From Unofficial Handbook of the Virtue Universe
|I've been here five minutes and nothing's exploded. Something must be wrong.|
|Real Name:||Jacob Wong/Night Between the Stars|
|Occupation:||Hero, Pandora's Box consultant|
|Place of Birth:||Paragon City|
|Base of Operations:||Paragon City|
|Known Relatives:||David Wong (brother), Angela Wong (sister, deceased), various distant cousins in remote locales|
|Umbra, Transformation, Distorted Balance|
|Arcane researcher, minor magic, weapons familiarity|
|No additional information available.|
Also, I assume Hex is checking in occasionally, since Aki drafted him to help out with the war effort by being ironic at people until they stop being stupid. - @PyroICFF
The man who became Broken Hex comes from a long line of powerful but traditionally ill-fated Mu mystics. However, he was unable to tap into the power of his bloodline himself until his fusion with the renegade Nictus Night Between the Stars, who provided an alternative source of power. Hex's original goal was to avenge the deaths of the numerous family members (including all of his immediate family) who perished fighting against criminal organizations and malicious arcanists, and to end the cycle of misfortune that had plagued them. Over time, his goals have become both less selfish and more directed.
Originally bitter and angry, his association with the Do-Gooders and a few noteworthy transformative events have gradually softened Hex to the point of being merely acerbic and cranky. He has a penchant for sarcasm and gallows humor that does not always mesh well with his associates' personalities, and possesses little in the way of tact. He seldom sees the point in sugar-coating a brutal truth; it should be said fully or not at all.
Virtually all of Hex's power comes from the dark energies of the Nictus within him; in some cases, the way it manifests is shaped by his own training and knowledge.
Nictus exhibit a certain natural affinity for gravity and its effects, which Hex can harness to lock foes in place or chronically displace their centers of gravity, or distort spacetime to transport himself or others from one place to another instantaneously.
Hex "feeds" on energy to boost his own strength. This can be benign, as when he draws passively on the strengths of his allies to bolster the same traits in himself, or harmful, as when he siphons strength directly from an opponent.
Hex can transmute the mass of his body to energy and assume the form of previous hosts in the interest of bolstering his own resilience or offensive capabilities. He does not need to breathe in these forms, nor does he require sustenance, but the transformation requires concentration to maintain.
Additionally, he can borrow energy from defenseless (or willing) entities to project a portion of himself as a free-floating entity much like an unbound Nictus. He can sense what they sense, although they act independently of him, and when the energy used to project them expires (or they are dispersed through damage) they return to him instantly. He can maintain up to two such projections at once, with substantial overlap.
With preparation, he can also transmute his body to energy and separate Jacob Wong from Night Between the Stars. The separation is not a pure one, as in a very real sense they are no longer individual entities, and the result is highly disorienting and uncomfortable. He has done this only once and does not desire to do so again.
Hex is a skilled researcher in arcane matters and holds (as Jacob Wong) an honorary degree in occult studies from Paragon University, which he declined to accept publicly. He has never mentioned the fact to anyone, although the degree is displayed in a small frame in his bedroom. He can read passably well in a number of obscure languages. He is also capable of performing ritual spells ("Magic for Dummies") that require more adherence to directions than natural talent.
As a result of his physical training prior to his Kheldian bond, and the memories the Nictus brought with it, Hex is familiar with a number of hand-to-hand and ranged weapons (some of which, admittedly, require more arms than are commonly found on Earth to manipulate properly). The issue is generally moot, however, as he prefers to defend himself with his own powers.
Weaknesses and Limitations
Hex is physically more frail than he appears. Although he is reasonably strong, an extended period in the toxic vapors of a Circle of Thorns ritual took its toll on his constitution, and his lungs in particular. For a long time he was unable to undertake strenuous activity without the aid of a breathing apparatus supplying a mixture of oxygen and a mild anesthetic. He has since harnessed his increasing control over his powers to reinforce his body, but still tires more easily than he will admit.
Plus there's that whole "quantum rifle" thing, but these days he considers most models of those more irritating than dangerous.
The Wong family has amassed an impressive library over the years, mostly pertaining to matters arcane, along with a basement full of artifacts, mystic whatnots, and cursed gewgaws. Both are warded in such a fashion that inventively unpleasant things will occur should anyone try to enter without permission.
Hex is a member of the Do-Gooders supergroup. He has also worked extensively with members of the Brigands of Light, particularly their leader, whose very direct methods of problem-solving he tends to appreciate.
He also serves, in a private capacity, as an arcane consultant for Pandora's Box. Scarcely anyone is aware of this, as he keeps his private life (insofar as it may be said to exist) entirely separate from his hero work.
Niggling existential questions aside, Resurgent Effort is Hex's brother, David Wong, for sufficiently loose values of "is," "brother," and "David Wong." But it's close enough for government work and Hex knows better than to look a gift horse in the mouth.
The Supreme Dictator for Life of the Brigands of Light. They enjoy an easy rapport and a mutual admiration for the school of problem solving that says an excellent way to solve problems is to beat them about the head and shoulders until they behave. Possibly the only person besides his brother he would willingly open up to.
There is not much love lost between Hex and Gale, the Do-Gooders' resident witchmaster general, whom he considers to be flighty, self-absorbed, irrational, overconfident, and irresponsible, and he has a low opinion of her style of magic to boot. Her feelings about him are no doubt similarly flattering. However, he does (grudgingly) admit her expertise and, truth be told, deeply envies her easy command of magic; he sees no reason to let mere personal dislike interfere (much) with a solid working relationship, at least not when so many more significant matters are at stake.
Thanks to his memories of his ancient past, Hex feels a certain kinship with A42, who has recently recovered her memories (or someone's memories) of her activities during her tenure as a military superweapon.
The former and present head of Crey's chronically underfunded and laughably inept placebo watchdog group, the Department of Corporate Responsibility. Hex's relationship with Jim O'Toole originally was based on simple curiosity as to how deluded and naive an adult human with no obvious signs of severe brain damage could actually be. He then became determined to pull the wool from over Jim's eyes, despite powerful temptations to throttle him, and was greatly gratified when something resembling success was finally achieved. However, an apparent recent upswing in delusional gullibility has led the Chief to resume his old position, prompting Hex and his brother to turn their backs on him completely.
Circle of Thorns
Hex despises the Thorns; aside from the issue of the ancient enmity the Oranbegans feel for the entire bloodline of Mu, he holds them directly responsible for the death of his sister and his own near demise. He feels a strong personal distaste for the traitor Akarist, but has on several occasions gone beyond the call of duty to ensure his safety, as he has his Nictus's memories of what it takes to turn against all that you were.
David Wong was murdered by Crey agents in early 2002. That, at least, is what all the circumstantial evidence points to, and there's no other logical conclusion, although legally it cannot be proved--especially since Countess Crey has enough leverage in the judicial system (and enough subliminal conditioning in her products) to ensure a victory for Crey Industries. Hex delights in ruining their efforts wherever possible.
This section contains minor spoilers for the final Kheldian story arcs.
The Council was always a tertiary concern for Hex, although he kept an eye on their movements. That changed when Requiem and Arakhn finally made their strike against the Center, planning to establish a massive network of Shadow Seeds under Paragon on the eve of the second Rikti invasion. Requiem managed to displace Hex's Nictus portion and assume control of his body, using it to (apparently) eradicate his rival Arakhn and fake his own defeat. Requiem voluntarily relinquished control of his body and Hex was made whole again, but the intrusion--and the lingering aftertaste of Requiem's mind--is a transgression Hex will never forgive.
It is not particularly pleasant to be a dud in a family of powerful mystics, especially ones who risk their lives on a daily basis, but that is the lot assigned to Jacob Wong. His parents and both older siblings were all active heroes. When he was 14, his mother and father were both killed when, after exorcising an evil influence in a mausoleum in Astoria's cemetery, they found that (as is so often the case) the haunting entity was key to the building's structural integrity. Responsibility for the family fell to David, the only one of the three children to have reached legal majority.
The family fortunes continued to hold true six years later when David, then operating under the name Iron Wind, vanished while on a highly secretive mission. No body was ever found, but all indications pointed to Crey. Jacob hated not being able to provide more than passive support, and could easily have fallen into a morass of guilt and self loathing, but instead chose to direct his loathing outward. He began intense physical training, but was forced to acknowledge that at the end of the day he was only human, and a rather pasty human unused to extreme physical exertion at that.
"Broken Hex" came into being on a mild night in January of 2005 when Angela Wong descended into an Oranbegan stronghold and Jacob, against express orders to the contrary, followed her. She was caught off guard in an ambush, and the short of it is that both she and Jacob were captured and taken to be sacrificed, a long and arduous process involving a great deal of floating and noxious fumes. Angela was the first to succumb, and Jacob nearly joined her. He was saved at the twelfth hour by an offer from Night Between the Stars, itself captive and wounded. The two fused and, with the resulting rush of power, Jacob eradicated the Thorns--one of them wearing his sister's body--and barely managed to drag himself to a hospital, where he spent most of the next month recovering and integrating with his new ally.
Life Goes On
Hex soon made the acquaintance of several members of the D.F.B. Crew while prowling around King's Row. Through them, he eventually met the almost painfully cheerful and optimistic Peacebringer/J-pop idol/discarded Sony corporate shill Morning Misa, who drafted him into the Do-Gooders more or less whether he liked it or not.
He also eventually made the acquaintance of delusional loon and Crey patsy Jim O'Toole, whose dogged investigations into "rogue" Crey operations eventually lead to...
Eventually Hex proved enough of an irritant that Crey began to take notice of him, and once he began tugging at threads that threatened to uncover the Revenant Hero Project they diverted considerable resources to eliminate him. When, after starting an investigation into a twenty-year-old missing persons case, it reached the point that Crey snipers seemed to be lurking on more street corners than not, he disappeared entirely for several weeks utilizing a combination of shapeshifting, teleportation, and a series of disused family hideaways.
While he was in hiding, he made some subtle and not-so-subtle attempts to help steer O'Toole in the proper direction. For the most part, however, he was distracted by avoiding Crey and a persistent tail who was eventually revealed to be a slightly-defective early-model Paragon Protector based on his own brother. Although his memory was incomplete and he had certain programmed responses that proved difficult to suppress, Hex opted not to look a gift horse in the mouth.
O'Toole's investigations eventually led to a showdown with Countess Crey. While this proved ultimately inconclusive, it provided some measure of closure, and Hex recovered at least one member of his family, sort of, more or less.
Big Scary Monsters from Space
- Is one quarter Chinese.
- Once served as a vessel for the voice of Hequat, although he does not remember anything about it. Which is probably just as well, as she called him defective.
- Believes his sister's soul may be present in a Thorn soul crystal somewhere.
- Will relentlessly and mercilessly mock anyone who intentionally misspells the word magic. "Oh, I'm sorry. How is that pronounced, exactly? Majjjikkkkkkkk? Mahzheeeek? What, no differently? So basically it's just shorthand for 'Look at me, everyone, I've tried absinthe and write godawful Harry Potter fanfiction using my beloved copy of The Anne Rice Thesaurus of Ghastly Victorian Adjectives,' is that it?" This has lead to some ugly disputes with the counter staff at Pandora's Box.
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