Like virtually every other super-human hailing from his world, Nelson Kohler was a formerly ordinary man until he gained paranormal powers in the immediate wake of the so-called White Event, that bizarre astronomical phenomenon that crossed the earth back in 1986.
Spectral Freedom: though he died in the wake of the White Event, Nelson Kohler's anima did not pass on to greener pastures. No, gifted with the power to separate his consciousness from his body, Nelson's mind persists even while his body breaks down completely.
As a result of this turn of events, Nelson is essentially a paranormally simulated ghost, a spectral entity with all the advantages of that state of being, but without the need to subsist parasitically on the living. Nelson's disembodied consciousness has these special abilities:
* Agelessness: since he no longer has a physical body to hold him back, Nelson is theoretically ageless. While he may eventually go mad from the strain of the ages, since he's already grown a bit unstable over the years, his consciousness may very well be around forever.
* Flight: no longer bound by the traditional, understood laws of physics, Nelson can move about in any of the three dimensions - he may even be able to cross temporal and dimensional barriers, but hasn't tried as of yet. He can fly at Typical (6) speeds (90 MPH).
* Invisibility: naught but a consciousness free of the shackles of flesh, Nelson cannot be perceived by conventional vision. Abilities such as origin sense or psi sense can spot him just fine, but thanks to this Typical (6) power, normals cannot witness... the Witness.
* Invulnerability to Physical and Energy Attacks: being a disembodied, paranormal consciousness, Nelson is primarily immune to the effects of the world around him. Assaults with a basis in conventional physical or energy will have no effect on Nelson whatsoever.
* Origin Sense: while he can see and hear the world around him, the only thing that Nelson can actually feel is the emergence of paranormal powers and their presence in those around him - other than that, he feels nothing. This power functions for him at Amazing (50) rank.
* Possession: while spectral freedom doesn't normally allow people to commandeer others' bodies against their will, it does allow Nelson to 'move in' on the body of someone who has powers at least partially similar to his own, such as Randy O'Brien (the Antibody).
In order for him to do so, the body of said person needs to be unconscious - either asleep or 'out of body'. It is assumed that, upon finding his or her body to be occupied, the original owner could attempt to regain control of it, though they'd have to overcome Nelson's Psyche first.
Limitations / Enhancements:
Discarnate: being that Nelson has no body, he cannot interact with conventional matter or energy in any fashion. While he can see and hear the world around him normally, Nelson can only affect it via his possession power - unless others can sense his very consciousness.
Salesmanship: this talent describes Nelson's career as a computer software salesman. He didn't necessarily know how to program software, or even use it much, but Nelson definitely knew enough about it to sell it to the common man - or big corporations, at least.
Nelson could easily rely on his wife and daughter for aid, if he could communicate with them. He did met Jacob Burnsley while the old man tried to fix the Pitt, and assuming he can still sense Nelson without possession of the Star Brand, he may be a reliable contact.
Being immaterial, Nelson requires no clothing. However, his mental image doesn't feel 'decent' wandering about naked, so he mentally formed an outfit around himself consisting of a long trench coat over a collared shirt, trousers, dress shoes, and a fedora.
Nelson was a loving family man before the accident that disembodied him.
He's tried to come to grips with his current state of existence, but has had trouble - particularly with the whole loneliness portion of it all. However, he seems to have finally contented himself with being an unseen witness of world events.
Real Name: Nelson Kohler
Occupation: wanderer, former computer software salesman
Legal Status: American citizen, legally dead.
Marital Status: married (technically speaking)
Alias(es), if any: none
Group Affiliation: none
Hair: sort of greenish (formerly brown - and graying)
Eyes: sort of greenish (formerly brown)
Weight: 0 lbs (formerly 175 lbs)
Other Distinguishing Characteristics: though immaterial, Nelson has constructed a psychic image of himself, wearing the outfit described above. The trick is that it is consistently of greenish hue; while he can change his outward appearance (as it were), he cannot change color.
Fatally injured in an automobile accident immediately after the White Event, software salesman Nelson Kohler found that when his family disconnected him from life support, he was still alive. Despite the fact that his body lay beneath him, Nelson was still wholly conscious!
While he could see and hear his surroundings, Nelson couldn't feel anything, for he was intangible - a veritable ghost. This was no supernatural experience, however, instead being a direct result of the White Event's mutagenic energies, which gave him the power to leave his body behind.
Nelson didn't know this until his death, of course.
As he tried to come to grips with his strange new existence, Nelson discovered that he could feel one sensation - and was inexorably drawn to it. Arriving on the scene of a quiet retirement home, he witnessed the awakening of Lenore Fenzl's paranormal powers.
Afterwards, Nelson found the sensation that drew him there had subsided, at least until a like feeling pulled him elsewhere. After witnessing the emergence of parabilities in Stephanie Harrington, Dennis Cuzinski, Charlotte Beck, David Landers, and Jeffrey Walters, Nelson figured it out.
Nelson realized he was doomed to witness this strange phenomenon forever, since he was drawn to the sensation of these powers emerging like a moth to open flames. Naturally he disliked this, since he wound up being the one amongst them all who was denied a physical existence.
Vowing to find a paranormal capable of ending his anguish, Nelson continued to follow his terrible urgings. He ultimately happened upon Randy O'Brien, who seemed capable of sending bits of his own consciousness outside his body, as semi-sentient shadows of his own personality.
While he found this intriguing, the thought occurred to Nelson that he may not be a passive observer of these events so much as their catalyst, so he fled to his grave, which had been filled during his wanderings across the Wisconsin countryside, and entered his very own corpse.
Moping over his fate, Nelson was accosted in the grave by the strange, shadowy guy he'd seen wandering near Randy during his hospital rounds, and begged it to end his life. When the antibody refused, Nelson grew desperate and attacked it, finding that he could, in fact, affect it!
Apparently, while immaterial, he could affect entities that were in a similar state of being!
In his rage Nelson, had severely injured the antibody before him, a fact that horrified him. Ensuring he hadn't killed Randy, Nelson returned to his hospital, and tried to determine if he was okay. Failing this, he entered Randy's body, hoping to see what was wrong from inside.
To his amazement, Nelson found he could control Randy's body, and indulged himself by moving about for a while, until Randy's antibody returned to its home - and found it occupied. Suddenly high on life, Nelson refused to hand Randy's body over... until he realized he was in the wrong.
He then abandoned Randy's body, vowing to never act so selfishly in the future. In fact, he decreed (to no one in particular) that from now on, if it was his lot in life to be a mere Witness of events, he would live with the hand that fate has dealt him, for what else could he do, really??
As such, Nelson witness a countless number of formerly ordinary humans manifest strange, sometimes horrifying paranormal abilities, and did so for over a year. However, near the end of 1987, something happened, and Nelson found himself drawn to Pittsburgh in the worst way.
Unable to resist, Nelson let it take him along for the ride, and he stopped miles over the city proper, where he saw Ken Connell (though he didn't know it at the time), as the man prepared to rid himself of the Star Brand. As Ken did so, Nelson realized the danger.
He knew that Ken must NOT do what he planned, but it was too late. As Ken transferred the Star Brand into his weight, the thing detonated spectacularly, tearing Ken's body apart and leaving nothing but a void where Pittsburgh once lay - though this was not immediately apparent.
Nelson discovered this truth later, as he explored the devastation below. As he did so, the populace of Pittsburgh attacked him en masse - at least, what appeared to be the populace. The countless souls that mobbed him were just that, souls torn asunder by Ken's colossal blunder.
The problem was, of course, that once the illusion of normalcy was gone, all Nelson saw was the smoldering crater that was Pittsburgh. Returning to investigate this horror, he encountered Jenny Swensen, who was looking for survivors in the crater with her Spitfire armor.
The weird thing was that she actually saw him!
When she called out to him, he felt compelled to hide; he couldn't even explain it himself, but perhaps after being unseen for so long, Nelson couldn't deal with actual human contact. Regardless, Jenny flew off empty-handed, and Nelson was left alone in the horror of the Pitt.
However, at least he found a purpose for his existence. He vowed to ensure that the man who destroyed this city was dead... and if he wasn't, Nelson would find a way to ensure that he paid for causing this carnage. He then left the smoldering ruins of Pittsburgh, and began his search.
As he looked for Connell's corpse, Nelson discovered that he was not unchanged by the destruction of Pittsburgh. All the souls that had mobbed him had apparently been contained within his consciousness somehow, and they were clamoring at him to return to the place of their death.
Thus did Nelson return to the Pitt. Upon his arrival, he found a small portion of the suburbs outside the former city had seemingly been restored to a normal state. Exploring the site in amazement, he found that the area had been repaired by a man with the same power as Ken Connell!
Watching the old man act, Nelson witnessed his attempt to repair the damage Connell caused while creating the Pitt, and when the old man did so, Nelson felt the psychic energy that the million souls within him contained ripped asunder, their memories being used to restore the city!
At least, that's how it first appeared. Though the souls Nelson had carried within him were now gone, their memories were not, and he recognized every single corner of the city upon viewing it. It looked perfect, until you checked the edges, at which point you could see it wasn't real.
The restored Pittsburgh was but an illusion, a spectral projection created from the memories of millions of the dead. Finding that the old man who built this image could see him, Nelson approached him and told him the truth, that even his amazing power couldn't fix this.
As the old man left in defeat, Nelson was himself left to his own devices. Left to watch this fleeting image of a city restored slowly fade away. Having been relieved of the consciousnesses of those that had been slain there, though, Nelson was finally free to leave the Pitt for good.
What he did after this is as of yet unknown.
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