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Black Widow

Black Widow

Natalia Romanova

Ultimate Marvel Universe

Black Widow's History

Natasha Romanova was a descendant of Russian royalty who was abandoned as a child and was found by soldier Ivan Petrovich. As a ballerina in her youth, she joined Russia's KGB spy organization and became an elite intelligence operative and assassin due to government enhancements of her natural abilities and her own skill. She eventually was nicknamed the "Black Widow" due to her reputation as an often-wed, often-widowed heartbreaker whose husbands (beginning with test pilot turned intelligence agent Alexi Shostakov) tended to suffer "unfortunate accidents" that lead to their deaths. She defected to the United States of America as a freelance spy and joined S.H.I.E.L.D. after she gave them information she stole from the Latverian embassy.

She was originally part of the Ultimates' covert operations ("black ops") team, but was subsequently moved to public status after a publicly acceptable background was written for her. The Widow seemed to have genetic or cybernetic enhancements that allowed her to coordinate herself in combat far better than the average human, being able, for instance, to leap across the gap between two high-rises. After accepting a marriage proposal from Tony Stark, he presented her with a black suit of Iron Man armor as an engagement present, along with a set of nanites bonded to her skin to control the armor. While testing the armor, they couldn't agree on a new name for her, such as Cybernatrix or Iron Maiden.

Black Widow was later revealed to be a traitor, responsible for revealing the identity of the Hulk, framing Thor and Captain America, and aiding the Liberators in their invasion of America. She sided with the Liberators to cripple the country that crippled and turned Mother Russia into a bankrupt nation of hookers and gangsters. After killing Edwin Jarvis, the Widow held Tony Stark hostage and attempted to extort his enormous fortune at gunpoint. However, Stark was able to activate the nanites in her bloodstream and froze her body in place. He revealed that he had been downloading her knowledge into his mind through the nanites. He then summarily knocked her unconscious with a wine bottle, resulting in probable brain damage which caused her to be hospitalized. After the Liberators' defeat, Hawkeye tracked Natasha to a hospital, where he shot her in the head with an arrow, killing her for her role in his family's death.