"Weapon!": The strange is all around us, waiting to be noticed and interrogated.
- You know... all those bad, bad things... you see on the news every... night? How you... can't believe that... any human could ever... do them? Well... what if humans... didn't do them?
- -- Leo Chandler
Appearing in "Weapon!"
- The Pearl
Synopsis for "Weapon!"
The strange is all around us, waiting to be noticed and interrogated.
In a boarded-up basement, an inhuman-looking figure in a suit with coattails, spats and a fedora sits snoring. A sign taped to his chest identifies him as "Mr. Biscuits", and says he is only to be woken in an emergency. A small girl, on a dare from friends, breaks into the basement to present him with a bag of baked goods. He responds by presenting her with a quarter by an act of prestidigitation. She, asks if he is a good man; he responds that he doesn't know.
Returning from a missing-persons case on the Moon, the Martian Manhunter sends out a telepatic signal to anyone who can hear him: something called the Epiphany is coming, performing terrible acts, and they need to save as many souls as they can. He flies over an airplane with a flaming engine, about to crash into the ocean, and tries to carry it to safety. When he cannot, he phases into the airplane and telepathically sends all the passengers to sleep.
However, one of the passengers is immune to his power: an old woman with glowing red eyes who says that he should be a weapon for their side. He waves her aside, phasing outside the aircraft again and turning into a dragon to better carry the plane to safety. In his head, he agonises over his origin, how he was created as a weapon of infiltration for his shadowy masters, and now they are coming to Earth.
At the Watchtower space station, the Justice League are responding to Martian Manhunter's telepathic signal by tracking him down. But after they find him in the South Pacific, they realise that a vast number of terror attacks and military escalations are happening around the globe.
In Dubai, a cat-burglar named the Pearl sits on a windowsill, waiting for a member of the local royal family to fall asleep so she can steal from him. However, just before he does, a man enters the room, promptly shapeshifts into a large blue creature with four arms, and murders him. As Pearl is horrified, the murderer tells her that she can run, but he can see into her mind, and he already knows how the chase will end.
On an island in the South Pacific, the plane got down safely. Martian Manhunter comes to with one of the children from the plane asking if he is a monster. Martian Manhunter, whose shape was humanoid but misshapen, swiftly changes to his more familiar "super hero" form, which causes the child to run, calling him a monster. Hurt, Martian Manhunter flies away.
In Washington D.C., federal agent Daryl Wessel has just arrived at a strange crime scene. A mother kidnapped her adult son from a care facility in Pennsylvania and drove her, upon which the son strangled her to death... except that the son has motor neuron disease and is effectively quadruplegic. It was why he was in the care home for the last five years in the first place.
Wessel goes in to interview the son, Leo Chandler, who claims he murdered his mother because she was annoying, and she wasn't his real mother. Leo goes on to claim that records can be altered, that both he and Wessel have friends in high places, and demonstrates knowledge he should not have, which he credits to an "epiphany". As Leo pauses, a pair of colossal explosions go off elsewhere in Washington D.C. Wessel demands to know how Leo knew they were coming. Leo, with a sadistic grin, posits a hypothetical world: that inhuman acts among humans are the result of inhuman intelligences at work.
In NASA headquarters in Florida, Dr. Helen DeMoff is keeping up with the news. An emergency update on the terror attacks is joined by the security correspondant, Lincoln Brahn, who explains that the attacks were not just concurrent, but all started at the same time, as though synchronised. Furthermore, the extremist groups being blamed could not have co-ordinated because the groups have such divergent ideologies. Grinning and demonstrating glowing eyes, Brahn says the pattern is truly terrifying and that probably no-one is safe.
DeMoff is interrupted by a mournful-looking Martian Manhunter, who says she needs to help him. He has to be killed...
Back in the basement, Mr Biscuits gives the girl the coin and tells her to run away. She gleefully complies, as he tucks into his baked goods using a prehensile tongue with four prongs.
- This book was first published on June 17, 2015.
- Martian Manhunter's adventure on the Moon was in the free online preview for this series.
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