First Story :
This is a reprint of X-Men (1st series) #127.
Havok and Polaris are barely conscious. They are trapped in the wreckage of their Jeep. As the vehicle swerved off the road, Alex could only think about Lorna. The first time he met her, he could barely tear his eyes away. She changed the course of his life and he feels as though he could wrap himself in her arms forever. He holds Lorna tightly as the Jeep melts and their bodies become fused into the twisted metal. He wonders if she is happy. She lies next to him so peacefully. He loves her dearly.
Suddenly, Havok hears Lorna scream for him to stop. He jolts and hits the brakes. He wonders what has just happened, and Lorna tells him that he just drove them off the road. He feels he must have fallen asleep or something, but Lorna informs him that his eyes were wide open. She yelled but he was a million miles away.
Lorna gets out of the Jeep and heads to the roadside. She asks what he was thinking. His actions could have killed them both. Alex follows her and vaguely replies that he doesn’t know. Lorna asks him to try. “What was going on in that mind of yours?”
Alex explains that lately, sometimes, when he’s driving, all he can think of is how fast they’re going and how easy it would be to just smash. He started having these feelings around the time he first met her. Driving, he continues, is like being in one of those particle accelerators. It’s like they’re rushing towards something, and the smash is inevitable. As he speaks, his words trail away, as his mind wanders again. Lorna doesn’t know whether to be angry, or feel sorry for him.
Lorna uses her magnetic powers to lift the Jeep back onto the road. They’re supposed to be on a surveillance mission and they’ll talk about this later. For now, she’ll drive. She takes Havok’s hand and takes to the air. As they drift over the meadows, Alex tells her that she has such a calming effect on him. He is a time-bomb that she continually defuses with a smile. Lorna is glad, but then realizes something is wrong. Alex begins to fall backwards and, as he heads to the ground, he tells her this is the end. He tells Lorna that he loves her and asks for one last kiss. As their faces near each other, their bodies merge and they plummet to the road below with a crash.
High in the air, Lorna once again pulls Havok out of his miasma. They land and he explains that he doesn’t remember what happened. Thankfully, however, Lorna is alive, and Alex thinks he’s beginning to understand. He holds her tight and explains that, lately, he’s been resenting the danger that being in the X-Men places them in. He resents the risk, the dangers; the fast-driving on all levels. All he can see is that eventual, inevitable crashing end. Lorna replies that he’s never felt that way before. No, he continues, it’s only since he began realizing how much he loves her. Maybe, he wonders, that ‘smash’ he fears is the end of love… confused with the violence of the end of their lives.
He turns away and asks why they risk it. Maybe people in love don’t make good soldiers, he thinks. They’re so happy, why risk losing it all? Lorna replies that it’s because they’re needed. The world needs them. Havok doesn’t care. He charges up one of his plasma beams and takes his frustrations out on a nearby rock, which shatters upon impact. Havok is agitated, and says he wants happiness for them. He wants a long life, safety and children. He doesn’t want their love to be just a slow car wreck. If they stay X-Men, they’ll end up shattered. He doesn’t want them to end in tears.
In the distance, they notice black clouds looming over the horizon. It must be Storm, Havok thinks, and his thoughts are confirmed when gunfire is heard coming from that direction. The battle has begun and they run quickly back to the Jeep. Havok drives and, despite drifting away again briefly, he manages to talk himself into concentrating. He can control himself. He’s not afraid. He’s an X-Man.
As they drive over a hill, they spot Phoenix in the air, with Banshee and Colossus below her in another Jeep. As they approach the battleground, all is quiet. They pull up to find Wolverine and Nightcrawler recovering from their ordeal. Storm just wants to be left alone, despite Jean’s concerned presence. Lorna asks Kurt if everyone’s okay, and he replies, “Yes, and no. It was a rough one, my friend.”
Havok approaches Wolverine but, as he places a comforting hand on his shoulder, Wolverine turns, surprised by Havok’s arrival. The look of fear on Logan’s face surprises Alex. He flinches at his touch. He’s so raw, so shell shocked. What, Alex wonders, has he been through? Has he seen the inevitable; the thing he fears too? As he looks around at the assembled X-Men, Alex is determined that he won’t see that horror, ever. He is no X-Man. He won’t fight that last battle. He wants out.