Marauders (1st series) #9

Issue Date: 
May 2020
Story Title: 
Journey to the Center of Pyro

Gerry Duggan (writer), Matteo Lolli (artist), Edgar Delgado (colorist), VC’s Cory Petit (letterer), Tom Muller (Design), Russell Dautermann & Matthew Wilson (cover artists), Nick Russell (production), Jonathan Hickman (Head of X), Chris Robinson (assistant editor), Jordan D. White (editor), C.B. Cebulski (editor-in-chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer)
X-Men created by Stan Lee & Jack Kirby

Brief Description: 

Emma Frost has learned about Yellowjacket hiding in Pyro’s body and has been fooling him with illusions. She, Pyro, Bishop, Magneto and the Cuckoos play through a telepathic scenario where Yellowjacket realizes he has been found out, kills Pyro and Emma and flees, but all of that only happens in his mind, thanks to the telepaths. In the meantime, Magneto removes the submarine with Yellowjacket from Pyro’s body and throws it into the ocean. Afterwards, Pyro and Emma scare Verendi via a telepathic transmission and warn them off. Emma visits Xavier and the Five to learn that, repeatedly now, they have been unable to resurrect Kate Pryde. On Madripoor, a healed Lockjaw leaves the girl that has nursed him back to health.

Full Summary: 

The Marauder sets anchor on Krakoa, where a beach party is in full swing. Pyro is offered a drink by a butler and urged to join the party by fans. However, he announces that after one drink they are sailing back out. That is a shame, Jean Grey purrs, seductively draped across the front of a car. She was hoping he could give her a ride. For her any time, he promises, as he kisses her and carries her into the car. Music blasting, they drive off.

Emma Frost’s mindscape:
Bishop meets Emma at a kind of theater. Onstage, simplified figures are staging the scene Pyro has just lived though. Bishop asks what he is looking at. Emma explains she went to meet the Marauders when she “heard” the thoughts of a stowaway. Would he please meet her below at the cove?

In his quarters, Bishop promises he is on it and leaves. He telepathically asks about that play. Emma explains, some time ago, she was in need of a touch of rhinoplasty and she awoke in recovery and they had some sort of show about oiled-up hillbillies binge-drinking on the tackiest beach she’d ever seen. She’s putting on a show by replaying all the staged sexual promiscuity she can recall, but she is cold and tired.

He finds her sitting on the steps outside her castle with Pyro standing before her, paralyzed. So, who’s the stowaway in Pyro’s mind? he asks. Emma informs him, the strange thing is it is not a telepath. It is a man in a tiny submarine named Yellowjacket.

Bishop covers her with his jacket. What the hell? he wonders, as Pyro groans “Jean.” Emma adds, she could handle Yellowjacket directly, but they would lose access to the submarine. Very clever, she smirks a moment later.

In his command center, Yellowjacket sees Emma’s staged play of Pyro dating Jean. Suddenly, he notices the redhead is missing – he investigates and learns Pyro knows.

Emma realizes immediately. He presses the emergency button and his vessel grows to normal size tearing Pyro apart. Yellowjacket orders his ship to fire and it shoots Emma in the head. He shrinks the vessel again to flee while being shot at by Bishop. His shrunk vessel hits the water. Home free, he contacts Verendi, explaining he had to butt out. He’s on the open sea and sailing for Madripoor.

Of course, none of this is really happening. Pyro, Bishop, Emma, the Cuckoos and Magneto are standing on the beach, with the telepaths feeding Yellowjacket illusions and trying to get into his mind.

Pyro asks if they can now evict this guy. He gets to kill him. No, Magneto states and makes him puke the sub up. Despite Pyro’s whining killing him is out.  The Cuckoos inform the others, he believes three hours have passed and he is en route to Madripoor. So far, he expresses no regret over “killing” Pyro or Emma.

Madripoor again, Bishop remarks. Emma announces that his memories have now been wiped, and Magneto sends the sub into the ocean. Magneto leaves announcing to need to think about how to deploy the telepath.

Bishop asks Emma to come with him. He needs to talk to her about something he found. She tells him to hold that thought. She wants the Red Queen to join them for that conversation. She turns to Pyro and asks if he is ready. She bonds them telepathically.

In Madripoor, the young Verendi members and Zhao sit around a table celebrating their first successful mission and Zhao’s new title as White Bishop. Suddenly, Emma appears, telling them to celebrate their spy mission. Yellowjacket is on his way back to Madripoor. He won’t remember anything but tell him not to set foot on Krakoa again. She tells them she is embarrassed for them. They are children copying her old club. She hopes they’ll grow up. This is the only warning they will receive to stay out of mutant shipping lanes. She prides herself on being the cooler head, because there are mutants whose blood runs much hotter than hers.

Pyro appears next to her. He states they embarrassed him in front of his friends. He doesn’t have many friends. He guesses that’s why when he was their age he played with fire. He manipulates the fire in the candles, burning them. They shout in fear and pain, until they realize all this was just an astral projection.

Emma tells them that was their only warning.

Pyro is disappointed it ended so fast. Emma states she has pressing matters at Arbor Magna.

She joins the Five and Xavier standing dejected around an egg cocoon. Again? Emma asks. Xavier tells her this husk wasn’t viable either. They will take a break and try again in the morning. Emma wants to speak to the Five. She doesn’t understand what the problem is. Xavier admits, neither do they.

In Madripoor, the fisher girl that nursed Lockheed back to health sleeps. Lockheed draws her cover up to her chin and then flies away.

Meanwhile, Emma desperately thinks to herself that she needs Kate back…

Characters Involved: 

Bishop, Emma Frost, Pyro (all Marauders)
Stepford Cuckoos
Magneto, Xavier
Egg, Elixir, Hope Summers II, Proteus, Tempus (The Five)

Manuel Enduque, Maximilian Frankenstein, Wilhelmina Kensington, Kade Kilgore (Homines Verendi)
Zao Chen


Story Notes: 

Top Secret, eyes ony access note from the X desk, summarizing that Verendi has taken over Madripoor, the role of Pierce and Zao Chen, the mutant enclave in Rio Verde, Arizona, and something about a Hellfire Gala A mail by Beast discussing how to update Krakoa‘s defenses against another “Pyro incident”


Further notes:

The title is a play on Jules Verne’s novel “Journey to the Center of the Earth.”

Written By: