Chapter 1

Ferral

"How long has it been since Wolverine was released into the city?" Natasha Romanoff, a.k.a. the Black Widow, carefully focused all her attention to the one monitor that mattered at that moment. The Tinkerer huddled in his makeshift workbench furiously twisting knobs and toggling switches, sweat staining his shirt. Wilson Fisk stood imposingly in the corner of the command center, smoking another of his army of Cuban cigars.

"Two-hundred and eighty six minutes, ma'am," answered an S.H.I.E.L.D. operative checking the mission timer. The monitor Natasha stared at intently hummed a flat-line for over two hours now.

Mumbling in Russian, she turned on her heel to the workbench. "Tinkerer?"

"It's not me, madam. I've done all I can," shrugged the little old man. As Natasha turned back to focus on the monitor once more, a radio transmission buzzed over the speaker.

"Command, this is Recon Team Zeta, we found something."

"Report, Zeta," snapped Natasha.

"I think we found the Tinkerer's control collar. It looks like it's been shredded, but no sign of—Shit! Contact! I repeat, contact," yelled the soldier. "It's him! We need back-up, ASAP! I repeat, it's Wolver—aaaah!"

"Zeta?! Come in, Zeta," demanded the furious Black Widow. The radio buzzed with weakening fire until all was silent. Then a growl rumbled the speakers.

"You thought you could put a collar on me and expect me to obey?" growled the infected Wolverine. "You can't train what could never be controlled. I'm one with the wild, and now much more. Oh, and don't worry; I'll kill Parker, but be prepared to die 'cause you're next!" A sharp slink and a pop later, the radio died. Natasha cursed aloud in Russian.

"It seems the animal chewed through his collar. Even with the symbiote influencing his mind, I don't think we could ever have hoped to fully control him," sneered the Tinkerer.

"I told you we should have put that dog down, little girl. He was too feral to train," snickered the Kingpin.

Natasha leaned on top of her desk, head bowed in shame. "Patch me in with Colonel Fury," she moaned. A second later the comm. buzzed to life.

"This is Fury. What's your status, Black Widow?"

"Operation failed, Colonel. Wolverine broke free from his collar and is loose within the city," reported Natasha.

"That is really bad news. However, an opportunity has shown itself that may assist us in ending this invasion. You will be briefed when Alpha team and I arrive. Fury out."

***

Wolverine sniffed the air and gagged. "Grraah, this city stinks of symbiote. I stink of symbiote. I can't find Parker in this cesspool of symbiote shi—!" Wolverine sniffed again, grumbling, satisfied. "Huh, nifty. Doesn't smell anymore. Uh, thanks, I guess," Wolverine said as he observed his symbiote. Wolverine focused on his sense of smell for a moment. "Hurm, funny. Smells a lot like—"

Wolverine howled in pain as two silver crescent boomerangs sliced into his back. A large symbiote landed in a crouched-attack position in front of Wolverine, tentacles trailing behind it as if they were a cape. Spikes jutted out from its arms and a dark crescent moon covered the symbiote's chest. The face which consisted only of large teeth opened and hissed, "I know what you're doing here, Wolverine, and I won't allow you to harm my king!"

"That's not like you, Moon Knight. I thought you only served that imaginary god of yours," growled Wolverine as his symbiote assisted in pulling out the boomerangs from his back.

"Khonshu did not offer a power stronger than that which Spider-Man has bestowed upon me. Naturally I abandoned my old god for a new one, and I will protect him with my life," Moon Knight hissed. He charged at Wolverine, but was immediately knocked back as Wolverine pounced on him, claws stabbing into Moon Knight's chest.

"You're way out of your league, bub! Why don't you step aside so your king and I could have a little chat," growled Wolverine. Moon Knight screeched in Wolverine's face, but suddenly ceased.

"Enough, Moon Knight. He's right; you are out of your league. Stand down," commanded the ever-seducing Black Cat in her royal attire that consisted of her symbiote without the cowl. She stood on top of a near-by office building, looking down upon the street at the two combatants. Moon Knight shoved Wolverine off and retreated up onto another rooftop, the symbiote healing the stab wounds in his chest.

"I'll tear through you too, Felicia. I want Parker," roared Wolverine.

"I guess you're still sore about me tearing you in half the other day," laughed Spider-Man, walking up next to his queen Black Cat, still wearing his old symbiote.

"I said I'd kill you. I'm here to keep that promise!"

"You don't want to fight me, Wolvie. You are way out of your league," warned Spidey.

"Yeah, right!" Wolverine extracted his claws and projected a tentacle, catching Spidey by the ankle and flinging him towards Wolverine. Spidey recovered from the attack and slammed into Wolverine's face feet first. Wolverine fell back while Spidey flipped once in the air and landed on Wolverine's chest. Spidey crouched and moved his face close to Wolverine's.

"You forget, Wolvie. I've had my symbiote a lot longer than you. I know things, I've mastered my skills. And I can do this…!" Spidey slammed his clawed hands into Wolverine's chest, absorbing his symbiote. Exposed, Wolverine looked angrily into Spidey's eyes.

"Son of a—!"

***

A group of S.H.I.E.L.D. soldiers guarded the energy barrier blocking New York City from Stark Tower. One turned to the other and said, "You know what? Life sucks."

"Na, just this whole symbiote invasion crap," another joked.

"Yo, contact at eleven o'clock! Five crawlers!" motioned another soldier. Fifty yards on the city side of the barrier five blue and white symbiotes dragged chunks of a carcass to the front of the barrier, dropped them, and fled back into the city. "Huh, wonder what that was all about?"

One of the soldiers ran over to the remains, stumbled back, removed his helmet and gagged. "Uh, guys? You better check this out!" The remaining guards ran over to see the bloody mess of what used to be Wolverine.

The leader radioed in, "Command, this is Epsilon Team, we found our missing hero."