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Roma is the youngest member of her race, but still millennia old. She is immortal and has vast magical powers at her disposal, which she can use in countless ways, including interdimensional teleportation, astral projection, healing, mind-reading, energy manipulation and many more. As the Omniversal Guardian she also has access to the technology and power of Otherworld, which has devices capable of destroying complete universes. The Captain Britain Corps obeys her commands.
Captain Britain, then still a baseline human, was working as a research assistant at the Darkmoor Research Center when the nuclear complex was suddenly attacked by a man named Joshua Stragg (the Reaver). In his efforts to escape, Brian was chased over a cliff. Roma, then calling herself "the Lady of the Northern Skies," appeared to him and offered him the chance to become a hero. Her father, Merlyn, was with her during this first encounter with Brian. Roma urged him to choose between two weapons, the Sword of Might, or the Amulet of Right; Roma's decision to offer him salvation and power rode on this choice. Brian subsequently made the correct choice, choosing the Amulet.
Roma and her father exist in another dimension called Otherworld. Captain Britain, or more specifically, his spirit, met them in this dimension after a battle with a villain named Lord Hawk that left him in a coma.
Aside from bequeathing Captain Britain with great physical strength, Roma also originally gifted him with a quarterstaff, a weapon that could be used for direct attack or emit a protective force field. Merlyn eventually replaced the staff with Captain Britain's Star Scepter.
Roma would eventually replace her father as the Omniversal Guardian and ruler of Otherworld, thinking her father had died. In fact, Merlyn had faked his death so he could manipulate future events while being safe from his enemies.
Roma appeared in human form while reaching out to a recovering and disillusioned Colossus shortly after "Mutant Massacre" and before "Inferno." Colossus had just healed from his injuries inflicted on him by the Marauders when the X-Men were fighting to rescue the Morlocks. Roma approached him and asked him to draw a sketch of her; she offered to pay him by telling him his fortune. When he finished his sketch, she hinted at things that would happen in the X-Men's future, but remained vague enough to anger him. She disappeared from the scene, leaving behind a figurine of him in his armored (steel) form.
During this encounter, Roma was really being held captive in her Starlight Citadel by the Trickster (aka the Adversary), a deity who planned on destroying the earth to remake it into whatever image he chose. The X-Men defeated the Adversary, freeing Roma and forcing the Adversary into a portal. Using Forge's spell, it took harnessing the souls of all eight active X-Men and Madelyne Pryor, who was there at the time, to create and shut the portal. Roma repaid them by retrieving their souls from the portal, which had a side effect of making them undetectable to electronic equipment and cameras, effectively making them "invisible" to their enemies.
Roma also bequeathed the X-Men with a portal called the Siege Perilous. This portal is a gem that enlarges into a doorway. Individuals walk through the portal to have their lives and deeds judged on a cosmic scale, eventually being reborn if they are deemed worthy. X-Men who have traveled through the Siege Perilous include Havok, Rogue (accidentally sucked into it while battling the Master Mold/Nimrod in issues 246-247), Psylocke, Dazzler, and Colossus.
One of the X-Men who sacrificed herself was Psylocke, Captain Britain's sister. The grief over his sister's death united Captain Britain and his girlfriend Meggan with the surviving X-Men Shadowcat and Nightcrawler. Together they saved Rachel Summers, host to the Phoenix Force, and formed Excalibur. To keep the individualistic Captain Britain a part of Excalibur, Roma put a jinx on him. Whenever he tried to act independently of the team, he would make mistakes and fail. Roma had foreseen that Excalibur would become essential to the safety of the Omniverse; only a group with their specific talents could stop an unknown threat.
Merlyn in disguise, manipulated Captain Britain into confronting Roma and she removed the jinx and told him about the secret threat. Excalibur encountered the threat shortly afterwards: Necrom, Merlyn's teacher had been planning for millenia to use the Phoenix Force to increase his own power. The combined powers of Excalibur defeated Necrom as Merlyn had planned. Roma told Excalibur that from now on, they would be free to determine their own destiny.
Roma was captured and impersonated by the villain Mastermind, who planned on using the Sword of Might and the Amulet of Right to reshape the Omniverse. Mastermind was defeated by Captain Britain and his friends and Roma gave the throne of Otherworld to Captain Britain, who now wielded both the Sword and the Amulet. Roma would retain her function as Omniversal Guardian though.
Roma briefly appeared in Fantastic Four when she sent Gatecrasher to kidnap Franklin Richards, thinking he was too powerful to stay on Earth and with his family. Johnny Storm was later able to convince her otherwise.
She again appeared when Abraxas was trying to find the Ultimate Nullifier. She summoned Valeria Richards and Franklin Richards to protect them from Abraxas but was unsuccessful, since she was murdered in the process. But Franklin revealed that Roma had taught him for an unknown period of time and that Valeria and himself would be needed in resurrecting Galactus. They used up all their powers to resurrect Galactus and ended the threat of Abraxas. Roma, who was killed, was ultimately resurrected in the process.
Created by Chris Claremont
First Appearance: Captain Britain (1976) #1
View a chronological listing of this character's appearances
Captain Britain (1976)
#1#1 (classic)#1 (new version)#2 Captain Britain (1985)
- 'From the Holocaust-- A Hero!'#12
- 'To die a superhero!'#33
- 'Even heroes bleed!'#34
- 'An odyssey of the mind!'#35
- 'That Camelot might live!'#36
- 'The Star Sceptre!'#37
- 'And the Highwayman came riding, riding...!'
#25 Excalibur (2001)
- 'Guess Who's Coming For Phoenix?'#47
- 'Come One and All to the Ugly Bug-Eyed Monster Ball'#48
- 'Irish Stew'#49
- 'Let There Be Dark'#50
- 'Winner Loses All'#65
- 'White Lies, Dark Truths'#125
- 'Tying the Knot'
#1 Excalibur: The Sword is Drawn (1987)
- 'Camelot Lost'#3
- 'Destiny's Children'#4
- 'Heir Apparent'
#90 Fantastic Four (1998)
- 'Enemy of the Stars, Part 1: Fresh Blood'
#7 Marvel Comics Presents (1988)
- 'Seize the Child!'#8
- 'Storm Warnings'#10
- 'Reed Richards: Alone!'#47
- 'Just Imagine...'#48
- 'Worlds Apart'#49
- 'Dark Victory'
Marvel Team-Up (1972)
#65 New Excalibur (2006)
- 'Introducing, Captain Britain'
#18 New Exiles (2008)
- 'To Rise Again This Day!'
#13 Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z (2008)
- 'Away We Go: Part 1'
Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Women of Marvel 2005 (2005)
#24 Ryhmä-X / X-Men (1984)
- 'Prolog VI: Maelstrom Manifest'#25
- 'All -- or Nothing!'
The Amazing Spider-Man (2014)
The Daredevils (1983)
The Incredible Hulk (1980)
The Incredible Hulk Weekly (1980)
The Marvel Encyclopedia (2006)
HC The Marvel X-Men Collection (1994)
- 'The Marvel Encyclopedia'
The Mighty World of Marvel (UK) (Vol. 2) (1983)
The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Master Edition (1990)
The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Update '89 (1989)
#6 Uncanny X-Men (1963)
- 'Prowler to Serpent Society'
#225 Wolverine Encyclopedia (1996)
- 'False Dawn!'#226
- 'Go Tell the Spartans'#227
- 'The Belly of the Beast!'#229
- 'Down Under'#462
- 'Season of the Witch'#464
- 'Season of the Witch, Part 3 of 4: To Die For'#465
- 'Season of the Witch, Part 4 of 4: Chaos Rules'
Wolverine: Save the Tiger (1992)
#117 X-Men: Die by the Sword (2007)
- 'Havok's Fall'#119
- 'The Best Offense'#120
- 'Meeting The Maker'#121
- 'The True Path'
- 'The Sword Is Drawn'#2
- 'First Blood'#3
- 'When Falls A Dream'#4
- 'When is Born the Nightmare!'#5
- 'Dawn of a New Day?'
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