At a public auction, Beetle is threatening the auctioneer to hand over the Picasso painting or he'll kill him. Iron Man is there to subdue Beetle and leaves him for the police to handle. Iron Man heads for Tony Stark's house and goes inside.
Rhodey meets up with Tony Stark in his lab and delivers some smuggled cargo. As they're unpacking Tony gets a phone call from Hawkeye and Mockingbird. They're concerned that Tony fired Iron Man from Stark Enterprises and that he is still going "vigilante" on the suspects who he believes have stolen his armor technology. He tells them not to worry and hangs up the phone.
Stark walks upstairs and heads for his office. He is again swarmed with employees asking questions, and giving advice. He passes them all and just about before he's going to walk inside his office, Mrs. Arbogast advises him that he has people waiting in his office. Not remembering he has any appointments he goes inside. Inside his office he is met by Col. Nick Fury of S.H.I.E.L.D. and they begin talking.
S.H.I.E.L.D. is concerned about Iron Man and his current condition. They are upset that Iron Man has hurt a federal agent (Stingray) and want him brought to justice. Tony Stark cooperates and feeds them a false lead and agrees to help them find Iron Man. They agree to set up a base of operations at Stark Enterprise building in New York, they leave.
In New York, the begin investigating the whereabouts of Iron Man. Tony gives them a false lead to some property he's recently reacquired and recommends they send in the Mandriods. Col Fury agrees but adds 100 ground troops.
The next morning, as planned, Col Fury sends in the troops and Mandroids. Iron Man is ready for them and has set up preliminary mines which disable any robotic armor in the area. He is able to disable two of the 5 on the first wave. Col Fury orders them to charge. Two charge at Iron Man and he's able to absorb the energy of one enough to lower it's shields and plant an explosive. Then he uses the stored energy of the now disabled to wear down the shields of the next. He then plans another detonator on the 4th and renders him useless.
Now there's only one left who's pilot ejects and escapes. Tony destroys the last of the armor while pushing the unarmored troops back with a sonic blast. He escapes into the night.
Back at Start Enterprises Col Fury questions Tony's loyalty because it seems like Iron Man knew they were coming. Tony blames it on S.H.I.E.L.D. technology and plants a bug proving that Iron Man was able to infiltrate and discover their plans beforehand.