Nomad (2nd series) #4

Issue Date: 
August 1992
Story Title: 
Dead Man’s Hand: part 2: Neon Knights

Fabian Nicieza (writer), Pat Olliffe (pencils), Marc McKenna (inks), Chris Eliopoulos (letters), Steve Mattson (colors), Glenn Herdling (editor), Tom DeFalco (editor-in-chief)

Brief Description: 

Nomad arrives in Las Vegas. There, he attends a show, which he tries to enjoy. Unfortunately, the evening gets disturbed by none other than Bushwacker! He’s out for revenge, and wants to kill Troy Donnahue, unless he hands over his sister-in-law’s baby to him. Bushwacker mentions that, in doing so, Carl himself will get his life and wife back, as she will forgive him for his past crimes if he succeeds. Refusing to obey the threats, Troy escapes together with his date, Legs, who happens to be a friend of Nomad. He fights Bushwacker. However, Bushwacker notices Troy’s escape and follows him. Troy and Legs return to their hotel, where Troy leaves Legs behind, as he has a meeting to attend. Some time later, the meeting of the Lotus crime organization begins. The spokeswoman, a mysterious representative for the Red Skull known as Word, reveals to the other present crime bosses, including Troy, that the Skull wants to divide sections to them all. Meanwhile, Nomad locates Legs, and orders her to escape together with his adopted daughter, Bucky, with them, thinking that she is the one Bushwacker is after. Legs listens and leaves. Nomad waits in the room until Troy is back. They fight, but are interrupted by none other than Deadpool! He has been hired to kill Troy, and wastes no time to finish his job. However, Nomad manages to defeat Deadpool. He agrees on letting Nomad live, and teleports away. During the battle, Troy managed to escape. Nomad, not caring much about either men, is glad that at least Legs and Bucky are safe, and tries to let things be and goes to find a place to stay. Later, Troy is found by Bushwacker, and the man lies that his kid is with Legs at the airport. Carl believes Troy and leaves. Troy laughs that his actual daughter is back home with his mom in Miami. Unfortunately for Troy, Deadpool returns and kills him! After a job well done, Deadpool is picked up by his employer, Mr. Tolliver, and they leave together. At the airport, Bushwacker sneaks up on Legs. He kills her and takes Bucky away with him. Later, Nomad tries to figure out what to do with the organized crime syndicate in Las Vegas, hoping that he can take them all out.

Full Summary: 

Troy and his date are walking through the Las Vegas Streets. The girl thanks him, as this was exactly what she needed to stress-out from Los Angeles, which sometimes starts to get to her. Troy smiles that it’s good to try some sanity. The girl calls Troy crazy, and he jokes that is exactly what he is. Crazy like a coyote. The girl corrects Troy he means “crazy like a fox.” No, Troy smiles at Legs: she is a fox.

As they continue their walk, they don’t notice that they are being watched by a crook, whose arms look like cannons!

Troy and his date walk inside a casino. Troy explains to her that he’s got a meeting coming up and will be stuck in Las Vegas for the entire week, so he might as well have brought his favorite party girl with him. The girl smiles that by taking her off the streets, Troy has certainly hit the jackpot. They pass along an old lady, who fails to win something at the slots. Disappointed, the woman takes off, and bumps into someone. She drops all of her leftover coins, and asks the man to help her pick them up. The old lady looks up, and notices she has bumped into the guy with the cannon arms! He asks her to be quiet, as he’s trying to avoid attention.

Troy and his girl go to watch a show, and manage to get a table for their own. The villain sneaks up from behind, and points his cannon arms against Troy, telling him that there won’t be any more running. The other spectators notice that the villain has got a gun, but he corrects them: he is the gun! Legs start to freak out and asks Troy who the bad guy is. Troy remains calm and asks Legs to sit down.

The villain punches Legs in her face, telling the hooker to listen to her date. Troy gets upset and tells Carl that wasn’t necessary. Carl points his attention to Troy, and asks him where the kid is he wants. If Carl gets the kid back, he’ll make good with his wife. A man sneaks up behind Carl, and points his gun at Carl’s head, sarcastically telling him that slapping around his friend won’t do him any good. Carl doesn’t know who the guy is, but he introduces himself as… Nomad!

Nomad has been in Las Vegas for only one hour and he’s already into trouble. He may end up liking this place as much as he likes L.A. Legs gets up and asks Jack what he’s doing here. He replies that he came to get Legs out of here. Legs notices Bucky on Nomad’s back, and he gives her a smile. In all the confusion, Carl manages to free himself from Nomad’s grip, and angrily slaps the man, upset that this is all about a baby.

Carl starts shooting, and mentions that Troy took away his daughter from his wife. And Troy’s ex-wife is Carl’s sister-in-law! And since Carl’s wife isn’t talking to him anymore, thanks to this mess, he is bound to get the baby back. Nomad manages to dodge all the bullets, but doesn’t understand much of this. He was just trying to enjoy the show.

While they fight, Troy orders Legs to follow him and run away. Legs hesitates, since Jack is her friend. Carl notices their escape, and shoots at him, but they hide behind the stage curtains and survive. Carl shouts that you can’t just take a kid like that. Nomad tries to slam a chair on Carl’s head and tells him to shut up, but Carl defends that he won’t. That kid is his last chance to get both his life and wife back. Carl starts shooting again, but luckily Nomad manages to dodge all the bullets, and luckily both the baby and the other spectators remain unharmed. The spectators make a run for it.

When Nomad gets up again, he notices that Carl managed to escape. Jack tries to make a decision: chase after psycho Carl or find Legs and get her out of there? Either way, Jack has a feeling that this town is in for some fireworks. He thinks that clearing Legs out is more important, so she can take Bucky with her. Nomad finds a pack of cigarettes lying on the floor, and discovers some weird markings on it. He thinks that at least he knows where to start looking.

Troy and Legs have returned to their room at the Hilton Hotel. Legs wants to know what’s going on, since they left Jack behind and he’s a friend of hers. Troy thinks that, if Carl managed to get his hands on Jack, he won’t be Leg’s friend anymore. He starts drinking, but the scotch won’t calm him down. But Troy thinks it’ll all turn out just fine in the end, since this is business they are talking about. Troy prepares to leave, as he’s still got that meeting to go to. Legs doesn’t like behind left behind. Troy throws her some money, and tells her to go out and have some fun. Troy leaves, and promises to be back by two. Legs is scared and closes the door behind him.

Troy goes to his office building and introduces himself to the security guards as he enters. He mentions to them that he’s presenting the west coast operations for Lotus. The guards mock Troy that he’s late, but he likes to make an entrance. Troy’s boss welcomes him, and he takes a look at all the other representatives sitting at the table nearby him. But, the female speaker had understood from Lotus, Troy’s boss, that she prefers her people to be punctual. Troy apologizes, and explains to the board that he ran into some trouble, and claims that it’s solved now.

The spokeswoman suggest that they begin. She tells the gathered men that, as they may know, they are there to divide and allocate the resources left by the Kingpin after his recent downfall. She hopes they can do this professionally and without bloodshed. Hammerhead gets frustrated and demands to know who the spokeswoman is. The woman introduces herself as the Word, and mentions that she represents the interests of Johann Schmidt. Hammerhead realizes who he is, and immediately calms down. Word suggests that, just so everyone knows each other, she will introduce all gathered in the room.

There is Andreas von Strucker, representing Fenris. Also present is Werner von Strucker, of the new Hydra. Justin Hammer is also there; he’s a corporate entrepreneur. Another representative is the mysterious Mr. Tolliver of the European cartel. There’s also Jonin, member of the Hand. Tombstone represents the Maggia, while there are also representatives of the Secret Empire present. Master Tatsu’o heads the Yakuza, and the Slug is the Miami based capo. And last but not least, there’s Hammerhead, head of a New York splinter group of the Maggia.

Word suggests that the villains take a look at the briefs that are being handed over to them. She explains that they will see that her employer has attempted to subdivide all proceeds in an equitable manner, based on influence and experience. Hammer cuts in, as he wonders why the Red Skull couldn’t be there by himself. Word responds that the Skull is there in all ways that matter. Hammerhead wants to know what’s going to happen if they don’t like this “subdivide” the Skulls’ suggesting.

Tolliver explains that they are trying to conduct business in a civilized manner. And he knows that will not be accomplished for as long as he shares this table with someone who has stolen something from him. Troy shouts that Tolliver is going at it again. He defends that the deal was sour, and that Lotus lost as almost as much as Tolliver did. That was years ago, though, and Tolliver should let it go. Word agrees, and suggests that they all put aside the differences from the past. She opens a viewing screen, on which she displays a chart.

At the same time, Nomad has had enough of the waiting. He has watched Troy leave his hotel an hour ago, and since there is nobody walking in or out the hotel that Jack recognizes, he thinks its time for him to make his move. He goes to Leg’s hotel room, and tells her to pack her things, as she and Bucky are moving out of the place. He hands over Bucky to Legs and warns her not to waste any time, as this place means trouble. He opens the fridge and takes out a drink, and mentions to Legs that things are starting to add up.

Nomad explains that Leg’s trick works for Lotus, and mentions that they are organized crime, and that the government has hired him to put an end to the group. And a couple of months ago, Jack ran into someone who had an unhealthy curiosity about west coast shipping activity. He just knows that something big is going down in Vegas. He discovered that the underground wants Legs out, and he wants Legs to take Bucky with her. Legs asks Jack what will happen to him. He plans on waiting right there in the room until Troy returns, and then he’ll ask him some questions.

At the same time, on the outskirts of the city, a motel door opens. It’s windy outside. A costumed man walks out on the streets, and his hat gets blown away. He doesn’t care much, and just walks to his car. He drives away, leaving the hat behind.

Three hours have pass, and Nomad is still waiting for Troy. He starts running things through in his head, wondering what’s really going on, and exactly who is involved. Outside the hotel, Troy returns. Unfortunately, he isn’t aware that he’s being watched by none other than… Deadpool!

Troy enters his room, and a gun gets pointed to his head. He suspects that Bushwacker is responsible, but Jack denies that. He introduces himself as a friend of a friend. He mentions that he sent Legs packing with his kid, and got them out of Bushwacker’s way. Jack demands to know what’s going on, and to give him a reason to save Troy from that madman that’s chasing him. At that point, smoke bombs get tossed inside! Nomad pushes Troy to safety. He starts running away, and can’t believe that they sent Deadpool after him. An overjoyed Deadpool laughs, and starts shooting wild.

Jack runs after Troy, but he makes it to the elevators, and descends before Jack can enter. Nomad has no idea who Deadpool is but, despite the guy’s ridiculous costume, Jack has to admit that he is good. Deadpool teleports behind Jack, and jokingly congratulates Jack on his long hairstyle. But all kidding aside, he wants to know where Troy went. Nomad moves fast, and punches his elbow right into Deadpool’s face!

Nomad quickly ducks and takes out his gun, and shoots into Deadpool’s face! Wade survives, but wonders why everyone always aims to his head. He starts fighting Nomad, and wonders if people perhaps think he’s happy with the way he looks. After all, there is a reason why Deadpool wears his mask. Wade keeps punching Nomad several times, with him unable to defend himself. Wade really tries to be considerate but fails, and thinks that Jack will make a nice looking corpse. He even destroys Jack’s sunglasses.

The elevator starts coming up again. Jack has a plan. Wade reveals to Jack that, if he’s working for Troy, it means he’s also working for Lotus, who scammed Wade’s boss out of big cash. He apologizes that this fight is nothing personal, but pure business. The elevator finally gets up. The door opens, and Jack rolls backwards into it! He tosses a stun disc at Deadpool, giving him the chance to close the door and press the button down to the lobby.

Unfortunately, Deadpool quickly heals and sticks his sword through the elevator door! Jack almost gets a heart attack because of this. He slams his fist against the sword, and its top breaks apart. Wade is a bit upset by this. He jokes that, if Jack didn’t have as much gumption as he has, Wade would really be ticked by him. But, since a man has got to be merciful every now and then, he decides to let Jack live, and instead plans to go after Troy. He teleports away.

Meanwhile, Nomad makes it downstairs, though startling the other guests. He gets up, and wants a beer. Stumbling outside, he tries to keep his mind of the sunglasses and thinks that, at least, on the bright side, Legs and Bucky are home free, and he is still alive. And he hopes that Troy gets what he deserves.

Troy on the other hand is running for his life. Someone fires on him. He suspects that Deadpool is behind it and calls out to him, trying to make a deal, but it isn’t Deadpool. It’s Bushwacker! Carl shouts that he wants to know where Troy’s wife’s kid is. Troy defends that the woman is his ex-wife, but answers that his friend took the kid. Carl aims at Troy, and calls him stupid. He mentions that his wife is clean now, and wants the kid back. And in return, Carl will get his wife back. Troy falls on his knees, explaining that Legs and the kid went out of town on his command, as he didn’t want to see his kid hurt. He sent them to the airport.

Bushwacker believes Troy, but warns him that, if he finds out he has been lying, he’ll come back for him. Once Carl is gone, Troy catches his breath. He calls Carl an idiot, since his daughter is nice and safe with his mother in Miami! Suddenly, someone calls out to Troy. It’s Deadpool! He shoots at Troy, and kills the man.

A car arrives. Tolliver opens the door and informs Deadpool that it’s time for them to go, as their business in this city is concluded. Wade agrees, but found it a boring trip, as he’s feeling a little guilty: he feels like he didn’t really earn his paycheck. While they drive away together, Troy’s corpse is left behind.

At the same time at the airport, Legs is washing her face off, telling Bucky that, soon, they’ll be safe for good. Just at that moment, Bushwacker enters, and kills Legs! Bucky starts crying, but Carl doesn’t care and picks her up, telling the baby that her mom is waiting for her.

Meanwhile, Nomad made it to a motel room and washes up. He feels like a bruised tomato. He jokes that Deadpool can hit like a mother. But at least, Jack can settle down now. He takes out his bag, in which lie guns, bullets and… a spare of sunglasses! Jack puts them on, thinking he can finally put things in perspective. Get a clear view on things. He takes a look outside his window, and looks at the magnificence that is Las Vegas.

Jack realizes that there’s a crime conference of some sort going on. He doesn’t know why, though. He knows that Daredevil is in the city as well, so he can handle most trouble. Jack has a decision to make. He wonders if getting his slate cleaned by the government worth killing the Slug for. After all, after Jack got Bucky and what happened in Alaska, he said he would never kill again. He wonders what he’ll do then.

Characters Involved: 

Nomad (Jack Monroe)

Bucky (Nomad’s adopted daughter)



Andreas von Strucker, Hammerhead, Jonin, Justin Hammer, Tatsu’o, Tolliver, Tombstone, Troy Donnahue, Secret Empire representatives, the Slug, Werner von Strucker, Word (villains attending the Lotus meeting)


various Las Vegas visitors (all unnamed)

various casino performers including Merv (all unnamed)

Story Notes: 

Nomad is a man named Jack Monroe. He is a failed super soldier and fallen super hero. Since those days, Jack has been wandering the highways and byways of the vast country. In the meantime, Monroe tries to discover who he is exactly, and does that by discovering the magnificent country called America.

Bushwacker used to be a main Daredevil adversary. Once upon a time, he was a priest, but for unknown reasons quit the job. He instead joined the CIA, who gave him the bionic cannon-like arm. After leaving the CIA after some unpleasant missions, he started hating mutants and went out to kill them. But for some reason his victims were not the super powered ones, but the mutants who used their powers to perform art. He at least killed two mutants with success. At one point, Wolverine discovered Bushwacker’s actions, and went out to kill him. However, Daredevil, who was in league with Bushwacker’s wife Marilyn to stop Bushwacker himself, prevented Wolverine from doing it, and they eventually worked together to defeat Bushwacker and turned him over to the NYPD. Later, Bushwacker participated in Loki’s Acts of Vengeance, where he was assigned to kill the Punisher, but failed. Marilyn had enough of her husband’s career as a villain and chose to leave him. Disappointed in himself, Bushwacker ended up seemingly killed by the Punisher, but he later resurfaced after being hired to kill Daily Bugle reporter Ben Urich. After that failed attempt, he was sent back to prison, but apparently he managed to escape.

The Kingpin was defeated in the final battle of the Acts of Vengeance. Johann Schmidt is the real name of the Red Skull.

Daredevil arrived in Las Vegas in Daredevil (1st series) #307.

Nomad was hired by the government at the start of this series.

As much later revealed in Cable (2nd series) #6, Deadpool’s mysterious employer, Mr. Tolliver, is in fact Cable’s son turned evil, Tyler.

Issue Information: 
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