Exiles (1st series) #28

Issue Date: 
August 2003
Story Title: 
Unnatural Instincts - part 1

Chuck Austen (writer), Clay Henry (pencils), Mark Morales (inks), Transparency Digital (colors), Dave Sharpe (letters), Annie Thornton (assistant editor), Mike Raicht (editor), Joe Quesada (editor in Chief), Bill Jemas (president).

Brief Description: 

The group returns to nothing/nowhere and Illyana and Calvin fight over her going against the group and killing the Avengers. TheTimebroker who informs them about their new mission: prevent the two children, Carter Ghazikhanian and Nicholas Gleason from being killed. They are informed that Havok is connected to every other Havok subspatially and that the Timebrokers have taken steps in removing all the Havoks because they were causing bugs in the different dimensions. Two Havok personalities remain and they both occupy Havok 616, one is very evil and the other is very good. Evil Havok is about to take over and kill the little boys, it is the Exiles job to ensure that the little boys live any way they can.
The Exiles show up right before evil Havok resurfaces. They face off with Juggernaut who don’t believe them about needing to protect the kids from Havok. Evil Havok wakes in the middle of the argument after Havok flat-lines from injuries inflicted by Nicholas Gleason.
Mimic and Sasquatch fight evil Havok as the others make a run for it. The group splits apart as they are getting away from evil Havok.
Husk, Morph, and Wolverine go into the woods to find Nicholas. They find Nicholas but also find the same pack of werewolves that nearly killed them last time.
Meanwhile, Magik and Sunfire have teleported to get Warren to bring him and his healing blood back to help Carter who had been injured in the encounter with evil Havok earlier. Magik and Sunfire teleport in to the Lobo Tech lab just after Archangel gets a death-threat to Husk from Lobo over his com link. Needless to say, Warren is not interested in helping Magik and Sunfire, he is more interested in going to save Paige from the werewolves. Magik is pissed and threatens him.

Full Summary: 

A time portal opens up atop of a desert-like nothingness, sand and sky and nothing, including time and place."Oof." The Exiles land on the sand, the Timebroker has brought them back to nothing for a briefing before their next mission.

Calvin and Illyana get into an argument, he suspects her (quite correctly) of killing the Avengers. She vehemently denies it and states that there was a plane crash. and that Moses Magnum might have done it. (Morph has now turned himself into a referee, demanding a fair fight) While still clutching the helmet of the Black Knight, Illyana accuses Calvin of bullying her and that maybe one of the other Exiles might have done it. Calvin defends them by saying that he knows them and not her. Illyana slugs him and sends Calvin hurtling towards the ground."You want to keep taking out your feelings out on me because you lost your girlfriend, fine. There’s plenty more where that came from."
An interruption by the Timebroker, stops the fighting, he needs to explain and clarify the details of their next mission,"Why don’t you have a seat and make yourselves comfortable while I explain the details." Their next mission will be fast paced,"when things start to happen they will happen fast – so you will need to be on top of it right from the word’ go." Time broker shows the team a side-by-side image of Alex Summers and Alex Summers in his Havok helmet. Pointing a baton at the screen, an image of Alex Summers as Davinci’s Man (think four arms, four legs, a representation of a joining) is shown to the group. Timebrokers goes on to tell them that, Alex Summers is a mutants of too much power because he is subspatially joined to every other Alex Summers in every other existence, and was at one point referred to as the nexus of all realities, and that one some level, each Alex was aware of the other’s existence. Alex was used as a back door for Timebroker to connect the different dimensions. A bored Morph starts the throw a paper airplane. "Morph stop that."

Time brokers goes on explaining how each Alex subconsciously designed a similar headdress to represent the coming together and separating of life, which are important paths that make up multi-dimensional actuality. Alex being some what aware of the other Alexs affected his personality, his memories, and his powers which made him unstable. This instability began to cause ripples in the different dimensions which created a need for the team to come into the different dimensions and fixing the damage.
Shocked looks all around the group, a confused one from Morph, as Time broker proceeds to inform them that Alex, like many other back doors was causing a bug in the system so the Timebrokers decided to remove him from all existence. The death of every Alex was planned and coordinated but a few survived including Alex 616 and another Alex that was evil, managed to survive and live in one space.. Good Alex was released and came back to occupy his body but they are about to switch places once again and evil Alex will kill Carter (the child that helped pull the good Alex consciousness back into his body) and Nicholas Gleason, a wolf mutant, along with many others, their job is to make sure that the two little boys live, by any means necessary.

Meanwhile, Earth 616, Xavier’s School...

Fun and games, the children are engaged in a game of touch football, Nicholas (a werewolf cub) claims to have made a touch down."Touchdown! Jerry Rice in his prime got nothin’ on me!" As Carter announces that he already tagged Nicholas out, Nick gets angry, Juggernaut tells them to chill out as Alex intervenes telling to take it down a notch and that Carter did touch Nick. Enraged, Nick claims that Alex always takes Carter’s side and that it wasn’t fair, but Alex says that he is fair and that Nick just doesn’t like it when he’s wrong. Nick succumbs to his werewolf instincts and starts to parrot Alex then takes a sharp slash at his stomach with his nails. Alex doesn’t recoil in time, Carter reels in fear, Juggernaut stands in shock,"Holy mother- -" Blood gushes forth from Alex’s wound.

Nurse Annie and Paige are talking in the nurses office about a recent trip romantic trip of Annie and Alex to Bistro 21 in the Felix Faure district. Gushing about Alex and her romantic trip, she seems in a daze as Juggernaut carries Alex into the office."Wow, sometimes I forget how big you are, Cain. Alex looks almost as small as Carter in- -." Shock sets in as the bleeding Alex is set down on a bed. His organs are exposed and Annie is frantic,"I need a-I need a doctor!"

Carter and Nicholas are watching from behind, Nicholas repeats how he didn’t mean to and it was an accident, no one seems to be paying any attention to him, or blaming him.
And just as a doctor is needed, one is delivered. The Exiles teleport in, everyone ready for some action: Mimic, Morph, and Heather stand in battle position, Sunfire has her fist fired up and ready. Illyana has her sword drawn. Nocturne stands facing the X-Men team. Juggernaut sees them,"Oh man, what now? Everyone behind me!" Juggernaut demands to know who the Exiles are. Mimic is shocked to see Juggernaut with the X-Men, on the good guys’ side. Heather questions what’s happening to Havok as Juggernaut demands from her, how she knows him."Long story." Being that a doctor is needed, and that one is there, the X-Men let Heather help Havok and put questions aside.

Mimic checks Tallus, Havok is still savable since he is still unconscious and bad Havok hasn’t arrived yet."Ah, to be a hero again. And not the sandwich." Morph is posing as Caesar as Mariko tells Juggernaut that they are here to help then questions him as to if he is really Juggernaut. Her questions are confirmed when a worried Juggernaut roars back at her,"Who’s asking?" As Mimic checks Tallus again, he pauses is distress, Nocturne ask what going on as Morph looks seriously at Tallus and says"‘Made—in-- Korea.’ That explains a lot." Tallus tells the group that it is now too late for Alex. Bad Alex has arrived and the only thing that matters is to keep the kids alive.

Juggernaut hears Mimic talking about the kids and gets protective, he lets them know that they aren’t getting any where near the kids, Juggernaut cracks his massive knuckles. Mimic and Nocturne give in and tell him that’s fine as long as he gets the kids away from Havok now, since there isn’t much time. Enraged that Mimic is besmirching his teammate’s good name, Cain screams at Mimic and straddles to fight with him. Morph has now become Super Chicken- the tiny white chicken that wears a cape to show his heroism, otherwise, nothing more that a chicken. Heather screams that she can’t stop the bleeding, Annie pleads that Alex can’t die.

Mimic pulls his arms back for some punches Colossus style. He gives reasoning one last chance, telling Juggernaut that there isn’t enough time and that either he takes the kids away or they do. CHANG! Juggernaut clocks Mimic across the cheek, Illyana hunches ready to attack Juggernaut back with her sword as Super Chicken squawks that the sky is falling. The fighting stops as Heather screams that she can’t do anything and that Alex is about to flat line, the kids need to be taken out of there at once, Bad Alex is on his way. Beeeeeeeeppppp!!!! As he flatlines, Annie screams at them for not doing anything. Mimic yells for Nocturne and Morph to get the kids out of there. CHANG! Another blow from Juggernaut. Carter stands over Alex trying to pull him back once again. Heather chides him to go as she puts her hands on Carter’s shoulders. Annie screams for Heather to get her hands off Carter and Paige starts to husk."Something is wrong with Alex, Mom- -" Heather tells Annie to listen to Carter and get the kids to safety. Annie still oblivious to what is happening to Alex defends Alex by saying that he would never do anything to hurt the kids, he has become like a father to Carter. Bad Alex wakes,"Unnh..."

Heather, as she changes into Sasquatch tells Annie that Alex was like a father, now he’s extremely dangerous. She tells Mimic that they are going to get the kids out of there. Annie looks surprised and hopeful as Alex sits up and stares down Sasquatch."Tell them everything is all right." But it’s not,"Out of all the meat available in this place, he picks you as his woman? The man is an idiot." Annie begins to realize that something is wrong, as Evil Alex confronts Carter for pulling good Alex out of the coma and leaving him stuck in"that hellish limbo." He sends a blast of solar energy at a scared and perplexed Carter, but the blast is thrown off target as Mimic punches Bad Havok. The blast doesn’t miss entirely and glazes and knocks out Carter hitting the roof as well. Annie catcher her son and Juggernaut shields them from roof debris. Juggernaut realizes that the Exiles were telling the truth and that Alex just tried to kill Carter, Paige tells him to move and get the kids out of there like"the Sasquatch lady said!"

Mimic tells them all to get on it, as he and Sasquatch stay to fend off Bad Havok, the others head off with the kids. They realize that Nicholas has run off in the excitement. Juggernaut asks where Warren is because he has healing blood, which Carter is in need of at the moment. Illyana tells them to just tell her where because she can teleport. Mimic and Bad Havok fight, Bad Havok calls Mimic"Colossus" as it seems that Mimic has him pinned to the ground. As Mimic tells him that he’s not Colossus, Bad Havok unleashed a solar blast at him,"You’re a strong one, Colossus- ...I am the power of the sun!!" Mimic is sent hurtling into a medical bed and some equipment."God, it feels good to have a body again after all these years." Sasquatch throws Bad Havok through a wall and into a hallway where the rest of the group in running in. As Bad Havok pushes himself up, Sasquatch carries an unconscious Mimic into the hall way and threatens to kill Bad Havok if her friend Mimic is dead. Bad Havok tells her that he needs far less motivation and will kill for any reason at all. Paige tells the Exiles that Warren is in Lobo Tech labs in White Plains with Iceman; Illyana tells her that she can find it but Mariko doesn’t trust Illyana and goes with her to find Warren.

Outside of the Mansion, Annie pleads that Carter needs a doctor. Nocturne adds that Mimic looks like he need one as well but their"resident doctor is inside hammering that psycho." She also tells them that they need to find Nicholas as well and keep him safe from Bad Havok, Paige, still confused asks what’s going on. Morph tells her that it’s complicated just as Wolverine appears and tells him to uncomplicate it. Nocturne tells them that their Alex has basically been taken over by another evil consciousness and that they were warned that this would happen. Wolverine asks if they were sent to save the real Alex. Annie is some what relieved that the man who tried to kill her son isn’t"her Alex." Nocturne tells Wolverine by name that they were sent here to save the two kids and Wolverine heads into the woods with Paige because he just saw Nicholas running into the woods. Nocturne sends Morph with them to help."Righty HO, Nocturne! I’ll give your regards to Stanley Livingston, I presume?" Morph has now changed into a moustached adventurer. Nocturne questions Annie if Nightcrawler is at the mansion also."Yes, why? Do you know him?" She tells her that he’s her father. (As if the resemblance wasn’t enough.)

In the woods, Morph suggests to Husk that maybe she should have shown Illyana and Sunfire more specifically where Worthington is. Paige tells him that she couldn’t because they are somewhere that she has a strong aversion to. Morph begins to tells her that Sunfire is a really good friends of his when Paige interrupts him saying that Carter means a lot to her but that someone else can get Warren who’s"faster and more suited to being around that place than I am." She apologizes and explains that she was almost killed by a bunch of werewolves there and it hasn’t all left her yet. Wolverine has led them to Nicholas who is hiding in a bush below some trees. Paige tells Nicholas that they are here to take him back to Xavier’s and that no one blames him for what happened. Wolverine smells something just as the werewolves hiding behind Nicholas start parroting the group. „Hello again Meat." The three adults look on shocked, Morph tries to break the tension."Um...Is this some kind of Haiku game?"

Meanwhile in White Plains, NY, Warren and Iceman are looking around the remains of the Lobo Tech building. Iceman gets annoyed and questions Warren as to what exactly they are looking for and why it was taking so long. Warren snaps back by telling Iceman that he’s already told him five times that he didn’t know and that he didn’t have to come with him. Iceman apologizes for being so irritable lately and Warren tells him that it’s alright because that are all used to it. Warren finds what he’s looking for: a memo from his uncle Burt to Maximus Lobo concerning Experiment 29-D. Warren is surprised that his uncle is still involved in his family business despite being in prison and having killed his parents. Suddenly his com interrupts with a voice asking for Warren Worthington or anyone who knows him. Warren responds and is informed by the voice that he just wanted to kill them all especially his little girlfriend and that he can smell Warren on her."Is there any part of her you want me to save for you? Don’t you remember the voice of your old friend, Lobo?"

Just them Illyana and Mariko teleport to their location, Warren and Iceman are confused but Warren is too concerned for Paige to worry about them. Illyana demands Warren’s attention but Warrens brushes her off by telling them that whatever they are here for can wait because her need to go help the woman he loves. Iceman is floored by the declaration. Illyana on the other hand is not in the least amused, and tells Warren that his healing blood is needed back at the mansion to save the kid so they can finish their mission and she can get back home."I will take your blood back to the mansion with or without the rest of your body."

Characters Involved: 

Magik, Mimic, Morph, Nocturne, Sasquatch, Sunfire (all Exiles)

main Marvel Universe "616":

Archangel, Havok, Husk, Iceman, Juggernaut, Wolverine (all X-Men)
Annie Ghazikhanian, school nurse

Carter Ghazikhanian, her son

Nicholas Gleason, student at Xavier's
Maximus Lobo and his crew of werewolves

Story Notes: 

"616" is the number of the Marvel universe proper, every alternate universe having a different designation.
The X-Men encountered Maximus Lobo and the werewolves in Uncanny X-Men #417-420 (Dominant Species) Lobo believed that his kind was to dominate and they had to right to kill because they can. Wolverine was beaten to a bloody pulp and Husk was killed, only to be resurrected by Archangel’s second mutation of healing blood. The two have formed some what of a bond after that, Paige helped Warren get over the loss of his ex- Psylocke, and they have been dating since.
Maximus Lobo also claimed to have murdered Warren’s father. Indeed, while Warren’s uncle Burtram (who also poisoned Warren’s mother) was behind the murder, he did not commit the deed himself, sut some men working for him shot Warren's father. [Ka-Zar (2nd series) #2-3]

Annie and Carter came to the mansion with the then comatose Havok. She remained his nurse at the mansion and her son Carter even helped coax Havok out of his coma. Professor Xavier soon offered her a full time job as school nurse.
This story probably takes place continuity-wise some time after Havok’s canceled wedding (Uncanny X-Men #425-426), because Annie is apparently referring to the romantic trip to Paris she and Alex went on at the end of Uncanny X-Men #426.
Alex Summers apparently died at the end of X-Factor #149, and then awoke in the body of another Alex Summers in another reality. "Bad Alex" appears to be the Alex whose body "616" Alex usurped. During his adventures in the other reality in the title Mutant X, Alex also became the nexus of realities at one point.

Ironically, the Timebroker’s statement that every Alex Summers designs a certain type of headdress for his costume does not go for"our" Havok, since his costume (along with the headdress) was given to him by Larry Trask, when he was Trask’s prisoner, to keep his power in check (X-Men (1st series) #58).
Nicholas Gleason was originally introduced in the Chamber limited series.

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