CANON/AU/PREVIOUS GAME HISTORY:
At the Royal Wedding in Rule of Wolves
LINK TO CONTACT POST: Here
The first thing about David Kostyk is that he is a Grisha Fabrikator, specifically a Durast (those able to manipulate the solid elements). For some people, that’s just one piece of their identity. For David, it’s who he is, and not just because he’s the best at it (though he absolutely is). His abilities as a Fabrikator are inextricably linked with his experiments, his history with the Darkling and with Alina and as part of the Grisha Triumvirate, all his victories and defeats in everything throughout his life. If he wasn’t Grisha, he’d just be a weirdo.
Well…maybe. His curiosity about how everything around him works might have persisted even if he hadn’t any ability to manipulate it magically. When David sees a machine, he wants to find out how it works, and he is extraordinarily good at doing so. If he’d spent the rest of his life on the farm in the far south of Ravka, maybe he’d have revolutionized plow technology or built an improved cotton gin.
Ask David which way it would have gone and you won’t get much of an answer. He’s logical in all things, some would say to the point of fault. Ask about might-have-beens and he’ll either consider it a waste of his time or he’ll feel he has to carefully analyze every possibility and the evidence base around it and get back to you in a few days. Basically, this is not the man to bring hypotheticals to unless you want a real answer.
In a modern society, David would likely be diagnosed as some variety of non-neurotypical. There’s no language for it in the world he comes from, at least not specifically. It’s “David doesn’t get jokes” and “David’s better with machines than people” and “David takes everything literally” and “David’s so quiet.” Really, David’s just quiet because he doesn’t see a point in saying things if he doesn’t have anything important to say. He has to make a much greater effort to understand people than he does to understand magic and physics, and he doesn’t make that effort unless he sees it as important.
He does, for the record, see it as important sometimes. He has an entire notebook dedicated to keeping well-organized track of things that make his wife happy so he remembers to do them regularly. He’s immensely devoted to Genya and finds her as remarkable as any of the inventions he’s worked on with Nikolai. Until the two of them got together, most of the Little Palace probably would’ve bet real silver on David being incapable of experiencing emotion. That is, of course, ridiculous–he experiences the same range of human emotion that anyone else does. He just doesn’t tend to show it. He’s calm in the face of problems that most people wouldn’t be (including impending certain death), but he feels just as much fear, love, anger, and so on as other people do. He feels guilt more than most, perhaps because he has more to feel guilty about–as a younger man, he developed technology and magic that was used to kill thousands and help a sociopathic shadow asshole achieve power that he absolutely should not have.
Which brings us to a final note about David Kostyk: he is so, so tired of war. He wants to use technology and magic to help people, not kill them. He wants to make the world a better place, not keep destroying it by bits and pieces. For him, Vallo will be a dream come true in every respect except that he can’t use the advances he can make here to help the country he came from.
David Kostyk on the Grishaverse Wiki
To fill in some spaces not covered by the books with headcanon:
- Born in a village near the southern border with Shu Han, sixth child to a family that was, like much of Ravka, barely scraping by
- Six years old when the Grisha testers discovered his ability; he remembers only little bits about his family and hasn’t seen them since the day he was brought to the Little Palace
- Never had many friends while he was in training, but was noticed as extremely talented very early on
- Began his crush on Genya Safin much earlier than anybody thought, but he was busy doing other stuff, and also why would anybody that incredible be interested in him? Probably she was just being nice.
You have my email and discord, but now I have a CDJ! ~airshipmechanic
CAST PAGE IMAGE: Will one of these work?