X-Force (1st series) #80

Issue Date: 
August 1998
Story Title: 
The Fire Within

John Francis Moore (writer), Adam Pollina (penciler), Guillermo Zubiaga (background assists) Mark Morales (inker), Gloria Vasquez (colorist), Richard Starkings & Comicraft & EM (letterers), Polly Watson (assistant editor), Bobbie Chase (editor), Bob Harras (editor-in-chief)

Brief Description: 

The Director of the Board of DaCosta International reveals that he has hired specialists to take down Bobby DaCosta to end all their current problems with him. Of course they don’t realize that the problem is Reignfire, whose form has engulfed Sunspot’s body, and is wrecking havoc in Las Vegas, where Sunspot’s teammates - Moonstar, Siryn, Warpath and Meltdown - plan to rescue their friend. Moonstar uses a psychic arrow on Reignfire and learns that Sunspot is still in there and struggling to wrest control of his body. Meltdown and Reignfire exchange words and abilities, while Siryn finds Doctor Joshua and reveals more about the origin of Reignfire, and how he was the scientist responsible for introducing Sunspot’s blood to Project Nineteen. While X-Force continue to quell Reignfire’s destructive rage, they locate the disruptor, planning to free their friend from Reignfire’s hold. Eventually they trap Reignfire in a chapel, and bombard him with their powers, before using the disruptor on him, which separates Sunspot and Reignfire’s form. Sunspot, generally fine, proceeds to reabsorb all the power Reignfire stole from him, and Reignfire is left a withered husk. SHIELD arrives and takes the remains of Reignfire and Doctor Joshua into custody, leaving X-Force free. Sunspot flies off, while X-Force head to the airport and wait for his call, telling them he will take care of everything. Soon, Sunspot arrives at DaCosta International headquarters and after unintentionally frightening a receptionist, explains his situation to the Board, and is cleared of any wrong-doings - just as the specialists arrive to take care of the situation - Heroes for Hire! Arriving in San Francisco after Sunspot arranged for them to fly from Las Vegas to Boulder, then to San Fran, X-Force realize Sunspot’s trust fund is no longer frozen. Sunspot meets his friends at the airport and takes them to a warehouse which he is leasing from DaCosta International for the team’s new headquarters. X-Force are grateful for this, but wished that he had consulted them first. Meltdown decides she liked Sunspot better when he was broke as he is acting arrogant now, before Sunspot announces that he is taking them all to Hawaii for a vacation. Meanwhile, the complete opposite to Hawaii, Skids and Locus are stuck in a snow-covered wasteland. Skids tells Locus they should work together to survive, but Locus only wishes her powers weren’t cancelled out by Skids’ power so she could scatter Skids across the globe. They begin to fight, before a mysterious stranger arrives and puts them in a trance.

Full Summary: 

DaCosta International Establishes S.F. Office

By Leslie Smallwood

SF Herald Staff Writer

In order to expand their rapidly growing Pacific Rim marketplace, Brazilian multinational DaCosta International recently opened the doors of the new San Francisco regional office. Last year, the company purchased the Norton Building in the city’s financial district after Mayor Willie Brown wooed the corporation away from Vancouver, its initial choice. At a press conference, DaCosta CEO Getulio Villa-Lobos, said “We look forward to a rich and rewarding relationship with this beautiful city.”

Inside the boardroom of the San Francisco office of DaCosta International, a Board meeting is underway. ‘DaCosta International is under siege, my friends. If we don’t act now, we could lose everything to this psicopata - this madman’ Villa-Lobos tells the Board members. One of them tells Villa-Lobos that he doesn’t like it any more than he, before asking if he is certain they are talking about Roberto DaCosta. The Board member declares that during his own unfortunate encounter with him, he referred to himself as Reignfire. ‘As he did when he broke into my home’ Villa-Lobos declares, adding that he believes it to be a sign of Roberto’s mental instability.

Villa-Lobos exclaims that if Roberto, or Reignfire, or whatever he wishes to call himself believes he can threaten this Board into submission, they will prove him wrong. He announces that, to that end, he has contracted specialized professionals who can end this menace once and for all. ‘Are you talking about murder, Getulio? Good lord, man! He’s the son of this company’s founder!’ someone asks. Villa-Lobos replies that he will do anything and everything necessary to protect this company’s best interests. ‘End of discussion’.

National Security Agency Memo

From: Asst. Director Barnett Chambers

To: Agent Louisa D’Angelo

RE: X-Force


Lou, in wake of Zero Tolerance disaster, our database on the mutant strike team called X-Force needs to be revised.

Please update information on Danielle Moonstar a.k.a. Mirage a.k.a. Moonstar… Theresa Rourke a.k.a. Siryn… James Proudstar a.k.a. Warpath… Tabitha Smith a.k.a. Boom-Boom a.k.a. Boomer a.k.a. Meltdown… and Roberto DaCosta a.k.a. Sunspot.
All these mutants are extremely dangerous and volatile. It’s imperative that we keep them under constant surveillance.


Barnett Chambers

Los Angeles, a fire rages, and a scene of destruction is the backdrop for the teenage mutant heroes known as X-Force. ‘This is worse than I could ever have imagined’ Danielle exclaims. DanI adds that when she was with the Mutant Liberation Front, she prayed that the mutant called Reignfire wasn’t her old friend and teammate, Sunspot. Siryn declares that now they know the truth. ‘It’s a small consolation, considering what we just witnessed’ Siryn declares. Meltdown asks what are they going to do to stop Reignfire. She knows they have to stop him, but points out that as long as Reignfire controls Bobby’s body, any damage they do to him, they do to Bobby. Warpath reminds his friends that Reignfire brought them to Las Vegas to kill them, and declares that unless they can separate Sunspot and Reignfire, he is going to use their friend to try again.

High overhead, Sunspot tries to scream - but no sound comes from his mouth. ‘I’ve won, Roberto. You tried to kill me and failed. Now where tow once existed, there is only one!’ Reignfire exclaims. Sunspot tries to move, but his body ignores his commands. Instead there is another voice that speaks through him. Another mind that controls his mutant body. He has been possessed by his greatest enemy. ‘Sunspot is dead! Reignfire is triumphant!’ the evil mutant booms. ‘I won’t let you manipulate me…’ Sunspot utters. Reignfire tells him to give it up. ‘My will is far stronger than yours. Your body belongs to me now’. ‘How can this be?’ Bobby wonders.

‘Confused? Of course you are. You were always so blissfully unaware of the psychic link we share - a link so strong that even the telepathic prowess of your former drill sergeant Cable could not sever it completely!’ Reignfire declares. Reignfire declares that, moments ago, when Sunspot used Doctor Joshua’s weapon to return him to his original physical state, he realizes that their telepathic bond remained, and with it, he could manipulate him. ‘Just as I did a year ago when I made you believe you were me’.

Down below, Siryn points out that Reignfire’s flight is erratic, which suggests to her that Bobby is trying to resist Reignfire’s control. Theresa asks Dani if she can create a little psychic static to keep Reignfire off balance. ‘You’re the boss’ Dani replies as she readies a psychic arrow, before telling James that she needs a hand, and asks him if he has ever seen Colossus do this with Wolverine. ‘The “Fastball Special”? It’s legendary’ James declares as he lifts Danielle up by her feet. ‘Just give me some air, and I’ll take care of the rest!’ Dani exclaims, while James shouts ‘DO IT!’ as he throws Danielle into the air, and as she rises, she creates the bow of psionic energy. Long ago, her grandfather taught her the fine points of archery. These days, Dani uses the metaphor of the bow and arrow to focus her psionic assault against her opponents.

Sorry, Bobby. This is going to hurt you more than it does me!’ Dani remarks as she blasts Bobby/Reignfire. There is a brief moment when Dani’s arrows find their mark, and Dani is connected with her target. Reignfire screams, and in that instant, the turbulent mental energy generating from the duelling psyches feeds back to the source, stunning Dani with a cascade of conflicting thoughts, images and emotions belonging to both Sunspot and Reignfire. As Danielle plummets to the ground, Reignfire flies down towards her, telling her that she hurt him, so he is not going to let the fall kill her. ‘I’m going to do it myself!’ he booms. Bobby tells Reignfire that he will not let him do this, but Reignfire declares that Bobby can’t stop him.

Suddenly, several of Meltdown’s plasma “time-bombs” explode around Reignfire, preventing him from reaching Dani. ‘Blast her!’ Reignfire exclaims, while Warpath congratulates his teammate on keeping Reignfire occupied, while Dani’s limp body falls into Warpath’s arms. ‘Listen you jerk, Bobby and I haven’t had much time to sort through this new boyfriend-girlfriend thing by ourselves - so this demonic possession bit is really complicating things, y’know?’. Tabitha exclaims, throwing more “time-bombs” into the air. Meltdown jokes that she has always made a point never to date guys with more than one personality. ‘Three’s a crowd’ she adds.

Reignfire throws energy down at Tabitha and tells her not to delude herself into thinking her relationship with Bobby means anything. ‘He doesn’t love you!’ Reignfire exclaims, while Sunspot declares ‘That’s not true’, not that anyone but Reignfire can hear him. ‘He’s incapable of loving anyone but himself!’ Reignfire exclaims as he knocks Tabitha backwards. ‘You’re lying!’ Bobby exclaims. Reignfire drops down beside Tabitha and grabs her by the throat, and declares that Tabitha tries so hard to be a good girl. ‘But I know the truth about you’. Reignfire exclaims that he knows what Tabitha did when she was a runaway, living on the streets of New York. ‘Scared…vulnerable…’ he remarks. ‘You don’t know anything about me…’ a weary Meltdown retorts.

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‘You’re so wrong. Every memory Bobby holds is mine - including all of the intimacies and confidences that you and he shared!’ Reignfire exclaims. Reignfire tells Meltdown that she will never beat him because she is unwilling to do what it takes. ‘You don’t want to kill again, do you?’ he asks her. ‘Maybe now, but that doesn’t mean I won’t play dirty!’ Tabitha exclaims as she shoves a time-bomb down the front of Sunspot/Reignfire’s pants. ‘You wouldn’t!’ Reignfire gasps, horrified. ‘Try me’ Meltdown warns him. ‘You’ll regret -’ Reignfire begins, but Meltdown interrupts him, beginning the countdown. ‘Three. Two. One’ she exclaims, but Reignfire takes to the sky, telling her that this isn’t over as he flies away. ‘Men. They’re so easy’ Meltdown remarks.

What is the sinister secret of the Damocles Foundation? What is their disturbing connection to the Transglobal Eugenics Cabal? Can we protect our children from bio-engineered experiments being performed on American citizens?

A leading scientist of the Damocles Foundation, Doctor Joshua, crawls across the road, between vehicles, thinking to himself that he never should have taken on Reignfire alone. ‘My body’s one mass of blistering flesh. I’ll have to spend a week in regeneration to recover from these burns’ he thinks to himself. ‘Thank God these clothes are made of unstable molecular fabric. This is humiliating enough!’. Dr Joshua realizes that he should have gone to the committee and requested a team to back him up. ‘They’re not going to be pleased I acted so publicly…’ he thinks to himself, when, suddenly, he is lifted into the air!

‘Where do ye think ye’re going, boyo?’ Siryn asks. ‘Huh?’ Dr Joshua exclaims. Holding Dr Joshua by one leg, Siryn tells him not to think that they didn’t notice him. ‘Ye brought that big ol’ disruptor to the party - the one that Bobby used against Reignfire’ Siryn remarks, before asking Dr Joshua to tell her who he is and what his connection is to Reignfire. ‘I can’t tell you!’ Dr Joshua retorts. Siryn drops Dr Joshua onto the ground: ‘That’s what a six foot fall feels like. Now imagine what’ll happen if I drop inform fifty or a hundred’ Siryn warns Dr Joshua, who exclaims ‘Alright. I’ll talk. I’ll talk’.

(Flashback, narrated by Dr Joshua)

Dr Joshua explains that he is a geneticist who has devoted his life to the study of mutation in higher life forms, and reveals that Reignfire was Project Nineteen - a mutant life form he had been studying since the horrific circumstances of its birth. Dr Joshua reveals to Siryn that although Project Nineteen’s protoplasmic body lacked any human characteristics, a psi-talent determined Nineteen possessed a rudimentary consciousness, and when the External known as Gideon contracted him to run a series of experiments on Sunspot, he found the means to increase Sunspot’s ability to absorb and process heat and light.

Dr Joshua continues, revealing that at the same time, he introduced a sample of DaCosta’s cell tissue into Nineteen to see if Nineteen would replicate Bobby’s photovoltaic ability, the result being far more amazing that Dr Joshua anticipated, with Nineteen transforming into a mirror image of Roberto Dacosta, as if Bobby was the template for his existence. ‘Soon after, Nineteen escaped, after setting fire to my laboratory and killing five people’. Dr Joshua concludes.


Dr Joshua concludes by telling Siryn that a few months later, Nineteen reappeared as Reignfire with the Mutant Liberation Front. ‘I regret I was unable to stop him then’ Dr Joshua adds. ‘Now that we’ve established yuir complicity in this abomination, I need t’know if we can separate Reignfire and Bobby’ Siryn exclaims. Dr Joshua replies that it is possible, but he doesn’t know if the disruptor will be enough to stop him now that he has bonded with Sunspot. Siryn warns Dr Joshua that if anything happens to Sunspot, X-Force are going to hold him responsible.

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Nearby, Warpath and Danielle take cover behind a truck, which Warpath has turned on its side to block the flame attack from Reignfire. James asks Dani if she is okay, and tells her that she was out for a few seconds. Dani replies that she knows and tells James that she is much more of a telepathic sender and not used to being on the receiving end. Dani reveals that Bobby is trying to fight him, but Reignfire’s hatred is so intense.

Up in the air, Reignfire asks ‘Why do you risk your lives for Roberto DaCosta? He’s nothing but a selfish, egocentric, spoiled rich kid! He doesn’t deserve your loyalty!’ James lifts the car up above his head and tells Reignfire that he is wrong. ‘Bobby braved the fires of Hell to keep a demon from stealing my soul - and there’s no way on Earth I’m going to let you take his!’ James shouts as he throws the truck, which slams into Reignfire. James and Danielle run from the explosion generated by the truck, and James declares that Reignfire could have dodged the truck ordinarily, which means Bobby is still fighting for control. Dani asks James if he thinks the mutant that Reignfire used to cancel out there powers would help them. ‘What was his name? Short Circuit?’

At that moment, Short Circuit is standing amongst fleeing civilians, gazing up at the blazing sky, he exclaims ‘Pretty’.

James tells Dani that even if they could find him, he doubts he would be much help, as he thinks Short Circuit has a mental disability. James points out that Reignfire and Locus exploited Short Circuit’s simple nature. ‘And I don’t want to be guilty of that’ he declares. ‘Heads up, ye two!’ Siryn exclaims, as she throws the molecular disruptor down to James, who catches it. ‘Wow. This is a big gun. I feel like Cable - the old Cable, I mean’ James declares, before asking Siryn how she knows this will succeed any more than it did the first time.

‘Meet Dr Segismund Joshua!’ Meltdown declares as she shoves Dr Joshua towards James and Dani. Tabitha informs them that Dr Joshua was on Gideon’s payroll when the green pony tailed External was holding Bobby captive. ‘I no longer work for Gideon!’ Dr Joshua assures them. ‘Duh. Gideon croaked a while back along with most of the other X-Ternals’ Tabitha jokes, before remarking that it is funny, as she feels like she should know who killed the Externals, but she cannot remember. ‘Anyway, today’s lightning round question is who’s signing your pay check these days?’ Meltdown asks Dr Joshua, who replies that he will not tell.

Siryn tells her teammates that they will grill the nutty professor later, before explaining that Dr Joshua told her that they have to hit Reignfire with everything they have got before the symbiosis becomes permanent. ‘And if we don’t succeed, what then?’ Danielle asks James. ‘Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that’ James tells her.

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Atop a snow-covered mountain side, Sally “Skids” Blevins - a former New Mutant and friend of X-Force, huddles to keep warm. ‘Why did you bring us here? It’s so very cold…’ Sally utters, to which the aggressive young woman known only as Locus crawls through the snow nearby and exclaims that it was Skids’ bio-electric field which interfered with one of her trans-spatial portals. ‘You’re lucky you’re in one piece and not scattered across the globe!’ Locus exclaims. Sally replies that she doesn’t feel lucky. ‘All I wanted was a normal life. Then you and Reignfire had to show up and attack my friends. And now look at us, stranded on some mountain!’ Skids declares.

‘If you hadn’t screwed up my ability to open a doorway out of here, I’d leave you to freeze!’ Locus exclaims as she lunges at Sally, shouting that, right now, she is going to feel a lot better pounding her whiny little college girl face into a pulp. Locus grabs Sally by her collar, but Sally tells her that they shouldn’t be fighting, as they may need to work together to survive. ‘If you think I’m doing anything for you, you’ve got a -’ Locus begins, before suddenly, both she and Skids fall into a trance-like state. A voice suddenly exclaims ‘Now, now, ladies, there’ll be no fighting. After all, you’re my guests’ says the mysterious new arrival, stroking a cat.

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Inside the Love Me Tender Chapel, a wedding conductor dressed like Elvis Presley is in the process of marrying a couple, when suddenly, a massive blast of flame interrupts the procession, as Sunspot / Reignfire crashes into the chapel. Reignfire tells Bobby to stop struggling and to accept the inevitable. ’Never!’ Bobby declares as their shared body thrashes about as each tries to gain control. ’Look at the little human sheep run. Don’t you see, they fear mutants and with good reason. They know that in the end, they will have no choice but to bow down before us or die at our feet!’ Reignfire exclaims.

‘No, that will destroy everything we’ve worked for -’ Bobby begins, but Reignfire tells him that he has wasted his power and wealth. ’But I won’t make that mistake’. Reignfire declares that with the resources of DaCosta International at his command, he will wield more power than he ever did with the Mutant Liberation Front. ’I will resist you until I am an old man!’ Bobby shouts, still struggling within his own body. ’Don’t fight me, Bobby’ Reignfire declares once more, when suddenly, X-Force arrive, and Siryn exclaims ’Fer such a powerful mutant, you spend a lot of time talking to yuirself!’

Reignfire hovers in the chapel, telling X-Force that they are wasting their time. ‘Roberto DaCosta is as good as dead’. Reignfire declares that Sunspot is nothing more than an annoying buzz in the back of his head. ‘We wouldn’t be here if we thought that were true’ Siryn exclaims. Dani readies a psychic arrow as she declares that they do not give up on their friends. Reignfire tells Danielle that she should have stayed in Asgard. ‘You could have lived forever!’ he exclaims, telling her that instead she will die with the rest of her friends in some tawdry Vegas wedding chapel.

Meltdown throws some plasma time-bombs at Reignfire, telling him that he has it wrong. ‘You’re the one who should’ve gone to see Seigfried and Roy instead of messing with X-Force!’. Reignfire grins as he declares that he is going to take great pleasure in shutting her up permanently. Hovering off the ground, Siryn exclaims ‘Now, Jimmy, while he’s so sure of himself’. James holds the disruptor, remarking that normally he doesn’t like guns, but that in this case, he will make an exception. ‘Joshua’s molecular disruptor?’ Reignfire asks, wide-eyed.

Warpath fires the odd weapon, and Siryn joins in the assault with an ultrasonic scream. With both energies blasting towards Reignfire, the disruptor beams being to break Reignfire’s physical bold on Bobby’s body - while the piercing decibel level of Siryn’s wail makes it impossible for him to continue to sublimate Bobby’s psyche. Reignfire screams, ‘You’re killing me…you’re killing us…!’. Sunspot exclaims that it is better to die this way than surrender to Reignfire, while Meltdown rushes over to Warpath, telling him to stop. ‘We’re killing Bobby!’ she exclaims, while Danielle holds her back, telling her to take it easy, and that she knows this is hard to watch, but that it is the only way.

‘Give us back our friend!’ Warpath shouts, when suddenly, ‘Can’t take any more…you’re ripping me apart!’ Reignfire exclaims as his muck-like form is ripped from Sunspot. ‘I hurt…’ Bobby whispers, holding his face, while the muck remains of Project Nineteen a.k.a. Reignfire warns X-Force that they are going to pay for this. ‘All of you!’ he shouts. ‘Bobby, are you all right?’ Meltdown shouts out as she runs over to Bobby, lying on the floor. Tabitha asks Bobby if he is going to be okay, and whether he wants them to call an ambulance. ‘Guess you’re feeling a little more comfortable about these public displays of affection’ Bobby smiles while Tabitha puts her hands on him.

Helping Bobby to his feet, Meltdown tells him he should take it easy and try to rest awhile. ‘Not while Reignfire is still alive’ Bobby exclaims. ‘Not so high and mighty now, eg, Reignfire?’ Bobby asks, while the remains of Reignfire lie in a corner. Bobby tells Reignfire that they have unfinished business. ‘Before you invaded my body, you leeched all my body heat’ Bobby reminds Reignfire, before telling him that it is time for payback. ‘And I’m going to take your fire’. ‘No, you can’t do this. I’m Reignfire!’ the villain booms as his form begins to fade even more. ‘You were right. I have wasted my powers. I won’t make that mistake again!’ Bobby exclaims, standing over the last of Reignfire’s form, before Bobby returns to his solar form, ‘Hah! I’m back!’ he exclaims, happily.

Meltdown tells Sunspot to turn down the heat before he sets this whole cheesy love-me-tender shack on fire. Bobby apologizes and remarks that he cannot help himself. ‘I feel better in ages!’ he exclaims. Suddenly, a voice exclaims ‘Mr DaCosta, you will power down right now. And Mr Proudstar, place your weapon on the ground slowly’. ‘Who the -?’ Tabitha asks, spinning around.

Outta My Head

By Jerry King

Nobody sings a Cole Porter tune the way Ella did…Who says romance is dead? I caught Reed Richards buying flowers for his lovely wife Susan…When did the Supreme Headquarters International Espionage Law Enforcement Division become the Strategic Hazard Intervention Espionage Logistics Division? You can call them compact discs, they’re still records to me.

Jordan Holiday from SHIELD introduces himself as he stands in front of several other SHIELD officers and tells everyone to step away from Reignfire. Moonstar approaches Agent Holiday and asks him if he is going to try and arrest X-Force too. Agent Holiday reminds Moonstar that she worked for SHIELD, which is why he is going to let her and her friends walk, but Reignfire - or whatever is left of him - and Dr Joshua are now SHIELD’s business.

Siryn suggests that it may be better this way, pointing out that they do not have the means to keep Reignfire locked up. James announces that he is worried about Skids, reminding his friends that she disappeared with Locus, which means she could be anywhere in the world. ‘Then we have to hope she can take care of herself’ Dani points out, to which Meltdown declares that she wants to know how they are going to get back to Boulder. ‘Our car and all our stuff are there’. Taking flight, Bobby tells his friends to head for the airport and await his call. ‘I’ll take care of everything’ he assures them.

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‘…so anyway, the guy picks me up and takes me to some south of market bondage club on our first date. No, I’m not into that scene. It’s gross. And why is that the only men who wear chaps are overweight and hairy? Ugh. Of course I’m not going out with him again. Uh-oh. Gotta put you on hold. Someone just walked in the lobby’ a receptionist blabbers to someone over her headset telephone while examining her manicured fingernails. The new arrival approaches the receptionist and remarks that he doesn’t have an appointment, but he is sure Getulio will see him. ‘Would you please tell him Roberto Dacosta is here?’

‘Roberto…? DaCosta…?’ the receptionist gasps, wide-eyed. Bobby asks her if she is alright. ‘You seem like you’re about to hyperventilate’ he points out, asking her if she wants a glass of water or something. The receptionist replies that she is fine and that nothing is wrong. She proceeds to buzz Villa-Lobos, and when she gets a response she informs Villa-Lobos that Roberto DaCosta is here, and wants to see him. ‘What should I do?’ she asks. Moments later, the receptionist motions to a staircase and tells Bobby that Villa-Lobos says he can go straight in.

Moments later, Bobby bursts into Villa-Lobos’ office: ‘Getulio, how are you? Bet you didn’t expect to see me!’ Bobby grins. The doors slam, and back down at reception, the receptionist panics: ‘Omigod…omigod…this is terrible. Poor Mr Villa-Lobos!’ she exclaims, before ringing security, announcing that she has a code red. Dropping under her desk, she mutters that she isn’t paid enough for this, when suddenly, a quartet approach her desk, and one of them remarks ‘Ma’am, we recommend you leave the area’. ‘Things could get ugly’ another tells her.

Soon, upstairs: ‘Do you want to knock?’ one of the quartet asks. ‘I don’t see the point’ another replies. ‘Whose turn is it?’ the first asks. ‘You ripped open the vault door during that hostage crisis in Miami’ the second points out, before the double wooden doors are kicked open, sending shards of wood everywhere.

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Misty Knight holds a gun, while Colleen Wing has a sword ready, and Luke Cage and Iron Fist are ready for action. ‘Move away from the Board members, young man. We don’t want to see anyone hurt!’ Iron Fist exclaims, while Luke Cage tells him that this doesn’t feel right. ‘Are you sure that’s Reignfire?’ Colleen asks. Lounging back in a chair at the board table, Bobby smiles and introduces himself. ‘I’m happy to tell you, in no uncertain terms - I’m not Reignfire’ Bobby announces, while one of the Board remarks that it appears they are no longer in any danger.

Heroes for Hire look at each other and Luke Cage asks if someone is jerking their chain. ‘We were told DaCosta is Reignfire’ he adds, while Iron Fist tells him that he senses no threat from DaCosta. ‘I could’ve been in St Barts this weekend’ Colleen complains. Villa-Lobos tells the Heroes for Hire that he apologizes for the inconvenience, and explains that they mistakenly believed young Roberto was a threat when it turns out he was merely a victim. Villa-Lobos adds that Rboerto has assured him Reignfire is in the custody of SHIELD. He tells the Heroes for Hire that he no longer requires their services and assures them they will be fully compensated for their time. ‘See ya!’ Bobby exclaims, waving at them. Leaving the room, Luke Cage remindshis teammates that he told them it is better to stay away from anything involving mutants. ‘They’re nothing but trouble’ he declares. ‘No offense, Colleen. I know you used to have a thing for the guy with the funny visor’ Luke adds. Colleen looks at Luke and mutters ‘Luke, Don’t even go there’.

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‘Flight 35 from Denver has now arrived at gate 4’ an announcer exclaims, while various travellers make their way through the airport, four weary teenage heroes carry their luggage - Warpath carries most of it - as they make their way to where Sunspot is waiting for them. ‘Wow. San Francisco. I’ve never been here before’ Meltdown exclaims. Siryn remarks that she thinks some of her childhood friends from Ireland have moved here, while Dani declares that she cannot believe Bobby arranged to fly them from Vegas to Boulder and now to San Francisco. ‘It looks like his trust fund is no longer frozen’ Dani adds, while Tabitha exclaims that she feels just like those guys on Road Rules.

‘Hey, guys, over here!’ Sunspot calls out. ‘A limo?’ Tabitha remarks as they approach Bobby. ‘Yeah, I’d say Bobby’s not broke anymore’ James declares. Bobby tells everyone to hop in and announces that he has a surprise for everybody. ‘So where exactly are we headed, Bobby?’ someone asks as they make their way through San Francisco. ‘Our new home’ Bobby reveals.

Soon, the five friends stand outside a large warehouse. ‘You brought this entire warehouse? How much money do you have?’ Moonstar asks. Bobby replies that he doesn’t have that much and explains that the company owns the building and leased it to him for next to nothing. ‘All I had to do was agree to keep out of the corporation’s business until I’m twenty-five’ Bobby explains, adding that the Board want to avoid another Reignfire incident. ‘Can you blame them?’ Meltdown asks as Bobby pushes the doors to the warehouse open.

‘What do you think?’ Bobby asks, standing in the large open warehouse, lots of cartoons stacked along the walls. ‘It’s huge!’ Tabitha exclaims. Warpath points out that they are going to have to do a lot to make this place livable, to which Moonstar adds that living in motel rooms and on other people’s couches was fun for a while, but that it will be nice to have their own place again. ‘We could do worse than settling in San Francisco’ Siryn points out as she flies around the lofty warehouse, before dropping to the ground and announcing that her only reservation is that she wished Sunspot consulted with her before he took this place.

‘Yeah, Bobby, we all should’ve had a say’ Tabitha remarks, leaning against a post, before declaring that she has dibs on the room with the view of the bay. Bobby apologizes to his friends but points out that they have been carrying him since his funds were frozen by Reignfire, and he thought this was his way of paying them all back with interest. Tabitha frowns and tells herself that now Bobby has his money back he is acting a lot more arrogant. ‘I think I liked him better when he was broke’ she tells herself, before Warpath declares that from now on, they make all living decisions together. ‘Now, when do we start the renovation?’ he asks Bobby, slapping him on the back. ‘Not yet. That’s my next surprise’ Bobby exclaims as he holds up airline tickets, telling his friends that after all the grief they have been through with Reignfire, he thought they deserved a genuine vacation. ‘Pack up the suntan lotion. We’re going to Hawaii!’

Characters Involved: 

Meltdown, Moonstar, Siryn, Sunspot, Warpath (all X-Force)

Skids (former New Mutant)

Locus & Reignfire

Short Circuit

Dr Joshua

Pandemonia (unnamed)

Luke Cage, Iron Fist, Misty Knight, Colleen Wing (Heroes for Hire)

Agent Jordan Holiday

Getulio Villa-Lobos

DaCosta International Board Members




In Illustrative Flashback Image:



In Flashback:


Dr Joshua

Project Nineteen

Story Notes: 

This issue is plagued with numerous and unusual caption boxes at the start of most pages, detailed in italics throughout this issue summary.

Reignfire, not Sunspot, broke into Villa-Lobos’ home in X-Force (1st series) #78.

Moonstar was with the MLF (undercover for SHIELD) from X-Force (1st series) #27-69.

Reignfire took over Sunspot’s body in X-Force (1st series) #79.

After the shocking events of X-Force (1st series) #43, the world was plunged into the Age of Apocalypse. The events of that issue were briefly mentioned in X-Force (1st series) #44 in a way of tying them up.

Sunspot developed the ability to absorb and process heat and light in X-Force (1st series) #14-15.

Reignfire debuted in X-Force (1st series) #26.

Warpath was trapped in Hell in X-Force (1st series) #74.

Selene killed most of the Externals in X-Force (1st series) #64, but no one remembers because Selene wiped her part in the killings from X-Force’s minds.

Skids and Locus vanished from Las Vegas in X-Force (1st series) #79.

Moonstar was a resident of Asgard from New Mutants (1st series) #87 until her sudden appearance with the MLF in X-Force (1st series) #27.

X-Force were abducted from Boulder, Colorado in X-Force (1st series) #78.

Colleen Wing and Cyclops went on several dates. [X-Men (1st series) #118-119, #122]

Sunspot has been broke since X-Force (1st series) #71 when his trust fund was frozen.

Issue Information: 
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