Dr. Icarus Hicks is a neurosurgeon and Light Infantry combat field medic who later shifted into pure research.
During the 3rd Civil War, he was in college studying neurosurgery, and developing a lifelong addiction to caffeine, particularly in the form of coffee and Yangtze Cola. Upon graduation, he volunteered for the Light Infantry as a medic, but the fighting was over before he saw much action. He served his 4-year hitch mostly during the mopping-up phase after the ascension of Arthur Clarke. When his hitch was over, the mopping-up was pretty much done, and he used his GI Bill-equivalent benefits to go back to school and get a second degree in biochemistry, intending to go into research and study brain injuries with an eye towards curing the many paralyzed and deranged wounded veterans. When the Vin Shriak war came along 3 years later, he volunteered again, and served as a surgeon in a field hospital once more. One of his notable patients was Argus McCall, who Hicks fitted with extensive cybernetic equipment after a Bug Warrior ate off his arm and half his face. McCall became something of a pet project for Hicks, with many follow-up visits to tweak the machinery and circuitry that had turned McCall from a good soldier into an exceptional sniper.
During the Ascension War, he once again fought in the Light Infantry as a field medic, on the side of Joseph Smythe and his rump Federation. After fighting in the Kalintos campaign, he was again called upon to patch up Argus McCall after his patient was once more wounded in combat. It was while visiting McCall in the hospital that he met and befriended David Tibbetts, who also had a personal interest in McCall's case, and Tibbetts later introduced him to Herbert Gergenstein, Tibbetts' boss in Earth Fleet Intelligence. When the Federation went down to defeat in the war, and Gergenstein was granted New Madrid as his fiefdom as new head of House Vendo, Hicks joined him as a loyal retainer and personal physician. While working for House Vendo, he played a part in developing the neural-interface control system for the Gymelif combat suits.
Season 8 Alternate Timeline
In the chaos of the Eastern Bloc invasion that followed the Vin Shriak war, Dr. Hicks was serving on New Madrid when an enemy fleet appeared in orbit. When the flagship of the invasion force was hit and destroyed in the ensuing battle, Lord Admiral Im Jin-Bin commanding it bailed out and his escape pod was picked up by LI troopers after it crash-landed on the surface. Dr. Hicks not only ended up treating the captured EB admiral with shrapnel in his brain, saving the man’s life (and memory), but he physically stood over his bed and blocked the angry soldiers who came to execute him when it became clear that the Lord Admiral's forces were going to be successful in conquering New Madrid despite his capture. Once the planetary garrison surrendered (and of course the field hospital with it), the Lord Admiral (who turned out to be VERY well connected) thanked him by sparing his life during the post-war executions of pretty much anyone who had been in the Federation military in any capacity. Lord Admiral Im later became the Earl of New Madrid, and the two became life-long friends. When the earl’s youngest daughter was severely injured in an aircar accident, Hicks also saved her life and prevented her from being a vegetable. After that, he retired from active practice of neurosurgery and went into pure research.
He worked at an Imperial Research Institute, along with is lab assisstant Pablo Losada, focused on finding new therapies and treatments for soldiers and others who suffered traumatic brain injuries. During the course of this research, Dr. Hicks stumbled upon a way to use the drugs and healing nanobots he was working with to alter the structure of healthy brains to effect a very powerful sort of mind control. Fearing what misuse this concept could be put to by Imperial Security forces (who he found to be sniffing around his research note files), Hicks torched his lab, faked his own death, kidnapped Pablo Losada, and took him along as he went into hiding. With help from James Welthammer, he fled New Madrid and managed to make contact with the remnants of Earth Federation forces now fighting as a guerilla resistance movement led by Arthur Clarke. Hoping to see his mind control research used to topple the Middle Kingdom, Hicks asked for and recieved an audience with Arthur Clarke. However, one of Welthammer's mercenary crewmembers turned out to be Lwan Eddington in disguise, who used the opportunity to confront Clarke. Clarke and Eddington fought, and when some of Clarke's troops entered the combat with guns blazing, Hicks was caught in the crossfire and killed by accident. The secret of his mind control technique died with him.
Behind the Scenes
Icarus Hicks was the player character of Martin Hohner in Season Eight. His name comes from the poem "Icarus" by Edward Field, which also supplied much of the inspiration for his character and his planned plotline. However, his death was not planned, but was due to his player making an ill-timed visit to the house of a friend who turned out to not have internet access, so the weekly orders could not be sent in for the second week in a row, and the Storyteller killed off the character. Other aspects of the character were based on the retired-scientist father of another player. His Actor Avatar is Ed Harris. He appears on both the "Active" and "Obituaries" lists of notable figures because, while he canonically died in the season he was originally written for, since that enitre season was an alternate timeline, in the main timeline he's still very much alive as an NPC.