"Past Imperfect": Nathaniel Adam finds himself in the pre-superhero past. New Year's Eve 1996, he ducks into a back alley to stop a beat-down he winds up being stabbed and is rushed to a hospital where he meets nurse Takara Sato. A
- ...the universe is self-regulating... it will neutralize any action in the past that might cause a future time-paradox. Hence, the time-stream always finds a way to correct itself.
Synopsis for "Past Imperfect"
Nathaniel Adam finds himself in the pre-superhero past. New Year's Eve 1996, he ducks into a back alley to stop a beat-down he winds up being stabbed and is rushed to a hospital where he meets nurse Takara Sato. Adam also poses as a potential PhD student to glean advice from Professor Cyril Rathaway by pretending to have written his past into a novel of time-travel. The professor explains to him the Novikov self-consistency principle which states that the universe will neutralise any action which may cause a future paradox, and that any actions a time-traveller can influence are pre-destined.
Adam goes on to date and propose to Takara and in his spare time, Adam enlists as a rescue pilot; during a routine rescue he saves the life of Perry White an action Adam takes to believe is pre-destined. Because of this, however, Adam is uncertain of whether he can marry Takara. After having nightmares about the church exploding he decides to bite the bullet and marries Takara on June 6, 1998 and they move to Central City.
One evening, in the year 2000, Adam leaves his wife to go visit Professor Rathaway (whom he had been giving advice to) and reveals that small silver patches of his old costume had been appearing on his body. The Professor takes him to get an MRI scan but the machine explodes from Adam's presence suggesting that his existence as a normal man is coming to an end. The Professor tells him to run back to his wife and tell her everything before it is too late. Meanwhile, Takara leaves a voice mail telling Adam that she is pregnant.
On the Route 9 on the way home Adam finds a woman laid flat on the road, he jumps out of his car but two armed men run in from the sides and hold him at gun point. One of the robbers shoots Adam but he remains uninjured and instead surges with power. He runs into his car to escape but the vehicle explodes and a mysterious voice drags him back to the present and he wakes up in 2017. In the background, the Continuum is being torn down; having witnessed Captain Atom's destruction previously in 2012.
Appearing in "Past Imperfect"
- Nathaniel Adam (as Vince Mallory)
- Street Thugs
- Justice League (Mentioned only)
- Perry White
- Rescue Vehicles
- Police Car
- Adam wakes up in the year 2017, set by a skywriter's message "Give to the 2017 Super Hero Fund"
- Cover gallery for the The Fall and Rise of Captain Atom series
- Images from The Fall and Rise of Captain Atom Vol 1 2