The New Mutants #18

    The New Mutants » The New Mutants #18 - Death-Hunt released by Marvel on August 1, 1984.

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    Psyche hid underneath the covers, scared by recurring nightmares of a demonic bear.

    An unseen person had flashback memories of an alternative future. In the timeline known as Days of Future Past (Earth-811) Xavier's school came under attack. A young red-haired girl managed to create a telekinetic shield to protect herself as she ran through the building. She found Professor Xavier in his wheelchair, who commanded her to go downstairs and hide in the Danger Room where she would be safe. However, before she was able to do anything, he used the curtains to pull himself up to his feet and stood in the window. As he called for a ceasefire, Professor Xavier was immediately shot dead and fell back in his wheelchair. The young girl crouched beside the reclined body of her dead mentor.

    Back in the present (of Earth-616) Rachel Summers stood looking at the school where she had grown up. She thought about how she had been taken away after the Professor's death, given drugs to dampen her psionic powers and was later tortured. She considered how her past hadn't happened yet, and that she hadn't even been born in this reality. Her thoughts were interrupted by a passing police car and she plucked up the courage to walk up the mansion's driveway.

    Meanwhile, the New Mutants were training underneath the mansion. Down in the Danger Room, Cannonball, Magma, and Sunspot were destroying a series of robotic foes. Sunspot smashed them, Cannonball flew through them, and Magma melted them. As one robot dropped Magma, Cannonball caught her in mid-air. Magik and Psyche watched from the observation room, and secretly discussed Cannonball's obvious unrequited crush on Magma and how it must have been difficult for her to adjust to twentieth century life. While Lockheed played in Magik's hair, the girls discussed recent events in Massachusetts. Psyche kept secret her recurring nightmares of the demonic bear, but they were interrupted by the doorbell. Magik went to the door, shooing Lockheed out of sight. There, Rachel was shocked as she was greeted by Magik. Although Magik asked if she could take a message, Rachel merely asked her what her name was. Rachel was obviously shocked to discover that she really was Magik. She couldn't understand how Colossus' little sister could be so old, and ran away without revealing her own identity.

    Across the galaxy, a strange metallic being regained consciousness on a barren planet. He considered how much time he had, but was interrupted by the growing light of a nearby sun. The blinding light grew to reveal another metallic entity, much larger than himself. The larger being announced to his son that he would make his death quick and painless. However, the younger alien soon fled into the depths of space. His father merely smiled as he relished in his hunt.

    Back on Earth, Psyche used a bow an arrow to defeat a bear in the snow. Magik turned off the Danger Room's simulated environment leaving Psyche slouched against the wall. Magik quizzed her friend about why all her Danger Room sessions of the last week had been against bears, but she redirected the conversation and they both headed back upstairs. In the dark gloom of the Danger Room, a mysterious fanged creature began to growl.

    Later, Psyche changed into her civilian clothes and looked out of the window into the snowy night. She thought about telling her friends, and then considered how she had lost her entire family. She confronted herself in the mirror and decorated herself in war paint. Armed with a bow and arrows she stepped out into the snow and demanded the bear that had been stalking her mind to show itself.

    In the snow storm, the Demon Bear towered above Psyche. She summoned an image of it's worst fear and was surprised to see an image of herself. The beast swiped at the illusion, and she fired a killing shot to it's neck. However, the bear merely swatted her bow away and picked her up in it's gigantic paws. Face to face with the creature, Psyche drove an arrow through the Demon Bear's upper jaw and through the bridge of it's nose. The pain caused the bear to drop her, and quickly Psyche found her bow again. She fired another arrow into the it's mouth, and the Demon Bear collapsed on the snow covered floor. Relieved that she had finally killed the monster that had murdered her parents, Psyche approached the dead bear. However, when she was close it opened it's eyes and attacked.

    Inside the mansion, Wolfsbane woke screaming for Cannonball and the others. Although she had been sleeping in her human state, her psychic link with Psyche had connected and she sense her friend's pain. Transforming into a wolf she led the others through the snow. However, they had arrived too late, and found Psyche's battered and bloody body abandoned in the snow.

    Note: This is the first appearance of Warlock, but he is not named till later issues.


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    And...relaunch! 0

    Talk about your drastic artistic changes! Like Cannonball himself, The New Mutants (as a series) takes a violent, sharp turn (more like a jagged veer) in direction. Don't get me wrong, I think it is quite good and helps give the New Mutants a distinctive artistic identity (not that McLeod's or Buscema's initial work were inferior), it's just a stark, sudden shift. Sienkiewicz's artistry gives the New Mutants what they needed: a revitalization into maturity. Considering all the serious ground Cla...

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