One week ago, Niles Caulder taunted Emily Sung with the Justice League’s apparently lack of interest in locating her after she went missing during the Crime Syndicate’s attack. He warned that if he hadn’t found her, she’d still be a cloud of unstable molecules. And while the League may no longer need her, he claimed that he did. She would fit in with him and the other unfortunates he had gathered.
He introduced her, then, to Cliff Steele – a former NASCAR driver who was thought dead, but in truth, came to reside within a robotic body. Capt. Larry Trainor was once a pilot who crashed into the ocean, where he was exposed to a radioactive toxin. Finally, he introduced her to Rita Farr, an actress whose exposure to a strange gas caused her cellular structure to break down, and had since learned that she had to maintain a grin in order to maintain her humanoid form. Every one of them owed their lives to Dr. Caulder, and Emily did too. The Doom Patrol was where Element Woman belonged.
Within a week, the Doom Patrol are in Oregon, fighting the woman who fell victim to the Ring of Volthoom’s influence, Jessica Cruz. As Power Ring, she cannot control the ring’s whims at all, and begs the Doom Patrol to help her, even while attacking them. The ring taunts Jessica, warning that it will never come off unless they kill her. The Chief hears this and attempts to shoot her down, but Emily stands in his way, warning that the woman is under the ring’s control – she isn’t responsible for her actions. Seeing that a nearby building is on fire with innocents inside, Cliff pauses to consider rescuing them all. The Chief warns that if they let Power Ring go, it will escalate to hundreds and thousands of innocent deaths. Even hearing that, the Doom Patrol hesitates.
They hesitate a moment too long, as the Justice League suddenly blasts through the building, rescuing everyone inside. Seeing their heroics, Emily doubts again the Chief’s claims that they don’t care. Angrily The Chief warns them to fall in line with his plan, reminding that they owe him their lives, and therefore they must do as he says or he will take them back. The ring, meanwhile, plans to use the Justice League to cause a disturbance so big that it will be seen from far away.
Meanwhile, in Metropolis, Lex Luthor takes a meeting with Leonard Snart, who has waited nearly 24 hours since his arrival at LexCorp to see him. Lex explains that he has an important role for Len to fill. People have underestimated him to this point. The way he sees it, Captain Cold is destined for greater things than bank robberies. Like, for example, head of LexCorp security. In that position, he’d see more money in a week than he’d see in a year. Before Leonard can accept, Mercy pops in to report that the League has caught up with Power Ring.
Back in Portland, Cyborg attempts to get close enough to Power Ring to shut down her ring. However, the ring decides it’s time to share a secret with him. The ring enters Vic’s mind and explains that its world was destroyed, and now it is dying. It – the ring – is Volthoom. He was the first bearer of the ring before he was cursed and imprisoned within it eons ago. In all that time, his only pleasure has been watching the subsequent ring bearers fail and die in their fear and weakness, to which the ring is all the more drawn. Jessica is no different. She once went hunting and came across two men dressed in suits working in the woods. Those men were burying a body. When she was spotted, the men shot and killed her friends, and only she escaped, hiding ever since. Now, all Volthoom wants is to use her to create a beacon that will lead the being who destroyed his world to theirs. That being needs Superwoman’s child.
The ring releases Vic, and Jessica collapses, allowing Caulder a chance to get near her. He orders the Doom Patrol to keep the Justice League back while he deals with her. Before he can do anything, though, Lex Luthor appears behind him and holds him back, threatening to blow a hole through his spine if he doesn’t turn Power Ring over to the League.