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fiction: serial fiction
faraway: cast of characters
Warden (colonel equivalent) Keniston Spaulding:
Considered one of the United States' most competent intelligence operatives and national security specialists, Keniston Spaulding lived a life which could not be found with the Freedom of Information Act. Born in the year of the Bicentennial, he grew up gripped by twin inspirations of overwhelming national pride and alarming moral flexibility. Pulled from his "top of the sophomore class" standing at West Point, Spaulding was brought into the CIA at age 20, and remained a part of the Agency until it was absorbed into the Department of Corrections in 2020. He shortly after accepted a rank in the new hierarchy and a relative retirement as warden of Faraway, where he thought he could escape the ghosts of his past.
Commander (lieutenant colonel equivalent) Bartholomew Arthur Simpson:
Born in 2007, Bartholomew Simpson was the child of parents some considered overly liberal, and named after a cultural figure of their adolescence. An already troubled youth, Simpson's life took a turn for the tragic when, at age 17, his parents were slain as part of a cross-country killing spree initiated by domestic terrorist Ishmael Damu. He threw his life into criminal justice, failing to become a lawyer but finding an aptitude for corrections and law enforcement work. In 2031, Simpson accepted an assignment to Faraway, knowing he'd be close to the man who killed his parents, and through his brutal efficiency and obsessive-compulsive attention to detail rose to the rank of Commander.
Inmate IR0293461, Onuma "Anthony" Harata:
From his Department of Corrections File: "INMATE IR0293461, ONUMA "ANTHONY" HARATA, born approximately 2009. Suspected of string of assassinations and contract killings from Tokyo to Lisbon. Suspected of association with Asian crime families. Acquitted on twenty seven DOC arraignments. No concrete data of any criminal behavior until the plea bargain testimony of DOC Witness 723627-22 [see TextFile DC-29374.201: "Liu Hsang Affadavit Testimony" January 7, 2025]. Captured without struggle at home May 10, 2025, tried and sentenced to Faraway for seventeen counts of first degree murder May 16, 2025. Convicted in absentia of 58 other unsolved cases under the Associative Guilt Act of 2016. Skilled marksman and mechanic. Security code Black, high security procedures required."
Born in 2009, the man who became one of the Japaneze Yakuza's most feared snipers began life as an orphan who was adopted by crime boss Ryu Tanaka. Tanaka did regular sweeps of orphanages, looking for furious young acolytes he could mold into soldiers for the future. Wholly failing at any form of martial arts or interpersonal combat training, Harata found his calling in the cool metal grip of a rifle, its unerring sighs exercising his will. Tanaka encouraged this, and fostered Harata's skill until the young man was a world class sharpshooter. With an orphan's anger at his core, Harata went on to become wildly successful, leaving virtually no trace of his work as he custom crafted his munitions and worked alone in utter silence. It was only at the threat of destroying Tanaka, his arguable father figure, that federal agents were able to secure his testimony against Tanaka's rival Boss Tiger (a dishonorable means of combat, using law enforcement against an opponent). Still holding Tanaka's gratitude, Harata accepted a sentence at Faraway, where he met Ishmael Damu.
Inmate LS4684459, Lorenzo "Junior" Toleafoa Jr.:
A small-time triggerman who happened to catch the wrong assignment, Lorenzo Toleafoa Jr. was one of twelve goons hired to shoot up a pleasure boat owned by San Diego-area racounteur Raphael De La Cruz. Unfortunately for Toleafoa (one of only two survivors of this ill-fated assignment), De La Cruz was trying to work out a deal with a particularly vengeful US Senator that day, and the Senator's security staff responded with overwhelming force. Toleafoa was captured and sentenced to Faraway for this "egregious" crime.
Inmate XV4012287, Ishmael Damu:
From his Department of Corrections file: "INMATE XV4012287, ISHMAEL DAMU, born approximately January 1, 2004 to unknown parents in unknown location. Entered public record February 21, 2014, delivering toxic pizzas to Los Angeles Police headquarters Parker Center as a prelude to a missile strike [see VidFile LA-029374.793: LAPD Entryway Camera 01 Time Index 1609, VidFile LA-73648.200: MSNBC Footage, Missile Attack on LAPD 2/21/14]. Beginning August 30, 2018, spent four years studying at University of Arizona under an assumed identity [see TextFile: Alias(es): Jack Colquitt] using a pirate traceiver chip for identification. Received dual bachelor degrees in Communications and Psychology with minor in Administration of Justice. Disappeared May 2022 until hijacking a Federal Prisoner Transport [see TextFile US-07536.990: Unsolved Cases: Escapes: Serkhet Ashe aka Nia Jackson], cross country pursuit and capture June 17, 2024 [see TextFile US-09234.992, "Murder Spree Ends for Black Militant Leader", Seattle Times]. Convicted of several counts of Sedition, Murder 1, Mass Murder, Serial Murder, Eluding Federal Agents, Illegal Use of Federal Materials, Violation of the Registration Act of 2009, and several other lesser charges. Sentenced to Faraway prison June 22, 2024 for life with the possibility of parole after sixty years in case of senility or severe physical disfigurement [see TextFile US-90987.111, "Specific Instructions for Parole Consideration, Ishmael Damu Sentencing, 6/22/24"]. Subject skilled with numerous forms of martial arts and unarmed combat, as well as all NATO and DOC small arms, mechanic [see TextFile: Technology Restrictions, TextFile FW-00042.001: Closed Cases: Failed Federal Escapes: Faraway Helicopter Shot Down - June 24, 2024 Time Index 0317], and possible training in "soft arts" spirituality and psychology. Spent first year in solitary confinement, has injured seventeen guards and killed four, as well as undetermined number of prisoners in planned mass outbreaks of violence during his sentence, last case TextFile FW-34985.763 Daily Report January 20 ,2031. Security code Ultrablack, highest possible security procedures required. Federal Order 16-B [see TextFile US92103.011, "Federal Political Prisoner Agreement"] mandates the inmate only be terminated under situations labeled Defcon 2 or worse."
Raised in a family whose sole goal was toppling the United States government, Inmate XV4012287's path was clear from the day that a ten-year-old Ishmael Damu walked a stack of poisoned pizzas through the front doors of the Parker Center headquarters of the Los Angeles Police Department. After losing his mother early to a senseless and random act of violence, he is haunted by the face of his father in everything he does, devoting his life to The Way of The Circle and his family's work. Which most importantly means he has to be at Faraway.
Inmate AR0002638, Paul "Jonesy" Jones Jr.:
From his Department of Corrections file: "INMATE AR0002638, PAUL JONES JR., born November 22, 2008 to Paul and Sidney Jones, deceased. Entered public record as "Sigma Blue," hacker who terrorized network television and California governments by hijacking public data access for "digital graffiti" [see TextFile SF-65382.203: "Sigma Blue's Reign of Digital Terror," San Francisco Chronicle]. Convicted January 1, 2020 of more than two thousand counts of illegal use of public data lines and other assorted cybercrimes [see TextFile US-00003.029, "Arraignment of Paul Jones Jr. aka Sigma Blue"]. Is under suspicion for "Set It Off" cyber-robbery ring acts [see TextFile US 20364.092: Unsolved Cases: Conspiracy: Set it Off Digital Acquisitions, Unlimited], as well as numerous other unsolved digital crimes. Under Digital Security Act of 2020, is restricted from contact with any terminal accessing a network of more than two workstations directly or indirectly. Security code Ultrablue, digital restrictions listed [see TextFile US-00003.030, "Specifics of Incarceration for Paul Jones Jr."]."
The cybercriminal known the world over as Sigma Blue is a Black man, slight of build, soft spoken, quicker to hide or negotiate than fight. He'd likely have died the first week in gen pop at Faraway if not for the intervention of Ishmael Damu -- Damu and Jones' fathers were friends in college, and Damu recognized a potential resource when he saw one. A technophile of the highest order, Jones is the soft core of Ishmael Damu's closest confidantes, but a better team player for the long run than anyone else realizes.
Inmate WG9920173, Morgan Summers:
The Trinidad-born, Brooklyn-raised engineer was never really one for politics, but he still found himself in a rites of passage program with Ishmael Damu's father in college. This led to a lifelong bond between the two men, and "Uncle Mo" being a fixture and shining beacon of relative normalcy in Ishmael's life. When Summers' less-than-tactically minded wife inadvertantly led the wolves to the door, he secured freedom for his family while losing his own. By that point, the justice system had tossed aside much of the sham and pretense of "fair trials" and Summers ended up alongside his "nephew" at Faraway in short order.
Inmate PP174685, Abdul Quincy:
A street enforcer for a St. Louis Crip set, Abdul Quincy had slain more than twenty men before finding himself -- and a new faith in Islam -- within the walls of Faraway. He gravitated to Ishmael Damu when they found a shared interest in creating a peace between inmates and quickly became a close friend and source of information for Damu.
Captain Daniel Hathaway:
Daniel Hathaway was a top-of-his-class soldier in the DOC Junior ROTC in Joliet and accepted what was supposed to be a two year assignment at Faraway in order to increase his chances at a cushy desk job in the new nation's capital of Omaha, Nebraska (edging out the children of privilege along the way). Slight of frame and not really made for the brutalities of prison life, he fell into what seemed like an undemanding job in the prison's sleepy Situation Room ... until everything he knew started to change, leaving no more sure footing beneath him than so much quicksand.
Specialist Kyle Richards:
A former high school football star who was permanently sidelined by a knee injury, Kyle Richards was still getting used to not being the "big man on campus" when a crisis hit the normally sleepy super prison, and Richards would spend the rest of his life wondering how things could have gone so far, so fast.
Specialist Lyle Rayner:
An aspiring artist with severe shyness and thin confidence, Lyle Rayner practically had his career in law enforcement thrust upon him after his father suffered a massive stroke in his teens and he had to support his family. Relying on some very expensive forged documents, Rayner entered the Department of Corrections a year before he was legally able to at eighteen and sought out the most financially rewarding (and therefore dangerous) assignments until he finally landed at Faraway. He still harbors dreams of working in comic books and animation.
Secretary of Corrections Stuart Grayson:
A contemporary of Spaulding, Stuart Grayson was a bit older and a less interested in field work, a bit more willing to mollycoddle the higher ups, finding himself promoted time and time again until he was ultimately selected for a Cabinet-level position overseeing all of the country's intelligence, law enforcement, immigration and penal duties. He managed the position admirably until July of 2036, when all of the rules changed.
Inmate QZ9475211, Dr. Thomas Chunpakven:
After graduating near the top of his class at Johns Hopkins in 2028, Dr. Chunpakven fell prey to a gambling addiction that soon consumed his life. Left to trade his services for his life, he became the on-call physician for an east coast organized crime family. While patching up Gianni "Fingers" Genova, he was caught in a DOC raid and convicted of what are popularly known as "Consorting with Dangerous Minds" crimes, practicing medicine without a license (his own has been suspended years before due to heavy drinking) and aiding and abetting a felony. He was sentenced to Faraway, which turned out to help him get clean while again trading services for security, this time using his slight frame and delicate features as a bartering chip.
Private Third Class William Korenak:
After the death of his wife Noriko, Private Korenak accepted a two-year assignment at Faraway in order to provide a better education for his son. Korenak, a community college graduate with an associate's degree in Administration of Justice, he's not known as a thinker and hasn't advanced in the ranks despite having seven years with the Department.
Inmate OA6741297, Manuel Ortiz:
Initially arrested for using his tractor trailer to return to Texas with illegal immigrants, Manuel Ortiz ended up in much more trouble when three of his passengers turned out to be targets of the Department of Corrections' Terrorist Watch List. It proved opportunistic for an attorney general campaigning for re-election, who made a very public push of getting Ortiz sentenced to hard federal time. His sixty year sentence to Faraway was seen as a victory for the crime-and-punishment crowd, and his last sight before leaving for Faraway was the sight of his wife and three children being loaded on a transport that would take them to Mexico, despite all being Latinos born in the United States.
Inmate ZP7329476, James "Thor" Thornton:
A self-proclaimed acolyte of second-generation white supremacist hatemonger Warren Lancaster, James Thornton and his younger brother Simon grew up in rural Idaho, a place where racist thought was as regular an occurrence as the Sunday newspaper. Their father Peter often railed against minorities after the closing of his plant, which forced him into a much less lucrative sales job, and relocated the work he used to market into Asia. James' first run in with the law was carefully brushed under the carpet -- taking a cadre of like minds, abducting and spray painting a female African American ROTC cadet under his command and spray painting her black. He served briefly in the Army National Guard before receiving a dishonorable discharge for racially motivated violence against another soldier. He fell into the nascent militia group lifestyle, serving as a triggerman and all around Mister Fixit for organized white supremacists in the Pacific Northwest, culminating his career in the slaying of a Black congressman who didn't stop the gutting of Fort Lewis Army Base in western Washington. That crime ultimately led him to Faraway. Unknown to many people, he has an almost flawless tenor singing voice and was a favorite in church choirs, as well as being fascinated by Chaucer-era England.
Inmate PR6392012, Alexandro Munoz:
From his Department of Corrections file: "IMNATE PR6392012, ALEXANDRO MUNOZ, born sometime in 1999 to unknown Mexican national parents. Entered public record after receiving citizenship and Bachelor's Degree in Sociology from University of California at Irvine in 2021. Outspoken public speaker on immigrant rights, worked with Los Angeles based nonprofit organization Crystal Stairs, Inc. until its firebombing May 23, 2023 [see TextFile LA-79402.253]. Was arrested at Parker Center Sit In protesting lack of police investigation of the crime, [see TextFile LA-79402.409] and while incarcerated, was assaulted by unknown white prisoners for his political views, losing his tongue in the attack [see TextFile LA-79403.203, "Silenced -- Latino Activist Attacked in County Jail," Los Angeles Times]. Upon release, disappeared from public record, having tranceiver chip removed and placed on a shipping boat leaving San Jose December 9, 2023 [see TextFile SJ-02934.982, "Commercial Shipping Frigate Attacked by DOC Fighters," Los Angeles Times and TextFile US-82639.409: COINTELPRO: Interdiction Files: Alexandro Munoz #084]. Reentered public eye as a cat burgler striking the rich and powerful [see TextFile SC-32718.039, "Governor's Mansion Theft Tied to Political Robberies Statewide"], captured August 29, 2029 fleeing crime scene of theft of security documents from then DOC headquarters [see TextFile DC-83620.029, "Pentagon Robbed! Suspect Former California Immigrant Rights Activist," Washington Post]. Convicted September 7, 2029 of multiple theft-related felonies, sentenced to Sing Sing Federal Correctional Facility. Escaped September 20, 2029, eluded DOC authorities on multi-state manhunt until being captured November 9, 2032 in Albequerque, NM [see TextFile AQ-09273.744 "Excitement as National Criminal Captured Here," Albequerque Herald]. Sentenced November 10, 2032 to Faraway Federal Penal Facility. Expert at burglary, evasion, and other stealth and black ops methodology. Security code Ultrablack, containment protocols at full. Federal Order 16-B [see TextFile US92103.011, "Federal Political Prisoner Agreement"] mandates the inmate only be terminated under situations labeled Defcon 2 or worse."
Alexandro Munoz had never been one to go along with the more radical ideas amongst certain members of Los Angeles' progressive political scene, instead believing firmly in the examples of King and Gandhi. At least until he was purposely put in a cell block alongside several skinhead gang members, who tore out his tongue and orally raped him repeatedly before he was discovered, bleeding and battered, the next morning as his attorney visited. After his eventual release and an intensive healing process, Munoz disappeared and repurposed himself into a criminal, feeling that the examples he'd believed in were flawed. He committed a string of high profile political robberies, diverting the proceeds into his own work and back into the communities of color he loved. He almost expected an "I Told You So" attitude when encountering Khari Collins, who he'd called "a relic," but was accepted with only cameraderie.
Inmate AA0000034, Khari Collins:
From his Department of Corrections file: "INMATE AA0000034, KHARI COLLINS, born April 1, 1986 to Michael and Imani Collins, deceased. Entered public record as artist and community activist in late 20th Century in Atlanta, Georgia. Inflammatory poetry published nationally [see TextFiles AT-00003.918-00004.000], considered a central player in Atlanta Riots of 2007 but not convicted. After publicly opposing Registration Act of 2009, went into hiding that year. Captured July 9, 2012 in raid on New Afrikan Party headquarters [see TextFile AT-00034.716, "Black Militant Headqarters Raided by DOC in strike against terrorism," Atlanta Journal-Constitution]. Convicted of sedition, illegal possession of firearms, Violation of the Registration Act of 2009, and several lesser charges, sentenced to be one of the second set of prisoners of Faraway Prison July 12, 2012 [see TextFile AT-37452.930, "Black Militant among first inmates at super prison," from Atlanta Journal-Constitution]. Security code Black."
One of the pre-eminent members of the Atlanta branch of the New Afrikan Party, Collins was a poet and wizened elder amongst the neo-politicos of the late twentieth century. Unlike many of his embittered, broken contemporaries, Collins embraced the ideas of youth (he was, at one time, rumored to have memorized every lyric Eminem ever wrote) and was highly regarded for his ability to speak to mayors and gang members, bankers and Third World freedom fighters, and hold the same level of respect. "Free Khari" t-shirts were sold alongside ones demanding justice for political exiles Mumia Abu Jamal and Assata Shakur, who both died free but hunted in Cuba before that nation's bloody takeover at the hands of US forces in 2018.
Albert and Tina Madison:
The two surviving children of Gregory and Alberta Madison, Albert and Tina were born a year apart and were considered a blessing, because Alberta had suffered a miscarriage with her first pregnancy, several years before. However, the cost of medical treatment to make sure their births were flawless far outweighed the laughable health insurance Gregory Madison enjoyed from his private security consulting position. When the DOC made him an offer to work with systems management in correctional facilities, it was too lucrative to pass up. Madison excelled and was shipped around the country with his family until finally landing the most prestigious -- and most feared -- assignment of all, the limited contact world of Faraway. His assignment was until 2039, at which point he plans to retire from the DOC with his partial pension and get away from urban living as much as possible. Albert is a patriotic and athletic child and an avid baseball fan (of the Houston Astros, his birthplace). Tina was a gifted young singer with perfect pitch and a haunting, whispery soprano voice who loved to entertain her mother with happy songs to brighten up the oppressive atmosphere of living around caged men and women.
Captain Miles Cavanaugh:
The third son of a Colorado mining family, Miles Cavanaugh bought into the patriotic fervor of the early twenty first century, enlisting in the DOC as soon as he was of age. He served in Spain and Nigeria through military campaigns there, as well as serving at numerous domestic posts. His field experience in the infantry gained him a number of citations, and he sometimes regretted his rise through the ranks, missing the more direct chances for action he had as an enlisted man. When the United States capital at Omaha was overthrown, he cast his lot with a group of disgruntled fundamental Christian soldiers who were trying to reform the country with bullets and bravery, eventually becoming one of the major players in this new Union.
Major Simon Thornton:
Simon Thornton was the first born son of Secretary of Defense David Thornton, the retired three-star general who served in two Republican administrations. Raised with the same strict conservative upbringing, he never came to dismiss his brother James' more extreme views, keeping in touch with his younger brother as best as he could after James' convictions. Some rumored that James' notoriety hindered the elder Thornton sibling's career. Still, Simon Thornton's work ethic and determination saw him make a name for himself, and when the country started falling down around him, he took a lesson from history and called out to the best and brightest survivors he knew, suggesting a Union to lead the country out of the "darkness."
Inmate 1798245DJ, Nosalira Sampson:
Nosalira Sampson had always had a problem of being in the right place at the wrong time. She graduated from high school the day of the Second Digital Crash on Wall Street, meaning her already prodigious technical skills were heading for a job market that was suddenly technophobic. She was studying abroad in Taiwan as an exchange student and got caught up in the huge tsunami of 2030, destroying her burgeoning network of international career prospects. Frustrated, she turned to crime on the worst possible day, and robbed a bank with some very influential account holders. She was sentenced to Faraway in 2035.
Major Roy Leonard:
The oldest of five children, Roy Leonard dutifully had two hundred dollars taken out of every single paycheck and placed in an account for the use of his sick mother Orenthishia. The family grew up in post-Hurricane Katrina New Orleans, and the dedication of local authorities versus the apparent indifference of federal authorities drove a young Roy Leonard to seek a career in public service. After rising to the rank of lieutenant in his Fifth Ward precinct, he was recruited by the DOC for the Penal Division, and was assigned to Faraway in the fall of 2034. He is acutely agoraphobic and has six toes on his left foot.
Specialist Madelyne Fujikawa:
When Portland-born school teacher Madelyne Fujikawa read the Time Magazine story about lower test scores coming from children living in DOC facilities, she was appalled. She did some research, consulted with her family and applied for a position with the Department's Education Division, finally getting a first assignment at the most feared prison of all, Faraway. She accepted her position on Valentine's Day, 2036, and arrived on the Ides of March, which even she found ironic. She immediately leapt into creating an involving and upbeat curriculum for her students, who were overburdened with the horrors in the lives of their parents, increasing average test scores in her classes over seven percent in just six months.
The daughter of Samuel and Latosha Martinez, "Sammy" was a quiet and studious ten year old born on July 3rd, 2027. She'd spent her entire life in various DOC facilities, her father a sought after machinist and locksmith. Shy and reluctant to make friends due to never knowing them for long, Sammy developed an interest in the poetry of Emily Dickinson and the fiction of children's author Xiomara Vasques (who came to visit Sammy's school when she was six). Samuel Vasquez was in the seventh month of a nine-month assignment at Faraway when Secretary Grayson came to stay, and Sammy actually started to feel like some of her classmates at Faraway could be friends, all as terrified as she had been most of her life.
Inmate 3946271QP, Juanita Cruz:
Juanita Cruz was sentenced to Faraway after a highly publicized case from Minnesota. She'd been caught on video tape shaking and hitting her nine-year-old son Antonio after some bout of misbehavior on the boy's part. When the police came to her door, she reacted quite negatively, knocking the first officer unconscious with one punch and leveling the second with a table lamp. By the time backup arrived, she'd hustled her children out of the house with a sister and barricaded herself in with a shotgun and a wealth of home-made explosives. The standoff with Minneapolis DOC officers lasted seventeen hours, and ended with four police officers dead. At the trial, during her testimony, she claimed she was right in everything she did and would easily do it again. The media characterized her as disturbingly cordial and charismatic on the stand, and when the jury was unable to deliver a verdict, the judge issued a directed verdict of guilty against the stocky Latina, sealing her fate.
Inmate 9365291HE, Rochelle Torres:
A member of the Eight-Trey Crips street gang in Los Angeles, she was sentenced to Faraway for her part in an armored truck heist and chase that tore through the streets of south Los Angeles. She's intensively acrophobic, passing out when airlifted to Faraway. The youngest child of seven, she grew up a sub-par student in an environment where no one noticed sub-par students. Rochelle dropped out of school in eighth grade after finding acceptance and respect as one of the most violent females in her "set."
Inmate 3772492AI, Jennifer Lin:
Another case of bad luck, Jennifer Lin was convicted of coercive assault and aggravated rape after being found straddling a US congressman. He claimed he'd been drugged and raped, and since she was just a well-paid escort, she barely got anywhere with her overmatched public defender and an election year trial date.
Inmate PA2222283, John "Fat Jack" Matua:
Convicted of twelve counts of murder, John Matua's conviction was seen as the straw that broke the back of one of Dallas' most notorious Asian gangs. Finding themselves amongst established Latin and Black populations, Matua's Pula Tribe street gang obliterated a Michoacan-based syndicate in an orchestra of mayhem likened by the media to a Hollywood blockbuster. As the second in command of this family, answering to David "Papa" Tuiasosopo, Fat Jack was charged with the enforcement duties. His capture during a daring daylight raid by Dallas DOC officers also saw the death of his superior, and the end of the Pule Tribe's criminal activity in Dallas.
Inmate PQ9927451, Joseph Castro:
Twenty-six year old Joseph Castro ended up in a criminal lifestyle despite the wishes of his family. The only son of Maria Castro, the first born daughter of notorious narco-trafficker Juancarlo "Padrino" Castro. Sent away to study at boarding schools and Ivy League colleges, he nevertheless discovered his heritage and created a criminal enterprise in Conneticut based on extortion and intimidation, one so extreme that it drew the attention of both his family and law enforcement. Forced to throw their support behind the grandson they sent away, keeping Joseph out of the hands of law enforcement for a year before the DOC's all-invasive eyes finally found him. He was sentenced to Faraway as a means of punishing his Padrino, forever out of the reach of law enforcement in a variety of Latin American hideouts.
Corporal Shiela Jeffries:
Jeffries was born in Riverside California in the wake of the riots following a police debacle at an international poetry festival. Her father insisted she and her two younger brothers get involved in public service, with the youngest serving as deputy chief of staff for a senator and the oldest a commando in a special forces unit. Shiela's less-than-adventurous inclinations led her to correctional training, and she found a comfortable spot as a guard at Valley State Penitentiary before being reassigned to Faraway to address staffing shortages. She's worked hard at being unremarkable and undistinguished, dreaming of a day when she can move to Pennsylvania and buy a house with her savings, away from the world.
Specialist Tabitha Stephenson:
Tabitha Stephenson fell into law enforcement as a means to avoid being a victim of it -- after a series of disciplinary incidents at her Scottsdale, Arizona high school, her ROTC teacher saw an aggressive nature that could be useful and switched her course load to focus on crowd control and penal procedures. Stephenson found herself fascinated by controlling the behaviors of other people, and dove headfirst into it. She was accepted to the Department of Corrections training program on high school graduation, and applied for a position at Faraway the second she heard about its construction.
Inmate JJ0028362, Peter "Petey" Andrews:
Peter Andrews turned to a life of crime after a set of police cruisers crashed into the liquor store where he worked, and the city refused to pay for the damages, effectively making him lose the job. With mounting medical costs for his teenaged daughter's infant son, he agreed to join a local gang's robbery crew, performing a series of daring bank robberies throughout Louisiana. This included two hold ups of federal reserve transfers moving through Baton Rouge and New Orleans, where he was able to subdue security with non-lethal force, ultimately mitigating his sentencing. The jobs managed to net him enough money to insure the health of his grandson, but he was so skilled at disabling security personnel, the robbery crew threatened to kill his daughter if he didn't remain with them. Without any viable employment options in the deeply depressed economy, he stayed, eventually getting caught in a DOC sting that targeted the crew's driver, a man of extreme sexual needs. As of the time of this story, Andrews is the last surviving member of the crew, the rest meeting unfortunate ends in the walls of Faraway.
Specialist Demetrius Faireborn:
A failed West Point cadet, Demetrius Faireborn was the third born son of a military family that went back seven generations. He was essentially told that if he wanted a part of the family fortune, he'd have to find a way to serve, and tactical correctional service was all he could qualify for. So he found an assignment at Faraway was the most prestigious he could land, so he accepted it when offered.
Specialist Samuel Idelson:
For Texarkansas resident Samuel Idelson, the Department of Corrections offered him something that he wanted more than anything else: a way out of Texarkansas. They were hiring and he was determined, and soon that led him to the Arizona deserts, never again to think of his rural home.
Corporal Franklin Hinton:
Franklin Hinton was two months away from a transfer to a desk job in Omaha when the Secretary of Corrections made his emergency landing at Faraway. After spending ten years at the prison, he was none too happy about the prospect of never seeing another assignment, and performed his supervisory duties with a perfunctory and indifferent air. His wife Lois committed suicide during the interminable wait for Union reinforcements, and he's spiralled deeper into despair as the days went on.
Private Second Class Warren Martin:
A communications specialist pressed into service as a guard, Martin had just barely scraped by the minimum marksmanship requirements to keep his job with the forgiving assessment of a former mentor. A quiet man who collected DVDs and owned the only working karaoke machine in the entire prison, his life became a constant parade of terror when things started to go south at Faraway.