yates | Brother | Muggle | 1862
Mary Barker née Yates | Sister | Muggle |  1867
Rebecca Yates | Sister | Muggle | 1869
Tommy Yates | Brother | Muggle | 1870 - 1871
Caleb Yates | Brother | Muggle | 1873

Appearance: They say a good footman should be ‘tall and handsome’, and in Sam’s opinion, he checks both boxes. At 5’9”, he has a trim but hale build, and takes care of his appearance as he is supposed to, with a clean-shaven face and neatly combed fair - almost strawberry-blond - hair. His skin is pale and burns easily and his eyes are a light blue. His pointed nose and chin, however, give him a bit of a weaselly look, which coincidentally says something about his personality. He is right-handed.

History:
CHILDHOOD | 1865 - 1875

Born to a poor muggle family in Marylebone when times are tough and the economy’s downturn is set to worsen further, Sampson, second child of John and Susan, does not have much of a future to look forward to. His father works at a factory, his mother too frequently falling pregnant after that to do much more than outsourced work from their home with young children to take care of. Most of the children are healthy enough - only Tommy doesn’t make it to his first birthday. Sampson gets to go to a local school for a year or two, just enough schooling to know how to read and write, before his mother pulls him out to help with her work and looking after the younger ones. Just before Caleb is born, John gets caught up in a machinery accident, and, though he lives, is too badly crippled to find factory work. They have to downsize into new rooms, and the children squabble constantly, especially when their father grows worse in temper at the uselessness of the situation. Sampson isn’t too young to notice that they’re badly in debt.

Meanwhile Sam is also noticing that he can do things. No one else has time for him, but he sees it, he can make things happen. He’s made glass shatter, sent things flying, found things hiding under his pillow when he’s sure he never put them there. He wins fights in the streets, finds pennies he should have lost, little things mostly: but it’s what keeps him going.

WIZARD SCHOOL | 1876 - 1879

The summer he turns eleven, Sam finds out he’s special for real. His parents are in a bit of a daze, but there’s no good argument they can make when they find out there’s a fund to help him go to this magical school. Besides, eleven-year-old Sam promises this is a good thing. He’ll go and learn magic and come back home with it in his pockets, ready to put these new powers to use and help them all.

He does go to Hogwarts, is dazzled by it and all the possibility, and is sorted into Slytherin. Quickly - far too quickly - the illusion wears off. Sam isn’t so special here, he’s just like all the other pupils, and if anything he’s less than them, because plenty of the boys in his dorm have parents as rich as kings, and, when they find out about his normal family, seem to think his blood is as good as mud. Not all the students are bad about it, but it’s too late; every slight snide comment now takes its toll, is a torment to him. Sam doesn’t care to be friends with the people like him, when those are the boys, but for the accident of his birth, he could have been.

He has dreams of proving this somehow - climbing the society ladder maybe, with his talent for wandwork or for making friends in the right places, or a fancy Ministry career - but Sampson has been counting on persuading his parents to put him through Hogwarts at least until OWLs. For the family’s sake, of course. Only, in the summer of ‘79, before his fourth year, his chronically out-of-work father lands the whole family in debtors’ prison.

FAMILY? FUCK FAMILY | 1879 - 1883

Yeah, except Sam, because he’s not going to rot in there with the rest of them. He’s furious that they’ve scuppered his chances of ever finishing his Hogwarts education - or hanging onto the few useful skills and social ties he’s made there - and privately he doesn’t see why he should have to throw away the rest of his life for his parents’ mistakes. Besides, glorified workhouse that debtors’ prison is, they’ll at least be well fed. Sam disappears into Diagon Alley, weasels his way into being put up by one of the few wizarding families he knows, and mulls over what he’s going to do next. Fuck the muggle world. He’s a wizard. He can do what he likes.

Well. Turns out he’s too young to do much at fourteen, so the parents of the friend he’s staying with kindly find him a position as a hall boy in an upper class household. Sampson is less than thrilled, but he swallows his pride and goes along with this move, if only because he has always longed to see what life at a rich house is like.

He stays there for a good few years, graduating to third footman at seventeen and subsequently getting a little too... involved with one of his employer’s teenage daughters. Sam persuades her not to admit to her parents who really got her pregnant, which she falls for happily, and once she has been sent to stay with an aunt he makes up a tidy little story about having to leave, and gets to move on with some perfectly good references. (What becomes of the pregnant girl? No idea. If he’s honest, he never really cared.)

THE LONG GAME | 1884 - 1890

He continues life in domestic service, taking another position without fanfare, if only because he has decided, the serving aside, it’s more comfortable than a lot of potential professions. And so what? He likes (loves to hate? it’s complicated) rubbing shoulders with the higher-ups. The fact is he’s within reach of the rungs up, he’ll just have to be... more creative about climbing the social ladder. But he’s sure there are easier ways to climb than through hard, thankless work. What do they take him for?

In 1885, he becomes a footman at the Sanditon inn and resort, which is a livelier scene than the last dead-end of a household he worked in. He progresses quickly, an outstanding footman - at least when he’s on display and interacting with the guests - but the problem is, from footman there’s nowhere else to go, not unless he decides to push the current under-butler down the stairs. Still, Sam finds the odd bit of entertainment to his life, as if the Sanditon isn’t an excellent stage on which to scrutinise the cream of upper-class magical society when they think they’re on holiday! And, to be honest, there’s just something about strolling down the boardwalk that makes it easier than ever to imagine himself as one of them, entitled to it all.


Personality: Devious and self-serving, Sam has no loyalty to anyone but himself. That’s just the way the world works, isn’t it? Someone’s got to suffer, and it might as well not be him. He’s happy enough to play at subservience, deference, keep his head down and wait for an opportunity at which to present himself in the most charming guise he can muster. He’s a chameleon when he wants to be, likes to think he knows how other people tick and how to manipulate this to his advantage. Some more astute people do see right through him when he’s putting on airs or trying to weasel his way in or out of something - but usually they’re people who have nothing to offer anyway except kind-hearted sentiment, which is certainly no good to him. He’ll play nice(ish) as far as he is able, but he’s by no means above blackmail or cold hard callousness when it suits. He’s patient often to the point of laziness (hard work is not his calling) and frequently delights in idle, cutting mockery, but on the other hand he’s not afraid to take initiative and act swiftly when it suits him, nor even to burn a few bridges along the way. He knows he was meant for more than this, and maybe one day someone else will be smart enough to see it.

Other:
— Straight, but will flirt with absolutely anyone if he sees some benefit in it.
— Will do almost anything if he sees some personal benefit in it.
— Sends anonymous tips into Witch Weekly just to stir the pot.

Sample Roleplay Post:


Out-of-Character
Name: MJ
Age: 25


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