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Jon was born to Anne and Thomas Constantine. Jon’s twin brother was still born (a side effect of the Infernal Bloodline Curse. Only one male heir could be allowed to survive) and his mother died soon after giving birth. As a result of this, Jon and his father were never close.
Thomas had forsworn the use of magic and did his best to discourage his son from entering into the practice, fearing the curse on his family. After all, both Constantine the Accursed the Pit Lord Abarax were still out there, both of which seeking to end the Constantine line. As such he told nothing of the family history to the young Jon nor his elder daughter Cynthia.
The quiet world Thomas had built was shattered when Jon (13) and Cynthia (16) were set upon by bandits while travelling home from the local school. The Bandits quickly overpowered Jon and then proceeded to beat Cynthia to the ground. Their intentions clear. Enraged, Jon somehow summoned up his latent mystical power, calling forth a wave of magical fire, scorching the thugs holding him.
Panicked, the bandits fled, leaving both alive, though Cynthia was grievously wounded from a blow to the head and abdomen.
Carrying his stricken sister home, Jon demanded answers. Thomas refused, but eventually gave in to his sons demands while healers treated his daughter.
Thomas explained everything about the curse and why the Constantine bloodline could never again practice magic. He ordered Jon to drop the matter but there was a fire inside the young man, something that seemed to have been bred out of the Constantine line generations before.
Cynthia succumbed to her wounds in the weeks that followed, further galvanising Jon on his course and driving a final wedge between father and son.
Determined to never again be vulnerable and week. Jon began to practice, trying to teach himself to control his powers. He made little progress and, aged 15 set off on his own, leaving his home and seeking out Zatara the Sorceror.
Something of a local legend, Zatara was intrigued by both the young ‘s talent and his determination. Zatara agreed to take Jon under his wing.
The death of his sister had hardened Jon, but one chink in his armour remained: Zatara’s daughter Zatanna. Jon became infatuated with her. The kind words she offered going a long way towards healing his broken heart.
Eventually after a year of training with Zatara, Constantine snuck away in the night. The bandits that had murdered his sister had been spotted in the area once more and using the little magical knowledge he had acquired, Jon intended to take his revenge. Using a series of simple cantrips, he was able to sow confusion into the camp. Many of the bandits actually killed one another and by dawn, not one remained alive.
Returning to his teacher, Jon found his master enraged and his beloved frightened of him.
Jon attempted to explain the situation and justify his actions. As he saw it, justice had been meted out.
Zatara did not see it that way and ordered Jon to return to his home.
Dejected, he begged Zatanna to come with him, but though she loved him deeply, she would not leave her father.
Jon returned to his childhood home, only to find it a smoking cinder, his father’s body burnt to ash. Talon marks in the ground and remains inferred that no human had perpetuated the act.
Realising that his embracing of his heritage had drawn either the Accursed or Abarax’s attention. Jon fled back to warn Zatara.
He was too late.
Zatara’s home had also been destroyed, but picking among the ruins, Constantine found something that gave him a glimmer of hope: Zatanna had not been home.
Searching the country-side for the girl, he eventually found her in a cave. The two reconciled, being the only companions either had left.
For the next five years, the two would journey together, battling evil as they saw it, but never staying in one place for too long, lest the Accursed of Abarax find them.
During this time, Jon knew that Zatanna wanted the two of the tem to be wed, and though he deeply loved the girl, he never proposed, fearing his families curse.
The curse would indeed catch up with them, Constantine returning to their campsite to find it scorched and destroyed, Zatanna gone. Vanished without a trace.
From this point on, Jon began to avoid developing any sort of relationship. He became harder and more cynical in his outlook.
He also learned of a herb, that when burned masked his aura from demonic scrying. He would conceal the herb in the form of a cigarette, to the casual observer, it would appear that he was constantly smoking.