Note: Sorry for some reason the paragraph breaks aren't in there properly... and it's all squished rather than going the full width (probably a result of copying and pasting it from my webmail)... but here we go...
Alpha Flight #2: "Down to the Wyre."
In a time of darkness, heroes stood up and fought for their country
that they loved so much. Hated by their own government, questioned by
the people of Canada – Alpha Flight never stops to ask why they do
what they do. They are heroes. It is their duty. Welcome –
Vindicator! Guardian! Sasquatch! Northstar! Aurora! Shaman! Puck!
Snowbird! Welcome to – Alpha Flight!
Sasquatch jumped through the hopes, dodged the blasts of
flame, and tumbled with the punches with all too much ease. Those
things he could not get above or around, he simply ripped it out of
The sight of Sasquatch through the training room lacks any
way of properly describing his grace, strength, speed and agility.
From the upper room, protected by a glass that was as hard as
steel, Heather stood behind James Hudson. "How are the readings?"
James turned around and smiled at his wife. "He's actually
operating above peak condition. His agility and speed both seemed to
have increased, as well as his strength. His strength was formerly
capped at approximately 100 tons. Now we have seen him lift an upward
of several tons over that limit, and still doesn't look to be his
"That's incredible," Heather blinked. "Any explanation for
"Michael says that he detects a lot more magic surrounding
Sasquatch in his new form," James shrugged. "That may be what allows
his limits to exceed his previous standard."
"What is Puck doing in there?" Heather pointed to Puck
crouched behind a metal pipe.
"Well, we have seen that Walter's new limits in speed and
agility," James looked at Heather. "He can anticipate the machines.
He's been through this before. However, what he can not predict is
the human mind."
"And who better to test his speed and agility than Puck?"
"Exactly," James nodded. "Now while Northstar and Aurora are
both faster, Puck has his agility, and his speed is much faster than
an average human's when it comes to combat. He's a close combat
expert, and being a smaller target for Walter's bigger form should
present Walter with a significant challenge."
"Has he been able to shift into human form?" Heather asked.
"Not yet," James shook his head, "but Snowbird promises that
the ability is there. It will just take for his body to accept the
changes it has gone through. After all, it's partially his body, and
also the body of the Taranaq. After all, while the Taranaq is exactly
like Sasquatch's original beast form – Taranaq was never able to
transform itself into a human – or anything for that matter, other
than its original form."
Heather smiled at James and patted him on the shoulder. "You
know, a simple no would have done."
James chuckled, "I am sorry."
She kissed James on the cheek. "That's why I love you, Mac."
She walked passed him, "I am going upstairs to freshen up."
She halted in the doorway, raising on leg on the door and winking at
Sasquatch ripped a three-ton anvil from the ground and threw
it into the pipe ahead of him that blocked his way. Much to his
surprise, Puck leaped out from the shadows.
"Nice throw, eh?" Puck smiled. "Made a mess of the training
room, like you always do. Mac says you're doing great against the
machines. How about a real person? Up for the challenge, eh?"
Sasquatch smiled and cracked his knuckles. "Sure thing, short
stuff," Sasquatch swung, only to have Puck rolled out of the
Puck landed on the broke pipe. "Well, then I should get some
rest then, because looks like my funeral is a long time away, eh?"
Sasquatch swung again, his fist slamming against the metal
pipe, as Puck easily tumbled to the left. Sasquatch ripped the pipe
that Puck was on, throwing him off balance.
But Puck wasn't one to be off balance for long. He was quick
on his feet, even before Sasquatch leapt to his side. Puck charged
Sasquatch, who watched in amazement as Puck rolled between
Sasquatch's legs. Sasquatch turned around. "Nice trick, runt."
"You'd be amazed at what I can do," Puck chuckled.
Sasquatch charged, "You're in for a world of pain!"
"Pain?" Puck jumped up and proceeded to leapfrog over
Sasquatch's head. "I know all about pain. I have spent my life
dealing with it."
"Well short stuff," Sasquatch laughed, "when I get a hold of
you, I am going to bounce you around this training room!"
Puck dodged to the left, easily avoiding Sasquatch. Sasquatch
then faked a punch to the right, for which Puck rolled to the left,
right into Sasquatch's hand.
Heather's voice crackled over the speaker. "James, we're
getting a report from Department H."
"What do they want?" James asked, turning to face the
monitor. "We have nothing to do with them anymore, unless they have
detected another mutant in Canada that they'd like us to fetch and
bring to Department M for them?"
"They've detected a mutant," Heather replied. "But it's
someone we know."
James' brows came together. "Who?"
"Wyre," Heather replied.
"Wyre?" James replied, somewhat startled. "We haven't heard
from him since Alpha Flight disbanded from the government." (1) He
paused for a moment, "So what do they want us to do?"
"Rescue him," Heather reported back.
"Rescue him?" James stood up. "From who?"
"Desert Sword," Heather replied.
"Who?" James shook his head.
"Getting the information now," Heather answered. After a
moment's pause, she finally said, "Here's what's come through. Desert
Sword, an Iraqi Super team, consisting of the following members:
Arabian Knight – no longer a member (2); Aminedi, deceased from
Legacy Virus; Sirocco – Current Member; Veil, deceased due to Pyro,"
she paused, "and there's Black Raazer."
"Raazer?" James asked. "The same one that has ties with
"One and the same," Heather replied.
"So what's there to worry about? Wyre can take care of
himself, especially if he's only facing two people," James shrugged.
"But there's more," Heather's voice returned. "They've picked
up some members. There's a female mutant named Dust – who's able to,
well, turn to dust."
"No worse than Iceman turning to ice, I suppose," James
"This is true," Heather smiled. "Another named Black Tiger."
"Black Tiger?" James looked at Heather through the
monitor. "I thought he was an Avenger?"
"That's Black Panther, love," Heather shook her head. "Two
very different people."
"Right," James shrugged. "Black Tiger, Black Panther," he
shook his head. "So what's his – or her – story?"
"No powers to speak of," Heather replied. "He's just an
expert at unarmed combat and an excellent horseman."
"So he's a John Wayne?"
"John Wayne was a gunslinger," Heather replied.
"I mean about the horse riding thing," James replied with a
"I suppose," she rolled her eyes. "There's little know about
him, except for the fact he's not one person. He's existed for
hundreds of years, possibly a millennia. How successive
representatives are chosen remains unknown."
"Another by the name of Scarlet Scarab – something that's
interesting is his history."
"What about it?" James asked, turning for a moment.
"He fought Captain America and the Invaders during World War
II," Heather replied. (4)
James spun around. "What? He's got to be old then."
"No," Heather replied. "He has the ability to absorb energy.
Apparently this has allowed him to maintain his youth."
"So what's Wyre doing there?"
"Apparently Department H sold something to the Middle Eastern
government that Wyre found out about. Now he's in there wreaking
havoc, and the Middle East is accusing Department H of selling
whatever it is they sold – and then trying to recover it so that they
can keep the money without having given anything up."
"What would they have sold that would have sent Wyre over
there to try and recover it?" James asked.
"Department H said, now that we are no longer officially
connected with the government, that the information is classified,"
Heather replied shortly, clearly showing her frustration.
"Of course," James replied. "Let's get everyone else and do
this by the numbers."
The jet that Madison Jeffries had created for them worked
like a charm. Silently it landed in Cairo airport.
"Notice anything?" Sasquatch pointed out the window.
"All their planes," Vindicator replied. "They've been cleared
off the runways."
"Sounds like we're in for a fight," Sasquatch cracked his
massive orange knuckles.
Vindicator turned, "Aurora, Northstar – both of you – as soon
as that door opens, fly out and scan the area. Report anything you
With a gust of the wind, Aurora and Northstar were out of the
Vindicator turned to the others. "Keep your eyes open for
"Anything like that, boss?" Sasquatch pointed out the left
window as a red bolt streaked toward the plane, striking it with
Vindicator tumbled to the side, slamming against the wall,
his hands slipping from the controls. "We're going down," he shouted
as he regained the controls and saw it had no response to what he had
"Oh," Sasquatch winced, "this is going to hurt."
The plane landed flat on its belly, its twin engines
exploding into fire as the plane itself cracked in half.
Sasquatch leaped from the fire, holding an unconscious Puck,
while Vindicator and Snowbird each carried a dazed Guardian and
"You have trespassed on these lands long enough, Americans,"
Sirocco shouted, as he stepped out of the darkness.
"Technically we're not Americans," Sasquatch pointed
out. "We're Canadians."
Vindicator shot Sasquatch a scolding look, then turned back
before the members of Desert Sword standing before him. "We've come
for one of our own," Vindicator countered as he landed on the
ground. "We have reports that you have taken him prisoner."
"Then your reports are wrong," came the haunting voice of
"Turn back," came the female known as Dust, "before this
turns into an international incident."
"It already is," Vindicator retorted. "Your government is
holding someone from Alpha Flight against their will."
"If you are indicating Wyre," Black Tiger replied, "he is
being held legally."
"He attacked a government facility," Scarlet Scarab
added. "He endangered hundreds of lives with his ruthless attack."
"He came to recover something that should have never been
sold," Vindicator replied.
"Whether it should have never been sold or not, it was,"
Sirocco replied, "making it our property now."
"Now if it was never Department H's to begin with,"
Vindicator retorted confidently.
"Well, it seems we are what the Americans call, a Mexican
Standoff," Scarlet Scarab growled. "And those, of course, can only be
resolved through violence." As the words fell from his lips, a
crimson bolt flew from his hands and struck Sasquatch in the chest,
slamming him against a portion of Alpha's shattered jet.
"L'idiot vous osez l'assaut?" (5) Northstar shouted as he
zoomed by Scarlet Scarab, striking him repeatedly with blinding
fists. "We came hoping to resolve this peacefully! We even radioed
in, before arriving! Yet you had no intention of discussing this
peacefully! You even shot us out of the air before we could make our
"Long time no see, eh?" came a voice in front of Black Raazer.
Black Raazer's haunting eyes looked down. "You!"
"Yeah," Puck smiled. "Me."
"How is that possible? You were cast into the Dream Realm!"
"Same way you got away from Svartalfheim," Puck answered as
he easily cart wheeled around Black Raazer's furious swings. (3) "If
I can not hit you, then I will find another target."
Black Raazer's sword found a new target indeed.
There was a woman's scream, and Guardian crashed to the
ground, the circuitry of her armor sparking wildly.
"Heather!" Vindicator shouted. He landed next to Heather,
relieved that she was still breathing. He turned his clenched fist at
Black Tiger and blasted.
Black Tiger tumbled out of the way, only to find himself
caught in the firm clutch of Sasquatch. An orange smile spread across
Sasquatch's face. Towering ten feet tall, it was something else, when
he held Black Tiger by the throat and held his outstretched arms
above his head. Black Tiger tried to kick his way free, to little
avail. "First, I was upset that you guys attacked us. Then I was
annoyed to be blasted into the jet. Now I am extremely upset."
Sasquatch slammed Black Tiger's head against the metal jet
fragment. "Now give it a rest."
Snowbird dove at Dust, who used her mutant ability to turn to
her namesake. At that moment, both Northstar and Aurora began
furiously flying at speeds that quickly reached, and began to exceed
Mach 10 – over 7,700 miles per hour, creating a vortex around Dust
and Black Raazer's gaseous form.
Puck jumped into Sasquatch's hands, "Lets do that X-Men
"Fastball Special coming up," Sasquatch smiled. Winding up
his arm, he threw Puck with incredible force, who slammed into
Sirocco, knocking the wind out of him. A side effect of Puck's
condensed size was a thick layer of skin that proved to be extremely
Alpha Flight turned and faced Scarlet Scarab, the only
remaining member of Desert Sword standing.
"Now," Vindicator rose, helping Heather. He pointed his fist
at Scarlet Scarab. "I am giving you a choice. Fight and lose or hand
In a plane provided by the Middle East, Alpha Flight flew
back, heading home only a few short hours later.
Vindicator allowed Puck to take the controls as he walked to
the back, and stopped next to Wyre's seat. "So what did we just risk
our lives for? What were you doing in the Middle East?"
"I came for these," Wyre pulled out a folder that contained
well over three hundred pages of code within.
"And what," Vindicator took the folder, "is this?"
Wyre looked at Snowbird, "They're Nayra's DNA sequence code."
"What?" Vindicator flipped through the pages, and immediately
recognized them. "But where did they get this?"
"Department H," Wyre replied.
"What were they going to do with it?" Snowbird asked.
"Create super soldiers," Wyre replied, "using her DNA. Being
a half goddess is a nice thing to try to isolate when it comes to
DNA." Wyre looked away for a moment. "The Secret Empire created super
soldiers out of me," he whispered, "I won't let it happen again."
Snowbird sat down. "Where did Department H get my DNA?" (6)
"Someone must have given them the DNA sequence," Wyre
replied. "Probably the same person who spliced mine down and gave it
to the Secret Empire."
"Makes sense," Vindicator looked at Snowbird. "We noticed
during Devil's Night that Nayra was able to cross the Canadian
border – something she was not able to do previously, due to Shaman
binding her to the land of Canada."
"So what next, eh?" Puck asked.
"Who knows," Vindicator replied, looking over his shoulder at
Heather, who was now out of her Guardian armor. "Who knows…"
1. At the end of Alpha Flight's original run, Alpha Flight broke
all connections to the government. For that tale, see Marvel's Alpha
Flight #130. Sometime between then and Alternate Marvel's Deadpool,
Alpha Flight signed up with the government once more, only to break
those ties yet again.
2. Arabian Knight departed from Desert Sword and joined
Alternate Marvel's X-Factor! Check out the heart pounding issues!
3. Indeed! Raazer first manifested himself within Puck, and was
revealed why he was a dwarf. When Raazer was freed from Puck, Puck
returned to his normal height of 6' as well as his proper age. Raazer
was defeated and contained within Puck once more. For all of that,
see Marvel's Alpha Flight #32. However, while being tricked by Loki,
Raazer was once more released. Puck and Raazer were separated, as
Raazer was trapped in the Nether Realm known as Svartalfheim and Puck
was transported to Tibet. Confused yet? Give me a chance! In Marvel's
Alpha Flight #60, Puck fought the DreamQueen and pulled her back into
the Dream Realm, both of them vanishing. Wait, it gets better! Puck
returns in Alpha Flight #89, completely deformed. Apparently, still
at 6' when he entered Dream Realm, Puck's body was kept alive by
magic. Upon returning to Earth, he found himself dying once more.
Master stumbled upon him, injected him with healthy DNA, which he had
obtained during Puck's time at the hospital (see Marvel's Alpha
Flight #5). Since the DNA had been while Puck was still a dwarf, it
returned his body back to dwarf size, including his age. And that is
how Puck is a dwarf, and free of Raazer at the same time! Now where
were we again?
4. Don't believe me? Check out Marvel's Invaders, Volume 1,
issues #23 and #25.
5. "L'idiot vous osez l'assaut?" translates to "Idiot, you dare
6. Want to know more? You should pick up Alternate Marvel's
Uncanny X-Men #355 for more details and this… Sinister connection!