Special-agent-in-charge Derek Khanata of S.H.I.E.L.D., and unbound by the United States Constitution, uses his unique position to protect others and manage Super Heroes.
Derek Khanata and his family are members of Wakanda’s Ghudazai ethnic minority. Derek, born late in the reign of King T’Chaka, AKA Black Panther, grows up to join the army at a young age since jobs for Ghudazai are scarce. His skills catch the attention of T’Chaka’s adopted son Hunter, AKA White Wolf. Hunter recruits Khanata into his Hatut Zeraze, “Dogs of War”, who are Wakandan political police that ruthlessly persecute any dissent to T’Chaka’s rule. As part of his initiation, Hunter brands Derek’s cheeks to mark him as a Hatut Zeraze for the rest of his life. Once Khanata discovers his Hatut Zeraze duties would include torture and assassination, he quickly becomes disgusted with his job but is hesitant to leave because the White Wolf horrifically punishes deserters.
Khanata finds his chance to escape upon the death of T’Chaka and the ascension of Prince T’Challa, AKA Black Panther, to the throne. Hunter immediately begins plotting a coup to seize power from his brother, but Khanata warns the new king in time. The furious T’Challa dissolves the Hatut Zeraze and exiles Hunter from Wakanda. Nevertheless, Hatut Zeraze informants and sympathizers still remain throughout the country, causing T’Challa to fear for the safety of Khanata’s family if anyone discovers he had betrayed Hunter. The Black Panther arranges for Khanata to be transferred to the United Nations counterterrorism organization S.H.I.E.L.D., and Khanata moves his wife Zari and two daughters to New York City.
Expert Field Agent
Khanata is familiar with a variety of conventional and advanced armaments thanks to S.H.I.E.L.D., Hatut Zeraze, and army training, coupled with his considerable experience in the field. Specializing in Wakandan weaponry, he is a formidable hand-to-hand opponent as well. Khanata usually wields a handgun.
Allies and Adversaries
In Wakanda, Khanata joins the army and becomes allies to the White Wolf, a relationship that ceases to exist after Khanata learns he must torture and kill others. Khanata then allies himself with the new King T’Challa, who helps him transfer to S.H.I.E.L.D. and escape the White Wolf’s retribution for the betrayal.
Because Khanata had served in the secret police, a personal recommendation from T’Challa helps persuade S.H.I.E.L.D. Director Nick Fury to accept Khanata into the agency. Khanata proves to be one of Fury’s most able agents, employing technicians Ayna Sareva and Noriko Nagayoshi in his personal squad. Khanata runs the freelance S.H.I.E.L.D. operative Carmilla Black, AKA Scorpion, who most of the world believes to be a costumed Super Hero. They often go up against the criminal corporation, Advanced Idea Mechanics (A.I.M.).
During a S.H.I.E.L.D. investigation into agent James “Jimmy” Woo, AKA Jimmy Woo, Khanata gets himself not only kidnapped by Woo’s team of operatives, but also wrapped up in their mission to expose the criminal enterprise of Plan Tzu, AKA Yellow Claw. Woo then becomes the head of Claw’s organization, the Altas Foundation, and heads their Agents of Atlas, a security team with a shady reputation who seek to do good for the world. They free Khanata, and Khanata lies to S.H.I.E.L.D. so they can continue their work in secret.
After S.H.I.E.L.D. falls and Norman Osborn, AKA Green Goblin, rises to power, Derek becomes jobless, but soon helps Woo reform the Agents of Atlas. The team also includes Kenneth Hale, AKA Gorilla-Man, M-11, AKA Human Robot, Aquaria Nautica Neptunia, AKA Namora, Robert Grayson, AKA Marvel Boy, and Venus.
An Agent's Account
With Scorpion, Khanata’s S.H.I.E.L.D. cell thwarted an A.I.M. attack on Fort Detrick, Maryland, and nearly apprehended A.I.M. Scientist Supreme Monica Rappaccini in Australia; in the course of this mission, Scorpion was forced to allow a terror attack in the Sudan. The Sudanese held Khanata responsible, but Nick Fury refused to release Khanata to them. Subsequently, Khanata had Scorpion investigate A.I.M.’s research into the mysterious Uni-Power in upstate New York and supervised her encounters with Bruce Banner, AKA Hulk, in Australia and Mac Gargan, AKA Venom, in Manhattan.
Khanata was placed in charge of a S.H.I.E.L.D. investigation of agent Jimmy Woo, who was nearly killed while investigating his old enemy the Yellow Claw, then kidnapped from his hospital bed by his 1950s allies who briefly comprised “the G-Men.” Khanata was kidnapped by Woo’s team and forced to accompany them as they exposed the many arms of the Claw’s empire, the Atlas Foundation. Khanata joined the team as they finally invaded the Claw’s San Francisco base, only for Woo to be offered the organization’s leadership from Claw himself. Woo accepted, and his team became the Agents of Atlas; Khanata was set free, telling S.H.I.E.L.D. the heroes were all dead to help them maintain their new cover.
After S.H.I.E.L.D. fell, Derek struggled to get work until Jimmy Woo offered him a job helping to reform the Atlas Foundation’s Agents of Atlas, into law-abiding operatives.