Cabal of Scrier

Cabal of Scrier



The Cabal of Scrier (a.k.a. the "Brotherhood of Scrier"" or the "Secret Order of Scrier") is a centuries old organization inspired by its namesake, an immensely powerful ancient being who claimed to be old when the several billion year old Galactus was young, as well as to be the architect of life on Earth. Though believed to have been destroyed circa 18500 BC, five centuries before Atlantis fell, Scrier (one of many names the entity has used over his lifespan) remained dormant for thousands of years beneath an ancient temple hidden in the Himalayas. The Cabal's members all dress identically with hooded robes and a ghostly costume. The intensely dedicated members behave in a quasi-religious fashion with rituals and ceremonies. Rooted in Europe, the "Scriers" hold ties to organized crime in Europe and share a common goal of maximizing the accumulation of wealth and power through whatever means necessary.

After the murder of Peter Parker's girlfriend, Gwen Stacy, Norman Osborn (the Green Goblin) was impaled by his glider in the culmination of a battle with Spider-Man. Osborn regenerated from the near-fatal injuries via the "Goblin serum" in his blood and secretly fled to Europe. There, he built a vast communications network to monitor his affairs in America while the world believed him dead. Through this network, he discovered and joined the Cabal of Scrier. Finding the group near extinction, Osborn quickly rose up the ranks, until violently usurping the position of leadership from the former Scrier Prime. Osborn believed he could utilize the Cabal to become the European equivalent of the Kingpin of crime. He reshaped the Cabal - honing the fighting skills of the Scriers, updating their espionage techniques, and supplying sophisticated armaments. The Cabal forged new alliances with other nefarious organizations like A.I.M., Hydra, and the Hand.

Osborn sent a Scrier, Samuel Fox, to Empire State University professor Warren Miles for assistance with his cloning experiments upon Gwen Stacy (mother of Osborn's twin children) and Peter Parker. Using information and technology garnered from the European underground scientific community, Scrier Fox helped Warren succeed in creating clones of Stacy and Parker after several failures including the disfigured clone of Parker, Kaine. As the villainous Jackal, Warren sought to punish Parker for the death of Gwen, his beloved student. After Parker and his clone battled in Shea Stadium, the Jackal planned to convince the clone that he was the original genetic progenitor. However, Fox was ordered to turn against Warren, as the professor's plans against Parker conflicted with Osborn's slower timetable. Fox blackmailed Warren's assistant, Seward Trainer, to rig the Jackal's equipment to reverse the results of clone identification. Thus Parker's clone became the wanderer Ben Reilly while the Jackal believed he had robbed Spider-Man of his identity. Fox commanded Trainer to monitor the clone's whereabouts, as Osborn planned to use Reilly as a key player in his machinations. Trainer grew to become a mentor and friend to Reilly.

Nearly a year later, Osborn learned of the apparent return of his former partner, Mendel Stromm. While this "Stromm" was revealed to be a robot previously created by the true Stromm, Scriers discovered Stromm had used the Goblin serum upon himself before he apparently died. Since the formula prevented Osborn from dying, Scriers were sent to Stromm's tomb where they discovered his withered body alive but in a sort of suspended animation. Creating another pawn for his causes, Osborn revived Stromm, renamed Gaunt, outfitting him in a special life-support suit and promising a full return of his functions in exchange for his services to the Cabal. Stromm's scientific skills provided the Cabal with highly advanced weaponry, special effects, holographic technology and transportation devices to create the illusion of mystically appearing and disappearing as a single powerful entity.

When the world-renowned criminal psychologist Dr. Judas Traveller emerged from seclusion after a mental breakdown, a latent mutant power was triggered enabling him to alter a person's perception of reality. Recognizing the usefulness of his power, Osborn dispatched a Scrier, Charles Bates, to befriend Traveller, becoming his confidant while playing into his deluded fantasies that the two of them had been friends for centuries. Through Scrier Bates, Osborn set up Traveller with a team of special operatives called the Host. After Osborn's son Harry died, and a genetically modified Miles Warren returned, Norman implemented his plan of revenge against Parker in earnest. Gaunt forced Trainer to again tamper with the Jackal's equipment such that Parker was identified as the clone, driving Parker into despair. Once the Jackal planned worldwide genocide for all save his clones, Osborn sent Scrier Fox after Warren to stop him. After application of a special psychoactive medication clarifying the mind of the deranged amorphous Parker clone, Spidercide, Bates enlisted his aid against the Jackal; both Spidercide and the Jackal were apparently killed. Soon after, Judas Traveller was displeased to discover a connection between the Scrier in his Host and Gaunt. To prevent being discovered by Traveller, Osborn ordered Judas' termination. Spider-Man (Ben Reilly) learned of the true nature of the Scriers and battled several Cabal members while Parker rescued Traveller from a watery trap. Traveller and his new love, Chakra, escaped, while several Scrier's and members of the Host were taken into police custody. After this failure and the failure to procure a deal with the Rose, Gaunt killed bates.

Osborn returned to America, publicly revealing that he was alive, aggressively causing Peter Parker misery. As the Green Goblin, Osborn killed Ben Reilly and employed Alison Mongrain to cause Mary Jane Watson-Parker to miscarry their first child. Osborn assigned Mongrain to guard over something of value upon a yacht in the Aegean Sea. Four Scriers later came to reacquire the "package" from Mongrain, exploding the yacht as they departed; Mongrain survived and returned to find Parker to reveal that Osborn held Parker's Aunt May captive, despite May's apparent death. With the Scriers, Osborn brainwashed the Molten Man to kill Mongrain after Parker recovered his aunt. Thirsting for more power, Osborn performed an arcane ritual called the Gathering of the Five. Though aiming for the gift of power, he instead received insanity atop his already erratic mental state. His loyal Scriers rescued him from a mental asylum after a battle with Spider-Man, and arranged for application of dermal patches to maintain his sanity.

The original Scrier was recently awakened by the Silver Surfer. Scrier refused to explain his intentions to the Surfer since he claimed an elevated perspective from that of humanity. He offered the Surfer the restoration of his suppressed emotions and a seeming revival of life on his home planet, Zenn-La in exchange for becoming Scrier's agent. Though the Surfer agreed to follow the Scrier's requests without question, he failed in his first test to take a baby, Edward Cross, from his impoverished drug-addicted mother, Emily. Recognizing the mother's unconditional love for her child, the Silver Surfer could not justify his gain at the mother's expense. After an attack upon the Surfer by the alien collective, the Other, Scrier reappeared offering his help to Alicia Masters. Alicia, fearful of Scrier's intentions, refused his aid, while the Surfer began to die, infected by a virus of the soul. Later, given a second chance, Alicia allowed Scrier's help. With sorceress Agatha Harkness, Scrier concocted a plan to purge the virus from the Surfer, allowing his body to die, but protecting the world from the virus spreading. Aided by Alicia and Agatha, Scrier recovered the Silver Surfer's soul while preventing the demon lord Mephisto from claiming it. Scrier and Agatha returned the Surfer's soul to his virus-free body. Scrier and the Silver Surfer then ventured to another realm to construct the Great Barricade to temporarily contain the evil consciousness known as the Other.

Scrier departed for time in solitude, but returned to take control of the Cabal. One member, Martin Zantz, recognized Scrier for who he was despite the skepticism of his brother Scriers. Scrier transformed Zantz into Outrider to act as his agent in his plot to use the Nexus of All Realities to reshape creation to his own will. Scrier destroyed the Man-Thing, guardian of the Nexus - who at the time was inhabited by the ancient being Adam K'admon - and usurped his power source, the legendary Staff of the Creator. The spirit of the previous Man-Thing, Ted Sallis, had merged with that of his wife, Ellen, within the Nexus itself, but K'admon convinced Sallis to become the Man-Thing anew to oppose Scrier. As Scrier sent Outrider to usurp the Nexus from Ellen, the K'admon/Sallis Man-Thing recruited Spider-Man to defend the Nexus from Outrider who sought to usurp it from Ellen. The K'admon-powered Man-Thing confronted Scrier, but realized their evenly matched power might threaten Earth should they battle. They instead agreed to have their agents battle: if Spider-Man won, Scrier would leave the Nexus alone and return the Staff of the Creator. Spider-Man was occupied by transportation into an alternate reality, allowing the Outrider to overpower Ellen and enter the Nexus. Escaping back to the Nexus at the last second, Spider-Man leapt into its core and struggled against the Outrider directly. In the course of the struggle, Ellen returned to Earth, taking the Nexus with her, and merging it and herself with Ted Sallis within the Man-Thing's form. Scrier was furious at this seeming betrayal, but Sallis explained that K'admon had given his word, but he (Sallis) had not. Scrier left Man-Thing hinting that perhaps the entire event was a test for his new disciple and a means to manipulate the Man-Thing into merging with the Nexus. Scrier departed with Outrider and gained a few followers that defected from the Cabal.

Usurped from the Cabal, Matthew DeRoma, a young man Spider-Man dubbed "Scrier Junior" led a rebellious faction of mainly younger Scriers wishing to restore the organization back to the ancient ways, further dividing the splintered Cabal. DeRoma's associates, top computer technology experts, created an animated holographic Harry Osborn equipped with artificial intelligence. Seeking retribution against Osborn for exploiting the Cabal for his own petty criminal endeavors, DeRoma kidnapped Osborn's grandson Normie, hoping to use the holographic version of his father to turn him against his grandfather. However, possessing Harry Osborn's memories, the hologram would not allow his son to be manipulated and turned against DeRoma, providing Spider-Man with the key to victory, short circuiting DeRoma's gauntlets. From the shadows, someone surprised DeRoma and killed him with his bare hands, rescuing Normie.

Osborn took his loyal Scriers and forged a new group, the Order of the Goblin, with assistance from Osborn's loyal associate, Donald Menkin. Other Scriers still remained faithful to the old Cabal or to the ancient Scrier. The viability of the Order of the Goblin since Osborn's incarceration and appointment to being director of the Thunderbolts is unknown.

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