- Some days weird just won't leave you alone.
- -- The Atom
Appearing in "The Man Who Swallowed Eternity (Part II of II) - The Entropy of the Universe Tends to a Maximum"
- Atom (Ray Palmer)(Flashback only)
Synopsis for "The Man Who Swallowed Eternity (Part II of II) - The Entropy of the Universe Tends to a Maximum"
Upon meeting the bisected Professor Hyatt, Ryan remembers the stern warning of Ryak the Rogue. Ryak told him that if he helped Professor Hyatt in any way, he would go backwards in time and wipe out Ryan's entire family line. But seeing this pathetic half-man standing before him, Ryan feels obligated to at least listen to his story.
The strange individual introduces himself as Teddy Hyatt, the son of Professor Alpheus V. Hyatt, an old colleague of Ray Palmer. Alpheus was the man who first discovered the microscopic singularity known as the Time Pool. Teddy reveals that Alpheus became obsessed with the singularity and actually entered the Time Pool in an effort to act as its guardian. Teddy witnessed the event and sought to find his father. Unable to do so, he decided instead to eat the singularity.
Before Teddy can explain why half of his body is missing, Ryak the Rogue bursts through the wall and attacks them. To escape Ryak's wrath, Ryan and Teddy enter the singularity. They are thrust forward through time into Earth's future.
In the future, Ivy Town is a micro-metropolis, whose culture is based upon the achievements of the Atom. Ryan finds a statue commemorating a woman named Jia Choi – a possible descendent. Teddy reveals that he brought them here to find his other half, which is currently languishing away inside of a prison. They run afoul of a team of security police whose uniforms are based upon the designs of the Atom's costume.
Ryak eventually tracks them down and the Atom and he resume their fight. Ryan begins to understand what is happening and Ryak and he call a truce. Teddy Hyatt is not the son of Alpheus Hyatt – he actually is Alpheus Hyatt. Professor Hyatt was suffering from senile dementia and knew that entering the Time Pool was his last, best hope of regenerating his diseased mind. The effort regressed him in age, but also bisected him down the middle, leaving one half of his body trapped inside the Time Pool. Ryan barters with Ryak to spare the Professor's life. Ryak agrees, but Hyatt must return to his formerly aged insensate state of mind. Further, Ryan must agree to become the guardian of the Time Pool.
The Atom returns home with a physically complete, yet addle-brained Professor Alpheus Hyatt. Hyatt mistakes Ryan for Ray Palmer, but Ryan doesn't seem to mind.
- This issue is reprinted in The All-New Atom: Future/Past trade paperback.
- This issue shipped on February 7th, 2007.
- This issue contains flashbacks to events that took place over the course of the first Atom comic book series.
- Issue includes DC Nation editorial #42 by Mark Chiarello.
- The tagline for this issue is "Half Time!"
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