From Unofficial Handbook of the Virtue Universe
James doesn't have parents. Not that he can remember, at least. The earliest he can remember was trying to survive on the harsh streets of Port Oakes, begging for money, stealing food, and trying to avoid the pedophiles with perverse tastes. That was at age 5. Fourteen long grueling months later, he was picked up by a gang of petty street thieves called the "Port Oakes Rogues Guild." They gave him training in thieving, breaking and entering, and a bit of martial arts skill. Apparently, an intelligent young innocent boy made for a good petty criminal. For the next few years, James struggled to survive, fighting off other guilds, scratching together enough coin to pay for guild dues, and still getting enough for himself to eat. At age 10, James was caught while trying to pickpocket someone. The mark, George Hammel, noticed Jame's innate brilliance despite his lack of education. Hammel decided to adopt James and put him into school.
Junior high was tough for James, everyone else made fun of him because of his years behind. The teasing made him determined to learn and within a year, James was as good as anyone else in his class. By the beginning of High School, James was far ahead of his class. Despite the learning environment and the example his adopted parents tried to set for him, James began to slip back into old habits. By 16, a combination of his good grades and his bad behavior got him into college. He still suspects his early "graduation" was to get rid of him, but the school denies it completely. James only lasted two years in college, taking eight classes a semester, making A's the whole way through, but spending his time stealing, partying, and sleeping with random women, who he stole from afterward. He got kicked out near the beginning of his junior year after the dean caught James breaking into her office, trying to hack into the main campus computer. Even with only two years, James still absorbed an advanced knowledge of electronics and engineering.
Out of school, James worked a variety of odd jobs for the next two years, occasionally stealing for kicks. About half a year after his 19th birthday, James suffered from liver failure, brought on by his excessive drinking. Unable to find a donor, James used his technological prowess to design an artificial liver before his deteriorated completely. Healthy, but broke again, James drifted back to the streets. He found begging and stealing as an adult was much more difficult than it used to be and wound up in jail several times before he mastered the arts. Two months before his 20th, James found the remnants of the Port Oakes Rogues Guild. With his new knowledge and leadership skills, he took the group over, shortening it to "The Rogues" and taking on the moniker The Lord of Rogues.
James spent the next year and a half trying to sort out his new criminal group. With his gadgets and training, the Rogues transformed from petty street criminals to a significant criminal organization that handled everything from high security thieving, hit contracts, and corporate espionage to pickpocketing, drug running, and prostitution. Other orphans and street kids gravitated to the "gang" for James' protection, giving him a large supply of recruits for his operations. James also learned pistol combat, favoring twin custom modified 9 mm Beretta 92FS semi-auto pistols. During this time, James committed a lot of crimes, but none of them really bugged him. Except for one. He was on his way out from a bank job when, like usual, a hero came to stop him. James kicked the female hero, disarmed her, and put her on her knees. She was barely 16, fresh to the world of being a hero. But even as she gazed up at him with tears in her eyes, James calmly put a gun to her head and shot her, without hesitation. He kept the bullet casing from the kill over the years, without knowing why. Eventually he would claim it as his one shred of humanity.
Power Suit and Artificial Arm
With money rolling in from his wide variety of crimes, James decided to construct himself a power suit to enhance his criminal capabilities. The suit saved his life multiple times over the next few years, giving him a multitude of options and features that amplified his effectiveness. Unfortunately, the suit was unable to save him completely from a blade master James had recently stolen from. The master snuck up behind James and attempted to cleave him in half. Fortunately, James was able to move and the blade only took off his right arm and a small part of his shoulder. James managed a lucky shot, killing the master before he could try again. Bleeding profusely, James barely managed to get to a hospital before he passed out. Upon leaving, they offered him a prosthetic. James refused, and spent the next few months building his own version.
Finally, James resurfaced. He went to his father first, to explain about his past. He had a lot to account for; College, crime, and the artificial right arm he didn't have when he left. He had indeed been in gangs for a while, but left shortly after joining the company Sin Enterprises as non-powered security, under the influence of a certain Terra Wattson, who encouraged him to change his ways. Not a angel, but no longer a demon, James continued his work at Sin, looking for a position in the Research and Development sector. In the mean time, he designed himself a set of power armor in order to join up with the Powered Security forces of Sin. He attained the R&D job, along with a promotion not long after his first month.
End of Sin
A week or two later, Terra left Sin, after a huge fight with her twin sister. She moved back to Paragon and turned herself in. That same night, James decided he wasn't going to live without her. So when she used her only phone call from prison, he told her his intentions of moving to Paragon. He'd get a job and work towards a life for them when she got out of prison. After an intense period of emotion, he also asked her to marry him. When she excepted, he almost immediately put in his resignation, packed up his bags, and legally moved to Paragon. He got a job at Hero Corps, building gear and weaponry and plans on turning Hero himself, complete with a new version of his power suit that's currently under construction. Him and Terra plan on getting married after she's released.
Problems, and return to the Isles
James and Terra got married on October 17, in the Midnighter's Club, where friends and family from the Isles could attend without fear of arrest. Unfortunately, the rushed relationship and marriage didn't last and the two divorced in early December. Terra stayed in Paragon, and James decided to move back into the Isles, picking up mercenary work to rebuild his previous fortune. During one of his less tasteful jobs, James met Courtney. She discovered his dislike for the current crop of work he was doing and suggested he apply for a security position at the adult entertainment company, Rogue Entertainment. Figuring it couldn't be as bad as a Longbow and Arachnos hating group, James made the move. He was torn, at first, between the love he still harbored for his ex-wife, and the rather tempting offers more than a few of the Stars proposed to him. But after a few weeks, James decided not to be held back by that part of his life and, as a symbol of starting new, he incinerated his old wedding ring, which he had previously worn on a chain around his neck.
James was welcomed and quickly accepted into Rogue once he had moved on. He found them to be, for the most part, a fun and accepting family to him. He linked his personal systems with the security systems when they moved to the new mansion, allowing him to see through the entire camera system at once, letting his autonomous programs do most the work. That small edit was all James needed to do for his job, and he spent most the rest of his time hanging out and getting to know his co-workers, falling back into his fun-loving and charming self. He found that there were very few other men working at the company, none of which as outgoing and outspoken as himself. So it was among his female co-workers and co-stars that he made his friends. He pursued casual sexual relationships with most of his friends, and just regular friendships with all the others. He has found that being one of the only men among a large group of wanting women has it's advantages. But after a while, James decided to leave Rogue, the job not providing him with enough mental and intellectual stimulation.
After wandering alone for a while, and working with a few small groups, James was contacted by Brooklyn Cale with an offer. To join Titan Industries and work for her. He'd be able to continue to invent and work through his own contacts, at his own pace, but with a base of operations and allies to support him. It was the perfect setup for James, so he accepted the offer. After a uneventful few months, James decided to take a greater role in the company, and formed his own little R&D niche, to develop inventions for Brook to sell. As a twisting, surprising, turn of events, James ran into his ex-wife again, during a meet and greet party between Titan, and their new allies, James' old job, Sin. The chance meeting didn't go over so well, as neither of them expected to see the other. But James realized he still did love her, and fully intended to attempt to make amends.
The power suit built by James channels electricity through the shock plates built into his cybernetic arm and offhand glove, allowing him to manipulate and focus it to send out a wide array of lightning bolts, or close in as 'punch' type lightning attacks. He can also cover himself in the electricity, giving him slightly increased defenses.
To generate the immense power needed to use the electrical powers, James had included a miniaturized nuclear reactor. As the excess radiation builds up, James is able to vent it in ways that can either harm his enemies or help his allies.
James custom built his own power armor, using components he either bought, stole, or salvaged. He's upgraded it, along with all his mechanical implants, multiple times since first building it while at Sin. The Shocktrap is made from a weave of Impervium and kevlar, with extra padding on the chest, stomach, and thighs for maximum protection to his vital organs. Protective rubber coating runs beneath the metal work, shielding James' flesh and blood body from the electric shocks he outputs. The entire rig vacuum seals shut, with oxygen refreshers and filtration built into the helmet, along with minimal life support and inner climate control systems. The armor around his non-cybernetic arm was purposefully designed to mimic the cybernetic one. Each hand has a shock plate built into the palm, to generate and focus the electric blasts James uses. The entire suit conducts and stores electricity, allowing James to recharge the suit with any external electrical source. Triple coils above the shoulders house a majority of the Trap's power supply, though the entire thing can run for five to ten minutes on the backup power stored in James' arm. The helmet contains an HUD that utilizes a wide variety of vision modes and other useful tools, all linking in with his cybernetic implants for faster functionality. Vision modes include telescopic, thermal, motion, electronic imaging, heartbeat, and tactical weakness analysis. The Trap connects directly into James' control implant and arm computer, using his programs to run the suit with minimal interference. Some systems are pre-programed and autonomous, such as life support, electrical conduction, and oxygen filtration, but the movement and targeting controls are all linked directly into his brain, all responding instantly to his thoughts as easily as his own flesh.
James has both a cybernetic arm and right eye, both controlled by the chip implanted into his neural pathways above his spine. The arm has its own power source and houses a small computer. He's programmed his own operating system into it, using a variety of programs he designed for hacking, searching, overriding, and day to day tasks. Though the power source is much smaller, he can still access the shock plate to produce a taser-like shock effect. The cybernetic eye allows him to access his miniature computer at any time, without needing a HUD or screen. He also has use of an array of vision enhancing modes, including zoom, thermal, motion-tracking, heartbeat and electronic imaging. The eye can take both picture and video, though sound must be recorded through the arm. He has recently injected himself with a stream of nanites, flowing through his blood stream and vital organs to help him heal slightly faster and to make him practically immune to disease or poisons.
From Man to Machine
It's been an issue of great interest to James, balancing the qualities he enjoys as a human, verses the strengths he gets from being a machine. So far, he's stayed mostly human, working to modify and upgrade his human parts, not replace them. But the weaknesses that comes with being man troubles him, especially when he sees what the full power of machines can do for him. James' implants and upgrades currently include:
- Cybernetic arm
- Cybernetic right eye
- Cybernetic liver
- Interface chip
- Nanite swarm
- Cybernetic ear implants
- Cybernetic nostril implants
With his variety of implants come several special abilities. His right arm is incredibly strong and can expel short range electrical blasts, strong enough to take down an elephant. The arm houses multiple jacks and ports for hacking and hardwired downloads, along with a rather powerful computer chip, powered by a fusion reactor. The computer is directly linked with his mind, through the interface chip, allowing his components to work flawlessly with his human side. He can also think faster than most geniuses and concentrate on numerous tasks at the same time, without difficulty. All of his memories are recorded and stored in the computer, which he can access at any time. His eye records video and contains multiple viewing modes that James can use at a thought.
James is in general a happy-go-lucky kind of guy, though he's darkened and become more serious since his divorce. It's certainly possible that he's clinically depressed underneath the happy attitude, though it rarely shows through. James is also a genius, and can often be seen fiddling with his various tech components, usually his arm. He can't get drunk anymore, since his liver was replaced with a mechanized one, but he still loves the taste of good Scotch. James is an outgoing and outspoken socialite, chatting up any one around him with good natured humor and charm. He also enjoys listening to rock and metal, especially while working on his power suit. Though it isn't well known, James also plays guitar in his spare time when he's not working, and is quite good at it.
Without the armor, James is relatively breakable. He's fairly resilient, but only human. He has no telepathic resistances, though he can dump his memories into his implant to keep them from being stolen. His fierce loyalty to his friends and lovers can also be exploited and used against him, even better than threats to his own life.
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