The worst fears of the Justice League are realized, as the villains strike through those closest to the heroes! Plus, an important member of the JLA returns!
Outside the Fortress of Solitude, Batman and Superman discuss the dichotomy between Metropolis and Gotham City, and the effectiveness of the villains' coordinated attacks. Superman leaves the Dark Knight and flies above the Earth to a stationary orbit; observing the villains' floating cities, he recognizes Brainiac's hand in their construction.
The Flash confronts Captain Cold in Africa and apprehends him after a brief skirmish. He brings Cold to the Fortress, where Batman intimidates Cold into talking about what he knows.
Ray Palmer is told about Brainiac's plan: mind-control worms have been miniaturized by Brainiac so that they can infiltrate the human body.
Batman alerts the other Leaguers to what Captain Cold told him:
"The villains who have been attacking us have had the same recurring nightmare, a vision of the end. They have not questioned its origins, believing only that their shared experience somehow makes the dream true [...] They dream that we all fail to save anyone, including ourselves. If anything this world's trust in the Justice League was its undoing. And so, our enemies have formed an alliance to either stop the coming end of life, or prepare a remnant of humanity to survive it."
The Joker, disguised as a preacher, enters one of the cities unnoticed.
In Metropolis, Luthor oversees Supergirl's kidnapping at the hands of the Parasite. The Scarecrow and Clayface kidnap Batgirl. In the world generated by his ring, the young Hal Jordan is confronted by the Phantom Stranger and brought to the Fortress. Wonder Woman reveals to Captain Marvel that the wounds she incurred in her battle with Cheetah continue to damage her from within and will eventually destroy her.
Mera arrives and informs Aquaman that Aqualad spirited away their son and handed him over to Black Manta; Aquaman vows to kill Brainiac. Red Tornado alerts the League that their loved ones (including Jimmy Olsen and Lois Lane) have all been kidnapped.