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Bequeathed Power

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"My time has come. ... The ring, it has chosen you. Take it."
Abin Sur to Hal Jordan, Green Lantern: First Flight

Before a character dies or performs a Heroic Sacrifice, they give some or all of their power to someone else.

If the character does this by giving the recipient an item or weapon that bestows the powers, it may overlap with Take Up My Sword or I'm Dying, Please Take My MacGuffin (or both).

Alternatively, if the character directly transfers their power rather than giving their successor a physical item, this may be a subtrope of Powers as Programs, Energy Donation and Super-Empowering.

However, it's only really this trope when the deceased person isn't known for routinely transferring or lending powers to others - sometimes, their ability to transfer the power may have been entirely unrevealed until their death. Or perhaps it's an ability that can only be used as they approach death.

The character who bequeaths the power is often a mentor of the recipient. If so, expect the recipient to say that they didn't have to do this, often while sobbing.

The recipient isn't usually a Power Parasite or the possessor of a Cannibalism Superpower. For this trope the power is given, not taken, and those abilities aren't normally required to receive it.

Contrast Devour the Dragon, where a villain kills a subordinate to gain their power. Also see You Kill It, You Bought It.

As this is a Death Trope, unmarked spoilers abound. Beware.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Attack on Titan reveals that Grisha Yeager, Eren's father, got his Titan powers from Eren Kruger this way. It also overlaps with Almost Dead Guy.
  • In Beet the Vandel Buster, a whole team of busters pass their saiga on to Beet before their (apparent) Heroic Sacrifice.
  • Dragon Ball Z:
    • The Namekian Grand Elder was approaching the end of his life for the final time, and before he did finally pass away, he gave his status as the Grand Elder to Moori, meaning the Namekian Dragon Balls were tied to the latter's life.
    • Similarly, the dying Nail allowed Piccolo to absorb him, which gave Piccolo a massive power boost. In this case there wasn't any deep connection between them; Nail simply recognized that Piccolo was the last warrior-class Namekian alive and therefore had the best chance to defeat Freeza.
  • Silver Fullbuster in Fairy Tail passes his Ice Devil Slaying power to his son Gray before he dies.
  • Scar from Fullmetal Alchemist got his alchemy seals from his brother in a case of Blessed with Suck.
  • In Hunter × Hunter, Pakunoda gets afflicted with a curse that causes her to die if she uses her powers. She makes her way back to the organization she works for and uses her powers one last time, to insert what she knows about her attacker into their memories so they all have detailed information about this assailant.
  • In Part 1 of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure, Phantom Blood, William Zepelli transfers his Hamon power to Jonathan before he dies. In Part 2, Battle Tendency, the same thing happens with their grandsons: when Caesar is defeated by Wamuu, he infuses a bubble made from his blood with all of his remaining Hamon, which is absorbed by Joseph.
  • It's possible that Mikoto, the Red King in Season 1 of K, did this for Anna Kushina to succeed him — his last words are said to her, and she hears them even though she isn't there. She Awakens as the next Red King in the movie that comes between Seasons 1 and 2, and when that happens, she sees a vision of Mikoto giving her his "red" — his power as a King.
  • In The Lucifer and Biscuit Hammer, Hangetsu Shinome uses his wish as one of the Animal Knights to bequeath his phenomenal martial arts skills to Amamiya Yuuhi when he receives a mortal blow in battle.
  • In My Hero Academia, Izuku receives One for All from his idol, All Might, who suffered from a crippling injury several years ago and severely limits him to perform heroics, knowing that he'll have to retire sooner or later. Later chapters reveal that this is the nature of the One for All itself, as the original owner received a Quirk capable of stockpiling power, which he could pass on to another person that would make it even stronger, and so on. Izuku receiving the Quirk is the 8th time such a transfer has taken place. Izuku also gets the seven Quirks of the users who already possessed one said Quirks being , amped up to 11.
  • This is a mechanism of Devil Fruits in One Piece. Whenever the user dies, the power of the Fruit is reborn — such as in the case of Ace's Flame Flame Fruit.
  • In s-CRY-ed, Cherise Adjani's sole power is to allow whoever she loves most to be resurrected from any sort of death at the cost of her own life.
  • Combined with I'm Dying, Please Take My MacGuffin in Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V with Yuto passing his soul, his Superpowered Evil Side, and his ability to Xyz summon onto Yuya by giving him his most powerful and magical card after Taking the Bullet for him. It's unclear right now if Yuto can ever be revived since his soul is still around, but the scene where this transaction occurs plays out like an example of this trope.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!: In the Virtual World Arc, Tristan, Duke Devlin, and Joey's sister Serenity are forced into a three on one duel against a member of the Big 5 named Nezbitt. During the duel, Serenity constantly makes mistakes because she's never played before. Tristan sacrifices his monsters and lifepoints to save her, loses the duel, and gets dropped into a abyss. While not dead, he disappears for the rest of the episode. Before losing, he placed a face down card on the field, and for some reason it still remained on the field for the whole duel. When Serenity finally starts winning, and summons a powerful monster, she still needed one last power boost to win. Putting all their faith in Tristan's face down card, they activate it, revealing it to be the card they needed to win the duel.
  • In YuYu Hakusho close to the end of the Dark Tournament Genkai gives Yusuke her Spirit Wave Power before she sacrifices herself to Toguro. However, Yusuke (and possibly the whole team) used his reward for winning the tournament to bring Genkai back to life.

    Comic Books 
  • In Batman: Crimson Mist, the weakened vampire Batman is cornered with Alfred in the Batcave as Two-Face and Killer Croc attack Gordon. Alfred tells Batman to feed on him to take down the villains and save Gordon. Regretfully, Batman does so. Unfortunately, this heroic act ultimately only helps Batman regain enough of himself to walk into the sunlight.
  • In A Distant Soil, the original Rieken attempts to given Seren his memories as he is dying. This goes wrong, and Seren actually becomes Rieken in all but face and psychic ability.
  • Earth Two: Jay Garrick gets his powers of super-speed from a dying Hermes.
  • Iron Fist: In Immortal Iron Fist, when Orson Randall dies, he bequeaths his half of the Iron Fist chi to Danny Rand.
  • In Nexus, when the rest of the Merk left to Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence, all of their power and all of their blood were left to Drizripool, who in turn used it to empower Horatio Hellpop, the eponymous Nexus between the Merk and humanity. Until Drizripool went so mad that another Merk, GQ, returned to stop him.
  • Power Pack: The series is similar to Animorphs in that the kids get their powers from a dying alien, Whitemane, who was killed by the same aliens that kidnap their parents. They also inherit his Sapient Ship, Friday.
  • In Savage Dragon, the superhero Mighty Man works in this manner. The most common version is nurse Ann Stevens who was unwittingly given the Mighty Man power while treating the previous, dying host.
  • In CrossGen's Sigil universe, the eponymous Power Tattoo transfers, upon the death of the bearer, to their nearest blood relative. In addition to this being how Sephie of Meridian and Obo-San of The Path gained their respective marks, the later "Negation War" arc had shapeshifting Atlantean Capricia seduce Space Marine Sigil-bearer Sam Rey with the intent of bearing a child that could inherit Sam's extra-powerful Sigil, in addition to Atlantean powers. Unfortunately, that was the point where the company went bankrupt.
  • In White Sand, when Praxton dies in a burst of energy and Kenton suddenly sees his own power magify enormously, the latter assumes that his father somehow gave the power to him in the moment of his death. We don't get any "external" confirmation of the theory, though.

    Fan Works 
  • The Bridge:
    • Enjin ensnares Aria Blaze with tentacles and starts pulling her towards his core for assimilation. Monster X grabs her and desperately tries to save her. Sensing that if this keeps up, he'll just get pulled in with her, she passes him her necklace, the source of her powers, then shoves him away, letting herself get absorbed. The power boost allows him to transform into his Kaiju form and defeat Enjin.
    • Later, when Monster X starts losing his memories and getting possessed by Boreas, he somehow transfers his Kaizer Ghidorah personality to Aria's body, giving her a massive power boost.
  • Fate: Zero Sanity: After Saber defeats Caster, who is Natsu Dragneel, he decides to give her his beloved scarf before he dies. This later grants her his fire powers.
  • In a Hero: The Guardian Smurf mini-story, Hero bequeaths his Ki powers to his two daughters, Saviour and Miracle, upon his death.
  • In the Hetalia: Axis Powers After the End fanfic Gutters, Denmark performs a Heroic Sacrifice in order to let Sealand escape to safety. Through a mechanism that lets his body live three more days he bequeaths the remaining arable land of Denmark to Sealand, transforming him into a real nation.
  • Inner Demons: When Rarity is heavily wounded by Trixie, her last act before slipping into a coma is to transfer the Element of Generosity and all its power to Spike.
  • Pony POV Series:
    • During Dark World, Princess Cadence defeated Queen Chrysalis in battle. As Chrysalis was dying, she choose to transfer her remaining energy to Cadence, since the Changelings need a Queen.
    • When Dark World Discord was mortally wounded, his daughter Fluttercruel begged him to absorb her to save himself, but he instead transferred his remaining energy to her, transforming her into a full Draconequus.
    • During the Finale Arc, Nightmare Mirror shields Applejack from Nyarlathotrot's attack, then transfers her power to her. Applejack turns into an Alicorn as a result, Princess Veritas. Applejack gives the power up after literally kicking Nyarlathotrot out of the universe to resurrect Mirror, but as an innocent foal with none of her memories.
  • In Side Story of Support, the Support class' Secret Art, Relay, temporarily merges the user's level and stats with the ones of a fallen party member and grants them permanent use of one of their abilities when they pick up their weapon. Vega first uses this when Kureha Clyret gets her arm cut off by Legion, which is enough to overwhelm the otherwise unstoppable opponent.

    Film — Animation 
  • Both subverted and played straight in BoBoiBoy: The Movie. The titular hero's Robot Buddy Ochobot gave him and his friends the last of his energy after being fatally damaged by Bora Ra. This gives them all power upgrades to defeat the villains once and for all. After the battle, Ochobot turns out to be alive because Klamkabot transferred the last of his energy to him after the latter was convinced that Ochobot would be safe with BoBoiBoy from witnessing the power of their friendship.
  • In The Transformers: The Movie, Optimus Prime gives the Autobot's Matrix of Leadership to Ultra Magnus. It later goes to Hot Rod, which transforms him into Rodimus Prime, allowing him to easily defeat Galvatron and destroy the killer planet-robot Unicron from within.

    Film — Live-Action 
  • In The Covenant, a witch can give his power (and life force) to another by saying "I will you my power." The Big Bad tries to get the hero to do this to him in order to save his friends and girlfriend. However, the hero's mother convinces her weak and dying husband to give up his life and power in order to save their son. This 11th-Hour Superpower ends up turning the tide of battle, allowing the hero to win.
  • Combined with Take Up My Sword in Demon Knight, where the Key, and the powers that accompany it, are periodically passed on to a new bearer, and have been since the Crucifixion. Brayker tells Jeryline after he's passed on the key to her, that she'll have to do the same thing someday.
    Brayker: When the stars align, you'll know what to do.
  • In Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla II, Rodan sacrifices his life force to enhance Godzilla's power, allowing him to use the Red Spiral Ray.
  • In the final scene of Godzilla vs. Destoroyah, Godzilla Senior dies, but his power flows into his son. Junior matures into a full grown adult as a result.
  • In Godzilla, Mothra, King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack!, when Mothra is killed, her power flows into King Ghidorah to supercharge him.
  • In Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019), when Mothra is killed, her power flows into Godzilla to supercharge him.
  • In A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master, Kristen gives her dream powers to Alice before she dies so that Alice can fight Freddy Krueger.
  • A more down to earth example. In The Patriot (2000), Gabriel and other militia men return to find their hometown burned down to the ground and all of their loved ones with it. Desiring revenge for the death of his wife and the other townspeople, they all ride after the British officers responsible, and all except the villain, Gabriel and the preacher who married Gabriel and his wife are the last ones standing at the end of the shootout. Gabriel runs out of ammo and the villain is reloading his gun. The preacher attempts to shoot him, but is too slow and gets shot instead. Before he collapses, he tosses his loaded gun over his head into Gabriel's hands, and he quickly shoots the villain.
  • Sgt. Kabukiman N.Y.P.D.: An dying old Japanese man transfers the power of Kabuki to a cop.
  • In Transformers: Revenge of The Fallen, the dying Jetfire insists that Optimus repair and augment himself with Jetfire's jet engines and other parts for his fight with the Fallen.

  • In the Action Figures series, the superpowers of Carrie "Lightstorm" Hauser are the gift of a dying alien, who implanted his own energy-control devices into the palms of her hands. Much later, this results in Carrie being drafted into an interstellar war by the forces that the alien once served.
  • Animorphs begins with five human kids walking home at night when an alien ship crash-lands in front of them. The dying alien, an Andalite, warns them that Puppeteer Parasites are secretly infiltrating the planet, and gives them the power to "morph" into any living creature that they touch.
  • In Bright Shadows by Avi, the book starts with a poor kitchen girl running into a dying man in the castle that everyone else is ignoring. He gives her the last five wishes of legend in the land right before he dies.
  • Dragonlance: The New Adventures: The ghost gold dragon Theoran gives Sindri actual magical ability, making him a real wizard rather than a fake one. An unusual case in that Theoran was already a ghost, but Sindri and his companions helped him finally pass on.
  • In Dreadnought, the protagonist Danny Tozer is given the "mantle" of the titular Dreadnought after he suffers a fatal injury in a fight.
  • In Vasily Golovachov's The Envoy, the previous Envoy transfers his mission and powers (in the form of a Power Tattoo) to the protagonist, when he's ambushed and killed by the villains.
  • Geeks, Girls and Secret Identities has this as part of its premise — the protagonist, Vincent, discovers that the local superhero, Captain Stupendous, is acting strange because "he" is actually Vincent's crush, Polly, who just inherited Henshin Hero powers when their art teacher died of a heart attack.
  • In The Girl from the Miracles District, it eventually turns out that what little Healing Hands magic Nikita has was given to her by her grandmother in an attempt to save her from Irena.
  • In the climax of Kafka on the Shore, it appears as though Nakata has passed on his ability to talk to cats to Hoshino.
  • In the Malazan Book of the Fallen this is how Quick Ben became so powerful. The Aren cabal of mages, numbering twelve members, fled into the desert to escape pursuit by the Malazan army that had conquered their city. It is kept vague what really transpired in the desert, but somehow the youngest and thus fittest and strongest of them managed to convince the others to transfer their power and life force to him upon their deaths from thirst. It is heavily implied that Quick Ben had somehow managed to acquire the ancient, supposedly lost art of transferring souls between bodies, and taking the souls of eleven powerful mages into himself made him unparalleled in power and knowledge.
  • In Pact, the Behaim Circle, a family of chronomancers, does this on a generational scale-each member sacrifices some of their personal time over the course of their lifetimes into a family store of power, creating a reserve which the family as a whole can grant to a single member, if necessary.
  • In Sourcery, a wizard is about to die (Death is standing by, waiting) and gives his staff to his newborn son — then projects himself and his wizard powers into it. This causes no end of problems for the kid as he grows up.
  • In Stone of Tears, each Sister of Light — if she fails to convince a person with the gift to come train with them — passes her life force to another so that when the second one (or third one) attempts she has stronger Mind Control powers to add to her arguments.
  • Warbreaker: Standard practice with the Breaths that power the Functional Magic of Awakening, since everyone is born with only one and you need many to get any benefit. It's easy to give your breath to someone else with little downside, and Awakening usually allows you to re-use the breath afterwards, so as long as breath is passed on before death the amount in circulation only goes up. Whereas if you die, any breaths you had at the time die with you. At the very start of the story, the Court of the Gods are delaying the execution of a captured rebel leader because he's not breaking and giving them the thousand breaths he holds (it's not possible to just take breath from another, it has to be given), because they can't bring themselves to let that much breath go to waste. A few chapters later, a member of an Anti-Magical Faction has five hundred breaths forced on her by a (different) dying man, much to her horror (it's also not possible to refuse breath when given).
  • Whateley Universe: The original Champion passed the Champion Force on to Miss Champion, who in turned gave it Champ's other Kid Sidekick, Junior Champion, who became the new Champion. Since the creation of Whateley Academy (which both Miss Champion and the second Champion helped found), the school has tried to always have one student with the appropriate 'Avatar' power and a suitably heroic demeanor who is prepared to step into the role of Champion whenever the current one falls.
    • 'Forces' act like this in general. All of the other known Forces (including the Astarte Force, held by the former Miss Champion, now known as Lady Astarte AKA Headmistress Elizabeth Carson) except the 'Fred Force' were created directly or indirectly due to some incident involving the Champion Force, though there are always Mad Scientists and powerful wizards looking to find a way to form one some other way. We later learn that Solange may have the same unusual variant of the Avatar ability which Harry Holbrook, the first Champion, had, and that she may be able to create new Forces on her own.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In Angel, Doyle passes on his prophetic visions to Cordelia via kiss just before going off to heroically sacrifice himself.
  • Kamen Rider Drive, Chase, mortally damaged, hands his Chaser Signal Bike to Gou before trying to pull a Taking You with Me on Banno. It doesn't work, but Gou uses the Signal Bike to transform into Kamen Rider Chaser Mach, a combined version of his and Chase's Rider forms.
  • In Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger, Burai passes on his Dragon Medal and the weapon Zyusouken to his brother Geki before his life slips away, granting Geki control of Dragon Cesar and access to the Dragon Armor.
    • It plays out similarly in Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers, minus the whole dying part; Rita Repulsa is draining Tommy's Green Ranger powers via magic candle, but rather than let her win, Tommy transfers the remainder of his power to Jason.
  • In Tin Man, the Queen finds her possessed elder daughter killed her younger sister (Dorothy) using a Life Drain spell. The Queen pours her own power into Dorothy, reviving her. It's implied that the process depleted her of magic, leaving her and Oz defenseless against the Witch's reign of terror.

    Myths & Religion 
  • In Russian Mythology and Tales, Ilya Muromets receives his Super-Strength from the dying Svyatogor.
  • In The Bible, Elijah promises to bequeath his power to his disciple Elisha if Elisha sees Elijah Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence. Elisha does indeed witness this and inherits Elijah's mantle — figuratively and literally — as Elijah is taken into Heaven.
    • Moses did something similar to his successor, Joshua, before his death.

  • This is premise for Adam Beeson's The Magicians Daughter — a famous magician passes on the secrets of his craft to his daughter with his dying breath, which makes her wanted by his rivals. However, it's intentionally left vague as to whether the titular magician's secrets were merely stage magic or something more.

    Tabletop Games 

    Video Games 
  • In City of Heroes, Ralph Valetti somehow wound up killing The Invulnerable Ajax with a single gunshot, something that he has no idea how he accomplished given that Ajax was supposed to be immune to everything. In Ajax's dying moments, he stared into Ralph's eyes — and, according to the letter Ralph left in the Omega Team Time Capsule, that was when Ajax transferred his power of invulnerability to him.
    • In general, considering that players are free to write whatever history they want for their characters, it is entirely possible for a player character's powers to have been bequeathed to them.
  • Fate/Grand Order: In the climax of Lostbelt 4 - Yugakshetra, Asvatthaman, fading away due to him using too much power for his Time Travel spell, gives his Spirit Origin, and thus Shiva's power, to Karna to bring him Back from the Dead. Shortly afterwards, Rama who is cursed and thus cannot fight, gives him Brahmastra to Karna. The result of both these gifts is a new Super Form for Karna, so he can now challenge the god-like Arjuna Alter.
  • Final Fantasy V: Galuf gives his power (in other words job levels, abilities, and stats) to his granddaughter Krile after giving his all to fight off the newly-restored Exdeath.
  • In Final Fantasy VIII, Ultimecia hands her powers to Edea in the past after her Time Compression plot fails. As a timey wimey bally detail, due to the unrolling of the time compression where Ultimecia has the power of all the sorcerers in her future, Edea ends up receiving the power of all Sorcerers in history.
  • In Legend of Dragoon, after Lavitz is stabbed to death by Lloyd at the end of the first disc, he passes the Jade Dragoon Stone on to his liege and best friend Albert.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • Part way though Twilight Princess, Zelda sacrifices her physical form to save Midna's life by transferring... something to her. It's never specified what she gave her, but it's hinted to be the Triforce of Wisdom.
    • In Breath of the Wild, the four Champions, who were killed a century ago, give Link their special magical spells once he frees their spirits from the Divine Beasts. Mipha in particular notes that her magic would be wasted on herself now that she's a spirit.
  • Chapter 10 of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A's Portable: The Gears of Destiny ends with Stern and Levi handing all their remaining energy over to a protesting Lord Dearche after their battle with the Unbreakable Darkness left them nearly dead. For extra irony points, Lord Dearche is characterized as someone who only desires power, but now that she has that power, she can only scream in anguish after having lost her loyal retainers.
  • In Mega Man ZX, Giro gives up Model Z to Vent/Aile despite Z being the only thing keeping him alive from his fatal wounds. They then Double-Megamerge with Model X to become the titular Model ZX in an explosion of power that completely destroys the robots that were about to kill them.
  • In Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, Sam's blade is given to Raiden by Bladewolf at the request of Sam to destroy Senator Armstrong.
  • You can invoke this trope in Persona 5, which, in addition to fusing personas with guillotines, gives you a gallows which you can use to sacrifice one persona to power up another. The recipient inherits one random move from the sacrificed persona as well as an experience boost based on their power.
  • In Pokémon, the move Healing Wish will faint the user immediately. The Pokemon that takes its place is healed to full capacity.
  • In Zenonia 4, the hero lives in a typical RPG village with his dad. However he soon discovers that he is actually trapped in a fantasy reality inside his mind, but thankfully his future self gives him all his powers to Set Right What Once Went Wrong.

    Web Animation 
  • RWBY: When a Maiden dies, her power will pass to the person who is last in their thoughts, as long as that target is a young women below the age of 30. If their final thoughts are of someone who isn't eligible, the power will seek out a random young woman. This means that a Maiden can choose her successor if she can control her final thoughts. This also means that it's possible for young, female assassins to steal Maiden power if they can force a Maiden to think of her attacker as she's being slain. Cinder Fall obtains the Fall Maiden's power in Volume 3 through assassination whereas Winter Schnee obtains the Winter Maiden's power in Volume 8 through her predecessor's dying choice.

  • 180 Angel: If one of the lords of Hell has no blood heir, it's possible for them to pass on their power via a deal. This is how Chloe got her shapeshifting, she's the heir to Envy via a deal her mother made.
  • In first season's finale of Sidekicks, Darkslug transfers both the First Prana and all of his powers into Dream Girl. As a result, Dream Girl goes from a sidekick into the extremely powerful superhero Nightmare.
  • Sleepless Domain:
    • Heartful Punch believes that something like this happened to her as a side effect of being born to a still-active Magical Girl and her mother's powers leaving her and going into the baby. While HP's actual abilities are her own, indeed the only sign anything about her is different from the standard magical girl is her eyes neither match nor complement her hair and costume, she thinks her overall strength is higher as a result.
    • It's hinted that some of Tessa's power passed onto Undine as a result of Tessa giving up her powers to heal Undine. Undine has a rare second dream of the power granting nature, then soon pulls off a powerful water jet similar to one of Tessa's attacks: specifically, one she tried before, but deemed impossible. Like HP, the only real sign something changed with Undine is her pupils are now pink when she transforms.
  • In Spinnerette, this is implied to be how Tiger got his powers (though we never see the actual moment of transfer).

    Western Animation 
  • Adventure Time gives us Marceline, in a way. She was originally a vampire hunter (admittedly one who was half-demon); after killing all of the others, she fought with the the Vampire King. As she staked him, he managed to bite her, thus turning her into a vampire and keeping the species from being totally destroyed.
  • In Freedom Fighters: The Ray, Ray gets his light-based powers from his dying doppelganger from Earth-X, who was mortally wounded by Blitzkrieg and sent to Earth-1 by Earth-X's version of Vibe.
  • Wander over Yonder: The episode "The Fancy Party" has Hater trying to impress a dying alien queen so she can bequeath her power to him. She turns out to be possessed by a spirit who roams the galaxy looking for strong bodies to possess for a millennium, and Hater almost became its next victim.