Characters: Makeda

Real Name: Makeda

Occupation: Warrior, Adventurer

Identity: Not known to the general public

Legal Status: Former citizen of the Kingdom of Aksum, Phoenicia, Macedonia, Greece, Egypt, Kush, Nubia, Rome, Wagadu, Mali, the Oyo Empire, the Benin Empire, the Gupta Empire, Ancient China (various dynasties), feudal Japan, various caliphates, honorary citizen of the Galactic Sarai Protectorate

Aliases: The Queen of Sheba, the Goddess of War, Lady Red Blade, Red Lioness, the She-Wolf, the Red Fang

Place of Birth: Semien Mountains of Ethiopia

Known relatives: Ejigu (father), Teru (mother)

Group Affiliation: Galactic Sarai Protectorate, The First World, T.A.S.K.

Powers and Abilities: Makeda possesses various enhanced abilities granted by the transformed Kaz'nagoh life gem implanted in her forehead. Her strength (she can lift at least 5 tons), speed, agility, stamina, and reflexes are vastly beyond human. The alien gem has all but halted her aging process and grants her incredibly powerful recuperative and regenerative abilities. Makeda heals from physical injury much faster that a normal person and has regrown entire limbs on many occasions. The gem also projects a force field around Makeda's head and allows her to communicate telepathically with individuals who possess telepathy.

Makeda is probably the most experienced hand to hand combatant in the world and an expert in most terrestrial martial arts and at least one alien combat form. A veteran of more than a thousand battles, Makeda is a tactical genius -- easily capable of isolating an opponent's weakness and using it to her advantage.

Makeda is an expert in the use all of man's weapons of war, from blades to missile systems. Her signature weapon is the Blood Sister; a wrist housed Sarai axe that Epion forged for her. The Blood Sister is stronger than any terrestrial metal and sharp enough to cleave through titanium alloys. Makeda's armor is a hodge podge of various protective pieces that she has worn during her lifetime of combat. These components have been strengthened using advanced materials and technical advancements so that they are functional while reflecting Makeda's journey.

Origin: Around 980 BC, Ejigu, legendary warrior and commander of the Royal Guard of the Kingdom of Aksum, resigned his post. His wife Teru, was about to give birth and it was his intention to relocate his family to his ancestral home, a small village in the Semien Mountains. Soon after they arrived at their destination Teru gave birth to a baby girl who they named Makeda.

Makeda was an adventurous child and grew to know every inch of her mountainous home. Sensing her nature, Ejigu helped her avoid her chores so she could travel with him and watch him train. Watching soon became training and Makeda learned the ways of combat from a master. By the time she was a teenager, she could best any boy in the village (and most of the adult males) using the spear, bow or in close combat. She was her father's child in every way.

One night around Makeda's 18th year, the sky filled with strange lights and the village was attacked by strange insect/human hybrid creatures wielding weapons that fired beams of light that burned anything they touched. Ejigu and Makeda managed to outrun the attackers but Teru fell to one of the beams. The former King's guard and his daughter escaped into the forest and realized that they were the only survivors of the attack. Soon Ejigu discovered that they were being followed -- hunted. A deadly game of cat and mouse followed. Three of the insect creatures stalked and attacked Makeda and her father day and night while the two survivors used knowledge of their mountain home's terrain to stay ahead of their otherworldly pursuers. After a time Ejigu and Makeda began to employ guerilla tactics against their attackers; setting up ambushes and traps in their wake. While most of their attacks bounced harmlessly off the creatures' armor, they managed to detect weak points in the creatures' defense. On the fourth day they managed to crush one of the creatures in a rockslide trap but Ejigu was badly burned while making his escape with one of the fallen hunter's blades.

In a desperate gambit the humans managed to separate the remaining two creatures and engaged one of them in combat. Ejigu sacrificed himself so that Makeda could gut the creature with its comrade's blade. While Makeda knelt grieving her father she was found by another visitor to our world; Epion.

Epion was a member of the Sarai -- a cyclopean eyed, grey skinned humanoid alien race. Visibly impressed with the girl's feat, Epion communicated with her telepathically. He informed her that he was an enemy of the creature she had killed and that he and it had come from beyond the stars. The attack on her village and the hunt of Makeda and her father was part of a coming of age ritual for the creatures called the Kaz'nagoh, a way for the males of that species to prove their worth. Makeda learned that the Sarai were once the victims of these rituals until they became too powerful to be preyed upon. The Sarai now protected others and Epion offered Makeda his help to hunt and kill the final Kaz'nagoh.

Epion took the pieces of the armor from the dead Kaz'nagoh and fashioned a Sarai-styled weapon for Makeda; a wrist-housed axe which he named "Blood Sister." While she slept he implanted knowledge of Sarai combat techniques in her mind. The next morning they hunted the last Kaz'nagoh which Makeda struck down. Following Sarai custom, Epion removed a gem from the creature's throat, transformed it in a chamber and placed it on Makeda's forehead. Epion told her that the gem would strengthen and protect her and forever mark her as a member of the Galactic Sarai Protectorate. Then, as Aksumite troops appeared, Epion rocketed into the sky to rendezvous with his orbiting craft, leaving Makeda to tell her unbelievable tale.

Makeda was taken to Aksum to testify before the Queen and both women were amazed by how physically similar they were. They could have easily passed for sisters and although the sovereign now went by her official name, the Queen of Sheba, her birth name was also Makeda. Makeda told the Queen of her ordeal and was given refuge at the Royal residence. Makeda requested to become part of the Royal Guard as her father had been and within months she was promoted to the Queen's personal guard. It was during this time that Makeda discovered that her strength and speed were vastly superior to others and her body healed from almost any injury at a greatly accelerated rate. She was chosen and trained to be the Queen's double and publicly appeared as the monarch in times of danger. Makeda was at the Queen's side during her famous trip to meet with King Solomon and foiled assassination attempts during the journey and at Solomon's palace. Makeda stayed in the Queen's service until the ruler died and then, realizing that everyone around her was aging while she was not, she left Aksum.

Makeda became a mercenary and travelled throughout the world selling her deadly skills to any force that could afford them. The tale of her prowess took on a life of its own and soon she was sought out by the Assyrian Empire to aid them in the conquest of Aram (846 BC). She wandered North Africa, Assyria and Greece and watched states, empires and rulers rise and fall. Over the centuries she managed to separate her personal morals from those of her employers, yet there were certain individuals and causes she believed in. She was a great friend of Alexander the Great and led his armies to several victories (334-323 BC). She also fought with Carthaginian general Hannibal Barca and was part of the army he led over the Pyrenees and Alps into Italy (218 BC). She travelled to China and fought for the Han dynasty during the invasion of Xiongnu and incorporated early Chinese martial arts into her skillset.

For a time she wandered through what is now India and throughout the entire continent of Africa. Returning to the Roman Empire after almost 400 years away, she fought for Emperor Marcus Aurelius. It was during Aurelius' reign that Makeda first heard rumors of a group called The Right Hand and their movements in the shadows of the Empire. Over the next 400 years, The Right Hand infiltrated and corrupted the Empire to such a degree that Makeda became instrumental in uniting the Vandals and inciting them to sack Rome (455 AD).

At some point after the collapse of the Roman Empire Makeda was hounded by Legacy, who wanted to analyze and add her abilities to his growing compendium of powers. During their confrontation Makeda lost a leg to one of Legacy's minions and was forced to retreat to give her limb time to regenerate.

Over the next 1,000 years Makeda was a participant in many of the world's great wars. She bloodied her axe during the Muslim conquests, the Crusades and against the Mongol invasions. She fought with and against Vikings, in support of the Lanna in Thailand and against the Crown of Castille at Granada, Spain. After the Moors' defeat at Granada, Makeda fell into a comatose state somewhere within modern day Libya. As her consciousness faded, a message left in her mind by Epion was triggered. The gem he implanted on her forehead -- the object that granted her long life, physical prowess and advanced recuperative abilities -- was running out of energy and needed time to replenish. Makeda lay comatose in a cave for almost 300 hundred years.

The world Makeda woke to was larger than the one she left; a world built on the backs of African slaves. Makeda soon found herself sailing with pirates and then joined the struggle for freedom in Haiti. From then it was on to battles in the rain forests of the New World and then back to Africa and Asia.

In the 20th century, Makeda fought alongside the 15th New York National Guard Regiment (a.k.a. the Harlem Hell Fighters) in the trenches of France during what was called the first World War, and in Northern Africa and the Philippines in during its sequel. It was during combat in the Philippines that she encountered John Henry, Dr. Eitan Greenberger and their operatives. Makeda and Henry shared a brief romance and she witnessed the "steel driving man's" powers in action. However, Makeda refused to join him in America once the war ended. She did however start scouring the African continent for superhuman individuals to create an organization much like the one discussed by Henry and Greenberger. She managed to briefly assemble four other superhumans and they operated as the initial incarnation of The First World. The First World has seen much turmoil (most notably a Right Hand offensive led by General Widowmaker) and several members have come and gone but Makeda has been the organization's one constant. She has maintained a friendly relationship with John Henry and as per his request is secretly a member of the U.N. organization's Global Advisory Council.

Written by Damion Gonzales
Character design by Sean Isaakse