From Unofficial Handbook of the Virtue Universe
- The truth is cruel, but it can be loved, and it makes free those who have loved it.
- —George Santayana, Little Essays (1920)
The original look and feel for Spectral Fighter goes way back to the old Marvel Super Heroes RPG. When I was looking for my first post-Going Rogue character to develop, I immediately saw the advantages of the Stalker AT for this concept. What I ended up with was a character who, in a way, is my first "legacy" style character.
Davison is a bit of a crusader for Truth. Getting the truth of a story out has been a driving force in his life, and he has worked hard to get into a position to find it and report on it. Unfortunately, this drive has gotten him into trouble-which directly led to his "exile" in the Rogue Islands.
As Spectral Fighter, he tends to go to the scary. While he isn't much for the "criminals are a cowardly and superstitious lot", he does recognize that fear is as useful a weapon as any other he can get his hands on. To this end he takes pains to "hit and fade" his opposition, whether in physical conflict or in psychological warfare.
This also means that Davison-in both identities-can be very, very patient. He's not the sort who will rush in (a habit broken during his "exile"), but will quietly wait and watch for the moment that he feels is the correct one to act. Waiting someone out has proven an effective tactic for him, and Davison has benefited from it tremendously.
Spectral Fighter's sole "super power" is the ability to "fade", a state resembling invisibility. In such a state, he is undetectable by all but the most advanced technology specifically designed to detect such things. He cannot be detected by scent, sound, infrared or other aspects of the spectrum, or even mental detection. However, due to the classifications demanded by GIFT, the following has been listed as his "powers".
Spectral Fighter is a swiftly developing master of martial arts. He is not versed in any single discipline, having adapted to a mish-mash of styles into his own unique style. His preferred technique is to strike out of hiding, reverting to visibility as he takes down an opponent. As side effect of this style is that Spectral Fighter will often be a very patient attacker if he is operating on his own.
The one martial art that has been identified as being strongly present in his fighting style is that of Ninjitsu. His reflexes have been honed to razor sharpness-the best a person can have short of superhuman enhancement-and he has attained substantial mastery over his mind and body.
The combat suit of Spectral Fighter gives him other options in addition to simple hand-to-hand fighting.
By unknown means-although confirmed to be permitted by wearing his combat suit-Spectral Fighter may leap a tall building in a single bound. Or at least a decent sized one. He has incorporated this extra capability into his fighting style, allowing him a third dimension to fight in.
Spectral Fighter was relatively fit before his time in the Rogue Islands. His time since becoming Spectral Fighter has honed his body into a living weapon; infection and fatigue rarely can get a hold within him now.
Paul Davison was an investigative reporter for Channel 13 in Paragon City (WPGN) originally, then with the fledgling newspaper The Paragon Chronicle. While not a professional detective, Davison does have the ability to dig beneath the surface in order to find the truth of things.
Weaknesses and Limitations
While fit, Davison is still an unenhanced human, and so if he is taken by surprise-or worse still, caught out of uniform-he can be injured and killed just as easily as any normal person.
Sometimes, Davison tries to do too much, and accordingly ends up sleep-deprived. This can affect his judgment at times-as well as his fighting ability.
Paul Davison was a native of New York, and had the dubious fortune of going through his driver's exam during the Rikti War, having narrowly missed having a drop ship crash on top of his car. (He passed.) At the time, he figured that this would be the most exciting thing to have happened to him, even if it did scare the crap out of him.
The event did have a secondary effect-he began devouring (so to speak) news reports on the War-from its beginnings to the tragic end. Whether it was in print or on the television, he spent a great deal of time learning about the War-and even more importantly, about the men and women who risked their lives to bring the story to the people. Paul even began to write for the school newspaper, trying to emulate their techniques. It was no surprise to anyone when he went to New York University and came out with a journalism degree.
Thanks to an intern program, he quickly got a job at Channel 13 (WPGN) at Paragon City, and worked as an investigative reporter. Unfortunately, this job was what led him to a fateful meeting that would be the defining moment of his life.
The Etoile Islands
One of his investigations led him to the airspace over the Etoile Islands-better known as the Rogue Islands. It had been the idea of his partner, who felt that getting camera shots of Mercy Island-including its devastation and the gangs that ruled over most of it-would be worth the risk of being detected by Arachnos. Their helicopter was seen, and an Arachnos Flier-after giving them one warning to get out-shot it down.
The only survivor of the crash was Davison. Davison got lucky-he was mostly unhurt, but the trauma of the moment activated the genetic bomb in his body: his mutant gene activated, and he disappeared. Fatigue and pain eventually would overcome him, however, and he faded back into sight-right in front of a roving gang of Hellions. He would have died at their hands if not for a man in a black bodysuit, white trench coat and hat, with glowing red eyes. In moments, the man dispatched the Hellions, and took Paul to a safe place.
The man identified himself as Spectral Fighter, a freedom fighter for the people of the Islands. He had fought for years under the regime of President Marchand, and later Lord Recluse, hoping to bring freedom to the citizens of the islands-hoping to change the course of its piratical history. He told Davison that his fight was almost over, however: he was dying.
Since Davison had no way off of the island, Spectral Fighter offered him a chance: study with him, fight with him, learn from him. If Davison could master the skills Spectral Fighter taught, then with his own mutant power working with those skills, Davison had a good chance to make it back home.
The training took two years. In that time, Davison proved to be a capable student. Yet in that time, Spectral Fighter grew weaker, slower. He never unmasked, and Davison never saw him out of uniform. Yet still the Fighter was his better. But Davison continued to learn, and used his power to supplement his growing fighting skills. When the final test came, Davison was able to match his teacher-and demonstrated that his ethics had not been corrupted by the teachings.
Afterward, the Fighter finally removed his uniform, and told Davison that it was finally time. The Fighter was done, and Davison would carry his story back with him to the United States. And just like that, the Fighter quietly died.
Davison buried him near one of the beaches of Mercy Island, took the hero's gear, and used his power and training to work his way back to the States. Davison made a decision on that journey-and his mentor would not be forgotten.
Soon after, criminals of Paragon City would come to know and fear the name of the Spectral Fighter!
|Primals||Heroes||Agent Repulse • Amazing Kane • Armored Battalion • Fighting Wolfman • Gatewarden • Invictar • Old Ranger • Qi'Lar • Skyshade • Spectral Fighter • Stellar Protector • Sunpulse • Timelost • Winter Tornado|
|Vigilantes||Nyctomancer • Occult Explorer|
|Villains||Devil's Chamberlain • Dracofire • Operative Rostov • Stellar Abyss|
|Rogues||Baron Craven • Ebon Thunderbolt • General Retaliation • Professor Dredd|