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Appearing in "To Challenge The Beyonder!"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Amazing Spider-Man #273.

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Synopsis for "To Challenge The Beyonder!"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Amazing Spider-Man #273.

Several miles southwest of Hartsdale, New Mexico, Thomas Fireheart meets with his tribe's shaman for a mystic ceremony. The shaman explains to Fireheart that his destiny as the Puma is to slay the "One-Who-Comes-From-Beyond", known around the world as the Beyonder. Although Fireheart has his doubts about the old legends, he decides to go through the ceremony out of respect and transforming into his Puma form defeats his tribes best warriors by himself. Having succeeded in the final test, the shaman awards Thomas with a new costume and wishes him luck on his quest to destroy the Beyonder. Before he leaves, Thomas is recommended to seek the aid of Spider-Man in defeating their enemy, as their fates are intermingled.

The next day in New York City, Spider-Man is web-slinging across town, his mind dwelling on the recent death of Jean DeWolf[2]. His attention is brought to a group of thugs attacking two young men handing out pamphlets on the street corner and easily scares the thugs off. The young men thank Spider-Man for his help and offer him a button and reading material for their spiritual group of Cosmic Oneness. Spider-Man politely declines and when they mention their founder is one from "beyond", Spider-Man wonders if the Beyonder is responsible for the cult. As he web-slings across the city, he recalls how he was pulled into a secret war by the Beyonder[3] and his recent encounter with the Beyonder that led to the Heroes for Hire building being turned into solid gold[4]. He considers on the bright side how that incident netted him the golden notebook that could solve his financial woes[5], but also considers the guilt he feels for thinking of himself when taking it. Spider-Man finally arrives at his destination: Queens County Hospital where he scales the walls and changes into his guise of Peter Parker. There he checks to see how Nathan Lubensky is doing since being brought to the hospital following his heart attack. He is surprised to not only find his Aunt May there but most of the members of her boarding house for the elderly. As he visits, he overhears a news report about the Cosmic Oneness cult which features an interview with its executive director Barry Foxxe. Listening to how the cults mandate is for everyone to learn their true potential, Peter -- noting that his Aunt May is sporting the group's buttons -- feels uneasy about the cult and it's true intentions.

Peter Parker is not the only one, as Thomas Fireheart arrives at JFK airport aboard his company jet. His considerable resources have made a connection between the Beyonder and the Cosmic Oneness cult. He considers the idea of seeking to work with Spider-Man, considering in their last encounter he was hired to kill the Wall-Crawler[6]. Cosmic Oneness has also gained the interest of the Daily Bugle, whose new editor Kathryn Cushing demands results from her staff on the cult. When nobody has any answers to provide, she sends Ned Leeds and Lance Bannon to get the scoop on the cult. Peter notices that the new editor is still out to "get" him, giving important jobs to other photographers. Peter happens to notice when Betty confronts Ned and tells her husband that they need to talk. Ned angrily brushes her aside telling her that now is not the time and he will talk to her when his job is done if he bothers coming home that night. Later as Peter walks the streets, he thinks about how Betty has also been recently seeing Flash Thompson, and wonders if he has any right to get involved with Betty's personal life especially her affair with Flash. He feels guilty, however, as his knowledge of this affair makes him feel like he's an accomplice.

When Peter arrives at his Soho apartment, he finds Mary Jane waiting for him and has completely forgotten that she has come by to help him repair the damages by the recent fire in his apartment[7]. In the lobby, Mrs. Muggins reminds Peter that she intends to deduct the repair costs from the check he recently gave her [8] and that his rent is also due. When Peter and Mary Jane get outside Peter's apartment, Peter's spider-sense goes off and when he opens the door he finds Thomas Fireheart in his apartment. When Fireheart politely asks Mary Jane to leaves, she realizes that this means business and leaves. Fireheart tosses Peter the golden notebook and tells him it shouldn't be left lying around. He then introduces himself as the Puma and tells him he knows that Peter is really Spider-Man (although he doesn't know, nor cares to know what Peter's name is.)

As Peter is shocked by this revelation, across the street from the Daily Bugle, Ned Leeds and Lance Bannon wait to watch the front door of their place of employment. When Ned sees Betty exit and meets up with Flash Thompson, giving him a hug, Ned has seen as he needs and storms off.

Back at Peter's apartment, Thomas offers to pay him a thousand dollars to help him slay the Beyonder. Peter finds this offer crazy and does not accept the money to murder someone -- even a potential threat like the Beyonder. However, he does agree to tag along to make sure that the Puma is doing the right thing. Dawning his black costume, Spider-Man joins the Puma, who tells him all the information regarding the Beyonder he has learned. He explains that the Beyonder, under the alias "Frank" was involved with crook Vinnie Corbo[9] before apparently being involved with the Cosmic Oneness cult, but has yet to determine the extent of the Beyonder's involvement with its operations.

With blueprints on the brownstone the cult is located in, the two super-beings climb in through the electrical system. As they travel along, the Puma begins tracking Barry Foxxe, thinking that he might be the Beyonder. Along the way, Spider-Man thinks to himself and wonders if killing the Beyonder is the right thing to do. When Foxxe is alone, Puma decides to go down and determine if he is the Beyonder and land a killing blow. When Spider-Man hesitates, the Puma goes down alone. As Spidey struggle to make up his mind to stop Puma or not, the Puma determines that Foxxe is not really the Beyonder. When Foxxe detects the Puma's presence, he is surprised at first, but not frightened. When Foxxe confirms that the Beyonder was responsible for helping set up the cult, he happily provides them with the Beyonder's home address.

Outside, Spider-Man has decided that he has no desire to be party to murder and gives Puma directions to the Beyonder's home before departing. As the Puma begins his travels he once more questions the validity of his quest, considering his company has important business deals in Japan. Before he can reach the Beyonders home, the Beyonder appears before him and expresses how interesting he finds the Puma to be. Telling Fireheart that he couldn't possibly kill him unless he allowed it, the Beyonder decides to help Puma out by transporting him to Japan to deal with his business there. Puma is shocked at the power the Beyonder has. Rushing to the Japanese branch of Fireheart Industries, he places a call to Jenna Taylor at head office and arranges to have his passport (with forged entry stamps to avoid issues with customs) to be sent to him in Japan.

A week later, as Peter Parker and Mary Jane begin repainting Peter's apartment, they are interrupted by the arrival of Thomas Fireheart. Taking a cue, Mary Jane heads out, but not before Fireheart gifts her with an authentic Japanese kimono. Once more alone, Fireheart explains to Peter that he was teleported to Japan and spent the entire week trying to get back to America. Having realized the full power and threat of the Beyonder, Fireheart offers Peter 100 thousand dollars to help him kill the Beyonder. Peter, having had enough tells Fireheart he is crazy, that the Beyonder could snuff them out with a thought and says that if he's listening all you need to do is yell "Hey Beyonder!"... Before Peter can say any more the Beyonder appears in his apartment asking Peter what he wants.

This story continues in Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man #111...

Appearing in "Jumping the Tracks, Part III"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man #10.

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Synopsis for "Jumping the Tracks, Part III"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man #10.
  • Spider-Man Versus the Hobgoblin from 2211.

Appearing in "Wing and a Prayer"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Spider-Man 2099 #7.

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Other Characters:

  • Thor Odinson (Mentioned)
  • Dante Alighieri (Mentioned)
  • The Throwbacks (Mentioned)
  • The Scavs (a Downtown's gang) (Mentioned)
  • The Trumps (a Downtown's gang) (Mentioned)
  • The Thorites (Mentioned)
  • Public Eye (Mentioned)
  • Armrest Furnitures (an Alchemax division) (Mentioned)
    • An unnamed Holo-Assistant (Only appearance)[1] (Hologram)
  • Venture (Mentioned)
  • Inga (a Tyler Stone's "friend") (Mentioned)

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Synopsis for "Wing and a Prayer"

This story is a reprint of the comic
Spider-Man 2099 #7.

After blacking out during a clash with the Watchdogs and Public Eye, Spider-Man is pulled off the streets of Downtown by the Vulture. This is observed by Kasey Nash who tries to save the hero from the Vulture's clutches. The Vulture then uses his talons to wreck Kasey's hovercraft, sending her crashing. Seeing this, Spider-Man struggles to get free so he can save Kasey. The Vulture knocks him out and flies away. While Kasey manages to bail out of her crashing hovercraft.

Meanwhile, Dana D'Angelo goes to Babylon Towers to look for her fiancee Miguel O'Hara. There, his holographic assistant Lyla tells her that Miguel hasn't been home for a few days. In her concern, she ignores the strange things that Lyla is saying that would have given away his double identity.[Continuity 1] Back Downtown, Gabriel searches the streets for any sign of his brother. Along the way, he runs into the Fenris gang who tries to steal his mag-lev car. Not willing to give up his ride, Gabriel plows through them, managing to take one of their guns. At that moment, Spider-Man wakes up in a cell and is feeling much better, however, something smells really bad. Realizing that he's been locked out, the reluctant hero decides to try and get out. That's when the Vulture's second-in-command, Seargent-at-Arms comes to bring him food. Spider-Man waits until the Sergeant gets close enough to be knocked out when he smashes through the cell door.

In the next room, he finds the Vulture drinking some crimson liquid from a bowl. He welcomes Spider-Man and introduces the hero to his gang, the Freakers. Spider-Man is also told that he is Downtown, a section of old New York that exists in squalor since Neuva York was built overtop of it. It is viewed as the bottom of the "corporate ladder" and rival gangs of freaks and outcasts struggle in a game of survival of the fittest. The Vulture has gotten it in his head that Spider-Man was created by one of the many independent corporations (Indy's). Unfortunately, Spider-Mans' own ignorance of the outside world proves to anger the Vulture. While back Uptown, Sargeant Rico Estevez returns to his apartment after being fired from the Public Eye by Tyler Stone. There he discovers that all of his belongings have been repossessed and that he is being evicted from his apartment, courtesy of Alchemax. Furious, Estevez vows to get revenge against Tyler Stone.

Back at the Vulture's den, Spider-Man listens to the gang leader's proposals to take down Alchemax. As he listens to the Vulture's insane ravings, he looks around the room and notices there are a lot of human skeletons laying around. He quickly puts together that the Vulture and his Freakers are a gang of cannibals. This realization angers Spider-Man that he savagely attacks the Vulture. However, the hero is forced to fall back when Sergeant-at-Arms begins to open fire, prompting Spider-Man to retreat. Meanwhile, Tyler Stone is on a virtual sailing expedition when he is contacted by Hikaru of Stark-Fujikawa. The rival CEO is upset at what happened to his agent, the Sepcialist during his battle with Spider-Man.[Continuity 2] Hikaru has figured out that Stone intentionally hired the Specialist because Spider-Man would get involved and remove him from the playing board. Seeing this as an insult, Hikaru warns Tyler that he will not forget this insult. With the call over, Tyler is interrupted by his assistant Winston who tells him that Miguel's financee Dana D'Angelo has come to see him. Terminating the virtual reality simulation, Stone agrees to visit her. She has come to confront Tyler for addicting Miguel with Rapture and has come to give her a piece of his mind.[Continuity 3] However, Tyler Stone quickly manipulates the situation into making Dana sympathetic to him over Miguel's strange behavior.

Downtown, Spider-Man continues to flee from the Vulture's lair and ends up in the meat locker where the Vulture stores the bodies of his victims. The stench of the rotting meat is too much for the hero who makes a quick escape up an elevator shaft to get out of the stench. However, the Vulture isn't following closely behind. Even Spider-Man's attempt to crush the Vulture under an elevator car fails and thgeir fight is taken into the air. Elsewhere, Gabriel continues to search for his brother when someone sneaks up behind him. Frightened, Gabe turns around and fires his gun. It's only then that he realizes that he has just shot his girlfriend, Kasey Nash.

Notes

Continuity Notes

  1. Lyla repeats Miguel's instructions and recounts various activities he engaged in during the events of Spider-Man 2099 #1-3.
  2. Spider-Man battled the Specialist in Spider-Man 2099 #4-5.
  3. Tyler seemingly addicted Miguel to Rapture in Spider-Man 2099 #1. However, as revealed in Spider-Man 2099 #25, this was a trick to get Miguel to maintain his loyalty to Alchemax.

See Also

Footnotes



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