Appearing in "Part 7"
Synopsis for "Part 7"
Made a prisoner of General John Ryker at Area 51, the Hulk has been contained and bombarded with a combination of gamma rays and every painful memory he has experienced. This has caused Bruce Banner to retreat inside his mind where all the fragments of his personality have broken loose and are now running amok. Outside, the Hulk continues to rage as his strength continues to increase and fight back against the feedback machine he is strapped into. Watching this is General John Ryker, who concludes that they can control the Hulk and make him do what they want with the right emotional input. He then excuses himself, leaving General Ross to watch over the Hulk while he deals with his own gamma mutate, Private Benjamin Tibbets, aka Flux. Meanwhile, outside, Nick Fury has arrived on the scene with an army of SHIELD agents ready to storm Area 51 and free the Hulk and John Ryker's other captives. The arrival of the SHIELD agents is picked up by security inside. When Agent Johnson is told this, he orders a red alert, but they are subdued by General Ross who has had enough of Ryker's manipulations and schemes. SHIELD comes smashing into the facility, just as General Ryker begins playing with Flux's mind by manipulating the conflicting feelings the soldier has toward his mother.
Meanwhile, General Ross takes over the control room and opening a communications channel into the lab below begins to berate the Hulk that he generates enough anger and strength to break free from his bonds. When Nick Fury arrives he tells the Hulk that he is in the process of freeing all of Ryker's hostages. Just then, their foe enters the room with Flux behind him. Flux has been conditioned to think that Ryker is his mother and follows his orders to the letter. When Doc Samson tries to talk sense to Private Tibbets, Flux knocks him out first. Soon both the Hulk and Flux come to blows. Fury then orders everyone out into the main corridor while the two gamma-spawned brawlers fight it out. Elsewhere, General Ross decides to find out what Ryker is keeping in a secret room. However, he is denied entry by the guard posted there. Ross is soon joined by Doc Samson who knocks the guard out so they can both see what is in this room. Inside they find a deformed creature in a holding tank that they soon learn, much to their horror, is none other than Lucy Ryker, John's wife. As Fury scrambles to get all the hostages out, the Hulk continues to battle Flux and try to get him to break free from Ryker's conditioning.
With everything falling apart, John Ryker continues to try and take command of the situation. However, things all come crashing down when Doc Samson and General Ross radio in and reveal that they found his wife. Much to John's horror, they have told Lucy about all the horrible experiments that he has been conducting with gamma research, instead of trying to find a cure for her cancer like he claimed. In tears, Ryker tries to explain himself and tells his wife that the others are lying. However, he is already formulating a plan, telling Agent Johnson to prepare a jet. Meanwhile, the Hulk has beaten Flux into submission and no longer able to handle the pain, reverts back into Private Benjamin Tibbets, ending the battle. Meanwhile, Ryker gets to Samson and Ross to try and recover his wife. However, they are holding her at gunpoint, finding himself at a stand-off, Ryker tells the two men that this isn't over yet and makes a run for it. However, Ryker manages to escape even though Fury and the Hulk are not far down the hallway. With the facility under SHIELD control, the Hulk and his allies begin trying to figure out their next moves. Thaddeus Ross still considers Bruce a fugitive of the law, but allows him, Doc Samson, and Angela Lipscombe to leave the facility, citing a "lapse in memory" about their involvement in this ordeal.
Later, the Hulk is out in a forest meditating and thinking about all the fragments of his personality. Withdrawing into his mind, Bruce Banner explores the hidden caves and discovers that the Devil Hulk is still free and lurking somewhere in his mind, leaving him to wonder what sort of evil he will unleash upon the world.
- Lucy Ryker's mutated condition was caused by John injecting his wife with the Hulk's blood, as revealed in World War Hulk: Gamma Corps #3.
- This issue is reprinted in other comics and books, see references for more info.
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