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With the construction of a massive citadel by the Sun-People threatening the ecosystem of the Savage Land, the X-Men team up with KA-ZAR to prevent its destruction!

Reprint of and retroactive backup story to The X-Men #116 - To Save the Savage Land (December, !978).

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Backup story summary:


The X-men awake in the village of the Fall people to find that Storm is gone. They find a note from her saying that she needed some time to herself and that she would be back before they left. Ka-zar thinks they should go after her, saying that he knows the dangers of the Savage Land and that it's no place for a lone woman, but Wolverine says Ka-zar doesn't know Storm and that they should trust her judgement. And Cyclops actually agrees with Wolverine.

In another part of the Savage Land, Storm is flying high above a lake. She's considering how some of the situations she's come into since being with the X-men have made her have to confront what she considers to be her core values, most recently the fate ofGarokk, who she still wonders if she could have saved, and she's worries about how it's changing her. As she dives into the lake, she's surprised by the appearance of a huge, aquatic dinosaur rushing towards her.

She narrowly evades the beast, but is still injured. As the dinosaur turns to attack again, Storm notices someone caught on the back of it, tangled in a harpoon lash. As she swims in to save them, they motion for her to save herself, but Storm refuses and frees them in spite of the danger. As the beast seems to dive deeper, Storm becomes disoriented feeling that down in leading her back to the surface. The beast leaps forth from the water with Storm in tow, giving her the opportunity to attack with a lightning bolt; though this seems to fell the beast, Storm herself collapses on the shore.

Unconscious, Storm's mind torments her with her fears, twisted versions of her memories, and ominous premonitions. She is a child again: at one moment safe in her mother's arm, then lost from her in a wave of fire; she runs down desperate ally ways, chased by a skeletal version of the dinosaur; her powers fail her, and she feels completely lost. Out of the darkness, a hand reaches out to her and she takes it.

She wakes in a bed to find a woman in a strange headdress trying to calm her and tell her she is safe. The woman says her name isM'Rin, and she believes that Storm is from another world, explaining that just as Storm had dived into a lake that seemed to have two surfaces, so had she, and that they had come up on her surface. It's then that Storm realizes that M'rin was the one she saved in the lake, and as she processes what M'rin says, she wonders if she will be able to return home.

The two walk out onto the deck of M'rin's ship, and Storm is astonished to see that it flies, and even more so that it is carried by a giant, flying silver fox --that can speak! The fox replies that it's more astounding that such intellect can be found in one so small as her; he introduces himself as C'Jime, and says that for saving his mistress, M'rin, he is now forever Storm's servant, as he is to her.

In the days and weeks that follow, the three become fast friends. In this world, M'rin is the lord of the sky, and her crew hunt savage sky-pirates. Storm becomes M'rin's right-hand-man, fighting alongside her in battle and tending to the wounded of both sides. She sees that M'rin is a even fair judge of her prisoners, and develops a great respect for her as a leader. But as time passes, Storm begins to wonder if she will ever return to her own world, her own life. She senses that her time with M'rin has awakened a wildness in her personality, but she feels duty bound to return to her friends.

One day, walking through the ship, Storm comes across a statue of M'rin and notices that it is a depiction of her with a child she has never mentioned. Confronting her, M'rin confesses that her daughter became the leader of the sky-pirates; though she knows it's selfish of her to want Storm to stay, she feels that Storm has been more like a daughter to her in spirit than her own ever was. Storm recognizes that the feeling is mutual, and is thankful for the time she's spent on this world, but says she still must return home. As M'rin agrees, the two embrace once more as surrogate mother and daughter.



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