- Well, I hate to tell you this, but my daughter is the Avatar, and unless you want to be reincarnated as a slug, I suggest you bring me to the Totems... Now!
Appearing in "Extinction Is Forever, Part One: The Bone Orchard"
- Las Animas
Synopsis for "Extinction Is Forever, Part One: The Bone Orchard"
Elsewhere, Ellen Baker and her family have arrived at the city limits for Las Animas, Colorado. At Socks' urging, they have been heading east in order to get closer to the Swamp Thing. It is his hope that Alec Holland will be able to protect Maxine Baker while her father is missing. Sleeping in her mother's lap, Maxine wakes, and realizes that her father is beyond even her ability to sense him.
In the Red, Buddy encounters a strange creature who introduces himself as the Shepherd, and welcomes him to the Bone Orchard. It is his job to help those lost in the Red find their way. Realizing where he is, Buddy suddenly feels an overwhelming concern for Maxine's safety. He is meant to be her protector, and if he is in the Red, nobody is there to keep her safe.
Buddy demands an audience with the Totems, but the Shepherd warns that not just anybody can see them whenever they want. Angrily, Buddy informs the Shepherd that he is the father of the avatar of the Red, and he must be brought to the Totems, lest he turn the creature into a slug.
Maxine demands to be allowed to go into the Red and rescue her father, but Ellen won't let the family be separated again. Maxine is only four-years-old, and she is not ready to be traversing the Red alone, in Ellen's mind. Ellen is also not keen on meeting with the Swamp Thing, wishing to keep Maxine - and herself - as far from any craziness as possible. Socks assures her that the fate of the world depends on Maxine, and Ellen ought to get used to that.
In Buddy's body, the hunter arrives at Las Animas and uses some nearby roadkill to enter the Rot. He believes that with this form, he will surely be able to capture Maxine. His companions, however, know that she is too powerful to subdue outside of the Rot. Instead, he must find a way to lure her into the Rot with them, where they will be most powerful.
After grovelling for a moment, the Shepherd rises and offers to guide Buddy through the Red to the Totems. From the Bone Orchard, they must traverse the Sea of Blood. Then, they must head through the flesh desert. Unfortunately, there is an obstacle to their progress - the Rot has been appearing in pockets of the Red, and one sits in the middle of the Sea of Blood, between Buddy and his destination.
Outside a motel, Ellen and her son Cliff return to the camper when they are accosted by a surly looking man with a British accent. John Constantine introduces himself as the man who is going to save their bacon.
- The dream that Buddy describes is essentially the first 26 issues of Animal Man Vol 1, comprising Grant Morrison's run on the series.
- No trivia.
- Animal Man Recommended Reading