"Infected: Chapter 3, "Danger Zone"": In the last several days, Superman has destroyed Doomsday, refused to undergo testing, nearly murdered three people, and finally turned himself in to Lex Luthor and [[Sam
Appearing in Infected: Chapter 3, "Danger Zone"
- Senator Sam Lane (On a TV or computer screen)
Synopsis for Infected: Chapter 3, "Danger Zone"
In the last several days, Superman has destroyed Doomsday, refused to undergo testing, nearly murdered three people, and finally turned himself in to Lex Luthor and Senator Sam Lane to find out what's been wrong with him. Batman knows well enough what's wrong. Superman has been infected by spores left in the wake of Doomsday's destruction. He had inhaled them all in order to save the residents of Smallville without knowing what it might do to him. What it appears to be doing is turning him into a Doomsday himself. Lane and Luthor, meanwhile, are doing a good job of making the world terrified of him.
Batman travels to the Fortress of Solitude to seek out a cure, having traced Doomsday's steps back there. Given how close to home it is, Bruce wonders if Lane and Luthor might be right, no matter how good Clark's intentions are. He is interrupted there by Wonder Woman and Steel, whom Clark sent to help. Even as Bruce doubts him, he still believes in Bruce.
Outside, they discover that Krypto is sick, apparently affected by the same cellular damage that Steel himself faced when he fought Doomsday. The dog never fought Doomsday, though. He was just with Superman after his infection. Somehow, Clark had hurt his dog just by being near him. Inside the Fortress, Batman tracks Doomsday's path to the Phantom Zone Lens. Krypto becomes excited, and Bruce realizes that the dog had also been tracking Doomsday as it leaps through the portal without hesitation. Uncomfortably, he tries to enter it as well, and despite the searing pain of passing through the lens, he determines that it is imperative that he does it, for Clark's sake. Before Wonder Woman follows him, she warns Steel to stay behind, and to close the portal behind them forever if something goes wrong. The prisoners of the Phantom Zone cannot be allowed to escape.
The first thing they notice about the Zone is that they can feel in it. They aren't supposed to be able to feel anything. The residents of the Zone are intangible - but for some reason, the ground is covered with skulls. Worriedly, Batman comments that this might be a bigger problem than they realize. Determinedly, Diana presses on. Soon, along with Krypto, they come upon a disturbing scene. Mongul and Non are desperately holding shut a rift in the wall of the Phantom Zone that - if opened - will kill everyone in the Zone.
Without hesitation, Wonder Woman rushes forward to help, successfully closing the rift on her own. She turns to Non, asking where his companions Zod and Faora are. He explains that he lost track of them when Doomsday attacked. He opened the rift, and his brutality reminded Non of the old stories from Krypton of a monster that could kill them all. Mongul, though, considers Diana's help an affront, and attacks her. As he watches helplessly, Batman wonders if he and Diana were sent there in order to recruit the monsters who were actually capable of surviving an attack by Doomsday.
Mongul turns on Batman as well, but Bruce is saved suddenly when Ghost Soldier appears from the portal's opening and makes both Batman and Wonder Woman intangible before teleporting them to another part of the Zone. Rather than trust him, Batman attacks him with a liquid-nitrogen grenade, giving Diana the time she needs to wrap her Lasso of Truth around Ghost Soldier. Under its influence, he explains that he used to work for the organization called the Tower, who set Doomsday loose because they thought Superman was dangerous. They failed to see that they'd risk millions of lives to take him out by that method.
A howl from Krypto draws their attention instead to something else. From his position in the Fortress, Steel determines that the device the dog is sniffing is tapping power from a second rift in the Zone's wall. Worse, Batman discovers that this is where Doomsday came from. Before they can investigate further, they are attacked by Xa-Du, the first prisoner of the Phantom Zone. He gets Ghost Soldier at his mercy, prompting a standstill. Reluctantly, Wonder Woman suppresses her desire to crush him in favour of getting information.
She asks about Doomsday, and Xa-Du explains that he was approached by Harrow of Tower with a plan to kill Superman. When Ghost Soldier failed to assassinate him, Xa-Du gave Harrow a second gift. The Kryptonians have passed down a legend of a beast destined to kill the last knight of the House of El. Using his Ecto-Suit, Xa-Du managed to locate Doomsday within a hidden corner of the Phantom Zone. When he released it, though, he realized that it had changed, and it broke the Phantom Zone. He suspects correctly that Doomsday has since merged with Superman and become the most powerful creature in the galaxy. If they do not band together to kill Superman, he will kill them all. Wonder Woman was hoping for a cure, and in her annoyance, she attacks.
In the Fortress, Steel senses the rift in the Zone expanding. Worriedly, he opens the portal for Batman and Wonder Woman to come through, only to have Non come through instead. Sensing a Kryptonian, the Fortress automatically inundates him with yellow sun rays, making him stronger than Steel. Before he can reach full power, Wonder Woman leaps through the lens and tackles him, thrusting him back into the Zone just as Batman, Krypto, and Ghost Soldier leap out. Hurriedly, Steel closes the portal only to have Batman chastise him for failing to close the portal when he was warned to. Steel responds that he was only doing as Superman would have done. So had Batman and Wonder Woman, who dragged Xa-Du back through the portal with her Lasso.
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