Real Name: Nita Young was the name from birth;
    following apparent gender reassignment, he went by the name Jake, and he may have had his name legally changed to Jake following bringing down Power Broker, Inc.;
    there is no information to indicate whether Jake would have kept the surname Young or not

Identity/ClassHuman mutate and technology (exoskeleton) user

Occupation: Unrevealed;
    possibly a former law clerk (see comments)

Group MembershipPower Broker Inc. mutates from Dr. Forrest's research trials

AffiliationsAlicia (formerly Marcia Guzman), Millie Collins, Hanover Modeling Agency, Hawkeye (Clint Barton), Emi Ishida, Tulio GuzmanMelanie, Toni Turner;
    allegedly Black Cat (Felicia Hardy) and others

EnemiesChance (Nicholas Powell), Power Broker Inc. (Angela Golden, Dr. Seth Forrest), Dr. Forrest's mutates, Trapster (Peter Petruski)
    formerly Hawkeye (Clint Barton)

Known Relatives: None


Base of OperationsUnrevealed;
    formerly "Jake's friend's place," New York City (accessible via the Number Three subway/train, and over a machine shop);
    formerly an unidentified base in an abandoned building in New York City

First Appearance: (Nita Young mentioned) Avengers: Solo#1 (December, 2011);
    (Jake named and seen)
Avengers: Solo#2 (January, 2012)

Powers/Abilities: Jake could project flames of unspecified peak ranges.

    Jake also occasionally wore the Trace armor, which provided him with a disguise and presumably some degree of protection from injury. As he was seen to use a zip-line to travel, it would seem it did not grant him the power of flight, but he may simply may not have been experienced or comfortable in its use.

    Jake could project flames on the surfaces of Trace's gloves, or project them out from its gauntlets, without damaging the armor.

Height: Unrevealed; approximately 6' (I would not think Jake would have been taller than Nita); as Trace: approximately 6'4"
Weight: Unrevealed; approximately 188 lbs. (Trace exo-skeleton weight) approximately an addtitional 47 lbs. (for a total of 235 lbs.)
Eyes: Brown
Hair: Brown (including goatee)

Note: Nita was never pictured. All physical stats relate to Jake's appearance

(Avengers: Solo#1-5 (fb) - BTS) - Power Broker Inc. employed Dr. Seth Forrest
at Great Northern University to pay test subjects in a seemingly benign study involving calcium treatments in; however, the study actually treated the subjects with four different formulae designed to cause the women's children to have one of four superhuman powers (strength, metabolism control, telekineses/energy field manipulation, incendiary power). Instead, however, a percentage of the women eventually began developing powers themselves (by accident or design on the part of Forrest).

(Avengers: Solo#4 (fb) - BTS) - Nita Young had been taken hormone replacements as part of a planned gender reassignment for months before she joined the study. Needing the money and afraid she would get kicked out, she didn't tell anyone about what she was doing.

(Avengers: Solo#1 (fb) - BTS ) <from Tuli's Guzman's notes> - Everyone who worked on the study disappeared, one way or another; and almost every piece of documentation associated with the study vanished. 

(Avengers: Solo#4 (fb) - BTS) - The women at Hanover modeling helped Nita establish a male identity as Jake. 

(Avengers: Solo#3 (fb) - BTS) - Jake joined with other test subjects Emi Ishida, Melanie, Alicia (formerly Marcia Guzman) to investigate the research and find other victims. As what Alicia had learned made it seem that Captain America was involved with the research, Emi and her allies distrusted super-heroes in general, and Captain America and the Avengers specifically.

(Avengers: Solo#2 (fb) - BTS) - Mel apparently became Jake's girlfriend.

(Avengers: Solo#5 (fb) - BTS) <6 months prior to the main story> - Emi, Alicia, Jake, and Melanie arranged -- perhaps via someone owing a friend a favor -- for the Black Cat (although the thief's identity is not confirmed) to steal a suit of armor from a private research facility in Estonia. 

(Avengers: Solo#3 (fb) - BTS / Avengers: Solo#3 (fb) - BTS) - The armor not only granted them its powers, but also allowed the wearer to appear to be male, since Power Broker Inc. was only looking for women. Alicia, Emi, and Jake wore the armor as needed as Trace.

(Avengers: Solo#2 (fb) - BTS) - With Power Broker Inc. after them for over 6 months, Trace helped the group investigate their pursuants and push them back. jake-powerbroker-trace-full_0001.jpg

(Avengers: Solo#3 (fb) - BTS) - Emi and the others discovered that the project involved five clinics, each with approximately 400 subjects; that at least 15 women died, while over a hundred women...had unspecified issues; and that it had involved four formulae meant to produce specific traits in the subject's future children. They planned to find any information connecting subjects from each of the four formulae to the subjects' names, and to locate the other subjects showing enhancements from the processes, but they found the clinics had all been stripped by the time they could investigate them. The New York office lacked the information they sought, but referred to a central lab, but they couldn't find any hint of where the central lab might be.

(Avengers: Solo#3 (fb) - BTS) - Jake and the others learned that only Nita Young was confirmed to have been empowered the incendiary formula.

(Avengers: Solo#1 (fb) - BTS) - Seth Forrest's house was burned down and Forrest seemingly perished in the fire. Police sought Nita in connection with the fire.

(Avengers: Solo#3 (fb) - BTS) - Emi, Alicia, Melanie, and Jake suspected that Power Broker Inc. had framed "Nita Young" (Power Broker Inc. had no idea Nita was now Jake) for setting fire to researcher Seth Forrest's home in hopes of drawing out "Nita" , as they really wanted the subject with the incendiary power.

(Avengers: Solo#3 (fb) - BTS) <1 week before the main story> - Emi, Alicia, Jake, and Mel stoles files stating that 6% of the test subjects developed some sort of enhancement. 

(Avengers: Solo#1) - Apparently trying to stop the unwitting Tuli from going to the police, Trace (Emi) pursued Tuli down an alley. Hawkeye (Clint Barton) got in the middle of the flight, and both Trace and Tuli fled.

(Avengers: Solo#1 - BTS) - Deciding to trust Hawkeye, Tuli gave him a disc with all the information he had on the research investigation.

(Avengers: Solo#1 (fb) - BTS) - Tuli was slain by Chance under orders from Angela Golden of Power Broker Inc.

(Avengers: Solo#1 - BTS) - After discovering Tuli's death, Hawkeye was ambushed by Chance, but briefly assisted by Trace (Alicia), facilitating Hawkeye's capture of Chance.

(Avengers: Solo#2 (fb) - BTS) - Trapster and a group of armored Power Broker agents were instructed to monitor their primary target: Trace and/or the Power Broker augmentees Emi, Alicia, Jake (they did not know Jake was formerly Nita, so they would have only been after him if they knew he was associated with this group, like Tulio), and Melanie.

(Avengers: Solo#2) - Having defeated Trapster (who had ambushed him as he approached a meeting with Melanie and the others), Hawkeye observed Trace (Alicia) entering an apartment window, closely followed by multiple ski mask-wearing Power Broker agents. 

    Alicia changed back into her civilian garb upon meeting with the others, and when she chastised Melanie for bringing in an outsider, Jake argued that they needed the help, and Alicia knew it. As the Power Broker agents entered the room, Hawkeye broke in through a window and began taking out the agents. 

(Avengers: Solo#2 (fb) - BTS) - Hawkeye placed a tracer on one of Power Broker's agents.

(Avengers: Solo#2) - Emi instructed Alicia to "find Trace" and get Jake and Mel out of there, while she helped Hawkeye. 

(Avengers: Solo#2 (fb) - BTS) - Mel was apparently hurt in the process of trying to get out.

(Avengers: Solo#2 - BTS) - Jake reported Mel's injury to Emi and told her that he was getting Mel away from the fight. Hawkeye used the tracking signal he had placed to lead Emi on a shortcut back to find Jake and Mel; and Emi sent Hawkeye to "Trace and Alicia."

(Avengers: Solo#3 (fb) - BTS) - Hawkeye told Emi that she and the others should get rid of their phones so they could not be tracked by them.

(Avengers: Solo#2 - BTS) - Hawkeye helped Trace (Alicia) defeat attacking Power Broker, Inc forces and also helped identify the transmitter stuck in the armor's left arm by Chance.Trace trusted him sufficiently to unmask.

(Avengers: Solo#3 - BTS) - Alicia (still in Trace armor) shared her story with Hawkeye and brought him to meet the others at "Jake's friend's place."

(Avengers: Solo#3) - At the place, after Hawkeye swore not to involve any other Avengers unless they changed their minds; Mel argued that Hawkeye should stay, and Jake backed whatever Mel wanted; Alicia and Emi reluctantly agreed as well. They shared their findings, with Jake noting how their first plan had been to find all the other "positives" out there but that they had found all the clinics to have been stripped.

    Sympathizing with how this group had been constantly on guard -- suited up and allowed them to rest while he watched over them. 

(Avengers: Solo#3 - BTS) - At Ryker's Island, Hawkeye learned from Chance about the company employing him ("PBI"), his only contact being Golden and that most of the mercs were paid with a drug. 

(Avengers: Solo#3 - BTS / Avengers: Solo#4 - BTS) - Trace (Emi) and Hawkeye "rescued" Dr. Forrest from Power Broker Inc's captivity.

    Hawkeye had Emi arrange for the others to meet them at a cabin he co-owned with Bobbi Morse (Mockingbird).

(Avengers: Solo#4 (fb) - BTS) - Confirming via a conversation en route with Mel, Jake did not trust Forrest, did not trust himself to stay cool in the room with Forrest, and presumably feared that Forrest might recognize him as having been Nita; Jake resolved to avoid the meeting with Forrest and receive the information thereafter. 

(Avengers: Solo#4) - When Jake explained his reasons for skipping the meeting, Hawkeye argued that it would be hard for the others and that it didn't seem like him to walk away from that; Jake answered, "Yeah...well, today, it's exactly like me."

(Avengers: Solo#4 - BTS) - Hawkeye and the mutate women doubted Forrest's story, but agreed to let him bring them to Power Broker's base where they might take their foes by surprise.

(Avengers: Solo#4 (fb) - BTS) - Hawkeye figured out a plan that could take down the whole Power Broker operation, considering Mel, who had never shown her powers, and Jake, whose identity and nature was unknown to Power Broker, to be their secret weapons. jake-powerbroker-trace.jpg

(Avengers: Solo#4) - Hawkeye met with Jake and Mel, confirming his suspicions that Mel got the metabolic formula and that Jake had the combustion power. Jake was surprised and asked if Mel had told him, but Hawkeye noted he had suspected Jake to have been Nita, and when he hadn't wanted to risk Forrest recognizing him as such, he was sure. 
    Though Hawkeye warned they were risking their lives with his plan to take down PBI, Mel and Jake agreed to to whatever they could.

(Avengers: Solo#5) - Forrest brought Alicia and Emi by boat to the Power Broker ship, intending to turn them over to Golden and some mutates, with the plan for Hawkeye and Trace (Jake) racing to save them. 

(Avengers: Solo#4) - Having discovered the Trace armor to be that stolen from an Estonian research facility, Iron Man (Tony Stark) tracked down Trace and confronted Trace (Jake) and Hawkeye as they oversaw Forrest's delivery of Alicia and Emi to PBI's ship. 
    Jake feared Hawkeye has betrayed them. 

(Avengers: Solo#5) - When Iron Man questioned how they had gotten the Black Cat to steal the Trace armor, Jake nervously offered that someone owed a friend a favor. Hawkeye tried to convince both Jake and Iron Man to trust him based on his previous actions, and he delayed Iron Man to allow Trace (Jake) to travel down a zip-line Hawkeye had made from their location to PBI's ship.

(Avengers: Solo#5 (fb) - BTS) - Trusting Hawkeye, Iron Man departed.
    Alicia and Emi were imprisoned with the other female prisoners of Power Broker Inc.

(Avengers: Solo#5) - After Hawkeye shorted out PBI's ship's power, he and Trace (Jake) boarded the ship and began taking down the guards who were preparing to stop the prisoners from escaping. Recognizing Trace as the fire-powered subject Forrest had been seeking, the guards swiftly contacted and informed Forrest. While Mel worked to secure transport for the prisoners off the ship, Trace and Hawkeye saved her from mutates threatening her. Forrest then arrived, demanding Trace demonstate the fire power; when Trace refused, Forrest tossed Mel overboard, but Hawkeye then engaged Forrest.

(Avengers: Solo#5 (fb) - BTS) - Trace presumably helped return Mel to the ship.

(Avengers: Solo#5) - As Mel and Emi helped the prisoners aboard their boat, Trace and Alicia held off the guards. 

(Avengers: Solo#5) - As Trace returned to Hawkeye and Forrest, he found Hawkeye had convinced the mutates Forrest had betrayed them, and the mutates turned on Forrest threatening to tear him apart.jake-powerbroker-trace-fire.jpg

    Water hit the electricals as the back-up generator was coming on, and Hawkeye had Trace use fire to drive the others toward the boat, and Trace made sure to destroy the records of the formulae. 

    As they approached the boat, the mutates hurled Hawkeye and Trace out of the ship; the mutates and Forrest were still in the ship as it exploded.

    Hawkeye gave Trace the records and his equipment and sent him to land, while Hawkeye recovered a pair of mutates.

(Avengers: Solo#5) - Jake, Alicia, Emi, and Mel planned to identify the remaining test subjects before going to the police. Hawkeye gave them Forrest's notes (and Golden assured them that Forrest did not have copies)

    Golden planned to tell everything she knew to the authorities because she knew how to survive in the world.

(Avengers: Solo#5 - BTS) - Hawkeye told Captain America and Iron Man about his experiences, telling them he still needed to pursue the Power Broker angle and also to find the prison that had sold its inmates for the second round of tests. However, he told them Forrest had sterilized all of the clinics and that any other records would have been destroyed with the ship.

Comments: Created by Jen Van Meter and Roger Robinson.

    As Forrest was fighting Trace (Jake) and Mel, Hawkeye attacked Forrest, telling him it was time to stop fighting schoolteachers and law clerks...and we know Mel was a school teacher, so that would make Jake (or Nita) the former law clerk...or it could have referred to Alicia, who had been in law school at the time of the study.

    This story is REALLY hard to follow...I've been through it 4 times now to gain the understanding that I now have. And I just skimmed it all again trying to sort out who had what powers, and what powers the Trace armor granted. Nothing was too clear-cut in this series.

    Jake appeared to have a moustache and goatee in #2, definitely did not in #3, and definitely did in #4-5. Either it was an art error that he did not have it in #3, or it was a fake attachment. I think there was only a matter of hours in between the issues, and it's pretty unlikely to go from clean shaven to a thick goatee in just a few hours, regardkless of hormone therapy...unless that was also part of Jake's powers.
    There was a different art team in #3 from 1-2 and 4-5, which likely is the explanation.

    On the subject of the Trace armor's powers, Markus concluded: 

The features of the armor? Flight! Physical protection! It seemed like it could switch between a form fitting mode and an additional body armor mode (making them appear masculine). I doubt holograms were involved. Actual size-changing sounds reasonable.

Profile by Snood.

should be distinguished from:

images: (without ads)
Avengers: Solo#2, pg. 5, panel 1 (full body, showered);
    #3, pg. 11, pg. 4 (seated, beardless);
    #4, pg. 12, pg. 4 (face, close-up);
        pg. 17, panel 5 (full face);
        pg. 19, panel 3 (Trace, full);
    #5, pg. 3, panel 2 (zip-line);
        pg. 14, panel 4 (fiery blasts)

Avengers: Solo#1 (December, 2011) - Jen Van Meter (writer), Roger Robinson (artist), Tom Brennan (editor)
Avengers: Solo#2 (January, 2012) - Jen Van Meter (writer), Roger Robinson (artist), Tom Brennan (editor)
Avengers: Solo#3 (February, 2012) - Jen Van Meter (writer), Al Barrionuevo (pencils), Raul Lopez (inks), Tom Brennan (editor)
Avengers: Solo#4 (March, 2012) - Jen Van Meter (writer), Roger Robinson (artist), Tom Brennan (editor)
Avengers: Solo#5 (April, 2012) - Jen Van Meter (writer), Roger Robinson & Declan Shalvey (artists), Tom Brennan (editor)

Last updated: 02/26/15

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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