Cassandra "Cass" Okuda
Profession: photographer/paranormal investigator
Overall, Cass is friendly and willing to help others. Confident about her photography skills she wishes that she could break away from commercial art into fine art. With regard to her interest in the paranormal: Cass prefers to keep a low profile in most things she does with regard to the paranormal. She is mildly paranoid about the forces she feels at large in Quinlan, and feels that she has been drawn back to the city by them.
other: none at the moment
Favorite food: Steak, medium rare, with mashed potatoes
Most prized possession: a talisman her father gave her
Hobbies & Interests: anything to do with the paranormal, reading, hiking, camping, martial arts
The only child of Matsuo Okuda & Annalise Linfield. Cass's parents Matsuo and Annalise had to cope with the fact that Annalise's family did not approve of the marriage or the fact that he was from a different cultural background. These conspired to keep Annalise & her new husband away from her family and hometown. When Cass was born she was much loved and created a bridge between Cass's parents her her grandparents. While her grandparents remained prejudiced against Matsuo, they grew to dote on Cass and extended their home to her. Thus, although she lived in NYC with her parents -- she spent portions of each summer in Quinlan with her relatives.
Cass has always had pre-cognitive dreams & was able to pick up on paranormal emanations around her. Unfortunately for Cass, like her namesake, growing up with her abilities was difficult. Her father was open minded, saying that the kami had an eye on her, while her mother swung from acceptance to denial. Cass thought her mother's family were weird & disliked staying with them--consequently spending every free moment during the summer--elsewhere. Cass was thrilled when her parents bought a very large loft apartment in Quinlan's downtown to use when they were finished with the Academic Year.
Cass developed a good eye--and took up photography deciding that it was what she wanted to do as a career. She attended Parson's School of Design and graduated with an job placement with POSH magazine. It was the beginning of her career as a commercial photographer.
The year she turned 27 tragedy struck her family. Cass's father, Matsuo was found dead in an alley in Quinlan only a week into the summer vacation. The police investigated it and declared it a random mugging gone bad. However, Cass suspected that her father had been murdered. Unable to deal with her mother's denial and emotional withdrawal, Cass became determined to find out the true cause behind her father's death. Against Cass's wishes her mother sold their NYC apartment and moved back to the Loft in Quinlan.
At the same time that Cass was dealing with this, her professional life was also in upheval. Looker Magazine, an imprint of POSH had been disolved and Cass was without an immediate source of employment. While freelancing to make ends meet, she met Vanessa Lennox, the artistic director for Bishop, a smallish publishing house located--in all places--Quinlan. She was offered a staff position, and permanently relocated to Quinlan while secretly planning to find the real cause of her father's death. Cass is still seeking closure. Since her move Cass has started to become known locally as an amateur paranormal investigator although she will admit or mention it only if asked.
At the start of last year, Cass had a premonition related to her mother and her mother's family all in flames. It was New Years eve when she was contacted by the state police. Apparently there had been a freak accident involving a gas main and her grandparents' house had blown up and her grandparents & mother had died in the explosion. Gutted, and emotionally wrecked, Cass remains certain that it was not an accident. Still uncertain what forces are at work Cass is trying to stay safe while doing her best to investigate and any all leads...Unfortunately, Quinlan is an extraordinarily active city when it comes to paranormal activity.
Cass hasn't been able to shake the feeling that whatever engineered the death of her parents isn't still after her--and she doesn't want to take the chance of bringing someone (she could love) into the crosshairs. In the past two of her lovers have had near-fatal misses and she feels that is proof positive that it is not safe to be romantically involved. With that in mind Cass tends to steer clear of romantic entanglements and has only had occasional flings (lasting a week or two at most). She spends the majority of her free time alone.