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The Illuminati is a secret organization comprised of several of the world's most powerful heroes: Sorcerer Supreme Doctor Strange, Black Bolt, King of the Inhumans, Charles Xavier, founder of the X-Men and mutant rights activist, Reed Richards,founding member of the Fantastic Four, Namor the Sub-Mariner, King of Atlantis and Iron Man (Anthony Stark), founding member of the Avengers.

These six men have worked together to mold and shape the status of the superhuman world and the world around it.

How and what they have done together has remained a mystery...


Writers Brian Michael Bendis ( Avengers, Ultimate Spider-Man) and Brian Reed ( Ms. Marvel) have joined together with Jim Cheung (Young Avengers) to reveal this untold story of the Marvel Universe and the Illuminati's actions affect today!

Years back during the Kree/Skrull war, the Illuminati proactively try to keep the war from spilling over towards the Earth.


Years ago...

[On a Capital Skrull Ship over Throneworld]

Skrull Emperor Dorrek VII is hearing from one of his advisors that the Kree-Skrull War is over on account of Rick Jones, a "single human". Outraged, Dorrek demands an explanation as to how their superior fleet had been defeated. The advisor cautiously lays down the factors: explaining that the Earth's population of "genetic atrocities" (mutants) and so-called superheroes posed the biggest threat, and in conjunction with the competition from the Kree, the Skrulls' attempt to conquer Earth with a frontal attack was impossible.

The two are interrupted by the teleportation of the Illuminati, who introduce themselves as Reed Richards of the Fantastic Four, Iron Man of the Avengers, Prince Namor of Atlantis, Doctor Stephen Strange of the mystic arts, Professor Charles Xavier of the "genetic atrocities", and Black Bolt of the Inhumans. Mr. Fantastic quickly declares that they traveled there to inform the Emperor that they will not tolerate another invasion of Earth and warns him against even approaching Earth space. Iron Man and Namor promise the Emperor retribution should he disregard their warnings. Dorrek is offended by their presence and swears that the Earth planet belongs to the Skrulls while promising to wipe out the human race, starting with their families. In acknowledgement, Iron Man asks Black Bolt what he has to say...

The Capital Skrull Ship explodes from the inside out, and the Illuminati are safely teleported aboard the nearby Quinjet by Doctor Strange. Namor rejoices at the ship's destruction, watching with pride from a window as it crashes down into the water below. When the rest of the Illuminati do not share his satisfaction, Namor comments that he'll just enjoy it enough for everyone then. Just then, the Quinjet is fired upon by multiple Skrull ships, despite being cloaked. The assault comes too fast for Doctor Strange or Professor X to aid in their escape, and the Quinjet is blown to pieces. The Illuminati drift in space, helpless.

Skrull scientists look upon their captured subjects. Mr. Fantastic is stretched in captivity to an enormous length and width, and the scientists are curious as to what the upper limits of his extension are. Namor is laid within a heated cell, deprived of nearly all moisture in the air as the scientists mock his existence as a "homo superior". Black Bolt is held in restraints with a beam immobilizing his vocal chords as the scientists comment on the perverse nature of the "Kree-spawn" and the Terrigen Mists. Professor X is held suspended in a containment field while the scientists explore his mutant DNA. Doctor Strange is held upside-down inside a spinning containment field while the scientists are confounded by his mystical powers and have called in priests from the Vovco Islands to look into them. The scientists then move onto study Iron Man's armor, which lies in pieces on a lab table. They comment on its primitive design in comparison to Skrull technology and state that it will go into the Royal Trophy Room, now that it has been dismantled. After discovering the armor kept Tony Stark's heart valves working, they are anxious to see how long he will survive without it.

Tony Stark sits naked alone in the brig. He is greeted by the Avengers, who crash through to rescue him. Stark knows better however, and tells the Skrull imposters that they always underestimate their opponents, asking them how dumb they think he is. The Skrull Quicksilver and Skrull Scarlet Witch insist that the exercise was a waste of time, but the Skrull Captain America and Skrull Thor think otherwise. The Skrull Thor theorizes that Stark doesn't expect his teammates to come and rescue him because no one knows they came there. He assaults Stark, who quickly incapacitates the Skrulls in unarmed combat, noting the training the real Captain America had given him beforehand. He puts on some pants taken from a Skrull and moves on with a Skrull rifle, freeing Charles Xavier from his confinement. Once free, Xavier assaults the Skrull scientists around him psychically until they are begging him to stop. Tony asks him if he's happened to have seen his armor, and Xavier replies that he hasn't while expressing concern for Tony's heart. Stark helps him move down the corridor to rescue the others. Namor exclaims that he would very much like to hit something, and Xavier alerts the two that the entire Skrull armada has been called. They quickly free Doctor Strange, who casts a spell to keep Stark's heart pumping for a little while longer. After recovering Black Bolt, the Illuminati arrive where Reed Richards is being painfully stretched. Namor recovers Richards and they make it into a large Skrull ship for their escape. Tony Stark pilots the Skrull ship out of the hangar, shooting into the atmosphere. As a countless number of Skrull attack ships open fire on their vessel, Black Bolt motions for them to open the back pod-bay. Doctor Strange refuses, stating that they are almost out of the atmosphere. Reed asks Strange if he can cast an illusion spell to aid in their escape, and Xavier helps "sell" it psychically.

As the Skrull armada bears down on the Illuminati's ship, a gigantic psychic illusion of Galactus appears before them. Many Skrulls, in their panic, collide into each other as the Illuminati flies off to safety. As they pass quietly by Saturn, Namor exclaims that they will come for them. Xavier tells him that the Skrulls were coming for them already. Stark replies that Namor is right, but at the very least, they made it clear that if they DO come at Earth, then the fight will be a real fight. Maybe now they'll look for someone else to pick on. The Illuminati pause, and as their ship nears Earth, Tony says "well, at least now they know it'll be a GOOD fight."

Back on Throneworld, Emperor Dorrek sits in his broken throne among the ruins of his chambers. He asks his advisor if they got what they needed from the [Illuminati], and the advisor answers "yes." The Emperor sullenly declares that it was worth it. He orders that the priests of the sciences get to work, exclaiming that no matter how long it takes, he will wait.

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