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December 23, 2016

357. APHELION

BIRTH NAME:

CLASSIFIED

ALIASES:

Aphelion

BIRTH DETAILS:

Platinum City, USA, Earth (Core Reality); Late 21st Century

SPECIES:

Hyper-human; female

Intelligence

Mental Powers

Strength

Speed

Energy Projection

Tactical Skill

Durability

Agility

Power Rating: 1 – 100

POWERS, ABILITIES, WEAPONS & TOOLS

Aphelion possesses super-sonic eyesight which grants her telescopic vision and x-ray vision. She also possesses the ability to fly. She has military weapons and combat training and is an expert markswoman.

My name is Angel Wraith. And I am the new commander of the Starship Stratalight. This is an excerpt from my official log.

Stratalight Maiden Voyage, Day 201

THE STORY

From the very first day I met Aphelion I knew we’d get along. She was like me in that nothing came easy to her. Not to throw any shade whatsoever on any of the other members of the Stratalight crew, (especially those who we’ve also lost) but Captain Noble, Chief Two Strike, Wavelength, Robotica, Smolder and Euphoria were all born into varying degrees of privilege, while Powerline and Placebo possessed powers that they were able to almost immediately profit or benefit from.

HEIGHT: 5’8″
WEIGHT: 169 lbs.
SKIN: Brown
HAIR: Black
EYES: Light brown

And Marco Crux of course is an immortal who possesses powers comparable to that of a god. On the other hand, like me, Aphelion, and by proxy her son and Stratalight copilot HyperThrust, were born into low-income situations and had to scrap for everything she would end up achieving.

Born in a particularly gang-ridden part of Platinum City to a woman known as Star Chenault II, Aphelion was all but destined to end up in the life. Star was actually a gang leader herself, as she had taken over the smalltime Plat City Cutters when her boyfriend, and Aphelion’s father, was killed by a rival crew. The incident happened before Aphelion was born and thus Star was noticeably pregnant during the first 3 months of her reign as leader of the Cutters.

Star remained in power throughout Aphelion’s childhood and introduced the girl to the life while she was still in elementary school. Furthermore, once Aphelion’s hyper-abilities manifested, her mother saw an opportunity to become major players in the criminal activity of their section of Platinum City.

Aphelion was born with super-sonic vision which allowed her to see at extreme distances and also granted her x-ray and telescopic capabilities. As a sniper her vision would one day become so precise and far-reaching that she could hit a target on the moon of Jupiter while standing outside a Target in Jupiter, Florida. Yes, THAT good! By the time she was 12 years old, she and her elementary school friend Desmond Wallace, were pulling off robberies on behalf of the Cutters. He was the muscle and she was the eyes and ears. The two of them had an impressive police record for a couple of preteens. After a few years of running together, Desmond moved on to bigger and better things, taking a job with a more successful and well-funded criminal organization run by mobster Chuck Ellis. Aphelion of course remained loyal to her mother.

But that loyalty never paid off, as Star was eventually arrested and sentenced to 25 years in prison. The Plat City Cutters quickly fell apart and at the age of 21 Aphelion was left with nothing… no family, no friends, no education and not a lot of money. It also did not help that she had a 3 year-old son of her own at this point; his father an on-again-off-again boyfriend named Peri Foster, who drove a bus for a living. Aphelion used her hyper-sight to take on a few assassination gigs for small time crooks, but having not truly honed her abilities and only being hired to take out other small time hustlers, she still didn’t make enough money to move her and her son out of the ghetto. She was definitely headed down the road to becoming a statistic in the worst possible sense when she received an unexpected call from her childhood pal Desmond.

Desmond had ended up in the Marines 3 years prior and become a highly decorated soldier and marksman. He had come home to Platinum City on leave and was disappointed to hear that Aphelion’s life was on a downward spiral. He told her that he could get her and her son out of the slums of Platinum City through connections he had developed in the military. But it would take a ton of hard work on her part. She weighed her options and decided to take him up on the offer. Interestingly enough Aphelion had recently discovered she possessed an additional hyper-ability: flight. So when Desmond listed her choices she decided to enroll in a pre-pilot training certificate program in southern Platinum City not far from a NASA military base. The scholarship Desmond secured for her came with a one bedroom apartment, for her and her son, as well as subsidized child care.

It took a few weeks, but eventually Aphelion found that classwork, academics and especially aeronautics were all very interesting to her. She began to pull herself together and dedicate herself to becoming the best student possible. Additionally, the program set up appointments for her with a pair of hyper-being trainers called Ebb and Flow, in order to help her fully develop her sonic-eyesight and hyper-flight capabilities. Furthermore, she finally worked things out with Peri, who came to live with her in the apartment, and the two of them married just a few months after her graduation from the certificate program.

She then officially enlisted in the Air Force and in her 8 year career became one of the most respected and decorated pilots to ever wear the uniform. After her honorable discharge, she and Peri and their son settled down in Southern Platinum City. Six years later, however, Aphelion was contacted by NASA and asked to enroll in their Advanced Aeronautic Pilot Program. With the support of Peri, she accepted the commission and for the first 12 months was the program’s top performer. That is until her 19 year-old son, HyperThrust, dropped out of college and joined the program – a decision Aphelion was not very happy with at all.

HyperThrust, who also possessed hyper-abilities however showed extreme aptitude for flying and though Aphelion would have preferred for him to get his degree, she had to come to terms with the fact that he was right where he needed to be. The relationship between Aphelion and HyperThrust remained difficult until the two of them were selected as the flight team for the Starship Stratalight. In all my space missions I’ve never seen a duo work so well alongside one another (and yes I’ve seen other family members, even spouses, co-pilot together). Her hyper-sight and his hyper-speed interfaced perfectly with the Stratalight’s hyper-modulation unit allowing us to see almost a light year into the distance. Just incredible. But of course the working relationship was far outstripped by the personal relationship. And over these first seven months of our first commission, I’ve seen the love between them grow and morph into an inseparable bond.

That is why it saddens me so deeply to report that Aphelion has been killed in action. On this, the 201st day of the Stratalight’s maiden voyage, we lost our lead pilot during an encounter with the alien warrior called Ominous. After losing contact with our engineer Smolder upon our initial crash landing, then constantly battling the planet’s elements and the hordes of monstrous creatures that inhabit it, we were confronted by Ominous, who claimed to belong to a collective of warriors called the Denizen Supreme. We were then told we would have to pay a price for every bit of energy and resources we had harvested so far during our desolation. If we did not offer the sacrifice the attacks from the monstrous planet would never cease.

Captain Noble was the first to offer his life in order to save the rest of us. Already the most devastating loss any of us could imagine. However, Ominous required yet another sacrifice. It was at that point that Aphelion spoke up. And from the moment she took her first shaky step forward, I could tell she was doing it less for all of us, and more specifically for her son. Yes, it’s true that outside of Marco Crux, the immortal, and Doctor Robotica, who is 75 percent cybernetic, Aphelion was the oldest member of the crew, and thus could have rationalized to herself that the rest of us still had much more life to live. But the bottom line is that she was willing to do anything in her power to ensure her son had a chance to go on. And at that point the one thing in her power was to give herself over to Ominous.

And while Captain Noble did everything he could to hold his steely demeanor and reassure us with his eyes as he was destroyed by the alien, Aphelion’s terror-filled face and agonizing screeches of horror much more embodied what we were all truly experiencing in our hearts and minds – terror and agony.

Aphelion – loving wife, devoted mother, dedicated Air Force and NASA pilot, incredible friend, fierce woman, and true survivor – will be missed.