Generation X (1st series) #19

Issue Date: 
September 1996
Story Title: 
Don't Wait Up ...

Lobdell (writer), Chris Bachalo (penciler), Mark Buckingham (inker), RS / Comicraft / DL (letters), The Bucce (colors), Malibu (enhancements), Bob Harras (editor, editor in chief)

Brief Description: 

Continuing to be affected by Onslaught, Emma takes the kids to one of her estates in Canada where she will keep them safe. Emma had previously offered the estate to the Toad and Surgeon as a safe haven, but Surgeon had altered an army of frogs and toads so they can communicate with Toad. The kids are becoming aware that something is wrong, because they cant figure out why they aren‘t scared or sad, just continiously happy. Toad manages to capture them when he sees tham all acting strangely, and Nicole suddenly appears to Emma and tells her whats going on and how she’s got to snap out of it and let the kids think on their own or they will all be killed. This works and Emma manages to talk to Toad, but as she does Banshee and Sasquatch of Alpha Flight burst in to rescue them. Emma tells him they didnt need their help, but does apologise for subtly affecting all their actions. They all understand because she was only trying to save them.

Full Summary: 

At the mansion in Northern Ontario, Canada, Emma’s chauffeurs are discussing how oddly Emma’s acting. They mention they have both been with her since her Hellfire Club days, before she lost the Hellions. They appreciate her being protective over Generation X, but think she’s taking abit too far. In fact it‘s only one of them talking, the other seems to agree, but remains silent. All around them, toads are hopping all over the grounds.

Inside, Emma is trying to make breakfast when the kids arrive. Still, (unknown to her or them) under Emma’s influence, they are all acting very differently. Jubilee is acting and dressed like a New York gangster, M, like a bubble head cheerleader, Husk like a clown, and Synch like a 60’s hippy. Emma begins to think something is rather odd with the kids, but can’t quite figure out whats happening. They start to have a food fight, and confused as to why she can’t understand whats happening, she telepathically makes them all go upstairs and get washed.

In the grounds a toad hops onto the Toad and tells him about Emma cooking for the kids. Toad realises she’s obviously not 100% at home at the moment and decides he can use this to his advantage.

Banshee arrives at Alpha Flight’s headquarters looking for help, but ends up angry when he finds out the team arn’t there. As he is arguing with a robot, Sasquatch comes crashing through a window asking why Sean has broken into Alpha Flight’s headquarters. Banshee fills Sasquatch in on the current events, why he needs help locating Emma and the kids, and he’s also worried because all phone lines to the U.S. are out of order. Sean notices that Sasquatch is looking a bit shabby and asks if everything is ok. Sasquatch reverts to Walter Langowski and is still acting odd. He seems to be having trouble remembering things, so Banshee thanks him and goes to leave, but Walter tells Sean he has a tracking device in the basement and if he can find it he will help. Sean decides to help Walter, if only to rescue the kids, but to also discover whats wrong with Walter.

At the Mansion, the kids are playing in a giant tree. They start to realise something isn‘t quite right, but cant figure out what it is. M tells them that Emma would never let anything happen to them, and Jubilee then knows something is wrong if M has started to trust Emma. Subconciously, M is scrawling ‘Help’ on a magazine. At the base of the tree, hundreds of toads begin to eat away at the tree and it collapses into the side of the mansion. Emma sees this from the kitchen and is glad the kids are having fun. Inside, Jubilee checks everyone is ok and then begins to realise something is seriously wrong. Why weren’t they scared when the tree fell? Why are they unable to feel anything other than happyness? Then Toad appears and tells them its because they aren’t in control. And thats what makes them perfect victims.

Back in the kitchen, Emma’s chauffeurs find her asleep, and several spice jars are floating around. They wake her up, and all the jars fall down, not that anybody notiuced them. The chaffeurs ask Emma why she hasn’t gone to see if the kids are ok after the tree fell through the house. She gets agitated and forces them to leave psionically. Then, a younger version of M (who is really Nicole St Croix, one of Monet’s younger twin sisters, but Emma doen’t know any of this) appears to Emma on the psychic plane and tells Emma that she’s decided Emma is mean. She tells Emma she’s come into Emma’s head to make her let them all go. Emma is shocked that M is this powerful, but M tells her all about Onslaught and how he has affected psionic powered people, including Chamber. She tells her that Onslaught is very bad and is taking over the world. That Emma dosn’t realise it, but she’s trying to protect Gen X the way she couldn’t protect the Hellions. She’s subconciously keeping them safe by keeping them away from the fight, exept now they are in big trouble with the Toad. They can‘t fight back until she lets them all go. Emma can’t believe this is happening and is suddenly jolted back to reality.What has she done?

Toad has tied up the kids and has introduced them to The Surgeon, his friend who alters mutants to make them something more. Thats how he aquired his army of sentient toads, and he wants to start by changing Husk. He tells them he is no longer the sidekick and he finally has somewhere to rule. Emma then appears and asks him what he’s doing. She tells him that she let him stay here after the Hellfire Club laughed at him when he asked to join, because he said he wanted to be alone. She wants to know whats happened - she lets mutants like him and the Surgeon live here so they can have a normal life. Toad tells her that he has a kingdom here - and he is king! Emma asks him to remember when Magneto used to abuse him and treat him like dirt - how different is that from what he’s doing now? Suddenly, all the toads begin to leave and the Surgeon runs off.

The kids begin to feel like themselves just as Sasquatch crashes through the roof to rescue them. Husk tells him he’s about two minutes too late and Emma tells him if she wanted Alpha Flight’s help, she’d have asked for it. Sasquatch tells her she did, kind of, as Banshee lands. He tells Emma he dosen’t blame her as he’s seen news reports from the states and guessed she must have been caught up in the psionic backlash. Eating a bit of humble pie, Emma apologises to the kids and Synch hugs her, telling her they dont blame her as its not her fault. Husk tells Sean she hopes she didn’t let him down, and Jubilee and M think all this lovey dovey stuff is sickening. They slowly look at each other and decide to call a truce.

Characters Involved: 

Husk, Jubilee, M, Synch (all Generation X)
Banshee, Emma Frost (Generation X‘s teachers and tutors)

Sasquatch (Alpha Flight)

Chevy, the new groundsman
Emma’s two chauffeurs

The Surgeon

On the psionic plane :
Nicole St. Croix

Story Notes: 

At the time when Sean went to Alpha Flight for help, they were disbanded, which is why only Sasquatch was around.

Nicole St Croix is one of the twins that make up the current M incarnation. Claudette, her sister makes her appearance in the series a bit later on.

Chamber and Skin only appear on an introduction page that is not part of the story. Kind of like an inside cover.

The two chauffeurs look like buffed up adult versions of Artie and Leech. One is green, the other pink and not speaking. Neither this mystery, nor Emma‘s telekinesis will be followed upon. Possibly it is a leftover of Jean having temporarily transferred her consciousness to Emma‘s mind, in order to avoid from getting killed by Sentinels in Uncanny X-Men (1st series) #281-284.

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