Max did not have a happy childhood. Her parents split up when she was young, and she and her older sister moved in with their mother. To make ends meet, Mrs. Gibson was on the road a lot, leaving Max to take care of herself from a young age. She missed a lot of the attention and love, but grew stronger through it.
Not deterred by her family situation, Max rose to become one of the smartest students at Hamilton Hill High School. She received a perfect score on the standardized GAT test and her class grades made her the lead candidate for class valedictorian. Also a computer genius, Max wrote a computer program to discover Batman's secret identity as a hobby. She narrowed it down to a basic physical description, plus the her hunch that he was somehow connected to the high school. Unfortunately for her, Terminal, the leader of a gang of Jokerz, attacked the school to try and alter records and then tried to kill her. After the first attempt on her life failed, Max adapted her identification program to find possible Jokerz gang members. The list of names the computer printed out included Terry's, which she suspected may have been why he had tried to talk her out of making the list. Deciding to take action, she sent a message to Terry that she knew "his secret", and ordered him to meet her.
Terminal followed her and threatened to kill her, but Batman showed up and saved her. Terminal's true identity was revealed as Carter Wilson, the class's second-highest achiever who was driven to be first by his uncaring mother, and she realized that Terry was actually Batman. In private, she told Terry that she knew his secret but promised not to tell anyone and offered to help him any way she could.