The members of Hope’s team (with the exception of Zero) are watching the X-Men deal with Sentinels on TV. Laurie, as usual, is reading and Hope is practicing assembling her guns. Gabriel angrily summarizes that one mutant anarchist makes all those leaders tell their dirty secrets on live TV and it’s “time to drag all our Sentinels out of storage?” Overreact much? Of course, now all their Sentinels are going crazy because that’s what robot death machines do when they’ve been stuck in a box for too long. Hell, that’s what robot death machines do, full stop! Never trust robot death machines! he pronounces. It’s the first rule of robotics!
It’s not, Laurie replies unimpressed. And adds the paranoia is insane. Less than 200 mutants left and they are still spending money on all these Sentinels. When the austerity measures are as bad as they are, that they are paying for this, is simply ludicrous!
Idie mutters she doesn’t see why they shouldn’t have them. “Excuse me?” Laurie asks. Idie explains that governments have to protect their people. They need Sentinels to protect their people from people like them. They are dangerous.
That’s not what Sentinels are for, Laurie protests. She recalls that the opening of the mutant museum is tonight. Idie is going there with her, she decides. She needs to understand. Hope agrees with the idea. Laurie insists they all come. She was reading about the program online and it’s very progressive.
Hope apologizes. She’ll go later; she’s busy. Gabriel is coincidentally busy, too. Mate? Teon asks suspiciously and growls at him. Just a movie, Gabriel explains. The new Captain America biopic. It looks sick. Hope orders Teon not to growl at Gabriel, he will be a perfect gentleman.
Laurie asks about Kenji. Has he locked himself in his room again? Hope informs them he went to the mainland. She doesn’t know what for. Oh, isn’t he so arty and mysterious, Gabriel mocks. Also, sticky. Okay, just her and Idie then, Laurie decides and promises it will be educational.
Later in the evening, they are at the opening with several other students while a group of X-Men are also present. Laurie talks excitedly about each exhibit. Mutant history is her new passion. Idie is aware, though, that many of the ideas she pronounces aren’t hers. Laurie complains about the crowds. At least it proves the museum is popular, she argues. Idie silently observes she’s wrong. It’s busy in this room and that’s because the X-Men pose for photos. They are the exhibition. When she looks at Magneto and Colossus and the rest with all their power, she thinks “mutant rights?” Surely they have all the rights they want! How could anyone try to stop them?
Laurie leads her to another exhibition room where they find Kenji sitting in front of a giant Sentinel head. He came here early, he informs them. He wanted to see the classic design. Bitterly, he remarks that a boy makes their leaders tell the truth and their response is to parade genocidal machines on television. They may as well be showing a schematic for a death camp. Mutant history! he scoffs. How appropriate. As the news quite clearly shows, they’d be much more comfortable if mutants were history. If they weren’t tied to Hope, he thinks he’d be like this Quire boy. Or Magneto. Or his old Brotherhood. As he sits in the shadow of this, he knows he won’t turn the other cheek.
Laurie informs him that turning the other cheek isn’t about being stoic. It’s a form of protest. By not resisting you show the other exactly what they are and you are not. The violence only demeans. Because turning the cheek means the striker can’t hit backhanded and to strike normally in Christ’s period admits social equality. He interrupts that he thought she was on his side. It’s not about sides, Laurie retorts. It’s about freedom! Idie walks away, realizing that they are really talking something other than what they’re actually talking about. They think she doesn’t know, so she’ll leave them to their argument.
In another room, she sees an exhibit about Reverend Stryker. David Alleyne aka Prodigy remarks that he knows people like Stryker have to be in here. It’s part of the story. Doesn’t mean he likes it much. Does he know him? Idie asks. Yeah, he replies. The last school. Out East. Stryker’s people came for them after M-Day. A bus full of students was leaving. Stryker had his men fire a rocket in it. They all came to Xavier’s to learn. He learned what his friends smell like as they burn. They weren’t even mutants anymore. They were depowered! She’s sorry, Idie tells him. David thanks her. But the sickest thing of all? It could be worse.
Idie learns about “worse” in a room dedicated to alternate timelines. She watches an interview of Rachel Summers. Rachel introduces herself and states she was a Hound. Hesitatingly, she explains that, in the future she’s from, they gathered mutants and put them in concentration camps. They didn’t go willingly. They had to be forced. And before they could force them, they had to be found. Hounds did that. She did that. Because she was scared and they beat it into her, in so many ways. They trained and conditioned her. But mainly she was so scared and she just did it.
And when she talks about it, she can see people just looking at her like it’s not real. Because to most people it’s an alternate future. A world that hasn’t happened, that doesn’t exist. But it did exist. It was reality. It happened. And… she doesn’t like talking about it. But she has to. Because if she does and people realize where they can end up, maybe they can stop it or anything like that happening again.
Crying, she shows her face tattoos. She explains she masks them psychically, because she doesn’t like feeling like crying every time she looks in the mirror. But even if you can’t see it, it’s still there. It still happened. Like her timeline. And if it happened there, it could happen here.
Laurie catches up with Idie and apologizes. Kenji left. What is she doing? Idie explains she was watching the lady. She seems very sad. She looks a bit like Hope. No, she doesn’t, Laurie insists. They’ve just both got red hair. Not everybody with red hair looks the same. Does she look like Hope? A little, Idie teases her. As they walk towards a door a detonations shockwave throws them down.
There is utter chaos. People flee, the X-Men fight a new version of the Hellfire Club. Laurie shouts at Idie to run. Idie loses her. In the corner of an abandoned room, she kneels down and prays.
She sneaks around and hears the fighting has stopped. She sees the X-Men have lost. They are paralyzed with brainslugs on their faces. She observes the Hellfire Club guards priming a device that could be a bomb.
One of the Stepford Cuckoos telepathically contacts her. Idie tells her what she sees. The grown-ups argue what to do, Mr. Summers and Mr. Logan. Wolverine promises he is coming. He says he can get there in time to stop the disaster. Cyclops thinks there isn’t time and then tells her to do what she feels she has to.
She thinks is a monster, but those people are too. And they would kill her friends and her; everyone. She sits down and thinks. She knows she is doused in sin and guilt, but they must be worse, she is this way, they chose to do this. And given the chance, they would be the men who build robots or the men who fire rockets at buses packed with children or the men who turn girls into dogs and fill camps with corpses. She remembers what she said in Tokyo when Kenji had his madness upon him. “Monsters should fight monsters.” She thinks she was right. And so she does what she feels she has to by killing all the Hellfire Guards with her heat and cold powers.
A little later, she is still in shock. She is outside; someone has put a blanket on her. Cyclops and Wolverine are arguing about Cyclops’ order. The rest of Idie’s team has arrived. Hope blames Laurie for abandoning Idie. Laurie explains she didn’t do it deliberately. She thought Idie was following. She should have checked! Hope shouts. Leave no man behind! Laurie shouts back she is no soldier. Yes, she is! Hope insists. She’s fine in the field! Tokyo, Berlin, she was the best of them when things went bad in England. It’s different, Laurie insists. When Hope insists it wasn’t, Laurie cries that Hope wasn’t there. She’s not like that unless she’s around Hope. They aren’t normal when they are around Hope. The two girls glare at each other.
Kenji asks Idie how she is. She’s okay, she announces. Is there anyone else she needs to kill? she asks her shocked friends. Because if not, she thinks she’d like to sleep a little.