Hellions #4

Issue Date: 
November 2020
Story Title: 
Love Bleeds

Zeb Wells (writer), Stephen Segovia (artist), David Curiel (colorist), Virtual Calligraphy's Ariana Maher (letterer), Tom Muller (designer), Stephen Segovia & Rain Beredo (cover artists), Carlos Gomez (sketch variant cover artist), Caros Gomez & Java Tartaglia (variant cover artists), Anthony Gambino (production) Jonathan Hickman (Head of X), Annalise Bisa & Lauren Amaro & Mark Basso (assistant editors), Jordan D White (editor), CB Cebulski (editor-in-chief)

Brief Description: 

Madelyne Pryor talks to Havok about how she wants to raise an army and to bring Hell to Earth. The zombie-like Marauders are almost about to break through Nanny's armor and feast on her, when Wild Child and Kwannon arrive and start to take the Marauders down. Kwannon helps Scalphunter free himself when they start to hear all the old clone machines begin to stir, and realize that Madelyne is waking up all of the Marauder clones. This weakens Madelyne's control over the Marauders, and Arclight is able to speak to Scalphunter. Scalphunter decides that he has to get his former teammates back to Krakoa, as he owe them that much, and after Kwannon agrees to let Scalphunter sort the Marauders out, she leaves with Wild Child, Nanny and Orphan Maker. Then, Scalphunter shoots Arclight and the rest of the Marauders. Kwannon and her companions find themselves in the waste processing part of the old clone farm, and Nanny is disturbed to see bodies of unsuable clones stacked in containers. Madelyne continues to torment Havok, until Scalphunter shoots her in her chest. As she seemingly dies, Madelyne restores Havok to his true appearance and tells him that she only wanted them to know that she was a real girl. Havok is upset and lashes out, using his powers to destroy the clone farm. Kwannon, Wild Child, Nanny and Orphan Maker escape the old orphange as Havoks' powers destroy it. Scalphunter makes it out alive, and Havok emerges from the rubble. Havok and Wild Child laugh about the events that have just transpired. After arriving back on Krakoa, a psychiatric report on the group is undertaken, noting that Scalphunter does not want to reconnect with his fellow Marauders back on Krakoa when they are resurrected. Kwannon and Wild Child later find Scalphunter on a beach and they discuss the recent mission. Cyclops informs Havok that the Council declined the request to resurrect Madelyne, deciding that Madelyne was a clone of Jean Grey. Havok is upset by this decision and tries to tell Cyclops that Madelyne was a real person. Sinister revels in the drama, before he is startled by Nanny who sneaks up on him and tells him that he is in a lot of trouble after she found the bodies of those mutant children thrown in the trash. Sinister claims that he is responsible for the current glorious state that mutants exist in thanks to his experiments on resurrection, but Nanny isn't having it, and warns him that she wants to know how many orphans she will make when she takes him down, and Sinister seems genuinely concerned.

Full Summary: 

Omaha, Nebraska, 300 feet below ground, in the old clone farm belonging to Mr Sinister. 'you can feel it, can't you? Not Hell, but so, so close' Madelyne Pryor utters as she holds Alex Summers a.k.a. Havok against a brick wall. 'Yesh. I feel it' Havok responds, his mouth stained with blood. 'The pig, Essex, built a lamentable thing here, rending reality as he pentrated its depths. And as the depths opened in ways unholy and mad...the shore between Earth and Hell was scraped away' Madeylne utters, adding that she can hear the demons, old friends, and that they talk to her. 'I think they talk to you, too' Madelyne adds. 'They want the army I raise, this army with dead minds and souls of void'. Havok grins back at Madelyne, who leans into Havok, her mouth an inch from his as she tells him 'They want to use them. To fill their bodies and walk this Earth and bring Hell to my enemies. But there is a price with these things there is a sacrifice. So, hungry, they gather' Madelyne remarks as demonic hands burst through the wall behind Havok and grab his body, holding him against the wall as a pentagram suddenly glows behind Havok, and Madelyne steps backwards, They gather to war our love bleed!' she calls out.

Elsewhere in the clone farm, Philippa Sontag a.k.a. Arclight, one of the zombie-like Marauders is chewing away at her former lover, John Greycrow a.k.a. Scalphunter, apologizing to him as she takes another bite. 'I'll heal...' Scalphunter mutters as blood trickle down his face. There is some banging noises, then a loud creaking, as Nanny can be heard shouting 'Ah! No! Bad! BAD, BAD, BAD!' she tells the other zombie-like Marauders who are tearing at her armor. 'That did it!' Harpoon calls out. 'Delinquents! Miscreants!' Nanny exclaims as Blockbuster removes her glove, revealing her skinny arm underneath. 'Ha ha! We cracked her!' Riptide exclaims, while Scrambler lies motionless nearby, half of his face melted away. 'No we feast!' Blockbuster declares – but before he can bite down, Harpoon pushes him away, claiming that he hungers more. 'Choke on it, you dirty brat!' Nanny snaps.

But before Harpoon can take his bite, Kyle Gibney a.k.a Wild Child leaps at Harpoon, pushing him backwards. 'Wild Child? They found us, Peter! They found us!' Nanny calls out to Orphan Maker. Kwannon a.k.a. Psylocke shoves her psi-blade into Blockbuster's head while kicking Riptide, 'Hello, Riptide. I can to return this' Kwannon snaps as she holds up a small, spiked throwing disc which Riptide wounded her with earlier, then slices Riptide's throat with his own weapon. Wild Child shrieks in pain as one of Harpoon's energy harpoons is shoved through his stomach. Kwannon pulls it out and orders Wild Child to get back in there. 'Yes, ma'am' Wild Child responds, while Orphan Maker tends to Nanny, Kwannon hurls the harpoon towards Scalphunter. 'Greycrow!' she calls out. Arclight dodges as the harpoon nears her face, but Scalphunter grabs it and uses the blade of the harpoon to cut him free of the cables that suspend him upside down in the air. He thanks Kwannon, who walks towards Arclight. 'Stay away' Arclight warns Kwannon. 'Of course. Your fate lies behind you' Kwannon responds, when suddenly, there is a loud rumbling noise. 'Wait...she...oh, God, she's doing it!' Arclight exclaims. 'She's waking them up. All of them!' Arclight calls out.

Kwannon looks up to the various pods that are suspended throughout the laboratory, and Scalphunter explains that Madelyne is bringing the entire Marauder clone farm online. Arclight looks strange, and reveals that Madelyne is spreadthin now, and that she is losing her hold on her mind. 'I'm back, John' Arclight utters. Scalphunter tells Kwannon that Madelyne will be down in the control matrix, and instructs her to take tunnel eleven until it terminates at nine, and then to switch to six. 'And you?' Kwannon asks. 'Like it or not, these are my people. I've gotta get them out. Bring them home. I owe them that' Scalphunter responds, referring to the Marauders. 'Fine, we'll take care of Pryor. Hellions, we're moving out!' Kwannon announces as she rushes past Wild Child, Nanny and Orphan Maker. She turns back to Scalphunter and tells him that they will see him topside. 'Right' Scalphunter replies.

'How bad is it? What did she do to me, John?' Arclight asks Scalphunter. 'Nothing that can't be fixed' Scalphunter replies as he readies a weapon, then turns it and fires it at Arclight, close-range, although he doesn't look at her while he does it. 'John, wait -' Blockbuster protests as Scalphunter moves towards him – and opens fire.

Meanwhile: 'This isn't the control center' Nanny calls out as she and the others walk through a large warehouse-like room where dozens of barrels are scattered about. 'No...the smell of death is here' Kwannon responds. 'Nanny?' Orphan Maker asks. 'Stay back, Peter' Nanny tells her precious Orphan Maker. 'There are some things you shouldn't see' Nanny adds as she looks into one of the barrels, and holds up an arm. 'This... this is where he throws them away. The ones he doesn't like. He just throws them away' Nanny utters. 'Waste processing. We're heading up, now down' Kwannon states.

Back in the other room, Madelyne holds a blade to Havok's face and asks 'You're not scared, are  you?' to which Havok tells her that he isn't. 'Hmmm. I think the demons call to you too' Madelyne utters. 'I never lost my hold on you, did I?' Madelyne asks. 'One sight of me was all it took to rend your sanity to wet threads' Madelyne smirks. Havok laughs as he replies 'Sure, Maddy. If that makes you feel better'. Madelyne scowls, 'No...your wounded mind. It...it wasn't me. Who did this to you, Alex?' Madelyne asks, placing a hand on Havok's face. 'What happened to you, baby?' she asks him. Before Havok can answer, a powerful blast is fired at Madelyne, knocking her backwards. The blast was fired by one of Scalphunter's large weapons, as he hangs from one of the clone pod which are suspended to the ceiling. 'MADELYNE!' Havok screams, tears forming in his eyes.

Havok breaks away from the demons holding him back against the wall and rushes over to Madelyne. 'Alex?' Madelyne asks. 'There ceremony is broken... they're leaving... in the end... not even the demons stay... only you...' Madelyne utters as she casts a spell which restores Havok's face, his mouth is repaired and the blood is gone. 'That's better' Madelyne tells him, before asking him if he will remember her. 'I only wanted them to know... that I was a real girl... that I...' Madelyne utters before she passes away.

Tears swell in Havok's eyes, and energy crackles around his body as he clenches his fists. '$%&#!' Scalphunter exclaims as he watches Havok, who suddenly releases the powerful energy which begins to ripple through the laboratory, destroying the clone pods.

'What was that?' Nanny asks as she, Orphan Maker, Kwannon and Wild Child rush down another corridor.

Havok releases more energy, and more, one blast narrowly missing Scalphunter, who swears again, while Havok screams, and the energy rises upwards, bursting through the old orphanage which is above ground, sending streaks of blue energy effects upwards into the night sky.

Outside, in the forest surrounding the orphanage, Kwannon and Wild Child have made it to safety through a secret hatch in the ground, and Orphan Maker is attempting to push Nanny up through the hatch. 'Up!' Kwannon tells her. 'I'm trying!' Nanny exclaims, while eneregy pours through thev orphanage with deadly force, causing it to explode from the inside. Scalphunter rushes through the orphanage, escaping just in time, swearing as he makes his escape, the orphanage rubble collapsing behind him. He sees the other Hellions and makes his way towards them. Orphan Maker asks if Havok is dead, but Kwannon reports that she can hear his mind. 'He's okay!' Nanny calls out. 'I didn't say that' Kwannon states.

But, as the dust cloud and energy residue begins to clear, Havok emerges, part of his uniform destroyed, he looks over towards the others. 'Damn, son' Scalphunter utters. 'Did I do that?' Havok asks, motioning back at the destruction. 'Heh. They were right, weren't they?' Wild Child asks. 'We're a bunch of crazy sons of #@$%&^!' Wild Child adds, before he starts laughing. Scalphunter looks down at him and starts laughing, too. Havok looks puzzled, before he joins in as well. Kwannon stands back from the others, while Nanny tells Peter not to laugh. 'They're funny, Nanny! Hee hee hee!' Orphan Maker replies.

Krakoa, where John Greycrow sits on a beach, cleaning his weapons as he watches the sun set in the distance. Kwannon approaches him, with Wild Child following at her heels, and reports that the legacy Marauders have been approved for resurrection, and although it won't be quick, it will happen. Scalphunter tells Kwannon that he doesn't think that is his business anymore. He adds that if Kwannon knew what he was going to do, then he appreciates her letting him do it. 'You misunderstand my duties, John. Krakoa doesn't ask you to deny your nature. A dog will hunt. And we must wrest peace wherever we find it' Kwannon replies as she pats Wild Child on his head, then sits down near where John is sitting.

At Bar Sinister, Havok is sitting on some stairs, where his brother Scott a.k.a. Cyclops  finds him. 'Alex... I tried' Cyclops reports. 'It's a “no” then' Alex remarks. Scott explains that there are protocols, and that Madelyne was a clone of Jean. 'The Council doesn't want -' Cyclops starts to say, to which Alex nervously looks up at Cyclops and asks him what he wants. Cyclops doesn't answer, before he starts to walk away, 'It doesn't matter. I'm sorry it didn't work out' he remarks. 'She was a real person, Scott. She existed!' Alex  calls out. Scott stops and turns slightly, before telling Alex that he is sorry, and carrying on his way. Tears stream down Alex's face, as he hunches over, unaware that he is being watched by Sinister.

'I keep expecting this $#%& to get old, and it never does! Not once, not ever!' Sinister grins wickedly. Suddenly, 'I saw what you did' Nanny declares. 'Oh my god!' Sinister shouts, turning, startled by Nanny sneaking up on him. 'Please, a little warning. That little mouth... it's beyond' Sinister mutters. 'All of those dead mutant children. Thrown away like trash. You're in an awful lot of trouble, Mr Sinister' Nanny warns the villain. 'Oh, am I? Have I woken up this morning and suddenly become not the man who made eternal life possible for all Krakoans?' Sinister asks. 'Everyone who's been resurrected owes their lives to me. They are my children. I am their father. Last I looked, Daddy gives the spankings, he doesn't bend over and take them' Sinister snaps.

'How many?' Nanny asks. 'Hmmm?' Sinister replies. 'How many mutants have been resurrected? How many of your “children” are there?' Nanny enquires. Sinister tells her that he would have to look the numbers up. 'Why?' he adds. Nanny turns and walks away, warning Sinister that when she comes to punish him, she wants to know how many orphans it will make. 'Hmmm. Didn't love that' Sinister utters nervously.


Characters Involved: 

Havok, Psylocke II/Kwannon, Nanny, Orphan Maker, Scalphunter, Wild Child (all Hellions)

Mr Sinister




Arclight, Blockbuster, Harpoon, Riptide, Scrambler (all Sinister's Marauders)

Goblin Queen

Story Notes: 

The regular cover to this issue pays homage to the cover of Uncanny X-Men (1st series) #270.

This issue contains a one-page text-only debrief following the Hellions' first mission, which notes that Havok remains a concern, and that he doesn't remember who shot Madelyne, while Scalphunter feels relieved after the mission, and has agreed that the Marauders should be restored to with as few of Sinister's modifications as possible, but that he has declined to help them assimilate, feeling it is better for everyone to go their separate ways. The report also notes that Wild Child has taken to following Kwannon around, and that Nanny appears traumatized by the mission, having seen Sinister's misdeeds. The report concludes by stating that the Council have not decided whether Madelyne is a clone or her own person, so her resurrection remains undecided.

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