William Cross joined the CIA with the intent to learn the secrets of the trade and to make contacts which might one day prove useful to him. He intended to use CIA training and knowledge to obtain a profit for himself.
Specializing in information gathering and extraction, Cross worked with scientists within the organization to develop an extremely effective method of brainwashing people using ultrasonics. There he became romantically involved with Rozalyn Backus. He also met fellow CIA agent Marc Spector.
Quitting the CIA soon after, Cross used his skills and resources to begin a number of highly profitable criminal operations including drug trafficking, extortion, and assassinations. Assuming the codename Crossfire, he diverted a portion of his profits to hire a small army of mercenaries to serve as his enforcers. Crossfire's goal became to foment disorder and subversion within society in order to make a profit.
At one point in his career, some of his enemies booby-trapped his headquarters. The ensuing explosion robbed him of his left eye and ear, plus 85% of his hearing. He replaced his losses with cybernetic equipment. Crossfire eventually located the men who had injured him, and eliminated them personally.
Crossfire eventually decided that the existence of superhumanly powerful crime-fighters posed a threat to his operations. He poured his monetary resources into the refinement of his ultrasonic brainwashing device, with which he hoped to brainwash all superhumans into battling one another to the death. To test the effectiveness of his machine, he arranged to abduct the Thing. Coincidentally, the Thing's plight was witnessed by Moon Knight, who was secretly fellow ex-CIA Marc Spector. The Moon Knight recognized Crossfire and went to help the Thing to defeat Crossfire's private army. Together, the Thing and Moon Knight managed to destroy the mind-control machine. Crossfire himself, however, escaped.
Despite this set-back, Crossfire began work on the construction of a new, advanced model of his ultrasonic brainwashing device. He arranged to have certain components constructed at Cross Technologies, a firm founded by his cousin, Darren Cross. Learning that the Avenger Hawkeye was employed as a security guard at CTE, Crossfire devised a plan to use Hawkeye, whom he believed to be the weakest of the costumed crimefighters, as bait to lure other superhumans into his clutches where he could subject them to his brain-washing machine. To capture Hawkeye, Crossfire hired a trio of costumed criminals: the Silencer, Oddball, and Bombshell.
Crossfire's minions managed to take Hawkeye and his companion Mockingbird captive, and Crossfire used his ultrasonic weapon to make them fight each other. During this fight, Hawkeye suffered permanent hearing damage. However, Hawkeye eventually escaped and defeated Crossfire and his henchmen. The second machine was destroyed, and Crossfire was arrested and sentenced to prison. His subordinates were rescued by Oddball's brother Tenpin.
From prison, Crossfire discovered that Oddball and Bombshell belonged to a criminal team called the Death-Throws, a troupe of costumed criminal jugglers. Crossfire contacted and hired them to release him in exchange for a sum of money, which he would pay after being freed. Crossfire had no money at that point; his devices had been confiscated by the police, and he had lost any link to Cross Technologies.
The Death-Throws staged an attack on the prison and kidnapped the prisoner Crossfire. Once they had taken him to their HQ, they discovered that Cross had no money. They considered killing him in revenge, but they eventually decided to use the "fugitive" as a bait to attract Hawkeye and Captain America to a trap. However, Hawkeye and Captain America defeated the Death-Throws and sent Crossfire back to prison.
Powers and AbilitiesEdit
|Power Grid |
AbilitiesCrossfire is highly skilled at the various arts of espionage and is an expert marksman and probably a martial arts aficionado. He is proficient at unarmed combat, particularly killing blows. Although no scientific genius, he possesses sufficient technical ability to develop and modify reasonably sophisticated computer technology without aid. He has specialized pitch for the human ear to perceive.
Strength levelCrossfire possesses the normal human strength of a man his age, height and build who engages in moderate regular exercise.
Without the removable cybernetic orthopedics, William Cross cannot see from the left side, and almost cannot hear. As a result, he can be easily surprised with an attack coming from the side.
- Crossfire's left eye has been replaced by an infrared imaging device which affords him a semblance of sight even in total darkness. Crossfire's left ear has been replaced by an audio sensor that is far more sensitive than the human ear. The explosion that damaged his left eye and ear also caused an 85% hearing loss in his other ear. Consequently, Crossfire is immune to the effects of his own ultrasonic machinery as long as he adjusts his artificial ear to be unaffected by it.
- Crossfire's uniform is composed of a special bullet-proof, flame-retardant fabric, and has special hidden compartments containing various weaponry and devices, including a compressed oxygen tank, various miniature surveillance devices, and small single-shot weaponry.
- Mind Control Equipment: Crossfire had developed ultrasound-based mind-control devices. The sounds would fill hearers with intense hatred and violence; unprotected victims would attack anyone in range until the device was shut off. The range of the device was minimal, because it was only a prototype.
- Short-range single-shot guns hidden in the pouches of his uniform.
- 68 Appearances of William Cross (Earth-616)
- 6 Images featuring William Cross (Earth-616)
- Quotations by or about William Cross (Earth-616)
- Character Gallery: William Cross (Earth-616)
- Fan-Art Gallery: William Cross (Earth-616)
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