Deadpool (2nd series) #68

Issue Date: 
August 2002
Story Title: 
Healing Factor - chapter 3: Headbanger's Ball

Gail Simone (writer), Udon - Erik Ko, Rhys Yorke, Arnold Tsand, Andrew Hou, Eric Vedder, Omar Dogan, TheRealT! (art team), Dave Sharpe (letters), Mike Raicht and Lynne Yoshii (assistant editors), Mike Marts and Andrew Lis (editors), Joe Quesada (editor in chief), Bill Jemas (president)

Brief Description: 

Deadpool meets with the Taskmaster, who knows the Black Swan from a mercenary job years ago. He saw him use his mental powers on another merc and knows how dangerous the Black Swan is. Taskmaster offers Wade to help him go after the Swan, but Deadpool says that he has to do this alone. Yet before he can do so, he has one more client. C.L. Montgomery wants him to get rid of Curtis Boland, a man who holds a grudge against him ever since C.L. fired him years ago on his birthday. Fueled by hatred and his need for revenge, Boland threatens to "out" Montgomery's son, David, as a mutant. Deadpool gets to know the little kid and as he is one of the ugliest people alive, Deadpool relates to him. He takes the job, but fighting through Boland's bodyguards, he experiences heavy migraine attacks, that make death like seem a welcome option. Yet Deadpool manages to kick Boland out of a window, who falls to his death. Afterwards, Deadpool once visits little David more, only to learn that the kid's precognitive dreams show that Deadpool will get killed by the Black Swan. Puzzled, Deadpool returns to his headquarters, only to learn that his assistant Sandi is in a hospital.

Full Summary: 

Deadpool is lying on the floor with several guns are pointed at him. He slowly gets up and starts singing, much to the armed goons surprise. Deadpool grabs one of the guards' arms and makes him point his gun to Deadpool's forehead, begging him to kill him. The guard thinks he is crazy and says he won't shoot a lunatic. Suddenly, Deadpool experiences a major migraine attack, though does not let go of the man's arm. The guard complains that his arm hurts, and wants Deadpool to let go, at the same time his boss, Mr. Boland, tells him to holds his fire. Deadpool, however, has other plans. He makes the guard pull the trigger and as the bullet comes out, Deadpool thinks it weird that most of his happiest memories smell like gunpowder.

(eight hours ago)

Deadpool and the Taskmaster are sitting in a bar and enjoy a beer. Wade asks the Taskmaster about the Black Swan, and the Taskmaster confirms that he thinks Deadpool was infected with some strange virus. Neither Deadpool nor Taskmaster know why, but the Taskmaster has worked with the Swan once before, and that one time was enough for him. Years ago, the two of them and a Canadian guy called Tyrell Farsa, who could crush skulls with his hands, had been hired for the same job.

(flashback, years ago)

Black Swan, Farsa and Taskmaster are in a transport to an unnamed country that has been taken over by the military. The local airport is used as their headquarter, and the three mercs have been hired to deal with the about seventy soldiers that guard it - almost a suicide run. Along the way, Farsa starts joking and babbling to cover his fears and doubts. Making fun of the Black Swan, Farsa says once they get paid, he'd rent a limo and "take pretty boy to the prom." He then asks what the Swan is carrying around in the briefcase that is under his bench, but the Swan does not even bother to respond to any of Farsa's comments.

Surprisingly, the three mercs effectively deal with all soldiers and make their way back to their transport. Farsa and Taskmaster arrive a little bit before the Swan, and still on a combat high, Farsa opens the Swan's briefcase. Taskmaster knew that Farsa was underestimating the Swan, but he was curious too. Actually he thought the case would contain some weapons or interrogation tools, but much to the two mercs' surprise, they find a comb, a shaver, silk hankies, a nail file and other things that belong in a toilet bag. Right then the Black Swan returns and orders Farsa to stop rummaging through his property. However, Farsa has no intention to, instead he blows his nose into one of the silk hankies. Next, the Swan mentally assaults Farsa, and as the Taskmaster tries to help him, he gets hit in the throat by the Swan. As he walks away, the Taskmaster realizes that not only Farsa underestimated their colleague, but he did too.

(eight hours ago)

The Taskmaster concludes his story by stating that he recently visited Farsa in hospital. He still can't feed himself or go to the bathroom without help and he starts to cry like a baby when he sees a picture of a swan. Taskmaster thinks that Deadpool must have annoyed the Black Swan, just like Farsa did back then. Deadpool apparently no longer listens, as he is philosophizing about peanuts: Two of them inside a shell that is their whole universe, so close - but never together as the shell seperates them. Deadpool liberates the two peanuts from their cruel master - the shell - and then brings them together and pretends they are in love. Taskmaster has seen enough and leaves. Before he does, he tells Deadpool that if he plans to make a move on the Black Swan, he'll join without charge. Deadpool is surprised, but thankfully declines. Taskmaster says that he wasn't doing it for Wade, but for Sandi, since without Deadpool, she'd be out of job.

(ca. one hour ago)

Since his car was smashed by the Rhino, Deadpool has to ride a scooter to get to his next appointment. On the way, Deadpool thinks that ever since he shot the Four Winds, his clients have been nothing but rich businessmen. Deadpool has learned one thing since then: if you have to choose between trusting a businessman or a murderous super-villain, always decide for the latter. Deadpool arrives at a huge skyscraper and is lead into the office of C.L. Montgomery, his new client. C.L. explains that Cruise Minor recommended Deadpool's services and then tells Deadpool what he needs him for. Pointing outside the window to a building across the street, Montgomery says that the target is Curtis Boland, a man whom he never met and never spoke to. Years ago, Boland worked for Montgomery, but bad business forced C.L. to fire some of his workers, including Boland. It turns out that it had been his birthday, and ever since he held a grudge. Boland stalked C.L. and wanted everything he had: he dated the same women, went to the same tailor, worked as hard to create a rivaling company and finally built the building on the other side of the street, just to spoil Montgomery's view. Deadpool couldn't care less. He doesn't want to hear any backstory, yet C.L. says that is something else Wade needs to know.

C.L. opens a door to a room full of toys and a huge bed with curtains. A couple of days ago, C.L. found a note on the windshield of his car. It was from Boland who threatens to "out" Montgomery's son, David, as a mutant. In the business they are in, it would destroy Montgomery's reputation and mean bankruptcy. Wade is unsure if he can kill a guy for just writing a note, but Montgomery asks him to at least meet his son, before he turns the job down. Deadpool approaches the bed, and seeing the kid's face, he has to fight the urge to throw up. Little David is the ugliest person Wade has ever seen. Montgomery leaves so that the two can get acquainted. After his first shock, Wade warms up to the boy. Looking around the room, he finds strange drawings, for example of stock quotation. David says that he sometimes dreams things before they actually happen - that's how his father got so rich. David then says that he knows he is scary to look at and Deadpool takes off his mask, saying they have something in common.

Deadpool comes out of the kid's room and accepts the job. C.L. immediately starts talking about blueprints of Boland's building and how they carefully need to plan any moves, as no evidence should connect Montgomery with Boland's disappearance. Meanwhile, Wade has called the parking garage on his mobile and asked them for his scooter. He cuts off the legs of a table and leans the tabletop to a desk. While C.L. is still babbling, Deadpool drives with top speed to the ramp he just built. He bursts through the window and comes crashing into Boland's heavily guarded office. Deadpool fights his way through the men, stating that "kids are off-limits", but suddenly he is hit by a major migraine and collapses.

Deadpool has just made a guard shoot him in the face, yet the bullet only scratched his mask and right cheek. Deadpool is quite mad at the guard for missing at this close range, but he is still too weak to get up. Mr. Boland walks towards Wade and after stating that he was fired on his birthday, he starts mocking him. Up till now, Boland would have been happy with just blackmailing Montgomery, but as he sent a mercenary after him, he will now expose the mutant child and then kill him. Deadpool still begs to be put out of his misery, but Boland slaps him in the face. Suddenly, Deadpool starts to laughs his ass off - while lying on the floor, he tied Boland's shoelaces together. Deadpool kicks Boland out of the broken window who, falling to his death, repeats his favorite sentence: "He fired me on my birth ... " Deadpool gets up and tells the bodyguards that they will all get new jobs from the guy across the street.

Somewhat later, Deadpool is again in David's room. He tells him that he does not have to hide for the rest of his life - there is that school in Westchester. However David says that his father needs him. He then shows Deadpool one of his drawings; it's Deadpool lying in a pool of his own blood with his head crossed out. Above Deadpool is a black swan flying away. David says he is sorry, but that's what he dreamt. Deadpool encourages him, telling the boy he loves the picture, especially the blood. Deadpool says he has to leave now, but will be back, but the kid knows otherwise: "No, you won't, Mr. Pool. I'm sorry."

On his way back to the office, Deadpool throws away his image inducer. He is greeted by Ratbag with disturbing news: "Cheese in my shoe". Yet he also manages to mutter two important words: "Sandi hospital"

Characters Involved: 



Curtis Boland

C.L. Montgomery

David Montgomery, C.L.'s mutant son

several bodyguards

In flashbacks :


Black Swan

Tyrell Farsa

Story Notes: 

The job involving the Four Winds was shown in a flashback of Deadpool (2nd series) #65.

The Rhino smashed Deadpool's car in Deadpool (2nd series) #66.

Cruise Minor is the Dazzler's agent who hired Deadpool for her protection in Deadpool (2nd series) #67.

Issue Information: 
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