Wolverine and the X-Men (1st series) #32

Issue Date: 
August 2013
Story Title: 
The Hellfire Saga – part two

Jason Aaron (writer), Nick Bradshaw (pencils), Walden Wong (inks), Laura Martin & Matt Milla (colorists), VC’s Clayton Cowles (letterer), Nick Bradshaw & Morry Hollowell (cover artists), Jordan D. White (associate editor), Nick Lowe (editor), Axel Alonso (editor-in-chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (Exec. Publisher)

Brief Description: 

The Siege Perilous has rejected Kid Omega and now he is being tortured by the Hellfire Academy. Toad starts to have misgivings about his role in the Hellfire Academy, which result in Husk rejecting him. In the meantime, the X-Men have no success in finding their missing students. Wolverine finally realizes the Bamfs might help. Plying them with whiskey, he has them retrace the Hellfire Club’s teleporter’s steps until they finally end up in Madripoor, where he finds a member of the Hellfire Academy, Lord Deathstrike…

Full Summary: 

The corporate headquarters of Kilgore Arms, Midtown Manhattan, where some Hellfire guards react to an intruder alert when suddenly a snowman is standing in their midst. One of them tears it apart. The snowman tells him not to be grumpy. Happy snowman just wants to play. They begin to scream as it attacks.

Some distance away, Iceman (who controls the snowman) addresses Kitty Pryde in the computer center, warning her they’ve got company. And it wasn’t him who tripped the alarm, which means she owes him a plate of pork buns from Momofuku.

She points out the security array is fairly impressive; it took her almost a full minute to hack their systems. He tells her to take her time and has more ice monsters attack the Hellfire guards. Kitty learns about Kilgore’s Latverian and Atlantean accounts, holdings in Subterranea, Shadowland, Nova Roma. But what she doesn’t find is Kade Kilgore.

Iceman warns Kitty they are about to start spewing Sentinels. Did she get what they came for? She got bupkis, she replies. No clue. This was a waste of time. Then they might as well get their money’s worth, he decides and has his ice creatures destroy the building. He promises the bills will get paid if they send it to the Jean Grey School. He’s the accountant.

Kitty adds that when they see their boss, tell him— On second thought, never mind. Something tells her the X-Men will see the little punk before that.

Doop and Warbird search the Spaceship graveyard at Chaparanga Beach.

300 Feet above New York, Rachel Grey tries to read every mind on Earth, much to Storm’s concern. No sign of the Hellfire Club so far.

Back at the school, a class finds they are being held in check by Lockheed who, with the help of a translator, informs them their assignment is not to anger him. He breathes fire and is decidedly carnivorous, so do their math. Seriously, do their math, or he will burn and eat them!

In the hallways, students walk by as Wolverine growls and vents his frustrations on a wall. Genesis figures the search for the Hellfire Club isn’t going well.

After making short work of his office, Wolverine notices the Bamfs have been stealing his whiskey again. This gives him an idea…

At the Hellfire Academy, Master Pandemonium and his demon hands are torturing a chained Kid Omega. Philistine interrupts him eventually and tells him to return to his regular classes. Quentin asks him if he wants to try to throw him into his magic mirror again. Didn’t work out so good last time.

Quentin is rejected by the Siege Perilous when Philistine tries to throw him through it.

Philistine muses that in five thousand years this has never happened. He is dealing as well as he can with the crushing disappointment, Quentin deadpans. Philistine muses perhaps there is something special about him. Or more likely, he is simply not yet worthy of the Siege’s embrace. Perhaps after a bit more tutoring.

Quentin scoffs at the idea of the Philistine being worthy. The other man replies the Siege blessed him with gifts far beyond any mortal’s worth. He likes to think because above all he possessed one important trait: He loved it.

Months ago:
A handsome archaeologist finds the Siege Perilous in a hidden chamber beneath Stonehenge. The legendary gateway to the unknown he tells another archaeologist. The portal to man’s fate. The other man congratulates him. He will be the most famous archaeologist after this discovery. He’ll send some photos to the university.

Before he can do that, the first man bashes his head in with a rock. He didn’t find the Siege for anyone else: it’s only for him! He walks into its blinding light…

The Philistine tells Quentin the Siege judged him and made him as he was always meant to be. He has served it ever since. Some day if he is worthy, Quentin may serve it as well.

Quentin mutters he thought Philistine was working for the Hellfire Club. The other man tells him he goes where the Siege wishes and for now it wishes to be here, powering this school. Quentin asks what he has done with Idie and the others. The Philistine tells him his concern is pointless. Ultimately they will all be remade. They will all submit to the Siege. And to the will of hellfire.

A guard leads Broo into the room, telling him it’s chowtime.

Later, the staff meets in the teachers’ lounge. Mystique announces they’ve had these kids for three weeks now. Kilgore wants to know if they are ready for phase two. What do they say?
Master Pandemonium demands someone give back the head he put into the refrigerator. Sauron scoffs the children are a pathetic statement to the fortitude of today’s youth. Makes him glad he never had any children of his own he allowed to live.

Eating something strange, Starblood muses Broo and Infestation are coming along nicely. But Mudbug and Glob Hermann would not have half a brain if they pooled their resources.

Dog Logan announces Idie is hiding something, not that he gives a flying flip.

Suddenly, a voice suggests maybe these kids don’t want to be bad guys. And even those that do, maybe they don’t know what they are getting into, Toad opines. Maybe they should actually educate them.

Everybody stares silently. Finally, Husk throws him out, announcing she can’t believe he embarrassed her like that. Stay away from her forever! She slams the door in his face.

At the Jean Grey School, Wolverine has laid a trail of whiskey for the Bamfs and is waiting with some leashes for them. Soon they teleport him to the Ledbetter home in Alabama, from where the Hellfire Club recruited a mutant. He asks them to pick on the trail. They teleport him away before Mudbug’s father can shoot him.

Elsewhere, Kade Kilgore welcomes Sabretooth to the academy. What does he think of the place? Sabretooth notes the volcano shot his plane down and then a swamp with eyes ate it. Seaweed dragged him into the ocean. A pack of giggling thorn bushes tried to choke him. And then a giant tree crapped exploding coconuts on his head. In other words, can he rent the place for his birthday?

If it ensures his continued cooperation with Kade’s wishes, he may do as he wishes. Kade announces. Sabretooth scoffs he tends to do that anyway. Are his people doing their part? Given the prices he charges, they better. The new Silver Samurai was quite helpful in designing this facility. Mystique is one of their best instructors and Lord Deathstrike has proven adept at the clandestine procurement of all manner of necessary resources.

He could get used to these consulting gigs, Sabes muses. A mountain of money and he ain’t lifted so much as a finger. Kade welcomes him to the world of upper management. Leave the blood spilling to the hourly workers.

The Lord Cardinals meet with other Hellfire Club members in virtual space. Among them are Szandor Shaw, Ezekiel Stane, Cordelia Frost, Kenneth and Kevin Krane, Wolfgang von Roehm and Kid Blackheart.

Elsewhere, in the cellars, Madame Mondo films Sauron torturing Quentin. An angry Toad enters unnoticed…

In the meantime, the Bamf trail leads Wolverine to the cave in which the Philistine found the Siege Perilous and they find his dead colleague.

At the Hellfire Club meeting, Manuel Enduque informs everybody about the Sentinel sales since the Dark Phoenix Cyclops incident. Current areas of development include a mutant-tracking cellphone. And Legacy Virus pepper spray, Max Frankenstein adds. Personal home Sentinels and a genetically gated living community.

Kade nervously asks Mystique if they are ready.

Wolverine and the Bamfs are in the Arctic.

On the rooftops of Madripoor, Philistine hands Lord Deathstrike the latest supply list. Master Pandemonium needs three more goats and the blood of a virgin tiger. Dr. Starblood would like the heads of a dozen Skrulls, as freshly decapitated as possible. Dog Logan is requesting more whiskey and Madame Mondo is asking for something called a Werner Herzog. He will return in three days’ time.

Deathstrike takes out his cell phone to look for the home address of Werner Herzog. Unnoticed, Wolverine and the Bamfs teleport in behind him.

Kade introduces the Club to the all new Hellions, who chant all hail Hellfire!

On the rooftop, Wolverine unsheathes his claws. Took a lot of whiskey to get here, but it was worth every drop...

Characters Involved: 

Beast, Iceman, Kitty Pryde, Rachel Grey, Storm, Warbird II, Wolverine (all X-Men)
Anole, Blindfold, Eye-Boy, Genesis II, Graymalkin, Hellion, Match, No-Girl, Pixie III, Primal, Shark-Girl (students at the Jean Grey school)

Broo, Glob Herman, Infestation, Kid Omega, Oya, Snot, Tin Man (students at the Hellfire Academy)
Dog Logan, Husk, Master Pandemonium, Lord Deathstrike, Madame Mondo, Mystique, Philistine, Sabretooth, Sauron, Toad, Wendigo, Xanto Starblood (staff at the Hellfire Academy)

Manuel Enduque, Maximilian Frankenstein Wilhelmina Kensington, Kade Kilgore (inner Circle of the Hellfire Club)

Story Notes: 

Werner Herzog is a famous German film director.

Momofuku refers to a group of famous restaurants, mainly based in New York and Toronto and each with a slightly different name denoting its individual location.

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