The Ch'i-Lin is a mystical beast that hungers for the life force of the dragon Shou-Lao and has been claiming the lives of every Iron Fist when they turn thirty-three. The Ch'i-Lin projects his spirit and energy into his loyal servant named Zhou Cheng that provides him extraordinary abilities. Zhou Cheng killed the Iron Fist, Kwai Jun-Fan in 1878 and the Ch'i-Lin used his body as a portal to attack the city of Kun-Lun. Ch'i'Lin was opposed by Lei Kung and an army of soldiers but the beast reached the mouth of the cave for its search of the dragon's egg. Lei Kung severed the lower jaw of the Ch'i-Lin to prevent it from consuming the egg. The Ch'i-Lin disappeared and Lei Kung knew the demon would eventually return.
The Ch'i-Lin and his servant, Zhou Cheng went after Orson Randall as the Iron Fist in 1934 but he was able to elude capture and death by dampening his chi with the use of heroin. Seventy-Five years later, Danny Rand was the new Iron Fist and Ch'i-Lin sent his servant Zhou Cheng to claim his heart on his thirty-third birthday. Cheng nearly killed Rand in Central Park but retreated after Luke Cage, Misty Knight and Colleen Wing came to the rescue. The Ch'i-Lin was very angry and gave Zheng one more chance to kill Iron Fist. Zheng would take mental control of Rand's students from his School of Thunder to lure Iron Fist to him. Iron Fist and Luke Cage entered the dojo with the possessed students. Iron Fist was forced to kneel before Cheng as his chi was began to drain. Iron Fist came up with a contingency plan and asked Zheng if his abilities allowed him to drain the chi of other immortal weapons. Cheng was perplexed when the Immortal Weapons appeared to help Iron Fist. Ch'i-Lin's spirit was forced to reveal itself as it faced Iron Fist and some of the Immortal Weapons including Fat Cobra, Dog Brother # 1, Prince of Orphans and the Bride of Nine Spiders. The fight was fierce but the Ch'i-Lin and Cheng escaped.
The Ch'i-Lin could not drain the chi of the other Immortal Weapons so they agreed to look into the apartment of Zhou Cheng while Rand recuperated. The Immortal Weapons discovered a map to the Eighth City which the Ch'i-Lin called home when they were caught in an explosion. Rand would be poisoned by his assistant Nadine who was Zhou Cheng's girlfriend. Rand was severely weakened and Cheng was about to deliver the killing blow when Nadine intervened. Nadine didn't want the father of her child to be a killer so Cheng momentarily paused his attack. Cheng flung Nadine across the room which allowed Iron Fist to recover. Iron Fist would dampened his chi powers by using pure rage and decapitate Cheng with one powerful blow. The Ch'i-Lin's spirit left his dead host and would starve as the Dragon lived because it could only consume the egg before it hatched. The dragon egg would hatch in Kun-Lun and the warriors of that city realized that Iron Fist successfully defeated the Ch'i-Lin.
The Ch'i-Lin was created by Duane Swierczynski and Travel Foreman in 2008 and first appeared in The Immortal Iron Fist # 17.
Powers & Abilities
The Ch'i-Lin is a powerful, mystical beast that possess enhanced strength, speed, durability and resistance to injury. The Ch'i-Lin in its original form has razor sharp fangs and claws. It could transfer its spirit and powers into a host and grant them various abilities, said host could emit flames from his breath and take mental control of human beings. The human host it shares a link with has an analytic, tactical mind which studies every generation of their new adversary thoroughly.
Both the Ch'i-Lin and its host are a spiritual predator; the human skin it wears. While through the union with their master, the hosting beings are able to absorb and metabolize Chi from targeted Iron Fists feeding the parasitic being inside of them. Decidedly the servant of the creature is functionally immortal, having killed many Iron Fists while host to the patron entity for centuries. They both fight their targeted prey and challenge them through a recombination of in-depth knowledge and partial transformations.