"You don't have your powers anymore, Peter... Because I have them now."
The power to steal some or all of the powers from other Awesomes and make them one’s own. Sub-power of Superpower Manipulation, variation of Absorption, not to be confused with Power Negation or Power Replication.
- Ability Absorption
- Ability Stealing
- Ability Theft
- Power Theft
The user can steal others powers, usually this is temporary and the victims naturally regain their lost power, but some users may be able to steal powers permanently.
- May be constantly active.
- May need touch.
- Useless if there are no other people with powers.
- Ability weaknesses may also be transferred.
- May be unable to control absorbed abilities.
- Some users may have to kill the original user to steal the power.
- May be countered by Power Immunity.
With this ability, Arthur can remove the ability of another evolved human by touching them. Arthur seems to gain immediate use of the stolen ability such as when he stole Adam's regeneration power and regenerated the damage to his nervous system and the hole in his throat from the tube placed there. Arthur can take multiple abilities at once from someone who has acquired multiple abilities. (Dying of the Light)
Firm physical contact seems to be necessary for this ability to work. Arthur hugged Peter to steal his abilities, and Knox forced Adam to place his hand in Arthur's grasp. However, skin-to-skin contact is apparently not required, as he absorbed Maya's ability through her hospital gown and Hiro's ability through his shirt.
When Arthur stole Adam's ability, Adam rapidly died and decomposed due to the loss of the aging-suppression aspect of his ability—his 400 years of age caught up with him in seconds. Peter suffered no obvious ill effects upon losing his abilities, although the process appeared to cause intense pain.
Arthur's use of this ability requires active concentration. He can choose to not steal abilities from an evolved human. Knox's hand brushed against Arthur's, yet no abilities were lost or gained. (Dying of the Light)
According to Arthur, the removal of abilities from a targeted evolved human is permanent (Eris Quod Sum), but they can, in fact, be at least partially restored. Matt Parkman, Jr.partially restored Hiro's ability, allowing him to stop time but not teleport (Cold Snap), and Peter Petrelli restored part of his ability with the formula. Hiro's powers all eventually returned, but due to a brain tumor Hiro developed, he didn't have full control until his tumor was removed, showing that powers stolen can be fully returned.
All of the abilities Arthur stole made him so powerful that even the Haitian was only able to block him for a few minutes before he began to manifest his abilities again. Despite all of the abilities he has at his disposal, however, Arthur's stolen abilities otherwise still have their normal limitations. For example, a bullet through the back of his brain was able to kill him like it would anyone with regeneration.