CYCLOPS: Page 3 of 20

Publication Date: 14th Nov 2019
Image Work: sixhoursoflucy and Gremlin.


Out amongst the stars, Scott did his best to learn how to be a space pirate. He was self-conscious about his lack of experience and being around his new "step-mom," Hepzibah. After the Starjammers confiscated a Badoon cruising ship in battle, Corsair decided to take Scott on a "road trip" to get to know each other better. They explored the hot spots for lowlifes in the galaxy, as Scott learned about fencing and space travel from his privateer father. They also frequently had to run for their lives considering the open bounty that stood on Corsair's head. [Cyclops (2nd series) #1-2]

Their trek came to a sudden conclusion when the Badoon cruiser gave out, causing them to crash on a world uninhabited by civilized life. The ship was beyond repair, the communications system was hopelessly damaged and the local wildlife was getting restless. Worse than being marooned, Scott also learned his father was dying. Or, technically, he was barely living. Corsair was forced to come clean with Scott about his full history, how he became a pirate after the Shi'ar Emperor D'Ken killed Scott's mother in front of him. How Scott's youngest brother Gabriel had been pulled from Katherine's womb as she died and was raised as a Shi'ar slave, only to return years later as Vulcan, twisted by rage. Vulcan had killed Corsair for abandoning him when they finally encountered each other. Hepzibah only brought him back to life with the help of a sect known as the Shrouded. Unfortunately, Corsair needed regular doses of a nano-tech medicine in order to maintain his restored life, and he only had about a month's supply when they crashed. Without rescue, it was just a matter of time before Corsair passed away and Scott was completely alone in the world. [Cyclops (2nd series) #3]

After several weeks, Cyclops and Corsair decided to take a risk in order to survive. They had discovered a tracking beacon in the wreckage of their ship, explaining how the bounty hunters kept finding them on their journey. Using pieces from the comms system, they repaired the beacon in order to lure bounty hunters to the crash site. Using the terrain and the element of surprise, Scott and Corsair got the drop on their intended attackers. They stole the hunters' ship and reunited with the Starjammers. [Cyclops (2nd series) #4-5]

Soon after, the Starjammer was ambushed by Valesh Malafect and the rival crew of the Desolation. Malafect had a personal grudge against Corsair and wanted to see him suffer before turning him in for the bounty. Thinking quickly, Corsair faked a fight with Scott, manipulating Malafect into taking on "Scott Cyclops" as a member of his crew. Scott spent the following days ingratiating himself with the Desolation crew while looking for a way to free his father. He also found himself stumbling into a relationship with Vileena Malafect, the captain's daughter. [Cyclops (2nd series) #6-8]

The opportunity arose to escape when the Desolation stole a Shi'ar Starcracker bomb, and a squadron attacked the crew to steal it back. Cyclops had made friends on the Desolation, though, and so he insisted Corsair turn back and help the crew against the Shi'ar instead of escaping scot free. Once they did, Corsair tried to make amends with Malafect for their past, but Vileena felt betrayed by Scott and insisted her father make an example out of them. Cyclops and Corsair were to be sold into slavery, but nevertheless managed to escape. In a final confrontation with the Malafects, Vileena accidentally killed her own father with a blade when Scott tackled Corsair out of the way of her throw. Father and son Summers reunited with the Starjammers, but Scott knew he had made an enemy for life. [Cyclops (2nd series) #9-11]

After receiving a distress call from the Guardians of the Galaxy, Cyclops was reunited with his X-Men teammates in a struggle for the Black Vortex. The Vortex was a Celestial artifact that bestowed questionable power on those who submitted to it. Cyclops was temporarily enhanced by the Vortex during the conflict, but he chose to give up the augmented powers in the end. A subtle change was reportedly still inflicted upon him, and Jean Grey's private telepathic probe indicated the change came to his heart, not his mind. [Black Vortex crossover]

Cyclops returned to Earth with his friends after this, but he had trouble reconnecting with them, as they felt abandoned from when he left earlier. As the group began drifting apart, a cold war starting brewing between the mutants and Inhumans. It was discovered that the Inhumans' Terrigen Mists (released into the atmosphere months ago) were toxic to mutantkind. After the first mutant deaths were confirmed on Muir Island, the adult Cyclops broadcast the message worldwide, stirring up a panic. He then led a group of X-Men in destroying one of the two Terrigen clouds. This was an act of war to the Inhumans, who considered Terrigenesis a sacred part of their heritage. The adult Scott defiantly faced down the Inhuman royals, and was executed by Black Bolt's scream. Mankind turned against the mutants after this: humans irrationally began to fear the "M-Pox" hurting mutants would begin infecting normal people, and Cyclops was declared one of the most hated terrorists in memory. Young Scott was once again forced to confront the ramifications of his older self's legacy. [Death of X #1-4]

Scott spent months on his own processing what had happened, refusing to use his power and hiding his infamous face. He eventually traveled to Chicago, investigating the Ghosts of Cyclops, a flashmob of young mutant thugs stealing and destroying public property in a defiant and misguided display of solidarity with Cyclops' message. Scott tracked the Ghosts to a local college and confronted the leader Thirst in the library. Their fight drew the attention of Scott's friends and the police. Cyclops and Thirst were arrested for fighting on campus. In jail, Scott laid into Thirst for his wrong-headed interpretation of "what Cyclops stood for." The other Ghosts impulsively attacked the police station in order to break Thirst out, only to stumble into a hostage situation when, surprisingly, the police had a quick response time when responding to an attack on a police station.

Many of the Ghosts started to realize they were in over their heads, but Scott told them it was already too late to turn themselves in. The police wouldn't see them as college kids who screwed up -- they'd see mutant deadly weapons and respond with lethal force. When the Ghosts tried to escape and the other X-Men tried to protect everyone involved, Scott's words almost proved prophetic. The SWAT team moved in and was ready to shoot the Ghosts. Despite himself, Cyclops stepped forward on behalf of the Ghosts and delivered a speech that calmed the situation. (And trended online, much to his dismay.) Still, he began to step out of his elder self's shadow. With Jean off with the main X-Men, Scott reunited with his other friends as they began traveling together, doing good work in the name of mutants rather than worrying about the Terrigen Mists or conflict with the Inhumans. [All-New X-Men (2nd series) #1-3]

Cyclops could not escape the specter of his older self so easily, however. During a battle in Paris, Scott was hit by a car and kidnapped by Toad. The drunken mutant had convinced himself he could kill young Scott in order to prevent all his future self was responsible for. Toad's surprisingly brutal beating separated Scott from his visor in the catacombs under the city, leaving him blind for fear of bringing the entire delicate tunnels down around them. During his escape, Scott's leg was broken by falling debris, and he barely survived the ordeal. [All-New X-Men (2nd series) #6-7]

As his leg healed, Cyclops was confined to a wheelchair. He struggled with the inactivity and lack of action for weeks. [All-New X-Men (2nd series) #8-16] When he finally recovered, Scott decided to make more of an effort to distinguish himself from the adult Cyclops and the choices he made. One decision he followed through on was to join the new heroic youth movement known as the Champions. The Champions were initially reluctant to accept him based on his older self's actions. However, they had recently dealt with a war against pre-determination thanks to the Inhuman Ulysses and his predictive analysis. Partly based on those unfortunate memories, they accepted "Slim" as a member of the group. [Champions (2nd series) #2]

Cyclops enjoyed his time with the Champions, free from the expectations and pre-cast role he played among the X-Men. He engaged in a friendly rivalry with the Hulk and became close to the idealistic Ms. Marvel, despite the current mutant and Inhuman rivalry. Although his gift for tactics occasionally caused Cyclops to fall into a leadership role, he didn't seek it out and mostly deferred to Ms. Marvel's resolute spirit. Mostly, Scott was looking for friends to hang out with without the pressure of the X-Men, and he found them. Although they laughed at his outdated references and joked that Cyclops was probably an old man even in his own time period, Scott could relax among these new peers. [Champions (2nd series) #3-7]

The Champions got their biggest insight into Scott's character after a battle when he was affected by the overload of Psycho-Man's emotion control box. Cyclops became emotionally manic and compulsively expressive of his feelings. He disclosed to his friends how terrified he still was of his powers every day, and of one day turning into a man he didn't understand. When he defeated Psycho-Man a second time and the effects wore off, Scott didn't remember anything from his manic period. Still, he knew he had friends to look after him. [Champions (2nd series) #12]