Wolverine (2nd series) #67

Issue Date: 
March 1993
Story Title: 
Valley O’ Death!

Larry Hama (script), Mark Texeira (pencils & cover), Texeira & Palmiotti (inks), Steve Buccellato (colors), Pat Brosseau (letters), Bob Harras (editor), Tom DeFalco (editor-in-chief)

Brief Description: 

In order to find Logan, the X-Men enlist the assistance of Maverick. They find him in Manhattan, tracking down a mutant serial killer. They bring him back to Salem Center and learn from him that Terry Adams is in fact Tyuratam, a Russian space center. With this new information, the X-Men head out there to find Logan. In the Kazhak desert, Logan, along with the assistance of his angel, makes the trek to his ultimate destination – Terry Adams. Once he reaches there, the two KGB agents that shot him and left him for dead come back after him in order to collect a bounty on him that was put there by the Hand. Logan takes them out with ease and commandeers their armored car. Using it, Logan enters the space center and eventually encounters his angel. Only this time, she doesn’t have wings and she speaks Russian. The lady unwittingly proceeds to take Logan to the building that houses her father, the Soviet super astronaut known as Epsilon Red.

Full Summary: 

As Logan’s “dead” body lies in the wreckage of the bus, it is being eaten by jackals while vultures fly above. He thinks to himself that some mornin’s it just don’t pay to get up. He means, ol’ LBJ is safe at home in the Great Society directin’ his war on poverty and here he is, shot and left for dead in some stinkin’ Kazhak desert, somewhere in the stinkin’ USSR! Is it really up to guys like him to save the world from Communism? He yells out that he doesn’t think so and proceeds to rise up, unleash his claws and knocks the jackals off of him.

Alone, he recognizes that the KGB border guards copped his jeans, boots, an’ his hat and that there’s nothing to wear but a crazy Halloween outfit. Putting on his yellow and blue costume, he is happy that it at least fits. He also notices that there’s somethin’ familiar about it. A voice behind him informs him that it’s a Wolverine costume. Logan quips that he didn’t know them little furballs came in that color-scheme. He then notices that the voice is coming from the angel. He tells her that she reminds him of somebody. The angel asks that she does? Maybe it’s the wings. Logan replies right, the wings and asks her where they are going. The angel tells him Terry Adams, remember? Logan replies that he’s supposed to kill him, right? The angel says to him that he’ll figure it out. With that, they begin walking through the desert.

At Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters, Professor Charles Xavier tells Jubilee that it was inexcusable. As she proceeds with cleaning up Wolverine’s room, Jubilee tells him that Wolvy didn’t mean to trash his room and, besides, she’s cleanin’ it up for him and… Xavier replies that isn’t what he meant. He meant that his failure to anticipate this turn of events was inexcusable. He should have known the death of Mariko and the real death of Silver Fox, one on top of the other… All of that egregious manipulation of his memory – the combination of the psychic trauma and neurological tampering must have triggered a systems crash. Jubilee adds that now Wolvy thinks he’s back in 1967 and on a mission to kill this Terry Adams, whoever he is. She tells Xavier that they have to find him before he, before he…

Just then, Colossus interrupts them and asks Xavier if he remembers that they found out from Wraith that Maverick was the case-officer on the Terry Adams assignment. When Xavier says yes, Colossus informs him that they found Maverick and that Psylocke, Scott, and he are going to meet him in a penthouse on the upper east side of Manhattan.

At the penthouse in Manhattan, Scott Summers, the mutant known as Cyclops, asks Psylocke if she is sure she wants him to blow the door in. Psylocke replies that she knows there was death in there. Violence and pain leave behind an indelible psychic signature -a horrid cold vibration. Scott notices a dead lady floating in mid-air and asks what is going on there. Did the killer suspend her with near-invisible monofilaments? Colossus waves his hand over her body and mentions that there are no wires on her – it is a gravity field or telekinesis. Psylocke waves her hand below her confirms that it is telekinesis and she is the source. She asks how, the victim is clearly dead.

The answer comes from Maverick, who informs her that it’s like rigor mortis. The effect will gradually fade away and she will fall. He then informs them that she was a mutant. Not a full blown in-your-face mutant. All the adrenaline pumped into her system by her strangulation has amplified the effect. When she was alive, she was barely able to make a roulette ball stop on her number or make her dice fall on a natural. Still, she made quite a bundle before she got banned from the casinos. He has been tracking the thing that killed her. He was too late to save her, but he thinks he hurt whatever it was before it got away. There had been three other cases just like that one. He then informs them that there’s something out there, stalking mutants. They have a serial killer on their hands.

In the desert, Logan asks the angel if this is the way to Terry Adams. The angel tells him that it’s just another hundred miles or so if he can make it. Logan answers that it takes more’n a measly half-dozen AK slugs to put him down for the count. The angel tells him that his healing factor doesn’t work on thin air and that he’s lost a lot of blood and fluids and he’s not replenishing them. There’s also the heat and the resultant dehydration which can cause… Logan tells her that he knows. He’s already joinin’ the soft parade. As he adds that everybody’s marchin’ these days, they walk past the visions of protestors from the past.

As they continue to walk, Logan says that the marchers are plodding along to the beat o’ one drum or the other. It was the Summer of Love before the Tet Offensive and Israeli super Sherman tanks were sluggin’ it out with Syrian T-40s in the Sinai for six days. Just then, the angel notices, that he said “were.” Logan asks what the tense matters. The angel tells him that it matters whether he thinks he’s actually seeing that white phosphorus round light up that T-40 or whether he perceives it as a vivid memory. Logan hallucinates that the tanks are shooting at each other until he collapses.

As he does, he thinks to himself this is rich. He has a floatin’ angel askin’ him if he thinks he’s seein’ things or not. Pushing himself up off the sand, Logan tells the angel that he knows what’s real. The sand is real, the sun is real. Those bullets were real, and the circlin’ vultures are real. The angel tells him that death can be real too. She adds that even his mutant healing factor can’t generate tissue without protein.

At a trading post in the Hindu Kush, Ahmed tells the women gathered around him and Yuri that the short foreigner showed them his I.D. and claimed he was military intelligence so Yuri shot him. Yuri laughs and says that he got the jeans and boots while Ahmed got the hat. They threw away the shirt; there were too many bullet holes in it. An old man tells them that maybe it is not a wise thing to wear a cowboy hat in the Hindu Kush these days. Yuri asks him what that is supposed to mean. The old man holds up a wanted poster that has Logan’s picture on it. He adds that he doesn’t want to be mistaken for that poor devil. The Hand is offering 100 million Yen for his head.

In the desert, Logan lies on the sand in a prone state. When the vultures land and begin to approach him, he kills one of them and proceeds to eat it. He mentions that it’s a bit stringy but it’s protein. He then asks the angel how far it is to Terry Adams now.

In the Kazhak desert, Yuri and Ahmed pull their vehicle up to the bus they left earlier. When they enter the bus they notice that the foreigner is gone. Worth a hundred million yen and he’s gone. They deduct that if the jackals drug him off, they can track them to their den and Ahmed points out that the prints on the ground aren’t jackal prints, they’re boot-prints. He suggests that some thieving back-stabbers stole their body and are going to collect the reward. Yuri informs him that it’s only one man and he hasn’t collected it yet. He’s walking across a desert carrying a corpse unless, he don’t suppose it might be… Ahmed asks what. Yuri says no, impossible. He saw the bullets strike his chest. They need to track down the body-snatcher and take back their prize.

In Salem Center, Cyclops tells Xavier that Maverick has stumbled onto something that affects all of them. He’s found… Xavier cuts him off and asks him if he’s forgotten his obligation to his teammate Wolverine. He was supposed to find out who Terry Adams is. Maverick tells Xavier that he can solve that mystery. First of all, Terry Adams is a where, not a who. He asks if he minds if he taps into his database. Xavier answers to go right ahead, he’s made himself at home in every other way.

As Maverick punches up the right map segments and zooms in on the pertinent quadrant, he shows Xavier, Cyclops, Psylocke and Jubilee Tyuratam, the former Soviet space center. A lot of them door-kicker types couldn’t wrap their tongues around those Slavic dipthongs so they took to calling it Terry Adams. Xavier mentions that it is a non-official cryptonym only in use among field operatives. No wonder they couldn’t track it through channels. Psylocke asks Soviet space center? That facility should have been terminated with the collapse of the Communist regime. All those rubles that could have refurbished factories…

Xavier tells her that their shuttle launch technology is still a viable foreign currency magnet. Communications satellites still need to be orbited and serviced. Maverick says speaking of satellites, here’s the latest spy-eye-in the sky sneaky-peeky photographs complete with analysis annotations. He proceeds to point out that all of the mechanical patterns of light spots that circle the whole installation in the infrared shot to them. He tells them that the ground registers lighter where it was recently dug up and replaced. The pattern is the unmistakable signature of the latest Russian mechanical mine-layer.

When Xavier asks what the significance is of that piece of intelligence, Maverick informs him that the minefield didn’t exist back in 1967. It wasn’t in the mission prep folder. It wasn’t included in the briefing notes. As far as Logan knew, there was clear sailing between the outer fence and the launch pads. He’ll get blown away. Xavier mentions to Maverick that he thinks he underestimates Wolverine’s mutant abilities.

Near the space station, Logan stands outside a tall fence covered in barbed wire. He sniffs the air and recognizes the smell o’ fresh tilled soil, the sharp aroma o’ nitrite-based detonators, and that awful “dead-rubbed” stench o’ second generation plastic explosives. He tells the angel that there is no way he can tip toe through the field o’ bouncin’ Bettys. Not unless he can learn to fly right quick. The angel tells him that there are other ways.

Just then, a tank rushes towards Logan. Ahmed points out to Yuri there he is and that he can count those crisp thousand yen notes already. Yuri asks how their target can be alive. Ahmed asks him what it matters. Just gun him down and he’ll be quite dead again. As they open up fire on Logan he realizes that it is a Russian armored car attacking him. It must be those KGB border guards again – the ones who shot him and left him for the buzzards.

Yuri and Ahmed spot Logan start to run towards them and decide that the best thing to do is to run him down. Before they can, Logan is able to bury himself in the sand. Once Ahmed runs over where Logan should have been he asks Yuri where their target is, he doesn’t see him back there. Yuri tells him that he can’t just disappear, unless he’s underneath them. At that exact moment, Logan slices through the bottom of the armored car and kills both Yuri and Ahmed in seconds.

In Salem Center, Cyclops, Psylocke, Iceman, and Colossus board the Blackbird. Cyclops informs his fellow X-Men that they will be taking off for their destination, Tyuratam, via super-sonic speed. When they take off, Iceman asks Colossus if he has any beef about them making this incursion into his home turf. Colossus asks home? The Kazhak desert is to his home in Lake Baikal, Siberia what Tucson, Arizona is to Fairbanks, Alaska. Iceman asks long way apart huh and that he doesn’t know anybody there. Colossus tells him about three thousand miles.

At the main gate of Tyuratam space center, a soldier tells his dog, Sasha, to relax. It’s just one of their BTRs. He wonders why it has KGB border guard markings on it. That was a political organ of the defunct party. They also notice that a local vagabond is behind the wheel. The guard tells him to get down off the piece of state property. Logan, his face wrapped in Ahmed’s traditional garb, tells him that he is GRU, military intelligence. He flashes a badge and tells the guard to note the Stavka supreme headquarters designation and the level of security clearance. He asks the guard if there is any problem. The guard lets him pass with no incident and tells him that there is no problem at all. Logan knows that credentials and attitude can get you past most anythin’ even inside a launch base the size of a small city.

Inside the armored car, Logan asks the angel where she is. He is there inside Terry Adams. He’s not supposed to take out the whole place, is he? As he continues to drive, he tells her that she has to take him to his target. As he turns the corner between buildings, he finds her but she doesn’t have wings. He tells her there she is, he’s been lookin’ all over for her. The young blonde-haired lady asks him, in Russian, what has she done. She then says that the KGB is no more. Logan asks her what is going on, doesn’t she speak English anymore. He also asks her where her scar is. The lady begins to speak English and Logan tells her to get into the car.

As she gets in, she asks him if he is security service. Logan tells her this time around, he’s military intelligence. He then asks her where he is. He orders her to take him to him and to get the show on the road. The lady asks him? He wants to go to… She then tells him to make the next right. Logan proceeds down the long ramp and stops in front of a solid steel door. He mentions that they must be expecting some fierce visitors but he doubts he never expected the likes of him. He then removes his hood and reveals his likeness to the lady.

As Logan puts his hand on the door he asks who the guy is behind the door. The lady asks him doesn’t he know? He’s Epsilon Red, the Soviet super astronaut. She asks him why wouldn’t he know unless he’s not military intelligence? Shocked, she realizes who he is, he’s the one her mother told him about. He’s the one who years ago came to kill her father. She adds that she doesn’t think he can kill him this time either!

Characters Involved: 

Colossus, Cyclops, Iceman, Jubilee, Psylocke, Wolverine (all X-Men)

Professor X


Yuri and Ahmed (soldiers from Kazakh)

Various residents of Hindu Kush (all unnamed)

Various Russian guards (all unnamed)

Russian lady at Tyuratam (unnamed – Epsilon Red’s daughter)

In Wolverine’s hallucinations:

An angel (unnamed)

Various protestors (unnamed)

Story Notes: 

Yuri and Ahmed shot Logan and left him for dead in Wolverine (2nd series) #66.

The Summer of Love was the summer of 1967. The Tet Offensive took place between January and June 1968 during the Vietnam War.

Bouncing Bettys were a type of mine that ejected an explosive several feet off the ground to the target’s torso height.

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