- MALEKITH! Not Thor at all but Malekith! I remember now! I shall find you, Malekith! I shall find you and wring the life from you drop by drop for what you did to me!
- -- Kurse
Appearing in "This Kursed Earth"
Synopsis for "This Kursed Earth"
Kurse (Algrim the Elf, resurrected by the Beyonder) has been defeated in combat against the Power Pack. Buried under tons of rubble from a collapsed building, the powerful creature may be defeated but he is far from dead. Recalling his battle with Beta Ray Bill and the Power children causes the creature to stir and break free from his environment to continue seeking out his mortal enemy Thor. Meanwhile, Thor has returned to Manhattan from Asgard with the souls that were stolen by Malekith and uses the power of Mjolnir to send them back to their mortal bodies. Thor grimly thinks back to how his face was recently scarred by Hela during his latest trials while parking his chariot in a nearby alley so that he can find solitude in the city. Walking out of the alley, Thor is begged for change by some of the city homeless. When they are complaining about him not having any, Thor angrily yells at them as he had saved their lives countless times in the past and frightens them off by showing them his facial scars. The incident deeply upsets Thor, and he wonders if it is finally time for him to swear off Midgard and return to home for good.
As Kurse resumes his rampage, the Power Pack have sneaked out of their parents home and brought Tattletale from Avengers Mansion so that they can search for others that were hurt during Kurse's rampage earlier that day. They come across Beta Ray Bill, who is just reviving from his fight against Kurse. When they check to see if he is okay, they learn that they have a mutual enemy and that he has not been vanquished. Telling the Power Pack that Thor has returned to Earth, Lightspeed flies off to locate him so that she can warn him of Kurse while the others search for the rampaging monster.
Meanwhile, on Asgard, Loki begins another new plot against his brother Thor. Once more using his cosmic transmuter, he fires a powerful mystical blast to Earth, striking a woman ironing her clothes in Manhattan. On Earth, this beam of energy streaks past the oceanic base of the Beyonder who is intrigued by it. Using his powers, he learns that it is meant for Thor. Taking his monitoring devices to look at the Thunder God, the Beyonder is surprised to see that Kurse has just found the pondering, god. Although he no longer is interested in the battle's outcome, the Beyonder decides to see his previous experiment through to the end anyway and watches as Kurse and Thor battle it out. As Thor defends himself from Kurse, he realizes he's battle Algrim. Upon mentioning Algrim's name, causes Kurse to go into another berserker rage and renew his attack. Back on Asgard, Rolfe and Flosi are playing games with their younger sister Hilde. They chase her into the wild area. There they stumble upon Suturs sword and see a giant device siphoning energy from it. Believing this could be trouble, the three children run back to the city to warn Heimdall.
The battle against Kurse is not fairing well for Thor at his usual strength. Realizing more power is needed he rushes back to his chariot where he recovers his Belt of Strength and puts it own. Even with his enhanced strength, he finds that Kurse is able to still match his abilities. The Beyonder at this point has appeared over the battle and finds Thor's resolve and code of honor interesting. Curious, the Beyonder sees what would happen by increasing Kurse's powers even more. Thor is easily trounced but does not give up, making the Beyonder wonder what sort of desire keep Thor fighting against impossible odds. He is even more confused when Beta Ray Bill and the Power Pack arrive to help him out, considering Thor has no idea who the Power children are.
The children lend Thor a hand and in the course of the battle, Kurse realizes that his true enemy, the one responsible for his current state is in reality Malekith. Although Kurse realizes who his true foe is, Thor comes to the decision that such unchecked rage would be a danger and works with the Power children to defeat Kurse. They get Energizer to use her powers on Mjolnir and Storm-Bringer, even though it will at least weaken -- if not destroy -- Thor and Beta Ray Bill's weapons. Katie absorbs as much power as she can handle and when it becomes too painful she fires a bolt of energy that knocks Kurse out.
With the battle over, the Beyonder makes his presence known and takes away the extra power he gave Kurse. He is about to destroy the creature when Thor tells him not to, that Kurse could be better use helping end Malekith's tyranny and so the Beyonder sends the creature back to Asgard. When Franklin tells the other members of the Power Pack that the Beyonder was responsible for creating Kurse the children become upset -- feeling betrayed that the Beyonder was responsible for creating the creature that injured their mother. When Katie lashes out at him, the Beyonder tells the children that he realizes that there the only thing that makes the difference between good and evil is a choice. Seeing the consequences of being evil, the Beyonder decides that he will do only good and uses his powers to restore Mjolnir and Storm Bringer to their full power again before teleporting off. The Power children are upset that the Beyonder left before he could help their mother and are taken home by Beta Ray Bill.
Weary from the battle, Thor decides to return to Asgard after all, but before he can the woman transmuted by Loki approaches him and kisses Thor. There is a flash of energy leaving the woman with no memory of what she has done, unaware that she has succeed in carrying out Loki's current scheme: turning Thor into a frog!
This story is continued next issue...
Secret Wars II continues in Power Man and Iron Fist #121...
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