Darby Patricia Shaw is a female superhuman whose primary power is the ability to revive murder victims when in physical contact with both them and their murderer. Most revivals, or resuscitations, must happen within 6 - 7 days of the murder, depending on age of both victim and killer, as well as level of injury to the victim. Darby is a homicide detective for the privatized and corporate-owned Kansas City Bendex Police Department, a division of Bendex Law Enforcement Services. Darby is 30 as of Omission.
Darby Shaw was born on May 14, the daughter of an as yet unidentified mother and father. She has one older brother, Eric Shaw, who is about four years older than her. Though she doesn't talk about it much, her home wasn't a happy one, full of at least verbal and physical abuse. This culminated in Darby coming home from school at age 14 to find her mother brutally murdered at the hands of her father.
Her father was arrested for the murder, and with a brother who wanted nothing to do with her, Darby's fate was left up to the system--and her childhood best friend, Patricia Cameron, who begged her pastor to adopt her friend so the two wouldn't be separated. The pastor, Simon Cuthbert, gave in, and brought Darby to live with him. He would eventually adopt her, although she never took his name.
The detective on her mother's murder, Caleb Sherman, would become her mentor, and would eventually write her recommendation to the police academy. They remain friends, despite Caleb's retirement to Costa Rica.
Darby graduated the Academy at age 22, at which time she joined the police force which had investigated her mother's murder. She was assigned to the east patrol office for two years, mid-town for one, and finally headquarters for two years before taking the detectives exam at age 26.
Days after taking the exam, on June 17th, Darby was ordered to the scene of a domestic dispute at the tail end of her shift. Together with Academy mate, Officer Trent Oliver, she dutifully investigated. It was at that scene where she made contact with victim Paola Kennedy and murderer Jeffrey Wade Donnigan, reviving Kennedy in the process and starting the course of events which would eventually determine that she was, in fact, a superhuman.
Darby as a Superhuman Edit
Darby is something of an enigma as far as superhumans go. Most supers who are "out" (i.e. those who have registered with the Department of Superhuman Affairs (DSHA)) became aware of their powers around puberty. Due to the nature of her powers and the fact she discovered them later in life, it makes her very attractive to the DSHA and other government bureaus who are fundamentally restricted from extensively testing superhumans.
Darby, for her part, is not enthused about being subject to the DSHA, nor is she happy about the attention she receives from the DSHA, CIA, and National Institute for Health. She grudgingly has joined the SuperHuman Society, although that is more due to the fact that her best friend, Genova Murphie, is one their primary lobbyists and paid her dues for her.
Darby's powers are unique--to public knowledge, there is not another super out there who has her ability to revive murder victims. Her powers were discovered accidentally, which is likely why there have not been other supers discovered with her abilities.
A typical resuscitation (she loathes the term 'resurrection' because of how closely tied the word is to Christ and she doesn't want to be compared to Christ) lasts between two and three minutes. Her longest to date was while sick, and it lasted 12 minutes, 48 seconds. Resuscitations are not without repercussions for Darby. Post-resuscitation, her symptoms can range from weakness and headaches, to nausea, dehydration, low blood sugar, and migraines. Variance of symptoms depends on several factors: whether Darby was an investigating officer on the case, number and type of injuries to the victim, suffering of the victim, length of time between injury and eventually succumbing to the injury by the victim, age of victim and killer, how recently Darby has performed another resuscitation, and overall health of Darby at the time of resuscitation.
Darby likens a resuscitation to being caught in an electrical current. While the vast majority of her cases have the electrical current start up almost immediately, if any of the above factors are at odds, it can wreak havoc with Darby's ability to start a resuscitation. Typically, she can feel the flow of electricity up and down her arms, and it always flows from murderer to victim. A short, intense resuscitation may cause her to not be sensitive to the flow. When a connection is made, her body and even her eyes are fixed until the connection totally drops off. She can't move, and no one can move her as the connection will prevent others from coming into contact with her. This will stop as soon as she's able to pull away from either victim or murderer.
A consequence to her resuscitations is the fact that one year after she resuscitates a victim, their killer will age dramatically in a few short days, then die.
In addition to being able to resuscitate murder victims when in the presence of their killer, Darby learns about three years later that she is able throw up a defensive shield.
Personal Life Edit
Before the discovery of her powers, Darby was a fairly social person with an active social life. After her powers became apparent, she lost a lot of friends, and she pulled back socially. She's suspicious of other superhumans, and it's taken some persistence to get her to accept Genova Murphie, Holly Stack, and Veronica Willhelm --all superhumans as well--in her life.
Now, Darby tends to find books and a very small circle of friends and colleagues is the safest place for herself.
Darby's a cautious dater. She believes strongly in marriage and traditional ideals, which means she's not likely to date just anyone. Typically, men she dates she's known for a while and she feels she can trust.
Darby began dating Sgt. Trent Oliver sometime after the occurrences of Retaliation, and dates him through the vast majority of Capitulation.
Darby is the daughter of an unnamed set of (presumably) married parents. She has an older brother, Eric Shaw, who is about four years older than herself. After her father murdered her mother, and Darby discovered the body, her brother, a juvenile delinquent already in trouble with the law, renounced claim to her. Darby was adopted by Simon Cuthbert sometime before reaching her age of majority.
Growing up, Darby's best friend was Priscilla Cameron, whom she's remained close to despite Priscilla moving away from Kansas City for a spell. After Darby discovered she has superhuman powers, Genova Murphie wormed her way into Darby's life and it wasn't long before Darby realized that she and Genova were best friends.