Legacies

From WestGuard

Legacies

Legacies is a twelve-issue comic book limited series published monthly by Kalos Comics. The series began publication in January 2011. The story explores what would happen if the world's greatest superhero became the world's greatest supervillain.

Paragon is the greatest, most honorable, most powerful superhero on earth.

He has saved the world more times than anyone knows.
He has been a role model for generations.
Last week, he started killing people.

He started with superheroes.

Issue #1, "The Call"

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Over the past two weeks Paragon has destroyed the city of Atlanta, Georgia, and has attacked sites in Las Vegas, Alaska, and Brazil, among others. He has sought out and killed two of his former teammates, the Justifiers.

Sean Findlay, the third hero to use the name Arclight, is approached by a mysterious spherical machine calling itself Mentor. Mentor suggests that Arclight begin recruiting a team of superheroes to investigate what has caused Paragon to turn against humanity, so that together they can defeat him. Mentor offers Arclight a dimensional key which opens a portal to a safe haven where they can't be seen or heard by Paragon.

Using information provided by Mentor, Sean contacts Matthew "Tagger" Wells (a talented graffiti artist living in Los Angeles, California), Karen 7 (an android living in Kansas), and Swan (a crime-fighter operating out of New Orleans, Louisiana). Tagger and Arclight meet Karen in Kansas.

Meanwhile, Swan goes to Atlanta, Georgia, to try and learn why Paragon has turned violent. In Atlanta, Swan finds Alana Morrison, the former girlfriend of Paragon. Swan also finds ground zero: the point at which Paragon began his destruction of the city.

Issue #2, "Master Of Destruction"

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Arclight, Tagger, and Karen drive to New Orleans, Louisiana to meet Swan, whose contact information was given to Arclight by Mentor. The four meet at the Vanguard headquarters, which is now little more than a museum which honors the once-great team.

The four heroes charter a plane to Chicago, Illinois, intending to find and join forces with Mongoose, a former teammate of Paragon. When they land, they learn that Paragon has destroyed several blocks of Chicago's "loop", including the headquarters of Morningstar, Inc. The heroes deduce that Morningstar CEO and billionaire Joseph Mansueto was the hero known as Mongoose.

The four drive to Mansueto's estate outside Chicago, where a former associate of Mongoose shows them a recording made by Mongoose a few weeks earlier. The recording reveals that Mongoose knew that something was wrong with Paragon, and he suggests contacting Rook and Archimedes (who is already dead by this time) for assistance in finding a way to defeat Paragon.

Before leaving Chicago, the four encounter the infamous supervillain M.O.D., who is digging survivors out of the wreckage of downtown Chicago. The team decides not to attack him despite his long career of violence and villainy, and instead helps him rescue survivors.

Issue #3, "King Takes Rook"

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Gravitar joins the team in Chicago. M.O.D. agrees to tag along and help out, for now, in exchange for an escort out of the city. The team heads to New York, to see if they can find Rook. They find Rook's base in Manhattan, thanks to Arclight, and Swan scouts it out -- to find that Paragon and several super-villains are already there! While listening to their conversation, Swan learns that Rook was actually billionaire genius Gregory Sterling, of Sterling Aerospace, who was killed in Las Vegas a week ago when Paragon destroyed the Lotus Casino. Paragon leaves abruptly, and Rook's base explodes shortly afterward.

The heroes follow Paragon to the United Nations building, but are too late to prevent him from killing the US Vice President and the ambassador from the UK (by ice breath and by heat vision, respectively). Paragon leaves just as the heroes arrive.

The team splits up. Swan, Tagger, and Gravitar head to the CDC office in Maryland to see if they know why Paragon visited the CDC headquarters before destroying Atlanta, Georgia, while Karen 7, M.O.D., and Arclight head to Phoenix, Arizona to see what can be found at the home of Gregory Sterling.

Meanwhile, Swan's uncle Leo heads to Paraguay to see if Guardian is actually dead.

Issue #4, "Storm Front"

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In Maryland, Swan, Tagger, and Gravitar finally get answers from the CDC. According to archived emails, researchers at CDC in Atlanta, Georgia wanted to meet with Paragon to ask about a strange device given to them in 2010 by the Center for Neuroacoustic Research in Beltsville, MD. Visiting the research facility, they learn that the device was given to one of their scientists, and that their experimentation with the device was somehow responsible for the Burroughs Plague. They can't question the head scientist on that project, because Paragon incinerated him ten minutes after he destroyed Atlanta.

In Phoenix, Arizona, Karen 7 and Arclight continue to sift through Rook's files (M.O.D. decides he has better things to do, and departs). Arclight discovers a detailed analysis of the same portal technology that was given to him by Mentor, and decides to "try something". Arclight activates the portal and enters. Several hours later, Karen 7 decides that he is not coming back.

Karen 7 removes two drives the data storage array holding the neurotemplate of Karen West, and uses these drives to store data from the Rook computer system, including a large block of encrypted data called DOOMSDAY. She then gathers up some spare parts from Rook's labs, destroys the data array holding Karen West, activates the countdown for Rook's self-destruct, and drives away.

Tagger and Gravitar fly to Phoenix, where Karen 7 meets them at the airport. They are attacked by Thunderbird, who tracked Karen 7 from Rook's destroyed base. Paragon arrives, and kills Thunderbird. An enormous storm-eagle appears in the sky, and Thunderbird's powers are passed to Tempest, a meteorologist working at the Phoenix airport.

Meanwhile, Swan returns to New Orleans to deal with troubles at home, and meteors are falling on Singapore.

Issue #5, "Road Trip"

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In Phoenix, Arizona, Karen 7, and Arclight sift through Rook's files. Arclight discovers a detailed analysis of the same portal technology that was given to him by Mentor, and decides to "try something". Arclight activates the portal and enters.

Arclight returns to the cold, sterile facility at the other end of the vortex, and after exploring a bit, he finds what appears to be some kind of dimensional gateway. Arclight experiments with controlling it directly, and discovers that it can send him through time as well as space. He travels to Chicago in the year 2037, where he meets the Widow, a hero of that time. He then returns to the station, where he sees Karen 7, who appears to be in command of this now fully-staffed facility. He soon discovers that she isn't Karen 7, when she attacks him. He flees through the vortex once again, arriving back at Rook's base, in the year 1974. Arclight urges Rook to place a specific password on the DOOMSDAY file encryption so that he can decrypt it later, and Rook agrees.

Certain now that he has control of the vortex, Arclight opens it once again, but this time he arrives in Savannah, Georgia in 1982. He is just in time to witness his father, the previous Arclight, fighting the mighty Prawn. Afterward, he is approached by the Bride, the supernatural protector of Savannah. She warns Arclight of meddling with powers "beyond his ken": she removes his knowledge of time travel, and grants him greater understanding of the dimensional vortex in exchange.

Arclight bids farewell to Savannah and the Bride, and returns to the present.

Issue #6, "Family Reunion"

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In Scottsdale, just outside Phoenix, Arizona, Karen 7, Tagger, Gravitar, and Tempest go to Lo-Lo's Chicken and Waffles for some much-needed refueling.

Just as they are being served the restaurant's signature dish, Arclight crashes through the front window, having been ejected from the dimensional vortex by the Shran. While the heroes compare notes on what they have been through over the past few days, an android duplicate of Karen 7 attacks. The heroes rebuff her attack, and Tagger strikes what appears to be the killing blow, but the doppelganger seems to vanish under the cover of an explosion.

Tagger is critically injured by the explosion, and the rest of the heroes take him to the nearby hospital. While unconscious, Tagger has strange visions of cave covered with drawings, and a mysterious old man.

Meanwhile, back at the debris-strewn parking lot which is all that remains of Lo-Los', the Karen doppelganger crawls out from under a slab of concrete.

Issue #7, "Taco Time"

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In Scottsdale, just outside Phoenix, Arizona, Karen 7, Tagger, Gravitar, and Tempest go to Speedy's Tacos for some much-needed refueling (their previous meal having been interrupted by Karen X).

Afterward, Karen 7 heads to Kansas to report the death of her creator, Dr. Herbert West, while Tagger, Gravitar, and Tempest go to Chicago, Illinois so that Gravitar can get his mail and visit his sister Charlotte, who is in the hospital after a freestyle BMX stunt mishap.

They then join back up for a trip to Antarctica. Meanwhile, Arclight is lost in space and time, and the earthquakes caused by Paragon's pushing Singapore into the sea cause extensive damage in Japan.

Issue #8, "History Lesson"

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Arclight is lost in a formless void.

Karen 7, Tagger, Gravitar, and Tempest explore the Justifiers base in Antarctica. Through a clever bit of legerdemain with a fragment of Draconian, Karen 7 grants herself and everyone else access to the computer system.

While exploring the museum level, Gravitar encounters Tinman, General Entropy, Whiteout, and Trigger Mortis, who are attempting to break into the Justifiers' museum armory using an energy cannon. Tagger and Tempest rush to Gravitar's aid just in time to help capture the villains.

Meanwhile, Arclight reaches out for Mentor, and arrives on an alien spacecraft in low Earth orbit. Mentor (appearing for the first time as a menacing humanoid robot) captures and studies Arclight, trying to figure out how Arclight accomplished this. Arclight escapes in a pod, landing off the coast of Alabama.

Arclight is taken to Antarctica by Wilson in a high-tech military aircraft. On arrival, Wilson informs the team that unless someone stops Paragon soon, the countries of the world will attack him with nuclear weapons.

Wilson departs abruptly, and Paragon arrives. He seems angry and confused. After a brief conversation, he departs.

The team shares their notes and tries to come up with a plan. Arclight provides the password given him by Rook in 1974, allowing Karen 7 to decrypt the DOOMSDAY file she obtained from Rook's base. It is a video recorded by Rook shortly after the Isopteran invasion in 2009.

Rook begins by saying that in 1974, he was visited briefly by a man claiming to be from the future. After he left, Rook and the Justifiers traced the visitor's tachyon trail to an abandoned Shran space station on the far side of the asteroid belt. The station self-destructed, but not before Rook was able to capture a sample of their portal technology.

Rook explains that it was this technology which Mongoose traded to the Isopterans in order to get them to leave the Earth, but with one additional condition: if the need ever arose, the Justifiers could call the Isopterans back, and they would kill or capture Paragon. Rook confessed that only he and Mongoose knew how Mongoose had convinced the Isopterans to leave. Mongoose's only statement at the time was that he had "given them a little something they weren't expecting". Most people, including the rest of the Justifiers, assumed that this meant he had sabotaged the Isopterans' ship somehow.

Rook closes the recording by providing information on how to send a signal to the Isopterans, should the need ever arise. He seems sad, and a bit wistful.

Issue #9, "The Librarian"

In Antarctica, the team faces off against Archon, who seeks to preserve the Earth by digitizing and storing it. They defeat him, but are unable to prevent his ship from leaving. Meanwhile, Gravitar is plagued by dreams of a woman who does not exist... and keeps finding reminders of her when he wakes up.

Issue #10, "Road Trip"

The team is treated for their injuries in a hospital in Christchurch, New Zealand. While there, they are contacted by the former sidekick of Archimedes, Young Cleopatra. As luck would have it, she moved to Auckland when she retired from crimefighting, which is just a short hop away.

The team visits Cleopatra ("Just Lydia, dear"), and learns that she and Archimedes had known for years that Paragon was a ticking time bomb. However, because he did so much good for the world, they did not tell anyone, choosing to keep an eye on him instead, and hoping that they were wrong.

Returning to Antarctica, the team prepares for a trip to Embassy Station, where they hope to find a weapon to use against Paragon. They find the weapons they seek. They also find Mongoose, who used the malfunctioning dimensional aperture portal generator to escape from Paragon. With Mongoose, the team forms a plan to lure Paragon to an isolated location, and kill him. If they fail, Mongoose will use the signal device constructed by Gravitar and Arclight (using schematics provided posthumously by Rook) to contact the Isopterans.

Issue #11, "Rock Lobster"

The team prepares to fight Paragon. They retrieve Isopteran and GORGON weapons from Embassy Station, while Karen 7 prepares recordings of victims of the Burroughs Plague.

Meanwhile, Gravitar and Arclight reconfigure the dimensional aperture generator to open more rapidly. In the process, they make two discoveries. First, Embassy Station is unable to provide enough power to create a stable dimensional aperture. Second, there is another dimensional signal pattern causing interference.

Returning to Vinson Massif, the team springs their trap. Paragon puts up a good fight, but the ambush is too well executed. The signal is sent, and Mongoose activates the aperture generator on the space station. Paragon is pushed into the flawed dimensional aperture, and is presumed dead.

The team returns to the space station, hoping to arrive in time to save Mongoose, but find that he has died as a result of the injuries he sustained when he used the aperture generator to escape from Paragon. His last words are typed on the computer screen: "It was good working with you. Protect the Earth. It's worth it."

The team returns to Earth and contacts the United Nations, and announces their victory. The reaction from the world leaders is cautious celebration. However, the congratulations are soon followed by demands for answers, and Karen 7 terminates the connection.

As they congratulate themselves on their victory, and struggle with the ethical issues of their tactics, the team readies to visit New Zealand, which offered to support the team before learning of the defeat of Paragon.

Issue #12, "Epilogue"

The team decides to go to their respective homes for the weekend, to unwind after the stress of the past couple of weeks. Tempest, Gravitar, and Arclight reconnect with family, while Tagger hangs out with friends. Karen 7 stays at Vinson Massif.

While away, Gravitar has a visitation from the Bride, who explains that the nightmares he has been having since he was a teen were caused by a flaw in the time stream. She warns him not to continue looking for Jessica Eisenberg (who was never born, because her great-grandparents never met), lest he cause additional damage. The Bride offers to make him forget Jessie; Gravitar declines.

Meanwhile, Tagger has a vision of the First Storyteller, and comes to the realization that the world is his canvas.

After returning to Vinson Massif, the team makes a quick tour of Rook's auxiliary bases, to make sure that no Earth-threatening weapons have been left behind. They find a few, and bring them back to Vinson Massif. Those weapons, along with the Isopteran artifacts and other weapons they took from Embassy Station, are taken back to the space station and securely stored.

While at the station, Gravitar and Arclight investigate the signal which is causing interference with the dimensional aperture generator. They send an acknowledgement signal, and an interdimensional portal appears. Crossing through, they find themselves aboard the Corvette -- an immense spaceship which appears to have been abandoned many centuries ago. Only Karen 7 is able to "hear" the ship, but it appears capable of listening to anyone aboard. The ship modifies Karen 7 so that she can process base 73 mathematics without crashing, and Arclight volunteers for a subcutaneous radiotelepathy implant, at which point Karen 7 and Arclight can communicate nonverbally, and both of them can speak to the ship (apparently over great distances).

The team returns to Embassy Station, and thence to Vinson Massif, aboard the Justifiers spaceplane.

The next day, they visit New Zealand, where they are treated like visiting dignitaries, due to their defeat of Paragon (and the recommendation of Lydia Mironov). Their point of contact, The Honourable Dr. Wayne Mapp (the current New Zealand Minister of Defence, and Minister of Research, Science and Technology), acts as their guide and cultural liaison during their visit. The festivities include a waffle-and-fried-chicken breakfast and a spectacular Maori haka (prefaced with a very simplified explanation of Maori/Pakeha relations by Dr. Mapp, in an attempt to prevent any unfortunate faux pas by the team). The high point of the day is a ceremony in which the team members are each given the New Zealand Cross, New Zealand's highest award for civilian bravery.

The adventures of Arclight, Tagger, Gravitar, Karen 7, and Tempest continue in the pages of New Justifiers.