Reed was born into a working-class family in South East London, his parents were loving and, despite having such little earnings, his family was happy and managed to get by. His father, Thomas Hamilton, worked nights as a security guard at the HSBC building in Canary Wharf, and despite not seeing him often, he played a massive influence on Reed’s interests, both him and his dad shared a great interest in music, and from a young age he surrounded himself with music, despite not exactly understanding it, his dad wasn’t the best parent, often forgetting to apply discipline, but he loved his son, and for Reed that was more than enough. His mother, on the other hand, played a much stricter role in his childhood, more than anything she was worried about him taking the wrong path, the area they lived in was not exactly the nicest, and his mother took all precautions to protect her son from gangs and drugs, both of which were commonplace on their estate, it took many years for Reed to realise his mother’s good intentions, something he always regretted. As a young child, Reed was rather shy, once he started school he found great trouble making friends and engaging himself in lessons. Luck had it that he managed to make a few friends who he stuck by, allowing him to avoid a severe downward spiral.
He was happy throughout school, making good progress, he was never a star student, but he was content in the knowledge that it would all be okay in the end. During his first few years in secondary school, Reed was bullied by a select few kids, they ridiculed him for his long hair and appearance outside of school, it was at this point that Reed started to question his appearance and mindset, he was a weak minded young teenager and the bullying he suffered had a knock-on effect that would greatly affect his life from that point on.
The bullying didn’t last long, but Reed suffered the consequences, in many ways, he damaged himself more than anything. First, he took a complete change in style, instead of wearing the punk/metal esqe attire he usually stuck to, of which was influenced by his taste in music, he started to dress more ‘commonly’ and tried to listen to other types of music but this just made him unhappier. When he was 15 he decided to ask out a girl whom he had a crush on, much like any young boy did, not only was he rejected, but also emotionally torn, the girl in question made various comments about his weight, he wasn’t at all chubby or fat, but clearly not good enough to her standards.
Reed once again made the mistake of letting harsh comments get to him, from that point on, he began to lose weight.
Reed’s life began to get better, and worse. He regained his confidence socially, began to dress and act like he wanted, and built strong relationships, both with his parents, who he had been very distant from up until now, and a select few friends. But one thing still haunted him.
When he was 16, he was diagnosed with Anorexia Nervosa, it was a surprise to all that knew him, although his weight was picked up on, no one thought it was that serious. Reed was usually very open with his thoughts and feelings, but whenever it came to his weight, in the usual fashion of anorexia sufferers, he denied it being a problem. It was a bigger concern considering Reed’s interest in various fields of medicine.
Coming to the end of his school years, Reed was confident in his career choices and strived to gain the qualifications needed. He had built an interest in medicinal fields, mainly due to the influences took of his grandmother. They had always been very close, when his grandfather died when he was only 3, his grandma, who lived locally, spent a lot of time helping his mother raise Reed. He loved the stories his grandma told of both her time working as a nurse and of her father, who at a young age served as a soldier during World War 1.
Reed took Biology and Chemistry for his A Levels, and the fact that he was so good at this motivated him more than anything. Upon leaving school at age 18 with A’s and B’s in all his subjects, Reed attended University studying Biochemistry on a 3-year course.
At University Reed came to terms with his problems, he would undergo therapy to help with his body dysmorphia, and start to branch out a bit more, meeting new people and partying all helped with him eventually tackling his anorexia. It took some time, but he finally started to make progress with gaining weight and building strength, he was still very weak, but doctors confirmed that he was on a good path.
Reed took a great interest in his studies, he quickly concluded that he wanted to work in the hematology field after extensive research. As well as this, he also started to get involved in charity work, upon the persuasion of a few of his classmates, he started to volunteer for the British Red Cross. It was here that he was taught extensive first aid, he was also educated on previous and current affairs to which the Red Cross responded to. During his final year of university, Reed applied for and gained a part-time position as an Offshore Medical Response Worker, he found himself very interested in said affairs and thought it would be a plausible act to pledge his service if such an event were to happen.
At the age of 20, Reed graduated from University with the qualifications for a Position as a Medicinal Lab Technician at Kings College Hospital in London. He underwent a 3-month training scheme prior. His job consisted of the processing of patients blood tests, as well as handling the hospitals pharmaceutical needs. He was very happy with his job and in turn made great progress.
Reed was in an unfortunate position for the turn of the outbreak, Following the strange occurrences and military activity in the small country of Chernarus, of which gained a steady news coverage, Reed was contacted by the British Red Cross regarding a potential shipping of aid workers following word from UN Officials about a potential outbreak of severe infection. Reed saw this as his time to serve and promptly confirmed his attendance. During the time before being shipped out, Reed became increasingly concerned as to what he could expect, the news delivered reports of Russia and Takistan closing their borders, as well as airstrikes and NATO intervention.
When the time came, all BRC Aid workers, including Reed and a few of his former classmates, were told they were being flown to the city of Miroslavl, and then being split and moved to the cities of Chernogorsk and Electrozavadosk to assist UN Peacekeepers with duties such as medical check-ups and treatment, as well as supplying goods to the populace. Reed was swiftly moved to Chernogorsk, commonly abbreviated to Cherno by non-locals. Reed was first tasked with getting medical supplies to each of the city’s hospitals, then to help set up a camp to handle the overflow of patients awaiting examination for the feared infection, in the short few days before contact was lost, Reed assisted with check-ups on each patient.
Once contact was lost, the fear crept in, many people left the city, and many started acting as though the world was ending. Reed couldn’t help but think just how severe the whole situation could be, regardless, he continued to play his part. The reality of the situation didn’t sink in until the city was officially evacuated by CDF and NATO/UN forces, Red Cross workers were told a full evacuation would take place back in Miroslavl, but nothing more.
Reed was then given the word that NATO forces had started to leave the country, and then word slipped through about the outbreak. Upon starting to leave, Reed first saw what was trying to be contained, humans with zombie-like features began to move into the vicinity above Cherno, from this point on gunshots were a common occurrence on the borders of the city. Reed was split from the majority of Peacekeepers and Aid workers leaving the eastern region of the country, he remained under the line of defence attempting to keep control of the city, It was less than a day before the defence started to cripple, and the infected humans started to breach, it was at this point that Reed first saw what they were capable of.
Soon enough the continuous gunfire fell silent and practically clueless Reed was left with a grim reality. The UN resisted the infection in pockets around the coastal area, and soon enough Reed would have to fend for himself.