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How Karkull managed to escape the Inner Pit is unknown, however, his first escape was foiled by Doctor Fate who trapped him within a tablet called the Artifact of Lorta. About a century after his imprisonment, Karkull was accidentally released by a thief that had come across the artifact and read its inscriptions out loud. Freed once again, Karkull crushed the artifact and began a rampage in Metropolis catching the attention of Superman. After a brief battle, Karkull managed to scratch Superman and cast a spell of protection around the Daily Planet. Now safe from any opposition, Karkull began casting a spell that transformed the building into his own realm. Once his spell was completed, Karkull opened a portal to the inner circle and began to summon demons with which to possess and transform humans into demon slaves. However, before Karkull could extend his influence outside of the building, Superman arrived to stop him. Unfortunately, Superman was unable to defeat Karkull alone and nearly fell in battle. It was then that Doctor Fate arrived to stop him once more. Karkull fought Fate furiously and was horrified to see that the Artifact of Lorta had been reconstructed. Desperate not to be captured again, Karkull attacked Fate, causing him to drop the tablet down toward the portal. Fortunately, Superman managed to retrieve the tablet before it was lost and Fate finished the containment spell. Karkull was once again drawn into the tablet and his demons were drawn in with him. His influence was removed on the building and he is presumably still trapped.

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