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New Warriors (2nd series) # 10

Issue Date: July 2000

Story Title: Judgment Day

Staff: Jay Faerber (writer), Jamal Igle (penciler), Walden Wong (inker), Sharpe font & PT (letterers), Kevin Somers (colorist), Brian Smith (assistant editor), Bobbie Chase (editor), Bob Harras (editor-in-chief)

Brief Description:
Night Thrasher watches various footage of recent New Warrior activities, and is not impressed. Hercules confronts the New Warriors, and transports Turbo, Bolt, Namorita and Aegis to Olympus, where they are confronted by Zeus. Hercules claims that Aegis is a thief, for stealing the chest plate that he wears. Athena appears and reveals that she placed the armor where she new Trey Rollins would find it, as she wanted a new champion hero. The New Warriors spend some time on Olympus, where Athena gives Aegis a re-designed costume, and Turbo begins to suspect Bolt is very sick. Namorita suggests he tell the truth to everyone else, but Bolt doesn’t want to. Zeus and Hercules think that Athena was wrong in giving the armor to Trey Rollins, so he is challenged to a battle against Hercules. Aegis manages to get the other New Warriors working as a team, and their combined effort takes Hercules down. Zeus is pleased with Aegis. Afterwards, Bolt confides in Zeus about the Legacy Virus, but after “scanning” Bolt, Zeus explains that he cannot meddle in the lives of mortals. In Hollywood, Nova and Speedball foil an armed robbery, and once again the media is interested in Nova’s trouble with being accused of killing his ex-girlfriend’s husband. They go to meet with the agent who Speedball’s mother knows, as well as the director and producer who have come up with a demo of the screenplay for the New Warriors film. They show it to Nova and Speedball who are utterly embarrassed, and leave promptly. Nova is upset about the recent events in his life, and wonders how to turn it all around, when he realizes that he needs to start acting like a hero once more. The New Warriors gather outside of a courthouse where the media confronts the team, after the She-Hulk announces that the DA has decided not to press charges against Nova. The New Warriors go back to their HQ, where Bolt finally confides in all of his friends, revealing that he is dying. They offer their support, as does Night Thrasher, who appears, and promises to devote all of his resources to finding a cure to the Legacy Virus. Night Thrasher then reveals that he would like to rejoin the team. Elsewhere, the new Iron Fist plots his revenge on the New Warriors.

Full Synopsis:
Dwayne Taylor a.k.a. the former New Warrior called Night Thrasher sits at a desk and watches a news report, where an announcer points out that the teenage crime-fighting group called the New Warriors are making headlines everywhere the past week, as four days ago, the Warriors were part of a spectacular battle in Midtown, against Iron Man, a respected member of the Avengers, and to make matters worse for the Warriors, a woman called Ginger Jaye-Firestone made a shocking accusation, that Nova killed her husband. The announcer explains that Firestone claims to be the former girlfriend of Nova, and paints the Warrior as a jealous ex-boyfriend, who interrupted an argument between her and her husband, which resulted in Nova using his superhuman strength to injure Darren Firestone so seriously that he lapsed into a prolonged coma and eventually died. Listening to the news report, Night Thrasher does not look impressed.

Meantime, at the Warriors’ Firehouse HQ in Brooklyn, New York, the Olympian Hercules enters the building, ‘Ho there, Warriors! We have much to discuss -’ he calls out to them, before a blinding light engulfs the Warriors’ HQ, ‘- on fair Olympus!’ Hercules concludes his statement, as he and four members of the New Warriors are transported to Olympus itself. ‘Wha - Hercules? Did he just take us -’ Mickey Musashi a.k.a. Turbo begins. ‘To Olympus, Mickey. Yep’ Namorita replies. ‘Oh. My. God!’ Chris “Bolt” Bradley gushes, while Aegis’s jaw drops as he sees Zeus standing over them. Arms folded, Zeus asks his son why he begged to be transported to Olympus, the very land he forbade him to set food upon. Hercules explains that he requested an audience with his father because he has uncovered a crime against Olympus, and against his father.

Pointing at Aegis, Hercules declares ‘This child who hath the audacity to call himself “Aegis” hath stolen the prized breastplate of the same name!’ A wide-eyed Aegis, begins to reply: ‘What? I didn’t -’, but Hercules tells him to be silent, and that he will speak only when spoken to. ‘A thief, eh? And these children are his accomplices?’ Zeus enquires. Hercules introduces Turbo, Aegis, Namorita and Bolt of the New Warriors, and tells his father that he has not yet determined what part they played in the burglary. Bolt waves sheepishly at Zeus, while Namorita frowns at Hercules. Hercules turns to Aegis and shakes a finger at him while asking what he has to say in his defense. ‘Zeus…um, Sir…your honor…I’m no thief. I found this breastplate. I didn’t steal it! I swear!’

‘The boy speaks the truth!’ Zeus booms, lightning crackling around him, he tells his son that he has once more proven to be a disappointment. ‘The Aegis breastplate that this young man wears so proudly was a gift!’ Zeus reveals. ‘A gift’ a surprised Aegis asks. ‘From whom?’ Hercules mutters. ‘From me! I placed yon breastplate in an abandoned building on Earth, where I knew Trey Rollins would find it’ Athena reveals as she materializes beside Zeus.

Meanwhile, in Los Angeles, California, Robbie “Speedall” Baldwin follows a car that races down on busy street. ‘Will you guys just surrender already? My friend and I didn’t come all the way to Tinseltown to chase burglars. We’ve got places to go, people to see - movie deals to sign!’ Speedball calls out. ‘Will you floor it? The kid’s getting closer!’ one of the burglars tells the driver. ‘I’m going as fast as I can’ the driver replies, before asking ‘Wait a minute - did he just say he’s got a friend with him?’ the driver asks. ‘I dunnot, I wasn’t really -’ the other criminal begins to reply, before they both shout out in shock as they se Nova the Human Rocket standing before them. Rich Rider slams his fists down on the front of the car, causing both criminals to fly through the windscreen, landing on kinetic bubbles which Speedball threw down to protect them from slamming into the concrete. ‘And that is how the Warriors take care of business in the Big Apple and the Left Coast!’ Speedball grins. ‘Okay, enough kinetic suspension for you two. Night-night’ Speedball exclaims as he removes the kinetic bubbles, and the criminals fall to the ground.

A short while later, reporters gather around Nova and Speedball while police lead the criminals away. ‘Yes, the rumors are true - Nova and I are in town to put the finishing touches on a movie deal’ Speedball announces, and before they open up the floor for questions, he tells everyone that his name is indeed “Speedball”, one word with two Es and two Ls. ‘Any questions about the movie?’ he calls out. ‘I’ve got one’ a reporter announces, turning to Nova, he asks how he responds to the accusations made by Ginger Jaye-Firestone, who claims that he killed her husband. An exasperated Nova just sighs.

Back on Olympus, Aegis walks alongside Athena, while centaurs, mermaids, satyrs and pixies frolic nearby. ‘I’ve seen some pretty cool stuff with the Warriors, ma’m, but this…this is amazing!’ Aegis exclaims. Athena tells Aegis that e had best become accustomed to the splendor before him, as he is her champion and Olympus is not his home, too. “Champion” Aegis asks. ‘What are you talking about?’, while Athena assures him that he is free to come and go as he pleases. ‘Throughout history, the Gods hath chosen champions - heroic mortals that we watch over. Men like Jason, of the Argonauts, the invincible Achilles, the brave Theseus, the wise Odysseus and Perseus, who once did use the breastplate thou wearest to slay Medusa’ Athena reveals. ‘Perseus? Oh man…I’ve got a good rep in my own little neighborhood, but there’s no way I can live up to the standard those guys set!’ Aegis replies, adding that he read about them in mythology class, and they are legends.

Aegis sits down on a nearby rock and tells Athena that this is too much, too much for him, ‘I think I’m gonna hurl’ he mutters, clutching his head. ‘My champion, why doth this cause thee such distress?’ Athena enquires. Aegis looks up at her and explains that he is still getting used to the idea of the Warriors counting on him, and is not even sure if they trust him. ‘But to know that Greek goddess depends on me is just more than I can handle’ Aegis tells her. Athena smiles and tells Aegis that his compatriots do trust him, even though they may not tell him so, they do. She tells him to stand up, as she has something in mind that may cease his anxiety. She casts some energies towards Aegis, and his costume is slightly re-designed. ‘Wicked! How’d you - oh, wait. Never mind’ Aegis smiles.

Elsewhere on Mount Olympus, Namorita is speaking to a cyclops, while Turbo stands near Bolt, who is sitting down, and asks him what is wrong. ‘We’re in this fantastic place and you’ve been sitting around like a wet pile of laundry’ she points out. Chris replies that he knows, and tells Mickey that he is feeling a little under the weather today. ‘Again? You oughta change your name to Hypochondriac Lad’ Mickey suggests. ‘Hardy-har -’ Chris begins, before bursting into an uncontrollable coughing fit. ‘Geez, you really are sick’ Turbo browns, while Namorita grabs Bolt and flies him up into the air: ‘A moment of your time, please’ she tells him, and as she places her hand against his forehead, feels that he is burning up.

‘This is the Legacy Virus and you know it’ Namorita tells him, adding that she is going to tell the others so they can find someone to cure this - but Bolt releases a surge of energy and reminds Namorita that she promised she wouldn’t tell anyone about his condition. ‘If the others find out, they might kick me off the team’ Chris exclaims. Suddenly, Turbo flies up beside them and asks what is going on. Bolt tells Mickey that it is nothing, explaining that Namorita was just worried about him, but he has told her it is nothing. ‘Right, Nita?’ Chris asks. Namorita sighs, before muttering ‘Yeah…it’s nothing’.

Shortly, Namorita, Turbo and Bolt meet up with Aegis, Hercules, Athena and Zeus. ‘Hey, Trey! What’s with the new look?’ Namorita calls out, adding that she doesn’t mind it. Trey explains that Athena said if he is going to be a Greek champion, then he oughtta look like one. ‘I didn’t know Greek champions wore dreadlocks’ Turbo jokes, while Zeus exclaims ‘Enough of this meaningless banter. My son and I have finally agreed on something -’, to which Hercules announces that they think Athena’s famed wisdom failed her if she thinks that this boy possesses the stuff of champions. Hercules states that he has decided to give the boy the gift to test his worth. ‘A gift? For me? Really?’ Aegis asks, smiling. ‘Oh, no…not “the” gift…Trey, he’s going to -’ Namorita begins, but too late, as Hercules shouts ‘Receive the gift!’ as he punches Aegis hard, knocking him backwards.

Back in Los Angeles, specifically the office of Sid Stockwell, talent agent. ‘Nova! Superball! Great to see you, boys!’ Sid exclaims as Nova and Speedball drop down onto his balcony. ‘Um, it’s Speedball’ Robbie corrects Sid. ‘Of course it is, babe!’ Sid replies casually. Sid tells Nova and Speedball that it is great to meet them face-to-face. Nova frowns when Sid puts a hand on his shoulder: ‘You’re touching me’ he remarks, while Speedball asks Sid if he really represents Bruce Willis, John Travolta and Julia Roberts. ‘Well, not technically, no’ Sid replies, before muttering ‘Enough about me. Lemme introduce you to the guys I told you about’. Two more men step forward, Jamal and Ray. Sid introduces Jamal as a director, and Ray as a producer. ‘They’re the production team behind such hits as Red Ronin, I Married a Skrull, and Atlantis Rising’ Sid explains. Jamal tells Nova that he loves how he went back to his old costume, while Ray asks him what is the story behind him killing his ex-girlfriend’s husband.

‘Can we not talk about that, please?’ Nova frowns, folding his arms across his chest. ‘Um, yeah, sure, big guy’ Ray replies nervously. Sid suggests they move the “party” into the office, announcing that Jamal and Ray have put together what they call a demo reel, to give them an idea of what they want to do with their screenplay. Jamal adds that they have it a few tweaks here and there, to make it a little more marketable. ‘But don’t worry, it’s nothing drastic’ he assures them. The video begins. It is very cartoon-like. “Whenever evil threatens the citizens of Megaville…the New Warriors explode into action! The New Warriors’ own amazing super-powers are boosted by their awesome mecha-machines!” the captions read, as a large green monster looms over the city, and six small hover-craft race towards it, each shaped like an aspect of the New Warrior or their powers.

The New Warriors are introduced - Superball! Namorita! Turbo! Aegis! Bolt! Nova!, then their hover-crafts combine to form Warrior, the most powerful force for good to ever walk the Earth. Exactly ten seconds after the demo reel started, Nova grabs Speedball and they fly out of the office. ‘Hey, wait! Come back! You didn’t see the best part!’ Sid Stockwell calls out after them. ‘Remind me to never, ever listen to another one of your idiotic -’ Speedball begins. ‘Just save it, okay?’ Nova mutters. Jamal tells Ray and Sid that he can’t understand what went wrong. ‘You think it was the costume designs?’ he asks. ‘Maybe we didn’t have enough action’ Ray suggests. Sid puts his sunglasses on and walks away, telling Ray and Jamal that he will mail them his bill.

Olympus, ‘Hold him still!’ Turbo calls out as she hovers overhead as Namorita struggles to hold Hercules from behind. ‘Gee, what a great idea, Mickey. Where would we be without you?’ Namorita mutters, while Hercules lashes out and knocks Aegis back once more. ‘What fun we are having!’ Hercules smiles. ‘Oh, man, I think Aegis felt that one, even through his force field!’ Bolt announces. Hercules flips Namorita over his shoulder and boasts that stronger warriors have failed to restrain the power of the Prince, when suddenly, a thunderbolt crackles overhead. ‘What is it, father?’ Hercules asks. ‘Guess again, Sir. That was just a warning shot. Please stop this senseless fighting!’ Bolt calls out as his energy powers are prepped and ready to blast at Hercules.

‘This pup both think he can harness the thunderbolts of the almighty Zeus?’ Hercules asks, before bursting into laughter. Hercules suddenly leaps sideways, ‘Eh?’ he mutters, as Turbo hovers above and warns him that the next wind-blast will hit a lot closer to time. She tells Hercules that they don’t want to fight him, and asks why he is doing this, as Athena already said Aegis didn’t steal his father’s breastplate. Aegis decides that Hercules seems to be enjoying himself, not attacking them out of anger, as if this is some sort of fame. ‘A test. That’s it!’ Aegis realizes, and tells the New Warriors that they need to hit Hercules with everything they have got. ‘But -’ Bolt begins, however Aegis tells him not to question him, just to trust him. ‘Don’t show him any mercy!’ he exclaims, pointing at Hercules. Namorita remarks that she thinks she gets it, while Aegis stands his ground as Hercules goes over to him and punches him hard.

‘Sure, your earlier punches sent me flying, but this time, I’m ready for you. Whatever you want to dish out, I can take’ Aegis declares. ‘Brave words for such a neophyte. I shall enjoy - oh’ Hercules mutters, as Aegis steps aside, and Bolt is behind him. Bolt fires a powerful energy blast, which sends Hercules careening backwards, straight through a pillar. Namorita grabs part of the broken pillar, ‘Mark McGwire, eat your heart out, baby!’ she exclaims as she uses it to smack Hercules across the field, towards Turbo, who fires another wind turbine at him, knocking him aside once more. ‘Well, father?’ Athena asks. ‘I am reminded yet again that I should never question the wisdom of Athena’ Zeus smiles.

Atop the world-famous Hollywood sign, Speedball balances on the first O, while Nova sits, slumped over. ‘Okay, so our first “big break” turned out to be anything but. But that isn’t what’s got you down, is it?’ Speedball asks his friend. ‘Nope’ Rich replies, explaining that he is learning that whoever said “be careful what you wish for” was right. ‘All I wanted was for the media to notice me…to give me some attention. And now, thanks to Ginger, I got exactly what I wished for’ he explains, adding that he wants to talk to Ginger, to find out what is making her say those terrible things about him, as she knows he didn’t mean to kill her husband, who was threatening her with an ax. ‘I just tried to help. It’s not my fault my powers went out of control, and I wound up throwing him through a wall’ Rich tells Robbie.

Robbie tells Rich to keep in mind that the Warriors aren’t new to controversy, and reminds him that the media had a field day when Justice accidentally kills his father. ‘Yeah, good point’ Rich decides, and tells Robbie that he appreciates him being here for him. ‘But what I could really use is some time to myself, to get my head straight. Is that cool?’ Rich asks. ‘Totally cool, dude. I’ll catch you later’ Speedball exclaims as he bounds off the sign. ‘Thanks, Robbie’ Rich calls out to his friend, while telling himself that it is do or die time. ‘You’ve never been one to run away from a fight in the past, so what’s stopping you this time? You keep talking about how you want to be an Avenger one day, but lately you haven’t been acting like an Avenger’ Rich thinks to himself, and wonders how an Avenger would handle this. ‘Of course! Time to start acting like a hero again’ Rich decides as he stands up and gazes out at the setting sun.

The battle on Olympus continues, however, and Hercules exclaims ‘At last, thou dost understand the gift!’ as he races towards Aegis, who tells the Warriors to keep at him, as he thinks they are starting to wear him down. Suddenly, Zeus throws a thunderbolt down, separating Hercules, Aegis and Namorita. ‘I have seen enough!’ he booms. ‘Trey Rollins, I have watched you do battle with my son, the Lion of Olympus. My fair daughter, Athena, claims thou dost possess the heart of a champion, the like of which only mighty Olympus could produce. And so the question is, do I agree with her?’ Zeus declares, arms folded as his imposing form looks down at the New Warriors. ‘And the answer…is yes’ Zeus smiles. ‘Let the Heavens ring out - a new champion walks on Mount Olympus!’ Hercules exclaims, while Namorita throws her arms around Aegis and tells him that she knew he could do it.

Aegis smiles, while a confused Bolt turns to him and asks how he knew that fighting Hercules was the key. ‘Isn’t violence supposed to be a last resort?’ Bolt asks. Aegis replies that normally, it is, but that they are dealing with Hercules, and he his father value courage in combat above all else. ‘If we’d surrendered, they would’ve thought we were cowards’ Aegis explains. Athena smiles and asks Trey if he noticed that his friends followed his head. Hercules smiles and tells Aegis not to let these congratulations go to his head, as there is still much he has to learn. ‘And this warrior would be most proud to be the one to teach thee’ Hercules offers. ‘Wow…I don’t know what to say!’ Aegis exclaims.

Bolt walks over to Zeus and looks up at him: ‘Um, excuse me, Zeus? Sir? Could I speak to you a moment…in private?’ Bolt asks. They walk along a path, and Bolt reveals to Zeus that he has a disease called the Legacy Virus, that it only affects mutants, like him, and no one knows how it is spread or how to cure it. ‘But it’s fatal. It’s killing me, Sir. Can you help?’ Bolt asks. ‘Let me see, young one’ Zeus replies as energy pours from his eyes and scans Bolt. When the scan is complete, Zeus tells Bolt that he is sorry, for whatever this Legacy Virus is, it is not for him to meddle in the lives of mortals thusly. ‘Oh. Okay. I didn’t think so. I was just, you know, asking’ Bolt replies, glancing away. Zeus tells Bolt that if anyone is going to overcome this dread malady, it will be someone with the strength and courage of the thunderbolts of Zeus, as if they were his own. Bolt smiles, and they walk back to the others, as Zeus points out that many battles await the New Warriors, back on Earth.

The New Warriors, along with She-Hulk, stand on the steps of a courthouse. Reporters, photographers and camera crews gather around them. ‘Ladies and gentlemen of the press, we’d like to thank you all for coming. I’m Jennifer Walters, and this is my client, Nova’ She-Hulk announces, explaining that earlier this morning, Nova voluntarily made himself available to a group of New York detectives and a New York district attorney, in order to clear up his role in the death of Darren Firestone. She states that Nova answered every one of the detectives’ questions, and after weighing all the factors in the case, the DA decided not to press charges. ‘Nova, now that you’re in the clear, are you going top move ahead with your plans to make a feature film?’ one reporter, Ben Urich, enquires. Nova tells Mr Urich that his is glad he asked that question, and the answer is no. ‘The Warriors have decided to stop playing the media, and get back to what we were always about: fighting the kinds of crime no one else will touch’ he announces. A photographer asks the Warriors if they can move in closer for a photo, and the team does, posing for their group shot.

Later, at the Firehouse, Chris stands up in front of his team who are gathered around a table. ‘I bet you’re all wondering why I called this meeting tonight’ he begins, explaining that there is something that he has been keeping from them all since they first met, and that he has decided to come clean. He remarks that some of them may have heard about the Legacy Virus, a terrible disease that affects mutants. ‘I’ve got it. I’m dying, guys’ Chris announces. Namorita smiles at his decision to tell the others, whose faces all carry various degrees of shock and awe. ‘Whoa…dude…I don’t know what to say’ Rich exclaims. Mickey assures Chris that they will fight this, that they will call in every favor they can, as someone has got to know how to cure this thing.

Namorita announces that first thing tomorrow she will call Hank Pym, and see what he can tell them. ‘And I’ll devote all of my resources to finding a cure as well’ a voice calls out. Everyone turns around, to see Night Thrasher standing behind them. ‘Where’d you come from?’ Rich asks. Night Thrasher reveals that he has been here, inside the Firehouse since their meeting began. Bolt asks him what he is doing here, ‘Besides creeping around like a burglar?’ Namorita points out. Dwayne tells the Warriors that last time they met, he laid into them for not being a team, and explains that since then, he has been watching them, that he has seen their mistakes, fighting Iron Man, for one, and then their shining moments, like this morning’s press conference. Dwayne tells the Warriors that he thinks they are finally in a spot where he can help them become a team again, if they will have him. ‘There’s just no getting rid of you, is there, Thrashie?’ Robbie exclaims, while Dwayne asks him what the matter is - can’t decide who will play the movie version of him? ‘Hey now, that’s not fair!’ Rich exclaims as the New Warriors have a group hug.

Somewhere else, a man sits in a chair, shrouded in darkness, watching a television, where a reporter proclaims that things seem to finally looking up for the Brooklyn-based Warriors, as the DA opted not to press charges. ‘The Warriors may be riding high now, but once my plan takes effect, they, like the rest of the world, will bow down before me’ the man in darkness boasts. ‘We can make examples out of them, Master Junzo’ an elderly man smiles. ‘Please, Hiromitsu, how many times do I have to tell you?’ Junzo replies, holding a wine glass in his hand, he crushes it in his bare hand, while ninjas line the room behind him. ‘Call me Iron Fist!’ he booms….

Characters:
Aegis, Bolt, Namorita, Nova, Speedball, Turbo (all New Warriors)
Night Thrasher (former New Warrior)

Hercules
She-Hulk

Athena & Zeus

Ben Urich

Junzo Muto

Hiromitsu
Hand ninjas
Sid Stockwell
Jamal & Ray
Reporter
Criminals
Police
Civilians

On Recording:
Iron Man
Ginger Jaye-Firestone
Announcer

Notes:
The battle with an out-of-control Iron Man took place in New Warriors (2nd series) #9.

Ginger Jaye is a long-time supporting character in Nova’s various series, and at times his girlfriend. Nova saved her from her husband in Nova (3rd series) #1. She accused him of murder in New Warriors (2nd series) #9.

Aegis found the breastplate in New Warriors (2nd series) #0.

Hercules became aware of Aegis in New Warriors (2nd series) #6.

Bolt told Namorita about the Legacy Virus in New Warriors (2nd series) #9.

Mark McGwire is an American baseball player.

Justice accidentally killed his abusive father in New Warriors (1st series) #20.

The story with Junzo Muto continues in the Iron Fist / Wolverine: K’un Lun 2000 mini series.

Unfortunately this marks the final issue of the second series of New Warriors. A third series was planned shortly after, and it would have included x-characters Jubilee and Skids on the team, along with Nova, Speedball and Turbo, with the characters all attending college. Unfortunately this series never saw publication due to alleged activities of the writer. The third published New Warriors series was a mini series made famous by events that led into the infamous Civil War.

Issue Summary written by: Daytripper (Steven Bishop)


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