Speedball is dead; Timeslip's prophecy has come true. Timeslip has lost her memory of recent events. Someone named Advent has plans for all of them 50 years in the past. It's about to get a lot worse before it gets better.
While the Warriors mourn their friend, Timeslip tries to make sense of the jumbled thoughts going through her head. In his grief, Justice demands her shut up, but soon wishes he listened as she announces too late the arrival of Advent! Nearby police don't like his looks and attempt to stop him, but Advent rapidly ages them to death. Justice demands answers from him, but his response is to attack, wiping all but Timeslip out of existence. She runs off before he can try a more conventional attack, and he shrugs it off. Grabbing Speedball's body, he takes to the skies. Something in Rina tells her to follow him, so she does, and as she runs her mind is invaded by memories not her own.
His name was Darrion Grobe. The year was 2092. He and his father, Kyle, had discovered a way to visit and record the past, but with Alchemax controlling their funding and demanding results in three days, time was running short. They had successfully tapped into a dimension of pure kinetic energy to use as a power source and created a bioelectronic time-shell that would protect a human from the transtemporal friction. But 3 days wasn't enough time to perfect the process.
Darrion tries to convince his father they can't do it in that time, but Kyle insists they must. As they open a link to the kinetic dimension's holographic display, they see in the kinetic bubbles what appears to be the form of a person traveling through it. This gives them a new alternative theory to the one they have, but as time grows short they decided to continue on with the original plan and explore the other options later.
Meanwhile in the present, Rina tries to stay focused on the here and now as she chases Advent, but the memories continue to consume her. Kyle prepares to take the first trip into the past, not heeding his son's desires to reconsider. Activating the protective phase-shift in the lab to protect himself from any possible chronological changes, Darrion activates the machine and sends his father back in time. An alarm sounds and Darrion checks his instruments, discover that predicted molecular inversion is happening, bonding the time-shell with his father and creating the being known as Advent. He was traipsing through time, altering key events to his liking, including keeping Spider-Man from saving New York City from a terrorist nuclear attack.
Darrion's re-education of history is interrupted by Advent appearing on his screen as the new ruler of 2092. He asks Darrion to lower the phase-shift so that he can be assimilated into the new reality. Darrion is the only one aware of the changes, and the only threat to Advent's absolute rule. Darrion tries to figure out how to fix history without turning himself into another Advent and before Advent's forces pierce the lab. Then he remembers the form going through the kinetic dimension.
Scanning the form at the subatomic level, he uses the process for the time-shell to create an exact duplicate of the being (who happens to be Speedball if you didn't figure that out already) right down to his protective kinetic field. He even ups Speedball's power level, but aside from that he's a perfect duplicate right down to the last brain cell. The last step is to download his mind into Speedball and send him on his way, just as Advent's forces pierce the lab. He bypasses the real Speedball to land back in the past, his persona regressing to allow the Speedball personality to take over, and thus forgetting his purpose. This explains Speedball's powers being out of whack, his mother's signs of temporal-related stress, and ability to send off a temporal inversion to save himself from the Guardians of the Galaxy. But, it only worked once, and Sphinx came calling to fix the problems in the universe.
Somehow, he transferred all of this information into Rina's head with the touch before his borrowed body died. Rina takes a breather, trying to comprehend it all, just as a battle ravaged Spider-Man (Ben Reilly, not Peter) comes flying through a nearby window. Advent comes out soon after, and Spidey tries his best to defeat him to deal with the terrorists across town. However, time is not on his side as Advent sends his age beam through a strand of Spidey's webbing, rapidly aging him to defeat.
Rina steals a nearby cop's gun and tries to take out Advent, but it proves to no use as he ages the bullets before they can hit. Advent takes his leave, but Rina feels too sick to follow, or to stop the cop from grabbing her. Spidey struggles to his feet, telling her about the bomb, and she realizes it's too late. The bomb goes off and the wave finds its way towards them. Fighting the sudden sickness, Rina manages to time warp and reality slows down for her, allowing her to hear and see first hand the results of a nuclear explosion. She knew she was Darrion's last hope to put things right, but she failed. And now, history will suffer for it.
Wow. Every single dangling plot-line is explained in a nice neat little package. Plus, we got a hell of a cliffhanger ending to go out on into the final part of this story. Every twist and turn, every confusing moment, all explained for the benefit of the reader and it all makes sense. And extra kudos for the throwing in of the future curse "shock" made famous in the 2099 books.
5 Webs. This was a great part and really made the story.