BIOGRAPHY - Page 10
A lot had changed during Alex’s absence. The X-Men had moved to a repurposed Asteroid M, which was now being used as an island base of the coast of San Francisco. Even more surprising, Alex’s brother Cyclops and Wolverine had had a falling out over how to lead the X-Men, resulting in a schism that split the team. After only just reuniting with his brother, Alex was forced to choose a side. He begged Scott to find a middle ground with Logan but there was no persuading him. As he felt damned either way, Alex was reluctant to make a choice.
Fortunately, a distraction came. An “entity” had hitched a ride back to Earth in Alex and the other returnees from Earth. Thanks to Rogue’s intervention, it was revealed to be the X-Man Ariel, who had become trapped between dimensions during Bastion’s recent assault on the X-Men. Fortunately, a method was devised to extract her and the woman was rescued. With the distraction over, Alex and Lorna had to choose. Luckily for them, a surprising third option was presented to them by Wolverine: join X-Factor Investigations. [X-Men Legacy (1st series) #259-260, X-Men: Regenesis #1]
As X-Factor Investigation’s leader, Jamie Madrox, had recently been killed, the team was in need of a new leader. Having work alongside many of the team members before, particularly Wolfsbane and Strong Guy in the previous X-Factor, Havok slipped into the role of new team leader easily. Over the next few weeks, he shaped the team into a well-oiled machine, completing various missions for Wolverine and Val Cooper’s government organization: O*N*E. It wasn’t long, though, until Madrox returned from the dead and Alex’s smooth time as leader started to get bumpy.
Madrox and Havok managed to reach an agreement about leading the team; Havok would take point on any missions for the X-Men or O*N*E and Jamie would handle any other jobs that came along. However, they didn’t reach this agreement until after an argument about whether or not to handle a murder case. Havok wanted to take it to the police, while Jamie wanted to take the case. In the end, Alex conceded control of this case to Madrox, though he couldn’t help giving instructions to Madrox regardless. [X-Factor (1st series) #233-235]
Tensions continued between Madrox and Alex as the pair disagreed on their leadership styles. Being old friends, though, the pair managed to keep things amicable, even when Madrox suggested Alex was with the team to spy on them for his brother.
When several members of an Irish family were killed by sonics in Ulster, New York, Wolverine tasked Havok with investigating. After awkwardly confirming the killer wasn’t teammate Banshee, he and Theresa took a road trip to investigate. During the trip, Theresa expressed concerns about Alex’s relationship with Lorna, as they hadn’t been openly affectionate lately. Alex admitted that the pair had been on again off again for so long that sometimes he couldn’t remember where their relationship was at. In Ulster, the pair uncovered an actual banshee, who kidnapped Theresa, forcing Alex to destroy the lighthouse in which she was living, seemingly killing the creature. [X-Factor (1st series) #238-239]
During Jamie’s “death,” he had travelled realities, gaining enemies as he went. These enemies followed Jamie back to his world and set a trap for the man. When Jamie received a call from Rahne, asking him to meet her in Central Park, Havok accompanied him. Upon meeting up with Rahne, Jamie was immediately suspicious of the woman and Alex, showing his respect for his teammate, deferred to his judgement. The trap was sprung and the pair were attacked by alternate versions of Dormammu, Rahne’s daughter Vanora and a Captain America Deathlock. As Dormammu was weaker in this dimension, Havok’s status as dimensional nexus allowed him to draw power and recharge. Fortunately, due to Layla Miller’s intervention, the rest of the team arrived in time to save them. [X-Factor (1st series) #241]
Despite joining X-Factor to get away from the X-Men’s dramas, Alex couldn’t stay away when the X-Men went to war over the fate of Hope Summers and the Phoenix. When the Pheonix Force was accidently split between five X-Men, including Alex’s brother Scott, he and Lorna sided with the X-Men as they used to opportunity to take down the Avengers and build a more mutant friendly world. Unfortunately, the power of the Phoenix corrupted Scott and the others, driving Havok and the rest of the X-Men to side with the Avengers. During the final climactic battle with Cyclops, the corrupted X-Man killed Charles Xavier in a fit of rage. Havok could only watch on as his brother killed his father figure. [Avengers vs X-Men crossover]
On the anniversary of her parents death, Lorna became moody and detached, something Alex had grown familiar with over the years. After Longshot touched a photo of her parents, Lorna realized that, between his telemetry and Monet’s telepathy, she could relive their death and find out what happened. When she learned the horrible truth that she had caused her parents’ death, her mind broke down and Havok became furious and protective.
Lorna’s mental state deteriorated, fluctuating between violent and deeply depressed, something Alex had difficulty dealing with. Sitting at her bedside, the distraught man divulged his innermost feelings to the catatonic woman – he was struggling greatly with leadership and wished they could go back to space where things were simpler. Fortunately for Lorna, Theresa made a deal with the banshee she and Alex had encountered weeks earlier, the Morrigan, becoming an actual banshee herself, with the power to repair Lorna’s mind. [X-Factor (1st series) #243-244]
With Theresa’s sacrifice things, came to a head between Madrox and Havok. In the past few days, the team had also lost Strong Guy and Rahne. Blaming him and his leadership, Jamie vented at Alex, leading to the pair almost becoming physical. When the group discussed how Theresa had become an actual Banshee, Alex realized that Layla must have helped her with the spell that summoned her. Not wanting Jamie to be angry at Layla, and understanding that he was already mad at him, Alex told him that it was actually he who had helped summon the Morrigan.
These events lead to a decision point for Alex; it was time for him to leave X-Factor. As he packed his bags, he discussed things with Lorna. For him, coming back to X-Factor was a step backwards for both of them, and they should be moving forward. Lorna, however, didn’t appreciate him including her in something that was clearly just about him. She was happy with X-Factor and it was what she needed at that time; she didn’t want to leave. The pair realized that they didn’t need each other as much as they used to and ended their relationship on good terms. [X-Factor (1st series) #245]