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(Tarnax VII, many months ago)
In the far reaches of the Skrull Empire, plans are afoot. Chrell and Fremin are chatting. Fremin doesn't understand what they are doing there. Would the Empire really give these warlords the next Super-Skrull to resolve a border dispute? He is soft. Chrell replies that the child shows promise, and can be hardened. He asks him to come along as their guest has arrived. Fremin is surprised to find that the guest is Queen Veranke. She informs Commander Chrell that she has need of him. Fremin is surprised. He thinks this is insane. He cannot listen to her. He cannot trust her. Chrell, without a word, takes out his weapon and shoots Fremin dead. He informs Veranke that Fremin was a close friend and an excellent instructor, but he was not a believer. Queen Veranke then entrusts Chrell with two tasks for the glory ahead. She needs an army trained, and when the day comes, she needs the Prince eliminated. He is too dangerous to live. Chrell replies that when the day comes, he will end his blasphemous life himself.

(Earth, present)
It is a bright day and the runaways are in New York City, with Molly showing Klara the sites, such as the Empire State Building, the Baxter Building and a rooftop where they once beat up a guy. Times Square is only four blocks away. Xavin finds this unacceptable. Nico explains that it's called hiding in plain sight. It's only for a few hours so that Klara can say goodbye to her home. Then they will return to Los Angeles and drop off the radar. Chase stops at a hot dog vendor and Karolina is appalled. They brought Klara from the past to save her, not poison her. Chase asks what she's going to feed her. Tofurkey? That freaks him out and he's from this century. Klara talks to Molly. She feels that the clothes people wear seem awfully... sinful. Should Nico not cover her shoulders?

Xavin is still complaining. She says that in the Skrull language, hiding in plain sight also means 'begging to get caught.' They shouldn't even have to be running. They shouldn't have to hide. "Here it comes," sighs Victor. Xavin adds that New York City is where they should be. Is this city not home to Earth's superhumans? And yet, they are fugitives. They are treated like criminals when they should be the rulers of this world. Everyone, including Karolina, stops and looks at Xavin. She blushes and nervously admits that it sounded bad. What she meant was, they should be more like leaders, like the Fantastic Four and the Avengers. Karolina places a hand on her shoulder and figures she should quit while she's ahead. "Or maybe stop thinking in general," adds Victor.

Klara is looking skywards, and Molly reminds her that Chase said she shouldn't do that. She looks like a hick tourist. Klara keeps her eyes aimed high, replying that she is sorry, but she doesn't think she will ever become accustomed to the wonders of their world. Molly says sure she will. She wouldn't believe the things she has gotten used to, like vampires and giants. As she speaks, a shadow crosses them and Molly turns to look up. "Whoa!" she exclaims as she sees a Skrull invasion force approaching.

Numerous Skrulls along with their equipment descend from the skies. "It's raining Xavins," jokes Molly, not realizing the seriousness of the situation. "Um, sweetie," says Karolina, as Xavin tries to figure out what's going on. The Skrulls land and Nico tells Xavin to snap out of it. What is this? she asks. Xavin's eyes glow and she turns to them before creating a flat forcefield which hurls them all away from danger, but which also knocks them out.

(several blocks away)
In Times Square, the Young Avengers swing bravely into action. The Vision, Speed, Wiccan, Hawkeye, Patriot and Hulkling charge towards Times Square with Eli calling the shots. He orders them to spread out and protect the civilians. Tommy reckons they're a little outgunned, but Eli says they will hold the invaders until help arrives. A Skrull picks up a New York Transit bus and Speed turns to the Vision. He thought the Skrulls couldn't do powers. He thought it was only the Super-Skrull guy and he only had the FF's bag of tricks. The Vision replies that it would appear they were wrong. Billy asks Teddy if this is about him. Have the Skrulls come back for him? Teddy has no idea. He doesn't know what to do. Watching from afar, a Skrull spots Hulkling and thinks it's a potential match. "Inform the commander."

(meanwhile)
The runaways are slowly recovering from the concussive effects of Xavin's forcefield. Nico and Victor come round first and they see two Skrulls talking to Xavin. Unfortunately, they are speaking Skrullian so they have no idea what is being said. Victor needs a little more time to fully reboot. The others are still unconscious. He asks Nico if she has any ideas. Nico reckons she's already done a teleportation spell, but she's still got a spell that will stop Xavin's heart - assuming she's got one. She asks him to wait for her signal.

Xavin shouts at the two new arrivals, and they decide to leave for the time being. Xavin then turns and sees her friends sprawled across the ground. She checks on Karolina who emits a groan, and uses her Invisible Woman powers to place each of her friends inside small capsules with which she can move them. Xavin looks extremely unhappy at what's going on. She takes the runaways over the stranded cars and away from danger, but, not realizing this, Nico casts a spell. "Pop," she utters, and the capsules explode, dropping each of the runaways to the ground. As soon as Nico lands, she tells Victor to hit Xavin with everything he's got. He asks about the others, but Nico tells him that if they don't take Xavin down now, it won't matter. Xavin sees the kids fall and creates invisible cushions to protect them, but Victor takes the opportunity to use wreckage around them to wrap Xavin up in slithers of metal.

Xavin insists that she was taking them to the Leapfrog. She's trying to save them. Nico asks what makes her believe her less. She attacking them, or her extended family playing 'space invaders' in Times Square. She asks Victor to squeeze, and the metal tightens around Xavin's Skrull body. She tells them that they have to trust her, but Victor replies that the team isn't big on trust. All she is, is another Skrull, just like the invaders. Xavin assures him that he's wrong. She isn't like them. The Skrull Empire has attempted invasions of Earth before. Her own parents did so, but this is different. These Skrulls are religious extremists. They believe in a prophecy that Earth belongs to them, and that their god has promised it to them. They think it is their by right. They will kill everyone that stands in their way... human or Skrull, she continues. They should forget everything she has said about standing up and fighting, and about her calling them cowards. They must get away. They have to run.

Xavin adds that because these Skrulls see every human as a sin against their god, and they won't hesitate to kill them all, even the children like Molly and Klara. Nico turns and looks at her still-unconscious friends. "This invasion..." she begins. Xavin cuts her off. She informs Nico that if it has come to this, then the invasion is over. They have won. Now it's just a matter of cleaning up. She begs Nico, and asks her to remember her battle cry. Nico says, "Try not to die," and quickly wises up. She asks Victor to grab everyone and get them outta there. She knows that Karolina will hate her for this, but Xavin tells her that at least she will be alive.

(elsewhere)
Hulkling thinks that, because he is half-Skrull, he can talk to them. He rushes over to a group of Skrulls and introduces himself to his 'brothers of the Empire' as Hulkling, the son of Princess Anelle. He tells them that they have to stop this. They all turn on him and blast him from all directions. Teddy screams in pain as he takes everything they've got. Nearby, Hawkeye think that this is insane. Where are the Avengers?

From afar, Chrell is watching footage on a large screen with X'iv, and he pauses the image to ask for a genetic match on Hulkling. The computer is unable to identify Teddy due to the subject's form being in flux. This is due to the energy attack from the other Skrulls. Chrell tells it to extrapolate, and the computer states that there is a 57% match probability. Chrell is convinced that it is Dorrek and feels that it's fortunate that they attacked so quickly that they didn't recognize him. He can't believe that the prophesised savior of the Skrull Empire is living amongst them, and an Avenger no less. Chrell thinks that if news of his presence spread through their armada, it could instil confusion, and then doubt. Doubt is the enemy of faith. X'iV informs him that more heroes are coming. On Earth, the Initiative charge into action led by Gauntlet. Chrell doesn't think it matters. Their victory is promised to them.

(New York City)
The runaways have retreated to the Leapfrog which is cloaked atop a tall building. Nico looks after Karolina who is still unconscious. She hopes Karolina won't hate her for this. The Leapfrog's systems come online and he warns Nico and Victor that he has detected multiple spacecraft. Vic already knows, and he takes the 'Frog high into the air. Vic is feeling torn. He doesn't think this is right, but Nico asks him to trust her. It's her decision, and it might have been wrong, but their luck is only going to last so long, and this is too big. Vic replies that Xavin was going to help. He should have stayed with her. As Nico assures him that she needs him there, two extremely large Skrulls appear right in front of the Leapfrog; both ready to attack.

On the ground, the heroes are struggling. Stature is battered to the ground, and Speed is concerned for Wiccan who can't seem to pull it together. Billy wants to find Teddy, but Speed tries to get through to him that they're going to die there.

Elsewhere, Xavin has wriggled free of her shackles and flamed on. She lands on a building overlooking the action in semi-invisible mode. Xavin then looks over and sees a couple of Skrull ships coming in to land. This is band news, she feels. They're all going to die. She has to help. She then notices what the commotion is about. "Oh no, no please... not him," she gasps. Two Skrulls step out onto the street. One of them is Chrell. He tells the other that he knows his orders. If their target talks, he will lie. He is a deceiver and a betrayer. He should treat him like the Kree he is. Xavin looks at the forlorn figure lying before them. "Dorrek."

Xavin acts quickly. He rockets in and causes an explosion between Teddy and the Skrulls. By the time the smoke dissipates, Chrell sees a hole in the ground and no sign of Dorrek. Xavin has taken him into the sewers beneath New York. As she drags him along as quickly as she can, she tries to wake him up. He finally wakes up, though he is still groggy. "Billy... have to stop them..." he whispers. Xavin agrees, but first he has to survive. That will actually require being conscious. "They're coming, do you hear me?" she warns. Xavin turns to see the tunnel behind them light up in flame. They are soon bundled over by a blast and sent sprawling into the water. Dorrek falls unconscious again, and by the time Xavin regains her facilities, she finds three Skrulls standing over them. Their leader says, "Die sinners."

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Yup, 0

 Okay, so the Runaways, just so happen to be in New York on the day of the Secret Invasion, i guess I can believe that. I got a very strong feeling, very quickly that I was not the key demographic for this book. The writing is incredibly childish. The dialogue, and the almost manga art style really fell flat for me. I don't know, sometimes I do like the Runaways series, but maybe forcing these two teams together for every cross over is just an idea that has run its course. I hope the next issue ...

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