Age of X-Man: Apocalypse and the X-tracts #1

Issue Date: 
May 2019
Story Title: 

Tim Seeley (writer), Salva Espin (artist), Israel Silva (colorist), VC’s Travis Lanham (letterer), Gerardo Sandoval & Israel Silva (cover artists), Inhuyk Lee; Carlos Pacheco, Rafael Fonteriz & Nolan Woodard (variant cover artists), Annalise Bissa (assistant editor), Jordan D. White (editor), C.B. Cebulski (editor-in-chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer)
X-Men created by Stan Lee & Jack Kirby

Brief Description: 

En Sabah Nur calls his Light Riders to him. Dazzler breaks off a concert to join him, whereas Shadowcat and Eye-Boy come from stealing a religious object for him. En Sabah Nur informs them that the plans for their rally have changed. He will now project it psychically, despite the danger of being caught by the X-Men or Department X. In the meantime, they are to free a certain former Soviet mutant. He decides that his son, Genesis, will go with them while Shadowcat will remain. In Kazakhstan, said mutant, Omega Red, breaks out and immediately kills those around him.

Full Summary: 

The Age of X-Man:
Semipalatink testsite aka the Polygon:
Two mutants, one green, the other horse-faced test the radiation levels of the site. The green man’s counter tells him levels are still safe. The woman remarks that something must be making the residents of the nearby villages ill. The green man shrugs. He doesn’t understand why the current leadership pretends it cares. The previous certainly did not. The woman nervously replies it is easy for him to say. The Resolution gave him an immunity to radiation. He jokes it is much harder to get a suntan now. He is about to ask his partner what power she got, then snorts at the obviousness.

He is not paying attention to where his foot falls. At the crunching sound of frail bones, they see he stepped onto the body of a bird, then they see birds falling from the sky. They too fall and die, as all living beings do in a certain ring around the bunker. The Resolution bestowed many gifts, but none are greater than the gift the Tongue of Czernobog lavishes upon them. None are greater than death.

New York City
Greenwich Village:
In a club Alison Blaire is singing a song criticizing the current times in front of an audience, dressed in identical black like her. The song over, they snap their fingers in approval. Dazzler is about to introduce the next song when she receives a telepathic message by En Sabah Nur, telling her they need her. She excuses herself from the club.

Midtown Manhattan:
Iceman iceslides past the Hope Monument and telepathically talks to his Department X teammates. He has Psylocke ascertain that there are no other minds present. They don’t see the two people hiding in the alley, hidden thanks to a little “Unveil.” One is Trevor Hawkins aka Eye-Boy, stylishly dressed in a black suit, who is joined by Kitty Pryde aka Shadowcat who stole a menorah out from the building, though she has no idea what it is.

Eye-Boy explains it is a symbol of an extinct religion called Judaism. This used to be the site of a synagogue before the X-Men filled it in. He continues explaining, as Kitty suddenly has a painful flash and remembers lighting the menorah with her mother as a child.

He asks if she is okay and kisses her. Kitty brushes him off and tells him he is just a child. Trevor protests he thought they were breaking all the rules and that was the point of all they did. It is the point, she replies, but just because she believes they should have the right, doesn’t mean they have to do it all the time like desperate animals! She wants to touch, she wants to kiss, she wants it to be special!

He mutters excuses. She ignores him and telepathically calls the one they call Murshid. He replies that he has need of his Riders. Trevor takes her with him on his Vespa. She jokes he really takes that all-seeing Mod thing seriously.

Union Square West, inside the Gilded Tomb Gallery and Studio:
A colorful crowd has gathered. One of them informs young Genesis that they worked together and passed out 25,000 copies. For the glory of his father! Evan looks at the leaflet’s spelling: EMBACE THE BONDS: Central Park this Saturday. He points out they spelled “embrace” wrong. Evan is furious. His father gave him the responsibility of spreading his word. And now he has failed him, because he made the mistake of letting the drugged-out sycophants and hangers-on be involved!

Genesis! comes the chiding voice of En Sabah Nur as he enters the room with Unveil. Murshid, everyone utters. Evan stammers, he was… His father continues, stating he was telling their wonderful guests that the Tomb is closed for tonight, but that he will gladly accept them with open arms in the morning. The guests file out.

Genesis gets down on his knees and apologizes. He wasn’t prepared to deal with files and this art world. He thought this crusade would involve great battles and campaigns. He thought he would be a Light Rider like Dazzler, Shadowcat and Eye-Boy. He thought he would be… a hero.

Unveil gently laughs. The concerns of boys. The same here as in Barbados or anywhere. She promises him that his name will be written in the account of the fall of the X-Men and the beginning of a new history. The exploits of En Sabah Nur are gonna become religion. They’ll all be saviors. As immortal as his father. Because they are the prophets of the X-tracts!

Dazzler, Kitty and Trevor enter. En Sabah Nur welcomes them and tells them to join hands in opposition of what they have been through in the true X. The three newcomers and En Sabah Nur form an X around Unveil. Touch, connect and speak the truth of the X-tracts. They quote: “We seek to find the divinity within and to express the revelation in an exchange with others. We believe community is not conflict. We believe love is not war. We believe mutant is not god.”

En Sabah Nur orders them to breathe as Unveil emits a colorful gas. He tells them to focus… share their minds. He informs them that plans have changed. Saturday’s rally will no longer be advertised with leaflets and whispers. Instead, he will broadcast it across the psychic spectrum.

Trevor protests, he will be detected by Jean Grey or X-Man. Kitty adds, Department X will come for him. En Sabah Nur agrees. That will prove the necessary distraction, so they can accomplish their true mission. There is a mutant in the former Soviet Union who was experimented upon, his power refined, making him the prefect weapon of war. He has been all but forgotten in the transition of realms. But now his prison crumbles, revealing his anguish to him. He has lived decades in isolation. En Sabah Nur feels his desire to rejoin the world. He represents an extinct form of governing… he is a communist. A system that de-emphasizes the individual and focuses on the interdependence of its citizens. His existence is an affront to the sick world the X-Men enforce. He must be rescued and brought here, before he can be made to join the X-Men’s cruel cause.

He decides that Shadowcat will remain with him, whereas Genesis may join the other Light Riders. Happily, the boy promises not to let him down. En Sabah Nur hugs him and tells him he will be a hero. He teleports them to their destination with his Celestial endowments.

On a TV screen runs an ad starring Colossus, emphasizing that pursuing relationships with others is bad. A tentacle smashes the TV screen. Omega Red addresses the corpse in the chair, thanking him. He decides that this is how they make themselves gods by sparing others. He will unite them again. They will become part of Omega Red and he will destroy the gods.

Characters Involved: 

En Sabah Nur
Dazzler, Eye-Boy, Shadowcat, Unveil (Light Riders)
Genesis II

Iceman, Psylocke (Department X)

Omega Red

Story Notes: 

Jean Grey and X-Man receive Apocalypse’s psychic message in Age of X-Men: Extraordinary X-Men #1.

Czernobog: an ancient Russian god of darkness

Murshid: Arab for “teacher.”

Mod: a British youth movement during the early 60ies. The male members wore suits and drove vespas, as Eye-Boy is doing here.

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