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Brian Michael Bendis (writer), Mike Mayhew (artist), Andy Troy (color artist), Richard Starkings & Comicraft's Albert Deschesne (letterers), Mike Mayhew (cover artist), Taylor Esposito (production), Lauren Sankovitch (assistant editor), Tom Breevort (editor), Axel Alonso (editor-in-chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer)
Hawkeye has been captured and imprisoned by Norman Osborn, who is seeking revenge against the archer who recently humiliated him. The Dark Avengers are on hand to assist Osborn, who demands to know where the rest of the Avengers are. Hawkeye's ex-wife, Mockingbird, wakes to find Hawkeye missing, all that is left it a note asking her not to come after him. Mockingbird is found by Ms Marvel and Spider-Woman, who are unimpressed when Mockingbird tells them Hawkeye has gone to kill Osborn. Hawkeye refuses to reveal the Avengers' location to Osborn, so Venom bites into Hawkeye. Hawkeye attempts to fight the Dark Avengers, but there are too many of them, and Sentry takes him down with ease. Spider-Woman tries to talk to Mockingbird out of going after Hawkeye, but eventually she, Ms Marvel and Jessica Jones agree to go with her. Hawkeye wakes in his cell and finds his bow and some arrows. He escapes and makes his way out of the cell, only to find himself re-living a recent invasion by the Kree in which he was killed. In fact, Hawkeye is being mentally tormented by Mentallo, who is working for Osborn to try and find the location of the Avengers within Hawkeye's mind. Numerous important events in Hawkeye's life play out through Hawkeye's mind as Mentallo tries to break him down – and eventually, he finds it. The Dark Avengers leave the HAMMER Helicarrier and make their way to the Brooklyn warehouse where supposedly the Avengers are hiding out. But when break into it, they find it abandoned – but Daken is sure they were here at least an hour ago. Mockingbird, Ms Marvel, Jessica Jones and Spider-Woman break into the HAMMER Helicarrier as they search for Hawkeye, and eventually find him, as Mockingbird takes Mentallo out with ease. The Dark Avengers leave the destroyed Avengers hideout in Brooklyn, where Spider-Man returns to. He is spotted by a HAMMER soldier and escapes into some tunnels, where the Avengers have regrouped. They talk with Hawkeye about his actions, but other priorities arise as Steve Rogers finds them and tells them that the world has gone to hell, but the Avengers are now going to do something about it!
Clint Barton a.k.a. Ronin, and formerly known as Hawkeye, wakes, to find himself naked, sitting on a chair in an empty, sterile-looking room, a large clamp around his hands which are tied behind him. 'Agh! Crap... oh great' Clint mutters to himself. 'Well, Mister Barton... the lesson you've learned today is... be careful who you go out of your way to slam in the media... oh, and... be careful who you go and try and murder in cold blood...' a voice calls out.
Wide-eyed, Clint looks up and sees the Dark Avengers standing before him! Norman Osborn a.k.a. Iron Patriot, Ares, Bullseye a.k.a. Hawkeye, Venom a.k.a. Spider-Man, Moonstone a.k.a. Ms Marvel, Daken a.k.a. Wolverine and the Sentry. The Dark Avengers stand at the ready, as Osborn tells Clint that he never knows who the last people to see him alive will be. 'Hey, Norman. How's the hair?' Clint replies. Norman ignores Clint, and tells him that if he says sorry, they will let him go. 'Okay, that's funny' Clint declares. 'I thought so' Norman responds. Bullseye reaches for one of his arrows and asks 'Where do you want me to start the hurting?' 'No, No, Hawkeye. This is between him and me. You get to watch' Norman tells Bullseye, who starts to protest. 'Just having you here in his old costume is enough torture for now' Norman remarks. 'For you, maybe. I need more tactile -' Bullseye begins, but Norman tells him to settle.
Venom goes up behind Hawkeye, his long tongue flickers at Hawkeye's cheek, as the hero asks Osborn 'What's on your mind?' 'Where are the Avengers hiding?' Norman demands. Hawkeye remains silent, so Venom puts a large clawed hand around his neck. 'You tell me now and I'll spare your ex-wife' Norman smirks. Hawkeye just stares back at Norman and says nothing.
Meanwhile, at the Avengers hideout, Bobbi Morse-Barton a.k.a. Mockingbird wakes, smiling, she turns over to find the other side of the bed empty, save for a note laid against the other pillow. 'Oh no' Bobbi utters, wide-eyed as she reads the note that says “I had to try. Do not come after me. I love you very much” and has a picture of an arrow through a heart. Bobbi leaps out of bed and rushes out of the room. She arrives at a wall where the Avengers' weapons are stored, and finds some of the hooks that hold the weapons empty. Without bothering to get dressed, wearing only her bra and panties, Bobbi rushes out onto the rooftop, dropping to her knees, 'Oh, no... no no no... what did you do?' she utters. Tears stream down her face as she declares 'After all we've been through. All of it. You threw it all away'. Suddenly a voice calls her name, and Mockingbird looks up to see Carol Danvers a.k.a. Ms Marvel and Jessica Drew a.k.a. Spider-Woman hovering before her. 'What's going on?' Carol asks. 'Clint went and did it. He went and did it' Bobbi exclaims. 'Did what?' Jessica asks her teammate. 'Went to kill Norman Osborn' the concerned Mockingbird announces. 'Idiot' Carol declares as she flies swiftly across the city to Avengers Tower, where the HAMMER Helicarrier is hovering beside, along with several helicopters. 'What did you do?' Carol wonders.
'Where are the Avengers hiding?' Osborn demands. Hawkeye ignores the question and asks where he is. 'Is this a Helicarrier?' he adds. 'He will never tell you' Ares remarks to Osborn, who replies 'We'll see'. Hawkeye calls Osborn “Green Goblin” and tells him that the “God of War” is right. 'You don't mind if I call you by your real name, do you?' Hawkeye asks, announcing that he is not going to be intimated, and is not going to play Osborn's game – on any level. 'So go ahead. Do what you have to do' Hawkeye tells him, as Venom continues to hold him by his neck. Osborn once again asks where the Avengers are hiding, but Hawkeye ignores him and asks 'How do you even get your hair to do that?' Osborn grins, 'Mac. Just a nibble' he tells Venom, who then clams his razor-sharp teeth down into Clint's right shoulder, causing Clint to scream in pain. But suddenly, Clint thrusts backwards, slamming Venom into the wall behind him, and kicking the chair out towards the Dark Avengers. Bullseye readies an arrow, while Venom latches back on to Clint, who moves forward and kicks the bow that Bullseye is aiming up – causing him to fire the arrow at Norman Osborn, who ducks for safety.
Sentry moves forward and slams his fist into Clint's face, causing the marksman to drop to the floor. 'That was cute' Bullseye remarks. Ares stands ready with his sword, while Osborn tells his team that the fun is over, and orders everyone out. 'You want me to stay?' Sentry asks. The team look down at Clint, and Osborn replies that he doesn't, but he instructs Sentry to tell Victoria Hand to bring their special guest in as soon as he arrives. 'Who?' Bullseye enquires. 'She knows' is all Osborn tells his team.
Meanwhile, Mockingbird has changed into her costume and asks Spider-Woman, who is standing on a wall nearby, if there is any word from Captain America or Spidey. 'No' Spider-Woman responds on both accounts. 'They were just here' Mockingbird declares. 'Hey, that's the nature of our deal. Everyone has their own adventures, too' Spider-Woman jokes. Mockingbird tells her that she knows, but that they need them. 'Cellphones don't work with the lifestyle' Spider-Woman remarks. 'I know' Mockingbird replies, before Spider-Woman asks her what she is planning. 'What am I – I'm going after him' Mockingbird declares. 'He told you not to' Spider-Woman reminds Mockingbird, who explains that the magic of their relationship is she never listens to Clint because she knows better than him. 'And he doesn't seem to listen to you' Spider-Woman points out. 'Clearly' Mockingbird mutters. 'Sounds great' Spider-Woman tells her. Mockingbird declares that it works, to which Spider-Woman points out 'Except for this part'. Bobbi tells Spider-Woman that she knows she is trying to take her mind off the situation by being cute, and asks her not to. Jessica apologizes. 'Look, Jessica...I appreciate the -' Bobbi begins, turning around, but Spider-Woman just tells her that she gets it, before asking what the plan is.
'Hey, guys, what's going on? Is Luke okay?' Jessica Jones asks as she approaches Bobbi and Spider-Woman, who tells her that Luke is recuperating fine, but Barton has gone after Norman. 'Holy #$%&' swears Jessica Jones. 'Yeah' Spider-Woman agrees. Jessica asks if Clint has gone by himself, and Spider-Woman confirms that he has. 'Oh my God. What are you going to do?' Jessica asks. 'Nothing!' Ms Marvel exclaims as she drops down beside the others. 'NOTHING?' Mockingbird shouts. Ms Marvel informs the others that Clint is definitely in the helicarrier over the tower, but that it is a mob scene of agents and #$%& Avengers. 'It's a fortress guarded by the God of War and fifty other things better than us'. But Mockingbird declares that she is not going to do nothing. 'I know. But the three of us against that...' Carol begins. 'Hold on...' Jessica begins as she holds up her cellphone. Carol reminds Jessica that Luke has to heal, to which Jessica replies that she knows. 'Yeah, I don't want him to -' Mockingbird begins. 'I got it' Jessica tells the others as she puts the phone to her ear and asks her mother if she can watch the baby. 'I know. No. Everythng's fine. Can you? Good' Jessica tells her mother, before turning to the other heroines and telling them they can make it four.
'No. Really?' Bobbi asks. 'Yeah' Jessica tells her. 'Since when?' Bobbi asks. Jessica announces that it is time, but Bobbi tells her to stay with her baby. 'Hey, you helped save my husband. I'll help you save yours' Jessica replies. 'Bobbi' Carol remarks, removing her mask, she tells Bobbi that she doesn't know how to say this, but that the Dark Avengers don't play by their rules. 'If they caught him, they killed him'. Spider-Woman looks shocked, and Bobbi goes wide-eyed. 'No... they didn't. There's much more they can do' Spider-Woman declares.
Back aboard the Helicarrier, Clint wakes up on the floor of the cell he was in, wearing shorts now. He looks over and sees a bow and set of arrows propped up against the wall, and grabs them before exiting the room and stepping out into the corridor. He fires an explosive arrow into another door up ahead, and it bursts open. 'I know this...' Clint utters as he sees Nick Fury, Captain America, Daredevil and Wonder Man rushing towards a large Kree vessel which has descended, and Kree soldiers running towards them. 'Okay, ya li'l pishers... time to end this!' Hawkeye, in his old costume, calls out as he takes down several Kree at once, with Tigra nearby. 'Come on, Avengers!' Hawkeye shouts as he shouts as he leaps over some Kree weapons. 'Let's end this our way! These blue #$%& came around today? Looking for a fight? Let's send them home with something to talk about!' Hawkeye shouts as he kicks one of the Kree warriors. Suddenly, Hawkeye's satchel of arrows is shot at, and they catch on fire. 'Aw, crap! Need some help here!' Clint calls out. 'Not like this!' he shouts as he smacks down another Kree officer. 'LIKE THIS!' Hawkeye roars as he takes control of a Kree officer's flight pack, and flies towards the Kree ship with his exploding sachet of arrows. 'Hawkeye!' Captain America calls out, as Clint screams, and is torn apart by the ensuing explosion.
'What are you doing? You're wasting my time' a voice calls out. It's Norman Osborn, who stands at a console, while Clint, strapped to a table, continues to scream. 'Just get me the intel, Flumm' Osborn snaps at the bald man who sits near Clint. 'Mentallo' the bald man corrects Osborn. 'Whatever' Osborn mutters, while Moonstone stands at his side. Mentallo informs Osborn that the mind is a complicated, gorgeous landscape, and this man has been trained by Captain America and Nick Fury, he knows how to fight off a mental intrusion. 'You're wasting my time' Osborn scowls. Mentallo announces that he needs to strip away Hawkeye's resolve, needs to weaken him mentally. Clint's psychic form begins to crumble, while Mentallo declares that the best way to do that is to make him relive all the nightmares of his life. 'Every hurt. Every embarrassment. Every missed opportunity. Every failure. The little ones, the big ones. The ones no one knows about...' Mentallo declares, as memories flash through Clint's mind – of becoming Goliath; meeting Mockingbird; the wedding of the Scarlet Witch and Vision; his training under the watch of the Swordsman; his debut as Hawkeye; meeting the Black Widow; battling Daredevil; kissing Moonstone; battling Mephisto and the seeming death of Mockingbird. 'You wanted him to suffer. Don't you worry. He is suffering' Mentallo announces, as anguish spreads across Clint's face.
'Where are the Avengers hiding?' Osborn shouts. 'I'll ask him' Mentallo replies, as he digs deeper into Clint's mind, and sees Clint, as Ronin standing in a kitchen, while Ms Marvel busies herself at the sink, and Spider-Man clings to a kitchen wall. Jessica Jones feeds her daughter, while Spider-Woman, Mockingbird, Bucky, Wolverine and Luke Cage sit around the table. 'Got a pen?' Mentallo asks, and Osborn smiles, while Clint's looks despondent.
Shortly, Iron Patriot flies from the helicarrier, with Moonstone and Sentry at his side. Venom, Ares, Bullseye and Daken travel through the air on hover-pads, before coming to a stop on a rooftop in Brooklyn, where they look down at a rather non-descript three-story brick building. 'What does the armor say, Normy?' Bullseye asks. 'Nothing. It scans clean' Osborn reports. 'There's no one there?' Bullseye enquires as he peers through a scanning device. Iron Patriot reports that the building is cloaked, he can't scan it. 'It mans they are absolutely in there' Moonstone declares. 'Exactly. Old-school Fury stuff' Iron Patriot points out. Ares grabs his huge axe and asks Iron Patriot what he would have them do. 'Well, you guys are always asking for my permission to let loose. On my word. Have at it' Osborn tells his team. 'There's a baby in there. Luke Cage's baby...' Venom points out. 'And I'm not the one that put him in harm's way' Osborn declares, before instructing the Sentry to rip the north side of the building off.
Sentry does as commanded, flying into the air, then dropping down into the building, which causes the north side to fall apart. Iron Patriot leads his team down into the ruined building, 'Avengers assem...ble' he remarks, as they look around the ruined building and discover that no one is there. Daken sniffs the air: 'Diapers and menstruation. They were here an hour ago' he announces. Bullseye looks at the wall where the weapons were stored and tells the others that they cleaned out and ran. 'They knew we were coming'. Ares opens the refridgerator, 'Ah. They were smart enough to know Osborn could get this location out of Barton' he points out, smiling. Iron Patriot hangs his head, his expression obscured by his armor, while Moonstone asks him where he thinks the Avengers went.
The HAMMER Helicarrier, where Spider-Woman, Ms Marvel, Mockingbird and Jewel are taking down HAMMER officers with ease. Kicking and punching their way through them, while Spider-Woman shocks them with her spider-bite power. In the lab, Mentallo continues to stand at Hawkeye's head, 'What else do you have for me in there, Mister Barton?' he asks. 'Tell me the names of your friends...their real names'. 'Where is Clint Barton?' Spider-Woman shouts as she glides down a corridor. 'Ronin!' Ms Marvel calls out as she flies over a HAMMER officer. 'Where is my husband!?' Mockingbird demands, kicking an officer over. 'Tell me their real names...' Mentallo asks Hawkeye, who appears to be in agony once again. Suddenly, 'Son of a – No, I didn't do any -' Mentallo begins as Jewel breaks open the door to the lab, and she and Mockingbird enter. Mockingbird doesn't hesitate as she slams her boot into Mentallo's head, knocking him backwards. 'Baby? Baby?' Mockingbird calls out as she and Jessica stand over the once-again naked Hawkeye. 'Bobbi...' Clint utters. 'You okay, baby?' Mockingbird asks. 'Sorry, baby...last time. Promise' Clint tells Bobbi, who smirks and reminds him that he said that last time. Several HAMMER soldiers rush down a corridor, 'Time to go!' Ms Marvel calls out.
Back in Brooklyn: 'Well, damn' Bullseye mutters as he and the other Dark Avengers walk away from the flaming building abandoned by the Avengers. 'It's almost as if they were smart enough to know you'd figure out where they live...hauled ass out of there in time, and used the open window to break Barton out of -' Bullseye begins but Iron Patriot spins around, points at Bullseye, who stops talking, before Iron Patriot turns back and carries on, 'We got their house' he declares.
'Oh, man... I am an expert on bad and this is bad' Peter Parker a.k.a. Spider-Man remarks as he clings to the side of a building and looks down at the destroyed Avengers hideout, as emergency services including firefighters have gathered. 'I got a hot read all of a sudden!' a HAMMER soldier announces. 'There!' another shouts. 'We have visual. Squadron 6, take to the sky' a third orders as they open fire on Spider-Man. Spider-Man leaps away from the wall he was clinging to and spins a web, swinging through the city, he dodges the attack and declares 'It's my fault for leaving Queens!'
Shortly: 'Okay, what was that!?' Spider-Man exclaims as he emerges from a series of tunnels, entering some sort of hangar bay where several Avengers jets are, along with Hawkeye and Mockingbird, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage and their daughter, Spider-Woman, Ms Marvel and Bucky – the current Captain America. 'Spider-Man. Good. You remembered plan B' Bucky remarks. I remember thinking we were safe in your other secret hideout and we wouldn't need another one a block and a half away. And yet...here we are' Spider-Man replies, before Ms Marvel asks 'How bad was it over there?' Spider-Man announces that it wasn't too bad – for Germany 1945. Clint tells the team that he is sorry. 'And...' Bobbi adds. 'And i'll never do it again' Clint declares. 'Because...' Bobbi begins. 'It was selfish, stupid, ill-conceived...' Clint responds. 'And...' Bobbi says, to which Clint exclaims that he gets it, and he won't do it again. Clint acknowledges that Peter was right. 'I'm not used to being pushed this hard. I'm not' Clint tells the others, adding that he can't stand Osborn, he can stand that the world is going to hell and no one seems to care. 'You were right and I was wrong. But listen to me here, please...' Clint asks his teammates.
Clint looks at Luke, Jessica and their baby as he announces that he would never do anything to put any of them, their baby, in harm's way. 'I would never do anything to put you in this position'. Clint then tells them all that he is sorry. Luke looks and Jessica and asks her 'And what's all this?' 'Hey, post-baby and I still squeezed into the damn thing' Jessica replies. 'Is this the way it's going to be?' Luke asks. Jessica tells him that she is thinking about it, to which Luke remarks 'Well, this is a new thing then'. 'I said I'm thinking about it' Jessica declares, but Luke tells Jessica that he knows her and that she has already decided. 'Well, you guys clearly need back-up' Jessica points out, while looking at her daughter. Bucky pulls his mask back and remarks that he can't believe it came to this, and that Steve Rogers is going to kill him. 'Well, I'm not thrilled...' a voice calls out. Bucky, Hakweye and Mockingbird go wide-eyed as they turn in the direction of the voice, who adds 'But for now I'm just happy you're all okay. You're right, Hawkeye, the world has gone to hell'. It's Steve Rogers – Captain America – who points at the Avengers and declares 'Thank God the Avengers are here to do something about it. And we are. You ready?'
Captain America VII, Hawkeye/Ronin II, Luke Cage, Ms Marvel, Mockingbird, Spider-Man, Spider-Woman I (all New Avengers)
Ares, Bullseye/Hawkeye III, Daken/Wolverine II, Norman Osborn/Iron Patriot, Moonstone/Ms Marvel III, Sentry, Venom III/Spider-Man IV (all Dark Avengers)
In Hawkeye's hallucination:
Captain America, Daredevil, Nick Fury, Tigra, Wonder Man
In Hawkeye's memories:
Black Widow, Captain America, Hawkeye/Goliath II, Iron Man, Mantis, Mockingbird, Scarlet Witch, Swordsman, Thor, USAgent, Vision (all Avengers / Avengers West Coast)
In Hawkeye's mind:
Captain America VII, Luke Cage, Ms Marvel, Mockingbird, Ronin II, Spider-Man, Spider-Woman I, Wolverine (all New Avengers)
Hawkeye publicly spoke out against Norman Osborn in New Avengers (1st series) #54.