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This article is about the second Aquaman. For the first, see Orin, and the third, see La'gaan.

Kaldur'ahm (Atlantean Kαλδυρ'αμ[1]) is the former protégé of Aquaman, operating as Aqualad by his king's side and as the first leader of the Team. He briefly worked under deep cover as the loyal lieutenant of his father, Black Manta, to bring down the Light and their Partner. Eventually, King Orin retired his heroic duties and Kaldur took over the mantle of Aquaman, joined the Justice League and became their leader by July 2018. In February 2019, he officially stepped down as the leader. He is also the Atlantean Minister of Justice.[10]

Personality

Kaldur'ahm is a very calm person, a trait unshared by the rest of his teammates. Soft-spoken and clear-headed, he has a tendency to think things through and formulate plans before taking any sort of action. He tries to see the good in all people and often acts as the voice of reason amongst his teammates, who were rarely—if ever—as cool-headed as he was. Kaldur always speaks in a formal manner, with an air of respect to all people, both young and old, and he demonstrates the utmost respect to all of the adult heroes of the Justice League, even when he disagrees with them. He holds Aquaman in the highest regard because he is his king.[11] Despite his calm behavior, Kaldur was still a teenager, and could at times behave rashly and impulsively. This was, of course, what led to the Team's first mission together.[12]

Kaldur'ahm was (eventually) considered by all his teammates to be the natural choice for team leader. He considered the position to be temporary and believed Robin would take command once he was ready. Although he had proven to be a natural leader, Kaldur seemed reluctant to take the job, calling it a heavy burden. Still, he accepted the role and had done rather well for the most part.[13]

However, due to his responsibilities as a leader as well as widely considered the rock and adult for everyone to always lean upon, Kaldur refuses to give himself a break when needed or come to terms with his own feelings and emotions, especially his grief over the losses of his friends and teammates, Aquagirl, Kid Flash and Superboy. Kaldur often puts his own wants and needs aside to focus on the task at hand, but also to avoid dealing with his grief.[10]

Physical appearance

Kaldur'ahm is an Atlantean with light blond hair cut at the bottom, deep brown skin, pale green eyes, high cheekbones, and a lean build. He possesses black, eel-like tattoos that run across his back and along his arms and glow a bright blue when using his powers. The visibility of the tattoos is due to the fact that Aqualad dropped out of Sorcery school before progressing to an advanced level; with more advanced sorcerers, the tattoos are only visible when used.[14] Kaldur'ahm also has webbed hands and feet and possesses a set of gills that allow him to breathe underwater. The set of visible gills is a trait not shared by most Atlanteans from Poseidonis, but common among the residents of Kaldur's hometown of Shayeris.[15][16]

As Aqualad, his superhero costume is a skin-tight, full-body, red-and-blue swimsuit that exposes his arms and feet. The costume has a set of small dorsal fins on the back of the calves. His uniform is outfitted with stealth-tech. Pressing the "A" symbol on his buckle changes his shirt to dark gray and his pants to dark blue.[13] Aqualad also carries a water pack that holds twin Water-Bearers and water.

After leaving the Team and joining Black Manta, he wore armor similar to that of his father. It had a disc-shaped helmet with two large, daunting red eyes that also allowed him to shoot plasma beams; there were small tubes that connected from the back of the head to his shoulders. The hands of his suit were webbed; the suit also sported fins on each of his legs. Hidden in his suit were compartments that allowed him to shoot rockets. He has also shaven the bottom half of his head.[3]

History

Early life

Atlantean art depicting Aquaman taking Aqualad under his tutelage.

Kaldur'ahm came from the Atlantean city of Shayeris, where he was raised by Sha'lain'a, a native of that city, and Calvin Durham, a henchman of Black Manta who was genetically altered to infiltrate Atlantis.[8] However, his biological father was Black Manta himself, though Kaldur was long unaware of this.[3]

Kaldur had a difficult childhood, but was mature and responsible even then. While his mother suffered from depression, he comforted her, and he took up odd jobs when his father struggled to find honest work. Despite these struggles, he remembers his childhood fondly.[17] He completed his education and began mandatory military service at age 12. At 14, he was transferred to the Conservatory of Sorcery in Poseidonis.[15]

In 2008,[18] Ocean-Master attacked Atlantis, causing Aquaman to battle with him. During the fight, Aquaman was defeated but was suddenly helped by the combined forces of Kaldur'ahm and Garth. Using a combination of Garth's magic and Kaldur's fighting abilities, the two attacked Ocean-Master. Though they were easily defeated, this allowed Aquaman time to recover and defeat Ocean-Master.[15] After the victory, Aquaman offered the boys the opportunity to become his protégés. Although Garth declined the offer and returned to his studies, Kaldur jumped at the chance to serve his king as his sidekick, becoming the "Aqualad".[5]

He has an impressive knowledge of the people or factions he encounters and has identified many such as Guardian, Sportsmaster, the Cult of the Kobra and Professor Ivo.

July 2010

Main article: Aqualad in July 2010

Aqualad, Superboy, Robin, and Kid Flash make a stand and the Team is born.

Aqualad eagerly expected to become a member of the Justice League, alongside Speedy, Robin, and Kid Flash. However, when it became clear that that wasn't happening, he decided to accompany Robin and Kid Flash to investigate Cadmus Labs. There, they discovered the Genomorph project and Superboy,[12] whom they liberated. The four youths stood up to their mentors and declared they were ready to prove themselves as heroes. They formed a covert ops team and were given their own headquarters in Mount Justice by Batman, and were introduced to Miss Martian.[11]

The next day, Aqualad, Kid Flash, and Robin set off on an unsanctioned mission to protect CEO Selena Gonzalez from the League of Shadows, but despite their best efforts, Gonzalez still vanished.[19] [20]

The Team's first success.

Aqualad, Robin and Kid Flash asked Speedy to join the Team but were rebuffed. The Team grew restless from the lack of missions but tried to get to know each other better. They fought Mister Twister, eventually defeating him, which renewed their faith in the Team.[2] The Team later went on a camp-out where they shared the stories of how they became heroes.[15][21]

The Team's first official mission was to investigate the stoppage of Venom production in Santa Prisca. While Robin initially took the lead, the Team eventually agreed Aqualad was their natural leader.[13] The Team was then sent to stop a plutonium robbery. They defeated Psycho-Pirate and Atomic Skull, capturing the former.[22]

August 2010

Main article: Aqualad in August 2010

Aqualad, along with the rest of the Team, began taking training sessions with Black Canary. The Team was assigned to guard shipments of the disassembled Amazo. Professor Ivo was able to retrieve and reassemble the robot, but the Team defeated Amazo and captured Ivo.[23]

Aqualad parries with Cheshire to protect Serling Roquette.

Artemis joined the Team just before they were assigned a mission by Red Arrow: to protect Serling Roquette from the League of Shadows while she worked on a counter-weapon to the Fog she developed. Following the successful mission, he officially welcomed Artemis to the Team.[24]

The Team took a class in espionage from Captain Atom. When the lecture proved boring, Captain Atom assigned them a cold case mission–to determine whether or not Air Force captain Nathaniel Adams was framed for the murder of his superior during the Vietnam War. The Team was ultimately successful in determining Adams' innocence, despite Aqualad being distracted by thoughts of Tula.[8][25]

The Team was later sent by Red Tornado to protect the Helmet of Fate following Kent Nelson's disappearance. While the Helmet was kept safe, Kent died defending it.[9] Two days later, Aqualad and the others attended Kent's funeral.[26]

Aqualad tries to reconnect with Tula.

Later, Batman ordered the Team to track Clayface through Gotham City while he worked on a way to defeat him.[27] Still distracted by Tula, Aqualad allowed the Team to engage Clayface against Batman's orders–the Team was soundly defeated, but saved by Batman at the last moment.[28] Batman questioned Aqualad's commitment to surface life. Aqualad returned to Atlantis to resolve his issues with Tula. He was heartbroken to discover she had begun a relationship with his best friend Garth. At the same time, Black Manta launched an attack on Atlantis, which Kaldur helped to repel.[5]

September 2010

Main article: Aqualad in September 2010

Aqualad spent his mission in Bialya mostly out of commission.

Following his experiences in Atlantis, Aqualad returned to the Cave with renewed determination.[5] Batman sent the Team to Bialya, where they encountered Psimon, who blocked their memories of the prior six months. The arid climate left Aqualad unconscious for most of the mission, but the others rescued him and Miss Martian restored his memories after he awoke questioning her presence in his mind.[29]

Aqualad invited Superboy and Miss Martian to visit Atlantis with him. They met Kaldur's parents, then went to the capital, where they helped thwart Ocean-Master's plot to steal Queen Mera's powers.[30][1]

Aqualad and Red Arrow team up to stop an assassination attempt against Lex Luthor.

Aqualad provided information for Red Arrow, who was on a mission in Taipei. When it became clear he was in over his head, Arrow called in Aqualad for help, and the pair successfully repelled the League of Shadows' attempt to kill Lex Luthor. The mission revealed the possibility of a mole being on the Team, which Aqualad decided to investigate without informing the others.[31]

Aqualad and Red Tornado supervised Miss Martian and Superboy's undercover mission to infiltrate Belle Reve Penitentiary.[32]

After some squabbling, Aqualad is unanimously voted to remain team leader.

Aqualad was present in the Cave when Red Inferno and Red Torpedo attacked. He was held captive in a cage of fire until rescued by Artemis. Like the rest of the Team, he was rendered unconscious by Red Tornado, who fled with his "siblings".[33] Following Red Tornado's apparent betrayal, Aqualad discussed his mole intelligence with Batman but was overheard by Superboy. He and the rest of the Team were furious with Aqualad for withholding information from them. Batman assigned the Team to investigate reports of gorilla attacks in India. Following advice from Captain Marvel, Aqualad was able to reassert his leadership during the mission. After defeating the Brain and freeing his Kobra-Venom-enhanced animal slaves, he was able to explain why he kept the information secret, to the Team's satisfaction.[34]

The Team was then sent to investigate reports of another Kobra-Venom operation in Bwunda. Miss Martian questioned Aqualad over his lingering feelings for Tula. The Team was ambushed and captured by the Brain's gorillas, but eventually freed themselves and helped the gorillas stage a rebellion against their captors.[35][36]

October 2010

Main article: Aqualad in October 2010

Donning the Helmet of Fate, Aqualad saves everyone.

The Team was sent to destroy the central control system being used by the Injustice League to attack a number of cities worldwide with giant plants. They successfully destroyed the control plant, but the ensuing battle with the Injustice League led Kaldur to don the Helmet of Fate, and with the arrival of the Justice League, was enough to force their enemies to surrender. Nabu begrudgingly released Kaldur from being Doctor Fate.[37]

Aqualad later led the Team, along with new friend Zatanna, on a mission to find Red Tornado. Aqualad was not convinced the robot had really betrayed them and was proved right. Together with Red Inferno and Red Torpedo, they were able to destroy Red Volcano and prevent the Yellowstone super-volcano from devastating the planet.[38]

During his therapy session, Aqualad struggles with insecurity and indecision.

Aqualad and the rest of the Team took part in a telepathic training simulation run by Martian Manhunter. It went wrong when Artemis's "death" caused Miss Martian to take control, causing them to forget it was not real. Leading the Team as Earth's last remaining heroes, Aqualad sacrificed his "life" to let the others escape the attack. When the simulation was ended, Aqualad, like the others, was left devastated.[39] The Team was given therapy by Black Canary. Kaldur felt he had failed by acting as a soldier rather than a general, and offered to resign as leader, only to withdraw it upon realizing there was no other suitable candidate.[40]

On Halloween, Aqualad discussed the possibility of a mole on the Team with Batman, Robin, Red Tornado and Red Arrow. Despite doubts from Arrow and Batman, he was confident the Intel was disinformation.[41]

November 2010

 
Mount Justice
November 5, 19:47 EDT

Klarion cast a spell to make all adults disappear, causing widespread pandemonium. In response to this, Aqualad, Kid Flash, and Robin relayed a message to the world imploring the older children to come together to take care of the younger kids. Within the Cave, Aqualad and Kid Flash discussed the severity of the situation and entertained the idea of using the Helmet of Fate. They ultimately decided not to as the situation was not severe enough to call for its employment.

Later on, Billy Batson entered the Cave, surprising the Team, who were cautious of the stranger. After Billy convinced the Team he was Captain Marvel and explaining to them the situation they were in, Aqualad formulated a plan to take advantage of Billy's abilities in order to rejoin the two separate worlds.[42]

 
Roanoke Island
November 6, post-00:01 EDT

Aqualad and the Team attacked Klarion at Roanoke. With his superior magic, Klarion was able to easily handle the Team. Zatanna was forced to don the Helmet of Fate, much to the disapproval of Aqualad. With the combined efforts of the Team, Doctor Fate, and the adults of the parallel dimension, Klarion momentarily submitted to the attacks, allowing Kid Flash to snatch the gem that acted as the catalyst for the spell. He threw it at Doctor Fate, who merged the two separate worlds simultaneously with Zatara. With his plans foiled, Klarion escaped.[42]

 
Mount Justice
November 11, 16:05 EST

Aqualad was present to celebrate Wally's sixteenth birthday. The celebration was cut short when Batman called the Team for a mission to destroy a number of ice fortresses that were causing extreme winter weather.[43]

 
Ice Fortress-1
November 11, post-16:05 EST

Aqualad, Aquaman, Robin, Batman, and Flash successfully destroyed the first ice fortress.[43]

December 2010

Main article: Aqualad in December 2010

Aqualad was pleased when Red Arrow decided to join the Team. They, along with Kid Flash and Artemis, were assigned to track Sportsmaster in New Orleans. They were unsuccessful in capturing Sportsmaster, the case he carried or discovering the villains' plans.[44]

The Team rejoices about their small victory.

Aqualad and the rest of the Team, now including Rocket, responded to an alert that Cheshire had been spotted. They found they had been lured into a trap, but were nonetheless successful in defeating their enemies and capturing the case that had eluded them previously. Realizing the trap meant there must really be a mole, Superboy, Artemis, and Miss Martian revealed their secret links to their enemies to the rest of the Team and found acceptance. The Team ambushed Lex Luthor, Queen Bee and their allies on Santa Prisca and captured several villains, though Luthor and Bee escaped.[45]

Aqualad tries to reach out to his confused friend.

Aqualad and the others returned to the Cave triumphant but were shocked to find Batman waiting to tell them the mole was Red Arrow. Despite Batman's orders to leave Arrow to the League, Aqualad took Artemis, Superboy, and Miss Martian to find Roy, leaving the others to investigate Red Tornado's mysterious shutdown. Aqualad found Red Arrow, who explained how he had been unconsciously programmed to betray them, and that the Justice League was now under Vandal Savage's control. The team infiltrated the Watchtower and freed the League from the Light's control.[46]

January 2011

 
The Watchtower
January 1, post-00:00 EST

The Team reconvened in the hall, just too late to prevent Vandal Savage and Klarion from getting away. As the clock struck midnight, and New Year, Kid Flash and Artemis, Superboy and Miss Martian, and Zatanna and Robin kissed. In response, Rocket gave Aqualad a peck on the cheek.[46]

2011-2014

Aqualad maintained leadership of the Team as its ranks expanded to include Aquagirl, Tempest, Lagoon Boy, Bumblebee, Batgirl, and Beast Boy.

2015

 
Mount Justice
February 16, 21:31 EST

While in the mission room with Nightwing, Kid Flash, and Artemis, Aqualad received a new mission from Batman. The archaeologist Helena Sandsmark has been abducted from an excavation site near Olympia, Greece. Local authorities were unable to find her, and Wonder Woman requested that the Team investigate the abduction. Although Aqualad noted that Bumblebee and Lagoon Boy were on special assignment, he assembled the Team and dispatched Alpha Squad to Olympia, under the command of Artemis.[47]

 
Mount Justice
February 17, post-01:41 EST

Alpha Squad had been unable to prevent Sportsmaster from absconding with a mysterious artifact, but Artemis managed to plant a tracer on Sportsmaster and retrieved a tablet computer belonging to Helena, which was receiving intermittent transmissions from the kidnapped archaeologist. Kaldur noted that there is more to the abduction than a simple kidnapping. Nightwing managed to trace the tracer's signal to Siberia, and Aqualad dispatched Alpha Squad under Superboy's command.[47]

 
Mount Justice
February 17, post-05:59 EST

Alpha Squad had successfully subdued Sportsmaster and retrieved two artifact fragments. The Team members noted that the fragments fit together, appearing to be a Babylonian statue, and may have sigils inscribed into them. Aqualad agreed and dispatched Aquagirl to the Metropolitan Museum of Art to further study the fragments.

Aqualad mused that many of their enemies, Cheshire, Sportsmaster, Killer Frost, and Icicle Jr., had united to locate the statue fragments. He concluded that it must be another operation of the Light. Nightwing noticed that the equipment encountered in Siberia came from LexCorp, and Batman informed the Team that Luthor was currently overseeing a mining operation on Santa Prisca.

With the Light's new dig site now revealed, the Team mobilized a mission to the island. They would rendezvous with Aquaman, who was already on-site to investigate the sudden rise of toxic metals in the soil and water.[48]

 
Santa Prisca
February 17, 14:36 ECT

Alpha Squad, led by Aqualad, fought their way through Bane's henchmen, Manta Troopers, and LexCorp robots. There was no sign of Aquaman, but Batman informed the squad that Aquaman's last transmission originated near Atabey's Shrine. Upon reaching the shrine, the Team encountered Bane. Bane taunted Aqualad and threw Aquaman's belt buckle at his feet. With combined teamwork, Bane was defeated, and Alpha Squad entered the shrine.

The Team fought its way through the shrine, which Aquagirl indicated was an 8th-century B.C. temple dedicated to Atabey, a water and fertility goddess, and eventually made its way underground to find Aquaman, held captive in a force field by Black Manta and Lex Luthor.

Manta and Luthor attempted to escape with the third statue fragment on the Manta-Flyer, but the squad managed to disable it by overloading its generators. Manta fought the Team to allow Luthor to escape in a hovercraft but was defeated. Before he lost consciousness, he despaired at Aqualad's blind loyalty towards Aquaman and challenged the Sea King to reveal the secret he kept from Kaldur for years. Aquaman deflected the challenge, telling the Team to pursue Luthor. Aqualad agreed, albeit with slight hesitation and much to Manta's disappointment.

Alpha Squad and Aquaman caught up to Luthor's hovercraft but were unable to apprehend him. However, he left the statue fragment behind when trying to escape. With their enemies defeated, Aqualad returned Aquaman's belt buckle but told him they had things to discuss.

Back at the Cave, Aquaman and Aqualad had a heated discussion about Aquaman's secret. Orin suggested that Kaldur talks to his parents, but Kaldur insisted on talking with him. The king finally admitted that Calvin Durham was not Kaldur's biological father. He kept it from Aqualad because he did not want him to seek out his birth father. Kaldur pressed Aquaman on his true identity, but the truth was written on Orin's face—Black Manta was his father. Disgusted, Kaldur walked away from Orin and ignored his entreaties.

Aqualad rejoined the others, who had learned more details about the statue fragments. Tula's research indicated that it is from the 2nd Millennium BCE, and was engraved with ancient Babylonian cuneiform, and what Nightwing recognizes as something similar to a circuit board. The statue was of Tiamat, a creature of chaos from the myth of Tiamat and Marduk, an ancient Mesopotamian tale which told of the demigod Marduk who defeated the Chaos god Tiamat with lightning and rain.

Nightwing's repair program pieced together garbled transmissions received during the Santa Priscan mission, and the Team discovered that all the fragments had been located. Helena was worried that her captors would eliminate her since she is of no further use. She overheard her captors mention Gotham City. Alpha Squad, led by Nightwing, set off to investigate Gotham's docks.[49]

 
Mount Justice
February 17, post-20:20 EST

Alpha Squad had rescued Helena Sandsmark and captured the final fragment. On further study, Helena realized the new fragment was fake, while Tula had gone missing. Reviewing surveillance footage, the Team discovered that Klarion, who had the real final fragment, had stolen the fragments and Aquagirl had pursued him through his portal to parts unknown. The footage also revealed Tula had found out that Tiamat was, in fact, an alien weapon.

Eventually locating Tula in Bialya thanks to Zatanna's locator spell, the Team set out to rescue their comrade.[50]

 
Bialya
February 18, 09:16 UTC+2

Aqualad led Alpha Squad, who fought their way to Marduk's temple. Finding the path forward split, Kaldur called in Nightwing and Beta Squad to save time. Deep in the temple, Alpha encountered Teekl. Kaldur, attacked the cat, retrieving the Tablet of Destiny it carried. Klarion then arrived with Blockbuster. Kaldur soon realized the tablet was key to defeating Tiamat. Alpha fought and defeated Blockbuster, and Klarion's attempt to take back the tablet resulted in its destruction. With his prize gone, Klarion left, leaving Aqualad dismayed at the loss of their only weapon against Tiamat.

Meanwhile, Beta found Tula and a reawakened Tiamat. Beta was able to defeat Tiamat's various incarnations and free Aquagirl, who sacrificed her life to render Tiamat dormant once more. Aqualad and Tempest arrived soon after and freed Tula's body from the rubble.[51]

 
Mount Justice
February 18, 2015, 09:59 EST

Aqualad left a message for Nightwing, passing on the mantle of leadership to him, telling him that he had many questions and he did not know where the answers would take him. He admonished Nightwing to spend time with the ones he loved.[51]

Aqualad and Nightwing forge a plan.

Aqualad eventually parlayed his grief into a mission to infiltrate the Light by working for his father, in hopes of learning more about their plans and their new Partner. This deep cover was done in absolute secrecy to minimize the danger of discovery.[52] Aquaman was not informed.[3]

January 2016

 
Metropolis
January 5, 17:09 EST

With a group of Manta Troopers and Kroloteans, Kaldur welcomed an escaped Krolotean to his Manta-Flyer. He then ordered for the ship to dive.[3]

 
Malina Island
January 6, 07:10 HAST

Kaldur arrived at the island base and informed his father that the last of the Kroloteans had been evacuated. He then proceeded to phase two.

While performing a security check, Kaldur noticed the lack of response from Sector 3 guards (who had been Knocked out by Batman). Announcing to the Manta Troopers that the base had been infiltrated, he blasted the water with his helmet's plasma beams to eliminate the undersea infiltrators, narrowly missing Aquaman and Lagoon Boy. The fight was on, with the heroes facing against the manta men and Kroloteans.

Aqualad confronts his old friends.

During the melee, a mysterious figure calling himself "Partner" planted an alien bomb underneath the base and informed Kaldur that he had five minutes to evacuate his men. Kaldur called for a strategic retreat but failed to stop Aquaman from knocking off his Black Manta mask. Kaldur revealed himself to his former mentor and friends, who were all in shock. Aquaman, in particular, hadn't wanted to believe Nightwing when he informed them of Kaldur's defection.

Kaldur spat hateful words at them, blaming them for the death of Tula, and Aquaman for not informing him about his true parentage. Claiming that he now answered to Black Manta, Kaldur launched a shoulder-mounted rocket at the assembled group. Superman absorbed the explosion, but Kaldur escaped.

Nightwing and Superboy caught up with Kaldur, who gave them a choice—either they take him prisoner, or they defuse the alien bomb. Superboy attacked him to prevent his escape, but Kaldur subdued him and fled by swimming underwater. He grabbed on to the departing Manta Sub and left the island before the bomb detonated.[3]

 
North Pacific
January 7, 07:07 HAST

The Manta-Flyer docked with Black Manta's bigger sub, and Kaldur reported the mission results to his father. Black Manta was pleased with his performance but was disappointed when Kaldur opined that Aquaman was unlikely to have died in the explosion.[3]

March 2016

 
Cape Canaveral
March 19, 20:59 EDT

In the sea, the Manta-Flyer towed a missile platform into position. Kaldur'ahm and several Manta Troopers left the craft to man the platform and prepared it to target the rocket carrying the Earth-Mars communication satellite.

Lagoon Boy discovered the missile platform and attacked, prompting the Manta Troopers to begin invading the beach. Kaldur'ahm disabled Lagoon Boy but decided to take him prisoner for the Light's Partner rather than kill him. He then ordered the platform to open fire. When the initial missiles were destroyed by Superboy on the bioship before they could damage the rocket and Nightwing and Artemis were able to turn the tide against the Manta Troopers, Kaldur'ahm ordered the platform to go to the maximum rate of fire and left to take command of the surface forces.

Kaldur'ahm emerged from the water near Nightwing and Artemis and, despite Artemis trying to convince him otherwise, attacked them with a hard-water serpent. The rocket then launched. Kaldur'ahm told his troopers the mission could still succeed and shot a small suit-mounted rocket at the rocket. Artemis destroyed the rocket with one of her own. Kaldur then charged at Artemis, knocking Nightwing aside. He disarmed Artemis and apparently stabbed her in the chest with a water sword, but actually made the blade curve around her body. As Artemis pretended to fall dead, Kaldur'ahm ordered his men to move out, calling the mission a failure. The rocket then exploded, to Kaldur'ahm's surprise, and he and his men withdrew into the water.[53]

 
Atlantic Ocean
March 20, 00:00 EDT

In the Manta Sub's docking bay, Kaldur'ahm disembarked the Manta-Flyer and was greeted by Black Manta, who congratulated him for capturing Lagoon Boy, killing Artemis, and destroying the satellite. Kaldur'ahm admitted that his team was not responsible for the satellite's destruction, and his father explained that the mission was a test to see if he would take credit for a victory that was not his, having arranged for a bomb to be smuggled aboard days earlier. Kaldur'ahm had passed and was deemed ready for the next level.[53]

 
Blüdhaven
March 20, 04:00 EDT

Kaldur'ahm arrived at a warehouse to find Nightwing waiting for him and was soon followed by Wally and Artemis. They discussed the success of their plan to fake Artemis's death, and Nightwing confirmed no-one else knew about it or the fact Kaldur was working undercover for them. Nightwing gave Artemis a Glamour Charm to change her appearance to everyone except the four present. She and Kaldur then went out to a pier and boarded the Manta-Flyer.[53] They devised a role for her: she was to go undercover as Tigress, his new right hand.[54]

 
Gulf of Mexico
March 23, 16:03 EDT

In the brig of the Manta-Sub, Kaldur'ahm confronted Lagoon Boy, who was angry about Kaldur's betrayal. At Black Manta's orders, he was to be moved, but Manta denied his son the opportunity to do it himself, as he has another mission for him. Kaldur instead injected a sedative in Lagoon Boy, that also contained a tracer. Manta's mission for Kaldur was one to solidify his trust with his masters in the Light. His mission was to capture Blue Beetle.

Kaldur had a strike team ready, consisting of Tigress, Icicle Jr. and the Terror Twins. They left in the Manta-Flyer, headed for El Paso. Kaldur had to straighten his crew out, as they did not have their minds on the mission.[54]

 
El Paso
March 23, 18:18 MDT

Kaldur's strike team attacked Blue Beetle and Impulse as the two were in the mountains outside of El Paso. Kaldur kept out of the fight, observing from a ledge. After Beetle and Impulse defeated the strike team, Impulse confronted Kaldur, taking an alien tracking device Kaldur had used to track Blue Beetle. He and Beetle escaped and Kaldur did not pursue.

Aboard the Manta-Flyer, he revealed to his team that he had another device that could track the one Impulse took. That device was meant to be taken, and it would act as a Trojan horse disabling Cave security at Mount Justice.[54]

 
Mount Justice
March 23, post-21:05 EDT

Kaldur slipped into Mount Justice through the hangar and was met by Sphere, who rolled back after Aqualad touched her. He let his teammates take out all heroes, but he forbade them to kill anyone.

Tommy and Icicle defeated Superboy and knocked him unconscious. They moved on to the Mission Room, where Tigress and Tuppence Terror had subdued Nightwing and Impulse. Blue Beetle was ready to engage in battle but Kaldur persuaded him not to by bringing in a bomb, similar to the one that destroyed Malina Island, and saying it would go off if his finger was removed from a dead man's switch. A collar was placed on Beetle, but before the strike team left, Kaldur confronted Nightwing, punched him in the gut and warned him not to follow. Unbeknownst to the strike team, Kaldur had slipped a flash drive to Nightwing when he punched him.

On the beach, Beetle suddenly attacked after the Scarab had disabled his inhibitor collar and taken control, causing Kaldur to drop the switch and revealing he was bluffing. Beetle charged Kaldur, who hit Beetle at point blank range with a blast of magic, allowing Tigress to shoot a sedative dart that caused Beetle to pass out. Aboard the Manta-Flyer, Tommy and Icicle Jr. questioned Kaldur's resolve, which prompted Kaldur to order Tigress to detonate the bomb.[54]

 
Atlantic Ocean
March 24, 03:17 EDT

Upon returning to the Manta-Sub, Black Manta requested Kaldur accompany him. He took Kaldur to his private quarters, where the members of the Light appeared on video screens. Manta introduced Kaldur, after which Ra's al Ghul officially welcomed Kaldur into the Light and told him he would soon meet the Partner.[54]

 
Pacific Ocean
March 30, post-18:28 HAST

Kaldur met with the Partner and learned it was the Reach. The ambassador gave Kaldur a tour of the Reach's ship, explaining their research and introducing him to the scientist. Kaldur learned that the Reach was studying the Meta-Gene, that Lagoon Boy was in one lab as one of several subjects in which they were trying to stimulate dormant powers within, and that Beast Boy and Impulse were in another lab, being studied to see how those with active Meta-Genes reacted to stress. As the scientist entered the third lab, Kaldur inquired if Blue Beetle was being held there, to which the ambassador told him that Beetle was of the Reach and what they were doing was not Kaldur's concern. Kaldur assured the ambassador that more test subjects were on their way.

When members of the Team infiltrated the Reach ship, Kaldur encountered M'gann, who attacked Kaldur telepathically, causing him to scream and fall to his knees. As this happened, M'gann learned the truth about Kaldur working in deep cover, but her attack left him in a catatonic state. Tigress arrived on the scene and, after a brief confrontation, Tigress threw a smoke bomb and disappeared with Kaldur.[55]

April 2016

 
Atlantic Ocean
April 9, 00:13 EDT

Aqualad remained in a catatonic state. At Black Manta's request, Vandal Savage had Psimon start piecing together Aqualad's shattered mind.[56]

 
Atlantic Ocean
April 9, 01:16 EDT

Psimon was about to begin repairing Kaldur's mind, but Tigress, who Black Manta asked to stay with Psimon and Kaldur, secretly took him out with a drugged dart. When Manta returned, Tigress suggested that Miss Martian may have placed a telepathic virus in Kaldur's mind, and recommended that they capture Miss Martian and force her to restore Kaldur's mind. Manta agreed but insisted that Deathstroke accompany Tigress to ensure her safety.[57]

 
Atlantic Ocean
April 9, post-07:20 EDT

Miss Martian was captured and brought to the Sub. Black Manta restrained her with a collar and ordered her to fix Kaldur's mind or die. Her telepathic ability was selectively activated to do this. Communicating telepathically, M'gann told Tigress her intrusion in Kaldur's mind might be considered a threat, so Tigress told M'gann to bring her in as well.

Kaldur's damaged mind was represented by Atlantis in ruins. M'gann and Artemis were attacked by a wraith appearing as Tula. M'gann warned Artemis to remember that nothing in the mindscape was real, but her overwhelming guilt let her fall victim to phantom Tula's attacks. Unable to help, Artemis sought out Aqualad himself. She ultimately found him, but his facial features were missing. Speaking in Atlantean, Aqualad muttered that all was lost, but Artemis brought him back from the brink. Now restored, Aqualad was brought to M'gann's side. M'gann apologized and worked with him to piece his mind back together.

When Manta returned to check on Miss Martian's progress, he accused her of stalling but noticed she had made progress when Kaldur called out to his father.[57]


May 2016

 
Atlantic Ocean
May 27, 01:00 EDT

Aboard the Manta-Sub, M'gann had successfully restored Kaldur's mind but, unknown to Black Manta and Deathstroke, Kaldur was playing possum so he and Artemis could figure out how to save M'gann's life. Manta entered Kaldur's quarters, telling Miss Martian his patience had run out and she had 24 hours to cure his son or die, forcing Kaldur and Artemis to put a plan into action to help M'gann. M'gann didn't want the two blowing their cover but Kaldur telepathically told her he wouldn't allow her life to be risked.

Tigress told Deathstroke she needed to stretch her legs and get coffee, leaving the room so she could head to the control room to deactivate M'gann's collar. Cheshire suddenly entered the room through a ventilation shaft, knocking out a Manta trooper who was subbing for Tigress. M'gann then blocked Cheshire's attempted attack on Kaldur. Cheshire took down Manta troopers who tried to intervene and destroyed the door's controls with her sword. She and M'gann tussled over a trooper's laser blaster, leading to the camera from which Deathstroke was watching being shot. M'gann tried to explain things to Cheshire but she knocked M'gann down. Kaldur then rose and explained to Cheshire that Artemis was not really dead and was, in fact, on board the ship. Not believing Kaldur, Cheshire grabbed him in a chokehold.

Black Manta ultimately intervened, blasting the door open before his troopers could open it with an explosive. He found Kaldur lodged under the door but was attacked by Cheshire and struck with an electrocuting disc. Cheshire was about to move in on Kaldur, but a revived M'gann, whose inhibitor collar had been deactivated, intervened.

M'gann took Aqualad, Artemis, Cheshire, and Sportsmaster—who had joined Cheshire in sneaking aboard the Manta-Sub—into a mindscape of Artemis's room. She then revealed to Cheshire and Sportsmaster that Aqualad was working in deep cover, that Artemis's death had been faked and she was posing as Tigress. Feeling her sister's mental presence, Cheshire dropped her grudge against Aqualad, who thanked her for keeping his and Artemis's ruse going.

Released from the mindscape, Miss Martian allowed Cheshire to flee and declared she wanted revenge on Black Manta. Kaldur then tackled Miss Martian to prevent her attack, but Miss Martian escaped by phasing out of the room, as Black Manta embraced his son.[58]

 
Caribbean Sea
May 28, 17:00 EDT

Black Manta presented Kaldur before Vandal Savage and the Reach ambassador, telling them Kaldur's mind was restored and that the shock of seeing his father's life in danger was the catalyst that cured him.[58]

June 2016

 
Santa Prisca
June 19, 00:00 ECT

Kaldur was put in charge of security for a summit between the Light and the Reach. When he tried to speak up, Black Beetle ordered his silence but Vandal Savage said Kaldur could speak, given nobody had sacrificed more for the Light and the Reach than he did. Kaldur responded to the Ambassador's question about allowing the Team to access the Bialyan temple, saying that if the Light had known the Reach had sent the Scarab to earth in ancient times, the Light might have made the connection to the temple and guarded it better, a point to which the Scientist agreed, but she was cut off by the Ambassador.

After words turned to blows between the Light and the Reach, Kaldur intervened between Black Beetle and Black Manta, reminding everyone they shouldn't allow petty disagreements to come between them, lest they are distracted from their true enemies, the Justice League, and their sidekicks. Manta willingly stood down while Beetle grudgingly did so. Kaldur then asked what would happen when the Justice League members on Rimbor returned to Earth, but Savage assured him that some well-placed bribes would ensure their conviction.

At that point, Ra's al Ghul approached Tigress and pulled her Glamour Charm, revealing her true identity of Artemis. The Ambassador and Beetle concluded because Artemis wasn't really dead, that Kaldur was in cahoots with her and duped everyone in the Light, including his father. Ambassador ordered Beetle to kill Kaldur and Artemis but Manta stepped in front of Beetle. Deathstroke then shot both Kaldur and Artemis in the chest, saying the Light took care of its own. As Manta tended to his dying son, Kaldur declared he had already won, then a dead man's switch fell from his hand.

A holographic message from Aqualad played, in which he revealed that the Reach had thought the Light was working for them but had, in fact, been advancing its own agenda. He revealed how the Light had merely lured the Reach to Earth, then sabotaged their plans as a means to become rulers of the galaxy. Both Savage and the Ambassador were angered by this revelation, but when Savage stated that he had possession of the key to the Warworld, Aqualad and Artemis rose to their feet. "Deathstroke" then revealed her true identity as Miss Martian, other Team members arrived and Aqualad lectured Savage on the true meaning of friendship.

When Savage declared the Light had contingency plans and multiple League of Shadows agents showed up, Aqualad noted Savage's biggest weakness was that he continually underestimated the young heroes. Several of the Shadows revealed themselves to be Team members and all engaged in battle, forcing Savage into a retreat as he escaped with Klarion.

Aqualad then confronted his father, who could not believe his son had betrayed him. Aqualad said he was conflicted given his father's noble qualities, but as long as Manta embraced evil, Aqualad would stand against him. Saying his son needed discipline, Manta attacked but Aqualad countered his assault. Manta remarked he would teach Kaldur to be ruthless, and Kaldur's response was to use a two-hit combo with a water mace to knock his father unconscious.

The Team claimed a decisive victory, although Aqualad lamented that Savage and Klarion escaped, as did Black Beetle and the Scientist, and that Queen Bee and Lex Luthor never showed. Nightwing, Kid Flash, and Artemis all reassured Aqualad that he had claimed a decisive win and that it had been one of the Team's best nights ever, probably the best since the outing at Cadmus more than five years ago, and that he should enjoy the moment because he earned it. Aqualad glanced back at his father and his expression softened.[59]

 
The Watchtower
June 19, 05:24 EDT

Aqualad was congratulated by Aquaman and Red Tornado for his successful deep cover mission as Nightwing turned the leadership of the Team back to Kaldur. Aqualad noted Nightwing had been a successful leader in trying times and Nightwing said he wanted that burden off his back. A boom tube suddenly appeared as an unconscious Black Canary, Black Lightning and Captain Marvel fell out of it. The Warworld was then activated and left Earth's orbit.[59]

 
New York City
June 20, 06:16 EDT

The Team raided the Reach flagship, with Aqualad, Blue Beetle and Green Beetle reaching the bridge. Blue and Green Beetle subdued the Scientist and the Reach crew members as Aqualad engaged Black Beetle. Although Black Beetle was able to take down Aqualad and destroy Green Beetle's scarab, his attempt to do the same to Blue Beetle failed and Blue Beetle was able to destroy Black Beetle's scarab. Aqualad congratulated Jaime Reyes on his victory, but Jaime alerted Aqualad that he had learned about the Reach's plan to destroy the Earth.[60]

 
Metropolis
June 20, 08:16 EDT

When magnetic field disruptors planted by the Reach threatened the Earth, Aqualad joined 39 other heroes of Earth in a briefing in Metropolis. The heroes would use a computer virus provided by Lex Luthor to safely disable the disruptors. The heroes were paired off with another into twenty squads: one member would run interference against weapons guarding the disruptors, allowing the other to get close enough to plant the virus.[60]

 
Atlantic Ocean
June 20, 09:32 AST

Aqualad was paired off with Lagoon Boy, as Sigma Squad. He offered to distract the Beetle-tech drones, while Lagoon Boy planted the countermeasure. Lagoon Boy commented that only now is Kaldur trusting him. Kaldur disagreed, as he had entrusted La'gaan with his position on the Team when he left it. With Lagoon Boy mollified, the Atlanteans implemented their plan. Aqualad provided cover, while Lagoon Boy forced his way towards the disruptor, easily defusing it.[60]

 
North Magnetic Pole
June 20, post-13:48 UTC

Aqualad arrived with other Team members in the Bio-Ship as Flash, Kid Flash and Impulse were able to counter a disruptor that had gone chrysalis and thus stabilize Earth's magnetic field, but it came at the cost of Wally West's life. Aqualad and the others grieved the loss of their friend.[60]

 
Mount Justice
June 20, 23:16 EDT

As the League members who were on Rimbor returned to Earth, Aqualad and the rest of the Team arrived. He told the Leaguers the crisis had passed, but at a cost.[60]

July 2016

 
The Watchtower
July 4, 21:16 EDT

Aqualad summoned the Team members to the Watchtower Mission Room, where Batman informed them that the Watchtower would serve as the Team's headquarters because the Team had earned the right to fight side by side with the Justice League. Aqualad then assigned Superboy, Miss Martian, and Beast Boy to Alpha Squad to go to Mars to help Green Beetle; Tigress, Bart Allen (who took up the mantle of Kid Flash), Bumblebee and Guardian to Beta Squad to search for evidence of LexCorp bringing out the Reach drink under a different name, and the others to Gamma Squad to investigate Batgirl's lead on Vandal Savage's next move.[60]

2017

Kaldur'ahm took on the mantle of Aquaman following Orin's retirement.[61] He joined the Justice League around December 2017.[62]

2018

At some point, he joined with other leading members of the Justice League and the Team to form a secret group to oppose the Light. They plotted a breakaway from the League to form a new covert team which would secretly be coordinated with the League.[63]

 
The Watchtower
July 27, 19:57 EDT

Aquaman called an emergency meeting and invited Miss Martian, as Team leader, to observe the proceedings, though Kaldur'ahm admitted discussions would be difficult. During the meeting, Aquaman discussed meta-human trafficking and how the League's efforts to stop it had been restrained by restrictions placed on the League by the United Nations, thanks to persuasion by Secretary General Lex Luthor.

Batman and Aquaman debated whether or not the League had outlived its usefulness. Batman tendered his resignation, despite Aquaman's protests, then Green Arrow followed suit and others who were present via hologram did likewise. After Batman and Green Arrow departed the conference room, Black Lightning informed Aquaman he was resigning from the League, but he had nothing to do with Batman's scheme. Aquaman said that he understood Lightning's reasons.[6]

 
Star City
September 10, 12:01 PDT

Aquaman assisted Rocket, Flash and Shazam when Sportsmaster and Abra Kadabra attempted to free Brick and another meta-prisoner while they were being transported to Belle Reve. Though the Justice Leaguers succeeded in capturing Kadabra and keeping Brick in custody, Sportsmaster escaped with the other prisoner. When Brick bemoaned his poor luck, Aquaman placed an inhibitor collar on him and told Brick he had no idea how lucky he was.[63]

 
Gotham City
September 26, 02:24 EDT

Aquaman met with Batman, Nightwing, Oracle, Robin, Miss Martian and, via hologram, Wonder Woman in the Batcave and gave his report about what happened in Star City. The others shared their reports on missions that allowed them to neutralize a meta-human trafficking operation run by Branchwater Security, a front company controlled by Stagg Industries. After everyone shared information that led to the heroes taking down Simon Stagg, Wonder Woman observed that they were leading six separate teams who were unaware that they were working together. When she asked if everyone was prepared to lie about this situation, Aquaman shared a meaningful look with Miss Martian but had no response.[63]

 
Taos
September 29, 09:00 MDT

Aquaman appeared at a press conference, broadcast by GBS, at the Meta-Human Youth Center, which STAR Labs opened with the Justice League's cooperation. He explained the center is for children and teens who have been victims of meta-human trafficking. Aquaman introduced the center's director, Eduardo Dorado Sr., who discussed the center's purpose.[64]

 
Taos
November 04, 08:24 MST

Aquaman held a press conference at the Meta-Human Youth Center, revealing the role of Goode Goggles in meta-human trafficking, announcing that the League had shut down the trafficking centers and brought the rescued meta-humans to the center. He called on the world's governments to investigate Goode World Studios.[65]

 
The Watchtower
November 16, 21:21 EST

Aquaman and Tigress briefed the Team on their upcoming mission to Russia, investigating a possible government sponsored meta program. Aquaman warned Geo-Force not to let his distrust of Russia cloud his judgement.[66]

 
Belle Reve Parish
November 17, 10:10 CST

Aquaman brought the "escaped" criminals, including his father, caught by the Team in Russia back to Belle Reve Penitentiary. After getting nowhere speaking to Warden Economos, he waited to speak to someone else. Via comm he talked to Tigress about the mission, until he was interrupted by the arrival of Amanda Waller. Waller explained that she was in charge of an operation to send felons on high-risk missions for the US government as part of Task Force X. Aquaman was disgusted by the "suicide squad" and the risks it presented. Waller made it clear that if he publicly revealed her operation, she would publicly reveal the Team. Aquaman and Tigress felt compelled to maintain the stalemate, despite Beast Boy's objections.[66]

In the first few days of December, Aquaman received a tip about a sunken Reach warship being salvaged by Intergang. They raided the ship and stopped Intergang, but thee members escaped in War Bugs.[67]

 
The Watchtower
December 04, 19:09 EST

Aquaman was present for a meeting of the Team called by Beast Boy. Gar announced his intention to form a new public team to help inspire young people and change the narrative about meta-humans. Kaldur was initially against it, not wanting younger heroes to take the risks that come with public life, but Beast Boy persisted and, joined by five other members of the Team, reminded him that they didn't need the League's permission. Aquaman conceded the argument.[67]

 
Brooklyn
December 07, 19:37 PST

Aquaman responded to the War Bug attack on Brooklyn, Maine. He made no progress in stopping them, until Beast Boy's team arrived. They were successful in shutting down the War Bugs, but ran afoul of the town's mayor, who cited anti-vigilante legislation to have Gar's people arrested. When the War Bugs' mothership arrived to attack the town, Beast Boy's team freed themselves and took down the ship. The town's sheriff then let Aquaman and the group off, citing a Good Samaritan law.[67]

 
Gotham City
December 08, 00:01 EST

In the Batcave, Aquaman and Miss Martian briefed Batman, Wonder Woman, Nightwing, Oracle and Robin on the Brooklyn operation. They had known the War Bug attack was coming and made sure the new Outsiders would respond. The mothership's attack was unexpected but, they felt the Outsiders dealt with the situation well. Aquaman questioned whether Beast Boy should now join their group, but M'gann said he wasn't ready for that.[67]

 
The Watchtower
December 21, 10:12 EST

Aquaman argued with Zatanna, who was upset that the Outsiders were going on a mission against Klarion without any magical back-up. Aquaman insisted that the League was barred form intervening and that the mission was too public for the Team. Zatanna went to assist anyway, promising to be discreet.[68]

 
Taos
December 21, 16:51 MST

At the Meta-Human Youth Center, Aquaman greeted the returning Outsiders, congratulating them on their successful mission. Beast Boy showed him their "special case", a meta-human who could now only breathe underwater. Aquaman noted that they would need to make special arrangements for her as the center was not equipped for water-breathers. Wendy then joined them and played a Stargirl video, reporting that the Outsiders were now more popular than the Justice League.[68]

2019

 
Gotham City
January 01, 21:10 EST

Aquaman was in the Batcave with the other team leaders, as Batman and Miss Martian briefed them on their operation in Dublin, having drawn the Outsiders there on false pretenses to destroy a LexCorp Spider Bot factory with plausible deniability. When Wonder Woman objected to the extreme deception against their own allies, Aquaman and the rest remained silent.[69]

 
Taos
January 02, 06:18 MST

At STAR Labs, Aquaman checked with the water-breathing meta-teen that she was sure she wanted to go ahead with her journey. When she agreed, he noted her bravery and pushed her tank into the Zeta-Tube.[70]

 
Poseidonis
January 02, 11:19 UTC-2

They emerged in Poseidonis. Aquaman released the teen from the tank and performed a translation spell, allowing her to communicate properly for the first time since her meta-activation.

Later, Aquaman introduced the teen to King Orin. When asked, Orin explained that he had given up the title of Aquaman as being king was already a full-time job, and he had always intended Kaldur to replace him when ready. Orin noted that he and Queen Mera had been very impressed by him, and particularly the recent Outsiders operation in Dublin. Aquaman tried to hide his discomfort as he failed to mention that it had been a set-up, but the teen noticed.

Aquaman took the girl to his parents' home in Shayeris, where she would stay. After being introduced to his parents, the girl took Kaldur aside and told him that she knew he had lied to Orin, and that he was troubled by it. She also told him that good men don't feel bad when they lie, and that Kaldur was a good man.

Later, Kaldur watched the girl swimming happily with his parents. He was joined by Wyynde and they kissed.[70]

 
Shayeris
January 21, 23:28 UTC-2

Kaldur and Wyynde discussed how well the meta-teen, now calling herself Delphis, was settling in, when they were interrupted by a call from Oracle. She informed Kaldur that Nightwing and Black Lightning had gone missing after investigating Gretchen Goode's house, and that Kaldur was the only back-up she could call on. Wyynde asked to join Kaldur. Kaldur was initially reluctant to put him in danger, but Wyynde insisted. Plus he wanted to see the surface world.[71]

 
Hollywood
January 21, post-17:32 PST

Kaldur and Wyynde arrived at Goode's house. Oracle offered to distract her, but Kaldur took the direct approach and rang her doorbell. He asked Goode to take them to his friends, and Goode agreed, and had Overlord take them to her X-Pit. In the pit, Kaldur and Wyynde retrieved Nightwing and Lightning with Goode's blessing, and Wyynde also took their Motherbox. When Goode returned them to her home, she objected to them taking the Motherbox, but Kaldur refused to return it. Goode then had the brainwashed Nightwing and Lightning attack the Atlanteans, but they were unable to overcome them. When Goode had Overlord attack the Motherbox, it caused Halo and Vic to detect it, and the boom tubed in with the Outsiders. Halo cleansed Dick and Jeff of Goode's control, and with the assistance of a Bat-drone, the group escaped Goode and boom tubed back to the Premiere Building.

Later, Dick was still badly suffering the aftereffects of exposure to the X-Pit. As Kaldur watched with concern, Wyynde told him he was sure that Dick would recover, and that he saw little appeal in the surface world, save that Kaldur was there.[71]

 
Hollywood
January 22, 02:21 PST

Kaldur remained at the Premiere Building as Dick's condition worsened. Bruce called Kaldur and the other team leaders aside, prompting Jefferson to realize that they had been coordinating their activities behind everyone else's backs the whole time. After Jeff explosive called the group out in front of everyone, Bruce and Kaldur spoke with him privately. Jeff angrily refused their non-apology. They were interrupted by an improving Dick, who suggested Jeff was really mad at him.

Later, Brion and Tara returned after being abducted by Helga Jace, and revealed her betrayal and the kidnapping of Halo by Goode. As Jeff left, Kaldur tried to reach out, but Jeff angrily rebuked him.[72]

 
Hollywood
January 25, 14:28 PST

At the Premiere Building, Kaldur told a recovering Dick that the only reason Barbara had left was because he had promised he would watch over Dick for her. Shortly after, Vandal Savage arrived, and offered them the coordinates of where Halo was being held, in exchange for them telling her captors who sent them. As the Team prepared to leave to get her, Dick decided to join them in an absent Thirteen's place, and Kaldur insisted on joining him to keep his promise to Barbara. He assured M'gann that this was a Team mission and so she was in charge.[73]

 
The Orphanage
January 26, 01:17 UTC

The Team exited the boom tube and immediately took down some nearby Parademons. Geo-Force led a squad of the younger members to find Halo, while the older members created a distraction. Kaldur noticed the Javelin was present, leading the group to conclude that the League squad that had raided the Orphanage was also under Granny's control. Kaldur's squad fought the Furies and Parademons. During the fight, Nightwing had a fever dream in which he saw Wally West and the group as they were when the Team first formed. Miss Martian's mindlink meant the dream was shared to all members of the group. With their enemies defeated, the group went on to join the other squad.

On the way they realized they had lost contact with them. Kaldur reasoned that their only chance was for M'gann to brain blast everyone they encounter as she once did to him. Despite Superboy's objections, M'gann agreed, and did so as they entered Granny's control room. Overlord activated the Ghost Dimension machine, which distracted M'gann, allowing Granny to trigger Halo to place the squad under the Anti-Life Equation.[73]

 
The Orphanage
January 26, 02:48 UTC

While Gretchen Goode and Granny Goodness merged back together, Vic boom tubes in and freed Halo, who in turn freed the Team and the League from the Anti-Life Equation. They destroyed Overlord and the Ghost Dimension machine, captured Granny's minions, and liberated the captive meta-humans.[74]

 
Hollywood
January 26, 06:54 PST

Aquaman and the Team boom tubed back to the Premiere Building to find the Outsiders waiting for them. Kaldur and the other original Team members watched with pride as Vic was inducted into the Outsiders as Cyborg.[74]

 
Gotham City
Febrary 15, 18:35 EST

Aquaman and others watched the unfolding coup in Markovia on the Batcave monitors.[75]

 
The Watchtower
February 24, 19:00 EST

At a meeting of the Justice League, the Team, the Outsiders and Batman's team, Nightwing publicly admitted the secret activities of the group's leaders. Aquaman and Wonder Woman resigned as League leaders. Black Lightning was unanimously elected as the League's new leader, and Batman's team was folded into the League and Team.[75]

 
Metropolis
February 28, 16:16 EST

Kaldur and Wyynde attended a private party at Bibbo's Diner for the Team Year Zero members and their significant others.[75]

2020

 
Happy Harbor
February 23, 14:16 EST

Kaldur arrived at the Carr home for a bon voyage party for Conner and M'gann. Kaldur ribbed Conner for how long the trip had taken to come. Later, the party was interrupted by a call from Roy, who reported that Bowhunter Security had been hit by a group of meta felons, who abducted their new guy. Will revealed to the rest of the heroes at the party that his new employee was in fact a rehabilitated Clayface, now going by Harlan Matthews. Kaldur realized that the kidnappers were Amanda Waller's Task Force X, and that they could not openly act against them due to the agreement he had made with Waller. Will noted that Bowhunter Security had no such agreement with Waller, and offered to take the gathered heroes on as temporary employees to rescue Harlan. Kaldur, Raquel, Artemis, Conner and M'gann accepted.[76]

 
Bayou Bartholomew
February 23, 16:16 CST

The Bowhunter squad took the Bio-Ship to intercept the Manta-Flyer, shooting it down a few miles short of Belle Reve Penitentiary. The squad met Task Force X as they escaped form the Flyer, and soon engaged them in battle. Kaldur fought his father. After Task Force X was successfully defeated and Harlan freed, the group returned to Happy Harbor for the party. Kaldur asked if Harlan was interested in joining the Justice League, but he remained committed to Bowhunter Security.[76]

 
Star City
March 26, post-07:09 PDT

In the wake of Conner's death, Kaldur and Dick went to Will Harper's house to inform him and Artemis of the news. Artemis had arrived home to find Kaldur and Dick have finished explaining to Will what happened, but could not bring themselves to tell Artemis when she realized the truth about their sudden appearance. They sadly listened as Will revealed to Artemis that Conner had died.[77]

Kaldur and Dick proceeded to inform the rest of Conner's friends and family of his death, attended multiple memorial services, including the lighting of his hologram in the Watchtower grotto.[10]

 
The Watchtower
April 19, 21:17 PDT

Kaldur and Dick visited Conner's memorial in the grotto. Kaldur confessed he was having a hard time coming to terms with Conner's death, admitting it still did not seem real. Dick advised Kaldur he should consider giving himself a break to process his grief, explaining how he never gave himself the chance to properly mourn Wally West or Tula, but instead focused on the tasks at hand following their deaths. Although Kaldur assured him he understood, Dick further pointed out how Kaldur had always been the rock holding everyone together and putting others' needs before his own, and strongly urged him to take a break before all the pressure becomes too much for him. Kaldur thanked Dick for his concern, but refused and left the grotto to prepare for the conference in Poseidonis.[10]

 
Poseidonis
April 20, 15:56 UTC-2

Kaldur arrived just in time for the opening of the annual conference between representatives of the eight Atlantean city states, appearing in his capacity as minister of justice on the Atlantean cabinet. The meeting ended somewhat abruptly after it became clear that Xebel had failed to send a representative, though Orin assured the delegates he was sure someone would be there for the start of proper talks the next day.

Outside, Kaldur met with Wyynde, Delphis and Sha'lain'a, and he and Wyynde agreed to show Delphis around Poseidonis. As they explored, Delphis noted the relative splendor of Poseidonis relative to Shayeris. Wyynde suggested they visit an algae bar, and Delphis was taught how to enjoy the Black Gold. They met Lori Lemaris, who was happy to be introduced to Delphis, but colder to Wyynde, whom she had not forgiven for his time as a Purist. Kaldur interjected on Wyynde's behalf, and Lori admitted that is Kaldur loved him, then there might be hope for Wyynde. They were interrupted by the arrival of Nanaue Sha'ark, who goaded Lori over the recent annexation of Tritonian territory by Nanauve. A fight broke out between the two, but Kaldur ended it, beseeching them to save their grievances for the conference.[10]

 
Poseidonis
April 21, 09:58 UTC-2

The conference resumed with the arrival of Bishop Beluga representing Xebel. The delegates discussed recent conflicts between states, the effects of climate change on ocean food chains, and the wealth gap between Poseidonis and the other city states. Sha'ark took some relish in reminding everyone of Calvin Durham's history with Black Manta when Calvin raised it, prompting Kaldur to defend Calvin as his father in every way that matters. Lord Ronal airily dismissed Calvin's presence as solely being due to his relationship to Kaldur, though he apologized after being chastened by Lori. As Orin acknowledged the delegates concerns, the conference, and Poseidonis as a whole, came under attack by Ocean-Master. Empowered by Neptune's Trident, Ocean-Master proved a superior foe even while greatly outnumbered, and easily swatted back attacks by Kaldur, Orin, Mera, the delegates and the palace guards. Ocean-Master was finally defeated by a hooded stranger with powerful magic, causing Ocean-Master to quickly flee. The stranger disappeared before the others could recover. Kaldur was determined to find Ocean-Master.[10]

Kaldur spent the next few weeks searching for Ocean-Master, while also leading two missions for the Justice League.[17]

 
Poseidonis
May 14, 07:42 UTC-2

At the ruined conference center, Kaldur reported to Orin on his failure to locate Ocean-Master. Orin was unsurprised, all too familiar with Orm's slipperiness, and discussed his confusion at the lack of apparent motive for the attack. Kaldur suggested revenge for his imprisonment, but Orin wondered why it took him so long. La'gaan reported on the unrest in the other city states, with people upset that repairs to Poseidonis were being given high priority.

Kaldur returned to his and Wyynde's home to find Wyynde and Delphis discussing her work to help those displaced by the damage from Ocean-Master's attack. Kaldur invited Delphis to stay longer with them to continue her work. Delphis then asked Kaldur to call his parents. She and Wyynde then left Kaldur to make the call. Calvin and Sha'lain'a told him that they were worried that he was taking on too much. Kaldur insisted he was only doing what needed to be done, but his parents objected, reminding him of his overly strong sense of responsibility even as a child. Kaldur refused to consider taking a break until Ocean-Master was found. The call was interrupted by a shout from Wyynde, who called Kaldur out to see the towering pillar of fire that had appeared just outside the Poseidonis dome.

Kaldur rushed out alongside Orin, to find that Mera was already responding, having been alerted by Madame Xanadu. The pillar was a creation of a new Chaos Lord, and it was generating red waters that killed anything it touched. Mera was unable to both protect them and try to extinguish the pillar, so had Kaldur take over forming the protective shield. Orin then left to help Blubber escape the red water. Ocean-Master appeared, offering help, and worked to enhance Mera's magic construct. Kaldur wondered what Ocean-Master would do once they succeeded; Mera suspected he would try to kill them, but they needed to focus on one crisis at a time. Even Ocean-Master's help was not enough to quell the pillar, but then the hooded stranger arrived, and together the three extinguished the pillar. As expected, Ocean-Master immediately attacked Kaldur and Mera, knocking Kaldur out, but the stranger prevented further attack, and took the trident. Ocean-Master was then easily apprehended. As a crowd gathered whispering of a prophecy, the stranger reluctantly revealed himself to be Arion. The crowd quickly began chanting Arion's name, prompting Delphis to ask Kaldur who he was. Kaldur explained he was the answer to an ancient question, one which prompted many more questions.[17]

 
Poseidonis
June 01, post-17:28 UTC-2

With increasing civil unrest in Arion's name, and being unable to conclusively prove his identity, Orin tasked Kaldur with a covert mission to explore a pocket ocean detected underneath Xebel by the Watchtower, in search of Arion's crown.[78]

 
Poseidonis
June 02, post-08:37 UTC-2

Wyynde and Kaldur argued in their house. Wyynde was furious that Kaldur had taken the mission, despite promising to take a break once Orm was captured. Kaldur insisted that he was fine, and that Wyynde would see that for himself as he was coming along. Delphis asked to join them, but Kaldur refused her, saying she was already busy and not properly trained.[78]

 
Xebel
June 02, 15:07 UTC-2

Kaldur, Wyynde and La'gaan used the ongoing unrest in Xebel to cover their entrance to the city. They made their way to the Grave of Legends, a holy site that marked the thinnest point between Xebel and the Undersea. Kaldur created a drill, while La'gaan lifted rocks and Wyynde directed debris away. Though they hoped Nereus's Watch would be too busy with the crowds to find them, a patrol did come close, but was distracted by a strange light. Kaldur recognized the light, and Delphis soon appeared.[78]

 
The Undersea
June 02, 15:23 UTC-2

The quartet finished drilling through the sea floor, and swam into the undersea. The tunnel behind them collapsed, causing a cave-in that forced them to rush forward and drill through another floor. Kaldur was sure they could drill their way out when they were finished.[78]

 
The Undersea
July 03, 19:00 UTC-2

After a month in the Undersea, the group had not found the crown, but had become adept at finding and dousing the geothermal vents that periodically erupted there. When La'gaan expressed concern at possibly missing the birth of his child, Kaldur reminded him that he needed to be 100% focused on the mission at hand. Then, what they initially thought was another geothermal vent turned out to be a giant crab emerging from the sea floor. The group fled, but the crab sucked the group toward its mouth, until La'gaan allowed himself and a pillar of rock to be swallowed. The pillar was distasteful, so the crab spat La'gaan out and moved on.

The crab had emerged from a chasm, which the group then swam down. They found ruins from the ancient Atlantean capital, and the three magically trained members could all sense great magic power nearby. They fanned out to triangulate its location, and quickly found Arion's crown shallowly buried in the ground. Another giant creature then appeared. Kaldur used a Water-Bearer to impale the creature and ride it. He then shocked the creature to make it move, as the others grabbed ahold. They rode the creature as it swam upwards, jumping off just before the creature crashed into the ceiling of the Undersea, creating an opening for them to escape through.

They returned to Xebel to find Arion taking the mantle of High King. Before anything else could be said, Arion took the crown and donned it, but was immediately killed by the Lords of Order. Mera then went to crown Orin once more, but Orin insisted that it was Mera who satisfied the prophecy and was the rightful High King. Kaldur helped Orin crown her, and she gave a speech accepting the crown.

Later, Kaldur asked Orin what he planned to do next. When Orin said he wanted to return to the Justice League, Kaldur offered to relinquish the title of Aquaman, but Orin was confident the League could accommodate multiple Aquamen-including La'gaan. Kaldur congratulated La'gaan and admitted he was relieved, as he was going to take a leave of absence.

Later, he relaxed at home with Wyynde and Delphis.

The next day, on the tenth anniversary of the Team's founding, Kaldur spoke with Black Canary on the Watchtower. He talked about how founding the Team had been a turning point in his life which he looked back on with great pride, but he also felt that too many of his Teammates had died as a result, and that he needed to come to terms with this before he could return to his old life.[79]

Kaldur's leave lasted for a month, in which time he came to terms with Conner's "death".[80]

 
Poseidonis
September 06, 01:36 UTC-2

Kaldur greeted Nightwing and Rocket at the Zeta-Tube. After confirming Aquaman was back on duty, Nightwing informed him of his and Zatanna's investigation into Conner's whereabouts.

They took him to the warehouse and showed him Nightwing's cork board filled with evidence and theories. Kaldur offered his help.[80]

 
Salem
September 06, 00:16 EDT

At the Tower of Fate, the group anchored Zatanna's spell to summon Klarion. Zatanna had hoped to compel him to bring Conner out of the Phantom Zone, but Klarion was more willing to enter the Tower than expected and fought them using twisted versions of their own powers. Zatanna was able to force Klarion to honor his debt to her, but he did so only by sparing their lives. Kaldur thought the plan could not have gone worse, but Zatanna had a Plan B, if Dick could find a certain school bus.[80]

 
Metropolis
September 09, 19:47 EDT

Nightwing traced the bus to a scrapyard. They found it had been compacted into a cube. Zatanna summoned some Trogowogs to rebuild the bus. While they worked, Kaldur asked Zatanna about the strange creatures. Once the bus was finished, Zatanna cast a spell to create a portal in the bus door. The squad donned space-belts and entered the portal.[81]

 
The Phantom Zone
September 13, 21:34 UTC

The group found Superboy at Fort Krypton, but were ambushed by Dru-Zod and his followers after they approached him. Zod attempted to persuade the group to take him out of the Zone. Kaldur offered to set up a probationary court for the prisoners, but Zod insisted they be released first, leading to an impasse. Superboy was unwilling to go with them due to his Zone-Sickness, though Kaldur tried to convince him his broken memories could be fixed. Zod tried to force the group to let him go, and Nightwing's squad was outmatched by Zod's forces. The group was able to escape thanks to a glamour spell.

Soon after, a boom tube opened up. Zod decided to go through with Superboy and two others, leaving the rest behind until he knew it was safe. Nightwing's team observed from a nearby rock and determined that no more Kryptonians should be allowed to exit.[82]

 
The Phantom Zone
September 14, 00:04 UTC

Faora Hu-Ul returned through the boom tube to gather Zod's army, but the tube closed shortly after. Kaldur and the squad prepared to leave, when a new boom tube opened. Hidden with a glamour, the group moved toward the boom tube, but the tube warped the glamour, revealing them to the Kryptonians. They fought them off, using the narrow opening of the boom tube to their advantage. After Nightwing went through the tube to see where it went, the rest were faced with a Devourer summoned by the rage of the Kryptonians. The Devourer forced them back into the tube, but was too big to follow them. Faora attempted to get through the tube, using the Zone's intangibility to pass through the Devourer, but was stopped by the team midway, where their usual powers and abilities were reinstated. When Faora stated that she had only been sentenced to five years in the Zone, Kaldur reiterated his offer of parole, but she was too angry and impatient, and was caught and dragged off by the Devourer.

The group planned to hold the tube from this position, but they ended up under attack from both ends after Lor-Zod came back through from the Earth end of the tube. Rocket created a force bubble to protect them and block the tube. The boom tube began to destabilize due to being held open so long, and the team's attackers fled. Zatanna created a portal to take them back to the school bus.[83]

 
Metropolis
September 14, 00:16 EDT

Kaldur, Tigress and Zatanna emerged back on the bus, but Rocket didn't make it.[83]

 
Metropolis
September 14, post-05:46 EDT

The group took the school bus into battle against Dru-Zod and his forces at Planet Circle. Zatanna used magic to enable the bus to fly and render it invisible. It rammed into Lor-Zod, but was later destroyed by the Emerald Empress. Everyone was able to get off safely beforehand. Kaldur fought Dru-Zod for much of the battle, with Superboy intervening to defend Zod before M'gann repaired his mind. Eventually, Dru-Zod threw Kaldur into Zatanna, knocking both out. Ultimately, Zod's group was defeated, with each member either forced to flee or sent into the Phantom Zone, and Rocket returned during the battle.[84]

 
Happy Harbor
September 16, post-16:16 EDT

Kaldur was a groomsman at Conner and M'gann's wedding. Before the ceremony, he talked about the need to let the Phantom Zone's prisoners out eventually. A plan was hatched to let them out on Trombus, where they could start from scratch on a barren world.[84]

Powers and abilities

Powers

  • Atlantean sorcery: Before becoming the original Aquaman's sidekick, Kaldur'ahm was trained in the mystical arts at the Conservatory of Sorcery, where he was given eel-shaped skin icons. His skills have fallen somewhat behind those of his former classmates Tula and Garth due to focusing on his studies as a hero, but his Water-Bearers compensate somewhat.[5]
    • Electricity generation: He has the power to generate electricity from the eel tattoos on his arms, which he can channel through water or use as a direct offense against opponents.
    • Hydrokinesis: Aquaman is able to manipulate water to serve any number of uses, e.g. water blasts, whips, waves, shields, or waterspouts to lift him into the air. He can manipulate water from a nearby source, like fire hydrants, lakes, etc. or his water pack. His water blasts are capable of slicing through metal and other materials.
    • Aqualad can solidify water into swords, among other weapons.

      Hard-water constructs: Aquaman has the unique ability to solidify water into a myriad of different weapons for physical attacks. So far he has created swords, maces, sledgehammers, a small shield, and a large eel. This ability, like his hydrokinesis and electricity generation, is powered by his eel tattoos.
    • Translation spell: Aquaman can cast a spell which makes an individual speak and understand Atlantean instantly. An incantation is required to use a spell.[70]
  • Atlantean attributes: Atlanteans, although Human, have through scientific and sorcerous means[30] developed several abilities which allow them to live comfortably under the sea:
    • Underwater breathing: All Atlanteans are capable of surviving the aquatic atmosphere under the sea. Some accomplish this without the presence of visible gills.[5][30]
    • Temperature resilience: Resistant to low temperatures[39] and the effects of freezing,[12] although notably hindered by high temperatures.[9]
    • Durability: Dense flesh, although not invulnerable.[31][30][55]
    • Strength: Ranging from undetected levels to super strength.[12][30][37]
    • Toxin resistance: Aquaman has partial immunity to poisons of sea creatures, such as jellyfish toxin.[24]

Abilities

  • Expert hand-to-hand combatant: Aquaman is extremely skilled in combat, able to hold his own against Cheshire[24] and has taken down Superboy with little to no effort before.[3]
  • Multilingualism: Aquaman can speak Atlantean and English.[5] Likely as an extension of his home language, he has some fluency in Ancient Greek and Modern Greek.[85]

Equipment

Kaldur wielding his Water-Bearers.

  • Water Pack: A black metallic backpack that holds an unspecified amount of water that Aqualad can use. It also holds his Water-Bearers.
  • Water-Bearers:[9] Twin hilts that can hold onto water which Aquaman then uses to create his hard-water weapons. They are also used as a type of water gun to shoot water from his water pack and can be used to help manipulate sources of water.[5]
  • Stealth-tech: Technology that is integrated into a piece of clothing and can shift the color of that clothing from the original color to a darker color. Aquaman can access it by pressing the "A" belt buckle on his waist, his "blend" color is dark gray/blue and green.[13]
  • Darkwear[71]

Former equipment

  • Black Manta armor: After defecting from the Team, he joined his father and received an armor nearly identical to Manta's. It has plasma blasts in the helmet and rocket launchers. Since rejoining the Team he has discarded this armor in favor of his original suit.[3]
  • Helmet of Fate: Due to desperation, Aqualad wore the helmet to help the Team survive their fight against the Injustice League. Thanks to Kent Nelson, Nabu freed Aqualad and let him take off the helmet.[42]

Weaknesses

  • Dehydration: As his natural habitat is underwater, Aquaman is weakened when exposed to high temperatures[33] and dry conditions.[29]

Relationships

Aquaman

Main article: Orin

Kaldur'ahm was disillusioned with Aquaman when he learned of his true lineage.

Being the King of Atlantis's partner, Kaldur saw Aquaman as a ruler, a mentor, and a father figure.[12] Aquaman had known about his true parentage but hadn't told him. When Nightwing told Aquaman that Kaldur had defected to the Light, at first, he refused to believe it. However, when he met face-to-face with his former apprentice, he was saddened to learn that it had been true.[3]

To improve his cover, the "former" Aqualad expressed resentment towards his former mentor for lying to him for so many years and used this as a reason for "hatred" towards him.[3][53]

Robin/Nightwing

Main article: Robin/Nightwing

When the time came for the Team to choose a field leader, Robin initially saw himself as the most appropriate leader of the Team, citing his greater experience despite being the youngest member of the Team. However, Aqualad explained that Robin's experience and his strong working relationship with Batman meant that Robin assumed his teammates could follow his plans without much explanation, whereas the Team really needed a leader who would be clear. Robin instead suggested that Aqualad should be the Team's leader, and Aqualad accepted. Nevertheless, Aqualad claimed that Robin was a natural leader and believed he would one day be ready to take control of the Team.[13]

Aqualad and Nightwing devised a risky plan to infiltrate the Light.

Kaldur and Nightwing remained on strong terms, and forged, in secret, a plot to infiltrate the Light and to figure out who their new Partner is. They had trust in each other, though they both knew they endangered themselves and others like Artemis.[53] When Aqualad's deep cover mission ended, he returned to the Team, where Nightwing humbly offered to return command of the Team back over to Aqualad. Kaldur thought it was unnecessary,[59] though soon accepted his leadership status back.[60] After Wally's death, Kaldur objected against Nightwing's resignation. Nightwing corrected him and stated that he was only taking a leave of absence, Aqualad understood his wanting to be away from the hero lifestyle for a while and continued to lead the Team.[60]

Superboy

Main article: Superboy

Aqualad and Superboy are very close, as Superboy admires Aqualad's serenity.[86] This involved actively persuading Superboy to care more about his surroundings. Aqualad picked up on Superboy and Miss Martian being a couple early on, noting it made sense.[37]

While Aqualad was undercover, Superboy was greatly devastated that he was seemingly a traitor and nearly attacked him in anger but was repelled. However, they reconciled with the truth was revealed.

Kaldur took Superboy's death very hard, unable to properly execute missions until he got closure. However, he was greatly relieved to discover his survival and joined in the mission to retrieve him from the The Phantom Zone but Superboy fell under the sway of Dru-Zod.

Black Manta

Main article: Black Manta

Black Manta commended Aqualad for admitting to his failures, believing it to be the mark of his true character.

Black Manta is Kaldur'ahm's biological father. Kaldur was originally unaware of his true parentage, believing himself to be the son of Manta's former henchman, Calvin Durham. As part of his cover, Kaldur pretended to be a loyal son to Manta, and with Nightwing's help, he hoped to cement his father's trust in him to reveal information about the Light and their new partner.

When Kaldur's mind was damaged by Miss Martian, Black Manta displayed the utmost concern for son, to the extent where he kidnapped Miss Martian and demanded that she repair his son's mind. Their relationship was crippled when the Light discovered Aqualad's true intentions. Initially, Black Manta was shocked and saddened by this revelation, he still protected him from Black Beetle though his feelings towards his son quickly turned sour. Although Kaldur's heroic nature conflicts with Black Manta's villainous attitude, he still sees nobility in his father and was saddened at having to defeat him.

Miss Martian

Main article: Miss Martian

Kaldur'ahm was Miss Martian's teammate and an earnest friend. He sometimes helped her with unfamiliar aspe

Kaldur'ahm was Miss Martian's teammate and an earnest friend. He sometimes helped her with unfamiliar aspects of Earth culture. Miss Martian has mentioned that she looked at Kaldur like an older brother. When Aqualad infiltrated the Light and "killed" Artemis, Miss Martian was saddened by his actions. She soon encountered him on the Reach's ship, where she condemned him as a murderer for his actions and used a mental blast on him. She was shocked to discover that he was really undercover and that Artemis was still alive which left her in a heartbroken and guilt-ridden state. Not long after, Miss Martian was kidnapped by Manta and forced to undo her damage, she apologized to him for what she had done and he forgave her. After his mind was restored, they worked on a way to save her and were successful. The friendship between them was restored over the next two years and both formed the secret "Anti-Light" team among other leaders, but they also displayed concern and reservations about their actions.

Garth

Main article: Garth

Kaldur and Garth remained good friends even as Garth dated Tula.

Kaldur was best friends with Garth back in Atlantis and they along with Tula trained together at the Conservatory of Sorcery under Queen Mera. When Kaldur'ahm became Aquaman's protégé he left his studies and carried out his responsibilities as Aqualad, and later joined the Team. During this time, Garth and Tula began dating, which hurt Kaldur who also had feelings for Tula. Their friendship was strained but they eventually reconciled.<ref name="e108">Hopps, Kevin (writer) & Oliva, Jay (director) (March 4, 2011). "Downtime". Young Justice. Season 1. Episode 8. Cartoon Network.</ref>

Kaldur took Superboy's death very hard, unable to properly execute missions until he got closure. However, he was greatly relieved to discover his survival and joined in the mission to retrieve him from the The Phantom Zone but Superboy fell under the sway of Dru-Zod.[87]

Tula

Main article: Tula

Kaldur was deeply in love with Tula.

Tula was Kaldur'ahm's first crush, a classmate from the Conservatory of Sorcery. After Kaldur became Aqualad and left for the surface, Tula began seeing Garth. Unaware, Aqualad thought long of Tula and considered leaving the Team for her. He eventually accepted their relationship.[5]

Tula's death during a mission for the Team took a heavy toll on him. It was one of the reasons to quit the Team, along with the revelation of his parentage.[49][3]

Wyynde

Main article: Wyynde

Kaldur with his second love, Wyynde.

Though they were initially enemies due to the purist crisis,[1] they became lovers in time.[70] Kaldur has not defined his sexuality yet. He has dated several people, but he has only been in love with Tula and Wyynde.[88]

Appearances

Background information

Kaldur'ahm was developed specifically for Young Justice, rather than using the existing Aqualad, Garth. There were several reasons for this. In the comics, Garth had stopped using the name Aqualad and started going by the name Tempest. Furthermore, Garth had been killed off during the event Blackest Night, so the character was not current at the time of development. A new character also provided an opportunity to add more diversity to the cast. Kaldur'ahm was therefore created, inspired by characters such as Cal Durham, as well as the DC series Arion, in which it was revealed that not all Atlanteans are Caucasian.[89]

During the production of the series, Geoff Johns saw the designs for Kaldur'ahm and decided to transfer the character into the mainstream DC Universe as the new Aqualad (replacing Garth). Johns's Aqualad has a slightly different background to Kaldur'ahm: rather than being raised in Atlantis, he was raised as a human in New Mexico and he goes by the name Jackson Hyde rather than Kaldur'ahm. He lacks Kaldur's obvious Atlantean physical traits but retains Kaldur's eel tattoos and powers (in the TV series, the tattoos were given to Kaldur by the Conservatory of Sorcery; in the comics, Jackson Hyde was born with them). Jackson Hyde first appeared in Brightest Day #4, which preceded the pilot movie of Young Justice by five months. Jackson became an important character in the Brightest Day series, and promotional art revealed that he was intended to become a member of the Teen Titans. However, due to the events of Flashpoint, this did not come to be. He did not appear in the New 52 and finally appeared briefly in Johns's DC Rebirth #1. In a brief scene, it's revealed he is a homosexual teen from Silver City.

A version of Kaldur'ahm similar to his appearance in Young Justice appeared in Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox.

Aqualad's physicality is based on American Olympian swimmer Michael Phelps. His costume combined the aspects of the Aqualad in the comics, as well as the full-body suits used by Olympians in the 2004 Athens and 2008 Beijing Olympics.[90]

References

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