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- "Leathers, zippers and straps. Yum. What more could one ask for in a costume?"
Jeanne-Marie Beaubier was born in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. She and her twin brother Jean-Paul were separated in infancy after their parents died. Jean-Paul was adopted by Mr. and Mrs. Louis Martin, who were cousins of his mother. The Martins could not afford to adopt Jeanne-Marie as well and arranged for Jeanne-Marie to be raised at Madame DuPont's School for Girls in LaVelle, Quebec, a reactionary religious school. Soon afterward, the Martins moved to Northern Quebec. The Martins were killed in an accident several years later and Jean-Paul was placed in a foster home, unaware that he had a sister. Extremely nervous and introverted, Jeanne-Marie Beaubier was miserable at Madame DuPont's School and at the age of thirteen, she attempted suicide by throwing herself from the roof of one of the school's buildings. Instead of falling to her death, Beaubier discovered that she could fly at great speed. Unaware that she was a mutant, the deeply religious Beaubier believed that her flight was the result of a divine miracle. The next morning, she explained to the school's headmistress what she believed had happened. Believing the young girl to be guilty of blasphemy, the headmistress had Beaubier severely disciplined. This incident (and possibly other abuse) triggered a dissociative identity disorder in Jeanne-Marie; a second personality, extroverted and far more uninhibited, emerged. Under the influence of this second personality, Beaubier secretly left the school that same night. Returning three days later, she had no memory of where she had been or what she had done and she was again physically punished. The resulting trauma was so great that Beaubier repressed her second personality.
Five years later, Beaubier's application to become a teacher of history and geography at the school was accepted. By this time, Beaubier had adjusted to life at the school and her everyday personality was that of a prim, proper, repressed woman. The same night that her application was accepted, her second personality re-emerged and she left to enjoy herself in Montreal. Confronted by muggers, she knocked one unconscious by moving at superhuman speed. This was the first time that she had used her superhuman powers in five years. The second mugger was halted by Wolverine, who had witnessed the attempted assault. Recognizing that Beaubier had superhuman powers, Wolverine invited her to go to Ottawa to meet James MacDonald Hudson, who was organizing a team of superhumanly powerful agents for the Canadian government's Department H. Hudson accepted her as a recruit and reunited her with her brother. After a period of training, both Beaubier siblings joined the team that Hudson created, Alpha Flight, under the code names Aurora and Northstar. On Alpha Flight's first mission, Aurora aided in combating the X-Men to capture Wolverine. With Northstar, she battled Deadly Ernest. She later recounted how she developed her superhuman powers and developed her Aurora personality, and how Wolverine recruited her into Alpha Flight, as well as how she met Northstar. Her powers were later altered by Walter Langowski. Aurora was captured by Gilded Lily, but was rescued by Sasquatch, who began to suspect that she was manifesting a third personality. With Northstar, she battled Pink Pearl. She was later temporarily cured of her multiple personalities. Alongside the X-Men and Alpha Flight, she battled Loki. She was again attacked by Gilded Lily. Aurora was captured by Box, who had gone insane, but was later rescued by Alpha Flight. Loki deceived Aurora into believing that her mother had been an Asgardian Light Elf. She journeyed to Alfheim, and seemingly expended all of her superhuman power in curing Northstar of a fatal illness. She then joined a convent and dropped out of sight for a while. Jean-Marie eventually left the convent and was transported to Asgard, and helped rescue Northstar in Alfheim. She discovered that she had regained her superhuman powers and rejoined Alpha Flight. Aurora soon discovered that she could now generate a light that bestowed inner peace in others. With Alpha Flight and the Fantastic Four, she contended against Headlok. Headlok mentally manipulated her, causing her to revert to her original split personality, and she then killed Headlok. She soon thereafter had a rematch with Pink Pearl. Eventually, the original incarnation of Alpha Flight disbanded. Aurora has suffered from dissociative identity disorder for some time: Jeanne-Marie represented her more prim and proper persona while Aurora represented Jeanne-Marie's more outgoing, repressed personality traits. The personalities were later merged into one relatively healthy personality although her sanity has deteriorated in recent years and they split again. Jeanne-Marie underwent further personality changes. For a time, her "Aurora" and "Jeanne-Marie" personae each manifested traits of the other while nevertheless remaining distinctly separate personalities. She later manifests a third personality which is basically Aurora's, but with a greater sense of responsibility than before. Aurora, deeply in love and distraught with the departure of Wildheart (who had left to join X-Factor when his mutation reverted his handsome appearance to a bestial one, fearing rejection from Aurora), left to follow him, with the intention that if she could not have him, "no one could". During her pursuit of Wild Child, Mystique intervened, taking on the form of his Wildheart persona to try to stop Aurora from killing him. Kyle told Aurora that Mystique was lying, and Aurora, her mind already distraught, fainted with the overwhelming strain. Kyle vowed to help her. Northstar and Puck arrived to return Jeanne-Marie to Canada.
Resurfacing and rehabilitation
In the events leading up her reappearance in Weapon X Vol. 2, Aurora's mental health continues to deteriorate and she is later turned into a mind controlled agent of Weapon X. She also engages in an abusive relationship with the Weapon X director, Malcolm Colcord, who frequently beat her. Aurora manages to retaliate against her mind-control by creating a third personality that was unaffected by her situation. She attacks Colcord and manages to escape. In her next appearance in X-Men (Vol. 2) Aurora's mental state becomes unstable to the point that all her personalities agree that suicide is the best solution. However, she is stopped by the arrival of Northstar, who is under the control of the Children of the Vault, a mysterious group of newly emerged superhumans who seek to destroy mutants, viewing them to be their competition for dominance of the planet. One of the Children, Serafina, places the twins under their control, largely repairing Aurora's fragile psyche, boosting the twins powers and altering them so that they can generate not only light when in contact with each other, but heat as well. The twins are sent on a mission to attack the X-Men and retrieve Sabretooth for the Children of the Vault. The twins are able to defeat several of the X-Men and New X-Men until Mystique is able to exploit Aurora's shattered psyche by taking on her image. Iceman manages to incapacitate Aurora while Cable subdues Northstar. The X-Men take Northstar and Aurora to the S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier in an attempt to fix the mental damage inflicted on the twins. Using their V.R. equipment the X-Men allowed the twins to relive their lives at an accelerated pace. The process was interrupted near the end of the session by Exodus, creating a telepathic connection between the twins. Using each other's emotional support, they manage to face their inner personal turmoils and regain control of their minds. Aurora and Northstar also gain a higher level of control over their powers, which they use to save Rogue from the Acolyte known as Frenzy. They later reappear in the mini-crossover series Secret Invasion: X-Men fighting alongside the X-Men in San Francisco against the Skrulls when they invade the Earth. Aurora next appears in Uncanny X-Men having formed a snowsporting company with Northstar, Team Northstar Extreme Snowsports. Aurora appears to be living a relatively normal life since regaining control of her mind, and is the joint CEO of the company. She is contacted by Wolverine when he wishes to extend an invitation to join the X-Men to her brother after they both helped out during the Invasion. During one of Aurora's therapy sessions to deal with her disorder, she is given a device to wear on her head for tests, when in actuality, her therapist was bribed by Norman Osborn to use it on her so he could speak with her more dark and violent personality about joining his Dark X-Men. Jeanne-Marie, though, does not care to take orders from anyone, least of all someone who is just as broken as herself, and goes to leave, before he turns the device on her again, saying he doesn't take no for an answer. However, Aurora brings up another personality to combat the guards, and brings up more for each time the device is used on her, before she is able to turn it on Osborn himself and walk away
Powers and Abilities
Gestalt Photokinesis: Originally she could only generate light when in physical contact with her twin brother Northstar. Should she link hands with Northstar, they could generate a light equivalent to a lighthouse beacon (one million foot candles) by each sibling’s varying the rate of acceleration of his or her own molecules out of phase with those of the other's.
Photokinesis: can generate from her body a bright white light equivalent at maximum intensity to half million-foot candles. She does so by varying the rate of acceleration of the molecules of her body out of phase with one another, thereby generating a cascade of photonic discharges.
- Calming Light: ability to send out a calming light that the target feels emotions and memories that make them at peace. It can even be used to break telepathic control.
- Concussive Blasts: ability to send out powerful concussive blasts that can do considerable damage. She can project these from her hand and out from her body in a series of concussive bursts.
- Lightning: ability to project lighting blasts with devastating results.
Superhuman Speed: possesses the ability to propel her body at superhuman speed, becoming a living projectile. Through an act of concentration, Aurora can channel a portion of the kinetic energy of the atomic motion in her body’s molecules in a single direction. This can accelerate her body in a velocity in direct proportions to the amount of kinetic energy she has tapped. It was once theoretically possible for her to reach 99% of the speed of light (186, 272 miles per second in a vacuum), although she never traveled at anywhere near that speed since if she did, she would wreak great damage upon herself and her environment. Aurora can also move a portion of her body at superhuman speed at a time. Dr. Langkowski's actions in molecularly restructuring Aurora's body greatly reduced the potential limits of her speed. She now can move at speeds roughly up to the speed of sound (about 770 miles per hour at sea level). This reduction has made little difference in the use of her powers over short distances, since she can still move faster than the human eye can follow.
- Molecular Acceleration: ability to accelerate the molecules within an inanimate object or a living being by touch, causing the target to tear itself apart from the subsequent stress generated upon it.
- Heightened Reflexes: possesses reflexes far above the average human. Reflexes are so advanced that she can go through an entire apartment, checking all the rooms and taking out the survivors in just mere seconds.
- Flight: ability to propel herself through the air. To hover in mid-air Aurora applies thrust downward in a carefully controlled manner. When carrying another, unprotected human being aloft, Aurora does not move faster than 60 miles per hour in order that her "passenger" may be able to breathe easily (Aurora herself can breathe at somewhat higher rates due to training) and so that the "passenger" will not suffer harm from wind, friction, or air turbulence.
- Accelerated Metabolism: possesses a boosted metabolism that can be used to heal wounds quickly.
- Enhanced Durability: as a side effect of partially robbing her molecules of their atomic motion, the binding forces within and between the molecules increase. This enhances the sheer toughness of Aurora's entire body. This effect gives her skin enough durability to withstand the ravages of wind, friction and air turbulence.
- G-Force Compensation: ability to use her super speed to automatically compensate for any G-Force difference.
- Invisibility to Technological Detection: Langkowski claimed he had made Aurora undetectable to gene-scan devices that look for mutants.
Normal human female with intensive regular exercise.
Aurora's costume is specially made so it does not tear while she uses her powers.
Alpha Flight Omnijet.
- Aurora's Identity is known to certain Canadian government officials.
- Aurora is schizophrenic as well as having 'dis-associative identity disorder', also known as multiple personalities.
- Loki has claimed that Aurora and Northstar's real mother was a Norse light elf, but if this was ever true, it has since been retconned away.