Gambit (5th series) #2

Issue Date: 
October 2012
Story Title: 
Once a Thief (part two): Can�t Shake You Loose

James Asmus (writer), Clay Mann (penciler), Seth Mann (inker), Rachelle Rosenberg (colorist), VC�s Cory Petit (letterer), Mann & Rosenberg (cover), Idette Winecoor (production), Jennifer M. Smith (assistant editor), Daniel Ketchum, (editor), Nick Lowe (X-Men group editor), Axel Alonso (editor in chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer)

Brief Description: 

Gambit has a friend of his named Fence try to extract the parasite that has lodged itself into his chest. However, despite his hi-tech equipment, Fence is unable to shift it. He determines that there is no digital record of it anywhere online and suggests that Remy digs around into Borya Cich a little more. They discover that the Museum of the Americas has a small team dedicated to Cich�s acquisitions, so Gambit heads over there and finds a map of the place in the lobby. Later, he breaks into the building and avoids its security sensors before discovering two workers lying unconscious. He then spots a woman in the next room searching for something. When he confronts her, they start fighting, but after she finds what she�s looking for they are disturbed by a guard. She quickly heads to the roof with Gambit hot on her heels. There, she plays nice for a moment before pulling out a knife with which to pry the parasite from his chest. When he steps back in surprise, he falls off the roof and crashes through a skylight back into the museum. He is arrested whilst she makes her getaway. Gambit is then led to a car in handcuffs. En route to the police station, the woman blocks their path and the car skids to a halt. Remy picks his locks and kicks his two guards out before running the woman over in response to her sending him through the skylight. Clinging to the car�s hood, she points out that he needs her help in removing the parasite. Remy decides to give her the benefit of the doubt and he pulls over, allowing her inside. He asks where they are heading next. �Guatemala,� she replies.

Full Summary: 

Gambit is wearing only a pair of white boxer shorts. He is lying on a table with his wrists and ankles tied so he is unable to move. He�s always thought of himself as a guy who doesn�t care to be tied down and now he�s realizing just how many ways he meant it. A large man with a hi-tech gauntlet on his wrist and a red bandana around his forehead approaches and asks him not to squirm around. He�d like this to do this in time to catch the Antiques Roadshow. He also asks Remy not to scream. His new auditory upgrades are very sensitive and there�s no reason for them both to suffer, right? He fiddles with the gauntlet and several cutting devices emerge alongside a grabber that looks like something Doctor Octopus would use. He asks Remy to hold still while he rips the little prize out of his chest.

As the gauntlet buzzes into action, Remy remains tight-lipped, despite the pain. As the guy tries to pull out the strange parasite that has burrowed itself into Remy�s chest, his gauntlet goes haywire and he is hurled backwards by a burst of energy that comes from the device. Remy flips over the table to protect himself from flying saw blades and knives. Once the danger is over he sits up and tells the guy, whom he calls Fence, that it�s not that he doesn�t trust him, it�s that he doesn�t trust him to perform surgery using stolen alien technology. Fence replies that he needn�t worry. The ancient starfish-from-heck that he�s carrying just blasted his medi-gun into pieces. He jokes that he has a little mole he was wanting to remove, too.

�Medi-Gun?� asks Gambit. Fence tells him it�s no more colorfully on the nose than a thief calling himself �Gambit.� �Or a fence calling himself Fence,� replies Remy. He touches the strange device in his chest and says Fence needs to help him figure this out. He feels like the thing is starting to drain him. Fence says he�s always happy to help, but he just sells this crazy junk. Maybe he should be seeing some of his super-science buddies. Remy replies that he can�t exactly go to Beast or Mr. Fantastic when the story starts �I�ve been feelin� restless, so I decided to rob this businessman�� Fence reminds him that Cich is a dirty businessman who deals in dirty business, but Remy reckons that, either way, he doesn�t need a lecture. He just needs to get this thing out of his chest. Unfortunately, he�s got no idea what it even is.

Fence says he could do it in a flash. Remy asks why he didn�t do that in the first place. Fence activates a small device attached to his left eye and takes a good look at Remy�s chest, replying that that Remy asked him to get it out of him, not tell him what it is. Remy jokes that he�s gotten real literal since he put that machine in his head. Fence replies that he had to take out part of his brain to make room for a Wi-Fi card.

Once he�s investigated the device in his chest, Fence brings up holo-images of what he�s found. He reckons there is no digital record anywhere of his parasite, but maybe he could dig around into its former owner. Remy doesn�t like where this is heading, but Fence informs him that apparently Cich funds the kind of aggressive archaeological digs and acquisitions that went out of style with the Third Reich. If they follow his partnerships in these endeavors� bingo!

(later, the Museum of the Americas, Washington)

Noting that some very similar pieces are quietly popping up in the museum�s acquisition log, Remy heads there to investigate. Stealing from a museum, he thinks. He does love the classics. From the little that Fence could hack from the museum�s database, it looks like there�s a whole research team there dedicated to sorting out Borya Cich�s questionably-obtained artifacts. So, he wishes to see if they can come across any information on his little parasite and see if they discovered its origins before Cich took the thing for his private collection. As he enters, a museum guard informs him that they�re closing in ten minutes. Remy leafs through a few maps and finds a layout of the museum, telling the guard that it�ll do just fine.

(later that night)

Remy is in black and on the museum�s roof. He uses his power to open a skylight and then rappels upside down into the upper floors. To him this feels like being both back at home and out of practice at the same time. It�s like being a musician who hasn�t picked up a horn in a long time. It feels good, but you can�t help worrying you�ll hit a wrong note.

As he descends he activates the museum�s defenses and an array of laser sensors crisscrosses the room. Remy guesses that it�s a good job he didn�t wear the trench coat for this as he drops acrobatically between the lines and somersaults the floor. He lands ungraciously and figures he�s never been that shaky before. It�s not a good sign. He takes a look around and soon comes across a man and a woman lying on the ground. He wonders what�s happened here. He checks them and determines that they are still breathing.

Remy then hears a noise and peers through a crack in the door to the adjoining room. He sees a black-haired woman standing with her back to him, sifting through some of the material in the room. She cannot find what she is searching for. Remy charges a couple of cards up and then makes himself known. �Care to tell me what you�re looking for, che�� he asks before being surprised at her swift response. She turns and throws an artifact towards him forcing him to quickly use the door to stop it in its tracks.

Remy swings the door open again and responds by throwing the cards at the wall behind her. They explode and cause her to tumble towards him. He rips her face mask off and they stare at each other. �You!� they exclaim in unison. She immediately knocks him backwards and asks what he�s doing there. Remy replies that he�s discovering the nice girl he met at last night�s soiree maybe ain�t so nice after all. She tells him that to be honest, he doesn�t know the first thing about her. She reaches for a piece of brown paper and rolls it up. Gambit charges up another card but the energy immediately dissipates. �Enfer�� he gasps. He stands and asks what she�s got there. �Answers,� she replies. Before she can explain, a guard appears looking for Dr. Studdard. As soon as he sees Remy and the mystery woman he calls in a security code 326 on the radio.

Remy turns to tell her they must hurry, but she�s wastes no time in clambering up into an open panel in the ceiling. The guard tells his colleague that he�s spotted a suspect, a Caucasian male headed to the roof. Remy follows the woman onto the roof and she makes a break for it, apologizing that this is just too important. Remy quickly catches her and tells her he feels the same as she does. He wants answers of his own and she just blew his one clear shot at finding some. As he speaks she thrusts her elbow up into his chin. �Sorry, not my problem,� she says. Gambit grabs her but she reaches into her boot and pulls out a knife, slashing the front of his shirt, revealing the parasite lodged in his chest.

She asks where he got that. Remy informs her that it�s his party favor from Borya Cich. �So the bastard did have it,� she snarls. Remy asks if she knows what it is. She replies that if it�s what she thinks it is, then it�s one of a pair of ancient relics designed for each other. �How sweet,� replies Remy. �What else you know?� The stranger holds her knife to Remy�s throat and apologizes, but tells him that he literally blew her chances to get to Cich and stole the one thing she was after. Cute as he is, she doesn�t trust him in the least. Remy likes that she thinks he�s cute and asks her for her name. She declines, adding that if he knew her name he could look her up. He might be disappointed with what he finds.

They stand close together on the edge of the roof. Remy tells her he doesn�t know about that. After all, they all have a past� things they aren�t proud of. She asks him to just hand her over to the cops and get himself out of trouble. �Trouble for what? he asks. �For smashing up the museum, right after I pry this relic out�� she replies. She tries to jam her knife into his chest to take out the parasite, but instead, Gambit steps backwards in surprise to evade her and falls off the roof. He crashes through a skylight and lands in the natural history exhibition room. The woman looks down at him and apologizes again, but he says it�s all right. He got what he came for. He holds out the brown piece of paper she had earlier. �Sonuva�� she gasps before departing the scene of the crime.

The armed museum guards soon arrive and Remy is taken away in handcuffs. It�s been a while since he�s been hauled in by the authorities. Maybe, he figures, it�s a good thing it went belly up. He now has no choice but to stop before he gets carried away with his old life again� right? As he is led to their car, the guards inform him that the cops seemed real interested when they called this in. It sounds like they have an idea about who he is. Once inside the car, one asks if they need to bring the map they found on him as evidence. His colleague says he doesn�t know, but he has it on him just in case. Remy tells them that he really must thank them and they ask why. Remy replies that he hadn�t really planned a getaway.

The car screeches to a halt when the driver sees the woman standing in the middle of the road. Gambit wastes no time in picking his locks and kicking the two guards out of the vehicle. The woman is about to ask him to pull over and step out of the car, but instead, Remy accelerates and runs her over. She lands on the hood and screams at him, �What the hell is wrong with you?� Remy replies that maybe it�s because he was just dropped two stories through a skylight. She asks if they can call it even, after all, she thinks they�re going to need each other for what comes next. Gambit says he has her fancy map. Why does he need her? She informs him that the map is ancient and she knows for a fact that he won�t be able to decipher it. She can. She�s the only hope he has of digging that relic out of his chest. What does he say? Partner�s in crime?

Remy slides the car into a parking space and allows her inside. �All right, femme mysterieuse. Where to?� he asks. �Guatemala,� she replies.

Characters Involved: 




Museum guards

Dr. Studdard and colleague

Story Notes: 

Antiques Roadshow is a British television show that has been running since 1979. A US version began in 1997.

Dr. Studdard is presumably one other two people Gambit found unconscious at the museum. The museum shown doesn�t look like the real museum which is located on 18th Street, Washington.
Joelle is named in issue #4.

Issue Information: 
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