Wednesday, January 11, 2012
Jeanne-Marie Beaubier’s parents died in a car crash when she was an infant. Separated from her twin brother Jean-Paul after he was adopted by the Martins, she was sent to Madame DuPont’s School for Girls in LaVelle, Quebec. Unhappy there, the introverted Beaubier attempted suicide at age thirteen by throwing herself off a roof; however, instead of falling to her death, she began to fly. Unaware of her true mutant nature, the deeply religious Beaubier believed that her flying was a divine miracle. The School’s headmistress, Soeur Anne, considered it blasphemy and had Beaubier severely disciplined. The resulting corporal punishment triggered a dissociative identity disorder in Beaubier, and a second, extroverted persona emerged. Beaubier secretly left the school that night, returning three days later with no memory of where she had been or what she had done. Subsequent discipline forced Beaubier to repress her second personality, and eventually she became a teacher at the school. Her second personality later returned, and while partying in Montreal she faced a pair of muggers. She super-swiftly subdued one while the other was defeated by the feral mutant Wolverine. He invited Beaubier to meet James MacDonald Hudson, who was forming a team of superhuman agents for the Canadian government’s Department H. Hudson accepted her as a recruit under the codename Aurora, and soon tracked down her brother, inviting him to join as Northstar. The siblings’ reunion surprised everyone: when the twins shook hands, they released a flash of intense light.
As a member of Alpha Flight, Aurora fought such opponents as the X-Men, Machine Man, the Great Beast Tundra and the ancient mystic Ranark the Ravager. Beaubier’s dual personality persisted, with each persona regarding the other as an entirely different person. As the prim and proper Jeanne-Marie, Beaubier had little memory of her activities while under the control of the uninhibited Aurora persona. Later, Aurora accompanied Northstar to visit his old mentor Belmonde, but the reunion turned to tragedy after Belmonde was killed by Ernest St. Ives (Deadly Ernest). Mistakenly believing Aurora to be Belmonde’s daughter, St. Ives kidnapped her. With the help of the enigmatic Nemesis, Northstar managed to rescue his sister and St. Ives was seemingly killed. The siblings later argued over Northstar’s mistaken assumption that Aurora had romanced St. Ives to prevent him from harming her. Shocked at her brother’s arrogance and insolence, Aurora angrily told him she never wanted to see him again. She ultimately sought to break her ties with Northstar completely, by having her teammate and then-lover Sasquatch (Walter Langkowski) alter her cellular structure to change her superhuman powers to be different from her brother’s. She could now generate brilliant light on her own, no longer requiring contact with Northstar. The experiment also rendered her mutant nature undetectable.
Aurora then teamed with Sasquatch against ancient alchemist Gilded Lily, and with Northstar against terrorist Pink Pearl. Alongside Alpha Flight, Aurora battled the Great Beasts, the robotic Macro System, and Omega Flight. Ultimately reconciling their differences following the apparent death of Langkowski, the twins helped Alpha Flight oppose the rampaging Hulk in Vancouver. During the battle, they discovered that Aurora’s altered powers prevented them from touching without temporarily negating their powers. After facing the return of Deadly Ernest, Aurora battled Pestilence alongside Alpha Flight, teamed up with the Avengers to oppose Attuma’s Atlantean army, and battled Scramble, the Mixed-Up Man. During this time, she briefly flirted with her teammate Box (Roger Bochs) before cruelly rejecting him. Shortly thereafter, Northstar grew severely ill, and while Alpha Flight sought a cure, the Norse trickster god Loki appeared to Aurora and Northstar, convincing them that they were not mutants but rather the offspring of an Asgardian elf, and that Northstar was dying because he could not exist without the light that the twins had once shared. Aurora willingly expended her power to bathe Northstar in her light, curing him. She was then captured by demons and became trapped in the Asgardian netherworld, while Northstar was welcomed into Asgard by his supposed brethren. Loki was summoned before the higher gods They Who Sit Above in Shadow and berated for his actions.
In attempted atonement, he transported Aurora from the netherworld to the Sainte-Anne de Beaupré monastery in Quebec, but was sent to the netherworld himself as punishment. Aurora became a nun and avoided contacting Alpha Flight until summoned by the mystic Talisman (Elizabeth Twoyoungmen) to rescue Northstar from Asgard. After returning to Earth, the twins rejoined Alpha Flight in time to oppose Llan the Sorcerer. During the battle, Northstar restored Aurora’s light, and the twins proved instrumental in Llan’s defeat. After encountering the telepathic Headlok, Aurora realized that the alteration of her cellular structure had begun to alter her powers further, and that her evolved abilities allowed her to transform into a being of pure light.
Becoming a more pacifistic adventurer devoted to spiritual healing, Aurora resigned from active duty with Alpha Flight and joined the Gamma Flight support team in the psychiatric counseling unit to work on rehabilitating Alpha Flight’s incarcerated prisoners. She was later captured by Headlok, who mentally tortured her for weeks. Ultimately, Headlok’s mental tampering restored her original dual personality, allowing the Jeanne-Marie persona to resurface and defeat Headlok by expending the last of Aurora’s healing powers. During the “Infinity Crusade,” Jeanne-Marie’s religious beliefs made her a pawn of the Goddess, and her trip to the Goddess’ Paradise Omega Base revealed its existence to the heroes. Aurora regained her free will following the Goddess’ defeat. Aurora continued with Alpha Flight, battling foes such as the Hand, Wyre, the Wrecking Crew, the Hardliners and a new Omega Flight until Alpha disbanded once more. Aurora briefly romanced her former teammate Wild Child, who had joined the government-sponsored X-Factor team. When a new, more militaristic Department H arose, they deemed Aurora a threat and had her committed to a psychiatric ward. She was released by the terrorist organization the Brotherhood, led by Havok (Alex Summers), and remained with them until the group was dissolved. Aurora later reunited with the other Alpha Flight founders to investigate a new Department H, assisting its new Alpha Flight team against the latest Weapon X, carrier of the virulent bacterium Thetagen-24.
Rejoining Alpha Flight, Aurora was injured in battle by the cannibalistic sorcerer Mauvais, who forced her Jeanne-Marie personality to assume control. She was subsequently admitted to the Manitoba Psychiatric Hospital for Women, but was soon liberated by Wild Child, then an agent for the subversive Weapon X Project. The Project’s Director had her damaged mind repaired and her superhuman abilities altered in exchange for her services as an agent. She rejected Wild Child’s romantic advances before embarking with him on her first mission to recapture rogue Weapon X agent Sabretooth. During the encounter, Sabretooth savagely attacked her, severely scarring her face. As her wounds healed, Aurora romanced the Project’s Director; however, his anti-mutant sentiments eventually came to the fore, and he brutally beat her. When a rogue faction took control of the Project, the Director and Madison Jeffries were forced to flee, so the Director coerced Aurora into making good their escape.