By Jim Beard
When Nathan Summers returned from the future as the mutant freedom fighter Cable, his evil clone followed and brought their struggle to the present. Stryfe proved to be the single greatest challenge in Cable's life-after all, how can a man fight himself and win?
But win he did, and more than once, however now Stryfe has returned from beyond to bedevil Cable again in the ongoing conflict known as Messiah War. This May 6, in CABLE #14, Cable's existence goes from bad to worse as Stryfe turns up the volume on his plan to bring the house down on his "brother" once and for all.
Check out these past battles between the two future warriors to learn just how deep the roots of the Messiah War run.
NEW MUTANTS v1 #87 (1990)
The armored Stryfe and his Mutant Liberation Front sought the release of New Mutants members Skids and Rusty from federal custody and weren't above blowing a few things up to get their way. Cable interrupted the "rescue" but unfortunately things didn't go well for the time-lost soldier and the MLF spirited away with the kids, forcing the man from the future to seek allies for the battles to come.
X-FORCE v1 #18 (1993)
While Cyclops and Jean Grey looked on, Cable and Stryfe bandied angry words about and then took to blows. Offering little aid, the two X-Men suspected the identities of the fighters but watched as the battle literally began to destroy the men. Finally, an almost-defeated Cable managed to open a time vortex and he and his clone disappeared into the timestream.
CABLE v1 #8 (1994)
His body destroyed in the time vortex, Stryfe found his consciousness resided in Cable's body, a form of revenge by Cable's son Tyler. Horrified, Stryfe then learned of his clone nature and Cable's existence as the original of the two. After a battle with the X-Men, Stryfe gave up Cable's body and the mutant warrior looked forward to freedom from his enemy forever...
CABLE v1 #63 (1999)
...but that just wasn't in the cards. After suffering through a vision of Stryfe, Cable discovered through Blaquesmith that his dark clone still existed and held court in Latveria. Once in Doctor Doom's country, Cable met up with Madelyne Pryor and discovered that Stryfe had captured "X-Man" Nate Grey. The two "sons" of Cyclops soon found themselves easily defeated by the powerful villain.
GAMBIT & BISHOP #6 (2001)
Faced with the destructive alien threat known as the Bete Noir, Cable and Stryfe attempted to hold the beast in a telekinetic field. Bishop asked to be killed so as to unanchor the Bete Noir in this world, but Stryfe absorbed it into himself and tried to make amends to Cable. Once having apologized for all the strife he'd caused, the power overload once again brought him death.
Alas, a good villain never truly dies and a hero's battle against evil never ends. Stryfe's back and the Messiah War ramps up in CABLE #14, due out on May 6!
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