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Callisto's origins are unknown, although she has claimed that the scars she bears are proof of "how dumb a mistake" it was for her to try to live among normal humans; in one of her earlier appearances, her greatest psychological fear is the image of the beautiful woman that she once was, although she may have overcome that as of the present.
When Callisto first appeared she was leader of the Morlocks, a group of mutants who lived in the sewers (named after H.G. Wells' characters in The Time Machine). The Morlocks were first formed well over twenty years ago by Callisto, Sunder, Caliban, and Masque. Callisto kidnapped Angel and stripped him of most of his clothing, intending to make him her mate. Callisto also attempted to cripple Angel by cutting away his primary feathers. To rescue Angel, Storm challenged and beat Callisto in a duel for the leadership of the Morlocks. As the new leader of the Morlocks, Storm decreed that they would no longer kidnap and terrorize surface-dwellers, and in return they would have peace. Callisto regards Storm with both resentment and respect due to Storm defeating her in hand-to-hand combat, but she sneers at what she considers Storm's "weakness," namely her conviction not to take a life, or to take revenge on baseline humans that despise mutants. Callisto attempted to take revenge on the X-Men by trying to force Kitty Pryde to wed Caliban, and battled Storm again. When the wizard Kulan Gath enslaved and ensorcelled the city of New York and transformed it into a Hyborian Age city, Callisto became his warrior servant. She battled Storm again, but Storm saved her life. Callisto helped defeat Kulan Gath, and as a result Callisto and her allies found themselves on a new timeline where Kulan Gath never transformed New York. Thereafter, Callisto found herself as more of an ally to the X-Men. She rescued Professor X after he was nearly killed by anti-mutant Columbia University students. She saved Power Pack from the Morlocks Annalee and Masque. Callisto was wounded during the Marauders' massacre of the Morlocks, and took refuge with the X-Men. She befriended Storm and convinced her not to give up leadership of the X-Men. After a while, Callisto moved to Muir Island to become the bodyguard for Moira MacTaggert. With Moira, she was transported to an alternate Earth where Britain is dominated by Nazis. Meanwhile, the Nazi counterparts of Callisto and Moira appeared on the mainstream Earth. These counterparts captured Brigadier Alistaire Stuart at the Tower of London, but failed in their attempt to escape the Tower of London. Both Callisto and Moira and their counterparts then returned to their native Earths.
Callisto later encountered an amnesiac Colossus, who had assumed the identity of artist Peter Nicholas. Peter remembered nothing of his former life after his journey through the Siege Perilous. The two became attracted to each other after Masque reshaped Callisto's flesh, restoring her beauty to greater than what it was before she was scarred. Rather than an act of kindness, Masque, who had taken control of the Morlocks in Callisto's absence and saw fit to capture and psychologically torture her when she reappeared in their tunnels, restored Callisto's beauty only to take it away later as a means of tormenting her. The process was repeated several times before Callisto and Colossus were finally rescued by Forge, Banshee, and Jean Grey. Callisto began a career as a fashion model and moved above ground, embarking on a new life with Peter Nicholas as her lover. They were attacked by Genoshan magistrates but defeated them. The Morlocks later attacked Callisto, still under the influence of Masque. Masque had grossly transformed the Morlocks, leaving them with grotesque physical mutations. They nearly beat Callisto to death. The Morlocks' Healer treated her wounds, but accidentally restored Callisto's scars and her original physical deformities. The Healer's powers were overloaded by the severity of her injuries, killing him in the process. Callisto vowed revenge on her former followers for stealing away her looks, and then allied herself with Mikhail Rasputin, Colossus' older brother. Mikhail and Callisto appeared to have perished when he used his powers over matter to flood the Morlock tunnels. Rasputin had actually transported the Morlocks into an alternate reality, where time moved more quickly than on Earth. There she watched as the Morlock youths grew up with great bitterness towards their elders for all that had happened to them. When the young Morlocks, now calling themselves Gene Nation, returned to Earth with revenge planned, she went looking for help and located her former love Colossus, who had recently returned to Earth after the fall of Avalon. The two returned to the X-Mansion to warn the X-Men that Gene Nation was planning to kill innocents for every Morlock killed during the Mutant Massacre. Drawing Storm and Wolverine into the tunnels, she witnessed as Storm fought Marrow in a duel that saw the X-Man once more resort to lethal measures to win. Callisto remained in the tunnels looking over Marrow until she became injured during the events of Operation: Zero Tolerance. Recovering from her wounds, she told Marrow to find a place amongst the X-Men, figuring it to be the best place for her. After the six month gap and Marrow's departure from the X-Men, Callisto disappeared. More recently, Callisto was once again transformed by Masque, having her arms reformed into tentacles. Callisto was also under Masque's control in "The Arena," an elite fight club in Japan. Callisto and Storm battled each other in the Arena, but later both escaped with help from Storm's friend, Yukio.
Last seen, she was one of the main characters in the new Excalibur title, where she was helping Professor Xavier and Magneto rebuild Genosha. Ironically, this alliance briefly (and perhaps uncomfortably) reunited her with Archangel. Callisto also has a maternal relationship with Marrow, acting as a mother-figure towards the young mutant (though the two are not biologically related), making her the only person Marrow would follow nearly blindly.
Son of M
In the aftermath of House of M, Callisto is among the many mutants to have lost her powers. Quicksilver offered to her the Terrigen Mists, stolen from the Inhumans, as a way to restore her powers. Callisto willingly accepted the offer and the Mist effectively restored all her previous abilities (minus her disfigurements and arm-tentacles), but without any control over them. Her new senses are so acute that even a drop of rain causes her tremendous pain; unable to handle it, she fell into a coma. The depowered Magneto found her body and showed it to Quicksilver saying that he poisoned her with the Terrigen Mist. He later took her body to a hospital, where the effects of the Mists wore off.
Currently, Callisto has been reunited with Marrow; they are both members of X-Cell, a group of mutants who hold the government responsible for their power loss. When Quicksilver offered to repower its members, she warned Marrow about what happens to non-Inhumans who gain power from the Terrigen Mist. She and Marrow later fled into the sewers to escape the government.
Powers and Abilities
Superhuman Senses (formerly): Callisto possessed superhumanly keen senses of sight (including night vision), hearing, smell, taste, and touch.
Enhanced Strength (formerly).
Enhanced Agility (formerly).
Enhanced Reflexes (formerly).
Regeneration (formerly): ability to heal herself to an amazing degree.
Callisto is a natural-born leader, huntress, and fighter skilled in virtually every form of hand-to-hand combat.
Callisto possesses the normal level strength for a woman of her height, weight and build, who engages in regular exercise.
She frequently employs throwing knives.
- X-Cell formerly
- Mutant Resistance (eatrh-11326)
- Genoshan Excalibur formerly
in other media
X-Men: Animated Series
X-Men: Last Stand
- The Terrigen Mists restored her powers to normal but now she had no control over them. Her new senses were so acute that even a drop of rain caused her tremendous pain. The Terrigen Mists eventually wore off.
- In Excalibur Vol 3 #7, Callisto reveals that she is from Missouri.