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Adam Tempest
Post Count : 12
Name: Adam Tempest

Age: Twenty

Adam 2

Although an Esper’s mind is by far his deadliest weapon, the Psi-Ops is still a military outfit – an elite one, at that, whose stated purpose is combat.  As such, Adam’s time spent in the Esper Academy was split evenly between mental conditioning, scientific studies, and physical training of a most intense sort.  He emerged a man of great physical prowess, and this shines through in his physique.  Adam stands at a height of precisely one hundred eighty-eight centimeters (approx. 6’2’’) and weighs in at a fairly ideal eighty-nine kilograms (approx. 195 lbs).  Few would consider him a giant, yet even fewer would deny that he looks the part of a trained soldier.  His conditioning placed more emphasis on speed, dexterity, and stamina than on raw strength, given the nature of his techniques and weapons, and so his highly athletic physique more greatly resembles that of a swimmer or, perhaps more accurately, a swordsman.  His shoulders are broad and commanding, but his upper body quickly tapers off into a very slender, V-shaped torso with well-defined abdominal muscles.

Adam has been trained to wage war and to do so with efficiency far outstripping that of any normal human, but his deep blue eyes reflect none of the ferocity one might expect from such an individual. Rather, they are filled to the brim with curiosity and compassion.  Only when locked in battle are they set aflame with the terrible resolve of a hardened warrior.  His features are similarly soft and youthful, lacking in the hard lines and creases found in most soldiers who have seen their share of live combat.  However, the greatest surprise to those unfamiliar with the Esper Program is Adam’s blue hair.  He was raised a raven-haired child, but one peculiar side-effect of the procedures carried out on him was the alteration of his hair color to this more unnatural state.  One hypothesis suggests that the discoloration could be caused by the individual’s aura “bleeding over” just the slightest bit into their physical appearance, but research on the subject is slow-going because there don’t seem to be any detrimental, health-related complications associated with the change.

The Esper dresses simply and practically; he never gave that much thought to fashion, thinking it to be rather frivolous.  In truth, if the Esper Program used proper uniforms, he would probably wear it whenever convenient.  However, most of the time, he can be found in a form-fitting, short-sleeved black shirt which comfortably hugs his athletic torso.  A pair of blue, cloth pants cover his lower body, just loose enough so as not to restrict motion while clinging just enough to his legs to avoid slowing him down.  Depending on the climate, he will also wear the blue jacket given to members of the Esper Corps’ frontline troops.  Red flames line its bottom edges, while a distinctive, stylized emblem sits on the back.  His sword, Nothung, is strapped diagonally across his back such that, to unsheathe it, he need only reach over his shoulder with his left hand.

Sex: Male

Species: Esper (Transhuman)

Adam Tempest is a man driven by reason and scientific curiosity of a magnitude not often seen in the hearts of men.  He seeks the truth – indisputable, intuitive, and wholly quantifiable – not just in the name of his own species, but for the enlightenment of all life forms across the cosmos.  To that end, he kneels only before the throne of logic and will, as a matter of personal philosophy, bow his head to no gods or kings regardless of how powerful they may appear.  The technology woven through his very cellular makeup has added fuel to this fire, but Adam’s need for empirical truth can, in a far more rudimentary form, be traced back to his earliest years.  He is possessed of a very analytical mind which constantly seeks to deconstruct, examine, and understand the world around him, though never in a destructive manner.  When first he encounters an unfamiliar process, the word “How?” inevitably flashes through his mind, while new ideas are unfailingly met with a resounding “Why?” as Adam attempts to unearth the logic behind it.

Though skeptical of the unknown – especially when it comes packaged within a veneer of mysticism or cryptic metaphors, Adam makes a conscious effort to remain open-minded.  His way of life is the grand sum of countless monologues, dialogues, and offhanded musings, each of which has done its part to help shape the young Esper’s world view.  If presented with a nugget of information that he finds no fault with, Adam graciously assimilates it and accepts it as yet another invaluable piece of the puzzle.  This trait has served him well in his scientific endeavors and even better in matters of philosophy, where the answer is not always as linear as he might hope.  In short, Adam is a thinker, and he struggles to have as complete a picture as possible, if only so that he does not make a costly mistake at a critical moment.  Needless to say, he has trouble “taking it on faith”, which may be one of the reasons why he and others like him in his sovereign nation have no real aptitude for Magic.

Of course, let it not be said that Adam Tempest is a coldhearted man or without empathy.  Quite the contrary, the young Esper believes that all life is precious, that it must be defended, and that it is the responsibility of the strong to see that these tenants are upheld.  Adam recognizes the simple, irreducible truth that each individual presents a profound and irreplaceable pattern of thought; no matter how humble or obscure a life form may be, they nonetheless hold a perspective which is entirely unique to them in the whole of the universe.  This, though, could just be Adam attempting to apply his brand of logic to what is, in essence, a naturally kind heart born from a little boy who could not stand to see others come to harm.  As I said earlier, of course, Adam will never do anything “just because”, if only due to the fact that he wants to feel prepared to argue in favor of his philosophy at any given moment.

On the subject of responsibility, Adam takes his position as Esper very seriously – almost to a fault, one might say.  The people of his sovereign nation, particularly the media outlets, have been known to refer to Espers as “The Men of Tomorrow” (or “Women”, for that matter, but the reporters need to think in terms of what rolls off the tongue best).  As such, they are expected to help usher in an age of prosperity, which adds a fair amount of unintentional pressure for them to behave as paragons of enlightenment and virtue.  Adam, in particular, has taken this idea to heart and carries it with him wherever he goes – even outside the borders of Vígríðr itself.  He holds himself to exceedingly high standards of conduct, and, should he perceive any sort of flaw or failure on his part, he is excessively hard on himself.

However, this is not the only burden placed upon Adam’s shoulders by his status as an Esper.  His swift and logical mind operates in a manner slightly different from that of a “baseline” human.  For that reason, Adam feels rather alienated from others and, at times, wonders whether he even qualifies as a human any longer.  He grapples with issues of what, exactly, constitutes “a person” and sometimes goes so far as to muse that the original Adam Tempest may not exist at all.  In other words, where does the man end and the Esper begin? Is such a distinction even possible?  Is it desirable?  Yet he forces such fears into an obscure corner of his mind, for Adam is a proponent of progress and acknowledges himself, at least on an intellectual level, as a means for achieving that progress among the people of Vígríðr.

If nothing else, of course, one need not worry about Adam Tempest’s ability to keep himself together.  His reason is matched only by his mental fortitude, and his willpower may well be the one component of his being which is well and truly indomitable.  No matter the pressure, no matter how heavy the weight he carries, Adam just does not break.  Hell, getting him to bend at all would be an impressive feat.  Be it physical torture or mental coercion, there may well not be a single force in the universe which can get Adam to “give in” without actually killing him.  He adheres rigidly to his ethical code, and, provided he believes in the cause which he fights for, he does not give up.  Some find the overwhelming passion with which he pursues his goals to be slightly surprising, given the wholly rational, calculating manner he usually conducts himself with.

Despite the alienation he feels regarding humanity at large, in fact, Adam’s uncompromising dedication to his ideals lends him a certain charisma.  He would never claim to make a good General, for he much prefers to toil away in live combat, but Adam possesses a very commanding presence nonetheless.  When he walked into a room, he brings with him an air of confidence and inner strength, for he is a man who knows what he believes, what he wants, and how he wants to go about getting there.  Unless directly approached, Adam is a man of few words who prefers to stoically observe a situation with a pensive, contemplative look sitting most naturally upon his face.  When he is in thought, he is in his element, and this grants him a look of implacability which some might find impressive.

Psychokinesis/PK: The Psychokinetic Arts, alternatively known as Telekinesis or simply “PK”, are one of several disciplines which a prospective Esper may choose as his or her area of expertise.  This skill is typically the choice of frontline troops with no need for deception or subtlety, and, in this regard, Adam stands out as a master of his craft even among his accomplished peers.  As its name implies, Psychokinesis involves the projection of a mental force capable of moving physical objects according to the will of the psychic.  There are two key limitations on this power, one of which is more easily circumvented than the other.  First, Psychokinesis may not be used directly on anyone or anything of sufficiently powerful will [Note: In RP terms, this means any and all PCs, or NPCs of comparable strength].  For instance, an Esper cannot snap the neck of an opposing warrior with a wave of the hand or stop the very beating of his heart from a kilometer away.  This is because Psychokinesis is, essentially, a manifestation of the Esper’s life force; foreign intelligence or vitality interferes with this process.

Going off this point, an Esper is limited by the scope of his or her own willpower, as well as their understanding of the world around them.  For an Esper to move something with their mind alone, they must believe themselves to be capable of moving it with every fiber of their being.  Indeed, much of the training at the Esper Academy consists of building up mental fortitude and maintaining it under stressful conditions.  A firm understanding of Physics and Chemistry helps with this process tremendously, as the Esper is capable of quantifying the amount of force needed to manipulate a given object.  The prevailing school of thought in the Academy is as follows: “If it can be reduced to a number or vector, then the human mind can comprehend it.”

Of course, this is hyperbole done for simplicity’s sake.  Otherwise, a well-learned Esper could impact the orbit of a planet about its sun.  The human body, enhanced though it may be, saddles even the most strong-willed Esper with limitations.  For a supremely tenacious man like Adam, similarly versed in the physical sciences and mathematics, a maximum of approximately ten metric tons (10,000 kg) can be expected.  However, just as a weightlifter succumbs more easily to fatigue the closer he gets to his highest possible load, so too does an Esper tire out as he strains his mind.  In practical combat, an S Rank Psychokinetic can reliably manipulate anything up to medium-sized vehicles.  Of course, the Esper Program is still in its infancy, and its true upper limits have not yet been tested…

--Techniques: Although Psychokinesis is, in many ways, reliant upon the ingenuity of the Esper, there are a number of established techniques for these Transhuman soldiers to fall back on in times of duress.  They can be exceedingly difficult to master, but they often serve as the cornerstone of an Esper’s offensive when no suitable ammunition can be found on the battlefield.  Indeed, it has often been said that the difference between a good Esper and a great Esper is whether or not they took the time to develop their repertoire of support techniques.  Overachiever such as he is, Adam made it a point to learn a few of them and learn them well, to the point where he has garnered a reputation as something of a gunslinger among his peers:

  • Psychokinetic Bolts: This is a standard projectile whereby the user expels a small amount of pure, condensed mental aura from the palm of their hand.  To the naked eye, it appears as a bolt of translucent, blue light.  In terms of overall potency, it can be compared to a high caliber, armor-piercing round from a military grade handgun or, in Magical terms, a mid-level elemental Spell.  The parallels to modern firearms do not stop there, however: Adam can fire sixteen rounds before he must “reload” [in RP time, this amounts to one post].  In fast paced, long range combat, this serves as his bread-and-butter, in a manner of speaking.
  • Projected Barrier: A defensive technique in which the user creates an impermeable wall of telekinetic force directly in front of them, maintained by positioning both hands facing palm-out.  The strength of the barrier depends primarily on the caster’s degree of concentration.  A stationary Esper with his full attention devoted to maintaining the shield can expect to withstand a fairly heavy attack without suffering significant damage (though this will result in the barrier’s destruction).  When on the move (or on the attack), the barrier is weakened considerably, to the point where a moderately strong blow may forcibly shatter it and leave the caster momentarily stunned.
  • Psychokinetic Leap: Aimed at improving the mobility of an Esper during urban warfare, the Psychokinetic Leap involves the release of a burst of mental energy underneath the user’s feet as he jumps into the air.  Being that an Esper’s body is slightly tougher than that of a normal human (more on this later), landing is not much of an issue.  However, when landing from greater heights, a secondary release of energy may be necessary to slow their descent just before hitting the ground.  Adam himself can reach a maximum height of twenty-five meters (approximately eighty feet).
  • PK Spread: A variation on the Psychokinetic Bolts used for short- to mid-range combat, with its maximum “effective” range being approximately one hundred meters.  However, it is most potent when used at point-blank range.  The attack involves firing six aura pellets, each one half as strong as a single Psychokinetic Bolt.  These pellets then spread out at forty-five degree angles from one another, essentially meaning that a target hit with all six will suffer considerable damage, while those who manage to evade or otherwise deflect some of them may escape relatively unscathed.  The PK Spread can be fired six times before a “reload” is necessary [two posts in RP time].
  • Psycho Railgun: Adam and one of his close friends from the Esper Academy pioneered this weapon, and it has become something of a signature move for him.  Indeed, some of his fellow soldiers have jokingly taken to calling it the “Psycho Tempest” as something of a tribute.  It heavily involves the precise manipulation of electromagnetic fields and the attractive forces between molecules to achieve two effects.  First, it hyper-condenses the projectile – either a projection of the Esper’s aura or a solid object (physical matter is easier to work with).  Second, it propels the projectile with such overwhelming force that it becomes comparable in might to a sustained blast from a high tech railgun – hence its name.  However, due to its extraordinary power, it can be fired only twice a day [as far as the RP is concerned, this means “per thread”], and Adam must rest between shots [the equivalent of five In Character posts].  After the second shot, he will be totally drained to the point where he may not be able to continue fighting at all.

    However, extraordinary caution is required from anyone capable of firing the Psycho Railgun (there are only a handful in the Esper Academy who can manage even one shot).  Its range and power mean that it can and will cause substantial damage to the environment.  Any time the technique is used in combat, a thorough investigation is carried out to make absolutely sure that the user was justified.  Adam, as one of the Psycho Railgun’s two developers, shares in this sentiment.  He uses it only as a finishing move against particularly mighty foes, and under no circumstances will he think to use it if he knows there are innocent bystanders anywhere remotely near his target.  The problem, in this case, is more the possibility that the user might miss.

Superhuman Reflexes: This skill is not related to the psychic powers of the Esper; rather, it is a byproduct of the procedures used to enhance their bodies and mind.  An Esper literally thinks faster than a normal human, allowing them to react to stimuli in a manner both swift and efficient.  Their muscles have been similarly treated to withstand such consistently rapid movements without deteriorating.  However, an Esper’s physical strength is not significantly beyond the upper limits of a normal human being (I hesitate to call it ‘superhuman’ in any sense of the word, though they are, by necessity, made from sterner stuff).  Espers who specialize in direct combat are capable of evading or deflecting bullets, so long as they know the direction they’re coming from.  This, in essence, makes melee combat a viable option even against technologically equipped foes.  However, given that a great number of bullets travel faster than the speed of sound, they are still quite vulnerable to the bullets of a well-hidden sniper.

Enhanced Immune Response: Less a combat specification and more a matter of utility, the average Esper has been treated with Nanomachines which are capable of directly and intelligently targeting malevolent, foreign agents.  Once they arrive at the point of the malicious invader, they administer lysing agents, antitoxins, or antibiotics depending on the exact nature of the affliction.  In addition, they are able to manually repair any damage done by these harmful agents after they have been dealt with.  What this means is that an Esper is far less likely to get sick than a normal human, be it from harmful bacteria, viruses, or even cancer.  If they do suffer from such an ailment, they will make a much faster recovery and will be no worse-for-wear.  What this means, in layman’s terms, is that, so long as an Esper takes care to maintain these systems and does not fall in combat, there is no reason for them to age or die: It is engineered immortality, in other words, though Adam obviously has not yet lived long enough to truly reap the benefits.

One useful side effect of this trait is that an Esper has less to fear from infectious agents (ergo, chemical warfare, be it technological or magical).  Any harmful agent will require vastly higher dosages to produce the same effect, and, even in the event that one manages to overwhelm an Esper’s defenses, it will be metabolized much quicker and flushed from their systems.  This makes it possible for an Esper to continue fighting under difficult conditions or in hostile environments where ordinary soldiers might prove unreliable.

Master Swordsman: All Espers are required to choose a Psychic Discipline and a Physical Discipline.  In Adam’s case, he selected swordsmanship.  Unlike the Psychokinetic Arts, Adam was not the star achiever of his graduating class, though he did receive his share of accolades.  He practiced diligently for eight years, which, due to the increased rate at which Espers process information, shaped him into a fine warrior in his own right.  Adam achieved the rank of “Master”, which is the second highest awarded in the Esper Academy (Untrained->Novice->Amateur->Proficient->Journeyman->Expert->Master->Grandmaster, with “Amateur” required for graduation.  In “real world” terms, this degree of skill, combined with Adam’s enhanced reflexes, means that he can at least hold his own against all manner of foes.  However, he knows he has much to learn, and he is always eager to seek the tutelage of those more experienced than him.

Keen Thinker: Adam is well-versed in the sciences of Chemistry and Microbiology, as well as in Mathematics.  To that end, his critical thinking skills are quite impressive.  He is very good at thinking on his feet and analyzing the techniques of his foes on the fly.  Furthermore, it is very difficult to rattle or deceive him, for Adam is a man of reason who attempts, whenever possible, to justify his actions through rational thought.

Strong Will: It bears repeating that Adam Tempest does not give  up – not ever.  If he fights for a cause that he believes in, he will not yield before even the most hopeless of odds.  He firmly believes that anything is possible given the proper drive, intellect, and dedication.  Physical and mental pain, though just as much a deterrent to him as to anyone else, will slow him down only insofar as his body dictates.  If the bones in his legs are intact, he will move them.  If he remains conscious, he will press onward.  If he still draws breath, he will keep coming until his foes are vanquished and his ideals upheld.

The Psy-Edge Mk IV (Custom Model ‘Nothung’): The line of Psy-Edges have gone through several iterations before the Mk IV reached Adam’s hands.  Each model proved more efficient and reliable than the last, with Mk I being a prototype and Mk II serving as the first production model.  Essentially, the Psy-Edge is an alloyed blade which, with the flip of a switch on its hilt, becomes coated in a layer of blue plasma held in place through precise applications of magnetic fields.  Naturally, the incredibly high temperatures drastically increase the cutting ability of the sword, though it, of course, cannot slice through anything.  The plasma itself incorporates much of the same technology sometimes employed in Northern Beam Rifles, made to counter the elemental Spells employed by the Southern Magi.

Those who achieve excellence in Psychic abilities or Swordsmanship are allowed to commission an “ace custom” of sorts, hand-crafted according to their specifications and paid for by the military.  In Adam’s case, he chose Nothung, a blade designed for largely for single combat.  Nothung sacrifices battery life and, thus, staying power in exchange for a keener cutting edge and plasma maintained at slightly higher temperatures.  This comes with the caveat that Adam must pay more attention to maintaining the sword – keeping it sharpened, running checks on its internal systems, etc.  And, of course, he runs the risk of losing power mid-battle.

World of Origin: Vígríðr
Adam hails from the world of Vígríðr, whose bountiful lands have long been besieged by a great and terrible war.  The planet is home to but a singular yet expansive landmass, typically thought of in terms of its Northern and Southern regions.  The South, whose soil, air, and waters are rich in Mana, gave birth to a society founded and run by sorcerers of immense power.  Even the earliest historical texts tell of how the mystical arts flourished in those parts, and so positions of authority went to whosoever possessed the greatest capacity for invoking the primordial forces of the World.  No matter how a nation got its start, it quickly and inevitably fell into a social hierarchy based on innate magical talent.  Civilizations lived and died at the whims of these masters of the arcane, who easily rose to the uppermost echelons of society wherever they traveled.  Those who escaped these all-too-often totalitarian regimes with their lives fled to the North, where natural reserves of Mana were negligible at best.

However, in time, literacy trickled down to the common man, and with it came the tomes from which the sorcerers drew their power.  A period of civil unrest and political strife eventually led to the establishment of a society ruled by councils – elected Senates of magicians, rather than a single, all-powerful tyrant.  Triumphs of architecture were built and great works of literature penned during this Southern Renaissance, and the peoples of those lands pushed their borders out with thoughts of expansion on their minds.  With the primal forces at their fingertips and the world’s most ancient spirits at their beck-and-call, uniting the South under a single, unified banner proved all too trivial.

During this period of revolution, the men of the North were forgotten by the Southern society.  Though they toiled in obscurity for much of their time, the Northern nations took unprecedented strides in science, technology, and the arts.  In lieu of magic and with the constant threat of the South (known in their historical texts as ‘The Ancient Magi’) looming over their shoulders, the North struggled to build a society free from oppression and ruled by reason and logic.  Great cities rose in the name of these enlightened times, their pristine structures of twisted metal seeming to reach the skies themselves.    Thus, Vígríðr saw two great Renaissances occur simultaneously and each in complete ignorance of the other.

Inevitably, the two societies met again as they both sought to expand into what they thought were uncharted territories.  For a time, they coexisted in wondrous harmony.  They shared their secrets with one another and were prosperous in this way of life.  However, dissent in the South came from a cabal of wealthy and powerful sorcerers who called themselves The Arcane Reformation.  Their doctrine consisted of magical supremacy just as in the days of old, and they regarded the peoples of the North as little more than a slave caste to be ruled over without remorse.  They gained support among the people of the far South, who did not often interact with their Northern brethren and thus fell victim to their propaganda.  With the momentum of this group left unchecked, they freely conspired and instigated “misunderstandings” and “accidents” between the people of the North and South.  Within two generations, they managed to create a war that would forever change the course of Vígríðr’s history.

The magical talents of the South set themselves against the North’s devastating machines of war, and each side’s relative ignorance of their opponent led to a bloody beginning to this terrible conflict.  The Southern Magi held a decisive advantage in open conflict, but a wealth of natural resources and superior Generals in the North saw to it that the conflict continued without an end in sight.  Furthermore, this race of humans, born and bred to be thinkers of the highest caliber, soon came to close the gap between themselves and their primordially charged foes.  Genetically altered soldiers took to the fray, matching enchantments with great physical might, while new weapons sought to further level this all-encompassing playing field.

Several generations of bloodshed down the road, in A.P. 2461 (Anno Prosperitatem, or The Year of Prosperity of the Northern Calendar), the North made a startling discovery: Those born and raised in the absence of Mana had a chance of developing a certain attunement with the physical world.  Often, this manifested itself as a unique talent for the physical sciences, but when cultivated and acted upon through a series of well-calculated processes, it became something much more.  These theoretical individuals, referred to as ‘Espers’ in shorthand, would have the ability to manipulate matter and energy in accord with their degree of ability.  Their bodies, too, would be enhanced by this process, granting traits setting them apart from the general populace.  Initial tests, though rife with obstacles, proved a resounding success, and the Northern scientists, once assured that human experimentation could be carried out safely and ethically, began to seek out candidates for what came to be known as the Esper Program.

Their eyes soon fell upon a young student by the name of Adam Tempest…

Personal History
The Northern government required that all children of the great Republic Cities undergo screening for potential as a candidate for the Esper Program, starting at age five, though any child could undergo the tests at the request of teachers or caregivers.  The “symptoms”, for lack of a better term, ranged from limited clairvoyance (in essence, receiving information not involved with any of the five human senses) to advanced understanding of three dimensional systems to simple intuition regarding mathematics.  The age of onset varied in a similar fashion; some did not begin to show signs of potential until as late as age fourteen, and so the Northern Academies held annual exams open to the public as well as students.  Adam, however, met all criteria for greater talent in the Psychokinetic Arts or “PK” on his fifth birthday.  In essence, this meant that those in charge were willing to do whatever they could to see him enrolled in the program.

At the age of eight, Adam officially entered into the program, though the higher-ups made certain concessions on his behalf, as they did with all especially-promising candidates.  Before that day, he had lived a relatively normal life as the son of two Chemists – one Physical, the other Organic.  After his induction into the Esper Program, surprisingly little changed at first.  His parents, at their vehement insistence, moved with him to the Capital, granting him a level of comfort with his new surroundings that served him well in the coming years.  He almost immediately became enthralled with the sciences, however, both the physical and biological.  Mathematics and Biochemistry proved his strongest suits, both of which the Esper Program promised him in spades.  Less predictably (for most candidates gravitated to science), he came to possess an unyielding sense of justice, which meant that inspiring him to fight for the freedom of his people proved all-too-easy.

When the day of the procedures came, he still had not reached the age where he could fully comprehend what it meant to become an Esper.  Unfortunately, the South had redoubled their war effort and had begun to gain ground at an alarming rate, and they, indeed, held thoughts of slavery in their minds.  For this reason, the North sought to field their new “miracle weapon” as soon as possible.  Adam faced the operating table during what came to be known as the last wave of First Generation Espers.  That day, he closed his eyes as a human and opened them as something…different – something “more”.  Adam, always perceptive of his surroundings, noticed that he differed from other children even aside from his overt powers.  Espers developed and thought quicker, and their very immune systems proved more resilient; could they truly be considered humans any longer?

One day, when he was thirteen years of age, one year before he would declare the psychic discipline which he would study, Adam came across three of his classmates using their budding powers to push around those who could not defend themselves.  This was uncommon but not unheard-of among Espers, but, for one reason or another, Adam was not aware of it.  Without thinking, he sprang into action, calling upon his limited Psychokinetic training to dispatch the guilty party.  The students in-question possessed average talent, but they held the advantage in number and age.  However, Adam became consumed with an overwhelming, righteous fury at the sight of these boys preying upon the weak in some terrible show of force.  It contrasted so horribly with his view of the Espers – a proud corps dedicated to protecting the innocent, gifted with both vast powers and responsibilities to match – that he could scarcely restrain himself.  In the ensuing struggle, Adam inflicted grievous injuries upon two of the boys and sent the last running.

Adam went to his superiors expecting punishment.  Instead, they granted him admission into a more advanced training program, with one stipulation: He needed to declare Psychokinesis as his intended focus and to commit to it.  Adam, constantly searching for a better understanding of himself and his powers, accepted graciously in the hopes of receiving the best tutors available.  For the next five years, he trained diligently, throwing himself wholeheartedly into Psychokinesis and Swordsmanship.  Come graduation, he had earned a spot among as a Rank S PK Operative – the highest level of prestige available achieved by only a small pool of elites, as well as an A Rank in Swordsmanship.  For his psychic talents, he earned the title “Grand Psyker” of his graduating class, while his skill with the blade saw that he achieved the level of “Master” (those who graded Rank S were awarded the title “Grandmaster”).

He met with similar prosperity and success during his years of service in the military, though he still had not found a satisfying answer to the all-consuming question of “Who am I?”  As his powers grew and he rose in prominence to become one of the North’s most feared combatants, Adam only felt the rift between himself and his fellow man broaden further.  Moreover, though his sovereign nation raised him to view the Southern Magi as implacable tyrants, his close encounters with them suggested no significant difference between their kind and the Northern soldiers.  They protected their own and fought valiantly for ideals which they had come to believe in.  Though Adam continued to oppose the Southern war effort and what it stood for (that being conquest of the North), he began to question the motivation behind such a bloody and long-lived war.

This personal strife reached its apex when Adam engaged a man by the name of Cain Stark in a duel.  Much like Adam was counted as one of his nation’s most powerful psychics, Cain was a magical prodigy whose skill with the arcane matched that of the sorcerers of old.  Their duel was fierce, and neither combatant walked away unscathed.  However, in the end, Adam emerged victorious.  Before striking down his adversary, the Esper caught sight of a locket.  Contained therein was a picture of the magician’s family.  This touched upon the strings of Adam’s own heart, for, close to his breast, he carried a similar trinket.  This opened the gates of discussion, and, begrudgingly, Adam spared his foe, for he saw him as a noble spirit every bit as worthy of life as he was.  He felt certain that strange forces beyond the brink of the waking world tugged subtly at the strings of causality, keeping North and South alike in the dark as to their true intentions.  Thus, Adam’s quest for enlightenment began anew.

The universe at large saw fit to oblige him; soon after his victory over Cain Stark, black creatures began to appear throughout the land.  The North and South looked into the matter, turning at least a portion of their attention away from fighting for the first time in decades.  While the Southern Magi had an easier time discovering the nature of the creatures, the scientists of the North used the phenomena affiliated with their arrival to uncover the existence of other Worlds.  In particular, they saw great success in reverse engineering the Gummi technology that fell from the skies – or, at least, they managed to put together a working prototype.  Unfortunately, old habits die hard, and the North and South refused full cooperation even in the face of so revolutionary a discovery as parallel universes.

Adam, however, grew tired of what he had come to perceive as senseless bickering.  Though he remained loyal to his country, he wished desperately to depart for these strange and wondrous lands, that he might achieve a level of power and knowledge capable of affecting change in Vígríðr.  So, he volunteered himself to be a pioneer of sorts.  Northern spies, having successfully infiltrated the South, returned with grave tidings, vague as they were: The appearance of the black creatures foretold great tragedy, though the exact nature of the approaching cataclysm remained shrouded in mystery.  To that end, they prepared a one-man expedition of sorts.  Adam, as one of the most accomplished Espers of the Northern military, had an easy enough time securing the spot as Vígríðr’s first inter-dimensional pioneer.

So, he embarked on a quest for enlightenment, motivated by a thirst for knowledge for its own sake as well as to stop the black creatures from further terrorizing the cosmos.

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