Joset Phraag was an elderly salarian male who spent much of his life trying to get out from beyond the grasp of his extended family, and then found himself alone and with very little to do. He posted as Bitterskin, and upon discovering CDN hung around out of general loneliness and fascination, despite being convinced that most of the board was crazy - and possibly involved in a cult centred around a fat krogan. The few people he was convinced weren't in some way mad he tended to try and cultivate relationships with, an effort that rarely succeeded. Desperate to be useful or helpful, he was likely to make offers of assistance to others (particularly fellow salarians, out of his general guilt over turning his back on home); this was more a means of justifying his continued presence than an actual capacity to help.
Avoiding salarian space wherever possible, "Bitterskin" worked in the office of the humans' Interstellar Safari, until retiring a year before the Reaper War. He made it through the war unscathed, but then found himself completely at loose ends, spending most of his time on the extranet. He was unable to reconcile his genuine love of home and concern for the salarian people with the sheer amount of aggravation they caused him, and in practice he spent as much time attacking his own kind as he did defending them. Humans and salarians were both subject to his ire and his affection, and he often bemoaned that he didn't know which species was the more troubling. He had a tendency to mope, as well as a habit of getting involved in extranet arguments where his main "contribution" was to get his various frustrations and insecurities off of his chest - in a manner that proved of no use to anyone. His only real friend at this point was his turian neighbour, who prompted him at times to be a "good citizen" and participate as part of the community. This usually backfired in some way. Prior to his Omega adventure, Bitterskin had no combat experience at all, and had never been seriously injured, though he did once break his foot when a human colleague dropped a globe on it.
His full name was Sur'kesh Tanalat Yuushor-Jat'atat Ji Phraag Joset.
Pessimistic and increasingly unable to cope with a changing galaxy, Bitterskin was intellectually more sophisticated than he was emotionally. If he stopped to think about things, he could be insightful, but that assumed he managed to avoid a knee-jerk emotional overreaction. Although he couldn't stand life in the Salarian Union, he was fearful and critical of any change there, and was clearly conservative in his political views. A low-key but unquestioning believer in the righteousness and benevolence of C-Space, he was disturbed by the dawning understanding that the reality might be something different, and he was deeply fearful of the threatened paradigm shift that would see him less a misplaced piece on the edge of a vast monolithic culture and more just another individual responsible for his own life.
Bitterskin was somewhat racist, though this was more through simple ignorance than malice or hatred - he tended to find the galaxy frustratingly chaotic and was highly security-conscious (read: paranoid). Citadel races (AKA "civilized" species) he had no issues with (apart from his afore-mentioned frustrations with his own people and the humans he lived among, which weren’t racially motivated but were due to his inability to fit in). Krogan he found intimidating, but for that reason he was likely to be careful what he said around them. Vorcha he thought of as talking animals that really shouldn’t be posting on the extranet or acting like people. Geth were basically machines in his book, though that might change if he got to know them better. It was more thoughtlessness and a tinge of fear than actual ill-feeling; Bitterskin was easily made nervous by the more aggressive species.
After one meltdown too many, Joset had an epiphany of sorts and decided to dive into life at the deep end, to see if he could somehow discover what it actually was to be alive after decades of running and hiding. Bucking up his courage, he travelled to Omega, where he actually did have things to panic about. He was convinced that somehow he would find answers there, even if it killed him - which was a near-inevitability in his view. Eventually, he fled the station ahead of angry krogan, thanks to a life-line from Mekan of Omega. Now on Illium, he seemed at last to have found the balance between the C-space virtues he had always believed in and the unpleasant realities of the seedier, less fortunate part of the galaxy. Having fallen into orbit of Mekan and his mercenary associates, he made the decision to get the most out of his later years by becoming, with much trepidation, a minor part of their unit.
Joset Phraag eventually died in his sleep in a Nos Astra hospital, as old age caught up with him following a last trip home to Sur'Kesh.
A view on salarians
Well, about salarian lifespans; I'm not, like, a biologist or anything, but we're explosive breeders. You humans are slow, 'cause it takes you so long to grow up, right? And you have, like, one child at a time. You're more conservative, biologically I mean. We, we produce a lot of children; our females don't even need to be fertilized to set up a brood. Unlike *some people* who function on the explosive model, we're smart enough to balance population against resources or available space, and to keep things stable politically. The number of females, it's low. But when each female can produce out of nowhere a batch of males who can then mate with other females and make more females who can make more males immediately....I mean, we're like the sort of creature that you can't get rid of, you know? Fast-paced, big broods, takes only one or two of us in an area and then we're everywhere. Linking up where we can, big webs of us across the ecosystem. All very fast, metabolisms and reflexes are....well, faster than yours. It's...it's really quite beautiful, really.
But the thing is, we grow up fast for the same reason we think and talk and react fast; we needed to. So that whatever happened, there would always be enough salarians to assert some sort of grip.
We're...well, we're like those - what are they called, the ones that hop and give out chocolate? - rabbits. I mean, ironically, since we don't have that sex drive the rest of you have, but.... I guess that's also why we like to identify and deal with threats before they become threats. We're reactive survivalists, but when we get numerous enough and our political webs are strong enough, we can start reacting....before the action. If that makes sense?
General Announcement: Bitterskin introduces himself to the board, and makes a fool of himself.
The DDS Code: Bitterskin thinks he's worked the site out.
Thoughts on Faith: Salarian religion, as Bitterskin sees it.
Trying To Be Responsible For The Young'uns: Bitterskin lets himself feel useful by offering to look out for a young salarian.
The DDS Code: Disturbing: Bitterskin decides the site is creeping him out.
Private Message to BlueFroggy: He therefore tries to justify his continued presence by trying to shepherd the child he'd interacted with previously.
The DDS Code: Curr at Thanksgiving: Attempts to decipher the dispatches from the network of the Illuminated One continue...
Controversy: Bitterskin's opinion on the current tensions between human and salarian.
The Fuck?: Bitterskin reflects briefly on the human obsession with mating.
Dead Frogs: After Spiza receives an unpleasant package, Bitterskin briefly tries to be useful, still feeling guilty over fanning the flames between human and salarian...
The DDS Code: Avalon: Bitterskin is pleasantly surprised, and moved.
The Council: Bitterskin wants to help a friend, and wonders if anyone knows what on Sur'Kesh he's talking about...
Christmas Gifts: Another attempt to be useful.
Humans Doing Their Part?: Bitterskin comments on the gung-ho citizenship that everyone seems to be going for these days.
New Assemblyman: Unfortunately, some politicians have just the right balance of alarmist fear-mongering and friendly enthusiasm to appeal to Bitterskin.
Station Security: Once again, Bitterskin's paranoia isn't helped by a certain maverick Assemblyman...
Creative Solutions: Bitterskin is intimidated by Dwick, who is apparently confused.
Impressions of Species: Bitterskin on humans, salarians and his own inability to fit in.
Shopping: Bitterskin visits the market in his first appearance in a role play thread. He meets WavesHaveBroken, to his horror.
The DDS Code: Breakfast: More krogan symbolism.
Sneaky, tricksy salarianses: Bitterskin bemoans politics in the Union.
Conspiracy!: Bitterskin probably overthinks things, as politics back home continues to be extremely complex...
Meeting: Motivated by curiosity and dread, Bitterskin decides to attend the annual CDN get-together.
Alarming News From Sur'Kesh: Responding to a reported terrorist bombing on the homeworld.
Bitterskin Down The Rabbit Hole: A strange end to a bad week.
I don't know how to hit the right target: More personal uncertainities over the situation back home.
More personal concerns: Signs of strain when posting.
The Terminus Will Claim Us All: More signs of strain, as Bitterskin apparently fears the breakdown not only of the Union but of C-space itself.
Further fallout as Bitterskin stews in his own lack of knowledge or, indeed, usefulness.
Later in the thread: Scary Stories: More Dwick analysis.
Ask Not For Whom The Drell Toils: Another opportunity to moan about democracy, as the Compact within the Illuminated Primacy becomes controversial again.
New Year Get-together: A quiet CDN gathering to greet the new year.
Citadel Noir: Bitterskin becomes involved in dark goings-on
Citadel Noir, part two: Following on from the above.
Geth Surprise: Reactions to a new political reality. Leading to...
A Most Melancholy Moan: Why is life so confusing?
Public Debate: That earlier interest in Vallario sees some pay-off.
The Talat Five: Discussing a favourite animated show.
Yahg!: A reaction to the newest CDN members. Leading to...
Epiphany: This can't go on.
Adventure is a Wonderful Thing: Arrival on Omega.
Reapers!: Bitterskin plays the popular forum game.
Got To Pick A Package Or Two: The usual chaos surrounds Bitterskin as he skulks on Omega.
Enter The Master: Goph arrives on the new CDN.
The Very Model Of A Cynical Salarian: Bitterskin meets with Goph.
We Can't Run, We Can't Fight, We Do Have Charts: Making good on Omega.
Skrat Attack: After a bizarre vorcha-related post, Bitterskin thinks he's found his outfit's first job.
Help!: A bit of a krogan pickle.
Delivery or deliverance: A simple request about shipping turns awkwardly philosophical.
Funeral: A melancholy development.
Desperate times: The Omega adventure comes to an end.
You'll Never Want To Come Home...And Maybe You Never Will!: Goodbye to Omega.
Lessons: A new revolutionary poster maybe teases a few conclusions out of our salarian.
A Night In The Bar: A somewhat relaxing evening.
Fight of the Century: A somewhat less relaxing evening.
Vorcha: Bitterskin's perspective on the vorcha species.
Krogan Domestic Drama: How have CDN's krogan and his recent experiences changed Bitterskin's views on the race?
Dalatrass Scare: A salarian dalatrass shows up, to much paranoia on Bitterskin's part.
Huey Lewis and the News: A second adventure with Mekan and company.
Dream: Discussing bad dreams.
Books and Authors and All: A physical reminder of someone, and a discussion on placing pen to paper.
Some commentary on first memories of aliens, and a reminder of his krogan troubles when the Yomuuk Belt winds up in the news. This after just missing further Skrat antics and addressing the issue of a missing penguin: In other words, just another morning on CDN.
Books, Cars and Guts: Mekan has a vision, and Bitterskin is part of it.
Skrat is Mad: Skrat antics make a comeback.
Total Eclipse of the Phraag: Kenlin commences Bitterskin's training.
Naughty and Nice: Bitterskin joins the board as a whole in reflecting on the year.
A solemn report, amid reports: Bitterskin is one of many wandering the battlezone as "Nos Dwicka" burns.
Presents By Mekan: In the warm glow of the aftermath, Bitterskin receives a gift.
Names: Asking the forum about names. A popular topic, as it happens.
Sort of Urgent: In the aftermath of the incident at the club, Bitterskin panics after learning that his team mates are soon to be out of custody. Is the law closing in on him? Ferem tries to get him to calm down.
That Vast, Terrible Inbetween: Having killed someone, Bitterskin struggles with the ramifications.
Salarians, Hello: Matriarch J. picks a bad time to look in on her charges, I mean fellow salarian posters.
A joke: A very short joke is awkward.
The Tale of the Big Bad Frog: It seems the rumours got a little out of hand.
Where Everybody Knows Your Name: Mekan returns to Illium.
Lydia Returned: Some final reflection on the Lydia arc from Bitterskin.
Questionnaire by Raik Turak: Phraag answers some questions about himself, including his earliest memory and his social skills.
The Head-Hunter Case: Sleuthing on Illium with Mekan.
Mother: Nat's niece has called her "mum", and Phraag is among those giving insight. Among salarians, one doesn't use the word lightly.
Bin Trouble: Needing help while digging through trash for clues.
What is this Goop?: Bitterskin and Ferem Baccath discuss an alarming development reported in from Earth.
Bin There, Done That: Bitterskin asks Grisank Vimanthia for help, as he navigates Illium high society.
Er, Humbug: A semi-canonical Christmas piece. Yet Another Christmas Carol.
Drinks In The Depths: An open invitation from D'Veyra.
Indiscriminate Catharsis: Mekan and Spiza call the gang in for a mission, and Bitterskin technically counts.
Collect Call: The immediate aftermath of the mission.
Pranks: After Dani's translator is hacked, Lacertilia seizes on another opportunity to make Phraag uncomfortable.
Exposé: A follow-up mission with Mekan, Spiza and company (Phraag starts on page 2)
I Know The Croaking Chorus: Phraag returns to Sur'Kesh for the Great Phraagmoot.
Obituary: Age finally catches up to him, and a chronological farewell to the character.
Party Ideas: Some of the board discuss holding funeral rites during a planned get-together. Leading to...
Late Rites: Jeral and Spiza discuss Phraag as they repair their strained relationship.
Synthesis: What happens to Bitterskin if Shepard goes green?
On the Normandy: Bitterskin and his alts are left to save the galaxy. (spoiler: the galaxy is screwed).