Appearing in "Secrets & Lies"
- New Avengers
- Nick Fury (Main story and flashback)
- Dard'van (Behind the scenes)
- Daily Bugle
- Hydra (Mentioned)
- Morgan Le Fay (Mentioned)
- Matt Murdock (Mentioned)
- Galactus (Mentioned)
- Kree (Mentioned)
- Skrulls (Mentioned)
- Mary Jane Watson (Mentioned)
- Edwin Jarvis (Mentioned)
Synopsis for "Secrets & Lies"
The story starts with Kat Farrell on the phone to her mother in her workplace, the Daily Bugle. She attempts to get her mother to hang up, claiming that she has to leave. However, after hearing her mother claim that a building has lit up, Farrell travels to the window and sees the Sentry's Watchtower.
Meanwhile, inside the Watchtower, Captain America presses Spider-Woman (Jessica Drew) to answer his question of who she is working for. She asks Cap if he could trust her, and Cap is doubtful. He asks if Madame Hydra has any control over Jessica, and Jess admits that she is part of it. When Cap asks who else, Jess claims that this conversation isn't fair to Cap because she is pelting him with pheromones which attract him to her. Cap says he will attempt to control himself, and demands that Jessica tell him everything. Jessica hesitates and Cap accuses her of thinking of a lie. Denying this, Jessica says she is trying to imagine a scenario in which she tells Cap everything and doesn’t end up dead. When Cap says he won't hurt her, she says that he's done enough already anyway, by making her an Avenger. She explains her story...
Once upon a time, Spider-Woman was a super-hero, with a messed-up childhood, which she blamed on her awful father, who altered her genetics and gave her super-powers. She joins HYDRA at 17, and explains to Cap how Nick Fury saved her and converted her to S.H.I.E.L.D. Jessica claims that she wouldn't have changed a second of it, through all of the madness.
She then recalls how her powers failed and how she was grounded, a typical civilian, going over her successes as a super-hero. She recalls how Connely, an agent of Hydra, broke into her house, beat her up, then offered to restore her powers, if she joined both HYDRA and S.H.I.E.L.D.
When Jessica visits Nick Fury, he tells her to do this twisted deal and get her powers. Disgusted, Jessica agrees, and a seventeen-month procedure takes place to restart her powers. Admitting to Cap that she was doing it not for peace, freedom or right, but for herself, she tells how much stronger she was after the procedure.
Explaining to Cap that her life now depended on her being a “double-crossing, poker-faced, weasel woman”, Jessica tells Cap about her finally getting used to her lifestyle of lies, that the heroes had their Secret War.
Calling Jess one night, Fury tells her about his error in Latveria, and that he is leaving. Horrified, Jess attempts to talk to him some more but he hangs up.
Spider-Woman admits she is a traitor and a double agent. She cannot explain her status to her superiors because of the discovery in the Savage Land. She is given worse assignments, such as accompanying Matt Murdock to the Raft. Cap then makes her an Avenger and HYDRA force her to accept. Jessica thinks that HYDRA is being controlled by the same powers that are corrupting S.H.I.E.L.D. She says that she had to let Madame Hydra go, and confesses she is horrified at her own actions, particularly since she almost killed Cap.
Cap asks where Nick Fury is. Jessica says that she doesn’t know. Cap asks “you guys believe her?” and Jess turns around to see the Avengers standing behind her. Wolverine says that she doesn’t smell as though she’s lying. Iron Man says her heart and brainwaves are normal. Luke Cage and Spider-Man believe her, whereas the Sentry does not think it is his place to say.
Wolverine says he has known Jess a long time and that they have a history, and that he believes her. He then demands that she tell them the rest. Cap tells her that there should be no more secrets and lies.
Jessica’s phone goes off. Cap tells her to get it. It is Colonel Fury, who tells the Avengers to take it easy on Jessica. Luke Cage swears at Fury, and Jess reveals that Fury was listening all along. Fury refuses to reveal his location, insisting that the Avengers deal with the press, who are all over the Sentry’s enormous Watchtower. Spider-Man asks if they can go back to being beaten up by ninjas.
- This story is reprinted in New Avengers: Secrets & Lies.