Power Girl and the Golden Age Flash race through Justice Society of America Headquarters. Though the race is close, the Golden Age Flash is the victor. When Wildcat punches out the television, out of anger over a boxing match, the Golden Age Flash determines that the team is just, plain bored. At that moment, Vulcan attacks, hurling his great flaming axe into the room, nearly decapitating Wildcat. Vulcan transforms his body into organic steel, then backhands the Golden Age Flash across the room. In Gotham City, the Golden Age Green Lantern returns to his office, to resume his civilian identity, Alan Scott. An economic downturn has left Scott's company in dire straits. Scott is pondering an uncertain future when Kent Nelson pays him a visit. Once they're alone, Nelson immediately becomes Doctor Fate.
A pitched battle ensues at Justice Society of America Headquarters, where the team is hard pressed to hold their own against Vulcan. Emitting a powerful burst of light, Vulcan temporarily blinds the Justice Society of America. Rendering Wildcat and the Golden Age Flash unconscious, Vulcan sets their headquarters on fire, then departs. In Washington D.C, Doctor Fate and the Golden Age Green Lantern hear the story of Commander Christopher Pike, an astornaut. Pike had been selected, along with two other astronauts, Raul Jerome and Doctor Edward Solomon, to embark on Vulcan Probe One. Their mission was to remain in orbit around the sun for 200 days. On the 104th day, Pike murdered Jerome and Solomon.
Vulcan Probe One plummeted into the sun. As it neared the surface, the command module collapsed, forming a molten shell around Pike. Astonishingly, the module skipped across the surface of the sun, and returned to Earth. After recovering the module, scientists discover that Pike lives, though he has become something more than human. 23 days after Pike's return to Earth, he awakens from his comatose state, and escapes his confinement. Doctor Fate leads the Golden Age Green Lantern to Pike's location. There the two heroes close on Vulcan, who steels himself for the inevitable confrontation.