New York was a teeming metropolis, lined with super heroes of both mutant and non mutant origins. But that was a long time ago. It all started with the reinstatement of the Mutant Registration Act. A process had been discovered that could eliminate mutant abilities and rid the world once and for all of the mutant threat. Mutants resisted. First, the X-Men, but later the Avengers, the Fantastic Four and nearly every other super hero in the public eye banded together to oppose the government. It all culminated with a final battle in front of the Baxter Building. They lost. Those who weren’t killed were either imprisoned or went into hiding. But that was a long time ago. Everything is different now. Gone are the days of Avengers Mansion and Four Freedoms Plaza. Gone are the days of public spectacle and heroics. Today, there is a Sentinel on every street corner. Laws are obeyed and crime is down. The heroes have gone underground… but for how long?
Chad Channing remembers a day he’ll never forget. He recalls falling into a deep tunnel. While trying to find a way out, Chad stumbled upon a hidden lab, and in the middle of it was a brain kept in stasis.
Chad, in his super hero costume, fights alongside the Thing against some Mole-like creatures in the park. The two heroes are outnumbered, but they notice a disturbance among their enemies. The two leaders of the two groups attacking them argue about who’s going to get to rule the upside world. Thing notices that, and has an idea. He picks up one of the Mole creatures and throws it like a Fastball Special against his brothers, making them fall down like bowling pins. The Moles realize their defeat, and return back underground. Chad’s impressed by the Thing’s quick thinking. Thing tells Chad he can stop calling him that. He can call him simply… Reed!
They return to the Baxter Building, to the hidden lab. Reed gets himself out of Ben’s body, and places his brain into a robot. Reed is glad to be an intelligent man again, and admits that he finds himself thinking with his fists more often than with his head. He feels that there’s something about Ben’s body, which has made Reed come to a new understanding of his now dead friend. Reed wishes that Ben were still there. Chad would like that, as he has read a great deal of stories about the Thing. Reed is certain that all those stories were bad ones, created by the government which has nearly rewritten history to support their Mutant Registration agenda, something he and Ben have fought against with every fiber of their beings. Chad’s sure that they’ll show them and leaves, and on his way out locks the lab.
Chad slumbers the streets and a Sentinel warns him to move faster, as curfew for Chad’s age is almost coming up. Chad ignores the robot. He has an idea. He goes to hide in an alley nearby. He checks if it’s clear and activates his powers to move faster, and flies over the rooftops.
He makes it back home and apologizes for being late. His mom doesn’t know what her son is talking about, since they didn’t expect him to be back for a couple of hours, since they knew he had a date with Keshia. Oh no! Chad forgot! His dad gets suspicious and asks Chad where he’s been all this time, as school has been over for hours. Chad fakes that he was working on an after-class project. He runs out of the house, wanting to go apologize to Keshia and try to be back before curfew. His mom asks to credit the bus accounts, but Chad lies that he has enough of them. His dad gets even more suspicious, since he hasn’t given Chad any bus credits in weeks.
Chad makes it to Keshia’s house. Her mom warns Chad to just go inside, and be sure that her dad doesn’t see him, because he’s mad at him for being late. Chad walks to Keshia’s room, unseen, but she isn’t too happy to see him. She has gotten used to Chad’s tardiness, but realizes that other girls don’t have to put up with this with their boyfriends. She asks Chad to leave before her dad sees him. Chad does as asked.
A Sentinel approaches him, and wants to apprehend Chad because curfew has already started. Chad uses his powers in front of the Sentinel, who warns Chad that he will be apprehended, but Chad moves too fast for the Sentinel, which doesn’t even follow the boy. Chad makes it safely back home, where he’s welcomed by his calm father, who’s glad that Chad made it, because he couldn’t afford another fine.
The next day at school, Chad has to face his bad grades. His friend, O’Hara, notices the tattoo on Chad’s arm, which indicates his registration number. O’Hara didn’t knew that Chad was a mutant. Chad smiles and tells his friend to relax. He explains that he takes his suppression meds, and that everything is fine. He jokes that he’s not going to sprout blue fur or metal wings any time soon. O’Hara asks about the suppression meds. Chad explains them as things they give mutants when they find the gene in them at birth. It keeps one’s mutant abilities from manifesting when the child reaches puberty. O’Hara apologizes for almost freaking out, but Chad’s fine with it. Their teacher approaches them, and warns them to be silent or else their grades will even go further down. They apologize and pay attention.
After school, Chad goes back to Reed. Chad mentions that nobody saw him coming in or out, since nobody bothers to check a janitor’s closet when they’re at a mall. Chad explains to Reed that, if he does happen to see someone, he just goes back up to the school, and use the entrance in the boy’s bathroom on the twenty-seventh floor. Reed’s glad to hear that, since he’s technically still an outlaw, and he wouldn’t want to have to serve hard time in his condition. Chad tells Reed that he and the other heroes and mutants did disobey a government order and wage a battle with the Sentinels.
Reed asks Chad what he means. Chad wants to know what Reed is fighting for. He believes that now with mutant suppression drugs, kids don’t have to worry about growing gills when everyone else is worried about acne. The whole world doesn’t have to worry about Magneto taking over New York. He knows that the heroes lost, but Chad doesn’t see what’s so bad about that. Chad asks Reed to look at him for instance. Chad knows that Reed has given him placebo suppressors and taken him under his wing, and he likes helping people. But Chad says that he’s failing out at school, and that his girlfriend hates him. A plus is that he never sees his parents, but Chad fails to see the point of it all. He really believes that they are almost useless.
Reed reminds Chad of all the people they rescued in Central Park yesterday. He explains to Chad that they are not there to police the city. They’re there when the world needs them, and that’s the point. Reed believes that the Sentinel malfunction was just the beginning and fears that their system will continue to flaw and get worse. Chad drops his costume and says, “whatever,” and walks out on Reed.
Chad goes back home. His father’s surprised, as it’s only four-thirty, and Chad is usually out until after nine. He’s sure that his son won’t be home for long, so he guesses he should just go ahead and mention that they received Chad’s grades this morning. Chad is ready for the lecture. Chad’s dad won’t give him one, since he knows that Chad is going to an adjustment period at the moment. They know that Chad did well at school all of his life, so they’re just going to save the lecture this time until another point. Chad thanks his dad and they hug. He mentions that Keshia called and was looking for him. Chad explains that he never got to talk to her after school, and is going to her now. Chad’s dad smiles and knew that he wouldn’t be there long.
Chad flies through the city. However, he wonders why he did it. Nonetheless, it’s taking too long to his liking. Suddenly, a beam hits a building and destroys it! Chad falls down, and sees a huge monster fighting the Sentinels downtown! Chad notices the monster throwing a car at some bystanders. He quickly reacts and manages to rescue those people, and jumps away before the Sentinels notice him. The Sentinels regroup and apprehend the monster.
Chad triumphantly stands on a roof. Reed arrives in his Fantasticar, and mentions that he heard it all on the news and was on his way, but has been watching Chad rescuing those people. He makes it clear to Chad that the Sentinels are single-minded and have only one task: to uphold the law. Anything else is secondary to them, including human lives, making Reed’s suspicious about the flawed system reality. Chad agrees and Reed decides to give him a ride to Keshia’s home.
Once in her room, Keshia tells Chad that she likes him a lot and promises to live with the facts that Chad seems to be forgetful and busy all the time. Chad smiles and thanks her, and they go get sundaes.
Later, Chad goes back to Reed and tells him about the good news, that Keshia wasn’t angry. Reed finds it fantastic that his friend is back. The alarm goes off. There’s trouble ahead. Reed asks Chad if he’s coming. He just says “Oh, yeah.” They put their costume and battle suit on, and leave in the Fantasticar.