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Appearing in "A Hot Time in the Old Town"

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Synopsis for "A Hot Time in the Old Town"

This story continues from Sensational Spider-Man #32...

Spider-Man arrived in the city after hearing reports that the Molten Man is going on a rampge. This surprises the wall-crawlers as he believed that his old foe had gone straight.[Continuity 1] When he first encounters Molten Man, Spider-Man discovers that Raxton is in some kind of trance, walking directly in a straight line smashing through anything that stands in his way. Molten Man walks through a wall and activates the building's sprinkler system. As the water hits him, it turns in to scalding hot steam, forcing Spider-Man to clear out the building instead of continuing his pursuit. Once the civilians are safe, Spider-Man returns only to find that the Molten Man has somehow vanished.

Meanwhile, Norman Osborn pays a visit to Morris Maxwell, the owner of a pawnshop, another owner of one of the shards of an artifact called the Rites of the Five. Morris is well aware that Osborn is looking to gather the pieces once more as his own fragment has been "speaking" to him. Maxwell warns Osborn that of all the power offered by a Gathering of Five there is a risk of insanity or death. despite this, Osborn intends to complete the ceremony seeking to gain untold power.

Meanwhile, Spider-Man has backtracked to figure out what happened to the Molten Man, discovering that he has escaped by melting through the floor of the building and escaping into the sewers. He begins following the steam generated by the heat of Molten Man's body reacting with the sewage water. However, as he gets closer, the wall-crawler quickly discovers that the heat is too intense to continue and is forced to flee the sewers. Changing tactics, Spider-Man returns to the surface and uses a map to try and figure out where Raxton was going and pinpoints that he is heading to the pair.

There, Joe Robertson and Alison Mongraine have just arrived after fleeing from France.[Continuity 2] As they try to make their getaway, the Molten Man comes crashing out of the ground to try and stop them. Seeing that Raxton is after Alison, Joe tries to stop him with a crowbar, but the weapons has no effect and he is swatted aside. Before Joe can be harmed, Spider-Man arrives and intervenes. To protect himself from the Molten Man's extreme heat by webbing up his hands. As the two battle it out, the warehouse they are fighting in begins to catch fire. Although Robertson insists they stay and find a way to help the wall-crawler, Mongraine insists that they get out of there so they can find Peter Parker. With no other choice, Joe is forced to leave Spider-Man to fend for himself. By this point, the flames caused by the Molten Mad compromise the wooden floors of the warehouse sending them both falling into the water below. Driven back by boiling steam, Spider-Man once again loses all trace of the Molten Man when he is sucked into the propellers of a passing boat. Although he isn't sure if the Molten Man survived or not, Spider-Man is certain he knows who his employer was.

Observing this battle is one of the members of the Brotherhood of Scriers who reports the Molten Man's failure to his master, Norman Osborn. Norman tells his minion to confirm if the Molten Man is dead or alive and get back to him. He then continues his conversation with Morris Maxwell about the Gathering of Five. Maxwell once again warns Norman that the power offered by the gathering is not always what it seems. Still, even at the risk of madness or death, he wants to continue gathering the fragments needed for the ceremony, knowing that others needed for the ceremony will also be willing to take those risks as well. ... The Gathering of Five continues in Spider-Man #96.


Continuity Notes

The Gathering of Five
Sensational Spider-Man #32 Amazing Spider-Man #440 Spider-Man #96 Spectacular Spider-Man #262 Sensational Spider-Man #33
  1. The Molten Man reformed from his life of crime in Web of Spider-Man #62. How he got into this state is explained next issue.
  2. The Brotherhood of Scrier has been attempting to eliminate Alison Mongraine since Amazing Spider-Man #434 due to what she knew about Norman Osborn's plans for Peter Parker.

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