Welsh was raised by members of a nomad carnival troupe after they found him abandoned at one of their carnival grounds. Throughout his childhood and adolescence, he was trained in slight-of-hand and the art of illusion. Kela DoMori, one of the elder carnies, realized he had untapped magical abilities and secretly instructed him in the use of real magic.
When the carnival visited Queen City, Welsh saw the hero Mercury fighting a gang and helped him defeat them. Mercury invited him to the Omega 8 headquarters within the Montag Building and told him about the team. Mercury offered him the chance to join them, and Welsh accepted.