"Heroes and Villains": I.O. agents arrive at the violent scene of Tao's office but finding no trace of Grifter. One of the agents detects him among the pile of dead bodies and finds him alive in the death grip of a dead Peter Grimm on his neck. On the rooftop, other I.O. agents have found the bo
- Tao, I know you're not a fool, so don't play me for one. It's over. And you have to know there's nothing you can say to save yourself...
Appearing in "Heroes and Villains"
- Pit Bull
- Peter Grimm (Final appearance; Dies) (Appears only as a corpse)
- Veronica St. James (Appears only as a corpse)
- Miss Misery (Appears only as a corpse)
- International Operations
- I.O. flying car
Synopsis for "Heroes and Villains"
I.O. agents arrive at the violent scene of Tao's office but finding no trace of Grifter. One of the agents detects him among the pile of dead bodies and finds him alive in the death grip of a dead Peter Grimm on his neck. On the rooftop, other I.O. agents have found the bodies of Miss Misery and Veronica St. James.
Holden takes a tied up Tao on the still damage, but operational flying car to the I.O. New Jersey facility. He contacts John Lynch to meet him for Tao and telling that he is doing on his own demands. Lynch meets Holden, who then hold him at gunpoint and demanding to have himself operated by the alien, Aldo. He then force Lynch and Tao into the facility's elevator and finally learning from Lynch that the operation would likely kill him as human physiology is different from Aldo's people. However, Holden doesn't care. Lynch then professes to him that he tried everything to keep Veronica away and plead to not throw his life away, as everything they done have manage to arrest Tao. Holden is unfazed and stating that he is using Tao as a bargaining chip to escape his manipulated life, but now there is no point for this as Miss Misery, Gretchen, had died. Furthermore, he tells Lynch that he had the urge to kill him while waiting on the roof, but realize that living in his perpetual hell of secrets and superpowers would be satisfying as Holden then shoots himself in the head. Shocked, Lynch examines Holden but he is shock into unconscious by Holden's powers, whom in turn survives his suicide and have intended this to happen.
After a length of time, I.O. agents discover an unconscious Lynch in the elevator and wakes him up. Lynch then desperately search for Tao by following a trail of blood, which leads him to a prison cell and finds Tao with his tongue torn out by Holden. Basically 'disarming' him from using his vocal manipulations. Meanwhile, Holden in question is being operated in the surgery ward by Aldo after having convincing him and the medical staff by killing one of the staffers. Holden's powers is removed. Lynch finds and learns from Aldo and the staffers that there were complications which left Holden into a coma.
Three weeks later.
John Lynch shows a recuperating Cole Cash to a comatose Holden and somberly tells him that he granted Holden a permanent fantasy of where he is happily living on a tropical island with Miss Misery and Veronica. A sympathetic repayment for his friend's agonizing journey. As for Tao, Lynch reveals that he is imprison in a specimen tube as he was once raised in...where he quietly screams without his tongue.
- This book was first published on May 25, 2005.
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