Operation: Big Trouble in Little Lowtown
|Big Trouble in Little Lowtown|
|Dates run:||May 14-22, 2015|
|Read the logs:||Big Trouble in Little Lowtown|
The Seals of Anqi Sheng. When brought together a contract is made, and the bearer is granted immortality and the aspects of the gods.
Ancient artifacts, an extremely elderly Chinese businessman, and a French mercenary. Sounds like just another day at the office for X-Force!
Things begin with the deaths of a number of private antiquities collects and museum staff involved with ancient China. The incidents are world-wide, which is why no-one else makes the connection, but when an old friend of Christian Kane is murdered, he asks Kevin and Domino to investigate, using their established connections.
X-Force investigates the items stolen and the people they were stolen from. Old fashioned footwork, interviewing family and associates, trying to establish what was so important about the items. This also includes researching the items themselves - their history, their potential links to each other, and so on. They discover that most of the items are not particularly valuable, from the middle of the Qing dynasty. The connection is that all ten items came from the same place; a trove of artifacts found in a Ling Valley dig.
The identity of the thief is discovered to be a French mercenary named Batroc the Leaper. XF tracks him back to Madripoor and captures him after he's already passed over the last of the artifacts. They discover the connection between him, Tong and the Triads. They also learn the reason that he wants the artifacts are something called the Seals of Qi. They are ancient magical items that were hidden inside the Qing dynasty artifacts.
Following their information gathering in Madripoor, the team confronts the Mandarin and discover his connections with the Chinese underground go further than the expected Mafia. They manage to stop him in his plan to become a new god via the power of the artifacts, but he manages to de-age and gain significant power from the rings.
Trivia and Meta
Georges Batroc is the Marvel Cinematic Universe version, although the events of Captain America: The Winter Soldier have yet to take place in X-Project.
The Qin dynasty is the oldest of the Chinese dynasties, and the Qing is the most recent. Hiding the oldest dynasty seals inside the newest dynasty copies was deliberate. ;)