Two weeks have passed since the Mighty Thor embarked for the dreaded Black Galaxy! It was a desperate journey which eventually led to Asgard and the eve of Ragnarok!
Descending upon New York, Thor states at long last the Son of Odin returns to planet Earth. The teeming inhabitants of this world which he has come to love could ne’er conceive of the monstrous forces which recently threatened them, and the universe entire. The danger is now passed, and Thor must resume his mortal identity.
Entering his apartment, Thor notices that the workmen which he hired have proceeded apace. They have repaired the recent damage to his apartment. Alas, it no longer seems like a true home to him. It has been so empty, so alien, e’er since his duties as the Thunder God forced him to relinquish the custody of Kevin. Kevin who is the son of his human self – Eric Masterson. With that, Thor smacks his hammer Mjolnir onto the ground and transforms into his human identity.
Dialing the phone, Eric hopes that his ex-wife, Marcy, will let him see him tonight. It feels like an eternity since they were last together. He wishes he could tell him his secret and share his adventures with him, but… When the maid answers on the other end, she informs Eric that the mister has taken the family to Disney World for the weekend. She can leave a message for the missus to call him later on Sunday, or early Monday. Hanging up the phone, Eric thinks to himself Disney World? They always talked about going but he could never find the time. He doesn’t know what’s worse – missing Kevin or knowing that he’s there without him. Maybe a shower will help clear his head.
Later, after a shower, Eric sits down at his drawing table. From what Marcy’s maid said, he can only assume it’s Friday night. He always loses track of the days whenever he’s Thor for a prolonged period. Time isn’t a major concern for an immortal. He should dive into that pile of overdue paperwork, and start trying to get his life back in order. It’s obvious to him that Susan Austin has been keeping track of everything while he was away. She’s terrific. He doesn’t know how he could ever survive without her. This is ridiculous. He should be doing his work, but he just can’t get into it. Mundane matters just don’t cut it on the night after you’ve saved the universe.
Looking down at his drawing pad, Eric is surprised at what he drew. He must have been doodling unconsciously – it’s the Lady Sif. Talk about a weird situation. She is hot, but he seemed to be a lot more attracted to her when he was Thor. Right now, he’d much rather be spending time with… Looking over at a picture of Kevin and Susan, Eric thinks why not.
A change of wardrobe and a taxi shuffle later, Eric reaches an apartment. Before he knocks on the door, he wonders if he should have called first. He hasn’t been on a real date since his divorce. He feels so weird. He wonders if she’ll be glad to see him. Should he have brought flowers? When a shirtless muscular man answers the door, Eric asks him if this is the home of Jackie Lukus. The man answers that he has the right house and asks who he is.
Barely a minute later, the man reenters the apartment and thanks Jackie for the quick iron job. Things have been pretty hectic with all the last minute wedding plans. Jackie tells the man, Jim, no prob and asks who was at the door. Jim informs her that it was some weird guy who suddenly realized he’d made a mistake and came to the wrong place. He had a limp and an odd-looking walking stick.
Making his way back to his home, Eric tells himself dumb, dumb, dumb. He should have realized a woman like Jackie would have a boyfriend. He is such a total jerk. Nobody is waiting up nights for Eric Masterson to drop by. Just then, Jackie calls out to Eric from behind him. Concerned, Eric wonders how he can face her now, what can he say? She must be furious. As Jackie hugs him, she says to Eric that it is him. She thought it was the way her brother described him.
Eric asks “her brother?” Jackie tells him that Jim may look pretty intimidating but he’s a real teddy bear. She heard that he’s been going through some pretty rough times lately, with his son and all. How is he holding up? Eric tells her pretty good, all things considered. Jackie says that’s the spirit. Still, she knows that he could probably use a good friend in his corner. Kissing him, she states that she’d like to officially volunteer for the job. Walking hand in hand with Jackie, Eric tells the pretty lady that she really knows how to make a man feel at home.
For the briefest of moments, the cares and responsibilities of a Thunder God are forgotten. But alas, it shall only be for the very briefest of moments, as you shall see.
Nobody enjoys reporting to work on Monday morning. And that includes a certain God of Thunder summoned to the newly constructed training complex located within Avengers mansion.
In the training room, Captain America tells Thor that he’s glad he’s early. He can help him test the new toys Tony Stark designed for them. When Thor asks Captain America what they are, Cap replies they are stun drones and he has to get past them without being blasted. Thor tells him to fear not, the Son of Odin shall aid him. His enchanted hammer shall call forth a searing bolt of lightning to clear his path.
At that moment, Thor destroys the stun drones with a blast from his hammer. Covering his hand with his face, Cap tells Thor that he thinks he missed the point. This was supposed to be a training exercise. Thor replies that a warrior prince of Asgard has little understanding of such charades. Battle is as natural and instinctive to him as is the simple act of breathing. Cap tells him that’s easy for him to say, but mere mortals need all the practice they can get.
Flipping a switch, Cap activates the robot sweeper to clean up the mess so they can get down to business. He then tells Thor that he received a message from England over the weekend. It seems that the British government has a proprietary interest in a super criminal that he recently fought. Thor answers that they shall have his full cooperation and asks whom they seek.
At that precise moment, across the Atlantic Ocean, an inspector informs the members of Excalibur that he believes they all know the gentleman in question – Cain Marko, better known as the Juggernaut. Until most recently, he was a guest of her majesty’s government, in the maximum security prison at Crossmoor. In a manner which they have yet to determine, he recently escaped from the stasis cage which held him completely immobile. They learned that he was later seen in New York City battling the Avenger known as the Mighty Thor. Needless to say, they are most curious to learn his current whereabouts and the method he employed to breach their security. Since the Avengers are currently out of favor with the government, it was felt that they should deal with them directly. Super-team to super-team, and all that.
Shaking the inspector’s hand, Captain Britain flanked by his Excalibur teammates, Shadowcat, Lockheed, Nightcrawler, Meggan and Phoenix, tell him that they understand. The politicians need Excalibur. The inspector states that they all have a duty to queen and country. A limousine is waiting to take them to Heathrow. Seats are already booked on the next Concorde.
Sometime later, back in the good old U.S. of A., Thor arrives back at his apartment. As he does, he thinks to himself that Captain America does not realize that his battle with the Juggernaut went poorly and that he is still haunted by its inconclusive resolution. But, he will not allow that to distract him from his current concerns. Though the Wrecker and his murderous crew are loose somewhere within this city, he must temporarily resume his mortal identity as Eric Masterson. When he transforms into Eric, he determines that his pressing responsibilities as the Thunder God have forced him to neglect his personal life and architect business far too much in recent weeks.
Just then, Susan Austin enters the room and rushes over to Eric and gives him a huge hug. She tells him she was so worried about him. Where has he been the past two weeks? Why didn’t he call? Eric tells her to take it easy. He just had to get away and sort some things out. As they both work on picking up the stack of papers that fell to the ground, Susan apologizes for overreacting, but she’s just so happy to see him. Eric tells her that he appreciates the enthusiasm and the terrific way she ran the business in his absence. Susan replies it was her pleasure. She then adds that she guesses that they, he has already started making plans to get Kevin back. Eric tells her not really. He’s no longer convinced that he should have custody of his son. He’s probably better off with Marcy.
Shocked, Susan asks that he can’t be serious. The boy belongs there with him, not with his ex-wife. However, even before Eric can respond, Jackie Lukus enters the room and tells everybody that she hopes she’s not too early. Calling him “blue eyes,” she tells Eric that there’s no need to stand on her account. Men are always throwing themselves at her feet. After she compliments Susan on her outfit and telling her that it suits her very well, Susan thanks her and says this is a rather pleasant surprise.
Eric mentions that actually, he ran into Jackie over the weekend. They were working on some joint projects before he left and decided to get an early start on them. Jackie adds that they could have started much earlier but decorum won out. Clearly jealous, Susan replies that she sees… Looking at her watch, Jackie tells Eric that she’s afraid she can only spare him a few hours today. What shall they do first? Smiling, Eric says actually, he was hoping that he wouldn’t be forced to choose.
At that precise moment, across town, the members of the Wrecking Crew – Piledriver, Bulldozer, Thunderball and the Wrecker – suddenly appear in a grocery store. When they do, Piledriver exclaims to the Wrecker that he did it. He warped them right into the center of D’Agostino’s. Wrecker tells them to move it and stock up on supplies for a few days. He has more important things on his mind than stupid shopping sprees. He adds not to forget the maple walnut ice cream. Piledriver asks him what his favorite brand; Wrecker asks if they have any Haagen-Dazs. Asking if he should bring the cash register, Bulldozer is told by Wrecker to forget it. He doesn’t need no stinkin’ money. As long as he’s loaded with Asgardian power, he can take whatever he wants!
Just then, in a building across town, Loki informs Enchantress and Ulik that something must be done about the Wrecker. The man, himself, is naught but a petty annoyance but the power he wields could become very disruptive if left unchecked. Enchantress tells him that he finds his concern over this insignificant mortal most amusing. There must be more to it than mere caution. Is he, perhaps, an old friend? Loki replies that he has very few friends but they are legion compared to those who have survived his displeasure. He then informs Ulik that the sphere in his hand is a psychic beacon and that it will lure the Wrecker to a place of their choosing. He is to be captured and rendered helpless, but not killed. Ulik informs Loki that he and the Enchantress will prepare an appropriate reception for him. Loki tells them not to fail him. He has uses for his power.
Elsewhere, at a police training facility, Lieutenant Stone asks a man in a wheelchair, Majowski where the rest of Code: Blue is. They’re supposed to be practicing on the firing range. Shooting his rifle down range, Majowski replies they are on the range. Only he didn’t exactly specify the type of practicing he wanted. Taking cover on the range, four members of Code: Blue dodge the oncoming rounds. They say they swear that crazy old coots trying to kill them. They’re just lucky he’s only firing paint-balls. He won’t be as lucky when it’s their turn.
Just then, Majowski orders the police officers to fall in, the Lieutenant “wants ta talk” to them. One of the officers thinks to himself that Stone is well-named. He never shows any emotion. Once they are lined up, Stone asks so they are the very finest of New York’s finest. A tactical unit dedicated to the battle against super criminals. He tells them they did okay on their first outing against the Wrecking Crew even if they did manage to slip through their fingers. Things can only get worse. They’re going to keep intensifying their training and upping the stakes so they’ll be ready when they do. He then orders them to get back on the field. This time they use live ammo.
Meanwhile, Enchantress and Ulik are on the ship docks. As they do, Enchantress tells Ulik that she is growing bored. She then tells him to find a secure haven for the beacon and activate it. Ulik states that the Wrecker is as deadly as he is merciless. Enchantress adds that the scope of her magic is virtually limitless. After placing the psychic beacon, Dr. Strange in his Sanctum Sanctorum located in Greenwich Village senses a vague shudder on the psychic plane.
On a Manhattan rooftop, Spider-Man’s spider-sense begins to go off. It is also felt high above the New York skyline by Quasar. His quantum bands are reacting to an unknown form of energy but they can’t seem to pinpoint it. On a midtown construction site, Wrecker provides a new wrecking ball to replace Thunderball’s old one. As Thunderball replies that he doesn’t know what to say, Wrecker tells him to keep his yap shut while he energizes it and just remember who rules this outfit. An’ if he ever tries ta take him outta the top spot again… Interrupting, Thunderball tells Wrecker that he’s the boss, though in his mind he thinks ‘for now.’
Just then, Wrecker holds his head in pain. Thunderball asks him what’s happening. Is he experiencing some kind of backlash? Wrecker responds that he ain’t sure. He just knows that something’s calling him and he has to go.
Meanwhile, at Kennedy airport, the members of Excalibur stand in line. While they do, Nightcrawler asks if they stand out as much as he thinks they do. Captain Britain tells him to relax. Rachel’s psychic shields will get them through customs. At that moment, Rachel puts her hand to her own head in pain. When asked if there’s something wrong, Rachel replies that she is suddenly receiving some kind of urgent signal on the psychic plane. It’s a summons and she must heed it!
Transforming into the Phoenix, she flies off with the rest of Excalibur in tow. As they do, Shadowcat exclaims that she can’t be serious. Rachel apologizes and says that it’s just that she’s never felt anything like this before and she believes that it’s imperative that she answers it. The power of the Phoenix will carry them to it. Shadowcat replies that it looks like they don’t have much choice. She just wishes she’d at least try to curb her impulsiveness.
At that precise moment, Eric Masterson and Susan enter Eric’s son’s school. As they ascend the steps, Susan says to Eric that she still can’t believe that he’s going to abandon his own son to that… that woman. Eric tells her to c’mon, they’ve already had that discussion. Marcy isn’t as bad as all that. After all, she did agree to allow him to visit Kevin after school today. Susan sarcastically replies she’s all heart. He’ll have almost a half hour together before he’s due at his rollerblade lesson. Eric says that it may not be all that much time, but he appreciates the gesture anyway.
Just then, Eric senses that someone has employed an enchanted Asgardian lure. He wonders who on this world could possess such arcane technology and for what sinister purpose. Seeing his distress, Susan asks him if he is feeling okay. Eric tells her yeah, it’s nothing. He thinks to himself that he should transform to Thor and investigate immediately but…
When Kevin comes out, Eric gives him a big hug and knows that he can’t leave his son, not now. As Eric and his son walk off, Susan thinks to herself that those two belong together. If Eric won’t take the proper action to reclaim Kevin, maybe she should.
Meanwhile, at the ship yard, Bulldozer mentions to Wrecker that something’s wrong. He can sense it; just look at the crazy gizmo Thunderball found. Holding the beacon, Thunderball asks what it is. It’s pulsing and he’s never seen anything quite like it. Wrecker states that it’s a blasted trap, that’s what it is. Somebody obviously planted it to get their attention and he can guess who. He then orders his teammates to fan out, he bets their old buddy Ulik is behind this.
Using magic to hide themselves from sight, Ulik says to the Enchantress to take no chances and strike them now. Enchantress tells the rock troll to be patient. They cannot see them while they are covered by her spell of invisibility. Besides, she fears their psychic lure was far more powerful than they were led to believe and she suddenly senses the approach of others who have also been drawn to this location.
At that moment, Captain Britain grabs Wrecker by the shoulder and tells him that he is certain that he belongs in a prison cell. He doesn’t suppose he’d care to be sensible and just surrender himself to the local authorities. Wrecker tells him that he’s gotta be crazy. Punching the Wrecker across the dock, Captain Britain replies no, he’s merely optimistic.
As the members of Excalibur begin to take on the Wrecking Crew in battle, Captain Britain tells them that, since Americans are usually too provincial to be aware of anything or anyone from the proper side of the Atlantic, he assumes they don’t recognize them. He is Captain Britain and this is Excalibur. They are actually hoping to find the Juggernaut there. Wrecker tells him that he should’a kept looking fancy pants. The Wrecking Crew will give them a beating they’ll never forget.
Watching what is going on, Ulik asks Enchantress who the strange interlopers are. Enchantress replies ‘tis of no importance. The world has an abundance of such costumed fools. They shall stand aside while they attend to the mundane task of subduing their foes. And, even as a sinister chuckle escapes her lips, Thunderball takes a swipe at Nightcrawler with his wrecking ball.
As he does, he calls him a creepy-looking freak and tells him to keep away from him or he’ll… Seeing Nightcrawler teleport around, Thunderball asks him how he moves so fast. Nightcrawler replies it’s easy when you eat righteously, exercise rigorously and is bone with certain mutant abilities. Attacking Thunderball, Nightcrawler groans in pain and realizes that he mustn’t overdue it. The strain of teleporting has been leaving him weakened and winded.
Across the shipyard, Bulldozer attempts to run over Shadowcat but is surprised when he doesn’t make contact. He exclaims that babe must be some kinda ghost, he just ran completely through her. Shadowcat tells him get current sweetcheeks. Nobody uses the term “babe” anymore. His name’s Shadowcat and he can become as intangible as he is passé.
Just then, across town, Majowski pilots a helicopter with members of Code: Blue on board. The officer in the back exclaims yahoo. Sounds like Code: Blue is on line for some major league action. The officer sitting up front next to Majowski tells the officer, Mad Dog, to simmer down. They stay cool until they have a visual I.D. on all the players. At that moment, the officer witnesses something flying past their chopper and asks what that was. Majowski informs Lieutenant Stone that there’s no need to call for backup, it’s already arrived. Stone then tells his team to lock and load. This could get dicey, the big guy looks pretty pissed.
Hurtling through the air, Thor wonders to himself what could have possessed him to place his personal concerns above the clarion call of duty. Responsibility should always hold sway to a god, but he is also a man. He only prays that no innocent was harmed because he chose to spend a few precious moments with Kevin.
Carried by his enchanted hammer, the God of Thunder quickly arrives on the scene. Seeing Thor coming towards them, Wrecker thinks to himself oh swell. As if the Excalibur creeps weren’t enough of a headache, Thor can only make things worse. Things could really get ugly. This calls for brains instead ‘a brawn. He has to use his Asgardian power like never before. He doesn’t know if this trick is gonna work, but it’s worth a shot.
And so, barely a split-second later, the Wrecker shoots Thor with a beam from his crowbar. When he is hit, Thor tells him to spare his effort. His futile blasts cannot harm the Son of Odin. Wrecker says to himself ‘That’s what you think Goldilocks.’ He then tells Britain that if he and his guys really want the Juggernaut, he’s all theirs.
Turning around, Nightcrawler sees Juggernaut (in actuality Thor but thanks to Wrecker’s magic, he looks like Juggernaut to Excalibur) exclaims that he doesn’t believe it. It’s the Juggernaut. He suddenly materialized directly in front of them. When Meggan asks where he came from, Britain tells her that they can’t worry about that now. Their primary responsibility is to subdue him. Shooting at him with one of her blasts, Phoenix tells everyone to stay back. No physical force can harm him. He’s only vulnerable to a psychic assault.
Leaping out of the way, Thor asks what the meaning of this is, why dost they attack him? Phoenix remarks that he’s a lot faster than he remembers but even he can’t outrace another Phoenix blast. Thor calls out to them to stop. There is no reason for them to do battle. The Wrecking Crew is their common foe.
Bulldozer states that he ain’t sure what’s going on, but Thor’s too busy to notice him. He can flatten him before he even realizes that he’s been hit. With that, Bulldozer smashes into Thor and knocks him down.
Teleporting near the stunned Thor, Nightcrawler wonders to himself that he doesn’t know why Bulldozer is suddenly helping them but he seems to have given him an opportunity to remove the Juggernaut’s helmet. But then, even as Nightcrawler reaches forward, a dazed Thunder god lashes out and knocks Nightcrawler away. As he does, he tells him to stay away from him. None may lay hands upon the Son of Odin. Thor then states that he knows not the reason for the unseemly abuse, but he will suffer it no more.
Phasing through a wall behind him, Shadowcat knows that the Juggernaut is too powerful to fight in any conventional matter. There’s no way to stop him once he starts moving. She’s got to try something radical. A stunt so desperate that she’d never dare attempt it on any other living being. Just then, Shadowcat comes up to Thor, and touches his chest. Thor proceeds to ask what their purpose is, why dost they attack? Shadowcat thinks to herself that he sounds different, nothing like the man she knows. She then tells “Juggernaut” that she’s making him intangible and phasing him into the dock. But she is going to release him so that he will become permanently bonded with it and he will never move again. Stuck in the cement, Thor calls out with a great yell.