CLOAK & DAGGER: Page 6 of 8

Publication Date: 7th Sep 2023
Written By: Monolith.
Image Work: Douglas Mangum.


Cloak was thrilled to have Dagger back in his life, but terrified at the thought of losing her again. His over-protectiveness led him to teleport her away to safety at even the hint of danger. Tandy did not appreciate Tyrone's smothering form of love, and pushed back against his possessiveness. She even told him she loved him only as a brother, but whether that was true or merely an attempt to put some distance back between them is unknown. [Amazing Spider-Man Annual #28] It was perhaps because of Cloak's attitude that Dagger began striking out on her own more often. She fought alongside the Defenders and the New Warriors, the latter occasion happening even over Cloak's explicit objections. As much as she enjoyed the company of others occasionally, though, Dagger still always returned to Cloak when pressed. She turned down two more offers to work with the New Warriors full-time because she wouldn't end her partnership with Cloak. [New Warriors (1st series) #48-51, New Warriors (2nd series) #1, Secret Defenders #22-25]

Circumstances led to Cloak and Dagger's abilities changing once more. Cloak fell under the influence of Nightmare again, his pocket of the Dark Dimension penetrated by a rift into the Realm of Nightmares. This allowed Nightmare to push Cloak into hungering for human souls more than ever before, drawing even minor criminals such as card sharks and toll jumpers into his folds on a renewed mission to punish "sinners." He separated from Dagger who, by coincidence or design, demonstrated a greater "purity" than ever before, manifested as a more innocent and childlike demeanor.

While searching for Cloak in the various churches they frequented, Dagger helped Black Widow defend the priest against thieves. She was drawn into Widow and Daredevil's hunt to capture the Punisher, and agreed to assist them in their search in exchange for their help finding Cloak. In the course of their investigation into Punisher's activities, they also encountered Shang-Chi and a cadre of Asgardian Rock Trolls being led by Ulik. The Trolls were defeated, but Castle escaped in the meantime. [Marvel Knights (1st series) #1-3]

Daredevil was more than determined than ever to bring Punisher to justice, and so the unlikely foursome remained together as a loose-knit team. Moon Knight heard of their alliance and invited himself along as well, pushing the group to establish themselves more officially. Dagger continued working with them as Daredevil used his street contacts and the Black Widow consulted with S.H.I.E.L.D. to find leads on Cloak's whereabouts. In the meantime, Tandy moved into the Widow's penthouse apartment at her request to stay close by. Although this team never officially took a name, it was occasionally referred to as the Marvel Knights. [Marvel Knights (1st series) #4-6]

With the assistance of Doctor Strange, Dagger finally was able to locate Cloak. Strange sensed Nightmare's hand in the case, and accompanied the Knights. Cloak had already consumed the Punisher on top of his other victims, and he rejected Dagger's attempt at getting him help. The unstable Cloak struck out at Dagger's allies, pulling Daredevil, Black Widow and Moon Knight into his Dark Dimension as well. Even Dagger's light could not quell his desire to feed on the light of others.

Doctor Strange was unable to best the power Cloak was channeling, so he dispatched his astral form into the Dark Dimension. He counseled the heroes inside, but they were powerless to hold back the hordes of Nightmare annexing the Dark Dimension from his realm, and making their way towards the waking world through Cloak. Outside, Dagger continued to feed Cloak as much light as she could, trying to reach Tyrone's true spirit beneath the influence of Nightmare. She succeeded and embraced Tyrone in her light, as her teammates escaped from the cloak of darkness with the Punisher in custody. In the aftermath, Tyrone emerged as cured of his powers, with the gateway to the Dark Dimension and the Realm of Nightmares seemingly gone forever, along with his powers. [Marvel Knights (1st series) #7-9]

The Black Widow allowed Tyrone to move into her apartment with Dagger while he readjusted to life as a normal person. Tandy and Natasha continued to bond as they went shopping together and fought car thieves foolish enough to steal Natasha's S.H.I.E.L.D. issue sports car. [Marvel Knights (1st series) #10]

The Knights continued to grow as Moon Knight hired Luke Cage as a bruiser to expand their roster. During a fight with Tombstone and an alliance of several mob families, the team was caught off-guard by a rocket launcher fired indoors, leaving everyone but Dagger woozy or unconscious. Faced with a room full of armed gunmen, Dagger instinctively unleashed Cloak's corrupted darkness, which she had absorbed in their final confrontation over Nightmare. However, while Luke Cage saw the tail end of her defeat of the gangsters, Dagger herself remembered nothing of the event afterwards. [Marvel Knights (1st series) #11-12]

Black Widow intended to press Tandy on the issue after she rested, but they were drawn into an unrelated crisis. Tyrone was attacked at the apartment by a Life Model Decoy of Nick Fury, hunting for Natasha. After they defeated the LMD, Natasha feared a conspiracy within SHIELD and so she went to the Helicarrier directly to speak to Fury and Sharon Carter. Thanks to Dagger's ability to detect human souls, they would be able to detect any LMDs in person who might be involved in the conspiracy. Of course, Natasha's plan hit a snag when Dagger informed her that everyone on board the Helicarrier was an LMD. Still, they improvised and managed to defeat the renegade A.I. called Celine, who had declared Black Widow a security threat. Once they returned to the apartment, however, they learned the team's tower headquarters had been destroyed and Daredevil dissolved the group as most of the members went their separate ways. [Marvel Knights (1st series) #13-15]

[Note: During Marvel Knights, Dagger erroneous stated Cloak was raised in foster homes after his addict mother lost custody and he never knew his father. This is contrary to all other depictions of Tyrone's past.]

In an undocumented adventure in Cleveland, the power of Cloak left Dagger and returned to Tyrone, and so Cloak and Dagger's abilities were restored to normal. Cloak would also demonstrate a greater control over his abilities going forward, seemingly able to return to a truly normal appearance at will on a regular basis. Sometime later, their contacts in the police force put them in touch with Lieutenant Flores of the LAPD. Flores wanted their expertise locating Molly Hayes, a 12 year old girl supposedly kidnapped by several teenaged runaways. The runaways had already killed once and reportedly had special powers of their own, so Flores needed exceptional help for the case. Of course, Flores' report was largely a lie. Molly and the other runaways were the children of the Pride, a secret order of super-villains controlling crime on the West Coast. After witnessing their parents commit murder in a ritual sacrifice, the kids banded together and ran away for their own protection and to bring their parents down.

In battle with the runaways, Cloak swallowed most of them into his cape, but Molly Hayes' mutant strength actually severed the cape from his body, causing him to revert back to Tyrone and closing the gateway to the Dark Dimension. Dagger was able to restore him with her light, but this break in the action gave the vigilantes pause to confer with the runaways and learn the truth. Dagger suggested the kids lay low while she used her connections with Black Widow to gather enough East Coast heroes to return and deal with the Pride. Unfortunately, Cloak and Dagger were captured by the Pride before they could return home, and the villains erased their memories of the encounter entirely. [Runaways (1st series) #11-12]

Some months later, an obsessive stalker of Dagger's named Reginald Mantz bought a supply of Mutant Growth Hormone laced with Simon Marshall's drugs so he could become her new Cloak. When she rejected his advances, Reginald used the Darkforce to leech away her light, putting her in a coma. Video footage of the incident seemingly implicated Tyrone of the attack, sending him on the run from the Avengers. A blow to the head shook loose his stolen memories of the runaways, and so he traveled to Los Angeles to seek their help. With the assistance of the runaways, Cloak found evidence of the MGH deal and stopped Reginald (secretly a hospital orderly tending to Dagger) from draining too much of her light in his quest to possess her. [Runaways (2nd series) #9-12]