Selene was born 17,000 years ago in central Europe, "After the Oceans swallowed Atlantis" and "Before the rise of the sons of Aryas". Selene's mother was young when she bore her, but would be dead before Selene spoke her first words. The tribal elders ordered her mother's people to sacrifice themselves to Selene until none remained. They thus gave her sustenance and her name.
During the times of the Roman Empire, Selene had an eye on Senator Eliphas, who was used by others for their own benefit. She came before him, offering him her eternal love and immortality - if he helped her sacrifice the countless souls of Rome. The thousands of souls that she would feed on would allow her to become as powerful as a god. She instructed her pawn to draw symbols around the city in his own blood for the ritual.
However, Eliphas performed a small act of compassion by telling a slave girl he gave ruby earrings to about what was going to happen. Her father informed the authorities, who captured both Eliphas and Selene and sentenced them to be burned at the stake. Selene awoke before it could happen and set the flames back against their would-be executioners. Furious at Eliphas for seemingly betraying her, she took his life-force and transformed him into a vampire-like creature, swearing that he would never see her again.
Selene created the land of Nova Roma in Brazil, bringing outsiders to her paradise with her psychic powers and forcing them to worship her as the Dark Priestess. She led everyone to believe Nova Roma was a colony of the ancient Roman Empire, until she was discovered by the New Mutants. Trying to sacrifice Amara Aquilla, this last revealed to be a volcanic and revengeful mutant. Sunspot locked the witch under a rock. The New Mutants were cautious that she was not dead. Intrigued by seeing the young heroes use their powers, Selene traveled to New York City. In New York, Selene seduced Cain Marko in a bar, hoping to absorb his life force, indirectly prevented by the X-Men who happened upon Rachel Summers when sensing her immense power. She attempted to drain her life-force, but was prevented by the X-Men.
Soon after, Selene became interested in the Hellfire Club and tried to join its Inner Circle with help from her worshiper Friedrich von Roehm. Sensing Rachel Summers and Magma nearby, she defeated them and offered them as gifts to the Club. While the adolescents were rescued by the X-Men, Selene was admitted and given the position of Black Queen. However, it was clear that Sebastian Shaw was frightened by the witch despite their association. Selene developed a rivalry with the White Queen Emma Frost.
When Kulan Gath transformed all of Manhattan into a Hyborian Age land, Selene was unaffected by the dark sorcerer's spell. It was revealed that she was an old enemy of Gath: the two had feuded long ago during the actual Hyborian Age. Selene's spells caused Storm and Callisto to remember Gath was an enemy, eventually leading to his defeat.
Rachel Summers plotted to kill Selene and the other members of the Hellfire Club after recovering the memories of the Phoenix Force, whom she believed to be her mother. Having drained the X-Men's life-forces temporarily to battle the Beyonder, the spirit of Wolverine was drawn into her dreams, where he learned her intentions. Rachel confronted Selene in her room at the club, and was about to kill her when Wolverine arrived. He tried to reason with the young X-Man, and when she attempted to carry on, he stabbed her through the heart with his claws, saving Selene.
Joined by Sebastian Shaw, Harry Leland, and Friedrich von Roehm, Selene sought revenge for Rachel's attack. Encountering the X-Men in Central Park, the two groups clashed, even though the Hellfire Club were outnumbered by the heroes. Selene proved herself in combat by disintegrating Rogue's gloves as she tried to save Colossus from Leland's density-altering power.
To both teams' surprise, the time-displaced mutant hunter Nimrod appeared, declaring that they were all viable targets. Within moments the robot had vaporized von Roehm and proceeded to attack the others, leading to Nightcrawler being shocked and Shaw being launched into the upper atmosphere. Combining their efforts, the Hellfire Club and X-Men were able to defeat Nimrod. Leland used his power to change Shaw's orbit-bound course, while Selene animated power cables to restrain the advanced Sentinel. Even with the Black King smashing into Nimrod at terminal velocity and Wolverine poised to slash apart the exposed internal systems, the mutant hunter was still able to teleport to safety. Having exerted his power to its limit, Harry Leland died. The two groups parted amicably, willing to cooperate in the future.
Selene was present at a party held in the Club, where Magneto became White King to the Inner Circle and his students the New Mutants were invited. She tried to intimidate Amara by revealing to have killed her mother. She also revealed to be Amara's ancestor. It remains unconfirmed.
Over time, Selene's ambition grew and she arranged for the assassination of her fellow Lords Cardinal of the Hellfire Club. She created a hunting club of rich, bored mutants called the Upstarts, coordinated by the omnipath Gamesmaster to hunt and kill Hellfire Club members for sport. Selene lost control of the Upstarts, however, as Gamesmaster continued to moderate the game without her approval, and the Upstart Trevor Fitzroy captured and tortured her as part of the Hellfire hunt.
Selene was critically wounded by Fitzroy's trap and barely escaped. She spent some time recuperating in Paris, where she eventually found and seduced Madelyne Pryor into her employ. Selene found a way to rejuvenate herself by stalking and killing her fellow Externals, draining their life essences. She and Sebastian Shaw later formed an uneasy alliance and reclaimed control of the Hellfire Club from Shinobi Shaw, Sebastian's son and one of Selene's former Upstarts.
After Sebastian lost interest in the Club, Selene tried to reform the Inner Circle with demonic help, bringing Mephisto's son Blackheart in as her new Black King. Her efforts were opposed by the Son of Satan and the Fantastic Four. She also attempted to coerce Roberto Da Costa into the Club as her Black Rook. Selene lost control of the Club, however, and was condemned to a shadowy existence bound within the borders of the Club mansion. She later battled Storm's team of X-Men as they sought out her ally Donald Pierce.
Eliphas, changing his name to Eli Bard, searched the world for Selene, despite the curse she placed on him. He eventually found her in Nova Roma, but was too scared to approach her. He planned on completing her original plan from a few thousand years ago, by sacrificing thousands of Purifiers for her. However, he changed his plan when he saw the Technarchy's abilities to reanimate the dead. He resurrected an Apache tribe he slaughtered many decades ago, including Caliban, whom he presented to Selene as his gift, to find all the mutants in the world as her army and sacrifice, which Selene gladly accepted.
To help her collect all the deceased mutants in the world and claim their souls, Selene gathered mutants with deadly abilities, including Wither, Senyaka, Blink, Mortis, and of course Eliphas. They traveled around the world, reanimating long dead friends and foes of the X-Men, before journeying finally to Genosha, where 16 million mutants had been killed by Wild Sentinels sent by Cassandra Nova.
Selene sent her reanimated slaves to attack the X-Men on Utopia. While the X-Men were occupied defending themselves from foes and friends long lost, Selene ordered Eliphas to reanimate all the deceased mutants of Genosha; because of M-Day, however, only a million or less of the 16 million mutants on Genosha had retained their abilities.
With a million mutant souls ready to be offered to her, she sent her Inner Circle to collect the mystical knife needed to make the ritual work. Selene's Inner Circle attacked Utopia and killed Onyxx, Diamond Lil, and Meld. They managed to return with the knife and capture Warpath in the process. As Selene commanded her Inner Circle to prepare the ritual, X-Force arrived at Genosha and tried to stop the ritual, but they were too late to prevent Selene absorbing the reanimated souls of a million mutants and ascending to godhood.
During her ascension, X-Force attacked her Inner Circle, killing Senyaka and Wither (Eliphas had been killed by Selene earlier). Selene, now a goddess, was then alone against X-Force, and Warpath managed to stab Selene in the heart with the same knife used to perform the ritual. Selene exploded, and it was presumed that she died.
It was later revealed that Selene's body and soul had been preserved as airborne particles and somehow stored in stasis in a vault located somewhere in New York City. Lady Deathstrike and the Enchantress gained access to the vault, and through the newly enhanced magic granted to Deathstrike by the sentient virus, Arkea, she was able to fully restore Selene to physical life for the purpose of adding her to the newly-formed Sisterhood of Mutants.
Selene was confronted alongside Madelyne Pryor and Arkea by Storm and Rachel Summers. However, because Selene and Madelyne did not particularly care for her, they took Storm's offer to let them go in exchange for Arkea.
In the aftermath of Hydra's takeover Selene had publicly become the head of the White House's Task Force of Faith-Based Initiatives, and joined the Power Elite. She also assisted Alexa Lukin in the resurrection of Alexa's husband Alexander Lukin; however with the mind of the Red Skull.
After stealing part of Sharon Carter's soul, Captain America, Falcon, Winter Soldier, Princess Aja-Adanna, and the Daughters of Liberty assaulted her and her 'christian' group of controlled workers. Selene was ultimately defeated by Sharon Carter in Iron Patriot Armor.
House of X
Selene was eventually welcomed to the new mutant island of Krakoa, created by Xavier, Magneto, and Moira X. She entered through the teleportation gateway alongside other villainous and fractious mutants, who had been invited to join the nation in order to heal mutantdom and start over as a whole species together.
Selene had been tasked by Xavier, alongside Emplate, with measuring the amount of psychic energy that Krakoa would take from its inhabitants. A similar protocol was put in place for her as she also needed to feed on mutants for survival.
Powers and Abilities
Life-Force Absorption: Selene can psionically drain the life forces of other human beings into herself, by physical touch. If she drained a person’s entire life force from him or her, the victim dies and the victim’s body crumbles into dust. It is unknown how often Selene must drain life force from another human in order to survive. A side-effect of this absorption is that Selene takes on the memories of her victims. Great expenditure of power causes Selene to age, but she can rejuvenate herself by absorbing more life force. Selene will not age as long as she maintains her supply of absorbed life force.
- Psychic Vampire: If Selene drains only part of a victim's life force, she achieves a measure of psychic control over her victim’s mind. Through unknown means, Selene can cause a human being to become a psychic vampire like herself, but be subordinate to Selene’s own will.
Physical Enhancement: By using the absorbed life energies that sustain her, Selene can enhance her physical strength, speed, stamina, agility, reflexes, and durability to superhuman levels.
- Superhuman Strength
- Superhuman Endurance
- 'Superhuman Reflexes
- Superhuman Speed: Selene can momentarily move at superhuman speeds of around 175 miles/hour, though this requires a heavy expenditure of energy and can cause her to age rapidly and require more life energy immediately.
Telekinesis: Her telekinetic abilities gives her complete psionic control over inanimate objects.
- Telekinetic Animation: She can cause inanimate objects to move according to her will by projecting part of her absorbed life force into them.
- Inanimate Disintegration: She can cause inanimate objects in her presence to disintegrate. She cannot, however, rearrange the atomic or molecular structure of matter.
Pyrokinesis: Selene can psionically generate and project intense heat and flame from and around her body or direct it at certain distances. The exact radius remains unknown. She was also able to manipulate flame created from other sources and could magnify their intensity or snuff them. The flames Selene generated could also be illusory in effect; for example, she could focus the power on an object making it appear to be on fire while it was not being damaged by the flames at all. Selene instinctively created a psionic force field about her entire body that protected her from the effects of the heat and flame she created and from other sources as well.
Telepathy: High Order telepath. She is capable of displaying various psionic feats with the minds of others including reading and communicating with thoughts over vast distances.
- Psi-Screen: Selene is able to shield herself from psionic intrusion.
- Mental Bolts: She can project psionic force bolts which have no physical effects but which can affect a victim's mind so as to cause the victim pain or unconsciousness. She was even able to temporarily subdue the Grey Hulk with this power before he could fight it off.
- Hypnotic Trance: She can induce a momentary hypnotic trance state in people around her. Often used along with her speed to create the illusion of teleportation.
- Astral Projection: Her telepathy is strong enough for her to survive in her astral form.
Immortality: As an External, Selene is immortal. She can regenerate injured or missing cells from even near-fatal injuries.
- Rapid Healing: She has the ability to endure injuries (within unknown limits) without lasting harm or even feeling pain such as knife wounds.
- Resurrection: As an immortal, Selene has shown to be able to resurrect herself from death.
Psychic-Link: As an External, she shares a telepathic-link with her fellow Externals that allows them to not only sense each other and where, but can call on each other at will from great distances. She is also able to sense when one rises from their first death and when one is killed by another External.
Sorcery: She possesses considerable magical abilities, having gained a great deal of mystical knowledge over the millennia. The number of magical effects that she can create has yet to be cataloged, but it is known that she can cast and counteract spells and summon extra-dimensional demons.
Darkforce or Shadow Manipulation: It is seen that she can turn herself into a shadow figure enabling her to blend in.
- Multilingual: Selene is fluent in Latin, as well as English.
Selene possesses superhuman strength, enabling her to lift (press) about 1,500 pounds under optimal conditions.
- Selene appears to age as she uses magic, especially when she over-exerts herself.
- As an External and her immortality becoming active upon her first death she does not age, but she has been seen to temporarily age when overexerting her other powers or been injured. This temporary state could either be an affect of the overexertion/injury or her briefly returning to her true age at the time she met her first death remains unknown.
- Selene was originally introduced as being of Incan descent, although that's obviously been retconned.
- The former Hellion Firestar was originally trained by the White Queen for the purpose of assassinating Selene.
- The main character Selene in the Underworld series is based on her.
- She appears as a protagonist in New Mutants Forever.
- At over 17,000 years old, she one of the oldest known mutants on the planet (more on the first mutants here).
- The name "Selene" is Greek in origin. Selene was the Greek name of both the Moon (the natural satellite of the Earth) and the goddess personifying it. The Roman equivalent of Selene was Luna.
- 120 appearance(s) of Selene Gallio (Earth-616)
- 12 minor appearance(s) of Selene Gallio (Earth-616)
- 27 mention(s) of Selene Gallio (Earth-616)
- 86 image(s) of Selene Gallio (Earth-616)
- 10 quotation(s) by or about Selene Gallio (Earth-616)
- 2 victim(s) killed by Selene Gallio (Earth-616)
Links and References
- Selene Gallio (Earth-616) on Wikipedia.org
- uncannyxmen.net Bring on the Bad Guys: Selene - La Belle Dame Sans Merci