Who Lives and Who Dies
When the rogue Olympian underworld god Pluto (Hades) sought a Valkyrie pawn as part of an elaborate conquest plot, he retrieved Parrington’s lost Valkyrie spear and had Amora’s sister Lorelei the Ice Queen re-create Amora’s old spell. Unwittingly under Lorelei’s mystical influence, Samantha Parrington wandered back to the alleyway where she had abandoned her spear (since returned to its resting place there by Pluto) and picked it up, transforming into the Valkyrie again. As the Valkyrie, she became the amnesiac, mind-controlled servant of Pluto, who planned to combine his underworld magic with her mystical status as a chooser of the slain in a spell that would raise an army of undead warriors to serve him. Not wanting to share power with his partner Lorelei, Pluto sabotaged her casting of the Valkyrie spell so that the backlash affected its caster as well, transforming her into a mute facsimile of Brunnhilde stripped of Lorelei’s mystical powers before abandoning her on the street. Brunnhilde’s old Defenders teammate Nighthawk (Kyle Richmond) later found her living on the streets and took her in, believing her to be an amnesiac Brunnhilde and employing her as his personal aide while he sought a cure for her condition.
When Pluto and his Valkyrie (Parrington) began raising Pluto’s undead army, they were opposed by the recently reunited Defenders, including Nighthawk, who brought his Valkyrie (Lorelei) with him. During the ensuing battle, Lorelei regained her true form and mystical powers and attacked Pluto, trying to seize control of the undead army for herself. When the undead army ran amok during this power struggle, the worlds of Asgard and Olympus detected the clash on Earth.
Asgard intervened with the original Valkyrie (Brunnhilde) and her Valkyrior army, who fought the undead army while the Defenders faced Pluto and Lorelei. Trying to take control of the undead army but needing mastery of the Parrington Valkyrie to do it, Pluto and Lorelei continued to fight for control of her. The spell’s control of Parrington, however, had already been weakened by Parrington’s outrage over an earlier random murder carried out by Pluto. And when Pluto and Lorelei tried to compel Parrington to destroy the Defenders, she finally rebelled.
Moments later, the Olympian ruler Zeus manifested, seeking to punish Pluto and Lorelei for their crimes, and the two villains fled. The Parrington Valkyrie buried the murder victim, but was uncertain of what to do next, lacking any memory of her human past. Happy to have a worthy successor on Earth, Brunnhilde suggested this new Valkyrie take her place in the Defenders, and as a gesture of support, gave her the enchanted sword Dragonfang and her winged steed Aragorn before returning to Asgard.
Taking Brunnhilde’s advice, Parrington joined the Defenders as their new Valkyrie, befriending her teammates Nighthawk and Hellcat (Patsy Walker), who would become Valkyrie’s roommate. While aiding the Defenders against menaces such as the Headmen, the Bloodraven cult, Attuma, A.I.M., Orrgo, the Chronarch, and Yandroth, she gradually regained her memories of her life as Samantha Parrington and reconnected with her parents. The Parringtons supported their daughter’s super heroic pursuits by offering the Defenders funding, equipment, and well-intentioned meddling, even drastically renovating the attic of Parrington Mansion so it could serve as a high-tech headquarters for the group.
Later, the Defenders would gradually drift apart, allowing Parrington to join a new group called the Lady Liberators. She was also involved in a rescue mission to save Luke Cage from Norman Osborn’s H.A.M.M.E.R. agency.
Brunnhilde ultimately died alongside her fellow Asgardians when rogue god Loki staged a revolt in fulfillment of the Ragnarok prophecy. While many of the Asgardians have since been reborn, Brunnhilde’s fate remains uncertain, which may partially explain why Parrington has recently assumed the duties of a traditional Asgardian Valkyrie, conducting the souls of fallen heroes to their reward in Valhalla.