The Temporal Gene is an extremely rare genetic trait that allows anyone who possesses it to bend time to apparently freeze it using the power of concentration alone.
The Temporal Gene, as it was formally named by the International Temporal Enforcement Agency, naturally manifests only in women. It has been shown that only an X-chromosome can possess the recessive trait, thus the only way for it to manifest is if the recessive-halves meet when a child is conceived. It is notable that even woman who possess the gene aren't always able to activate so its suspected some kind of biological event must occur first. While the recessive trait isn't that uncommon the requirement for two of them to join and for the gene to be active has led to the estimate that there are no more than a few dozen women worldwide with active genes. The gene can primarily be traced in the head of those who possess it, it being the best location to retrieve a DNA sample for study.
To use the Temporal Gene great concentration is required, thus accessing the frontal lobe of the brain. A possessor must focus and calm their mind, and upon reaching a sort of nirvana the person has effectively frozen time. Anything or anyone in contact with the gene-carrier when they activate it will not freeze, and time will only start flowing again when the user loses total concentration. When the time-stop state is achieved it is possible to lose some concentration and keep time frozen, but a total loss of focus will cause a disruption. Those who use their gift frequently will find themselves able to activate it quicker and not lose concentration so easily but are prone to fatigue, but mentally and physically, thus requiring properly sleep after repeated use.
Study of the exact nature of the gene has yielded few results, though electrical stimulation of a preserved DNA sample has yielded some results. The magical effect produced when the Stillsville Camera froze the Durga Hourglass made Temporal Gene users immune to the effect, possibly indicating a relationship between magic and the gene. Additionally users' abilities were demonstrated to be stronger after the event, Tasia Spiro even gaining the ability to apparently freeze people with a kiss. Examination by those familiar with the gene was suggested that the exact manifestation of the ability may not always be freezing time, but also through other unusual abilities. So far only Tasia Spiro and possibly Laura Blair have demonstrated anything outside of the norm, Tasia with her kiss and Laura being suspected of somehow freezing people and not time itself.
Using sophisticated electronics it is possible to use a sample of the gene to create a field that freezes anything within it, known as a Time-Stopper. A Uranus Generator takes the ability even further, being able to use gene samples to freeze time on a global scale. The Immortality Gate attempted to defy aging by having gen-users plugged directly into the machine but failed entirely. To fully replicate the effect a complete replication of the gene as it appears within the human host is required, which requires either the harvest of genetic material or cloning, though the latter hasn't proved successful as of yet. No known attempts have been made yet to give a person the gene artificially.