- All my life, even before I found out everything, I just wanna be a normal, respectable guy, alright? Treating others with respect, helping out the community with what I can do as I live. You know, doing all those kind of typical moral responsibilities, okay? That's all I ever wanted on doing... I never expected that something horrible like this would happen to me... I never expected that becoming someone, something worse than monsters like Hitler, Stalin, and Kim Jong-il combined, will be my ultimate destiny...
- -- Iron Lad
- -- Iron Lad
Nathaniel K. Richards was born on the suburban residences of Manhattan, New York City. Nate was the son of Allan Richards, a man who came from a family distantly related to the family of the Richards, most notably Nathaniel and Cassandra Richards, having both of their surnames identical. Additionally, his father was also genius but a deadbeat inventor whose early business he tried to run had miserably failed even before it even had the chance to rise into popularity. Despite his father's failures in his career as a businessman, he never gave up on his lifetime dream of becoming a technological revolutionist for the next generation, in which he started by first joining the world famous Stark Industries.
Nate was also the son of Nicole, a mysterious woman who came from a distinct family, which originated from the ancestry of the tyrannical pharaoh Rama-Tut, named the Kang Family. Regarding her family lineage, she was also a former loyalist of an ancient Egyptian cult based on the American continent known as the Cult of Rama-Tut, which had been continuously preserved by her ancestors for several millennia, a few years long before she'd regret her decisions in joining the secret alliance, causing for her to escape from her own remorse by starting a new life in the state of New York, where she would eventually meet her future husband and the father of their future son, Nate.
Unfortunate for Nate, his young and innocent life had gone downhill after a series of unfortunate events had turned him into nothing but an orphan at a very young age. Having only raised by his parents during his childhood, both of his father and mother had sadly perished in a mysterious fire that occurred at their house, during the night of his 9th birthday. When the great fire had promptly engulfed their entire home into flames, Nate was almost killed inside his bedroom having suffocated by the smoke, similar to what has already happened to his parents at that night, when a mysterious figure had rescued an unconscious Nate, and carried the child outside his burning home.
More saddening enough than it already was, Nate was also wearing his birthday gift, which was a special necklace made by his father courtesy of Stark Industries, given to him by his parents only an hour before the fire started. While being raised in a significant orphanage located in the city of New York, the Graham Windham, he was gradually being taught by his noble caretaker, father-like figure, and lifetime mentor Jonas on how to hide his uncontrollable grief and anger towards the tragic loss of his parents, since he wanted to help in raising Nate become the greatest man he can ever become, someday far in the future.
Visions to his Destiny
Over the next few years of his teenage years, Nate had discovered that he was in fact a natural, inventive genius, having grown to be extremely bright in science and technology (in addition to social sciences), primarily excelling in the field of robotics, engineering, and other branches of applied sciences, and became a high honors student at Brooklyn Visions Academy when he was only in sixth grade 'till he reaches junior high school. Nate's scholastic interest often made him a social outcast, with the exception of the few friends he had made, and a target for bullies.
However, regardless of his social dilemmas, Nate's future is still on the verge of having a fruitful future, as Jonas had expected, that is, right until the day when he started having the "visions." At some point while he was in his classroom after their dismissal, Nate start began to get strangest visions, seeing "flashforwards" of how his next life in the future might have or will become. Although seeing one's future might does sound profoundly astonishing to most others, Nate's visions of his future were far from profound nor astonishing, but were instead filled with absolute terror and chaos, with Nate apparently seeing himself as a tyrannical and genocidal warlord & conqueror, who was wreaking havoc across an unknown city as he cause countless of casualties without any feeling of remorse whatsoever.
Along with his visions, he also found out that concurrence to him experiencing the latter, he also discovered that his necklace, the same gift father had made for him, had started on glowing. Unbeknownst to Nate's awareness, one student had seen his strange behavior, revealing to be one of his closest friends, Cassie Lang, in which she grew a deep concern towards Nate, right before she saw him left the room even before she could have gotten the chance to talk to him. Afterwards following his nightmarish apparitions, Nate immediately left the campus and quickly took a bus on his way back to the orphanage, where he sought for Jonas' help in accompanying Nate to go back into the very place that changed his entire life forever, his childhood home.
An Unusual Discovery
Back inside the ruins of his burnt down, abandoned house, Nate and Jonas came into investigating the whole place in search for possible answers, only to find nothing, right until Jonas noticed something unusual during their investigation, which was Nate's necklace repeatedly glowing on-and-off as they slowly reach a specific area inside the house's living room, or was the living room. As they got nearer and nearer, the stranger the necklace behaves, where after they've reach the room's corner, it started beeping loudly. With Jonas thinking of the necklace beeping as somewhat a radar, Nate finally finds a hatch under the scorched carpet.
Jonas tried to opens the hatch, pulling it up with all his strength and effort, but still fails to do so. Nate then uses his continuously beeping and glowing necklace as a key after noticing that it's naturally going towards the hatch like a magnet, hypothetically guessing that it would open the hatch if he takes it off. As Nate lets his necklace be in contact with the hatch, the hatch suddenly to release a powerful emission of neon lights, temporarily disrupting both the eyesight of Nate and Jonas for three seconds, along with the hatch finally opening.
Finding Out his Future
As both of them regains their sight once again, Nate stares at Jonas in disbelief, with the former now seeing the latter as someone possessing the body structure of an android similarly identical to those of the future Avenger Vision, much to Jonas' shock and denial afterwards of him knowing the unexpected discovery himself. Following Jonas' revelation on his supposedly true form as an android-like being, Nate was able to prevent him from having a serious panic attack, before proceeding to enter the opened hatch by himself. Inside the recently-discovered hidden bunker, wandered the dark place, where he eventually sees a bizarre, futuristic-looking caisson.
Curiously opening the caisson, Nate finds an odd, mysterious device, to which he accidentally activates it after all his fingerprints have touched the latter, causing for the device to visually project a screen towards a wall, showing a series of video footage, specifically a disturbing and obscene news report from the year of the late 4000, during the end of the 40th century, that identically resembles Nate's future-foreseeing visions.
While watching the footage, Nate then abruptly comes up with a horrible, frightening realization, only a microsecond before the reporter in the footage had stated that the man responsible for all the destruction and bloodshed of future New York, and the rest of America, was actually himself all along, who was going by his long-time infamous epithet, Kang the Conqueror. After and finding out about his terrible fate, Nate fell into a state of shock and was about to pass out, to which Jonas (who was somehow back into his human form at the moment) who was above the living room, suddenly came into his senses and went all the way down to the bunker, was able to catch Nate on time before he could fall into the ground.
Upon waking up from unconsciousness afterwards, Nate and Jonas then continued their investigation and unexpectedly discovers another breakthrough following his discovery on the caisson, revealing to be a vault, containing a suit of armor. Astonished by of the appearance and the design of the suit, Nate accidentally makes another finding, right at the moment when he thinks of wearing the suit similarly to how the Iron Man suits up, and as a result, the armor itself flies off its vault and suits Nate, much to his surprise.
Nate then cheered in utter delight as he soared high across the sky over Manhattan and shouted out in delight at his success, only to realized that he has no mastery nor little knowledge on flying the suit, or anything else for that matter, causing for Nate to lose his balance. Nate was falling from the sky and was about to fall back into the ground, right before he was caught by Jonas (who was unknowingly in his android form for the moment) once more, who has also discovered his ability to fly. After returning back to Nate's old home, the two then then decided to call it a day, right after they found out that the bunker had exploded out of the sudden when they tried to revisit it again.
Having no other choice but to keep the armor for himself, and out of sheer guess, the armor suddenly shrank, reshaping its form into a digital watch just as Nate had wished in his thoughts that the armor could turn smaller for him to carry. Afterwards, the two finally left the site on their way back to the orphanage, where they would subsequently take a break and rest for a while, having too much tired, both physically, emotionally, and mentally drained from all the life-changing experiences that they've both went through.
Only a few days after the events of the Ultron Offensive, a group of enhanced and super-powered teenagers, including Nate who was now wearing the suit of armor that he once found on his childhood home's hidden bunker, from the streets of New York City, which would be later known as the Young Avengers, have decided to secretly assemble after a gigantic android only known as the Growing Man had unleashed its destruction throughout the streets and alleyways of the city. The Avengers were even compelled to investigate the scene, but they were already late since the battle was revealed to be over thanks to the actions of the newly-formed juvenile superhero team.
The Iron Lad
Following the events of the disclosed but publicly-concealed "Growing Man Incident," the Avengers and the peace-keeping organization S.H.I.E.L.D. as well, then honored the youngsters and expressed their gratitude for helping them in fighting the fights against the forces of evil, as they would later name their new team as the Young Avengers, and kindly gave them a place into the renowned Avengers Tower, whenever they need to reassemble again. Since Nate's armor resembles that of Iron Man, he, his teammates, his allies, and even the citizens of New York and the rest of the United States, had began calling himself the heroic Iron Lad, from that point on forwards. As Iron Lad, he and the Young Avengers to protect, along with Nate's other core mission towards entirely change his destiny from subsequently becoming Kang in the future, which was now being assisted with the help of his newfound teammates.
The Hauntings of Kang
To be added.
Powers and Abilities
|Power Grid |
|* Teleporter; Other stats' enhanced ratings due to armor|
- Gifted Intelligence
- Experienced Engineer
- Political Savvy
- Expert Tactician
- Skilled Combatant
- Indomitable Will
- Class 10+ (with armor)
- Class 6 (without armor)
- Neurokinetic Armor: Iron Lad's battle armor is produced from a rare synthetic alloy from the 40th century. It is neuro-kinetic, meaning it responds to his subconscious thoughts. Though Kang has no powers, his armor endows him with rough equivalents of super-human abilities.
- Enhanced Strength
- Video Communicator
- Time Travel
- Concussive Bolts
- Neurokinetic Interface
- Energy Blasts
- Project Holographic Images, masking Iron Lad's true appearance
- Download/upload massive amounts of data with its complex hard drive
- Override Security Systems
- Key Necklace (formerly; destroyed)
Transportation: Since Nathan is almost identical to his potential future self Kang, Nathan most likely also possesses a large space ship, capable of travel through both time and space.
Weapons: He typically carries various weapons, such as an anti-matter defense screen generator, a "vibration-ray" projector, an electromagnetic field amplifier, neutrino-ray warheaded missile launcher (hand-gun size), electrical paralysis generator, nerve gas sprayer and a molecular expander. He commands a vast array of warriors from across all periods of time, including his own future era, armed with advanced weaponry.
- No special notes.
- ↑ Modern Comics: Young Avengers Vol 1 5
- No trivia.
- Appearances of Nathaniel K. Richards (Earth-61615)
- Character Gallery: Nathaniel K. Richards (Earth-61615)
- Quotations by Nathaniel K. Richards (Earth-61615)
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