Of all the heroes to call themselves Defenders, Luke Cage and Daimon Hellstrom may have had the least in common. This made the duo's impromptu reunion in Marvel Team-Up #126 all the more intriguing.
The issue began with Hellstrom and Cage each responding to a cry for help. But as they approached a wounded man in a dark alley, the heroes mistook one another for the assailant. Not until they began fighting did the two recognize each other (having worked together only briefly as Defenders).
The injured man had been a mentor to Luke Cage, one of the few supportive adults in his life while growing up. Yet desperate for power and purpose, this same man had joined a secret sect intent on conjuring up an demonic entity. The cult thought Power Man's steel-hard body would make a perfect host for the malevolent spirit.
With crimefighting partner Iron Fist away on a meditation retreat, Power Man gladly accepted help from the Son of Satan.
Marvel Team-Up. No. 1. Vol. 1. February 1983. "A Firm Offer!" J.M. DeMatteis (scripter), Bob Hall (penciler), Mike Esposito (inks), Diana Albers (letters), Bob Sharen (colors), Tom DeFalco (editor), Jim Shooter (chief).
The second team-up this issue was a retelling of a story originally published in a Sunday newspaper supplement.
With a S.W.A.T. team on his tail, Hulk was in the midst of a reckless rampage until Spider-Man lured him to a deserted warehouse, where the green goliath calmed down and turned back into Bruce Banner.
Concerned that apprehending the distraught physicist might induce yet another violent transformation, the web-slinger tried a different approach. Changing back into his street clothes. Peter Parker gave the shirtless scientist the jacket off his back, the last $5 in his pocket, and a suggestion to head out of town.
The tale ended with Hulk handing a destitute man a wad of cash from his own ripped pants. Hulk's generosity would have been more touching, though, if he hadn't needlessly smashed parked cars and uprooted lampposts earlier that issue.