Template:Featured Articles/24-2007

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Wither

Kevin Ford hails from Atlanta, Georgia. His mother died when he was very young, leaving him to be raised by his father. While Kevin missed his mother, he knew that he would always have his father, a fact that comforted him. They were a very close-knit family, but they were not the richest. With some luck, they managed to be lower-middle class. Kevin attended public school, where he did relatively well, but not exceptional. He had an "average" education and learned a little bit of Spanish, but nothing impressive. His father worked very hard to give his son life's necessities. This ranged from braces to music that supposedly made children smarter.

Kevin had a small group of friends and was occasionally bullied, but overall, he was happy. Toward the middle of his teenage years, Kevin started noticing strange things happening around him. For example, plants started wilting whenever he touched them. These strange occurrences climaxed when Kevin was getting ready for school one morning and his clothing started to disintegrated. Panicked, he called for his dad, who, while trying to help his son, was exposed to Kevin's skin and began to decay. This increased Kevin's panic. In an effort to save his father, he only prolonged the skin exposure until the man was dead.

Horrified and guilt-ridden, Kevin fled his home and took up residence in a nearby junkyard, where he lived for over a year. He did not have trouble with the guard dogs because he could simple grab onto them and within a few moments, they were dead. Meanwhile, the police had ruled his father's death as homicide and were looking for the killer. At this point, Kevin was located by members of Xavier's School for Gifted Youngstersvia rumors of a boy with a "death touch". Kevin agreed to attend as a student in order to learn to control his powers.

After being brought to the school by Scott Summers, Kevin slowly made friends with his peers, although his self-enforced distancing due to his powers made him a difficult person for most to get close to. He enjoyed the chance to work on his art, and found a talent for it. He also took the opportunity presented by Ororo Munroe to aid with some of the gardening around the mansion, finding a somewhat constructive use for his power. However, this use of Kevin's power would result in the chain of events that led to him leaving the school. In November 2006, Kevin accidentally ran into Jonothon Starsmore while the latter was playing soccer, and made skin-to-skin contact with the older boy. The effect on Jono's psionically-constructed body resulted in an almost-total reversion to Jono's earlier energy-based state. To help find a cure for Jono's condition, Kevin agreed to accompany him to the Muir Island Research Facility, where he could also work on controlling his powers in a more guarded environment.

Kevin causes the decay and eventual disintegration of organic matter via touch. These powers are "stuck on" and cannot be controlled. Since most clothing and furniture are made from organic material (eg: Cotton, wood, leather), Kevin requires synthetic clothing and metallic furniture. His powers began in his early teen years when Kevin noticed that plants began to wilt when he touched them. Eventually, his powers became so effective that he could not touch another living creature or any organic material. His father was his first victim, a result of a failed attempt to comfort Kevin when his clothing began to disintegrate. Generally, his abilities are very powerful. It can take seconds for an object to decay and a matter of minutes for them to disintegrate to nothing more than dust.