New Mutants (1st series) #74

Issue Date: 
April 1989
Story Title: 
The Right Stuff

Louise Simonson (Writer), Brett Blevins (Penciler), Bob Wiacek (Inker), Joe Rosen (Letterer), Gregory Wright (Colorist), Daryl Edelman (Assistant Editor), Bob Harras (Editor), Tom DeFalco (Editor-in-Chief)

Brief Description: 

Cannonball, Rusty and Skids return to the church where their teammates and allies are looking after the Inferno Babies from a reconnaissance mission, as do Mirage, Warlock, Sunspot and Gosamyr from a separate mission. The two teams regroup and discuss the recent events they went through during the Inferno, as well as the loss of Lila Cheney shortly prior to that. Gosamyr feels like she is to blame for that, and the boys all swoon over her. Rusty gets hold of Ship, who sends a small craft to collect them all. They soon arrive at Ship, Warlock and Illyana Rasputin have a little trouble being allowed in, but it’s Gosamyr who Ship will not allow inside. Sunspot, Cannonball, Rictor and Rusty all fight for her to be let in, while Ship gives them a history of Gosamyr’s dangerous race. Mirage’s headaches get worse, and Gosamyr realizes that it is because of her, for when they aren’t fighting evil, they fight each other, which she instigates. Ship tells her of a planet where some mystics have supposedly taught, long ago, others of Gosamyr’s race how to control what they are, and offers her a star-ship to go to the planet. Each of the boys gives a reason why they should go with her, but Gosamyr is adamant that she is going alone, and thanks Sunspot for teaching her about love, before she departs. At the Hellfire Club, Magneto and Sebastian Shaw fight over whether economics or mutant supremacy is more important, and later the White Queen tells Magneto that Shaw will probably try and get him kicked out, when they are interrupted by Selene, who informs them that something is going on at Xavier’s School. Indeed, the New Mutants, after saying goodbye to the X-Terminators, travel back to their school to tell Magneto they don’t want him as their headmaster anymore, except they find that something is very, very wrong.

Full Summary: 

It was a night of terror, change and passage for the teenage heroes known as the New Mutants and the X-Terminators. Now, the two teams of young heroes have begun to act as one.

Sam “Cannonball” Guthrie, co-leader of the New Mutants flies low along a street in Times Square, carrying the leader of the X-Terminators, Rusty Collins, while Rusty’s girlfriend and teammate Sally “Skids” Blevins holds onto Cannonball’s back. Sally exclaims that it is amazing that so few people were injured, considering what happened here last night. Cannonball agrees, and remarks that people seem to be forgetting what really went on, like it was a dream or something. The handsome Rusty adds that it is so peaceful now, and almost hard to believe that every object in Manhattan was out to get them.

Rusty adds that he is glad things are back to normal, when suddenly a rubbish bin leaps at the three heroes, smashing into Cannonball, Skids is knocked off and throws up a deflector shield to catch her friends. When the three of them land on the ground, Rusty blasts the rubbish bin with his flame powers, and the rubbish bin acts as if it is hurt, before it is no longer demonized and just lies on the ground, lifeless, as it should be.

Rusty mutters that he guesses he spoke too soon about it being over, to which Sally assures him that it nearly is, and only the occasional thing is still “magicked”. Cannonball points out that all they have to do is nudge it a little and it reverts to normal, to which Rusty remarks that it wouldn’t hurt to get back to the church and the kids and babies, for if a trash can is able to attack them, something worse could be happening to the others.

At the church where the New Mutants and X-Terminators have been keeping safe with their companions and the Inferno Babies, Julio “Rictor” Esteban Richter and Tabby “Boom-Boom” Smith of the X-Terminators and Rahne “Wolfsbane” Sinclair of the New Mutants are entertaining the infants that were kidnapped during the Inferno, while Wiz-Kid, Artie Maddicks and Leech play nearby. ‘This is the worst! The absolute worst!’ Tabby shouts, muttering that they are stick with thirteen screaming brats and a punch-drunk egghead, ‘Nothing personal, Taki, you beat N’astirh and all that’ she quickly adds. ‘Thanks, Boom-Boom, I love you too’ Taki replies sarcastically.

Rictor mumbles that he sees now why their teammates were so gung-ho to be the ones to engage in rescue missions. Rahne is in a wolfen form and Illyana Rasputin, the former New Mutant known as Magik, de-aged to an infant rides her back. Rahne transforms to a half-girl, half-wolf as she leaps up and prevents a young boy from falling off a ledge. ‘Yes, they get the glory, we get the diapers!’ Rahne complains.

Rahne glances back to Illyana who is clinging to her neck and tells her that she knows she won’t understand a word that she is saying because she doesn’t speak English anymore, ever since her Darkchilde persona sacrificed herself to save the world, and now she is just a wee child again, although Rahne supposes that Illyana always was a wee child…’Time travel is so confusing’ Rahne exclaims, before asking Illyana not to hold on so tightly around her neck, as she finds it difficult to breathe.

Nearby, a infant is being chased by a demonized boom-box. The child’s screaming alerts Boom-Boom, who turns and picks up the child as the boom-box exclaims ’All the better to eat you with!’ Tabby is about to unleash a time-bomb on the sound-system, until Rictor grabs her arm preventing her from tossing it. ’Rictor, are you crazy? That boom-box was going to eat -’ Tabby begins, until Rictor interrupts, pointing out that it is no reason to subject the boom-box to high powered explosives, when he can just shake the evil out of it.

Indeed, Rictor places a hand on the boom-box and using a low dosage of vis seismic powers, expels the evil from the sound system. ‘That’s so cool! So cool, in fact, that you win the door prize!’ Tabby exclaims as she shoves the three infants she was carrying into Rictor’s arms. ‘I think the middle one needs changing’ she adds. Tabby picks up the boom-box and exclaims that they can now have some tunes, when suddenly a voice cries ‘Hello, self friends and babies!’

The alien voice of course belongs to the New Mutant Warlock who is arriving back, in his “Super-Warlock” form along with his teammates Danielle “Mirage” Moonstar, Bobby “Sunspot” DaCosta and their ally Gosamyr. Tabby greets her friends and asks how the clean-up went, before pointing out that Dani doesn’t look so good. Bobby remarks that Dani doesn’t feel well either. Gosamyr informs the others that Mirage has been putting up a brave front, but that really her headache is worse than ever. Dani declares that Gosamyr is exaggerating, and adds that she thought once the Demon Reign was over, she would feel better.

Rictor sees Cannonball, Rusty and Sally returning and as he is covered in babies, he asks them if they know anything about babies. Sam replies that he has got little brothers and sisters, to which Rictor shoves the babies in his arms, telling him to put that good experience to use as the middle one needs changing. Rictor then turns to Gosamyr and tells her that she looks ravishing this morning. Sunspot frowns at that comment, while Rusty agrees with Rictor. ‘I’ll say!’ he exclaims. Sally wonders what is going on with the boys, when suddenly Wolfsbane rushes over to Cannonball, ‘Sam! Oh, Sam, you’re back!’ she shouts as she hugs him.

Cannonball smiles and tells Rahne that it looks like they had a harder time than his squad did, before telling her that she can forget giving him Illyana, as he has enough infants of his own right now. A news announcer can be heard on Boom-Boom’s radio: “A night to remember…or maybe to try and forget!” That’s how one observer described rioting and mass hallucinations dubbed “goblin Night” that gripped Manhattan…leading some speculators to wonder if it had any connection to the much publicized disappearance of rock star Lila Cheney, in which she appeared to be carried off by an alien horde. Though Cheney’s concerts are famous for their spectacular effects, Cheney has not been seen since -.

Dani suggests to Boom-Boom that she switch to some other station, to which Sally asks why. Dani informs the X-Terminators that Lila was Sam’s girlfriend, a mutant like all of them, who could teleport across vast distances. Tabby is surprised by this revelation, while Dani continues with the story, informing her new friends that they rushed to aid Lila when she was in danger, adding that their headmaster Magneto would have tried to stop them, but they never listen to him much anymore. She explains that it was on that adventure where they ran into Gosamyr and learned that her family had been captured by the same villain, a creep named Spyder, so they all went off into space to rescue them all.

Artie Maddicks uses his powers to project images of what Mirage is telling everyone, while Mirage continues with her story, explaining that before they could reach Lila or Gosamyr’s family, Spyder released the family in monstrous evolved forms and they were about to destroy a planet - until they freed Lila, who saved the New Mutants by teleporting the monsters into the sun - unfortunately, the way Lila’s power works, she had to teleport with them.

Gosamyr remarks that Lila died so her family would not be set free on an unsuspecting universe. ‘If your family was anything like you…’ Rusty begins, ‘They’d be worth dying for…’ Rictor concludes. Of course, Sunspot frowns at them.

Wolfsbane asks what it is that makes everyone so sure that Lila is dead, adding that she thought Lila could only teleport to places that she had been. ‘Has she ever been to that sun?’ Rahne asks, before pointing out that if indeed she has, then there must have been some way to survive there, and if she hasn’t’, then she must have taken them somewhere else where she could survive. Cannonball realizes that Rahne is right, and remarks that maybe one day Lila will come home, after all, she has the power. ‘If only she’s alive. If only we could know for sure…’.

Gosamyr remarks that this is all her fault, as she is like the rest of her family. She hangs her head as she remarks that even at her best she has an evil effect on other beings, like a flower whose fragrance is poison to breathe. Gosamyr points out that under the wrong conditions, she could become one of those planet-destroyers. ‘I’m like Illyana - an accident waiting to happen!’ Sunspot holds Gosamyr close and tells her that she isn’t, ‘You want to be as good as you are beautiful’ he assures her that she has learned that there are other ways to behave than the ways taught to her. Gosamyr replies that she knows that intellectually, but wonders if she can become something other than what she actually is. ‘If only I knew for sure…’.

Meanwhile, at the Hellfire Club, on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue. The Club’s Black King, Sebastian Shaw, and White King, Magneto are in the men’s room, where Shaw declares that he blames Magneto for Illyana’s loss of control. ‘She was your student and you allowed her to cause this…goblin night!’ Shaw adds that it is property damage and points out that had it continued, it could have adversely affected the Club’s members financial holdings. ‘The world’s security has been threatened and your narrow concern if for our economic interests?’ Magneto replies.

Magneto remarks that Shaw is angered, not at the damage to the city, but only that the Hellfire Club didn’t know it time to profit from it. Shaw tells Magneto to spare him his hypocrisy. ‘You care nothing for this city! Your constituency is mutant kind - and the number of mutants that you represent has dwindled!’ Shaw smashes Magneto across the chest, but before he can strike again, Magneto grabs his fist. Shaw reminds Magneto that they of the Inner Circle have chosen to share with him their position of power. ‘We have made you our White King…but we can unmake you as easily!’

‘Can you, Shaw?’ Magneto asks as he elbows the Black King in the face, before exclaiming ‘Control of the world’s economy is the scope of your interest! You have an accountant’s mind!’ Magneto asks the long-serving member of the Inner Circle where his concern for mutant kind is, ‘For the fate of your own people?’ Magneto then uses his power of metals to snare Shaw in the pipes from the floor. Shaw exclaims that the world cannot be bound by physical power, ‘Even power such as yours!’ Shaw adds that he is no messiah and remarks that a messiah does not belong in the Inner Circle.

‘Mark me well, Shaw. An evil wind is blowing through the world. I have seen the signs!’ Magneto exclaims. The White Queen and Selene enter the room as Magneto declares that mutant’s freedoms will soon be in jeopardy, therefore they must acquire such power that the world will not dare raise against them. Shaw breaks from the metal pipes and remarks that if they are put in jeopardy, it will be because of displays like this. He begins to storm out of the room as the White Queen asks them what this is about. ‘Philosophy, Miss Frost…and the path our kind must travel if they are to survive!’ Shaw replies.

Meanwhile, ‘Are you getting anybody?’ one of the young heroes asks Rusty as he holds a phone receiver to his ear. ‘Yeah. Hi. Ship? This is Rusty!’ the former sailor exclaims. ‘That’s your ship talking to him?’ Cannonball asks in disbelief. ‘Yeah. Fresh, isn’t it?’ Tabby replies. Rusty assures Ship that he is not in jail, and explains that he is calling from New York, adding that the others are with him. ‘Yeah, I know they’re supposed to be in school…it’s a long story’ Rusty exclaims, before asking Ship to shut up and send a plane for them. ‘And whatever you send - make sure it’s big! We have ten babies, four kids, eight teenagers and two alien life forms…’.

Soon, a small aircraft approaches the massive sentient ship, dubbed, appropriately, Ship. Warlock remarks that he could have brought them all here and spared Ship sending another. Rusty tells his new friend that it was thoughtful of him, but points out how he could have found it, as it is a pretty big ocean out here. ‘It’s a pretty big ship!’ Sunspot exclaims. Another of the New Mutants comments on the size of Ship, while another informs the X-Terminators that they have seen it on TV before, but that didn’t even begin to show how big it is. ‘It’s awesome!’

The aircraft lands and everyone exits it as Boom-Boom greats Ship and tells him that it is good to see him again. Ship replies that it id good to see her also, before asking who else is here. Tabby introduces them as the New Mutants and explains that they helped them save New York. Tabby then asks Ship if he can make up a wheelchair for Taki. Ship replies that it will be his pleasure, before reminding the X-Terminators that, because of his programming, he can only allow mutants inside.

Boom-Boom replies that it shouldn’t be a problem, as the babies, which are all being carried by the teens, are mutants, that’s why the demons want them. Wolfsbane informs Ship that all the New Mutants are mutants, but Ship, who examines everyone as they enter, declares that there is something strange about the small one on Wolfsbane’s back. Rahne replies that it is perhaps because Illyana is just a baby now. Rusty tells Ship that he has to learn to be more flexible, to which Ship replies that he will try, and as his sensors do not indicate that Illyana is not a mutant, he will allow her to pass. Illyana pokes her tongue out at Ship as she passes.

Rusty tells Warlock that it is his turn now, but as Warlock passes the barrier, an alarm sounds and Ship wonders what kind of being Warlock is - ‘A young Magus? A prince of that terrible race? A being of power with a rage to rule -’ Warlock interrupts Ship and assures Ship that he is not a Magus. He then shifts his form into that of a cartoon rabbit and explains that he is indeed techno-organic, and can shape change, but that he is also a mutant, for he has no desire for power, only friends.

Ship remarks that no potential Magus would even know the meaning of the word and that his scanners acknowledge that Warlock is indeed a mutant of his kind, and allows Warlock to enter, literally kicking him in where Artie and Leech tend to him while he tells Gosamyr that it is her turn now. But as Gosamyr steps forward, Ship shouts that Gosamyr is not a mutant and shines a bright spotlight on her, before encasing her in a capsule and announcing that she is even more dangerous than a Magus, which is why she must be captured and contained. ‘She must be destroyed!’ Ship declares.

Sunspot won’t have it, and as Rusty uses his powers to burn the base of the capsule, Sunspot picks it up. Rusty asks Ship what he thinks he is doing, and Sunspot tells Gosamyr not to worry, as he has her and will not let her go. Bobby calls to Cannonball and Warlock and asks them to come and help him. Rictor joins them too, helping Sunspot to put Gosamyr, still in the capsule, under Warlock, who has reshaped his body into a sort of tent, protecting Gosamyr from the barrage of instruments that Ship tries to attack her with. Rusty and Cannonball go about attacking these instruments.

Rusty tells Ship to cut it out, asking him if he thinks they would have brought anybody dangerous onboard. Cannonball tells Ship that they do not want to hurt him, but he has to stop this. Warlock points out that Ship does not want to hurt any of them either, for he could have already if he desired. Sunspot agrees, pointing out that it only wants to hurt Gosamyr. ‘I thought you said this ship was on your side!’ Bobby exclaims. Rictor replies that Ship does things like this sometimes, mostly when it doesn’t understand what it is going on.

Rictor proceeds to shatter the capsule with a low-level vibration and Gosamyr thanks him as he helps her from the cage. ‘Hey, he didn’t save you by himself!’ Sunspot exclaims, before warning Rictor to quit looking at Gosamyr the way he is looking at her. Gosamyr asks Bobby to listen to himself. ‘Don’t you see? I’m doing it again!’ Gosamyr exclaims that they are all friends, but now they are fighting each other because of her. ‘It’s what always happens!’

Gosamyr tells her friends that Ship does understand, better than any of them, the dangers of her remaining her. Everyone turns to several computer screens as Ship exclaims ‘She admits it! She is dangerous!’ Ship tells the New Mutants and X-Terminators that on the screens is the history of Gosamyr’s kind. Ship points out that, physically, they are exquisite, but that there is something alluring about all the females of Gosamyr’s kind that makes others fight - even kill - to possess them.

Ship exclaims that this is madness, before informing the young heroes that the beautiful form which Gosamyr is in now is her larval stage, but many thousand years in the future - or perhaps even tomorrow - she will undergo a transformation, and when she does, she will be changed. She will almost certainly be mad and will hold in her hands enough power to decimate a solar system!

Suddenly, Mirage shouts ‘No! No! I see death!’ Dani clutches her head and exclaims that Death is coming closer. ‘Gift of the Valkyries, ha! The Valkyries torment! It’s torment!’ She falls to the ground, exclaiming that she thought the death-visions were caused by the Demon Reign, that if the demons vanished then the probabilities would alter, and the vision would cease and everything would be okay. Rahne holds onto her best friend in an attempt to comfort her, but Dani still exclaims that her head aches and now her visions are worse than ever!

Gosamyr suddenly exclaims ‘No, it’s me who’s causing them! Me!’ she remarks that she is a curse, a danger to anyone who gets close to her. Bobby assures Gosamyr that she has changed, that she doesn’t want them to fight each other anymore. Gosamyr replies that it isn’t what I want, but what she is, and cannot help herself. Sunspot declares that if Gosamyr has to go, then he is going with her. Shocked, Gosamyr turns to Bobby and tells him that he cannot come with her, as she doesn’t want to cause him harm, especially to him. ‘And to have me near you is to invite destruction!’

Gosamyr remarks that, like Illyana, she is what she was born to be. She reminds everyone that she was present during the Inferno and saw the danger that Illyana caused this world, saw her overcome her destiny to benefit from it. Gosamyr claims that she has learned from Illyana, learned from all of them, and she too wants to be part of the constructive force of the universe. ‘If only there was some way that could come to pass’.

Suddenly, Ship informs Gosamyr that he has a place in his memory banks where perhaps she might learn. Ship explains that it is a planet of mystics who, legends say, have taught others of Gosamyr’s kind to control what they are. However, he points out that it was long ago, and if they still exist, it will be up to them to decide if they will teach her or not. Gosamyr exclaims that she had heard rumors, whispers among her elders, but she never thought it was true. She then thanks Ship.

However, the boys aren’t too convinced. Rusty exclaims that they cannot let her go alone, as it might be dangerous, and begins to offer to go with her, until Rictor interrupts, pointing out that he is the one who freed Gosamyr, before reminding Rusty that he has a girlfriend. Cannonball points out that it was the New Mutants who got Gosamyr into this mess, so it is up to him as co-leader to go with her, when Sunspot shouts ‘No way! Gosamyr’s mine!’

Gosamyr separates the squabbling friends, asking them if they cannot see that it is happening again. ‘You can’t help yourselves!’ Suddenly, Ship offers Gosamyr a star-ship, with room for one. Gosamyr places a kiss on Sunspot’s lips as she tells him that she will never forget him. ‘You’re the one who taught me what love was all about!’ Gosamyr turns to Cannonball, telling him that she will be out in space with Lila. ‘She saved a world my family was set to destroy! If she’s out there….I’ll find her!’ Gosamyr then kisses Sam, while Sally and Boom-Boom stand near Rusty and Rictor and frown. ‘Forget it, you two! They’ve earned those good-bye kisses, you hardly know that bimbo!’ Tabby exclaims.

Mirage bids Gosamyr farewell, assuring her that she did not mean for her visions to drive her away. Gosamyr climbs into the star-ship which Wiz-Kid had been examining and replies that the visions only showed what was true, adding that with her around, the minute they all stop fighting evil, they begin to fight each other. ‘It’s for the best really!’ With that, Gosamyr takes off in the star-ship, and Sunspot waves goodbye as he watches the small ship disappear into the sky.

Meanwhile, back at the Hellfire Club, Magneto wonders if Shaw was right, after all, Illyana was his student. Emma “the White Queen” Frost points out that Illyana was the student of demons and sorcerers long before she studied with him. Magneto remarks that Magik was the most potent of the New Mutants, and now he has lost her. Emma strokes a finger along Magneto’s cheek and tells him that Shaw will say that since he no longer represents the X-Men, nor controls the most powerful among the New Mutants, ‘You have no place as the Inner Circle’s White King!’ Magneto replies that Shaw is not fit to lead, as he is short-sighted and cares too much for the fate of humanity.

‘Only insofar as they affect his fortune. For Shaw, money is power!’ Emma points out. Magneto declares that the time is coming, and soon, when economics won’t matter, but physical strength will win the day. ‘The time for subtlety is passing. Now is the time for a change!’ Suddenly, Selene enters the room and announces that something is happening at Xavier’s School, it is registering on their survey equipment.

Back aboard Ship, Cannonball tells the X-Terminators that the New Mutants would love to stay here with them, but they are registered at Xavier’s School. Boom-Boom tells Sam to forget about the school and reminds him how they saw Magneto palling around with N’astirh. Warlock remarks that it is like Darth Vader in “Star Wars”, now Magneto is turning to the dark side of the force. ‘As if he was ever really turned any other way!’ Sunspot mumbles.

Wolfsbane, still holding on to Illyana remarks that she thinks Magneto was good for a while, after all, Professor X did leave him in charge. Mirage points out that if they do go back, they cannot just ignore Magneto anymore, they will have to play by his rules. ‘No way!’ Sunspot shouts, to which Dani points out she said if they go back, suggesting that they can quit, but whatever they do, they owe Magneto an explanation.

Cannonball suggests that they go and face Magneto, explain their position like adults. ‘All right. We’ll tell him why we can’t stay with him’ Sunspot remarks as the New Mutants and Illyana climb into Warlock, who has transformed himself into a small ship. The X-Terminators wave goodbye to their friends, while up in the air, Wolfsbane remarks that when Magneto learns what his demon accomplice did to Illyana, perhaps he will snap out of it. ‘Don’t kid yourself, Rahne’ one of the others replies.

Mirage remarks that the X-Terminators sure seem happy, and asks her teammates if they get the impression that things are normal there, that X-Factor likes and respects the X-Terminators, even if they are just kids too. Dani is about to say something else, when suddenly the New Mutants arrive back at their school, and looking down from above, Cannonball exclaims that it looks like the problem of whether to come back to school has been settled - once and for all!

Characters Involved: 

Cannonball, Mirage, Sunspot, Warlock, Wolfsbane (all New Mutants)

Boom-Boom, Rictor, Rusty, Skids (all X-Terminators)

Illyana Rasputin



Artie Maddicks

Wiz Kid


Nathan Christopher Summers

Inferno Babies

Magneto, Sebastian Shaw, Selene, White Queen (all Hellfire Club Inner Circle)

News announcer (voice only)

Various demonized objects

In Artie’s Projection:

Lila Cheney


Gosamyr’s family

On Ship’s computer screens:


Various aliens

Story Notes: 

For the full story on Illyana’s transformation to childhood, see New Mutants (1st series) #71-73.

The clean-up which Boom-Boom refers to can be seen in Power Pack (1st series) #43 and Cloak & Dagger (3rd series) #4.

For the kidnapping and supposed death of Lila Cheney, the New Mutants meeting Gosamyr and fighting Spyder, see New Mutants (1st series) #67-70.

Ship believes that Rusty is in jail and Skids, Rictor and Boom-Boom to be in school because that’s where they were all sent in X-Terminators #1 - and then the “Inferno” happened.

The Valkyries of Asgard gave Mirage her death-vision power in the New Mutants Special Edition #1.

Final appearance of Gosamyr, who has barely been mentioned since.

The New Mutants and X-Terminators witnessed Magneto and N’astirh conversing during the Inferno.

Illyana’s face is removed from the cover corner box with this issue and replaced by headshots of Boom-Boom and Rictor. Skids and Rusty do not receive headshots in the cover corner box at anytime during their tenure in the title.

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