Legendary Star-Lord #4

Issue Date: 
December 2014
Story Title: 

Sam Humphries (writer), Freddie Williams III (artist), David Curiel (colorist), VC’s Joe Caramagna (letterer), Paco Medina (cover art), Frankie Johnson (assistant editor), Mike Marts (editor), Axel Alonso (editor-in-chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer)

Brief Description: 

Star-Lord feels guilty about letting Thanos escape from the Cancerverse when Nova gave his life to free him and Drax from that place. Since their truce is up, he prepares to attack Thanos, who is currently on Earth’s moon. As Peter is in possession of the Mandalay gem and its powers, he actually holds his own against the mad Titan, who shows Peter that he isn’t furious about anything Thanos has done so far but about his own guilt. Thanos threatens that his dying act will be to destroy the moon and hence Earth, if Star-Lord kills him and Peter gives up, letting him go. On Earth Kitty Pryde is angry about Peter coming to Earth without visiting her. Peter plants an apology note in flowers. And somewhere in the cosmos in the Celestial graveyard Mr Knife is very close to finding the Black Vortex…

Full Summary: 

Pete Quill has escaped from the Badoon with a new ship, which unfortunately comes with sentience in the form of an annoying young girl named Lydia, who teases him and asks if he is gonna visit his girlfriend when they get to Earth. 

Kitty isn’t his girlfriend, Peter replies curtly. Lydia continues to make fun. He orders her to quit bugging him and fly his ship! Unfortunately, she can do both. So where are they taking her out on the date? Lydia still asks about Kitty. Star-Lord replies they are not going to see Kitty, which surprises Lydia. They are flying millions of miles to his girlfriend’s planet and he isn’t even going to visit her? What did Kitty say when he told her that?

Peter remembers a pissed-off Kitty calling him a dumb-ass.

It wasn’t pretty, he admits. Lydia informs him he blew it. He didn’t blow it, Peter insists. He’s got a loose end that needs tying up. He grabs his gun. There’s a madman out there and it’s his fault…

He remember his time in the Cancerverse with Drax and Nova aka Richard Rider. How they decided they couldn’t let Thanos, who was stranded with them, back into their universe. If they did and he hurt one hair on one planet’s head, it would be on them. And he can’t live with that.

So he’s gonna smack him around or something like that? Lydia asks. Something like that, Peter echoes. Last time he didn’t know what he was doing. Now he’s got the Mandalay Gem.

A pinging noise alerts them to a strange energy signature on the moon. He’s free! Peter bursts out horrified. Stark let him escape!

As they head towards the moon, Peter apologizes to Lydia for calling her a superbrat and asks her to fly in the opposite direction as he heads out. How is she gonna help? she asks. He might not come back, Peter replies. He’s going after Thanos.

A grinning Thanos is on the moon’s surface, energy glowing from his hands. He blasts a chunk of rock and adds it to others, creating a statue of his true love - Death. Suddenly, he notices something coming at him from the sky at high speed and it hits him one moment later - it being an energized glowing Star-Lord. 

Calling Thanos “purple potato-head,” Peter reminds him it’s been a while. So much has changed since their time in the Cancerverse. Star-Lord’s like a big deal in the galaxy now! But Thanos’ face still look like old toothpaste!

He’s late, Thanos smirks. Their truce has been up for some time. And Thanos has been busy doing things, Peter points out. Bad things. Thanos-like things. He’s surprised Quill is surprised, Thanos remarks. Thanos really went to town while his hands were tied, Peter spits. Well the party is over! Is it? Thanos asks and blasts him. Pathetic, he sighs. 

Surprisingly. Peter survives to attack again. He grabs Thanos by the throat. He should never have agreed to their truce, Peter snaps. Regret stings, Thanos agrees. But this will sting worse. He eye-blasts Star-Lord, but Peter again is none the worse for wear, frustrating Thanos.

Finally, the Mad Titan notices the crystal on Star-Lord’s chest that seems to be the source of the purple glow surrounding him. When Star-Lord vows to make him pay, Thanos knees him in the nose. His mother gave him that nose, Peter complains when it bleeds. 

Thanos is gratified to see he can still be hurt. He blasts him again and tells him to be truthful with himself. This isn’t about justice or redemption. This is about Quill’s guilt. Name one planet he’s destroyed since their pathetic truce! He takes him into a headlock. They both did what they had to to return to this universe alive. Since then they both have done what they must. Can he not live with that? Can he not live with himself? If not, Thanos will have no trouble relieving him of his shame. That crystal is Celestial technology. Is he sure he knows what he is doing? 

Thanos tries to grab the Mandalay crystal then tears his hand away screaming in pain. Peter blast him and asks if it feels like he knows what he’s doing.

Thanos lies on the ground panting. Last words? Peter asks. Thanos tells him to kill him if his conscience dictates it but he will regret it. Peter replies Thanos can’t fry him. He’s got the Celestial crystal, remember? Thanos grins. But he’s got the moon. Kill him and the real source of Thanos’ cosmic energy will pulverize it. And if the moon dies, the Earth dies. All because Quill’s pathetic emotions are in a twist over a truce. Will he make the Earth pay the prize or will he bear the burden of his own guilt like they all must do?

Peter relents. Thanos calls him a fool. Quill tells him to sit tight while he calls the Avengers. Thanos replies either he will be gone or they won’t believe Quill or chastise him for letting Thanos get away. Again. Heed his counsel, give up on vengeance. He has too much milk in his veins for it. There must be something for which his bleeding heart is more suited than retribution. He recommends he do that. The truce is up for Star-Lord but that means the truce is up for Thanos as well. Beware. Goodbye.

What is he doing with this anyway? Peter wonders, looking at the crystal in his hand. He looks up to see his ship hasn’t left. She doesn’t do well with orders, does she? he asks Lydia. The computer tells him that was hardcore. Peter tentatively agrees and adds there is something he must do. He can’t believe he’s saying this but he’s actually gonna take Thanos’ advice.

He leaves the crystal behind and takes off.

The New Xavier School:
Kitty Pryde and her best friend Illyana Rasputin are doing the dishes and discuss what passes for Kitty’s love life or in this case the fact that her “boyfriend” is flying millions of light years to her planet but doesn’t visit her. He is not her boyfriend, Kitty announces stone-faced. Then what is he? Illyana asks. Kitty doesn’t know. Then why is she so upset? Kitty doesn’t know. Do they sext? Illyana! Kitty shouts. No judgment, Magik assures her. He’s cute enough. He is cute, Kitty admits, but he’s also shady.He’s a smooth talker and a thief and a habitual jailbird. What the hell was she thinking anyway?

Young Iceman interrupts them, shouting she has to come outside and see this. In the snow, they find a message spelled with flowers: Kitty, I’m sory XoXo dumb-ass.

Points off for spelling, Kitty decides and wonders who “dumbass” is. The list of candidates is endless, Illyana mocks. Who would drag flowers all the way up a mountain? Flattered, Kitty announces he is a total dumbass.

Space, where several huge corpses float around. In a living spaceship someone addresses Mr. Knife, admitting this place terrifies him. Mr. Knife agrees, not many have seen the graveyard of the Celestials. And now that he works for him, he must acclimate himself to the unseemly and terrifying. The masked Mr. Knife informs Bligh this is his new world. The Star-Lord escaped his castle and with him the Mandalay Gem. It is not just a weapon but a key to one of the greatest mysteries in the cosmos. 

The creature emits a beam, reanimating the Celestials. They all point in the same direction to one of the most powerful artifacts in the universe. Mr. Knife tells Bligh to call his crew. Tomorrow they steal the Black Vortex……

Characters Involved: 


Kitty Pryde, Magik


Mr. Knife

Drax, Star-Lord


Kitty Pryde

Story Notes: 

Star-Lord, Drax and Nova stayed behind in the collapsing Cancerverse to keep Thanos there at the end of The Thanos Imperative.

Obviously things didn’t quite work as planned. Nova sacrificed himself to allow Drax and Star-Lord (and inadvertently Thanos) to return as told in Guardians of the Galaxy (3rd series) #20.

Presumably, Peter and Thanos made their truce right after that.


Peter “liberated” the Mandalay Gem in issue #1

The bad things Thanos has been up to are told in the Infinity crossover event, among other things.

Thnaos was left trapped in an amber-like state in Infinity #6, but was freed by Namor in New Avengers (3rd series) #23.

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