A man fumbles with a video camera but all he is aiming at is his subject’s feet. The person whom he is trying to film simply says “mutant equality” and then poses the question that that’s what it’s all about isn’t it?
The cameraman’s friend tells him he is missing it, to which the cameraman tells him he’s got it. He brings the camera up to view a blurry image of a man in a green shirt holding a microphone. The man continues and says that mutants want to be treated like normal human beings because that’s what they are, right? The cameraman’s friend points out that the image is all fuzzy and tells him he’s terrible at this.
The man in the green shirt continues his speech with a big smile on his face and his arms open wide. He goes on to say that he loves America and the next time one of them runs across one of those mutants he wants them to spit in their face. With the last part of the speech, his smile drops and he screams the words into his microphone.
He is standing on a stage in front of an anti-mutant meeting consisting of a couple of dozen people. Many of them are carrying boards with anti-mutant sentiments on them and a few shout out in agreement at the man’s last statement. He tells the crowd they are getting him all fired up and he can feel that the energy in there is magnetic.
All of a sudden all the small metallic objects in the room rise into the air, which causes the group to stop and stare. A voice shouts out saying that was a perfect choice of words, as a magnetic pulse goes off sending the people and the contents of the room crashing around. The man on the stage can only stand there and watch as his supporters bodies are crushed and are left to lie amongst the debris. He looks towards the other end of the room to see where the voice came from. Realizing who had caused the incident, he starts to stutter and repeat that he is sorry. A figure wearing purple boots and a cape walks through the debris and past the dying supporters. The man in the green shirt says that he can’t do this, as he thought he was good now. The shadowy figure sporting Magneto’s helmet tells him he is right; he is so very good. With that, Magneto kills the man as various electrical devises float around him, filming the whole scene.
Captain America and Iron Man are in a dark room, watching footage of the massacre on a computer screen. The two men watch as Magneto kills the leader of the rally. A voice comes out from the computer, telling the two men that forty members of an anti-mutant group were found murdered in Brooklyn last night. The voice goes on to say it’s no surprise as to who was responsible. Captain America tells the voice, which belongs to the president, that he understands and that he can assure him… but the president interrupts him and says he was assured he wouldn’t be a problem and that the man in question was a boy scout now. Captain America tries to speak up but the president continues and says that he was assured the man wasn’t a terrorist anymore. He then tells Captain America to handle it now, to which the Captain can only comply.
As the Captain walks towards Iron Man, Tony jokes that Steve is walking funny and maybe he should have set up a safe word. The Captain ignores the quip and looks up at the monitor with the massacre playing on it and tells Iron Man that he didn’t see this coming. Iron Man simply replies that he is surprised it took this long. A voice comes from behind them, telling them that he’s just flattered.
They turn around to see Cyclops and Erik, dressed in civilian clothing, walking towards them. Erik remarks that he can’t remember the last time he got this much attention. Even Iron Man has changed his armor for him, although the “Invincible Rubber Man” doesn’t quite have the same ring to it. As Erik smirks, Cyclops shoots him a glare, which causes him to agree reluctantly to behave. Cyclops asks them if there is somewhere that can talk.
In the Avengers’s conference room, the four men sit around a large table. Cyclops says that he knows this doesn’t look good but any kid with a laptop and a case of Red Bull could fabricate that footage. The Captain agrees and then states that the X-Men have footage placing him five states away at the time of the incident. Cyclops confirms this and asks what the problem is. The Captain says that the X-Men have an island full of kids with laptops and Red Bull. Cyclops confirms this again and the Captain says that he is asking him to believe their footage and not the one showing the massacre. Cyclops simply says he is. Captain America looks away exasperated and pinches the bridge of his nose. Erik chirps in and says that he can be very frustrating.
Erik leans back in his chair and uses his powers to levitate a pen. He says that, while Cyclops may sound naïve, he is right. No matter what footage is to be believed, it’s not enough evidence to prove anything other than someone has a great taste in costumes. Iron Man tells them that none of it matters, as he went to the site himself. Captain America pulls up a display on the computer. A holographic display appears over the table and Iron Man says that, no matter what footage is believed, they have DNA proof that Erik was in the room. The display focuses on a strand of hair and Iron Man says that that little guy tells them all they need to know. Erik stares at the display with amazed silence and Iron Man asks if they finally have his attention. Erik tells them that it’s a lie and stands up. He says that he doesn’t care if they found a severed hand that matches his own... the massacre was not his doing.
He then says that he has entertained them long enough but, before he can go anywhere, Iron Man points out that he didn’t think they were going to let him leave did he? Erik tells Iron Man he slightly admires him for thinking he could let him do anything. He then says that they may have limited the metal in the room but he is a not a man easily limited. Iron Man squares off against him and asks him if he wants to put it to the test. With that, Erik manipulates the hooks holding the curtains up, causing them to fall to the floor. Outside the window, all the vehicles around the Avengers Mansion are floating high in the air.
Erik turns to Iron Man and tells him that people look up to him as if he has some kind of power but they both know he is just a weak human playing pretend with his toys. Iron Man becomes angry and starts to charge up the repulsor rays in the hands of his armor. However, before a fight breaks out, Cyclops and Captain America intervene and get the men to calm down. The Captain tells Cyclops he has a few days but then he will have to send in the cavalry. Cyclops tells him if he doesn’t figure out what’s going on, then they won’t have to do anything as he’ll take care of him himself. As Erik walks out the room bidding them goodbye, he tells them he will put the vehicles back where he found them. After the two men leave, Captain America turns to Iron Man and tells him he is walking funny and that maybe he should have come up with a safe word.
In the X-Men’s island base, Pixie hurriedly flies down a corridor holding a book with hearts on the cover. Behind her, Surge skids around the corner yelling for her to give it back. Pixie tells her that she just wants to read more about “the kiss that made me melt.” Surge yells that she’ll make her melt and then starts to charge up her electric powers. Pixie turns around and makes a kissing expression with her face and tells Surge she may have the next Twilight on her hands. With that, Surge zaps her with an electric bolt, which causes Pixie to yell in pain and fall on the floor. Surge rushes to her and leaps on her, trying to get the diary back.
Suddenly, both girls stop moving and a voice tells them that it isn’t very attractive behavior. Emma Frost picks up the diary off the floor and gives it back to Surge. Both girls apologize and walk away. Erik tells Emma that she is good with them but she merely replies that they are afraid of her. Erik corrects her and says that they fear him but respect her. Emma tells him that there is such a thin line between the two it’s hard to tell.
They walk into a lounge room and Erik sits down on the sofa. As Emma goes to a cupboard and pours them both a drink, she asks if they are done now. Erik tells her he doesn’t understand the question. She hands him his drink and says she is done with the small talk. As she sits in another chair, she tells him she has been dealing with students for a very long time and when they want something they always lead with the flattering. Maybe a few lines about fear and respect but then they hit her with it. Erik says he thought a little charm might put her in a more helpful frame of mind, then he apologizes for being so transparent.
Emma tells him that, from what she hears, he should be sitting in a cell somewhere. She is surprised Scott is letting him go this alone. Erik tells her that he put it to Scott that it might be best for the place if he has plausible deniability if things get rocky. Emma tells him that he seems to be fine with dragging her down though. He tells her that she has been down here before and he thinks she can handle it. He tells her he thinks he knows who is responsible and he needs her help to find them. He then tells her to follow him, as he has something to show her.
In another room, Erik has stripped down to his underwear and has strapped himself into a large machine. Emma observes and tells him she knows her outfits can be a bit suggestive but even this is a bit much. Erik tells her the machine is like Cerebra but, instead of connecting minds through the psionic plane, his power allows him to plug into the magnetosphere. Using it, he can create an electromagnetic map of the world and find a person who is capable of doing the things he is accused of. He based it on the concept of Cerebra but he cannot operate it without a telepath.
Emma asks him if that’s all he needs… just for her to jump in his brain and take a stroll around his little magnet map. He confirms it is and then asks if the task is beyond her capabilities or does he have to call Charles? She tells him she imagines they have each other on speed dial. Tiring of the banter, Erik asks if they shall begin. With that, Emma enters his mind and starts the process.
Erik appears in his mindscape dressed in his full costume. In front of him, he sees a Nazi holding a baby dressed in a Magneto costume. Erik tells Emma he is in but he is not sure it’s working. She says it worked and that this is just his mind trying to figure out which way is up. She warns him not to get distracted.
He turns to see two children dressed as the Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver. The kids have drawn a sad face on the floor with the word “daddy” beneath it. Emma asks him what he is seeing but he tells her it’s none of her concern. He turns again to see a group of people dressed as Magneto. One of them had red, glowing eyes like Cyclops’s. In the distance behind the group, he sees a hooded figure. The figure starts to walk away but turns their head slightly and tells Erik he has betrayed them. Erik yells for them to wait but they disappear. He runs to where they were and finds a door with the words “Real World. Keep Out” on. Emma tells him he has found the threshold of his mind and from hereon he should be able to find the offending party.
As he opens the door, he starts to regret the whole idea. As Erik stares into the pitch black room, Emma calls out to him and asks what he sees. He tells her he was right, that Joseph is back but he is not alone. Erik stares at Joseph, who is sitting on a stone throne and surrounded by grotesque and twisted versions of the original Brotherhood members.