Absolon Zebardyn Mercator claims to have grown up near Ghent, Belgium. According to his own account, he left Belgium as a teenager after killing another child. Residing in Mutant Town, Mercator at one point intended to destroy the entire district out of sheer world weariness, but was convinced of the senselessness of his endeavor by Special Agent Lucas Bishop and Detective Ismael Ortega. Mercator is extremely powerful, even by the standards of omega-level mutants. Having accumulated extensive knowledge in many fields, including technology, biology and nuclear physics, he has taught himself to achieve virtually anything with a simple gesture, from repairing a toaster to healing the sick to causing a nuclear explosion. Though usually an equanimous individual, Mercator is believed to have taken a human life at least twice.
After the House of M fiasco Mercator joined other mutants who retained their powers at the Xavier Institute. While there he met and started a relationship with Lorelei (Lorelei Travis) and led a group of rag-tag mutants calling themselves the 198. Eventually Mercator led the group outside the protected area of the mansion's grounds and came into conflict with the X-Men. During this conflict a mutant known as Johnny Dee manipulated the mutant Leech into sapping Mercators power away, then manipulated Magma into killing Mercator. Once the other mutants saw that Mercator was dead they returned to the grounds with his body, eventually placing him in a coffin and giving him a memorial. At a memorial for Mercator Lorelei and Leech discovered that Mercators body had disappeared from the coffin and in its place dozens of butterflies of various colors came flying out.