Wolverine: Origins #37

Issue Date: 
August 2009
Story Title: 
Romulus: Part One

Daniel Way (writer), Scot Eaton (pencils), Andrew Hennessy (inks), Andy Troy (colors), VC’s Cory Petit (letters & production), Jody LeHeup (assistant editor), John Barber (editor), Axel Alonso (group editor), Joe Quesada (editor in chief), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer), Doug Braithwaite with Art Lyon (cover art)

Brief Description: 

In Amsterdam, the carbonadium synthesizer is found by some locals and is then stolen by a policeman who gets it to Victor Hudson, Romulus’ henchman. Victor then makes his way to a Russian prison where Omega Red is being held. The entire time, a focused, determined Logan follows Victor to the prison. Once he gets there, he realizes that he’s been set up. Unfortunately for him, he is attacked by Omega Red before he can do anything about it.

Full Summary: 

At Vutluga prison in Russia, the prison manager asks the warden for his afternoon report and if there have been any incidents. When the warden replies seventeen, the manager asks only seventeen? The warden states that that the prisoners are listless and that many of them have complained of feeling drained. The manager states that he feels much the same way. He then asks if there have been any incidents within the solitary confinement unit. The warden informs that there have been none. The manger mutters ‘yet,’ seeming to sense the impending doom.

Holding his glass of vodka, the warden asks the manager why Rossovich was sent there, why them? The manager replies God’s will perhaps. When the warden asks him if he believes that, the manager says that he does not and that he suspects there are other forces at work. Forces they should pray never to know. With that, they down their vodka.

On a cell phone, a man by the name of Lavrinenno calls defense minister Oleg Konstantinov’s office and tells him that he has information to trade. Once Konstantinov gets on the line, he tells Lavrinenno that it’s good to hear from him and asks him how his sister is. Lavrinenno informs him that she is dead; he murdered her in a garage in Skrotja nine years ago. But they both know this.

When Konstantinov asks him what his information is, Lavrinenno tells him that the Wolverine is there in Novosibirsk. Konstantinov asks if he is certain and Lavrinenno replies that he is, he just saw him a few moments ago. Hearing this, Konstantinov tells Lavrinenno, who is just entering his residence, to put Wolverine on the phone. Sure enough, standing in the hallways into Lavrinenno’s residence is Wolverine, having followed him home.

Once Logan is on the line, Konstantinov asks him who is backing his mission. When Logan replies “nobody, it’s personal,” Konstantinov tells him that this is of no comfort to him. Perhaps while he is in neighborhood, he would like to participate in their new capitalist society. Logan tells him to post a list and he’ll see what he can do. He’ll require payment in advance though. When Konstantinov then asks him what he requires, Logan tells him to “keep an eye on me.” Startin’ tomorrow, he wants to be spotted in Moscow, then in Odessa, maybe Tcheli. Konstantinov states in other words, anywhere he is not. After Logan admits that is the case, Konstantinov asks him who he thinks is watching him. He asks not to be intrusive but to simply know who can see him. Standing over a decapitated Lavrinenno with bloody claws, Logan tells him that he can see him. That’s all he should be worryin’ about.

Later, entering his hotel room, Logan reflects on how Konstantinov’s fake broadcast will buy him a few days at the most. Eventually, Romulus will see through it. But a few days is all he needs. Victor Hudson knows he’s followin’ him. Been doin’ it since New York, nine days ago. He’s been tryin’ to give him the slip but he can’t. Not anymore, not ever again, he’s got his scent. Victor is Romulus’s right-hand man, his operative, his sole physical interface with the rest o’ the world. That’s Romulus’s greatest strength, nobody’s ever seen him – includin’ Victor.

Born blind an’ mute, Victor’s perfectly suited for the job. He could torture him all day an’ night and he’ll never tell him nothin’ – he can’t. But if he follows him long enough, an’ if his play through Konstantinov works an’ he thinks it’s safe, he’ll lead him back to his master. Up ‘til now, there were two things holdin’ him back from goin’ directly at Romulus. He didn’t know how to find him an’, even if he did, gettin’ to him meant goin’ directly through his son, Daken. Now, finally, he’s got a trail to follow an’ with Daken off doin’ his own thing there ain’t nothin’ that Romulus can throw in his way to stop him.

In solitary confinement in the Russian prison, a sick Omega Red notices that his dinner has arrived. When the old man slides Omega’s dinner into him, he tells him to make it quick. Omega asks if that is because he has to bring the cup and plate back with him and then says to him that he has AIDS. That is why they are using him for this task, because he is already dead. The old man replies no, he volunteered. Omega says so he wants him to kill him? But there is so little life left in him, it is hardly worth his effort. Tossing the cup and plate out of his cell, he tells him to take it, it doesn’t agree with him.

Picking up the dinnerware, the old man tells him that his sentence was for ten years but then he got this #$%@in’ disease. As he starts to cry he adds that he’s going to die in the prison alone. Smiling, Omega tells him that he won’t be alone. Banging on the door, the old man tells Omega to do it. He knows who he is; he could kill everyone in this hell! Why is he waiting?

In Amsterdam, a diver finds the carbonadium synthesizer and brings it to his buddy, Alfons, on the shore. Taking it from him, Alfons is excited to see it and kisses him on the side of his face in excitement. When his diving friend then tells him that he’s sorry, Alfons asks for what? He has just made him a very rich man. His diving friend then brandishes a weapon and stabs Alfons in the neck, killing him.

As he begins to stash Alfons’ body into the river, the diver is confronted by a police officer, who orders him to stop moving and drop his weapon. When the diver does, the policeman shoots him and then gathers up the synthesizer. He proceeds to call Romulus, who is on a train, and tells him that he has it, just as he said. The cop then reminds Romulus not to forget that they had a deal. The cop gives Romulus what he wants and Romulus gives the cop what he wants. Romulus tells him not to worry; he will get exactly what he deserves.

Two days later in Krasnoyarsk, wearing his yellow and blue costume, Logan thinks to himself that Romulus seems to have a thing ‘fer trains. Makes sense, every continent on the globe ‘cept Antarctica is covered by a network o’ old railway tracks, most of ‘em forgotten. Hidden ‘cause nobody’s lookin’ for ‘em. Every track in a rail system’s connected to every other track in that system. An’ every system’s connected with every other system at the switchyards. Everything is connected. That’s what he’s lookin’ for, a connection. Observing Victor entering a train via the use of binoculars, he thinks he just found it and proceeds to leap towards the train.

In the prison, the old man brings Omega a letter and tells him that he was told to bring him this. Reading it, Omega begins to laugh. The old man asks him if it is good news. Omega replies very good news. By dawn, his suffering will be over.

Waking up on top of the train, Logan realizes that the sun is up an’ the train’s stopped. Seeing Victor walk off into the woods, he follows him, wondering where he is going. Seeing a shelter with a ladder, Logan wonders if this is it and if this is where he hides himself. Reaching the top of the ladder, Logan discovers that it’s locked from the outside and determines that somebody on the other side o’ is let Victor in.

Logan assumes that it’s Romulus and angrily slashes through the barricade and makes his way in the courtyard of a prison. Logan thinks to himself that it makes sense. It’s fortified, secure, remote an’ even though everybody knows it exists, they pretend it doesn’t. Nobody’s lookin’ ‘cause nobody wants to see. This is where the monsters live, but not for much longer.

Making his way down the hallway, Logan senses that the place already reeks o’ death an’ not the natural kind. At that moment, Logan sees that the door to one of the cells has crushed a man – the old man that was serving Omega his dinner. Running through the prison, Logan can sense that somethin’s wrong there and finds all the prisoners and guards dead. Logan sees that it has been burnt and that Romulus has killed everybody off, cuttin’ ties. He knows that Romulus knew he was coming but how?

Just then, Logan sees a familiar sight, the carbonadium synthesizer. He dropped that in a river in Amsterdam, how did it end up? He then recalls that Victor was carrying a suitcase when he got on the train. He was lookin’ so hard for a hidden connection, he missed the obvious one. He’s been set up. Victor knew he was trailin’ him and he led him there by the nose. All his moves, all his plans an’ he still walked right into Romulus’s trap. He was a fool, a damn fool. Wrapping his coils around his neck, Omega tells him “and now you will die.”

Characters Involved: 


Victor Hudson

Omega Red



Defense Minister Oleg Konstantinov

Various unnamed employees of Defense Minister Konstantinov

Various guards and inmates of Vutluga prison in Russia (all unnamed)

Various residents of Amsterdam (Alfons is the only one named)

Unnamed police officer in Amsterdam

Story Notes: 

Logan tossed the carbonadium synthesizer into a river in Amsterdam back in Wolverine Origins #15.

Omega Red was born Arkady Gregorivich. Arkady Rossovich is one of his aliases. He was transformed into Omega Red by the KGB, so he could be a Russian super-soldier. Years ago, Team X stole a device called the carbonadium synthesizer, which was a device that was used to stabilize Omega Red’s mutant power. Omega Red’s powers are as follows: he is a mutant with the ability to secrete bodily pheromones deadly to everyone in his immediate vicinity. This power greatly drains his energy, requiring him to absorb the life force of others. He also has superhuman strength gained from the KGB’s enhancement. Omega Red’s arms were implanted with long carbonadium coils that he can extend and retract through openings in his wrists. The coils serve as both a conduit and a stabilizing factor for his mutant pheromones.

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