Times were tough near the very start of Ace’s life. He was sent to a distant planet by his parents. Their motivation as to why they made this choice still remains unclear to this day. They left very few clues of his origin; besides a few notes I a foreign language. With the language being from a race largely unknown in Solana, the latest translation technologies were needed to help decipher the words. They were able to discover his first name and birthdate. Ace was indeed his true name. And so anybody who took him in would know of his age and what to call him by. The rest of the information, along with his surname, remained untranslated.
The planet he was dropped off at was Bolden 3, a small but moderately populated planet located in the Solana galaxy.
Ace ended up spending his first birthday there and was raised by many different staff over the passing months and years, giving him no chance to bond with anybody in particular. Bolden 3 was famous for its orphanage and there were many children of various different species here; from all over the Solana galaxy. It was the number one place for parents wanting to adopt the right child.
As Ace grew older, he became quite rebellious. He didn’t even start to speak until he was three years old, but it was quite clear that he always had a mind of his own.
Ace always wanted to do things his way and explore outside the orphanage, mostly on his own. He possibly found it difficult to befriend other children due to him being the only verpardi there. The other children liked playing inside with toys and watching holovision kid’s shows, but Ace didn’t show much interest in that. Unless he got a chance to change the HV channel and see shows about fighting and intergalactic superheroes.
He was especially interested in what superheroes around the galaxy did for a living, and wondered if he could ever get the chance to be like them. Yet he knew that he didn’t have parents or any other kind of family; so his chances were very slim at the time.
Ace would always try to explore outside, finding it to be much more interesting than being inside the orphanage building all day. He was usually caught by the staff however, fearing his safety out in the open world. He also didn’t seem to get along with any of the other children, as they found him to be a bit too mischievous and rough to befriend. Especially after the incident that caused widespread panic throughout the orphanage; while Ace was sitting outside at night, on the very highest rooftop of the facility. Watching the stars and spaceships in the sky.
All windows needed to be locked and secured after that.
Even so, besides all the troubles he caused and strict rules he had to follow, Ace was treated well by the staff. Everyone was friendly; they never gave anyone physical discipline or bad verbal abuse as a punishment, children only had some privileges taken from them temporarily if they misbehaved. Every child always had at least one gift during their birthdays or when they had good behaviour - and they were given decent clothing and food.
But Ace; like every other child there, only really wanted to be part of a family more than anything else. And near his 5th birthday, he finally got that chance.
A group of people visited the orphanage one day - though at the time of their visit, Ace was outside playing alone in the courtyard, climbing onto the stonewall fence. The wall was almost two metres high but that didn’t stop Ace from climbing up to reach the very top. He stood up and balanced himself carefully as he started to walk along the top. He found the thrill to be somewhat enjoyable.
The particular group of people visiting happened to be a team of superheroes, known as the Sonic 6. They had recently been involved in a big accident. They accidentally destroyed a planet while saving a starcruiser from some enemy spacecrafts. Thankfully the planet that perished was not populated with citizens; it was a factory planet run by robots. But nevertheless, people were quite outraged at the incident and the Sonic 6 were in hot water with the galactic government.
To help improve their positive outlook on the public, they decided to adopt a new member into their family. Kurt came up with the idea, and the rest of the team agreed on it. Kurt was a young adult back then, in his mid-twenties, as well as Aster. Bettilena didn’t have an actual age, as being a robot. While Jake was 13 at the time and Jenna and Leera were almost 6 years old.
Two hours had past and they were struggling to decide on whom to adopt. There were many children, many choices… making it very difficult to decide. They had talked with and greeted many of them, but still found it hard to choose only one. Until later on, the main entrance opened up and a caregiver robot came in, holding onto Ace as he struggled to get free from its grip,
”I did not need to be rescued! I was really fine until you came along!” young Ace snapped, struggling to get free from the grasp of the robotic caregiver.
“Young one, you should not be outside without any supervision. And climbing on the stone wall is much too dangerous. Please play inside with the other children”
Ace sighed angrily and gave up with the struggle, and then he was released. The main entry door closed shut and the caregiver robot left the scene, leaving Ace standing there to give off another sigh of disappointment.
The Sonic 6 were nearby and Aster had heard Ace and the robot talking some distance away. He turned around and saw Ace, who was about to walk back to the main play area of the facility.
He was wide eyed…
”Hey look over there! He looks like a little, blond, verpardi. Like a Mini Jake Jetspeed!”
”Oh my god, where?” Jake looked over to where the child was. “Wow, he is a verpardi! He really is, no way!”
He was equally as surprised as Aster was. Jenna looked to see who they were staring at. Kurt and Bettilena also turned around and noticed the young Vaelidian, who was still walking away,
Jake shouted. Ace was quick to respond and turned around to see the team staring back at him. He raised an eyebrow. What are these people doing in here?
But he swiftly noticed that they were a group of superheroes who he had seen on HV a few times before. Ace suddenly felt very self-concious in their presence, but yet he continued to look back at them with great curiosity, before replying
”What is your name?”
Kurt asked, as he walked over to get a closer look at him. The rest of the team followed slowly from behind.
”Uhh… my name is Ace”
”Nice to meet you”
Kurt stood in front of Ace now, right before he kneeled down. He now had a better look at the small child and could clearly see he was the same species as Jake and Jenna. Bettilena and Aster stood at his side, while Jake, Jenna and Leera watched from the far right.
“My name is Kurt. You may have seen us on holovision channels before. We are known as the Sonic 6”
”Yeah I have seen you on the HV before, when I get to watch it… but umm, what are you doing here? Shouldn’t you be fighting bad guys?”
“Heh heh well no, not at the moment. There are no villains we need to fight against as of late. And we are here, because we’re looking for a new child to adopt into our family”
Kurt replied and stood up smiling down at him. He then turned around to talk with the rest of the team members. They gathered around in a circle and Ace stood there, watching them curiously as they discussed amongst one another. Just moments later they all turned around to look back at Ace and Kurt looked down at him again
”I’ll tell you what, Ace. How do you like the sound of being adopted into our family?”
Ace was speechless. Did he really mean that? He thought. It was almost too good to be true but he was also unsure at the same time.
He replied hesitantly…
”Uhh family? I thought that you guys were just a team of superheroes?”
”Oh, we’re more than just a team. We are like a family; although only Jake and Jenna over there are related to one another. But with all of us together, we’re not that much different to any other family. We live together, take care of each other and treat one another like families do”
Kurt said. The rest of the team members nodded at that point to clarify what he said was true. With his young mind, Ace thought to himself.
Is this a good idea? Do they really mean it? It must be real, because why would they tell a lie like that to a kid around here?
He was still unsure if it was true or not but he thought it would be great chance to get out into the open more.
He looked up at Kurt and the rest of the team, and nodded
”Yeah I would like to be in the family! But this better be no joke!”
”Ha! Of course we’re not joking Ace, you’re welcome to join our family if you really want to. We will be more than happy to adopt you”
Ace was excited now. He finally smiled and lost the shy look on his face. He walked over closer to be taken to the office area with the Sonic 6 team.
It only took about an hour for the staff at the orphanage to agree on the adoption and for Kurt to sign the papers. Ace didn’t need to take much with him, as his new family was already very wealthy and could get him anything that he needed.
Everyone, including Ace, waved goodbye as they left the orphanage and entered the Sonic Starfighter. His new home.
He was quite excited to finally get a chance to be out in the open world and enter a large spaceship, something he could only dream of before. Taken by his hand, he was given a tour of the ship by Bettilena and shown where his new room was. Everything looked grand and spectacular to him, with some rooms showing nice views of outside the starcruiser. Ace sat at a desk next to one of the windows as the starcruiser powered up. He could feel the floor move slightly and watched from the window as they started to take off from the ground. He was still thrilled about being on the cruiser and watched as they were lifted from the ground and into the sky… into the start of a new life.
What Ace didn’t think or even suspect at the time, was that this was the start of his road to becoming a great superhero himself.
While the months and years passed by, he became even more interested in the work that his new family did. He would often watch the missions back at the Starfighter with Jenna and Leera, as the older members fought against hordes of villains. Bettilena was usually the one who had to stay behind to baby-sit them as they were too young to be alone by themselves. Ace liked Bettilena because of her kindness and caring nature towards him and despite her being a robot, he did see her as a sort of motherly figure. And he, like everyone else in the family, was very fond of her cooking.
As he got older, he started to become more and more inspired to be like them and would try and imitate Kurt’s Kung Fu moves, often posing in the same stances he would see Aster and Jake in while they held a weapon, ready for combat. He would also beg Kurt if he could practice with his weaponry, but was always told that he was too young to be using real weapons and that they are not toys.
But he was stubborn and, against Kurt’s will, he would start begging Aster if he could practice with his weapons instead. Aster let him practice without hesitation. Around this time, Ace was 8 years old and was really enjoying the chance to practice with weaponry as a start. But Kurt was not impressed when he found out about it. Aster on the other hand would protest and say that he was allowed to at Ace’s age; he even claimed that he got a Blaster for his 7th birthday from his grandmother, years ago back on Orxon.
Nevertheless, Ace was not allowed to go anywhere near the weapons and training area, but that still didn’t stop him from following his dream.
Ace and Jenna were a lot like siblings during these early years, they would sometimes fight and argue, but at other times they would get along. Usually when Jake was around the three of them would all get along and play games and explore.
Jake was sort of like a brother to Ace, with Jake even referring to Ace as little bro, although Ace didn’t call him brother in return but did see him like one. Even so, Jake was unaware of Ace’s weapon collection hidden in his room.
But Ace wanted to do something grand. He wanted to try and design something by himself but wasn’t quite sure how to start it at the time and didn’t have the right tools for it.
Until one morning, Kurt finally found out about all the weapons he had under his bed and mattress. The markazian was in complete shock. Ace was too scared to say anything as he stared back at him with an innocent look on his face.
Then Kurt finally decided to give in and hand him the training he had wanted for the past few years. Ace was 10 at the time.
Kurt was quite impressed with what Ace had done with the guns, after he examined them for himself. He was surprised that Ace was able to fix them in the first place. He even tested them and found them to be working in near-original condition, except for one that almost exploded in his face.
He began with teaching Ace how to aim properly and how to use a wider range of the weapons they had available in the team. Ace also got another wish; martial arts training.
Even though Kurt was strict with what he was allowed to do during his childhood, Ace was very fond of him, and looked up to him like a father, ever since he was adopted. His respect for him grew even more once he was receiving the superhero training around this time.
It wasn’t until Ace was 13 that he was allowed to join in on their missions. But the older team members would keep a close watch on Ace at all times, just in case he got into trouble. They had faith in him though, after spending a lot of time training him. But Ace proved to be quite independent out in the battlefield, even more so than Jake when he was his age. Ace had also invented his own weapon by now and named it the Hardlight Launcher.
Kurt had also given Ace his very first battle armour, some Terraflux armour that he brought with him from the Polaris Galaxy after he fled with Bettilena years ago. It was one size too small for Kurt, so he gave it to Ace to wear, as it could offer him plenty of protection and absorb 55% of all damage inflicted on him. It was his favourite during this age, as it wasn’t too bulky but flexible and robust. Perfect for athletic and melee moves.
As Ace grew, he became more and more well-known and very popular within the Solana galaxy. Jake had also stopped referring to Ace as little bro by now, as he was already taller and much stronger that himself, but would still call him bro.
By age 15, he was known as Ace Hardlight. He had also invented his HL clone device, which allowed him to create and control several copies of himself to aid in combat. But at first he could only create one extra hard-light clone, until he gained more experienced with using the device. It was a very complex gadget and even the other team members had no idea how it worked. Though Jake claimed that it is quite similar to some of the technology he remembers from planet Vaelidius. The HL clone device is where Ace got his ‘Hardlight’ surname from. Jake could read some Vaelidian, and he had explained to Ace that his surname had a similar meaning. The hard-light clones are made up of ‘hard light’ nanotech particles, and were capable of inflicting damage on enemies. Despite being a type of hologram; it was a very complex and useful technology for him.
During these years, Ace had defeated many villains and foiled many of their evil schemes. He was not only successful in Solana, but also the Bogon and Thyrullian Galaxies. But it wasn’t until he was 16 when he defeated one of the biggest threats to the galaxy; the blargian race had been a serious problem in the Solana galaxy for many years. They were responsible for most of the trouble the Sonic 7 team had encountered over the years.
The majority of the trouble was led by an evil general, known as Devan Vergunsbane. He was one of Chairmen Drek’s top generals, and was extremely hostile and dangerous. Ace and the Sonic 7 had defeated other generals of the Blargian army but this one in particular was a lot smarter, stronger and more dangerous than all the others put together. What made things worse was that he also had a prototype R.Y.N.O, one of the most powerful handheld weapons in the galaxy.
General Devan hit the team hard one day while the Sonic 7 was fighting more of the blarg armies. He used the R.Y.N.O and it managed to hurt a few of the team members. Ace was lucky not to get injured but he was outraged with what the blarg had done. Feeling vengeance, he attempted to sneak off the Sonic Starfighter to go face to face with Devan by himself.
He managed to sneak on-board his Blargian Battleship and fight through the security, reaching his personal headquarters. Their fight was intense and Ace had to be very careful with the missiles from the R.Y.N.O. His hard-light clones were very helpful during this fight and they helped confuse the missiles while Ace could focus on shooting at the other missiles and Devan himself. And once Devan’s expensive and rare ammo was low, Ace had the upper hand. They went in for a fistfight as both hero and villain were strong and muscular. The blarg was tired though and didn’t have as much physical fighting experience as the young hero did. So instead, he decided to flee the scene… but Ace caught up with him as he ran and knocked him down, allowing Ace to finally finish him off.
This victory was one of Ace’s biggest successes, as he put a complete halt on the Blargian attacks. The entire Solana galaxy was free of trouble at last and Drek was not happy. He decided to put a halt with invasions, seeing as the Sonic 7 was proving too much trouble for him and his forces at the time.
Ace Hardlight was now known as one of the greatest superheroes the galaxy has ever known. He was unbeatable, unstoppable, and feared by supervillains all over the Solana galaxy and beyond. Sometimes civilians even thought he was the leader of the Sonic 7. They even argued that he was the most skilled in the team, despite him being the youngest.
Ace was easily the most experienced fighter though, managing to outpace his mentor Kurt and even pummel Aster during training rounds. Ace himself still knew he had a lot to learn, but was nonetheless, proud of himself and his team; and very grateful to have been adopted by them. This was his family and his life and it seemed as if nothing could get him down. Life was awesome, he thought. He was just 17, what else could happen when he would reach adulthood? It could only keep getting better, and there were still many years to come for him and the Sonic 7…
That is until a devastating disaster struck his life at the most unsuspecting time…
Chapter 3: Shock and Disbelief
Return to Chapter List
Return to Home
Return to Chapter List