Daria Judith Morgendorffer, commonly known as Judith, is a sociopathic version of Daria Morgendorffer that currently travels through the Daria Multiverse wreaking havoc and killing any other alternate Daria Morgendorffers she encounters. She was the antagonist of the Judith Strikes shared world series, and is currently the primary antagonist of the Worldburner shared world series and Worldhopper by Erin Mills.
Through a Closet, Darkly
Judith's first appearance was as an alternative version of Daria seen in Brian Taylor's "Through a Closet, Darkly." Originally referred to as "Alternate Daria," Judith was much angrier and antisocial than the "standard" Daria. Amongst the differences between Judith's world and Daria's world:
Judith is a Gold and Platinum selling lyricist, selling her lyrics to various music artists and making large royalties for such songs as "Where God Went Wrong."
Judith and her world's version of Jane dressed in opposing color palettes: Judith in a red jacket, gray skirt and boots, black T-shirt. Jane in an orange shirt, green overshirt, black shorts, leggings and boots. Jane's normal silver earrings are replaced by three gold studs.
Judith has psychologically dominated Quinn to the point where Quinn refers to Judith as "Sis" when their parents are around and "Mistress" when they aren't.
Judith and Jane are cousins by the marriage of Amy Barksdale to Vincent Lane. As Daria and Jane saw when they visited Judith's world, the two have been married for some time and are celebrating their wedding anniversary at the time the story begins.
Despite the above, Judith and Jane have an active sexual relationship, as Judith is bisexual and Jane an open lesbian. Both have described what they do as "a bit of fun," but it is evident that they care deeply about each other.
Judith still has a crush on Trent, who is a successful music teacher and engaged to Monique, who is a "theoretical research" scientist. When stuck in Daria's world, Judith attempted to seduce Trent, and was abruptly interrupted when she and her Jane were returned to their own world.
The Missing Stories
Two stories were planned to continue the story begun in "Through A Closet, Darkly" but ultimately came to nothing:
In "Out of the Closet, Brightly," Judith and her Jane attempted revenge by kidnapping Tom Sloane; Daria and Jane went after them. In the ensuing battle, it became clear Judith was losing her grip and she ended up stuck halfway through a dimensional portal. Her ultimate fate was originally have intended to be left ambiguous. However, Erin Mills (who was a beta reader on TACD and helped devise the basic framework of this story) decided to follow up on Judith's ultimate fate.
In Mills' unfinished fic "Judith," it was revealed that, once the portal in the closet closed, Judith found herself falling through the void between the universes, shattering the last of her sanity, and ultimately depositing her in the crossdimensional nexus known as The Cafe. It was here she met the dimensional traveling nihilist known as Ryo and began her apprenticeship and ultimate career as a reality hopping villain. This is also, chronologically, when she began using her middle name as her primary moniker.
At some unspecified point after this story, Ryo died and Judith took the magical locket the two had been using for trans-reality travel from his corpse. She then began her own rampage across the Multiverse.
"Misnomer" and "Research"
Judith would appear again in these two short stories wherein she attacked and killed the entire Lane family and Daria in one, and an alternate version of Daria who guarded the Library, "The repository of all human knowledge," in the other.
As part of the Judith Strikes! shared world, Judith rampaged through the Daria Multiverse, seizing a variety of objects and information for an, unknown purpose. She also left a sizable number of corpses and large amounts of destruction in her wake, sometimes just for fun.
She also terminated, or attempted to terminate, any other Darias she came across as a secondary goal.
As of Closing Ceremony, the final Judith Strikes story, it was revealed that the items Judith acquired were needed to power a ritual found in the Tome of T'agobinskem'ace which empowered Judith to become the prophecied Worldburner. As a test of power, she altered time to both cause the end of a world and the Daria on that world to contract a terminal illness - the very world, D-0, she was using as a hideout (making her responsible for "Last Night In Lawndale").
Now bearing the raw power to destroy entire universes at will, Judith first wrote the message "Worlds Will Burn" across the multiverse and then went on a seemingly-random rampage. The various reality-defending organisations - the Corps of Ringbearers, DELPHI, The Agency and The Foundation - unified to share intelligence and try to limit the damage, but by this point she'd already obliterated the universe D-316 (the "Falling Into College" setting). In direct engagements, even the elite Warhammer units of the Corps of Ringbearers have seemingly proven to be little match for Judith.
Before destroying a reality, however, Judith takes great pains to locate and abduct the Jane Lane of that given reality (should there be one). She kept hundreds of alternate Jane Lanes within her base of operations. With the use of her tron-splitter device, she intended to turn them into negative counterparts of themselves, to help her destroy reality. She only succeeded in creating a single alternate suitable for her needs; Judith christened her NegaJane and took her on as a partner, treating her with the same affection you'd expect from a normal Daria for a Jane.
She has also brought several allies into the conflict, including the Architect Gate Intelligence, the being known as Apocalypse, the Movellans, and an extra-dimensional religious order, referring to itself as 'the Order of Infinity'. These allies have been recruited by Judith for the purpose of acting against alternate universes in her name.
In one operation on behalf of the Ringmasters, however, Ringbearer Viola Fosh was able to both immobilize and banish Judith and her universe-destroying annihilation spheres from a reality with the standard powers of a Defender Ring. It was hoped Judith could be fooled into thinking another power had done this, but this failed. Worse, it became apparent that while there were forces than can oppose or stop Judith's rampages, direct attempts to do so and hinder the Worldburner prophecy only find themselves subverted by forces unknown - by taking her on, the Ringmasters managed to unravel their own highly-intricate plan to subvert the prophecy. (The only exception to this rule was the entity known as "The Man", a supremely powerful being that forced Judith to leave a universe unmolested)
In revenge against the Ringmasters, Judith launched a direct assault on them and the Corps of Ringbearers, wiping out the Ringmasters, various vital Ringbearer locations (including Command Headquarters at Nova Valdris), and the universes they're part of. As a result, the bulk of the remaining Ringbearer fleet regrouped and reorganised around the stellar cluster where the headquarters of The Agency is located, while a large faction of Ringbearers declared total war on Judith. The Ringbearers Archangel and Amelia Pine became her most persistent, and annoying, foes, causing her numerous embarrassing defeats.
The final victory rested with Judith, when she launched an attack on the Cafe - the Foundation's main base in the reality cluster - and used its Reality Stabilisers to send a reality shift right down the "quantum resonance frequency" used by all Ringbearer artifacts. The Foundation was left crippled, the Ringbearers were removed from the multiverse by the shift, and the Agency was too busy dealing with the chaos Judith had left behind to take action against her. She was now free to hunt down and kill the "Worldhopper".
Judith resembles most Darias in the multiverse. As mentioned, on her homeworld she wore the same basic jacket and skirt combination, only with a different color scheme: red jacket, black t-shirt, gray skirt and boots. So far, she has not encountered a Daria with the same color sense, finding instead that many wear the more traditional green, orange, and black. This has caused Judith to usually refer to other Darias as "that Green Jacketed Snot Nosed Bitch."
Since beginning her reality hopping, Judith's typical outfit consists of a matte black catsuit and a large floor length hooded blood red cloak (See "Tools and Weapons"). She usually keeps the hood of the cloak up, hiding her face, only revealing it when she wants to shock her victims with the knowledge that they've been attacked by Daria Morgendorffer. She wore glasses up until she enacted the ritual in the Tome of T'agobinskem'ace to become the Worldburner. Following the ritual, Judith's vision was corrected and she no longer needs them.
Intelligence and Psychological Assessments
Being a Daria Morgendorffer, Judith already had above average intelligence. Since being exiled form her home world and hopping from world to world on various jobs and missions, Judith has learned quite a bit about how the multiverse works and the organizations and entities sworn to protect it. As such, her knowledge of strategy and tactics is on a par with many well respected individuals through the multiverse. She's got a pitch-black sense of humour, though more sadistic than the average Daria.
On her home world, Judith's anti-social nature was much worse than that of most Darias. She was much angrier and prone to venting that anger in a variety of creative, but violent, ways, such as spiking the football team's Gatorade with LSD, letting any boy who looked at her the wrong way have her size six boot right in the crotch, and psychologically dominating her sister Quinn to the point that Quinn referred to her as "sis" when around their parents or others, and "Mistress" when they were alone or if it was only Jane in their company. There is, however, no evidence to support that any sort of sexual abuse was involved in this dynamic...at least, not on Judith's end.
Upon being exiled by accident from her home world, Judith's normal psychological problems exploded into full blown sociopathy. She hates all other Darias with an unbridled passion and takes great pleasure in killing any one she encounters in the most specatcularly violent and painful way possible. She also despises the name "Daria" and refuses to use it, referring to the alternates under the aforementioned "Green Jacketed Snot Nosed Bitch" title. Daria's with a happy life attract her greatest ire: the sheer savagery of her attack on D-316 is down to being enraged at that Daria having a successful, happy life that she herself didn't have.
On the other hand, she genuinely misses the Jane from her home world and this has led to her having something of a soft spot for the Jane Lanes she encounters on her travels. Nine times out of ten, a Jane Lane has been the only traumatized survivor of one of Judith's rampages. However, Judith lets nothing get in the way of her goals and will kill Jane if necessary to effect her victory and escape. Now she has the power to destroy worlds, she deliberately removes every Jane from that reality before she cuts loose.
As far as others are concerned, Judith has no feelings of empathy or remorse for anyone, and will gleefully kill, maim, or torture anyone who gets in her way. However, the end of A Very Judith Christmas showed genuine sadness over not being able to return home.
Unlike many other Darias, Judith does believe in the existence of God - but as an obstacle and enemy,
Tools and Weapons
Judith's catsuit is an armored lightweight Nomex/Kevlar weave with several other advanced fibers of unknown composition worked into the material. The suit is able to take a bullet at close range and deflect most bladed weapon attacks; however, it provides little proof against high-powered energy attacks (as was shown in 'Not So Different', when plasma blasts were able to cause Judith severe burns).
Judith is an accomplished burglar and wears a utility belt with a variety of burglary tools and devices at her disposal.
The magical locket has a primary function to allow the user to travel from universe to universe simply with the power of thought, and the nature of its magic prevents almost any methods of blocking interdimensional travel from affecting it. This gives Judith a major edge over groups like the Ringbearers, the Foundation, and the Agency.
If the locket has a single user, it simply moves them from point a to point b in a single flash of light; Judith can open a portal to transport other people as well. As the locket is old and dying, only four people can be transported without the locket sending them to the wrong location, so for large groups Judith uses other methods of transport.
A secondary function of the locket is to act as an early warning system when a version of the user is in the same universe as the user. The locket with briefly flash with its customary blue-white flame if it detects a Daria within ten miles, and flash more than once if there's multiple Darias.
The locket also has several temporal manipulation abilities. The first is good old fashioned time travel (though Judith rarely uses it to avoid messing up her own timeline). Most of the other abilties are fairly standard, but temporary. Judith can speed up time, slow it down, or make it stutter in order to disorient enemies, all within a ten-meter radius of herself. These are largely one time effects, used for brief bursts, giving her some time to think and plan when under attack. The locket can also allow her to control energy discharges (such as laser blasts) within her area of effect.
The other temporal ability is known as "Temporal Disalignment." By maintaining focus, the user can "hold" themselves outside of the normal timestream by up to ten seconds. However, the disorientation is directly proportional to the length of time held. Therefore, Judith rarely holds herself out of the timestream for longer than a second or two. During the disalignment, the user can move around a location and interact with it, even though it will seem that random things are happening for no readily apparent reason. If the user is using this ability to retrieve an item, they will need to wait the appropriate amount of time after acquring it, for the item to be fully integrated into the disalignment.
Additionally, since the method for setting up the disalignment requires the user to begin the travel process then more or less freeze their thoughts to maintain the disalignment, any sudden distractions or changes of thought could trigger an unwanted temporal, spatial, or dimensional shift. It is for this reason Judith uses this ability extremely sparingly.
The locket has a profound weakness (as does Judith herself) against temporal-manipulation abilities used against it, such as the temporal stasis fields created by Defender and Vengeance Rings. Judith, the energy-effects that she creates (including her 'annihilation spheres') and the locket itself can be caught and totally immobilized within the stasis fields for the length of time that the field is in place. While within the stasis field, Judith is totally helpless (for her, no time has passed), and her energy effects can be safely handled through means such as telekinesis). This makes the stasis-field an excellent means of delaying and escaping Judith, but a conscious effort must be made in erecting the field around a specific target, which is why it has most likely not been used in combat against her (to date).
The locket also has a profound weakness against the banishment endowment of the Rings; it cannot resist the effect and will be forcibly displaced into the dimensional plane from which she last departed. (If given the time needed to do so, the banishment endowment could return Judith to her home dimension; however, it is quite unlikely that Judith would allow that to happen. This gives rise to the speculation that the Rings cannot use the banishment and temporal-stasis endowments at the same time.)
Judith's cloak was acquired from an inter-dimensional bazaar in a world where magic and technology were frequently combined to create new and exciting devices. It was originally intended as a portable wardrobe created by the design firm of Griffin, Deckler and Rowe, and able to hold a ridiculously large amount of clothes, shoes, and accessories. Judith found an alternate use for it and quickly began filling it with any and every weapon she could get her hands on. Knowing that she was limited by what she could comfortably pick up, throw, or wield, she primarily has filled her arsenal with weapons that can be held in either one or two hands, along with a selection of explosives.
The interior space of the cloak is split into two compartments, one on the wearer's left and one on the right. Judith has organized her arsenal thus: guns, rifles, shotguns, bazookas, and so on on the left. Explosives and bladed weapons on the right. She simply pictures the weapon she wants in her mind, reaches into the appropriate area and, voila, instant weapon.
The nature of the cloak affords some protection from magical attacks, since the designers knew that anyone traveling through reality would likely encounter somebody who wanted to do harm to your clothes, if not your actual person.
Physically, the cloak has been treated with a chemical compound known as Fab-Brick, stolen from world KP-3509. The Fab-Brick treatment armors any cloth it is placed in contact with, while still leaving it lightweight and flexible. The cloak is capable of blocking all bladed weapon attacks, and can block most small and medium arms fire, although the effect is similar as if the wearer was hit with a bullet while wearing a Kevlar vest. It has also rendered the cloak fireproof,
In an absolute dire emergency, Judith can disappear into the folds of her cloak for added protection, however the interior of the cloak isn't particularly comfortable, being filled with weapons and all, and it does leave her vulnerable to capture as all anyone would have to do at that point is pick up the cloak and secure it somewhere small enough that Judith couldn't get out of it. Usually she'll only use this if she's in a situation she can't escape from that would otherwise cause her death (such as being trapped in the wrong place during an explosion.)
The cloak is also semi-sentient and can operate on its own if necessary. It has limited intelligence, however, and after the events of Brother Grimace's "Cat Scratch Fever," it now has a pathological fear of cats and will not get near the things without being worn by Judith.
Base of Operations
Judith had set up shop in Chez Morgendorffer on a dead world in a locked universe (Daria-0 universe of "Last Night In Lawndale"). The house is structurally sound but largely neglected except for her bedroom and the upstairs bathroom. Judith has an expansive computer system compiled from assorted parts from a variety of time periods, allowing her to read most conceivable electronic media from old 5.25" floppy discs to USB drives, to futuristic algae wafer discs.
In the closet of the bedroom is a large safe. Inside the safe are half a dozen magical and technological devices that can be used to create portals to other realities or times. Judith has these as backups in case she finds herself in a situation where she needs to transport large items or groups of people to other realities or times, and she doesn't want to risk overloading the locket.
However, after beginning her rampage as the Worldburner, Judith has relocated to an as yet unidentified universe. Details of this new base of operations are sketchy, but it has been stated that Judith keeps the Jane Lanes she abducts in an opulent, well supplied and comfortable mansion that has no windows or doors.
Powers and Abilities
After becoming the Worldburner, Judith's basic weapon is dark energy channeled through her hands - she attack and destroy anything or anyone with them, from people to entire cities; she can also open dimensional portals with this energy. She can also turn herself into a being of living flame, and then create duplicates composed of flame - "Flame Judiths" - to do her work, with no limit to the amount of Flame Judiths she can create.
She also has been endowed with the ability to fly. In the TotR fic 'The Battle of Carthage', Judith is seen flying at supersonic speeds. Judith also now possesses enhanced physical strength that allows her to effortlessly lift up to 800 pounds, with an upper limit of ten tons with maximum effort. Additionally, she possesses the power of accelerated healing, which enables her to repair the damage she takes in a matter of minutes. However, this healing ability does sap her energy, which means that if enough damage is taken, Judith will prefer to retreat to lick her wounds rather than continue the confrontation.
She can obliterate universes but has to be physically in the universe to do so. When destroying universes, Judith creates a spherical construct composed of dark energies, known as 'annihilation spheres', which she releases into the air within the atmosphere of a world (usually Earth, but in at least one instance, she began the destruction somewhere else in the universe). Because of the destructive capacities demonstrated by her powers, Judith would register as being capable of Class X-4 destructive potentials (allowing her to destroying anything up to an entire universe).
She has several options with use of the annihilation spheres. She can increase or decrease their size (in her attack on the Citadel of the Ringmasters, she created one the size of the Moon), and also increase or decrease the level of destructive power they unleash. She can also fire off spheres in a manner similar to the fictional weapons known as 'photon torpedoes', which can track and chase down targets in motion. It has been shown that spheres projected in this manner have an upper explosive limit equal to a low-yield nuclear device (between one to five kilotons). In short, an annihilation sphere can destroy things as small as a human, or as large as an entire universe.
Annihilation spheres can also be altered to be triggered by a variety of methods. The can be triggered after a preset amount of time, or when a set of conditions are met. (For example, Judith set the aforementioned Moon-size sphere to be triggered when the Ringmasters focused their power to prevent it from crashing into the Earth.) Spheres can also be handed off to one of Judith's agents to be triggered at another site, allowing her to bestow the ability to destroy universes to others (as was shown in 'The Order of Infinity'). They can also be used as a power source. Interestingly enough, though, they can only been shown (at present) to be capable of powering weapons or devices of mass destruction.
The creation of these spheres (regardless of destructive capacity) is physically taxing for Judith, and it is possible (though as yet unconfirmed) that there may be an upper limit of how many spheres Judith can create in a specific period due to the physical stress.
Judith, through the use of the tron-splitter device acquired from a cross-dimensional non-human contact known only as "Negs," had the ability to separate individuals into duplicate beings of polar opposite alignments (of 'lawful good' and chaotic evil' alignment), as well as the ability to endow these beings with near-equal abilities to her own. She has only been able to do this once, creating the being known as NegaJane in the Worldburner fic of the same name. The device was destroyed by NegaJane shortly after her creation.
Judith also has the means (through nanotechnology*) to control those persons; while she has only demonstrated the ability to keep those persons/beings from attacking her or using their abilities against her in any negative fashion, it is easy to surmise that she has other, as-yet undisclosed abilities and controls available to her through this technology. In On The Night Shift, Judith infected Tommy Sherman with a nanotech virus; it was implied that this virus conferred a limited healing factor to Sherman (which would allow him immunity from all forms of disease), as well as some form of ability to summon Sherman to her presence if she so desired (even across time and alternate realities).
After the events of 'First Dance', Judith began looking into anti-nanite technology as means of personal defense. It is unknown what forms of defenses she now possesses against nanotechnology, but prudent to assume that she now possesses significant defenses against such tech being used against her.
*A reverse-engineered form of this nanotechnology was used against 'Judy Blue' by DELPHI forces. Because of this development (and the advanced technology that DELPHI possesses and can receive access to), it is quite plausible to assume that DELPHI forces are now possessed of immunities to Judith's nanoviruses, but have formulated both active measures against them, and nanoviral agents for their own use.
In A Great Halloween Party, it was shown that Judith (and her 'annihilation spheres') have a specific vulnerability to the time-control and banishment endowments of the Defender Rings worn by the Corps of Ringbearers. (This was confirmed in 'When It Rains', when Victoria Von Doom used the combined power of a Defender, a Vengeance and a Deliverance Ring to destroy a sphere, albeit at the cost of her own life. This may have been an isolated incident, as Von Doom was somehow able to overcome the 'morality interlock' of the Defender Ring in order to use it, and the abilities of the Deliverance Ring, in addition to Von Doom's machinations and skills, may have made this an occurrence that can not be duplicated.) It is believed that this realization was the provocation for Judith's sudden pogrom against the Corps (as well as her betrayal of the Ringwraiths), in order to keep either group from acting against her, as well as preventing their technology from falling into the hands of others who would seek to do likewise.
Judith is an expert in hand to hand combat, and can kill or disable any baseline-normal humanoid humanoid being (or those without body armor) without any effort.
Judith possesses a number of 'black-bag' oriented skills, which make her criminal activities much easier to accomplish. She possesses advanced computer operations and hacking skills, and is a master at a number of burglary-oriented skills (such as circumventing alarm systems, breaking and entering, and lock-picking/safe-cracking). She possesses incredible stealth abilities, allowing her to move through areas with a minimal chance of being seen or even detected by surveillance equipment.
She has extensive psychological operations experience, which was demonstrated during the broadcast of 'A Very Judith Christmas'. In addition, she is quite skilled in the urban-styled form of argumentative discourse known as 'trash talking', and is quite skilled in the area of sexual seduction (also known as 'honey-trapping').
Judith has developed a talent for prestidigitation. The origins of this talent, and her skill level at such, are currently unknown.
At least two other Judiths exist in the multiverse.
One Judith was a twin sister to Daria Morgendorffer, appearing in Charles RB's "You'll Never Walk Alone". She greatly resembled Judith's teenage self, albeit with actual ethics, and was also in a relationship with Jane. After Daria was murdered, Judith - with help from Jane and Tom Sloane - went out of her way to find and kill the guilty parties, determining them to be Angela Li and Leonard Lamm. Unknown to her, the worldhopping Judith had killed her sister and Li & Lamm were completely uninvolved. (The original Judith, for her part, had found out about this Judith via Daria's diary and was unnerved by the idea of having a counterpart of herself.)
A second alternate Judith appeared in Brother Grimace's "The Legion Encounters 'Part 2 - An Unexpected Stop'", and returned as a regular character in Worldhopper with "Judy Blue". An alternative counterpart of Judith, she appeared to also rampage across the Daria Multiverse with her own locket (removable) and a blue cloak until she made the mistake of attacking the DELPHI Niagara Falls installation on D-247 that was the headquarters of Project Fast Forward (their primary research and development facility), which the 'real' Judith had attacked the DELPHI Well of Souls in "Opening Gambit." As a result, DELPHI was ready for this version of Judith; easily capturing her, DELPHI confiscated her locket and cloak, and imprisoned her under the aegis of the Bowman Acts (which allowed them to declare her a ward of the Federal Government, and keep her sequestered for an indeterminate period of time until she is no longer considered a threat to herself or others). After the events of 'Lunch', DELPHI was thoroughly apprised of Judith's mission and capabilities; it was because of this information that they were able to deduce that this was not the Judith now known as 'Worldburner' , and thus, they did not need to allow her to escape.
In "Judy Blue", however, it was revealed that this alternate was a vulnerable and pacifistic version of Judith, who went by the name Judy. When the Foundation's Reiko Tsereba investigated, it came out that the locket was a fake and the blue "cloak" was a shapeshifting alien parasite/symbiote known as a Barrier Worm, which had made Judy believe she was Judith in an attempt to keep her safe in the multiverse. Only one person had been killed by the duo, Judy's mother Helen: someone the Worm stated deserved to die. Without the Worm, Judy could not remember why she had attacked DELPHI and was having withdrawal symptoms.
Under psychic investigation, it was discovered that Judy suffered extreme abuse from her mother, after her father left the house during an argument over Judy and died in a car crash ("Boxing Daria" AU). Judy's only real tie was to her sister Quinn; in this universe, Jane was extremely wealthy, head of the Fashion Club, and a vicious bully of Judy. When she picked up the Barrier Worm, it decided to protect the girl by killing her mother (thereby feeding itself) and offered Judy the chance to travel the multiverse instead of remain in this reality; at Judy's request, it used Judith's psychic "vibes" to make her tougher.
Judy was ultimately released from DELPHI's custody, with the Worm returned to her and both have been set up as Watchers reporting to the Foundation, working for a Cluster Burger location in a universe where Daria Morgendorffer does not exist.