Operation: зимний солдат
|Dates run:||May 11-21, 2011|
|Run By:||Twiller and Frito|
|Read the logs:||Operation зимний солдат|
"Winter Soldier may be a Soviet era weapon but Rebecca Barnes is my daughter. If there's anything left of her that can be saved, I have to try."
When David North misses a check-in, X-Force stumbles upon a Cold War legend that strikes much closer to home than any of them imagine.
When Maverick was sent undercover in Europe to investigate mutant weaponization programs, X-Force set up back-channel communications with him using a defunct Russian ‘numbers station’. When that station suddenly stops broadcasting, there is a concern that North has either been killed or gone ‘off the reservation’.
However, a quick trip by Jubilee to check in on North finds him perfectly normal and unharmed. In fact, he has been transmitting on a regular basis - the transmissions simply haven’t been received. Further investigation shows that the numbers station’s broadcast location itself was physically destroyed.
Amanda and Ororo meet with a contact from the Russian embassy for more information on the history of the numbers station in an attempt to determine why it would have been destroyed in that fashion. The contact tells them about a KGB urban legend: apparently the station was used intermittently during the latter part of the Cold War to provide instructions to an operative codenamed Winter Soldier. If the extremely spotty and heavily redacted accounts are to be believed, the Winter Soldier was responsible for a string of assassinations and ‘accidents’ of high-profile personnel from Vietnam to the fall of the Berlin Wall. Part of the difficulty in reconciling these accounts is that at the time, most of the assassinated people were believed to have died accidentally or of natural causes.
Marie-Ange, Amanda, and Wanda head to Russia to meet Sarah, who is already there. Wanda and Marie-Ange meet with Colonel Alexei Vazhin to discuss the destruction of the numbers station and the myth of the Winter Soldier; Natasha Romanova escorts Amanda and Sarah M. to the archives to access the Directorate X files and they find a reference to the Winter Soldier and the name "Barnes"; Amanda alerts the rest of X-Force that their Winter Soldier appears to be the old man who lives on the ground floor of the brownstone.
Jubilee then breaks into Bucky Barnes' apartment to look for evidence while Doug acts as lookout, but Barnes returns early and beats the crap out of Doug, gets Wade (who was coming by to visit Marie-Ange) with Mace and then flees.
The following day, X-Force has a conference call to update everyone on the Barnes situation; that he's a lot older than he looks, but DNA analysis of the fingernail scrapings Doug sent to Muir for rush analysis show he's baseline human with no enhancements. During the conference, Barnes himself turns up to the Snow Valley offices to explain that his adopted daughter, reported KIA in Vietnam, is the Winter Soldier and that he wants X-Force to help him apprehend her.
Emma and Sarah M. go to meet Aleksandr Dmitrovich Lukin, the protege of General Karpov, the man behind the Winter Soldier project; Amanda and Wanda speak to a mafiya contact about Lukin and get more information about his operations; based on the gathered data, Marie-Ange and Cammie go to an abandoned hospital and have their own encounter with the Winter Soldier.
The team and Mr. Barnes have a strategy session to determine how best to simultaneously go after Lukin and recover Rebecca. Marie-Ange asks Doug two difficult things - to act as a sniper and to call Wade to ask him to help.
Wanda, Emma and Marie-Ange confront Lukin at his offices, but he is expecting them and manages to escape. In Pripyat, Jubilee and Cammie blow up the old Directorate X depot that houses the stasis chamber that the Winter Soldier has been kept in all these years, along with Lukin's other hand-me-downs from General Karpov. Doug, Amanda, and James Barnes set up on top of a building to keep an eye on both of the other teams. Wade and Sarah are the heavy hitters, and they draw out the Soldier and are able to wear her down and knock her out, to be taken to a secure medical facility.
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