As part of our continued effort to educate new readers on the Valiant universe, we are starting a new series of articles summarizing every story arc for every book Valiant publishes. This week we are focusing on Archer and Armstrong so be sure to check out our Character Spotlight series as well!
Archer and Armstrong #1-4: The Michelangelo Code
In Ancient Mesopotamia, Aram Anni-Padda, who is later known as Armstrong, gains immortality when his brother Ivar activates the Boon.
In a modern day Christian amusement park, Obadiah Archer (Obie) is trained by his parents, the Reverend Joseph Archer and Congresswoman Thelma Archer, to set off on the mission of destroying Armstrong.
He heads to New York to find Armstrong, but they are both captured by The One Percent. Obie frees himself, leaving Armstrong, but discovers that his parents are a part of The Sect, an ancient secret organization, along with The One Percent. They are willing to sacrifice their son in order to recover the Fulcrum, one of the six pieces of the Boon, that was taken from Obie. This brings him to the realization that Armstrong is not the enemy, but he is recaptured by the One Percent. Armstrong frees himself, as does Obie, and they take the two pieces of the Boon that the One Percent had gained control of and head off together to find the rest.
They head to Italy to find the Torque. Armstrong’s old friend, Sister Thomas Aquinas, helps them solve Michelangelo’s puzzles to find where the Torque is hidden. They stumble upon another part of the Sect, the Sisters of Perpetual Darkness. After dispatching the Sisters, they continue on to find Mary-Maria, Obie’s adopted sister, with Torque in hand. Mary-Maria realizes who Armstrong really is and a fight ensues. Mary-Maria shoots Armstrong in the eyes and threatens to test his immortality if Obie doesn’t give her Armstrong’s satchel and the two pieces of the Boon they posses. She drops him and absconds with the satchel while Obie tends to Armstrong.
Mary-Maria and the Archer’s head to Tibet and another member of the Sect, the Green Dragon Lamas, to discover that they have already assembled the Boon. They put the pieces in the Boon, activating it. Obie and a still-blind Armstrong crash the party and begin losing a fight with the Lamas. Mary-Maria interferes on Obie’s behalf, incapacitating the Lamas. Armstrong begins regaining his sight to discover that the Archers have captured the Geomancer. Obie’s father activates the Boon which begins extracting the life from everybody. Ivar, who has been appearing as a vision to Obie, shows him how to destroy the Boon, which topples over, unfortunately killing the Geomancer. Aside from Obie, Armstrong, and an AWOL Mary-Maria, the Boon has killed everybody in the monastery.