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Northstar as you’ve never known him before!

A sixty-something retired Canadian super-hero (Canada's first, in fact) known as Major Mapleleaf, sits alone at night in his bathrobe poring over a videotape of the press conference in which he announced his retirement several years prior. He freezes the image at a closeup of his infant son Michael, and collapses on the TV screen in anguish. At that moment in downtown Toronto, Mr. Hyde is seen battling members of Alpha Flight. Hyde strikes Northstar and sends him crashing into rows of garbage cans down an alley. To his shock, Northstar finds an abandoned newborn girl in one of those trash cans and immediately flees the scene. Mr. Hyde gloats briefly before being pounded into the ground by Sasquatch.

Three weeks later, Northstar, who still insists on holding the teams debriefings in the hospital, is told by the infant's doctor that she was born to a mother who was HIV positive and that the child, who has since been adopted by Northstar, and named Joanne, has AIDS.

Another three weeks pass. The woman believed to be the childs' mother is buried and because of the constant media coverage, there is a general national feeling of mourning and sadness all over Canada for this baby, who has been named the "unofficial youngest member" of Alpha Flight. This all proves too much for Major Mapleleaf to bear. Clearly irrational and distraught, the former hero crashes into the infants hospital room where he is met by an angry Northstar.

A heated battle breaks out over Toronto, when Mapleleaf discloses the reason for his rage to Northstar. Major Mapleleaf's own son, Michael Nadler, died of AIDS. He is resentful and sickened by the sympathy and attention given to an infant with AIDS, when no there was no such public outcry for his adult, gay son. Northstar then makes comics history by angrily disclosing his own gayness to Mapleleaf in a flurry of punches that send Major Mapleleaf down the street and into a moving truck. Mapleleaf attacks back and tells Northstar that by closetting himself all these years, when he could instead have been making strides as a positive role model and public spokesperson, he (Northstar) is just as guilty for the social and political indifference to AIDS and the homophobia that stems from it. Northstar reluctantly ends the battle and beats Mapleleaf into submission before the two share a mournful embrace. The next day, Joanne dies in her adoptive father's arms, even as he is held and comforted by Major Mapleleaf. Northstar announces his homosexuality publicly on the front page of the January 21, 1992 issue of Toronto's The Daily Mail.

Reprinted in Astonishing X-Men Annual #1

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Puck Part 84: Alpha Flight #106 0

Puck learns some personal information about a fellow Alphan and gets reacquainted with an old friend. Judd attends a debriefing with “Core Alpha” in a waiting room at Toronto General Hospital as Jean-Paul awaits news of an infant girl he found in a garbage can. They learn the child is dying from AIDS, and the team spends the next three weeks speaking out regarding the disease. Judd catches up with Northstar, who’s still at the hospital, and convinces him to take a break and try to get some foo...

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