Born on 29 September 2475, Taylor Chen Michaels was born the fourth son of Jameson and Sara Beth. The Michaels family were second generation farmers on Hera, and though it was hard work, and a simple life, they were happy. Taylor grew up with an older sister and two older brothers, and the twins, a younger sister and brother. None of his family were ever much for book learning, and his sisters were all married off by their majority, and the boys took to the rural responsibilities of farm life with a sort of grim dedication. All was going as he'd planned, and eventually he moved off with a wife of his own and got a stake for some land of his own, and farmed it, following the family path. He was thirty-two when the Unification War reached Hera, and turned his life upside down, collateral damage by Devchenko's assault destroying his farm. With nothing left of the life he'd built, he joined the Browncoats and went to war. The death of his wife, and the destruction of his farm pushed Taylor hard and like he had with the craft of husbandry, he threw himself into learning the craft of war, discovering he had a particular knack for it. He was assigned to a unit, and fought in several engagements, eventually returning home to Hera in 2511, to fight at Serenity Valley. He fought a hard war, refusing to give up his revenge until he was forced to it. His squad, fought for nearly a week after the official surrender. He was wounded at Serenity, but nothing that would slow him down. In fact, Serenity Valley would haunt him for years to come, leaving him with cold sweating nightmares that interrupted his sleep, and drove him to move through the border worlds and fringes trying to escape the bloody conflict that rages in his head interminably. He spent a year in an Alliance prison, before the general amnesty let him be released. He's never been back to Hera. He doesn't speak much about his life before the war, or about the war either. His life is punctuated by huge potholes that derail the progress he's made in life and sometimes threaten to destroy him entirely. He's bummed around the Border Worlds and the fringes, thieving, hiring on as a gunman, and generally moving on from one place to the next. He typically stays in one place long enough to find passage to someplace else. He's an enigma, as upbeat as he comes off, there's something restless behind the humourous twinkle of his eyes, as if he's looking for something. But he's quicker with a joke than he is with information on his life.
He has only one real dark secret, in that the first few years after he was released from prison, he frequented the seedier sides of the underworld, spending every cent he could earn to learn details of the Alliance unit that burned his home and killed his family. Over the next few years, he worked whatever jobs he could get, and spent nearly every cent to track the men responsible down to kill them. One by one, he found them, looked them in the eye, and killed them. He's marked the passage of these people with tattoos on his right forearm, fifteen so far, with only fifteen to go before all those who forever changed his life are dead, and justice is served.
He has a few specific identifying marks. He has several scars from bullet wounds, three on his torso, one on his right thigh, and one on his left forearm. On his left shoulder, he has a tattoo of a green triangle with two horizantal gold stripes, and a blue star point down at the centre. On his left forearm, he has fifteen hearts crossed with a black 'x' tattooed in three neat, even lines.
Originally a loyal Alliance citizen, he joined the Independent rebels after the initial landing of Alliance military forces on the planet Hera. Reports indicate that Michaels was away from his farmstead when elements of the Alliance expeditionary force moved through his holding. Major Davis, the battalion commander reported that his family resisted the lawful attempts of Alliance forces to secure resources for their beachhead operation. Michaels wife, and son, were killed in the ensuing violence. Taylor Chen Michaels was not encountered by those units before it became necessary for Alliance forces to withdraw from Hera. Records indicate that Michaels joined the Independant mechanized infantry within weeks of the Alliance withdrawal from that world.
Subsequent to his entry into the Independant forces, he served in several battles including Tietam over the course of the war. His fitreps appear to be excellent, and he rose to the rank of sergeant-major by February of 2511. He was decorated several times for bravery and service above and beyond the call of duty. Michaels was eventually bound by Alliance military law after the battle of Serenity Valley, when he and his unit refused their orders to surrender under the agreement between the Alliance and rebel factions. He was held in a military prison as a prisoner of war until the general amnesty took effect after the last actions of the Unification War.
There are several entries since his release from prison across most of the border and rim worlds for a variety of charges, including assault, illegal possession of a firearm, suspicion of smuggling, and armed robbery. He's largely avoided spending any significant time in jail, as the charges were dropped by the prosecuting authorities due to lack of sufficient evidence, or refusal to prosecute by the alleged victims.
He has recently been accepted into the Bounty Hunter's Guild and been issued his APKC Level 3 License.