Appearing in "A World Against Them!"
- Mister Fantastic (Only in flashback)
- Lacaroo (First appearance)
Synopsis for "A World Against Them!"
The Skrull throneworld is under siege by the massive planetary arsenal of Devos the Devastator. Realizing that his one time ally seeks to destroy his people, Paibok tries to eliminate Devos on the planets surface, but the warrior is too skilled to be captured by the Skrulls. Meanwhile down below in a dungeon, the Thing, Invisible Woman, Human Torch and Lyja are prisoners of the Skrulls. Sue tells everyone to get ready, just as the roof begins to cave in. Elsewhere, General Kalamari reports to Empress Sy'Bll about the attack on the planet by Devos. When he reports that their fleets are being destroyed by the massive ship, Sy'Bll asks who brought Devos to their world. When Kalamari informs her that it was Paibok, she brands him a traitor of his people. Elsewhere, Paibok and Devos continue to fight each other when they are interrupted by a squad of Skrull soldiers. Paibok is shocked when the soldiers begin firing at him as well as Devos and uses his ice powers to keep them at bay. Satisfied that his enemy will be destroyed by his own people, Devos bids Paibok adue and flies away.
While down below, the members of the Fantastic Four and Lyja have survived the cave in. Johnny believes he could use his flame powers to free them, but worries that if he uses his powers he might accidentally burn someone. Sue pushes her invisibility powers to the limit to cause the rubble to disappear giving Johnny a clear picture of what is around him. Seeing where his friends are, Johnny then flames on and uses his powers to blast them free from the rubble. Meanwhile, in another dimension, Huntara and Franklin face off against each other. In order to defend himself, Franklin activates his Psi-Lord armor to defend himself. Hunatara, however, is too lithe to be subdued by its crude weapons. As they battle, Huntara tells Franklin that the Fantastic Four must be destroyed in order to preserve the timeline. When Franklin explains that he and his grandfather are trying to stop the great enemy from achieving his goal, Huntara asks him if Nathaniel ever imparted the identity of who their great foe might be, causing Franklin to take pause.
Back in Skrull space, the Fantastic Four have freed themselves and Sue orders Lyja to lead them to a space port where they can steal a ship and get off the throneworld. As their Skrull ally begins to lead the way, Lyja is struck by another labor pain and collapses on the ground. Johnny explains to Sue that the complications are caused by their baby and that Lyja needs a Skrull device called a Lacaroo to assist her in the birthing process or she will die. Johnny tells the others to get Lyja to the space center while he goes looking for a Lacaroo, but Sue tells them that they are a family and will go together. Meanwhile, Devos boards his massive arsenal ship, unaware that Paibok is following him aboard after having shapeshifted into a flying creature. At that moment at a Skrull medical center, the Thing, Torch and Lyja come smashing through the wall and begin attacking the Skrull soldiers on the scene. Overhearing that they are seeking a Lacaroo, one of the Skrull doctors on the scene goes and retrieves the only working device in the facility. He is suddenly ambushed by the Invisible Woman, who had been secretly following the doctor the whole way. With the Lacaroo obtained, the Fantastic Four then begin planning to escape the Skrull planet.
At that moment, Franklin and Huntara's battle take them back to the rooftops of Manhattan. Huntara tells Franklin that she cannot forsake him, but warns him to swear off Nathaniel's insane question. Franklin tells her to stop fighting him and help. The battle abruptly stops when Huntara realizes that Franklin must have divined who their mysterious foe is. When Franklin pauses to think of this again, he ends the fight, turning off his Psi-Lord armor. Huntara asks Franklin one more time to renounce his path, but when Franklin refuses again, Huntara opens a portal, telling the Richards boy that the path he seeks in one to madness, before disappearing into the portal. While back in Skrull space, Devos continues his assault on the Skrull homeworld when suddenly he detects something wrong with his ship. He goes searching and is suddenly attacked by Paibok. During the fight Paibok tells Devos that he sabotaged the ships' stardrive beyond repair, shunting them into sub-space where they will be endlessly trapped forever, suddenly Devos' ship suddenly disappears. While on the planet below, the Fantastic Four come across a Skrull Stealth-Hawk ship and commandeer it in order to escape the Skrull throneworld. While back on Earth, Franklin realizes that the one he has to stop is his own mother, and reactivates his Psi-Lord armor in order to engage her in battle...
- Although not mentioned by name, the Skrull throneworld is Satriani, which has been the Skrull empires throneworld since Empress Sy'Bll became ruler in Silver Surfer (Vol. 3) #31.
- The Thing is wearing a helmet here because his face was scarred battling Wolverine in Fantastic Four #374, he started wearing the helmet in the following issue. Ben continues to wear the helmet until Fantastic Four #385 and his face is ultimately healed in Fantastic Four #409.
- The group makes multiple mentions to the fact that Reed and Doctor Doom were seemingly slain in Fantastic Four #381, however as revealed in Fantastic Four #406–407 they were actually taken prisoner by Hyperstorm.
- Empress Sy'Bll appears here between her appearances in Infinity Gauntlet #1 and Silver Surfer (Vol. 3) #105.
- Sue has had strain on her force field powers since she was injured battling Doctor Doom in Fantastic Four #375.
- Some facts about Franklin and Huntara that are glossed over in this story:
- Young Franklin Richards was taken to the future of Earth-6311 at the end of last issue. Young Franklin eventually returns in Fantastic Four #414. As clarified in Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z #14, the teenaged Franklin seen here is not the child of Reed and Sue, but a divergent counterpart of the child.
- It's later revealed that Huntara is apparently the offspring of Nathaniel Richards as explained in Fantastic Four #390. However this is later disputed in Fantastic Force #2 when Paul Alvarez states that he believes that Huntara is his long lost sister Mary Elizabeth Alvarez.
- Franklin's mission is to prevent the destruction of his family at the hands of Hyperstorm. A complex series of events that finally reach their conclusion in Fantastic Four #414.
- Lyja has claimed that she is pregnant with Johnny's child as early as Fantastic Four #358. As revealed in Fantastic Four #390 and 393 however, Lyja and Johnny's "child" is not their offspring but a Sha'Barri implanted in her by Paibok.
- Lyja mentions how terrible she has treated Johnny. This is a complex and long running issue:
- As revealed in Fantastic Four #358, Lyja took the place of Alicia Masters in order to spy on the Fantastic Four circa Fantastic Four #265. Due to the fact that the Thing was no longer part of the group, Lyja pursued a relationship with Johnny in order to maintain ties to the group.
- Johnny eventually married "Alicia" in Fantastic Four #300.
- Lyja was eventually exposed in Fantastic Four #357 and was seemingly slain the following issue during a mission to rescue the real Alicia Masters from the Skrulls.
- Lyja and her commander Paibok survived and have been trying to ruin Johnny from Fantastic Four #371–374.
- Eventually, Lyja betrayed Paibok when she realized she still cared for Johnny, and came to her ex-husband's side in his battle against the Secret Defenders in Fantastic Four #374. She has remained by his side ever since.
- Following her appearance her, Huntara is next seen in Fantastic Four #389.
- Paibok and Devos are not trapped forever as this story implies. Paibok returns to Earth to try and get revenge against the Thing in Thing: Freakshow #1–4, while Devos ends up on the planet Godthab Omega, where he battles against the Annihilation Wave as seen in Annihilation: Ronan #2–4. Devos was also plucked out of time and space by Aron the Rogue Watcher in Fantastic Four #400.
- The Fantastic Four commandeer the Stealth-Hawk here using it until they eventually abandon it in after the events of Fantastic Four #411.
- Following this story the members of the Fantastic Four are seen in various other stories: