Wolverine (2nd series) #15

Issue Date: 
October 1989
Story Title: 
The Gehenna Stone Affair part 5 - Homecoming

Peter David (written by), John Buscema (penciled by), Bill Sienkiewicz (inked by), Ken Bruzenak (lettered by), Glynis Oliver (colored by), Bob Harras (edited by), Tom DeFalco (bossed by)

Brief Description: 

In the streets of Madripoor, Wolverine saves Lindsay McCabe from Chief Tai and his men. When he asks Tai what that was all about, he gets nowhere. He then decides that, for answers, he needs to go to the Princess Bar. When he gets there, he finds O’Donnell and Lindsay in a huge fight. After Lindsay storms out, Patch and O’Donnell discuss the goings-on of the past events. Patch laments about the fact that his “secret” identity is no longer very secret when Archie storms in, angry at Wolverine for not letting him toss Burt out of the plane when he had a chance. Wolverine calms the situation down while O’Donnell tells them about the stone and how it was taken from him by the Prince’s aid, Johann. Just then, they are interrupted by Chief Tai and his men. A huge brawl breaks out until Wolverine pins Tai up against the wall and gets everybody to calm down. At that point, Wolverine starts to put the pieces together of what is going on. Turns out, that each piece of the stone makes people crazy, except him – he’s already nasty. That’s a bad sign, as the Prince of Madripoor has the last piece. They need to head up to the prince’s castle and defuse the situation. On the streets of Madripoor, Burt meets up with some followers of Ba’al. They have taken a prostitute and are going to make her a sacrifice. Burt fights for her safety, until he is subdued. Just when it looks the worse, Jessica Drew shows up and takes out two of the three vampires with gunshots. The third vampire takes off with Jessica and Burt in pursuit. When the vampire finally gets to his destination, Jessica recognizes it as the prince’s castle. She enters the castle so she can warn the prince about the impending danger When she gets to his chamber’s, the prince introduces her to his guest, Ba’al!!!!

Full Summary: 

Perched on a rooftop, Wolverine thinks to himself as he watches to goings-on below him. He knows that people can change over time, but he hasn’t been away from Madripoor for that long and besides people don’t change that much. He can’t believe his eyes. There in Madripoor, Tai has always done his job with total calm. He can’t seem to understand than why at this point is he popping his cork at Lindsay McCabe????

Chief Tai, surrounded by his fellow police offices, has a hold of Lindsay’s sweater and is grilling her, asking her where it is! Lindsay responds by telling him that she doesn’t have it, she never did. O’Donnell did, and now he doesn’t even have it anymore. Chief Tai retorts by calling her a liar!! They’ll convince her to tell the truth.

At that point, Tai’s fellow police officers convene on Lindsay and proceed to beat the truth out of her. Just then, Wolverine comes down from his perch and tells them that he will have to convince them to back off from her. Chief Tai instructs Kwan, one of the other officers, to dispatch this costumed imbecile. Wolverine takes him out with one good punch to his kisser, saying that wasn’t nice. They don’t hear him making fun of their duds.

Another cop comes up behind Wolverine, brandishing a nightstick. He tells Wolverine that someone is in serious trouble. Wolverine retorts by telling him that he’s got that right. With that, Wolverine pops his claws and swipes at the cop’s wooden nightstick. The cop, sure of himself, brags to Wolverine that he missed. Just then, the cop’s nightstick falls into four pieces. Wolverine engages him in fisticuffs and tells them that he never misses. He then says, “Don’t you get it, I could slice and dice you guys, but it’s too nice a night.” With that, he takes the cop he was fighting with out with a shot to the gut and the other cop sneaking up behind him with a backhand punch to the face.

Lindsay takes the opportunity to escape in all of the confusion. Brandishing a pistol, Chief Tai yells at her to stop; they’re not finished with her yet. Wolverine catches the pistol in his claws and tells Tai that he is finished with her. Wolverine then grabs him by the collar and pins him up against a wall. Tossing the gun aside, Wolverine asks Tai what is wrong with him; this isn’t like him. Tai, defiant in his words, responds by telling him that he doesn’t know who he is, and he certainly doesn’t know how he does things. But he can tell Wolverine this: he’s a dead man! Wolverine lets him go and takes off, he has more important things to tend to.

After that little warning from Tai, Wolverine has gone back to his place and changed his clothes into his Madripoor disguise of Patch. As he walks down the street, he thinks to himself that it should feel good to be back in Madripoor after that brouhaha in Frisco. Should, but instead it feels wrong somehow. Can’t shake the feeling that it has something to do with the whole Gehenna Stone affair, but that’s impossible, isn’t it???

Patch enters the Princess Bar, and notices that there’s not as much chatter as there usually is. There’s a reason for that, though, for from the back room O’Donnell and Lindsay are shouting at each other. Patch opens up the back-room door to witness Lindsay smacking O’Donnell across the face and calling him gutless. O’Donnell, enraged, raises his hand to smack Lindsay. He’ll show her guts....

Just then Patch grabs his arm and tells him to simmer down. Rhetorically he asks if the whole town has gone nuts??? Lindsay responds by saying, Right, nuts!! With that, she gives O’Donnell a swift kick to the nether region. While O’Donnell is writhing around on the floor in pain, Lindsay turns her anger to... Patch. She puts her finger in his chest and yells at him for “saving” her butt twice tonight, and she wants “Wolverine” to butt out!!! Wolverine, shocked, says to her “You knew???” Lindsay storms out of the room while telling him that of course she knew, Jessica told her. And they can all rot!

O’Donnell sarcastically thanks Patch for his help. Patch responds to him by telling him that he’ll be alright but, if he has kids, they’ll be stupid He then asks O’Donnell what that was all about. O’Donnell sits at his desk with his head in his hands. He doesn’t know, but can he stop pretending that he doesn’t know that he’s Wolverine now? When Wolverine asks him how he knew, O’Donnell indicates to him that Lindsay told him. Wolverine is somewhat distraught at this time. When it happened with Drew, he thought she was yanking him. He relays the story of what happened to O’Donnell.

It happened when they were chasing this plane filled with... you don’t want to know what with. Drew had already jumped down onto it. He put on his costume and leaped down after her. When he got there, she said, “Wolverine, it’s about time!” After they took care of business and got back into the plane, he confronted Drew about what she had said. Jessica indicates to Wolverine that of course she knew. Wolverine responds with that is bull and somebody should’ve told him. Jessica retorts with that wasn’t an option. When somebody with claws and a temper wants to believe he’s fooling people, no one wants to be the one to say, “Hey, Wolvie, what’s with the stupid eye patch?”

Wolverine laments to O’Donnell that the joke is on him and that everybody must think that he’s a class-A loon. O’Donnell agrees, he is a class-A loon. However, most folks in Madripoor have aliases. He asks Wolverine if he thinks that Tiger Tyger is her real name, or if O’Donnell is really his. He goes on to explain to Wolverine that the French foreign legion is where guys go to forget. Madripoor is where they go to remember, even if what they remember didn’t happen.

Wolverine has had enough of this and changes the topic. He asks O’Donnell what that was all about between him and Lindsay. Before O’Donnell can answer, Archie Corrigan bursts through the door and angrily points a finger at Wolverine. He blames him for what’s going on. He, Archie, wanted to push Burt out of the plane, but Wolverine told him no! He’s my brother, you said! O’Donnell, trying to lighten the mood asks Archie if he is having a good day. Archie responds by telling him to clam up!

Archie moves closer to where Wolverine is sitting and points his finger directly in his face. He continues his tirade by telling Wolverine that Burt is acting weird, even for him. If he’d only... Wolverine cuts him off and puts a single claw to Archie’s throat. He tells him to wait his turn. He then orders him to sit down. They’ll order a drink, then listen to O’Donnell, and then Archie, and then they’re going to figure out what’s going on in Madripoor.

Out on the streets of Madripoor, Burt is walking solemnly. He feels badly about walking out on Archie like that, but it’s about time he started taking him seriously. Burt then notices a scantily clad woman leaning up against the wall. She seems like a lovely young woman; wonder what she’s doing out on a night like this?? The woman then asks Burt if he would like to have gobs of fun. Burt, realizing she is a prostitute, understands why she’s out tonight.

Before he can answer, the prostitute is yanked behind a corner. Burt, showing concerned for her safety, speaks out loud that if this is some sort of come-on… He stops dead in his tracks when he turns the corner to see three vampires surrounding the woman. Two of them point out that they have been spotted. The third tells them to take care of it, while he prepares the woman for a blood sacrifice for the master!

Back in the Princess Bar, O’Donnell is relaying his story to Wolverine and Archie. After the cops took away the two dead brothers, Lindsay started acting funny. Real funny. Like coming to his place at 4 a.m. funny. She’s all over him, and he doesn’t push her away. Then the roof caved in. This goon squad, sent by the Prince of Madripoor, bursts in. They are led by Johann. Johann tells me that he, O’Donnell, has something that the Prince wants and he suggest that he turns it over now.

O’Donnell goes to get up and get it, but Lindsay grabs his arm. She doesn’t want him to give it up; it’s theirs. O’Donnell looks at her and asks her what this “stuff” is all about. Just then, two of the guards grab O’Donnell and restrain him. Johann proceeds to tell him that reticence is not a good idea, health-wise or otherwise. He leaves it up to O’Donnell. What part of his body does he want his men to break first, unless he’d care to... Cooperate, asks O’Donnell, just what he had in mind. Lindsay yells at him not to do it, don’t tell them!! O’Donnell tells her to zip it. He reaches into the dresser drawer and goes to reach for the pistol next to the stone.

Just then, the sounds of automatic rifles are clicked and Johann informs O’Donnell to not even think about it. O’Donnell, knowing he can’t win, tosses the stone over to Johann. As Johann and his guards turn to leave, O’Donnell grabs Lindsay around the neck and points the gun to her head. He threatens to blow what little brains she has from there to Singapore unless he puts down the stone. Calmly, Johann informs him to wait to do so until they leave. It’s difficult getting brain matter out of a suit.

Wolverine points out that that was some bluff. O’Donnell indicates that it wasn’t a bluff; he didn’t do it, but when he said it, he meant it. Bad thing is Lindsay knew it. She stormed right out, and just now was the first time he’s seen her since the incident. Wolverine asks O’Donnell if his and Lindsay’s behavior strike him as strange. O’Donnell asks strange, how? Wolverine points out that Lindsay is coming on to him. He’s not questioning it, and all of the threats just aren’t like him. This town stinks so much that it’s hard to separate the aromas, but something definitely is going on. Just then, Wolverine turns around to notice Chief Tai and his men. Tai is demanding to know where it is!!

Back in the streets of Madripoor, Burt is once again faced with vampires. The lead vampire again informs the other two to get him; no one can interfere with the master’s blood sacrifice!! Burt uses his bullwhip to take down one of the vampires. When he then asks where Ba’al is, one of the vampires points out that he spoke the masters name, and for that he must die! Burt takes him down with a bullwhip to the legs. Burt is feeling pretty cocky at this point until the other vampire takes him out with a diving tackle to the gut. This vampire stands over Burt, getting ready to rip out his neck when Burt delivers a punch to his face.

While Burt and the vampire are struggling, the lead vampire is still on top of the woman. He is ordering the other one to hold Burt while he feasts in the name of Ba’al!!!!! Just then, a shot rings out and the lead vampire slouches over. Jessica Drew is standing there with a smoking gun. She apologizes, they’ll have to do lunch some other time.

As one of the vampires takes off down the street, the vampire that Burt was struggling with now has him from behind and he is threatening Burt’s life. He orders Jessica to stay back or baldy gets it. Jessica responds by telling Burt that it’s his call. Burt, angry about the baldy comment, gives the vampire an elbow to the gut. This gives Burt a chance to get away so Jessica can shoot him, which she does.

At this point, the prostitute takes her leave and runs past Jessica who sarcastically tells her that she doesn’t have to thank them or anything. Burt, gathering himself, points out to Jessica that she saw them; she saw the fake fangs, she heard what they said. They’re followers of Ba’al. Jessica responds with an affirmative, now they have to follow the follower, because if they’re still following that means that somewhere Ba’al is leading. With that, they take off down the street after the escaping vampire.

Back in the Princess Bar, a melee is occurring between Wolverine, O’Donnell and Archie on one side – and on the other, Chief Tai and his men. Wolverine thinks to himself that it’s getting so that you can’t sit around with friends and knock back a few brews without someone showing up to wreck your good time. “Curiouser and curiouser,” that’s what they said in Alice in Wonderland. That’s how I feel, like I went through the looking glass. Everyone is acting like distorted reflections of themselves. If I had any patience, I’d be losing it about now.

The melee continues with O’Donnell, Archie and Wolverine holding their own. The brawl spills out into the bar itself amongst the other patrons. Wolverine thinks to himself that he likes a fracas as well as the next guy, unless the next guy is Ghandi, but enough is enough. At that point, he goes after Chief Tai and grabs him around the neck. He pins him up against the wall and tells everybody to freeze!! One move and we’ve got Tai died! He then asks one of the other men what is going on. The man responds with they have no idea, it was all Tai’s orders. Tai starts to ramble that he wants the gem, the fragmented gem. He can’t stop thinking about it.

Wolverine then tells everybody to hold it. He asks Tai if he has been near this gem? Tai replied in the affirmative and informs Wolverine that he is under arrest. Wolverine tells him to save it for Hawaii Five-O. He then asks O’Donnell if this gem that Tai mentioned is the same one that Johann was after. O’Donnell replies that it was. Wolverine asks if Lindsay was near it too, again yes.

Wolverine holds up a picture of the stone that he just drew. He asks O’Donnell and Tai if it looked like this? Tai responds that it was different fragmentally, but that was basically it. Archie points out that Wolverine drew a picture of the gem that Burt had back in Frisco. Wolverine responds that it was; the same one that made him so crazed. He points out that, since the gem O’Donnell had was similar, they may both be pieces of the Gehenna Stone.

O’Donnell informs Wolverine that he’s never heard of the Gehenna Stone, but the gem is now with the prince, remember?? Wolverine, with a very concerned look on his face, points out that the most powerful man in Madripoor has a gem that puts people at each other’s throats? He then heads out of the Princess Bar with Archie, O’Donnell and Chief Tai in tow. O’Donnell tells Patch to hold it, but Patch responds with the fact that there’s no time.

On a dark path, the vampire from the failed attempt on the prostitute’s life is walking with a purpose. He turns around, he felt that there was somebody behind him, but he sees nobody and continues on his trek. Up in a tree, Jessica wonders where Burt headed off to? She then notices the road that the vampire is on, leads straight to the castle of the Prince of Madripoor.

Back over near the Princess Bar, Patch asks Archie if he knows where Burt is. Archie responds by telling him that they had an argument. Burt was becoming obsessive about the stone, saying we had to find the whole thing. Patch responds by asking him doesn’t he get it???? Burt was right about everything. The Gehenna Stone does exist and, as it gets reassembled, every individual, outstanding piece gets stronger. It brings out the worst in whoever’s near it except him, because he’s always nasty.

He also has a sick feeling that piece is the last one, which goes with his other sick feeling that Ba’al ain’t dead!!! The more pieces that were assembled, the stronger the Gehenna Stone becomes. If the prince has the single outstanding piece, he’s in mortal danger!!!!!!!!

Back at the steps of the prince’s castle, Jessica climbs up the stairs. She enters the castle and is greeted by the prince’s doorman, Saloman. She is then greeted by the Prince’s aid, Johann. Jessica informs him that she needs to see the prince; it’s urgent. Johann leads her down the hall, informing her that the prince always has time for his favorite agent. They reach the Prince’s chambers and Jessica informs the prince that he may have an intruder in the.... The prince cuts her off and asks her what intruder is she talking about? He then introduces her to his guest, Ba’al!!!

Characters Involved: 


Jessica Drew
Archie Corrigan
Burt Corrigan (Archie’s brother)

O’Donnell (owner of the Princess Bar)
Lindsay McCabe

Captain Tai
Madripoor police (unnamed)

Various residents of Madripoor (unnamed)

Various “vampires” (followers of Ba’al)

Prince of Madripoor
Jonah (Aide to the prince of Madripoor)
Prince of Madripoor guards (unnamed)
Saloman (doorman for the Prince)

Jessica Drew

Story Notes: 

This is the fifth part of “The Gehenna Stone Affair” that runs from Wolverine (2nd Series) #11-16, during which the title went bi-weekly.

Hawaii Five-O was an immensely popular television series which ran for 12 series between 1968 and 1980. It featured a fictional Hawaiian police force, led by Steve McGarrett, played by Jack Lord.

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