Excalibur (1st series) #41

Issue Date: 
September 1991
Story Title: 
“At Last… The Reunion!!” or “the office furniture that ate London”

Scott Lobdell & Dana Moreshead (authors), Dave Hoover (penciler), Ivy Candelario (inker), Bill Oakley (letterer), Oliver / Thomas (colors), Terry Kavanagh (editor), Tom deFalco (editor in chief)

Excalibur created by Chris Claremont and Alan Davis

Brief Description: 

Excalibur and the visiting X-Men meet in a rented pub. The atmosphere becomes somewhat tense when the X-Men express their expectation that Kitty and Kurt will rejoin them. Kitty scolds them and leaves to be with Lockheed at the hospital. She is joined by Storm. As the others continue their reunion, chaos erupts in the street outside when passersby are attacked by office furniture which has been possessed by spirits of criminals who have accidentally been freed from a magic gem. The heroes go to help, save for Rachel, who is on the roof with Colossus. They are soon joined by Dai Thomas, who has suspicions about these X-Men and shoots Colossus, revealing what he and the rest of the “X-Men” really are: Warwolves. All five Warwolves try to capture Phoenix to return her to Mojo but the Excalibur members come to her rescue. Ultimately, Excalibur uses the gem the souls were in to defeat the Warwolves. Finally, they decide to call the real X-Men.

Full Summary: 

A group of ordinary citizens run from Neal’s Pub for a very simple reason: two superhero teams are having drinks in there. The members of Excalibur and several teammembers of the X-Men - Marvel Girl, Psylocke, Storm, Rogue, Colossus, Wolverine – that have come to finally visit.

Standing at the bar, Rogue proposes a toast: long live the X-Men! Jean Grey speaks up next. Noting the awkward atmosphere, she remarks this is not going as well as she – as well as they – had planned. This is hard for all of them. She can only imagine how sudden and awkward their unannounced arrival must seem for them. It’s been so long that they’ve seen each other, she assumed that when they made the trip to England Kitty and Kurt would...

Would what? Kitty shouts. Drop to their knees and thank their maker that the X-Men are alive—again? Did they think the two of them would just run back to Westchester with them? Did they?! Well she’s wrong. Dead wrong! If anyone needs her, she’ll be back at the hospital with a real friend. Kitty slams the door behind her. Well, Wolverine suggests, anyone for another round?

Not too far away, Commander Thomas and Professor Stuart have arrived at the blockade nearby. He’s got everyone here except the palace guards, Alistaire exclaims. They’re due any minute, Dai replies wryly. And yes, he does have that sort of pull. Especially if they are in the kind of muss and bother he thinks they are in.

Alistaire is surprised when he notices the policemen are all armed. What about control laws? Yes, he does have that kind of pull, Dai repeats and addresses a captain, asking about a missing persons file he requested. He receives it and shows the picture to Alistaire, asking if the people look at all familiar to him. Saints above! Alistaire exclaims. These troops aren’t going to be enough, he decides and suggests to call his sister at the Weird Happenings Organization. They are going to need more manpower. And then what do they do? Alistaire asks. They don’t do anything, Dai replies and takes a gun. Alistaire waits for WHO and is told make sure they know exactly what they are in for. He is going in.

In the pub, there is another tense moment between Captain Britain and his sister Psylocke, who has changed quite a bit since he last saw her. Brian happily hugs her and the mood relaxes.

Meanwhile, barrelling through South London is a prison truck with several criminals all of which, save for one, are dead. One of them speaks is strange tongues. Phineous Umbridge uses an ancient gemstone he purchased and has taken his gang’s souls. He plans to release them in the emergency room for them to find new bodies which will then possess superhuman abilities. He assures his dead friends it will be worth the sacrifice.

At the hospital in the intensive care ward, Kitty is sitting at comatose Lockheed’s bedside, crying he will pull through. He is the only family she has left, Kitty exclaims. That’s not necessarily true, comes another voice as Storm joins her. Kitty apologizes for her harsh words but when her parents split up she felt rejected. And when she found out the X-Men were alive and hadn’t told her...

It was as if her surrogate family had rejected her as well, Storm finishes her sentence. She admits her decisions may have been wrong. She hugs Kitty and asks her forgiveness, which Kitty readily gives, though she asks her not to pull anything like this again any time soon. Grinning evilly, Ororo assures her they will be together for the rest of her life…

Outside the pub, people peer inside to see the heroes just talking. If Captain Britain hadn’t given him 3000 Pounds to rent the pub, the owner states, he’d be on the street with the office furniture he set out for the thrash this morning.

That moment, a certain prison truck is passing. Phineas sees the barmaid from the back of the cart and decides to make her his bride when he rules the world. But fate has other plans, this one in the shape of a pothole which makes him drop the gem, which in turn falls next to the abandoned office furniture. The spirits of the dead convicts are free. But with no bodies to possess, they are going to have to make do…

Back in the pub, Wolverine and Nightcrawler are sharing drinks while Logan asks pointblank if Kurt is coming back to the States with them. Kurt admits he hasn’t given it much thought. Even after Excalibur learned the X-Men were alive, he never thought of returning to the States. What really happened with that Genoshan Extinction Agenda fiasco? he asks. It was a media nightmare here. Suddenly, they hear a scream from outside and immediately head outside to see what is going on.

Meanwhile on the pub’s roof, oblivious to commotion below, Rachel is joined by Colossus, finding her lost in thoughts. He asks her what is wrong. Why doesn’t she join them? Hasn’t she disappointed them all enough already? Rachel asks. She reminds him of the future she came from, where she saw everyone she loved destroyed. She travelled to the past in hopes of changing that and now doesn’t know if she’s saved the world or destroyed it. Not even that, but the X-Men shunned her away from the team that should have been her home. Even Cyclops and Marvel Girl want nothing to do with her. Sometimes she truly believes everyone is better off without her.

On the street below, the others find the odd cause of the chaos is old furniture possessed by the souls of the dead cons (and not so happy about it), all of which are attacking people. Meggan, Captain Britain and Nightcrawler immediately spring to battle while the X-Men stay back. Rogue asks Wolverine what the deal is. Are they going to off them or what? Wolverine replies that impulsive behavior got them in trouble last time. They wait until they achieve their ultimate goal, then they’ll strike…

On the roof, Colossus surprisingly agrees with Rachel’s statement. They would all be better off without her. This entire planet could have been obliterated that time she confronted the Beyonder.They did not think Wolverine let her live when he tried to stop her engaging in that same conflict. She is inheritor of a power that consumes stars. Who knows the damage she could do the universe, never mind earth? Is she the reason the X-Men have come here? Rachel asks. To end--

That moment, Commander Thomas joins them. He announces he’s been looking for her all afternoon. Scotland Yard has another kidnapping. Who’s her friend? He walks up to them. Automatically, Rachel introduces them. Blimey! Dai announces wide-eyed. He’s never met a honest to goodness X-Man before. He’s always wanted to do... this! He fires his gun at Colossus.

Down on the street, the battle is still raging. Meggan saves a bystander from a homicidal lamp, which Rogue then captures, while Psylocke proves suspiciously helpless against a refrigerator. When Cap asks what happened to her psionic powers, she claims they apparently don’t work on these monsters.

Wolverine is incredulous when threatened by a desk, then reduces it to kindling. However, the desk gathers, finding it is indestructible.

A cabinet attacks the barmaid whom Nightcrawler gallantly saves. The young woman tells Kurt she has a theory where these things came from and points at the green crystal that fell out of a passing paddy wagon. She suggests that it contained some life forms that animated the furniture.

On the roof, Colossus slaps Dai aside and reveals his true form, that of a Warwolf. It grabs Rachel, reminding her that she thought he was dead by her hand. She was wrong and they will take her back to Mojo!

Rachel swears inwardly. Her psi-powers don’t work on the Wawolves. The Warwolf while carrying her howls to gather its kin.

The others hear the howl on the street. Cap urges the X-Men stay back. Excalibur has more experience with the Warwolves. They wouldn’t say that, the X-Men reply as they all reveal their true forms. They head to the roof and the members of Excalibur realize that Rachel is on her own until they manage to defeat the killer office furniture.

Luckily, Kurt is already working on it, as he examines the halves of the crystal. He figures the souls were released when the crystal fell apart, so he brings the halves together.

Rachel stares up at her captor mesmerized. The five Warwolves have merged into one being with five heads. They sense something wrong with her, but don’t care. That’s Mojo’s problem. They open up a doorway to Mojoword but before they can take Rachel through, Shadowcat appears and phases Rachel out of their grip.

A moment later, Captain Britain arrives and kicks the Warwolves into the still-building portal where they are stuck.

Meggan and Nightcrawler also arrive, having dealt with the office furniture. Kitty asks what should they do – the Warwolves are stuck in the portal. Fry them, Rachel suggests. Kurt has a better idea. If he breaks the crystal open in front of the Warwolves, the souls inside should try to occupy their bodies. That may distract them long enough for the portal to close on them.

He throws the crystal at them and indeed the souls distract the Warwolves until the wolves close the portal from the others side. The team has won but still are not happy, considering what was done to their hearts and souls. Dai informs them they are just upset that they had a fight without knocking over a single building. If the Warwolves opened old wounds, maybe it’s about time they thought about healing those scars.

One week passes, enough time to recuperate. Lockheed has been released from the hospital. Not completely healed from the surgery, he’s remained under watchful eyes. Today, those eyes belong to Alistaire Stuart, who is getting the lowdown on the Warwolves firsthand from Commander Thomas. Dai explains the Warwolves had a hard time finding X- look-alikes. The storehouse they were using as a hideaway had corpses strewn all about the place. Corpses and fabrics. They made their costumes from scratch. Had all sorts of reference too, even reels of newsfootage from the Genoshan crisis.

Tell him something, he asks Alistaire, and it’s not because he cares or anything, because he doesn’t… are they going to be okay? Cradling Lockheed, Alistaire announces that he really believes so.

Rachel Summers has felt uncomfortable with herself all week. As she stands atop the lighthouse balcony, she wonders why she did not tell her teammates about he X-Men’s resurrection when she found out about it almost a year ago. Was she scared? Was she afraid they would leave to join their former teammates? Or did she just forget? She does not know what will happen when she runs into the real Wolverine. Is it because she does not know what she will do? Or because she knows what he is capable of doing? She has no answers.

Inside after a training session, Meggan asks how Brian could accept Betsy’s return so easily. He was so upset when she died. She didn’t even look like herself. People change, himself included, he admits. He’s pretended that he was dead. He thinks it’s a prerequisite of being a superhero. Sometimes the only way you can get some off time, it seems, is to “die.” He’s beginning to believe that, in the end, all that truly matters is family. She’s his sister and he misses her.

Meggan suggests they have a real reunion then. If the X-Men are too busy to call, why doesn’t Excalibur call them? Brian agrees and suggests they get the others.

Downstairs, Kitty asks Kurt if he is sure they want to do this. Someone must take the first step, he replies. He’d like to meet their friends face to face but their teams are a world apart. What do they say if they ask them to rejoin the X-Men? Kitty wonders. That’s simple, Kurt replies. They tell them what’s in their hearts. That they are all members of the same extended family. That Professor Xavier’s dream of a world where humans and mutants live together needs to be kept alive in Europe as well as in America. Excalibur is as important to the world as the X-Men, New Mutants and X-Factor.

That and they know how to spell out an entire world, Cap adds as he and Meggan join them. Meggan points out it’s three in the morning over there. Should they wait? Nah, they all reply and place the call.

Cable answers, not very surprised. They’d like to speak to the X-Men, Rachel who joins them, states. It’s about time they called, Cable replies and tells them to hold the phone. He’ll transfer them…

Characters Involved: 

Captain Britain, Meggan, Nightcrawler, Phoenix III, Shadowcat (all Excalibur)


Professor Alistaire Stuart

Commander Dai Thomas


Bar personnel

Warwolves prtentending to be Colossus, Marvel Girl, Psylocke, Rogue, Storm and Wolverine

Phineous Umbridge

Dead criminals

In pictures:

Archangel, Colossus Cyclops, Gambit, Iceman, Jean Grey, Psylocke, Rogue, Storm, Wolverine (all X-Men)

Boom Boom, Cannonball, Feral, Shatterstar, Warpath (all X-Force)

Havok, Multiple Man, Polaris, Strong Guy, Wolfsbane (all X-Force)

Story Notes: 

The pub comment refers to issue #28 when Cap and Meggan tried to have a nice quiet night at a pub…

British gun laws are stricter than American ones. Even policemen only get them in certain situations.

The world learned the X-Men had survived in Uncanny X-Men #270.

The one Warwolf seemingly died in Excalibur Special edition #1. The cover is an homage to Excalibur Special edition #1, the Warwolves’ first appearance.

Rachel fought the Beyonder in Uncanny X-Men #202-203.

Wolverine hurt Rachel in Uncanny X-Men #207.

Phoenix helped Scotland Yard with a kidnapping in #35.

Poor Dai is mistakenly referred to as inspector again.

Brian pretending his death happened years ago during the British Hulk run, when he teamed up with the Black knight.

Issue Information: 
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