Wolverine: Origins #38

Issue Date: 
September 2009
Story Title: 
Romulus: Part Two

Daniel Way (writer), Scot Eaton (pencils), Andrew Hennessy (inks), Andy Troy & Rob Schwager (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), Mike Mayhew (1940s variant cover)

Brief Description: 

A mysterious man makes his way from a Russian airport and onto a train that stops at the back entrance to the prison, killing two FSB agents in the process. Meanwhile, Wolverine and Omega Red continue to battle inside the Russian prison. Using the life forces of the prisoners, Omega is able to continuously pound on Wolverine unmercifully with great strength. Through cunning and using Omega’s obsession with the C-synth to his advantage, Wolverine manages to survive and trap Omega underneath a large prison gate. Eventually, he makes his way out of the prison, where he collapses. Once he does, the mysterious man reveals himself – Wild Child – and he is ready to inflict more pain and damage to Wolverine upon Romulus’ direction.

Full Summary: 

9 hours ago at Pulkovo International airport in Russia, two FSB agents show a picture of a man and ask the director of security if they have detained him. The director of security admits that they have. He arrived on a flight from the United States this afternoon. How he was able to board the flight is quite a mystery when taking into consideration he is wanted for questioning by at least seven international agencies. They are holding him until the embassies sort out the matter.

Stoic-faced, the agents inform him that the man is to come with them immediately. The director replies that he’s sorry but that’s impossible and that the FSB must wait in line with everyone else. The agents tell him that he misunderstands. They are informing him of what is to happen, not asking whether or not it is possible. Showing a gun inside their jackets, the agents add that the detained is to come with them immediately. The director answers that he sees but may he ask on whose authority. Walking away, the agents tell him if they were him, they would not.

At Vutluga prison, Omega Red and Wolverine are locked in fierce combat. As they do so, Omega asks Wolverine why he struggles so much. Is this not what he wanted? Why else would he have come to this place if not to die? Struggling against Omega’s coils, Wolverine thinks to himself that, when he came there, he thought he’d find Romulus. He should’ve pulled back immediately, regrouped and came up with a plan. But he’s been waiting so long that he charged in. Getting tossed into a wall, Wolverine realizes that he was unprepared, stupid, and blind. This was a set-up, an ambush.

After getting hit in the eyes with Omega’s coils, Wolverine is physically blinded. Lying on the ground, bleeding, Wolverine recalls that back durin’ the Cold War, Russian scientists came up with a metal they called carbonadium. It was their answer to adamantium. But in their rush to please their bosses, the scientists glossed over one very important detail – carbonadium is highly radioactive. An’ Red’s body is shot through with the stuff.

Holding the carbonadium synthesizer in his hand, Omega is glad to have it at last. He mentions that all those years Wolverine kept it from him, the metal eating away at his body, at his mind. The C-synth is the only thing that can permanently stabilize the radiation. It was torture he cannot describe. Instead, he will show him. He informs Wolverine that he knows of his healing factor. He knows that killing him will take a very long time but now that he has everything he ever wanted, he is in no hurry.

6 hours ago at Obakril train station, a father hurries his son onto the train; they don’t want to miss it. At that moment, two Russian police officers push past the boy. As the train leaves the station, the boy sees the officers investigating the area around the trash dumpsters. Near the dumpsters, the officers find two dead agents and wonder what they should do, they are FSB. They then wonder why the FSB would be there, and who on earth could do this without being seen.

In the prison, Omega asks Wolverine where his friends are. Why do they not come to save him? Catching one of Omega’s coils, Wolverine tells him that he don’t need ‘em to take care o’ his punk ass and attempts to pull Omega towards him. When he doesn’t budge him, Omega flips him up against the wall as if he was a small toy. Landing on the ground with a thud, Wolverine recognizes that Omega is so much stronger than last time and wonders how. When one of the prisoners weakly asks for help, Wolverine realizes why.

There was a reason why those Russian scientists chose Arkady Rossovich to become Omega Red. His mutant abilities masked the negative effects of the carbonadium. Red can “feed” off of others, to siphon off their life force an’ use it for himself. It’s only temporary though an’ it’s only effective when he has ready access to plenty o’ healthy “donors.” Inside a prison filled with a number of inmates, Wolverine says that means he couldn’t have picked a worse place to fight this bastard if he’d tried.

On the train, the boy wakes his father from his slumber and tells him that they have arrived at their destination. Gazing at his watch, the man tells his son that is not possible. The boy proceeds to ask why the train has stopped then. Just then, the conductor makes an announcement and apologizes for the delay and that the will be underway in only a few moments. Putting his arm around his son, the man tells him that there was nothing to worry about, nothing at all. Outside, where the train had stopped, there are fresh footsteps in the snow heading towards the back entrance of the prison.

Inside the prison, Omega tells Wolverine to just close his eyes and go to sleep; this will be over before he knows it. Gathering his thoughts, Wolverine realizes that if he doesn’t get the hell outta there soon, the prisoners are doomed. Red’ll drain ‘em dry. An’ it ain’t like he’s doin’ too good there either. His vision’s comin’ back sorta but he’s gonna keep that little secret to himself for now.

With that, Wolverine leaps towards Omega but misses him on purpose. Dodging him easily, Omega tells Wolverine that he’s over there blind man. Wolverine knows that but the C-synth is over there. Red’s been playin’ it real smart so far – usin’ his tentacles, keepin’ his distance and stayin’ clear of his claws. If he’s gonna have any chance at all, he has to bring him in close. Seeing Wolverine holding the C-synth, Omega angrily tells him to give it back to him. Holding it out, Wolverine dares him to come an’ get it.

As Omega rushes towards him, Wolverine assesses the situation. He’s half-blind, can only use one arm, an’ he’s about as weak as he can be an’ still stand up. He can’t believe this was his plan. When Omega gets in close, Wolverine stabs him in the coils and then gets backfisted for his efforts. As he continues to battle him in close, Wolverine knows that Omega is stronger than he is, taller than he is, an’ heavier than he is. He can use those last two things against him. Using the strength he can muster, Wolverine is able to stab Omega in his shoulder and tosses him into the prison bars. As he stumbles away, Wolverine thinks to himself ‘c’mon Red, don’t give up now.’ He then says to himself ‘yeah right, like he ever has.’

Making his way into a nearby storage room, Wolverine deduces that he’s gotta find a way to even things up a bit. That was about all the toe-to-toe action he thinks he can handle right now. Seeing a bunch of chains sitting on a table, he decides that those will work. Once Omega walks into the room, Wolverine smacks him in the face with the long chain. He knows they ain’t made o’ carbonadium but they’re long and heavy an’ he can damn sure use ‘em to put some pain on the bastard. As Wolverine uses the chains against Omega, he thinks to himself that there’s not much point in doin’ this, every bit he takes out of Omega, he just replaces with a bit o’ him. But he hates this piece o’ crap and he wants to hit him as much as he can while he can.

Once Wolverine is able to knock Omega to the ground for a little while, he drops to one knee as he is in severe pain. Just then, One of Omega’s coils catch him across the neck. Wolverine recognizes that it was just a glancin’ blow – painful, but not much behind it. He notices that Red is distracted and that Red’s realized he Wolverine doesn’t have the C-synth anymore. When Omega sees it across the room, Wolverine wonders what it’s gonna be for him – the C-synth or Wolverine?

As Omega rushes towards the C-synth, a smile comes across Wolverine’s face. Using his chain, Wolverine catches the lever which brings the gate down upon Omega and into his chest, pinning him to the ground. Taking the opportunity to leave the prison, Wolverine thinks that it’d be so easy. Omega would try to keep him back with his tentacles but eventually he’d get close enough. He could sink his claws into his belly, pull to the side and watch his guts come spillin’ out. It’d be so easy.

Retracting his claws, Wolverine determines that if he finished Omega off, he’d just siphon what he needed away from the prisoners and kill every one of ‘em. Picking up the C-synth, he decides that this is far as things are gonna go there. He knows that now that he has the C-synth, Omega’ll chase after him. And eventually, he’ll catch up and when he does… At that moment, Omega yells out to Wolverine to go ahead and run coward but know that he is behind him always. When they meet next, things will go much differently. Gritting his teeth, Wolverine tells him he’s right, they will.

While Wolverine walks through the snow, injured, a man informs his boss that Wolverine has left the prison. When his boss asks about Omega Red, the man informs him that he assumes he’s dead. There’s no way he’d leave somebody that dangerous at his rear. His boss tells him that his assumption may cause him to make that very mistake. When the man states that he knows what he’s doing, his boss remarks that thus far, he’s done nothing. The man replies that the fight took everything Wolverine had. He’s weak now, barely able to walk. The boss says to him and yet, he fears him.

At the moment that Wolverine falls to the ground in a heap, dropping the C-synth, the man, Wild Child, tells his boss Romulus no, he’s just been waitin’ for the perfect opportunity.

Characters Involved: 


Omega Red

Various inmates of Vutluga prison in Russia (all unnamed)

Wild Child

Various employees of Pulkovo International Airport (all unnamed)

Two unnamed FSB agents

Various patrons and employees at the Obakril train station (all unnamed)

Various Russian police (all unnamed)

Story Notes: 

FSB stands for the Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation. It is the main domestic security service of the Russian Federation and the main successor agency of the Soviet-era Cheka, NKVD, and KGB.

Wolverine last faced off against Omega Red in Wolverine Origins #6-10.

The last time we saw Wild Child was back in Wolverine Origins #15. He also appeared in Wolverine (3rd series) #53-56. In issue #53, Wild Child soundly defeated Wolverine in battle.

Issue Information: 
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