If all children are equally interested in creation and destruction, Arkanis Mortel took this to its logical extreme. He astounded his parents and teachers with intricate constructions from the crudest materials at an early age, but also shocked them in casually destroying them mere moments later. An isolated child, he did not take - as some might expect - to destroying the creations of his peers. Perhaps to improving them when nobody was looking, but never to wanton destruction unless provoked.
But as he aged, and access to more powerful equipment and substances became possible, Arkanis began to develop a true flair for construction and destruction. As intelligent as any Arkanian, he nonetheless jeopardised a place at the prestigious University of Novania after an incident involving a particularly disagreeable teacher, a prized hovercar, an elaborate fusing mechanism wired to its door handle, and several depressurising cans of foamcast. With this incident behind him, he reached the university, and there excelled. His first degree was a BSc in Structural Engineering, but he followed this with a BSc in Chemical Engineering (begun in the third year of his first degree), a BSc in Mechanical Engineering (begun immediately after completing his first degree), an MSc in Chemical Engineering (begun after finishing his second degree) and a BA in Musical Theory (to pass the time). As the proverbial 'eternal student' he learned a great deal, but with seven years and five degrees in his time at university he also had a good deal of spare time to focus on other interests, interests which first earned him the Empire's attention.
Originally wandering into a meeting by accident, Arkanis became a vocal advocate for Arkanian Offshoot rights. He felt sympathy with the subspecies, recognised their genuine contributions to Arkanian society, and valued anyone who appreciated his jokes. When attending a protest in support of their rights outside the Imperial Headquarters in Adascapolis he was attacked by protest-breakers from an anti-Offshoot group sponsored by the Empire (Arkania's worst-kept secret). Battered and bruised, he nursed a passionate dislike for the Empire even as he entered the world of work.
Highly-qualified, he was able to get a good job as a senior engineer at a major construction and demolition firm on Arkania, which for four years gave him good employment. Lacking almost all people skills he was never going to ascend to management, but he did at least earn a good salary and do good work, coordinating the planning for demolition work on several major projects. But as a successful alien-run business in the Colonies, the firm was soon nationalised. The 'aliens' received a major pay cut, and were ordered to begin work on Imperial projects, ignoring all they had completed in favour of Imperial brutalism and poor work conditions. And in the case of Arkanis Mortel, there was no way they would allow an alien to handle high explosives. He was unceremoniously stripped of his role, and sent down to perform menial work.
For Arkanis, this was the last straw. Deprive him of his rights, cut his pay, even beat him up, fine - but rob him of his explosives, his art and passion? That was it.
The company was ordered to construct a new headquarters for COMPNOR on Arkania. It was to be the centre of Imperial rule, a beacon of order and security on a world ruled by aliens, the enemies of the Empire, watching over them to ensure compliance and meek adherence to doctrine. It was a proud day for Imperial rule. The stormtroopers polished their armour, the officers wore uniforms freshly-ironed by Offshoot servants, and local dignitaries were out in full force. Nobody really expected the detonation of half a ton of stolen explosives that dropped the proud edifice on top of Arkania's Imperial governor, his cabinet, and the best part of a company of stormtroopers.
After that it made sense for Arkanis to run very fast. Months spent running with the Arkanian underground, the Offshoot Resistance, gave him a chance at last to get offworld and shelter in a Hutt safe house on Nal Hutta. It was not comfortable or pleasant, but it was better than an Imperial cell. New treaties with the Alliance even allowed him to move to a new safe house on Nar Shaddaa, with promise of transfer to a Rebel cell soon. But when he heard word of a murdered Hutt, of Rebel operatives loose on the megalopolis' streets, and he considered the rapidly cooling atmosphere of his safe house, Arkanis decided it might be time for him to make his own way.
Blaze of Glory
While Arkanis does not seek death, he is aware that one day it will inevitably find him. But rather than go gentle into that good night, he has chosen to light it up like a blazing dawn. Always obsessed with explosions, he wants his exit to be marked by an explosion that will present a fitting capstone to a life marked by creation and destruction both. He wants to build up to this point, creating ever more destruction with each passing blast, challenging himself to rise to new heights of creative devastation. He will turn off the lights on his way out, and he doesn't expect you to wait up.
Sabotage - 0
Arkanis has never expected to make a great, galaxy-shifting change in his life. Indeed, these days his ambitions are rather more modest: to create as much chaos, confusion and catastrophe for the Empire, and derive as much amusement as possible from the results.
Arkanis does not look much like the Rebel operative one might imagine. His eyes generally possess a crazed look, his bags and belts are full of explosives, and he is hardly built like a soldier. Grey overalls, tactically padded in the chest, arms and knees, hang off a loose, thin frame, weighed down by a wealth of tools and equipment. He is almost permanently fiddling with some aspect of his personal effects, having to keep his mind busy in some way nigh-constantly, and is continually in search of the perfect fit for all his kit. His white hair is uniformly messy, his eyes darting about to consider every facet of the structure he is inhabiting, and his mouth set in the loose, easy smile of a man with a line for every occasion (though rarely the right one).
Few people are quite sure what to think of Arkanis Mortel on first meeting. On the one hand he can seem friendly, funny, entertaining and enjoyable to be around. On the other he lacks many of the social skills and understanding of nuances and cues of others, cracking jokes at the worst possible moment or allowing subtlety and nuance to sail distantly over his head. Of note is his lack of understanding that while he knows when it is time to get out of dodge before something explodes impressively, others may not be so aware. Still, so long as they can keep up it is rarely a problem.