Chapter Thirty-One: Takeda vs. The Fatal Eight
In the ocean around the island, Sheeva watches her ship burn before swimming to the beach, Kintaro with her. As they catch their breath, Sheeva hears several Red Dragon soldiers commenting their disgust as they watch bugs cover D'Vorah's remains. The two Shokan begin sneaking up on the unsuspecting mercenaries, but just as the soldiers begin contemplating burning D'Vorah's remains, the insects swarm them, devouring the screaming soldiers alive down to the bone.
The insects converge together and form a new body for D'Vorah, reviving her. D'Vorah notes her relief to see Sheeva and Kintaro alive, even Kintaro. The Tigar begins to growl, but Sheeva orders the two to calm down. Angry, D'Vorah holds a poison coated stinger to Sheeva's neck, reminding her that Kotal Kahn is currently prisoner by Havik and demands to know where her forces were. Sheeva reveals to D'Vorah that Havik destroyed her ship, killing her battalion onboard.
Annoyed, D'Vorah reluctantly spares the Shokan and orders them to follow her. When Sheeva asks where, D'Vorah reveals that Kotal Kahn had the foresight to hide emergency supplies before they invaded the island. D'Vorah explains that they will find and use them to bring in the necessary reinforcements to confront Havik and his slaves.
In Shang Tsung's Palace, Takeda is confronted by Cassie Cage and Jacqui Briggs while Havik and the rest of his slaves stand back and watch. Cassie and Jacqui mock Takeda for his upbringing around killers and ask when the last time he played with anyone his own age. Commenting on the girls being cute, especially Jacqui, Takeda easily dodges and parries their attacks, noting that they learned to fight for sport instead of survival. Using his new whips, Takeda brings Cassie down and throws her at Jacqui before pinning the two into submission, all the while saying that growing up around killers taught him to survive.
Picking up his severed hand and reattaching it, Havik agrees, reminding of when Takeda split Forrest Fox's skull open, revealing tot Takeda that while he was passenger in Fox's blood, he learned how much Fox cared for him, even right up until Takeda killed him. Goading Havik to push all the buttons he wants, Takeda marches towards the chaos cleric, stating that he's already killed everything that mattered to him and he has no feelings left. Dragging his whips, Takeda declares that his final purpose in life is to fight Havik.
Havik reminds Takeda that he is not the only he'll have to fight, and indicates his Blood Code possessed slaves before suddenly feigning confusion over Mileena's absence. The deposed empress lands a teleporting dropkick on Takeda, allowing Kotal Kahn to follow up with an elbow to his spin, a blast from Sonya, a punch to the groin from Johnny, and finally a direct electrocution to the head from Raiden, all the while, each possessed fighter mocking him for believing he could fight veteran fighters after defeating rookies, and stating Hanzo's disappointment in his failure. Standing over the defeated Takeda, Havik notes that Hanzo is not here to witness his failures and raises the amulet.
Telling Takeda he has whole realms waiting to explode into chaos, he offers a simple choice to the Shirai Ryu: Sacrifice his blood to the Kamidogu and become an agent of chaos enslaved to Havik's will or be reunited with Hanzo.
Elsewhere, in a burning village, Hanzo Hasahi stands among the flames, while a voice tells him that the fire is their home now. Hanzo disagrees, saying the fire is the beating of his heart. Telling his enemy that he has something to live for, Hanzo says that 'wrestling' with him just got him killed. Hanzo's adversary, revealed to be his own inner demon, Scorpion, says that he cannot protect Takeda without him. The two charge for each other, Hanzo telling Scorpion to "Get over yourself" while the revenant roars that vengeance will be his.
Chapter Thirty-Two: Mirror Match
Hanzo fights his inner demon, launching a kunai that the revenant easily dodges, all the while mocking him for his predictable opening attack. Scorpion lands a powerful series of blows on his human-half, while saying that victory in kombat requires more than one variation of attacks. Landing a knee to Hanzo's stomach, Scorpion summons his demonic familiars to hold Hanzo down, while calling Hanzo a depressed loner with a death wish for denying the hellfire inside himself.
Asking Hanzo why he denies the inferno within, Hanzo admits in shame to Scorpion that he turned memories of his family into weapons. Scorpion reminds him that he did this in order to avenge their deaths, but Hanzo snaps that they were avenged long ago. Drawing one of his swords, Scorpion rebuffs this, stating that an eye for an eye is not enough for his family and clan and that he will burn the world for them. When Hanzo asks if he would burn Takeda as well, Scorpion snaps that the boy is already dead and impales his human half in the chest.
Back in Shang Tsung's Palace, Havik orders Takeda to choose his destiny as either an agent of chaos, or among the forgotten dead, all teh while torturing him with energy from Shinnok's Amulet. Takeda weakly begins to whisper his response, and Havik leans in to hear him over his own sizzling flesh. Takeda headbutts Havik in defiance, choosing to fight to the bitter end.
Impressed by Takeda's choice to stick to his principles, Havik pins the boy down by his neck and prepares to finish him when the amulet is shot from his hand. An open portal reveals the shooter to be Erron Black, who stands alongside D'Vorah, Reptile, Ferra and Torr, Sheeva, and Kintaro, D'Vorah holding Kotal Kahn's Portal Stone, having used it to gather the reinforcements from Outworld. When Ferra comments on them no longer being in Outworld, Havik jubilantly speaks through all his slaves to welcome them to their nightmare.
D'Vorah asks Erron if he is ready for his redemption, the gunslinger just asking who to fight. After D'Vorah tells him to keep Raiden occupied and to die if he has to achieve this, Black comments on this rescue mission is beginning to feel like a suicide squad before opening fire on the thunder god. Reptile spits acid at Mileena while Sheeva takes on both Johnny Cage and Sonya Blade, commenting to Kintaro if this is the glorious battle he hoped for. The Tigar finds himself uppercutted and punched in the groin by Jacqui and Cassie simultaneously. Kotal Kahn slashes Torr much to Ferra's shock, and D'Vorah attempts to order them to restrain the possessed emperor, only to find herself punched.
Havik, while entertained, notes to himself he still has to finish Takeda, when he realizes the boy has absconded with Shinnok's Amulet. Giving chase, Havik mocks Takeda for running from his opponent, asking him what his master would have to say. Distracted, Takeda trips, and Havik stands over him, revealing he heard everything Raiden told them when he feigned freeing the thunder god from his control. Telling Takeda that the amulet possesses the power of an elder god, Takeda points the relic at Havik, saying it's more than enough to kill the chaos cleric. Reminding Takeda that Raiden never taught him how to wield the amulet, Havik grasps the weapon and offers to show Takeda.
Back in the burning village, Scorpion rages at Hanzo that he no longer needs a heart that bleeds with survivor's guilt, and impales his human side again. Stating that how they feel changes nothing but themselves, Scorpion declares that what they could do will change the world. Hanzo agrees, and states that he has worn guilt around his neck like a noose long enough, before disappearing in a burst of hellfire. A shocked Scorpion is caught off guard as a fireball tears through his back and out his chest.
Appearing behind the collapsing Scorpion, at peace with his inner turmoil, Hanzo tells Scorpion that it is time to let his actions speak for themselves. Picking up the revenant's sword, Hazno declares he will feel no more guilt, desire no more vengeance, and seek only justice before cutting off Scorpion's masked face with a single stroke of his blade.
Back in Shang Tsung's Palace, Havik is blasting Takeda with the amulet, noting that the boy's Jinsei energy charged soul is only prolonging his agonizing death. Havik rants that Earthrealm will suffer just as slow death for Raiden believing Shinnok's defeat could achieve peace between all realms. Just as Havik declares peace to be a golden opportunity for chaos, the cleric suddenly finds himself decapitated by Hanzo, who easily rips Havik's head from his body with his bare hand.
A shocked Havik admits his surprise at Hanzo's unexpected appearance, while the Shirai Ryu grandmaster merely tells the cleric of chaos that that he is the only one he can count on, before teleporting away with Havik's head. Takeda is left alone, weakly calling after his master while lying next to Havik's headless body.
Chapter Thirty-Three: Deliverance
The battle between the Outworld reinforcements and Havik's Blood Code controlled slaves is now faring poorly against D'Vorah and her comrades. As Mileena bites into Reptile's shoulder, D'Vorah is futilely pleading with Kotal Kahn as he attacks her with his sword, while Kintaro is being overpowered by Cassie Cage and Jacqui Briggs. Sheeva, in the midst of her battle with Johnny Cage, tries to spur the Tigar on, but Kintaro is beheaded by Sonya Blade before a horrified Sheeva's eyes.
Raiden blasts Erron Black with red lightning just as Kotal Kahn pins D'Vorah by her neck with his blade. Sonya holds Kintaro's severed head and boasts of chaos and blood when dark red streams of magic exit her, Cassie, and Jacqui's bodies. Cassie is shocked to see her mother, while Sonya is horrified and drops Kintaro's head. Raiden stops his assault on Erron Black, questioning himself as Erron collapses in a smoking heap. Kotal Kahn comes to his senses, and in shock asks D'Vorah what has happened.
Later, after everyone has recovered, Sonya apologizes to Sheeva as the Shokan queen mourns Kintaro's body, with Sheeva reassuring Sonya that Kintaro died a warrior's death. Takeda meanwhile, is lecturing Raiden for keeping Shinnok's amulet and the Kamidogu's connection to it a secret, saying that now all of them have to live with turning on each other. Takeda returns the amulet to Raiden in disgust over how many of his friends have died over it. Raiden tries to apologize, but Takeda only asks the thunder god to keep the relic safe for ll of their sakes.
As Johnny tries to calm an upset Jacqui down, who is panicking over her father's reactions, Sonya is berating Cassie for her actions that led up to her kidnapping, but calms down and hugs her daughter, finally admitting she loves her. As this happens, Mileena frees Ermac, eager to return to Outworld and claim the undefended throne, but Ermac refuses to return with her. Ermac tells Mileena she is not crazy but too impetuous to lead. To Mileena's fury, Ermac tells her Outworld the proven leadership of Kotal Kahn.
As Cassie is excitedly telling her mother of her cagematch, Kotal Kahn and Raiden approach to speak with Sonya, explaining they have interrealm matters to discuss. Though Kotal Kahn tells Sonya he is pleased to see her family reunited, Sonya reminds him that her daughter's kidnapper is in his rescue party. Kotal tells Sonya that Raiden's shock treatment on Erron Black was punishment enough and believes he deserves a second chance, but only if Sonya agrees.
Raiden interrupts to explain that Reiko and Havik had help from Daegon and the Red Dragon and explains to Sonya that he asked him to consider an accord with Earthrealm to discuss interrealm conflicts before attacking each other. Kotal says he will only agree if Sonya does, explaining it would be a non-aggression pact. As a gesture of good faith, Kotal promises to return the weapons of mass destruction he took from Kano. Pleased in Kotal's trust, the two agree to the accord.
Raiden then brings up the final matter: Shinnok's amulet. Presenting the relic, Raiden explains he cannot keep it, fearing the item would corrupt him once again and decides that he cannot hide it with secrets and lies again. Deciding that the amulet shall be guarded by a champion, Raiden tells Kotal and Sonya it must be one of them. Kotal Kahn refuses, reminding Raiden that Mileena has fled and Outworld remains in civil war, not guaranteeing the amulet's protection. Sonya takes the amulet, claiming Special Forces will put it somewhere nobody can find it.
In the Netherrealm, Scorpion approaches the gates of Hell and comes upon a surprised Moloch and Drahmin. He tosses them Havik's head, with the chaos cleric promising that everything he knows will die because of his actions. Drahmin is pleased to find a Chaosrealmer to torture, and just as Scorpion begins to leave, Drahmin stops him, reminding him of his betrayal of Quan Chi. Telling Drahmin he now serves himself, Scorpion explains he did not come for a fight, but smirks and says, "But if you insist..."
In Order of Appearance:
- Kintaro (Death)
- Red Dragon
- D'Vorah (Revived)
- Cassie Cage
- Jacqui Briggs
- Sonya Blade
- Johnny Cage
- Scorpion (Revived)
- Ferra & Torr
- Erron Black
- Drahmin (First Appearance)
- Moloch (First Appearance)
- Erron Black's "Suicide Squad" comment is a reference to another DC Comics book, the Suicide Squad, a team of super-villains who perform high-risk missions for the government.
- Hanzo killing Scorpion with his "Stop Ahead" Fatality is the only instance in the comic where a character from MKX uses a Fatality from the same game.