Quicksilver #8

Issue Date: 
June 1998
Story Title: 
Rescue Mission(s) !

John Ostrander and Joe Edkin (story), Derek Aucoin (penciler), Rich Faber (inker), RS & Comicraft’s Albert Deschesne (letters), Joe Rosas (colors), Mark Bernado (editor), Bob Harras (editor in chief)

Brief Description: 

Sir Ram is angry and looking for Quicksilver who he feels is reneging on his promise to lead the Knights of Wundagore. Quicksilver meanwhile talks to a robed stranger in the laundry room at the castle on the Hudson; a man who appears to know him well. The stranger tells Pietro to forget everyone in his life, including his wife and child so he can achieve his full potential. Before Pietro can get any more information, Sir Ram disturbs him and Pietro realizes he has been talking to himself. Lady Vermin arrives back at the castle and tells them that the Knights are being held in an abbey not far from there and while she speaks, the rat who took her place at the abbey is eaten by Feral for not providing them with any information. Lord Anon however is in the abbey’s grounds and attacks and kills a guard as he tries to learn what’s going on. Pyro is told by Exodus that his team should forget their current orders as he has discovered the unique energy signature of Isotope E in the Savage Land. As Pyro’s team try and move the Knights onto their craft, they manage to break free with the help of Lord Anon and steal the craft, overcoming not only Pyro’s team seen earlier, but also Random and Fenris who have joined them. As they head to the Savage Land, Exodus teleports Pyro’s failures back to Wundagore where they can team up with some of the Acolytes. Quicksilver and Sir Ram arrive at the abbey where Lady Vermin learns from a fellow rat that the Knights have gone to the Savage Land. As the Knights arrive in the Antarctic, they are attacked by some other evolved creatures as Quicksilver and Sir Ram arrive in an Avengers Quinjet. Following a battle with the creatures, a triceratops attacks and Lord Anon injures Quicksilver as he blasts it with a weapon found in their craft. As the Acolytes and Pyro’s strikeforce arrive overhead, they see the Knights disappear underground and here they meet the High Evolutionary who has undergone an unusual transformation.

Full Summary: 

It is night time at the castle on the Hudson, temporary home of the Knights of Wundagore, and Sir Ram is furious at the current situation and calls for Quicksilver who he knows is somewhere in the castle. Bova, wearing a ‘Kiss the cook’ overall asks him to speak gently as Sir Pietro’s mate has left him and taken away their child. Sir Ram replies that he cannot do that. The Knights have been missing for days while Quicksilver dallies with the Avengers and the Inhumans whilst all his searches have proven fruitless. Their creator left Pietro in charge and he feels it is about time he began living up to his responsibilities rather than feeling sorry for himself.

In the laundry room, Quicksilver sits cross-legged and alone in the corner with his head resting against his arm looking rather dejected. A few photographs are scattered on the stone floor beside him. He opens a fresh correspondence file, Crys-201. He tells her that he can’t believe that she would take Luna away from him and walk out of his life. He is sorry that he lost his temper when Dane Whitman, the Black Knight, intruded upon them but he had no right. He couldn’t let Whitman steal her away from him as he had tried once before. Instead he drove her away.

Suddenly, a voice to his left startles him and he quickly removes the headset he is speaking into and sees a tall figure dressed in a long dark red robe with his head covered, and in shadow. The man tells Pietro to let them go as he is better off without them. As Pietro asks who he is, the man continues to say that he should let them all go; his wife, his child, the Knights and the Avengers. They have no part in his destiny and only serve to slow him down. Quicksilver stands up and angrily confronts the mysterious stranger, asking who he is, how he managed to get in there and how he knows what his destiny is. The stranger replies that he knows Pietro better than he knows himself. He tells him that he knows what he has been, what he will be and that he must be free to achieve his full potential, free of his family and of the Knights. Sir Ram suddenly opens the laundry room door and stands silhouetted as he calls Pietro’s name. Angrily, Pietro turns and asks, “Can’t you see I’m already in the middle of a conversation?” Sir Ram asks if he’s talking to himself and Quicksilver turns to find himself alone in the room.

Lady Vermin meanwhile stands on the grassy shore on the opposite bank to where the castle is situated and knows she can’t quit now and so she dives in to swim the final leg of her journey. Meanwhile, Quicksilver and Sir Ram exchange words, Sir Ram berating him, telling him that his self-indulgence may have led to the Knights’ destruction. Quicksilver responds by telling him not to put all this on him. He had left Sir Ram in charge during his absence to which Sir Ram replies that he is well aware of his responsibilities. “Are you?” Pietro adds as his friend fixes him with an inquisitive look. Outside, despite the water being choppy, Lady Vermin makes it to the other side, panting from exhaustion but determined to finish her task.

To break up the tension between Pietro and Sir Ram, Bova enters the laundry room and tells them to stop it as it doesn’t matter who’s to blame; the Knights need their help. Sir Ram is honorable and asks Pietro to forgive his anger. He knows they should not fight amongst themselves when their comrades may be in danger. Out of nowhere, Lady Vermin leaps onto Bova’s shoulder and scares the pants off her but she quickly recognizes her friend and tries to listen to what she has to say. She’s doesn’t have her translator however and Bova tells the others that there is another in Lord Delphis’ laboratory.

Once they have drained the laboratory of water, Quicksilver attaches the translator and Lady Vermin explains that after they were captured, they were taken by airship to a secluded abbey north of the castle. Lord Gator had been captured separately and also taken there. She had another rat take her place while she escaped and returned to the castle. She continues to say that she could not ascertain the identities of their captors before she escaped but they did question them about where the High Evolutionary had gone and what he’d done with Isotope E. She is asked about Lord Anon but replies that she doesn’t know what happened to him. She hasn’t seen him since before they were captured and was hoping he would be at the castle.

Lord Anon hasn’t gone very far. The tall shadow of a guard scales the wall of the abbey mentioned by Lady Vermin. A large flying craft sits silently in the grounds as the guard patrols the area, watched from the bushes by Lord Anon. The guard isn’t very happy about being on patrol duty again but at least he doesn’t have to wear the stupid turban anymore. Inside the abbey, Lady Vermin’s replacement will be wishing she’d been elsewhere as she finds herself strapped to a table surrounded by Pyro, Omega Red, Feral and the Strucker Twins, otherwise known as Fenris, newcomers to the party. A rack resides nearby and other chains hang off the walls in what was presumably a torture chamber from earlier times. Feral says that the rat refuses to tell them where the High Evolutionary has gone and asks the rat, “Do you know what Feral does with little rats? I eat them for dinner.” The helpless rat is devoured by Feral and screams as Andreas Strucker tells Omega Red to fetch them another prisoner.

In the cell, the Knights are growing restless. Lord Churchill lets out a howl of anguish as they realize the rat has met it’s maker. Lord Tyger tells him that it is proper that they mourn the rat to which Lord Gator adds, “Aye Lord Tyger, and to avenge it in blood,” asking, “Are we not the Knights of Wundagore? The time has come for us to act!” In the grounds, as the moonlight reflects off the muscular body of the guard, he is annoyed that they’re killing the dog. He wanted to kill the dog and never gets to see any action. Lord Anon suddenly leaps from a tree as the guard is caught wrong-footed and Lord Anon tells him that this is his lucky day.

Meanwhile, inside the abbey, Pyro provides Exodus with another video briefing, accompanied by his friend, Avalanche. He offers his apologies as they still don’t have the information they require; the High Evolutionary’s whereabouts, but Exodus replies that his plans have changed and they should abandon their efforts. Pyro explains that he’ll only need a little more time and had even had one of the stupid animals killed to show they are serious but Exodus scolds him, telling him the Knights are too important as bargaining chips to be killed at this moment, especially as he now knows the location of the High Evolutionary. They ask how and he replies that the unique energy signature of Isotope E has been detected in the hidden jungle beneath the Antarctic known as the Savage Land. Exodus then orders Avalanche and Pyro to leave immediately for the Savage Land and rendezvous with some of the Acolytes, and to take the Knights with them. He adds that they are to secure the infidel known as the High Evolutionary and especially Isotope E and reminds them not to fail him. They should remember that the cure for the legacy Virus he and his compatriots have lies with Isotope E. He has downloaded the coordinates into their ship’s computer and tells them to get going. As he speaks, another rat watches intently.

At the crumbling citadel on Wundagore Mountain where Exodus currently resides, Fabian Cortez questions Exodus on the amount of trust he puts into those impure mutants. As he mentioned to Scanner once before, he informs Cortez that they are desperate and therefore their cooperation and diligence can be guaranteed. Exodus’ trusted lieutenant Scanner says that they don’t actually have a cure for the virus and don’t know if they isotope will even work. Exodus replies that they don’t know that and tells her that she will lead the away team. Cortez looks miffed, and says, “Lord Exodus, with all due respect, I should…” Exodus cuts him off and replies, “With no due respect, Cortez, you bungled the mission in New Attilan. I have decided to entrust this mission to Scanner.”

Over at the abbey, Avalanche is loading up their ship with the last of the supplies and is ready to take their prisoners on board. Lord Anon emerges from the shadows and realizes that they’re leaving and he has to make his move now. The other members of Pyro’s team along with Pyro himself ready themselves to release the Knights and he unlocks their cell, telling them to stand back as they’re coming with them. Lord Gator says the Knights of Wundagore take no more orders but Omega Red whips his coils and in a flash wraps them around Lord Gator’s muscular forearm. They begin to tighten as Pyro unleashes flames across the ceiling to try and keep everyone in line but the Knights are having none of this and Lord Tyger, still in his dinner jacket leaps through the cell door and a fight ensues.

Andreas Strucker tells his sister to join hands so they can access their powers but Tyger lands a deft kick to his jaw and tells him the Tyger is not brought down by a pair of wolves, even if they are the Fenris twins. Pyro orders Random to create weapons from his hands but Random is already doing this and replies that he knows his job before blasting at Lord Tyger who acrobatically leaps between the bolts. Just as Pyro orders his team not to kill the Knights because Exodus wants them alive, Random is knocked unconscious and slumps onto Pyro as Lord Anon is revealed standing behind him with his sword in hand. “So do I, “ he says, “But your kind is another matter.”

With their numbers fairly even, the Knights know they have a good chance and Lord Gator is set free by Lord Anon who cuts Omega Red’s tentacles. Gator responds to his freedom by lamping Omega Red with a solid right. Lord Anon then takes charge of the situation and tells them to follow him. The craft outside has already been programmed with the location of the High Evolutionary. As they emerge into the evening, Avalanche is standing on the ship and creates a rumble of Earth which tears towards the Knights. They begin to fall as their footing is lost but Lord Anon uses Lord Churchill’s shoulder to help propel him upwards and over the miniature earthquake and crunches the handle of his sword into Avalanche’s nose. He quickly turns the sword around and positions himself to thrust the sword into his enemy but Lord Gator stays his hand and reminds him that there is no honor in killing a helpless foe. Lord Anon does as he is told but thinks that there is pleasure in it, as in when he killed the guard. With no barriers to their freedom remaining, Lord Anon tells the Knights that he had located their armor and stored it in the craft. The Knights then take off for the Savage Land.

Shortly after the craft takes off, Quicksilver arrives on foot, tearing up the dirt as he speeds towards the abbey. Sir Ram arrives behind him on an atomic steed with Lady Vermin perching on his shoulder. Sir Ram says that this is the place and urges Pietro to run faster but he replies that he would have been there already if he hadn’t been carrying him and his atomic steed in his slipstream.

Inside the building, unaware of their approach, Pyro talks once again via video link to Exodus. He tells him that it’s not their fault that the Knights escaped as they were bushwhacked. Before he can tell Exodus of the dead guard, he is silenced by his leader who says that this lame excuses annoy him. He tells him that he is teleporting him and his strikeforce to Wundagore Mountain where they will then travel to the Savage Land with the Acolytes. He will not tolerate another failure.

Quicksilver meanwhile slides to a halt, his senses working overtime as he feels something is not right; there should be guards here. Sir Ram says, “Perhaps a reconnaissance…” as Lady Vermin leaps from his shoulder to meet with two other rats. In a blur, Pietro vanishes and appears almost instantaneously, telling Sir Ram the place is deserted; his super speed being particularly useful for this kind of thing. They both cast their eyes downwards as Lady Vermin informs them what her brother, the fellow rat, has told her. She says that the Knights have escaped in a ship after learning that their creator has taken refuge in the Savage land.

Now, in the Savage Land as a large herbivorous Sauropod chews lazily on some leaves looking skywards, the Knights’ craft arrives in the unusual surroundings. With Lord Anon and Lord Tyger at the helm, Lord Churchill stretches his arms and says it feels good to don armor once again. Lord Anon replies that it’s none too soon as the ship is executing its landing protocols. As the boosters carefully lower the ship into a clearing between the trees, he adds that they must be close to the High Evolutionary now. As they exit the craft, they find that surrounding them are many other creatures who Lord Tyger recognizes as being the handiwork of their creator.

Lord Anon tells the others to be on guard as the beasts may prove hostile. His attention is suddenly caught be another craft flying overhead; an Avengers Quinjet carrying Quicksilver, Sir Ram and Lady Vermin. Sir Ram points out the Knights below them and Quicksilver replies that he’s seen them, adding that it’s lucky that his status as a reserve Avenger entitles him access to the Quinjet because it looks like the Knights are about to come under attack.

He is correct. As the Quinjet lands in a similar fashion to the other craft, the Knights find themselves at battle stations as the evolved beasts attack them. Tyger is pleased that at last they have foes strong enough to test their mettle but Lord Anon points out that this is no test, it’s a fight for survival. A wolf-like being manages to throw him onto his back and he has to be saved by Pietro who hurls his foe away. Lord Anon stands and before anyone can act, plunges his sword into the wolf-like beast, the blood spurting out as Quicksilver looks on in shock.

Lord Gator, wearing his customary robe has an evolved bird in his mighty grasp and tells Lord Anon that they are fighting their cousins. They are all children of the High Evolutionary and as he told him before, they do not kill their brethren. Lord Anon takes offense at his team-mate and replies, “Honor and origin be damned! When it’s kill or be killed, I’ll be the one killing!” As each of the Knights is pinned down with their individual battles, a new threat makes an appearance, a large triceratops which arrives with some force. As everyone bar none turns to look at the dinosaur, Lady Ursula says to Lord Anon that it seems they have a cousin who would argue that point with him. With the evolved creatures making themselves scarce, Lord Gator tells his friends to stand their ground as the Knights of Wundagore do not flee from battle.

Quicksilver as usual takes the lead and as he leaps onto the back of the triceratops, points out that this is no cousin of theirs and order them to attack it. Pietro clings on to the animal’s bony hood and pounds it’s thick hide with his fist, figuring that even though it has a thick scaly hide, enough blows administered in the same place should be enough to lay it low. Lord Churchill attacks with a branch from behind but it simply snaps against the trunk-like leg before Churchill is unceremoniously thrown by the animal’s horn.

Pathetic, thinks Lord Anon as he watches his team-mates struggle against the giant. As Quicksilver continues to pound away on the hood, Lord Anon tells everyone to stand back as he has found something in the ship that might be of use to them. Before Pietro can move, Lord Anon fires a weapon at the creature which not only knocks the dinosaur down, but also severely injures Pietro who clutches his chest in agony. Sir Ram is furious and confronts Lord Anon, asking what he thought he was doing. Anon replies that he is trying to save all their lives by killing the dinosaur. He trusted Sir Pietro’s speed would get him free from harm. Pietro replies that he already had it subdued as Lady Ursula helps him to his feet. As he tells Lord Anon that more of a warning would be helpful, a third craft is seen in the skies and Lord Anon says it’s likely to carry the forces of Exodus.

Inside the craft, Scanner calls Exodus and informs him that the Knights are within sight but Pyro tells her to look; the ground appears to be giving way beneath the Knights. Below them, the ground indeed opens up beneath them and they all fall into a large pit below. As they collide with the floor, a voice behind them says, “My Knights; you have arrived in my…underground laboratory…just in time.” Pietro looks up and sees the High Evolutionary standing beside them in full armor. Quicksilver stands and asks, “You’ve been hiding in the Savage Land all this time?” As the dust begins to settle, he replies, “Yes, trying to save my own life…you see, things have gone terribly wrong.” As he says this, he removes his helmet and reveals to the Knights that he has now been physically devolved into the form of an ape.

Characters Involved: 


High Evolutionary

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

two unnamed rats

Fabian Cortez, Exodus, Scanner (all Acolytes)

Avalanche, Feral, Fenris, Omega Red, Pyro, Random (all associates of the Acolytes)

one of Exodus’ guards

in flashback:



Black Knight IV

In a vision:


Story Notes: 

Pyro’s team has now been joined by Fenris (Andrea and Andreas von Strucker) who weren’t shown previously. They are the children of classic Nick Fury villain Baron Wolfgang von Strucker. They are also joined by former X-Factor member, Random (Marshall Evan Stone III) whose physical form is made of morphing protoplasm, which acts to counteract any force or mutant ability directed at it. He can expand his mass and strength, and this can be fired as biomatter projectiles. Fenris generate electrical discharges and disintegration beams while in physical contact with each other.

The guard’s reference to wearing a turban shows that he drove the taxi in which the Knights were kidnapped in Quicksilver #5.

Lady Vermin’s replacement is tortured and eaten by Feral but is seen to held in place by tiny manacles and chains. Just a thought but where on Earth did they find manacles so tiny; they surely can’t have been lying around the place?

Cortez bungled the mission in New Attilan in Quicksilver #4-6 by failing to have Maximus destroy the Inhumans and recover the Terrigen Mists.

Though the triceratopses could grow up to thirty feet in length, they were herbivorous and would have posed little harm to the Knights unless they got in its way.

The High Evolutionary left Wundagore in Quicksilver #1 and from there made his way to the Savage Land. Ka-Zar meanwhile, in order to save the universe from Thanos was forced to allow S.H.I.E.L.D. to destroy the terraformer that kept the Savage Land warm. In doing so he expected the Land to be beyond repair but somehow, his wife Shanna was caught in the waves of energy released by the terraformer as it blew up and now acted as a conduit for the machine’s power, which soon attracted the attention of the High Evolutionary who had set up a lab there to continue his experiments with Isotope E. Ka-Zar told him that Shanna was evolving which piqued his interest. As soon as he laid his eyes on Shanna, he became instantly obsessed with her. He helped show Shanna how to use her new powers and she became intoxicated with her abilities. She finally realized that it wasn’t natural that she held so much power and asked the Evolutionary to build a new terraformer and steer her power into it. He pleaded with her, telling her he wanted to create a new Earth and use her powers to become the ecosystem, devoid of pollution like this one, but she didn’t resent the idea. Ka-Zar didn’t like the growing attraction between them and raided his lab and stole Isotope E. The Evolutionary visited Ka-Zar and told him that he, Shanna and their son Matthew were going to leave for a new paradise of his own invention and asked Ka-Zar (against his better judgement but at the request of Shanna) to join them there. However, when Ka-Zar discovered that the Evolutionary had given Matthew a leg up on his environment, just like his mother, he angrily refused and fully opposed his plans. Soon after the High Evolutionary had built the new terraformer as Shanna had asked him, Ka-Zar confronted him along with a small army of friends from the Savage Land and they fought the Evolutionary’s own evolved beasts. During an aerial dogfight, the Evolutionary discovered that Ka-Zar had got hold of Isotope E and surrendered when he threatened to use it. Unfortunately for Ka-Zar he dropped the container and the Evolutionary managed to catch it. Ka-Zar however fell to the ground and when the Evolutionary tried to help by possibly evolving him, Shanna told him to take his stinking hands off her husband. She told him that she would care for him not as a goddess, but as the woman he loves. Asking for her power to be removed, the Evolutionary did as she asked and removed the energies from her. The Evolutionary departed with a grudging admiration for Ka-Zar, returning to his lab. There he took off his face-mask and revealed what else he would have wanted Shanna to help him with. He had himself devolved by accident and now looked worryingly different. [Ka-Zar (2nd series) #11-14]

Issue Information: 
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