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Name: Seito Akai

Species: Imaja, Jackal configuration

Height: 6'7" (200 cm)

Weight: 276 lbs (125 kg)

Eyes: Red

Hair/Fur color: Hairless; has black skin

Age: Born on June 23, 1901; Initiated into the Imaja order on August 5th, 1940 (454 years old, though appears to be an adult in his prime)

Faction: Transhumanist Union

Profession: Political Activist, Data broker, Scholar.


Background:

1901 - 1940

Seito Akai was born in the year 1901 in Boston, Massachusetts, his father being a Japanese industrialist and his mother an American schoolteacher. Seito had proven to be a very bright child and he excelled at mathematics and physics. He attended M.I.T. and eventually graduated with a doctorate in physics. In the 1920's he had gone to work at Bell Labs in Murray Hill, New Jersey.

Over the next decade he developed a friendship with a group of theoretical physicists who had taken a great interest in trying to prove that there is some basis for the existence of the Luminiferous Aether, and they had devised a variety of odd experiments utilizing early particle accelerators. Some of the men in that group claimed to have obtained notes from Nikola Tesla, though this has never been confirmed. By 1937 the team had devised a machine that seemed able to thin the walls between normal space/time and this strange outer realm that they had discovered. What they realized is that they had accessed the strange hyperdimensional realm that would later be known as hyperspace. They decided that with better funding they could open a gateway that could lead them to other worlds, making the vast distances between worlds irrelevant. Seito was convinced at the time that there was life on Venus and Mars, and was determined to be able to visit those worlds.

They went to the U.S. Army for funding, and proposed to them a device that could allow them to instantly move troops and vehicles anywhere in the world. Considering the growing troubles in Europe and Eastern Asia, the generals they spoke to took them up on their offer. This led to Project Looking Glass, an effort to build a portal that could reach through hyperspace and open a gateway to other parts of the world. And other worlds altogether. By the late winter of 1940, Dr. Akai and his team moved to an underground Army base in the desert of New Mexico and built their portal, and by the end of July it was ready for testing.

The test took place on August 5th, 1940. Dr. Akai, his long time friends and colleagues, and a number of Army personnel were all present for the opening of the first portal, the other side leading to a base in Virginia. They were planning on sending a tank through it. At 11:23 hours, it was activated, and Dr. Akai's life changed forever.

The portal had gone out of control, later determined to be due to a mechanical malfunction, and it had sent a surge of energy through the laboratory that incinerated most of the people in the room. Over thirty dead, and seven scientists missing, including Dr. Akai. An hour later two of the missing scientists abruptly reappeared in the room, alive, but screaming in terror. They had been driven insane by whatever they had seen on the other side of the portal, and had to later be committed to an institution. The experiment was declared a failure and without the majority of the men who had built the device, the project was ended for the time being. The missing men were declared to be dead.

What they did not know was that Dr. Akai, and the other four missing scientists, had found themselves in another dimension, in the presence of a hyper-dimensional entity, a being with vast intelligence. It communed with them, and unlike the two men who were driven insane, this five were able to comprehend the bizarre mind of this entity and communicate with it. They grew to know the entity as the Nexus, and found that it had use for them. Since it could not directly interact with our universe, it needed people who could study our univere for it. It had already collected others for this purpose, and collectively they were known as the Imaja. Dr. Akai joined that esoteric order and his body was rebuilt as part of his initiation, the Nexus giving him a Jackal's head as a symbol of his intended place in the order as a leader.

Having been initiated into the order, Seito learned far more about the workings of the universe than he could have ever hoped to know. It was a dream come true for his curious mind, but he found himself missing the life that he left behind on Earth. He could feel a tugging from that world, and against the advice of his superiors in the order he returned.


1940 - 1947

The event that was attracting him back to Earth was Project Bilfrost, taking place in 1947, in the same laboratory where Project Looking Glass had taken place. The equipment was rebuilt and improved, and the experiments had been more successful. Humanity was on the verge of learning a great deal more about hyperspace, possibly even taking their place among the stars. And then Seito arrived on the base, haunting a house on the outskirts where he used to live with a girlfriend that he had at the time. She had gotten married to another man and moved on with her life. He was too lost in his own feelings to notice that he had been spotted peeking in her window, and he was arrested by the military police.

Taken to the base, he was interrogated by the military police and studied by the scientists there, including a few who realized that this was indeed their former colleague, radically changed. Before they could decide the ulitmate fate of the alien in their midst, the Imaja arrived on the base in force, deploying their war drones to kill any and all opposition and rescue Seito at all costs. By the time they had left the base with him, every human there was dead, and most of the evidence of Akai's existence confiscated. The carnage was later discovered by a rescue squad that had been sent to the base to find out why transmissions from it had been cut. Project Bilfrost was subsequently declared a failure and the base was sealed off and buried.


1947 - 2346

After his rescue, Dr. Akai abandoned his obsession with his previous life and lost himself in his work, exploring many worlds across the universe and making many discoveries. Like the other members of his order, he lost touch with his humanity, ascending into a being who cared of little beyond logic and the pursuit of knowledge. As a team leader in a great many expeditions, he had opportunity to discover and document hundreds of worlds, cataloging life forms that had never before been encountered by any other civilization. He visited primitive sapient life forms and was regarded as a god, as a devil; such reverence and fear meant little to him, as his primary interest was always his studies. He spent many long years cloisered away in remote laboratories obsessively researching projects for his order, opening up his peoples' understanding of the universe by small degrees.


2346 - Present

Dr. Akai's attention turned fully back to our universe in the year 2346 when an experimental Terran starship, the Stellaris, suddenly appeared in distant orbit around Tarlec. The ship had been testing an experimental Warp Drive that had malfunctioned, throwing the ship far beyond the safe confines of the layer of hyperspace that borders the known universe. The Imaja naturally took interest in the ship, as did the Nexus. Akai led an expedition there, and found that the ship's crew had been driven insane by the Nexus' alien mind. Two of the ship's crew survived, a scientist named Dr. Rena Mounier, and a security guard. Dr. Mounier had managed to return the Stellaris to normal space, in spite of her being seriously injured in a fight with the Imaja; the process of the return transit leaving most of the Imaja team behind in Tarlec's orbit. Akai stayed with the ship, and was subdued by the guard and placed in cryostasis at Dr. Mounier's urging. Both Dr. Mounier and the guard later died due to a sudden failure of the ship's life support. Yet the Stellaris' return was noticed by one of its sponsors, a brilliant scientist named Dr. Phillip Chandler.

Dr. Chandler sent a salvage team to the Stellaris to retrieve its frozen prize, and then dispose of the damaged ship. He knew from the ship's dying transmissions that an alien lifeform had been brought back from beyond known space, and he wanted to be the first to study it. Dr. Akai spent the next three months in the laboratory of Dr. Chandler, subject to the man's cruel curiosity. Eventually Akai was rescued by another would-be test subject by the name of Feyrin. She killed Dr. Chandler and took Seito when she escaped the secret laboratory, which happened to be in the city of Alexandria on the planet Osirs.

Akai had no way to get in touch with his homeworld of Tarlec, being that he lacked a Versicomm, the standard communications device that Imaja use to speak to each other across dimensional barriers. Yet his time with Feyrin reawakened some vestiges of his old humanity, and he took a new interest in this universe that he had left behind centuries ago. With Feyrin's help he traveled to the city of Shangri-La on Ceres and created a false identity for himself, pretending to be a bioroid that had escaped from its master. Ceres became his new home and he spent time living and working amonst humans and recoms and a variety of aliens. He began to develop a compassion for other people, and a desire to work for the causes of the Transhumanist Union, at the urging of a rabbit recom named Lomo.

In the nine years that followed, Akai earned a living as a data broker, and also served as an Activist for the Transhumanist Union. By the year 2354 he had reconnected with members of his order, uncovering a plot by the Imaja to use their portal technology to steal the entire city of Alexandria off of Osiris. Much to his dismay he found that this project was being led by none other than Dr. Chandler, who had somehow been resurrected by the Nexus and converted into an Imaja...a highly influencial one at that. Akai managed to help foil Chandler's plans to steal Alexandria, and in the aftermath found himself as the leader of a splinter faction of Imaja to whom he promised a new home on Ceres.

Eventually he led that splinter faction to Ceres, and they have taken up residence in the domed city of Shangri-La, working in secret to guide the development of the city's populace, and ultimately the development of humanity as a whole.


Skills: Akai is an Imaja, a member of an alien race that has been engineered to be able to survive in harsh climates, making them well suited for deep space exploration. Consistent with their design, his skin functions as insulation as well as armor. He can survive in the vacuum of space as well in atmospheres close to a hundred times as dense as the Earth's. He can hold his breath for up to five hours with light activity, and closer to one hour under strenuous activity. His skin is as tough as kevlar armor when it comes to resisting damage, and he has the ability to quickly heal from minor wounds, and he can survive more severe wounds that would incapacitate or kill a human. He has a dense musculature that lends him exceptional strength and agility, though he is not particularly well trained in combat beyond simple brawling and weapons use. He is a scientist and a negotiator, not much of a fighter.


He has learned how to use the crystalline Link in his skull to communicate with computers through a specialized interface, allowing him to rapidly access computer networks, especially those in Shangri-La.


Personality: Akai has a calm and cool demeanor, always polite and professional to friend and foe alike. His pitch perfect vocalizations and theatrical posturing can strike one as either charismatic, or eerily artificial. His mind at times seems to be on a different wavelength than those around him, his attention focused on more esoteric paths of thought, if not seeming utterly detached from his surroundings. He does have a temper, slow to provoke, but exceptionally harsh when it comes out.


Appearance: Akai looks like a humanoid jackal, having tall ears and angular features, but he is completely hairless, his armored skin having a leathery texture. He is tail-less and in some respects seems more human-like than most recoms; his canine features being more an aesthetic choice on the part of his creators rather than a reflection of genetic heritage. He almost always is dressed in a kilt, either white cotton or black leather; he tends to not wear much more unless he really has to.

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