Mutant X #3

Issue Date: 
December 1998
Story Title: 
The Pack

Howard Mackie (writer), Tom Raney (penciler), Andrew Pepoy (inks), Chris Eliopoulos (letters), Gina Going (colors), Frank Pittarese (editor), Bob Harras (editor-in-chief)

Brief Description: 

While on their way to the Summers' estate in Alaska to find the proof Alex needs he's not from this reality, Havok tries to convince Maddie and his teammates he isn't their Havok, but none are willing to believe him and think he is insane and need proof before believing. Alex then accidentally shuts down the plane's cloac and the plane crashes in the Canadian woods. The Fallen nearly gets killed during the crash and Ice-Man and Brute check the area on the look-out for the team called the Pack. During the search, they get knocked-out and Brute loses his cool and becomes one of them. Alex goes searching for them and meets the Pack, a team consisting out of a rogue Wolverine, Sabretooth and Wild Child. Alex fights his way through, bringing Brute back to himself, and then finds a hidden tunnel. The Pack wants Alex to follow them, but needs his team first. The three go get them, and they enter the tunnel. When blasting open a fully-made Adamantium door, they stumble across the destroyed Weapon X lab, where the Pack was created. Upon discovering their horrible origin, the Pack goes wild again and the team has to fight them once more, but are out of energy. They get saved by Alpha Flight and leave. On their trip home, Alex apologizes to Maddie and says he belongs here, with the Six and with her.

Full Summary: 

Saskatchewan, Canada

Havok is running for his life through the snowy Canadian woods and yells for his teammates. He has been searching for them for three hours and still hasn't found them. Then he stops, finding a footprint in the snow. As Havok looks up, he finds the Blackbird. Alex can't believe it: he's back where he started and has been running in circles all the way! Two shadowy figures jump through the trees. Alex hears them and opens a full blast at them, and cries out that they are to take him too, just like the rest of the team, who didn't even want to come here.

Four hours ago, in the Blackbird somewhere over the Northwestern United States, Alex is arguing with Maddie and the rest of the Six about his whereabouts. He can't understand that they won't believe him, because they are not exactly "normal" either, after all: they are Homo Superior, - mutants - and they've handled life in every worst way imaginable.

Maddie tries to calm him down and discuss things later, but Alex goes on and sums up the worst happenings in their lives: Ororo has been bitten by Dracula and transformed into the vampire Bloodstorm, Bob got transformed by Loki into a permanent full ice-form whose touch is deadly, and Warren has changed into the Fallen. Maddie still doesn’t believe him because Reed Richards, the smartest man on Earth, didn't find any proof about reality hopping and thinks Alex just can't handle his near-death experience. Alex says that's because this world's Reed isn't as smart as his Earth's Reed. Maddie tries to understand why Alex wants to go to his world then, where his brother never died, where mutants are feared and hated, where they never married and had a son and where Magneto is a villain. Alex explains it's just the place where he belongs. Maddie wants proof first, show it to them or something, and if so they'll do anything they can to help, but first they need proof; all of them. Alex gets even angrier and says he'll get their proof and accidentally shuts the plain's cloac off, making it visible for the Canadians. The Blackbird gets hit by something and crashes.


Alex continues to search the woods and finds some more footprints, but can't figure out who they belong to. He wishes he had paid more attention when Wolverine gave him the tracking lessons during his stint as an X-Man. Then a rockslide comes up and Alex realizes he's been set-up. He uses his powers to slow the rocks down, but then loses balance and drops. As he gets up, he notices an outraged, naked trio of Wolverine, Sabretooth and Wild Child standing in front of him, ready to attack! Alex remembers Madelyne telling him that they form the team called the Pack. As Alex looks further, he notices the Brute in enraged form and it appears that he has joined the Pack.

Three hours and a half ago.

The Blackbird has crashed, and during the crash the Fallen has lost a lot of blood and Bloodstorm tries to heal his wounds. Ice-Man and Brute are ordered to scout the area, and Maddie goes over to Alex to talk. Alex apologizes for not knowing that on this world relations between Americans and Canadians aren't that good. Maddie gets angry with him, opens a holodisc and reveals the day Alex first formed the Six, their family. Maddie says she just doesn't know what Alex wants anymore, because he told her that day was the happiest of his life.


Alex tries to figure out what the Pack wants with him, as they sniffle and jump all around him. Alex gets enough of it and tries to reach the outraged Wolverine, and says he only wants to go back to his friends, his team. Wolverine doesn't listen and pops his claws open. Alex realizes it's no use. He tries to snap Brute out of it and eventually succeeds. Brute apologizes for scaring Alex, and says they'll get out of this together. He opens a full blast at the Pack to give them a distraction while they escape. Alex' blast opens a tunnel entrance, and Wolverine, Sabretooth and Wild Child don't seem to care for Alex anymore and slash the tunnel further open and want Alex and Brute to follow them in. Alex says he wants his team first, and the three seem to understand and go get them.
Maddie cheerfully greets Alex, saying she knew he wouldn't abandon the team. Alex wants to grab Maddie and go home, but Wolverine stops him by popping his claws open again in front of Maddie.

Alex goes along with the three in the tunnel and tells Maddie to leave if he doesn't come back, but Maddie says the Six are a team and they won't leave anybody behind. Alex agrees and says they'll leave this country together and then enters the tunnel with Wolverine, Sabretooth and Wild Child.

A few minutes later.

Alex follows the Pack to a door and they can't get it open with their claws. Alex tells Wolverine he can't believe he totally lost his humanity. Wolverine tries to tell Alex to open the door. He uses the words, but with a lot of grumbling in between. Alex tells them to stay back, and uses his powers to blast the door open. It's hard to do because the door is made from Adamantium, but eventually Alex succeeds. They enter a lab and search through it. Alex tries to figure out what the place is, and realizes it must be Weapon X, the place where Wolverine got his Adamantium claws.
The Six show up, telling Alex they don't want to leave him alone with them. Wolverine hits a button and a playback starts, with no sound. But Alex explains it to the rest of the team: Wolverine, Sabretooth and Wild Child were kidnapped by Weapon X scientists and their mutant powers were upgraded to become elite Canadian government agents. But the three escaped and destroyed the lab, escaping into the wilderness, and they found the hidden entrance to the lab.

The three lose it and Brute says he can feel the wild thing in the air and needs to get out. None of the team is up their full strength, but prepare to fight anyhow. Alex apologizes to Maddie for everything and Maddie says she'll always love him, even if he doesn't remember it. They kiss, and then prepare to fight. Alex opens a full blast, but it's not enough. Alex again apologizes to Maddie, but she says he gave the team their leader back, and for that, everybody gives their best shot and the battle begins! Then a bright light shows up, nearly blinding everybody! Alpha Flight stands in front of them, and Guardian says that the Pack are rogue government operatives and will be placed in custody. And if the Six aren't off Canadian properties within the hour, so will they!
They leave, and in the plane, Alex apologizes to Maddie. He knows she was right, and that he belongs with the Six, with them, and with her. Maddie is overjoyed and welcomes him back.

Characters Involved: 

Bloodstorm, Brute, Fallen, Havok, Ice-Man, Marvel Woman (the Six)

Sabretooth, Wild Child, Wolverine (the Pack)

Aurora, Guardian, Northstar, Puck, Shaman, Sasquatch, Snowbird (Alpha Flight)

Story Notes: 
Issue Information: 
Written By: