From Unofficial Handbook of the Virtue Universe
|Archetype:||Controller (Electric / Sonic)|
|Real Name:||Darren Eric Billingston|
|Date of Birth:||February 7, 1993|
|Place of Birth:||Miami|
|Base of Operations:||Paragon City|
|Known Relatives:||Darryl Vox (twin brother)|
|Electricity Control, Sonic Field Creation, Draining Aura|
Darren has a natural charismatic air about him. He enjoys life's ups, weathers life's downs, and does it all with a light smile playing at his lips no matter how he feels inside.
Darren inherited a bit of an arrogant streak, though it is not nearly as pronounced as it is in his brother. Mostly it manifests as a right to desire attitude, believing that his want for something is enough for his taking it. Fortunately, he's easily distracted by other wants and desires and rarely actually acts on it.
Darren is a thrill seeker. This has the twin consequences of being daring in the face of adversity and being reckless when he's having fun. He's very much not the responsible twin.
Darren is very protective of those around him. He puts on a tough air and will stand up for his friends. He'd do the same for his brother, except Darryl usually is the one doing the protective thing since he's the older brother, if by less than fifteen minutes.
Young and Abused
Darren and Darryl were born to David and Cynthia Vox, a couple who married young when Cynthia got pregnant. Life was anything but a dream for Cynthia, though her family and David's were both wealthy, David and his kin were arrogant and believed they owned the world. David had little patience for a pair of babies, so he was rarely home. With her husband out drinking and gambling, Cynthia was always stressed. This didn't help matters at all when she developed cancer.
David and his family were unsympathetic. Cynthia's family had disowned her for marrying David. But Cynthia marched on. She was given a year to live. She stretched the year into five before finally succumbing to the cancer and the stresses of life. This left David with a pair of boys to raise. Alone. Darren and Darryl were good boys, if a little rough around the edges.
David let the boys have whatever money they wanted to buy toys and food. He thought his funds were bottomless. For a while this arrangement worked out well. David got to do what he wanted, the boys got what they wanted, they kept out of each others' way, and life was good.
But when the twins were eight, David lost his job. Home all day and with finances dwindling due to his gambling habit, David became violent with the kids if they got in his way. Punishments were harsh, often leaving welts and bruises all over the child he grabbed to beat. It only took once for Darren before Darryl stepped up and started taking the blame for everything or positioning himself so he was the most handy son to grab for a beating.
The twins were always close. But this abuse only brought them closer. They grew with Darryl's beatings a harsh reality they wanted no one to know about. Or even the rare time Darren got it instead. The boys often slept in Darryl's bed, holding each other as they cried themselves to sleep, vowing to one day escape the nightmare and unleashing vengeance on their father.
Sale and Experiment
Summer before their senior year of high school, with end in sight, the boys were busy making plans for their future, hopefully without ever seeing their father again. Money had dwindled, but Darren was able to keep up appearances amongst his peers. The dwindled funds, however, didn't fair well when their father developed a large gambling debt.
The twins came home one day to find their father at the table across from a man they recognized as one of their father's gambling debtors. Dinner was made and set out for them, something that had never happened since the death of their mother. They expected a talk about how they were losing the house and having to move or something, but the actual situation was much more dire.
Both boys were soon unconscious, bound, and being hauled away in the back of an unmarked black van. David Vox had sold the only assets he had left. His sons. The boys were taken to a lab out of the country, on some island in the Atlantic.
It is here that both boys were housed like lab animals. And they weren't the only people treated as such. Experiments were performed on the twins. They developed the intended traits and was able to control sonic fields. The experiment was proving to be successful with the boys and thus they were marked for further study.
There were unintended side effects, though. Darren, subjected to electric shock tests, started developing electric control ability. Darryl likewise, being subjected to mental stress tests, developed psychic ability.
The twins were of course kept in separate quarters, as all the lab rats were. It is this condition of their new lives that is most likely responsible for their escape. If they had been put in together, they may very well have suffered with each other as comfort. But without that comfort afforded, Darryl put his brain to work on a plan to escape with his brother.
He found a way to access the maintenance shafts behind the cells, making his way to his brother's room. There was confusion in another part of the lab facility and this helped the two cover their escape.
Leaving the facility with their new-found power and luck amongst confusion of another incident they still don't have much detail about, the twins hopped on a freighter and stowed away. They fell asleep in each others arms as they had almost every night before their sale. When they woke up, they were docked in Interdependence Port of Paragon City.
Return to School
Though it had felt like forever, they had only been in the facility for four months. The courts ruled that with their mother's trust fund, that their father could not touch and didn't even know anything about, the twins would be allowed to stay on their own. They agreed to three minor conditions: At least one of them would have to get a job, a case worker would visit once a week to assess their situation with an option to switch to a monthly visit after two months, and they had to keep their grades at a decent level in school.
The twins went back to school, changed, but easily slipping back to their old lives with one important difference: they were free of their father. For the most part. His shadow still covered the twins, especially Darryl who had developed such hatred for the man he convinced his brother to work on a plan for revenge.