Written by Peter Milligan
This issue serves as a prelude to the Fall of StormWatch. Hawksmoor, Midnighter, Apollo and Engineer study an alien they grabbed while he was headed for Earth. Meanwhile, Jenny is in her room, playing an 11-dimensional multi-linear game. She receives a visit from none other than Adam One, StormWatch’s previous leader! He’s coming from the past, from before he got killed by the Shadow Lords. He’s visiting Jenny because he must warn her of the great tragedy that’s coming.
Adam creates a portal to show visions to Jenny, tapping into the past to show her previous Century Babies, hoping to teach her a lesson. First he goes to the first StormWatch in the 11th century, who counted with Princess Janeen. At first she refused to accept her role and her powers, but soon after her parents were murdered. It took becoming an orphan for Janeen to trust the power inside her. Adam One is trying to show Jenny that she’s not the only Century Baby who is an orphan. (Wait a second. Jenny in the New 52 is supposed to have a high-ranking military man as a father, she’s no orphan. Maybe they mean she’s an orphan because she abandoned her family.) Around that time in the past, Adam One received a vision of the end of StormWatch: He saw friend fighting friend, ally against ally; even she Shadow Lords would turn against them. These visions trouble him deeply.
Afterwards, Adam One shows Jenny the 12th century, where the Century Baby was called Jeannie. She was ruthless and blood thirsty, and when Adam tried to talk with her about his vision she didn’t care to listen. It didn’t take long for the Shadow Lords to dispose of her. She should have avoided getting too big for her boots: that’s the lesson Jenny should take this time.
In the 14th century, the century baby is Sister J, a nun who accesses her powers through prayers. She prayed she would stop aging at the age of 18, and since then she turned 40 without her body getting one bit old. Adam One and her became lovers, and he came to trust her enough to tell her about his visions. Sister J used her love to comfort Adam. What Adam is trying to show Jenny is that sometimes brute force isn’t the only way, sometimes there’s room for tenderness. That century saw the first public arrival of the daemonites, and StormWatch was there to repel them. They learn to watch for the red storms that might herald the aliens’ return; this is the first team to call itself StormWatch.
Later, Adam shows Jenny the 19th century, where the Century Baby was called Jenny Freedom. Although she fought with the power of light and steam, her real power was her courage; her courage to fight against all odds. Adam also shows Jenny the 20th century, which counted with Jenny Sparks. She was electric, but also knew how to kick someone in the balls when she had to. Adam hopes Jenny might learn from both these examples. Because dark times are coming.
Adam explains the coming of superheroes is the signal that the final battle is at hand, that StormWatch’s end will happen in Jenny’s time. Adam is giving Jenny this crash course education to prepare her to save the team. Afterwards, Adam One disappears back into his time. Jenny is left feeling uncertain and disconcerted. Will she be up to the task?
Next: “Seoul Brothers” from “Young Romance: A New 52 Valentine’s Day Special” issue 1, written by Peter Milligan.