Travski and his uncle Desi lived on the harsh planet of Nidhogg, which required epilation (hair removal) treatments. Travski did not like life there except for the easy access to the addictive drug hab. Travski was supplied the drug from a young age, his caretakers referring to it as "medicine". At one point Travski had feelings for a woman, but she soon discovered Travski had built a fem bot that looked like her, and publicly shamed him for doing so.
Eventually Travski and his uncle escaped a disaster on Nidhogg and ended up on Pridewater. Desi worked at the Kal-Bryant Mining Conglomerate as a computer tech, while Travski was recruited into the Ghost Academy.
The Ghost Academy
Lio Travski tried to keep his hab addiction a secret. Unknown to him, Superintendent Sarco Angelini knew about his problem and used that in experiments on the effects of drugs on psionics. He assigned Kam Hantra, another student, to supply him with drugs. Travski used his technopathic abilities on "Sparky", the Ghost Academy's main computer, in order to hide the drug deal.
Sometime after joining Team Blue as a fourth-class student, Hantra cut off his hab supply, claiming a senator had visited his source, Canis, and the increased security made getting hab difficult. The resulting withdrawal symptoms greatly weakened Travski's performance. He failed a training mission, the Valerian hostage rescue scenario, due mainly to a lack of athleticism.
A new student, Aal Cistler, son of Terran Dominion Treasury Ministry head Aldeo (a personal friend of Arcturus Mengsk), was added to Team Blue. Cistler was a poor fit at the Academy and quickly made a bad impression on team leader Gabriel Tosh and teammate Kath Toom, whose father worked as a vice president at the Kal-Bryant Mining Conglomerate. Toom rejected Aal Cistler's romantic advances and mocked him. Cistler plotted revenge against her.
A former drug user himself, Cistler recognized Travski's withdrawal symptoms. He promised to give him hab in exchange for a favor – Travski had to convince his uncle Desi to sabotage the Conglomerate's computer system.
Cistler disguised a supply of turk (another drug) as hab and gave that to Travski, who promptly injected himself with the overdose. During another Valerian training mission, Travski performed much better, but eventually started suffering from hallucinations, his powers went out of control and then he collapsed. Fellow teammate Nova Terra, a veteran of the Gutter (a part of Tarsonis City where drug abuse was very common) recognized his symptoms and summoned medical aid, saving his life.
Dr. Neall diagnosed the overdose and detected traces of hab in his system, but Superintendent Sarco Angelini was more interested in covering the incident up. He took Travski and Terra for a memory wipe.
- Travski rejects Cistler's drug offer(src)
While Kath Toom's father ended up under investigation by the Treasury Ministry, Travski's drug addiction was revealed to the staff of the Academy. The Academy claimed that Travski was put into detox and rehab but Bick and Angelini continued to experiment on him until Cistler revealed Travski's drug abuse to the media. Travski was then heavily resocialized to partially cure his hab addiction, Bick and Angelini using shock therapy and the resocialization process subjecting him nightmarish visions of zerg. His physical addiction had continued too long to be cured with resocialization and had to defeated the old fashioned way. The process was ultimately a success and Travski rejoined his friends, more confident and no longer repeating words when nervous. However, they still had their doubts about his reliability.
During Travski's detox, Aal Cistler had returned to the Academy due to his father's influence, joining rival Team Red. Without the hab addiction inhibiting his abilities, Travski showed marked improvement in training, and was able to remotely manipulate several SCVs at once to incapacitate Team Red in a simulation, earning the respect of his teammates. Cistler offered Travski drugs to let him go, but Travski responded with great anger, punching Cistler in the face.
The Battle of Shi
The team was transported by the battlecruiser Cyrus. While the ship initially appeared impressive, it was undercrewed and undergunned. It had taken part in the Battle of Tarsonis and hadn't been retrofitted since. Travski discovered the technical details with his powers.
Upon entering the star system, Travski was able to pick up a faint distress call made by a pair of Old Family heirs—the Kusinis Twins. Travski helped convince the battlecruiser's commodore to launch a rescue mission. The cloaking devices would be controlled by Preceptor Lagdamen.
The battle fared poorly as the planet was infested with large numbers of zerg, which destroyed the lander that could take them back to the Cyrus. The ghosts couldn't cloak without Lagdamen's presence, but Travski used his powers to fire up their suits' cloaking device, giving them an advantage over the zerg.
Meanwhile, the Cyrus was shot down and invaded by the zerg, which killed the crew. Travski was able to track it, noting that it was still functional, but would require auto-repairs. The team made it back to the ship. While Nova Terra and Gabriel Tosh went to distract and engage the zerg, Travski technopathically linked with the battlecruiser's computer system and began the repair process. Terra put an end to the zerg, but Tosh was badly injured in the process. The newly-repaired Cyrus was able to pick them up and even take them back to the Ghost Academy.
Emperor Arcturus Mengsk was not pleased by the rescue of the Old Family heirs. He ordered their secret execution and the ghosts would be memory wiped. Now believing the rescue mission had been canceled, Travski was disappointed at never having seen a real battlecruiser.
Ghost in the Machine
"In the flesh. So to speak."
- Toom and Travski upon reuniting(src)
Travski died in a battle against the out-of-control Sparky. His consciousness survived as an AI, eventually leaving to explore the universe. He helped Tosh when he was on the run from the Dominion and eventually became a key part of Project Shadowblade, as software installed in Gehenna Station. He helped design many advanced programs that allowed the station to operate with minimal crew.
As an AI, Travski's personality changed and he became much less emotional. He believed the world was flawed, and the xel'naga had left it long ago. He had explored both protoss and xel'naga computers in his travels. He had little interest in the politics of Shadowblade, but wished to expand terran consciousness, which he believed terrazine would help with.
In 2503, Shadowblade was in the midst of final preparations for a strike against Arcturus Mengsk. On his part, Travski sent an order that supposedly originated from Mengsk himself, bringing old teammate Kath Toom to Altara. The plan worked, and Toom was captured, incapacitated and through some surgery and terrazine exposure, brought into Shadowblade's fold. Within a few days, he revealed his existence to Toom. He filled her in on his status, his goals and on the less savoury practices of Mengsk and the Ghost Program. Toom ended up terminating the conversation however, letting her emotions get the best of her. However, he continued to track her movements, various robots following her to an empty hanger. There, he replayed a holographic recording left to her by her father, revealing his suicide and that he had been set up for a fall by the Cistlers—information that Kath and Tosh had discovered back in their academy days. Toom lashed out at the AAI that he was using to communicate with her, but Travski had left his psychological mark.
Not long afterwards, Travski helped Tosh and a team of spectres infiltrate Korhal Palace. Thanks to his AI abilities, Travski was able to allow his team to bypass checkpoints, passcodes, defensive turrets and security cameras. However, the spectres failed in their assault, leaving Terra injured but alive.
Back aboard Gehenna Station, Lio Travski told Tosh that he was treating Toom like a POW and that he was deviating from the path of the experiment. Tosh tried to follow Travski's advice.
Aboard the Palatine, the Nova Squadron battlecruiser, Terra was captured by Colonel Jackson Hauler, aka General Cole Bennett. He also captured Kelerchian and had him transported to Gehenna. However, Dr. Shaw had a personal history with Terra and tried to kill her. As she lay helpless, attached to electrodes, Travski got into contact with her. He helped her escape. Terra launched the November, and had Travski make it seem like she was aboard, but she was still hiding on the Palatine. Travski also shut down the Palatine's communications and tracking systems, so they couldn't get in touch with Gehenna.
The ship made it to Gehenna Station, where Terra slipped aboard. During Terra's search of Gehenna, she encountered Kath Toom. The two fought, and Terra defeated Toom. She took Toom's suit and escaped. Bennett came across Toom and killed her, then relayed a message to Tosh that Terra had done it.
Travski got in touch with Terra and told her about the murder, and also helped her deal with an ambush. The station then came under attack by the Annihilators, and Travski shut down Gehenna's weapons. At this point Bennett realized that Travski had turned against him. Gehenna was outfitted with an EMP device that could destroy Travski, and it was activated. However, Travski knew about the device and found a way to evade it.
However, Bennett fooled Terra into a weak position by capturing Kelerchian again. Terra was forced into a psi indoctrinator. While there, she asked Travski to give Tosh information about Bennett's treachery. An angry Tosh attacked Bennett, and between his powers and those of Terra, they killed him.
Travski gave Terra a farewell message before joining the datastream, forever.
Personality and Traits
- Travski reflects on his past organic self.(src)
As a human, Travski was small, bald, had large eyes and prominent, saucer-like ears and was a "scatter-brained geek." Gabriel Tosh nonetheless considered him to be devoted to the Ghost Program. He had a habit of saying "problemo" and repeating his words, even when typing them. This disappeared after he underwent neural resocialization. He was considered "weird" as a child, which had an effect on his self-esteem. He found robots easier to deal with socially.
While human, Travski had technopathic abilities, allowing him to communicate with machines, though had a habit of making them go haywire. He could use these abilities to avoid notice by advanced computers; he often contacted his uncle Desi and told him of his problems with his hab addiction which he hid from the Ghost Academy. He also appeared to possess telekinesis, or at least levitative abilities.
- Travski in his AI form(src)
Tosh observed that as an AI, Travski was rid of the lack of self-confidence that had plagued him at the academy, and that the physical world was little more than a curiosity. Slowly Travski began to become more detached from his humanity, seeing the universe as nothing but a plaything made by the xel'naga. This apathetic look at the material universe lead him to join Cole Bennett's rebellion, but later defect to help Nova, as he liked her best when he was a physical being. It was also this outlook that caused him to decide to disperse himself into the datastream, losing his unified consciousness.