Longshot Saves the Marvel Universe # 2

Issue Date: 
January 2014
Story Title: 

Christopher Hastings (Writer), Jacopo Camagni (Artist), Matt Milla (Colorist), VC’s Joe Caramagna (Letters), Manny Mederos (Production Design), David Nakayama (Cover Artist), Jordan D. White (Editor), Axel Alonso (Editor in Chief), Joe Quesada (Chief Creative Officer), Dan Buckley (Publisher), Alan Fine (Executive Producer)

Brief Description: 

A woman, Sonja, is woken by banging at her door. Before she can answer it, her house is raided by SHIELD, who are looking for her daughter’s teddy bear. They find it, but in the mirror they see the reflection is of a demonic creature. Sonja and her daughter, Jennifer, escape with the bear, Mr. Dapples, and head to a friend in New York. Later, Longshot is about to be executed by SHIELD but the arrival of Sonja gets their attention and they try to capture Mr. Dapples. Longshot, aided by Dr. Strange, saves them and together they all teleport away to the sanctum sanctorum. After talking to Longshot, Dr. Strange realizes that the man in control of SHIELD is Order, one half of the cosmic being the In-Betweener. Order wants to rid the world of magic and Dr. Strange assumes he has his other half, Chaos, locked away. Dr. Strange, Longshot and a few magical allies raid SHIELD’s helicarrier in a bid to free Chaos and join him to Order again. The team is beaten but Longshot manages to get to where Chaos is supposedly kept. Instead, he finds the Hulk, trapped in magical bindings. Dazzler, who works for Order, tricks her boss into releasing the Hulk, who damages the helicarrier. As the craft begins to crash, Order escapes and takes the brainwashed Dr. Strange away with him. As Dazzler tries to stop the helicarrier from crashing, Longshot jumps off it to the ground below. He sits in the exact spot it is supposed to crash, hoping something lucky will happen to stop it. Suddenly, Chaos teleports in and stands with him, enjoying the devastation that is about to happen. 

Full Summary: 

(Putnam, Connecticut)
Some loud banging wakes a woman up from her sleep and, as she walks towards the door, she wonders what the commotion is. Suddenly, her windows and door are kicked in and she screams in terror. A group of soldiers are outside and one of them announces they are SHIELD and by rule of Order they are there to detain the extra-dimensional being known as Mr. Dapples.

The dazed woman informs one of the soldiers that Mr. Dapples is the name of her daughter’s teddy bear. The man tells her they will have to detain her daughter, Jennifer, too. The woman yells for them to stop but the men charge into the little girl’s room, waving their guns around. Jennifer sits upright in bed, screaming and clutching her purple teddy bear, Mr. Dapples. However, the soldiers look in a nearby mirror to see the Mr. Dapples’ reflection is that of a huge creature with a skull for a face.

Outside, the house gunfire rings out, followed by roaring and screaming. Jennifer and her mother come running out of the house and get in their car. The mother, Sonja, phones Diana Dipson but gets her voicemail. She leaves a message and apologizes for calling so late but she can’t talk about it on the phone. She asks if Diana’s father has invented a demon scanner and tells her she is driving to the city to see them. She looks in the rear view mirror to see Jennifer cuddling up to the demonic looking creature. Her daughter tells her not to worry though, as Mr. Dapples’ reflection won’t hurt her because he knows she is nice.

(Brooklyn, New York)
As two boys walk through a kitchen, a news report plays on the TV. The reporter is interviewing the pale, white version of the In-Betweener that previously captured Longshot. The new entity, calling himself Order, tells the reporter that their society has been held hostage by the random and brutal threat of magic for far too long. No mundane terrorist organization can compare to a Hell-portal opened up by some careless sorcerer. He asks what would happen if an immortal imp were to wipe the memories of their entire civilization. It could have happened already and that is unacceptable. SHIELD has always been committed to a safe and orderly America and it is only natural that their new priority is the regulation and containment of magical and extra-dimensional forces.

The reporter interviewing Order asks about the fears that SHIELD will expand to hunt down mutants and other super powered beings. Order assures him that SHIELD is not a gang of genephobic barbarians. Certain mutants do pose a threat but he believes current programs are enough and they are more concerned with the random, unscientific danger of magic at this time.

One of the boys, carrying a children’s magic kit, walks through the kitchen and asks the other if they should be doing this. The other kid tells him it’s just a game and asks if he is afraid he will summon a monster. SHIELD isn’t going to bother with them. As the two boys go outside, they look up to see the SHIELD helicarrier flying overhead and they decide to go inside instead.

Not far away Longshot is about to be executed by armed SHIELD soldiers. He tells Order that he has seen him before, or someone like him, with a split face and a horn. Order stops the execution and asks about the horn. Longshot explains that he touched the building and his psychometry caused him to see some visions. Order tells Longshot he is lucky to never have met that demon and he is lucky because of him. Longshot points out he is lucky because of a magical ceremony he took part in years ago. Order tells his soldiers to shoot him but one of the men tells him they are picking up a much larger magical force nearby. Order realizes it must be Mr. Dapples and turns to see Sonja’s car pull up nearby. Looking at the helicarrier and the SHIELD agents she says that she was hoping they would have touched down somewhere else.

Order tells his men that their new priority is to fire on the car, which alarms Longshot as he can see there are people inside. Before the soldiers can react, Longshot vaults over one of them, whips out a bunch of small blades and throws them. The blades jam in the men’s guns and Longshot shields the car with his body. He asks if Sonja is okay but she just tells him he’s gorgeous.

One of the soldiers asks why they would be given rifles that can be stopped by knives. Another tells him they were designed by Bruce Banner and he should ask him next time he sees him. Order vanishes and reappears behind Longshot, pushing him out of the way and telling him once again he must expend his power personally. He thrusts his hand through the window of the car and goes to grab Mr. Dapples. Jennifer dodges out of his grasp and shouts that Mr. Dapples tells him to go away.

Elsewhere, the two boys are dressed like magicians and one of them holds a top hat. He waves his wand and says the hat is empty but, with a simple flourish, they will find the hat... is occupied. Dr. Strange’s head pokes out of the top hat, much to the surprise of the two boys. He climbs out of the top hat, introduces himself to the shaken boys and tells them he was pulled here by a powerful magical force. It probably wasn’t them though and he looks out of the window to see Longshot and Order fighting.

Order tells Longshot that Jennifer is harboring something but he suddenly stops moving and speaking. Longshot is a little confused but Dr. Strange appears and opens the car door, letting Sonja out. He politely explains that Order is after her daughter because her teddy bear is a great and powerful force. Order is still frozen in place but Dr. Strange tells them that he fights the temporal cessation and it shall break at any moment. He gathers everyone around him, ready to vacate to his sanctuary and uses the top hat as a portal. Once he has left, Order can move again and he continues with what he was saying.

Everyone appears in Dr. Strange’s sanctum sanctorum. He offers them a drink and tells Longshot it is nice to see him again. Longshot tells him he can’t recall meeting him but then again his memory gets wiped all the time. Longshot kneels down in front of Jennifer and asks if she is okay, as the first portal ride can be scary. He puts an arm on her shoulder but it touches Mr. Dapples’ head and he gets a vision.

He seems himself lying in some rubble after crashing through a roof to an apartment. A man shouts at him and Longshot apologizes because his jetpack broke. On the other side of the room, Sonja holds Jennifer close to her and tells Longshot they cannot afford to fix the roof, as they can’t afford their mortgage as it is. The man, wielding a bottle, shouts at her and asks why she didn’t tell him she wasn’t paying the bills. Longshot tells the two that he can help.

He suddenly snaps out of the vision and tells Sonja that he helped her with her husband and he paid for their house, but he cannot remember how. Sonja laughs and tells him she hasn’t seen Bill since she got pregnant with Jennifer. She inherited the house from her great aunt and there wasn’t need for any help there.

Dr. Strange ponders something and then asks if Longshot’s luck is powerful to alter reality. He replies that it isn’t but Dr. Strange tells him it seems good enough to connect him with the powerful and mysterious presence in the bear. He says them he will inspect it later and then tells Sonja she will be safe there. He has a more pressing concern in the form of the new SHIELD director and his anti-magic agenda. He has an unknown power of his own and nobody remembers when he took control. Sonja smiles and tells Longshot that, just so he is clear, she doesn’t have a boyfriend at the moment.

Longshot tells Dr. Strange that he might have a psychometric memory of the director. He vaguely recalls the mask he wears but it is split in two, with a horn on one side. Dr. Strange excitedly picks up a book and tells them it is all clear now. He opens it to reveal hand-drawn sketches of a man similar-looking to the man Longshot saw. Dr. Strange informs them they are dealing with the In-Betweener, a cosmic arbiter of balance in the universe. He contains all that is good, evil, strong, weak, orderly and chaotic and he attracts the envy of all the other-worldly entities. In his own realm he is safe but it is dangerous for him to take form on their plane. When he has to personally seek out sources of imbalance in the universe, he wears a hunting mask. It renders him invisible to all but his prey, in the interest of fairness and balance.

Longshot asks that if you can see the mask then you are the one he is hunting. Dr. Strange confirms it and points out the person who drew the sketch was also being hunted by the In-Betweener. Longshot tells him he saw the mask and Dr. Strange tells him they will deal with it later. He has fought the In-Betweener before; he had to cheat to beat him though and it won’t work again.

Dr. Strange conjures a holographic image of the SHIELD helicarrier. He tells Longshot somehow the In-Betweener has been split and the person who has taken over SHIELD command represents Order. It would also explain the concentration of his restrictive power. Order is unchallenged because he has captured his twin, who represents Chaos. Dr. Strange then conjures an image of a vault inside the helicarrier and tells Longshot that Chaos is being held inside. Regardless as to what caused the split, they need to be joined again or Order will continue his radical crusade. Order has imbued himself into all of SHIELD, what they saw earlier was only an avatar, a focus for his attention and power.

Dr. Strange tells them he has a strike force who has managed to escape Order’s regime so far. They can raid the helicarrier, free Chaos and try and rejoin him to Order. Unfortunately, he lives in every aspect of SHIELD. If they are struck by a bullet, knife or fist Order will have them. Dr. Strange tells Longshot he won’t be available in any offensive capacity, as it will take all his power to ward off an attack. He won’t be able to shield anyone who isn’t in direct line of sight. Some luck would be appreciated.

Dr. Strange teleports his team, consisting of Longshot, Deadpool, Ghost Rider and the Scarlet Witch, on to the SHIELD helicarrier. Inside the control room, Order is watching the events on some monitors. He tells all agents to defend the helicarrier from the wizards and demons. They knew this was their mission and they knew it would happen. Behind him, Dazzler mutters that of course he knew Longshot would happen. He asks what she said but she replies nothing.

Outside, Deadpool skips along the tarmac whilst waving a magic wand. He starts zapping SHIELD agents, turning them into birds. The Scarlet Witch asks where he got it from and he simply tells her he found it. Dr. Strange is struggling to shield everyone and so Longshot grabs Ghost Rider’s chain. When asked what he is up to, he says he doesn’t know but something will probably happen. He throws the chain and it manages to whip around all of the nearby jets, but Ghost Rider tells them they are going to whip off the bike now. The Scarlet Witch tells them they won’t if the jets are suddenly much lighter. With that, she waves her hands and the jets bounce up into the air, tangled in the chain that Ghost Rider is dragging behind him.

With another wave of her hand, the jets become their normal weight again, and their missiles are armed. They slam into the control tower and explode, much to the delight of Longshot, who wishes his powers were that cool. The Scarlet Witch, flirting with him slightly, laughs and tells him she thinks his powers are great. In her head, though, she tells herself to get it together.

Dr. Strange is suddenly hit on the head by some metal thrown by a SHIELD agent. Before he can react, the agent shoots him and tells his commander the shields are down. Inside the control center, Order uses his powers and takes hold of Dr. Strange, but struggles to do so. Outside, Deadpool has also been caught by Order’s powers but his wand shoots up into the air. He tells Longshot his eye is still glowing but Longshot declares that this isn’t lucky. Unbeknownst to him, Order’s magical hold of the vault breaks through the strain of trying to contain Dr. Strange. The bolt of magic Deadpool’s wand fired in the air turns into a small bird that enters one of the offices and grabs some files off a desk. Outside, Ghost Rider skids his bike along the floor, catapulting Longshot off it and through a window.

He lands and then bounces down a flight of stairs. When he comes to a stop, he looks up to see the vault he has been searching for. He opens the door, expecting to find Chaos inside but instead he sees the Hulk, who is tied up with magical bindings. Order and Dazzler suddenly come from behind and tell Longshot not to touch the monster. Dazzler tells Order that, to find Longshot, you have to go to the place you want him the least. Longshot looks at her and asks if they have met. Angrily, Dazzler tells him not to pull the “my memory gets wiped all the time” crap on her like before.

Order walks up to Longshot and tells Dazzler that he was originally cleared for purging but he is now intrigued by his abilities and he might be useful for their agenda. When Longshot asks about it, Order tells him it is the protection of the country and maybe the world. Behind him, though, the small bird flies overhead and drops the set of files into Dazzler’s hands. Longshot tells Order that that must be why he has the Hulk locked up, as he tends to break a lot of buildings. Dazzler opens the files, marked “Phase Two: Mutant Restriction/Elimination.” Her face turns red in anger at what she reads inside. Order tells Longshot he doesn’t understand why the Hulk was in SHIELD’s employ in the first place. He doesn’t know what to do with him except waste energy restraining him. He is pure force and anger, it takes nearly everything he has to hold him, not to mention holding his friends too.

Dazzler tells Order that she didn’t realize they had Dr. Banner there. He must realize that he is so large and has so much energy because he is in direct opposition to the forces acting upon him. Order asks what she means and she explains that the madder the Hulk gets the stronger he gets too. If Order stops pushing him, he will turn back into a plain old scientist again. Order looks up at the green goliath and decides to give it a try.

The newly freed Hulk leaps through the top of the helicarrier in a pure rage. He grabs one of the propellers and smashes it up, before jumping off the helicarrier to the ground below. Dazzler tells Order that he will turn back eventually, to which Order realizes he has been tricked by her. Order declares that he has regained most of the energy he was using holding the Hulk. He decides to take his new recruits and go. Longshot looks to see Dr. Strange and his team are now all dressed in white and under the control of Order. Order clicks his fingers and the team disappears. Before he leaves as well, he tells Dazzler she is discharged of duty and he also tells Longshot if he saves the ship he gets a pardon.

Dazzler runs off to have a go at saving the crashing helicarrier, to which Longshot yells good luck after her. He suddenly gets a good idea and jumps off the helicarrier to the city below. As he falls, he is randomly caught by Thor, who just happened to be flying below. He asks if Thor is off anywhere important. The god tells him he is and so, not wanting to be a bother, Longshot jumps out of his arms again. He continues to fall, bounces off a shop awning, and lands on the pavement safe and sound. Thor looks at the burning helicarrier and wonders if he should call the emergency services.

Longshot looks at the way the helicarrier is falling and finds a spot on the pavement to sit. He watches as the helicarrier slowly nosedives to the exact spot he is sat in. Suddenly a man teleports in front of him, with jet-black skin and adorned with tusks and ritualistic clothing. He thanks Longshot for scaring off his brother and for helping the helicarrier inevitably blow up a large chunk of Park Slope. He asks what Longshot is doing now, to which the dazed man tells him he has put himself in the path of the collision and, if he is really lucky, something will happen to stop the collision.

The man, Chaos, smiles and looks up at the helicarrier and asks Longshot what happens if he pushes his luck too far. With a very worried look on his face, Longshot watches the helicarrier get closer and closer and then tells Chaos his luck simply stops working. Chaos simply says “neat” as he stands next to Longshot, waiting for the explosive touchdown.

Characters Involved: 



Dr. Strange
Deadpool, Ghost Rider, Scarlet Witch

SHIELD agents


“Mr. Dapples”

SHIELD soldiers

Young boys

(on TV)

(in Longshot’s vision)

Written By: