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Den of Barjack is a massive cyborg villain in the Battle Angel Alita universe, appearing alive in the original series. Den of Barjack, like numerous villains and adversaries of Alita, was the result of experimentation and augmentation by Desty Nova. Den originated in the mind of Nova's son, Kaos as an alter ego.
Kaos as a child felt upset at the fact that Tiphares would never accept him due to his being a mutant as well as his difficult struggles to communicate due to his lack of speech and hearing. This pain and frustration in Kaos' mind caused Den to grow within his mind from this focused hatred. Kaos experienced numerous outbursts leading up to adolescence where his Den Persona surfaced, causing him to attack people out of frustration. Only when Kaos attacked his own father and lab assistant during a medical exam, did Nova come to realize the monster that lurked inside his Son. After some time, Nova developed a special cybernetic implant with a transmitter that he bonded to the heart and nervous system of Kaos at the molecular level, along with a separate Cyborg Body to house the mind of Den.
Kaos felt mostly at peace without outbreaks following the operation, however, in those years, Den continued to build and upgrade his synthetic body into a more powerful, aggressive warrior body, as well as establish the Barjack Rebellion, with the goal of completely eliminating the floating sky city of Tiphares. Den possessed the cybernetic bodies of a centaur and a tall samurai over this time period, and with his towering height and massive bladed weapons, he towered above the Battlefield, shaking the ground whenever he charged. Den also received a consistent feed of information being received from Kaos' cardiac implant, allowing for Den to receive information from Kaos as his unwitting intelligence source, as well as share skills learned by Kaos, such as the wielding of various weapons. Den first directly encountered Alita during her mission as a Tuned Agent of Tiphares, upon which he stopped in front of Kaos' mobile radio station en route to the headquarters of Desty Nova, where Alita and Kaos were hoping to receive answers regarding the whereabouts of Alita's foster father, Doc Ido. Den had sensed that Alita had been alive and entering territory, thanks to Kaos rescuing Alita and Koyomi as well as sharing a brief moment of intimacy with her. Den then proceeded to engage Alita in a Skirmish using his massive Centaur Body and a Pike. Alita proved quite capable of defeating Den thanks to the quick assistance of her operator in providing a bike and powerful canon to strategically cripple Den's legs. Koyomi blocked the death blow from the canon, insisting that the Barjack had the right idea and that Tiphares was oppressive and bigoted. Alita held off killing her friend, but promised that she wouldn't offer mercy a second time.
Alita proceeded to try and track down Kaos, who had been ferried away from the battle unconscious, only to find that the mobile radio station had been destroyed and looted, and Kaos left out in the rain holding the lifeless body of his longtime business partner, along with the bodies of numerous Assassins sent to kill him. Alita gave an attempt to comfort Kaos, only to see a mysterious transformation in Kaos in which his muscles grew, teeth grew sharp, and his eyes turned black. Den then revealed that he had always been part of Kaos and declared that Kaos belonged to him. Using Kaos' body and skills in wielding a katana, Den attempted to slash Alita until a massive flash flood washed them both out. Alita rescued Kaos from the water, but upon awakening, Kaos found out the truth and was left in shock.
Kaos proceeded to drop off Alita to see her mysteriously resurrected father figure, Doc Ido, while heading to his father's laboratory in the Granite Inn. To Kaos' horror, Nova revealed that he had always had Den as an alter ego, and that he had tried to separate his son from the monster within. Alita arrived to rescue Kaos, and a fight ensued, ending with Alita being trapped inside the dream produced by the Ouroboros Program. Kaos attempted to hack the computer, only to be fatally electrocuted by the supercomputers. With his mind living inside the computer, Kaos struggled for life, taking the form of Den to disrupt the paradise dream that Nova was using to trap Alita. Kaos left the Ouroboros Program to find Den and ask Den to surrender and end his rebellion. Den defiantly declared that he was no longer a part of Kaos, and proceeded to charge through the walls of Iron City to die upon the suspension cables connecting Tiphares to the ground below.
Den is the embodiment of Kaos' own hatred and anger from his life in Scrap Iron City as a mutant and an outcast. Den despises weaker bodies of the flesh, including the body of Kaos, his alter-ego, and has no qualms about causing massive destruction and loss of life, including his own scheme to cause Tiphares to fall on top of Scrap Iron City, which would cause the deaths of millions if successful. Den also encouraged Alita herself to kill Kaos, without any concern of him also possibly dying as well.
Powers and Abilities
Unlike Kaos, Den in both Kaos' body as well as his cyborg bodies perceives the world around him in visible light, hears sounds, and speaks vocally, even when he is in possession of the body of Kaos. Den shares and apparently retains the skills acquired by Kaos, including the use of a katana and a naginata spear, which he uses in personal combat, as well as the memories acquired from others by Kaos, including Alita's birth name of Yoko and her past memories. Den possesses the ability to perceive whatever Kaos does as well, although this ability appears limited, as in at least one instance, Den was unsure of Kaos surviving the sword duel with Alita until he heard the broadcast from Kaos following the storm.