Mekanix #2

Issue Date: 
January 2003
Story Title: 

Chris Claremont (writer), Juan Bobillo & Marceto Sosa (art), Tom Orzechowski (letterer), Avalon studios´Edgar Tadeo (colorist), Andrew Lis (editor), Joe Quesada (editor-in-chief), Bill Jemas (president)

Brief Description: 

The experiment of Kitty and her class is about to turn into a runaway disaster. Professor Benes orders the students to flee through the getaway tunnel. He’ll shut down the system manually. Kitty knocks him out and asks the others to take him with them. She has a better chance of surviving. Kitty manages to shut down the system and follows the others. In the tunnels, she is found by volunteer helpers Tom More and Shan. They encounter the others and Shan possesses them to lead them to the exit. Just as the tunnel is about to collapse around them, they are saved by the telekinetic Genoshan mutant Shola Inkosi. Tom reacts with disgust towards Shola and Kitty angrily reveals that she is a mutant as well.
The next day, she reluctantly discusses both her father’s and her own tendency to keep secrets with her psychiatrist. Later, she is questioned by the police, who seem to be quite suspicious of her. When they ask her whether she is a mutant, she sarcastically says yes. Later, she learns that all her classmates gave the same answer.

Full Summary: 

At the Astrophysics at Bessemer field Station lab, Kitty Pryde and her classmates stare incredulously at the mess in front of them – a runaway accident that’s about to destroy a year’s work and possibly kill them all. As none of their countermeasures seem to work, the program is running out of control. When the laser starts to fire wildly, the disaster can be seen from outside. Shan Coy Manh, Kitty’s friend and fellow mutant, currently on a bus, notices and draws the conclusion that Kitty is probably be involved. Elsewhere, Purity member Tom More notices as well, as do the other group members Jeffrey and Alice, who are responsible for this disaster in the making. Jeffrey panics while Alice stays unnaturally calm. As far as she’s concerned, they just struck a blow for the survival of the human species.

Back at the lab the students realize that a virus has corrupted their system – it needs to be shut down manually. Professor Benes intends to do the job. He orders his students out into the getaway tunnel after which he’ll follow. Surprisingly, Kitty knocks him out and explains to the others that she knows the grid as well as he does and stands a better chance of surviving. She asks the others to get to the mainline circuit breakers and kill the power from the outside. The others wish her luck and leave.

Once they’re gone, she uses her mutant power to phase into the system, where an explosion passes harmlessly through her. Unfortunately, the heat still gets to her, so she has to hurry. She uses a crowbar to break the electrical connection and succeeds, though she is left wondering, whether the radiation will cause her health problems in the long run, as she had to be solid to hold the crowbar. As she stumbles into the getaway tunnel, she is found by volunteer helpers Tom More and Shan.

Tom quickly examines Kitty and the three of them go looking for the other students. Kitty’s interested in Tom and Shan tells her that he used to be a volunteer fire fighter in his hometown and is now a paramedic. Tom explains that the fire department can’t get their equipment through the blocked roads. They’ll have to hurry, the building’s ready to collapse. As they debate what to do, they hear the other students near them. None of them seems to be fit enough to manage the rest of the way, but then Shan possesses them and mentally forces them to run to towards the exit. Then, however, the building begins to collapse.

Strangely, though none of the debris hits them as though they were protected by a forcefield bubble. Some of the rubble moves aside and before them stands Shola Inkosi, who used his mutant powers to move the debris away. Kitty moves towards Shola and wants to thank him, but Tom holds her back. He tells her that “it” is a mutant, a Genoshan, a monster. Kitty angrily debates the point with him and finally phases her arm straight through him. She’s a mutant, she calmly tells him. Does that make her a monster?

Tom silently turns around and walks away. Kitty introduces herself to Shola. He tells her that he opened the roads and took care of the fire and then leaves over Kitty´s protests. While the others are taken care of, Kitty sullenly wonders whether she should follow his example and split. She’s angry that Tom turned out to be such a jerk. She and Shan are joined by the police who’d like a word with her. Kitty asks to be excused though, as she has an appointment with her psychiatrist the first thing in the morning.

The next morning in her office, Maureen asks Kitty what she thinks about her father’s choice to go to Vietnam underage. It is the only thing Kitty mentioned during last session. Kitty, clearly uncomfortable about the subject, answers that she only brought the subject up because she saw Maureen’s war picture and made a connection. She finally admits that she is bothered, because her father kept such an important part of his life secret from his family and what worries her as well is her fear that she has inherited that trait. When Maureen points out that everybody keeps secrets, Kitty retorts that her father’s secret got him and her mother into a witness protection program.

She momentarily drifts off and then insists that he was a good man. She still clearly blames herself for the deterioration of her parents’ marriage. When Kitty refuses to add anything more, Maureen points out that she is still keeping secrets and is apparently not interested in changing that status quo.

Later at the University Heights Precinct of the Chicago Police department, Kitty is questioned by Detectives Ramos and Lukaszh over the events at Bessemer Station. Detective Lukaszh clearly carries a grudge. He tells Kitty that his cousin lost his house when her father’s family-owned bank went bankrupt. Kitty refuses to let him goad her though and remains polite.
Regarding the incident, she explains that she has no clue what went wrong. There were no hardware problems, then another student yelled something about a virus and everything crashed.

Lukaszh remarks that it’s awfully convenient that a mutant would pop out of nowhere. Kitty retorts, since there were lots of volunteers, why shouldn’t one be a mutant? The detectives wonder why she split off from the others and why she punched her professor. She explains that she was in better shape and knew the systems better, so she had the best chance of surviving. When Lukaszh ironically states that it sounds as though she were a hero, she retorts sarcastically if that were the case, she wouldn’t be here. The detective answers that all her fellow students are being questioned as well.

Angrily, Kitty asks whether they think the students are responsible for this. She explains that the anti-mutant group Purity made them targets and somebody decided to act on it. Or the class did it to discredit Purity, Lukaszh replies. Ramos wonders why Purity would fixate on this class and finally asks Kitty point-blank, whether she is a mutant. Kitty saves herself by sarcastically answering, “Hell, yes. Isn´t everyone?”

Outside, her classmates are waiting and ask her how it went. They ask her, she’s a mutant, right? As Kitty is dumbfounded, they explain that they were all asked that question and they all gave the same answer Kitty did.

Elsewhere, the mysterious freighter, Amazon Belle, is approaching the Mackinac Straits, which connects Lake Huron with Lake Michigan. Someone or something on the freighter states that they have registered a mutant bioform in Chicago and that they will destroy it.

Characters Involved: 

Kitty Pryde / Shadowcat (former X-man)

Xi´An “Shan” Coy Manh /Karma (former New Mutant)

Shola Inkosi (a Genoshan mutant exchange student)

Tom More (former fire fighter, student and Purity member)

Dr. Maureen Lyszinski (Kitty’s psychiatrist)

Professor Simon Benes (Kitty’s teacher in her advanced physics class)

Sandra Burgos, Jun Ho Kim, Georges Raymond, Danny Zucco, Louis Magee, Aalyah Hardin, Brandy Hardin, Aaron Rosenberg, Martin Hanover, Pauline Shimizu (Kitty’s classmates)

Detectives Ramos and Lukaszh

Jeff Holloway, Alice (members of the anti-mutant group “Purity)

Story Notes: 

Carmen Pryde’s bank went bankrupt, leading to his involvement with the Yakuza in the “Kitty Pryde and Wolverine” LS from 1984. It was presumably this involvement which forced him and his ex-wife to join the witness protection program.

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