Daken: Dark Wolverine #5

Issue Date: 
February 2011
Story Title: 
Empire: Act 2: Part 2

Daniel Way and Marjorie Liu (writers), Giuseppe Camuncoli (penciler), Onofrio Catacchio with Cam Smith and Sandu Florea (inkers), Grazia Lobaccaro and Christian Cornia (background assists), Chris Sotomayor (colorist), VC’s Cory Petit (letterer), Jared K. Fletcher (designer), Jody LeHeup (assistant editor), Jeanine Schaefer (editor), Axel Alonso (group editor), Joe Quesada (editor in chief), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer), Giuseppe Camuncoli and Marte Gracia (cover art), Marko Djurdjevic (cover art)

Brief Description: 

In Madripoor, Tyger Tiger and her group of commandos take down a sex slavery ring. After doing so, Tyger is approached at her apartment by Daken. At first, Tyger shoots him but they soon come to an understanding and have a conversation about the inner dealings between Madripoor’s bankers and their secret ledgers. They agree to meet the next day at Tyger’s office. At the same time, Captain Gui, Madripoor’s chief of police, talks with his family about putting their daughter in a prestigious school, even though it is obvious they are having money issues. The next day, Gui informs Tyger and Max that some of the slaves were being experimented on. Upon entering the office, Daken tells Tyger that the bankers are all meeting at their annual summit as they speak. Tyger makes the call to infiltrate and organizes the troops. Max tells Tyger that he doesn’t trust Daken but Tyger says all that matters is that they get the secret ledgers. She doesn’t want to think about if someone else does. Unbeknownst to Tyger, Daken had a secret meeting with Gui earlier that day.

Full Summary: 

When I was a child, I believed that darkness was alive, and would consume me. Consume… and change me. I was right. But there was no place to hide. The darkness was everywhere. I felt like that when I first came to Madripoor. I was afraid for myself. But I got over it.

Inside a Madripoor office building, Tyger Tiger, flanked by her guards, infiltrates an office. As Tyger continues her beating of one of the men, she slams him on a nearby table and says to him that he must think she’s stupid. That all she does is sit around, painting her nails. She tells the man, Petrus, that she used to be a banker, which means she always follows the numbers. She follows the numbers of every business on the island. And when she doesn’t see the numbers, she finds them. She found his. And does he know what? They don’t add up. So she dug. And she dug. And she found something that really… really pisses her off.

Holding her knife to Petrus’ eye, she says that he’s selling girls and boys. He’s keeping slaves, for sex. And some of them are only ten years old. Does he know what she does with scum like him? Just then, she slams her knife into the ground, narrowly missing Petrus’ crotch. She then tells the man that she has two rules on the island. No drugs, no slaves. She thinks she’ll add morons to that list, too.

One of her henchman, Max, tells her that Madripoor will be empty if she does that. Tyger laughs and then tells her men that she wants his assets. She wants the deeds to his property. And she wants the names of every person Petrus did business with. Then, they are to get him, all of them, off the island. Tonight. Max then informs her that Charlie just checked in. The nuns have arrived. Leaving the room, she remarks that she’ll ask them if there’s a priest available for later.

In another section of the building, the nuns approach Tyger and tell her they came as soon as they could. Tyger thanks Sister Francis for coming and remarks that she wishes they didn’t have to meet like this. Sister Francis agrees and proceeds to follow Tyger down the hall. As they do, Tyger tells them that the man in charge converted three floors of the office building into a brothel. Right under her nose. Son of a bitch. After the nuns say please, they’d rather not..., Tyger apologizes. Reaching a female guard standing outside a room, Tyger asks her, Jaz, how they are. Jaz reports they are terrified. A couple of the stronger girls are taking care of the… the really little ones. They put the boys in another room. As the nuns go to work attending to the girls, Jaz asks Tyger if she’s gonna kill him for this. Tyger tells her that she doesn’t know yet. But the night’s still young and you never know what waits in the darkness.

Sitting outside the building inside their vehicle, Tyger and Max watch the parade of people exiting. Max tells Tyger that she cleaned the city up. Despite nights like this, don’t forget that. His wife and daughter have real lives there now. He’s not afraid every second they’ll get hurt, or worse. Didn’t used to be that way. Tyger replies maybe, but it could flip so fast. That’s what scares her. The good times, the peace. One wrong move, and they could lose it all. They could lose everything. As they drive off, Daken watches them from the shadows behind a building.

Entering her apartment, Tyger strips and readies herself to get into the shower. Before she does, she hears her cat hiss at a stranger, and proceeds to point her gun at the intruder (Daken). She tells him that she expected retaliation but not this fast. Daken tells her he’s not there for that. He just wants to talk about an opportunity that might interest her. Tyger says oh sure, him and every other two-bit criminal who comes through Madripoor. She’s heard everything. She doesn’t make deals. With that, she shoots Daken in the shoulder.

As Daken stands up, Tyger says to him that he’s not too smart, is he. She then tells him to get out, or else the next bullet will be in his heart. After Daken tells her she doesn’t want to do that, Tyger shoots him again, this time in the neck. Standing over the prone body of Daken, Tyger remarks that she doesn’t want a corpse in her living room, but life’s not fair; is it. Heading back into the bathroom, Tyger mutters that all she wanted was a quiet evening. Is that too much to ask?

As soon as Tyger goes to enter the bathroom, she is attacked from behind by Daken, who stabs her in the chest with his new stun claw. Standing over her prone body, Daken says to her that she doesn’t bluff, he admires that. He admires a lot of things about her. But she took too much for granted. She made assumptions. She thought she was in control. That’s what he’s there to discuss. Tonight she discovered something very dirty – a man, operating outside her control. Maybe she’ll find the root of it. Maybe she’ll shoot that root, like she shot him. But the ground will remain fertile. To kill the problem, you have to kill the source. And, in this case, the source has everything to do with money. When Tyger asks him who he is, Daken answers that they have a mutual acquaintance, his father.

In short time, Tyger is sitting on her couch with her cat in her lap as Daken looks out the window. As he does, she calls him by his name Daken Akhiro. She had a drink with Logan some months back. He talked about him. She tells Daken he’s no prize but, for some reason, he still cares about him. And he hates that, doesn’t he? Scowling, Daken answers that he’s not there to discuss him. Taking a sip of her drink, Tyger points out that he brought it up. Turning around to face her, Daken says they need to change the subject.

He then asks her what she knows about the inner dealings between Madripoor’s bankers. Tyger answers not enough. If there’s one cartel on this island that she hasn’t been able to touch, it’s them. They protect each other fiercely. When it comes right down to it, they’re the ones with the real power. Money is God and the Devil on Madripoor. Daken says it’s like that everywhere. So she’s heard about the secret ledgers they keep? Handwritten, perfect details about all the money they hold over the heads of the world’s most powerful crime syndicates?

Tyger states that those ledgers are a myth. As he starts to remove his uniform top, Daken tells her no, they’re not. Actually, as a matter of fact, they’re the reason why the bankers protect each other. And very soon, both the bankers and the ledgers are going to be in the same place at the same time. Standing, Tyger asks Daken what he wants. When Daken tells her that he wants to work together, Tyger asks him again what he wants from her. Daken says he’s trying to start over. Madripoor is a good place to get his footing. Tyger asks is that right. She then tells him she doesn’t trust him. She thinks he’s going to stab her in the back the first chance he gets. Daken says maybe, but he can get close to those ledgers. That’s worth a prick or two, doesn’t she think?

Tyger tells him that she thinks she deals with enough of those in her line of work. She then tells him to be at her office tomorrow morning at nine. They’ll talk more there. When Daken says they could talk more there, Tyger tells him no. She then tells him he’s a good actor but his eyes give him away. He has no interest in her, only in what she can give him. She also tells him to ditch the uniform tomorrow too. After Daken asks if there’s anything else, Tyger tells him nothing he can give her. Daken tells her she’d be surprised and, as he leaves, he tells her good night. Tyger remarks that, so far, it’s been anything but.

Just then, her phone rings. Answering it, her chief of police, Captain Gui, informs her that he has been following up on the evidence her people provided, and he’s made some very disturbing discoveries. Tyger says under her breath of course he has and then tells him to be at her office first thing in the morning.

Once he gets home, Captain Gui is greeted at his apartment by his wife and his two children. Opening the door to his home, his wife asks him if he had a long day. Gui replies that it was horrible but, after his eldest daughter gives him a big hug, he states that it’s much better now. His wife asks him if he would like to talk about it and Gui says yes, but…

After they send the older guy off to play, Gui informs his wife that Tyger Tiger discovered a human trafficking ring. It involved children. He’s the top cop in Madripoor and he had no idea that it was happening right under his nose. His wife remarks that Tyger is a criminal. She has knowledge to which he is not privy, resources that he cannot, as a policeman, tap into. Gui says yes, she’s a criminal with almost unlimited resources. And he answers to her. What does that make him? A puppet? A fool? His wife tells him what he is is a good man. The last good man in Madripoor.

Taking a bite of his dinner, Gui adds that he’s supposed to talk with her tomorrow. He’s not looking forward to it. His wife says that is why his burden is so heavy. Seeing his wife looking over their bills, Gui asks her if they are okay for the month. His wife answers that she thinks so but that special school called. They finally have a place for Adanna. Gui states that’s wonderful and then asks how much it costs. After his wife informs him too much, Gui tells her to tell them she’s going. With a concerned look on her face, his wife starts to ask questions but Gui cuts her off and tells her that nothing is more important. They’ll figure it out.

The next morning, in Tyger’s office, Tyger asks Max and Gui if they are sure this is all they found. They checked everywhere? Max replies that’s it. Almost all the business that Petrus conducted in that place was done in cash, very few computer records. But his men were able to give them some names. She won’t like them. There are some local bankers and local politicians on that list. Tyger remarks she bets and asks what else. Gui tells her there were some hard sales. Young girls and boys were bought and transferred to different locations on and off the island. He’s tasked a unit to search for them. They found one location, but all that was left were… bodies. His men tell him that it looks as though… they were experimented on.

When Tyger asks for specifics, Gui states that it was a lab. The children were in cells. Some had been cut open and stitched back together. Others were deformed. He’ll have a detailed report to her in an hour. Tyger asks what the hell is going on but, before the answer can come, she is informed by one of her guards that some weirdo is there to see her. He doesn’t look like the guy she warned them about. Seeing Daken at the door, Tyger says no, that’s the same weirdo and invites him in. Tyger says to Daken that she told him to leave the uniform at home. Daken replies that he’d feel naked without it. Literally. And they both know she doesn’t want that. At that moment, Tyger tells Max and Gui to wait outside. This will only take a moment. As they leave, Max tells Tyger to say the word if she needs anything.

Once they are alone, Daken tells Tyger that she’s terrified. Tyger stands up and says no; he’s playing games. She then asks him why he’s hiding behind that mask. Daken replies that he told her he’s turning over a new leaf, beginning anew, walking paths unsullied by his past. Tyger remarks that in other words, he’s a coward. He’s a little boy hiding behind a mask because he doesn’t have the guts to stand up in the light and live with his sins.

After a moment of silence, Daken says to her that’s no way to begin. Tyger tells him that it’s her way. She speaks plain; she speaks the truth as she sees it. Can he handle it? Daken says he can but he has one request. Call him whatever she wants. But don’t use his real name. That is between her and him. Tyger says fine and then asks Daken to tell her about those ledgers and how she can find them. Daken informs her that once a year the men gather. It’s a summit, if she likes. They bring their ledgers. They booze. They get entertained. And they make deals with each other. They exchange power over the crime syndicates, as although they’re nothing more than chess pieces. That meeting is happening today. Right now, in fact. It’s the only chance she’ll have to get those ledgers. So he recommends she acts fast.

In short time, Max, Tyger, Gui, and Daken stand outside the location where the bankers are meeting. Max informs Tyger that everyone is in place. They’ve confirmed that Madripoor’s major money players are all in there. But the guys are also reporting guards everywhere, and they’re armed for war. Tyger says no surprise. Think about who they’re protecting. Turning to Gui, Tyger asks him if his men are ready to move in. Gui informs her that he’s chosen only the best, and most trusted. So yes, they’re ready. Directing her attention to Daken, she tells him that he better be right about this. Daken says there’s only one way to find out. Max then tells Tyger that he doesn’t like this and he doesn’t like this man. Tyger tells him that it’s results that matter. If they can get those ledgers, they’ll have the power to make themselves safe, for good. When Max asks what if someone else gets them, Tyger says that she doesn’t want to think about that, she really doesn’t.

Unbeknownst to her, Daken had a secret meeting with Gui.

Characters Involved: 


Tyger Tiger

Tyger’s team (Max, Charlie, and Jaz are the only ones named)

Captain Gui (Madripoor’s chief of police) and his family

Petrus and his unnamed associates

Various unnamed residents of Madripoor

Story Notes: 

Tyger Tiger was indeed a banker before she became what she is now, the crimelord of Madripoor. Back in Uncanny X-Men #229 her name was Jessan Hoan. She was changed, due in part to the partial personality change induced by Pretty Boy.

The previous chief of police in Madripoor was Tai. He killed himself in Wolverine: Origins Annual #1.

Daken made contact with the Fantastic Four back in Dark Wolverine #76-77.

Daken was a part of Norman Osborn’s Avengers (Dark Avengers) and also as a member of his team of X-Men (Dark X-Men).

Daken’s mother Itsu was killed by the Winter Soldier. This was revealed in Wolverine (3rd series) #39-40.

At the end of this issue, Daken makes his way to Madripoor, a place where his father, Wolverine, spent a lot of time. Most of these adventures occurred early on in his (2nd series) and in his appearances in Marvel Comics Presents (1st series).

Issue Information: 
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