Maverick #1

Issue Date: 
September 1997
Story Title: 

Jorge Gonzalez (writer), Jim Cheung (penciler), Andrew Pepoy (inker), Chris Eliopoulos and Virtual Calligraphy (letterers), Kevin Somers (colorist), Kelly Corvese (editor), Bob Harras (editor-in-chief)

Brief Description: 

Elena Ivanova and Maverick have interrupted their search for Sabretooth, as Maverick is in the final stages of the Legacy Virus. He is dying, and flatlines, hallucinating about his dead wife. Elena refuses to let him go, and reaches into his mind with her psi-powers. Much to her and Maverick’s surprise, she succeeds and he comes back to life, and also his mutant powers, burned out years ago, are functioning again. Without knowing why, Maverick and Elena Ivanova are attacked by Hammer and Sickle who have orders to bring the pair to Ivan Pushkin for questioning. With his ability to absorb and rechannel kinetic energy, Maverick gains the upper hand in the fight and the pair escape. They visit Isabel Ferguson, who supplies Maverick with his gadgets and devices. She asks them to return the next day, as she needs time to work on the weapons he needs. Maverick and Elena spend the night in an abandoned church, where they discovered that the Legacy Virus really has gone into remission; even his scarred tissue is normal again. Then, Maverick receives a call from Chris Bradley, a teenager who also suffers from the Legacy Virus and who sees Maverick as some kind of role model. Maverick does not bear to tell him that he has gone into remission, while Chris‘s condition has taken a turn for the worse. The next day, Maverick and Elena head to Isabel’s house, but they are ambushed and captured by Pushkin, Hammer and Sickle.

Full Summary: 

(Three months ago)

At a concert in Paris, a cello player Francois Perigeux is feeling uneasy and edgy, but still gives an excellent performance. After the concert, he is approached in a dark alley by Hammer and Sickle, who confront him about the arrest of his overseas business partner Henri Dubois. Francois swears it was not him who ratted out on Henri, and frightfully suggests that it was Major Barrington who committed the betrayal. He then pleads with Hammer and Sickle not to kill him since he’s already told them what they wanted to know, but Sickle says Pushkin believes him to be a liability and thrusts his weapon into Francois’s throat.

In Quebec, Canada, Maverick returns to his hotel room via the balcony. He has just barely escaped from an explosion at his booby-trapped secret storage. Elena Ivanova is concerned for his health, but he himself doesn’t seem to care as much, claiming he’s already been as good as dead since he contracted the Legacy Virus. Believing he won’t survive the night, he collapses on the bed and begins coughing. Chris Bradley then calls him but Elena tells him Maverick is busy. Maverick is running a high fever and begins to hallucinate about his dead wife Ginetta. Elena snaps him out of it, but he goes into cardiac arrest and flat-lines. Having developed some affection for him, she desperately tries to revive him. As a last resort, she uses her psionic powers to try to reach him mentally. She succeeds, and Maverick comes to; releasing a huge burst of energy from his body that sends Elena flying to the side.
Maverick is surprised to find his hands glowing and figures that his “rebirth” has caused his mutant powers to resurface, although they had worn out years ago. He picks up an iron object and melts it to slag simply by holding it, and expends all the energies in his hands in the process. Feeling stronger than he’s ever been since he contracted the virus, he deduces that the virus has gone into remission and realizes his memories have become clearer to him. Elena decides they have to leave the hotel soon as his powers returning has caused quite a mess of the place.
Just then, Hammer and Sickle burst into the room, and Maverick and Elena are both surprised to find out that each other knows them. On Maverick’s instruction, Elena establishes a psi-link between the two of them and they give each other a brief description of how they each got to know Hammer and Sickle. They then agree to split up and meet up outside the hotel, while Hammer tells them no harm will come to them if they obligingly followed them to Ivan Pushkin. Maverick refuses and assaults Hammer as Elena flees the room pursued by Sickle.
During the fight, Hammer strikes Maverick with his weapon, inadvertently powering Maverick up. He absorbs the kinetic impact and much to his surprise seems to re-channel it, as his fist starts to glow again. This aspect of his power is new to him, yet Maverick barrels his powered-up fist into Hammer, putting him down immediately. He then fires a grappling hook and rope to a building across and begins to make his escape as Hammer picks himself up. Upon reaching the building, Maverick is fired upon by a helicopter before he can detach his grappling hook and send Hammer falling. Losing his balance, Maverick falls off the sloping roof of the building and just manages to get a hand on its edge, but he has nowhere to go as Hammer approaches him. Much to Hammer’s surprise, Maverick instead opts to let go of the ledge and let his powers save him from the fall. His plan just about works as he survives the fall and absorbs the impact.
Before he can get away, the helicopter again fires at him, keeping him pinned just as Sickle appears, having been given the slip by Elena. Before anything can take place though, Elena drives a car in between Sickle and Maverick, who wastes no time in getting in. Elena then speeds off but the helicopter continues firing at them. Mavericks tells her to steady the car, which she does doubtfully, and he duly blows the helicopter out of the sky with the energy he absorbed from the impact of his fall.
The couple soon arrive in a small town in Montreal, where Isabel Ferguson is residing with her infant daughter Madeline. Isabel creates Maverick’s body armor and equipment. After introductions are made, Maverick requests Isabel to supply him with more of his usual “goodies”.
Maverick and Elena spend the night in an abandoned church on the outskirts of town, and they are both surprised to find that Maverick’s hands and face are no longer disfigured by the scars caused by the Legacy Virus. Maverick is unsure what to do with his second chance at life, but Chris Bradley calls him at that moment and they have a short chat about how Chris is coping with his new identity. Chris then mentions to Maverick that they’ll face the Legacy Virus together, and Maverick suddenly realizes that he cannot bear to tell Chris that he has gone into remission.
The next morning, Maverick and Elena return to Isabel’s house to collect Maverick’s equipment, only to find the place a mess and Isabel and Madeline nowhere to be found. Maverick goes to the basement as Elena checks out the rooms only to be ambushed by Ivan Pushkin and his lackeys. Maverick hears this and rushes upstairs to find them holding Elena hostage. Pushkin tells Maverick Isabel and Madeline can no longer be of any help to him and orders him shackled.

Characters Involved: 

Maverick / David North / Christoph Nord

Elena Ivanova

Isabel Ferguson

Madeline, Isabel’s infant daughter

Chris Bradley, aka Brian Johnson

Francois Perigeux
Hammer IV / Boris Lubov

Sickle / Nikolai Vronsky

Ivan Pushkin

Story Notes: 

The issue is dedicated to the memory of Ian Lancaster Flemming and James O’Halleran.
Maverick got Chris Bradley and his family new identities after Chris’s secret of being a Legacy infected mutant was exposed in X-Men Unlimited #15.

Issue Information: 
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