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RESTRICTED FILE: LEVEL 3 CLEARANCE REQUIRED
[Esoteric Research & Response Observational Archives File; classified/ERS-20-0000-210B]


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Esoteric Research Subject : Contact File



Preface; All information in the following documentation not confirmed through direct testing comes at the subject’s own admittance and is, therefore, unsubstantiated. What remains has been pieced together from various sources and as such remains speculative.

Containment Procedures; When not deployed, ERS-20-0000-210B is to be contained in a standard humanoid containment cell. Under no circumstances is the subject allowed to be left unattended and two Tactical Response Teams are to be on-call at all times until returned to containment. Access to off-site electronic information grids is strictly prohibited and any information requests by the subject are to be provided in analogue form pending review. Removal of the subject from containment outside of prescribed hours must be approved by on-site Overseer.
+++Walls, floor and ceiling of the subject’s cell are of 20cm thick stainless steel and equipped with incendiary pacification arrays. The cell’s reinforced titanium blast door is to remain closed and secured at all times pending permission for the subject’s release. Micro-cameras mounted in all corners must remain unobstructed at all times. Should any attempt be made to obstruct camera view, damage or otherwise alter the containment cell, the subject is to be subdued by activation of pacification arrays until such time as repairs can be affected. Outer Security Perimeter is to be maintained at all times and staffed by senior Tactical Response Operatives. Administrative and Support monitoring must be maintained at all times and, should contact be lost, area lock-down will be automatically engaged and activation of pacification arrays maintained until contact is re-established. In such event, all Tactical Response Teams are to maintain fire lines upon killing corridor leading to Primary Containment Zone.

Additional Notes; The subject is to be monitored at all times while in the field by the Global Tracking Array. Contact likewise must be maintained through radio communication and personal tracking system. If contact is lost for any amount of time, Mobile Task Force Operatives are to be deployed to determine the cause. If such loss is determined to be wilful, containment procedures are to be enacted immediately.


Real Name; Unknown

Current Alias; Wight

Aliases; Wolf, Hunter, Nemesis, Tin Man, Stranger, Pale One, King of Ravens

Known Relatives; None

Group Affiliations; Esoteric Research & Response (Containment Division, Mobile Task Force)

Base of Operations; Global


STATUS

Identity; Not known to Legal authorities

Legal Status; Not a citizen of any country.

Marital Status; Single

Occupation; Mercenary

Education; The subject shows an approximation of university-level education and lifelong military training, these effectively lending a grasp of various disciplines, particularly centred around engineering, physical and computer science. Beyond this is a range of knowledge which encompasses deep occult secrets.


CHARACTERISTICS

Gender; Male

Body Type; Athletic

Height; 188 centimetres

Weight; 91 kilograms

Strength Level; Rank 4 (Peak Human), able to press-lift up to 318 kilograms.


ORIGIN

The subject claims to have originated in a place called Terminus. Apparently a location, although cryptic description by the subject makes this unclear, Terminus has been described as an artificial construct the size of a small country which resembles an enormous walled city. It is a labyrinthine mix of twisting natural landscapes and artificial construction. There, machinery and the forces of nature are inextricably linked and despite its ordered appearance, is deadly even for its inhabitants. Formed by concentric rings, walled sectors within a cavernous bowl, refuges are dotted about the landscape which protect from the toxic flora and fauna, lending shelter and amenities.
+++Apart from these is a great complex, a singular structure at its centre which offers unparalleled defences. This is the Charnel Palace, hub of habitation within Terminus. Citadels possess towers that act as power-plants mines and factories, their territories demarcated by the wastes that stretch out around them. The ring they create acts as a border between the outermost wilds and those inner, inhabited lands but few live amongst the automata which range there. Monolithic structures hang in the sky above Terminus, shifting masses of polyhedral suggestion which regulate the city’s energies and environmental conditions.


HISTORY

Any history from before the subject’s discovery is unknown, none of which has ever been hinted at during questioning. The subject was discovered on June 23rd 19XX by urban explorers in a sealed chamber beneath the city of XXXXXX, XXXXXX in a structure which had originally been built to serve as a bomb shelter. The subject was in what appeared to be a comatose state, sealed within a container bearing many resemblances to a sarcophagus covered in enigmatic runes and other symbology matching no known culture (designation ERS-20-0000-210A). The material of its construction, dubbed “electrum” is jetty black and seamless, sharing properties suggestive of wood, metal, glass and even some hard rubber or plastic. The copious arrays of carving are posited to function much like integrated circuitry, though its more esoteric properties stymie any in-depth scrutiny. This is due in large part to an electromagnetic signal the sarcophagus releases which interferes with electronics and causes spontaneous misfolding of proteins in the human brain and with it a host of deleterious effects.
+++Early tests determined that the subject is possessed of a dual physiology, both biological and artificial, but no headway has been made in discovering how or where either could have been manufactured. What has been determined is that a level of technological application at least XXX in advance of current techniques was used in the subject’s assumed manufacture. The subject revived on August 21st, 2XXX following the first successful attempt at opening the sarcophagus. Similar to an oversized puzzle box, the sarcophagus was only able to be opened via a precise shifting of the intricate plates which comprise its outer shell. This apparently triggered some form of activation procedure, after which the subject has continued to function as normal in regards to an inherently alien physiology. (see Addendum 20-0000-210B-1)
+++Through questioning, the subject has indicated a programmed imperative to acquire knowledge, scrutinising and studying anything encountered for any weakness or threat to the human species. This goes hand-in-hand with eliminating any such threats and it is this willingness that has caused the subject to become a vital asset to Initiative operations. Acting under the cover of a mercenary, the subject uses this as a means to move amongst the underworld of operational theatres around the world in order to ferret out the true monsters which lurk beneath. After a period of observation to determine the subject’s potential danger to the general public, the subject was released into the world at large to pursue the Initiative’s goals independently. The subject seems unwilling or incapable of attacking humans unless struck first and has been lauded for proficiency in carrying out mission objectives with minimal collateral damage.


DESCRIPTION

Little more than an automaton, the subject is largely inexpressive with a personality that is much the same and presents a quiet, thoughtful front. Beneath this unassuming façade is a mind that is cold, calculating and ruthless. Though not entirely uncaring, most who interact with the subject are met with a front that is taciturn and stoic, coupled with a soft monotone voice. This and a willingness to confront others for perceived failures and weaknesses can be construed as arrogance, which is true to an extent but this does not prevent admittance when another comes along who surpasses the subject’s skill. This lends the subject a calm, almost uninterested demeanour. Even when angered, the subject remains decidedly restrained and even demonstrates a dry sense of humour.
+++Speech is conducted in a slow, commanding manner, with a certain accentuated low-key moroseness of tone which borders on the cryptic. Mannerisms tend to straddle the line between man and machine, most notably in speech patterns which bear great similarity to command prompts. The subject’s movements are simple and robotic, verging on stilted and awkward at times. This clumsiness is apparent even in combat, though the subject has long learned to compensate and thus shows little to no hindrance. Despite this apparent lack of articulation and robotic speech tics, some of the subject’s other mannerisms could be considered human, such as brushing off clothing, posturing and taunting foes.

The subject possesses proportions similar to that of a human but unnaturally thin with tendrils longer than the limbs protruding from the back of the torso. What would be flesh is instead a vitrified, chitinous shell somewhat akin to bone that is soft at a touch but grows rigid when struck and is laced with fine circuitry that extends into soft tissues. Both the flesh and this intruding machinery are greyish and semitransparent, interwoven throughout each other. Below this skin can be seen the subject’s skeletal structure and below that, both recognisable organs and incomprehensible mechanics. The subject’s face is more organic but remains similarly translucent, revealing the grinning visage of the skull beneath.
+++Long hair of unnatural white spills about the subject’s shoulders, loose strands framing an angular face possessed of a long nose and thin lips. If the subject has eyes, these are perpetually hidden behind a swath of black cloth yet despite this covering the subject shows no apparent visual impairment. Motions such as combat or simple walking are unencumbered, though the subject shows no obvious ability to read or discern visual cues unless they precede some form of discomfort or danger. The subject’s “skin” is marred by a bevy of deep scars crisscrossing the body and limbs, rendered black by the ichor which flows beneath in place of blood.
+++The subject wears a complex system of straps that support overlapping plates encasing the torso along with similarly plated thigh-boots covering both legs. Over this is worn a voluminous cloak and beneath it all is a body glove that offers an inner layer of protection from the elements. All are comprised of a membranous covering appearing at a glance to be a dusty, smoke-like shroud. The substance shows a consistency somewhere between silk fabric and oily liquid and, as its appearance might suggest, leaves behind a feeling of moisture when touched although no residue is present upon examination.


ABILITIES

The tentacles which protrude from the subject’s back are a shifting silver and black. Most average from 1-2 metres in length with the longest coming to 7.5 metres and an average width of 1 centimetre in diameter. Often hidden, some are wrapped about the subject, but normally most trail behind or writhe in the air like an aura of headless snakes. These extra limbs are possessing of an inner skeleton much like jointed vertebrae. Around that, the subject’s flesh creates a malleable inner layer which serves to shape an outer casement through selective flexing that can be made hard enough to deflect heavy blows or fine enough to hold a unimolecular edge.

The subject has been known to display acts of superhuman strength, speed, vitality and durability. The subject is able to jump up to three times and fall up to ten times in height to land safely, survive wounds through vital organs and other similarly fatal injuries. The subject possesses a nearly indomitable will and can control the minds of others, create illusions, shape-shift and otherwise manipulate matter and energy for attack, defence or to heal the sick and even resurrect the dead. Beyond this, the subject has been seen to fly and exhibit abilities similar to telekinesis.


WEAKNESSES

Apparently built into the subject’s physiology is a defensive power limiter. This prevents runaway use of the subject’s more extreme abilities that would otherwise break any method of control while also protecting against burn-out of vital internal components. An additional life-support function is tied into the limiter system, which automatically initiates stepped removal of programming locks when the subject exhibits various levels of injury. This allows the subject to react appropriately as external conditions shift, compensating for increasingly dangerous situations. (see Addendum 20-0000-210B-2)

Despite great strength and agility, the subject’s body is subject to the same stresses as any human if to a markedly lesser degree. Even so, the subject can survive wounds that would otherwise incapacitate or kill. If subjected to such grievous injuries, the subject falls into a state similar to a coma only to emerge once minimal functionality has been restored. There exists no sure way to kill the subject, but substantial damage can be inflicted. This is best achieved through generous application of fire or corrosive substances. Dismemberment should be avoided as exposure to the subject’s bodily fluids is extremely hazardous. (see Addendum 20-0000-210B-3)


PARAPHERNALIA

The subject’s clothing seems to have been designed to function like a second skin and is appropriately referred to as a “skinsuit” both for this and because a considerable amount of its construction is biological. Because it is effectively bonded to the subject’s physiology, the skinsuit cannot be removed without cooperation and even then only by surgical means. Woven from fine metal threads with the durability of steel and the consistency of silk, the subject is protected by the skinsuit from harmful environments and external damage including flame, shrapnel, knives and small arms fire. Secondary to this is a filling-out of the subject’s unnatural proportions, rendering them more passably human.

Combat is supplemented by a variety of offensive and defensive tools including darts, spikes, knives and caltrops joined by an array of hand-held explosives. These are designed to release fog, blinding agent, psychotropic gas, flashes of light or more simply act as fragmentation grenades.

The subject wields as a primary weapon what has come to be called a “quicksilver blade” which utilises masses of alloy nanoparticles, compressed for storage inside a specialised scabbard. Resembling liquid mercury, these particles are rapidly aligned into a solid state by a magnetic field as they are extruded through a shaping emitter on the scabbard when the weapon is drawn. The scabbard itself is 91 centimetres long while the weapon’s hilt measures slightly over 46 centimetres and when joined both resemble a single carven column of obsidian. In full, the weapon’s blade can reach lengths of up to 213 centimetres.
+++Since its blade is not cast in a single piece, the weapon can survive being broken as particles lost are retrieved by the magnetic field. By supplying thermal energy through high-frequency vibration, the already considerable cutting power of its unimolecular edge can be further enhanced. Integrity and sharpness are maintained by a continual shifting of the composite particles. This repairs any break, alleviating dullness simply by passing through an atmosphere. While drawn, the span of the weapon’s blade reflects light. Any edges catch and scatter it, lending them a scintillating rainbow shimmer.
+++When cutting through an object of sufficient hardness, some of the object's material is taken up and subsequently left behind when cutting through something softer. Movement of the particles results in a grinding motion that deposits a thin coating of sharpened slivers across their span. Any wounds are kept from healing as these continuously lacerate the flesh. Matter appropriated, be it organic or inorganic, is utilised for general purposes, maintenance and the production of more particles by a mechanism within the scabbard.
+++The scabbard itself is equipped with a weighted tip at its base. This is affixed to a length of thin cable and can be launched at speed to act as a secondary weapon or grappling tool. A reservoir at the scabbard’s mouth contains a blinding agent which can be released with a simple swing or in a small explosive cloud. This too is restored from material supplied by the blade, though there is only enough at any one time for a single use before it must be replaced.


Addendum 20-0000-210B-1: Argyrocytes, named for their distinctive silvery sheen, serve the subject in lieu of cells. Without the proper stimulus, argyrocytes break down on a molecular level. This makes study impossible as they dissolve into an undifferentiated protean slurry and eventually reduce to an inert dust.

Addendum 20-0000-210B-2: The subject’s limiter circuit comprises five distinct ranks of release from an initial zero-state. Each rank represents an exponential increase in ability and power output, as well as an increased strain on the subject’s body. Observations thus far have only been witness to a limit release of up to Rank 2, however if trends hold for the following ranks then anything beyond this is of grave concern.
+++Rank 1: Short range, long duration, includes visible light & other low-frequency electromagnetic energy, discharge heat energy as an offensive weapon
+++Rank 2: Medium range, medium duration, includes all Rank 1 & ultraviolet, energy discharges used to sustain protective fields around self, simple command of molecular structures
+++Rank 3: Long range, short duration, includes all Rank 1, 2 & x-rays, increasingly nuanced command of discharges, greater command of molecular structures
+++Rank 4: Includes all Rank 1, 2, 3 & gamma rays, discharges used for flight
+++Rank 5: Virtually unlimited command of all forms of matter & energy

Addendum 20-0000-210B-3: RESTRICTED FILE: LEVEL 4 CLEARANCE REQUIRED

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