The Universal Machine
|Written by||Mike Mignola & John Arcudi|
|Illustrated by|| Guy Davis|
with Mike Mignola
|Colored by||Dave Stewart|
|Lettered by||Clem Robins|
|Edited by||Scott Allie|
|Originally Published in||B.P.R.D.: The Universal Machine #1–5|
|Internal Numbering||B.P.R.D. #24–28|
|Date Published||April–August 2006|
|Collected in||B.P.R.D. – Volume 6: The Universal Machine|
|Omnibus Edition||B.P.R.D. Plague of Frogs – Volume 3|
After the catastrophic encounter with the monster-god Katha-Hem, Dr. Kate Corrigan travels to rural France in search of an ancient text that might undo the death of Roger. Back at the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense, Captain Daimio tells the story of his own death, Johann Kraus confesses a bizarre love triangle arising from one of his séances, Abe recalls a mission with Hellboy during his early days at the B.P.R.D., and Liz reveals a weird tale of the family members she killed while discovering her firestarter powers.
The five issue mini-series was published from April to August 2006. The story was collected in the trade paperback B.P.R.D.: The Universal Machine in January 2007. Mike Mignola drew the final pages of issue 5.
Abe Sapien and Captain Daimo oversee the bombing of the Katha-Hem disaster site in Nebraska from The Black Flame. Despite the 1,700 dead from the attack, Daimo can only think about Roger who died in the attack.
Kate secretly meets with Andrew Devon who gives her information on 'Flama Reconditus' (The Secret Fire); which he believes would be the only book with a formula for regrowing homunculus tissue and therefore undoing Roger's death. The two travel to Ableben, France to meet with the collector and negotiate for the book. In 1491, the villagers of the town once destroyed the castle of Marquis de Fabre for feeding their young to his 'monsters.'
The pair meet with Thierry, the collector, who has a wide collection in his shop which he quizes Kate on, while he insists Devon uses the phone box outside. As they search for the book Kate begins to grow wary of the increasingly odd objects and knows she is in danger. While Devon is on the phone to B.P.R.D. HQ he sees a 'closed' sign in the shop window and breaks the door down to get back in, where he finds an empty shop apart from a painting of a castle.
A discussion at B.P.R.D. Headquarters between Daimo, Johann and Liz Sherman about Roger leads to Daimo agreeing to reveal the truth about his death.
Captain Daimio tells the B.P.R.D. the story of his own death in the jungles of Bolivia. Meanwhile, Dr. Kate Corrigan, searching rural France for a clandestine text with the secret to bringing Roger back to life, finds herself a guest in a strange shop on the site of a castle that was destroyed over half a century ago.
While searching for an arcane text that could hold the secret to bringing Roger back to life, Dr. Kate Corrigan is trapped in a mysterious French village where a collector of occult objects has terrible plans for one of the B.P.R.D.'s most valuable assets.
Hellboy and Abe Sapien take center stage in a flashback story set during Abe's early days at the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense, and Liz Sherman reveals weird tales of the family members that she killed while discovering her firestarter powers. And in Europe, Doctor Kate Corrigan bargains with an ancient evil over the fate of her dead friend, Roger.
As Kate's devilish adventure in a haunted French village concludes, Roger's fate is resolved in an otherworldly confrontation, and each member of the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defenses confronts the truth of their own deaths-which each has had to face alone.
|B.P.R.D. Publication Order|
The Black Flame
|The Universal Machine|| Followed by|
Garden of Souls