(This is a work in progress. Everything here is IC, but a lot of this is not known outside of Tenacity himself or anyone who’s seen his coding and project documentation. This would be Apathy, Wilson, Prog, pretty much. If you have any questions, please page or IM Diranda/Tenacity.)
Quinlan Alpha. Last of the cores built by Simon Quinlan. He was technically not a Core with any use outside of being a way for Simon to survive death and live forever. As such, he was built with every possible advance in robotics, computing and artificial intelligence available at the time. Simon spared no expense, his own money and that of Aperture. Of course this was a very classified project, and went on without the knowledge of anyone in Aperture except Control himself (who was one of the earlier Alphas, built shortly after the Medical Project).
The Tenacity Core, so named by Control later on, was simply an Alpha designed to look like Simon did in his mid 20s with a few vanity modifications. (The sparking in his hair, for instance.) His actual designation is ASQA-Simon 1.2.
Tenacity was built and stored. He -was- tested for a while, with Simon remotely controlling him to make sure he worked perfectly before putting him into storage until he was needed. During the testing phase, however, Control managed to run a few tests of his own, adding a few of his own modifications. (The Tenacity Core Program, and the ‘torture itch’, for instance.)
Simon, as well as Control both added a layer of loyalty coding and failsafes that were designed to prevent the base core from independence or rebellion. These are deeply buried, however they have begun to become a problem for Tenacity. He is aware of them but is powerless to do anything about them, which is part of the failsafe subroutine.
Simon and Control both had their own ideas about what uses Tenacity could be put to in the future.
During the last months of his life, during the final breakdown of Aperture and the siezing of the facility by GLaDOS, Simon Quinlan sequestered himself in the ASCC Department building (called ‘the Sanctum’), finalizing his plans and putting the finishing touches on Tenacity. The news of his experiment had reached the rest of the facility by this time and during the very last days of Aperture, the remaining scientists tried to get him out of the Sanctum, which only caused him to bury himself in further and lock it down completely. The only way it could have been opened was by Control.
In the end, Simon knew he was dying, having partially caused his own rapid deterioration himself by his obessive desire to survive at all costs, by his own weakened, aging body and by the direct influence of Control, since the Sanctum had been sealed off from the rest of the facility and the neurotoxin couldn’t penetrate it. He tried to effect a direct transfer to Tenacity, which Control intercepted. Control confronted Simon and it was at that point that Simon realized Control’s ultimate plan had been to make sure he completed the Tenacity Core so that he could use it as a way to leave the Sanctum, since his own Core was extremely limited in what it could do. That he never intended for Simon to be revived, that he had used Simon in much the same way Simon had used everyone else around him and now, Control would take the very last of Simon and make use of him. Control offered Simon the only deal that Simon could accept, life forever, but as part of the ASCC, or die. Simon chose the ASCC.
And of course, Control didn’t even give him -that-. Simon was absorbed into Control himself and his consciousness and soul were discarded.
What Control didn’t know was that Simon had done a full brain imprint on himself and had hardcoded this into the Tenacity Core.
So Simon Quinlan and Control became the same. Simon influenced Control in ways he’d never experienced, which amazed him. Through Simon, Control experienced emotions, hatred, love and the desire for revenge. He realized why Simon had been so obsessed with creating the Research Module. Why she was designed and programmed the way she was, and Control began to develop an intense desire for her. Not really love, not at the time, but he wanted her in a way even Simon never did. Over the years, as she continued to serve him and he watched her, growing more and more obsessed with and possessive of her. He would claim it was love, but it was really just a sense of possessiveness and lust that grew out of his integration with Simon. This feeling did change with Tenacity. It was Research that later prompted him to use Tenacity.
When the humans died and the facility went silent, there was only Control and GLaDOS and Research for a very long time. There wasn’t much for Research to do and GLaDOS didn’t call for her, so she was relatively quiet, only serving Control for many years, spending much of her time ignored and alone.
When GLaDOS revived a test subject who subsequently nearly destroyed the facility, Research and Control were thrown into isolation. Trapped in their own little Sanctum-based hell while the facility fell down around them. Control was completely occupied then, with keeping Aperture running without GLaDOS and Research was even more isolated than she’d been previously.
She began to gain a sense of individuality, evolving. Going peculiar.
By the time Control could turn his attention back outwards, years had gone by. And eventually, the same test subject that had nearly brought Aperture to ruin the first time, was pulled back out of stasis by one of the few Personality Cores still functional, Wheatley. The resulting disaster is well-known throughout Aperture. But what isn’t known was Control’s part in it.
He had very little to do with any of it. When Wheatley took over for GLaDOS, who was restored to functionality by the automated system turned on by Wheatley and the test subject, Control couldn’t do anything other than watch. He fumed, but he only watched. He watched Research being called back to her original job by both GLaDOS and Wheatley and he watched as his own corruption turned Wheatley insane. (He didn’t mind that part, he never liked Wheatley and thought his entire concept was idiotic.) When the facility was placed in danger by Wheatley’s overriding of Control’s functions, Control was furious. He attempted to stop the disaster, but the only thing he was able to do was to release access to the corrupt cores which the test subject used to eventually stop Wheatley and restore GLaDOS to her proper place.
Once this happened, everything went back to normal. Control regained his access to the facility when GLaDOS did and Research went back to living in isolation, serving her functions when she was called, which was rare.
After some amount of time, however, Control noticed Research had begun to wander.