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Quote1.png You see, Samuel, we have all faced death once before and managed to triumph over it. It is the defining moment for an External, the moment of transmutation into something… more. Quote2.png



Garbha-Hsien is a member of a rare subspecies of immortal mutants called Externals, to which he represents Patience in Thread in the Tapestry of the Infinite.[1] Even among his own Garbha-Hsien is one of the oldest Externals, having been already old when the continents shook.[2][3]

High Lords

It is unknown when Garbha-Hsien had joined fellow External Nicodemus and possibly though to a lesser extent Crule to form the self-fashioned "High Lords". Together they manipulate events behind the scenes on a global scale, with the sole goal of political and monetary control over the destiny of Earth.[4][5]

Nomad to Ruler

For several lifetimes of wonder Garbha-Hsien found himself in Mongolia, China in the northern mountains of Ho-Lo Shan or what is now the Hopeh Provine he would as a visionary and savage rule for centuries. Garbha-Hsien had twelve mortal children during his rule, and constructed giant booby-trapped tombs for each of them upon their deaths. Along with this through his immortality and magics Garbha-Hsien gained a level of infamy among his people.[1][6]

At some point near his kingdom Garbha-Hsien tribe found the crashed ship of the earth judging Celestials, both humbled and humiliated he'd spend the next fifty years studying the alien ship. He would also hide pieces of the alien vessel in the tombs of his dead children.[1][6]

Forever Walker

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In the 12th century during his fifty years Garbha-Hsien infamy grew far and wide, as a feared immortal magician ruler, whose magics were such that legions ran in fright even reached the ears of the Egyptian En Sabah Nur. En Sabah Nur though old was still very young and sought him out, in a confrontation to learn the truth of this possible fellow Forever Walker. He slaughtered all of Garbha-Hsien men in a bloody path to him, En Sabah Nur challenged Garbha-Hsien to show him this incredible power.

Having heard of En Sabah Nur as well Garbha-Hsien wanting to humble his fellow External showed him a test of his magic, and as he explained a bit of his long life he show En Sabah Nur the Celestial Ship. Though Garbha-Hsien was humbled En Sabah Nur though surprised was not unfamiliar with futuristic technologies. Believing he had humbled the young En Sabah Nur, he plunged his sword through an unaware Garbha-Hsien back. Badly wounded but not life threatening for an External, Garbha-Hsien could only watch as En Sabah Nur entered the ship to claim its secrets that were denied to him.

Learning that there will always be someone on this earth more cunning, more ruthless and more powerful than himself left his kingdom to take quite a different direction.[1]

Ritual of the Heart Stone

Later at an unknown point in the 12 Century C.E., despite fellow External Candra declining to join the High Lords prior,[7] Saul along with other Externals Selene, Crule, Nicodemus, and En Sabah Nur aided her in preforming a ritual to extract the life energy of her own immortal heart into a stone.[7][8]

Tomorrow Starts Today

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Having grown in numbers with the soon to be External Absalom, Garbha-Hsien together with the High Lords had become a type of authority among their kind, specially if it interfered with their plans.[9][3] 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.[10][11][9]

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, they 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 Garbha-Hsien and the other four High Lords who appeared as the reason behind her loss. Candra tried to explain her actions but Garbha-Hsien and the others knowing En Sabah Nur'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[12][13][14] and Candra's actions put that at risk punished her.[11][9]

Mystery Of The Externals

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In more recent years, Garbha-Hsien now calling himself Saul and the other High Lords were searching for the next External to rise, and their next member. For a time thanks to Gideon believed it was Roberto Da Costa,[15] but when Cannonball come back to life moments after his death Garbha-Hsien and the other four sensed it. Now knowing Samuel was the next External they had been looking for they gathered.[16][4]

Garbha-Hsien and the others met at Nicodemus Chalet in the Swiss Alps of Switzerland, to discuss this new revelation. Though Absalom was displeased with having their time wasted on recruiting the wrong person, they listened to Gideon's plan to unleash Krule to kill the X-Force leader Cable. Though shocked he'd involve Krule, Garbha-Hsien and Nicodemus allowed him to go through with his plan, despite Burke's concerns that his plan would only lead Cable, who was aware of Gideon being an External, right to them, or help Xavier, his X-Men, X-Factor, or X-Force learn of their existence.[17][4]

A New Threat

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When Crule went off plan and choose to attack Cannonball in an attempted to kill him, and X-Force came to Ophrah research facility to save Sunspot from Gideon he promised that as along as Cannonball stays out of the High Lords affairs they would leave him alone.[18][2] But when Stryfe tricked Sinister into unleashing his Legacy Virus the Externals found that they were not even safe.[19][20]

With the Legacy Virus having claimed Nicodemus, Garbha-Hsien and Gideon came up with a plan to trick Cannonball into coming to them. Garbha-Hsien went to Camp Verde in Arizona were X-Force had their base, there he found Warpath, Boom-Boom, and Siryn alone. From the shadows Garbha-Hsien blasted them with a form of electrical force that left the three unconscious. He brought them to his home on the North Oregon coastline and with each secured to a rock on the cliff near the ocean's water and near drowning, he and Gideon sent Cannonball via hologram the massage of their captives.[20][21][22]

But unbeknownst to them X-Force instead located Crule at St. Anthony's Hospital in Portland Maine, with Cannonball staying behind the others got a still in a body cast Crule. As Garbha-Hsien and Gideon discuss what the loss of Nicodemus and what the ascension of their newest External Cannonball means, Crule wanting to humble his fellow High Lords gladly gave them up to X-Force. While Garbha-Hsien and Gideon drank tea, X-Force in their IPAC came crashing through the side of Garbha-Hsien's house, sending them flying. With their teammates free as Shatterstar and Feral keeping guard, Sunspot showed Gideon the letter from Cannonball that their plan to get him to break their deal failed. As they left Garbha-Hsien pleaded that they needed to study the newest ascendant, for without Sam Guthrie the Externals may all die. But to no avail, instead he was left with a warning to cease harassing them or he would suffer that fate anyway.[2]

The Young And The Restless

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For a time Garbha-Hsien and the others stayed away from Cannonball and his X-Force, until Burke and Absalom became infected by the Legacy Virus which would take Burke's life first. But not before Burke, through his precognitive skills, saw and made the others aware that Samuel Guthrie was the architect of their salvation.[1]

Garbha-Hsien, Absalom, and Gideon went to Cumberland County, Kentucky to find Samuel who with Tabitha was visiting his family. In hopes to convince Samuel to help them Garbha-Hsien told them of his loss to En Sabah Nur and what he learned from that. As the others told him their defining moments of their ascension from mortals to something more, they told him of what each of them represent and for Samuel that was Hope.[1]

After Samuel shared heartfelt words with them and how they could have made a difference, but did nothing Absalom after losing his temper one to many times would have the virus overwhelm. Samuel saved Garbha-Hsien and the others with his blast field, amazed to have found Absalom survived Garbha-Hsien and Gideon believed it was a testament to the truth of Samuel's words. So with Samuel's word that as long as they try to do better with what they got and if the time comes, if he is able to he will save their lives Garbha-Hsien and with Gideon took their fallen brethren Absalom left.[1]

Even an X-Ternal Can Die!

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With the loss of Nicodemus[20] and Burke,[1] Garbha-Hsien and the remaining High Lords found themselves vulnerable for the first time in centuries. Though not from others but from their fellow Externals, namely Selene who had been waiting for this moment and with the coming terror that is Onslaught,[23] not to mention the return of Apocalypse[24] that would come with it she would wait no longer.[25]

As Garbha-Hsien joined Gideon at his Manhattan penthouse in Rockefeller Center, they were attacked by Selene, shifting in and out of shadow form. In trouble due to the surprise attack, Gideon reached out to Sunspot for help as Garbha-Hsien fought Selene. Garbha-Hsien would be defeated by Selene who then crucified him to the wall of Gideon's office and drained Garbha-Hsien of his life-force before moving on to Gideon.[25][3]

The Newer Mutants

Eventually Garbha-Hsien along with all the Externals previously killed by the Legacy Virus or Selene returned;[26] however, after Candra fall he would killed too, this time by a time-traveling Gideon.[27] This future Gideon with the aid of Absalom would claim nearly everyone until being stopped by Selene, Cable, Shatterstar, Doop, Armor, X-23, Shatterstar, and Blink who delivered the Coup de Grace by decapitating him.[28]

External Gateway

After receiving a summons through their shared psychic-link from Apocalypse he went to the Eternal Caldera of Krakoa, and there joined seven of his fellow Externals who were waiting 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 Saul 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. Nicodemus attacked Apocalypse who called on Selene, Gideon and Rictor to his side. After a brief exchange of words were Absalom attacked, Rictor turned to face Saul, Absalom, Candra, and Nicodemus. Getting ready to fight, Saul transformed into a great dragon, tearing through his own flesh as he did, but Rictor blasted them with a wave of lava unintentionally killing Saul along with Candra and Nicodemus.[29]

Saul's ancient bones, thus his life energy, along with the others turned into the stones that powers the External Gate,[30] trapping them, and allowing the whole of Krakoa to enter Otherworld as Apocalypse planned.[29]



Immortal: He is effectively immortal, and since Garbha-Hsien'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, Nicodemus can not be permanently killed.[4][1][3][27]

  • Rapid Healing: Ability to endure injuries (within unknown limits) without lasting harm or even feeling pain[2][1], he could apparently regenerate injured or missing cells from even near-fatal injuries.
  • Resurrection: As an immortal, Garbha-Hsien has shown to be able to resurrected himself from death.[1][3][27] After being drained of his life essence by Selene, he was seen fully restored 10 years later, then again after having his heart eaten and his body destroyed by Nicodemus he was seen years later fully restored.[3][31][29]

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.[8][29] He is also able to sense when one rises from their first death and when one is killed by another External.[4][1][32][28]

Magical Manipulation: He had the ability to manipulate magic in various ways, which may be a unique form of mutation.[1] He has so far shown:

  • Energy Blast: He could fire energy blasts that take the form of powerful explosive electrical energy.[21][33]
  • Levitation:[1]
  • Fire Manipulation: He could handle fire without any harm.[1]
  • Shapeshifting: He could transform into a winged fire breathing dragon.[6][33][29]


Garbha-Hsien 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.[3][27]


  • Many Externals had distinctive text bubbles, and Garbha-Hsien's one had a black fringe and pink background instead of white in X-Force #10.
  • Garbha-Hsien seems to have magical abilities[1] which could be a form of mutation in origin. He has so far displayed levitation,[1] powerful explosive energy that appears electrical in nature,[21] some type of fire manipulate,[1] plus accordering to a tapestry and his appearance at Eternal Caldera he can shapeshift into a great fire breathing winged dragon.[6][29]
  • Garbha-Hsien himself has said to be far older than Apocalypse when he stated that his feet have trod time beyond En Sabah Nur's imagining[1] and him being old when the continents shook,[2] which could be a reference to either the Great Cataclysm circa 18,000 B.C. or the post-Hyborian cataclysm that also shook and reshaped the continents around 8,000 B.C.[34]

See Also

Links and References


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