After confiding with the Stand about her current condition, the clone of the original Nightingale performed some testing and analysis and determined that if she did not find a way to stabilize her DNA, she would perish in 17 days. Even with expensive tests, serums and trials, a cure would be nearly impossible to find without help. In addition, the visions she had were bringing her closer to the conclusion that if the original Nightingale wasn’t rescued soon, the results could be disastrous.
Nightingale called all the Defenders together: the Stand, Doc Holly Day, Nu, Vessel, Awesome Man, and Ben Grimm. She revealed to them that she was indeed a clone. She explained that she had limited time for a cure, but also wanted to find the Original Nightingale and free her. Not one Defender hesitated to offer help.
Nightingale, with the help of Ben Grimm and the Stand, recruited Reed Richards, Curt Connors and Hank McCoy to assist with seeking a cure. In addition, when the Defenders determined that a joint strike on the three Essex cloning facilities they had identified would be better than striking one after the next, the X-Men and SHIELD’s Fantastic Force were recruited to form strike teams.
Over the next several days, the three sites were scouted. Nu flew low and fast over North Korea, evading detection and identifying a remote military base as the most likely location. SHIELD discovered a oil platform, moored to a decomissioned Russian icrebreaker ship in the Arctic Circle. Meanwhile Wolverine tracked through the savage land to find an industrialized set of caves in a village of half-men.
The strike teams were chosen. Nu, Nightingale, Doc Holly Day, Vessel and Steam would hit the North Korean site. Cyclops, Wolverine, Iceman, Siryn and Colossus would go against the Savage Land, and the. The Fantastic Force, consisting of Captain America, Sue Storm, Johnny Storm, Mockingbird and Dum Dum Dugan would move against the arctic location. Plans were drawn up, and the teams made ready to attack.