Hard Justice (formerly "Street Justice") is a member of the Guardians of the Dawn supergroup.
Martin Keys always yearned for something better in life. Although he had a guaranteed job with the Icon tailor corporation through his aunt and showed a clear sense of business management, he still yearned to do more with his life.
His connection to the tailor services of superheroes in Paragon City put him in constant contact with heroes, and he always managed to get as much information about their day-to-day activities as he could.
But then he discovered that someone he worked with was secretly a superhero.
During a Rikti incursion in Steel Canyon, he was forced to take shelter in one of the back rooms. There he discovered a pile of clothes neatly folded, which he recognized as belonging to Kara Hamilton. After the raid finished, he waited in hiding to see who would come retrieve them. Much to his surprise, he saw Galatea Powers arrive and change into Kara. He waited until she finished changing to confront her about her dual identity.
After, the two of them came to an understanding that he would help her maintain her dual identity in exchange for her telling him about being a hero.
Eventually, Martin wanted more than just a "taste" of being a hero. He wanted to be a hero himself.
He signed up for a special training course run by the Back Alley Brawler, in which he excelled. Using his resources and a little help from Kara and a certain "present" that Icon had in storage for the Paragon City Police Department, he created his own outfit, and soon became the registered hero "Street Justice".
His first adventure as a hero came quickly as he joined Lady Templar to help rescue Icon Powers from cybernetic minions of StarCygnus. Together they freed the rest of the Guardians of the Dawn as well as the Freedom Phalanx.
As a new hero, Martin handled himself well. As Galatea's friend, he was quickly accepted into the Guardians, and even found himself attracted to another Guardian named Whyspera. The two dated for a while.
Galaxy City Limbo
Martin was in Galaxy City along with Whyspera, Arktic Chill, and many other heroes when the area was hit by Shivan Meteors in 2011. Like the over 2000 people there, he was presumed missing and/or dead.
But in truth, he was in a temporal limbo thanks to Doc Tor. He was then brought back to normal time in 2012 thanks to Galatea and to Doc Tor's sacrifice.
Because Martin is human, his experience in the time loop had minimal effect on him other than a few nights of sleeping problems. But the same could not be said about Whyspera or the other members of the Guardians of the Dawn that were trapped with him that had mystical or mutant abilities.
Whyspera's mutant powers were unstable because of the time loop. While Martin tried to understand what was happening to her, he found himself drifting further and further away from her emotionally.
Then an "incident" happened between Arktic Chill and Whyspera at a charity event, and Wendy's throat was frozen. She was quickly rushed to the hospital, but they could not save her vocal cords.
Enraged, Martin blamed Chill for ruining Wendy's life and hero career. Icon Powers tried to talk him down, but he was too angry to listen. He sought out Chill and eventually fought him in the streets of Steel Canyon. Although Chill tried to avoid the confrontation, Martin pressed his attack and forced Chill to respond in kind. Chill's unstable powers froze Martin's arms solid. Martin was rushed to the hospital, but, just like Whyspera, the effects were too severe. His arms had to be amputated and replaced with cybernetic limbs.
With Martin in therapy to adjust to his new cybernetic arms, his status as a member of the Guardians of the Dawn was on hold.
Even with training with his new cybernetic appendages, team leader Ryder Lightning was hesitant to reinstate Martin until he knew for certain that Martin would not try to go after Chill again. Thus Martin was struggling for work, since being a tailor with cybernetic hands was not a viable occupation for his employers.
Struggling to find work, he was walking past the police stationhouse in Independence Port when he heard Captain Paragonna screaming. He rushed in to find his friend brutalized and stripped of her uniform completely. She was a victim of the corrupt Blue Dog Squad and this was her "retirement".
Martin rushed Stevie to the hospital, and, as per her insistence, registered her under the alias of the fictional sister that was set up so she could previously operate as Lady Templar. The shock of his friend being victimized like she was drove him to pledge his support to Cardinal Syn's new task force. He arrived at their first meeting in his new outfit, with his new battle-certified enhancements, and with a new codename... Hard Justice.
Powers and Abilities
His primary ability is Martial Arts. He is skilled in hand-to-hand combat. His strength levels are now augmented thanks to his new cybernetic arms, which have been battle-certified.
His secondary ability is Shield Defense. He managed to acquire the shield that was originally supposed to be used in the Hero Shield Program for Captain Paragonna and uses it for defense and some offense. This shield would eventually be destroyed in an attempt to save his arm, but it allowed him to come up with a cybernetic shield device that would be just as good if not better than his original shield. The shield generator is imbedded in his arm, which only appears when he needs it at full power. When he doesn't, he can still access a low-powered energy shield for emergencies.
Martin first appears in Issue #19 of the "Guardians of the Dawn Spotlight" series. His first appearance as "Street Justice" was in Issue #22.