MANIFOLD: Page 2 of 2

Publication Date: 25th Mar 2022
Written By: Monolith.
Image Work: Douglas Mangum.


Much from the final days of Incursions was lost when reality was reignited as the Eighth Cosmos, but Black Panther was one of the few who remembered the details. T’Challa knew what sort of choices Eden Fesi would make in the darkest moments, and maintained an association with him as a welcome friend of Wakanda. Eden’s abilities made him a natural wanderer, and he found himself spending time in Harlem, New York. He learned being Australian did nothing to shield him from the racism and injustice affecting the locals. A Harlem activist named Ezra Klein impressed upon Eden the need to look after others, and so Manifold became a local hero trying to impose vigilante peace and justice on one block at a time. After Ezra’s death, Manifold became involved with other heroes affected by his passing, including Black Panther, Storm, Luke Cage and Misty Knight. As the ad hoc team called the Crew, they spoiled a scheme by Hydra to dispossess the people of Harlem and claim the neighborhood for themselves. [Black Panther and the Crew #5-6]

When foreign invaders and militant revolutionaries threatened the crown of Wakanda, Manifold helped T’Challa reassemble the Crew and fight back. However, he was also in Wakanda to help with a different, more personal mission. Queen Shuri, T’Challa’s sister, had been imprisoned in a form of living death since the Incursion crisis. Moreover, the Black Panther’s soul-stalker power told him her spirit wasn’t even present in her body. He traced her soul to the Djalia, the ancestral plane, but he could not reach her on his own. Using a transverse brace similar to what he provided to Eden before, T’Challa augmented Manifold’s power to work beyond the traditional boundaries of a single universe. Together, the two of them reunited Shuri’s spirit and her body, bringing her back home to Wakanda and her family. [Black Panther (6th series) #5-8]

Manifold stood with Wakanda as the Golden City defended itself from the remaining revolutionaries. He fought alongside T’Challa and Shuri as they defeated the insurrectionists, Tetu and Zenzi, and ushered in a new era of constitutional monarchy in the country to quell the legitimate complaints of the less-extremist dissenting voices. Eden also had the beginnings of a flirtation with the returning princess Shuri. [Black Panther (6th series) #9-13] In time, Wakanda faced a new form of invasion, as creatures called the Originators started to pass through dimensional gates into the country. Manifold’s power could not pass back through these gates, and many foes arrived to take advantage of these invasions. Klaw, Hydra and even the trickster god the Adversary followed in the wake of the Originators. In response, Eden gathered the many heroes of Wakanda and their allies to defend it, such as Vibraxas, Asha, Kasper Cole, Thunderball, Zawavari and, of course, Storm. [Black Panther (1st series) #167-171]

The arrival of the Originators was doubly concerning in that Bast and the Orisha gods were meant to be the guardians of their prison. With the Orisha seemingly gone from Wakanda, T’Challa had concerns about where they might have gone. Furthermore, the king wished to follow up on explorations conceived by his birth mother N’Yami about the origin point of the Vibranium meteor. A Wakandan exploration team vanished through a wormhole seeking that origin point, and so T’Challa intended to follow up on the fate of his people. Shuri bade Eden to go with her brother, for his powers made him uniquely suited for navigating a wormhole to the end. [Shuri #1]

Manifold and the Black Panther discovered a miracle on the other end of the wormhole: the intergalactic empire of Wakanda. That wormhole had taken the first exploration team backwards over two thousand years of relative time, long enough to establish control of an entire star cluster and dozens of worlds. There was rot at the core of Emperor N’Jadaka’s reign, however, for Bast and the Orisha had sought out this greater quantity of worshippers, and warned the emperor of a redeemer who might come to take his empire away. T’Challa and Eden were honored guests at first, but soon were captured and stripped of their memories, joining the ranks of the Nameless slaves who served the empire.

While T’Challa was sent to the Vibranium mines, Manifold was kept in the emperor’s service and forced to be his personal operative. Three years of rigorous training and brainwashing made the Manifold a loyal servant to the throne, deadly in the use of his abilities. In that time, T’Challa had escaped captivity and joined a rebel army called the Maroons. Alongside the Askari slavers, the Manifold attacked the Maroon hideout in the Zanj Region. At the Emperor’s orders, Eden killed the rebels zealously, and was responsible for shooting down the escape shuttle of their beloved captain named N’Yami. [Black Panther (7th series) #3-4]

Years passed, with the Maroons primarily in hiding and licking their wounds after the defeat on their moon base. Emperor N’Jadaka exceeded his boundaries by claiming the power of Bast for himself, becoming a literal God to his people. The metaphysically injured Bast fled the realm of the gods and took up a new avatar, the emperor’s child daughter Zenzi. Using her position in court, Bast got close to Manifold and was able to restore his true memories and identity. Manifold and Bast met up with the Maroons on planet Agwe, alongside General Achebe who was loyal to the goddess and not the emperor. T’Challa and his allies were livid at the idea of working with N’Yami’s murderer, and Eden struggled to defend his actions while under the emperor’s influence. Still, Bast was able to access the Djalia and use the power of ancestral memory to restore her avatar’s mind, bringing T’Challa the Black Panther back to the memories of T’Challa the Maroon. [Black Panther (7th series) #9-12]

With his memories restored, T’Challa’s scientific expertise allowed him to breach the wormhole and return home with a warning for Wakanda-Prime about the empire. Eden remained behind with the Maroons to coordinate the resistance. They had success with a trap that destroyed the planet Agwe and apparently the emperor and his flagship as well. With the Imperials fractured, the Maroons gained ground for a time and fortified their moon base around T’Challa’s galactic gate. However, Emperor N’Jadaka returned and rallied his troops for an assault on the Maroons’ moon base. A hidden trigger allowed him to shut Eden down remotely, sabotaging the Maroons’ defenses and letting the Imperials storm through to Wakanda-Prime. Eden only awakened in time for the final battle, working with Queen Mother Ramonda to summon the Originators from their exile as a final line of defense against the invading Imperials. [Black Panther (7th series) #13-25]

Eden was traumatized by his experiences with the Empire of Wakanda. It weighed greatly on his soul that he was responsible for killing an unknown number of people while not being in control of his own mind. Manifold sought a change in his life, and became closely allied with the mutant people of Krakoa. He joined the new incarnation of S.W.O.R.D. supported by the mutant nation to work under commander Abigail Brand. As a “quintician,” Eden became Director of Logistics for S.W.O.R.D. where he also oversaw a Teleport Team of other ‘porters aligned with Krakoa. In addition to Vanisher, Lila Cheney, Blink and Amelia Voght, Gateway also joined the team. For some reason, Manifold and Gateway’s relationship had soured, though, and Eden now had little good to say about his elder.

The Teleport Team was also one piece of a larger example of mutant technology. Krakoa was actively exploring the idea of multiple mutants using their powers in conjunction with one another to achieve greater results, the most famous being The Five who could together resurrect mutants from the dead (aided by a separate telepath who downloaded a preserved consciousness from Cerebro). S.W.O.R.D., in turn, pioneered The Six. Their mandate was to farm exotic Kirbon particles from beyond the far edges of the universe. Operatives designated the Control and the Power augmented the Six’s abilities and guided them to efficiently work in unison. Thanks to the Control, the Teleport Team combined their power and range while linked to Manifold, transporting the Six to the harvest site. The Shield protected the Six in that exotic space while Manifold (as the Guide) worked with the Eye to navigate that space and locate the Kirbon particles they “needed.” The Foundry and the Guide then worked in unison to condense Kirbon particles into mysterium, a highly lucrative intergalactic export material for Krakoa and the Sol system. (As the Manifold, Eden was uniquely suited to the role of the Guide and, unlike other members of the Six, no known backup or alternate member exists for him.) [S.W.O.R.D. (2nd series) #1]

Eden found himself in the role of a cosmic diplomat and spymaster for Krakoa and, largely, the Earth. He courted members of the Zn’rx during the Snarkwar, seeking to gather allies against the void-god, Knull. He infiltrated S.W.O.R.D.’s now-rival organization, Alpha Flight, and learned Director Gyrich was working for the decidedly anti-mutant Orchis group. Manifold wasn’t afraid to mix it up personally either, and fought Knull’s avatar Cable on Krakoa when the security director was compromised. The Manifold folded space to call the heart of a star into the palm of his hand, banishing the void-god. [S.W.O.R.D. (2nd series) #3-4]