- The reality is... I'm not the hero of my own story and I'm totally okay with that. Sometime back I was offered a way out... but I decided to stop lying to myself and... if I'm going to be a villain... I'm going to be the best.
- -- The Hood
Appearing in 1st story
- Wrecker (Dirk Garthwaite)
- Tombstone (Lonnie Lincoln)
- Tiger Shark (Todd Arliss)
- Gray Gargoyle (Paul Duval)
- Jack O'Lantern
- Avengers (Mentioned)
- Doctor Karver (Mentioned)
- Wrecking Crew (Mentioned)
- Roxxon (Named only)
- Sally (First appearance)
- Electro (Max Dillon) (Mentioned)
- Kingpin (Wilson Fisk) (Mentioned)
- Red Skull (Johann Shmidt) (Mentioned)
- Tony Stark (Mentioned)
- Iron Fist (Danny Rand) (Mentioned)
- Luke Cage (Mentioned)
- Absorbing Man (Carl Creel) (Mentioned)
- Bree Robbins (Mentioned)
- Sara Robbins (Mentioned)
- NYPD (Mentioned)
- Thor (Jane Foster)
Races and Species:
- The Hood's House of Hell
- Mad Thinker's Lab
- The Hood's House of Hell
- Asgardia (Mentioned)
- Bifrost (Mentioned)
- Asgard (Mentioned)
- Quinjet (Mentioned)
Synopsis for 1st story
The Illuminati just killed a patron at Club Fenris, and the owners responded by putting a bounty on the group's heads. The gang holds their own, but they know it is only a matter of time before they fall. So Titania tries a tactic she "saw the mutants use one time", and throws Thunderball through the roof. Taking advantage of the hole, Hood and Enchantress are able to get the group some distance from the other villains, and teleport them away.
Landing in some woods in Upstate New York, Hood's first action is to pull out a gun and try to shoot Black Ant in the head. Titania stops him, which confuses Hood - Black Ant just made them all marked men. In addition, he is a Life-Model Decoy. If he is destroyed, they can literally just put his mind into another robot and carry on. The group starts airing its problems and grievances, leading Hood to accuse them all of preparing to jump ship.
He points through the woods, to a Roxxon facility - the very Roxxon facility where Dr. Karver worked on the artificial Bifrost they wanted for the plan. Originally, it was an open-ended plan, but now, they need to move fast. He challenges them to take a day, meet back here at midnight if the want to. Otherwise, they are all out of the deal, and back at the bottom of the pile.
Later that day, Thunderball has spent a long lunch with a woman named Sally. They kiss as she goes back to work. After she leaves, Enchantress steps out of the crowd and accuses Thunderball of lying to Sally. Thunderball is initially defensive and Enchantress is cryptic, but as Thunderball explains himself, he realizes that Enchantress has far less power than she used to, and is simply trying to see if he will have her back if they go through with the Hood's scheme.
Enchantress asks why Thunderball would go along with a plan as high-stakes as the Hood's. Thunderball shrugs, and explains that he was a genius physicist, one of the smartest men in his field, and that was before he gained superhuman strength, and that was before he started hanging around advanced pieces of technology on a regular basis. He could potentially be a master villain or a billionaire, but instead he's a C-List bruiser. He wants people to respect him, and he thinks the Hood can help him with that.
Back at the Hood's mansion, the Mad Thinker is literally tearing his hair out, raging that the ideas presented are inferior, and he has no fire if he has no challenge. Then, he realizes that the Hood already promised him a challenge.
At a tattoo parlor in Brooklyn, Black Ant is getting a whimsical tattoo, to go with the set he already has. As the tattoo artist asks him if he is sure, he pauses, and says that this is his third or fourth body so far. He knows there will be another body for him when this one is destroyed, and so he has no reason to slow down.
At a bar, Titania is drinking. She announces that she can hear the person standing behind her, prompting Hood to drop his invisibility. He wants to ask her why she was ready to surrender when he first recruited her, back at the pawn shop. She says that she was... tired. Tired of going to prison for scores that barely keep a roof over her head. Tired of sniping at her husband every waking hour they weren't punching someone else.
Hood explains that he first became a crimeboss because he had a child to support, and he didn't want her to have a life as precarious as his. It was a noble goal, the kind of goal that could be argued as heroic... but the Hood eventually realized that he was not the hero of his story, but the villain of someone else's. So, if he was going to be bad, he should at least be good at it. He urges her not to be so afraid of failure that she stops taking chances on her life, and leaves her be.
At midnight, the Hood readies his guns as he prepares to break into Roxxon alone... but the rest of the gang showed up, and his spirits are buoyed. The group teleports into the compound, already realizing that they need a distraction to get past Roxxon's security, when suddenly, a boisterous woman with a cape appears in the sky over the group, and accuses them of malfeasance: the Mighty Thor!
• FIGHT! Villain vs. Villain Battle Royale!
• Is the all-new all-different Illuminati disbanding? Has the Hood already lost control?
• Even if they can get their act together, they have no idea of the danger that is coming for them!
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