Extraordinary X-Men #18

Issue Date: 
March 2017
Story Title: 

Jeff Lemire (writer), Victor Ibanez & Andrea Sorentini (artists), Jay David Ramos (color artist), VC’s Joe Caramagna (letterer), David Yardin (cover artist), Jorge Molina (variant cover artist), Chris Robinson (assistant editor), Daniel Ketchum (editor), Mark Paniccia (X-Men group editor), Axel Alonso (editor-in-chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (Exec. Publisher)
X-Men created by Stan Lee & Jack Kirby

Brief Description: 

Forge creates a machine to destroy the second Terrigen Cloud. Inside, he bristles at the way Storm and the others take him for granted. When Storm asks him how work is going, he tries to talk with her about their relationship but she brushes him off and orders him to deploy the machine. Logan is to accompany him. En route, Forge asks Logan what happened to him in his future. Logan tells him he was a warrior shaman who protected a reservation in South Dakota from a particular vicious villain group. Later, Forge constructs the machine while Logan sweeps the perimeter. Storm teleports in with Cerebra and apologizes to Forge about how badly she has been treating him. She admits it is easier than confronting her feelings but part of her will always love him. She leaves and Forge now feels somewhat reassured.

Full Summary: 

In his workshop, Forge is working while musing how his power works. While it may not seem as flashy, he does make the impossible real and for that you’d think they’d give him a little respect.

Storm joins him and asks if he is almost finished. He retorts that she should be careful about sneaking up on him. He’s liable to spotweld his fingers together. She apologizes perfunctorily and asks if the machine is ready. He needs a few more minutes.

She explains the Terrigen Cloud is following the projected path. He needs to load the machine in the jet and get moving, if he is to intercept it in time.

Why not just have Cerebra teleport him and the machine there? he asks. She replies they are going to need Cerebra for crowd control on the strike against New Attilan. She turns to leave and he calls out to her. That’s it? he asks. He builds a machine that is going to save them all and she just pops down here, barks a few orders and walks away? She is preparing to go to war! she snaps. Something she despises! That goes against every fiber of her being. What more exactly does he want? Chastened, he admits she is right, but they are going to war. There is no telling if they are going to all make it. He just thought… He wants to hash out their relationship now? she asks angrily. She is right, he agrees. Of course not.

Good, she states. If his machine works, they will all make it out alive. She adds that she is going to send anther X-Man with him; they need to be ready for trouble. Forge rolls his eyes when he learns his bodyguard is Old Man Logan.

Later, on the plane en route to Alberta, Canada:
Apart from asking how far out they are,  the two are silent. Let’s have it, Logan finally announces. They’ve been dancing around this thing for weeks. He wants to talk about Ororo? Let’s get this over with!

Forge admits that Storm is not on his mind for once. There’s something else he’s been meaning to ask Logan, but he’s not sure he really wants to know the answer. What, Logan simply asks. Forge continues: in Logan’s future, after the villain uprising when he was tricked into killing the X-Men at the mansion, was Forge there? Did he kill him too? Logan demurs. Forge presses on. Does he know what happened to him in the future?

Logan replies, it doesn’t matter. He spent the last year trying to avoid that future and what he learned is it’s now that matters. Forge gets that but still wants to know. Logan sighs. He doesn’t know for sure, but there were stories…

Old Man Logan’s narration:
He told them the villain armies spread across the major cities. Wiped the good guys out first. In the years that followed, they spread out across the country. He heard about a particularly brutal group of villains in the New Mexico Badlands… the worst of the worst, they were butchers… they were the Rhino Gang. Yeah, that Rhino. He left New York and, before he knew it, he ruled his own patch of hell in the wastelands. Word was that he led his gang of degenerates through Arizona and into New Mexico, expanding his territory one dustbowl town at a time, leaving a trail of bodies in their wake.

But Logan also heard tell of one holdout in the desert. An old Cheyenne reservation in the South Dakota Badlands. They say there was a mad scientist there. A warrior shaman who was hellbent on stopping Rhino and protecting his people.

Rhino attacked the reservation thinking it was easy pickings. He never knew what hit him. The mad scientist had rigged the whole reservation with high tech defenses. Rhino’s men had grown complacent, believing themselves invulnerable. The mad scientist showed them how wrong they were. But the warrior shaman was just getting started. He wanted to make an example of them. Using an exo-skeleton, he killed them all.

In the years to come, the reservation became a stronghold, a refuge for the lost and needy. Nobody ever heard of Rhino again. Never heard what the scientist’s name was… but he knew.
End of narration.

And he never thought to come lend a hand? Forge demands. Believe it or not, he had a few problems of his own to deal with, Logan shoots back. Fair enough, Forge admits. So the moral of this story is… that he’s a total badass, huh? Logan tells him to hold on to his ego, while he lands the plane.

Outside, he asks if Forge has got this. Forge replies he just needs to unload and calibrate the machine. They have a few hours before the Terrigen Cloud arrives. Logan announces he will do a perimeter sweep. Forge calls after him and thanks him for sharing that. He knows things have been tense between them. Logan tells him to stop – he’s getting him all misty-eyed. He leaves and Forge begins to work.

Suddenly, Cerebra and Storm land. Storm claims she wanted to make sure all preparations are going well. He assures her everything is fine. She could have comm.’ed him. Storm asks Cerebra to help Logan with the perimeter check. Cerebra does it without moving, until Storm makes it clear she wants to speak to Forge alone.

Forge remarks that, this morning, she barely had two seconds to talk to him and now she teleports here minutes before she leads a strike on New Attilan? What’s going on? She admits she has been treating him horribly since they started this team. She avoided him. She’s taken him for granted. Through all they’ve done, she could not have done it without him. He is their rock. She’s been pushing him away because it’s easier than to deal with how she really feels. He was right this morning; they are going to war. There is no telling how this will end They may not all make it out alive. She hugs him, surprising him.

She does not know what will happen when this is all over, but she once loved him very much. So much has happened since then, but a part of her always will. Having said that, she wishes him good luck and leaves with Cerebra.

Logan returns, asking what he missed. Nothing much, Forge grins. All quiet here.

Characters Involved: 

Cerebra, Forge, Old Man Logan, Storm (X-Men)

In Logan’s narration:
Rhino Gang

Story Notes: 

This is part of the IVX crossover.

Written By: