There has never been anyone quite like Jesse Custer, and that's probably a sad loss.
Born of forbidden love, Jesse Custer came into the world in 1969, the only son of John Custer and Christina Custer. While they weren't married at the time, they were happy. John took his boy to see John Wayne movies and he learned how to say, "God dammit", "Son of a bitch" and "Pilgrim" by the time he was four. They were living in Laredo, Texas, where John was tending bar, when Christina's past caught up with her. Her mother was Marie L'Angell, the evil matriarch of the L'Angell clan, and she had sent her two henchmen, Jody and T.C., to fetch her wayward daughter. John put up a fight, easily knocking Jody to the ground. In response, T.C. put a gun to the back of John's head, planning to kill him then and there, when he realized that young Jesse had called him "Dad". The two were planning to bring Christina back alone, but the young Jesse changed the situation entirely. All three of them were taken back to L'Angell's plantation, Angelville. There, L'Angell laid down the law: John and Christina would get married, live together as a family, and raise Jesse to be a man of God in the tradition of the L'Angell family. And if they were to try to escape, John Custer would die.
It took about a year. John Custer woke his son in the middle of the night, and told him to get ready. He also left him with very important words: "You gotta be a good guy, Jesse. You gotta be like John Wayne: you don't take no shit off fools, an' you judge people by what's in 'em, not how they look. An' you do the right thing. You gotta be one of the good guys, son, 'cause there's way too many of the bad." They ran for their freedom, and were caught before they got two miles, and Jesse's father was shot dead before his eyes.
This was the last time Jesse Custer cried - he swore then and there never to give anyone the satisfaction.
He and his mother went back to Angelville, and she did her best to raise Jesse alone. Nearly alone, anyway. One afternoon, not long after his father's death, Jesse met an interesting new friend -The Duke. Watching one of John Wayne's old movies, just when it was about to end...The Duke himself reached out through the TV screen and told Jesse that from now on they would be partners. The boy gladly shook his idol's hand, and from then on, The Duke was always there when Jesse needed him the most. He was Jesse's conscious, always steering him in the right direction and helping him...always.
Under his grandmother's rules, he was to learn the Bible and be prepared to be a reverend, and his mother tried her best. The life had gone out of her though, with the death of her husband. She watched her boy grow up, and felt helpless to protect him, both directly and indirectly. When he was caught cursing by his grandmother, and sentenced to a week in the Coffin, Christina Custer tried to rebel. She tried to protect her boy, and was dragged away screaming, for all Jesse knew, to die.
Alone in Angelville
The Coffin was even worse than it sounded - Jesse was put under water in an airtight coffin, with an air hose keeping him from death. He was left there for one week, after which he came out filthy, starving, terrified and obedient. He studied under his grandmother, who terrified him with tales of an omniscient God who saw everything he thought and did. God was, according to her, his friend. His only friend, other than Billy-Bob Bobbs.
Billy-Bob was a neighbor from a few miles away, a deformed boy from a family that had a long tradition of inbreeding - the oldest son would marry the oldest daughter. But for his deformity, he had a good heart, and was a good friend to Jesse, until his death. Billy-Bob was killed by T.C., who thought that the boy had been spying on his sexual liasons with a chicken. He slashed Billy-Bob's throat, and left him to bleed out on the grass. Jesse went mad at his friend's death and attacked T.C., earning himself two weeks in The Coffin this time, as well as a broken arm. He had tried to fight Jody, the man who had shot his father, and failed.
When he got out, and his arm had healed, Jesse went to see Billy-Bob's family, to apologize for their son's death, insofar as he could. But his apology was for naught. He was from a terrible family, the L'angell's, and nothing good would ever come from them. Their anger gave Jesse just enough impetus to walk away from Angelville, towards Texas and freedom.
Gone to Texas
Finally free of his family, Jesse Custer had to figure out what to do with himself. At Angelville he had learned to fight, to shoot, and to do all kinds of manual labor, so he was able to do odd jobs from town to town. And it was in one of those towns that he met Tulip O'Hare. He went into a bar with his girlfriend Zoe, and walked out with Tulip. Within a few hours, they were in bed together, and knew they'd be together until the end of the world.
With Tulip's best friend Amy Grinderbinder, Jesse and Tulip traveled across the Southwest, stealing cars and causing chaos. They made a lot of money from their crimes, and nearly got killed more than once. Eventually, though, they knew that the good times would have to end, and it would be better for things to end on their terms than on someone else's. Amy headed back to New York City, and Tulip and Jesse headed towards California, which is where Jesse intended to ask her to marry him.
In Phoenix, however, his past caught up with him, and as with his parents, it was Jody and T.C. who found him. They told him that he could come with them now, or they would kill the woman he was with and come with them anyway. Frightened for Tulip, Jesse went with them, leaving her alone in Arizona.
This time, he spent a month in The Coffin. When he came out, he was well and truly broken. His grandmother had won - he would be a preacher.
The Time of the Preacher
Through his grandmother's connections, Jesse was posted as the preacher of a small town called Annville, Texas. There he heard confessions, performed services and did his best to drink himself to death. His spirit had been broken, and every time he remembered, it just made him want to crawl into a bottle and drink until he died. Even The Duke had given up on him, appearing just once since he was ordained to call Jesse a "Faggot." As far as Jesse was concerned, Annville was the end of the world, or at least the end of his world.
The turning point came as something of a surprise. He walked into a bar in a neighboring town, looking for something to drink. It was a comedy club, and though he had no interest in comedy, the man performing caught his notice. The man was Bill Hicks, and he spoke the truth. His commentary struck home with Jesse, and made him want something other than alcohol for the first time in months. Much later, he learned of Hicks' death from pancreatic cancer, and his admiration only grew. Here was a man, Jesse thought, who knew he was dying but still went out there and told the truth as he saw it. He spoke, "with the license granted to a dyin' man to say what he likes without fear." Jesse admired Hicks' life without compromise, and decided that he was through compromising too.
He went to the local Annville watering hole, where everyone was surprised to see him - Jesse usually did his drinking alone. Walking around from person to person, Jesse revealed the secrets of the town - secret deals, terrible acts and shameful deeds that were done by the residents. The result was a barfight that nearly got him killed. The next morning, his head throbbing, he prepared to give a sermon to a packed congregation on the topic of "forgiveness."
He never got to give that sermon. Just after the beginning of the service, a small comet-like apparition burst through the door and headed straight for Jesse Custer. The energy released by his possession by the being called Genesis caused an explosion that killed everyone in the church - nearly 200 people. Everyone died but Jesse, who escaped without a scratch on him. To his incredible surprise, he woke up to see Tulip kneeling over him. Without thinking, he kissed her, and nearly got a slap for his trouble.
The police were, of course, on their way. Tulip was with a man, Cassidy, who had a truck that they might use to get away, but before they could move the police were on them. They had guns drawn and were ready to shoot. Jesse reached into the part of him that was Genesis, and told them all to put their guns down. And they did. The possession from Genesis had given him a great gift - a Voice of Command that had to be obeyed, A power so incredible, it rivaled that of God himself.
Jesse asked Cassidy for a lift, and the three of them drove away as quickly as they could. They stopped off at a motel and did some shopping. Jesse wasn't ready to tell Tulip what had happened, how he had left her and why he was a reverend, but he assured her that he would. In the meantime, they needed to get away from the authorities and away from the Saint Of Killers, an immortal cowboy who was sent by heaven to get Genesis back, and his pursuit killed nearly all of the police men on Jesse's trail.
Of course, Jesse and the others didn't know this yet. What Jesse did find out, much to his surprise, was that Cassidy wasn't a normal man. During a barfight, Cassidy took a knife to his eye and didn't stop to notice. Then he ripped out that same man's throat with his teeth and started drinking his blood. In other words, Cassidy was a vampire. Jesse was horrified that the man he thought could eventually be a friend was a monster, a beast, and Jesse told him he was a an Abomination. Furious, Cassidy drove off, leaving Jesse and Tulip by themselves.
Over the next few hours, Jesse began to understand a little more about Genesis. He knew that it was the child of a demon and an angel, and that it was a being of incredible power, but that was all he knew. He had been granted a great power, but he didn't really know what to do with it. It wouldn't be long before he found out just how powerful he was - the Saint of Killers had tracked them down. Cassidy tried to rescue them, but was not nearly strong enough for the Saint to notice him. The Saint had them all dead to rights. Before he could get his shot off, however, Jesse Commanded him to holster his guns. And then to summon the Angels that had sent him.
One of the angels, DeBlanc, appeared and, under Jesse's command, told them all the truth - that God had, upon the emergence of Genesis, abandoned Heaven. Men and the angels were on their own. In Jesse's eyes, this was a betrayal. God had made the world, and then abandoned it, and that was something that Jesse couldn't let go. He told the angel to leave, and ordered the Saint to let them be. Then he commanded Sheriff Root, the county sheriff, to "go fuck himself," and - to his shock - the man did. This power of his was a dangerous thing, he realized, and it would be something to watch out for while he was on his mission to find God.
Where do you go when you're trying to find God? Cassidy suggested that they try New York City. An old friend of his, Si Coltrane lived there as a freelance journalist, and had a fondness for the weird. If there was anyone who might know where to start looking, it was Si. He seemed like an interesting person, and he and Cassidy were obviously very tight. So it came as quite the shock when Si turned out to be a serial killer. He was known in the press as the "Reaver-Cleaver" and had brutally murdered several men in the city. He nearly killed Tulip, and tried to frame both Cassidy and Jesse as being the Reaver-Cleaver. Jesse killed him with a punch and a Command to die.
Their tangle with Si got the attention of the police, and they were determined to get out. Jesse had learned in New York that Tulip had spent some time as a hit woman in Texas, or at least had tried to, and owed some money to a local club owner. Jesse was shocked at what he'd learned about her past, but was determined to try and help her. While Cassidy headed out to San Francisco, they made their way down to Dallas to confront the club owner, MacAvoy and to clear up Tulip's debt. But once again, they were interrupted by Jody and T.C. This time, though, Jesse had a secret - the Voice of Command. He ordered Jody to put his gun down - and nothing happened. He tried again, but Jody and T.C. were both immune to the Voice.
With no other options, Jesse told Tulip to cooperate with them in order to save her life. They got in a van with their captors, and Jesse was once again brought back to Angelville.
Back at his grandmother's home, Jesse had one night to tell Tulip everything, every detail about his childhood. He told her about his parents, and their ends. He told her about the Coffin and about the death of Billy-Bob. He told her why he left her in Phoenix and what had happened since then. Finally, she knew what it was that had driven Jesse away, and knew that he never wanted to leave her. Then morning broke, and Jody shot her in the head.
Finally, Jesse's last tie to the world had been broken, his last reason for rebelling taken away in a bloody smear on the floor. He was taken away to a bedroom and left to whatever his grandmother wanted for him. He lay curled up in bed, insensible, until he was once again visited by John Wayne.
Wayne asked him if he was ready to give up, if he was going to let these people win. If he was actually ready to let his father down. He reminded Jesse of his father's words - he had to be one of the good guys. Because there's way too many of the bad.
Angry but determined, Jesse marched outside and discovered that his Voice of Command had been restored to him - he Commanded them all to BURN. Most of the men ran off in flames, but Jody extinguished himself and faced Jesse man to man. They fought again, Jesse without his Voice and Jody without his gun, and this time Jesse won. He beat Jody down and choked the life out of him with his own two hands. And, much to his surprise, Tulip emerged from the burning house - alive and healthy. They were together again, and determined that nothing was ever going to seperate them again.
Together, they headed to San Francisco to meet Cassidy. His girlfriend had recently died, and Jesse was determined to help him find out how it had happened. As it turned out, she had overdosed on heroin, having been used as a drug mule for Bob Glover, who was moving drugs for the Lord of the Gomorrah People, Jesus DeSade. Determined to get revenge, Cassidy got Tulip and Jesse to go with him to DeSade's party to try and find Glover and, if possible, DeSade.
They were able to get in without too much trouble, and started looking for their men. Jesse was the one who found DeSade, and also found out just how far DeSade was willing to go in his pursuit of pleasure - child porn. While there were many things that Jesse would be able to tolerate, using a young boy in a sex film was not one of them. He proceeded to beat the hell out of DeSade and commanded the woman in the movie to take care of the boy for as long as she lived. Then he made his way out of the mansion just in time to see Tulip and Cassidy being kidnapped by an international secret society called The Grail.
Jesse gave chase, and managed to save Tulip although one of the vans got away with Cassidy. They managed to capture two Grail agents, Featherstone and Hoover, and by way of Jesse's Voice, told them all about the Grail's history and its purpose: the preservation of the bloodline of Christ. They had bred The Messiah over the last two thousand years, and the leader of that conspiracy, Starr, wanted to replace that messiah with Jesse Custer. Unfortunately for him, he hadn't kidnapped Jesse Custer - he had kidnapped Cassidy. And that was something that Jesse couldn't let go. So he and Tulip headed for France, to find Masada - the Grail's headquarters.
With the aid of Jesse's Voice, they managed to get into the country and out of Paris pretty easily. But Jesse had a plan, one that he knew Tulip wouldn't like. He planned to leave her behind. He knew that what he was about to do was going to be dangerous, and there was a good chance of some serious violence. So he left the hotel in the middle of the night and left Tulip with a large wad of cash and a note telling her to meet him in New York, if only so she could kick his ass.
Jesse headed for Masada, countering resistance from Grail troops by the use of his Voice. He Commanded them to take him to their leader, and they did, bringing him straight to Allfather D'Aronique. The Allfather, a man fat beyond normal comprehension, was interested in Custer, but not for the same reasons that Starr was. The Allfather was the nephew of Marie L'Angell, and knew that Jesse had killed her. For that, he was ready to see Jesse die. He set Starr up in a knife fight, planning to kill his disloyal servant one way or another, and Starr and Jesse managed to fight all the way through Masada. During the fight, Starr kept trying to get Jesse to listen to him - he had a plan, a way for both of them to topple the Grail and set the world right. But Jesse would have none of it. He wanted the man who had tried to kill Tulip and, as far as he knew, had killed his friend, and there was nothing Starr could say or do to change that.
Except to show him The Seraphim.
Back in 1994, The Grail had recovered a fallen angel, a Seraphim, and used it to get information about what was happening in Heaven. Through it, they learned of Genesis birth and God's desertion of His creation. Now, Starr offered the Seraphim's knowledge to Jesse as a way of proving his goodwill. But before he could do that, they had to deal once again with the Saint of Killers.
The Saint had tracked Jesse halfway across the world, and this time was ready for him. One word out of Jesse's lips, and he would die under the Saint's guns. But the angel found a way to stay the Saint's hand.
The angel told Jesse that he had to talk to Genesis, that he was, in fact, Genesis' father. He related the creature's conception, an unnatural union between angel and demon, and said that be communing with Genesis, he might be able to find out the greatest secret in all of Creation: the truth behind the deaths of the Saint's family and his own damnation. The Saint, again, let Jesse live. He gave him this one chance to survive, and promised that they would meet again. The angel told Jesse to go to the West, to the Native Americans, to find his answers. And then their conversation was cut short by the soldiers of The Grail.
They came in waves, held off only by the guns of the Saint of Killers. Starr tried to get Jesse to escape with him, but Jesse's only interest was in finding his friend Cassidy. He held Starr down under a knife and split his scalp until the man told him - Cassidy was in a basement, being used as target practice by a mad gunman. Starr escaped, but Jesse had his information. He ran downstairs and was faced with Frankie Toscani, who made the same promise the Saint had made: one word, and he would shoot. But once you've faced down the Saint of Killers, a crazy mobster is nothing. Jesse used his one word - "Miss." Frankie missed, and Jesse knocked him into the holding area, where he was killed by Cassidy.
Jesse and Cassidy escaped from Masada just before the whole place exploded, and made their way back to New York City. He and Cassidy went to the Empire State Building, where Cass told Jesse his life story. He had lived a long life, full of strangeness and loss, and told Jesse that he had learned the value of a true friend. He promised Jesse that he would stick with him to the very end, no matter what happened. The two of them would be partners.
Having listened to Cassidy, it was time to go meet Tulip. Once he got there, he was warmly greeted by Tulip, much to his surprise. She took him to a room in a swanky hotel, undressed him, and then tied him to the bed. He stayed there for the night, naked and bound, until she came back. She had been out with Amy, having a Girls' Night Out, but came back in a strange and dark mood. She didn't want to talk, she just wanted him to hold her, and he was happy to do so.
Back on the Road
The three of them headed south, their goal being to talk to some Native Americans in the Southwest. It was there that Jesse was supposed to learn how to talk to Genesis, to see if he could gain access to what it knew. But the way there would be full of its own adventures. Cassidy suggested that, before they go to Arizona, they try New Orleans. He knew a man there, Xavier, who was a voodoo priest and an expert at accessing the subconscious. On their way south, they ran into an old familiar face - the young son of the Annville sheriff, a young man who had been horribly disfigured by his own hand and who blamed Jesse Custer for his father's death. The boy had taken up the name Arseface, and had vowed revenge. When he finally found Jesse Custer, he held him at gunpoint, but couldn't bring himself to pull the trigger.
Jesse took pity on the boy, and offered to bring him to New Orleans for a new start. They brought him around to the bars and the gumbo restaurants and the whorehouses and generally showed him a good time. Meanwhile, Jesse was successful in his own quest - he met up with Xavier, who was more than happy to take Jesse on a trip into his subconscious. They went out to a cemetery for the ritual, which plunged Jesse into a hypnotic trance.
In the theater of his mind, Jesse was able to access some of Genesis' memories and thoughts. He saw its birth and God's abandonment. He saw the Saint of Killers and the chain of events that led to his creation. And, most importantly, he saw whose hand was behind it.
Jesse awoke to find his friends in the middle of an attack by a group of vampire wannabes called Les Enfents du Sang. They were after Cassidy, and had already cut off his head, but were willing to go through all of his friends in the process. By the time Jesse came back to his reality, Tulip had already done most of the work towards mowing them down, and Jesse only had to do a little punching. In the end, all of them died, but not without loss - Xavier's girlfriend had been killed in the attack as well.
They left New Orleans after that. Jesse's experiences with Genesis had been illuminating, but not complete. He still needed to know more, so he resumed following the angel's advice, and the three of them headed towards Monument Valley. Jesse bought some peyote on the reservation and spent the evening with Cassidy getting drunk. The next day was the day of destiny, in more ways than one.
The three of them went out into the desert for Jesse to have his visions. But first, he owed information to the Saint of Killers.
The Saint met them there in the sun, his hands by his guns, and asked Jesse to hold up his end of the bargain. Jesse told the Saint what he had learned from Genesis - that his creation had been deliberately engineered by God. His wife, his daughter and his entire hope of redemption had been destroyed by God's plan. The Saint was understandably furious, and took advantage of the surprise attack by the US Army and the Grail to work off some of his anger. The attack wasn't aimed at him, but he did an excellent job at taking them apart. Jesse was injured in the process, but was rescued by Cassidy and Tulip. They hijacked a military jet to try to get away from the carnage, but they were nearly destroyed by the nuclear blast that Starr had ordered against the Saint.
The plane was buffeted by the bomb's incredible forces, and one of the doors popped open, pulling Jesse out. Cassidy tried to catch him, but risked burning up in the sunlight. Jesse told Cassidy to tell Tulip he loved her, and then Commanded him to let him go. Unable to help himself, Cassidy did, and Jesse fell to earth.
The next thing he remembered was staggering through the desert, exhausted, dehydrated and half-blind. He stumbled into a blasting range owned by a desert hermit named Johnny Lee Wombat. Wombat nursed Jesse back to health over a month and lent him some money to go find Tulip. Missing one eye but otherwise whole, Jesse was determined to find his old friends and get back onto their quest. He thought the best place to try would be Phoenix, and he was right - they were there. And apparently a couple. He saw them kiss in a diner and couldn't being himself to meet them. He was so surprised by the revelation that he was literally knocked on his back.
Seeing Cassidy and Tulip together forced him to take some time to figure out what was going on with his life and his quest. With his dog, Skeeter, he drove back into Texas, his old home. He drove through to a small, half-dilapidated town called Salvation, Texas. He pulled in for lunch at Jodie's bar and grill, and afterward stopped a group of men from harassing a young girl with one eye - Lorie Bobbs. She was the sister of his old friend Billy-Bob, and he was glad to see her there. She offered him a place to say for the night, and there he met Jodie. She was a tough, one-armed woman who was one of the chief members of Salvation's society.
Jesse stayed overnight, but didn't sleep. He had a hole in his memory about how he had survived the fall from the plane, but all he could get was the image of Cassidy and Tulip together. He decided that he needed to "shift down a gear" and thought that Salvation might be a good place to stay for a while. It was a hick town, full of racists and losers, but it had a certain peace to it. He got a surprise when the sheriff of the town, Sheriff Jim Bewley, offered Jesse the position of deputy. Jesse said he wasn't interested in being a deputy, but he would be more than happy to be the sheriff.
Being sheriff of Salvation carried burdens, though, not the least of which was Odin Quincannon. Quincannon ran a local meat processing plant, and was the richest and most powerful man in that part of Texas. Not only that, he was an owl-eyed, tiny little goblin who talked about himself in the third person and saw himself as a sovereign power. Just the kind of person to make Jesse Custer furious.
Together with his deputy Cindy Daggett, Jesse was a thorn in Quincannon's side. He couldn't be bought and couldn't be threatened, which was an unknown quantity for someone like Quincannon. Even his tough-as-nails lawyer, Miss Oatlash couldn't scare Jesse, which kind of turned her on. Still, Quincannon was determined to assert his supremacy and tried several times to kill Jesse and most of the other residents of Salvation. Together, the town was able to stop Quincannon, and Jesse killed him.
The more important revelation Jesse had in Salvation, however, was the discovery that his mother, Christina, was still alive - she was Jodie.
Though Jody had tried to kill her, he had failed. The attempt at her life cost her an arm and her memory, and over the years she came to accept her new name (given to her by the doctors at the hospital) and her new identity, until her lost son came back to her.
Their reunion was brief, however. After the affair with Quincannon was finished, Jesse figured it was time to get back to his quest, to settle his issues with Tulip and Cassidy, and finally set things right with God. He went out the the seaside and took the peyote he had bought months earlier.
The vision was intense. He tapped into his subconscious and uncovered things he wanted - and didn't want - to know. He remembered the events after he fell from the airplane, which were the most important. God saved him from death, and asked Jesse to give up his quest. He told Jesse that He loved him, and all He wanted was to be loved in return. But Jesse wouldn't have it. He was determined to see God held accountable for His desertion and for the horrible things He had done in creating Earth. Jesse tried to use his Voice to command God, but God attacked, nearly killing Jesse and sucking out his left eyeball. Only the appearance of the Saint of Killers saved Jesse's life. God was terrified of the one being who could kill Him, and ran. The Saint offered to kill Jesse and save his sanity, but Jesse refused, saying that together they were going to bring God to justice.
Armed with this knowledge, Jesse was ready to finish his quest. But to do that, he needed to settle things with Tulip and Cassidy.
Reunions and Revelations
He drove to New York City, hoping to find Tulip with her friend Amy. He did, and was surprised to find that Tulip was not only thrilled to see him again, but also terrified. She couldn't understand why Jesse had left him, why he had left her with Cassidy and let him do all the terrible things that he did to her - how could he not have known the kind of man Cassidy was?
He didn't know because she hadn't told him.
She spent the night telling Jesse everything - how she and Cassidy had gone on the run after Monument Valley, and how she, thinking Jesse was dead, had retreated into alcohol and pills. She told him how she finally gave in to Cassidy and sought comfort in his arms. They had traveled together, and Tulip kept herself dulled and insensiate with booze and drugs and sex. Finally, she'd had enough and left him, heading straight to Amy's.
Jesse was really disturbed by what he'd heard from Tulip, but he trusted her and her word. But still, he needed to know. Cassidy had gotten under his skin, and Jesse needed to get him out. So he went to the one place he knew Cassidy had ties - McSorley's Old Ale House. The bar had changed since Cassidy's day, and none of the employees or regulars knew him, but there was an old homeless woman who did. She knew that Cassidy was a vampire, and that Cassidy was one to get so close to you that you see the knife in your back, but still can't believe what had happened.
Sally noticed that Jesse didn't want to find Cassidy, but rather wanted to find someone who knew about Cassidy. She sized up Jesse's problem right away and knew what had happened: Jesse had let Cassidy into his heart and gotten burned. So she told him about what she knew about Cassidy - a long, long lifetime of drugs, lies, cheating and sin - including what was for Jesse an unforgivable sin: Cassidy had hit women. There was one that Sally knew of, a girl from Iowa whose jaw Cassidy had broken, but she was pretty sure there had been more.
Jesse went back to Tulip, ready to tell her what he'd learned, and Cassidy - right on time - showed up. He was looking for Tulip and was stunned to see Jesse alive. He tried to make peace and tried to make nice, despite Tulip and Amy holding guns on him, and Jesse revealed that he knew about the dark, terrible things Cassidy had done. He told Cassidy to meet him in San Antonio, two months from then, and then they would talk. Until then, though, he wasn't ready to talk man to man to Cass.
Cassidy tried to get some words in, but was soon convinced that Jesse was serious, and left.
Jesse and Tulip, ready to finally find God, headed south. Their destination was San Antonio, but first Jesse had an errand to run. In order to seal God's punishment, he needed help: the Saint of Killers. Using the knowledge he'd gained from Genesis, Jesse found the dead town of Ratwater, Texas and dug up the bones of the human form that the Saint had once been. While the Saint professed not to care about the desecration of his bones, he came anyway.
The two of them talked. Jesse told the Saint what he knew about God - that He was an egotist, that He manipulated His creation for no other purpose than to be loved. He was willing to kill, destroy, to create Hell on Earth in order to see who loved Him more. What was worse, God had engineered the Saint's fall from grace, simply to see if He could gain the love of a being who could only hate. The plan was simple - God couldn't go back to Heaven as long as Jesse and Genesis were united. But if they could be separated, if that bond could be broken, God would head back to His throne, and the Saint would be there, waiting.
The Saint agreed to the plan, and the endgame began.
The End of the Quest
Jesse finally met up Cassidy at a bar in San Antonio, as they had agreed. Cassidy tried to explain, tried to make sense of who he had been, and asked Jesse to forgive him. Jesse wasn't ready to forgive, though. As far as he was concerned, Cassidy was little more than an animal who thought it was a man, and it was an animal that needed to be put down. So he told Cassidy that they were going to fight, and he Commanded him to fight like hell when the time came. He gave Cassidy a few hours to get himself ready, and went back to Tulip.
She wasn't worried about Cassidy, and probably thought it was just going to be a sinple fist fight. What she was really worried about was The Grail.
The Grail had been hunting Jesse for nearly a year, and was relentless in its pursuit. With Starr leading them, the soldiers of the Grail had already cost them lives and time, and she knew that they were going to be in San Antonio, too, and she was going to be prepared. She was armed to the teeth, ready to fight like hell for Jesse, and reminded him of his promise to let her be equal to him, not to leave her behind as he had in France. He remembered, and he promised. And then he drugged her.
He felt terrible about it, about lying to her, about breaking his promise to treat her as an equal. But he couldn't stand the idea of losing her. She had died once, back in Angelville, and he knew that he could never live with himself if that happened again. So, even though he knew it would be the end of their relationship, he was willing to do whatever it took to keep her alive and whole. He left her a note, and the key to a locker where he'd put some money, and left to go find Cassidy.
They fought in the only place they could - in front of the Alamo. Jesse took the first punch,and kept on hammering away at Cassidy. Bloodied and bruised, Cass kept trying to talk his way out of the fight, but didn't succeed against Jesse's righteous rage. He begged Jesse to help him, to take his hand and be his friend. He knew that he had done evil, that he was beyond redemption, but still - if someone like Jesse would take his hand, then maybe there was still hope. Maybe, under a century of wasted life, there was something to be saved.
Moved, Jesse took Cassidy's hand, and Cassidy sucker-punched him in the chest.
Cassidy had a plan too, and it hadn't gone exactly to plan. Still and all, he was more or less successful - Jesse was beaten down, if not yet beaten - and now Cass was ready to end it. As the run rose, Cassidy stood to the east, and exploded in the morning light. A moment later, Jesse Custer was shot in the head by a Grail sniper.
He woke up in the ambulance.
Healed and whole, but without Genesis and the Voice, Jesse had been brought back to life for reasons he did not know. He went to find Tulip, just to make sure she was okay, and she was. But she wasn't willing to stay with him, and never wanted to see him again. He had broken his word and lied to her, and, true to her word, they were finished. With Skeeter by his side, Jesse watched her go. But he knew it was a bad idea. He knew that, if he didn't go after her, all of what he had done would have been for nothing. He needed her, and he was sure they needed to be together.
On horseback, he found her stuck in traffic. He told her that he needed her, that he had done wrong, and he knew that, but that they had something wonderful. And it was something that is far too rare in this world, and he would do anything, anything to keep that. It was his tears that convinced her - the first tears he had shed since the death of his father. She abandoned her car and got on the horse behind him.
Together, Jesse, Tulip and Skeeter rode off - of course - into the sunset....
Jesse is a skilled hand-to-hand fighter, possessing quick reflexes and good endurance, and also has a sharp intellect. He is also relatively skilled with firearms. Jesse has no super-human attributes other than The Word (also called the word of command and the word of god) which he gains after being possessed by Genesis. Anyone Jesse uses The Word on is compelled to obey his commands, often in a completely literal manner.
Examples of the Word of God:
Preacher #1 :
Tells a group of police to drop their guns and let them go.
Preacher #2 :
Tells Cassidy to stand on his head.
Preacher #3 :
Tells Cassidy to stop drinking someone's blood.
Preacher #4 :
Tells the Saint of Killers to holster his gun. Tells the Heavenly Host to "Cut the shit and tell the truth". Tells Sheriff Root "go fuck yourself".
Similar feats occur throughout the entire series.