Epic X-Men #13: Magneto's Treaty
*On a lone island southeast of Madasgascar*
"Are we done yet, sir? This place gives me the creeps."
"I figured you would have loved a place like this, Larry. A tropical paradise with gorgeous scenery, not a single sound aside from the ocean behind us."
"Those tropical paradise don't come with people going missing in their visits, Alicia."
"Like it or not, Larry, we as S.H.I.E.L.D have our orders. We are to look for signs of those who have gone missing and bring any survivors back."
"Yeah, yeah, I was at the briefing, too. Doesn't mean I like it."
"Yeah, and no one cares."
As the trio continue to trek through the forest, an earthquake suddenly rumbles. It is the only warning they get before the ground beneath them crumbles and closes in on them, leaving no sign of their coming beyond a scanner dropped by one of the agents. On the scanner, a chart measuring the EM fields displays a drastic change as suddenly, the Master of Magnetism comes hovers above the spot where the agents disappeared.
"Such will be the fate of the rest of humans who choose to oppose us. What does our friend think, Douglas? Are they satisfied?", Magneto says to the blonde-haired young man to his left.
Douglas Ramsey, a recent addition to Magneto's mutant band and current favorite due to his ability to learn any language he comes across, human or alien. In this case, he is the only one who can understand the mutant who will be a game changer for mutants. Doug was glad his powers were rather passive in nature, given that he was promised to witness new experiences and be protected from the violence. A dream come true indeed. So, to repay Magneto, he had become the translator between their new friend and the self-proclaimed leader of mutantkind. So, he yelled a language not spoken by anyone Magneto knew of to seemingly no one. In response to Doug's call, a flock of parrots surrounded the two men, speaking in unison the same language Doug had spoke from the beginning.
"It says that it is pleased with your contribution. As promised, they will aid you in your plans to create a home for our kind", Doug explains to the older man.
"Very good. I will take full advantage of it, for the benefit of all mutants", Magneto says as he directs a giant metal platform as a base to start with. "Stand on the platform, Douglas. In a war against humanity, our first casualty will not be in the middle of constructing paradise."
Listening to Magneto, Doug walks to the platform and witnesses the true power of the Master of Magnetism at work. Raising his arms, Magneto reaches out to expand the range of his power as he searches for metal on the surface of the planet. Looking in the distance, Doug witnesses objects coming towards their location and merging together above their heads. With great awe, he watches as Magneto manipulates the metal on the molecular level and bends it to his whim, creating a giant structure around them. Once Doug was sure Magneto had finished building his citadel, he explored the newly created halls and comes across a staircase leading to the top. Once he got to a giant room with a throne made of the same metal, he was sure this would be where Magneto would rest after his work was done. He walked over to the balcony area and watched as the powerful mutant finishes making an entire city of metal. The architectural marvel was something truly incredible to behold in its finished glory as Magneto heads to his throne to rest. As he does, one of the parrots from the flock earlier flies in and perches on Doug's shoulder, speaking in that same language to the young man.
"They want to know how much land you intend to take for your plan to save mutants. They aren't exactly comfortable with the foreign material placed on the landscape", Doug says for the bird representing their friend.
Magneto puts his hand to his chin and ponders the question. "I may expand as time goes when we take our kind to fill this settlement. With that in mind, this is but a temporary arrangement in the grand scheme of things, where mutantkind will take their rightful place as rulers of this planet, with humans at our feet begging for mercy."
Doug feels a sense of nervousness for the thought of warring with the current dominant species of the planet. Still, after witnessing the display of power just now, he decides it better to keep silent and let things happen as they are. He communicates Magneto's plan to the bird and it asks its next question after Doug finishes.
"They want to know what your first step is."
"First, I will rest my strength for tomorrow, where I will gather my brotherhood and head over to New York City. There, a U.N. meeting is sure to takes place about what you saw today, Douglas. I will be there to force them to recognize our new capital city, Genosha, as a mutant settlement that no human shall desicrate!"
*U.N. Security Council Chamber*
The room is silent with lights dimmed, but their minds express complete fear and panic about the events that took place. And Charles Xavier can only do so much to block it out, but the worst part of it is that he may know exactly who was responsible for the mysterious phenomena yesterday. On the projector screen, Nicholas Joseph Fury Jr., director of the Strategic Homeland Intervention Enforcement and Logistics Division, or S.H.I.E.L.D, explains the information on the screen and images of an island somewhere in the Indian Ocean.
"As you see, this city made of metal appeared sometime after the metal had arrived in the area, where are scanners indicated a radically increased in the EM fields of that area that messed with Earth's magnetic fields that day. We believe the architecture of these structures indicate an intelligent lifeform, alien or human, is to blame for the strange happenings. Exactly who is-"
"Is me, humans", a voice rings as a metallic sphere crashes through the ceiling. When it opens, Charles sees the very subject of his nightmares. The mutant he prepared himself to eventually face. An once dear friend and brother and whatever closer you could have called them back when. Erik Lenshurr, now called Magneto, the Master of Magnetism. Behind him floats red-skinned mutant, a camera crew, and a silhouette of a woman in the shadows. "Greetings to you all. I am Magneto, Master of Magnetism and champion of mutantkind. I am sure you all are aware of the happenings from yesterday. I am indeed the one who liberated you of your world's metals to build our new empire, where we will allow our kind to live freely as they should have from the beginning, free from human persecution. Yes, my brethren, we now have a home away from the hardships put upon us by the insects who should be begging us to not smite them where they live. Today, change is beginning and I will be the one to lead the charge. If you wish to join me, then come and join our brotherhood. We welcome you with open arms. Oppose us and we will not hesitate to bring down our wrath!"
Charles watches Magneto make his speech to the entire world, while doing his best to try and penetrate Magneto's defenses. Yet, everytime he makes an attempt, something blocks his attempts.
"Charles Xavier. The great and powerful telepath of last generation. The great Magneto has told of your power to us and prepared us for an inevitable encounter against you. Still, I will not allow you to interfere with our masters plans. Magneto has already made his invitation clear from the beginning, so my warning will be this: Stay out of this or be crushed by the powerful mind of Exodus!"
*Xavier Institute for Higher Learning*
"As you all can see, the U.N. Security Council has been overrun by Magneto, a powerful Omega Level Mutant with the power to manipulate the elctromagnetic fields, and a band of mutants he claims to be his brotherhood", Moira explains to the newly formed group of mutants dubbed the X-Men. "Normally, I would not ask any of ya to go off like this. Yet, Magneto alone is a threat that would warrant anyone to approach carefully. But Magneto has formed an army and would surely gain more followers as time goes on. Worse yet, his followers are wreaking havoc across the city, making different heroes and vigilantes too busy to notice where the real threat is coming from. That leaves, I am afraid, you all to help Charles and the civilians, as we trained you to do so. Work as a team, and for the love of pete, be careful!"
"We will, Moira. Okay, team! As we practiced, suit up! Emma, on Cerebro. We will surely have need of you to help monitor the situation", Scott Summers commands his team. "Remember codenames in the field! I am Cyclops. Hank will be Beast. Warren, you are Angel. Jean, she is Marvel Girl. Last, but not least, Orroro, you will go by Storm."
"And I will be the Queen", Emma says as she makes her way to Cerebro.
"This isn't the time, Emma", Scott scolds Emma as he makes his way to change and then to the Blackbird. They take off and head over to the nearest airport to land their plane safely. There, Jean makes a mental command for the workers to watch the plane while they are gone. Afterwards, Orroro and Warren fly ahead as Jean levitates herself and Scott over traffic with Beast trailing behind by jumping from car to bench to flagpole and whatever else to help him travel across the city. "Hang tight, Professor. We are coming........"
*In the Council Chamber*
As Xavier continues to battle Exodus psionically, Magneto has his magnetic shield up to block incoming bullets from a swarm of S.H.I.E.L.D agents that came in to bring him in. As the bullets fall to the floor, Magneto then gestures towards the door as a wave of invisible elctromagnetic energy sends all the agents flying out of the room. This was going too far and Xavier wouldn't let it go further so long as he still drew breath. With another push, Xavier blasts Exodus with more psychic energy than hew as expecting, giving Xavier the chance to force his way into Exodus' head and shut down his powers. He could feel Exodus try to exert his will to break the shields, but Xavier kept firm hold on the man. He turns his attention to Magneto as the other man does the same, finally seeing Charles in front of the crowd of people that had backed away towards the wall away from Magneto and his hostages.
"Charles. So you did come to witness my announcement in person. Yet, judging from the fact that you are on the floor, you and Exodus had a falling out, which tells me you aren't here to join our cause", Magneto says as he looks to the other man straining with his hands on his head.
"We both knew it would come to this, Erik. Despite your best efforts to train them, nothing would stop me from coming and putting a stop to this- this madness!", Charles said as he gestures to his surroundings.
"The mad one here is the one who would stand in the way of our kind from attaining our birthright! This is the justice we deserve and no one is gonna put a stop to the change that will come!", Magneto yells as he flares up with power. Like before, the electronics int he room scramble from the electromagnetic energy building up at a focal point, including the broadcast.
The battle with Exodus from before was more subtle than it would have been, had Exodus not underestimated Charles. Now, with Magneto being the next hurdle, Xavier knew it would take all of his power to defeat his once friend. With a single thought, he puts the crowd in the room to sleep. Then, with not another moment for hesitation, Charles summons all of his strength and divides it into two attacks. The first powerful enough to force Magneto to stumble and blast away his helmet. The next to infiltrate the mans head.
As expected, Magneto resists with every fiber of his being, summoning all his willpower and whatever power he could access without letting Charles into his head fully to fight back. They are evenly matched, experience and power clashing with each other with equal force. Had anyone gotten any closer to the two, their brain would have very well been fried from the sheer power emanating from both men. With another push, Charles begins to find headway and Magento cries out from the mental exertion.
"GAAAHH! You...have gotten stronger since the last time, Charles.....m-more vicious in your attacks. Still, it won't be enough, Charles. True, I may still not be in tip-top shape after only resting a short time after building Genosha, but you are spread thin by focusing on both me and Exodus. You have limits Charles and I am slowing breaking past those limits, but I cannot afford to chance this. It is a good thing I did plan for even this outcome. NOW KWANNON!!!!", Magneto yells.
From the shadows, hidden from Xavier's notice, a japanese woman in purple conceals herself from the notice of the men. She had been waiting for this moment and does not allow a moment of doubt. In a single swift move, Kwannon summons a dagger made of pure psionic energy and plunges it into Xavier's skull, disrupting the neural pathways in Xavier's brain and blocking his telepathy. As Xavier is briefly stunned, Kwannon constructs psionic chains that lock Xavier's powers. When he recovers, he starts to push the limits of his restraints with the power of his mind. Not being capable of withstanding the might of his mind alone, Kwannon takes the opportunity to break the barriers installed in Exodus mind and has him help her restrain him telepathically. With him properly restrained Kwannon once more powers up her psi-knife and plunges it into Xavier's head to knock him out.
Now properly ko'd, Exodus leaves Kwannon to watch over Xavier's mind to ensure he doesn't bring any surprises for their mission. He then uses his telepathy to reawaken the unconscious assembly and allows Magneto to continue. "Rise and shine, humans. It is time you make a decision. Contact your superiors and have them recognize Genosha as a mutant sovereign nation, or lose your lives and endanger your lands by my wrath."
With a raise of his hand, Magneto calls forth random sharp metal and points them at the assembly.....
*outside of the Council building*
"Alright, team", Emma says in the fives heads. "I just lost contact with Xavier's head. "I couldn't get a proper read on the situation with the Professor, but his psionic signature is still active. He may only be unconscious, but I wouldn't dally any longer since there is more at stake than our Professor. I can't sense much thanks to some interference in the area, but Cerebro has got some readings on the mutants outside the building."
As the the five approach the building area, where police are in a battle with a group of mutants, Emma explains what she has learned of each mutant. She starts with a very lightly green-skinned brunette with warts encasing his entire body, jumping from car to car to happily dodge bullets as he takes out different cops.
"The first one should be the least of your worries. Mortimer Toynbee, a mutant with enhanced strength.....in his legs that allows him leap great distances, increased stamina, an extendable tongue (ew!), slight heaing factor, and varying degrees of toxic saliva. (gross) He is rightly dubbed, the Toad."
The X-Men next turn their attention to a white-haired young man in green, with a lightning streak going across his torso. When he disappears suddenly, they look for him as with perplexed looks on their faces seeing that the police that were just standing are now on the floor unconscious.
"There!", Jean says as she points to the other end of the street.
"That is Pietro Maximoff.....son of Magneto. He seems to have super-speed, increased strength and stamina for running, increased reflexes, and a very arrogant outlook. To the public, he is Quicksilver", Emma says as the man disappears to the human eye once more.
The next mutant is an elderly looking man who seems to have S.H.I.E.L.D. agents in front of him, who are joined in a gun fight with a group of police.
"Ugh. This one is named Jason Wyngarde. His mind just reeks of slimeball. He is a powerful illusionist. Plain and simple. Don't take him likely, though. Remember that the mind is the best at persuasion. If he puts you under an illusion, you can be caught up in the imaginary world he creates. Remember who you are and where you are", Emma explains.
Sitting on a bench, playing with reddish energy in the palm of her hands is a brunette woman also in a scarlet leotard and cape, with pinkish tights and scarlet boots, gloves, and a tiara. As she does, an aura of the same energy flows outward from her body, with different things suddenly combusting, exploding, or falling apart.
"Her name is Wanda Maximoff, sister of the previously mentioned Quicksilver. Hers is more of a mystery. She seems to be capable of tapping into an otherworldly energy that causes a variety of effects to her surroundings. It is not something she can completely control. She can direct the energies flow and has some go-to effects that she does manage to cause by sheer will, but under most circumstances any range of things could happen, all bad, potentially."
The next one is a young man in a black suit with a circular device in the center of his chest and a three arched tiara of sorts connected from his forehead to the back of his head. As he powers up, the middle piece lights up as the energy lights up from his hands, which he releases out in a beam at a car, effectively destroying it.
"What is it, Emma?", Scott asks confused.
"Scott", Jean says suddenly with a shocked and worried look on her face. "Its Alex."
Scott looks back at the young man in horror. "Alex."
"Yes, Scott. Alex Summers. Your brother is a mutant and has joined Magneto's brotherhood. His abilities work much like yours, but they are all-around more versatile and possibly more dangerous. He absorbs energy..... Cosmic energy."
"Fascinating", Hank utters as he watches Scott's brother shoot at another police car.
"......its not entirely sure what kind of cosmic energy, but he somehow is absorbing cosmic energy to power up and convert it into plasma. His plasma is super-heated and is being constantly replenished by Alex' passive absorption ability. It is uncontrollable like your optic blast if he absorbs too much, which is why that suit is necessary. Destroy it, specifically the core on his chest, he may lose control, like when you lose your glasses, Scott. He goes by Havok, now."
"So, what's the plan, Cyke?", Warren asks after a moment of silence.
"Might I recommend a divide and conquer plan?", Hank chimes in.
Scott looks at the scene for a moment and thinks over what he should do. A plan that could maybe not only save everyone, but perhaps keep Alex out of anymore trouble than he was already in? Would the Professor accept Alex after what he has done? Would Alex even go with Scott?
Seeing Scott's pain, Jean hugs him gently from behind as a sign of comfort. Scott for a moment closes his eyes and allows Jean's presence to calm his anxiety before making his choice.
"Okay, team. First thing we must focus on is getting civilians out of the area. Angel, you will be the lead in getting mostly anyone who can't make it to the exits out. Marvel Girl you will assist him. Beast, Storm, you both will be with me to deal with the main threats. Havok, Scarlet Witch, and Toad are the main threats. Toad for his toxic saliva, Scarlet Witches otherworldly energies, and Havok's plasma blasts. Keep aware of Quicksilver, but we are unlikely to catch him alone. So try to keep away from him. Jean, when you get most of the civilians out, switch your attention to Mastermind. In matters of the mind, only you or Emma are the most qualified. Do not deviate from the plan. Lives are at stake and we will still have Magneto and whoever is with him inside after we deal with his brotherhood. Emma, keep connection with us and monitor the situation as best you can. Alright, X-Men, move out!"