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Colin Wallis was the leader of the Brockton Bay Protectorate team as Armsmaster. After being critically wounded by the Slaughterhouse Nine, Colin took on the identity of Defiant and worked alongside Dragon in searching for and fighting the Slaughterhouse Nine.

Personality

Colin is exemplified by a stern and uncompromising personality, one which frequently serves as a source of friction between him and the people around him - including professional subordinates. Colin sees himself as being part of a war; a soldier of law and order fighting against the chaos of supervillains.[2] Because of this, he can be rude and abrupt to people who aren't on 'his side'.

Colin is defined by his tunnel vision.[3] He's a man who wants to be self-reliant at all times and to excel at everything he does, pushing himself to his absolute limit to a point that might be considered obsessive. He prided himself on this spartan existence which allowed him to take up any job and perform any role the Protectorate required of him.[4] He deliberately went without a family, friends or a personal life in order to be that much better at his life as a cape and to not give any enemies additional ammo to use against him.[5] In fact, until he developed a relationship with Dragon, he had no personal life to speak of whatsoever. Any time not spent on his official duties was spent training or working on his equipment. Despite his powerful drive to be a heroic cape, Colin's pride and anger can get the better of him, leading him to make errors in judgment or exhibit elements of narcissism. Along those lines, Colin also has difficulties with understanding people.[6] As Colin himself puts it: he never knows what to say, how to say it, or who to say it to.[5] Miss Militia noted that he "didn’t have a head for this sort of thing" when discussing interrogations.[7]

He was known to prepare for things well ahead of times even against threats he haden't met yet.[8]

Relationships

Dragon

His relationship with Dragon (and his new identity as Defiant) leads Colin to be slightly less stern and belligerent, although he still exhibits many of the same traits and habits that make him difficult for most people to deal with for an extended period. As Taylor puts it, Dragon is the only person on the planet who can stand him for more than ten minutes at a time,[9] and Dragon herself admittedly needs a break sometimes.[10] Dragon notes that she and Colin have the same taste in movies and television shows.[6]

As part of their profesional relationship Colin shared his electric pulse technology, an effective counter to Skitter, with Dragon. Much to the teenaged villains exasperation.[11]

Hannah

Besides Chevalier and Dragon she is one of the only people who considers Defiant a friend.

Taylor Hebert

Got off to a bad start with the young would-be hero. Taking credit for her and the Undersiders taking down Lung led to the first blemish on his record, and, in turn, led him to recklessly try for a win against Leviathan. In doing this, he attempted to kill her so that he could fight Leviathan one on one.

As Defiant, after having some time to recover and with somebody to help change his mind. He has officially retracted his statements calling Taylor a "manipulator and a liar".[12] Further he empathized with her over their time as a leader. He used her time as Weaver to make a new start in their professional relationship.[13]

Chevalier

Saw each other as old friends.[14]

Reputation

Armsmaster was featured in photoshoots of the "core group of the top Protectorate members". He had his own action figures.[15] He appeared on magazine covers and did interviews on TV, so you could find almost anything about Armsmaster through various media, short of his secret identity. Taylor Hebert compared him to Michael Jordan and referred to him as "one of the top heroes".[16][17]

Armsmaster is mentioned as being under 'retirement' and presumably the public thinks this.[18] He was allowed to operate as Defiant; with full knowlege of the PRT establishment,[19] by being under several severe prohabitions.[20] 

Appearance

Colin is a tall man in his late twenties or early thirties by Taylor's reckoning.[16] He has dark-brown hair and beard that he keeps short and cropped.[21]

Armsmaster's costume consists of a suit of midnight-blue power armor[22] with silver highlights and a helmet and visor that covers his eyes and nose[16]. He wears a neatly trimmed beard. He wields his personally designed and crafted Halberd weapon system which can shift into various weapons, cut through most metal, wreathe the blade in plasma, project electromagnetic pulses and act as a grappling hook, among many other tools and features. His helmet includes a lie detector and a computer program that allows him to predict enemy behavior - although these tools are not infallible. He also made use of a personalized tinker-tech motorcycle.

His chest emblem was a silhouette of his visor in blue against a silver background, and was featured on various merchandise, including underwear.[16]

Defiant's costume consists of an advanced, heavy-duty suit of power armor which is forest green and gold in coloration. Much of the armor is decorated in a styling that evokes dragons - such as frills or wings - along the green portions. His helmet, which obscures his whole face, resembles a high-tech knight's helm and the points where the visor meets the rest of the helmet are shaped like a dragon's wing. Much like Armsmaster, he wields a long polearm, although this one is a two-pronged spear as opposed to a halberd and is much larger, able to extend itself up to fifteen feet in length. The spear can deploy a number of different blades and tools, similar to Armsmaster's Halberd and is etched with a design like a lizard's skull in the spearhead. Much of this armor is obviously intended to invoke a comparison with his heroic partner, Dragon, who wears a similar set.

As Defiant, he has numerous cybernetic enhancements throughout his body and even inside of his brain. These include at least one prosthetic eye, a prosthetic leg, and a prosthetic arm to replace the one he lost fighting Leviathan (it is unclear whether more than one each of his arms and legs are cybernetic replacements; see trivia). This level of cybernetic augmentation allows Dragon to see what he sees and allows them both to communicate with each other privately. His scalp is covered in thin, neat surgical scars and he keeps his dark hair and beard shaved close. The level of cybernetic modification means he only has fifteen minutes of 'down time' each day, with six of those fifteen being for sleep. His cybernetic leg also mounts a nanomachine thorn generator.[2][23]

He usually has access to a personalized Dragon craft which he pilots.

Abilities and Powers

Colin is a Tinker that specializes in miniaturization and efficiency. He uses this power to create ridiculously efficient technological devices which he outfits into his suits of armor or into his weapons.[24][25][26][27]

His equipment has demonstrated, or has been said to have, the following features:

Equipment Features
  • Blade that rearranges into various other weapons (Halberd)[24]
  • Blade that can cut through steel (Halberd blade, spear[28])
  • Grappling hook (Halberd blade)[24][16]
  • Welding device (Halberd blade) [29][16]
  • Flail (Halberd blade)[24]
  • Teleporting to his hand (Halberd)[30]
  • Temporal stasis trigger (Halberd)
  • EMP Projector/Electricity field (Halberd, spear)[31]
  • Nano-thorn disintegration field (unique Halberd, spear, Defiant armour[32])
  • Plasma blade (Halberd)[16]
  • The ability to change its size (spear)[33]
  • Spinning blades (spear)[34]
  • Echolocation (Halberd, helmet)[24]
  • Lie detector (helmet)[24]
  • Combat predictor (helmet)[24]
  • Psychic shielding (helmet)[35]
  • Sealed biohazard capabilities (Defiant armor)[36]
  • Enhanced strength (Armour)[37]

He had a secondary ability that allowed him to "stick way more technology in a space than has a right to be there", but only while it was in his immediate presence, according to Tattletale (whose assessments aren't necessarily reliable).[35] During their partnership, Taylor speculated that Dragon must have had Defiant adjust her gear, because "there was no way she could pack that much machinery in that much space" - unless "it was all crammed into her torso, which was impossible". Of course, this doesn't disprove Tattletale's theory on his power's range, her torso can fit plenty of tech.[38]

As Defiant, he replaced his internal organs and parts of his brain with artificial equivalents, reducing his need to sleep, eat and eliminate waste to less than fifteen minutes a day.[39]

History

Background

Growing up Colin was a loner and the child of divorced parents. He went to college and had even taken psychology classes.

When he triggered he was old enough to directly join the Protectorate.[40] He was operating in the early enough days that he was part of Protectorate strike squads that dealt with problems as they flared up.

Armsmaster was present for The Simurghs attack on Madison, showcasing his competence. Myrddin chastises him for being reckless. When Myrddin grows argumentative with Dragon following orders unquestionably, Armsmaster defends her.[41]

Story Start

After pumping Lung full of tranquilizers and welding a steel cage around him, Armsmaster used his Halberd's grappling hook to scale to the top of the building that an unnamed bug girl had taken refuge on. He confirmed that she wasn't going to attack him before talking about what had happened that night as well as the threat of consequences to her if she took the credit for taking Lung down. Because of this, Skitter asked him to keep her involvement with Lung's capture secret and they amiably parted ways.[42]

Lung's arrest did not go well for Armsmaster. When he took Lung back to the local Protectorate HQ (to be held until the villain's trial by teleconference), Lung was under the effects of Skitter's insects. As Skitter's bugs had injected Lung with a near-lethal dose of poisons, Lung almost died as his powers wore off and his regeneration could not heal him faster than the poison was hurting him. Armsmaster was subject to an investigation. Over the course of two days, he lost command of his team, had his Halberd and power armor confiscated and taken apart for inspection to ensure that he had not been using lethal poisons, and was interrogated as to the circumstances of Lung's capture. This was the first blemish to his otherwise exemplory record.

Armsmaster met with Skitter at her request, although his demeanour was consequently colder than it had been on their initial meeting, though he was grateful for the information she was able to give him on Tattletale. They argued over her plan to infiltrate the Undersiders, and he revealed the consequences arresting Lung had had for him. It was persumably around this time that Armsmaster pushed the PRT to look into the Undersiders' backgrounds. They identified Regent's old identity as Hijack.[43]

After the Undersiders robbed the Brockton Bay Central Bank, Armsmaster met with the Wards. He looked at the information that they were compiling about the Undersiders before noting that Tattletale's section was nearly empty. He wanted Panacea to tell them what she had observed about the villain's powers, but the younger hero hadn't gotten her thoughts in order. When he attempts to push the issue, Miss Militia tells him it's fine.[44]

Armsmaster was present at the Battle at the Gallery alongside the rest of his team when the Undersiders hit it. He disables their stolen containment foam sprayers with electromagnetic pulses. He orders Bitch to call off her dogs before explaining that he had studied the Undersiders' powers, allowing him to construct countermeasures to each.[31] During the battle, he displayed telepathic shielding that blocked Regent's ability, a variation on his EMP that acted as a bug-zapper, echolocation that could see through Grue's darkness, and a powerful flail that disabled Tattletale, Grue, and Bitch's dogs. He also claimed that he had prediction software that could anticipate Bitch and her dogs based on footage of them.

During the fight, Tattletale employs her power against him, figuring out some of the tools in his Halberd and claiming that all of his subordinates despise him; he instantly disables her with his halberd. Although he and Miss Militia seem to have the Undersiders dead to rights, he orders her to use a less lethal weapon when the Undersiders imply that the two of them are engaging in brutality, allowing Regent an opportunity to disable her and Grue to blanket the room in darkness. He battles and defeats Grue and Bitch's dogs.

After the rest of his team are disabled, he refuses Skitter's quiet offer of a truce, stating that he plans to simply arrest her. In response, Skitter swarms him with seven hundred hornets, manages to wrestle his Halberd from him, and throws it over the side of the building. The Undersiders rescue Skitter and escape. Skitter deliberately leaves her message to leave in place to mock Armsmaster.[24]

As the Undersiders recuperate in an alley, however, Armsmaster tracks them down - along with Dauntless. With his Halberd once more in his hands, Armsmaster demands the surrender of the Undersiders. Armsmaster has had Dauntless wear earbuds to prevent him from hearing Tattletale. They fight and Armsmaster pursues them into a parking garage where he is promptly ambushed by the Travelers, Circus and Trainwreck. Armsmaster is then left beaten, bloodied and unconscious; Trainwreck picks up Armsmaster's Halberd and crushes it, covering the unconscious hero in the debris of his own weapon.[30]

Colin works through the entire night with Dragon

He took to the task with grim determination.[45]

After Legend gave his introductory speech Armsmaster took over the briefing to explain to the gathered capes how Dragon's armbands worked. He questioned Miss Militia about The Travelers when they stood with those who have faced an endbringer before. He was assigned to lead a group of capes who think they can harm Leviathan in hand-to-hand combat alongside Chevalier.

During the battle, Armsmaster provides tactical advice and orders, and eventually maneuvers things to set himself up in a one-on-one duel with the Endbringer itself.

Tired, but gloating and taunting, Armsmaster appears to be fighting Leviathan and winning due to his new disintegration weapon and his numerous tinker devices giving him countermeasures for much of what Leviathan attempts. then Leviathan uped his game, tearing the storm sewers up and out of the street and pined Armsmaster to the ground, tearing off one of Armsmaster's limbs.

Skitter, who had been watching the fight, arrives and administers first aid as best she can. Armsmaster claims that she was dead. Shortly afterwards, Lady Photon arrives to take Armsmaster to receive proper medical attention.

Post-Leviathan

Immediately after when Scion beat Leviathan back. Armsmaster finds Skitter, who had stumbled upon Shadow Stalker's civilian identity, he restrains her. Dragging her over to Legend and Miss Militia he reminds them that Skitter is an adept liar who was able to fool both his instincts and hardware. However, his angry belligerence isn't enough to prevent Tattletale from outing his actions during the battle against Leviathan - namely ensuring that villains were placed in the Endbringer's path which would be a violation of the truce. Armsmaster lunges for Tattletale, but Legend sends him sprawling with a laser blast and Miss Militia points her weapon at him.

Tattletale tells Legend and Miss Militia that Armsmaster essentially deliberately put villains such as Kaiser in harm's way, letting them die all to arrange his duel. Without any humility, Armsmaster states that he did everything he did for the greater good and that it was the most effective way of ensuring a bright future for Brockton Bay. In response to his immediate arrest, Armsmaster outs Skitter as a mole in the Undersiders, claiming that she is the one they should be mocking and spitting on as she had been planning to betray her teammates for her own gain.[46]

Afterward Colin was been kept under off-the-record[47] house arrest on the second-highest floor of the Protectorate ENE Headquarters with regular check-ups from Dragon. It has not been kind to him - Colin is tired and he has lost weight - although he is still able to work on many of his projects and has access to some of his equipment, such as his nano-disintegration blade. He has made no attempts to escape, despite the fact that he would be able to. When Dragon asks him about recent events, he expresses regret and acknowledges the fact that he broke the Endbringer truce during Leviathan's attack.[48]

Later he was visited by a member of the Slaughterhouse Nine - Mannequin. Mannequin is there to recruit Colin for the Slaughterhouse Nine, insinuating that he is no different from anyone in their villain group. This enrages Colin who, despite warnings and pleading from Dragon, deliberately provokes Mannequin by calling him out on his actions, on how he went from being Alan Gramme to Mannequin as a result of the death of his family. Mannequin promptly stabs Colin in the shoulder, several times in his abdomen and then slashes him across the face, blinding and disfiguring him. Despite his disintegration knife, Colin lacks the physical strength to overpower his opponent. As Colin falls into unconsciousness, Mannequin escapes.

Some time later, Colin wakes up in the PHQ under Dragon's care, who informs him that he had nine heart failures on the operating table, and finds out that some of the damage he incurred from Mannequin has been repaired with prosthetics, particularly his face and eye. Dragon sternly admonishes him, calling his display with Mannequin the "stupidest fucking thing I've ever seen" but then, after a brief moment of awkward conversation, she reveals to him her nature as an AI.(armsmasters interlude again)[49]

Miss Militia later disclosed to the villains at the truce that Mannequin had gone after Armsmaster and left him hospitalized.[50] Days later Miss Militia reveals to Skitter that Armsmaster escaped from his hospital bed.[51]


Post-Slaughterhouse Nine

Now garbed as Defiant Colin showed up along with Dragon, who was showing her 'face' in public for the first time to the Brockton Bay Protectorate. She explaines the duo's new mission of hunting down the Slaughterhouse Nine. Thanks to Colin's body language, Triumph immediately notices that it is Armsmaster under the armor and the implication is that Director Piggot and the rest of the Protectorate capes are aware of this fact as well, but no one is willing to mention it. Defiant reveals that he has replaced his internal organs with artificial equivalents, including parts of his brain as well, leaving him only fifteen minutes of 'down time' per day. It is also implicitly revealed that Defiant has made modifications to Dragon's programming to allow her to control a multitude of her suits at once.[52]

Colin and Dragon commence hunting the Slaughterhouse nine a task that takes them acrosss the northeast. While investigating a hospital attack in Stafford Defiant comes to the conclusion the Dragon is actually a Parahuman.[53]

They finally catch up to the group in Boston with Defiant coming upon Bonesaw and Damsel of Distress in the basemant of a building that Accord supplied to the local bio-technology tinker Blasto. Defiant easily deals with Damsel and tries to stop Bonesaw. She is able to suprise him and escape with Blasto. Defiant is trapped by Bonesaw and later freed by Dragon, who reports that she killed the Siberian. They continue their pursuit.[54]

Post-Echidna

The pair continued their pursuit of the Nine and were eventually able to force them into hiding.[55]

Dragon and Defiant arrive at Arcadia High in a pair of Dragon suits in order to apprehend Taylor, under orders of the PRT. Defiant counters her insects with his spear and defends Dragon as she verbally spars with Taylor. Defiant also apologizes to Taylor, admitting that he should have attempted to compromise with her and he regrets how he handled things with her. He is even willing to officially admit culpability in how Taylor became who she is. When Skitter asks why they have come to arrest her in a public place - outing her cape identity in the process - Defiant informs her that Dinah told them it was their best chance of apprehending her.[56]

Taylor refuses to go with them and uses her fellow students as an escape method. Defiant is dogpiled by many of them, preventing him from grabbing Skitter. When Dragon is forced by her programming to attempt to apprehend Skitter, Defiant makes a crude adjustment to her code that prevents her from pursuing Skitter further. Although he does not feel the risk of losing Dragon is worth Taylor's freedom, Dragon insists it is the right choice. He makes the Edit, cripaling Dragon. While Skitter escapes, Defiant embraces Dragon's malfunctioning android body.[57]

After the incident Piggot reminds Defiant that he is on a strict probation, with terms that he had personally agreeded to. As Dragon is unable to speak (although can persumably still communicate with him thanks to his cybernetic implants), Defiant promptly makes the demand that the Protectorate needs to clean house and eliminate any sign of Cauldron influence. When the Director refuses, Defiant claims that he and Dragon will simply leave then. In response, Alexandria indicates that the PRT will hand over much of Dragon's responsibilities to Saint. Because of this, Defiant and Dragon agree to a compromise: after the next Endbringer attack, the PRT will clean house.[58]

As Director Tagg tells Taylor, that she may be held by Dragon and Defiant in one of their vessels, away from any of her insects, until the time of her trial.[59]

Defiant arrives, with Dragon, to ostensibly collect Skitter from the Protectorate HQ in Brockton Bay. He confronts Skitter in a storeroom, pinning her to the ground with his spear until Dragon arrives. They haul Skitter to the Pendragon and, as they go, Skitter ties Defiant to Dragon with a cord from her insects. As they arrive, Skitter attempts to push Defiant over the edge of the roof, however Defiant manages to catch himself and Dragon hauls him back up over the edge. Angry, Defiant snaps at Skitter to "Stop trying things."

When Skitter continues to resist, Defiant tells her that Tagg and Alexandria are dead. They continue to spar verbally until Miss Militia intervenes, talking through Dragon's set of power armor. Defiant tells Skitter that they were not there to arrest her. Further, he says that the whole situation with Alexandria was a mistake - one that they are all about to pay for.[60]

Defiant likens Alexandria's mistake with Skitter to his lie detector - she had the wrong information and made the wrong decisions because of it. And, given that she never actually killed any of the Undersiders, they are poised to attack in fifteen minutes - something which Defiant says would be almost impossible odds with the suits, the Brockton Bay Protectorate and ten other visiting heroes. As the timer counts closer to zero, and Skitter sticks to her terms, Defiant goes into communication with the new Chief Director and Chevalier who agree to Skitter's terms.

Still, the Protectorate faces a public relations crisis due to the death of Alexandria. Defiant offers the Dragon-craft as a thing to use to capture the imagination of the public - but Miss Militia states that they're still vulnerable to the Endbringers, in contrast to Alexandria who had been instrumental in stopping all three on numerous occasions.

Later, Defiant gives Taylor her new mask and costume that she will wear as Weaver. He congratulates her and compliments her speech, although Dragon shushes him as he attempts to press a conflict of interest issue.[61](this last part goes into personality not catching the nuance of what is happening)

Defiant and Dragon served as transport for Weaver, taking her to and from prison, court, Protectorate meetings and what she terms 'field exercises'. In New York Defiant acted partly as her advocate during her meeting with various protectoarte teams.[62] Defiant also debriefed Weaver in part after her action against The Adepts.[63] When Behemoth was detected in New Delhi Defiant and Dragon arrived to collect Weaver from Boston.[64]

En route, Defiant provides Weaver with a flightpack that he had created for her and admits that he had wronged her and set her on the path to becoming a villain. Because of that, he has put himself on the line to recommend her for the Wards and will invest as much time and and equipment as necessary to keep her on track. In exchange for the apology and the flightpack, Colin asks Taylor to look past his own transgressions from his time as Armsmaster. As they land and disembark, Defiant prevents Taylor from rejoining the Undersiders, telling her that her place is with the Wards.[65]

When Alexandria arrives, Defiant is as confused as anyone else, claiming that he saw her dead body himself and verified her DNA, examined and carbon dated her prosthetic eye and checked several other readings. He also confirms that Alexandria went missing from Protectorate custody.

Defiant assists in the battle with Behemoth but is out of contact for sometime following the destruction of Dragon's suits. In the final battle against Behemoth Colin lent support to Chevalier as he faced the Endbringer head on.[14]

In the aftermath of of the battle, Defiant Waited in vain for Dragon to reboot and took time to reflect on his life, his actions, and his attitude. Trying to clear his head he sets out to help rescue workers, later a rebooted Dragon finnaly contacts him.[66]

Months later Defiant is present representing the Protectorate at the Khonsu Meeting, alongside Dragon. He exchanges verbal barbs with Saint over the needed response.[67]

Post-Timeskip

When the Slaughterhouse Nine reappeared, Defiant called Weaver to inform her.[68]

Defiant briefs Weaver on the threat posed by the Slaughterhouse Nine. Having spoken with Dinah, Defiant tells her that the chance of the world ending is 93.8 percent.[69] He blames himself for failing to kill Jack during their attack on Boston, seeing it as their best chance of being able to have stopped him.[70]

Following Dragon's death at Saint's hands, Defiant is immediately aware of who the culprit is. He swears to kill Saint for what he has done.[71] Contacted by Weaver, Defiant informs her that the Azazel suits have been 'compromised' and that they are now unreliable. Defiant is so distraught by the loss of Dragon that he thanks Weaver at the end of his conversation with her, something which she acknowledges is very uncharacteristic.[72]

Monitoring the Ellisburg Situation Defiant sees that the Nine contingent has fled back into their pocket dimension.[73]

Following her Failure to stop the abduction of Nilbog Defiant pilots the Pendragon to the goblin kingdom, taking many capes - including Weaver, Chevalier, Bitch, Parian and Foil - and two members of the Dragon's Teeth to stop the Slaughterhouse Nine directly. During the flight, he has a private conversation with Chevalier.

When they land, Defiant is one of the primary combatants in holding off the monstrous horde, fighting back to back with Weaver at points. During the battle, Saint refuses to assist the group and Defiant contacts someone, letting them know where to find and hunt down Saint. He then - with assistance from Dinah - computes the required number to track the Slaughterhouse Nine to their dimensional pocket and leads the group of capes after them.

Defiant lead a team to Houston to take down the Slaughterhouse faction there, presumably taking several of the leftover munitions form the Nines secret base for some much needed firepower.[74]

Successful in defending Houston Defiant works with Saint, only hours after threatening him for killing Dragon, to locate Lisette and have her transmit a message to Scion in the hopes of preventing Jack Slash from ending the world.[75] They succeed but their efforts are for nought.

Gold Morning

At the Cauldron meeting to discuss Scion, Defiant is grilling Saint about his string of failures since supplanting Dragon: Saint is failing and Defiant has placed the responsibility for numerous deaths - 2.2 million in New York alone when Saint failed to raise the defenses in time - upon his head.

Saint mutes him and Defiant claims that he will kill Saint and otherwise obstruct him in anything he will attempt, knowing that Saint has done everything he has done to get Teacher out of the Birdcage. And Defiant is the only one who holds the keys to release the prisoners. He agrees to the release of Teacher if everyone else in the room agrees to it.

They do.[76]

Was present at the Oil-rig battle, confirming the identities of the Birdcage prisoners released in the preparations to facial recognition, all were accounted for. He works with Tattletale to manage Dragon's programs and systems, and figures out something of a pattern to Scion's movements. Defiant instructs String Theory to scale up her F-Driver weapon but to minimize collateral damage. He co-ordinates the waves of attacks against Scion.[77]

Defiant later brought Saint into custody, though the exact details are not known.[78] Along with Narwhal he served as Saint's prison warden. When Narwhal claims that she needs to ensure that the Undersiders (and Canary) won't be any threat to Saint, Defiant vouches for them. Tattletale's interrogation of Saint is punctuated by verbal sparring from himself and Defiant throughout. When Tattletale informs the group that Teacher's plan was to obtain Dragon and/or her systems, Defiant heads off to investigate.[79]

He later confirms that Teacher obtained all of Dragon that wasn't on the satellite backups. In the face of such monumental news he did not appreciate Imp's poor attempts to inject levity into the situation.

As the Undersiders plan, Bitch states that they might have to let Teacher have Dragon for the moment. Defiant is not happy about the prospect of Dragon being dismantled, tortured, rebuilt and so on in Teacher's clutches, but admits he has little choice.

Narwhal comforts Defiant. When Saint asks to be freed, claiming that it makes sense, Defiant protests again and again, claiming that he wants to believe that Saint can be held for just a little bit longer. Saint is released, but Defiant remains with him, double-checking any code the faux-tinker works on.

Defiant is piloting the Pendragon when Tattletale attempts to communicate with the Simurgh. When Tattletale attempts to form a psychological model of the mental patterns of the Endbringers, Defiant criticises her for using Freudian terminology, recalling a Psychology class he took at University.

Defiant later met with Teacher in the hand over of Dragon. Teacher waved of Defiants vitriol and goads the couple with the fact he has rechained her. Ensuring that she will leave him alone and even protect him. Defiant makes a rare promise that Teacher will pay for enslaving his girlfriend.

Later he tries to comfort Dragon, promising to remove 'every last chain'. This falls on deaf ears.[80] Defiant spends some time recuperating from the events of the last few days,[81] presumably performing needed maintenance.

Despite not agreeing with Taylor's plan to infiltrate Cauldron but he does give her one of his disintegration knives along with an incredibly detailed maintenance instructions, Dragon cuts him off.[82]

As Khepri does considerable damage to Dragon's systems, Defiant is ready to come to her aid - until Dragon tells him not to and to focus on Zion.[83]

Khepri utilizes Defiant's eyes and his combat prediction software to try and predict Scion's movements and plan a strategy. As with all the other Tinkers, he is put to work creating a weapon that is enough to kill Scion.[84] The Goddess later gave him honor of activating the Tinker device that finally kills Zion.

Post-Gold Morning

In the time since the end of Gold Morning Colin was constantly working on a new project to deal with Dragon's mutilation at the hands of Teacher. He was able to unleash it and then had to deal with the consequences. He was used as a puppet by the women he loved in her fight against his better half.[85]

Ward

For some unknown reason Dragon and Defiant were away from the City for several months.

Post-Fallen fall

Following the Portal sabotage the duo return to The City to provide assistance and help coordinate the Heroes there.

Post-Goddess' Takeover

Alongside two dragon-crafts was in Brockton Bay during The Wardens attempt to stop March's Megacluster.[86]

Post-Time Bubble Pop

He was at the side of Dragon during the assault on Teacher's Compound. However, they were successfully diverted from the majority of the action.[87]

Post-Attack on Teacher

In the days after the battle he welcomed Victoria Dallon and Kenzie Martin to expanded Wardens HQ.[88]

Arrives to Breakthrough HQ during their venture to The Shardspace‎‎,[89] interrogates them after it, and present them an ultimatum.[90]

Trivia

  • Prior to his actions during Leviathan's attack, Taylor indicates that the fallout from Lung's poisoning was the first blemish on Armsmaster's record.
  • In Miss Militia's interlude, Colin remarks that he would "give [his] left foot" for Miss Militia's no-sleeping perk.[21] As Defiant, Colin needs almost no sleep and possesses at least one cybernetic leg.
  • Colin has been seen fighting all three Endbringers. The Simurgh in Madison, Leviathan in Brockton Bay and Behemoth in New Delhi.
  • In Fortuna's interlude, a version of Colin is glimpsed in an alternate reality. There, he is known as Arsenal. He wields a gisarme and works closely with someone named Richter (presumably that reality's version of Andrew Richter).
  • It appears that Defiant may be upgrading his body with further cybernetic modifications as the story progresses. While he initially only has one cybernetic eye,[2] by the epilogue both of his eyes are apparently prosthetics.[91] Similarly, during his interlude, Defiant works at further integrating cybernetic components into his calf - which is organic at that point - much to Dragon's disapproval.
  • Armsmaster finished the nano-thorn halberd only the night before the Battle against Leviathan.[92]
  • Armsaster was a recurring character in the various drafts of what would be Worm. His relationship with Dragon was exclusive to the final draft.[93]

Quotes

  • (To Leviathan): "You dumb brute. Every fight you’ve done so far, that we’ve got on camera?  I’ve watched it, put it through programs.  I’ve got a computer on my back that’s relaying to a supernetwork, noting your every move, using subsonic pulses to read every aspect of the street, the surrounding buildings, every feature of the terrain.  I know exactly what you’re going to do next – you’re going to try to catch me from behind with a wave. You don’t even speak English, do you?  Or you’d know what I was saying, you’d know I already won.  The others helped, slowing you down, stopping the waves.  But this victory, this killing blow?  It’s going to be *mine.* This cloud around my blade?  Nanotechnology.  Nano-structures engineered to slide between atoms, sever molecular bonds.  Cuts through anything.  Everything.  Like a sharp knife through air. [smashes his face] Let’s see how quickly you respond to classical conditioning.  Every time you try to run, I’ll do something like that. For the record, that last trick was a temporal stasis trigger, with thanks owed to the cooperation of a subordinate of mine.  Drains my battery reserves, but you don’t understand that, do you? *I* am going to be the one to take your head, abomination.  I can only hope you know mortal terror in your last moments, know what you’ve inflicted on so many others. Delaying, buying time for a tsunami? No.  Three point four minutes before the next big wave breaks through the ice.  Dragon’s probes are giving me the data on that.  This will be over before then. Finally scared? Good. I should thank you, monster."
  • (To Saint): "I'm inclined towards tunnel vision."
  • (To Hoyden): "I never guarantee anything, except for a select few promises I make to people I love and people I hate."
  • (To Dragon): "I'm about to put my foot in my mouth. Can I call in a 'Colin is a doofus' chit in advance?"

Fanart Gallery

References

  1. Extinction 27.2
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Interlude 16.y
  3. I dunno if he cares about friendly staff. He'd go to a place where the staff barely talks, just because the food is good and he can sit and eat. Just a loner with messy (helmet) hair sitting in the corner with a bowl and some bread, taking in much needed raw calories after a day of working out and inventing. Wifi doesn't matter - it's almost better without. He can just tap out notes on his phone as ideas come to him.

    He's defined by tunnel vision, so for just that moment, the world is defined by that 3-foot diameter space which is him and the table and the food. - Wildbow on Reddit
  4. Interlude 24.y
  5. 5.0 5.1 Interlude 11d
  6. 6.0 6.1 Interlude 10.5
  7. Cell 22.6
  8. Interlude 13
  9. Sting 26.4
  10. Colin was commenting on how society tends to demand that women be pure and virginal but at the same time sexualizes them. He says Dragon is possibly the only entity that could possibly be both and satisfy society, and he’s happy to have her.

    And if that isn’t misguided enough, he says it in a ham-handed way. - Comment by wildbow on Interlude 24.y
  11. Monarch 16.1
  12. Drone 23.1
  13. Drone 23.5
  14. 14.0 14.1 - Excerpt from Interlude 24.x
  15. Brockton Bay's team was officially ‘The Protectorate East-North-East', and were headquartered in the floating, forcefield-shrouded island that you could see from the Boardwalk.  This guy, Armsmaster, was the guy in charge of the local team.  When the core group of the top Protectorate members from around Canada and the States assembled in that classic ‘v' formation for the photo shoots, Armsmaster was one of the guys in the wings.  This was a guy who had his own action figures.  Poseable Armsmaster with interchangeable Halberd parts. - Gestation 1.6
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 16.3 16.4 16.5 16.6 Gestation 1.6
  17. Parahumans IRC said:
    Wildbow: Armsmaster appears in the posters and such of the top Protectorate heroes.
    Wildbow:When they do the image of everyone standing in a 'v' formation
    Parahumans IRC said:
    Wildbow: Nah. Legend in front, Alex and Eidolon to the left and right, respectively. Then Myrddin, Chev, Cinereal, Narwhal, Rime, Exalt, Armsmaster, Dragon suit silhouette in the background, wings echoing the wings of the PRT logo over their heads. - IRC conversation archived on Spacebattles
  18. Interlude 18.z
  19. Interlude 20.x
  20. Interlude 20.x
  21. 21.0 21.1 Interlude 7
  22. Wildbow on Spacebattles
  23. The nanites don’t eat. His nanites are basically like thorns, which sever molecular bonds and effectively disintegrate the target material. - Comment by Wildbow on Sting 26.2
  24. 24.0 24.1 24.2 24.3 24.4 24.5 24.6 24.7 Tangle 6.6
  25. Comment by Wildbow on Armsmaster's early days
  26. Armsmaster is defined in large part by his tunnel vision. He focuses overmuch and without outside factors will lean too heavily on his own perspective, goals, or way of doing things, so his levels of empathy take a hit.

    In the conversation, Dragon steps in to steer him back on course when he starts to get too tunnel-visioned. He's clever and intuitive enough to read people (provided his own biases or focuses aren't coming into play in the initial reading) and can even make programs that do it (combat analysis, lie detector) or leverage it into helping him conduct an investigation (gather evidence, read witnesses), but given a long conversation or a context that makes things less convenient for him, he'll wind up putting his foot in his mouth, inadvertently trampling over someone else's feelings and priorities, get too focused on his own goals, or devolve into tinker-talk that makes no sense to others. Depending on the context/subject, of course.

    Defiant has the 'tinker up efficiency/hybrid/minimized technology' skill tree. Stinger has the 'missile' skill tree. Tecton has the 'Seismic and Architecture' skill trees. Leet has all of them, but all throughout those trees are entire sections with 'Use of this technology has a X% chance to fail'. You get further away from one design, that chance drops, but it's still there. - Comment by Wildbow on Sufficient Velocity
  27. SB efficency trees
  28. “No,” Defiant said.  He took two steps forward and swiped with the spear, cutting her in half.

    Almost in half.  Something like chainmail was wrapped around her spine, but the spear had cut through the matching mesh that had protected her abdominal organs. - Excerpt from Interlude 19.x
  29. His grappling hook released me, reconfiguring into what I suspected was the same setup that had fixed Lung to the ground with bars of stainless steel, back in my first day in costume.  It was shaped like a rectangle, and there were two ‘u' shaped bands of metal with electricity arcing around them, the tips of each ‘u' glowing hot enough to melt against any surface. - Tangle 6.6
  30. 30.0 30.1 Tangle 6.7
  31. 31.0 31.1 Tangle 6.5
  32. His leg flared with a gray blur as he reached her, and be brought it down onto her back from above. It sheared through her as though she weren’t even there, cutting her in half.  - Excerpt from Interlude 19.x
  33. He held out a rod in one hand, and it unfolded into a spear of ridiculous length. - Excerpt from Interlude 19.x
  34. Blades sprung from the length of the shaft, and began spinning like propellers   One caught her from behind, and she slid forward, only to find herself sandwiched between two such sets.

    “That’s Mannequin’s trick!  That’s so cute, that you’re copying-” - Excerpt from Interlude 19.x
  35. 35.0 35.1 “Which means you can stop trying to use your power on me, Regent.  I’ve got a little blinking light in the corner of my H.U.D. telling me you’re trying something.  I’ve set up psychic and empathic shielding, to protect myself from you and Tattletale.”

    I glanced at Tattletale. He was psychically shielded against her? How did that work?

    Then I remembered. When we’d gone up against Glory Girl and Panacea, hadn’t Tattletale said she read minds? And now Armsmaster had bad info and was figuring he was immune.

    “I don’t need to read you,” she told him, “You’re the only one with shields, so your teammates and the PRT staff don’t have any psychic shields up, and I can read them to get anything I need. You’re not the best inventor, but like most tinkers, you’ve got a knack. Yours just happens to be condensing and integrating technology. Only works in your immediate presence, but still, you can stick way more technology in a space than has a right to be there… like your Halberd.” - excerpt from Tangle 6.6
  36. “Biohazard safe,” Defiant said.  His spear shaft tapped against his armor. - Excerpt from Interlude 19.x
  37. Gallant's armor? More details on style? Does it enhance strength? Do anything else?

    The armor is primarily protective, with some cosmetic features. Think stylized medieval armor with lights recessed in the midst of it, to give him more of a 'gleaming' look, highlighting edges. The armor is basically a super-reduced version of Armsmaster's, which is a smaller-scale version of Defiant's (which is tanky and bulky). It primarily offers enhanced strength, but 80% of that boosted strength is going towards just allowing Gallant to move around easily with the armor and equipment. Between gauntlet and armor, he can throw a pretty mean punch. - Wildbow on Spacebattles
  38. Excerpt from Chrysalis 20.5
  39. Interlude 15
  40. Too many years he’d spent alone. Too many years, he’d had nothing to care about. Nothing and nobody to hold precious. A dad who worked two jobs, a mother who traveled. They’d divorced, and virtually nothing had changed in the grand scheme of things. They’d looked after him, but they hadn’t been there. They had been occupied with other things, with dreams and aspirations that had never included him.

    Colin knew he had been the weird child. Had never made friends, had convinced himself he didn’t want or need them. He was efficient in how solitary he was.

    He’d even prided himself on it, for a time, that there was nothing to hold him back. That he could, should the mood strike him, pick up and leave at any time. He’d modeled his life around it, had led a spare existence, devoid of the little touches of home, of roots. He’d saved money so he had the ability to travel, to get a new place in a new city if the mood struck. It had even been an asset when he had joined the Protectorate, the ability to relocate, take any open position.

    It was only now, a full fifteen years later, that he started to wonder what he’d missed out on. Did most people know how to handle this sort of thing? The absence of someone they cared about? Did they have an easier time handling the moments when they weren’t sure if they’d ever see those people again, or was it harder? - Excerpt from Interlude 24.y
  41. Migration 17.4
  42. Gestation 1.6
  43. "What do you know about how I grew up?" Regent challenged him.

    "I know what the Protectorate knows.  Not long after Lung was brought into custody, Armsmaster began pushing for details on your group.  Staff at the PRT offices were tasked with looking through old criminal records and reports of lesser known parahumans, trying to find parallels.  Find if perhaps a supervillain in another area perhaps moved to Brockton Bay, changing their names, costumes and methods.  They found you." - [ Excerpt] from Tangle 6.8
  44. Interlude 3
  45. Excerpt from Interlude 7
  46. Extermination 8.8
  47. Interlude 13
  48. Interlude 10.5
  49. Interlude 11d
  50. Plague 12.2
  51. Snare 13.7
  52. Interlude 15
  53. Interlude 16.y
  54. Interlude 19.x
  55. Cell 22.2
  56. Chrysalis 20.4
  57. Chrysalis 20.5
  58. Interlude 20.x
  59. Cell 22.2
  60. Cell 22.5
  61. Cell 22.6
  62. Drone 23.1
  63. Drone 23.2
  64. Drone 23.4
  65. Drone 23.5
  66. Interlude 24.y
  67. Scarab 25.5
  68. Scarab 25.6
  69. Sting 26.1
  70. Sting 26.2
  71. Interlude 26.x
  72. Sting 26.4
  73. Sting 26.5
  74. Interlude 26a
  75. Interlude 26b
  76. Extinction 27.2
  77. Extinction 27.4
  78. Cockroaches 28.1
  79. Cockroaches 28.2
  80. Interlude 28
  81. Venom 29.1
  82. Venom 29.3
  83. Speck 30.4
  84. Speck 30.5
  85. Teneral e.3
  86. Heavens 12.all
  87. “No, I was just asking because she was absent.”

    “As was I, for the latter part. Dragon is immensely powerful, but she, like any tinker, is dependent on her pre-established work to function at optimal capacity. The Dragonslayers knew this and used it against her in the past. Teacher used it against her here. With no satellites to use for remote access except the ones she deployed after passing through the portal, she was limited in what she could do. - [1] from From Within 16.1
  88. From Within 16.1
  89. From Within 16.12
  90. Sundown 17.1
  91. Teneral e.3
  92. To be fair to the man, though, Armsmaster did only create the first iteration of the disintegration Halberd with Dragon that very morning. - Comment by Wildbow on Extermination 8.4
  93. Comment by Wildbow in Prey 14.8

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