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Quote1 Now beat it! And next time you show up dressed like a dead hero, say trick or treat! Quote2
-- Gorilla-Man

Appearing in "The Dragon's Corridor, Part 3/Inside America"Edit

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Synopsis for "The Dragon's Corridor, Part 3/Inside America"Edit

In 1958, the heroes are on an battleground, surrounded by the skeletons of soldiers and one monstrous saurian. Using the triangles, Marvel Boy is able to see more portals on the horizon, but Jimmy Woo sees one larger portal with a triangular shape. This, he believes is the one the gunmen are using, and the heroes rush through. On the other side is a snowy forest clearing in which the gunmen have a base. Human Robot zaps several soldiers with electricity so they can rescue Suwan, and Venus hypnotizes the gunmen by singing at them.

Suwan fills them in - a KGB official named Karpov is paying the Yellow Claw(Suwan's uncle) to use the Dragon's Corridor - the battlefield, which allows access to virtually anywhere through a network of portals - for one covert mission. Initially assigned to watch that Karpov's agents did not go anywhere else, she said she missed Jimmy so she abandoned her post. Marvel Boy chips in, having realized that the triangles must deflect some radiation in the Corridor. Wondering what the Russians want so badly, they look in a nearby transport aircraft - to discover the cryonically-stored bodies of Captain America and Bucky.

In the present, the heroes have been ambushed by Captain America who believes they are the evil leaders of the Atlas Empire. M-11 saves them by grabbing a nearby crane and carrying it to relative safety. They call for the Uranian to come get them, destroying the helicopter and kidnapping Captain America in the process.

The Human Robot carries the canister with the two heroes back to the portal. Marvel Boy looks at a nearby MiG that Kit was admiring. One addition strikes him: a module next to the radio, decorated with a triangle between two circles, linked by a straight line. Marvel Boy works out that it is copied from the equipment that allows access to the Dragon's Corridor, and the MiG could, in theory, strike anywhere. Karpov's agents assumed that Suwan was going to inform the Yellow Claw that they had broken their word, and that led to the attack against her.

Suddenly, airplanes carpet-bomb the base. The heroes run to the portal while Kit starts the MiG. Marvel Boy suddenly connects several facts, and comes to a horrifying conclusion.

In the saucer, the Uranian links his friends to probe Captain America's mind. However, something goes wrong, and the heroes are cast as Nazis to be attacked by Captain America and Bucky. The Red Skull shoots Cap in the chest and Bucky is restrained by Gorilla-Man. Suddenly, the hallucination changes: Bucky has become the Winter Soldier, and the environment is now a snowy waste. Winter Soldier covers Cap's corpse in snow, and the heroes have the new Captain America's identity: Bucky Barnes.

This leads to a sudden jump to a memory of Department Zero's last case, in 1958. Woo sees the Uranian's memory of the adventure as the heroes rush through the Dragon's Corridor. Kit Sekum flies past in the MiG, but as the jet breaks the sound barrier it disappears. Furthermore, Kit is not carrying a triangle, so he is subject to the uncanny radiation of the Corridor - which seems to turn his cells transparent. And since time and space are altered within the Corridor, breaking the sound barrier is enough to trap Sekum in a closed chronal loop, bouncing back and forth around the Corridor except for brief periods when he pops up at both ends - and Marvel Boy gave their superiors the time and place of a teleporting MiG, which they think is a threat. They leave to get the news out, but Suwan must stay to inform her uncle of what transpired. Woo doesn't want to leave, but must.

Jimmy is saddened by the memory, but he wonders why it was brought up. Bob appears in the memory as a human/Uranian hybrid, and tells them that he has worked out how Temugin teleported onto the flying saucer. He was using a red triangle like the ones from this case, embedded in a metal hand. With his enhanced powers, Bob can now tell them what the triangles are: scales. Specifically, the molted scales of Mister Lao, cut to refract light and allow the Dragon's Corridor portals to be seen. However, Bob's self-image is "grossing out" his friends, and they ask him to remove the headband. Puzzled, Bob does so - to find himself back on the flying saucer.

The heroes drop Captain America back to Earth, allowing him to believe that he was psychically probed by the villains but got information out of them as well. They go to prepare.

In 1958, the heroes rushed to save Kit Sekum, but the Air Force didn't get the message in time and the plane was destroyed. J. Edgar Hoover took a personal interest in the case, sending the two canisters with Cap and Bucky in them back to the archives and confiscating the red triangles. When Woo asks if Hoover trusts them, Hoover decides that their team has outlived its usefulness. Department Zero is no more.

At Captain America's apartment the day after he fought the Agents of Atlas, he has assembled the New Avengers. He knows about the factory that Atlas is using to arm HAMMER and the heroes are set to fight them.

  • The "Karpov" mentioned in the flashback may or may not be Vasily Karpov, the Soviet general who trained Aleksander Lukin when he was in the KGB.
  • The issue's recap page is presented by the Uranian this month. It is called "Bob's Psychic Psummary".
  • The issue includes a file on the Uranian, which purports the be from the Atlas Foundation's own files.


  • Venus' comment about Hoover being immune to her abilities is a reference either to the long-standing rumor that Hoover was a homosexual, or to Hoover's well-documented controlling tendencies.


See AlsoEdit


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Footnotes



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