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Earth-9: The Ultimates

Note: These Ultimates should not be confused with the Marvel Comics team of the same name. Readers should be aware that the original Champions Universe Ultimates existed years before Marvel's Ultimates line was conceived.

The Ultimates are Destroyer's answer to the Champions "problem." In response to Defender's quest to rebuild the ancient heroic alliance, Zerstoiten found (or created) powerful allies of his own to counter the Champions.

Dr. Destroyer

Toryym. Sharma-Gorath. Albert Zerstoiten. Known by many names over the Ages, the great Destroyer has been an unparalleled foe of freedom throughout most of human history. To proclaim him the ultimate evil, however, is to misunderstand his goals entirely. From the moment he was born into the First Age, Toryym was intended to be a sacrifice to Dark Powers, that his father -- king of Turak -- might become a living god. Unfortunately for his father, Toryym was a genius from the very beginning. He turned the ritual on his father and briefly took control of Turak. His enemies believed the boy vulnerable, and overthrew him, taking control of the kingdom. Thus began Toryym's long, strange path to becoming Sharma-Gorath, the Destroyer, who would rule a quarter of the world. His battles with Atlan's Champions would become legend, his relationship with his own firstborn tumultuous, and his ultimate fall to possession by a Malfean soul-shard devastating. His time as the entity known as Malice we will not address; suffice to say that this creature was unworthy of Destroyer. His return is covered at length in the Freelance Immortals miniseries. Though thwarted in his efforts at world conquest, he has taken control of a sizeable and wealthy section of western Africa, and has there gathered loyal forces from a populace largely grateful to him for saving them from true butchers. From Nova Valdoria, he continues to plot world domination for humanity's own good. Humanity as a whole, Destroyer has decided, has neither need nor desire for freedom, whatever a few defiant souls might think. [picture of Dr. Destroyer, originally from the now-gone "Superhero Showdown" site]

Menton

Easily Destroyer's most powerful and loyal servant, Alejandro Medina comes from a long and proud line of Eternals. His family served Sharma-Gorath as seneschals in the First Age, and today Menton continues the tradition as Destroyer's godlike right-hand immortal. Quite possibly the world's most powerful telepath, Menton also wields a vast array of Eternal powers derived from the Second Gate Key. Like Defender, he is competent in all the various fields and has no particular weak area. A born noble and aristocrat, he truly believes that Destroyer is the greatest leader the world has ever known and humanity's best hope. Throughout history, Alejandro reasons, the great have ruled their lessers, and the only true measure of a monarch is competence. Democracy is no sign of freedom; instead of claiming their rightful place, the powerful manipulate the masses into the decisions they desire. The only other choice is anarchy -- and given humanity's track record, that is no choice at all. While he plays the arrogant and pretentious supervillain in battle, Menton also serves his master in subtler ways throughout the world as the ultimate psychic agent provocateur.

Stormwatch

This powerful martial artist is a master of ki as well as combat, but Stormwatch is very much a purist. While he will use his powers to counter firearms and Awakened abilities, in personal combat Stormwatch adheres strictly to a code of honor that compels him to fight solely with his skills and his staff. Only an order from Destroyer can force the ninja to use his prodigious ki abilities against an honorable foe. Stormwatch once served an Akashic barabbi, Dr. Kirby Loo, who trained him with three other master assassins. The Fiend of the Orient betrayed his assassins when they grew too powerful, but Menton rescued Stormwatch on Destroyer's orders, and the mighty warrior decided that he'd found the perfect master to follow. Now, Stormwatch fights with the Ultimates as their warrior-ninja, while dealing with Destroyer's more shadowy enemies in the night.

Gremlin

Dr. Linda Shane, a brilliant biochemist, devious prankster, and overall cynic, would probably have ended up being a minor thorn in the side of law and order anyway. Instead, she was very well paid to care for what was left of an even more brilliant employer: Albert Zerstoiten. His reputation didn't bother her in the least, and she was happy to learn what he was willing to teach. So when Malice was defeated and Destroyer reborn, his first act was to reward Linda with power. The young doctor became Destroyer's gremlin, bringing chaos to his enemies and a powerful hybrid warrior to his Ultimates. Gremlin is tough and strong, flies, regenerates the most terrible wounds in moments, and has claws that can secrete a seemingly endless variety of chemicals, from acids to poisons to psychotropic drugs that send her victims on very bad trips. Though not as devoted to global conquest as the others, Gremlin's twin loves of science and mayhem keep her at Destroyer's side...for now.

Blackstar

James Carson is literally a self-made man. Once a Son of Ether, like other mages past he found having a single reliable power preferable to endless variation that could leave him sweating mercury or trapped in an M.C. Escher Paradox Realm if he screwed up. Trading his Awakening for the power to control his density, he became a super-mercenary for hire. He didn't dare become a "supervillain," though -- until he was approached by the great Destroyer. Treated with respect by someone even greater than he, offered an opportunity to show the world what he's made of, Carson leapt at the offer and Blackstar was born. Blackstar is far more interested in wealth and women than power, but he virtually worships Destroyer and loves super-combat with a terrible, savage joy. Though he is known as the Ultimates' walking tank, and indeed his only competition for the world's strongest man are Obsidian and the terrible Grond, his density control is absolute. Blackstar can choose to weigh several tons, but can also be light as a feather and remain super-strong (performing impossible leaps in this manner), or become intangible and pass freely through solid objects, or even perform the dreaded "solidify in a target" attack without harm to himself.

Charger

It is easy to argue that the Ultimates are "Eternal-heavy" in numbers, with Charger being Exhibit A. Edward Ellis was a frustrated immortal, mediocre at best in most ways, who wanted to be important. After all, wasn't he a living god, one of the world's true masters? While there are many with Ellis' attitude, Edward has a rare gift -- he equals both Defender and Destroyer in raw power generation, perhaps the only other immortal on Earth-9 at their level in this regard. He met James Carson while trying to find a group where he could be a real player. Occasionally, they would hire out together to become a devastating one-two punch in Earth-9's internecine secret wars. When Destroyer was ruminating about the need to find an Eternal to counter the future Defender's raw power, Blackstar recommended Ellis. The rogue immortal leapt at the chance, and became Charger -- a big shot at last. He also holds a personal grudge against Roland X, as they clashed before. Roland's skill easily countered Ellis' use as a blunt weapon. Destroyer considers secret identities inviolate and out of bounds, however. so Charger must play by the rules. For now.

Scorpia

Fiona O'Brady was a deadly IRA assassin, so ruthless and hateful that only the most extreme branches of that organization would work with her. When Hernan Cortez was going through his "Professor Muerte phase," he decided to put together his own supervillain team. Fiona was "between assignments," as her entire cell had been wiped out except for her. Muerte turned her into the super-fast killer Scorpia, modeling her glove-claws after Gremlin's venomous ones and granting her all the traditional powers of super-speed. Scorpia can run up walls and over water, generate wind storms, and vibrate out of phase. It was his first experiment with the power of the Third Gate Key, and ultimately the Proprietor's doom. While Scorpia was loyal to a point, Cortez went well past that point when he became the Proprietor and threatened the world's very existence. Destroyer recruited her the moment the Proprietor war ended, and the scheming, brilliant operative is much happier with the competent Destroyer than the unbalanced Cortez. While she briefly considered the possibilities of usurping Destroyer's position, Zerstoiten quickly and easily short-circuited further development of any such ideas. Ironically, this has resulted in the beginnings of a bizarre romance. Destroyer and Scorpia...understand each other.

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