Born to a prosperous family in Miami in 1982, Esteban Torcida was always dimly aware that there was something odd about the way that he could accurately guess an object's temperature by looking at it. But it was so minor and pointless of an ability that he couldn't possibly think of himself as a superpower, and so never told anyone about it and tried to ignore it. Instead, he focused on what he thought of as a much useful power -- his charm and poise, which were the tools by which he could attract girls (and a few older women, as well.) His life was pretty sweet, all told.
It's possible that Esteban's willful ignorance of his capacities delayed the point at which he manifested his full superpowers, but it's also possible that they came on much earlier than he realized. He didn't realize what he could do until 1999, when he was at a dance club with his current inamorata and a fire broke out. (It was later determined to be arson.) Instinctively, Esteban created his force field, protecting himself and a few others, and then snuffed out the flames with a thought. He was stunned by the cheers from the crowd, but immediately realized that he could get used to this.
His parents were not so thrilled when he finally got home that night, as his father explained something that he'd been planning to reveal to Esteban in a few more years. Long ago, there had been a time when many of his ancestors had possessed such flame-based powers, as they were supposedly descended from Nahua priests of Xiuhtecuhtli, who'd maintained a sacred fire with them. Both his father and his mother urged Esteban to hide his powers, to claim that what had happened had been some sort of a fluke occurrence, as they feared the consequences if it became known that a Torcida had once more awakened to power.
Esteban, of course, would having none of this. It was a new age of superpowers, and he intended to use his talents to win even more of the adulation that he'd experienced that night. (He also realized that nobody would ever buy into that 'fluke occurrence' story.) He fashioned himself a yellow and red costume and debuted the very next day as Fuego, La Antorcha Voladara! He was mostly active in the Miami area, but even in these early days he could fly fast enough to be active throughout Florida, even in the Keys. He got all the adulation he wanted, and then some.
Unfortunately, in the first two years of his career as a superhero, he rarely had to fight any villains who could test his mettle. So when Cerebron came in 2001, Fuego found himself seriously outmatched for the first time, and ended up in the hospital for a month afterward. In his mind, he hadn't just been humbled, but humiliated, and the Powerhouse's invitation to join them, once he was up and about, sounded condescending and insulting to him. The playful daredevil that he'd been before the invasion was gone, and with him went a lot of the admiration that he'd received. That just made Fuego even angrier than he already was.
In 2004, after he also turned down an offer from the United Superheroes, someone else reached out to him. He'd heard of Jolene before this, of course, but they'd never crossed paths. She claimed that this had been because he intimidated her more than any of the other superheroes active at that point, and that with this concern came respect. Accustomed to being the dominant figure in his relationships with women, he didn't realize how much he was being manipulated until it was much too late.
Jolene claimed that she could arrange things so that he had all the fame that he'd once had. Together, they would create the appearance that Fuego was taking down parts of her operation (unessential parts that had served their purpose) and make people realize that what they had taken for anger was a growing maturity and concern for everyone's safety. Of course, there would be other benefits to their alliance, she told him, leaning in close. He took the bait.
And when she betrayed him, arranging for the media to receive video proof of other jobs, much less laudable jobs, that he'd undertaken on her behalf, he was genuinely surprised, so much that it didn't even occur to him to try and escape during his initial imprisonment and trial. It's possible that he thought this whole situation was part of Jolene's plan, but when he was finally sentenced to spend seven more years in the flame retardant cell that they'd used to keep him locked up, he finally broke. Somehow, he got word out to the parasupremacist movement that Hadron had started, and claimed to want to join up. They proceeded to break him out of prison, and put him to work.
Fuego stayed with Hadron's organization for almost a decade, developing a strong rivalry with Megawatt once the latter joined. Often based in the group's California bases, he found himself frequently fighting Basilea in this time, becoming a part of her rogue's gallery. He was frustrated by the fact that he was never able to change their relationship to something more interesting, as he did by seducing most of the female contingent of Hadron's army and playing them off against each other. Ultimately, though, he even got tired of that little game. In 2016, he cut a deal with Argus to turn over information about the movement in exchange for his freedom. They agreed, but told him to get out of the country.
Since then, Fuego has largely acted as a superhuman mercenary for various criminal groups in Africa, South America and Australia, including that run by El Diablo Rojo. When not thusly engaged, he lives the life of a latter day remittance man, paid by his late parents' estate managers to stay away, and occasionally working as an instructor to would-be pick-up artists. He's uncomfortably aware that he's getting on in years himself, and wonders how long he can keep up with this lifestyle. That's part of the reason that he's intrigued by a recent job offer to go to Bhutan and take part in a certain tournament on behalf of the Combination ...
Fuego -- PL 11
STR 1 | STA 3 | AGL 2 | DEX 2 | FGT 4 | INT 1 | AWE 3 | PRE 4
Flame Control: Array (30 points)
- Flame Blast: Ranged Damage 15 - 30 points
- Flame Burst: Ranged Burst Area Damage 10 - 1 point
- Flame Flare: Ranged Burst Area Cumulative Affliction 10 (Resisted by Dodge, Overcome by Fortitude; Visually Impaired, Visually Disabled, Visually Unaware), Lmited to One Sense - 1 point
- Flame Snuff: Nullify Flame Powers 10, Perception Range, Simultaneous - 1 points
Heat Vision: Senses 3 (acute ranged detect temperature) - 3 points
Living Jet: Flight 10 (2000 MPH) - 20 points
Resistance: Immunity 10 (fire effects); Immunity 20 (energy effects), Limited to half effect - 20 points
All-out Attack, Attractive, Extraordinary Effort, Fearless, Great Endurance, Improved Initiative, Language 3 (English, French, Japanese, Portuguese, others [Spanish is native]) Power Attack, Taunt.
Acrobatics 6 (+8), Deception 7 (+11), Expertise: Criminal 5 (+6), Expertise: Popular Culture 6 (+7), Expertise: Streetwise 5 (+6), Insight 6 (+9), Perception 6 (+9), Persuasion 6 (+10), Ranged Combat: Flames 5 (+7).
Unarmed +4 (Close Damage 1)
Flame Blast +7 (Ranged Damage 15)
Flame Burst -- (Ranged Burst Area Damage 10)
Flame Flare -- (Ranged Burst Area Affliction 10, Resisted by Dodge)
Dodge 9, Parry 7, Fortitude 6, Toughness 13/3, Will 9.
Abilities 40 + Powers 111 + Advantages 11 + Skills 26 + Defenses 19 = 207 points
A Life of Ease--Motivation. Conscious of Advancing Age. Lecherous Cur. Secret (treason against parasupremacists.)