Appearing in "Sworn to Protect"
- X-Factor Investigations
- 🢐 Juggernaut (Cain Marko) 🢒
- New X-Men
- 🢐 Lockheed 🢒
- Xavier Institute student body
- Tag (Brian Cruz) (Mentioned)
- Wallflower (Laurie Collins) (Mentioned)
- X-Men Blackbird (Destroyed)
Synopsis for "Sworn to Protect"
The Hulk has come to the Xavier Institute to get revenge against Professor X for his association with the Illuminati, a clandestine group that was responsible for shooting him into space. In response, the X-Men have summoned all of their available allies to help stop the gamma-spawned monster. The X-Factor attack the Hulk while Madrox gets Emma and Wolverine to safety. Hulk kicks Monet far away on hearing her demand that Hulk surrender on the ground on herself being invulnerable, telling her to be invulnerable in New Jersey, and when Warpath attacks him with his Vibranium knives, he kicks the ground to create a shockwave that hurtles away his opponents while he plucks the knives out, which he promptly throws back at Warpath, who dodges them by mere millimeters. An enraged Warpath punches Hulk, but Hulk is not phased and defeats him with a headbutt. Strong Guy manages to hold his own but is warned by Emma from fighting anymore, as absorbing and redirecting the massive amounts of kinetic energy of Hulk's punches was putting a great strain on his heart and prolonged fighting could be fatal.
Hulk, who was impressed by his opponent's ability, had also noticed the problem at the same time as Emma and laughed at his opponent's predicament. Kurt and Hepzibah crash the Blackbird onto Hulk, but without any effect. Xavier tries to surrender again only to be stopped again by Mercury. Cain is told by Cyttorak that he's been weakened because he does not embrace his rage, desire for destruction and other negative thoughts, as he should be as Cyttorrak's avatar. Cain fully accepts his role as Cytorrak's avatar, and with his full power returned, he attacks Hulk. Xavier tells Elixir, who is healing the wounded and is very exhausted, to just stabilize their condition, as he feels that they won't be the last ones to be injured. Realizing their fight would take too long to settle, Hulk decides to throw his opponent out of the compound and finish off Xavier before Juggernaut returns.
Mercury, as a last attempt, tries to wrap her malleable limbs around Hulk, but he angrily throws her off. Xavier goes to check up on her and Hulk follows. She had fallen into the graveyard, and she explains that the large number of new graves are those of the mutant casualties after M-Day. Realizing Professor X blames himself for their deaths, Hulk is satisfied that his suffering is enough, and realizing that the X-Men have suffered too much already, leaves. Juggernaut scoffs at Xavier's gratitude while Beast and Elixir discuss on how to fix Colossus's twisted arms. Cyclops tells Xavier that they'd do it together. Hulk returns to his ship and after telling his allies to leave him alone, he muses that the ultimatum will soon be over and then things will begin.
The brutal conclusion! Hulk vs. the Juggernaut and whatever X-Men are left standing in a battle that will have lasting consequences for one of the combatants!
- This story takes place between page 20 and 23 of World War Hulk #1.
- Darwin mentions losing loved ones as well. He is referring to the death of his teammates in a short-lived X-Men team who perished during the events of X-Men: Deadly Genesis #1–6.
- Strong Guy has taxed his powers he suffers a heart attack. This weakness was first identified in X-Factor #111.
- Mercury mentions a number of mutants who lost their powers following M-Day circa House of M #8 and how her friends were murdered. She is talking about the de-powered students who were later killed by Willim Stryker in New X-Men (Vol. 2) #24.