Appearing in "Swift and Sure"
- Namor McKenzie (Past)
- Atlantean bandits (Past) (Death of several)
- Unnamed eldritch horror (Past) (Only appearance; dies)
- Soviet Russia (Past)
- Thule Society (Past)
- Baron Karl Mordo (Past)
- Unnamed Atlantean villagers (Past)
- Swift/Black Tide (Past)
- Chasm People (Mentioned)
- Imperial Atlanteans (Mentioned)
- Court Wizard Syzandias (Mentioned)
- Karthon (Invoked)
Races and Species:
- Atlanteans (Past)
- Dragons (Mentioned)
- Atlantean-Human Hybrids (Past)
- Sharks (Past)
- Deviants (Past)
- Great Old Ones (Only in flashback)
- Spawn of the Great Old Ones (Only in flashback)
- Aqueos (Only in flashback)
- Unidentified creatures (squid-like, squid-headed humanoids, etc.) (Only in flashback)
- Humans (Past)
- Outer Dark (Mentioned)
- Unforgotten Stone (First appearance) (Origin revealed)
- Philosopher's Stone (Mentioned)
- DeVermis Mysteries (Mentioned)
Synopsis for "Swift and Sure"
What begins as a peaceful day of harvest for a rural Atlantean village turns into horror as a group of bandits attack and threaten to slaughter the villagers unless they turn over their crop. Before the leader of the bandits can finish threatening the village elder, he is interrupted by the arrival of the Swift Tide, Prince Namor, Prince Attuma, Lady Dorma, and Ambrose. Panicking, the bandits attack the Swift Tide but are easily overwhelmed - the Atlantean warrior-women mocking their overconfidence in their superior numbers. Watching Namor, Dorma, and Attuma fight, Captain Kharsa complements the younger warriors' potential to Sycorax. As the bandits flee, Attuma triumphantly mocks them only to be gently chastized for his premature celebration by Kharsa, who points out that unless all of the bandits are hunted down and executed they will simply return once the Swift Tide has left. As they chase the bandits over a sea-cliff, however, the Swift Tide and their allies are immobilized by a psychic attack from an eldritch monster resembling an enormous octopus with multiple eyes. As the chieftain of the bandits gloats that even the Swift Tide are no match for his pet, Sycorax fights through the pain and exclaims that the entity is using them to gorge itself. As Sycorax distracts the eldritch horror with a blast of magic, Kharsa lunges through its writhing tentacles and slices it to pieces with her sword. The remaining bandits flee as the villagers cheer on the Swift Tide, Kharsa deciding that they should take the time to celebrate their victory with the liberated villagers. Awestruck, Dorma turns to Namor and exclaims that she still can't believe they're actually accompanying the legendary Swift Tide into battle, and that it feels like something out of a history scroll. Agreeing, Namor turns to Attuma, who seems put-off.
Later on in their travels, as they make camp Namor asks Attuma what's bothering him. Attuma remarks that the bandits reminded him too much of his tribe, Garanna the Breaker interjecting to inform Namor that the Chasm People were sometimes forced to resort to raiding villages when hunting and foraging weren't enough to feed the clan. As Dorma laments having never realized this, Kharsa remarks that the Imperial Atlanteans and the Chasm People both have much they can teach one another. Agreeing to this, Namor offers Attuma the support and resources of the Imperial Atlanteans so that his people never have to resort to banditry again. As Dorma plays with Ambrose, Sycorax asks her about the giant goldfish and is told that Syzandias and the other Court Wizards created him to be her guardian. Dorma turns to Sycorax and asks if the Swift Tide's mage would be willing to teach her magic, commenting that she'd always been told she had a talent and is amazed that anyone could have bested the eldritch horror. Sycorax declines, stating she doubts Dorma's duties would grant her adequate time to study, and denies being more powerful than the entity - stating that she was simply more resourceful. Elaborating, Sycorax states that magic requires more than just raw power, also requiring the willpower to shape the power and the character of the spellcaster to influence the power.
As Sycorax states that it's a good thing magic doesn't require power alone, Namor asks what she means. Sycorax replies that she was thinking about the object of their quest -- the Unforgotten Stone -- and that if power was all that mattered than they'd be corrupted and consumed by it. She exposits that the Unforgotten Stone is an ancient relic dating back to when the Great Old Ones ruled over the depths of the Earth's oceans from eldritch cities like R'lyeh. Sycorax states the Great Old Ones were sealed away or driven into hiding after countless millennia of war against the Atlanteans, but that their spawn - creatures such as the Aqueos, or the entity they had vanquished earlier - still lurk in the darkness; and that no matter how securely the Great Old Ones have been entombed they always find a way to escape. As Sycorax concludes by saying they must find the Unforgotten Stone before the eldritch darkness sealed within it can be unleashed, Namor questions the wisdom of having stopped to save the villagers, Kharsa stating that he must never regret stopping to help those in need - especially not his own people and future subjects.
In the Russian city of Murmansk, Baron Wolfgang von Strucker and Madame Lillian von Loont of the Thule Society meet with Baron Karl Mordo, Nikolai Kravinoff, and Director Vazhin to determine what has been uncovered by the Soviets. As von Loont speclates that it is the Philosopher's Stone, Mordo and von Strucker argue over whether to bring the Unforgotten Stone to the surface. Director Vazhin reminds the Thule Society that they were brought on as consultants alone, and that for now all they will be doing is X-raying the artefact.
In the Arctic Ocean, the Swift Tide and their allies approach Murmansk, Sycorax using her magic to scry the Unforgotten Stone; Namor incredulously wondering what the diving suits worn by the Soviet scientists are. Kharsa orders their entourage to set up camp and prepare to back them up if need-be, leading the Swift Tide, Namor, Attuma, and Dorma closer to the facility. Just as they reach it, however, there is a muffled explosion and tendrils of darkness surge out of the facility. As they are engulfed, Kharsa has Sycorax use her magic to warp Namor, Attuma, and Dorma to safety - telling them that they are the future of their people and need to survive. As the Swift Tide disappear into the corrupting darkness unleashed by the Unforgotten Stone, Namor's entourage hold him and the others back from following.
In the facility up above, Director Vazhin protests to Baron von Strucker that he has no clue what's happening. As tendrils of living darkness erupt from the ocean and coil around them, Baron von Strucker babbles that something is rising from the cold depths, filled with an endless hunger for flesh. Regaining his senses and grabbing Madame von Loont, Baron von Strucker escapes as the entity unleashed from the Unforgotten Stone tears the facility apart.
In the ocean below, Namor watches in horror as the tendrils of darkness coalesce into a crater, from which five shapes emerge: the members of the Swift Tide, corrupted into monstrous predatory versions of themselves. Speaking in a distorted voice, Kharsa spreads her arms and asks where they should begin their slaughter.
The Young Namor, Attuma and Dorma get to accompany the Swift Riders on a mission, see them in action and learn from them. But the mission involves Russian alchemists in 1930s Murmansk, a dangerous mystic relic, and a catastrophe that brings to life the most menacing threat that Atlantis has ever faced! Now all of undersea civilization is imperiled, and only three youngsters can save it!