The robot known as Drone R-11 reports to its master, Galactus, on its recent discovery. The robot informs him that its ship’s computers are homed in on the being its master seeks. The subject in question is located on the third planet of sol system, Earth. She is called Alison Blaire. Also… the Dazzler. The subject is virtually exploding with a quantity of energy so great it alerted their scanners to her presence. This energy destroys or disrupts everything it comes near, and the female is too emotionally distraught to control it. Nonetheless, in all the universe, she is the only one with the power to aid Galactus – and though it cost her life, she will aid him.
The robot and Galactus observe Dazzler on monitor, while she’s atop Mount Athena, releasing uncontrollable quantities of energy. The image on the monitor changes: it’s a much younger Dazzler blasting some men with her light beams. Drone R-11 explains that the female is a genetic mutate. Her ability to convert sound energy into light was made manifest at an early age when she used it to subdue a band of earthly miscreants. Her interests, however, were not in law enforcement but in providing auditory entertainment for her fellow humans. She became a “singer” and used her mutate abilities to visually enhance her performances. The screen image demonstrates that, by showing Ali performing on stage.
The screen images change rapidly, demonstrating how Ali has been forced in recent months to use her powers both offensively and defensively in several occasions; first, alongside the X-Men, they battled the Hellfire Club; then, she defended herself from the wrath of the Asgardian Enchantress. Later, she became the pawn of Victor von Doom, who dispatched her into the Nightmare dimension, where, in the course of her mission, she successfully battled a negative version of herself. Shortly thereafter, the Hulk coincidentally bumped into a performance of hers where she diverted his attentions from a panicking crowd of humans.
Finally, mere minutes ago, she engaged in combat with the entity known as Klaw, whose very body was composed of solidified, living sound. This creature directed his sound power against her, seeking to destroy her. He had not reckoned, however, with her unique abilities; she absorbed the energy and unintentionally consumed the physical totality of Klaw! The energy exceeded the threshold level at which her body begins storing energy. Never before has she possessed such power. However, the realization that she’d destroyed a living being wreaked havoc with her human emotions. The robot then proceeds to demonstrate Dazzler’s stats, complete with detailed descriptions of her light-based abilities, on screen.
After listening to all this info, Galactus finds it ironic that he should have need of such an insignificant being. He congratulates the Drone on a job well done. Unlikely as it seems, this female human is the one in all the universe who might solve his present dilemma. The Drone agrees, adding that the earthlings are backward but it is said that of all the races of the universe, the greatest potential lies in them. Galactus coldly replies that such thoughts are for those who indulge in the luxury of compassion but not for him who is eternally cursed. He orders the robot to set the course for earth.
Light years away, in upstate New York, Mt. Athena, site of the technological beehive that is the U.S. government’s energy research facility, Project Pegasus…
Following Dazzler’s confrontation with the murderous Klaw and her fleeing the base, security chief Wendel Vaughn, code-named Quasar, now leads a task force in pursuit. Quasar orders the security guards to follow him. The energy Dazzler’s been radiating has left a trail of debris that a blind man could follow. The guards should get their energy dampening devices ready but remember she’s not to be harmed.
Quasar hopes she doesn’t unwittingly destroy them first: she’s filled with energy she doesn’t know how to control! One of the guards interrupts his thoughts, pointing him at a very bright light ahead of them: she must be nearby. Quasar flies ahead to see what’s up. As he departs, he again urges the men not to get trigger-happy!
The guards think otherwise, though. One of them admits to the others that Quasar can’t fool him. He saw the hole Dazzler blasted clear through the mountain. He believes they couldn’t hurt her even if they used all the firepower this place has got. Another guard admits that it would’ve suited him if Dazzler and Klaw had destroyed each other and all the other super creeps out there! A third guard orders him to shut up. If Quasar hears that, he’ll be pounding the pavements tomorrow! The exact following moment, though, all three guards are astonished by the sudden change in the sky: it was perfectly clear a second ago but now it’s cloudy.
What has covered the sky, hovering over Mt. Athena, is the enormous spheroid starship of Galactus. A beam of light issues forth from the huge vessel, seizing Dazzler, carrying her inexorably upward. Witnessing this, Quasar flies towards Alison and decides to use his bracelets – capable of absorbing energy from quasars out in space – to siphon energy from that light beam, hoping this will free Dazzler from its grip. Quasar concentrates hard to accomplish this, however his attempt to absorb the beam fails, due to some built-in defense on the beam’s part.
As Dazzler disappears inside the ship, Quasar again desperately rushes towards it, telling himself he can’t quit now and fail Dazzler. Quasar’s bracelets glow with virtually limitless energy he brings forth from the distant quasi-stellar bodies. He directs that energy at the hull of Galactus’ craft – to no avail. In despair, Quasar starts hammering the hull of the ship with his fists, shouting at Dazzler’s unknown abductor to let her go, even though he knows he has no chance against the alien technology of this ship.
As the ship leaves the Earth’s atmosphere, the port through which Ali entered seals with a crackle of energy. Deep within the vessel, Alison wonders where on “Earth” she is. One second she’s freaking out in the woods outside Pegasus, the next she’s transported onto this weirdo ship. She wonders what’s going on.
Drone R-11 is pleased to see she has arrived. Apparently, the tranquilizer beam incorporated in the levitator seems to have enabled her to gain control of her current high-energy state.
Dazzler asks the robot where she is and what it wants with her. Drone R-11 introduces itself and explains to her that it has been assigned to prepare her for her coming ordeal. Assigned by whom, Dazzler asks. By Galactus, the robot replies. It explains that this is his starship in which she stands.
Hearing Galactus’ name, Dazzler asks him if he means the guy who – supposedly – eats planets. “You mean he exists?!” she adds in amazement. “Most assuredly,” Drone R-11 replies. In panic, Alison insists this must be some mistake. The robot may as well zap her back to earth: she’s obviously not the one Galactus wants. She begs the robot to send her home. Drone R-11 appreciates her trepidation but insists there’s no mistake. She has been chosen. She must serve.
Dazzler insists she won’t. There’s got to be a way out of here and she’s going to find it even if it kills her! The robot assures her she’s merely wasting time. There is no way out. They are already six trillion Earth miles from her planet. Horrified, Dazzler realizes the Drone’s not kidding. She tells the robot she has to speak to Galactus – tell him what a mistake he’s made! The robot explains that no human speaks to Galactus. Ali insists she’s going to find him and make him let her go!
Drone R-11 urges her to search all she wishes. Regardless of whether she finds Galactus, she will do his bidding. Galactus’ word is living law itself and he has decreed that, in all the universe, she alone can aid him.
As Dazzler starts running frantically around with the robot following her, she suddenly pauses at the sight of various creatures of enormous proportions being kept in cages. Drone R-11 explains this is Galactus’ zoo. It is here he keeps – for observation and research – specimens of the creatures he encounters on his many journeys. It is nothing compared to what he maintains on his home planet.
As they advance in the ship, Drone R-11 shows her the weapons its master has collected in his endless voyaging. After Galactus studies them, they will be adapted for his use or simply melted down for scrap. The robot shows her a specific weapon which is capable of destroying an entire armada – in another universe! Dazzler wonders what Galactus needs with her if he’s so powerful. The robot assures her this will be made clear to her soon enough. However, it also informs her that her frenzied locomotion has finally brought them to its master’s laboratory. It is here that Galactus ponders the mysteries of existence and seeks the answers to the eternal enigmas.
Shocked by Galactus’ gigantic proportions, Dazzler exclaims that no one’s that big. Drone R-11 agrees he’s awe-inspiring and believes it will be an honor for her to serve him. Dazzler argues it will not be an honor; the only honor she wants is a gold record!
Standing next to his foot, Dazzler asks Galactus if he can hear her; she’s got to talk to him! Galactus apparently ignores her, though. Realizing he’s her only chance to get out of there, Alison thinks of a way to make him notice her. Since she’s still pulsing with all the energy she absorbed from Klaw – she even shattered a mountainside with this energy – she decides to use her powers on Galactus, assuming that this is a level of power even this guy will understand. “Hey, you! Galactus!” she shouts as she releases some light beams against his back. The robot warns her to stop, otherwise she’ll only make things worse for herself.
Ali retorts that she couldn’t see how things could be any worse. In addition, much to Ali’s irritation, Galactus still doesn’t even acknowledge her existence, despite the beams she released against him. Summoning the vast quantities of energy still stored up within, Ali focuses all of her power on the towering titan.
Finally, Galactus seems to take notice of that and asks the Drone why his work has been disturbed. In frustration, Alison realizes that Galactus is not even deigning to talk to her. It’s like she’s not even here. How can a guy this powerful possibly need her help?
Back on Earth, in midtown Manhattan…
Outside a prestigious metropolitan rock club, a group of downcast men watch dejectedly as a marquee which had filled them with pride – Dazzler – is disassembled. These men are Dazzler’s manager, Harry S. Osgood, her road manager, Lancelot Steele, and her band, Beefer, Hunch and Marx. Harry declares this is a sad moment. This was Dazzler’ dream: to have a show at the Flash Club. He heartily hopes she hasn’t run into any trouble. Lance insists it’s her own fault. She ought to know better than to drop out of sight for a week, without a word. The band members admit also being worried. They’ve backed up Ali long enough to know something is wrong.
Harry is certain that something is definitely wrong. He wonders whether Techmaster could have discovered Dazzler’s role in foiling his plans to do him harm and decided to take his revenge against her.
At Kennedy International Airport
A 747 from Vancouver sets down on Runway Eight and discharges its passengers, one of whom rushes to the nearest phone booth. The man is Dr. Paul Janson. Paul calls Alison’s apartment but gets no answer. He hasn’t been able to get through to her the whole week he was away. He calls his office, thinking she may have left a message there. Nurse Collins picks it up and Paul informs her he’s back and asks of any messages from Alison Blaire. The nurse replies she hasn’t called him since he left town. Extremely worried, Paul thanks her and hangs up. Back at his office, Nurse Collins contemplates how it is possible Paul doesn’t see it’s her he should love and not that showbiz tramp. Still, she hopes Dazzler is far away but alright.
In Gardendale, Long Island
Judge Carter Blaire and his mother, Bella are arguing. Carter accuses his mother that something’s wrong and she’s not telling him what it is. Knitting nervously, Bella assures him that nothing’s wrong. Carter realizes it’s Alison; he believes Bella has been defying his wishes and keeping in touch with her. Bella is as stubborn as Alison’s mother is – was. He asks her to tell him what sort of trouble his daughter is in.
Bella insists she doesn’t know. She usually speaks to Alison every few days but she hasn’t been in touch for over a week. Carter insists that he knew that when she decided to forsake her law studies and become a… performer, no good would come of it. He wonders what horrors her “show business” friends have exposed her to. He tells Bella that Alison is on her own now. He has no daughter! As he strides into the yard, a great sadness weighs on him, as he recalls the tragic loss of his wife many years ago as well as his recent falling out with his daughter.
In Galactus’ starship, Drone R-11 begs his master to have mercy on Dazzler. She is confused, scared, so far from home – though the robot can make no excuse for her physical assault upon its master. Still, Drone R-11 reminds him they have need of her.
Galactus urges the robot to be silent; its words are wasted. Does Galactus need to exact revenge on a flea? They have brought the Earth woman for a purpose and the purpose shall be served. Is it not ironic he should need the aid of so insignificant a being? Galactus recalls that is has been eons since he, himself, was a mortal; eons since a plague-infested ship from the dying planet Taa crashed headlong into the heart of a blazing sun. All aboard that doomed ship perished – all save for himself! He emerged from the cataclysm with power unparalleled – and with a hunger which only entire planets could satisfy. Since that day, the very universe has trembled at the sound of his name. Planets have despaired at the sight of Galactus’ heralds, who have been chosen to announce his coming.
First among them was the Silver Surfer but his rebellious nature caused him to turn against Galactus, and let Galactus to forever condemn him to the planet Earth. There have been others honored with the title “herald”: Gabriel, the Air Walker; the Asgardian-built Destroyer who was stolen by Galactus’ service by the conniving Loki and the flaming entity called Firelord. Worthy servants all, but all eventually lost to his service, for they have all been men of morality and their principles led them to leave Galactus.
Therefore, as his current herald, Galactus chose a truly evil one, Terrax the Tamer, whose nature wouldn’t find repugnant his task of seeking out planets to sustain Galactus’ existence. Terrax truly possessed the mercilessness Galactus had been seeking, perhaps too much of it. Though his motives weren’t the pure ones of his former heralds, he did betray Galactus eventually!
Before he became his herald, Terrax was lord of the planet Terran, a world he ruled with a mailed fist and a hard heart. It was inevitable that, after searching out countless planets for Galactus’ sustenance, Terrax would succumb to his former empire-lust and claim one for his own. Employing the Power Cosmic granted by his master, Terrax easily overthrew the rulers of a peaceful world and put its inhabitants to the most arduous labors. They built him great cities, weapons and temples – with Terrax as their only deity! Those who survived the labors became fodder for the armies of what Terrax saw as the beginning of a vast intergalactic empire.
Naturally, Galactus came to know of all these and unleashed a shattering telepathic bolt against his herald to remind him where his destiny truly lay. Galactus gave him a menacing telepathic message, in which he told Terrax his treachery was as blatant as his stupidity and commanded him to return to him and face the Day of Reckoning! Seemingly in fear, Terrax assured him he would depart at once. However, in truth he had no intentions of returning and decided to flee, wanting to avoid his anger.
Using the power Galactus gave him, Terrax called forth a massive boulder and took once again to the spaceways. He knew there was only one place in all universe Galactus could not follow him: a black hole! Though no man has ever returned from one, he chose to risk its perils rather than face Galactus’ wrath.
Turning to Drone R-11, Alison realizes in shock that she just saw that whole story in her head. Drone R-11 explains that Galactus does not rely on words alone to convey his thoughts. When Alison wonders why Galactus doesn’t go into the hole and get Terrax, the robot explains that a black hole is the remnant of an imploded star. It creates a virtual vortex in space, a suction so great even light itself is absorbed. It is the ultimate destructive force. Galactus could easily survive entrance into such a space but the introduction of so energy-intensive a being as himself into the black hole would destroy it – and Terrax with it. It’s not Galactus’ wish to end Terrax’s life – yet.
Dazzler wonders how is Galactus going to get Terrax out of there. Drone R-11 replies that he will send her into the hole. Alison protests that she can’t get into a black hole: she will die! The robot explains that, in all the universe, none is more suited than her to combat the force of a black hole. The black hole is a dimension of anti-light whereas she is capable of radiating unlimited luminescent energy. Such energy would enable her to see and maneuver within the hole. In addition, their studies have shown her to possess the heart of a true warrior. Alison argues that right now her knees feel like Jello. The robot insists that she has ever shown courage when the moment called for it.
Galactus commands the Drone to prepare the “mutate” for her mission. Dazzler is sickened by the fact Galactus won’t even talk to her directly, as if she were an object… a flashlight! The Drone tells her to follow it. “And if say no?” she again protests. The robot assures her she has no choice.
A little bit later, they have finally reached the energy bombardment chamber of the ship. Drone R-11 tells her it must leave her now and wishes that all goes well with her task. Alone and panicky, Ali wonders what’s going to happen now. The answer to that comes almost immediately, as the chamber is suddenly flooded with explosive sound. Exposure to such sonic bombardment would shatter any other being into free-floating atoms. Alison, however, is not shattered but instead rapidly absorbs the pulsing sound energy around her and begins to glow brighter and brighter.
As the tremendous power crescendos within her, she feels tempted to embrace it and succumb to it. For a seeming eternity she trembles on the brink of insanity. She then focuses all her senses on the energy now feeding into her and conquers the power within her, as well as her own fear. She is determined to survive.
Suddenly, she hears Galactus’ voice urging her to turn and face him. He tells her that only now that she possesses power on the cosmic scale is she worthy of his notice. He instantly coats her body with an invisible layer of cosmic energy that will protect her from the bone-crushing force of the black hole and supply her with oxygen to travel.
As Galactus gestures, Alison suddenly finds herself floating in space and hearing Galactus’ voice in her brain! Ali sees a string floating next to her and Galactus’ voice informs her this is her life-line. He tells her to wrap it around herself as this will be her only connection with his ship while she carries out her mission. Alison quickly finds herself drawn into the black hole, as Galactus’ voice urges her to stop fighting the pull of the hole and let it draw her along on its currents, so that it will lead her to his herald.
In Galactus’ ship, the Drone believes this woman will surely bring Terrax back as she is indeed possessed of great courage and valor. Galactus, however, declares that matters of far greater consequence than meting their punishment to Terrax demand his attention. In truth, he cares little about the outcome and orders the Drone to never disturb him with the Earth woman again.
In the depths of the black hole, Alison is amazed by the fact this hole absorbs light as fast as she can generate it. She’s giving off huge quantities of energy but it barely lights up the immediate area.
Suddenly, up ahead, she sees someone else. As she approaches, she finds out it’s Terrax. However, she wonders what to do now, since Galactus never told her how to get Terrax to come back with her. Now standing in front of him, Alison gestures to indicate she means no harm. Terrax, however, responds telepathically, telling her he knows she does not come in peace: she came to take him back to his master… and that she will not do! With his axe, he cuts off Dazzler’s life-line. Alison realizes she’s stuck there forever… which looks like it’s going to be a very short time!