Alpha Flight (2nd series) #3

Issue Date: 
October 1997
Story Title: 
Bury Your Dead!

Steve T. Seagle (Writer), Scott Clark (Penciler) Chris Carlson (Inker), Richard Starkings & Comicraft (Letterers), Lee Ann Garner (Colorist), Dan Hosek (Assistant Editor), Jaye Gardner (Editor), Bob Harass (Editor-in-Chief)

Brief Description: 

Strange weather patterns are occurring in Orloo, and equally strange things are going on at Department H. Puck receives a mysterious letter, while Heather gets used to her new battle suit and ponders her current situation with a rejuvenated Guardian. General Clarke calls Alpha Flight together and informs them of the situation in Orloo, which causes Heather to reminisce about her and Mac’s wedding which took place there - except Mac cannot remember it. Radius, Murmur and Flex are all disgruntled when they are not permitted to go on the mission. Arriving in Orloo, the high winds cause a stone to be thrown through the windshield of the Alpha Jet, injuring the pilot. Guardian manages to land the jet safely. Heather and Sasquatch take the pilot to a hospital, while Guardian and Manbot head for the site where the strange weather is originating from, and Judd takes a trip down memory lane, visiting Hull House where he used to work, but is greeted by an unwelcoming Beatrice de la Salle, while Coordinator Proctor hides in the shadows. Guardian and Manbot are inspecting the site, which funnily enough turns out to be an old Department H project known as the Cosmic Ray Collector, and Chinook rises from his grave, mutated beyond recognition. He engages Alpha Flight in battle, Heather, Judd and Sasquatch join in, while Chinook reminds them all of their previous encounter here and how they are responsible for his death. Eventually, Sasquatch rips Chinook in half, destroying him and ending the strange weather. At Department H, Radius, Murmur and Flex are bored and “kidnap” Sunfire from the Helios Project, steal a Department H vehicle and go on a joy ride, ending up at a diner in Montreal, where Mesmero decides that this is his lucky day. Meanwhile, former Alphans Shaman and Wild Child both learn through a newspaper that Alpha Flight is back in business.

Full Summary: 

Do you ever feel like you’ve lost control of your life?

If you lived in Orloo, Ontario, Canada, you would. You might have tried to resist the sudden changes that threatened to consume the way of life your sleepy little town had know for over one hundred years. But in the end, your efforts would have been trampled by mini-malls, office buildings, four-lane roads and fast food franchises. Over the course of years that followed Department H’s opening and closing of a strange test facility at the edge of your town, you would come to accept those changes, though telling yourself that there are some things you simply have no control over - things like the swift current of progress - things like the weather - things like the past - all the things that can sometimes unexpectedly rise against you.

And for the citizens of Orloo, they are experiencing just that at this present point in time, for winds strong enough to blow people over and send cars literally flying down the streets are sweeping through the city.

Many such things also lurk within the Ministry of Defence’s Department H headquarters building. Do the residents of Department H think about those things? In particular, Eugene Milton Judd a.k.a. Puck, his codename for his role as one of the core members of Alpha Flight. It’s early morning, and Judd is lying in bed reading a lingerie magazine. ‘I may not be in the market for lingerie, but I sure am enjoying this catalogue,’ he says to himself, when there is a knock at the door. ‘Who is it? I’m…ah…busy in here, eh?’ Judd says, before asking if it is Heather.

Suddenly, a note is slipped under Judd’s door, and he quickly gets out of bed and opens the door to his quarters, looking to see if anyone is out there as he wonders who in the world would slip a note under his door, he’s even more surprised that he cannot see anyone, as this corridor is the only way out. Opening the note, Judd sees that it is on official Ministry of Defence paper, with “Classified Destroy After Reading” stamped across it. The letter is addressed to Director X and General Clarke, with the subject line “Hull House Protocol”. Several words have been blanked out with a marker, but the letter talks about a Hull House “subject” codenamed Cleric, and the circumstances surrounding this persons death. Scribbled across the bottom of the memo is “Judd, thought you might be interested in this, a friendly insider”.

Moments later, Judd is in his new blue and yellow uniform and enters Combat Centrale, where Heather McNeil Hudson a.k.a. Vindicator is testing out the capabilities of her new geothermal battle suit. The former long-time leader of Alpha Flight until its recent disbanding tells Chief Engineer Su who is watching her, that this doesn’t make any sense, for where exactly are her plasma blasts being drawn from? Heather reminds Su that he said the suit siphons them from tectonic reservoirs, but she doesn’t see how that can be possible.

Chief Engineer Su tells Heather that he can explain the physics of the battle suit to her after she has finished, before asking her to concentrate on the target devices. Judd makes his presence known by telling Heather that Combat Centrale isn’t for talking, its for fighting. ‘That said, you got a minute to talk?’ Su tells Judd that he isn’t scheduled for any tests this morning, to which Judd replies ‘That’s good, cause I sure didn’t study for none, eh?’

Dropping to the floor, Heather asks Judd why he always says that. ‘What?’ asks Judd. ‘”Eh?”’ Heather says, copying him and telling him that she feels like he is perpetuating the stereotype just for the fun of it. ‘Cant help it, Heather. Just the way I talk…eh?’ Su informs Heather that he will ready the next tests, but Heather tells him that she is done for now. She informs him that she still isn’t comfortable with the new capabilities, to which Su explains that any sort of control will take time, that she will acclimate.

‘I’d better!’ Heather remarks as she exclaims that she is not using any other new powers until she has got a much better idea about what is attached to her skin. As Heather and Judd begin to leave Combat Centrale, Su tells Heather to stop by his lab afterwards for today’s results, if she has the time. Judd asks Heather what is with the incessant training, pointing out that she has been at it non-stop for days now. Heather explains to him that she doesn’t understand the suit and certainly doesn’t trust it, adding that she would rather find out the suit’s weaknesses here than in the field where it might cost her her life.

Heather pauses before admitting that she is also looking for anything to keep her mind off Mac, explaining to Judd that it is like he is her dream come true and her worse nightmare all rolled into one - he is healthy, youthful and handsome, but he also has no real memories of their life together. She exclaims that it is eating her up, but that she cannot bear to leave the Department, especially with Walter all screwed up too. ‘I just wish I could be stronger. I always pretended to be’.

Walking slightly ahead of Judd, she asks him if he has any idea of what it is like to love someone who isn’t even aware of you. ‘Yeah. Sure do,’ Judd mumbles, looking up at Heather, before informing her that he got this note, when suddenly, Guardian appears on the view screen near them, informing all Alphans that there is a priority-1 emergency and that they are to meet in the briefing room. ‘Hold that thought, Puck. The past calls,’ Heather remarks.

A country away, in the State of Washington D.C. the past calls also, for the young mutant Wild Child has definitely lost control. Somewhere between his genesis in Gamma Flight and his current exploits with X-Factor, something snapped and his impulses became his actions. Kyle Gibney skateboards down a railing, and calls out to the person in front of him reading a newspaper to look out - but the person doesn’t hear and the two collide. ‘Hey! Watch out!’ the man cries as Kyle slams into him, sending his newspaper flying out of his arms. ‘Hey! Get your stinking newspaper outta my lap or I’ll rip it up!’ Kyle exclaims, that is until he seems the article on the back page - Alpha Flight Returns! Canada’s Finest Fight Once More the caption says, with a photograph of the new line up. Wild Child’s former team could probably help him with his predicament - the past calls, but will he answer it?

If your name is Michael Twoyoungmen, then you might feel the past is conspiring for control of the present this morning. As Michael Twoyoungmen trudges through an unseasonal ice storm in the reaches of the Northwest territories, he has a sudden urge to temper the tempest with the forces at his disposal, but he keeps his impulses under control - for now. Entering a small wooden building, Twoyoungmen greets Mr. Turndon and asks if there is anything for him in the mail. Turndon replies that there isn’t, but hands him a newspaper, explaining that it came in just before the runway was shut down.

Turndon informs Twoyoungmen that it says Alpha Flight is up and running, and asks him if he is going to go and join them. ‘You could be a hero again!’ The past calls, Dr. Twoyoungmen - do you answer it? ‘No!’ Michael replies, exclaiming that he will never go back, for helping the tribe here in Bear Lake is heroism enough for him, and adds that if Alpha Flight did not contact him, they mustn’t have wanted him, pointing out that the people of the tribe have long been in need of a good…Shaman.

There are men in the world who believe that the past belongs to the present - such as Alpha Flight’s “manager” General Jeremy Clarke. Heather and Puck have gathered in the briefing room, along with Guardian, Manbot, Radius, Flex and Murmur. Sitting at the table, Clarke informs Alpha Flight that an unusual crisis has arisen in the city of Orloo and they need to get to the bottom of it. Heather seems quite surprised by this and exclaims that Orloo is the city where she and Mac got married with odd Minister in that church…’And…never mind,’ she mutters.

Judd also remarks that Orloo is a flashback to his long lost past, as Guardian stands beside Clarke and explains to his team that reports of unnaturally violent weather phenomena began coming in this morning and they have now escalated to catastrophic levels. Concerned, Arlette Truffaut a.k.a. Murmur exclaims that they must go, for she lived in Orloo for many years. Adrian “Flex” Corbo agrees, for he lived there for practically his whole life. Adrian’s older half-brother, Jared Corbo a.k.a. Radius points out that they all lived there in that prison called Hull House. General Clarke interrupts the younger Alphans, declaring that he is sure they all have interesting stories to tell about Orloo’s past, but that they are concerned with the present…and its future.

Clarke informs everyone that earlier today high winds have led to immense destruction, and because of Department interests in the town, an Alpha strike squad is being sent to investigate. Heather declares that she refuses to go into another combat situation with the novices, for training against Master robots is one thing. Guardian informs her that the Department expressed a similar concern earlier, and therefore with the exception of Manbot to control Sasquatch, the reconnaissance unit will consist strictly of veterans, and the rookies will remain behind for additional training.

‘What? That sucks!’ exclaims Jared, telling them to forget it, for if he isn’t going to fight, then he isn’t going to train either. ‘I’m going back to bed’. Manbot whirs and clicks before telling Radius that he cannot, as he has been given orders. Jared declares that it is tough, because he has also been given free will, at least until someone in this place figures out how to suck that out of him too, he adds.

One hour later, Guardian, Heather, Judd, Sasquatch and Manbot are aboard a pilot-manned Alpha Jet, flying above the streets of Orloo. The past calls with a mournful voice that one can barely hear - and you worry about what the past will ask of you as much as you worry about whether you will be able to control it. Judd comments on how it is pretty weird coming back here after all this time, adding that he was keeping a low profile when he lived here, working at the orphanage and hiding out from everyone that was looking for him. ‘Who would have thought that it be the first way I’d meet you, huh, Mac?’ Judd remarks, adding that it is funny how little control they have got over life.

‘Meet me?’ asks Mac slightly confused, proclaiming that he doesn’t remember meeting Judd here, or even being here before. Judd tells Guardian not to sweat it and jokes that the Department must have left out that chapter when they rebuilt his memory. Mac just shoots Judd a cross look, and silence spreads through the ship, broken by Manbot who just whirs and clicks. Mac tells Judd that he doesn’t appreciate that comment, adding that he is the same man he has always been, just younger.

Suddenly, the Alpha Jet begins to shake in the air, and the pilot cries out as some shrapnel flies through the screen and hits him in the head, knocking him out. Mac immediately orders everyone to strap in, announcing that their pilot is unconscious. The Alpha Jet begins a nose dive towards a familiar looking church as someone asks Mac if he knows how to fly this thing. Pulling the jet upwards before it crashes, Mac replies that he has tested out on the simulator, but these winds are impossible. Sasquatch lets out a growl and Mac tells someone to strap him in, declaring that he has spotted a field to land in, but that they are going down hard, and in a mighty cloud of dust, the Alpha Jet lands in Orloo.

Back at Department H, in the monitoring station, one of the staff is watching Flex, and calls to a colleague, exclaiming that it should be interesting, as Flex is about to interrupt his brother.

‘Jared, you in there?’ asks Adrian as he bangs on his brother’s door. ‘What do you want, squirt?’ asks Jared as he opens the door. Flex tells his older brother that the guys in the combat room said he was supposed to help him with his training, as he keeps getting hit in the head by the ‘stupid target things’. Radius tells Flex to tell them that he doesn’t feel like training right now, as he is busy. ‘Doing what?’ asks Flex.

Jared is about to reply ‘None of your business,’ when Arlette walks out from behind him, excusing herself and pointing out to Jared that his brother needs him now, so he should go help him. ‘Awww, maaan!’ complains Jared. Flex looks quite puzzled to see Arlette in his brother’s room, but Arlette just bids them farewell.

Walking towards the training room, Radius tells his brother that he is going to pay for that. Innocently, Flex asks his brother what he and Arlette were doing in there. ‘Don’t be such a dork, she was giving me a back rub!’ Jared claims, before exclaiming that even if they were doing something more, he has got a built-in protection in his force field and it can never turn off, ever. Turning and grabbing Adrian by the neck, Jared exclaims ‘Who asked you to bring it up in the first place?’

Flex tells Radius to quit it, when they hear a scream coming from the room they are passing, a room with “Helios Project” labeled on the door. ‘What the hell was that?’ Jared asks before trying to open the door to the Helios Project. Adrian asks his brother why he always has to swear, and why he is so nosy, before pointing out that he won’t be able to get into the room as it has one of the security boxes on it, and neither of them have a priority access card. Taking a strand of his hair, Jared exclaims that his field is all the access he needs, and explains that he has been working on shaping it really thin, he does so, putting it into the tiny gap between the door and letting his field expand, so they can see who is screaming.

‘Whoa! It’s some kind of kung fu dude!’ Jared exclaims as he sees Shiro “Sunfire” Yashida, who crossly asks the scientists surrounding him why he is being caged here like some animal. One of the Department H staff tells the former X-Man that he will have to take that up with Doctor Huxley, explaining that when he tested positive for radiation poisoning, Huxley ordered him to be put into quarantine. The scientist adds that they have to wear these suits to protect themselves from him and there is nothing they can do about it.

‘No? Well there is something Sunfire can do about it!’ Shiro exclaims as he takes to the air in a burst of flames, informing the Department H staff that he was a lord in his own country and that he will not be treated like a dog in Canada by men he was told would help him with his powers. The scientists scramble about beneath Sunfire, pleading with him and telling him they will help him but that it will take time. Watching from the door, Jared smiles, exclaiming that he doesn’t know who the Japanese guy is, but that he thinks the two of them could definitely hang together.

Sometimes you gain control of a situation, while sometimes, you lose it. Like when one part of your mind starts telling another part of your mind that maybe you aren’t the great man you think you are, that maybe you’re just some hired worker’s idea of James MacDonald Hudson, rather than “Mac” himself. ‘Got to get out of here!’ exclaims Guardian as he bursts through the side of the Alpha Jet in a surge of electromagnetic energy. It is an unnerving thought on any occasion, but a particularly dangerous one to have just as you are charging headfirst into a potentially life-threatening situation.

As the rest of Alpha Flight emerge from the damaged Alpha Jet, Judd asks Mac if he isn’t overreacting a bit, pointing out that they did have a functional emergency hatch. ‘I’m not in the mood for your little jokes, Puck’ Guardian snaps back, to which Judd replies that he isn’t joking, and is about to give Guardian a piece of his mind when Heather points out that he is bleeding. Judd replies that it is just a scrape and that he will fine in a minute, but points out that they have to get their pilot to a medic, as he is hurt bad.

Guardian tells Heather and Manbot to take the pilot to a medic, but Manbot informs Guardian that he is to remain with him. Annoyed, Guardian says to Manbot ‘I’m team leader Manbot, and that was an order’. Heather exclaims that there is no time to argue, so picks the medic up and flies away with Sasquatch in tow, telling Mac that if she takes Sasquatch then the others can investigate the site. As Manbot follows Guardian, Judd suggests they go check to the South, as there is an old Department H piece of handiwork there which is worth looking into, and explains that he is going to poke around the town proper, as he has a bad feeling there is something ugly in there.

Rushing across the town, Judd thinks to himself that if the note he received this morning is any indication, then he knows just where to find it too…Hull House! Judd arrives at the orphanage and remarks that he hasn’t been here in years, but that the place hasn’t changed one bit. As he rings the doorbell, he wonders if the two boys he used to watch ever got placed, and tries to remember their names, but cannot recall them.

A large woman opens the door, ‘Yes?’ she says. Judd introduces himself and explains that he is with Alpha Flight. ‘Oh yes, the heroes’ she replies, adding that she has heard of them, and introducing herself as Beatrice de la Salle, the headmistress, and asking Judd if she can help him with anything. Judd replies that he isn’t sure to be honest, and remarks that he used to work here. ‘Really?’ exclaims Beatrice, before informing Judd that they aren’t hiring at the moment. Judd states that he isn’t looking for a job, but that he just wanted to know if she could keep the kids inside until she hears back from him.

Beatrice replies that she has already instructed the children to stay inside, as she heard the emergency report on the television, and bids him a good day. ‘Yeah, you too, uh…bye’ Judd replies as he walks off. Standing behind the door so he was hidden from view, Coordinator Proctor congratulates Beatrice on her effective and quick psychological work. Beatrice thanks the senior Department H staff member, exclaiming that she prides herself on her work.

At a hospital, Heather places the pilot onto a table as Sasquatch stands behind her and growls. ‘Oh my God!’ exclaims one of the doctors. Heather tells her not to worry as he is harmless - at the moment, and suggests no one touches him. Another doctor says to Heather ‘You’re Guardian, aren’t you? Alpha Flight?’ ‘They’re calling me Vindicator this week,’ Heather replies half-jokingly, before informing them the pilot was struck by a rock and took some windshield glass. She informs them that they can direct all of their paperwork questions to Department H in the Ministry of Defence, adding that their project code was AF2-6552, and that she thinks it is still the same.

Heather informs the doctors that they will come back for the pilot once they have tracked down the source of this weird weather Orloo is having, and begins to tell Sasquatch that they should get back to the others, when out of the window she sees the church where she finally got to marry Mac. ‘Walter?’ asks Heather, slightly confused as Sasquatch begins ambling away, just growling.

Guardian and Manbot have arrived at the site and Manbot announces that he has accessed Department H’s records on this site, explaining that it is the site of the Cosmic Collector Project, an early attempt to harvest and process cosmic rays. Before Manbot can say anything else, Mac exclaims that he has found a hand. He tells Manbot to stay where he is, as it doesn’t look good, adding that it may be leprous or radioactive. Suddenly, Guardian exclaims that it is moving, and in a blur, a giant creature emerges from the ground in a whirlwind, announcing that Chinook is alive once more, ‘After years of imprisonment, I am free!’

Back at Department H, Jared, Adrian and Arlette are on top of the building roof, and Jared suggests they break Sunfire out. ‘What?’ asks Flex, surprised. ‘You heard me, doof,’ Radius snaps at his brother. Arlette points out that they don’t even know him and tells Radius that from he said, Sunfire may be dangerous. ‘So? He looks cool?’ Jared exclaims, before pointing out that the three of them are dangerous too, and he would bet that Sunfire is just another guy being jerked around like the three of them are.

Jared admits that he knows it is a risky idea, which is why he brought them all up here, where no one can see or hear them. Unbeknownst to Radius and the others, someone in the monitoring station is indeed watching the rookies on hidden cameras. Flex asks his brother why they should break Sunfire out, to which Radius replies ‘Because I want to, because I’m bored and because it would be fun’. Arlette asks him if this is like the fun he used to have back at Hull House, to which Jared declares that “Hell House” was a nightmare for all for all of them and claims he was trying to liven things up a little and got out of control once in a while. Jared remarks that a few people got hurt, but so what?

Flex asks what happens when they break Sunfire out, to which Jared exclaims ‘Joy ride!’ before revealing that he knows where the keys to the new Department H Hummers are kept because he is mates with Gus in the motor pool, he plays broom hockey with him when he is on guard duty down there. He suggests they take on and make tracks for Montreal. Adrian exclaims that he doesn’t know about this, but Arlette smiles and exclaims that she likes this idea, so they should do it together, and now.

Outside the Helios Project lab, Flex exclaims that they are going to get in trouble for this, as Radius forces the lab door open. ‘No we wont. We’re Alpha Flight!’ he exclaims, before pointing out that they will get a little slap on the hand from Clarke but other than that, they won’t do jack. However, he exclaims that they will know the three of them aren’t just going to sit around while the “geezers” go out to play.

As the trio enter the part of the Helios lab where Sunfire is sitting, Radius says to him ‘What’s up?’ Thinking it to be a scientist, Sunfire exclaims that he will speak only to Doctor Huxley, when Jared tells him to calm down as he is one of the good guys - Alpha Flight, ‘Maybe you’ve heard of us?’ he asks, before boasting that they are here to rescue him. ‘Rescue me from what?’ Shiro asks. ‘From being locked in here like some lab rat for the rest of your life,’ Jared tells him, before explaining that it is not like a breakout, but a sneak out, and that they will bring him back in a few hours, adding that if not, then he can fly back. Murmur suggests that perhaps she can convince Sunfire to come along.

Moments later, the staff in the monitoring room watch Jared, Adrian and Arlette, who is ordering Sunfire to “walk”, in the motor pool. One of the staff asks another if they should let them go, to which the second replies ‘Why not?’ and tells the first to just track the vehicle so they know where they are, adding that it will make a good psych profile. ‘Besides, you can’t choke a dog if you don’t feed him some leash now and again’.

Back in Orloo, Manbot is caught up in Chinook’s little windstorm, finding himself flung around in the swift currents. Guardian calls to him, asking him what is going on and where Chinook went. Manbot replies that his sensor panels detect no other organic forms, only building winds of - he doesn’t get to say how strong the winds are before exclaiming in a robot-like way ‘Alert!’ as Chinook appears behind Guardian exclaiming that he is the wind, and knocking him aside, as Mac tries to tell Manbot what he needs. A massive weapon appears on Manbot as the mysterious Alphan announces that back up is primed and engaged.

Manbot blasts Chinook before announcing that his sensors detect Vindicator is re-entering the sector. ‘Sensors are right!’ Heather exclaims as she unleashes a geothermal blast on Chinook, adding that she is just in time to stop the creature that almost made her husband miss their wedding permanently all those years ago. ‘Years?’ wonders the hideously deformed once-hero known as Chinook, before recognizing their voices in his head. ‘He is saying I am not responsible! You saying you love him!’

Suddenly, Sasquatch steps forward and growls. ‘Have at him, Sasquatch!’ Heather declares, and the powerful beast lunges at Chinook, knocking him to the ground. Heather tells him to keep Chinook down, when suddenly Chinook escapes Sasquatch’s grasp, flying high into the air, he boasts that he is the wind itself. ‘I am the air of all of Canada!’ he exclaims, adding that he will not be contained ever again, but will move over the land, toppling it, a gust of righteous vengeance against those who changed him.

Chinook exclaims that he will begin with a swift return to end their ill-conceived lives and shoves his hand towards Sasquatch’s throat. ‘You’ll do nothing of the sort, monster - or you’ll answer to me!’ Guardian exclaims, ready with a blast of electromagnetic energy. Chinook turns and looks at Mac, telling him that his energy means nothing, for it is of the Earth as he is. However, he will answer to Mac in one way, pointing out that it is he who is responsible for what he has become. ‘Your armor has changed, but your voice is one will always remember’.

Chinook approaches Guardian, ‘I was Canada’s greatest and only champion,’ he exclaims, declaring that he fought for Canada through the great wars and retired a hero, however, when he chose to return and aid the city he had come to call home, Mac’s meddling led to his “monstrous” transformation. Chinook points out that Mac didn’t even try to help him, just pushed him into the dark and hungry void, sealing him in a dimensional rift where he has drifted and dreamt of killing him for a decade.

Guardian replies that it is a captivating story, but that he has no memory of Chinook and cannot just stand by and let him destroy this town or his country. ‘You Can’t do anything else!’ Chinook exclaims, when suddenly Judd leaps up at Chinook, ‘I was just remembering you on my way across town, ugly’ he exclaims, kicking Chinook in the head. Mac is surprised to see Judd, who declares that suddenly it all came together and he thought that he better get himself over to the Cosmic Collector site and kick old Chinook’s bottom good and hard. ‘I will - ‘ begins Chinook, until he is interrupted by Heather, ‘Bathe in molten plasma is what, courtesy of Vindicator!’ she exclaims, unleashing her new powers on him. Chinook screams, ‘The winds of the North will be your death!’ he declares, as Judd exclaims ‘Talking too much will be yours!’, before pointing out to Sasquatch that Chinook is open, and suggesting that he do something with him. ‘Something mean’ he adds.

The mighty Sasquatch lifts Chinook high into the air as Chinook boasts that he will have his revenge. Sasquatch growls, before Chinook declares that the evil device that changed him was created by men who would destroy the world, ‘They and all who follow them will perish in the wake of my - ‘ he doesn’t get to finish, as Sasquatch tears his mutated body in half. A mighty blast of wind is unleashes, sending Alpha Flight scattered across the Cosmic Collector site, and leaving a strange marking in the ground.

Heather asks what in the world just happened, as Judd declares that he thinks the past just caught up with them - ‘And found us wanting’. Judd reminds his teammates not to forget that they are standing on Department H property, so this was no accident. He suggests they better look around, when Manbot announces that they have a priority summons to return to Department H, as the novices are missing. ‘I guess this mystery will have to wait’ Heather remarks, as Judd mutters ‘Great, another one to add to our collection’.

Meanwhile, on the open road, ‘All right! No more Department H!’ exclaims Radius as he drives the vehicle away from the home of Alpha Flight. Murmur agrees, commenting on how romantic it is. ‘No, it’s rad!’ Radius replies, ‘It’s kidnapping!’ Sunfire exclaims. ‘Quit complaining, you love it and you know it!’ Radius tells him. Flex asks his brother if he is sure they are going the right way, to which Radius replies that any way away from Department H is right in his book.

Even if it is just outside of Montreal. It doesn’t really matter where you find yourself, the past is always your traveling companion. As the Department H vehicle pulls up outside a diner, Sunfire mutters ‘Oh, are we finally stopping?’ Radius tells him to lay off and points out that he was a lot more fun when they started this road trip. Flex asks his brother to hurry up and park, as he has to “go” really bad.

As the quartet enter the diner, Radius calls them a bunch of wusses and mumbles that he should have done it alone. The past is open for 24 hours, and even if you don’t want to go in there, you’ll find you way to it somehow. ‘A lovely choice for food, my friend’ remarks Sunfire, as Flex whispers that it is full of weirdos. Radius tells them to shut up and sit down, as they are really starting to tick him off. Murmur suggests they sit by the window.

A man is reading the newspaper with Alpha Flight splashed across if, and recognizes some of the group as they take their seats, thinking to himself that this is too rich, for what are the odds of such good fortune? The brightly dressed green-skinned man gets up from his seat and announces ‘Welcome to “Food for Thought”, Montreal’s most provocative night spot. Please, come in, take a seat and prepare yourselves for a most unforgettable dining experience!’ He thinks to himself that they should prepare to look into his eyes, for they are the first of his chosen, and therefore, the last of mankind to fall under his boot when that time comes - and the time is coming…for Mesmero has mastered death, mastered his powers and will soon master the world itself!

The past can look you in the eye, as if to say “I own you - you are under my sway now and forever…you are mine to control!”.

Characters Involved: 

Flex II, Guardian IV, Manbot, Murmur III, Puck, Radius, Sasquatch II, Vindicator II (all Alpha Flight)

Shaman & Wild Child (both former members of Alpha Flight)


General Clarke

Chief Engineer Su

Coordinator Proctor

Miss Beatrice de la Salle



Department H staff

Alpha Jet pilot

Citizens of Ontario

Mr. Turndon

Man that Wild Child crashes into

Orloo hospital staff

Story Notes: 

The prologue mentions a strange testing facility that Department H opened in Orloo, which is the Cosmic Ray Collector, a device that was going to be used as an alternative to nuclear power, as seen in Alpha Flight #minus1.

Nothing more is known of the person Cleric, whom is mentioned in the letter Puck receives.

Heather was the official leader of Alpha Flight from Alpha Flight (1st series) #18, firstly as a non-powered leader, then wearing a duplicate of Mac’s electromagnetic battle suit. However, essentially she was the driving force behind the team right from the start, and she sort of co-led with a resurrected Mac from Alpha Flight (1st series) #93-100, as Clarke wanted her taken out of the leadership role all together.

Combat Central is Alpha Flight’s version of the X-Men’s Danger Room, though it doesn’t have Shi’ar technology.

Puck’s comment about loving in someone who isn’t aware of him is of course a nod to Heather herself, as he pined for her for most of the first Alpha Flight series, and continues to this series also.

Following Alpha Flight’s disbanding in Alpha Flight (1st series) #130, Wild Child (then Wildheart) remained a solo operative for sometime and formed a relationship with Aurora, before joining X-Factor at the request of Dr. Valerie Cooper. [X-Factor (1st series) #113]

Heather and Mac’s marriage and the “odd” Minister, who is actually Stan Lee (hey, it was Flashback Month) can be seen in Alpha Flight #minus1.

Puck spent time in Orloo working at Hull House, the orphanage where Radius, Flex, Ghost Girl and Murmur spent time, and working on the construction of the Cosmic Ray Collector. He also helped Weapon Alpha, Weapon X and Heather avert a tragedy involving the Cosmic Collector, which is the first time he met them, though that was in the very early days of Department H and he did not become associated with them until sometime later, as he did not give them his name. [Alpha Flight #minus1] The boys that Puck is trying to remember and wonders if they ever got placed of course grew up to be Radius and Flex.

It seems odd that Judd doesn’t recognize Miss de la Salle, as he knows her because he mentioned her in Alpha Flight #minus1. She seems to purposely not recognize him, while the brainwashing he underwent in Alpha Flight (2nd series) #1 may have something to do with why he doesn’t recognize her.

The doctor addresses Heather as Guardian because that was the codename she most recently went by until Alpha Flight (2nd series) #1 when she returned to the Vindicator name. Heather was originally dubbed Vindicator in Alpha Flight (1st series) #32, as she had to “vindicate” Mac’s death. However when Mac was resurrected in Alpha Flight (1st series) #87-90, and took the codename Vindicator back in Alpha Flight (1st series) #90, she took up the codename of Guardian, which suits her better, as she is a “guardian” to her country. However she most commonly known as Vindicator, and Mac as Guardian.

Chinook is a pre-Department H Canadian hero who was first seen in Alpha Flight #minus1. Very little is known about him, for more, see the Alpha Flight #minus1 summary.

Chinook’s comment about being Canada’s “greatest and only champion” is untrue, for there are at least two other known pre-Department H heroes, the original Major Mapleleaf, and his unnamed and unseen sidekick. [Alpha Flight (1st series) #106]

An error occurs when Manbot informs everyone that they have to return to Department H as the novices are missing, the word balloon comes from Guardian.

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