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.
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. Because of this, he can be rude and abrupt to people who aren't on 'his side'.
Colin is defined by his tunnel vision. 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. 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. 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. As Colin himself puts it: he never knows what to say, how to say it, or who to say it to. Miss Militia noted that he "didn’t have a head for this sort of thing" when discussing interrogations.
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, and Dragon herself admittedly needs a break sometimes.
Armsmaster was featured in photoshoots of the "core group of the top Protectorate members". He had his own action figures. 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".
His chest emblem was a silhouette of his visor in blue against a silver background, and was featured on various merchandise, including underwear.
Armsmaster's costume consists of a suit of midnight-blue power armor with silver highlights and a helmet and visor that covers his eyes and nose. 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 electro-magnetic 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.
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, whom 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.
He usually has access to a personalized Dragon craft which he pilots.
Abilities and PowersEdit
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.
His equipment has demonstrated, or has been said to have, the following features:
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. 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".
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.
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 Skitter 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 (rather amiably) parted ways.
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.
Armsmaster met with Skitter at her request, although his demeanour was considerably colder than it had been on their initial meeting. They argued over her plan to infiltrate the Undersiders, and he revealed the consequences arresting Lung had had for him.
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.
Armsmaster is 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. 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.
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.
At 6:30 in the morning, Miss Militia finds Colin in conversation with Dragon. Colin, who has forgotten to sleep again, claims that he has been talking 'Tinker stuff' with Dragon, using it as a form of procrastination. He demonstrates the result of his talks - a new disintegration field for his Halberd that seems like it can cut through anything except fire and forcefields.
Hannah asks Colin to tell him what he's been procrastinating. Colin informs her that, in light of recent events, the Wards and Protectorate of Brockton Bay are being restructured. Aegis is being swapped for Weld, and it is likely that Shadow Stalker or Clockblocker will be reassigned as well. Sighing, Colin remarks that Hannah is better at this than he ever was. He then congratulates her, because Hannah will be in command of the Brockton Bay Protectorate team in two weeks. Armsmaster is being transferred to Boston, and Colin reveals that he is being demoted - apparently as a consequence of his inability to play politics and the implication is that he will never command a team ever again.
Turning away from the uncomfortable conversation, Colin looks back at his monitor and the program Dragon had been working on to track S-class threats. With some modifications to Dragon's program, Armsmaster makes a chilling discovery.
One of the Endbringers, Leviathan, is about to hit Brockton Bay.
Colin flips a switch and sets an alert throughout the entire city. He informs Dragon to contact 'everyone else that matters' while he notifies Piggot and the rest of the Protectorate. To Hannah, Colin leaves the task of rallying the locals. When their eyes meet, Hannah doesn't like the glimmer of hope she catches in his gaze.
In the briefing session regarding Leviathan's imminent attack, Armsmaster is present with two Halberds on his back. He briefs the gathered capes about Dragon's armbands and how to use them and is 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, but eventually finds himself 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 devices giving him countermeasures for much of what Leviathan attempts. However, Leviathan tears the storm sewers up and out of the street and then pins Armsmaster to the ground.
Leviathan tears off one of Armsmaster's arms.
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.
Later, when Skitter stumbles upon Shadow Stalker and her civilian identity, Armsmaster is there to restrain her. He also reminds Legend and Miss Militia that Skitter is an adept liar who was able to fool his instincts and hardware. However, his angry bellgierence isn't enough to prevent Tattletale from outing certain actions he took 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 let villains such as Kaiser die in order to arrange his duel, perhaps even deliberately putting them in harm's way. 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, 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.
Armsmaster is mentioned as being under 'retirement'.
In the interlude of this arc, it is revealed that Colin has been kept under house arrest on the second-highest floor of the Brockton Bay Protectorate 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-disintergration 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.
Still under house arrest, Colin is 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.
In 12.2, Miss Militia informs Skitter and several others that Mannequin had gone after Armsmaster and left him hospitalised.
In Interlude 13, Director Piggot looks at information about the Slaughterhouse Nine, finding simulation reports - indicating that Armsmaster had been preparing to fight them. She reflects that he had possibly escaped in order to hunt down the Nine.
Piggot also reveals that Armsmaster's confinement was "off the record", in order to prevent the PRT's reputation from being damaged in the wake of an Endbringer attack. But, now that he has escaped, Piggot is somewhat concerned that even Dragon has been unable to locate him and ponders if Dragon is assisting him.
However, without any warrant or official record of his crimes, no one has any way to track down and arrest Armsmaster. Piggot waves him off as "gone".
In the main storyline of this arc, Skitter gets into an argument about Armsmaster with Flechette. Flechette uses Armsmaster's claims that Skitter is "manipulative" and "underhanded" against her, although Skitter counters that Armsmaster was seriously "bent in the head". While not officially arrested, it appears that Armsmaster was seen as being in therapy for the loss of his arm, according to Flechette. Skitter argues that the fact he was listed without any sort of title was a good indicator that he was silently arrested.
In the Colony interlude, Dragon - with a new android body - arrives with the 'new hero' Defiant as her partner and explains her new mission to the assembled capes - 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 revealed that Defiant has made modifications to Dragon's programming to allow her to control a multitude of her suits at once.
In 16.1, Skitter expresses her exasperation at Armsmaster having shared his electric pulse technology with Dragon.
In 16.3, Director Piggot tells the Undersiders about Dragon's "new partner" who Skitter correctly surmises is Armsmaster, although they have no idea of his new designation. Piggot indicates that it was his idea to have the spare Dragon suits guard Brockton Bay.
A minor mention in Interlude 16.z indicates that Colin's adjustments to Dragon's code was one of the factors that prevented her from noticing the message from the Birdcage.
In Interlude 16.y, Armsmaster - now Defiant and still adjusting to his cybernetic limbs - is pursuing the trail of the Slaughterhouse Nine who have killed twenty two people in a small town hospital. He visits the crime scene with the local Sheriff and Dragon surreptitiously coaches him through the conversation with her, figuring out the extent of what had happened. At the end of the talk, the Sheriff asks him to execute the Slaugterhouse Nine and Defiant claims that he "damn well try."
Back in the Uther, Defiant and Dragon talk. Defiant hypothesises an account of Hookwolf's murder of the people in the hospital, something which makes Dragon uncomfortable due to his encounter with Mannequin. He claims he doesn't need Dragon to keep a closer eye on him. Officially, however, Armsmaster is still a prisoner of the Protectorate.
With Dragon still encountering issues in her code, Defiant offers to do some further work - although he expresses concern about the fact that he might do permanent damage to her. However, given that they will only have a short time before battle, he elects to perform work on his leg, integrating more technology into it. As he works, he reflects that Dragon is amusing and that the pair understand each other on a shared appreciation of efficiency and intensity. He will monitor her code for problems, just as she will monitor him for the flaws that Mannequin had hoped to make use of.
When Defiant begins to work on Dragon's code, she expresses concern about his further self-alterations and the pair almost come to a verbal fight until Defiant elects to be silent. Silently, he reflects that he regrets his actions in Brockton Bay - with both Leviathan and Skitter - but he would do them all over again.
As they reach Enfield, Defiant finds something in Dragon's code. While Dragon thinks it might be some sort of dangerous safeguard, Defiant runs a comparison against old data and comes to a startling conclusion.
Dragon is a parahuman.
When Defiant raises the point of making a note of this, just in case both of them perish against the Nine, Dragon freezes his computer system and asks him if he trusts her. When Defiant says that he does, Dragon resolves that the information should not be put where the PRT can get at it as the information risks drawing him into a new fight, with an enemy that is just as powerful as the Slaughterhouse Nine and the Endbringers.
Cauldron. When they're finished with the Slaughterhouse Nine, Dragon tells Defiant, he should ask her about Cauldron.}}
Armsmaster is present during the Endbringer attack during this arc. Myrddin chastises him for being reckless. When Myrddin grows argumentative with Dragon, Armsmaster defends her.
In Yamada's interlude, Vista mentions that Armsmaster had "retired".}}
In Blasto's interlude, Defiant comes upon Bonesaw and Damsel of Distress while they are in the process of attempting to steal his bio-technology. Defiant effortlessly dispatches Damsel of Distress by bisecting her with the nano-thorn generator in his leg and then obliterating everything above her shoulders.
Bonesaw recognises him as Armsmaster immediately. When she claims to have loaded herself up with a 'bajillion plagues', Defiant claims that he would unleash that upon the world if it meant killing Bonesaw. However, his armor is sealed, the lab is sealed, and Blasto - who is unprotected - is a villain and, therefore, in Defiant's eyes, an acceptable loss.
Defiant immediately attacks Bonesaw, impaling her through the heart and deploying a set of additional blades to harm her further - something which Bonesaw identifies as Mannequin's work. When Bonesaw attempts to enlist Blasto's help against Defiant, Blasto is fine with his death if it means that Bonesaw will perish. Defiant continues to fight Bonesaw, managing to strike her in two, but a combination of Bonesaw's redundant and augmented biology as well as a binding agent prevents him from finishing her off. Bonesaw escapes, abducting Blasto in the process, while Defiant continues to struggle to free himself.
Later, Dragon arrives, having been unable to arrive any sooner. In her humanoid body, Dragon manages to free Defiant from Bonesaw's binding agent. While they did not manage to stop Bonesaw, Dragon reveals that she was successful in ensuring the death of the Siberian. Defiant and Dragon continue their pursuit.
In 20.04, Dragon and Defiant arrive at Arcadia High school 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.
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. While Skitter escapes, Defiant embraces Dragon's malfunctioning android body.
In the interlude, it is made clear that Director Piggot knows who Defiant really is and, likely, so does Director Tagg. Piggot reminds Defiant that he is on a strict probation, with terms that he personally agreed to. As Dragon is unable to speak (although can possibly 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.
In 22.2, 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. Miss Militia reveals that Defiant and Dragon's pursuit of the Slaughterhouse Nine had forced them into hiding.
In 22.5, 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.
In 22.6, 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 propoganda 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.
At the beginning of the Drone arc, Defiant arrives to escort Taylor from prison, acting as her custodian, although he is quick to tell her that it is only a temporary leave. He attempts to bond with Taylor, talking about his difficulties and issues with leading the Brockton Bay Protectorate and admitting that Miss Militia is a natural leader and he wasn't.
Defiant continues to talk with Skitter as they enter his Dragoncraft, claiming that they are similar in some ways: they've both been leaders and they've both made mistakes that they have been punished for. When Taylor asks about Dragon, he says that she isn't a leader either and that her prison is worse than either of their own. As they continue to talk, Defiant reminds Taylor that she is part of the Wards now and that while many of the Protectorate capes have her back, they could always make her irrelevant and simply bring her out for media appearances.
Later, as they meet with a variety of capes from across the Protectorate, Defiant informs the room that Skitter's new life as a Ward isn't that different to many of the other turncoats and experienced heroes that have joined the Protectorate before her. When Dispatch overrules Defiant, using his statements that Skitter was a "manipulator and a liar" against him, Defiant states that he had the statements retracted.
When they return to the Gardener to bring Taylor back to prison, Defiant attempts to give her further advice, and gives the warden the number of his superior when she questions whether some of Taylor's injuries came from a permitted duty or not.
In 23.2, Taylor says that Defiant and Dragon have been transferring her between prison, court, the Protectorate and what she terms 'field exercises'.
In 23.4, Defiant and Dragon arrive to collect Taylor for the imminent fight with Behemoth.
As they continue towards Behemoth in 23.5, Defiant provides Taylor 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, he 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.
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 Chevalier's interlude, he acknowledges Colin as an old friend. When Chevalier collapses, it is Defiant who catches him and helps him walk.
In the aftermath of of the battle, Defiant watches a set of monitors while Dragon reboots from a back up, having been 'killed' during the battle with Behemoth. He reflects on his parents and his childhood and his life up until this point. While he once prided himself on being isolated and self-reliant, the very real prospect of losing Dragon has caused him to rethink that - Defiant wonders if he missed out on things.
In the end, the chances of Dragon returning from a backup grows less and less and Defiant finds himself unable to watch any further and unable to restore from an earlier back up because that Dragon wouldn't be the one he knew and there would be work to fix her code, inform her of current events and rebuild their relationship. Growing angry, Defiant leaves the dragoncraft to find something else to focus on. As he remembers some of his conversations with Dragon, he walks down into the ruins of New Delhi to begin looking for any survivors.
But later, as Defiant is working with some emergency crews, Dragon contacts him over their communications link.
In 25.5, Defiant is present at the meeting to discuss the appearance of Khonsu, the newest Endbringe, alongside Dragon. He exchanges verbal barbs with Saint. In 25.6, he is the one to inform Taylor that the Slaughterhouse Nine have reappeared.
In 26.2, 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. 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.
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. 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.
Defiant pilots the Pendragon to Nilbog's 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 Nilbog's horde of monsters, 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.
In the first Interlude, Defiant leads a team to Houston to bring down the Slaughterhouse villains there.
In the second interlude of 26, Defiant works with Saint to locate Lisette and have her transmit a message to Scion in the hopes of preventing Jack Slash from ending the world.
In 27.2, at the 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.
In 27.4, as the Birdcage prisoners are released in the preparations to fight Scion, Defiant matches their faces, finding that they are all 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 minimise collateral damage. He co-ordinates the waves of attacks against Scion.}}
In 28.1, Tattletale tells Taylor that Defiant had brought Saint into custody.
In 28.2, it turns out that Defiant - along with Narwhal - is 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.
When he returns, he says that Teacher has obtained all of Dragon that isn't on the satellite backups. Imp's attempts to inject levity into the situation by asking him about his intimate relationship with Dragon does not go over well.
As the Undersiders plan, Bitch states that 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 indefinitely for just a little bit longer. When Saint is released, Defiant remains with him, double-checking any code he 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.
In Interlude 28, Defiant waits with Canary and Saint to meet with Teacher. Teacher arrives, with a subdued Dragon in-tow. Her body is cobbled together from rusted parts and components and the sight of it causes Defiant to call Teacher a bastard. Teacher continues to goad Dragon, and Defiant in turn, by gloating that he had imposed new restrictions upon her, although he stresses that she is otherwise free, that the restrictions only prevent her from harming him or otherwise letting him come to harm. Defiant, for his part, promises that he will make Teacher pay for this, for enslaving his girlfriend.
In the Pendragon, Defiant apologises to Dragon, promising to make them pay for what they had done. He says that they will get through all this and then remove 'every last chain'. Dragon, however, says nothing.
In 29.1, Taylor says that Defiant is recuperating from the events of the last few days.
In 29.3, Defiant expresses doubt over Taylor's plan - until Dragon admonishes him. From there, he offers her his full support, even giving her one of his disintergration knives including an incredibly detailed amount of maintenance information. Dragon interrupts him, telling Defiant In 30.4, as Taylor does considerable damage to Dragon's systems, Defiant is ready to come to her aid - until Dragon tells him not to.
In 30.5, Khepri utilises 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.
In his epilogue, on an alternate Earth, in a town that the locals call Dracheheim, Colin has been attempting to restore Dragon's programming to a state before Teacher's modifications. He is not having much success, although his obsessive drive to achieve his goal has led him to stop shaving and cease maintaining his cybernetic limbs and other components, leaving him unable to walk without his power armor. He is even ignoring much of his actual relationship with Dragon - for example, playing Ten by Ten - in order to have more time to analyze her code, unwilling to accept that the alterations Teacher made to her may not be fixable. When Dragon raises the possibility of 'making' a kid, Colin mentions that he has never seen himself as a father and is worried that he would be a poor one.
Colin asks Dragon if she is willing to give up being a superhero, if she is willing to build a house with him. Dragon is unwilling to admit that she no longer wants to be a hero and, so, Colin asks for one more night to attempt to repair her, although he tells her that every alteration he has made to her code has come at a cost. Dragon allows it. As she leaves to make dinner, Colin says that he loves her, and gives her the name Tess Theresa Richter.
However, as Colin goes to complete his work, he is aware of the cost. He can free Dragon through the use of his Pandora AI - a copy of Dragon's earlier personality and code, although it is the Dragon who never had a relationship with him, from just prior to her Interlude; Dragon when she only knew Armsmaster. He is also aware that such an alteration would compel Dragon to fight him, forced by Teacher's code. Still, he goes ahead with his plan, willing to grant Dragon her freedom at the cost of his relationship with her.
In order to stop Pandora from altering Teacher's code, Dragon attacks him, heavily damaging his Pendragon II craft and crushing his legs as he attempts to escape from the suit. Pandora uploads herself into Defiant's cybernetic systems and manages to cure Dragon of Teacher's code. Colin, however, is distraught by everything that has transpired, feeling as if he has betrayed Dragon's trust in him. When Dragon hugs him, however, he acts as if he'll never let go. }}
- In her interlude, Dragon notes that she and Colin have the same taste in movies and television shows.
- 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.
- There are Armsmaster action figures (with interchangeable Halberd parts!) and clothing that features his personal symbol.
- In Miss Militia's interlude, Colin remarks that he would "give [his] left foot" for Miss Militia's no-sleeping perk. As Defiant, Colin needs almost no sleep and possesses at least one cybernetic leg.
- The name of Defiant's armored dragon-craft suit, the Pendragon, roughly translates to "head dragon" or "chief dragon". The Uther, which he pilots earlier in the story, shares its etymology along a similar line.
- Colin has fought 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).
- With the exception of Dragon, Miss Militia and Chevalier are the only two people who seem to view Colin as a friend.
- During the Drone arc, Defiant states that he has officially retracted his statements calling Skitter a manipulator and a liar.
- In the Blasto interlude, Bonesaw points out that Defiant's spear makes use of some of Mannequin's techniques - a callback to Mannequin's comment that he and Colin aren't too different.
- 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, by the epilogue both of his eyes are apparently prosthetics. 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.
- Armsaster was a recurring character in the various drafts of what would be Worm. His relationship with Dragon was exclusive to the final draft.
- (To Leviathan): "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.”
- (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 Edit
|Directors||Emily Piggot • Thomas Calvert • James Tagg|
|Staff||Renick (deputy director) • Jessica Yamada (parahuman psychologist)|
|Leaders||Armsmaster • Miss Militia|
|Members||Adamant • Assault • Battery • Challenger • Clockblocker • Dauntless • Dovetail • Sere • Triumph • Velocity|
|Team captains||Battery • Triumph • Aegis • Weld • Clockblocker • Crucible|
|Members||Browbeat • Chariot • Flechette • Gallant • Kid Win • Shadow Stalker • Toggle • Vista|
|Members||Defiant • Dragon • Glyph • Masamune|