From Unofficial Handbook of the Virtue Universe
Evilstreak is a super-fast lightning wielding villain who gained powers similar to Synapse from an infernal pact.
Now he seeks to further his power and break free of his contract.
So that’s why I did what I did. That’s why I sold my soul to the devil. I’ve never looked back.
You want to know who I am? Before the Riki War, I had a life and another name. I had a good job as a reporter for the Paragon Times, a swanky apartment and a fiancée. I was looking to break open a real story and get into the big leagues, so I jumped at the chance when an informant dropped me a lead on alleged illegal activities carried out by a Dr. Rudy Bein. Bein was a Crey researcher, working on some Emergency Defence Suit project, but also rumoured to be into a whole lot of undercover work with military applications. Crey Industries is a major player, and busting open a secret lab of mutant monsters or whatever would have been big news.
Somehow Dr. Bein found out about me snooping around. There were little clues about what he was up to, and it was the real telltale mad scientist type stuff. I followed it like a trail of breadcrumbs and then came across a clue that was too good to be true. A vial of some monster DNA Bein had been creating in his lab. Once I confirmed that the sample wasn’t human, I had to see for myself. Of course, things that are too good to be true sometimes turn out not to be true after all.
Crey security ambushed me and took me on a ride. I thought they were planning to scare me a little, put me off the story, maybe blackmail me with one or two little indiscretions I’d had in the past. Turns out they just decided it’d be easier if I vanished. Waste not want not though: Dr Bein had decided I’d be useful as a guinea pig for his latest research. I was kept in a cell, injected with god knows what and subjected to hours of brutal electrical torture. It took me a while to work out that there was some kind of experiment going on, I thought it was just torture plain and simple. Apparently there was some kind of purpose to it though, because one day they hit a break through.
Don’t ask me how long they kept it all up. I had no idea of time. Even when my brain wasn’t fried or I wasn’t lying convulsing or drooling on the cell floor, I never saw any sign of day or night, locked away underground. I couldn’t tell you what day it happened but what I do remember, what I’ll always remember, is this guy Berry in the next cell. The day it happened they were coming for me - for my next round of treatment - when this guy tries to make a bid for freedom. As the guard passes he swipes the keycard for the cell, but he hasn’t thought it through. A second later the guard reaches my cell and looks for the keycard to swipe me out. It takes about 2 seconds for him to figure out what happened. Next thing I know they’re hauling Berry out of his cell, saying how he just ’won’ an extra round of treatment for his little stunt.
Half an hour later the lights all go crazy. There’s this power surge in the cell and all hell seems to break loose. Crey security forces are everywhere and there’s sounds of fighting down the corridor. This is probably the bit where you think I make my bid for freedom right? Were you picturing me running through the lab as it goes up in flames? Maybe stopping to help some fellow prisoners? And maybe I found a bubbling formula in the lab, and it gave me superpowers? Yeah, right.
After a while it all goes dark, and I just lie there. We all do in fact. The cells are still locked, and no one knows what’s happening, but we don’t have the strength for an escape attempt. If I had to guess I’d say we lay in the dark for about two days. Some of the guys might have started talking, I don’t really remember. I was starving when someone finally came. It was a different guy from any of the guards. He got us all out and marched us into a part of the building we’d never been before. I could see something bad had happened to the lab, because of the burn marks and such. When we arrived we got issued some food rations, and a set of ill-fitting clothes. Then he kicked us out.
I had to steal to eat, and I lived a pretty miserable life. Then life decided to even the playing field, and dropped the Rikti on top of us. Everything got blown to hell. People became like me, homeless, lost, confused. Heroes were being blasted to ash or sliced in half by the Rikti soldiers, and then one day it was all just over as suddenly as it had begun. They took out the Mothership or something, and some big secret deal went down where a British guy got killed and then all the remaining capes began singing their praises.
It boiled inside me. I was the one that should have been in the lab that day. I’m the one that should’ve gotten super powers, and this idiot winds up taking my place. Next thing he’s on the cover of TIME, and I’m shivering in the gutter. How is that fair? It ate me up, burned up what was left of me with rage. He stole my life, plain and simple. It SHOULD have been ME.
Time passed. Cops started getting back on the streets and every superhuman weirdo from the Western hemisphere seems to end up flooding to Paragon City in the wake of the war. Bozos like Synapse crack down on crime. Crack down on me. I get chased one night by a guy that shoots freakin’ lasers out of his eyes, just because I stole a purse. That was it, that was enough for me. I hid on a boat to the Rogue Isles, where a guy like me could still scrape out an existence. Laws are kind of blurry over there, I’d heard. They’d take on anyone for work, and didn’t ask questions. I’d gotten a bit stronger since the torture, and thought maybe I could start fresh.
Then I hear this voice, speaking to me, and I know I’ve lost it. It sounds like it’s in my head. I don’t care anymore though, going mad won’t make anything worse. It just keeps asking me “Do you mean it?” and I say “Yeah I mean it. I’d have sold my soul for what he’s got. I’d do anything. “ There’s this little .. thing.. sitting in the mud now, and it’s like nothing I’ve ever seen before. Like a toad or a chicken or… Christ, I don’t know what it was like. It’s holding this paper out to me in the rain, and the rain is sizzling off the page instead of soaking it through. “Sign here” says the voice. I don’t know what’s happening, so I reach out to the paper, and it burns me. Takes the skin right off my hand, and leaves this bloody print on the page.
I wondered what had been in that spray, and if this would wear off. I remember thinking that I was probably hallucinating and had just got burned trying to pick up a welding torch or something. Suddenly I look up for some reason and the thing is gone. I’m holding my hand, and there’s this weird symbol on it, burnt into my palm. There’s a flash as lightning strikes, and it burns into my eyeballs as the lightning hits the orange pipe above me, and then snakes out straight into me.
Everything goes white, then black.
When I woke up in the hospital I wondered why I was there. I felt fine. Better than fine, in fact. For the first time in years I felt alive and whole. My mind was clearer and all the aches and pains were gone. I touched the wires on my chest and there was a spark which blew the heart monitor apart. I jumped out of bed surprising myself with the agility in my muscles and grabbed whatever I could find. They had me listed as a John Doe. Good.
I dodged through the darkened hall and found a window, and vanished into the Isles. It seemed impossible, but once I saw that mark on my hand I knew what had happened. I'd sold my soul to the devil, and in exchange I had power. The people around me bounced and swayed in slow-mo. I clenched my fist and felt the twang of electrical energy surge through it. I felt like bullets would bounce off of me. Do you know how good that feels? I felt like I could dodge bullets.
Best damn deal I ever made.
The next day the papers carried the headline:
I loved it, absolutely loved it, and I carried out a couple more robberies just to make it stick, and to provide me with a little spare cash. One newspaper carries a story about how the Synapse robberies could have been an impersonator, like back when the villain called Incognito impersonated Statesman. They've analyzed the videos and noticed a few differences between me and Synapse, beyond the obvious penchant for theft.
Two things struck me then. First off I didn't want to be some knock-off Synapse. That guy had taken enough of the glory from me, and while it was fun making him look bad, I wanted my own fame. The fame I DESERVED, the kind of fame he stole from me. Secondly I needed a costume, and from what the papers were saying this Incognito guy was the one I needed to find to have something run up. Money no object.
Choosing a name was easy, after the press coverage. Evilstreak. Perfect. I'm not going to be some dumb hero squandering my powers on saving kittens from trees. I've paid for this, and these powers are my ticket to a better life. So here I am, all set for a bright future. I'm learning more and more control each day, getting faster and stronger. It won't be long until I'm strong enough to break Synapse, and put him into the gutter where he put me.
Until then though, I have another task ahead of me. I love my new powers, but I've changed my mind about giving up my soul. Nobody gets to take anything away from me EVER AGAIN, you understand? Magic experts won't come cheap, but I'm willing to rob, lie, cheat and kill my way out of this pact.
If the devil wants me, he's going to have to catch me first...
Evilstreak is insanely fast. He can break the sound barrier, dodge bullets, and punch through enemies as though he were a dozen men. He can also generate magical electrical energy in exactly the way the Mu sorcerers do, although he does this instinctively without any magical knowledge or training. He uses this energy to augment his hand to hand combat.
He also has increased stamina, physical resilience and reaction times. Effectively he wields almost identical powers to Synapse, although his are derived from the magical bargain he made.
As is common among speedsters, Evilstreak is brash, loud and self-important.