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Gerry Duggan (writer), Ryan Stegman (artist), Richard Isanove (colorist), Virtual Calligraphy's Clayton Cowles (letterer & production), Ryan Stegman & Richard Isanove (cover artists), Trado Moore & Matt Wilson (variant cover artists), Alanna Smith (assistant editor), Tom Breevort & Daniel Ketchum (editors), Axel Alonso (editor-in-chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer)
Avengers created by Stan Lee & Jack Kirby
Doctor Voodoo saves Quicksilver from certain death, but in doing so, a mysterious force is unimpressed about Quicksilver cheating death, and warns Doctor Voodoo that he will see him soon. After stopping civilians who want to leave Boston, so that they don't spread the contagion, the Avengers are confronted by hatred as Rogue is attacked by one of the civilians. Their attention turns to a large pack of dog creatures chasing a crowd, before Cable arrives, and destroys the creatures. He reveals that he has come from 2087 where the entire planet has been affected by what is transpiring here in Boston today. Rogue isn't happy when Cable asserts his authority and tries to take over leadership on this mission. Quicksilver and Deadpool convince them to call a truce, for the sake of the future. Cable reveals what he has learnt in the future, and gives Quicksilver an antitoxin to take to the Human Torch who is with some scientists, so that more of the antitoxin can be synthesized. The Shredded Man soon arrives on scene, and after releasing his poison into the air, Deadpool Rogue and Doctor Voodoo fall. Synapse is fine, and Cable realizes she must be an Inhuman. While Cable tends to Rogue, who he learns has M-Pox, he sends Synapse to track the Shredded Man. But when she finds him, Synapse confronts him, only to discover that he is her grandfather!
'Then I punched the raggedy old man half to death. He's quite arrogant, nasty bit of business, Voodoo' Pietro Maximoff a.k.a. Quicksilver tells his teammate Jericho Drumm a.k.a. Doctor Voodoo. Doctor Voodoo looks up at a large mass of vines, with little pods growing off them and and asks him not to tell him what happened here, but show him where it happened. Pietro points and announces 'This is the spot. Right where I clobbered the Shredded Man' Quicksilver announces, before asking what the big deal is.
Wade Wilson a.k.a. Deadpool is standing and instructs him to cut the trunk open. Doctor Voodoo tells Quicksilver to brace himself – because things are not want they seem. 'I know this will be distressing for you to hear – but you're dead' Doctor Voodoo remarks, as goblin-like creatures grab Quicksilver and pull him away. 'Jericho, wha – help!' Quicksilver calls out. 'Demons! Stay thy foul hands!' Doctor Voodoo orders as he grabs Quicksilver's hand, and tells him not to speak or turn around.
'You may claim his spirit one day, devils... but not today!' Doctor Voodoo declares, as he manages to pull Quicksilver free from the goblins. 'Hurry. And do not look back' Voodoo adds as he and Quicksilver pass through the tear in reality, and a voice calls out 'Hmm. I hate cheating. That's one you owe me, Jericho. Be seeing you soon'.
At the same time, in reality, Deadpool is now giving mouth to mouth to Quicksilver, 'LIVE, DAMN YOU!' Deadpool shouts, when suddenly, Quicksilver coughs and sits up, covered in green gunk, near a pod which Deadpool had sliced open. Deadpool pulls down his mask back over his face, and contats Synapse, reporting that he got to Quicksilver and that he is alive. 'Voodoo thanks me for the moral support' Deadpool jokes. Quicksilver looks at Jericho, concerned, and asks 'Whose voice did I hear?' while Deadpool mutters 'You're welcome, by the way!' Doctor Voodoo tells Quicksilver that was a voice that few souls, living or dead, have heard, and that it has many names, but he cannot sayt it here for fear of conjuring it – and right now, the Avengers are in trouble.
Nearby, civilians have gathered as strange trees grow up throughout the city. Police officers have blocked off an area, preventing the civilians from passing them. 'Out of my way!' someone calls out. 'Stop pushing!' another exclaims. 'Let us out of here!' a man tells the police officers. 'Get away from me!' another person complains. 'Its contagious – oh my God -' one of them utters. One of the police officers instructs the civilians to stay back, explaining that this part of the city is quarantined. 'I ain't asking. Make way!' a man shouts, before pulling out as gun and declaring that her is not staying here to die – before he can cause any further trouble though, a small bag is thrown at his face – hard enough to cause him to start bleeding and fall to the ground. 'I remember the first time I used a bean bag to knock someone out' Deadpool remarks as he stands over the man. 'It was the third day of kindergarten and -' Deadpool begins, before Rogue appears over him and tells him that it is not story time. 'Copy that' Deadpool acknowledges.
Rogue then addresses the civilians, asking them all to listen, they look up at her as she tells them that the Avengers know they are scared. 'But we've faced worse, and we'll survive this'. Rogue reports thar they are chasing down a suspect, but that until they are sure they can't contminate others, the city of Boston is under quarantine. Suddenly, 'Go home, mutie!' someone calls out as they throw something at Rogue. 'Where are the real Avengers?' someone asks. 'Where's Iron Man?' another asks. 'Who threw that!?' Deadpool shouts, turning his attention to the crowd. Rogue tells Deadpool that she is okay, and isn't hurt – except her pride. Emily Guerrero a.k.a. Synapse looks up at Rogue, when suddenly, a large crowd begins to run: 'Here they come! Run for their lives!' someone shouts.
The civilians run past the Avengers. 'Oh God!' one of them shouts. 'We're all gonna die!' another screams, while Rogue instructs Deadpool not to use live fire. 'Someday you're gonna have to trust me to make these shots' Deadpool replies, as a large pack of the strange dog-like creatures can be seen chasing after the crowd. The Avengers move in to block the dogs, 'Don't let any of them get past us!' Rogue tells her team, when suddenly, a blinding glare distracts them. 'What now?' Doctor Voodoo mutters, looking up.
'You're still alive! Then I'm still in time! Everyone cover your ears -' calls out Nathan Summers a.k.a. Cable as he makes his explosive entrance. 'CABLE?' Deadpool shouts. '- it's gonna be loud!' Cable warns the others, as he opens fire on the dogs, blasting them all with a powerful, high-intensity and very loud weapon, eradicating the dog creatures.
Cable looks over to the Avengers: 'Rogue. Deadpool. Voodoo. Good. I can work with this'. 'You're that time-traveling X-Man' Synapse remarks. Cable looks at her and remarks that he doesn't know her, before asking her what she does. Synapse introduces herself and informs him that she can communicate telepathically and hack into brains. 'Okay, well... we're not all winners' Cable tells her.
Deadpool goes over to Cable and tells his companion that it is good to see him, but that he is a little busy right now. 'Yeah, busy putting this op in the toilet' Cable points out. 'What's that supposed to mean?' Deadpool asks.
Cable reveals that he just left the year 2087 and that the entire planet looks like this hellhole. 'I've come back from the future because you failed' he adds. 'On your six' Cable calls out as he fires his weapon behind the Avengers, derstroying another creature. Cable declares that he will be taking point until this is over, and then he will be on his way. 'Excuse me? I'm not letting this Avengers mission become a Cable and Deadpool shoot 'em up!' Rogue replies. She then asks how they know a suspected terrorist arriving from the future and commandeering the situation isn't what causes them to fail. Cable tells his former teammate that they obviously don't have time for niceties, and points out that if this team falls, then so does the rest of the world. Rogue moves towards Cable, so Quicksilver, who has arrived on scene, speeds between them and asks if he is really going to be the cool-headed one right now. 'No, of course not' Rogue replies, before asking Cable to tell them what they know, and asks if this attack spreads beyond Boston.
'Are you saying it's only here? We might be in better shape than I thought' Cable remarks, before Rogue asks him if nobody is alive in that future. 'Does a small number of Inhumans count?' Cable asks. 'Not really, no' Rogue replies, before telling Cable that she knows he has a plan, and that she wants to hear it. 'Then you agree that I'm in charge?' Cable asks. Rogue tells him that she didn't say that, and adds that they have already had enough testosterone-fueled mistakes tonight. 'Hey!' Deadpool calls out, announcing that if Cable is here from the future, then everything is worse than they thought. Deadpool pulls back his mask and reveals his disfigured face, telling Nathan that this isn't a bunch of inexperienced and scared mutants that he can boss around. 'These are the Avengers. So please, put your cards on the table' Deadpool asks.
Cable raises a very large weapon and fires it at a bat that swoops down towards them, he points out that these things don't behave like normal animals, and in fact they have cellular structures closer to plants. He tells the Avengers that they are looking at a new species of flora that shouldn't exist and will have scientists arguing for years. Suddenly, a robotic female voice belonging to the tattoo on Cable's large robotic arm reports that they found evidence that these winged creatures transported the contagion around the world. 'Did you bring a Tamagotchi for everyone?' Deadpool asks, looking at the tattoo. Cable introduces her as Belle and explains that she is a bleeding-edge artificial intelligence from the 2080s. Cable pulls a small vial from a pouch and reports that in the future he had gtime to develop an enzyme inhibitor. Cable explains that anyone exposed to the toxin will need it, but they need to synthesize more of it – fast. 'That's my cue. I'll get this to the Torch and his nerds at MIT' Quicksilver remarks as he takes the vial.
Doctor Voodoo turns to Synapse and asks her if she is all right. Synapse is concentrating, and tells Doctor Voodoo that she is using a bird as a drone, and reveals that someone is coing this way. They turn to see a figure lumbering towards them. 'Why fight, Avengers? This city will be underwater in a few years anyway. I'm just giving itb a tiny push into the ocean' he calls out. 'Get clear!' Cable shouts as he fires his weapon, which blats into the withered man that approaches them – but his body begins to repair itself. 'I think you will find... that I am not a problem you can shoot your way through' the Shredded man declares. 'I swear, I won't let you take another life!' Rogue calls out as she flies over to her foe and smacks him in the face. The Shredded Man then grabs her hand and asks her 'Why do you save them? The masses are killing themselves slowly', before he tosses Rogue backwards.
The Shredded Man claims that the end he offers is humane – quick – humanity need not to starve to death. Doctor Voodoo notices a police man at the Shredded Man's side and asks him what he has done to that officer, as he is dead on his feet. The Shredded Man pushes the police officer forward. He has green skin, and the Shredded Man explains that he found a way to make people useful to the planet, and adds that the avacuees can spread his cure. 'I'm in a rush to save the world...so I'm going to cut ahead to the part where you die!' the Shredded Man exclaims as trhe police officer suddenly explodes. Belle reports that she is detecting sky-high levels of neurotoxins and psychoactive spores. 'Cover your mouths!' Cable tells the others as he places a mask over his own mouth.
As Rogue, Deadpool and Doctor Voodoo collapse, a wave of green rushing over them, the Shredded Man remarks that he thought the Avengers would put up more of a fight. Belle informs Cable that if he doesn't pursue the Shredded Man, then Rogue is the priority, as she is now in anaphylactic shock. Belle scans Rogue and reports that her immune system wsa already comproromised by T-Mist exposure. 'I'm not watching another mutant die' Cable declares as he goes over to Rogue. He instructs Belle to hurry up with more antitoxin, and gives her authority to take power from his life support if she has to.
Suddenly, Synapse approaches Cable and tells him that she can help them. 'How are you still -?' Cable begins, before muttering 'Huhn. You're one of them'. 'Yes Inhuman' Synapse confirms. 'The luck of the chosen people, I suppose this maniac doesn't affect your kind' Cable remarks to Synapse as he injects Rogue with the antitoxin. Cable instructs Synapse to pursue the Shredded Man, but not to engage him. He adds that he will track her once the others are up. Synapse runs off through the green cloud that surrounds the area. 'Who does this guy think he is, barking orders?' she wonders, while realizing that she listens to the old man anyway. She continues running, and tells herself that Cable represents everything she has feared since Captain Rogers dragged her onto the team – Cable's arrival means they failed. It means she failed – and that makes her very angry.
Synapse hears a voice inside her mind, telling her to keep on running – and then this planet will become a paradise. The Shredded Man appears in a clearing and Synapse slams into him, asking him why he is doing this. The Shredded Man tells Synapse that he has no qualms with mutants, but that the Terrigen Mists instruct them otherwise. 'Mutants are to be smited. They'rre incompatible with life in our new world. The humans are the real problem'. Synapse then slams her fist into the Shredded Man and asks him who he is to decide. The Shredded Man asks Synapse if she hasn't been listening, and states that he is not deciding anything – the mists are doing the work for them, he is just helping tend the garden. 'Who are you?' Synapse shouts. 'Someone with the fortitude to do what must be done' the Shredded Man replies, as he holds Synapse back.
Synapse wonders why she can't sense his brain's electrical activity, to which the Shredded Man reveals that he underwent a dramatic transformation after Terrigenesis. Synapse suddenly falls back, her eyes are wide as she looks up at the Shredded Man and utters 'No. It can't be. This can't be...' as the Shredded Man remarks 'Don't you recognize me, Emily? Dont you recognize your own grandfather?!'
Deadpool, Doctor Voodoo, Quicksilver, Rogue, Synapse II (all Avengers Unity Squad)
Rogue was shown to be suffering from M-Pox in Uncanny Avengers (3rd series) #1.
The Shredded Man's Terrigeensis was seen in Uncanny Avengers (3rd series) #1.