Little is truly known about Jackson Travest's history, especially by Jake himself. He isn't sure which of his memories are real, and which aren't. He's had several flashbacks about his martial arts training, some operations in various bejungled countries, and more. However, his present is just as interesting as his past, as there are at least two people in his head.
Jake Travest is possessed of multiple personalities.
His normal self is sort of smooth, savvy, and of course, a highly effective operation. However, he occasionally switches into another persona, his Slash persona, which is rage and homicidal anger personified. This identity tends to manifest itself while Jake is under lots of stress, or when he needs to accomplish something his already violent 'normal' self is loathe to do.
At any rate, Jake's first published appearance saw him being dropped off in Afghanistan with Jenny Swensen by Edmund Roth, who wanted to impress upon the young lady just how important it was for her to work with Project: Spitfire. Jake was in on this duplicity, even though he masterfully feigned innocence, and managed to help Jenny complete her first mission.
Essentially, there were several Soviet-built Mark 1 M.A.X. suits killing the remaining Mujahedin rebels in the country. Knowing how the suits worked, and their weaknesses, Jenny managed to totally destroy the Soviet M.A.X. operation -- with Jake's help, of course. Upon returning to America, Jake joined up with Project: Spitfire full time, along with Swensen.
Jake's next adventure saw him accompanying Jenny (in the new, Mark 3 M.A.X. suit) into Nicaragua, as it was rumored that there were M.A.X. sightings in the region, perpetrated by the Soviets again. Jake was captured by the locals during this mission, and was almost killed when Jenny managed to save him, overcoming the jamming device the locals were using against her armor.
Jake was hospitalized for the next few months afterwards, and as such, he missed Jenny's mission into the Pitt, where she ultimately became paranormal after getting exposed to Pitt-juice. She abandoned her suit shortly after this, hooking up with the paranormals of D.P. 7 until the Army arrested her (and them) for simply being in the area. Oh, and because the Government wanted to punish Jenny for disobeying them.
As such, once the Mark 3 Spitfire suit was recovered from the Pitt area, Jake was chosen to be the man in the can. His first mission, once the suit was put back together, was to capture two rogue paranormals. They were Wayne Tucker and Tyrone Jessup, members of Psi-Force, who the government had failed to capture using the bounty hunters known as the Medusa Web.
Jake tracked them down in Vancouver, where he proceeded to take the place apart in his attempt to capture them; he eventually caught Wayne Tucker, whose mental powers weren't working on him thanks to the cybernetic interface of the armor. However, he didn't account for Wayne's new girlfriend, Lindsay Falmon, who sicced the Medusa Web on him.
After their previous operations, you see, the Medusa Web had a falling out with the government, and were now trying to recruit the remaining members of Psi-Force. Once Lindsay told them what was happening, they tracked Jake down and attacked him. The battle ended, however, when Tyrone Jessup, the other member of Psi-Force, returned. His electromagnetic body totally scrambled up the armor.
Out of his suit, Jake was easily defeated; sure, he's a master of combat, but the combined force of paranormals was simply too great a foe for him to overcome. Once beaten, Jake was programmed by Wayne Tucker to tell everybody what he was doing there, especially to the authorities. When they picked him up, that's exactly what he started doing.
He kept doing that for months, in fact, to anybody that appeared to him in his cell, a sort of solitary confinement chamber set up by the Canadian authorities, who knew he was a master of dirty operations, and didn't want him getting away. Of course, this managed to corrode what was left of the man's sanity (which wasn't too hard), and by the time the Medusa Web broke him out, he was a total loon.
You see, the Web wanted his technology, and they broke him out under the pretense that they were C.I.A. operatives. In his damaged mental state, Jake bought the deception, and rode with the Web operatives to the point where the Canadians were keeping the remains of the Mark 3 M.A.X. suit. Wishing to repair the suit, Jake went to the sweet spot of the armor, and downloaded it's onboard schematic.
Of course, that was just what the Medusa Web wanted, so they took the disk and left Jake for dead in the Canadian warehouse, which they promptly blew to bits. Unfortunately, Jake was in the warehouse still, so he was blown to bits with the warehouse, and as such, won't be appearing in any further New U tales (unless, of course, he managed to get away from the warehouse in time...