Off the broken coast of Southern California, the Santa Catalina Island, house of Danielle Winokur-Ezaki…
Danielle is glad that her boyfriend, Alexi, suggested they leave Tokyo for a while, so that they could escape from all the media attention. Danielle hasn’t felt so free in - she doesn’t know how long. Danielle asks Alexi if he would join her. Alexi, in another room of the gigantic house, puts some clothes on. As he does, his body glitters - literally. Alexi steps out of the room with full confidence and walks over to Danielle. Danielle activates the zero-gravity machine in her room, so that she can spread her wings freely, and so that Alexi can join her in the sky.
Danielle wishes that her wings weren’t only ornamental. She would love to soar through the sky for real. Alexi says that they can. Together. Danielle calls him a charmer, and says that she hasn’t been this happy since Hiromichi died. Danielle asks Alexi if he thinks she looks old, because she was thinking about calling Dr. Kaneko and asking for another facelift. Alexi grabs her tightly, telling Danielle that she looks as beautiful as ever and will be always remembered this way. Danielle tells Alexi that he is hurting her and asks what he is doing. Alexi touches Danielle with his finger, explaining to her that he is giving her exactly what she wanted. Alexi says that he is giving Danielle the chance to really fly.
He explains that the harness he is wearing has a Zero-G field and propulsion unit installed. Alexi admits that they are not as aesthetically striking as Danielle’s wings, but are more functional. Alexi activates the devices and flies through the roof of the house and hangs in mid-air. Alexi asks Danielle if he trusts her. She does. Danielle only now notices how Alexi is glittering, as she first thought it was a mere effect of the light. Alexi explains that he was genetically altered to absorb and process light as energy and sustenance. Alexi asks Danielle if that scares her. It doesn’t, she claims. Alexi says that it should. Alexi sparks at full force, blinding Danielle. Alexi drops Danielle and she falls in the sea; dead. Alexi says that it wasn’t anything personal, but Danielle flew too close to the sun and takes off.
Sangre de Cristo, Zhao’s base…
Meanstreak, Krystalin and Shakti can’t believe their eyes when Tim and La Lunática arrive at the base. Meanstreak becomes upset to see Luna again, after she tried to sell them to the Theatre of Pain. Meanstreak wants to attack them both, but Shakti holds him back and gives Tim a chance to explain himself. Tim explains to his former teammates that Xi’an has joined the Theatre of Pain. The X-Men are startled and ask how it could happen. Tim quickly explains that when he and Xi’an left the X-Men, they went in search of the Driver. They found him, but were attacked by Brimstone Love, who convinced Xi’an to join the Theatre. Meanstreak still can’t believe his ears. Shakti calms him down. Meanstreak asks what she plans to do. Tim says that they will pick up where Xi’an left, and rebuild the X-Men, and then bring down the Theatre of Pain for good.
The Oklahoma Hills of the Keewazi Nation…
Doctor Louise Wingfoot realizes that she isn’t alone anymore. She hasn’t been for over an hour. Louise also knows that her pursuers is the Shadow Dancer and calls out to him, but he doesn’t show up. Jesse Ten Eagles shows up and warns Louise that they’ve got trouble in town. The trouble looks like people who look like the Revival Tent Crowd. Louise asks why Jesse needs her and asks why Smith or Greyhawk can handle this. Jesse says that Louise needs to see these people and, besides, she is a member of the Council. Jesse explains that these people came in across South Fork about an hour ago. As they leave, neither Jesse or Louise notice the Shadow Dancer sitting in a cave.
Louise and Jesse arrive in the town and confront… the Freakshow! Louise knows them, and explains to Jesse that the team is a group of nomads compromised of Bioshop refugees and discards, leaded by a crazy old woman called Mama Hurricane. Louise walks over to Mama Hurricane and happily greets the woman like they are old friends. Hurricane introduces her team to Louise and explains that they have been on the road for some time now, and need some supplies. Hurricane says that, if they are trouble, they’ll leave. But Louise tells Hurricane that they can stay for as long as they want to, and that they will always be welcome here.
Some time later, Louise performs a medical scan on Rosa’s baby. Rosa calls Eddie and shows him her baby and says that it’s a boy. Louise asks Eddie if he is the father, but he blushes and says that he’s just a friend. Rosa explains that the father took off a long time ago, and that’s for the best.
Inside one of Century City’s many MediaCorp Multiplex’s…
Alexi enters the building and confronts his boss, Heinrich Greenstreet, telling him that he completed the Winokur-Ezaki contract. Heinrich is happy about the victory and is confident that nobody will laugh at him ever again. Alexi angry tells his boss that he won’t be played with and, if Heinrich won’t come through for him, Alexi promises to disconnect him permanently. Heinrich tells Alexi that he had to call in some favors for this one. Heinrich explains to Alexi that the girl is in Oklahoma and hands him a disc with her specific location.
Meanwhile, Dominic playfully jumps over the hills of Oklahoma. When he stops to catch his breath, Dominic panics at the horror he sees in front of him and hurries back to the city. The merely 10-year old boy warns Mama Hurricane about what he saw. Louise believes that Dominic ran into the Shadow Dancer. Metalhead asks what that is. Louise explains that according to old Keewazi legends, the Shadow Dancer lives in the hills and plays in the long shadows of twilight. They say that the Dancer runs with wolves in summer and sleeps with bears in the winter. Louise tells everyone not to panic, as the Shadow Dancer is mostly harmless. Mama Hurricane isn’t convinced that the creature actually exists. Dominic says that he did, and so does Louise. Louise explains that she never saw him for long, though, as the Shadow Dancer moves too long, but long enough to know that he’s not a myth.
Louise reveals that her grandmother used to say that the Shadow Dancer was the tribe’s guardian spirit, and only appeared when trouble was brewing. Suddenly, everyone is blinded by bright lights. It’s Glitterspike, and he wants Rosa Navarro. And he won’t let anyone stand in his way! Mama Hurricane explains that this is Rosa’s old boyfriend, who is a selfish, freelance thug. But he is dangerous.
Dominic steps forward and defends Rosa, but Glitterspike doesn’t care about Dominic and just pushes him out of his sight. Rosa can’t believe that Alexi would actually hurt a kid and wants to stop him. Glitterspike tells Rosa to stand back or else he’ll slap her. Alexi gets punched to the back, real hard. Metalhead shows up and attacks Alexi. Rosa warns Eddie to be careful, knowing that Alexi is a hired killer.
Eddie can’t believe that Rosa was actually involved with this creep. Rosa explains that she didn’t know about Alexi’s job when they were in love. But, when she found out that she was pregnant, Alexi began to beat her. Metalhead now really wants to hurt Glitterspike. Alexi says that not even Rosa’s brother Breakdown could stop him, so what chance does a monster like Eddie have?
Alexi uses the maximum force of his light powers to blind Metalhead, and then creates a weapon of pure light and slams Eddie unconscious. Rosa wants to help Eddie, but Mama Hurricane warns her that Eddie’s body is now like a live wire, with Alexi’s light spread on it. Rosa wants to kill Glitterspike for this. Alexi tells Rosa that she’s got it all wrong. He reveals that he isn’t here to fight her, but to take care of her and their baby!