|A Grim Day|
|Volume 1, Issue 2|
|Date of Release||10th of August, 2018|
|Written by||Jacky 50A|
|Illustrated by||Jacky 50A|
|Synopsis||Things get grim when HOGUN THE GRIM enters the scene! With the Thing on-spot, you know what time it is? Maybe team-up as a third party also wants the Destroyer...|
Mighty Defenders 1 1
Mighty Defenders 1 3
- Listen Mr. Northern Mustache, this thing ain't goin' to Asgard or Somegard 'til we get stretcho or ol' one-eye to see this. But since yer also as grim as Doc Doom, I guess it's time for some clobberin'!
- Bravado proves nothing, Rock Troll. And if anyone takes the Destroyer at the end of the day, it will be me! COME ON!
GRIM VS GRIMM!
Get ready for the biggest slugfest in the West Coast! Hogun has been sent sent to retrieve the Destroyer but our heroes are not sure if he's honest. The Hand takes advantage of the distraction while another party joins the pursuit of the Destroyer.
FEATURING: "THE DEVIL WEARS URU" BACK-UP STORY!
Appearing in "A Grim Day"
- Darkhawk (Christopher Powell)
- The Thing (Benjamin Grimm)
- Hogun the Grim
- Ghost Rider (Johnathon Blaze) (First Appearance)
- The Hand
- U-Foes (First Appearance)
- Alicia Masters
- Mephisto (Indirectly Mentioned)
- Odin (Mentioned)
- Christine Everhart (First Appearance)
- Volstagg (Mentioned)
- Nick Fury (Mentioned)
- Heimdall (Mentioned)
- Mr. Fantastic (Mentioned)
- Doctor Doom (Victor von Doom) (Mentioned)
- Fantasticar Mk. I
- Darkhawk Armor
- Hogun's dagger
- Ghost Rider's Cycle
- Hellfire Chain
Plot for "A Grim Day"
After a brief recap of the previous events, the focus is diverted towards Hogun confronting both the Thing and Darkhawk. Hogun once again asks the stunned heroes to step away from the Destroyer but the Thing asks who he is in turn. After identifying himself as Asgardian, Darkhawk informs Ben that he's in the same league as Thor. However, the revelation that the only good Asgardian to have visited Earth being Thor basically means they can't outright trust Hogun.
Despite Hogun's confirmation that Odin barred most Asgardians save for Thor who was cast out at first from entering Midgard, they still can't trust him out of the possibility of him being Loki's henchman (especially from his looks). Hogun tries to maintain his cool despite feeling offended by the Thing's thought as he reaffirmed his orders.
When the Thing makes it clear that the armor is going nowhere until Richards or Fury have taken a look at it, Hogun takes it as an obstacle for him and a fight inevitably starts. Although Darkhawk tries to intervene, his attempt goes in vain as Hogun smashes him down before surprising the Thing with his speed and strength with a heavy blow to his rocky face.
At the park's entrance where numerous journalists and news media await for the heroes' return, Christine Everhart is seen reporting at the recent events until the voice of the Thing's scream is heard and the man himself suddenly flies past her before crashing through a WHIH Newsfront truck. This prompts nearby civilians to scatter in panic. Hogun quickly follows the Thing's path after making sure Darkhawk is done.
Grimly walking out of the park, Hogun is confronted by a few policemen who correctly think he's the one responsible for the Thing's mishap. Not knowing what he can do, the officers foolishly open fire on him after failing to ask him to stand down. Hogun casually deflects the bullets and quickly dispatch them one by one.
The last officer stands unfazed by him and continues firing bullets upon him until he runs out of ammo. Hogun approaches him and chokes him, proceeding to smash his face to pulp. Luckily, he is saved by the Thing's haymaker punch at the last second that sends the Asgardian plowing through the asphalt. The Thing quips at the recovering Hogun, telling him his mustache has run out of trust points.
In the park, Darkhawk's armor goes on a reparation stage as it has sustained unexpectedly high amounts of damage. Powell himself is still conscious but he is forced to do nothing as Inochi and Shibou are apparently well after their attack. Even Shibou regenerated the arm he cut off previously.
Before Inochi teleports them and the Destroyer to their intended place, he and his brother look at the miserable hero. Although their masks hide it, they are smiling at him and Inochi even says a good bye for him. Darkhawk tries to get up but fails and can't even get out of his armor. The ninjas later escape and Powell curses himself before asking the armor when the reparations will finish in which it replies in five minutes.
Back to the grim warriors' perspective, Hogun is seen avoiding the Thing's thrown debris as he closes in the Fantastic Four member. Before he can strike at him within range, the Thing does a stunning thunderclap that sets him up for a devastating uppercut. The Thing says he's tough, but he's dealing with the toughest muscle in Yancy Street now.
He approaches Hogun who seemingly faints from the blow, sitting by a fountain. When the Thing admits he didn't know he's that weak, Hogun kicks him down and delivers an uppercut of his own that sends him crashing to a convenience store. Hogun replies from afar, saying he's dealing with the strongest warrior in Vanaheim now.
In the store, the Thing both praises and insults his opponent's target of his head. He likes how good he is, but he hates how painful it is when it hits him. A store clerk asks if he's alright and if he needs anything and the Thing's eyes are attracted by a fridge containing a multitude of bottled soft drinks. The Thing asks him to borrow them and surprisingly gives him some money to "compensate".
Hogun arrives at the store, seeing the Thing seemingly wounded and trying to get up. He asks him if he has given up and the Thing says yes. He asks him to give him some time to admit it however, and seconds later he ends up throwing a multitude of filled bottles at him, one of them actually going up his mouth.
This strange tactic surprises him as he tries to remove it in shock, distracting him long enough for the Thing to stomp his leg so hard he screams out like a coward. Afterwards he wastes no time going for a straight punch to the jaw, knocking Hogun back through some trucks before crashing on a cement truck.
Hogun quickly gets off his knees and stand up, mace still ready. The Thing walks to him and asks if he's had enough. Hogun compliments how he fights, saying he's a tough contender. However, mere strength itself is insufficient in defeating Hogun. Ben voices his disappointment as Hogun tries to charge at him only for Darkhawk to stop Hogun with words.
Powell tells him to stop and Hogun asks if his pompous Shi'ar ass wants to have a piece of him. He instead tells him that his fight is pointless. His mission was to retrieve the Destroyer and thanks to both him and the Thing's hot-headed brains, none of them succeeded in even getting it out of the park. Instead, those two random Hand ninjas have attained the Destroyer.
Both Hogun and the Thing disbelief this and they both blame each other for failing the mission and doing unwanted property damage. Darkhawk mocks them both for acting like children, saying they could've reasoned the first place if Ben wasn't such a jerk and Hogun not being single-minded. Although they try to reason themselves out, Darkhawk reminds them he tried to reason to them himself until they charged at each other like hooligans.
After looking at each other, the two decide to stand down and Darkhawk sighs in both relief and panic as he wonders how could they retrieve the Destroyer. Moments later, a group of policemen surround the three warriors and order them to get down on the ground. They once again stare at each other and Darkhawk is the first one to get on the ground. The other two are confused by this but comply nevertheless.
Returning to the ninjas' perspective, they arrive on the top floor of a penthouse. Inochi and Shibou materialize with the Destroyer in tow. After knowing Shibou's condition, Inochi scans the environment and realizes they're not supposed to be here. Shibou agrees and thought they're supposed to rendezvous straight to Nobu. A female voice soon replies, telling them they are supposed to be here.
The voice is revealed to be Lady Bullseye who the ninjas bow to. Inochi doesn't understand why he can't teleport it straight to the headquarters despite attuning its magics to the Hand's own. Bullseye admits she doesn't know much of magic but Nobu knows something about it. In an instance, Nobu steps out of the shadows and explain that despite the Hand's powerful magics the Destroyer's own mystical energies are nonetheless stronger and much more than theirs.
Due to the energies' interference, his teleportation can't transport them through such great distances so he set up a mystic beacon that leads them here far away from the heroes' reach. Their location remains in the West Coast but they will still be far from the heroes' interference. They need more time to suit the Destroyer's mystical emanations to their own and their teleporters' strength aren't enough to make a long jump.
When asked of the heroes, Nobu trusts Lady Bullseye that everything's going according to plan. She confirms and makes a phone call as Nobu orders the suit to be taken away. She makes contact with a man named Simon, asking him if they've agreed to their terms. Soon he is revealed to be Vector of the U-Foes, his team positioned right behind him on top of another building.
Vector and his team accept her offer and agree to intercept the heroes if they happen to be upon them unless she doesn't transfer the money. Maki assures him of the Hand's trustworthiness and Vector accepts nevertheless. After the phone call, Ironclad asks if he's really sure they're taking a job from a ninja clan and he says it'll be worth it. Besides, Ironclad will have the chance to beat his degenerate counterpart, the Thing.
Nobu asks Lady Bullseye if the U-Foes are adequate for the job. Lady Bullseye reminds him that they've fought against the Hulk and won. Nobu reminds her back that they lost more battles against the Hulk. With a smile, she assures him that he has never seen how powerful they are together.
In a police station's interrogation room, the trio are seen on a bench together. Hogun is seen with handcuffs while the rest are not. Darkhawk acknowledges that Hogun could've broken free of those bonds but he's nobler than he thought. He replies with a grunt, saying his respect is only to hasten the pursuit of the Destroyer. Soon, the Thing asks if he's really retrieving it and the warrior reminds him that it belongs to Asgard.
Courtesy to Darkhawk's question, Hogun reveals that the Destroyer fell to Midgard after Loki attacked Asgard along with Ulik. The Destroyer was lost to the ages for so long not even Heimdall could find it. But when Loki found it and unleashed its primal fury, not even the All-Father was safe. It took nearly all of Asgard and Odin himself to defeat it.
Despite Loki's attempt to revive it, Odin used the last ounce of his strength to imprison him in another dimension. Unfortunately, Odin's stamina was too weak for him to focus. Before falling into Odinsleep, he cast the armor to another place which he didn't specify. And now in an unfortunate turn of events, it fell to Midgard right in the West Coast. Mix it with the Hand's plot to steal it and the day has just become a string of unfortunate coincidences.
The Thing asks him why Odin couldn't beat it although he made it himself. Hogun admits it is beyond him, but that weapon must not fall into the wrong hands. Darkhawk goes on to ask him how he could recognize his armor as being Shi'ar.
As an answer he simply mentions of an altercation Asgard had with the Shi'ar years ago which brought in the Fraternity of Raptors in the conflict. When asked of how many Raptors did he kill that day, Hogun suggests he look at his trophy room if he ends up in Asgard one day. Powell's expression immediately becomes scared as he shuts up as soon as possible.
After a while the door to the room opens and an officer notifies that they can get out now. Hogun needs to be under their surveillance however. The Thing assures her they're on the same page now but he won't hesitate to give a nice one-two punch at his mustache if he goes rogue. Hogun grunts again and they all walk out of the room.
Outside the station, the Thing is met with Alicia who expresses her concern over him. When she recognizes Hogun as the man beating him up thanks to the Thing's comment, Alicia bravely slaps him and prompts Hogun and Darkhawk's surprise. She pep-talks Hogun with insults and mockeries, all while Hogun's eyes widen and Darkhawk comments on how valiant she is.
Problem is, that was all just a ruse in her mind because she didn't even successfully slap the Vanir. She did slap, but she hit nothing and talks not to Hogun but to random pedestrians thanks to her blindness. Ben later calms her down and assures her it'll be fine. As for now, he still has work to do and apologizes for not looking over her.
Alicia forgives him and asks if he's serious about the ring. Hogun looks at Darkhawk before turning to Ben, questionable looks on their faces. Ben outright says he's serious now and Alicia responds with a kiss. As a response the two heroes turn back before the Thing expresses his love for her. For now, she has to get to safety because things are about to shake down. She complies and with the help of a social agent returns to her place.
After teaching the two a lesson Ben retrieves the Fantasticar and invites them on a sight-seeing trip while they figure out the Hand's next move. Quite luckily Darkhawk happens to stumble upon a convoy of trucks moving to the docks. Intercepting it, the moment the Thing drives his Fantasticar down a violent telekinetic wave from none other than Vector.
On the streets, the trio come face to face with the U-Foes who Ben expected the least to confront this day. Hogun on the other hand, recognizes them from fellow warrior Volstagg who told him they're a group of whimsical fools. Vector also remembers Volstagg being a fat loser who ran away from them when they destroyed his restaurant. From this Hogun tells the Thing that there are a few Asgardians that visited Earth but they never made it to their so-called televisions.
A fight soon breaks out between the heroes and the U-Foes. Though Hogun's skills allow him to hold his own against the villains, he is ultimately restrained by Vapor who intoxicates him by entering his lungs. Darkhawk's immunity to radiation allows him to get the best of X-Ray but he is immediately taken out by Ironclad's superior strength and his armor is crusehd by Vector. It all comes down to the Thing and Ironclad but the hero's villainous metallic counterpart ultimately has more strength and overpowers him.
Despite the U-Foes' apparent victory, Hogun's Asgardian physiology is revealed to be resistant to Vapor's cosmic poison and he silently exhales her out. Taking advantage of their joy, he unsheathes his dagger and throws it at unimaginable speed at Vector's throat. Although he has mighty telekinesis, his durability is all but human and the weapon goes through his throat before plunging itself to a nearby stop sign.
Alarmed, Ironclad screams out his name the moment his body lie motionless on the ground. He turns to Hogun who apparently is nowhere to be seen, revealing himself at the last second with a smash to the back of his head. Soon he single-handedly takes on Ironclad and a revived X-Ray, the latter's radiation blasts having no ill effect on him. Still, the Vanir's efforts are trumped by the enraged metal brute as he pins him down.
At the last second, the Thing and Darkhawk recover and together they defeat X-Ray and Ironclad with difficulty. Seeing Vector's body, Darkhawk immediately rushes to check on him as the Thing asks him if it's necessary to kill him. Hogun defends his statement and lucky for him, Vector is still alive. He simply lost all but his words. Nevertheless, Darkhawk advises him to be less lethal next time even with villains. Of course, he simply grunts in response.
Continuing their pursuit after calling "help", the group end up tailing the convoy moments before an unexpected event happens. The vehicles guarding and transporting the Destroyer suddenly burst out in flames. Hogun thinks that it seems someone else has done their job for them. Darkhawk says this can't be a coincidence that someone else knows what the Hand has. With that warning, the team approach the site.
There, they found a multitude of fallen Hand ninjas that seemingly died instantly when the explosion happened. The Thing disbelieves that they died due to a simple explosion because even his TNT-power punches can't even knock out one of them. Darkhawk agrees and notes that the fires engulfing their bodies are detected to be magical by the armor which is semi-magical in nature. After walking through corpses and debris, Hogun excitedly spots the Destroyer at a distance and rushes at it without caring of the flames.
When he tries to lift up the armor, an unknown entity suddenly punches him from within the flames with such force that he's knocked back. After crashing the Thing, Hogun wonders who the Hel this person is. The person in question apologizes in stead, saying that his boss needs the Destroyer. When he reveals himself, the trio cannot believe their eyes as the Ghost Rider stands in front of them with Lady Bullseye in hand and the Destroyer below his feet.
Appearing in "The Devil Wears Uru"
- Clea (First Appearance)
- Hogun (Flashback and Cameo)
- Odin (Flashback Only)
- Heimdall (Flashback Only)
- Volstagg (Flashback Only)
- Fandral (Flashback Only)
- Lady Sif (Flashback Only)
- Balder (Flashback Only)
- Ulik (Flashback Only)
- Zarathos (Mentioned Only)
- Thor (Flashback Only)
(Lady Bullseye (Cameo)
- Ghost Rider's Cycle
- Hellfire Chain
- Hoss' Car
- Volstagg's Sword
Plot for "The Devil Wears Uru"
Johnny Blaze is seen drinking his way through bottles after bottles in a bar somewhere in Sacramento. After scaring away the uneasy bartender a fat man with a southern accent enters the establishment. Johnny recognizes him but ignores him nonetheless, continuing his booze-filled afternoon. The man sits near Johnny and expresses his excitement in meeting him again.
He is soon revealed to be Hoss, a demon bounty hunter that both fought and assisted him in the past. When asked of his servitude, Hoss informs him he's independent now. Nevertheless, he's still on-job as of now and his target is sitting right beside him. Upon realizing what is to come, Blaze lets out a small sigh before snapping out of his drunken state by immediately turning into Ghost Rider and punching Hoss out of the bar.
The demon is unfazed and the fight between the two end up with Hoss getting the best of rounds as Blaze has apparently gone out of action for quite a while. After putting him inside the trunk, Hoss goes to his destination as Blaze curses out the name of Mephisto. In Yomi, the Japanese underworld, the Beast gets an unexpected visit from Mephisto. Despite being demons, it's safe to say that their greetings aren't all that warm. Mephisto is well aware of the Beast's plot to steal the Destroyer after Asgard's fallout and reveals that he's also after the weapon to wage a war against a vile rival of his.
Beast seems to know who the rival is but does not reveal the identity of the being. Still, the Beast wants neither the weapon falling to his hands nor waste his energy in fighting his western counterpart. Mephisto laughs at his statement and mocks his mortal intentions. The Beast smirks and cryptically tells him that his time will come. They then return to their respective businesses, Beast guiding the Hand and Mephisto returning to his realm.
Sitting on his throne, his presence is soon joined by Hoss and Johnny in Ghost Rider form. The former asks for Mephisto's payment and the demon says his reward has already taken form in the material realm. After thanking him for his hospitality, Hoss gives off one final look and advises him to not take it personally. Johnny takes whatever goes and turns to Mephisto, asking him what mischief he's up to.
He tells him of the aforementioned plan he had in mind and speaking of mischief, he reveals of the background of his incoming job. Flashing back to literally several hours ago, Asgard is apparently under attack by the alliance of Ulik and Loki. Rock trolls and frost giants worked together hand-in-hand to defeat the Realm Eternal. They are ultimately defeated, but the duo still have a weapon in mind. That, was when the Destroyer appeared.
The Destroyer's mere presence instilled fear within the Asgardians and even Thor didn't know the sheer destructive power it holds. The Destroyer cut swathes of Asgardians left and right, wounding the dimension's greatest defenders and the All-Father himself. Odin recognized it as a weapon of the distant past powered by mighty magics. The Destroyer was finally defeated after Odin exerted himself to great limits, casting it out to another dimension.
Upon hearing the last part, Ghost Rider asks if he's supposed to go to another dimension. Nevertheless, he's not expecting to be his pawn now. Mephisto laughs at this and tells him that the "other" dimension Odin cast it out to happens to be Earth. Hearing this, Blaze is upset and wonders why Earth is always the problem. The demon doesn't know himself, but he knows that Earth is the center of all things.
Anyways, Johnny guesses that Mephisto wants him to recover the armor for him. The answer is obvious, but Johnny still doesn't want to carry out his will. Mephisto acknowledges that he has nothing to lose but casually reveals a secret he hid after so many years. Johnny's plead for him to cure his father's cancer succeeded, though it did not save his soul. But after Johnny had become the Ghost Rider and later broke off his ties with him, he inflicted the same cancer that consumed his dad. And the cancer is still eating his body slowly while he's in human form.
Although the revelation shook him at first, he ponders why he felt nothing in his human form. After taking Mephisto's challenge to turn back, Johnny suddenly feels an excruciating pain that prompts him to return to his Ghost Rider form. Mephisto admits that all the alcohol he consumed soothed the pain of the supposed magical cancer, but he has put some more kick to it now just for the hell of it.
The exchange is simple: bring him the Destroyer and he will not lose his humanity. If he does not, expect "Johnny Blaze" to disappear and Zarathos to take place as the "Ghost Rider". Left with no choice, he reluctantly accepts the job much to Mephisto's delight. Before sending him off, Mephisto tells him to not hold back and give him a good show. Because if not, he has to remind him that his cancer is still eating his human body as of now.
After cursing him, Ghost Rider returns to Earth and finds out that he's in a different place. After seeing a sign of San Fransisco, Johnny realizes he's in a bar filled with lights. He is still in his Ghost Rider form and because he doesn't want to risk getting the annoying aches of his cancer, he tries to escape. Only later does he realize that the establishment's inhabitants do not notice his presence even with him poking around random civilians.
Telepathically, Mephisto informs him that he's compensating for him for now, making him invisible to normal eyes. After wondering where can he find the Destroyer in this place, the Ghost Rider's spiritual instincts suddenly lead him to a convoy truck. There, he managed to detect a familiar type of magic that he dealt with back in New York: Hand magic.
Expressing his interest in the Hand's want of an Asgardian weapon, Johnny follows the convoy and intends to ambush it from the least expected angle. After the events that unfolded in the main story, it's obvious what happens next and Johnny, his cloak expired, crashes his bike head-first through the convoy. What follows is him walking through the debris and stumbling upon a surprised Lady Bullseye who he recognizes.
After knocking her out via choking he approaches the visible Destroyer. Before he can lay a hand on it he managed to detect a certain warrior rushing without expecting his presence. He quickly punches him back with such sheer force that it breaks some of his bones. Afterwards, the story ends with the same view of the main story, Ghost Rider stepping on the Destroyer with Lady Bullseye's neck within his hand.
But while all of this transpired, an unexpected figure apparently observes the unfolding events: Clea.