Arsenal of the Iron King
- Sonic and Tails travel to the Eastern Provinces of Mobius and are asked to save the villagers from the wrath of someone called the Iron King. As they investigate, they come face to face with Monkey Khan. Why is he there? Whose side is he on?
Tales Of The Freedom Fighters - The Ultimatum
- Also King Acorn requests something of Princess Sally. The result will be a shocker.
Arsenal of the Iron King
- Writer & Pencils: Frank Strom
- Inks: Jim Amash
- Colors: Barry Grossman
- Letters: Vickie Williams
- Editor: J. Freddy Gabrie
- Managing Editor: Victor Gorelick
- Editor-in-Chief: Richard Goldwater
Carrying Sonic through the air, Tails comments that they have found no sign of Ixis Naugus and he is afraid that they have lost him. Sonic disagrees, saying they are still hot on his tail... and that it is actually really hot. The pair are then astonished to come across the source of the heat: an entire mountain covered in fire. Sonic and Tails are confused that the blaze is having no effect on the surrounding forests and decide to land in a village that they spot below them.
Seeing a female resident, they ask if she can spare any water, but she informs them that the water supply is dangerously low and thus carefully monitored. She then informs them that the fire has been burning for 100 days, prompting Tails to ask why the villagers have not relocated. His question draws the attention of another villager, who introduces himself as Li Yuen and their first new acquaintance as Li Moon, his granddaughter. Li Yuen questions whether the pair would be so willing to abandon their home, a point that Sonic concedes to. Sonic asks what the cause of the fire is, and Li Yuen informs them that the Iron Queen cast the spell after the villagers resisted the will of her partner, the Iron King.
Li Yuen goes on to say that only the Fan of Fen Xing has the power to put out the blaze, and that it is locked in the Iron King's arsenal. Sonic volunteers to retrieve it, though Li Moon thinks him more foolish than brave for doing so. The two Freedom Fighters take off to retrieve the fan, unaware that the Iron King and Queen are watching them magically at the Iron Fortress.
The Iron Queen questions whether or not the two might be allies, but the Iron King immediately senses that the pair intend to interfere in their plans. The Iron Queen assures him that they need not worry, and determines that all they need is a "spoiler to add to the mix," and spots a likely candidate in her staff: Monkey Khan. Sonic and Tails continue towards the fortress, but the heat from Mount Stormtop begins to get to them as they spot clouds in the distance. Tails' concern about the possibility of a storm is brushed off by Sonic, only for lightning to strike near the pair. They are then confronted by the source -- Monkey Khan -- who warns them to go no further.
Sonic is confused, as his last meeting with Khan ended on a good note, only for the angry Monkey to begin attacking him again. The Hedgehog quickly senses that something is wrong, noting not only Khan's strange behavior but a weird glow emanating from his eyes. He tries to reason with Khan as the Monkey attacks him, trying to help him find another outlet for his rage. Amused by the display, the Iron Queen then appears, and informs Sonic that his efforts are useless-Khan's rage and temper have made him an easy victim of her Magitek. She claims that he is now unstoppable, though Sonic denies her claim, and then orders Khan to finish the Hedgehog off. Sonic realizes that he's in trouble, and Tails quickly determines that he as to act quickly to save his best friend. He flies towards the Iron Queen and breaks her staff, breaking her spell. Monkey Khan, freed from her control, asks what is going on, while the Iron Queen flees in rage over her defeat. Tails then examines her broken staff and finds several Power Rings that were installed in it, undoubtedly to amplify her powers.
Recognizing that they are dealing with dangerously powerful enemies, Khan is hesitant to press on, but Sonic takes the lead. Some time later, they arrive at the Iron Fortress, which Tails is unnerved by despite the bravado of his companions. They find their entrance unbarred, and begin to suspect that they're heading into a trap. Finding the arsenal, they prepare to enter it, only to be attacked by the Iron King wielding his Tremor Mace. Sonic orders Tails to find the fan, leaving Khan and himself to deal with the King. Tails sorts through the weaponry-everything from blades to missiles-and locates the fan, which he then gives to Sonic.
The Hedgehog then employs the magic of the artifact, blowing the Iron King out of the fortress and a good distance beyond that. The trio, impressed with the fan's powers, head back to Mount Stormtop to employ them one more time, only to run into the furious Iron Queen. Still displaying magical abilities despite her lost staff, she attempts to stop the heroes, but Sonic is able to extinguish the flaming mountain using the fan. Defeated, the Queen flees while swearing revenge, while the heroes land to be greeted by an overjoyed Li Yuen and Li Moon. After learning of Khan's role, Li Yuen mentions a prophecy of a great Monkey King, surprising Khan, which leads Sonic to complain about Khan getting the credit for his heroism.
- Dr. Ivo Robotnik (mentioned)
- Freedom Fighters
- Iron King (first appearance)
- Iron Queen (first appearance)
- Ixis Naugus (mentioned)
- Li Moon (first appearance)
- Li Yuen (first appearance)
Races and species:
- Prime Zone
- Fan of Fen Xing (first appearance)
- Iron Queen's Scepter (first appearance)
- Power Ring (x3)
- Sonic's sneakers
- Tremor Mace (first appearance)
- Sonic says that the Iron Queen built Power Rings into her staff to "amplify her staff". This is most likely a misprint, as Sonic meant that it amplified her staff's powers.
- "Prophecy" is misspelled "prophesy" in this story.
Tales Of The Freedom Fighters - "The Ultimatum"
Sally enters a room where her father, King Maximillian Acorn, is waiting for her, and is informed that he wishes to speak to her given their recent lack of communication. Sally responds that she has long done whatever he has asked, but admits to a concern, which he identifies as her being worried about his judgement ever since he ordered the disassembly of the robians. He points out that he was not in the right frame of mind at the time and has since been quite generous to the group, only for Sally to object to his usage of the term "robian", as she considers them to be mobians like everyone else. After replying that not everyone feels the same, he informs her that he has brought her to him for other reasons, and leads her into a secret passageway. At the end of it, he shows her the pool that houses the Source of All, which he explains that it usually forms a bond with the heir to the House of Acorn beginning at their tenth commemoration.
Sally remarks that she was unable to do so due to the war with Robotnik, but Max brushes the matter aside and then informs her that she has a decision to make. She must now choose whether or not she wishes to rule in her father's stead, which if she does will require that she binds herself to the Source of All, becoming the first female heir to do so. Sally expresses her willingness, but Max then informs her that the decision also entails her finding a husband to rule by her side. With this in mind, Sally is quick to respond that she does not feel ready, and also feels that Sonic would probably run at the very suggestion, only to provoke an outraged response from her father. He then informs her that the Source of All would choose her spouse, as it was with him, and that if she chooses to undergo the ritual that Antoine has been selected as her husband. Believing that Sally has agreed, Max prepares to go speak with the young Freedom Fighter, but Sally stops him in his tracks.
She responds that while she has been willing to accept his counsel in terms of running the Kingdom of Acorn, she is not about to give up the right to select her own husband. Max berates her for what he perceives as foolishness, and then informs her that if she does not agree to marry Antoine, then she will not be eligible to rule. Sally then leaves and asks for time to consider his proposal, and the irate Max allows it, but to himself realizes that if Sally decides not to go through with it, he needs to check on his other option.
- Alicia Acorn (flashback)
- Armand D'Coolette (mentioned)
- Frederick Acorn (flashback)
- Knothole Freedom Fighters
- Maximillian Acorn
Races and species:
- Sonic Fan Art
- "Super Sonic" Pin-up: A pin-up illustration of Super Sonic in an unidentified Zone. Presented in black-and-white as a coloring page. Pencils by Jim Valentino, inks by Ken Penders, "after Shuster".
- Sonic: All you need is someone brave enough to get it!
- Li Moon: Challenging the Iron King in his own fortress isn't brave -- it's stupid!
- Sonic: Lucky for you, Sonic the Hedgehog can't tell the difference!
- Sonic: Take five, Tails -- the humidity's really wearing me out!
- Tails: It's not the humidity, it's the heat.
- Sonic: Nitpicker!
- Maximilian Acorn: If Sally does not decide to go along, I'll need to know if my other option is still available!
- The "Super Sonic" pinup illustration in this issue is a parody of the cover for Superman #1.
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