Kurt Wagner was born with certain unusual physical characteristics, but his power of self-teleportation did not emerge until puberty. Margali Szardos, a sorceress and gypsy queen, found Wagner an hour after his birth, in a small roadside shelter in the Bavarian Alps. She found his father, Eric Wagner, dead of a heart attack on the road outside. Margali is said to have found Wagner's mother lying next to the baby and dying, but this assertion has been called into question, and not even Kurt Wagner knows the truth. Margali took the baby to the small Bavarian circus where she worked as a fortuneteller as a 'cover' for her activities as a sorceress. Wagner was never legally adopted by anyone, but was raised by all the members of the circus, who had no prejudices against 'freaks.' Margali acted as Wagner's unofficial foster mother.
Wagner grew up happily in the circus, and his two closest friends were Margali's natural children Stefan and Jimaine. Long before his teleportation power emerged, Wagner had tremendous natural agility, and by his adolescence he had become the circus's star acrobat and aerial artist. Circus audiences assumed that he was a normal-looking human being wearing a demon-like costume.
Years later, the Texas millionaire Arnos Jardine, who ran a large circus based in Florida, heard of the circus Wagner worked for and bought it. Jardine intended to move its best acts into his American circus. However, he demanded that Wagner be placed in the circus's freak show. Appalled, Wagner quit and made his way towards Winzeldorf, Germany, where Stefan was. He discovered that Stefan had gone mad and had brutally slain several children. Two nights after leaving the circus, Wagner found Stefan and fought him, hoping to stop his rampage. In the course of the struggle, Wagner unintentionally broke Stefan's neck. Then the villagers of Winzeldorf, who assumed him to be a demon who was responsible for the child killings, discovered Wagner. They were about to kill him when they were all psionically paralyzed by Professor Charles Xavier, who had come to recruit Wagner into the X-Men. Wagner agreed to join the group, but before they left for America, he and Xavier went to the Bavarian circus so that Wagner could explain to Margali about Stefan's death. However, Margali was not there. She held Wagner responsible for murdering Stefan, but years later, she learned the truth and she and Wagner were reconciled. Wagner was also happily reunited with Jimaine, who now lives in the United States under the name of Amanda Sefton. Known as Nightcrawler, Wagner became a member of the X-Men.
Powers & Abilities
Nightcrawler is a mutant with the ability of Teleportation He teleports by displacing himself into another dimension (the nature of which is as yet unknown), travelling through it, and then returning to his own dimension at a certain distance from his point of departure. He consciously determines his point of return. The entire process occurs so quickly that Nightcrawler is unaware of being in another dimension at all. Nightcrawler guides himself through the other dimension by an unconscious, natural direction-finding sense. Although Nightcrawler controls his teleportational ability with his conscious mind, his power to teleport is not psionic. Rather it is the result of an unknown biochemical/biophysical reaction which he triggers mentally.