Pilot: Natalie Macauley Call-sign: Gnat Concept: Vengeful Little Sister/Ace Driver Nationality: Empire State
Aspects: * Out for revenge on the Red Skull Legion * Missing relatives: Sister-in-Law, nephew... brother? * College-educated * "Tight spot? Not a problem." * Reluctant to kill * Droll
Piloting Sub-Skills: Great: Handling Good: Aerial Psyche Fair: Gunnery
Skills: Superb: Drive Great: Pilot, Leadership, Alertness Good: Academics (languages: German, French (Quebec accent), Spanish (Arixo accent)), Rapport, Engineering Fair: Athletics, Contacting, Stealth, Resources Average: Weapons, Endurance, Science, Resolve, Empathy
Stunts: *(Pilot) Flying Ace *(Athletics) Contortionist *(Drive) Defensive Driving *(Drive) Turn on a Dime *(Drive) Unsafe at any Speed *(Leadership) Instant Functionary
Aircraft: Name: Ford Hoplite Description: Pretty dusty right now; was painted in Hollywood livery for the raid, then hastily/sloppily painted over in bright orange after Natalie's arrival in Arixo. "Gnat" stenciled on a remaining patch of blue on the nose.
The saying goes, you don't cross Jonathan Kahn, you keep your nose clean and hope he doesn't cross you. Of course, a saying doesn't get started without some poor saps to prove it right, and "Gnat" Macauley is a fine example.
The Macauley family were fairly well-off in the early 20s, owners of a paper company doing business across most of New York State. The second half of the decade went decidedly less well. The flu of 1927 took Natalie and her brother Joseph's mother, in 1928 their father took his own life, and the fallout from the stock market crash in '29 eventually destroyed the company in 1930. Joseph, Natalie, and Joseph's wife Cassandra were left practically penniless on the streets of Albany, that city being even worse-off than the average due to the state government packing up and moving to The City during the Empire's birth. Natalie's business-administration skills were in less-than-high demand.
It was a newsreel regarding the exploits of the so-called "Ghengis" Kahn that gave Nat's brother his "big idea"; Joseph, who had gone through Signal Corps flight school but a few months too late to be shipped to the Great War, got together with some of his old flying buddies and started up a small smuggling operation. Her degree from Russell Sage being all but useless, Natalie asked her brother to teach her how to fly as well. To everyone's surprise, she became an excellent pilot and an even better automobile driver. Going by the name "Trigger", Joseph built up a moderate reputation with his gang over the next five years, although to a certain extent it was Natalie who was the glue that held the gang together. They were never big-time big-time, but they did alright for themselves in the "grey-market transportation" business. Natalie's callsign, "Gnat", was in reference to her skill "buzzing around" in an autogyro or car (although she rolled her eyes and called it "a little on-the-nose, guys" when they stencilled it on her bird). The gang had done jobs for some of the big hitters in the business, including Joeseph's idol, Kahn.
Six months ago, one of "Ghengis'" organizers invited the gang in on a big operation in the Nation of Hollywood. A couple of days before the score was to go down, one of Kahn's top lieutenants offered to cut the Macauley gang in on a double-cross. Joseph, outraged, told him where to stuff it. Unfortunately, the man was able to convince the pirate that it was Macauley that was in charge of the plot, not that that saved him from being tossed off the Red Skull Legion's zep at cruising altitude. An aerial chase ended in everyone but the Macauley siblings being downed, and Joseph telling Natalie to warn his family before turning back to cover her escape. She didn't see him crash, but she doesn't know how he could have gotten away from the squadron chasing them.
She touched down in some town in Arixo and sent a telegraph to Cassandra, telling her to get herself and the couple's son Brandon out of town, and she'd try to find them. Since then, however, she's been having enough trouble just making ends meet, and has yet to get herself and her gyro out of Arixo even. She's making a living as a glorified taxi driver now, although she thinks the heat's probably died down enough that she can consider getting back into the game.
Despite five years on the wrong side of the law, Natalie isn't much for a fight; she's the one breaking a bottle over someone's head rather than wading in, swinging fists every which way. Her former gang having been smugglers, she's more interested in getting away from an opponent or disabling them quickly, on the ground or in the air.