"Gold Standard": After having sought Clem Hootkins' gang together for some time, Jonah Hex and Booster Gold are surprised to find the gang brutally murdered and mutilated. However, this is of no concern to Hex, who has had his work
- That is seriously hardcore. How are you not freaking out about this? Mutilated bodies and you're decapitating them... You can just bring heads in and get paid for them?
Synopsis for "Gold Standard"
After having sought Clem Hootkins' gang together for some time, Jonah Hex and Booster Gold are surprised to find the gang brutally murdered and mutilated. However, this is of no concern to Hex, who has had his work done for him. To Booster's horror, he decapitates Hootkins' corpse, taking the head as proof of his bounty's completion. He has no intention of accompanying Booster in search of the gold Hootkins stole from his adoptive village's bank, which is nowhere at this scene. Frustrated, Booster resorts to offering Jonah some of the gold as a reward for helping him get it back.
That night, they spot the village where a gang of Mexican bandits have gathered, led by a man named Romeo and his woman, Damita. Thanks to his future-tech goggles, Booster can see through the walls of their hideout, where he can see Damita crouching over Romeo, while Hootkins' dwarf watches from a cage. The missing gold sits nearby.
To Hex's annoyance, Booster is disinclined to kill in cold blood by manning the Gatling gun on the back of a nearby cart. Despite Hex's warning that people will die in order to keep that gold, Booster suggests that they wait until the inhabitants are asleep, and steal it back without anyone's noticing.
Later, Booster makes his way into the hideout and takes gathers the large chest of gold up into his arms, sneaking carefully past Damita and Romeo. The caged dwarf, though, is wide awake, and warns that if Booster doesn't free him, he will scream and wake the sleeping bandits. Booster ignores him, with his arms full, and so the dwarf begins shouting for the sleeping drunks to wake - but to no avail. However, when Booster makes his way outside, it becomes clear that other people heard the shouts.
Without much prompting, the entire village unloads their pistols at him, but they are utterly stunned when he stands up, unharmed. Dumbfounded, they merely watch as he packs the gold into the back of the cart with the Gatling gun, and then returns to place the dwarf under arrest.
As the sun rises, Booster returns with the dwarf and cart to where Jonah Hex sits, waiting. Upon seeing the dwarf, however, he intends to shoot the prisoner dead, noting that the bounty is not dead or alive. Staying Hex's hand, Booster promises to pay the bounty regardless, and let the people of his village decide the dwarf's fate instead.
After Romeo wakes up, he disbelieves the stories of Booster's surviving their gunshots, and vows to shoot this Sheriff Booster Gold for himself, and see if he bleeds.
Appearing in "Gold Standard"
- Clem Hootkins (Dies)
- Amadeus Arkham (Mentioned only)
Synopsis for "Stormwatch: The Lost City of Gold"
As they ride through the desert of Arizona, Adam One's collection of crime-fighters is concerned that one of their ranks has kept mostly to himself. Though Adam One explains that this is merely because Cody Barrow is a loner, the Master Gunfighter is hanging back because he senses something dark about these lands they ride through. This is a hunting ground for something unthinkable.
Adam leads them to a Mesa where buildings have been carved into the rock itself. He turns to his companions and warns that from this point onward, they will be surrounded by death. Here, they will seek a relic from a dead age. Barrow warns that they should wait til morning before approaching, but Adam presses them onward, explaining that they will soon face vampires. Doctor Thirteen pooh-poohs vampires, suggesting that they are merely a myth. Adam assures them that they are not, claiming that some of the earliest writers on the subject of vampires became victims of the vampire they are seeking tonight.
He tells of how Mircalla Nosferata was once an Austrian aristocrat who was driven from Europe and presumed dead when her ship sank. Though the ship did sink, she did not drown. She survived on the blood of the creatures of the sea, and walked along the ocean floor, until she finally arrived in Mexico. After assimilating the culture of the Native Americans, she learned of the city of gold and the three skulls of boundless rule, which are contained here in Arizona. These skulls, Adam explains, can do anything their possessor desires of them, and Mircalla wants to rule the earth, reducing humanity to livestock.
The four of them enter the caves to find the lost city of gold, apparently deserted. Adam warns that they must be quick and silent, lest they wake the vampires, but Thirteen, in his skepticism calls out that there doesn't appear to be anyone to wake. This is met with a response from Nosferata herself, whose tribe of vampires converges on them. Angrily, Adam points out that Thirteen should have less trouble believing his own eyes, as Jenny Freedom shouts that they must defend themselves.
Even as Cody, Jenny and Adam fight for their lives, Doctor Thirteen remains a skeptic, prompting Nosferata to carry him up into the air on her wings, and fly him up to the top of the golden pyramid, to its altar. As Adam rushes after her, Jenny and Cody begin to suspect that Adam planned for Thirteen to get caught. Meanwhile, at the altar, Nosferata sinks her teeth into Doctor Thirteen's neck.
Appearing in "Stormwatch: The Lost City of Gold"
- Mircalla Nosferata
- Heinrich August Ossenfelder was a poet, whose 1748 poem The Vampire is thought to have been one of the first pieces of literature to depict the subject of vampirism, referenced here by Doctor Thirteen.