“Home and family are fragile, and worth fighting for.”
AJ Bassil is the son of Tony and Emma Bassil. He has a wife, Ava, and a daughter, Ellie.
Tony was a conservative Christian who worked at Boeing as an engineer. He has since retired. Emma was secretly a strong, fast superhero, the original Breakthrough.
Breakthrough’s powers were granted by an alien artifact buried under the family house since ancient times, requiring her to revisit the location daily or become sick and weak. Ava and Ellie do not know that Emma was Breakthrough.
AJ married Ava in 2004 and was deployed in 2005. Ellie was born the same year.
AJ came back from the Battle of Ramadi in 2006 missing an arm and a leg. Although his parents thought Breakthrough’s powers weren’t inherited, AJ’s body still contained latent alien nanotech. When he returned to the house, the buried artifact activated, and replaced his limbs with biomechanical equivalents. It healed the rest of his body and endowed him with superior durability and strength, along with a healing factor. However, he now became dependent on the alien artifact as well.
Ava moved out of the family home in 2015, unable to effectively raise her daughter and advance her promising career while so close. She wanted AJ to move with her, but he was unable to due to his dependence. Despite this tension, the two remain married, although AJ must go to considerable lengths to maintain the relationship. AJ told Ava that his parents needed him around the house as a caretaker, and his parents play along with this pose.
Withdrawn, moody, sometimes emotionless or emotionally unavailable. Prior to the war, AJ was an outgoing, friendly, eager young man. Sometimes this shines through, especially when he’s around people he considers comrades. He is self-sacrificing, putting himself in harm’s way to protect those in need.
He currently works as a mobile mechanic, driving a white van and fixing broken-down cars. He may work other part-time jobs to make ends meet.
- Super-strength, super-durability, healing factor.
- Alien prosthetics replacing his left hand and right leg. He disguises these prosthetics with long-sleeved shirts, gloves, long pants and work boots.
- Future power developments would include taking conscious control over his healing factor to gain stretching, shapechanging, natural weapons, or similar powers.
- All powers will lose strength if not periodically exposed to the alien artifact under his house.
- AJ must maintain a relationship with Ava and be a father to Ellie
- City, state, or corporate forces may have an interest in seizing his home, either because of the artifact or just because it’s in a neighborhood that is being developed
- The US DOD or DARPA has a super-soldier program and will take manipulative steps to involve him. They are aware of Breakthrough’s secret identity
- AJ still suffers from his time in Iraq and visits a VA therapist periodically
You’re still Over There, and people around you don’t realize that they are too. If there’s no distant sounds of gunfire, it means They’re just biding their time. It’s tough to sleep, because you have to be ready to act at any time. Anything around you could explode at any time, and people are going through their daily lives far too casually, and it’s frustrating that they aren’t more careful. Stay comfortable in your routines and try to cope however you can.