Wonder Woman and Batman explain to Cernunnos how they were secretly followed and then attacked by Declan, Lug and Maggie. Batman outlines his theory and wonders why King Elatha, while aware of the attacks on villages by the Formorians, did nothing to intervene. Did he condone them? Wonder Woman them asks Cernunnos if they can visit the late king’s widow to see if she can shed any light.
Cernunnos agrees and reminds the others that if they seek to intercede they should remember that the heroes had been invited here at his request, in order to discover who had murdered the king and bring an everlasting peace to their land.
Wonder Woman and Batman travel to the Queen’s castle and she explains how the Formorians are actually capable of great kindness and loyalty. They built and designed all the castles in Tir na nog. They are an ancient race and we are all their children – including the Danann. Her husband, King Elatha, was a complex man and at times opaque even to her. He would turn a blind eye to the raids and tell her that they were harmless in the context of eternal captivity. His mind was always on the greater prize – freedom.
She then gives them a history lesson, shown through paintings that were created to try and ensure that their people’s past would not be totally forgotten. But just as their memories fade year on year, so eventually will the paintings themselves. She shows a painting depicting a great battle that had taken place, whereby her husband had fought alongside King Nuada and the Danann army, crushing the invasion attempt of Balor the Evil Eye, self proclaimed king of the Formorians.
During the battle however King Nuada lost his arm. After the victory she had married King Elatha and alongside King Nuada brought unity and peace between the Formorians and Danann. Without and heir and terribly injured Nuada’s crown passed on to the queen’s son, Breas, who had become a great champion of the Danann.
But he proved to be an unjust and cruel king. Facing open rebellion from his own people he came to King Elatha for counsel. Enraged by Breas’ actions, Elatha sent him instead to confer with his banished brother, Balor.
Meanwhile, Nuada had become like a son to herself and Elatha and they had their best craftsmen create a silver arm to replace his lost limb.
However, hearing that Nuada was “whole” again Breas and Balor united and together attacked again. Nuada was killed during that battle by Balor who seared and burned their lands with his dreaded eye. Yet somehow Elatha prevailed, driving his sibling back into the sea and back into exile.
Batman then asks the Queen why Balor had attacked again. She replied that Breas always wanted to remain king and perhaps Balor just wanted to bring destruction. Elatha for his part wished only that Balor embraced the tutelage of Breas and see it as an act of trust and friendship. He always hoped for better – that one day they would be reunited. But neither Breas nor Elatha has realised how powerful Balor had grown on exile.
Nuada was like a brother to Elatha and when it was decided to cast a spell of forgetfulness over Tir na nog he was determined to remember Nuada and so had the paintings commissioned.
Later Batman and Wonder Woman visit the tomb of King Nuada, as the Dark Knight believes it is the nexus of Elatha’s sorrow. He manages to open the tomb and they see the corpse of the king lying there with his silver arm. Suddenly though Queen Ethné storms in with her troops, outraged that they have violated this sacred place without her permission. A brief fight breaks out but Batman asks for calm and using the stone had stone to reveal the truth to the queen – that Nuada’s silver arm has been stolen!
Later back in the chambers of King McCool, having heard the revelation about the arm from Wonder Woman and Batman he rants to Captain Furf how the Formorians had better not accuse the Danann of stealing it. And if it’s a war they want then a war they shall have!