The man only known as Absalom is a member of a rare subspecies of immortal mutants called Externals, to which he represents Despair of the Thread in the Tapestry of the Infinite.[1] Though he had not yet "ascended" his first death and reveled in immortality, Absalom under unrevealed circumstances joined a number of other Externals that had formed the self-fashioned “High Lords”.[2] Together they manipulate events behind the scenes on a global scale, with the soul goal of political and monetary control over the destiny of Earth.[3]

Stealing Power

Externals (Earth-616) from Gambit Vol 3 14.jpg

Having grown in numbers Absalom together with the High Lords had become a type of authority among their kind. Especially if it interfered with their plans.[4][5] So in 1891 when they learned that Candra planned to stop En Sabah Nur rise to power and take the ability to fold space for herself. He and the others unwilling to physically act against her sent Dr. Nathan Milbury, who worked for En Sabah Nur, deal with Candra.[6][7][2]

After Candra made it to En Sabah Nur’s sanctum beneath the pyramids outside of Banī-Mazā in Egypt, thanks to her Thieves Guild and their leader Jean-Luc LeBeau so began to translate the text. Dr. Nathan Milbury with a time traveling Gambit and Courier arrived to stop her via Milbury’s transport ship. Choosing to bring down En Sabah Nur sanctum instead of fighting and steal his powers another day, Milbury quickly over powers her with his new found metamorphic ability. Defeated she begs for him to stop and as he does while revealing Absalom and the other four High Lords who appeared as the reason behind her loss. Candra tried to explain her actions but Absalom and the others knowing En Sabah Nor's citadel is not to be touched, his slow glaciers rise to power is not to be interrupted. For their greater glory awaits the Millennial Dawn[8][9][10] and Candra's actions put that at risk punished her. [7][4]

Absalom (Earth-616) from X-Force Vol 1 37 0002

Defining Moment

At the end of the 19th century, in 1896, Absalom was a thief and a murderer running away from sheriffs from six states.[1]

In a small town in Wyoming, he met the legendary Caleb Hammer and challenged him, intending to become one as well, and thinking he could outmatch Hammer, now old. As he rejected the challenge, Absalom shot him in the back and was subsequently captured.[1]

As he was hanged, his mutant powers manifested and he freed himself, only to be gunned down by the citizens. While he died, he wished to become a better man.[1] He was buried, woke up two days later, and escape the village during night.[1] Despite never returning to the man he had been, he never found the strength to be the one he wanted to be. He also came to hate his bone-spikes generation mutant abilities.[1] After his mutant powers manifested, he left the town where he was hung and wondered the Earth for some time.

The Gathering

Along with Saul, Nicodemus and Burke, he waited for Gideon at Nicodemus' chalet in the Swiss Alps, about the fact Gideon wasted both his and his fellow Externals' time trying to recruit Sunspot (Roberto da Costa), believing him to be an External as well. As Gideon proposed to activate Krule and send him after Cannonball (Sam Guthrie), the supposed right target, Absalom rejected the idea (who was approved by the others).[3]

Legacy Virus

He eventually contracted the Legacy Virus released by Stryfe.[11][1]

Searching for Hope

Along with Gideon and Saul, he went to Cumberland County, Kentucky, to meet with Cannonball, threatening his brother Josh.[12] There, they discussed with Cannonball and Boomer (Tabitha Smith) of the Externals (including En Sabah Nur/Apocalypse). Absalom soon raged against Cannonball, but was put in his place both by the young mutants and the Externals, and apologized for his behavior. As Cannonball refused to help them against the Legacy Virus on religious and ethical basis, and stated the Externals acted like "frightened children", Absalom raged once again against him, and assault Gideon before cracking under the pressure, asking Cannonball to mourn him. His powers then started flaring, but he survived it. In peace with Cannonball, Gideon and Saul took Absalom in care and departed.[1]

Even an X-Ternal Can Die!

Absalom (Earth-616) vs Selene Gallio (Earth-616) from X-Force Vol 1 54 001

With the lost of Nicodemus[13] and Burke,[1] Absalom found himself as with the remaining High Lords vulnerable for the first time in centuries. Though not from others but from one of their fellow Externals, namely Selene. Selene who had been waiting for this moment for centuries and with the coming terror that is Onslaught,[14] not to mention the return of Apocalypse[15] that would come with it she made her move.[16]

Made aware they were being hunted by Crule, who he did not believe at first until they made it to Manhattan and found a dead Gideon in the streets of the Rockefeller Center.[16][17] With X-Force's Sunspot and Caliban having found Gideon due to him calling them for help, and unaware of Saul’s fate Absalom with Crule attacked X-Force members believing they were the cause. The two High Lords proving to be to much to handle and with Absalom nearly killing Caliban, they were defeated when the rest of X-Force in Shatterstar, Siryn, Meltdown, Domino and Warpath who would not join the fight arrived to help.[17]

With X-Force having won and Absalom caught unaware Selene, who had been watching and knocked out Warpath after he found a dead Saul discovered her made her move and killed him by quick drained Absalom’s life-force.[18]

The Newer Mutants

At some point after Selene’s failed attempt to absorb the essence of what was left of her fellow Externals, Absalom and the others including those that died due to the Legacy Virus came back to life.[19] 10 years later Absalom had become tired of immortal life and secretly started spying on the other Externals for a time-traveling Gideon, and joined Selene, Crul and Nicodemus when they sensed the sudden death of Candra to discovering this mysterious killer.[19][20] To keep up the ruse he stood with them when a Cable from 13 years later came with Shatterstar, Doop and Longshot to Manhattan’s Hellfire Club to find Selene and learn who this mysterious killer is.

Sensing the death of Saul he with the others would teleport to Saul's home in Orkhon Valley; Mongolia thanks to Selene's newly resurrected Blink.[21][22] To continue his ruse he'd fight alongside Crule against Shatterstar, Longshot and X-23 who they discovered there.[22][23]

After the death of Burke and with no other possible culprit Gideon revealed himself, as Selene and Gideon fought Absalom dropped the ruse; killing Crule and Nicodemus to stop them from aiding Selene. But before either Absalom and Gideon could finish Selene she had Blink teleport them to Black Canyon of the Gunnison, Colorado where Cable and the others were. Even with Cable dropping Absalom by blasting a whole in his chest, Gideon with the combined powers of all five Externals was to much for Cable and his team of Shatterstar, Longshot, Armor[22] and X-23. Selene with all her strength fought Gideon as Cable and Doop’s help distract Gideon, giving Blink the chance to quickly opened and close a portal decapitating the giant Gideon. Absalom quickly back up and ranting was knocked out by Cable, who had him locked down and took Gideon to a future with a Super-Max Prison that can hold him.[20]

Having stopped Gideon from achieving the godhood Selene once tried to attempted by stealing the essence of the others Externals, Cable revealed that an External can only kill another External so Gideon failing means they'll be back.[20]

External Gateway

Choosing to answer a summons through their shared psychic-link from Apocalypse he went to the Eternal Caldera of Krakoa, and there joined by Selene, Saul, Crule, Nicodemus, Candra and Gideon waited for Apocalypse. When Apocalypse arrived not wanting to play his games they learned of his plans for them, but they were unwilling to go along with his belief of what their purpose should be nor willing to sacrifice themselves for his goals. Apocalypse would force Absalom and the others to be sacrificed by playing his trump card in a newly enhanced Rictor. Rictor erupted from the ground in a blast of lava killing Crule. After an enraged Nicodemus attacked, forcing Apocalypse to call out for Selene, Gideon and Rictor to his side Absalom disrupted their chat by firing a number of his bone spikes at them. Despite Selene animating the ground to shield themselves one of his bone spikes hit Apocalypse hurting him. Rictor turned to face Absalom, Nicodemus, Candra and Saul. Even as Saul turned into a great dragon Rictor blasted them with a wave of lava unintentionally killing Nicodemus along with Candra and Saul. Absalom survived but was drained and badly hurt begged for Apocalypse's help, Apocalypse would have finished him but he needed four Externals for the ritual to work. [24]

Even after learning Candra, who knew this would happen, used a similar ritual Apocalypse was attempting and one they used long ago to place her energy into her Heart-Gem and hide it in Avalon's he staid by Apocalypse. Thanks to Gambit who had been sent to Avalon with the rest of Excalibur by Apocalypse happened to find the Gem in Starlight Citadel. With Apocalypse opening a gateway Rictor was able to telepathically warn Captain Britian, she asked Gambit to throw the Gem through the gate. Despite Candra's protests he did and with the Gem finding its mark the ritual was done.[24]

With the ancient bones of Saul, Crule, Nicodemus and Candra, thus their life energy, turned into the stones that powers the External Gate,[25] trapping them, and allowing the whole of Krakoa to enter Otherworld as Apocalypse planned.[24]

In his youth, Absalom was an arrogant and impulsive person.[1]

During his first death, he wished that if he could do his life over again, he'll do it right, but after he woke up, despite never returning to the man he had been, he never found the strength to be the one he wanted to be.[1] It was even stated he kept using violence to achieve his goals.[17]

Later, he remained pretty much the same: arrogant, impulsive.[3][1] (As Nicodemus stated, "we are immortal. No one ever said that would bring enlightenment").[3] He was deemed to be the despair component of the Externals.[1]

Despite those traits, Absalom was able to apologize and even be humble towards others and himself.[1]

That temperament caused Gideon to hate him, while Externals like Nicodemus forgave him that behavior,[3] but watched him with care (as they did for Crule).[17]


Immortal: He is effectively immortal and since Absalom's immortality became active after his first death he no longer ages. Though he can be put out of commission or seemingly destroyed for various periods of time, Absalom can not be killed.[18][20]

  • Rapid Healing: Ability to endure injuries (within unknown limits) without lasting harm or even feeling pain[17], he could apparently regenerate injured or missing cells from even near-fatal injuries.[22][20]
  • Resurrection: As an immortal, Absalom has shown to be able to resurrected himself from death.[18][19]

Psychic-Link: As an Extertal, he shares a telepathic-link with his fellow Externals that allows them to not only sense each other and where, but can call on each other at will from great distances.[24] He is also able to sense when one rises from their first death and when one is killed by another External.[3][1][19][26]

Bone Manipulate: Absolom's mutant physiology allowed him to create razor-sharp spikes of bone-like matter through his skin and from his fingertips.[1] He could then manipulate these spikes to stretch to incredible lengths and could use them as swords, fire them like bullets, use them as daddy long legs etc.[17][22][26][24]

Strength level

Enhanced Strength


Absalom can only be killed by having his life-force drained or heart eaten from a fellow External, but if the External fails to due the same to the other Externals he'll come back again.[18][19][20]

  • Many Externals had distinctive text bubbles, and Absalom's one had a black fringe in X-Force #10.
  • The date of Absalom's early life is contradictory.[1][2]

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