Herbert Wyndham was a student attending Oxford University in the 1930's who built a machine capable of accelerating the genetic evolution of living organisms. His first test subject was his pet dog who stood upright and had the intelligence of a chimpanzee. (the dog was accidentally killed by a hunter.) His experiments having provoked anger and hostility among his peers, Wyndham left the university to build a research center where he could carry on his experiments without detractors. Joined by his friend Jonathan Drew, who specialized in the study of arthropods, Wyndham found the site for his facility on Wundagore Mountain in Transia, a country near Yugoslavia where Drew's wife was born. The two men purchased a tract of land on the mountain and discovered a rich uranium deposit on their property which they converted into working capital. In a matter of years, they built a citadel of advanced scientific research. Wyndham's work centered on the improvement of his genetic accelerator while Drew studied spiders' natural immunological resistance to radiation. Subjecting himself to his own machine, Wyndham began to accelerate his own intellectual capacity, enabling him to make increasingly greater discoveries.
Wyndham's partnership with Drew began to fray when Drew's younger daughter Jessica was stricken with radiation due to prolonged exposure to uranium. Though both scientists pooled their skills to try to save her, the treatment required years of constant radiation-therapy during which time the young girl had to be placed in cryogenic suspension. When Drew's wife Merriem disappeared during her weekly trip to the village for supplies (Wyndham learned that she had been killed by a wolf-like beast but withheld the information from his friend), Drew became so despondent that he left Wundagore, with his daughter in Wyndham's custody.
Beginning to believe in the supernatural legends of the natives, Wyndham devised a suit of protective armor. He then began to procure and genetically accelerate both domestic and wild animals into "New Men," animals with humanoid posture and intelligence. Among the first of his New Men was Bova, a cow-woman, Porga, a pig-man, and Tagar, a tigar-man. With the assistance of the ghost of the sixth century magician Magnus, Wyndham trained the menagene of New Men in the arts of chivalry and combat of the Sixth Century. Thus he founded the Knights of Wundagore to protect his realm from certain native sorcerous foes. Wyndham himself had assumed the title of Lord High Evolutionary. Decades later, the High Evolutionary converted his citadel into a spaceship and set forth with his knights to the stars, feeling that Earth was too confining for them. He left behind only three of his subjects, Jessica Drew (who had gained spider-like powers from her treatment), the girl's nanny Bova, and the evil cat-man Tabur (who later exterminated the mysically-born race of Cat-People).
Eventually the High Evolutionary deposited the Knights on their own planet (called Wundagore 2) and released them from his service. Then he built himself a small moon-like satellite and embarked upon the most ambitious project of his life, the construction of a detailed replica of Earth. Creating the world out of debris from the asteroid belt, the Evolutionary positioned it in the stable "Ghost LaGrange point" (between L7 and L8) in the Earth's orbit, on the opposite side of the sun from the Earth. The High Evolutionary called the world Counter-Earth and for years watched over it as a god. Then, when he reposed in his ultimately-evolved state, Counter-Earth was towed out of it's orbit by the planet-movers of Pegasus, an extraterrestrial company of cosmic contractors. Curious as to the nature of the beings who hired them, the Evolutionary accompanied the Pegasusians to the world of the Beyonders. Going mad, he attempted suicide, but sophisticated circuitry of his armor had been designed to protect him from all bodily harm. He then returned to Earth, hoping to find something strong enough to destroy his armor and end his misery. The High Evolutionary found such a being in the Hulk, whom he cajoled into wreaking his armor. The Hulk succeeded in demolishing most but not all of the Evolutionary's armor, just enough so that the Evolutionary could devolve into a mass of single-celled organisms. But as long a the Evolutionary's armor contains the complete genetic information for its manufacture, the High Evolutionary's condition is reversible. He has since restored to his normal physical state. The Evolutionary has gone mad from watching the birth of a Celestial, but has strangely not shown how he has gotten better. He did get better though.
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