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"Rotworld: The Red Kingdom, Part Four": Deep in the subway system of Metropolis, Buddy Baker and his companions discover a Green Lantern trapped in an overgrowth of vines. Weak, but alive, he introduces himself as Medphyll, Lant

Quote1.png I-- I'm sorry, Socks. I can't run away. That's my family. I'll do it... and then you can take my mommy and Cliff and Grandma away from here. But don't worry. My daddy will be back. He'll save me. Quote2.png
Maxine Baker

Animal Man (Volume 2) #16 is an issue of the series Animal Man (Volume 2) with a cover date of March, 2013. It was published on January 9, 2013.

Synopsis for "Rotworld: The Red Kingdom, Part Four"

Deep in the subway system of Metropolis, Buddy Baker and his companions discover a Green Lantern trapped in an overgrowth of vines. Weak, but alive, he introduces himself as Medphyll, Lantern of Sector 2814. Carefully, they separate him from the vines, and he explains how he came to be chosen as Earth's Green Lantern when the Guardians of the Universe saw the planet fall to The Rot. They hoped that a Lantern from the planet J586, whose inhabitants are plant-based lifeforms, would best be equipped to face the Rot, thanks to their strong connection to The Green. In the meantime, the Guardians sealed off the planet, in order to prevent the Rot from spreading. Unfortunately, someone captured Medphyll soon after his arrival. That someone was Blackbriar Thorn, and he has just noticed that his prisoner was freed.

A year ago, Maxine Baker had been betrayed by William Arcane, thinking that he could lead them to her family. He did, but they were still infected by the Rot, and they were being guarded by the Hunters Two, who proposed a deal that they would let Maxine's family go free if she would join them as the third hunter. When Socks tried to warn her against the deal, Arcane infected the cat with the Rot as well.

With the massive wizard of the wood entangling them in his vines, Constantine tries to reason with him, warning that once Anton Arcane thinks Thorn has served his purpose, he will be done away with. In the meantime, Black Orchid uses her own connection to the Green to wither the vines that hold them. Regrouping, Constantine explains that beneath the woody exterior, Blackbriar Thorn is still a small, old man. Buddy volunteers to take on the power of a termite, and dig his way to the wizard's sanctuary. While his companions distracted him, Buddy went deep until he found the wizard, and dragged him out from his hideaway.

On the surface, the companions see that Frankenstein and his patchwork army are quite occupied with Arcane's forces, which have grown stronger since the defeat of Blackbriar Thorn. Medphyll would like to help them, but his ring is out of power, and he requires access to his power battery. This, he hid within the globe atop the ruins of the Daily Planet building. After saying his Oath and recharging, Medphyll manages to thin the Rot's troops, and earn them all some respite before the journey to Arcane's stronghold.

Unable to simply give up on her family, Maxine agreed to give herself over to the rot in exchange for their safety, much to Socks' displeasure. Freed of the Rot's influence, Ellen and Cliff begged Maxine not to let herself become infected. She disregarded their warnings, and allowed one of the hunters to bite into her arm. Soon, she became one with the Rot, and thereby sealed the planet's fate.

Approaching the heart of the Deadlands, Buddy and his friends sensed the Rot's influence becoming stronger and stronger. Strangely, though, there has been no sign of the gatekeepers rumoured to protect the stronghold. When patchwork soldiers are suddenly bisected by a reddish blur, they soon realize that the Rot managed to gain control over The Flash. With no defence against him, John Constantine falls victim, as Flash thrusts his fist through the man's chest.

Sadly, Steel looks ahead to the gates, and sees that Arcane is protecting his stronghold with the full force of the Justice League.

Appearing in "Rotworld: The Red Kingdom, Part Four"

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