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Quote1.png The only people you can trust are family. Quote2.png
John Proudstar

Appearing in "The Brothers Proudstar"

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Synopsis for "The Brothers Proudstar"

On the Camp Verde Apache Reservation, 11-year old James Proudstar is trying to summon his cat Coyote down from a tree, when he is startled by a large, fanged monster, which calls his name and chases him through a canyon. Racing back to his house with the cat, he runs directly into his older brother John, newly back from military service. John does not believe his brother’s story of a monster in the canyon, but the brothers are overjoyed to be reunited after two years.

John enjoys a large meal as he re-connects with his family. That night watching the stars, he tells his mother of a helicopter crash he was in, where he saw a great bird of lightning in the sky. His mom reveals she has cancer. The next day he takes her to the clinic to talk to the doctor, and a mysterious figure observes that he is back.

Nearby, a young Tabitha Smith unhappily endures a family vacation with her father and stepmother arguing in the front seat. They come across a roadside carnival, which John and James Proudstar are also attending. At the carnival (which is run by the Ringmaster and features Chondu the Mystic), John is approached by the figure watching him earlier, Michael Whitecloud, who is suspicious of the medical lab which has been dealing with the cancer cases from the Apache reservation, because it is surrounded by electrical fencing. He proposes to break into it with John’s help to investigate.

Meanwhile, James notices the young Tabitha but they do not talk. He visits a fortune-teller who realizes that his brother John will one day sacrifice his life for others. Not wishing to burden the boy with this information, she pretends she is only a fraud. After he leaves, the fortune teller, who is Destiny, speaks with her friend Mystique who says they should leave the carnival because better things await them.

Suddenly the brothers hear a scream; a tiger has escaped confinement and threatens the crowd. John Proudstar is able to wrestle it down until its trainer can tranquilize it. Impressed by the display of strength, the Ringmaster offers him a job.

That night, John and Michael break into the Arroyo Medical Laboratory. They discover that the cancer patients’ records have been tampered with by Dr. Martynec, who soon appears with young James as a hostage. He reveals that he was been experimenting on the Indians of the reservation, studying the effects of radiation on human tissue. John leaps at him, but Martynec transforms into a werewolf—the monster originally seen by James—and attacks all three men. James shoots him, which leaves him injured but he says he will recover soon. John orders Michael and James to leave and expose what’s happening in the laboratory. Rather than allow that, Martynec opens a gas line and sets off an explosion, which John survives.

A week later, Michael tells John that the police believe a faulty gas main caused the explosion, and that Martynec’s body was not recovered. He says he is now going to New Mexico to investigate reports of an upcoming gamma bomb test. John tells James he should have trusted him about the monster in the canyon. Maria Proudstar watches her two sons playing together in the yard and hopes they will never be separated again.


  • Michael Turney is noted as a contributing inker in the mail logs for X-Force #68.


  • The Proudstar brothers take a picture during the events of this issue that James would save on his phone years after his brother's death.[1]

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