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Some TMNT stuff really isn't for little kids.

TMNT -59 Subscription Cover by Kevin Eastman

Fox Hunt is a story arc in IDW Publishing's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles continuity. The story deals with Kitsune's grand scheme and the consequences of her actions.

Credits

Part One - Issue #59

Released June 15th, 2016

TMNT -59 Cover by Dave Wachter

Leo, Raph, and Mikey are shocked to see several Foot Ninja down, Alopex in combat with Jennika, and Kitsune clutching an incapacitated Master Splinter, about to stab him in the heart with a knife.

Flashback: Splinter visits Jennika as she guards the tomb of Oroku Saki, or the Shredder. Jennika states that she is confused by Splinter honoring someone who was once his enemy. Splinter explains that Saki was once his clan-mate, and was close to him as a brother before he lost his way and became a victim of his own anger. Splinter reminds Jennika that Saki was also once the head of the Foot Clan and that alone earns him some measure of respect.

Splinter goes to visit the immortal shape-shifting witch Kitsune in her quarters where she is painting a scene depicting a fox, phoenix, and dragon. Over a up of tea, Splinter and Kitsune discuss the game played by her and her siblings, the Pantheon, each vying for control over more mortals than the others. Kitsune explains that in her view, everyone alive plays the game, as it is one of survival that leaves only the quick and the dead. Kitsune points out that like the phoenix, Splinter and his family live again in this strange new world. Splinter excuses himself to tend to other matters.

In the Foot Clan throne room, April O'Neil and Angel Bridge talk about their mutual friend Casey Jones. Angel explains to April that as hard-headed as he is, Casey Jones broke up with April to try and protect her. Splinter walks in while they’re talking, and having overheard their conversation, remarks that he feels in time Casey will learn to balance his life and accept both April and danger as part of it. Angel tells Splinter that Alopex is still acting strangely and bids her friends goodbye. April asks Splinter for permission to go into the Foot’s library archives to research the Pantheon and he tells her to report any interesting findings to him.

Back in her quarters, Kitsune begins a ritual that will allow her to take control of Alopex’s mind. Kitsune reaches out to Alopex telepathically and wakes her from her sleep. Kitsune forces Alopex down to Oroku Saki’s tomb and takes psychic control of the two guards posted outside the doors as well. Seeing Jennika guarding the tomb inside, Kitsune strikes out through Alopex and knocks her out. Kitsune, through Alopex, orders the two guards to take Saki’s remains up to the roof and load them into the waiting helicopter.

Master Splinter heads to Alopex’s room to see how she is feeling, but he arrives and discovers that she is not there. Suddenly, Kitsune, Alopex, and several Foot ninjas and elite guards appear behind Splinter and attack. Splinter defeats many of the combatants but is eventually overwhelmed. Before a ninja can land a killing blow with his sword, Jennika arrives and intervenes. Alopex and Jennika begin fighting and while the two of them are occupied, Kitsune picks up Splinter and prepares to kill him with her knife. Just as she is about to do so, the Turtles arrive home. Splinter tells them to save Jennika, and Kitsune stabs him in the chest.

Part Two - Issue #60

Released July 27th, 2016

TMNT -60 Cover by Dave Wachter

The issue opens with the story of a retainer who lived in Feudal Japan, working for the governor of Kai. One day while riding home, the retainer spotted a fox and scared it away with a noisemaker arrow. The man shot it again, hitting it in the leg, but before he could shoot it again it disappeared. When he neared his home, he spied the fox again, this time carrying a burning brand. He chased after the fox all the way home, whereupon the fox turned into a woman and set his house on fire, turned back into a fox and was gone. The moral of the story is that some beings exact quick revenge and are best left alone.

The three Turtles cry out in shock as they watch Kitsune stab their father in the chest with a knife. Mikey is the first to spring into action, catching Kitsune around the neck with his grappling hook. Kitsune, confused, sees that Splinter had on a Kevlar vest underneath his robes, preventing her knife from penetrating too deeply. Leo tells his brothers that they need to get their father away from the conflict. Splinter tells Leo to focus on protecting their friends, some of whom are currently under Kitsune’s power. Mikey, still tangling with the witch, calls out to his brothers for help. Kitsune reaches out with her mind yet again and brings Raph under her control, using him to free herself from Mikey’s grasp before taking control of his mind as well. Kitsune attempts to take over Leo’s mind as well but due to having felt the effects of her brainwashing before Leo is able to resist. Kitsune sends Raph and Mikey after Leo and Splinter. Meanwhile, Jennika attempts to reason with Alopex, still under Kitsune’s control, but Alopex is unable to shake it off.

In the Foot Clan’s archives, April is searching for information on the immortal family of the Pantheon. Suddenly, one of its benevolent members, Aka, appears before April and urges her to rush to her friends’ aid. Aka give April a white feather and teaches her a powerful white magic spell.

Leo tells Splinter that they had better get away from Raph and Mikey while they are under Kitsune’s control, as they are not holding back. Splinter puts forth a burst of energy and manages to get Mikey in a sleeper hold and knock him out. Splinter dodges around Raph, still fighting Leo, and takes him out with a sleeper hold as well. Just then, Donnie arrives back from Burnow Island via a teleportation portal. Kitsune quickly takes control of Donnie's mind, while he is still startled by the scene, and makes him attack Leo and Splinter as well. Splinter instructs Leo to aid Jennika and goes to deal with Donnie.

Alopex is about to finish off Jennika when Leo calls out to her, and he is nearly able to break through Kitsune’s influence and reach out to her when Kitsune reminds Alopex of her fear of the great polar bear of her youth. Alopex enters a berserker rage and charges at Leo, but in her anger she is an easy target and Leo knocks her unconscious.

Splinter sweeps Donnie’s legs out from under him and takes him down with a chokehold as well, apologizing to his son for what he had to do. Splinter states that they must end this before any more innocent lives are lost. Kitsune asks if anyone is truly innocent. Splinter, Leo, and Jennika square off against Kitsune when suddenly April, rushing upstairs from the library, calls out to the group. Kitsune thinks it laughable that April would dare challenge her, but April recites the spell that Aka taught her. April brandishes the feather Aka gave her and in a flash of white light, Kitsune’s mind control powers are neutralized. Realizing she is temporarily powerless, Kitsune transforms into her fox form and flees.

Observing the mortals invisibly, the Rat King appears next to his sister Aka and comments on her intervention, a rare occurrence for her. Aka states that it is as Kitsune said, that none are truly innocent in this life. Leo and Splinter wake the other Turtles, who are confused as to what just happened. April explains that Kitsune made a big play in the Pantheon’s game of war against humanity. Jennika informs the others that she can’t find Alopex, who seems to have fled the scene.

On the rooftop, Kitsune reaches the helicopter waiting for her and finds that her mind-control powers have returned. She orders the pilots to depart and the helicopter flies away. Kitsune states that although she did not win the battle outright, she at least managed to claim what she had sought. Opening the box containing the Shredder’s remains, she finds that Splinter had deceived her, as only his helmet is inside.

In Oroku Saki’s tomb, Splinter holds Saki’s skull in his hands, contemplating the events of the evening and wondering what the future holds in store.

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