Silver Surfer Volume 1 #19-20
Written by Matt Hamilton,
Edited by Marvelite
At the end of Silver Surfer Vol. 1 Issue #18 (published in 1970 and written by Stan Lee), the Silver Surfer, still trapped on earth for betraying Galactus and still feared and hated by all of society, declared revenge on the human race. This is a continuation of that series.
Issue #19 - "Terminal Ferocity" Part 1
The people of Latveria, being a simple folk, were carrying out chores or browsing at the local marketplace on this particular morning. Most of the village that served as the nationís capital was basking in the glorious spring sun. The rest was cowering in the shadow of Victor Von Doom's castle.
Busy as they were, not many of the villagers noticed the bright flash of silver cross their sky. Those who did might have remarked to their comrades of a shooting star in the daytime, and get little more than doubtful laughter in return.
Soon enough, their observations would be proven true.
The Silver Surfer's voyage ended just outside the Latverian dictator's castle.
"Doom! Show yourself, coward!"
The Surfer's voice could carry through the vacuum of space. Von Doom had no trouble hearing the call. Within seconds his armored form appeared atop one of the castle's towers.
"I'm here, philosopher! Why do you risk my wrath so?"
Cosmic fire leaked from the eyes of the surfer as he turned to face his old nemesis.
"You'll find my philosophies have changed, Doom. It is time for vindication!"
With that the Surfer pointed both arms toward the figure, and released a barrage of energy in his direction. Protected by his force field, Doom began to laugh at his enemy's onslaught, until he realized that his footing was giving way. The tower, old as it was, could not withstand the assault, and collapsed beneath its owner.
"Curse you, silver one!" cried Doom as he pushed his way to the surface of the pile of rubble. "You won't get away with this!" Once atop the wreckage, he located the Surfer's form in the sky and released a series of energy bolts in his direction.
The Surfer did not even bother dodging. Instead, he shrugged off the attack, and flew closer to Doom's earthbound figure.
"I have suffered enough indignation at your ands, Doom! It ends now!" He raised a hand, and turned his head before releasing a wide beam toward Doom.
The evil monarch's eyes widened momentarily, expecting a killing blow. The Surfer could not have known that his force field was depleted from the first assault. Instead, the beam seemed to pass right through him, having no effect at all!
He smiled, and prepared to raise his gauntlets once more to retaliate. However, he soon realized that the Surfer had completely fused his armor in place! He could not move!
"What have you done!!?? How dare you insult me so in my own homeland??!!" he writhed with anger within the armor.
"I hope for your sake, Doom," spat the Surfer, "that whoever finds you is loyal to your cause, and not one of your oppressed peasant countrymen."
And with that, he flew off.
Doom could do little but stand and wonder if this was the same silvery alien he had fought so many times before.
Professor Charles Xavier sat peacefully in his wheelchair in the quiet of his study. Atop his head rested a metal skullcap, connected by dozens of cables to Cerebro, a massive computer that enhanced his formidable psychic powers. While his five prodigies trained in one of the building's gymnasiums, he scanned the world for anomalies.
His eyes suddenly snapped open, wide with shock. Somewhere in Europe he had sensed the tortured psyche of an alien mind, bent on revenge against humanity.
More worrying, however, was the assuredness he had felt that this being was capable of terrifying destruction. Quickly he telepathically notified Jean Grey, who, although still a teenager, was already an accomplished psychic.
Within minutes his X-Men were in the room with him.
"What is it, Professor?" asked Jean, dressed in her Marvel Girl costume.
"Has Magneto been pursuing his malevolent agenda once again?" inquired the Beast, crouched in what most people would consider an uncomfortable position.
"The mind I sensed was quite different from Magneto's, my pupils," began Xavier, "but at least as dangerous."
"Someone we know of?" asked Cyclops, trying to maintain an authoritative tone despite his misgivings about being placed in charge of his friends.
"No, Scott. And not a mutant. This mind is as alien as any I have read. Perhaps it is neither homo-sapien nor homo-superior. It is, however, frustrated and tortured beyond my comprehension. And I fear that its owner is fully able to pose a threat to all humanity!"
"Just tell me which way to fly!" exclaimed the Angel, stretching his wings.
"Eastern Europe right now," replied Xavier, "but headed quickly back to the States. By Cerebro's judgement I'd say it will be in New York within the next half-hour!"
"Then let's move!" commanded Cyclops, and the five raced to the rooftop helicopter.
Years of being trapped on this planet had eaten away Norrin Radd's judgement. As the Silver Surfer, herald to the planet-devourer Galactus, he had been free to roam the cosmos in search of new worlds.
Until he had found earth. Curse this planet! In his folly he had considered it worth saving, and rebelled against his master. Since that fateful day almost ten years ago he had been grounded here, unable to fly any further than the upper reaches of the atmosphere. Galactus had erected an impenetrable barrier around the world, and clipped his former-herald's wings.
But it was more than just cabin fever. For over a century before becoming the Surfer he had lived on the peaceful utopia of Zenn-La. Whilst he had found it tedious at the time, he longed for his home now. He longed for a world where people cared for each other, and existed purely for the advancement of their race.
And he longed for Shalla Bal. His one true love.
Instead, he had lived with the humans, and their petty wars. He had lived with the evil madmen of this world, who sought to dominate civilization or steal his power.
Well, enough was enough. If he could not be free of earth, he would make it Zenn-La. He would "fix" humanity so there were only peaceful beings left.
One madman at a time.
And, after a quick detour to settle a score in Latveria, he was heading back to the den of iniquity where it all started.
"What's our ETA, Cyke?" asked Iceman as the chopper neared New York City.
"I can see the target on the radar," replied Cyclops, "and he's headed this way in a real hurry. Most likely we'll have visual contact in less than five."
Angel spoke from his seat in the back. "I'm glad I decided to sit this one out - you guys would have left me behind ten minutes ago!"
"Save your strength, my ornithological companion," said the Beast, "I believe you are going to need it!"
"Heads up guys!" exclaimed Cyclops suddenly, "I've got--"
There was a flash as the silvery form of their target flew by them at enormous speed, and the chopper lurched from the turbulence.
"Where's he headed?" cried Marvel Girl, trying to look behind them through the side window.
"X-Men!" The chopper's radio sprang to life. "This is Professor X! Your target has slowed, and is headed down toward the outskirts of the city!"
"Roger, Professor," replied Cyclops, "we've got him on radar, and we're closing in as we speak. ETA one minute!"
As they drew closer to the junkyard where their target had landed, the five mutants saw him for the first time.
"He looks human enough to me," commented Iceman.
"What is that, a surfboard?" added Angel.
"Be ready for anything," snapped Cyclops.
As if in answer, the figure turned around and rose his hands toward the chopper. Suddenly a brilliant flash filled the cockpit, and the engines died!
Quick to react, Angel had already grabbed the Iceman, and quickly pulled him out the door. "Do your thing, frosty!" he shouted.
Iceman gestured, and a column of air condensed beneath the copter. It froze suddenly, and the craft came to rest atop the ice platform. One by one, Angel lowered his comrades to the ground.
"Quick thinking Angel," Cyclops said as his feet hit terra firma. "I wonder why our foe has not struck again?"
The silver figure was simply watching the five from several hundred meters away. He had made no gestures since downing the chopper.
"All right guys, spread out. Jean, keep a barrier between him and us if you can, and Angel: Don't get too high. Let's go!"
The five advanced slowly, trying not to show their enemy the trepidation they all felt.
Issue #20 - "Terminal Ferocity" Part 2
About a million kilometers outside the moon's orbit, the great craft sat. Its crew of one cared not of its destination. All that mattered was the bounty of resources on the planet it found.
After finishing its scan on each planet in the system, the ship began to move. Towards earth.
The X-Men moved in toward their silvery adversary, unsure of what was to come. Cyclops raised a hand, gesturing to his comrades to stop.
"Who are you? Why did you attack our chopper?" he called.
The Silver Surfer replied in a measured tone. "I am the Silver Surfer, and I have had my fill of human intervention. Leave me in peace, or you, too, will suffer my wrath!"
Cyclops let the threat bounce off him. "The way I see it, we have no choice. You seem to pose too big a threat to let you leave here."
The Surfer's shoulders seemed to sink. In a resigned voice, he said, "so be it. If you seek to be the first casualties of the new order, come forth now!"
That was enough for the five mutants. Signaling his intent, Cyclops' raised hand moved to his visor, and the crystals, which ordinarily blocked the ionic energy from his eyes, rotated out of the way. The beam struck the Surfer full in the chest, and (too his own surprise) he was knocked to the ground.
Before he had time to react, he was grabbed from behind by the Angel in a half-nelson. His anger growing, the Surfer easily broke the winged X-Man's grasp, almost breaking the Angel's wrists in the process.
No sooner had he released himself from the Angel, he felt the invisible force of Marvel Girl's telekinesis surround him. Suddenly he was suspended several meters above the ground! Anger swelled within him, and Jean Grey slowly became aware of the energy build-up within her field.
"Err . . . guys! I don't think I'm going to be able to hold him for long!" she warned.
"No sweat, Jean!" replied Iceman. As the field gave way, and the Surfer began to drop to earth, a case of ice enclosed him. His silvery form was barely visible through six feet of frozen air.
"Will it hold him, Bobby?" asked Cyclops.
"I can't say, Cyke," Iceman replied. "It's gotta be a hundred below in there. I'm not sure that anyone would have the strength to . . . to . . ."
Iceman's attention was suddenly grabbed by a radiance emanating from within the crystalline structure. Pale pink in colour, it seemed to be coming from the very heart of the Surfer's frozen form.
Suddenly, cracks appeared in the surface of the ice, and without warning the sphere exploded! One shard of ice struck the Angel in a wing, grounding him. The others were unharmed.
"No human can stop me! Taste the full fury of the power cosmic, mortals!" Norrin Radd raised both arms, and prepared to teach his assailants the last lesson of their lives.
The mighty Galactus sat in meditation aboard his Worldship as it approached the nearby planetary system. It had been many months since his last feeding, and once again the hunger gnawed at him. Galactus knew that the time between feedings was shortening. That had, in part, been the reason he had adopted Norrin Radd as a herald. The quicker he could find new worlds to devour, the easier it was to sate his hunger.
The next world, thought the devourer of worlds, would not only provide sustenance.
It would provide a new herald.
Scott Summers realised, at that moment, that he and the other X-Men were no match for this being. The alien had already taken a full optic-blast in the chest, had broken free of Jean's telekinetic field, and had shrugged off one of Bobby's freezing containers.
Angel and the Beast had been sidelined - physically outclassed.
However, he knew that it was pointless to surrender. An X-Men born, he braced himself for the fight of his life.
The outstretched hands of the Silver Surfer began to glow, as the power cosmic swelled within him. Unexpectedly, however, he turned to one side, and let his blast fall on a pile of junk several dozens of metres away!
All five mutants were dumbstruck - until the alien spoke. "Show yourself, evil ones!" he cried.
The junk pile beside the one he had struck suddenly began to shimmer, and then faded from sight! In its place stood the familiar figure of Mastermind, and the rest of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants!
"Holy cow!" yelled the Angel, and extended his slowly healing wing. "Have they been there all along?"
The Surfer nodded. "The presence of evil was what drew me to this place to begin with. Your arrival was simply a distraction. Leave now so that I may deal with this group!"
"What," replied Iceman, "and miss all the fun? These guys have been asking for it for a long time!"
Mastermind, by now, had shuffled his way to the back of the crowd. In his place stood a defiant Quicksilver, protective of his sister the Scarlet Witch. The sniveling form of Toad crouched beside them. "Where is Magneto, Quicksilver?" called Cyclops.
In answer, Quicksilver took off. His green costume blurred as he rounded the Surfer, and struck Cyclops on the chin with a super-speed punch. Unable to do anything but watch as their leader fell, the other X-Men tended to him.
The Surfer, however, paid no heed to the fallen hero. Instead, he tracked Quicksilver with his cosmic senses, and let loose a precise beam of cosmic energy, which found its mark. Pietro Maximoff's smoking body lay unconscious near his teammates.
"My brother!" cried the Scarlet Witch. "You have killed him!"
Before the Surfer could argue, the witch motioned with her hands, activating her probability-altering powers. The Surfer felt the earth shake beneath his feet, then open up! He fell into a chasm several hundred kilometers deep.
"To me, my board!" he cried, and the silver board obediently flew down to catch him. Within seconds he was back on solid ground. Before Wanda had lowered her arms, she was on the Surfer's board, held by him. "It was not your presence that brought me here. I sense that you are not truly evil." As he dropped her off within the group of X-Men, he spoke to the recovering Cyclops.
"You know these mutants. They do not seem to be a complete group. You spoke of another of their chapter "
Cyclops nodded. "They serve an evil maniac called Magneto. Without him they are no real threat."
The Surfer turned back to Mastermind and Toad. "Then it is your master I seek. Direct me to him and I will simply leave you to these mutants. Believe me when I tell you that they are less of a threat to any of you than I."
"We will never tell you--" began Toad, when Mastermind spoke up.
"He'll be here any minute! We were rendezvousing with him at noon!"
Satisfied with the veracity of Mastermind's words, the Surfer turned back to the X-Men. "Then we will wait, and when he arrives, I shall--"
Suddenly the wrecks of two dozen cars leapt from a nearby pile and struck the Surfer, burying him. Where the cars had been stood a caped figure, and it flew to the top of the newly formed pile. "You shall do nothing, silver one, except learn the awesome power of Magneto!!!"
To be continued...
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