"Balance in all things? Yes, I'm aware of the concept."
Contrast is a superhero currently investigating and solving mystical and planar anomalies. Her special talents for dimensional energies are extremely well suited for these and she has been monitoring the fluctuations in dimensional energy over a particular ruin in the Middle East.
- 1 Biography
- 2 Description
- 3 Social Network
- 4 Comments from other sources
- 5 Rumors
- 6 Network
- 7 OOC Section
PRIMUS, sadly, does not know much about this particular hero. While she has been active for quite some time, our relative lack of knowledge on the mystical world makes explaining most of her story and powers extremely hard. At best, we only have her testimony but it is impossible for us to know whether it is true or not.
Michelle Johnson was born in New York, more specifically the district of Manhattan where she lived most of the time, often going on vacation with her historical minded family. From a young age, her father wanted her family to visit museums and other historical sites. Numerous family photos exist of them visiting various museums across the country as well as natural history sites in addition to civil war battlefields.
While she did get a love of history from these visits, she is a far more active girl who's more interested in being in the field rather than staying behind. She worked very hard and got amazing grades, enough for various institutions of higher learning to notice. She finally chose to study abroad, in England. This way, she was closer to the archaeological digs she really wanted to investigate while getting a broader worldview on history. Plus, the university often had working arrangements for students to do field work while still studying.
(Keep in mind that this information comes from Contrast directly. It may be untrue.)
While this request by the British National Museum was strange, it did not raise suspicion. While they never really had any problems with certain middle eastern countries, it was still rare that they asked specifically for help in exploring a ruin that had just been discovered. The more experienced archaeologists had already mapped out the ruins and really, the students were there to see what the methods used where and give them a little time in the field before they would be honing their craft in other archaeological sites open to the public. They were given a tour of the ruins as well as some time to explore them by themselves.
Michelle Johnson came to a dead end and leaned against the wall. She heard a mechanism unlock and saw holes appear in the walls. However, the trap had rusted shut and the door opened. In there was an altar with two orbs. She stepped forward, thinking she may have discovered a room with priceless heirlooms and artifacts that no one had even seen. However, the door closed behind her. She then heard a booming voice in her head¹ who claimed to have existed since time immemorial. This voice allegedly knew her name and her occupation. It explained that on the altar were two orbs. One was the Orb of Radiance, representing the Champion of Light. It would grant her the power to heal incurable wounds but eventually, this power would end up consuming her life force to help others. The other was the Orb of Shadow, representing the Champion of Shadow. It would grant her the power to destroy her enemies but eventually, this power would end up consuming her life force to destroy others. She was told to pick which she wanted.
She said that if she picked one, she would eventually end up destroying herself. So the only good picks are to pick none, or both. As the voice would not let her leave if she picked none, she pressed down on the two orbs at the same time. She felt two strange forces infuse her with power beyond her imagining but at the same time, conflicting desires to both hurt and heal. She hid the orbs in her bag and left the dig site alongside her fellow colleagues.
Contrast first appeared when Michelle Johnson was returning to the United States to spend the holidays with her family. A group of terrorists attempted to hijack the plane and managed to overpower the air marshals trained specifically to prevent these things from happening. Using her newfound powers, she blasted the terrorists and healed the wounded. No one on the plane knew exactly what happened but after this show of power, they knew they had been saved by a superhero.
When they landed, PRIMUS debriefed Michelle Johnson and quickly reminded her to register her identity as a superhero. While she keeps her identity secret to the public, Contrast has confided with her family that she has seriously considered this option and will walk this path so long as she still can.
¹ : We have tried to corroborate this with the other people present at this site on that day but she seems to be the only one who heard anything like this. Either she is lying to us or some form of telepathy was involved.
Here are a few things we have been able to determine about Contrast.
Contrast is a relatively tall African-american woman who often wears full body suits when it comes to her hero work. Other than that, she is relatively unremarkable. She is quite shapely without being overweight.
Her psychological evaluation is... strange, to say the least. The forces inhabiting her make for paradoxical desires (hurt/heal, take/give, etc.) touching the rest of her life. If at all possible, it would be best that she never faces psychic enemies or else they stand to easily control her by simply enhancing a part of her conflicting wants. Were it not for these, we would definitely deem her sane. She has exceptional strength of will but it is being sapped keeping herself in check.
Contrast has powers of both healing and destruction, mostly based around dimensional energies. She can channel positive and negative dimensional energies though we do not detect any Qliphotic interference within her abilities. Her light can heal almost any wound and her shadow can destroy almost anything.
Putting the two powers in one body has begun to twist them and offer new possibilities, with Contrast using the Shadow to heal and the Light to destroy.¹
¹ : Criminals or malefic entities that have been subject to these contradictory purposes for her powers have noted interesting effects. Those chastised by the Light generally start feeling more sympathetic towards their aggressor as they are getting severely burned, almost experiencing an uncontrollable bliss and happiness the more energy is channeled towards them. Some even started praying while blasted while others suffered things we will not mention for common decency. Meanwhile, those who are the victims of her healing shadow tend to feel increasingly cold and bleak, as though a shadow had taken over their very essence. A magical consultant called this ability the equivalent of a "soul drain" but we cannot corroborate his assessment of the ability.
Here we attempt to detail Contrast's social network.
Comments from other sources
Be warned that anything under this line is not known by anyone IC unless they have extensive knowledge of the more mystical aspects of the Champions universe. Most of this information is not even known by Contrast herself. It will be mentioned what Contrast knows and does not know however, just so it is not assumed that she knows things she doesn't or vice-versa.
In a nutshell
OBVIOUS YIN-YANG REFERENCE. Also, non-magician magic user because we don't have a lot of those.
Contrast has the ability to channel and stabilize energy from two realms : Elysium and the Netherworld. These powers were granted in the alleged test of character that went on when she discovered that secret chamber in those desert ruins.
The Orbs themselves, the Orb of Radiance and the Orb of Shadow, do absolutely nothing beyond light up (of a different color for the Orb of Radiance, which is always "lit") if they are pressed into the altar. At best, they would fetch a pretty penny on the black market due to the quality of the ancient craftsmanship or for a mage needing to decorate his humble abode. Contrast knows this but she likes keeping the orbs on her shoulders anyway (at least, on the original costume). Most mages would easily figure this out as the orbs themselves contain no magic but others may believe them to be the source of her power.
The forces inhabiting her are from the Elysium and the Netherworld respectively. Though neither are supposed to be interacting with mortals, both have been in "playful" conflict for quite sometimes via humans chosen to be their avatars. This incident marks the first time that they have been chosen by the same person and they are learning far more about each other and more importantly, learning about their respective plans for this realm.
Keep in mind that these entities are not necessarily friendly nor hostile to Contrast and may end up rebelling against her if they tire of her using their abilities. That being said, her aforementioned exceptional strength of will seems to have tempered their desires, and more importantly, allowed her to remain in control of herself when faced with these invaders.
As she came to understand her powers, she also came to understand just how fragile Malkuth (more specifically, the Earth realm) actually is, what with mages shifting dimensions and other nasties showing up beyond the veil of mortal understanding. She also learned to manipulate those rifts in order to amplify or diminish their influence.
More importantly, treat the preceding amount of bull as a justification for her having access to Planar Fracture.
- While Contrast claims that orbs were what gave her her powers, there must be more to them than this simple explanation. Who are the beings behind the orbs and more importantly, are they humanity's friends or foes? And what of the voice? Does it belong to either entity, or an otherwise unidentified third party?
- As Contrast tends to deal with supernatural threats from other dimensions, banishing them from whence they came, these other dimensions sometimes interact with her in strange ways. Two Contrasts from alternate universes which respectively chose the Orb of Light and the Orb of Darkness, have been spotted though none have dared act significantly.
- While not an expert on Elysium or Netherworld, she does handle their energies on a very regular basis. Certain mages may find it weird or outright appalling that she does so, or may not care at all. Your choice.
Derpin' with TVTropes
Dark is not Evil - Kind of obvious but her usage of Netherworld powers does tend to be more to combat threats or to subvert their otherwise dark tendencies towards healing.
Light is not Good - It's been argued that the light entity that can take her over is even more destructive towards modern society than the dark one.
Yin Yang Bomb - She is exactly this. Her abilities allow for using the darkness to heal by filtering it through herself, or the light to burn by using the darkness to twist it's purpose.