Appearing in "X-Tremes!"
- Rick Jones
- Clay Quartermanin
Races and Species:
- United States of America
- St. Louis airport
Synopsis for "X-Tremes!"
At Gamma Base, Clay Quartermain receives the SHIELD council who express their displeasure with the way Quarterman has been handling the Hulk situation. Clay tries to explain that they managed to cure Rick Jones of his transformations into the Hulk. Still, the council feels that Bruce Banner has become too much of a liability and so they order Quartermain to eliminate him. Despite his orders, Clay Quartermain cannot bring himself to do it. Meanwhile in the town of Sparta, Illinois, the Hulk rages in an alleyway as he feels the daytime reversion back into the Bruce Banner. His last show of strength wrecks the structural integrity of one of the buildings. On person watching this transpire is Dick Tarrance, who lives in the apartment building next door. Watching as the Hulk changes into Bruce Banner, he thinks that he is witnessing a mutant. Recalling how X-Factor are hunting mutants, he figures there might be a quick buck to make by turning in this "mutant". As such, Terrance drags Banner into his meager apartment before the building collapses. With Banner knocked out from the transformation, Dick then places in a call to X-Factor.
At X-Factor headquarters in New York City, Cyclops and Marvel Girl and running Iceman through a training session to try and help him regain control of his ice powers. However, when he tries to create a simple snowball, he instead creates a massive chunk of ice, which Cyclops and Marvel Girl deflect and pulverise with their collective mutant powers. It's then that their ward, the mutant girl named Skids, enters the room and tells them that they got a call from someone reporting a mutant in Illinois. X-Factor decides to mobilize and investigate. When they offer Iceman a chance to stay behind since his powers are unreliable, Bobby refuses to do so, thinking he can handle the job without issue.
By this time, Banner has woken up and he and Dick have gotten to talking. Terrance discovers that the man he has turned into the "mutant hunters" is actually not a bad guy and begins to feel guilty. Suddenly there is a knock at the door and Dick rushes to it. Instead of X-Factor, it is actually his girlfriend Melanie. She needs to talk and after making up a quick exuse that Bruce is his "cousin", he goes out for a walk with his girlfriend. Eventually, Melanie explains to Dick that she had run a pregnancy test and has discovered that she is pregnant. When she asks him what they should do, he tells her that they should keep the baby, even though their jobs can't afford it. With a new mouth to feed on the way, Dick realises that he is going to have to swallow his guilt and turn Bruce in anyway. Back at Dick's apartment, Bruce calls in to Gamma Base to talk to Clay Quartermain. Suspecting that something is wrong, Bruce asks to talk to Rick Jones. Rick is put on the phone but he has five SHIELD agents standing all around him. To try and tip Bruce off, Rick calls him "Bob" during the conversation. The ploy works and when Clay asks Bruce where he is, he tells Quartermain that he is in Seattle. While in St. Louis Airport, X-Factor arrives in the state and begin loading their gear up into a rented van. As they make their way to Sparta, Iceman and Marvel Girl express their displeasure of pretending to be mutant hunters because it has made people believe that they are like the Gestapo, hunting and terminating mutants when they are really providing support and rehabilitation. Cyclops listens to their concerns and agrees that after this mission they should work at softening their public image.
Later, when Dick gets home he finds that Bruce has left the apartment. Banner is taking a walk to try and sort out his thoughts and decides what to do about the situation about Gamma Base. It's at that time that the members of X-Factor pay a visit to the home of Dick Terrance. He tells them that the mutant he called about went somewhere but he doesn't know where. When Iceman decides to take a look around, he recognises Bruce Banner and begins calling out to him. From a distance, Bruce confuses Bobby Drake's X-Factor jumpsuit for a SHIELD uniform and makes a break for it. Seeing this the rest of X-Factor chase after Banner in their rented van, wondering why he is running from them. Banner manages to sprint past a train crossing as the freighter is passing by. This happens just as the sun is beginning to set, turning into the Hulk, the gamma-spawned monster lifts up a railcar and throws it at the van pursuing him. The members of X-Factor get out unscathed thanks to Jean's telekinetic powers. The Hulk then tries to leap awaybut he's blasted by Cyclops and is sent crashing into the Spartan Printing Company building. Deciding this situation needs more than X-Factor, the group doff their mutant hunting uniforms and puts on their X-Terminator costumes. This helps in that when they catch up with the Hulk he recognises them as former members of the X-Men. The Hulk attacks them, and the X-Terminators can only keep the Hulk at bay as he is far too strong and cunning to be stopped. Eventually, the mutants have no choice but to full incapacitate the Hulk by letting Iceman cut loose with his powers trapping the Hulk in a huge chunk of ice. With the Hulk subdued, Cyclops decides that they best contact SHIELD, even though the idea doesn't sit very well with him. When news reaches Clay Quartermain at Gamma Base, he reports this to the SHIELD council who are delighted by the news and order him to eliminate the Hulk once and for all.
- At the time of this story, everyone believes that the Hulk was cursed in Incredible Hulk #325 the same cure that also briefly cursed Rick Jones with transforming into the Hulk. Bruce Banner cured Rick of the Hulk in Incredible Hulk #331-332 but also cursed himself into transforming into the Hulk every night, something he has kept secret up to this point.
- At the time of this story, X-Factor posed as mutant hunters who also kept their mutant identities secret. This has been their operating standard since X-Factor #1. They will later reveal themselves as mutants during the events of X-Factor #24-26.
- Iceman's powers have been out of control since they were magically boosted in Thor #377-378. Iceman later starts wearing a power dampening belt in X-Factor #21.
- This issue is reprinted in the trade paperback Incredible Hulk Visionaries: Peter David Volume 1
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