Darien Kinnison
Darien Kinnison
Portrayed By Casey Affleck
Sex Male
Status Unregistered Evolved
Ability Papyrokinesis
Age 28
Date of Birth September 9, 1980
Date of Death N/A
Occupation Crisis Center Volunteer, Bookseller
Family James Kinnison (father), Lillian Kinnison (Mother)
Significant Other(s) Books?
First Appearance See No Evil
Last Appearance

Darien Kinnison is a lover of the written word, a volunteer at St. John's Crisis Center, and a full-time employee at Ichihara Bookstore. He'd say more, but is too busy reading.

Character History:

Darien's childhood in Buffalo, New York was largely average. The only son of firmly middle-class parents, Darien tended to be a bit of a loner; not that he was ostracized, but rather because he preferred books to people even early on. Fiction or non-fiction, published by large companies or self-printed, across as many subjects as he could find: when other boys were joining football or baseball teams, Darien would settle in with another stack borrowed from the library.

High-school passed much the same for him, and an increasing amount of time would find him behind a computer screen. Relatively simple and logical, computers came fairly easily to him, and when time came for college he would choose programming as his major, more out of ease of use than any great desire for the field. He graduated near the middle of his class, moving to NYC shortly after getting a job at a small start-up.

Being as New York is, the start-up went belly-up after a few short months. Darien used what few contacts he had made in the industry and went into business for himself as a professional website designer. While he was making far less than before, it was enough to keep the black ink from turning red, which was all he really required. During this time he became a fixture in many used book stores downtown as well as the local community college, taking whatever further classes caught his interest.

Such a bookstore was where he found himself when the Bomb went off, surrounded by yellowed pages as the shockwave demolished the shop.

When he came to his senses, he found himself buried by rubble, virtually unharmed, surrounded by a shell of loose pages. He injured himself more trying to worm free of the debris covering him than the bomb had, breaking out hours later. Darien ended up dirty and bloody, though alive, more than anyone that had been near him could boast.

With few to no local businesses in need of redesigned websites, let alone there being reliable power to run his PC, Darien spent the next few months living off his savings and volunteering at whatever nearby relief center needed more staffing - which is to say, most of them.

Being closest to home, the lion's share of his time was spent at the Cathedral of Saint John. When the Crisis Intervention and Counseling Center opened its doors, Darien rolled up his sleeves like it was his calling; between the lower-division coursework he had completed and his down-to-earth manner, he became a quick study under what few professionals there were at the Center at the beginning.

Between the booms and busts of the city after power was restored, Darien almost made enough between a few small jobs to keep things as they were. What pushed him over was an almost unlooked for windfall; he had submitted his account of the weeks after the explosion, originally written in a battered notebook with a fading felt-tipped pen, to a publishing house while not expecting much to come of it. While hardly the most moving or well-written of the wave of such books to be published, the modest advance and more modest royalties nonetheless made him just enough to keep volunteering without looking for a steady job.

During these months around his apartment, pages of battered paperbacks flapped in a breeze that wasn't there, loose sheaves of paper would stick in their resting place even in a stiff breeze. He brushed such occurrences off as the product of a stressed and sleep-deprived mind; in those days, who wasn't? It was only after Nathan Petrelli's revelation that he had a name to put to the phenomena, and only then that he actually gave mind to what he could do.

A year and a half after the bomb, his savings finally gave out and the royalties petered away to nothing, necessitating a new source of income. While considering a return to his business, regarding his battered computer without much desire, Darien idly answered a help wanted sign at the Ichihara Bookstore. After a short trial period, he found the job fit him like a glove and has been there ever since.

Darien still spends his mornings at the Crisis Intervention and Counseling Center, virtually every day without fail. His afternoons are spent at the Ichihara Bookstore, getting paid to do what he loves. Evenings most often see him alone at home reading a new – or old – book, and his days off are usually given to the other bookstores, as much a fixture as ever.


Most people would describe Darien as polite, gentle and kind, if a little absent-minded, private and unsocial. He's motivated much more out of doing what's right than he is by personal welfare, rarely noticing slights against him or offering the same in kind. He's perhaps a little too trusting of other people, although that hasn't come back to bite him yet.

He has developed few strong ties to other people, happier to spend a night with a new book than out on the town. Darien's content with his place in life right now; his apartment is full of books and third-hand furniture, and he could make much more money as a code monkey… but he's doing something that matters with his mornings, and something he loves with the rest of his day.

Darien's unknown and unregistered, standing in opposition to the registration act, though he identifies with none of the factions opposing it. Like many of the other volunteers, he sees enough misery and despair in his mornings to break even the coldest heart; it really doesn't matter to most people that some guy a few streets over can toss fireballs when you don't know where your next meal is coming from.

Evolved Human Ability: Papyrokinesis

In short, Darien is able to manipulate paper like no other. He's capable of straightening and sharpening the edges of a sheet to razor-sharpness so it resembles a blade in function, adhere individual sheets to one another or to other objects or people, and to have it bend and fold at will. He can manipulate paper's structure to become smooth as silk or rough as sandpaper; as well, he can increase or decrease its relative density to sail through the air like a knife or be carried off by the faintest breeze.

Testing his ability at home, Darien has found that he can directly influence paper around him for roughly thirty feet in any direction. Direct tactile contact with the paper greatly increases his ability to manipulate it, extending along consecutive adhered sheets.

In practice, he's developed a few uses of the ability he thinks he would feel comfortable using in stressful situations. He can use a single sheet of paper like a held dagger, sharp and durable enough to score metal. He can hurl sheets of paper like daggers, guided more by his ability than any actual aim. Most of all, Darien is confident in his ability to use paper as a shield, either as a few sheets around his hand or as a large dome covering his full body - it's what saved him when the Bomb went off, after all.

His controlled paper is sharp enough to cut through several inches of wood, an inch of stone, and half an inch of soft metals like aluminum; anything harder will merely be superficially scratched without much more extensive sawing and cutting. He can make paper burn more slowly, but any fire will eventually consume the paper, slowly creeping in toward his hands where his control is greatest. Darien is utterly unable to control wet paper, and virtually any liquid splashed on paper he's currently manipulating will break his control over it. He's unsure of how the paper will hold up against more exotic forms of attack like radiation, although his shield did prevent any direct contamination from the Bomb.

The strength of his manipulated paper depends on the amount of paper behind the blow, and whether he's physically holding the paper or using it as a broader shield. Held pages have been bent and warped by hitting it with a claw hammer; he supposes he might be able to block bullets with full books much in the way telephone books can if stacked deep enough, but hasn't had the chance or inclination to test that theory. Broader shields lack the power of direct contact, but somewhat make up for it in the quantity of paper used, instead deflecting and redirecting force rather than absorbing it outright. He's had some success in inducing bends and folds in paper then snapping the paper flat to generate sudden force, like a rubber band snapping.

Darien is mostly untrained and unskilled in the use of his ability and, in general, fighting as a whole; while he could possibly stop a bullet by holding a book up against it or outfight someone with a knife, he'd be relying far more on blind luck rather than skill. The degree of control seems to be linked to his emotional state; the more he doubts himself and his ability, the weaker his control becomes. He must be awake and aware in order to use his ability, and anything hindering that will likewise hinder his control. While he usually has a novel or three on his person, he's also naturally loath to destroy any book, which might likewise serve to limit his actions.


Given his phenomenal list of books read and an above-average retention rate, the odds are high he's read something from any major author in most fields, and can recommend a long list of books to suit any reader.


July 2009
When Tell Me a Story Authors
6th See No Evil Darien and Hokuto
9th Of A Friend and Flowers Darien and Corbin
18th Song and Shakespeare Darien and Adelaide

Memorable Quotes:

Trivia and Notes:

  • Given his wide range of read books, he has an excellent range of trivia no one will likely ever care about. If you need to know the basic principles of how a trebuchet worked - or what one was - he's your man!
  • 1,814,400 Seconds Later, his book detailing his first three weeks after the Bomb, reached 95 on Amazon's best-seller list for two days, dropping out of the top 100 shortly after.
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