In the vastness of space two beams of light emerge among the stars. They slow down as they enter earth’s atmosphere. “Greetings fellow observer,” the first watcher says to his alternate self. These observers are humanoid in nature, although their heads are disproportionately large for their bodies. They wear white robes similar to those worn in ancient Greece or Rome. They are called watchers and their purpose is to observe and study. “I have brought you here to witness the story of a warrior who will soon be of great significance in the lives of the earthly heroes, the Avengers, in your world. Here, in my world, he already has powerful ties with them.”
“What significance can one man have?” asks the second watcher.
“I will show you. Watch as his story unfolds on the dark and grimy underworld island of Madripoor.”
The smell of jasmine overpowers the scent of the burlap sack over the head of the short beefy man in shackles. Despite the sack covering his face, he can pick up the scent of everything better than the six men sitting in the back of the van with him. And unfortunately, he can smell all of them as well. It reminds him of something his one time enemy and sometimes associate, Deadpool would say, “Six men on a high protein diet; stuck in a small space; dreams really do come true. He smiles and scoffs, thinking of how ridiculous Deadpool can be.
They didn’t add that scent of jasmine just to throw me off,” he thinks. “It was on purpose. Bloodscream, Roughhouse, Pierce or whoever is really running the show wants to see if the fragrance of jasmine triggers me. They want to see how much I remember. It doesn’t matter though, I can still pick up every fragrance and odor on this wretched island. And I notice every street turn that they take. We take Princess Street up to Paradise Boulevard. I can’t miss the starkness of shingles at Pino’s Roofing. One of the henchmen hits me across the face with a crowbar in a sad attempt to throw me off before they turn right onto Paradise Boulevard and drive past the aromatic spices from Rah’s Oriental. The smell of burnt rubber flows through the van as it turns the next corner sharply, putting great distance away from us and the Princess Bar.”
A warehouse door rattles as it slides up, and the van stops abruptly after pulling in. He can smell one of his many old enemies, Roughhouse, a super strong tank of a man with long blonde hair and a beard to match. His ancestry is that of Asgard but no one knows for sure how he ended up on earth or in Madripoor for that matter.
Two of Wolverine’s captors drag his 300 pound frame as if he was a bag of flour. These aren’t ordinary thugs. They smell different. They’ve been enhanced by something. The other four super thugs walk by closely in case he tries anything. A metal door swings open and Wolverine is thrown inside. Boots squish against the pavement as the six guards file in. Two of them drag his shackles to a table in the middle of the room and lock his restraints to a mechanism on the table. The table made of steel and oak, seems to have been previously used for manufacturing purposes. Now it is rigged to keep prisoners locked up. Judging by the way that the sounds reverberate against the walls and floors, Wolverine estimates that the room is about 10 yards deep and 9 yards wide.
Wolverine concentrates on the sounds and smells that lie beyond the room. There is very little to be found except for approaching footsteps of a very heavy man, built like a tank, and coming toward the room he is in.“Roughhouse,” Wolverine concludes, spitefully.
Roughhouse is the size of a typical professional wrestler. He is very Nordic in appearance with unkempt long blond hair. It’s been said that he actually descends from Asgard but no one has confirmed his true lineage. Wolverine first met Roughhouse when he was working for General Coy along with his frequent associate, Bloodscream, a sort of Vampire who looks the part and even absorbs the life force of others. The only difference is that he does it by touching the person instead of sucking their blood. It’s a strange and painful session that Wolverine knows all too well. It was only 8 years ago that the pair captured and tortured him in the basement of an old Madripoor chapel. Chained in between two support pillars, Wolverine knelt with his arms stretched out by the chains. Bloodscream had one hand on Wolverine’s forehead. He roared in agony as Bloodscream drained his vitality. Roughhouse looks on in delight, laughing at Wolverine’s pain.
Bloodscream releases Wolverine’s head and it drops toward his chest. “Alright, it’s your turn now,” Bloodscream says to his giant blonde ally. Wolverine sniffs and snarls as Roughhouse walks up to him.
“Ugh, and I thought the blood sucker would smell the worst.” Roughhouse’s eyes narrow and he bludgeons Wolverine with a flurry of hooks and uppercuts. Some to the stomach and some to the head. Wolverine hangs by his chains, swaying to a stop as he breathes heavy and coughs up blood.
Roughhouse grabs Wolverine’s wrist brace and tugs on it, breaking the chain from the pillar. “What, no claws to help you anymore?” He shakes his head. “What a shame.” He drops his arm but Wolverine summons all of his force into one swipe and scrapes Roughhouse across the cheek. The giant viking’s eyes widen as he is nearly knocked over. He reaches one hand behind to catch himself and the other to console his injured face. He quickly recovers and uses the second hand to back hand Wolverine who spits out another mouthful of blood.
“Don’t worry, Bub. He just took the metal. The claws are still part of the experience.”
“Very funny. Let’s see if you’re still laughing when we bring your wife out here.”
“What the hell did you just say?”
“Oh, now he’s serious.” Wolverine’s breathes heavily. He musters up what little energy he has but Roughhouse sucker punches him in the stomach and he crumples over. He mutters out as he loses consciousness.
“You better be bluffing, blondy.”
Roughhouse walks in and closes the door, locking it behind him as he walks around the table to face Wolverine. He leans over within inches of Wolverine’s face, grimacing at him, nearly growling. Wolverine can feel it behind the mask and doesn’t hold back.
“Seems like somebody needs an ice breaker?” He sniffs the air and crinkles his nose. “In more ways than one.” Roughhouse delivers a left hook and then a right. He pulls the sac off Wolverine’s head and glares down at him.
“A lot of people have mixed feelings about you being alive little man.”
“Not exactly new intel is it, Bub?” Roughhouse ponders for a moment.
“You’ve been pretty busy lately, haven’t you?”
“Why do you ask? Does that make you nervous?” Roughhouse chuckles. It’s too bad Bloodscream is busy right now, otherwise today could have been just like old times.” Wolverine smiles spitefully. Expecting a reaction, Roughhouse isn’t sure what to do so he changes the subject. “You knew it was me as soon as I walked in didn’t you?”
“You’ve known me how long and you still don’t know how good my sense of smell is. I detected the smell of coconut beard oil and cheap deodorant working hard to mask the fact that you haven’t showered in two days ever since the van pulled into this old bottling warehouse. Oh and don’t forget the 3 pints of beer that you’ve had and didn’t even bother to chew a stick of gum afterwards.”
“All right ya overgrown bloodhound, we get it. Now why don’t you cut straight to the point and tell me what your game is? What’s going on? Where’s the impulsive little rage machine that I know and hate? Come on. You have to be a little angry, right?”
Wolverine looks around the room. Every one of the soldiers surrounding him is nearly as strong as Captain America with almost comparable fighting skills and yet Wolverine can smell the fear on them. He can hear their heart rates increasing. He shakes his head. “Even Bloodscream would’ve been a better interrogator than this.”
Roughhouse unlocks the restraints from the table leaving Wolverine’s hands still locked together. He lifts Wolverine into the air with one hand. He punches him repeatedly in the stomach with his other hand. He throws him back into his chair and locks the restraints back onto the table. “All right, If you don’t want to tell me then we can make this like old times.” He opens a panel on the table and presses a few buttons. A prod extends from the back support of his chair. It pokes and electrocutes him. Wolverine grimaces and lets out a slight growl. “Ouch, right on the kidney and you won’t even let out a yelp. A real tough guy.”
“Tougher than you, beard oil.” Roughhouse smiles partially amused and partially annoyed. He presses a few more buttons and three other prods extend into Wolverine’s back, releasing a voltage deadly to most humans. He roars in pain. “That’s more like it, tree stump.” Wolverine’s breathes heavily.
“Relying on machines for most of the dirty work, huh. I thought it was going to be like old times.” Roughhouse stares him down. He unlocks his restraints from the table. Wolverine’s hands are still locked together. The giant blond viking of a superhuman immediately uppercuts the tiny bull of a mutant directly in the gut. He follows up with a flurry of hits including a few kicks and knees. He pauses for a second and Wolverine knocks him across the face with his hand restraints. Roughhouse hits him with a right hook and shoves him back into his chair, locking his cuffs down to the table.
Wolverine chuckles. And smiles with blood surrounding his teeth like vines growing on a house. He spits out the blood onto the table. Roughhouse walks back around to the other side of the table. “Now, are you ready to tell me what’s going on?”
“I’ll tell the boss. How about that? Get me the boss, and I’ll tell him everything.”
“I am the boss! This operation belongs to me and Bloodscream now.” Wolverine chuckles.
“Oh, right, but what about the brains of the operation? Where are they? I want to talk to that person.”
“You’re a real funny guy, Logan.”
“And you’re a real stupid guy if you think I’m stupid enough to think that generic brand Thor and his Twilight friend are operating a successful criminal empire in Madripoor so tell me where Cyber is!” Roughhouse punches him across the face.
“I’ll be making the demands here! Now tell me why you attacked those bases and how you knew where they were!” Wolverine chuckles. He looks up at Roughhouse with a contemptuous smile and a deathly glare. Deep breaths of air flow in and out of his nose. Wolverine bows his head down, looking at the table. He speaks calmly with a rage that burns inside.
“…They say that anger stems from three other emotions…” Wolverine begins in his gruff voice, “fear, pain, and shame…”
Roughhouse stares at Wolverine confused with a hint of fear that he’s doing his best to mask. He’s having a surprisingly difficult time for a man who doesn’t walk around displaying a lot of fear.
“For me, it all comes down to a matter of loss;”
Wolverine faces his palms toward each other. He growls like a grizzly bear defending it’s cub as he flares his elbows forward, and stands up. The pressure causes the restraints to bust apart. The super soldiers move forward to restrain him but his blades are too quick. The first two soldiers goes down with puncture wounds to their hearts.
“the fear of loss,”
Roughhouse looks on, not making any moves. He’s curious to see what his thugs can do although he knows Wolverine is stronger than usual. The next two super thugs manage to grab Wolverine by the wrists. He pulls them forward as if doing a chest fly exercise and quickly alters the direction of his movement upwards.
“the pain of loss,”
He growls as he stabs them both through their jaws and into their skulls. The last two soldiers shock him with electrified batons in the back. He falls forward and knocks his head on the table.
“We need backup in here,” one of the soldiers calls over the radio
“Not yet,” Roughhouse replies over the radio as well.
The last two soldiers beat Wolverine with their batons, shocking and bludgeoning him simultaneously.
He shakes off the attack and the head injury and gets to all four, swiping around himself, creating space.
“and all of the shame that goes with it!”
He continues swiping as he stands, and then focuses on swiping at one of them. The soldier manages to evade him and hit him in the head with the baton. Wolverine advances about to claw the soldier when the other one hits him the neck. Wolverine swings his other arm around and destroys the baton with an upper cut. He jumps forward, thrusting both sets of claws into the chest of the other soldier and then falls to the ground with him.
The last soldier picks up the chair and swings it down on Wolverine but he rolls out of the way, grabbing the other chair, he places it up against the door. The super thug hits him with the chair a few times before before he slices it into pieces. The soldier falls to the ground and kicks Wolverine’s legs out from under him. As Wolverine falls back, the soldier rams the electrified button upwards at him while evading Wolverine’s claws. He hits him with the baton rapidly but Wolverine only seems to be recovering faster. He slices the baton. The soldier kicks spin kicks him across the room and into the wall. The door buckles as a few more super thugs try to get into the room.
As Wolverine stands back up, the last thug in the room moves to advance, but before he can, the table smacks Wolverine back into the wall. Roughhouse pushes the table up against Wolverine squishing him between it and the wall. Wolverine grits his teeth and groans as the concrete begins to crack from the pressure. The last super thug runs up and pushes against the table. Wolverine grabs hold of part of the table and pulls it toward him while pushing the other side. He manages to get his claws to the top and slices about a third of the way through the table nearly cutting Roughhouse’s hand apart.
“The point is,” Wolverine growls as three blades puncture through Roughhouse’s stomach. He launches Wolverine across the room and into the other wall. Wolverine manages to tuck his head in allowing his incredible adamantium protected back to absorb the impact.
The super thug rushes to move the chair from the door but Wolverine sprints over and dices his hand off before he can touch it. He then stabs him in the head and the thug drops. Roughhouse rushes toward Wolverine, too prideful to call in for back up. Wolverine pierces Roughhouse several times moving him back toward the wall. He moves faster than ever before. His stabbing punches are like hail raining down from the sky.
Roughhouse manages to throw a right hook but Wolverine uppercuts his arm, stabbing him through the bicep and tricep. With his right claws, he pierces Roughhouse straight in the neck. Blood sputters from his mouth as his breath becomes strained.
“The point is, I remember,” Wolverine states evenly.
Roughhouse spits up blood and snarls, “You remember what?” Wolverine leans in closer to him and exclaims in a deep growl.
“I remember everything! He retracts his left claws out of Roughhouse’s arm and his right claws out of his neck. He plunges his left claws into his stomach and swings his right arm back and then forth, slicing Roughhouse’s head off.