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The issue begins with Nova busting in on a gun smuggling ring that’s being handled by four villains that go by the name of: Skullcat, Kid Quarry, Deadhead, and Sureshot. With minimal effort, he manages to take down Skullcat and Sureshot. With another pass around, he takes out Kid Quarry and Deadhead. Rage, Firestar and Night Thrasher arrive at the scene. Night Thrasher scolds Nova for jumping the gun, while Rage discovers that they were smuggling Stinger Missiles.
Elsewhere, a shadowed figure examines video footage of a man bursting into the office of Mr. Vanetti, murdering three guards, before throwing Mr. Vanetti to his death, twenty floors up. The shadowed figure is none other than Corruptor, who uses the Nova Express to set up Nova to encounter A. Dyker – none other than Diamondhead, whom Corruptor has discovered to be Mr. Vanetti’s murderer.
Nova and Diamondhead collide, each of them trading punches. Nova threatens to have Diamondhead tried for treason, since Diamondhead threw in with the enemy, which cost the Xandarians countless lives. Diamondhead manages to give Nova pause by mentioning Epyrus-7 which triggers memories of a war against Skrulls within Rich’s mind. He recalls being there, seeing the pain, so many Centurions killed. He remembers seeing Diamondhead, reveling in the senseless savagery of war – and then a female figure – one he can’t make out. Diamondhead capitalizes and punches Nova away; Nova gives chance and runs into Rhino. Rhino, in turn, knocks him into the air; by the time Rhino flies back, Nova’s surprised to see that Darkhawk has already taken care of Rhino; but Diamondhead has gotten away.
Nova decides he needs help and pays a visit to the Fantastic Four, where he is greeted by Thing and She-Hulk.
Elsewhere, Thera, Maximoff and Planner, the three mysterious figures previously speaking about the loss of the satellite, the space ship, and other financial woes come together again – this time Thera has recruited what appears to be Doctor Doom, Dragonman and Hulk.