Appearing in "The Power Trap!"
Races and Species:
- New York City
Synopsis for "The Power Trap!"
Alicia Masters is walking through Greenwich Village after deciding to head home alone while Ben prepared to carry home a block of granite for her latest carving. Under the belief that she would be safe walking by herself, Alicia soon realizes that Ben's concerns for her safety were warranted when she is accosted by a local street gang calling themselves the War Gods. They begin going through her things and are about to drag her into an alleyway when suddenly someone begins pelting the youths with rocks sending them fleeing. Her rescuer is a lone man, but when she asks who he is he tells her that he is nobody. After helping Alicia gather up her things he offers to walk her home. However, along the way, her attempts to learn her savior's identity are deflected as the man is afraid that if she knows his identity those who are after him might imprison him again. Taken up into her studio the mystery man is very impressed by her work, prompting more questions from Alicia, but all the strange man will tell her is that he was betrayed by those he trusted. She offers to help, even to get Ben involved, but the man is fearful of getting anyone else involved, explaining that his company has been taken over by those with evil goals. Suggesting that perhaps she can help him in other ways, Alicia begins to feel his face in order to start making a sculpture of it. However, the man is soon frightened off when he hears the Thing coming up the stairs, finally returning with the granite Alicia had ordered. Seeing the man making a run out the window, Ben believes that Alicia has been seeing someone else behind his back, but Alicia assures him that isn't the case and tell him about how the stranger was afraid of someone coming after him. Looking at the sculpture that Alicia was making of the man's face Ben recognizes him as Jeff Mann, a billionaire who went missing recently. He explains that those who run his company have been searching for him ever since, but now that he has fled Ben believes it will be difficult to find him in the maze that is New York City.
The Thing isn't the only one talking about Jeff Mann in the city this day. At a local arcade, Power Man and Iron Fist's Heroes for Hire have been hired to find Mann. They are currently waiting in a video arcade for an informant who might have a lead on where Mann might be. In order to pass the time, Power Man is playing an arcade game called X-Factor which was created by Mann's company. Luke Cage finds the game's puzzle difficult to solve and is almost ready to smash the arcade machine when Iron Fist calms him and tries to give it a try. Even with his martial arts training, his strategy skills are still not enough to break the game's puzzle. Finally, they are met by Benny, their informant, who has a list of people that Mann might have come into contact with. It's a varied list which includes both high ranking business officials and low-end bookies, making the Heroes for Hire realize that they have a long day ahead of them. While at the same time, the Thing has returned to the Baxter Building where he consults the Fantastic Four's computer files on Jeff Mann. Ben is surprised when the computer informs him his old Yancy Street friend Jerry Dean has done business with Mann in the past and decides to follow through on this lead. While at a local country club, Iron Fist uses his position as business owner Daniel Rand to play squash against Kurt Samel, an associate of Jeff Mann. While Danny questions Kurt about Mann, he can't help be think that Samel is hiding something that he knows. Although he does find a lead: Samel once sold Mann a piece of real estate on Yancy Street. Power Man also follows a lead of his own, paying a visit to a bookie named Louie who operates his betting ring out of a newspaper stand. After leaning on Louie for a bit, Cage is told that Jeff Mann has been hiding out in an old building on Yancy Street.
When Power Man finally arrives at the location Louie tells him about, he is able to find Jeff Mann hiding out in one of the rooms of the derelict building. When Luke nabs Mann he doesn't resist and so Cage decides to hear the man's story. Jeff explains that his company was taken over by the very consultants he hired to run his operation and his life. Having grown fed up with the lack of control, Mann ran off so that he could live his life by his own terms. Feeling sorry for Mann, Power Man has no choice but to follow through on his job to find him. On their way out of the building, they are stopped by the Thing who demands answers for what is going on. But while the two are arguing Jeff tries to make a break for it, only to get snagged by Iron Fist. Power Man tells the Thing to butt out and let them handle the job, leading to the pair coming to blows while Iron Fist takes Jeff away. While the two powerhouses duke it out, Iron Fist takes Mann back to the board of directors at J. Mann Incorporated. There Iron Fist becomes confused when they insist that both he and Power Man must be present to get paid for their job. Nonetheless, Iron Fist agrees to go back and get Power Man, leaving the board to wonder if he suspects that they intend to kill Iron Fist and his partner.
Iron Fist recovers Power Man who has lost his fight with the Thing, but when Ben tries to get in his way, Iron Fist uses his trademark move to knock him aside. When the Heroes for Hire return to J. Mann Incorporated the board of directors spring their trap. A trap floor opens beneath the two heroes and they fall into a massive maze full of death traps. While the Heroes for Hire are fighting for their lives, the Thing catches up with them and forces his way into J. Mann Incorporated. When he demands answers from the board of directors, Jeff Mann manages to break free and warns the Thing to get away while he still can, only for Ben to get dropped into the death trap as well. The three heroes are able to pool their resources together and break themselves out of the trap. When the board of directors tries to flee in a car, Iron Fist uses his powers to smash the engine. In the aftermath of the battle, Jeff thanks the heroes for helping him and excuses himself so he can pay Power Man and Iron Fist for their services. When they come back they find the Thing has become engrossed with the X-Factor arcade game in order to pass the time.