Black Bison and Silver Deer set their plan in motion at the Embassy. The 2000 Committee prepares an attack on Firestorm and Firehawk. Silver Deer shares her personal story with Black Bison. Senators and Representatives arrive at the Embassy for a formal gala. Firestorm and Firehawk battle Black Bison and Silver Deer.
Firestorm826's Panel-by-Panel Story Summary (Spoiler Alert)
There’s a lot that goes on behind closed doors in Washington, D.C., than even the most jaded Capitol watcher would find incredible. Take what’s happening now in this Embassy, for instance…
Silver Deer and Black Bison stand in a room filled with casino gaming tables. She moves her hands in preparation to cast her mystical magic. “Keep well back, my love!” she tells Black Bison, “Brass, the Gambler Spirit, can be most temperamental! He might take exception to being so forcibly summoned!” Black Bison stands near, arms folded, watching intently. Silver Deer closes her eyes in deep concentration, arms raised chin-high on front of her. The woman called Silver Deer throws back her head, her throat forming words first spoken millennium ago…feeling the chill of pleasure that dances through her from their mere recitation…reveling in the icy touch of their magical manifestations…their touch! Mystical bubbles of white energy float around her, and a white sphere appears from a cloud of blue smoke before her hands bearing a serpent’s face and long forked tongue. She raises her hand, and the serpent sphere follows over her head, gleaming brightly. The spell complete, Silver Deer starts to stumble. “Silver Deer!” Black Bison calls out, rushing to her side to steady her, “Silver Deer are you…?” She turns to him, gripping his sides to help keep her balance. “I…I’m fine, my warrior,” she says, catching her breath, “Just drained…needing to be refilled!” They embrace tightly. “But…later for that! The stage is set,” she says, looking back over the casino floor, “And tonight, the politicians of America will become my slaves!”
Meanwhile, directly above the Embassy… “I don’t like waiting around doing nothing, Firehawk,” Ronnie tells her, “We know Silver Deer and Black Bison are inside…or did I just imagine we backtracked her helicopter here?” Let’s go in and get ‘em!” They fly over the tall dome of the building. “Cool your jets, lover!” she tells him, “In case you haven’t noticed, that’s an embassy they’re inside - - and unless you’re looking to create an international incident, you’ll back off!” Ronnie replies, “Are you kidding? The bad guys are in the good old U.S. of A., baby…I’m not invading Lebanon!”
She turns to face him as they fly along. “That’d be about the same thing,” she cautions, “Look, the Embassy’s considered foreign soil, and everybody inside its gates has got diplomatic immunity. As in ‘Nyah-Nyah! You can’t touch me!” So let’s get out of here before you make trouble!” She grabs his hand and pulls him away. “Sheesh” he exclaims, “Okay, okay! I’m coming…but there are still a couple of tushes I want in slings.” They fly down the Mall away from the Embassy. “Not to worry, Storm,” Firehawk reassures, “There’s a big party for Senators and Representative here tonight - - which my father happens to be invited to. He’ll let us tag along as his guests!” Ronnie still thinks they should blast into the Embassy. “Storm, honey,” Firehawk says, shaking her head, “Shut up and fly!”
On the street below, a blue van sits parked outside the Embassy. Its windows are tinted dark and it has odd communication gear on the roof. Inside, a woman sits amidst high-tech surveillance systems watching a panel of display monitors. “There they go - - but we’ll be seeing them again soon,” the woman says, watching an image of Firestorm and Firehawk on her monitor. She takes a long draw of her cigarette and slowly blows out the smoke. “Tonight, in fact,” she continues, “Tonight - - when the 2000 Committee moves against Firestorm and Firehawk!”
Meanwhile, on the embassy grounds, Black Bison and Silver Deer walk along together in the decorative garden courtyard. “Are you sure your plan will work, Silver Deer?” Black Bison asks. “It can’t fail! Tonight, while the members of the Senate and Congress are our guests - - I will gain control of their minds, compelling them to pass a resolution tomorrow returning all ‘stolen’ lands to Native American!” she tells him determinedly. They pause, and Black Bison plucks a pretty yellow flower, extending it to her. “But…What is to prevent their passing a second resolution reversing the first - - after they’re released from your thrall…?” he asks. She takes the flower in her hand, replying, “My spell lasts for one day, my love. Long enough to pass the resolution…and then, dear Bison…then I will have them blow their brains out!” Pfoot! She puffs at the flower petals, and they fly off into the air.
“You would destroy so many…so casually” Do you hate the white man so much?” Black Bison asks, surprised at her anger. “Yes! More than words could ever express!” she answers, walking to gaze into a nearby fountain, “Their hatred…their laws and rules…they killed my world, Bison.” She looks at her reflection in the water as he steps alongside her. “I will tell you…if you want to hear…” Black Bison nods, but Silver Deer needs no prompting - - to cast back for memory as intangible as her image in the fountain - - and many times clearer…
“I was born on a reservation in North Carolina, one of twins,” she begins, “My brother was favored by my father and grandfather - - for through him would pass the medicine of my people, as that knowledge had been passed for a hundred generations. I, a mere girl, was taught the ways of the loom and the hearth. I longed for more - - but it was beyond my grasp.” She approached her grandfather as he was teaching her brother, eager to learn her people’s mystical ways. “Teach you the medicine - - ?” her grandfather scoffed at her, “Bah! You speak foolishness, girl! Return to your chores and leave knowledge to the men!”
“I loved my grandfather and brother both - - but, oh, how I envied them!” she continues, “And then one day…” She and her brother, Bobby, are playing along the grassy foothills on a beautiful sunny day. “C’mon, Chanka! I’ll race you!” Bobby challenges her. “Okay!” she answers, “But you’ve gotta give me a head start or it’s not fair…” Her brother speeds on ahead anyway, yelling back, “Only fair thing is winnin’! No head start for you, woman!” She runs fast in pursuit, calling out, “Bobby!”
“My brother ran ahead through the tall grass - - unmindful of the danger it concealed,” she continues the memory. “Ha-ha! You’ll never catch me now, slowpo…Oooooh! A….a rattler…” Bobby stops in his tracks in shock at the sight of the dangerous snake. Rattle-rattle-rattle! He has startled it, and it poises to strike, hissing and rattling angrily! Chanka and her grandfather run over the crest of the hill. Grandfather yells to direct Bobby to back away slowly from the rattlesnake. “D-don’t come any closer, Chank…aaaarrggghhh!” Bobby cries out as it strikes!
“The snake moved like lightning, sinking its venomous fangs into Bobby’s leg before he could leap aside,” she recalls, “and in the next instant, there was a crashing through the grass and a savage snarl…and before I knew what had happened, the rattler lay dead in the jaws of a wolverine…which became, in the next seconds...” Her grandfather! The brilliant silver form of the wolverine shapeshifts into her grandfather before her eyes! “Don’t stand there gaping, girl!” her grandfather orders, “Run ahead! Tell your father to ready the truck! Move, girl!”
“I ran, and there wasn’t time to ask my grandfather what he had done - - but I knew I’d seen a miracle of our people’s medicine - - and I ached knowing it was being denied me!” she remembers. They drove her brother as fast as they could for help, speeding along in the pickup truck on the dusty country roads. “The reservation’s dispensary didn’t have the anti-venom serum needed to survive,” Silver Deer explains, “That was to be found only at the white man’s hospital, but…”
Her mind replays the image of walking into the emergency room of the city hospital. Her father carries her dying brother in his arms as she and her grandfather walk next to them. A nurse points at them, telling them sternly, “You…men! You can’t bring that boy in here!” she orders. “My son…is dying!” her father protests, but the nurse blocks their path. “Well, I’m sorry, but there are rules that…ugh!” Chanka’s father shoves the nurse and she falls to the floor. “Out of my way, woman! My son needs medical attention!” he snaps, walking past her.
A security guard steps up, drawing his revolver from his holster. “Hey! Stop right there, mister! I said stop - - you damn, stinkin’ redskin!” he barks as he takes aim. “Father didn’t stop…” Silver Deer recalls softly. BLAM! A shot rings out! It pierces her father’s back and exits his chest, and then pierces into her brother! “Daddy…Bobby…No!” Chanka yells. Her father and her brother collapse to the floor, mortally wounded by a gunshot through their hearts. “The man who killed my father and brother was found innocent of manslaughter,” Silver Deer recalls, “White men’s justice didn’t extend to the Red Man. For him, there is only misery.”
Many days later, Chanka stands on the prairie with her grandfather. He sits upon a large rock, thinking. “This land…Once it was Cherokee, girl!” her grandfather tells her, “Thriving with life and hope. Now it is the last refuge of despair. Our hope is dead and buried.” He takes his hat off, setting it down on the rock, dejected. “It…it doesn’t have to be, Grandfather! I’m still here,” she says, “You could teach me your powerful medicine, couldn’t you?” Her grandfather looks at her carefully. “You? But…women are not meant to…” he tells her, recalling his people’s traditions. “Ahh! But that is the old ways speaking,” he says, reconsidering, “What do they matter now? Yes, you are here, Chanka, and your brother is dead - - as dead as the knowledge will one day be if it is not passed from elder to novice. You must be willing to work hard, child. You must want devote your life to study! Do you?”
Chanka does not hesitate. “I…yes, Grandfather! I do!” she answers. The two embrace tightly. Tears stream down her grandfather’s face. “Then let it be so, Child!” he tells her. Chanka snuggles her head against him. “Oh, thank you, Grandfather! Thank you!” she exclaims, “One day, I’ll use what you teach me to return what is Cherokee to the Cherokee! I promise! You’ll see!”
Silver Deer slides her hand back and forth in the calm fountain water as her reflection stares back at her. “Grandfather chuckled indulgently,” she remembers, looking at the ripples in the water, “He thought it just a childish promise made without thought - - he could never know how much I meant it! Now I have his shapechanging medicine, dear Bison…And with it, I can be just about anything I want…” She twirls from the fountain, spinning in a mystical dance as her form rapidly shifts before Black Bison’s amazed eyes! In seconds, she becomes a huge bear, a stealthy cougar, a magnificent hawk, and then a dangerous cobra! “From the fiercest beasts of prey…” she tells him, returning to her stunningly beautiful human form, “to softest woman! And tonight, sweet Black Bison - - I’ll show you greater magics still! Until later, then…” She turns and walks out of the courtyard. Black Bison stares intently at her as she leaves. He walks to the fountain and gazes at his reflection. Taking a deep breath, he thinks, “Tonight…”
Tonight…A huge line is queued at the Embassy entrance, waiting to get inside for the big event. “I feel like a jerk!” Martin Stein exclaims unhappily. “Don’t be silly, Professor Stein,” Lorraine says, complimenting his boy scout outfit, “I think you look cute!” Ronnie looks around dismissively. “If I knew it was gonna be a costume party, I would’ve risked the international incident this afternoon…” he whispers.
“Senator Reilly, so glad you could come” greets Ambassador Petrov, extending his hand. “Thank you, Mr. Petrov. I hope you don’t mind that I brought guests…?” Senator Reilly replies, shaking the man’s hand. Ronnie, Lorraine and Professor Stein stand behind the Senator. “Guess we should split up and watch for anything weird, right?” Ronnie whispers to them in his old-time baseball player outfit. “Fine, Ronald, but what if someone sees me in this get-up…?” Stein asks worriedly.
Senator Reilly starts to greet his fellow Congressmen. “Senator Fillerbuster! Nice to…huh?” he greets, taken aback as Senator Fillerbuster brushes past him with an aggravated grunt. Senator Reilly turns to another, greeting, “Er…Oh, hello, Congressman Watershed, I…I…” Congressman Watershed walks right past him, snipping, “Ex-cuse me, Senator!” Walking away alone to the refreshment table, Senator Reilly is downtrodden at the way his colleagues are treating him. “Sure…You’re excused,” he thinks, filling a glass from the punch bowl, “Wish to hell someone would say the same to me…”
Martin Stein is suddenly surprised by someone bumping into his hip. A woman in an elegant purple Marie Antoinette costume and a masquerade mask calls out in a familiar voice, “Whoops! So, sorry, scout!” Stein whips around to see her, answering, “That’s, er…quite all right, Miss…” The woman drops her mask. “Miss Clemens,” she says, emphasizing the last name, “Clarissa Clemens. How’s it going, ex-husband of mine?” Stein scowls at her. “Clarissa! What are you doing…following me?” She scoffs at the idea, answering, “Don’t flatter yourself, Martin! Can I help it if I run with a better class of people now?” Stein grows irritated. “Clarissa…Damn you!” he says loudly.
Ronnie steps up to them quickly. “Professor!” he says directly, leading Stein away from further confrontation as Clarissa walks back into the crowds. “Look, I know you’re divorced and all, but…” Ronnie says as they walk. “Please, Ronald!” Stein interjects, “When it comes to Clarissa Clemens…Trust my judgment!” Stein walks away to the refreshment table. “Judgment’s one thing, Professor Stein’s behavior’s another,” Ronnie thinks, “Maybe I ought to talk to her…on his behalf, of course!” He reaches to touch the back shoulder of the purple Victorian outfit, calling, “Ms. Clemens! Look, the Professor doesn’t mean any…” The woman spins around, dropping her mask to reveal an angry elderly face! “Unhand me, Sonny!” the woman snorts, taking obvious offense. “Whoops! Wrong Marie Antoinette!” Ronnie stammers, “Excuse me, Ma’am!” Ronnie stands, looking around curiously. “Brother!” he thinks, “So where’d Clarissa disappear to…?”
Across the room, Roxanne Sharpe recognizes Lorraine. “Miss Reilly…Lorraine!” she calls out, asking, “Hey, it’s me…Roxanne Sharpe! What about that rumor connecting your father with that crooked financier, DiSalvo?” Lorraine keeps walking without looking back at her. “Hey! Don’t ignore me, kid! I’m a reporter! I’ve got a right…” she continues, reaching to grab Lorraine’s shoulder. At that, Lorraine snaps around to face Roxanne. “Get…your…hands….off…of…me!” she snarls, very irritated, “’Rights!’” Hah! I ought to deck you, lady! You’re a vampire…a leach…you don’t care about fairness or truth - - only lies and distortions…all for a good story!” Lorraine storms away. Roxanne looks after her. “Miss Reilly, please! Let me…” she tries to explain, but Lorraine does not return. “God help me! Is this what I’ve come to provoke in people?” Roxanne thinks unhappily. She walks outside, clutching her hands to her chest and gazing up at the night sky. “Have I gotten so wrapped up in myself and my career that I’ve lost all perspective on the world around me?” she ponders. The night swallows her into its soft darkness…but the party goes on…
“I believe, Ronald, that this whole night’s been one big bust,” Stein reflects, “If Silver Deer and Black Bison are around - - they obviously plan on staying hidden. I suggest we call it a night.” Ronnie looks around, also disappointed. “Yeah, I suppose so,” he sighs in agreement, “I was just so sure that…huh?!” He looks nearby, seeing Senator Reilly standing alone, transfixed in front of a mirror. “What’s with Senator Reilly, Professor?” Ronnie says, quickly growing concerned, “Looks like he did a tad too much partying!” Ronnie walks over to the Senator who is standing perfectly still and looking into the mirror, fearfully mesmerized, unblinking eyes wide and jaw hanging open. “You okay, sir? Think you might want to lie down or something?” Ronnie asks, touching his shoulder, “Senator Reilly? Yo! Sir?”
But the Senator has nothing to say at the moment…He’s far too busy fleeing for his life through the shadow-shrouded horrors of his mind. Running. Screaming. In his mind, he races along a rocky pass. Shadowy animals watch him run in panic. He sees the shimmery image of Silver Deer. A ferocious silver coyote pursues him, drawing ever closer. He runs in terror, waiting for the impact upon his back, the fetid breath to wash across him…the fangs to steal the life from his body! “Ooooohhh….” he moans, falling face-first to the ballroom floor. “Senator!” Ronnie exclaims, unable to catch him. Lorraine rushes over. She cradles him in her arms. “Daddy!” she calls out in shock. Ronnie and Professor Stein huddle close to them. “Look at his face, Ronald…Such fright!” Stein observes.
A crowd of party-goers has formed around them. The crowd parts as a radiant white dress approaches. “Oh, dear! Is something the matter? Does the Senator feel unwell?” Silver Deer asks. Lorraine turns to see her, angrily lashing out, “You! What’ve you done to…” Stein restrains her, quickly whispering, “Hssst! Lorraine…don’t! We’ll come back for that!” Ronnie and Stein help the listless Senator to his feet, supporting him under both shoulders. “C’mon, Professor! We better get the Senator out of here!” Stein nods, answering, “Agreed. But just how far do you think Silver Deer will let us get?’ Lorraine walks with them. “You haven’t heard the last of this, Silver Deer,” she calls back, “I’ll...oh.” Her voice trails off as she looks. Silver Deer stands, arms raised triumphantly, surrounded by the mesmerized, hypnotized, zombie-like party crowd. The look on their faces matches the blank emptiness of Senator Reilly. “Ha-ha-ha-ha!” Silver Deer laughs, “That’s true, girl! There’s definitely more to come! Ha-ha-ha!”
Moments later, Ronnie Raymond and Martin Stein walk the dazed Senator Reilly outside, to find their limousine… “Gone! Damn Silver Deer anyway! She must’ve sent them away!” Lorraine exclaims, “She knew her guests would be staying the night!” Ronnie moves to the street to hail a cab as Lorraine and Professor Stein tend to the incoherent Senator. “Yeah, even if they didn’t!” Ronnie agrees, “No sweat, though. There’s plenty of cabs! Hey! Taxi! Taxi...?” A cab slows to a stop next to him. The driver laughs at Ronnie’s outfit, snorting, “Ya lookin’ for a ride, Joe DiMaggio? What’samatter, late for spring training? Ha-ha-ha!” He speeds off, and it takes Ronnie a moment to remember his costume. “Oh,” he says, looking down, “Might as well forget the taxi, gang!” he calls back to his friends, “No cabbie’s going to pick up a boy scout, a baseball player, and a drunk colonist!” Stein looks up as Senator Reilly slumps against him and Lorraine. “He’s not drunk, Ronald…no more than the others!” he scolds. Lorraine asks impatiently, “What’re we going to do?!”
Do? First, turn your heads to the thunder of galloping hooves…and then the bellowing war cry of… “The Black Bison! Ronald…!” Stein exclaims as the shaman races past them on a charging white stallion! They scramble out of the way from the sudden ambush! “I see him, Professor! Let’s…ugh!” KRAK! Black Bison sweeps his coup stick against the back of Ronnie’s head, knocking him face-first to the sidewalk! “Up, boy!” Black Bison commands him, “My coup stick barely grazed you!” His stallion rears back on its hindquarters as he turns for another charge. Ronnie struggles himself up, answering, “Uhh…I…I’d hate to see what you consider hitting hard!” A stunned driver in a passing car looks at Black Bison, and asks his passenger, “The Redskins playin’ a home game tonight?”
Black Bison faces him with a menacing glare. “Arise, then, Ronald Raymond…and the Black Bison will be pleased to show you the full extent of his might!” he says. “Hooboy!” Ronnie reacts, calling to Stein, “Like I was saying, Professor…” Stein replies, curious, “Yes?”
FZAAAM! In a burst of atomic energy, Firestorm appears as Ronnie yells out, “Let’s do it!”
THWAAAM! Ronnie blasts Black Bison off his horse with a devastating right-hand punch! The shaman flies back from the impact! “Now, Bison, let’s talk about ‘full extent’ of power?” Stein urges caution, advising, “Careful, Ronald! Don’t let Bison regain his equilibrium!”
Lorraine stands and shakes a fist in happiness. “Way to go, F.S.! Give ‘im a shot or two for me!” From behind her, a chillingly calm voice surprises her. “Shut up, girl - - you’re screeching annoys me!” Lorraine turns to see she is face-to-face with a giant silver bear! “Eeeek!” she screams in shock. Instantly, she transforms and becomes Firehawk! She appears in the air, floating in front of Silver Deer, telling the bear form, “Whew! You gave me a fright! And seeing as how you’re not ‘Gentle Ben,’ I figure I can handle you better - - as Firehawk!” Silver Deer assesses her unexpected adversary. “The heat…causing my fur to smolder,” she thinks, drawing back, “This form’s much too clumsy! I need something more agile - - and a shift of battlegrounds!”
Silver Deer quickly transforms into an agile panther, leaping into the thick brush. “She’s taking off into the Embassy grounds! Legally, I can’t touch her in there,” Firehawk observes. She looks back and sees Firestorm locked in combat with Black Bison. “Can’t ask Ronnie or the Professor what to do,” she thinks, “But what she’s done to the legislators - - it’s horrible…and Dad…Lord only knows what’s happening in the poor man’s mind…all his problems and worries…” Anger grows from deep inside her, and she turns to face the Embassy with a look of fierce determination. “Maybe Storm had the right idea this afternoon! Just get the buggers,” she yells out, “and to hell with the legalities!”
BLASH! Black Bison connects with a powerful punch to Firestorm! “Uhk!” Ronnie recoils as Stein asks if he is all right. “Sure! Who…ooff!...Wouldn’t be after chewing on this hulk’s knuckles?” Ronnie answers, landing an uppercut on Black Bison mid-sentence. “Then pull back!” Stein directs, “Hit him from a distance with something! He’s too strong to engage man-to-man!” Ronnie does a tuck and somersault away to gain some space. “Guess I let my macho run away with me!” he says, launching himself up and turning back to face his opponent, “Okay, Bison! Gloves are off! Cool down, or I’ll…” Black Bison shakes his fist at him in defiance, answering, “Never! We fight until there is one left!” Ronnie aims, saying, “Okay, but I warned you…” FZOT! A nuclear burst blasts into Black Bison, throwing him back towards the courtyard fountain wall! His headdress falls off as he gets to his feet. “Uhhh,” he groans, reaching into the fountain, “Coup stick fell in the…the…” His words trail off as he sees his reflection in the fountain.
A chance glimpse in cool, reflecting waters - - and memory comes flooding over him… “N-no…H-how…could I have been so…so…wrong…” he says softly, eyes locked onto those of his reflected face. He falls to the ground, kneeling as agonized realization sinks in. “So wrong…not the Black Bison…” he sobs, “Not…I…I’m John Ravenhair…not the Bison…sob! Please! N-not again…” Ronnie lands along the courtyard wall, ready to strike again. “You…can stand down, Ronald,” Stein directs, seeing that John Ravenhair has returned, “I doubt the Black Bison will be giving us any further trouble. At least not now…God help his tortured soul!”
Meanwhile, Firehawk flies in pursuit on Silver Deer’s trail. “Pawprints…changing to footprints…” she thinks, watching the trail snake out below her, “Leading straight into these conveniently opened doors!” She flies in to the darkened room inside, thinking, “Put them together and they spell - - TRAP!” Silver Deer ambushes her, leaping to attack in cobra form from a chandelier! SSSSSSST! The cobra hisses and tries to bite! “Ufff! She’s changed into a cobra,” Firehawk cries out in surprise, “Lunging at me from the chandelier!” She waves her massive flaming wing in front of Silver Deer, telling the cobra, “Yuk! Snakes give me the willies! Of course, I’m sure my handy-dandy control over heat at fusion-energy intensity does much the same to you!”
Ambassador Petrov runs up, yelling, “My God! Silver Deer! Y-you’ll kill her! Stop it! Please…don’t…hurt…aaiiieeee!” SSSSSCHOMP! The silver cobra springs forth, biting Petrov on the neck! Petrov falls to the floor as Silver Deer instantly transforms back to human form! “Petrov! You stupid fool! I would’ve had her if not for your blundering interference!” Silver Deer screams at him. Fire from Firehawk’s wing sweep has ignited sections of the room, and the flames start to grow. Firehawk stands near the hypnotized crowd. “Look - - Let’s finish this later!” she calls to Silver Deer, “I…I didn’t mean to…but this place is going up in flames! Help me get these people out of here!”
Silver Deer looks at the helpless people. “No! Let them burn!” she yells angrily, “My plan is ruined…but if I can’t have justice, at least I can have my vengeance!” She leaps onto a table and runs towards Firehawk, transforming into a powerful falcon! “But you,” she points, “You won’t have to wait for the flames to claim you - - because I’m going to kill you now - - Screeeech!” The huge silver peregrine smashes into the surprised Firehawk! “Oooof!” she groans with the blow, “Caught me off guard…” WHAM! Silver Deer strikes again! “Her wings…like crashing fists,” Firehawk says, “But I’ve got two of those myself!”
CHONK! She lands a powerful punch onto Silver Deer’s beak! “And no reason why I should stand around like a waiting target!” she says, taking flight. “Skree-skree!” Silver Deer screeches as she pursues on her silver wings. “Thing is, she doesn’t give up so easy,” Firehawk says to herself, “And unless she just decides to fall down and play dead in the next few seconds - - half of America’s politicians are going to go up in smoke - - because they’re too blitzed out to think about leaving a burning building on their own!” Silver Deer’s wings rake across a wall, leaving a trail of debris raining down. Firehawk banks into a dive, deciding, “Guess that means my options are kind of limited…which translates into…I ain’t got any!” Silver Deer screeches again as the two birds of prey square off in the air!
And, outside at that moment…Smoke starts to emanate from the Embassy entrance. “Looks like we’re in for a hot time in the old town tonight!” Ronnie says, aiming nuclear bursts at the entrance. “And nobody’s come out yet,” Stein worries. “I noticed,” Ronnie replies, “So, Step One…Create my own exit - - then atomically reconstruct some of the debris into a giant lasso - - and it’s round up time!” The crowd walks mindlessly out of Ronnie’s makeshift fire exit. He guides the lasso around them, encircling the entire group with the atomic rope. “Follow the leader, gang!” he calls back as he leads them away from the flames.
Fire explodes through the Embassy, raging out of control. Ronnie shelters the crowd, and turns to look at the blaze. “Excellent, Ronald! Everybody’s apparently been led out to safety,” Stein commends, “And not a moment too soon! The Embassy’s collapsing!” Ronnie stares intently as the decorative dome falls into the inferno. “Not everybody, Professor…not Firehawk!” Ronnie exclaims with fear, “I gotta…wait! The rubble’s shifting…”
Firehawk soars up and out of the flaming ruins, calling down, “Hiya, Storm. Looking for me?” Ronnie looks up, breathing a sigh of relief, “Hawk! Manoman…I thought you were…were…” She lands next to him and pulls him into a tight embrace. With a happy kiss, she tells him, “Well, I’m not!” Ronnie smiles, “Mmmmm! So I see!” Stein disrupts Ronnie’s tender moment, saying, “Er…Ronald…ahem!” Firestorm and Firehawk fly up over the Embassy. “Sorry, Prof!” Ronnie replies, then realizes, “Wait…I didn’t see Silver Deer come out, Hawk! What…” She looks at him sadly. “I…I don’t know!” she says, worried, “One minute she was fighting with me, then - - boom! No more building - - and no Silver Deer. I guess she’s dead!”
There’s sadness in even the death of an enemy - - but, life goes on…and, back in New York, Stein asks, “Er…Before we split up, Ronald, isn’t there still a chore to be done?” Flying down to the deflated Statue of Bop Bags, Ronnie replies, “Way ahead of you, Professor!” Down below, an angry group of Liberty Island park workers look up at him. “Firestorm…again!” one says with dismay. Another points at the Nuclear Man, asking, “Why don’t he destroy some other national monument this time?”
Ronnie soars around the Statue’s pedestal base, focusing nuclear beams at a pile of construction gear. “These old tools atomically reconstruct nicely into a super-sized-inflate-anything-airpump - - which ought to start to get Ol’ Miss Liberty back on her feet…” As the pump works, Ronnie lets fly with another beam. “And then, presto-changeo - - from the world’s biggest inflatable whoopee-doll back to copper statue! Satisifed?” The Statue of Liberty returns to her majestic and vigilant watch over New York Harbor. “As good as new, Ronald!” Stein says happily, “You did a fine job!”
Ronnie flies up alongside Lady Liberty’s face. “Hey, anything for this lady,” he says, executing a crisp salute, “Here’s lookin’ at you, kid!” Ronnie turns to soar toward Manhattan. “And now, seeing as how it’s past dawn, don’t you think we should be going our separate ways?” Stein asks. “Yikes!” Ronnie remembers with a sigh as they fly along, “I’ve got an early class today! Guess who’s getting another late-card…!”