Cable: Blood & Metal #2

Issue Date: 
November 1992
Story Title: 
Blood & Metal - part 2

Fabian Nicieza (writer), John Romita JR (penciler), Dan Green (inker), Bill Oakley (letterer), Brad Vancata (colorist), Lisa Patrick (assistant editor), Bob Harras (editor), Tom DeFalco (editor-in-chief)

Cable created by Rob Liefeld & Louise Simonson

Brief Description: 

Today, Cable and Kane have set aside their differences and arrive in Japan, to get to an artifact at the Yashida stronghold before Stryfe does. They battle dozens of ninjas, before the Silver Samurai agrees to let the artifact be replaced by a fake. In Mexico, Stryfe meets with Mr Richter, who has the mask from the Yashida stronghold, and informs Stryfe that it is a fake, and Stryfe discovers it has a tracking device. Cable and Kane plan their next move, while their rivalry continues to play out for Cable’s role in Kane’s loss of arms, and Hammer’s paralysis. Cable and Kane make it to the Yucatan Jungle, and arrive at a temple. More members of the Mutant Liberation Front attack them, and Stryfe arrives, taking Kane as his hostage. Stryfe removes his helmet, revealing his identical appearance to Cable, and the MLF. Cable remembers what happened last time they were in this situation, and when Stryfe requests the data-link to his computer in exchange for Kane’s life, Cable complex, but tricks Stryfe, destroying the data-link once Kane is freed. Cable is attacked by a telekinetic force from Stryfe, but Kane comes to Cable’s aid, and Stryfe is taken down. With the temple in danger of collapsing, Cable, despite having the opportunity to take Stryfe out once and for all, escapes with Kane. Stryfe simply vows revenge.
Cable’s adventure today relates to his many previous encounters with Stryfe. In one such, in Afghanistan, seven years ago, Cable and the Six Pack learn that their benefactor, Tolliver, has links to Stryfe. Cable attempts to kill Stryfe in an explosion, but fails. The Six Pack teleport out thanks to Cable’s technology, angering some of the team as they have broken their contract to get their job done. A year later, the Six Pack are on another mission in Singapore, one linked to Stryfe, and Cable asks the team to trust him with where this is going. Shortly after, the team makes it to Uruguay, and deep inside another underground complex, find Stryfe’s army. Hammer begins to download information from a computer onto a disc, but Stryfe appears, and takes Kane as his hostage. The rest of the Six Pack try to attack him, but are unsuccessful. Stryfe offers a trade - Kane for the disc of information. Hammer is about to hand over the disc, but Cable shoots him in the back. Stryfe takes the disc anyway, and drops Kane, before teleporting away. Cable attempts to follow him, leaving Domino, Bridge and Grizzly to fend for themselves as the complex explodes. Hammer and Kane are trapped within. In the future, Cable has used advanced technology to restore Kane’s arms to a more human appearance. The two men discuss their recent adventure, and seem to be at a truce.

Full Summary: 

A memo dated 6/3/85 from Jasper Sitwell, a SHIELD liaison, to Henry Peter Gyrich, regarding Six Pack activities, reads that, as previously mentioned in his memo of 4/13, the mercenary outfit currently known as the Six Pack have involved themselves in a situation which could be detrimental to the interests of the United States. Part of the memo is missing, but it goes on to say that, as Gyrich knows, continued support and funding of the rebellion against Kabul and Moscos is very vital to the well-being of the people of this country. In his memo, Sitwell suggests that they try to find a way to stop these mercenaries from further incursions into situations which are at cross-purposes to their needs, which is where SHIELD comes into it.

Several months weeks later, in a reply dated 7/15/85, Gyrich informs Sitwell that he has fortuitously obtained further incriminating evidence against the brigands mentioned in Sitwell’s correspondence, which corroborates his conclusions as to the questionable and potentially - some of the memo is blocked out, but it continues to read - that they were involved in a skirmish down in Uruguay, which most certainly did not prove successful as far as they were concerned. Gyrich goes on to say that his initial reports indicate that several members of the mercenary group may have been killed in an underground explosion, and that they suspect HYDRA activity, though they are still scanning the available data to further clarify the cause of this mission’s decay.

Several fax transmission from the mysterious Department K have been gathered. The first, dated 8/22/92, states that the situation remains unresolved, and the Cable hunt continues post the unsuccessful deployment of Weapon: Prime. The fax adds that Weapon X’s status is on--line, and that the agent is being deployed now, while Cable’s status remains that his ties to X-Force have been severed, and his actions are unknown. A second fax, dated 9/10/92 reveals that Cable’s status has been defined as operating in Europe, and that the cause of his activity is related to maneuvers by the Mutant Liberation Front. The fax reports that Weapon X is in transit for confrontation, and that DOA is acceptable for a recommended strategy.

A third and final fax from Department K, three days after the second, reports that Weapon X’s status is uncertain, and that his life-signs are nominal, however his targeting is on-line, though actions are unknown. The fax states that the signs lead to belief that Weapon X is either a prisoner or willing accomplice of Cable, and that the targets have made their presence known in Japan. The fax’s course of action and recommended strategy are both uncertain.

Japan, specifically the Yashida ancestral stronghold in the hills overlooking the city of Agarashima, today. Garrison Kane a.k.a. Weapon X and Cable a.k.a. Nathan Dayspring have spent the last three days planning this hit. They knew that the Yashida family has been in turmoil since their clan-head, Mariko Yashida - was murdered. ‘Pretty modern security system for an ancient house’ Kane remarks. ‘Nothing but the best for the families involved in Japan’s organized crime cartel’ Cable replies, before telling Kane that the security system has not been built, in this day and age, that he cannot break into. A device springs forth from Cable’s forearm, and enters the security pad. ‘A numerical sequence search?’ Kane asks, declaring that it will take forever to run the combination.

‘Perimeter defense override: engaged’ a computer voice states, before the doors to the stronghold swing open. ‘You were saying?’ Cable remarks. ‘Never mind’ Kane replies. ‘Good’ Cable tells his young companion, ordering him to keep his eyes peeled, as he is sure this place has more than mechanical defenses ready for them. ‘Take this as an example…’ Cable mutters as dozens of masked men armed with swords drop down towards them. ‘NINJAS?!’ Kane exclaims. ‘Yeah. Good call there, kid. Nothing gets by you, does it?’ Cable remarks.

Both Cable and Kane go into automatic - doing what they do best. Which just happens to be blowing away everything they want. They use their massive weapons on the ninjas, blowing them away, but eventually Kane becomes swarmed. His momentary panic-mode sweeps through him like greased adrenaline, before he takes care of business, using his own cybernetics to release and electrical discharge, which takes out half of his opponents. But there are still too many of them. Cable does what he can to stay on top of the ninjas, while Kane becomes like candy for the ants, overwhelmed once more.

Suddenly, ‘You are good, gaijin, but rather ineffective against such an impassioned onslaught’ a voice calls out. A man in silver armor steps towards Kane, who is being held down by several of the ninjas. ‘The price for disrupting our home - is paid for in blood!’ the new arrival shouts, before a gun clicks at his head - Cable has raised one of his weapons and suggests they make it a two-for-one sale and chalk it up to inflation. It is the Silver Samurai, the new leader of the Clan, and as he is not a total idiot, decides to talk. ‘We assumed you were Yakuza opposition’ Silver Samurai explains as the trio stand in a sea of motionless ninjas. ‘Nothing of the kind. We came for a piece of art in your possession’ Cable explains.,

Cable motions to the Shogun mask, which can be seen through a demolished wall. ‘Someone’s going to steal it. We want to replace it with a fake, and let the replica be stolen’ Cable tells Silver Samurai, who asks ‘Why should I do this for you?’ ‘Because then we will owe you a favor’ Cable tells him. ‘Is that all?’ the Silver Samurai asks. ‘In light of your recent troubles…isn’t that enough?’ Cable asks. Silver Samurai just frowns.

Seven years ago:

The Khyber Pass, Afghanistan. ‘I guess today’s as good a time to die as any’ a man in spectacular silver armor remarks inside an underground bunker. ‘STRYFE!’ Cable shouts. ‘Yes, Nathan Dayspring. It is Stryfe’ the enigmatic villain replies, a huge grin on his face. ‘So food to see a familiar face, isn’t it? If you know what I mean’ Stryfe adds. ‘But then again, I guess you don’t’ Stryfe adds, before announcing ‘Futile in its own way, Nathan, that you’ll die…before you were even born…with nothing but questions on your lips…and the taste of blood in your mouth!’ Cable and his team the Six Pack - Domino, Kane, Hammer, Grizzly and G.W. Bridge - are swarmed by dozens of Stryfe’s armored soldier inside the bunker.

‘The only way I’ll taste blood today, Stryfe…is by kissing you goodbye!’ Cable booms, while Domino asks them if the are choking on the testosterone, before wondering ‘Who are these clowns and why are we fighting them if we’re not being paid to do so?’ Stryfe reminds the Six Pack that Tolliver contracted them to eliminate Soviet interference of his opium route. ‘A route I maintain for him’ Stryfe adds. ‘This guy’s working with Tolliver? That just about takes the cake!’ G.W. Bridge exclaims, telling Cable that they are out of here, now. ‘Not just yet!’ Cable replies as he arms several grenades, strung together, and throws them to Stryfe.

‘Hmph. Explosives, Nathan Dayspring? How primitive’ Stryfe remarks as he catches the grenades, and calls out to his teleporter, Zero, ordering him to take them from this place now. Zero materializes, and opens a portal. Stryfe drops the explosives back down into where his troops are still holding back the Six Pack, before vanishing. ‘Where did they go?’ Bridge calls out, before asking Cable what Stryfe was saying to him. ‘What’s going on here?’ Bridge demands. ‘Bodyslide by six!’ Cable shouts. ‘Wait - what are you -?’ Bridge exclaims, before the Six Pack vanish, and just in time, as the grenades detonate, causing an explosion to wash over Stryfe’s army who remained trapped in the bunker.

An instant later, the Six Pack rematerialize on a nearby mountainside. The explosion was so powerful that it rips through the side of the mountain the bunker was contained in. ‘Geez’ Domino mutters as she looks out over the mountains. ‘There goes the neighborhood’ Hammer mutters. Grizzly and Kane stand with them, while Bridge angrily suggests to Cable that he might like to take a second to explain what he just did. ‘You’ll have to trust me, G.W.’ Cable replies. ‘Trust you? We just broke a contract!’ Bridge exclaims, remarking that they have never broken a contract before, and that unless they square this away the team will be working targets. ‘We already are…Stryfe is here…’ Cable replies.


Guadalajara, Mexico, in his motel room, Cable is dressed in some civilian clothing. His eye surges with power, before he heads out to a local bar. ‘Well?’ he asks, and a man turns to him, ‘The mask is a forgery’ the man announces, examining the Shogun mask. With telekinetic force, Cable slams the man against a wall and calls him “Mr Richter”, asking him how that could be. Ignoring the question, Mr Richter asks ‘Is that it then, senor? Are you going to kill me - as you did my brother, so many years ago, simply because you do not like the truth?’ he asks. The man is dropped to the ground, and pulls the mask from a pouch, revealing that as he inspected the item, he found something, and shows Cable a small key-like device. Mr Richter remarks that he has not idea what it is, as he has never seen one like it before.

‘An EM tracer?’ Cable realizes, as he examines the device closer. Clearly not Cable, Stryfe thinks to himself ‘Nathan, you sly dog…you got to one before I did. But now, one step ahead is two steps behind. Because now I know you’re coming…’.

Meantime, in Switzerland, from his safe house, Cable and Kane were able ot trace the mask. ‘A travel agent couldn’t have planned a more interesting itinerary for it’ Cable tells himself, seeing that the fake mask has found a comfortable place to call home outside of Cancun. ‘Don’t you ever sleep?’ Kane asks as he enters Cable’s control room, carrying a very large sandwich. ‘Covering all the angles. Just trying to be prepared’ Cable explains. ‘Sure. Regular boy scout you are’ Garrison remarks, before holding his sandwich out and asking Cable if he wants a bite. Cable just stares back at his young companion. ‘How did this happen, Nate?’ Garrison asks. ‘You make choices in life, Garrison. Sometimes they’re the right ones, sometimes they’re not’ Cable declares.

‘And when do you know which was which?’ Kane asks. ‘When you stop and look back on them’ Cable tells him, energy flaring up around his eye. Suddenly, Kane rips off his shirt, revealing his defined, muscular body, connected to cybernetic implants extending from his chest into his arms. ‘And when you do that with me - with Hammer - what do you see, Nate? WHAT?’ Kane shouts. Quietly, Cable replies that he sees a choice that had to be made, and informs Garrison that if he had to do it all over again, he would make the same choice. ‘What does that make me?’ Cable asks him. ‘It makes you a bastard’ Kane replies, staring Cable down. ‘I hate you’ Kane tells him, before reminding Cable that their deal is still on, that he will help Cable nail Stryfe, provided Cable helps him save Hammer. ‘I’ll work with you - but I’ll never - never - trust you again’ Kane declares.

Six years ago:

Singapore, the dead of night, war is being waged on a shipping dock. ‘“Trust me”, he said! What a joke! For eight months we’ve been hunted like dogs!’ Bridge exclaims as he and the Six Pack fire their weapons at their opponents. ‘Like foxes’ Grizzly remarks. ‘I’ve never seen dogs being hunted. I never understood that saying. We’re being hunted like foxes, right?’ he tells the others. ‘Good point’ Cable tells him as he continues firing at dozens of men on the other side of the dock. ‘Grizzly’s right, G.W.’ Hammer adds, as the Six Pack maintain their ground from behind large wooden crates. ‘You’re all idiots!’ Bridge calls out, to which Domino tells him that he is the head idiot. ‘Congratulations’ she adds, before telling her male teammates to all shut up and fight.

‘Money to the mouth’ Cable tells Domino, who asks him if he wants a deposit or a withdrawal. ‘I’d like them withdrawn from this skirmish - and deposited into the harbor’ Cable replies. As she drops from the dock into the water, Domino tells Cable that his wish is her command. ‘Wishes are fishes, so make like one!’ Cable exclaims, as Domino swims her way to the other side of the dock, where the men are still firing at the Six Pack. ‘Hmmm. Sturdy stanchion’ Domino tells herself as she bobs up under the other dock and examines the large wooden posts holding the dock up. ‘Shame to turn it into toothpicks’ Domino adds as she places explosives on the posts, and sets them, before she dives back under the water and swims away. An instant later, the dock explodes, sending men, boats and crates into the air, and into the water.

The Six Pack goes over to the now exploded dock and examine the situation. ‘Enola Gay delivers again’ one of them calls out. ‘I’m pretty sure some of them are still alive’ another remarks. ‘Sure. Some of them are’ someone agrees. ‘What next?’ one of the others asks. ‘This is no way for us to continue to do business’ G.W. Bridge states, to which Hammer asks why they don’t take it straight to the source. ‘No. We keep Tolliver out of this’ Cable announces. ‘Like our rep needs any more damage, right?’ domino asks, to which Cable declares that this has nothing to do with their rep, or Tolliver - that it is about Stryfe, now. G.W. asks Cable why they should trust him on this one, to which Cable replies ‘Because I’m asking you to. That’s why’.


Outside of Cancun, Mexico, deep in the Yucatan Jungle. They are side to side and back to back as Cable and Kane trudge through the jungle. Kane said he would never trust Cable again, but here he is, trusting Cable with his life. Just like Cable is trusting Kane with his. For someone like Cable, who hasn’t trusted anyone since the day she died in his arms, this is equal parts comfort and agony. And Cable knows it. ‘We’re on track’ Cable tells Kane, announcing that the mask registers five kilometers west. ‘Wonderful’ Kane mutters. Cable asks his companion why he is so edgy, and since when it is that he bugs so long before a fight. ‘Rocket scientist. Remember what happened the last time you and me we’re in rough territory - chasing after Stryfe?’ Kane asks. ‘Yeah. I remember’ Cable mutters.

The rest of their journey is covered in silence, save for the sizzling of their lasers cutting the undergrowth as they move through it. The sounds work Cable’s spinal column like a piano, cutting and searing all the way down to his conscience. ‘How could I have done that to the Pack years ago? Did I really make the right choice?’ Cable wonders. ‘This is it’ Cable announces as he and Garrison arrive at a large temple, hidden in the jungle. ‘Good call old man. Nothing gets by you, does it?’ Kane remarks, using the saying that Cable used to say to him. ‘Let’s move’ Cable declares, ignoring Kane, they enter the temple. As they make their way through it, a small stone drops from the ceiling, hitting Cable’s shoulder. ‘Unh?’ Cable mutters, before looking up and seeing a large temple stone falling towards him. ‘Holy %#$-!!’ Cable shouts, before he and Kane raise their weapons and blast the stone to smithereens.

‘Diversion?’ Kane asks. ‘I’m thinking, yes’ Cable tells him as four young mutants race towards them. ‘MLF!’ Kane shouts as Strobe, Tempo, Wildside and Reaper appear. Tempo is wearing a new black, red, silver and orange costume, while Strobe now has a flame-like mask covering part of her face. To Cable, the Mutant Liberation Front are Stryfe’s super-powered cannon fodder. He telekinetically adjusts the EMPG hand-cannon, creating a wide-screen bioelectric dispersal effect, which knocks the mutants back, taking them out without killing them. ‘Why hold back?’ Cable wonders. ‘Because they’re young? Because maybe - Stryfe is using them now…the way I used the Six Pack years ago?’

Without another thought, Cable and Kane continue on through the temple, although Kane glances back at the fallen MLF members, and Cable wonders how they were found out. ‘That’s how. The mask’ Kane tells him, motioning up ahead to where the fake mask is. ‘It’s a trap!’ Kane shouts. ‘Stab his eyes!’ Cable booms, as more members of the Mutant Liberation Front - Dragoness, Forearm, Samurai as well as former New Mutants Rusty Collins and Sally “Skids” Blevins - appear, along with a small army of Stryfe’s armored soldiers. ‘Where is he?’ Cable demands as the soldiers overwhelm he and Kane, who remarks that Stryfe is the least of their worries about now.

Suddenly, a portal opens behind Kane and Cable, and a voice calls out ‘That is where you a wrong, little pebble - for you should never consider death a trifle thing - and I assure you whole heartedly - Stryfe means to kill you both!’ the villain shouts as he wraps a hand around Kane’s neck. Kane struggles in Stryfe’s tight grip, and Cable asks him ‘Why now? After all these years - after all these games - why here and now?’ Stryfe grins, and tells Cable, calling him Nathan Dayspring, that time is up, and he is prepared to set his life aright. Stryfe removes his helmet and announces that it is time to make those who stabbed his heart and bled his soul pay for their sins.

Kane and the MLF members stare in shock as they see Stryfe’s face resembles exactly that of Cable’s. Cable stares back, his eye flares up, and he thinks to himself ‘It’s true, then…his face is mine…but how - why? And if Stryfe is me - what does that say about my future - and my past?’ Cable wonders, before asking Stryfe ‘Who in this time could have hurt you?’

Six years ago:

Cordeillera de Carabaya, a rugged mountain pass in Uruguay, where the Six Pack trudge through the across mountain terrain. ‘Anything yet?’ Grizzly enquires. ‘We’re kind of sitting ducks out here’ Kane remarks. ‘Quack, quack’ Domino exclaims, before announcing that her scanner is picking up a heavy concentration of iron. ‘We got it’ Domino calls out as she crouches down and checks part of the ground. She asks if the C-4 charges are set, to which G.W. replies that they aren’t, and suggests they keep quiet until they get inside. ‘Ionized magnesium strip’ G.W. explains as he pulls up the strip, from where he set a square of it on the ground.

The Six Pack drop into the chamber beneath the ground, and Cable orders everyone to turn on their infra-red and heat-imaging. ‘You’ll be able to spot ‘em before you see ‘em’ he declares, before Domino asks why they are even strolling here. G.W. suggests that since they are in without triggering any alarms, they should just wire the place up and trigger some fireworks. Cable reminds his teammates that Stryfe has teleportation technology, so they cannot risk him escaping like he did in Afghanistan. ‘We do this from the inside-out - and we make certain he dies!’ Cable declares. Domino declares that Cable is compromised, but Cable quickly replies that he is not, and that they should just get on with their job.

‘“Our” job is it now? I’m not seeing a pay check out of this one, am I?’ Domino asks, before muttering ‘Forget it’ as she acquires her targets - three of Stryfe’s soldiers lined up in a nearby corridor. ‘Acquired and eliminated’ Domino declares as she blasts the soldiers with her weapon. In a nearby room, some more soldiers are gathered. ‘You hear something?’ one of them asks his comrades. ‘Yeah - can’t see anything! Security cam’s down!’ one of the others reports. ‘Open the doors!’ another shouts. The doors rumble open. ‘Be ready for trouble -’ another of the armored soldiers warns the others - too late, though, as an explosion knocks them all back.

The Six Pack rush through the doors, with Cable finishing off the soldier’s sentence, sort of, as he shouts ‘- cause trouble’s ready for you!’ The Six Pack fire their weapons at the many soldiers in the chamber, before Cable tells Hammer to come with him. At a control panel, Cable tells Hammer to tap into the systems and give him everything it has got. Working away at the console, Hammer informs Cable that it will take a couple of minutes to download. ‘We don’t have a couple of minutes here!’ Kane shouts from where he is still fighting alongside the others. Grizzly asks if the charges are spread and set, to which Domino tells him that they are. ‘Cooking an egg?’ Domino asks. ‘Yup. Three minute timer. Set!’ G.W. Brigdge exclaims.

‘C’mon, c’mon!’ Hammer mutters, before the console spits out a disc. ‘It’s finished! Got it!’ Hammer announces, boasting that the info-disc is as stuffed as a Thanksgiving dinner. ‘So let’s make like Carl Lewis!’ Kane suggests, when suddenly, a portal opens behind the young man. ‘No…it will not be that easy…’ a voice from inside the portal calls out, as Stryfe reaches through the portal and grabs Kane by his neck. Holding Kane up off the ground, Stryfe tells Cable that his coming is likened to the trickle of little pebbles, before the avalanche named Stryfe rains down. ‘What’d he say?’ Domino asks. ‘Beats me. I’m still hung up on that foxes and dogs bit’ Grizzly replies as the two fire their weapons at Stryfe.

‘Futile’ Stryfe mutters as the weapons fire just bounces from his extravagant armor. ‘Hold your fire! He’s got a force field!’ G.W. tells the team. Grizzly mutters that they don’t have time for this, and Domino gives them thirty seconds, tops. ‘Stab his eyes…’ Cable mutters, before caling out ‘Professor - Pack body slide by six’. There is a whir as the teleport signal sounds - but then it stops, and the Six Pack remain where they are - Kane still at the mercy of Stryfe, and the others facing him. ‘Umm…Nate?’ Bridge asks.

‘Did you think I would let you escape once I had you, Nathan Dayspring?’ Stryfe enquires. ‘I think not’ he remarks, before revealing that this facility has shields to block Cable’s teleport wavelength. Stryfe tells the Pack that he cannot allow them to leave with the information they have stolen. ‘Give me the disc and I will give you your boy’ Stryfe bargains. ‘Deal!’ Hammer calls out as he marches towards Stryfe, but Cable grabs him, ‘I need that diskette!’ Cable exclaims. Hammer turns to Cable and tells him that there is nothing in the disc that is worth Kane’s life. ‘Hammer - stop!’ Cable shouts, but Hammer ignores him. ‘HAMMER! You are clueless as to what’s really going on here! HAMMER!’ Cable booms, raising his weapon.

‘Fifteen seconds’ Bridge reports, while Hammer continues to walk towards Stryfe. ‘HAMMER!’ Cable shouts again. ‘Damn you for doing this to me. Damn me for doing this to you’ Cable utters to himself as he fires his weapon, the blast strikes Hammer square in his back, causing him to drop the disc, which bounces back towards Cable, who is about to grab it, when Stryfe collects it in a telekinetic hold, and brings it towards him. ‘NO!’ Cable shouts. ‘Thank you for returning this. Enjoy your final moments on Earth, Nathan…’ Stryfe remarks. ‘Ten seconds!’ one of the Pack announces. As a portal opens around him, Stryfe remarks that it is ironic that Cable spends his life blissfully playing with time, yet when he plays with death, he still counts every single second.

‘Professor - I can’t let him get away - Graymalkin - access override - time rip by one!’ Cable shouts, vanishing moments after Stryfe. ‘Cable? Geez, he ditched us!’ Hammer Bridge exclaims, while Domino tells him and Grizzly to move. The trio then run for their lives, as the explosion resonates around them. The complex collapses inwards. ‘’HAMMER?’ someone calls out. ‘KANE?’ someone else shouts.


‘It’s not going to happen again, Stryfe!’ Cable declares as he is held back by some of Stryfe’s soldiers. Kane is still at Stryfe’s mercy, while Skids, Dragoness and the rest of the MLF look on. ‘Time and again, Nathan…the vicious circle on which our lives run…comes around once again’ Stryfe exclaims. ‘What is it you want - really want?’ Cable asks. Stryfe smiles and replies that he seeks to solve the puzzle of his future, with pieces of the past. He announces that he wants Cable’s computer, the one called Professor. ‘I want to own it as he once did’ Stryfe announces. ‘Who?’ Cable asks, angrily. ‘The Sinner of Time. The Master of Tomorrow. The end of all that is… Stryfe replies. ‘Apocalypse…’ Cable utters, realizing that the relics Stryfe has stolen are pieces of the past, all having to do with Apocalypse. ‘But why?’ Cable asks.

Stryfe doesn’t answer, he just tells Cable ‘The data-link to your computer…in exchange for Kane’s life’. There is the choice again. Cable frowns and wonders if Kane’s life is more important that the answers he need to know about Stryfe. A disc is ejected from Cable’s cybernetics, but he tells Stryfe that he does not get the Professor until Kane is freed. ‘It is so’ Stryfe replies before dropping Kane. But, Cable tells himself that choices are not so absolute, so black and white. They can’t be. For if they were, then time and fate dictate decisions for you, control your actions and determine your destiny. And that is something Cable simply doesn’t accept. ‘Burn’ he smiles, as his cybernetics set the disc alight, destroying it.

‘You fool…YOU FOOL!’ Stryfe booms. ‘You die, Nathan Dayspring Askani’son. YOU DIE NOW!’ Stryfe declares as he unleashes powerful energy at Cable, which strike him with a force he has never experienced before. The blue energy radiates from Stryfe to Cable, For the first time, Cable realizes that the power is not coming out of Stryfe’s armor, but from Stryfe himself. It is telekinetic fury, dwarfing Cable’s own abilities. It is then that Cable realizes, and accepts, that Stryfe is he, and he is Stryfe - only Stryfe is more of Cable than Cable is of Stryfe. Cable’s body falls apart, both blood and metal, stripped bare, naked to the core, by anger greater than his own, by a power greater than his own. By truth and honor, twisted though they are, greater than any conviction he ever lived by.

Suddenly, ‘NO!’ Kane shouts as he disengages his cyborg hands, aiming them at full force towards Stryfe. ‘Eh? Come now, little pebble…get a grip’ Stryfe replies, but the hands, still linked by a long wire, grab the large spikes on Stryfe’s armor, at his shoulders, and Kane releases an electromagnetic feedback, which pulses through Stryfe, causing him to scream in agony. ‘Kane - don’t -’ Cable utters, but too late, as there is an explosion. The Mutant Liberation Front members fall backwards, and Cable and Kane are both hurt, bad. Bad enough that no doctor or mechanic - of this century - can help them. Cable calls out to his computer: ‘Access override…time rip by two…’ he utters. Cable has two choices - to take a step forward to save Kane’s life, or to take a step back and kill Stryfe, who lies nearby in the chamber, once and for all. But this time, it is no choice for Cable at all.

As Cable and Kane vanish, Stryfe calls out to his mortal foe, telling him that he may escape this time, but that time is his enemy. ‘You will pay for uncovering my grand design…soon, you will all pay for what you have done to me…’

Some time else… ‘Garrison - wake up’ Cable calls out, smiling. ‘Cable - am I? Where am I?’ Garrison asks, looking around. ‘Safe. And alive’ Cable replies, adding ‘Good as new - better than that - as good as blood and metal’. Strapped to some machinery, Kane is wearing only a pair of briefs, and he sees that his arms once again appear like normal, flesh. ‘My arms?’ he asks. ‘Courtesy of modern day science. Welcome to Applecrust’ Cable exclaims. ‘It used to be called Manhattan - until about seven hundred years ago’ Cable reveals, as they look out a window, to see the city of the future.

Soon, Nathan and Garrison stand on a balcony, ‘You saved my life, Nate’ Kane remarks. ‘And you saved mine’ Cable reminds him. Kane supposes that they owe each other, to which Cable tells him they have paid each other back, as well. ‘Not completely’ Kane remarks. ‘Hammer?’ Cable asks, before telling Kane to look around him, as this is the face of tomorrow. ‘We’ll find something here which will help Hammer walk again’ Cable assures him. Kane reminds Cable that he said something to him - that people don’t know whether certain choices are right or wrong until they look back on them. ‘When you look back on this choice - the one you made - to save me over nailing Stryfe - what will you think?’ Kane asks.

Cable frowns, and replies that he will think, that no matter what the cost, if he had to do it all over again, he would do the same exact thing. In the middle of the city that the men look over is a large statute. Of a an impressive figure. Immense. Foreboding. And with the very large letter “A” stamped on it….

Characters Involved: 


Weapon X / Garrison Kane

Silver Samurai

Dragoness, Forearm, Reaper, Rusty, Samurai, Skids, Strobe, Tempo, Wildside (all Mutant Liberation Front)

Mr Richter


Various civilians

Stryfe’s soldiers

In Flashbacks:

G.W. Bridge, Cable, Domino, Grizzly, Hammer, Garrison Kane (all Six Pack)



Stryfe’s soldiers

Terrorists in Singapore

Story Notes: 

The character Richter is this story is the uncle of X-Force’s Rictor whose father was killed by Stryfe. X-Force’s Rictor had witnessed the murder and because of their resemblance wrongly believed Cable to be the killer.
When Cable mentions he hasn’t trusted anyone since “she“ died in his arms, he was referring to his wife Aliya .

Mariko Yashida died in Wolverine (2nd series) #58.

Though originally believed to be Kamikazee, the character wearing his costume is in fact called Samurai. Samurai has not been seen or mentioned since this issue.

Stryfe gets his revenge in the “X-Cutioner’s Song” crossover.

All of the artifacts that were stolen by the MLF were items needed for Stryfe’s preparation of his revenge against Apocalypse and others in the X-Cutioner’s Song crossover in the X-Men titles.

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