Cable & Deadpool #41

Issue Date: 
August 2007
Story Title: 
Fractured: Part Two

Fabian Nicieza (writer), Reilly Brown (penciler), Jeremy Freeman (inker), Gotham (colorist), Dave Sharpe (letterer), Skottie Young (cover), Nicole Boose (editor), Joe Quesada (editor-in-chief), Dan Buckley (publisher)

Brief Description: 

Deadpool travels to Providence to help the X-Men defeat the Hecatomb, but by the time he arrives, they have already finished the job. Rogue, however, now teeters on the brink of insanity, so the X-Men depart to find her help, leaving Cable behind to tie up loose ends. He and Domino split up and hunt for the recently escaped Sabretooth. Cable first heads to the power core, retrieves his sentient computer program Professor, and activates the island’s detonation sequence in order to eliminate the intelligence threat it poses. Domino tracks Sabretooth to the Infonet chamber, but by the time she arrives he has already killed Black Box and taken Irene Merryweather as a hostage. Deadpool takes him by surprise, obliterating him with hundreds of bullets from his machineguns. Irene and Domino escape and board the evacuation ferry after saying goodbye to Cable. Cable then heads back to find Deadpool and Sabretooth still engaged in combat. Because they have no time to waste, he gravimetrically flings Sabretooth miles into the ocean, makes amends with Deadpool, and proceeds with his task of burying the remains of Providence Island.

Full Summary: 

Deadpool, along with his Agency X associates Outlaw and Bob, Agent of HYDRA, is just over halfway to his destination of Providence Island when Deadpool learns his services are no longer needed; Cable and the X-Men have successfully defeated the Hecatomb. He throws a few airplane nuts into his mouth and chases it with a tiny bottle of liquor. When it comes to the X-Men, he notes, the end of a fight is usually the beginning of the problem. His services may still be needed after all.

Meanwhile, on Providence, the X-Men stand around in the wake of Hecatomb’s defeat, and true to Deadpool’s prediction, realize their problems have only just begun. Providence Island lies in ruins. Worse, Rogue had to absorb the eight billion minds held captive within the Hecatomb in order to defeat it, and now the interlopers inside her head are driving her crazy.

Staring at her with unease, the X-Men ponder what to do. Cable informs the team they can do nothing for her on the island; they need to get her into the care of Emma Frost or Hank McCoy immediately. He agrees to Mystique’s suggestion of salvaging a skimmer from the Conquistador’s wreckage, but informs her he will not be leaving with the team. He can do nothing to help Rogue without his telepathy. Besides, he needs to stay on Providence. The destruction of the island has left his vast resources unprotected, and he has too many enemies who would take advantage of the situation. Cannonball adds that Sabretooth is also loose on the island somewhere, as his body was not found in the wreckage of the Conquistador. He asks if Cable can handle him alone. I won’t be alone, Sam, Cable says to himself. Very soon, I’ll have more company than I’d like…

After salvaging a functional ship from the Conquistador, the X-Men take off while Cable watches from the shore. It’s the last time I’ll see them again, he says. Until the next time I see them. That’s how these things work. Cable assesses the damage to the island. He spent years building this place, only for it to be destroyed in a matter of minutes. While they successfully evacuated most of the citizenry by shutting down the gravity field, allowing the northern section of Providence to drift safely toward Australia, they also had to shut down the island’s power core to prevent a meltdown. The rest of Providence Island will sink beneath the ocean in twenty-four hours.

After meeting up with Domino and Prester John at the designated evacuation point, Cable orders them to shuttle the remaining survivors off the island with the ferries. Domino informs him that neither Irene Merryweather nor Black Box arrived at any of the evacuation points before the power went out. They must be trapped in the Infonet chamber!

Sure enough, in the chamber housing the Infonet, Irene and Black Box sit in the total darkness and discuss their predicament. Irene asks about the last transmissions Garabed received, and he informs her of the enormous destruction caused by the Hecatomb. He also adds that Dick Cheney was cooking wild pheasant with Martha Stewart on her TV show! Irene decides the blackout was a saving grace, then.

An abrasive scraping noise suddenly reverberates through the otherwise-silent chamber. Black Box asks what the noise is. “It sounded like…nails…on metal…” Irene says. “There’s someone here? Hello – is anyone here?” she calls out. Somewhere in the darkened chamber, Sabretooth slides his claws menacingly along the steel chamber walls.

Back at the dock, the remaining survivors board the two evacuation ferries. Domino asks if they have enough time to rescue Irene and Black Box. Cable takes this opportunity to inform her that there is one additional problem: Victor Creed is on the loose somewhere. Domino realizes that to get off the island, Sabretooth will need some hostages to use as leverage. She grabs her gun and immediately heads to the Infonet chamber, while Cable heads to the power core. He tells her to be careful. “As if,” Domino replies.

Don’t even get a goodbye kiss, Cable grumbles as he runs toward the power core. People like him are not allowed to acknowledge the danger they face every day of their lives. There is an unspoken code they follow; if one says it, it will come true. Plus he doesn’t let his emotions show. Cable, however, is tired of playing these games. He and Domino had finally reached a place where they could stop putting up these fronts, when this disaster happened. He forces himself to push these thoughts aside while he completes his job. As he descends the six stories to the power core, Cable ponders whether or not the island will fall apart before it sinks.

Domino, meanwhile, arrives at the Infonet chamber. She holds her assault rifle in one hand, and a flashlight in the other. A shuffling noise echoes all around her in the pitch-black room. Before long, she stumbles across the eviscerated body of Garabed Bashur, also known as Black Box. “Not gonna kill the light, Domino? I know exactly where you are,” Creed says, his voice filling the chamber. The ploy doesn’t fool Domino; she knows Sabretooth could just as easily find her in the dark. She only wants to know if Irene Merryweather is still alive.

Her light manages to find Creed in the dark. He stands against a wall, clutching Irene Merryweather’s mouth shut with one hand, and refuses to give up his hostage. Instead, he will keep her close while Domino finds Cable and asks for a method of transporting Sabretooth off of Providence. Cable is busy, Domino tells him. Sabretooth suggests that they all travel together, then, and Domino agrees. With her gun locked between Sabretooth’s eyes, they slowly step backward and exit the chamber. “I like what you guys have done with the place,” Sabretooth says when they finally step outside and into the harsh light of Providence’s destruction. Don’t worry, Domino says. Cable probably has his repair kit out already.

Sabretooth and Domino continue to walk further out into the open. Creed tells her he almost feels bad about what happened to Providence. “Not that I care for the Pollyanna Utopia crap Nate was goin’ for here,” he says, “but I do admire the brass ones it took to shove it in everyone’s faces no matter how hard they tried to pretend it didn’t exist.” Domino says nothing in response. “What? Got nuthin’ to say?” Creed asks her. Even if she did, Domino says, she wouldn’t be able to get a word in edgewise.

Deadpool takes that as his cue to enter. “Hey Vickie!” he shouts at Sabretooth as he descends in a parachute while opening fire with his dual machine guns. His shots tear several holes in Creed’s body.

Irene slips away and sobs into Domino’s arms. With Sabretooth temporarily down, Deadpool tells Domino to get Irene to safety, while he stays behind and kicks Sabretooth’s face in. Domino asks to trade places, but Deadpool reminds her that Cable would never forgive him if he did that. “Wade…” Domino begins.

“…thank you,” Irene finishes.

Deadpool gives them a look of disbelief. “Man, that was so hard to say it took two of you to say it!” he laughs. As they leave, he tells them to let Cable know he is sorry, and turns his machine guns back on the bleeding Creed. While he fires round after round into Sabretooth, Wade whistles merrily. The machinegunfire reduces Sabretooth to a bloody, formless pulp, but Deadpool keeps shooting. He poses a question: when he runs out of bullets, will there be anything left of Sabretooth for his healing factor to heal? “I mean, I’m hoping, really, ‘cause that just means I can find new ways to puddinize you,” he says, while Creed lumbers toward Deadpool. “Puddinize means: to turn one into pudding. I just made that up.” The guns finally run out of bullets when as Sabretooth reaches striking distance, but Deadpool doesn’t seem to care. Now, it’s Sabretooth’s turn.

As Domino and Irene pass by the building that houses the power core, Domino says she needs to go inside and help Cable. Irene, however, does not want to be left alone, even for the remaining three blocks before the evacuation point. Domino sighs. Cable can probably figure out the power problem on his own, she says as she continues to walk with Irene.

Inside, Cable sifts through the wreckage of electronics, eventually finding a backup copy he made of Professor, the sentient computer program who functions as his assistant. The Professor proves to be quite helpful in assessing the damage to the power grid. It informs Cable that the damage is too severe for the equipment to be salvaged. His goal is not to salvage the computer, Cable counters, but to keep the island intact long enough for him to safely remove all his archival records. The island contains too much information about the future. Cable insists this information be destroyed if he cannot keep it for himself.

Soon, they successfully restore enough power to keep the systems active for thirty-six hours, more than enough time for Cable to download his archive. He decides to return to the surface in the meantime. The first thing he notices when he reaches the evacuation point is Black Box’s absence. Cable knows exactly what that implies. Domino asks him if he restored the power. “Just enough to finish the job,” Cable says. “Sabretooth?”

“Deadpool,” Domino responds. This answer surprises Cable; he didn’t think Deadpool would come through like this. Irene interrupts and asks what Cable meant by “finish the job.” He informs her that the dream of Providence Island is over. Maybe it was too much to ask of people, he tells Irene. People can handle anger, cynicism, and hatred, but maybe the concept of hope is truly beyond them. Irene gives him a big hug. She tells Cable she loves him for what he tried to do, and what he helped her become. “Investigative reporter turned political babysitter?” Cable jokes. No, Irene says; someone who actually cares. She lets go of him and boards the ferry.

With everyone safely off the island, Domino advises they go assist Deadpool in dealing with Sabretooth. Cable refuses; Domino needs to get on the ferry and leave. When she resists, Cable interrupts her, gently grabs her by the shoulders, and explains himself. He does not need her help to assist Wade, but more importantly, he needs to destroy the island when he is done. It contains too much valuable technology to remain unprotected. While the island did have a failsafe that would have destroyed all Cable’s records in the event of his death, that failsafe was damaged by the Hecatomb. He now must activate it manually. Domino asks if he plans on killing himself in the process. “I’m not going to commit suicide,” he tells her with sincere expression on his face. She makes him promise. He leans forward and plants a kiss on her lips in response. “Promise,” he says as he pulls away. As Domino boards the ferry, however, Cable cannot help but ask himself: how many times has he broken his promises?

Meanwhile, the confrontation between Deadpool and Sabretooth has descended to an all-out brawl. Deadpool, now using his katanas instead of his machineguns, swiftly dodges a swipe by Sabretooth and leaps over the villain’s head. “Man, you’re gonna be one mighty tough opponent once all your tendons reattach themselves,” Wade says. “But in the meantime, it’s fun to watch you shuffle around like Taylor Hicks trying to do Swan Lake.”

Cable watches the battle progress from above. He realizes no conventional method will kill Sabretooth, but they do not have the time for anything complicated. He can either restrain him until he detonates the island, an explosion Creed will likely survive. Or, he can let Wade keep him occupied until he detonates the island, an explosion they will both likely survive. Hell with it, Cable says, deciding on the easiest possible option. Using his gravimetric power, he lifts Sabretooth into the air and throws him miles away into the ocean.

“Well, that was anticlimactic!” Deadpool says. Cable points out they do not have time to mess around. Deadpool asks where he sent Creed. That way, Cable says, gesturing vaguely toward the ocean. With Sabretooth gone, Cable extends his hand to Deadpool in gratitude. “Aah, you had me at ‘hello’ and you know it!” Deadpool says as he enthusiastically shakes his hand. He asks what the next step is. Bury the dead and prevent anyone from obtaining the island’s secrets about the future, Cable says, adding that he can kill these two birds with one stone. “You think people are gonna come after your goodies?” Deadpool asks. No, Cable replies, scrutinizing the crumpled cityscape; he thinks they are already here.

Characters Involved: 

Cable, Cannonball, Iceman, Lady Mastermind, Mystique, Omega Sentinel, Rogue (all X-Men)

Deadpool/Wade Wilson

Sabretooth/Victor Creed


Irene Merryweather

Black Box/Garabed Bashur

Prester John

Bob - Agent of HYDRA, Outlaw (both Agency X)

Story Notes: 

This story continues from the ongoing storyline in X-Men (2nd series) #199. In that issue, Cable’s Mummudrai friend Urizen was consumed by the Hecatomb, and Cable summoned Rogue to defeat the monster, knowing it would drive her crazy and maybe even kill her.

This story continues simultaneously in X-Men (2nd series) #200 and Cable & Deadpool #42.

The Professor that Cable recovers from Providence’s wreckage is not the original computer program, but a copy he made from the salvaged remains of Avalon and installed into Providence Island’s power core.

Cable overthrew the tyrannical government of Rumekistan and launched efforts to rebuild the nation in Cable and Deadpool #28-29.
Taylor Hicks was the winner of American Idol: Season Five. Deadpool’s comparison of Sabretooth’s lurching motion to Hicks attempting Swan Lake, a classic Russian ballet, is a jab at the singer’s off-beat, jerky style of dancing.

“You had me at hello” is a popular line from the 1996 film Jerry Maguire.

Sabretooth next appears in Wolverine (3rd series) #55.

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