Canadian soil, five minutes from the US Border, where Thor and Iron Man of the Avengers are doing their best to keep the approaching Wendigo at bay. ‘The last of the pack is heading your way, Cap - it’s on you and the twins now’ Iron Man radios to Captain America. ‘They claim not to be of Alfheim, but I sense it within them. That, and the arrogance’ Thor remarks about the twins. Lightning crackles, and the Wendigo howl. Nearby, ‘Understood, Iron Man’ Jean-Paul “Northstar” Beaubier reports back to Iron Man. ‘Am I to understand that we are bait?’ Northstar’s twin sister, Jeanne-Marie a.k.a. Aurora asks, unimpressed. ‘Do you understand now many lives are at stake here, sister?’ Jean-Paul replies. ‘Of course, but do you understand how badly these animals smell?’ Jean-Marie responds.
At another nearby location, Captain America tells the twins to ease up, as they need to keep the Wendigo interested and not lose them, as he rushes forward, a horde of Wendigo pursuing him. ‘Qui ne cet idiot pense qu’il parle de?’ Aurora can be heard asking over the communicator. ‘I speak French, Aurora’ Cap replies, before Northstar informs him that the Wendigo are right on them. ‘ We’re almost there, Northstar’ Cap responds, and as Northstar and Aurora arrive in a clearing, Cap is right behind them. ‘… get ready!’ he calls out to the twins.
‘Move, Rogers!’ Northstar shouts, as they arrive on United States soil and the Wendigo all suddenly revert to naked human forms. ‘Hmph. These savages could have at least put clothes on’ Aurora mutters as she and Northstar watch as emergency services arrive to assist. ‘They were attacked by cannibalistic monsters, Jeanne-Marie’ Northstar points out. ‘And?’ Aurora asks. ‘How I’ve missed you, sister’ Jean-Paul mutters.
At that moment, Thor and Iron Man appear overhead, and Thor reports that driving the beasts across the border is effective. ‘This curse truly only has power on Canadian soil’ Thor points out. Iron Man remarks that he can’t see the White House being too happy with this plan. ‘It’s a crisis. We’ll apologize later’ Cap declares, before announcing that they should get back out there, as according to Northstar, the X-Men are trying to stop the attack at the source. ‘Until then, we have to save as many lives as we can’ Cap adds, before turning to Northstar and asking if there is any word on Talisman. Northstar replies that there isn’t, before Aurora enquires as to how many Wendigo there are. Cap reports that flybys are estimating tens of thousands - and spreading. Can announces that this is, at most, a stopgap. The twins head towards one of the military tents set up nearby, as Northstar declares that Storm will succeed, for she is too stubborn to accept failure. Cap remarks that he heard Logan was turned into one of them, and asks if he could be here. ‘Wolverine? No, Captain… you know him as well as I. He’s still out there… hunting’ Northstar replies.
The Canadian wilderness, where a Wendigo with adamantium claws sniffs, then licks the blood that emerges from the wounds on his hands. The Wendigo is a transformed Wolverine a.k.a. Logan, and he opens his mouth and shouts ‘WEDNDIGOOOO!’ before roaring, which resonates through the dense forest.
Elsewhere in the forest, at the entrance to the Spirit Realm, where Piotr “Colossus” Rasputin, Kurt “Nightcrawler” Wagner and Rachel Grey of the X-Men, along with Dr Walter “Sasquatch” Langkowski of Alpha Flight are battling more Wendigo. ‘Enough!’ Colossus exclaims as he slams his fists into the side of the head of one of the Wendigo. ‘Temper, temper, Piotr’ Kurt remarks as he teleports beneath one of the Wendigo. ‘Their howling is driving me mad’ Colossus declares. ‘I like that you’re angry about the noise and not the impending death’ Kurt remarks. Sasquatch has two of the Wendigo wrapped in headlock, as Rachel hovers before him, telekinetically lifting some large stones, Sasquatch asks her ‘How confident…are you…Miss Summers…regarding accuracy?’ ‘Pretty confident’ Rachel replies as she slams the large stones forward, into the Wendigo, knocking them backwards. ‘How long was that?’ Sasquatch asks. ‘By my count, seven minutes. And it’s Grey now’ Rachel responds. ‘That’s five minutes shorter than the last wave’ Colossus points out, before asking Kurt how far away he is dropping them. ‘Two miles, maybe a little more. I can’t keep this up forever’ Kurt replies as he teleports alongside Colossus. ‘Then let us hope the others are almost done’ Colossus declares.
The Spirit Realm, where three of the X-Men - Ororo “Storm” Munroe, Bobby “Iceman” Drake, Angelica “Firestar” Jones and the student, Santo Vaccarro a.k.a. Rockslide, trudge through the knee-deep snow, alongside James MacDonald Hudson a.k.a. Guardian, of Alpha Flight. ‘Are we there yet?’ Rockslide complains. ‘You just have to shut up now, Rockslide. For real’ Iceman mutters. ‘This is a lot of walking’ Firestar points out, to which Storm reminds her that she glows when she flies. ‘Do you really want to let everything that dwells here know where you are?’ Storm enquires. ‘I wasn’t complaining’ Angelia replies. ‘It sounded like complaining’ Iceman tells his friend, while an ookpik that was circling the group from above descends upon them. ‘BIRD!’ Rockslide exclaims as the snowy owl gives way to its true form, the beautiful goddess Narya a.k.a. Snowbird of Alpha Flight. ‘Something is terribly wrong’ Narya announces. ‘What is it?’ Guardian asks her. Snowbird announces that the balance of power has shifted in the Spirit Realm. ‘Goddess…’ Storm gasps, as she and the others look on in horror as the Great Beast called Tundra appears before them, under attack by a horde of Wendigo. ‘The Great Beasts are at war!’ Snowbird exclaims.
‘This is the last time I do a favor for Department H’ Guardian mutters. ‘You really should know better by now’ Storm agrees, before asking why this is happening. ‘Tanaraq’ Snowbird replies. The six heroes see Kolomaq turn one of the Wendigo to ice as others skulk nearby. Several wolf-like creatures flight alongside Kolomaq, as Snowbird explains that it is the spread of the Wendigo curse, and the Great Beasts Tanaraq has tapped into his power - with every life infected, his strength grows. Snowbird continues, revealing that Tanaraq is using this new infusion of power to overthrow the other Great Beasts - even the mighty Tundra will not be able to withstand this assault for long. The Wendigo attack Kolomaq’s familiars - the wolf-like creatures, before several of them grab Kolomaq, and Snowbird declares that there is no balance here.
Suddenly, a large chunk of the ground falls away, and the wolf-like creatures howl as they fall into nothingness. ‘Is it not better to have one of these Beasts than a legion?’ Storm asks. ‘For every incursion the Great Beasts make into our world, their own infighting prevents a hundred more’ Snowbird explains. She adds that given the spread of the Wendigo on Earth, Tanaraq’s power will soon eclipse them all, even together. ‘This is horrible!’ Firestar exclaims. ‘Geez, the Wendigo are killing them’ Iceman points out, as they see the Kolomaq taken down by the Wendigo. ‘The Spirit Realm will not be enough for him. Once the Great Beasts fall, Earth will be next’ Snowbird announces, as they look out over the icy land before them and see the Wendigo drag the bodies of the two fallen Great Beasts along after them.
With the Wendigo gone, the heroes step down from the ledge they were standing on and walk amongst the fallen wolf-like creatures. The X-Men listen as Snowbird tells them that the limitations of the Wendigo curse will only hold for so long against Tanaraq’s power. ‘Wait, what do you mean?’ Firestar asks, while Iceman looks at the fallen creatures and asks ‘What are these things?’ A tear falls down Snowbird’s face as she looks at the creatures and announces that they are called Shilohs, mystic offspring of the Great Beasts, however they hold no darkness, and exist solely to love their makers. ‘Poor little guys…’ Bobby remarks as he crouches down beside one of them. ‘They never had a chance against… whatever those things were’. Suddenly, as Bobby puts his hand on one of the Shilohs, it opens its eyes, ‘What the -?’ Bobby gasps, before the Shiloh leaps up at him and starts licking his ice-form. ‘Okay, okay, that’s enough! No more kisses. We’re done. Okay - ew! No! Not in my mouth! Not. Ever. Please Stop. Please. Wasn’t this thing dead just a second ago?’ Bobby asks as he falls backwards.
‘It’s a zombie, man. Shoot it in the head’ Rockslide declares. ‘They’re kind of cute, I guess’ Firestar remarks, while Snowbird explains to Iceman that the coldness within him has revived the Shilohs. ‘Kinda figured that one out myself’ Bobby replies. ‘Down boy! Get down!’ he tells the Shiloh, before Snowbird instructs him to freeze them - all of them. As the Shiloh sits on Bobby’s shoulders, Bobby frowns and declares ‘We’re not going to talk about this when we get back, okay?’ But as he uses his power over the other Shilohs, nothing happens. ‘Why didn’t it work?’ Iceman asks. ‘Because you suck’ Rockslide suggests. ‘Wait, I think one’s -’ Firestar begins. ‘Oh’ Bobby utters ‘WAAAH!’ Firestar screams as the other Shilohs all get to their feet. Storm tells everyone that they need to keep moving. ‘Bobby just brought all those…things back to life’ Firestar points out. ‘would that he could back home’ Storm replies, before raising her voice and informing Iceman that they are leaving. ‘Okay, I’m coming! I’ll uh…be right there. Can someone help me?’ Iceman calls out as the Shilohs gather around him. Snowbird takes flight as the others follow on the ground. ‘We head in the direction of the fallen gods, we find them, we find Tanaraq’ Storm announces. ‘Hey, guys! Wait up!’ Iceman exclaims.
Back at the US / Canada Border, Elizabeth “Talisman” Twoyoungmen lies hooked up to life support in one of the military tents, bandages wrapped around her waist are splattered with blood from here she was skewered by the Wolverine-Wendigo. ‘This is all my fault’ Eugene Milton Judd a.k.a. Puck utters as he stands at her side. Northstar and Aurora stand solemnly and listen as Puck reports that when Heather called, Elizabeth asked him not to pick up the phone, as she just wanted it to be them, no one else. ‘Nobody ever wanted that before. She just wanted to be with me’ Puck explains. ‘Why did I pick up the phone?’ he utters. A doctor and a soldier stand nearby as Northstar announces that Department H is going to airlift Talisman to a hospital in New York, and they have room for one more person in the chopper. Northstar suggests to Puck that he should go, as his is the only face Talisman will want looking down at her when she wakes up. ‘But -’ Puck begins. ‘Go with her. She needs you’ Northstar points out.
Northstar and Aurora watch as paramedics carry Talisman out of the ten, with Puck at her side. ‘Better she die than end up with him. Disgusting’ Aurora declares. ‘What is wrong with you?’ Northstar asks his sister. ‘Oh, don’t be so sensitive’ Aurora retorts, before turning and walking away, she announces that she is leaving. ‘Aurora -’ Northstar calls out after his sister. Suddenly, ‘Water. Please…I need water’ a patient in another bed calls out. Northstar goes over to him and holds a bottle of water over to the man. ‘You’re heroes, right? Super heroes?’ the man asks. ‘Some of us’ Northstar mutters, as the man reports that his daughter is still out there, explaining that her mother got bit, and then he did, and now their daughter is all alone. ‘You have to help her’ he declares. ‘Under normal circumstances I would, but these are about as far from normal as it gets’ Northstar explains.
‘Please! Her name is Amber. She’s just nin-’ the man begins. ‘Stop. Did you say Amber?’ Northstar interrupts. ‘Yes… Amber Barton’ the man replies. Northstar speeds away, and returns an instant later, carrying the girl. ‘Amber!?’ the man gasps. ‘Daddy!’ Amber exclaims. Northstar puts the girl into the arms of her father. ‘Such a touching moment’ Jeanne-Marie mutters as she watches what transpires. ‘Should we remind them that her mother is probably dead?’ Aurora snaps. ‘Shut up’ Northstar tells his sister. Aurora frowns: ‘Look at you, helping families and coddling children. You should have been -’ she begins, as Northstar cuts her off: ‘An only child?’ he asks. ‘A social worker’ Aurora declares. ‘If you can be a super hero, I suppose anything is possible’ Northstar replies, before suggesting that Aurora comes with him, as being bait seems to be the only thing she is good at.
Back at the entrance to the Spirit Realm, lightning crackles, and more Wendigo have returned. ‘This…isn’t…accomplishing…anything!’ Sasquatch exclaims as he holds back one of the Wendigo. Rachel telekinetically knocks some of the Wendigo back and declares that Sasquatch is right. She points out that Kurt is exhausted and her brain is on fire - they can’t keep this up forever. But Colossus announces that they can’t stop, as the others are counting on them. Suddenly, there is a howling, and the Wendigo look around, nervously. ‘What are they doing?’ Nightcrawler asks as he stops teleporting. ‘I think…they’re scared’ Rachel explains. The Wendigo then all turn and run away. ‘That seems bad’ Kurt remarks. Colossus agrees, and Sasquatch sniffs the air: ‘It’s him’ he calls out. ‘Wolverine’ Sasquatch declares as the Wolverine-Wendigo emerges from behind some trees. ‘Should we run?’ Rachel asks. ‘Yes’ Sasquatch utters. ‘Maybe’ Colossus calls out. But Nightcrawler announces that they will stand their ground - and the rest is up to their friends inside.
Storm, Guardian, Iceman, Snowbird, Firestar and Rockslide take cover on a small ledge that overlooks a large pit, where Tanaraq, the Conqueror of Beasts stands proudly, and dozens of Wendigo dance about. The rest of the Great Beasts are all chained to large rocks. Kariooq the Corrupter, Tundra the Land Beast, Ranaq the Devourer, Somon the Artificer, Tolomaq the Fire Beast and Kolomaq, the Beast of Snows. As the heroes watch in horror, a voice suddenly calls out to them: ‘Outsiders! Come out of the shadows…or I will have my shadows drag you out!’ Iceman is suddenly knocked aside by several of the Shilohs. ‘Bobby?’ Firestar asks, turning to him. Tanaraq addresses Narya, telling her to surrender to her fate, as it is one of her own making. Snowbird flies off the ledge and hovers before Tanaraq. ‘Great and powerful Tanaraq, I -’ she begins, to which Tanaraq tells her not to insult him. ‘Always lying. Always pretending to be higher begins while denying the “Beasts” their rightful attributes, which you falsely claim as your own’ Tanaraq tells her.
Tanaraq continues, remarking thw man willingly destroys the world that mistakenly birthed it, but fights against all others that would see that world restored. ‘You would rather live in a grave dug by your own hands than allow the “lesser” creatures to have a true chance at survival’ Tanaraq adds. Snowbird tells him that he is wrong. ‘Am I?’ Tanaraq replies, asking Snowbird to tell her that she has come solely to save the lives of his fellow Beasts - to free them and allow them the chance to someday march on her fragile world again. Snowbird does not respond. ‘No? You cannot because you would slit their throats yourself if you believed it would protect your precious mortal race’. Snowbird suddenly kneels before Tanaraq and looking up at him, tells him that this power is not his to take, as it will destroy both worlds, not just hers.
‘Your kind chose to eat the flesh and blood of your brothers and sisters and with each filthy mouthful gave their lives to me willingly. It is only mine to possess’ Tanaraq exclaims, announcing that he will bring balance to this realm, but the heroes’ intrusion has widened his appetite for order. ‘You’ve shown me the limitations of the Wendigo only encourage man’s desire for cruelty, cannibalism and self-preservation. Let the Wendigo grow without limits. Without restraint. Just as your kind has for far too long’ Tanaraq declares. ‘No! You can’t!’ Storm exclaims as she drops down alongside Snowbird. ‘Foolish mortal…it is already done!’
And back on Earth, Northstar and Aurora turn back to the military tent as they hear a horrid howling. ‘No’ Jean-Paul utters, and inside the tent, Amber Barton screams, ‘Daddy! NOOOOO!’ as her father transforms into a Wendigo and looms over her….