With their parents all gathered at Alex Wilder's mansion for an annual gathering, Nico Minoru, Gertrude Yorkes, Chase Stein, Karolina Dean, Molly Hayes, and Alex Wilder accidentally witnessed their parents performing the ritual sacrifice of a teenage girl. Scared of those they loved, the children banded together and became runaways. The shocked teenagers vowed to turn the tables on their evil parents. Nico took a mystical staff called The Staff of One, Chase found powerful gauntlets and multi-spectral goggles, Karolina discovered her alien heritage and superpowers, Molly found out she is a mutant, and Gert inherited a genetically engineered Deinonychus under her telepathic control.
In order to get their children back, the Pride framed them for the murder of the innocent girl they had sacrificed. The runaways retreated to a subterranean hideout they called "the Hostel", a mansion in Bronson Canyon buried during an earthquake. The teenagers, except Alex, picked new superhero names to replace the ones their parents had given them. Meanwhile, Alex Wilder was secretly still loyal to the parents.
While stopping a robbery, the runaways encountered a boy named Topher, who claimed his parents forced him to aid them in the robbery. Deciding he was one of them, the group took him back to the Hostel. Topher revealed himself as a vampire and attempted to "turn" Nico, but Alex rescued her. Topher died after biting Karolina, whose blood was infused with solar energy.
Cloak and Dagger, informed that the teenagers had kidnapped Molly, confronted the Runaways. After learning the truth, the two superheroes promised to contact the Avengers to help the runaways take down the Pride; Alex, however, tipped off the Pride, and they telepathically removed all memory of the meeting from Cloak and Dagger.
The teenagers learned that the Gibborim, an ancient race of beings who wished to wipe Earth clean of humanity and start again, formed the Pride to do their bidding. The Runaways disrupted the ceremony that would give the Gibborim the power to destroy humanity. Alex engineered his friends' defeat and revealed himself to be the mole. He told Nico that Karolina and Molly's parents had planned on killing the rest of the Pride and taking their children with them to the next world. Alex offered for his family and Nico's family to go instead. Nico angrily refused and fighting ensued. It ended when Molly destroyed the container that held the sacrificed girl's soul in it (to be given as an offering to the Gibborim). The angry Gibborim destroyed Alex, and as the Pride's undersea lair collapsed, the grown-ups held off the giants giving the Runaways a chance to escape in a vehicle called "The Leapfrog".
With their parents dead, Social Services separated the Runaways. Three months after the destruction of the Pride, Karolina organized a reunion, and the team headed off to an Avengers storage complex to retrieve Old Lace. The teenagers decided to stay together, rather than return to their new lives.
Victor Mancha and Xavin
The Runaways fought the villains who moved to Los Angeles in the wake of the Pride's death. A future version of Gert appeared and warned the group that a man named Victor Mancha would one day kill all of Earth's heroes. Before she died, she told them to kill Victor as a boy before he became too powerful. They subdued Victor, a confused teenage boy with a superhero fixation whose superpowers activated for the first time in the struggle. Ultron, Victor's father, killed Victor's mother and took control of Victor, forcing him to attack his new friends. Victor learned that Ultron created him to be a superhero to destroy the Avengers from within. With the help of the teenage superhero support group Excelsior, the runaways defeated Ultron, just before Victor joined them.
Karolina attempted to kiss Nico, but Nico became embarrassed and left, making Karolina feel stupid and alone. A Skrull named Xavin appeared and told Karolina that, due to a pact between their parents, he was Karolina's fiancé. He asked Karolina to marry him in order to stop the war between their races. Karolina resisted, revealing to Xavin and her friends that she liked girls; Xavin told her he is a shape-shifter and changed into female form. Convinced, Karolina returned to her home planet with Xavin, in hopes of ending the conflict.
New York City and the New Pride
The Runaways traveled to New York City with Cloak, whose memories of them were restored. Someone had used Mutant Growth Hormone to attack Dagger and frame Cloak. When Nico and Chase found the dealer, Chase dropped the Pride's name and, claiming to have killed someone, talked his way out of the dangerous situation and into the information they need. Nico kissed Chase in thanks for saving her, but Chase rejected her, saying his relationship with Gert was the only thing keeping him "good". Gertrude and Victor ran into Spider-Man and discussed the situation with him over sushi, but Nico knocked him out because Spider-Man was an adult and an Avenger. When the Avengers were looking for Cloak, Wolverine scared Molly, and she punched him through a building. Chase defeated Dagger's attacker with Nico's staff after she was knocked unconscious. With Dagger safe and his name cleared, Cloak returned the kids home.
The Runaways encountered the X-Men, who had come to take Molly to the Xavier Institute for Higher Learning to train. While the two teams fought, Gert and Kitty Pryde sat at the sidelines talking. Finally, Emma Frost decided they shouldn't force someone to come with them against their will, and if Molly decided to join the X-Men, she knew where to find them.
Molly was knocked unconscious during a superhero fight, and she woke to find that she had been "recruited" by the Provost, who ran a crime ring that used children to commit thefts. Molly recruited her classmates, defeated the Provost, and returned home.
Alex's online friends met up after Alex's death and discussed his disappearance. One of them hacked Alex's account and learned that Alex's parents were part of the Pride, whom the group believed to be heroes. The group attempted a spell to bring Alex back, but a younger version of Alex's father Geoff appeared instead.
Victor had a nightmare about killing his friends under Ultron's influence. Chase confessed to being jealous of Victor, someone his parents would have loved. Gert and Nico discussed leadership and decided that if it should prove necessary, Gert would become the leader. Acting on a police call involving a masked individual, the teenagers realized they had arrived at Alex's old house. Alex appeared, although Nico was suspicious. She asked him where they first kissed, and his confusion and a spell revealed that it was Geoff Wilder. In the fight that resulted, the new Pride took control of Victor, Gert found out that Nico kissed Chase, and Geoff escaped with Molly.
Before the Runaways could rescue Molly, they had to repair the Leapfrog. Gert tried to break up with Chase, and Nico discovered, using a spell, that the new Pride were getting their information from Victor; much to his surprise. Gert and Nico were ready to destroy Victor, but Chase stuck up for him. Karolina interrupted the fight. After telling the team why she and Xavin were back on earth, Victor found out that the new Pride had been using him as a spy cam, and found that the broadcast was coming from Nico's old Summer Home. Xavin asked the team if he/she could help. The team went to Nico's old Summer Home and found the new Pride had moved out and the weapons cabinet was empty. The Runaways found the new Pride and a fight started, but in the end Geoff killed Gert and the new Pride learned the truth about his intentions. Nico used the Staff of One spell "Forget" causing the young Geoff to forget about what he had experienced in the present day. Chase ran away from the Runaways after a disagreement about where to bury Gert's body.
The Runaways intervened in a fight between the Flag-Smasher and S.H.I.E.L.D., whose agents damaged Victor. The Young Avengers saw the altercation on television, and the Vision suffered a seizure, and they stole a Quinjet and used Wiccan's magic to find them. Molly attacked the group, thinking they were working with S.H.I.E.L.D., but the team subdued her and entered the Hostel to talk to the Runaways. The Vision and Victor experienced seizures when they were near; the Vision explained that he and Victor shared the same electromagnetic signatures, most likely due to their both having been created by Ultron.
Noh-Varr, a Kree from an alternate reality sent by S.H.I.E.L.D to capture the teenagers, attacked the teenagers, breaking Xavin's neck. Noh-Varr's handlers captured Wiccan, Hulkling, Karolina, and Xavin's body and took them to Cube high-security metahuman prison. The Cube's warden attempted to dissect Hulkling, but his organs shifted to avoid the knife. Xavin righted his broken neck and attacked the warden. Victor, realizing that the Vision's arm, embedded in Noh-Varr's chest, had begun to interface with the alien, overloaded him by coming near, and the Vision removed Noh-varr's psychological conditioning. The two teams parted ways and Noh-Varr took control of the Cube.
Dead Means Dead
The Runaways dealt with the repercussions of the death of Gert. Nico and Victor began a physical relationship, Molly asked the Leapfrog if Gert was in heaven, and Xavin and Karolina — stranded on Earth — discussed the significance of a single death. A former policeman responsible for investigating the Pride attempted to sell a talisman he stole from one of their lairs to an antiques dealer. The elderly shopkeeper, who claimed that he just wanted things to "go back to the way they used to be", transformed into a monster and attacked Los Angeles, particularly Starbucks stores. The Runaways raced to the scene. Chase and Old Lace confronted Lotus, and Chase told her that he was hiring her. The teams headed to downtown LA to confront the monster. Xavin and Karolina tried their best to attack the monster but their attack failed. Molly was able to stop the monster's war path and knock it down thanks a caffeine spell made by Nico.
Meanwhile, Chase told Lotus that his plan was to bring back Gertrude by using the Gibborim and creating a new Pride called "The Fall". Chase attempted to exchange the soul of Lotus for the resurrection of Gert. Unfortunately, Lotus' soul was not innocent, and Chase departed the Gibborim's dimension, though they took care to repeat their offer: one innocent soul for Gert's resurrection. Chase had Lotus burn the Abstract; but not before he stole several pages; and left to rejoin the other Runaways. As the battle with the monster went out of control, Xavin and Nico tried a different approach: Xavin took the appearance of the old man's dead wife, and Nico cast a spell to give Xavin her voice. Together, the two were able to calm the monster and return him to his human form. Chase reunited with the other Runaways at the Hostel and looked at Gert's portrait longingly while holding his pages from the Abstract.
Xavin began to express confusion about his identity to Karolina, and Chase learned from the Gibborim that the time during which he could resurrect Gert was short. Chase told Nico that he intended to sacrifice himself on Gert's behalf and shut down Victor when he tried to intervene. He took the Staff of One and left. Molly heard a voice that told her to alert the others, and they followed Chase, using a urine trail that Old Lace left for them.
The team found the end of the trail behind a donut shop and left Molly behind with Victor. Using Chase's portal, they entered the realm of the Gibborim, only to find that the giants would not accept Chase as a sacrifice. Apparently, his self-sacrifice had removed him from the category of "innocent" and instead the giants moved to consume Nico. As Victor regained consciousness, he and Molly entered the realm of the Gibborim to save Nico (thanks to a "Fastball Special"). Without their sacrifice, the Gibborim faded from reality. As the team returned to the Hostel, they noticed one of their security robots had been destroyed. Xavin realized that he did not make the group invisible when they floated out of the tar pits. Iron Man greeted the children with a squad of S.H.I.E.L.D. Cape-Killers. Meanwhile, in another plane of reality, the Gibborim came face to face with the person who alerted Molly to Chase's plans in the first place: Alex Wilder.
The Runaways managed to escape from Iron Man into New York City, where they met with Wilson Fisk, the Kingpin. Fisk offered the team protection from the government if they stole an artifact for him. The team successfully stole it, but were confronted by the Punisher and a winged monster. The team managed to escape, but decided not to give the artifact to Fisk, which caused him to attack them with an army of ninjas. After losing a lot of blood, Nico cast a spell to knock the ninjas out. Chase plugged the artifact into the Leapfrog and they were sent back in time to 1907. When they arrived they were greeted by a group of "Wonders" known as the Street Arabs. Among them was a boy named Tristan who had mechanical wings and a girl who called herself the Spieler who could dance on the air when she heard music. Karolina and Molly discovered a young super powered girl named Klara Prast who could control plants. She was also the underage wife of an abusive husband. The two tried to convince her to join the team, however they could not. Victor also went on a "date" with the Spieler.
Meanwhile Chase discovers that Gert's parents are in this time period and are making a super team themselves. They are also stirring up a super powered war between the "Wonders" of that time period. Meanwhile, Nico has been kidnapped by her grandmother, the Witchbreaker, who, with her more powerful Staff of One, tortures Nico. As the war between the super groups begin. Nico escapes and steals the superior Staff of One. Within the chaos of the battle, the Runaways are preparing to escape when Klara walks up to them beaten and hurt and asks if she can join them, which she does. As this is happening Victor tries to convince the Spieler to go with them back to the future, however, she declines. The team returns to the present time with one new team member. In another part of the city, an old woman, the Spieler, sits in her room telling the winged monster from earlier, Tristan, how much she regretted not going with Victor and the Runaways.
After returning from their adventure in 1907, the Runaways have a new member in tow: Klara Prast. Molly is showing her the sights of modern-day New York City, though Xavin doesn't think that hanging around is a good idea. It turns out that she is right, as they see a Skrull invasion force approaching. Xavin thinks quickly and takes out her friends with a concussive forcefield. Nearby, the Young Avengers spring into action in Times Square, and Chrell is shown footage of the incident. He thinks he's spotted the elusive Dorrek. Xavin, meanwhile, tries to get her friends to safety, but Nico manages to take her down, allowing Victor the opportunity to envelop her in restraining metal. Xavin tries to explain that if the Skrull force is here, then they have already won the war. Now they're just cleaning up and they need to run away. Nico finally wises up and opts to retreat to the Leapfrog with the rest of the crew. The Initiative join the battle in Times Square, whilst Xavin spots Hulkling lying prostrate before Chrell and another Skrull. She acts quickly, creating an explosion so she can whisk Teddy into the sewers.
Once down there, she tries to rouse Teddy into consciousness, but they are followed and taken down by three Skrulls who now stand before them. Xavin is attacked by three Super Skrulls whilst protecting Hulkling from them. She takes a good shot, but before any further punishment can be inflicted, Wiccan and Speed arrive and turn the tables. Xavin informs them that they must get Teddy to safety, but they don't appear to understand her urgency. Meanwhile, the Runaways take down a Skrull who attacked them in the Leapfrog, before Karolina and Nico become embroiled in an argument about how Nico allowed Xavin to leave. Above New York, Commander Chrell is informed that someone helped Dorrek escape, and he sends X'iv to deal with them. She fails to kill Teddy, and Xavin helps them escape. Karolina and Nico continue their argument until they see the other Young Avengers on television. Vision is blasted through the head and Nico realizes that Xavin spared them from a similar fate. At that moment, Chrell appears with X'iv and three other Super Skrulls. X'iv catches up with the gang and goes in for the attack. She is well trained in the use of her powers, and manages to handle her opposition with confidence. She is then joined by Chrell who has Nico, Victor, Chase and Karolina helpless. Molly and Old Lace are also both out of the fight. Chrell orders Xavin to kill Dorrek, and her reward will be to live with his "Majesdanian tramp" anywhere she likes in the universe.
Klara panics a little, and in doing so, creates a tree which shoots from the ground, taking Chrell down. Karolina launches an attack. She is furious with Chrell and incredibly protective of her fiancé. X'iv continues to dominate, but when she is ordered by Chrell to kill everyone, Teddy moves in close. He tells X'iv that their God speaks to him, and he said he didn't love X'iv. X'iv's concentration lapses for a moment, and Teddy headbutts her unconscious. Meanwhile, Xavin and Karolina take on Chrell, and Chrell begins to go nova. Sensing extreme danger, Xavin uses just one of her powers; a forcefield with which she envelopes Chrell. Chrell explodes, but Xavin's forcefield holds. The battle is won. Billy tells Nico that they need to get back to their friends in Times Square, and asks her not to follow. Otherwise, who will be there to rescue them when they need it?
Return to LA
After their New York adventures, the team returns to LA in the Leapfrog, and locate an old base of the Pride, that had yet to be confiscated or discovered by the authorities. A house by the beach that they find to be infested with the robot guards the Pride left behind. After cleaning up the mess, they set up, and explore. Chase, being the oldest, gets a job at a Radio station, while four Majesdanian survivors track down Karolina through her powers. After attacking their home, the three soldiers are scattered across the globe, leaving the one civilian, who wasn't considered a threat by the Staff of One. After interrogating him, they discover that the Majesdanian home-world had been destroyed by the Skrull, and that Karolina was to blame. After a second conflict with the Majesdanians, Karolina offered to go with them, but not before Xavin knocked her out, and took her place instead, disguised as Karolina.
Later, Chase's boss, Val, is seen with a man named Mother, creating a spell embedded in a music track, to change the people of LA (who have had plastic surgery) into his own kind of "Zombies." The Runaways intervene, and attack. When Nico goes to interrogate Mother, he claims to have worked with her parents, but quickly snatches the Staff of One from her, before it comes alive as a dragon and eats him. Nico tells Karolina never to touch the Staff, saying that things have changed. Molly decides to play the musical track backwards, which undoes the transformation for everyone listening.
Some time afterwards, the Runaways team respond to a telepathic call to Molly from Charles Xavier, to join his school. After taking a tour of the school, Molly and Wolverine are kidnapped by a group who had previously come into conflict with the Pride years ago, looking for revenge on Molly. Before they could do anything, Wolverine cuts himself loose, and almost kills everyone, before Molly stops him. Later, Molly refuses to attend, and leaves with the Runaways.
During a mock prom that the older Runaways were having, the house was attacked an aircraft that had locked into a signal that Victor had pirated, and an explosion seemingly killed Lace, while she tried to save Klara. Hunter Stein, the owner of the house that the Runaways had been taking refuge in, had come to investigate to find military personnel at the scene to recover the aircraft. Klara had gone out of control, and engulfed the house in plants that were linked to her mentally. She killed a solider that attempted to enter, but allowed Hunter to pass. Hunter offered them a back-door out of there, without being shot by the soldiers outside. They obtained a new Leapfrog, but before leaving, Chase locked Hunter in an inter-dimensional box. They found their home burned down. Hunter was eventually freed, and managed to contact the Runaways for another deal. They eventually agreed to meet with him, while Chase wandered the city. Chase bumped into someone who he believed to be Gert and pursued, while the Runaways talked to Hunter about his offer to give them a home. They denied the offer, while Chase found himself hospitalized after being hit by a van.
The Claws Killer
When Daken discovered that a member of the Pride was apparently the source of the Heat drug, he went searching for, and found, the Runaways. We discover that Chase had gotten "better," and that a man named Marcus Roston, who Chase knows as "Uncle Eli," was a former member of the Pride who was kicked out. The Runaways assist in taking Marcus down, and Daken lets them do what ever they wish with him.
Some time later, Chase had been having visions that seemed to come from Old Lace, theorizing that Lace was indeed alive. Nico figured that she must of somehow sent Old Lace to some where "she'd be happy." Because she couldn't open a portal to the same place twice with the Staff of One, she asked it to find another way, and it led the ream to Reptil (or at least the Amulet embedded in him.) of the Avengers Academy. After a press conference with Stryker, the team had sneaked onto the campus, but were discovered by Juston Seyfert's Sentinel, who had detected the Ultron tech within Victor.
After a brief conflict with the students and staff, the Runaways explained their situation, and Pym agreed to help, using a machine he had to open a portal to the dimension that Reptil's amulet linked to. When Pym was done, they went into the portal, and found that Old Lace was healthy and alive. Nico cast a spell to discover what Pym and Tigra may have been planning, and discovered that they wanted to take Klara and Molly away from the group, and lashed out at Pym, starting another fight, before the students sided with the Runaways. Nico decided that a spell that allowed everyone to "understand" everyone else's situation could help push things along smoothly. The agreed to it, so they left the Dimension, before the spell was cast. Both teams came to an agreement, where Pym would build a robot that would tutor the younger members, and anyone else if they wanted, while also checking back with him to make sure everyone was okay. Before parting ways, Julie Power and Karolina made plans for a date.
Chase and Nico were two of the sixteen super powered teens captured and brought to Murderworld where Arcade plans on them to kill each other in order to survive. While Chase tried to fight Arcade right in the beginning of the game, Nico stay without make a move.
They later try with her to team-up with the Avengers but Chase was quickly accused to had attacked and burned Reptil. The Runaways were rejected, and Nico, affected by the destruction of her magical tree, rejected Chase herself , who found the amulet of Chris Powell now transforming Chase into the new Darkhawk. Even with their confidence broken, the two Runaways stay together in order to survive, and later teamed-up with with Cammi to find the safe zones announced by Arcade.
After Katy's murder of Justin and use of technopathy to take control of Death Locket, Nico was forced to fend her off while the others escaped, eventually losing her hand once Chase was controlled into shooting her off the edge of a cliff. She died in the the snow, clutching the Staff of One and casting a final spell: "Help".
Several hours later the Staff absorbed the blood from her bleeding out and resurrected her, changing its form and giving her a "Witch Arm". Nico buried Katy and Death Locket alive, believing them to be dead, after freeing Chase, and had become so distraught that she later tried to kill Cullen, reasoning that more deaths wouldn't hurt, while Cammi disarmed and removed the Darkhawk Amulet from Chase after breaking his leg to stop her.
The original six members:
- Alex Wilder - the son of mafia bosses, was a child prodigy and strategist.
- Nico Minoru - the daughter of dark wizards, is a witch capable of manipulating magic via the use of the Staff of One
- Karolina Dean - the daughter of two alien invaders with solar based powers. She is in a relationship with Xavin.
- Molly Hayes - the daughter of two telepathic mutants, is a mutant whose powers include super-strength and invulnerability.
- Chase Stein - the son of mad scientists, steals his father's flame generating gauntlets called "the Fistigons".
- Gertrude Yorkes - the daughter of time-traveling criminals from the 87th century, has an empathic and telepathic link with Old Lace.
- Old Lace - a genetically engineered dinosaur from the 87th century, had a telepathic and empathic bond with Gertrude Yorkes and later Chase Stein.
Later members include:
- Victor Mancha - the creation of Ultron and Marianella Mancha, is a cyborg who can manipulate electricity and metal.
- Xavin - the child of Skrull warlords, can shape-shift and also has the powers of the Fantastic Four.
- Klara Prast - a Swiss immigrant to America from 1907 and child bride of an abusive older man, can control the growth of plants.
- Topher a vampire (provisional member)
- Education robot built by Hank Pym to home-school the younger members (and any of the others if they wish)
- Karolina's Medical Alert Bracelet (formerly)
- Abstract and Decoder Ring (formerly)
- X-Ray Specs
- No special notes.
- Joss Whedon is a vocal fan of the book, and a letter written by him was printed in Runaways #18 and reprinted in the first Hardcover edition. Whedon was the books writer for a time.
- Brian K. Vaughan named the characters Geoffrey and Catherine Wilder after his parents and Molly Hayes after his younger sister.
- Despite not being used frequently since the first volume, Marvel's Handbooks and Website still refer to the characters by their "Superhero" names.
- Runaways #1-Runaways #17
- Mystic Arcana Sister Grimm #1
- Runaways #18
- Runaways Vol 2 #1-Runaways Vol 2 #12
- Free Comic Book Day Vol 2006 #X-Men
- Runaways Vol 2 #13-Runaways Vol 2 #21
- Civil War: Young Avengers and Runaways #1-Civil War: Young Avengers and Runaways #4
- Runaways Vol 2 #22-Runaways Vol 2 #24
- Runaways Saga #1
- Runaways Vol 2 #25-Runaways Vol 2 #30
- Secret Invasion Runaways Young Avengers #1-Secret Invasion Runaways Young Avengers #3
- Runaways Vol 3 #1-Runaways Vol 3 #10
- Breaking Into Comics the Marvel Way! #1
- Runaways Vol 3 #11-Runaways Vol 3 #14
- S.W.O.R.D. #2
- Uncanny X-Men: The Heroic Age #1
- Daken: Dark Wolverine #17-Daken: Dark Wolverine #19
- Avengers Academy #27-Avengers Academy #28
- Avengers Arena #1-Avengers Arena #18
- 14 Runaways (Earth-616) Members
- 101 Appearances of Runaways (Earth-616)
- 56 Images that include Runaways (Earth-616)
- Team Gallery: Runaways (Earth-616)
- Fan-Art Gallery: Runaways (Earth-616)
Links and References
- The Hostel
- Runaways' Safe House
- Runaways Fansite
- Brian K. Vaughan's official site
- Dark Secret (fansite)
- Wikipedia's Runaways page
- ↑ Runaways #1-6
- ↑ Runaways #7-10
- ↑ Runaways #11-12
- ↑ Runaways #13-17
- ↑ Runaways #18
- ↑ Runaways Vol 2 #1-6
- ↑ Runaways Vol 2 #7-8
- ↑ Runaways Vol 2 #9-12
- ↑ Free Comic Book Day Comic Book X-Men/Runaways
- ↑ Runaways Vol 2 #13
- ↑ Runaways Vol 2 #14-18
- ↑ Runaways Vol 2 #19-21
- ↑ Runaways Vol 2 #22-24
- ↑ Runaways Vol 2 #25-30
- ↑ Avengers Arena #4