Captain Britain and MI13 #13

Issue Date: 
July 2009
Story Title: 
Vampire State – part three

Paul Cornell (writer), Ardian Syaf &Leonard Kirk (pencilers), Craig Yeung & Jay Leisten (inkers), Brian Reber (colorist), Mico Suayan & Morry Hollowell (cover), VC’s Joe Caramagna (letterer), Daniel Ketchum (assistant editor), Nick Lowe (editor), Joe Quesada (editor-in-chief), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (Exec. Publisher)

Brief Description: 

With Quincy Harker’s skull destroyed, things begin to crumble for MI13 and their associates. Blade gets into a fight with Union Jack, while Captain Britain loses his confidence, his most important weapon. Dracula’s next step is to isolate Great Britain from the rest of the world with a magical shield and the heroes find they can neither get help from Norman Osborn’s HAMMER nor from the Avengers. With Dracula focusing on his army, Spitfire gives up her struggle and embraces her vampire side. She leads the vampire scouts to Earth where she is expected by her teammates. In the following fight Spitfire, kills Faiza and the others too fall, save for Captain Britain who lands outside the shield and Blade who flees for the north to find the resistance. Dracula slays the politicians and finds everything is going to plan. He has won…

Full Summary: 

Dracula walks along a hallway, flanked by his lieutenants, Captain Fate and Lilith, and followed at a respectful distance by vampire scientists. He gives orders that the embarkation phase is to begin immediately. He believes the journey time is two days. Then they’ll launch as soon the embarkation is complete. They’ll take the new converts with them, in their birthing pods. They will wake as vampires in time for the attack. The enemy may not know where they are, but he knows they’ll be coming. Let’s not give Mr. Wisdom time to think.

Back on Earth, the members of MI13 find themselves under vampire attack after having been dealt the fatal blow of losing Quincy Harker’s head to Dracula. Fending off a vampire, Wisdom shouts for Blade, who quickly stakes the bloodsucker. The other vampires retreat, their work done, after Dracula destroyed the skull.

How did they get in here? Wisdom wonders. The witch Diana suggests they were waiting outside, listening as she invited Wisdom’s group in. Their enemy is clever. Their only hope now is that they are a match for him.

Back on the moon, Dracula and his people watch the pods being loaded into the ships. Dracula states that their sheer number will be a match for their foes. Spitfire pleads for Dracula not do this. He laughs briefly and teasingly touches her cheek. This is for their people, he explains. And there will come a time when she does not recoil. Captain Fate will take charge of the launch itself. Dracula will be in his cabin on the ship, observing their enemies. And finessing their tactics for the final plan. He steps inside.

At the MI13 offices, Wisdom’s team reassembles under a portrait of the Queen. Anxiously, Wisdom asks for suggestions. What have they got? “Nothing!” comes a newcomer’s voice as MI5’s Union Jack aka Joe Chapman enters. Isn’t that right? He saw that last farce via a satellite. So Dracula can just walk into Britain now?

They’ve got every magical and technological sensor looking out for the first time if… Alistaire Stuart begins. Blade tells him to let him talk. He knows how Joe feels, he begins. Oh really? Chapman snaps back. Blade hasn’t raised a sweat… Hasn’t it occurred to him? It’s Blade’s fault the vampires are back. So it’s his fault Faiza’s dad copped it! His fault Jaq got taken! At least MI5 doesn’t get foreign amateurs to… Blade’s fangs show as he attacks Union Jack with a feral snarl. Wisdom orders both of them to stand down.

The Black Knight, in the meantime, tries to comfort Faiza, assuring her they will find something. In two days’ time her dad… She doesn’t finish the sentence. How can she carry Excalibur and be so useless?

Alistaire asks if the unusually cowed Captain Britain is all right. Brian explains the vampires obviously know about the magic Merlin used to make him. Knew his… He supposes Al would call it “machine code.” Something about which he knows nothing. That suggests that in combat he might be compromised and Dracula must know that and now all his powers depend on confidence.

Suddenly, the priority alarm rings. It’s the near-space detection system. He thinks it could be them!

And so, led by Captain Fate’s flagship, the vampire army commences towards Earth.

At MI13’s HQ people are starting to get more than anxious. They’ve got two days! Wisdom shouts, and they are getting almost no international cooperation. Are they seriously going to leave them to this?

MI5 director Warner explains that translunar space is a legal minefield. They hear the Chinese are going to block any Security Council attempts to wage war there. Obviously, Dracula has assets in the People’s Republic. No faith problems there. MI5 have officers in place, trying to expose or kill but it will be a close thing.

Sir Clive Reston of MI6 adds that the Prime Minister’s office is going to tell the public today. The opposition’s already outside. Good thing about vampires is, the public have some idea. They are going to try and turn the mass panic into mobs with stakes. Though they anticipate enormous losses.

O interrupts him. A message is coming in via telepresence with US government protocols. He doesn’t recognize the line. The next moment, Norman Osborn’s face appears on the screen. Curtly, he tells O to let him talk to someone in charge.

That would be him, Wisdom replies. He’s been trying to get past the president and talk to Osborn. What can he officially give them? And what can he really give them?

Osborn replies he’s sorry. He recognizes a fellow player, but his hands are tied by international agreements. He just wanted to tell him that in person. Osborn out.

Brilliant. Nothing! Pete exclaims frustrated. Except the %’@&%’$ thinks Pete is a bit like him!

Brian addresses him. He’s getting a… another sort of message. He didn’t know he could do this, he states surprised as red smoke forms in the room.

He cannot, an image of the Scarlet Witch, forming in the smoke, states. She brings a message from the Avengers… Which Avengers? Pete asks. The real Avengers, she replies. Those led by Henry Pym; he is in space with the rest of his team and he asks that they stop all international air traffic immediately, because…

Aboard their jet, the Wasp tells the Scarlet Witch to let MI13 know Britain has been magically cut off. They cannot get in.

A normal passenger plane is smashed against the wall.

Aboard the vampire ship Dracula states it’s working. They will receive no foreign aid. As he predicted, the Scarlet Witch is not willing to pierce the barrier. The reasons for which escape him. Still, it is satisfactory. Can Lilith maintain this? She can, with the assistance of his machines.

Dracula then proceeds to focus his will on unifying the army, coordinating the forward scouts. Lady Jaqueline should be feeling the effects as they speak.

Elsewhere in a ship, Spitfire seems to struggle. No… no… not like this she mutters while her son looks at her with anticipation. Suddenly she begins to smirk… What on Earth is she worrying about? It’s such a tiny thing really, just doing what the master says… Overjoyed, Ken hugs her. He knew she’d get there! Things are going to get great now! They are going to be in charge, the bosses, the top predators! They’re going to make Britain so much better!

Jaqueline looks out of the window with an evil smile. She gets to see her former colleagues again. She’s so looking forward to it. Oh, and she’s told it’s time for her phase of the plan. She activates the communicator hidden in her wristwatch…

Elsewhere, Captain Britain tries and fails to break through the invisible mystical barrier that now surrounds Great Britain. He falls and explains to MI13 that he could get through but he can’t hurt it and if he wins… he couldn’t get back inside that thing. He thinks it was made with him in mind.

Wisdom replies over the communicator that they just got a message from Jac. A trap obviously, but it’s their only chance to get any more intel before they are here.

Aboard MI13’s plane Faiza repeats to herself that she has to do something. For her dad, she has to do something.

They land to meet up with Cap at the destination where they are expecting Jaqueline. Wisdom tells Cap Jac sent them a message, saying she managed to break free. She sounded like a vampire, Blade adds. Brian swears. They make sure, Blade continues. But if she is, if she’s gone… she’s made her wishes clear to him. He hopes none of them are going to…

Here we go, Black Knight interrupts as a burning meteor-like object comes falling towards them and crashes into the ground.

Spitfire, mortally wounded (or would be, if she were a human) comes from the crater, asking them for help.

Blade and Cap sense magic around her. Protection from the sunlight. The others have their weapons drawn. Let’s get past this! Pete tells Spitfire. They know she’s been turned. If she has any will of her own left, she’ll let them take her in. Tell them what she knows. They can keep her on ice until…

A cure? she scoffs and heals her injuries. She’s so tired of people treating magical mutation as a medical condition. He’s right, let’s get past this!

Hordes of vampires come up from the ground, surrounding the team. Peacock Diamond! Peacock Diamond! Pete shouts. A group of vampires is engulfed by something and burned to the bones. The injured but still whole Spitfire scoffs again. Holy water delivered by carpet bombing? Is that all they’ve got? She asks Lady Liltih for help and the sorceress remote-destroys the plane carrying the bombs.

They have more and more and more, Jac threatens. They have been arriving every hour since that skull was destroyed. As they speak, scouts like these are engaging combat units all over Britain. And Dracula’s vessel with the bulk of their army isn’t even here yet.

If she’s the local commander, Pete begins, they take her. Blade agrees. Maybe the vampire hierarchy control system gets fragged and… otherwise there’ too many of them.

While they plan, Faiza focuses. Dane, save my Dad, she tells the Black Knight. Before he understands her meaning she cries Excalibur and cuts her way towards Spitfire, mowing down vampires right and left.

The Black Knight follows her, but too late. Even though she manages to injure Spitfire, she hesitates, and Spitfire slashes her throat. Then Whitman runs amok.

Pete orders Cap to get Blade out. Cap hesitates and Blade is rather unwilling. That moment, one of Lilith’s energy blasts hurls them both away. Cap is hurled farther outside the barrier around Britain.

Wisdom and the Knight are lost in the fight, while Blade leaves for the north that isn’t conquered yet.

A messenger tells all this to Dracula. The greater mass of the army is turning northward now, allowing the new converts to pacify the territory they have already gained. They anticipate the completion of the entire operation within six weeks. Everything has gone to plan.

As Dracula stands in the House of Commons, holding the sceptre, all the slaughtered MPs in their seats, he is told that he has won.

Characters Involved: 

Black Knight, Blade, Captain Britain, Excalibur, Pete Wisdom, Spitfire (all MI-13)

Alistaire Stuart
Annabel Warner (MI5 director)

Sir Clive Reston (MI6 agent)
Union Jack (MI5 agent)
Unnamed personnel of MI5 & 6
Diana Hetherington

Kenneth Falsworth / Baron Blood III

Captain Fate


on screen

Norman Osborn (director of HAMMER)
Hercules, Statue, Vision, Wasp II (all Mighty Avengers)
as magical vision:

Loki (posing as the Scarlet Witch)

Story Notes: 

Osborn is the current director of HAMMER (the official successor of SHIELD). Presumably, he isn’t acting because he is a member of the Cabal, same as Doom, who has a deal with Dracula.

The “Scarlet Witch” is actually Loki, as seen in current issues of Mighty Avengers #22 onwards.

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