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"An Anti-Crisis, Part V: The Man of No Tomorrow": Outside Castle Bat. The Metalverse. Earth-0

Quote1.png We do what Diana told us to in her speech... we fight like there is no tomorrow! Quote2.png
Donna Troy

Dark Nights: Death Metal #5 is an issue of the series Dark Nights: Death Metal (Volume 1) with a cover date of January, 2021. It was published on November 17, 2020.

Synopsis for "An Anti-Crisis, Part V: The Man of No Tomorrow"

Outside Castle Bat. The Metalverse. Earth-0

The heroes are struggling, fighting against the all-powerful Darkest Knight and his favorite minion, the Robin King, who is trash-talking Wonder Woman about a speech she made on his Earth, about always having a tomorrow. Things did not end well of course, but the speech was epic. But soon, the Darkest Knight decides to retire his pawn, and also prepare himself to kill a god, Perpetua. He tells Diana the fight is over since they gave him the remaining Manhattan energy without knowing it. As he leaves, he tells Castle Bat to keep them occupied.

The Castle, in truth the soul of Bruce Wayne incarnated into a Gotham of the Dark Multiverse, is made of every material Gotham ever had inside, including red sun particles and several other things that will hurt the heroes, and badly. But out of nowhere comes an unexpected savior: Lex Luthor, and his Legion of Doom, free once again, travelling inside their mobile Hall of Doom. After trapping the soul of Castle Bat in a miniature, thanks to an algorithm developed by Brainiac, Lex offers to Diana his help. Of course trusting him will be hard for them, but they do not have a choice.

Inside the mobile Hall of Doom

While Perpetua and the Darkest Knight hurl planets at each other, Lex explains what his plan is: they must act before the Darkest Knight kills Perpetua and uses his powers to create the Last 52, his own nightmarish version of the Multiverse. And even if it might surprise them, this time Lex will play small, and not big. The key for his plan are all inside a little box, brought there by the Main Man, Lobo. Lex tells them that after the fight with Barbatos, the Element X they used to defeat him was taken by the Monitor and spread over different layers of reality. Thanks to Lobo's healing factor, he was able to retrieve all the shards. But of course, Element X is not enough to defeat a being like Perpetua or the Darkest Knight.

The only way to defeat them is the truth: since Perpetua woke up, Lex discovered that throughout the history of the Multiverse, many tried to uncover the dark secrets of creation. All of them built machines aiming at finding truth, just like the Mobius Chair, for example. Lex projected a machine like this as well, and it will give them the weapon they need to put the word end to all this. But to create the machine, the heroes must reach the World Forge, where they can use these shards Lobo gathered to build it. This machine will "unknot" the Multiverse, making everyone remember all that happened to them, crisis after crisis. Doing so, they will connect everyone, and make everyone feel a small part of an epic story. And this will generate the opposite of the crisis energy.

Crisis energy is obtained by the desire of becoming something huge, able to change the course of existence itself. But Anti-Crisis energy is the opposite: it is connection between small beings, all able to see themselves as part of something greater, accepting it for what it is. But Diana is doubtful: in the League clash against Perpetua after the Justice/Doom War, they lost even if Diana used the Anti-Crisis energy against the evil goddess, so it must mean that the crisis energy is stronger than the anti-crisis one. But Lex tells her she's wrong: Perpetua, during the fight, told her what would happen with anti-crisis winning: some of her friends would die, and all their history would be forever changed.

Diana got scared, and a brief hesitation made all the difference: Perpetua won. Now Diana knows what she could not remember of that day, what Superman and Batman kept away from her. He also knows they both were hiding something from them, and wants to know what it is. Superman reveals her that he is still being transformed by Anti-Life, and will never come back to the one he was. Batman tells her he is dead, he was killed in the League first clash against the evil Batmen, but resurrected with the Black Lantern Ring powers. The Ring is the only thing keeping him alive right now. But both of them don't care: they will be at her side, as long as she needs them. So they will follow Lex's plan: they will unknot the rope, making all history relevant, good, bad and uncertain as it might be. And they will accept the future with hope in their hearts.

Between the Rock of Eternity and the space surrounding Prime Earth, core of the Multiverse

But still, they need a plan to damage the Darkest Knight enough to render him unable to bring his Last 52 Multiverse to life. And it seems the blood of Lobo, and Superman destroying the Earth with a team of villains, will be key to this. As they are ready to go, Diana delivers a final speech, inspired by the bitter words the Robin King told her while she was lying on the ground. Then, Diana and Lex got to the Rock of Eternity, the quickest passage to the World Forge: before going there, Diana asks Lex why he did not choose to go and save everything himself? It was his time to shine, and be the hero he always wanted to be. But Lex answers her, telling he is weak, but also that this is Wonder Woman's destiny.

Superman is there to inspire mankind, telling them to seek the best in themselves. Batman warns them to stay alert, curbing their worst part. But Wonder Woman just seeks one thing: the truth. And the only metal saving them this time will be that one. So Diana calls for her army: the Main Men, a squadron of Lobos born from pieces of the Main Man himself. Together with them, she jumps to reach the World Forge. Meanwhile, Superman directs the demolition of Earth, with sadness but knowing it's the only way: Earth-0 is the Multiverse core, without it the Darkest Knight won't be able to channel his powers to create the Last 52, and will have to fight with the only words he created since he gained his full powers.

As he sensed what is happening, he knows what the heroes put in motion, and throws at them all the planets he already created, and all the nightmares living in them. He still needs to defeat Perpetua. The heroes are prepared to make a last stand, defending their mission of destroying Earth, and Donna Troy tells them to remember the words of their Diana: not to fight because there is always a tomorrow, but to fight knowing there will be no tomorrow this time.

Appearing in "An Anti-Crisis, Part V: The Man of No Tomorrow"

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