Living… in Indianapolis, Indiana, with his parents and two sisters. Gus was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, an aggressive bone cancer, and had his leg amputated as a result. After his leg was removed, he went into remission. However, he still attends Cancer Support Group with his friend Isaac, who has eye cancer and will soon be having surgery to remove his one good eye.
Interests… basketball, video games and hanging out with Isaac. The pair can usually be found playing their favorite video game, Counterinsurgence 2: The Price of Dawn. Gus’ room is filled with trophies from when he played basketball, but having his leg amputated caused his sports career to come to a halt. Gus is also extremely interested in metaphors, most notably his proclivity for placing an unlit cigarette between his teeth: “You put the killing thing right between your teeth, but you don't give it the power to do its killing."
Relationship Status… in a relationship with Hazel Grace Lancaster, another member of the Cancer Support Group. Although at first Hazel is reluctant to give in to Gus’ flirtations, she eventually relents and starts spending more and more time with him. Given their fragile health (and Hazel’s terminal diagnosis), the relationship is more than a little complicated. As they fall in love, Hazel worries that she will be a “grenade” that blows up and breaks Gus’ heart. This doesn’t deter him, though; as he tells her, “It would be a privilege to have my heart broken by you.”
Challenge… leaving a mark on the world while he still can. In contrast to Hazel’s desire to tread lightly on Earth, Gus would prefer to leave a lasting legacy after he’s gone. As he tells Hazel, “I fear that I won’t get either a life or a death that means anything.” Because of this, he’s always over-the-top, making grand gestures, like arranging for Hazel to visit Amsterdam to meet Peter Van Houten, the reclusive author of her favorite book, An Imperial Affliction.
Personality… confident, charming, and caring. Gus is handsome and he knows it, but his signature charm is endearing rather than arrogant. He is driven by his selflessness and empathy, especially when it comes to Hazel and Isaac. Gus is honest and vulnerable, and never fails to say what’s on his mind. Ultimately, his deep love for Hazel helps him understand that you don’t have to leave behind a legacy to live a meaningful, love-filled life.
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