Victor was born in Krakow, Poland on February 10, 1875 to Josef Krakowski, a watchmaker and Renia Kowalczyk, a factory worker. Named after his grandfather, Victor was the eldest of six children and was expected to help his parents raise his younger siblings, Anita (born 1879), Thomas (born 1880), Josef (born 1882), Izabela (born 1885), Eryk (born 1886) and Katherine (born 1890).
The family is supposedly descended from Polish royalty, though this account has never been corroborated. By the 19th century, the Krakowskis were firmly established citizens of the city of Krakow. Thoroughly working class, Josef, a quiet, remote man whom Victor seems to have gained some significant personality traits from, attempted to keep the family clothed and fed through the running of a watch shop. Victor often skipped school to work as an assistant at the shop to keep running costs down, and with the intention of it to be handed to him when his father retired.
As a child, Victor was described as 'quietly thoughtful and an amusing trickster'. He had expressed a wish to work in vaudeville, yet never pursued this as a career, the work at the watchshop taking precedence. While on the few occasions he did attend school, Victor took quiet enjoyment out of more studious classes, including history, literature, science and mechanics. Although he was often referred to as being a near gifted sportsman, Victor seemed to show little interest in any physical activities, and even notably turned down an opportunity to play for the Krakow Young Person's Hockey team.
As well as a natural born talent for fixing watches, and the quiet demeanour of his father, Victor seems to have also gained his gifted abilities. Being able to naturally work out the placement, force, angle and trajectory of something in which to achieve a desired outcome without precise working out or intricate thought. Victor had always assumed his latent abilities to be natural, though upon investigation by Finn Vanderblit, it was discovered he was gifted.
Despite an apparent lack of a formal education, Victor was often cited as being fiercely intellectual, and would often spend his spare time working on building watches of his own, as well as other, more intricate projects. He grew interested in the compounds and mechanics of explosions and bombs and built several of his own, curious about the rates of explosive power through different chemical procedures - especially through simple household items.
This led to a fateful incident in 1892 when he had tried an experiment which resulted in one of his devices going off when it was not intended, resulting in the injury of four people. He was arrested on terrorism charges, and under the direction of a lawyer, was duped into a signed confession as part of a wider plot. Victor was sentenced to twenty-five years.
While behind bars, Victor befriended his cellmate, who was a charismatic man, who spoke of the unfairness of the system, that society was inherently corrupt, and that the bourgeoisie would forever rule upon the downtrodden should those below not rise up and create a fair and just system for all. The cellmate, a Communist, began to lead Victor into agreeing with such ideals.
During his time behind bars, suffering unfair treatment from prison guards, and the justice system as a whole, despite his protests of innocence, Victor began to grow bitter and discontent. He lost a significant amount of confidence in that time, and now thoroughly dislikes attention from most anyone, silently fearing it may result in something bad happening to him. He does know such fears are generally unfounded, but it is a difficult feeling to shake.
After six years of imprisonment, a riot occurred at the prison, and Victor took the opportunity to escape. He went in hiding and traveled across Europe until arriving in Lairea. Here he struggles to afford rent in his minuscule apartment, he is only able to wrangle odd-jobs where he can and occasional part time hours at the watch repair business which is below his apartment, owned by a decrepit old man who is also his landlord.