Quicksilver #5

Issue Date: 
March 1998
Story Title: 
Mad City

Tom Peyer (plotter), Joe Edkin (scripter), Derek Aucoin (penciler), Rich Faber, Jason Martin and Ralph Cabrera (inkers), Joe Rosas (colors), Richard Starkings / Comicraft’s AD (letters), Mark Bernado (editor), Bob Harras (editor in chief)

Brief Description: 

The Scarlet Witch visits Bova at the castle on the Hudson, teleported there by Lockjaw. They catch up with each other over a hot drink before Wanda leaves for New Attilan. Bova is worried about where the Knights of Wundagore have got to. In a prison cell in New Attilan, Quicksilver thinks about what he has done and more importantly, why. Crystal visits him and they talk, Pietro telling her someone must have been controlling him when he stole the mists. Maximus meanwhile is visited by his brother, Black Bolt. Unfortunately, Fabian Cortez chooses right then to teleport in and attacks, increasing Maximus’ mental powers in order for him to take control of Black Bolt. Maximus uses his powers to cause a riot in New Attilan, all but Crystal and Pietro being affected. Concerned for their daughter Luna’s safety, they burst out through the wall and find everyone, including Karnak, Gorgon and Triton acting dangerously. After Gorgon causes a water spout to throw Quicksilver off balance, Karnak shatters the palace and Quicksilver has to rescue his daughter from Medusa who is also in a confused state. Teleporting outside into the street, they find Maximus in Black Bolt’s arms and wearing a crown. He tells them his brother has something to say. Black Bolt, unable to prevent himself, speaks a single word - “Die“. The Knights of Wundagore meanwhile are in New York after having had dinner at a restaurant. As they disagree about the food there, Lord Tyger decides they should see the musical Cats. Unfortunately, Churchill attacks the cast and they are forced to flee, with Sir Ram staying to find Lord Gator and Lord Anon while the rest get into a taxi back to the station. They are kidnapped though by the driver who is not all he appears to be.

Full Summary: 

It is night time at the High Evolutionary’s safe house on the Hudson where Bova, wearing a blue gown, stares out into the evening sky, her troubled thoughts keeping her from enjoying the peace and calm. In her thoughts, she hopes Pietro, Crystal and Luna are all right. After spending so many months mourning for his wife Crystal, Pietro had been overjoyed to see her again. Crystal seemed pleased to be home with her husband and daughter, but Bova sensed she was holding something back. She wonders if Crystal going to New Attilan to see her family was the right thing to do. The three of them need time alone. She wanders across her bedroom floor, paved with huge slabs of stone and her thoughts turn to the Knights of Wundagore who have disappeared; another thing for her to worry about. She feels that what is needed is comfort food and decides to head to the kitchens. As she grabs the door handle and opens it, thinking about how a nice slice of pie will do the trick, she is shocked to see the huge canine face of Lockjaw blocking her exit and she steps back with a “Gah!”

Fortunately for her, Lockjaw also takes a backwards step and there beside him stands Wanda Maximoff, the Scarlet Witch, who greets her with a smile. Lockjaw pants as his antenna smokes after his latest teleportation. Wanda and Bova both open their arms as Bova tells her that she was so relieved to hear that she had survived the battle with Onslaught. As they hug, Wanda apologizes for not coming to see her sooner but a tearful Bova says that’s all right, she’s here and that’s what matters. Releasing her, Bova says she was just on her way to the kitchen to fix herself a snack. She offers to make Wanda and her very large friend something but Wanda places her gloved hand on Bova’s shoulder and says “In a moment Bova, I have something important to tell you.” Almost looking perplexed, Bova turned to her and said, “Dear me. What trouble has your brother gotten himself into this time?”

Meanwhile, in a dark cell in the Inhuman city of New Attilan, Quicksilver sits, legs crossed, opening a fresh correspondence file to Crystal, Crys-199. ‘Dear Crystal, I’m not surprised that you haven’t come to see me after the embarrassment I caused you. I should have known coming to New Attilan and seeing your family would bring back memories, terrible memories of how I nearly thrust our own daughter, Luna, into the mutagenic Terrigen Mists so she would become more than human. Seeing the Gene-Fest yesterday made something inside me snap. I felt I had to steal the mist before more children were mutated by it and transformed into Inhumans.’ He continued, ‘It pains me that you were the one that had to stop me. There’s something wrong. I just wish I could talk to you about it. I accepted imprisonment here. It’s given me time to think.’ As he speaks, tears fill his eyes.

Suddenly he hears a voice at the small, barred window of his cell door. It is Crystal and she asks Pietro if he is all right. He replies that he’s as well as can be expected and she tells him she is glad he didn’t try to escape. Pietro says he figures everyone will be safer if he remains there. Crystal is puzzled by her husband’s behavior and asks him why he would say something like that, adding whether this was some new way for him to run away. Pietro’s tired face looks back at her through the bars and he replies that this isn’t the case. He says he lost it yesterday during the Gene-Fest but it was as if something or someone else was controlling him. Until they know what happened to him, everyone will be better off if he stays right there.

In another cell in the tower, Maximus kneels, still with his arms shackled behind his back as he once again asks where the voice in his head has gone, laughing insanely as he does so. He is clearly not a well man, and it seems rather inhumane to keep him locked in such a cell. He asks the voice to tell him that he’s done well and Exodus, whose voice it is, informs him that Quicksilver has been neutralized. Maximus says that Quicksilver’s own hates and fears, combined with his mental manipulations ruined the celebration and turned everyone against him. He wishes he could have seen his brother’s face but Exodus tells him to be careful what he wishes for. Suddenly, a shadow appears beside him and he turns to see the silhouetted figure of his brother standing in the open doorway. Maximus tumbles backwards, afraid of his brother as he always has been and asks him “Why are you here? Why do you look at me that way? I’ve done nothing! Nothing!” Black Bolt stares at him with accusing eyes and Maximus knows that his brother is aware of what he’s done.

Black Bolt reaches out and grabs Maximus’ clothing at chest level, stretching the cloth above his neckline as Maximus swears that he didn’t manipulate Quicksilver, with his mental powers still being dormant. As the antenna on Black Bolt’s mask crackles with energy, Maximus says, “I’m not trying to take my throne back, er, your throne my liege. Why would I want a throne when I have this lovely prison cell? And I don’t hear voices in my head! Really!” With his feet lifted off the ground, his head is thrown back as Black Bolt shouts, with furious anger, “Stop lying to me!” Black Bolt’s merest whisper can level buildings and his shouted words cut through Maximus and destroy everything in its path, making a huge hole in the tower wall...

... or do they? Exodus’ voice snaps Maximus out of his hallucination and as he cautiously opens one eye, Exodus tells him that Black Bolt’s words were a delusion, created by his own fear, adding that he should hold his tongue. Maximus mutters, “I’m saved, heh heh.” Black Bolt notices something to his right. Unfortunately for him, by the time he realizes he is in danger, Fabian Cortez pounces from the shadows which startles Black Bolt. Cortez, reaching out to Maximus and clasping his hand over his face, tells him that Exodus is pleased to have him, Maximus serve him and he has sent him to amplify his mental powers. With a maniacal grin, Maximus says “Yes! Nothing can stop me from regaining my throne, not even you dear brother.” As he feels the power grow once again inside him, he immediately attacks Black Bolt’s mind and the swiftness of the attack fells him. As Black Bolt lays on the cell floor, his eyes rolled back and now no longer in control of his own mind, the Machiavellian Cortez tells Maximus that he must return to Wundagore. He thanks Maximus for ruining Quicksilver’s life and tells him that he can thank them back by destroying the Terrigen Mists after he has seized control of all New Attilan’s power, including Black Bolt’s sonic scream. A teleportation portal shines behind him as Maximus looks down on his helpless brother.

Back at the castle on the Hudson River, Bova and the Scarlet Witch enjoy a chat over a hot drink in the kitchen while Lockjaw laps up some milk behind them. Bova explains that after spending so many years in solitude, she never realized how much she missed people, especially Wanda and her brother Pietro. With everybody out of the castle she doesn’t know what to do with herself. Wanda says she’ll be happy to spend the night if she’d like but Bova tells her that her offer is sweet, but she’ll be fine. She adds that she thinks it will be best if Wanda scoots back to New Attilan and look after Pietro. If he’s in as much trouble as she says, he’s going to need her, and speaking of trouble, wonders Bova, “Where in heavens name are the Knights?”

The Knights are in New York City, wandering past a restaurant full of surprised diners as they chat about the meal they’ve just eaten. Lord Tyger is dressed in a dinner jacket, Sir Ram in a suit and Lady Ursula in a slinky red number, carrying a blue purse. Lord Churchill looks more casual; sticking to jeans and t-shirt with a checked shirt over that while Lord Gator hasn’t changed from his long purple cloak. Lord Anon wanders slightly behind them in an overcoat. Lord Tyger tells the group that he shall never again permit Lady Vermin to select a restaurant. Their first dinner in New York City and her suggestion nearly causes all of them to contract food poisoning. Lady Ursula balks at this, saying he is only complaining because the wine wasn’t to his liking. She personally found it educational to dine amongst humans. Churchill, carrying a brown paper doggy bag adds that he thought the place was fine, and he’ll have Lord Tyger’s leftovers for tomorrow’s lunch. He asks Lady Vermin how she knew to choose that particular place.

As he speaks, Lady Vermin leaps from his shoulder towards an overturned garbage bin with an overflow of food, rats and assorted waste. She says her brothers and sisters spoke highly of it. Lord Churchill questions, “Brothers and sisters?” As Lady Vermin lands, with her blaster tied to her back despite this being a social occasion, she greets a couple of rats who she appears to know. One asks, “Problems sister?” to which Lady Vermin replies, “Friends not happy with restaurant.” “Ungrateful they,” it replies, “garbage best on block.” Lord Tyger reaches down and picks Lady Vermin up with his claws, pinching her tail and dangling her in front of his face. He tells her that he hates to intrude on her family reunion, but she has already ruined dinner and he has no intention of seeing the rest of the evening spoiled by being late for the opera while she discusses her great Aunt’s health.” “Felines!” utters lady Vermin indignantly. “I beg your pardon?” asks Lord Tyger. “It was nothing, Lord Tyger, I was just admiring the sharpness of your teeth” replies Lady Vermin almost sarcastically, helpless in Tyger’s grasp.

Sir Ram steps in and tells them that he feels they should return to the castle but Lady Ursula tells him he worries too much, and they could learn much by interacting with the people of this city. Sir Ram replies that it is not appropriate that they are there without Sir Pietro or his leave. As he speaks, Lord Churchill says, “Hi humans,” to a shocked tramp and a guy in a suit whose toupee pops off his head in disbelief. Sir Ram’s comments however provoke Lord Anon who prods Sir Ram in the chest and tells him that if Sir Pietro was truly committed to the Knights, he would not have run off and left them. He adds that maybe they should consider a new leader. Sir Ram has to be held in check by Lord Tyger as he tells Lord Anon that he speaks without honor. He says their creator, the High Evolutionary personally selected Sir Pietro to lead them. Gator asks Sir Ram to stand down as Lord Anon was new to their ranks.

Lord Tyger is being overly dramatic as he asks the theater receptionist if there are any seats available for the evening’s performance of Don Giovanni. As the frightened receptionist scrambles for cover inside his small booth, a short balding man taps Tyger on the shoulder and says he doesn’t with to be rude or anything, but isn’t Tyger at the wrong theater? Lord Tyger questions his remark and the stranger points to a theater across the street, telling him that with his outstanding mask, he figures he was across the street. The show playing across the street is Cats. ‘Hmmm, most intriguing’ thinks Tyger.

Back in New Attilan, Quicksilver continues his conversation with Crystal through the bars on his cell door. She tells him that she’d really like to believe him when he says that someone else was controlling him, but given some of the things he’s done in the past, she finds it difficult. Pietro admits he has done some unforgivable things but he swears he wasn’t acting on his own accord yesterday. He adds that they’ve both let each other down in the past, but now it is time to believe in each other. Fabian Cortez meanwhile slimily asks Maximus to show their master what he can do, to wreak havoc throughout the city of artificial mutates. He wishes Maximus farewell as Maximus begins to concentrate his mind-skills on the population of New Attilan, telling himself that the Inhumans will quake before their new king, as he releases their hopes and dreams, lusts and fears, laying waste to the entire island.

As Pietro and Crystal share a kiss through the bars, Pietro notices something in the air. He asks his wife if she just felt something and she replies of course she did, it was just like old times. Pietro looks agitated and says it wasn’t that. There was something else; a tingling sensation that compelled him to kiss her, the same feeling he had yesterday just before he stole the Terrigen Mists, and also the time when he tried to subject Luna to the mists’ effects. Crystal takes his hand and says that she thought that tingling was them and Pietro replies by saying that he isn’t saying it wasn’t, but he felt amplified somehow, as if some outside force was manipulating them.

Suddenly, a loud ‘krakoom’ is heard outside and as Pietro dashes to the window, Crystal tears his door open shouting, “Maximus! He must have his powers back” and asks him if anyone else appears to be acting strangely. Outside, far below the cell window, the people of New Attilan are rioting and Pietro says that if they don’t do something, they’ll tear New Attilan apart. Simultaneously, they both realize that Luna may be in danger. Crystal blows a hole in the wall and flies out through the explosion, telling Pietro to find Luna as he speeds down the tower wall. Crystal heads off to try and calm things down. Seeing her own people with arms raised against one another below, she summons a torrential downpour and tries to use the weather to dampen their spirits and end their madness. Quicksilver meanwhile speeds to the royal palace to protect his daughter. He’s just got his family back and he isn’t going to risk losing them again.

Over in New York, the Knights hail a taxi as they make a hasty retreat from the theater. They had gone to see Cats after all and as they jump into the yellow cab, Lord Churchill apologizes to them, saying he didn’t know what had come over him. It seems he had mistaken the cast members for real cats and a fight had broken out. Sir Ram tells them to return to the castle while he searches for Lord Tyger and Lord Anon, so Lady Ursula asks the driver to take them to Grand Central Station. In the taxi, Tyger rhetorically asks how anyone can confuse that caterwauling with art. Lady Vermin asks Lord Churchill if he is all right as some of the dancers had put up a fight. He says he’ll be fine and Lady Ursula adds that they should be thankful no-one was seriously hurt. Tyger is mortified that on their first exposure to the theater, Churchill attacked the cast but Lady Vermin tells him not to be so hard on him as Churchill isn’t the only one who finds cats upsetting. She wanted to bite Mister Mistoffolees herself. Ursula asks what else can possibly go wrong when suddenly, the taxi accelerates and the turban-wearing driver crouches behind the wheel and screeches away. As Lady Ursula bangs on the glass partition telling the driver to slow down, the Knights are gassed as the taxi actually takes off, seemingly rocket-propelled. The driver (Unit Fourteen) calls in to his employers, telling them that his targets have been secured and his estimated time of arrival is fifteen minutes.

One and a half seconds after setting off from his cell, Quicksilver is at the royal palace and finds Triton with his ear to the ground, listening for a water flow underneath. Triton tells Gorgon that one stomp will tap into the underground river beneath them. As he does so, the earth splits into fragments and a huge spurt of water fires Pietro high into the air. They have been affected by Maximus the same as everyone else and unfortunately, as Crystal notices when she catches Quicksilver in mid-air, so has Karnak. Telling Pietro they have to rescue their daughter, she shouts at him, “Karnak, no!” as she sees him feeling the palace with his hands, gathering a sense of its weakest point. Crystal knows that when he finds it he will strike. Before Crystal can act further, Karnak reaches back and strikes with his powerful fingers, thrusting them into the wall which causes the palace to shake violently.

Inside, at that exact moment, the Scarlet Witch teleports in with Lockjaw and sees large blocks of debris falling towards them. Instinctively, she casts a hex sphere which protects them and hears Luna calling for her daddy. She says it’s her Auntie Wanda and she is coming for her but as she opens the door she sees Medusa in a confused state carrying Luna in her hair but calling her Ahuna. Pietro suddenly comes hurtling through the door and asks Wanda what is going on. She replies that Medusa is somehow confusing Luna with her own son. As Luna shouts for her daddy to help her, Quicksilver says, “Medusa! How dare you endanger my child! I’ll tear you to pieces if she’s hurt!” Wanda tries holding him back, telling Pietro that Medusa is too confused to hear them and she casts another hex which has the effect of knocking Medusa out with some debris. As Medusa falls, Quicksilver grabs Luna and tries to flee the collapsing building but the floor beneath him begins to crumble. Wanda tells Lockjaw to get them all out of there which he obligingly does.

In the blink of an eye, they find themselves in the street outside, as the palace is reduced to rubble. Pietro hears a long laugh and turns to see Maximus being carried by Black Bolt. He has placed a crown on his head and stares dementedly at Pietro who asks him if he’s the one behind all this. Maximus says, “Now now Quickie old pal, old friend, before you get yourself all worked up, my brother has something to say to all of you.” Black Bolt opens his mouth, and with his antenna bristling and despite any attempts he may be making to prevent himself from doing so says the word, “Die.” Out of the frying pan, into the fire.

Characters Involved: 



Luna Maximoff

Scarlet Witch

Lord Anon, Bova, Lord Churchill, Lord Gator, Sir Ram, Lord Tyger, Lady Ursula, Lady Vermin (all Knights of Wundagore)

Black Bolt, Gorgon, Karnak, Maximus, Medusa, Triton (all Inhuman royal family)


Citizens of New Attilan

theater employee

Taxi driver

people eating in restaurant

several pedestrians


Fabian Cortez (Acolytes)

voice only:


in flashback:



Story Notes: 

The title ‘Mad City’ was the name of a movie which came out the previous year starring Dustin Hoffman and John Travolta.

Cats is a musical by English composer Andrew Lloyd Webber which first appeared in 1981 and enjoyed a long run in the theater.

Don Giovanni is an opera by the composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

Medusa’s son is misspelled Ahuna. It should have been Ahura.

Issue Information: 
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