Epic X-Men #26

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Epic X-Men #26: Travels to Avalon

*Genoshan Palace*

No Caption Provided

"Your possessive attitude for a man who hadn't even thought of you for years is quite pathetic", Emma says as she expertly parries Sinister's attacks.

"I don't know what you're talking about, hun. You should probably work out your own issues instead of delving into others", Miss Sinister says before she changes the perspective to Emma's old home.

"Congratulations, Cladine. You made it to my memories. But I assure you that you have no idea what you're getting into", Emma says as she turns Sinister's plan over. Instead of Emma's father coming through the door, Nathaniel Essex walks through with a wicked gleam.

"Claudine, the time has come for us. We won't be behind the curve of evolution's plans. We will defy it! We will be eternal, starting with Grey's DNA", Essex says before a darkness envelopes the room, with Essex along with it. A lone mirror displaying the beautiful form of Claudine back then shows before the light over it flickers to reveal her current, deathly looking skin. From the shadows, the similar looking Mister Sinister walks up from behind and outs his hands on both her shoulders. "Perfection."

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With a scream in denial and horror, Claudine falls unconscious to the floor.

"What a pity. The typical daddy issues has gotten to another one", Emma says as she walks away from Claudine. In the back of her head though, a fear whispers what Emma won't admit. Just how easily she could become like Miss Sinister. It is then that she gets Jean's message. "Space. We have to go out in bloody space? For the love of- Fine, I will help get everyone ready."

Looking to her side, she sees Quicksilver ram into Polaris shield multiple times as Havok tries to tag the mutant speedster. His feet may take him anywhere he wishes quickly, but not even h e could match the speed of thought. With a simple thought, Emma shuts Quicksilver down telepathically.

"So, is younger Summers with us, now?", Emma asks.

"If you'll have me....", Havok says with seriousness.

"Great. Then I don't suppose you could tell us how we get to Magneto's space station?", Emma asks with arms crossed.

"I....he usually has Blink use her powers to teleport from here to Asteroid M.....I don't know if he has another way of getting there...", Havok says thoughtfully.

"I do", Cypher says as he reveals to have been in a corner watching the battle. "I also know what he is planning."

"Very good. I will download the information from your brain real quick.....", Emma says as she puts her fingers at his temple. "Got it! Get everything ready. We need to start wrapping things up here. Polaris, help Marvel Girl and Cyclops with Scarlet Witch. Summers, you're with me."

As Polaris flies over to Scott and Jean, Emma looks up to find Iceman having trouble tagging Nightcrawler with his ice blasts, as Sabertooth wrestles Beast to the ground with surprisingly comparable strength. Emma tries to do her best to wrangle Sabertooth back....but she finds his mind to be in a feral state, not susceptible to suggestion. So, she settles on a psi-blast. It manages to stun temporarily, but it does not take long for him to shake off the effects before Emma can help Beast up.

"I got him, Queen!", Havok says as he blasts Saberooth with heated energies that tear his skin continuously. His healing factor was always inferior to Wolverine, but his stubbornness and durability made up for it, as seen when he slowly progresses to Havok.

"Beast, help Iceman! Havok and I have Sabertooth", Emma says as she knocks away at Sabertooth's resistance.

Up at the rafters, Kurt Wagner easily maneuvers through the beams to escape the icy blasts shooting from below.

"I must say, mein freund. I have not had this much fun since the circus. Is it only abstract things that you create or do you make ice sculptures. Or perhaps snow cones?", Kurt asks conversationally as he hangs from his tail.

"Does it matter? You're Brotherhood! We should be at each other's throat", Iceman replies as he continues his blasts.

"Perhaps", Kurt says before disappearing in a puff of smoke as Beast was pouncing at him.

"HANK!", Iceman yells as Beast begins falling from high up to the floor below. Before his body could make impact though, Kurt ports onto his back ports them both back up. Hank sees the beam and grabs hold of it before positioning himself on it properly.

"Then again, we are all mutants, nein? I came here to escape prejudice of my appearance, but I hold no real grudge against humanity", Kurt says as he hangs upside-down.

"So, why follow the Brotherhood? Does Magneto not allow mutants to keep out of this war he is trying to enact?", Beast asks curiously as Iceman slides towards the two.

"Under certain circumstances, yes. But some mutants are too much of an asset to ignore. I was recruited for my ability to port and stick to walls while concealing myself in shadow. I can't port as far as Blink could, but I am still rather useful for getting people out quickly while entering just after. I agreed to help under the condition that the request is reasonable", Kurt explains further.

"And attacking us counts as such?", Iceman asks accusingly.

"Now, did I really attack? As far as I know, it was you who came for me. I more or less played around, but not once did I lay a finger on either of you", Kurt says. The two remain silent as they realize he is right. "What Magneto is planning is out of the jurisdiction of rational. I am not in support, but more than that, someone needs to stop him. I figured it would be meat first, but outside of my swords, I have no real way of defending or attacking. I am relatively powerless."

"So, you are gonna let us go?", Iceman asks with caution.

"Da."

"We promise to do everything we can to stop whatever he is planning", Beast assures the blue mutant.

"In that case!", it was then that Kurt jumps to Beast and ports him to Magneto's chamber, where a lone portal is being worked on by Cypher. "Be right back!"

So, Nightcrawler ports the X-Men one-by-one into the room, away from the fights below. When he is finished, bids an "Auf Wiedersehen" with a bow and ports away.

"What just happened?", Storm asks, confused since she was just about to retaliate against Pyro.

"A new friend. A teleporter it would seem took us to this room", Beast says as he walks to Cypher.

"Yeah, he is a pretty mischievous one with a big heart. You'd love him.....Okay, the portal is ready for use. It will take you to Asteroid M's loading bay. Your goal is to get to the main control room, where Magneto is likely stationed", Cypher explains to the group.

"I have been there once or twice", Havok says.

"And I got a the schematics of the place downloaded in my head, Scott. We are ready", Emma confirms as she points to her head.

"Alright.....this is it then. Remember to stick together. We have no idea who or what we will face up there. So long as we stick together though, we can overcome most of anything", Scott says before turning to the portal. "Alright, X-Men. Let's get our Professor back!"

**********************************************************************************

*Asteroid M*

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The 9 mutants walk through the portal to a large room with giant iron doors locked in place, possibly for instances where Magneto would plan to travel through Earth's atmosphere instead of by teleporter.

"YOU GUYS?! HOW?!", Toad shouts.

Before anyone can make a move, the green man falls unconscious to the floor.

"One of you should probably move him to somewhere else", Emma nonchalantly says as she passes by the unconscious mutant.

Without further argument, they put Toad in a safe place where no one would find him and they continue down the corridor. Much like the city he created on the planet below, the space station was incredible to behold. Some areas allowed for them to gaze out into the empty void of space, with nothing but the sun, the stars, the moon, and the Earth to view. Yet, even with a lack of variety, it was a world they marveled at because it was so different from their own home.

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"You doing, okay, 'Ro?", Jean asked with concern.

"I will be", Orroro said before continuing on. Jean could sense her unease though. This was far from the nature she was used to. Not just that, but her connection to the planet was weakened by the distance. What Storm wouldn't give to fly among the clouds again.

"Fascinating", Beast said as he looked around him, quickly trying to take in every detail as he could.

"Of course you would be geeking out over this place", Bobby said with a little humor in his tone. He was right though, Jean thought to herself. Hank would be extremely interested in stuff like this. And why wouldn't he? The genius it must of took to be capable of managing to keep this place in orbit without allowing gravity to pull it to the planet. Bobby is just happy to see Hank so excited, like a little kid in a toy store. It stirs something in him that Jean decides to leave alone. None of her business.

"Jean? Emma? Have either of you managed to locate the Professor at all?", Scott asks as he and Alex lead the group through. His mind is so focused, you wouldn't believe him truly human. But Jean has been in his head before. She knows it. She can feel every emotion. Lying beneath the impenetrable stone that is his willpower were worries and regrets and anxiety that he keeps in the back of his mind. Jean could only ever hope to alleviate some of the pain and concern, but he has hardened and repressed himself for so long even prior to the X-Men. Jean could only do so much without intruding in a way that Nathaniel and Claudine have.

"I would be surprised if they did, Cyke. The electromagnetic fields are intense. Stronger than the fields in Genosha", Polaris answers. Jean could sense the fear. Even with the hurt and anger that Lorna had gone through, it is clear from the emotions that Lorna is scared to face the man who ruined her life. A man who was supposed to love her more than anything in the entire world. What is even scarier for the woman is that there is a sense of comfort in this place she finds similar to Genosha. This excess of power at her disposal gives her a sense of belonging that she would care not to admit.

"Dear, Polaris is correct. Unfortunately, the EM fields scramble our psionics. We would be expending too much power even manage a casual scan. With those confounded telepaths around, it would be unwise to push too hard", Emma confirms. Emma is a closed book to Jean. So, concealed and impenetrable is her carefully stitched defense. Perhaps it is the atmosphere or the looming mystery around every corner, but Jean could tell that Emma's grip around her thoughts is all-around tighter than usual.

"Magneto had been preparing for the great Charles Xavier's arrival from day one of this place. From what I was told, he set this place up in its current position above Earth's atmosphere the day Juggernaut attacked your mansion. I was worried about whether you guys would manage to defeat him, though if you had asked me back then, I would deny it even to myself", Havok admits.

"It was scary, but we still had friends available to alert us to prepare. Alex.....it is apparent that both of us have regrets for the things we had done, and haven't done. Still, I want us to start over. Try to move forward together instead of against each other", Scott says to his brother.

"I'd like that", Havok smiles.

"That is more like it. Remember what I had told you before, Havok", Polaris said with a look of relief.

"I will, uh, Polaris, was it?", Alex asks nervously.

"In the field. Outside of it, Lorna is fine", she responds kindly before returning her attention onto something else, instead of on the...."good-looking" younger brother? Jean held in a giggle. The idea of the two of them sounded absolutely adorable to her.

"Lorna. I will remember that", he says while smiling. Jean was truly loving what she was getting from the both of them. She could squeal had this not been such a desperate situation. With their powers came a lack of normalcy for the young men and women on this team. It was an incredible experience unlike anything any normal person could dream of. Yet, the sacrifice to their normal lives was one that Jean had felt bad about more times than she'd like to admit. So, any moment where any one of them could take the chance to act their age like any normal person was something Jean always treasured. She did believe in Charles dream, but her own dreams mattered just as much. That dream being the ability to live her life with someone she loved. With people she loved, without the judgement from an entire world.

Despite that, something else tugged at her....something on a more primal level....as if her destiny was never to be down-to-Earth. No. It was something unworldly.......A part of her that craves to fly out into that empty void, as if it were all hers.

"Marvel Girl!"

"Hm?", Jean shook her head and looked to Scott, who had concern written on his mind. "Sorry, I thought I sensed something."

"...Alright. Alert us if it turns out to be something", Scott said before turning back to leading. She returned her focus on the mission, so as to not get caught like that again. After all, Jean hated to lie to Scott.....but was it truly a lie?

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The group trekked on through the metal halls, everything being oh so quiet.

"Where is everyone?", Iceman asked as they continued onwards cautiously.

"Not many know about this place yet. Magneto eventually plans to bring in a more help in waching over this place, but overall, no one should be here beyond a select few", Havok explains.

"Who, exactly, are the ones selected", Beast asks.

"You're about to find out", Havok says before opening a door that led to a wide room. Standing in the X-Men's way were more mutants chosen by Magneto to guard the door. No one would go in without their say-so, until today. "And here are the obstacles of this venture."

"Logan?", Jean uttered as she saw the man among those chosen to watch over the entrance to Magneto's control room.

"You know Wolverine?", Havok asks in surprise.

"He has helped us in the past before. One of them being the Juggernaut attack", Scott explains to his brother.

"Huh...didn't seem to friendly when I spoke with him. Normally, he keeps to himself", Havok says.

"Look who's made it", Logan said when he noticed the group. He catches eye of Jean and Scott, but manages to school his features. Underneath it, Jean could feel a sense of relief and guilt. Jean still had hope that he would help them again like before.

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"Logan is right. It seems we have unwanted guests aboard", a large metal man says.

"Colossus.......Piotr, please let us through. They just want their teacher back", Havok implores the large man.

The man stays silent as he watches the group there. Their only purpose was to get back the person they love dearly. The guilt comes to the forefront of his mind when he thinks of his dear sister and family, but he can't seem to afford to think such thoughts.

"Magneto was clear, tovarisch. Stop the X-Men at all costs", Colossus says while pounding his metal fist into his palm.

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"An order that Havok has seemed to disobey. We do not take kindly to traitors to our master, Summers", Exodus says as he floats above the group.

"Master? Is that what he is forcing you all to call him?", Polaris asks in shock at the red man's words.

"Nah, just his. He is more of a fanatic than the rest of us", a blue-skinned woman with red-hair says dismissively.

"And you....these traitors turned not just another one of our own against us, but an heiress. A daughter to the great Magneto is an X-Man", Exodus says after remembering hearing of Magneto's lost daughter.

"I was never one of you to begin with", Lorna growls.

"All mutants our one of us. These ones in particular choose to betray us for an inferior species that wishes to be rid of us", Exodus argues.

"You don't understand at all", Lorna says as she feels the power surge through her. "My real family are humans. hen my hair turned green, they had a doctor ensure I wasn't ill. When it was revealed to be a difference in my biology, they embraced me. My foster mom took me out for clothes to match my new look. My father still obsessed over boys who were interested in me. They were more family to me than any of you! I will protect them and everyone like them in spite of you all!"

"A real tragedy that your passion is for the wrong side. We will mourn your passing", Exodus says threateningly.

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"What are we standing around for?! Let's pound them already", Blob says eagerly.

"I'd like to see you try, flab face!", Iceman says.

"Why you-"

"Put a sock in it, bub! We still have to give the rest a chance to surrender or join our cause. It was an order given to us by Magneto", Logan interjects.

"Jean?", Scott asks through the telepathic connection.

"He doesn't want us to get hurt, Scott", Jean confirms to his suspicions.

"If that is true, then we will have to alert the rest of the team not attack him", Scott instructs her.

"Thanks, Scott", Jean said before passing on Scott's instruction.

"Well? You heard the man! Are ya gonna join? No?! Then, coming through", Blob says before charging forward.

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The man charges forward with his target in sight. It would seem though that his mark was off when he runs into a wall.

"What the-"

"You're a fool, Blob. They have telepaths on the team. You stood no chance to begin with", the blue-skinned woman scolds.

"Well, what good are our telepaths if they don't help us deal with 'em, Mystique?!", Blob argues back.

"They are powerful opponents, taught very well in the use of their powers. You charged outside the sphere of influence that kept them at bay, Blob", Kwannon said simply.

"You mean you can only do such a small area?", Blob asks in shock.

"It seems a sacrifice Magneto had to make was on your telepath's range as much as ours", Emma mocks.

"I could always port us somewhere that doesn't interfere with our powers", a pink skinned mutant chimes in.

"That's a good idea, Blink", Rogue agrees. "That way they are away from Magneto and we won't be so handicapped."

"Okay, then", Blink says as her hands conjure multiple daggers of pink transdimensional energy.

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"Don't get hit by those daggers. She can send us anywhere if she -"

Havok's warning nearly comes too late as her energy weapons are thrown at high speeds. Suddenly, they stop in mid-air.....

"What? They've never done that before", Blink exclaims confusingly.

"Its not the daggers that's the problem. It's her. The telekinetic", Exodus says. The group turns to Jean, who seems to strain to keep hold of the energy daggers.

"Cyclops, I can't....its like they aren't real like most matter. I like trying to push the air itself, only that air is sucking you in like a black hole.....", Jean says as she tries keep hold of them.

"Turn them around, Marvel Girl! Change their targets", Scott directs. With intense concentration, Jean directs them to everywhere else. The energy knives dissipate on impact with the walls.

"Shouldn't the walls disappear, too?", Iceman asks.

"They had a specific target. Metal walls weren't the target", Blink shrugs.

"How exactly are we gonna get past her?", Iceman whispers to Cyclops. Honestly, Cyclops was as clueless as Iceman.

"I think we know who the biggest threat is now", Blob says thoughtfully.

"They're all threats, idiot. Each and every one of 'em", Logan interjects.

"Than maybe ah can take some of their powers. Just to even the odds a bit", Rogue says with a smirk.

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"Just like ya did to Captain Marvel", Mystique says with an evil grin.

"Wait, Captain Marvel?", Beast think curiously. "There was news that she was put in the hospital. Had been in a coma for a good few months. Mayhaps-"

"That it was Rogue? Oh yeah. I was there when it happened", Blob said while laughing. Rogue though didn't look as proud about it.

"That explains the flight and super-strength. I also witnessed firsthand how her draining abilities work. They require skin on skin contact", Jean warns the team.

"That's a shame. She is kinda cute", Angel says.

"Back at ya, bird boy. Maybe you would like a kiss from lil' ol' me?", Rogue said flirtatiously.

Angel did not expect that kind of response.

"Think with your head, not your dick, dumby", Emma scolds telepathically. With a sigh, Angel concedes.

"Men, right?", Kwannon's voice says all of a sudden in his head.

"Oh god, she's in my head!", Angel panics.

"It's alright, Warren. She is merely projecting her thoughts to your head. She won't go anywhere near so long as Jean and I are here", Emma says calmly while glaring at Kwannon, who simply smiles.

"Let's wait until I dig my psionic weapons in your head before you make such a bold claim", Kwannon boasts as she turns her katana expertly and conjuring a psychic knife in her other hand.

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"I think its safe to say that none of them are looking to surrender. You all know the drill, Brotherhood", Mystique says as she walks to the middle of the group in the front.

"Remember your training, X-Men. So much is at stake. We cannot afford to lose this!", Scott reminds his team.

Mystique smirks. "Hmph. Maybe we should start a training program. Some of you need to get into shape."

"HEY!", Blob yells.

"On my mark, Brotherhood!", Mystique says as she cocks her gun. "Attack!"

"Defend yourselves, X-Men!", Scott says.

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*The Main Control Room*

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"Erik, please, tell me why you're doing this", Charles begs his old friend.

"You know why, Charles. I am doing this for our people, to prosper and take our place in this world on top", Magneto answers.

"Erik, please! Enough with the cryptics! Please, tell me what I am doing here", Xavier says.

"You are here to witness my plan and see what I have been building for so long. This base is more than just another headquarters. It is a working machine that generates its own electromagnetic field, much like the moon before it. Yet, I set it opposition to the moon, so that there won't be a cataclysm. Though that is an idea I have had. But, no, its purpose is something else", Magneto explains.

"What is it?", Xavier asks.

"With my own ability to generate a magnetic field that allows me to fly, I have seen how it affects electronics. But EMP's are nothing new to the planet. They are very much a valuable weapon to use against their opponents in warfare, wouldn't you say, Charles?", Magneto asks.

"............So, you are planning to generate an EMP. Would it not be easier to do so from the Earth?", Xavier asks.

"I could, but it would drain me more so than it had to create my city on the mutant island, Krakoa", Magneto reveals.

"Wait, Genosha resides on a mutant island?", Xavier asks in shock.

"A tale I will regale you another time, perhaps. Back to my plan, I do plan on using Earth's magnetic field. Combining the electromagnetic energy from my new space station, the Earth, and myself, I shall build up enough energy to burst forth in a concentrated blast that will envelope the entire planet, knocking out all electronics that exist on the planet. True, they will eventually reboot their systems, but before that, Genosha will strike across the planet. Not even Earth's Mightiest Super Heroes will stop our armies!", Magneto claims pridefully.

"You're....you're absolutely insane! Do you not realize what an electromagnetic pulse like that would do to the planet?! To our moon?!", Xavier shouts.

"I have Xavier. And I compensated for such in regards to our precious moon. There is small station where positioned a mutant who goes by the name of Amara. Her power involves manipulating the geological parts of the Earth, which includes the magnetic energy that they generate down below the crust. I had hoped that my long lost daughter would join me in this, but some plans need to be adapted. She is young, so I had to do what I can to amp her power enough to generate a counter EM field to counteract the worldwide EMP. As for the Earth itself, any changes to the planet will only benefit our cause. Volcanoes erupting? Tsunamis? Earthquakes? All will serve our cause as rulers of a new era!", Magneto declares.

************************************************************************************

*Back on the battle*

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Wolverine leans on the wall as he watches the battle goes on. Per Jean's instruction, he stays out of sight while she masks his presence so that they wouldn't notice him as they fight. He looks to Blob, who is fighting the X-Men who were called Angel, Beast, and Iceman.

"Why don't ya stop with these hit and run tactics and fight me like a man? Any one of ya? I can take ya!", Blob taunts.

"Oh, we do not doubt that at all. That is why we choose much less direct options. Feel proud as we kick your gluteus maximus", Beast says as he jumps off from Blobs tiny head comparably to his body.

"HEY! Grrrr, I am gonna crush the lot of ya!", Blob threatens as he misses in reaching Angel.

"Ya gotta catch us first, big guy", Angel says as he casually flies circles near Blob, but far enough to be out of reach.

"Before we catch YOU!", Iceman says as he freezes the ground beneath his feet. Blob then slips and lands on his back, groaning in pain.

"Why I oughta-", Blob trails off before banging the ground, causing the immediate surroundings to shake. Beast and Iceman trip over and Angel swoops in to get them both before Blob could manage.

Looking to another battle, he witnesses Cyclops doing battle with Mystique, whom were shooting with their respective weapons. Scott with his energy force blasts and Mystique with dual pistols. Scott waited for an opening to come out from his cover. When the array of bullets stopped, Scott took his chance instinctively and shot out his optic blast, nearly missing Jean.

"Oh god, Jean!", Scott called out as he ran to her aid.

Jean, can ya hear me?, Logan thought.

"Kinda busy, Logan!", Jean said telepathically.

"What are ya doing here? You're supposed to be dealing with Blink", Scott said, worried that she was injured, despite dodging the beam.

"I saw that woman, Mystique giving you trouble and came to help", Jean explained as he helped her up. "Thank you, Cyclops."

But I need ya to quickly patch me in with Scott!, Logan thought.

"Alright, Logan. Your thoughts are being broadcasted to Scott, directly", Jean said telepathically.

Scott! That ain't Jean! Mystique is shape-shifter! She can take any shape of anyone she has seen, Logan says hastily.

"It's no problem, Jean", Scott said. It was then that 'Jean' pulls out a gun. Thanks to Logan's warning, though, Scott blocks the gun with his other hand, making it shoot elsewhere. Mystique then reacts by headbutting Scott and then kicking him in the abdomen, causing Scott to fall. She then switches to her loaded gun and tries to shoot Scott, but he rolls and shoots her with an optic blast. "Thanks, Logan!"

Wolverine looks to a different battle. From what he had learned on the briefing, the woman with white hair was called Storm. She has teamed with Magneto's daughter, Polaris, against the psychic, Exodus.

"You wield the magnetic forces well, child. But even with your friends help, you will not defeat Magneto's second-in-command!", Exodus gloats proudly.

"Would you shut it!", Lorna yells before shooting another magnetic pulse beam at Exodus.

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"Our attacks are not getting past his telekinetic shield", Storm says.

"Push harder!", Lorna says as she hits the shield again. She had not noticed that behind her was a Rogue bull-rushing her, until Storm threw a lightning bolt with enough force to throw her from Lorna's path.

"Polaris, put up your magnetic shield!", Storm says as she watches Lorna's back where multiple objects were starting to float and fling towards him. On command, Polaris puts up a shield of electromagnetic energy that the objects were being thrown against.

"Having trouble, ladies?", Exodus says as he starts creating a telekinetic crushing force on her shield. Amazingly too, Rogue gets up. Slightly disheveled and a lot angrier, but still ready for round two.

Wolverine then turns his attention to Havok, who is blasting away at Colossus.

"Please, Colossus, you know this is wrong! What Magneto is planning, it will hurt everyone. Your family in Russia included", Havok tells the conflicted mutant.

"I was driven out of Russia for my powers after saving my own sister. I do not carer for the others anymore", Colossus answers.

"Even your family? Your sister, Illyana?", Havok argues.

"That does not concern you!", he yells as he charges at Havok. On instinct, Havok unleashes a plasma blast that holds Colossus back. "You will not stop me for long, Alex! Give up!"

"I won't! I can't! I just got my brother back! I won't let him lose me, just the same as I won't lost him!", Havok says as he unleashes more power.

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Logan turns his attention away from Havok and onto the last two battles taking place. Marvel Girl and the Queen vs Blink and Kwannon. Logan didn't find the telepaths fight all that intriguing with them just standing around, so he focused mostly on Jean's constant redirecting of Blinks daggers.

"You're doing pretty well all things considered. No one really lasts this long in fights with me", Blink says casually as she spams her throwing knives.

"Same for you!", Jean says as she grabs Blink telekinetically and hurls her to the ceiling.

"Whoo!", Blink yells as she throws a dagger that forms a portal for her to pass through. After she disappears into the portal, Jean feels the loss of mass in her tk grip. With Kwannon and Exodus blocking psionic scans, Jean had no choice but rely on her reflexes. Suddenly, a portal forms behind Jean.

On your six Jean, Logan says. On instinct, Jean puts up a shield that Blink rams into after she passes through her portal back to the battle.

"Thanks, Logan", Jean says appreciatively.

No prob, Red, Logan said with a smirk. It was then that the tide turned for Jean as she shot out telepathic lightning at Blink with her mind.

"Hey!"

Logan looked to Emma and saw that she had blocked Kwannon's psi-stab from knife made of pure telepathic energy.

"You little sneak! You almost had me! What's the matter? Couldn't take me on psychically, so you decided to go for physical combat?", Emma laughed.

"Your over-confidence will be your downfall", Kwannon said as she swings her katana.

It was then that a fight of a more physical nature took place. Logan was surprised and impressed with how the Queen kept pace with the ninja psi. Though he doubted the woman had the same amount of training Kwannon had, she made sure to keep on her toes as Kwannon tried to swing her knife and katana at Emma. Unfortunately, Kwannon was faster than Emma, so she swept her feet at Emma's ankles to trip her. Kwannon then jumped her and dug her psi-knife at Emma's head.

"Oh no you don't!", Emma mocked as she turned into her diamond form before the knife made contact. This woman was full of surprises!

"You shouldn't be conscious! This knife is the focused culmination of my telepathic power", Kwannon said as she kept digging her psi-knife at the diamond head.

"Lucky that this form is psi-proof then, huh?", Emma says before throwing Kwannon off of her. While Kwannon is down, Emma then pounces on her and drives Kwannon's head into the metal ground. Kwannon lie still, ko'd for good. "Jean! Telepathic blocks have been sufficiently weakened!"

"Teleporters down, too", Jean confirms as she drops Blink to the ground. "I will go for-"

"No, Jean! I will help Scott. You need to take on Exodus or Rogue. I can't fly and Exodus still has pretty tough defenses that I can't do in my diamond form. If he directs Rogue to me, the psi defenses will keep causing trouble", Emma explains. Jean wanted to argue, but she relented with a nod eventually.

The two scatter to their respective targets.

"Nighty-night, Mystake!", Emma says as she tries to infiltrate Mystique's mind, only to run into a complicated defense that fooled psychics into thinking one persona was the real one. "What? Why didn't- OOF!"

Mystique noticed Emma's intrusion, so in response she dodged Scott's blow and then kicks her leg back. It extends to kick into Emma's abdomen.

"Even if Exodus and Kwannon weren't here, you still would have trouble in trying to infiltrate my mind, telepath!", Mystique says as she casually blocks Scott's blow.

"Very well, then lets see how you fair in something more up-close and personal", Emma says changing into diamond.

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Meanwhile, Jean flies up to the battle looking for an opening in Exodus defenses. Suddenly, she is grabbed from behind and drained by Rogue. Jean then struggled as much as she could, but the drain was fast acting and it weakened her psi-blast to only making Rogue release her, rather than ko her completely.

"Logan....you betrayin' us?", Rogue says as Jean's thoughts and powers surge through her body.

"Nothin' to do with ya', darlin'. Mags is just not a good guy. Lotta people are gonna be hurt if I simply let him go forward with this", Logan explains calmly.

"And y'all think yer gin' be the one to stop 'im? Hah! Y'all are just plain stupid for thinkin' y'all would get away unnoticed.....Doing all this for a girl you had only a few conversations with?!", Rogue said as she crept slowly towards Logan.

"Am I?", Logan says with arms crossed.

"What othah explanation is there?! And don-"

Rogue stops in her tracks as she suddenly feels a headache coming on with many nightmares filling her head.

"That girl yer talkin' about is someone you vastly underestimated", Logan says with a smirk.

At that moment, Rogue starts bursting with psychic energy. She tried to impose her will, but she had never took on the mind of a telepath. She falls unconscious as the form of Jean Grey appears from her body, made if pure psionic energy.

"She won't remember anything when she wakes", Jean reassures him before re-entering her own body.

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Meanwhile, Storm and Polaris try their best to penetrate Exodus telekinetic shield. Metal flies around the three clashing into both shields.

"Storm, why won't throw more lightning bolts?", Polaris says.

"The iron surrounding us are massively conductive. That lightning bolt I shot at Rogue was a risk enough as it was. She could take the hit though due to her high-durability and non-conductive clothing. If a stay electrical surge hit this area, any one of our teammates will be put at risk", Storm explains as she conjures air pressures to create a vacuum for smaller metal pieces to be directed at Exodus.

"How resistant are you to electricity, Storm?", Polaris asks.

"With preparation, I can safely direct the electricity around or even through my body. Why do you ask?", Storm asks.

"I think I can contain us in a electromagnetic shield to contain your electricity. I won't be harmed, but Exodus might be overwhelmed", Polaris says as she extends her shield around the three of them and the metal.

"Very well, we will test how it works", Storm says in warning before she raises her hands towards Exodus. Through her own powers, the iron and copper flying in the air, and Lorna's electromagnetic field, Storm unleashes a great electrical attack that surrounds Exodus' shield.

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The light from the attack was so bright that Blob looked away from his opponents briefly. Finding his moment, Angel carries Beast above Blob and drops him on Blob's shoulders. It was then that Hank used his legs to once more keep Blob in a choke hold that ko's the giant mutant as it did last time.

"Not....again....",Blob weakly said as he begun to lose consciousness.

"Sweet dreams, tubby", Beast said as he jumped from Blob before he fell forward.

"And to make sure he doesn't get back up", Iceman says as he shoots a beam of ice that freezes Blob solid.

"Great job, guys!", Angel says.

"GET DOWN!", Iceman says as he puts an ice wall up thick enough to block stray bullets from Mystique.

"I gotta say, you guys have impressively kept pace with me throughout fight. I will have to end this sooner than I thought I guess", Mystique says as she flips away.

"That's a nice fantasy, but it still sounds like meaningless babble coming out of that garbage hole that you call a mouth", Emma quips as the bullets continue to bounce off of her diamond body.

"Queen, you gotta hang back and try to infiltrate her mind again. I can handle her", Scott directs as he goes for more aggressive swings and kicks.

"Fine", Emma says as she changes back to normal form and begin to search through Mystique's mind.

"Any minute would be nice!", Scott says as Mystique counters his swings with different kicks all over his body.

"There was a specific reason I decided to resort to physical combat and this is that exact reason. Her mind is unlike any I have encountered. She hides her mind among an array of personas in her head, as if she had multiple personalities with their own minds. But once I approach one, it turns up empty, sometimes even trapping. Who are you?....................Aha! Got you!", Emma says. Without another moment wasted, Emma knocks Mystique out.

"Nice work. Who's left?", Scott pants before taking a look around.

The group gathers around the spherical shield still containing electricity bouncing along its circumference and the metal inside.

"I can't seem to push past the interference in the shield", Emma says as she runs into static interference telepathically.

"Jean?", Scott looks to the red-head.

"I can get a glimmer of something......so much static. But if I can....just......got him! Storm and Polaris had worn him down enough for me to easily bypass his defenses. He can't spare one moment to stop me with Storm constantly hitting him!", Jean's says as she begins to attack him mentally. The resulting attacks on two fronts stretches Exodus to his limit and the shield breaks, hitting him with incredible amounts of electricity. Storm immediately halts her lightning after she sees it connect. The man falls to the ground limp and singed. The X-Men had won.

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*After clean-up*

"Alright, team. The doors are unlocked. I will stay here and keep an eye on the Brotherhood while you face Magneto", Wolverine says after finishing pressing buttons they didn't understand, with exception of Havok presumably.

"Why aren't we getting help from this guy? Doesn't he have big scary claws?", Iceman asks.

"Because big scary metal claws are not very scary to one who controls magnetism, Iceman", Polaris says deadpanned.

"I like her", Wolverine said. "If I am honest, I want to stop ya all from doing this, but somethin' tells me ya ain' changin' yer minds, huh?"

"We will be fine, Logan. So long as we work together like we have for so long, we can defeat Magneto", Jean said confidently to the other man. He gave a large sigh before nodding once. He then opened the doors to his chamber and watched as they disappeared into the room.

The room was relatively dark, with the only light coming in from a large window that showed the entire Earth.

"So, you finally got past my Brotherhood.....Xavier has taught you children well.....", a voice said.

The machines around them whirred to life, shining bright enough to fill the room. In the midst of the room was Magneto, lounging on a metal throne with his helmet hovering above his hand.

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"Magneto. Marvel Girl! Queen!", Scott said. The two psychics attempted to infiltrate his mind, but found a wall of static in their way. Emma was repelled psychically by the defenses of Magneto, while Jean exerted more telepathic power to try and push through the wall of electromagnetic energy slowing her down.

"Your students are powerful, Charles. They would have made valuable members of our people. Why did you have to go and poison their minds?", Magneto said to Xavier, who was behind a psi-proof, sound-proof see-through prison, as he put his helmet on to further keep Jean out.

"Scott, I lost his mind", Jean said.

"Don't waste anymore energy, Marvel Girl. You will be perhaps one of our best chances at winning", Scott said.

"A very slim and singular chance, X-Men. For no foe have you faced will be like the one you face now", Magneto says as he gets up and rises off-the ground.

"I have beaten you before, Magneto. I will surely do it again with every bit of my power if necessary", Storm said as her eyes began to glow pure white.

"Your appearance in Wakanda, X-Men, was an unexpected one. This time, I am more than prepared enough to deal with every one of you", Magneto says.

"As have we, you bastard!", Polaris shouts as she walked forward to the front.

"Polaris, stay back!", Scott whispered.

"Lorna.....so the rumors are true. You joined with the enemy", Magneto said in almost an emotionless tone.

"Of course, 'father-dearest'. Why would I join with the person who cred more for his precious empire than his own daughter? Why would I side with the man who sent mutants to threaten me and my family if I didn't go with them?! I hate you, more than anyone could fathom. Were it not for Xavier, my aim would be to kill you where you stand with no remorse. But, for now, I will deal with this the way I was taught. I will not devolve to your level....unless it becomes necessary", Polaris says menacingly.

"........Even with your disdain for me clearly evident, you still bear a resemblance to me in your determination", Magneto said in what looked to be a sort of doting expression.

"Go to hell! You didn't make me who I am! That credit belongs to my true family, which includes Xavier and my friends", Polaris gestures to accordingly.

"So be it. If that is your choice, then I will just have to show you the error of the path you have chosen. And despite your viewpoint, I do love each and every one of you, Lorna. I have had enough, now! You have had too many chances to join me, but it is clear that none of you are worthy to enjoy my new world as I envision. Som X-Men, welcome to your death!", Magneto said as electromagnetic energy burst forth from him.

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End of Chapter