Schwanhelt Bulge

Name: Captain Schwanhelt Bulge

Gender: male

Age: early - mid 40's (indeterminate)

Fandom: Galaxy Railways (anime)

Journal:

Typist:

Quick Biography

As a young man, Bulge was so impressed by the news of a member saving a young girl from a train accident that he joined the Space Defense Forces (SDF). The SDF is a quasi-military organization run by the Galaxy Railways for defense and rescue operations on the vast network of the railways. Another group, the Space Panzer Grenadiers, related to the SDF, seems to be an elite force more concerned with conventional military operations, ground combat, etc. Bulge eventually served under his hero, Captain Wataru Yuuki, as his first officer on Big One. Big One is the locomotive for the space train used by Sirius Platoon. He didn't learn that Wataru was the man he'd heard about until he encountered Wataru meeting with the survivor of that accident, now grown up. Bulge immediately fell for her. Her name was Catalina, and she'd recently graduated as a chef. Her dream was to open a restaurant.

Catalina and Schwanhelt became lovers, but like any other member of the SDF, his free time was sporadic and overshadowed by duty. Catalina didn't seem to resent it, but more than once she expressed her worries over his safety and a desire that he could ignore the call to duty every once in a while. Bulge intended to meet with her and give her a ring when Sirius Platoon was called to rescue a train that was endangered by a vortex into another universe. Big One was deployed from Tabito, Wataru Yuuki's home, instead of the base of the Galaxy Railways, Destiny Station, because they were the closest train to the situation. Wataru cut his leave short, and his impatient young sons, Manabu and Mamoru, followed him to stow away on Big One.

Shortly after they were discovered and scolded, the danger of the vortex became much more obvious as a huge space cruiser was seen emerging from it. To destroy the cruiser and close the vortex, Wataru decided to ram it with Big One, leaving the rest of Sirius Platoon to wait with the stranded trains until another train could come rescue them. He made Bulge captain of the platoon in his place and charged him with protecting the crew and civilian passengers. Wataru's noble sacrifice left Bulge with the sad duty of returning his grieving sons to their home and telling his now-widowed wife that Wataru had died in the line of duty.

When he made his own rendezvous where he was supposed to meet Catalina, she'd left him a note explaining that she knew he was going to tell her good-bye because his job was so dangerous. So she left him instead to spare him that pain. The man at the restaurant hotly declared that Catalina deserved someone better who could help her realize her dreams. After a visible flinch, Bulge wished them both luck. He obviously mourned herand Catalina supposedly still loved himbut he passed up a chance to visit her in her restaurant when he found her again years later.

Five or so years later, Manabu Yuuki, now a member of the SDF after his brother had been killed serving with the SPG, was assigned to Sirius Platoon. He had a hard time adjusting, butting heads constantly with his partner first officer Bruce Speed. For the most part, Bulge let them try to work things out themselves, but suspended Manubu once with orders to decide what it is he really wanted to do with his life. Bulge knew both his father and brother had died in service, and that Manabu was young enough to find another career and life if he wanted. Louise Fort Drake, another new member of the platoon, thought Bulge was being cruel, but in the end Manabu was a better officer for having had to make the decision to stay on his own.

Their duties were pretty much the same as always, defense and rescue of broken down trains. Bulge had to swallow some mean-spirited orders from his leaders—even once being ordered to destroy Big One with a crew member still trapped on board instead of letting it fall into the hands of pirates. Just as it was becoming clear that the worlds served by the railways were being threatened by a force from another universe, Bulge was forced to work with the conniving leadership of the Intelligence Division. It galled Bulge to realize these people, whom he was bound to obey, were going to ignore their only chance to defend themselves against the invaders.

An enemy soldier, a member of a subjugated race of plant women, risked her life to bring them the plans for a weapon that could be used against the alien forces. Because of being from an untrusted source, her advice and pleas were ignored by the Intelligence Division. Several platoons were destroyed trying to fend of the invasion with inadequate firepower. When Bulge was ordered to allow an injured crew member to die in order to repair Big One faster to fight a hopeless battle, he disobeyed the order and sent her for medical care. Later, the same man angered him enough to get punched. Bulge took full responsibility for his insubordination and was stripped of his rank and command at a court martial.

But as a man who held the loyalty and trust of people even outside his own platoon, he was able to have Big One secretly modified with the weaponry required to defend Destiny Station. He was given his command back unofficially by Commander Todo, with Supreme Commander Layla Destiny's knowledge. The invaders were driven back, but only at the cost of a space defense fortress, the entire Vega Platoon and massive damage to Big One.

Physical Abilities

Bulge is a normal adult male with military training. He can shoot a gun, knows the ins & outs of the space train he commands, drives many kinds of vehicles and presumably can pilot a small space plane or shuttle (all the other first officers seen in canon can, and he was formerly the first officer of Big One for Sirius Platoon).

Superhuman Abilities

None.

Unusual or Magical Possessions

He has his sidearm, a laser pistol, that presumably has limited power and can't be recharged here once it runs down.

Appearance

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Bulge is a tall, broad-shouldered man in his early to mid forties. He's still ruggedly handsome, even though he has a ragged vertical scar across his right eyebrow. He prefers to wear his SDF uniform, even when off-duty, but when forced to dress in civies, he tends toward bland colors. His hair is brown, probably a bit too long for the modern idea of a military cut, but there are others (the Yuukis for example) with wilder hair. His eyes are blue, but he often keeps them a little too narrow or wary for the color to be seen often. His nose looks like it may have been broken some time in his life, but if it was, it was years and years ago.

Personality

When he was younger, Bulge was a little shy around women. Now he acts as if he's completely unaffected by them, other than reminders of the woman he loved. Still, it's easy to say that Bulge gave up a family and romance for his job. He's one-hundred-percent a SDF captain. Sirius Platoon is his family; he treats the younger members like his children, and the older ones like brothers. Except, of course, that as captain he has to make the hard decisions and expects to be obeyed. At first, he may come off as a complete hard-ass about things, but he's careful about his decisions, and is often right when you stop to consider the situation.

Bulge is a very private man. Only the oldest member of his platoon seems to have any clue about his past romantic disappointment. Even on vacation in the company of two of his fellow captains and presumably closest friends who aren't direct subordinates, he doesn't talk about his life outside the SDF. He doesn't seem to have much of a life outside his job. He doesn't even drink all that much. His favorite beverage seems to be a specific brand of tomato juice. He can't carry a tune in a bucket.

He very much admired his former captain, Wataru Yuuki, and his authoritative command style and idealist approach to his duty probably evolved from Wataru's teaching. He often quotes Wataru (much to the delight or dismay of Wataru's son, Manabu, who serves under Bulge). He is strict with his platoon, but he seems to hold himself to very high degree of honor and responsibility. It seems his abandonment of a life outside the SDF dates back to when he earned his captaincy by a field promotion right before Wataru nobly sacrificed himself and the original Big One locomotive to save the rest of the platoon, his sons, and the passengers of the train they'd been called to help. Wataru's sacrifice affected him very deeply, especially seeing the effect his loss had on his wife and sons.

So overall, Bulge is perhaps a little gruff, rather direct, and very observant. He's a man of energy, though not inherently violent for all that he's a military man. He's prudent with the use of his sidearm, though not above punching someone if they deserve it. And if he considers you his responsibility, he'll take care of you, hell or high water.

Relationships

  • Family: none for real (Manabu Yuuki, Louise Fort Drake, Bruce J. Speed, David Young, Yuki, by default)
  • Lovers: Catalina
  • Score card (People they snogged without dating):
  • Friends: Wataru Yuuki, Julia Reinhart, Ryūsaku Murase
  • Enemies: the entire Intelligence Bureau of the SDF
  • Allies: Supreme Commander Layla Destiny, Commander Heigorō Tōdō, Temeraire
  • Affiliations (to a particular group, of origin, or not): SDF, Sirius Platoon

RP Canon

After his arrival at the Mansion, Bulge seems to have taken up part of the duty of chopping wood for the winter. He is used to being active and useful. And when the dragon Temeraire arrives, Bulge seems to think of him somewhere between a friend and an intelligent train engine. He's decided to build a pavilion for Temeraire and maybe Iskierka, if she wants.

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