Astonishing X-Men (3rd series) #48

Issue Date: 
May 2012
Story Title: 

Marjorie Liu (script), Mike Perkins (art), Andy Troy (color art), VC’s Joe Caramagna (letterer), Dustin Weaver & Rachelle Rosenberg (cover art), Daniel Ketchum (associate editor), Jeanine Schaefer (editor), Nick Lowe (group editor), Axel Alonso (editor in chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer)

Brief Description: 

Sometime soon, Northstar finds himself running though the sewage tunnels where he finds himself coming face-to-face with two mind-controlled colleagues - Wolverine and Gambit. However, Iceman manages to distract them whilst Northstar makes his escape. In the present, Jean-Paul wakes up to find his boyfriend Kyle looking for some books. They mention the fact that things seem to have been moving quickly lately, but neither of them regret it. As they’re getting cozy, Jean-Paul receives a call from Wolverine, who needs him for a job. Gambit, meanwhile, is enjoying a night in with Cecelia Reyes at his apartment, offering her a room for as long as she wants. They are interrupted when Wolverine calls round with Northstar and Warbird, who is carrying someone’s severed head. She collapses a moment before the team is attacked by a group of mercenaries. Cecelia erects a forcefield to save them whilst Iceman, already outside, freezes their chopper in mid-air. However, he is attacked by green dragons commanded by Chimera, who has turned up with a bunch of Marauders. Nearby, Kyle is on his way to find Northstar when he sees the explosion at Remy’s. As he runs towards the building, he is grabbed and dragged into a dark alleyway.

Full Summary: 


Northstar is running through a sewage tunnel. He continues at high speed until he comes across Wolverine and Gambit, who are blocking his path, standing over several dead bodies. Gambit’s energy illuminates the dark surroundings whilst what little light there is glints off Wolverine’s claws. Wolverine leaps at Northstar, but Jean-Paul picks up one of the bodies and protects himself with it. Gambit throws a couple of cards but they hit the wall behind Northstar which only hurts him a little. However, he is knocked off balance and looks up to see them both closing in. “Stop… please…” he says, weakly. “This isn’t you…” As he speaks, a huge ice hand appears and grabs the two X-Men. Iceman’s face then appears from the wall. “Northstar. Go!” he shouts. Jean-Paul doesn’t need telling twice, and he sprints off down the tunnels towards daylight.


Jean-Paul wakes with a start and says Kyle’s name. He gets out of bed and walks around the apartment looking for him. He soon finds Kyle unpacking from a pile of cardboard boxes. He asks Jean-Paul if he’s had enough beauty sleep. He apologizes to Kyle, explaining that he only meant to take a short nap after dinner. When he asks what he’s doing, Kyle says he’s trying to find his books. To this, Jean-Paul asks why he’d want to ruin his pretty face with a brain and then smiles. “Just kidding.”

He asks Kyle what the rush to unpack is. They only just moved in today. Kyle replies that they dated long distance for many years, and now they’re living together. It’s big. Jean-Paul asks if he has any regrets. Kyle says no, but he knows Jean-Paul wanted to stay in Canada and he pushed them to come here. Jean-Paul assures him that he didn’t push. It’s a fresh start for the both of them.

Kyle explains that he just wants to do it right. Jean-Paul tells him that nothing they could do together could possibly be wrong. How can he help? Kyle says that there is one thing. With their faces just an inch apart, Jean-Paul asks if he can guess, but Kyle replies that he was actually thinking of something a little more domestic. He thought that living with a superpowered speedster would mean that the apartment would get unpacked and put together… fast. “Seriously?” asks Jean-Paul. He’s superhot and all he can think of is how he cleans for him? With a wink, Kyle tells him that’s right. What else is he good for?

Jean-Paul laughs and then cleans the entire apartment in seconds. “Satisfied?” he asks. Kyle gives him a kiss which is rudely interrupted when Jean-Paul’s phone rings. Kyle asks him not to answer, but Jean-Paul says he has to. It’s the dedicated Jean Grey school line. He promised Wolverine that he’d help out if he had any trouble at his school or needed a French teacher. Kyle thanks him for waiting to mention that until now. “What the hell do you want, Wolverine?” asks Jean-Paul.

(meanwhile, in the Upper West Side)

Cecelia Reyes is at Gambit’s spacious apartment. She informs him that what she wants is simple. She wants a cheap place to live that isn’t so far from the hospital that she has to sit on a train for more than an hour to get home. Also, she wants a landlord who won’t raise the rent so high that she has to move. That would be nice, but she thinks she might be asking for too much. Remy says he told her already that he has an extra room and he won’t be there every night. His place is hers as long as she wants it. She thanks him but says no. Remy tells him it’s not charity. She’s a former X-Man and they take care of each other. Or try, anyway. Cecelia tells him that she’d rather forget that life and all the craziness that went along with it - aliens from outer space trying to eat her for starters. She still has nightmares.

Remy wishes he could tell her that he understands, but leaving Westchester a couple of nights a week and living in his own apartment pretending he’s not an X-Man… it makes him wonder why he ever goes back. Cecelia informs him that he goes back because he’s addicted to cheap thrills. He’s not happy unless someone is trying to kill him regularly. She slides on to the couch. What he really doesn’t like is having to be a good example twenty-four hours a day to a bunch of teenagers. “School teacher?” she laughs. “That cracks me up.” She glances at a photo of Remy and X-23 and takes a glass of wine from him. She changes the subject and tells him that if she asked him to volunteer at her hospital he’d probably run a mile. Sometimes she wants to run, she admits.

Remy asks her to move her legs so he can sit down. She asks what he’s doing, and Remy says she told him she wanted to stay in tonight and watch a movie. Rest. Feel normal. She asks if he hasn’t got to be somewhere. He replies that they’ve been having dinner every Friday night for the past two months. He’s got nothing planned but her. “Really?” she asks, surprised. “What are friends for?” he replies. She smiles and says that now she’s really suspicious. Did he steal that Picasso again? He asks what the point would be. She made him give it back the last time. All he’s saying is, he’s exactly where he wants to be. It’s totally innocent.

He turns on the television and hears a knock on the door. He assures Cecelia that he isn’t expecting anyone. She tells him that with his luck it’s either an old enemy from the past, a Skrull or a Victoria’s Secret model wearing nothing but a thong. As he stands up, he asks her what she’s wearing. “You so bad, Cajun,” she smiles.

He opens the door and finds Northstar standing there. Remy asks what he’s doing there. Wolverine then enters the room and admits that it’s his fault. He told him to meet him as he’s got business in the city. And, there are too many busybody eavesdroppers at the school. Also… he has whiskey. Gambit scratches his head and replies that he could have called ahead. “Or left us alone for one damn night,” adds Northstar with a sigh. Logan then spots Cecelia and says he didn’t know she and Remy were so friendly. Are they interrupting anything? Cecelia says no and decides to go for a walk, asking Remy to call her when they’re gone. She has zero interest in whatever problem short-and-hairy has got right now. Logan tells her they could use a doctor at the school. “Bite me,” she replies.

Both Remy and Cecelia are both shocked when Warbird appears in the doorway looking like she’s “gone twelve rounds with Mike Tyson.” She is carrying a decapitated head in her left hand and a bloody sword in her right. “It has begun,” is all she can say before she drops to the ground unconscious. Before they can even think about what she means, Logan senses danger and tells everyone to get down. Cecelia instinctively erects a forcefield just in time as the wall crumbles around them. She tells the others to get behind her and stay close. Remy says he hopes she remembers how to fight. Logan asks Northstar for eyes as the whump whump whump sound of chopper blades approaches.

Outside, the armed inhabitants of the chopper have ‘Target One’ in sight. A rifleman asks how fast they said he moves again, but the pilot replies that it doesn’t matter. They’re just there to distract. “Or get ourselves killed,” replies the rifleman. “Didn’t you hear the sound Max made right before he went silent?” The pilot asks him to focus and pull the damn trigger, but the shooter suddenly feels a chill come over him. A moment later, a solid column of ice thrusts upwards and slices the back end of the chopper right off. Iceman ascends with a grimace. “That’s right! Tremble, puny soldiers!” he cries, whispering under his breath, “Or just stay in there and shiver a whole lot.”

The chopper is then frozen almost solid, capturing its occupants. Logan asks Bobby what the hell is going on. Bobby asks him to forget that. What are they still doing there? As he speaks, he is attacked by strange jade-colored dragons, which knock him off-balance. He falls to the ground with a crunch as Northstar calls out his name and warns Chimera to get the hell away from him. “Make us,” she replies. Standing with her are the Vanisher, Prism, Harpoon, Arclight and Blockbuster, better known as the Marauders.


As the sound of the chopper approaches Remy’s apartment, Kyle is coming to find him. He says to himself that Jean-Paul might have super-speed but he has super-apps. It’s not like he’s stalking him either. He just needed a walk… in his direction. He looks at a red blip on his phone. As he walks, he sees a huge explosion and gasps Jean-Paul’s name. “Oh my God,” he cries. He is then startled as an arm reaches out to him from the dark alley and grabs him. “No!” he cries out.

Characters Involved: 

Gambit, Iceman, Northstar, Wolverine (all X-Men)

Dr. Cecelia Reyes


Kyle Jinadu

Mercenaries including Max

Arclight, Blockbuster, Chimera, Harpoon, Prism and Vanisher (all Marauders)

(in flashforward)


Gambit, Iceman, Wolverine

Dead bodies

Story Notes: 

Pablo Picasso is a famous artist, best known for cubist works such as Garçon à la pipe, Nude, Green Leaves and Bust and Dora Maar au Chat, all of which have been sold in the last decade for $100m dollars or more.

Victoria’s Secret is an American company specializing in women’s lingerie. Famous past models include Claudia Schiffer, Tyra Banks and Miranda Kerr.

Kyle mistakenly calls Northstar Jean-Claude a couple of times in this issue.

The flashforwards are explained through Astonishing X-Men (3rd series) #49 - 51.

Issue Information: 
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