Jonothon Starsmore grew up as a normal, happy, English boy, his life made remarkable only by his crazy old great-grandfather,  Jack Starsmore. The old man insisted his grandson be tattooed on his chest in the tradition of Clan Akkaba and sometimes disturbed young Jonothon with his tales of their ancestral lineage to a living god named En Sabah Nur. Jono grew up in London and in his late teens, got himself a girl named Gayle Edgerton and developed an interest in music and Goth culture. One night at a party, Jono arranged for he and Gayle to be left alone in the coatcheck room, where he planned on making love to her for the first time. Unfortunately, his mutant power chose that moment to burst forth, and its first manifestation blew away the lower half of his face and the upper part of his chest. The devastating blast left Gayle gravely injured and she ended up in a wheelchair as a result.

Ashamed, Jono left. A normal life was no longer possible for him, as he no longer could eat, drink, or breathe and was kept alive by the furnace of psionic energy within him. He couldn’t even talk properly, lacking the lower half of his face, though he learned to use his psionic powers to communicate telepathically. It is no surprise that Jono developed a rather bleak outlook on life. [Generation X (1st series) #12, Weapon X (2nd series) #16]

Eventually, he received a letter from Charles Xavier, inviting him to join the newest incarnation of Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters. Curious, Jono accepted. At the airport, it was not just his fellow students from Generation X who came to meet him. The mad mutant Emplate, who feasted on mutant energy, was also there and intended to kill him. However, Jono and Generation X beat their first opponent and Emplate was forced to retreat into the pocket dimension in which he resided. [Generation X (1st series) #1]

Taking on the codename Chamber, Jono stayed apart from the others, seriously scaring them. However, he took part in the search for the strange mute mutant known only as Penance, a girl locked into a razor-sharp body. Jono was able to empathize with her freakish nature more than any of the others and got the girl to trust him and stop fighting them. [Generation X (1st series) #2-3]

Jono made his home in the Institute’s basement, instead of the dorms, apart from the others. Shortly after the world learned of the Legacy Virus (an illness fatal to mutants), Gateway asked Jono to help his teammate, Husk, aka Paige Guthrie, as he was more familiar with pain than the others.

Desperate over the announcement of the virus, Paige had gotten drunk, or pathetically tried to anyway. Jono attempted to calm her down and, in her inebriated or desperate state, Husk acted on her attraction to Jono and tried to kiss him. As a result, the startled Jono lost control over his powers, causing a major explosion that destroyed an entire wing of the Institute. Luckily, Jono and Paige remained unhurt. [Generation X (1st series) #5-6]

Jono was ashamed, though, feeling he should have been more careful, as he should know how potentially dangerous his power was. Paige thanked him for sparing her the embarrassment of telling the others why he had freaked out. However, Jono misunderstood her, believing she was embarrassed for having shown interest in a freak like him. [Generation X (1st series) #7]

When Generation X investigated the disappearance of Banshee’s ancestral castle, Cassidy Keep, Chamber and Synch were pulled in after the castle into another dimension and the rest of the team eventually followed. The team saved the fairy kingdom by fixing their glamour machine and Chamber was able to act as an energy source, leaving the others to wonder how much raw power he had at his disposal. [Generation X (1st series) #8-9]

This question came up again, when Chamber, being immune to his death spore virus, pretty much single-handedly defeated Omega Red, an old foe of both the X-Men and Banshee from his Interpol days. [Generation X (1st series) #10-11]

In the meantime, Emplate had made a deal with Jono’s old flame, Gayle Edgerton, who wanted to revenge herself on him. Pretending to be wanting to talk about their past, Gayle invited Jono to dinner in Boston, but it was a set-up. Once Jono arrived, Gayle, infected with Emplate’s power, drained Jono and rendered him unconscious, while Emplate’s other servants trapped the rest of Generation X.

However, Emplate reneged on his part of the deal, having promised Jono to Gayle, as he had both of them dug into the ground. Both prisoners, the ex-couple angrily fought verbally, as Gayle mostly blamed Jono for having taken away their happiness together, while Jono told her that this was life. When both of them were eventually freed, Gayle started to lose her bitterness, as she found that Jono didn’t hate her for what she had tried to do. [Generation X (1st series) #12-14]