Guardians of the Galaxy (2nd series) #15

Issue Date: 
August 2009
Story Title: 
Knowhere to Run

Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning (writers), Brad Walker (penciler), Victor Olazaba & Livesay (inker), Jay David Ramos (colorist), VC’s Joe Caramagna (letterer), Salvador Larroca (cover artist), Michael Horwitz (assistant editor), Bill Rosemann (editor), Joe Quesada (editor in chief), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (Executive producer).

Brief Description: 

The Guardians of the Galaxy, the Imperial Guard and  the Inhuman royal family battle in the Knowhere continuum cortex.  Mantis shows Crystal the damage being caused to the universe.  The Inhumans extract Crystal , teleport out and the Guardians flee from the Imperial Guard into the bowels of Knowhere.  Rocket’s team returns to Knowhere and the Guardians drive the Imperial Guard out. Moondragon is mentally manipulated into releasing Starhawk who teleports Star-Lord, Mantis, Bug, Jack Flag and Cosmo away.  While the rest of the team recovers Knowhere comes to life and warns Adam the fate of the universe rests on him.

Full Summary: 

Debrief Log:  Star-Lord:

I turn around, there’s a big flash of light, and that freaky teleporting bulldog has landed the Inhumans  smack in our faces. Including his royal pain-in-the-butt-ness, Black Bolt. He didn’t look pleased...and that was only half of our problems.

The Continuum Cortex, Knowhere

The Inhuman royal family and the Imperial Guard have both teleported into Knowhere to attack the Guardians.  Mentor of the Imperial Guard recognizes Black Bolt and orders the Guard to attack him. The three groups battle.

Star-Lord scolds Phyla-Vell for her rash decision and what it’s brought on them and orders her to let Crystal, who she’s holding hostage, go. Phyla’s incredulous, arguing that she’s their Hail Mary pass. Crystal however responds that she allowed Phyla to take to hostage and easily breaks Phyla’s hold.

Crystal asks Peter to tell her about the warnings he was trying to make to Black Bolt.  How can he be so sure that space itself is threatened by the violence of the war? Peter asks Mantis to show Crystal the tears in space they’ve seen and she shares the images with her mentally.

Phyla scolds Peter. Come on! She’s their prisoner, their bargaining chip!

Peter apologizes to Crystal for Phyla’s behavior but Crystal says it won’t be enough; they’ve insulted and angered the Inhuman royal family.  Cosmo telepathically tells them to hurry up as the Imperial Guard have their own telepath.

Guardsman Mentor orders Oracle to remove the telepathic obstructions and brain fry their telepath.  Meanwhile, battle rages around them. Mantis knocks Karnak out by predicting his attacks with her clairvoyance, while Jack evades Gorgon. Black Bolt easily tosses Warlock aside, and charges straight at Star-Lord.  Crystal intercepts him with a wall of flame however, and assures him she hasn’t been harmed. She tries to convince him to listen to Star-Lord.

Oracle breaks through Cosmo’s mental barriers and stuns him; he sees Lockjaw and wonders if he’s god.  The Imperial Guard charge the Inhumans but Black Bolt blasts them away with his voice, followed by Gorgon knocking back the Guardians. As Crystal was all they came for Black Bolt grabs her and the Inhumans teleport away.

With the Inhumans gone the Imperial Guard revert to their original mission; kill Adam Warlock.  Unable to stand against the combined might of the Imperial Guard and a squad of Metal Wing Shi’ar troopers, the Guardians have no choice but to retreat and scatter throughout Knowhere. 

One group, consisting of Star-Lord, Mantis, Jack Flag, Bug and Cosmo, lose psychic contact with the others as they flee.  Star-Lord contacts council delegate Gorani  and informs him Knowhere is under attack. He requests Gorani mobilize station security and alert the Luminals. Gorani , however, refuses Peter’s request, advising Knowhere is a neutral facility and won’t be engaging the Shi’ar.  All species have withdrawn to shelter, he states before telling Star-Lord it’s his own fault they’re under attack and the Guardian’s should turn themselves over to the Shi’ar. Cyanosure of the Luminals adds that they have a non-combat pact with the Shi’ar.

The Continuum Cortex :

The Imperial Guard have seized control of the Continuum cortex. Hussar reports to Mentor that Warlock and the others have fled into the depths of the station and their forces are out searching. Warlock will be the easiest to locate. Due to the witch-mark on him he cannot hide.

Mentor advises he plans to seize Knowhere for the empire. They will need to teleport in more reinforcements, but Guardsman Voyager needs recovery time. He intends to use Knowhere’s sophisticated teleportation system to bring in the reinforcements, and he can also use it to deploy Shi’ar strike forces anywhere in time and space. Their transmit range will exceed the Inhumans’, no target will be beyond the Imperium’s reach. Hussar receives confirmation that the Guardians have been engaged in the sub-levels.

Sublevel Nine:

Gamora and Phyla battle Shi’ar soldiers and decide the best plan is to battle through to the central vent system. Phyla agrees and asks where Moondragon is.

Core deck levels:

Moondragon is following a mysterious voice in her head leading her to an unknown location. The voice informs her that her mind is fresh like a newborn and hasn’t been strengthened liked Mantis or Cosmo. She then opens a door to find the imprisoned Starhawk.

The Outer Engineering Layers:

Warlocks hides and prepares a spell while Magique and the Shi’ar approach. She enchants her soldiers’  guns so they won’t miss, as they’ll strike the witch-mark on Adam, and prepares to flush him out.

In the shadows Adam’s appearance shifts to the Magus’ as he prepares a spell. He attacks Magique and transfers the witch-mark to her.  As the mark is now upon her, when the Shi’ar fire their blasts all strike her instead of Adam. 

Adam, still looking like the Magus, then drops from the ceiling and butchers the Shi’ar soldiers.

Delegation Level Two

Star-Lord detects multiple Imperial Guardsmen approaching and prepares for their attack.  At the same time both Mantis and Cosmo suffer surprise nosebleeds, which is apparently caused by the sudden appearance of Starhawk (whom Moondragon had freed).

Starhawk envelops the group in an intense light and they all disappear. 

The Continuum Cortex:

Mentor is marveling at the simplicity of the cortex’s controls when he realizes it’s been recently used. Rocket, Drax, Groot and Major Victory attack and they’re quickly joined by Adam Warlock (who now looks like himself again), Gamora and Phyla.

Rocket taunts Mentor, telling him his boss Vulcan is out of a job. They and the Starjammers have just delivered Lilandra to Chandilar, who will be back on the throne soon.  Mentor laughs, stating that he’s received information that Lilandra has been assassinated, which devastates Rocket.

Mentor calls a retreat, demanding Voyager createe a portal and they retreat.

The Guardians have driven out the Shi’ar but it’s bittersweet; Lilandra is dead and their best hope of stopping the war and saving the universe is gone. In addition Peter, Bug, Jack, Mantis and Cosmo are missing.

Guardians Control Center

Heather explains how Starhawk got into her mind and drove her to release him. The group speculates that she may have done something to Peter and the others.

Suddenly everything starts to shake and Adam asks if any of the others can feel it... Knowhere just came back to life!


Characters Involved: 

Adam Warlock, Bug, Cosmo , Drax, Gamora , Groot , Jack Flag, Major Victory, Mantis,  Martyr, Moondragon, Rocket Raccoon, Star-Lord  (Guardians of the Galaxy)


Black Bolt, Crystal, Gorgon, Karnak, Lockjaw (Inhuman Royal Family)

Fang, Hussar, Magique, Mentor, Oracle, Scintilla, Voyager (Imperial Guard)




Councillor Glorani



Unnamed Kree

Unnamed Shi’ar

Story Notes: 

This issue is a tie in to the War of Kings event

The events Rocket refers to, saving Lilandra and taking her to Chandilar, are seen in War of Kings #3- 4.

Adam Warlock started transforming into the Magus in the previous issue.

Knowhere is the severed head of a Celestial.