New Mutants (3rd series) #36

Issue Date: 
March 2012
Story Title: 
Homing Instinct

Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning (writers), David Lopez (penciler) Alvaro Lopez (inker), Val Staples (colorist), Jorge Molina (cover artists), Virtual Calligraphy’s Joe Caramagna (letterer), Sebastian Girner (editor), Nick Lowe (senior editor), Axel Alonso (editor-in-chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer)

Brief Description: 

Cypher learns the truth about the strange creature inside the box - that it is part of a larger whole that got separated, and has been communicating with the rest of itself via chaos energy, trying to get heard. He relates his findings to the rest of the team, who have arrived at Diskhord’s next concert, only for Magma to detect that the next natural disaster that Diskhord is going to cause, thanks to the chaos energy of the creature, is a massive earthquake. Magma is encouraged to use her power to stop the earthquake, otherwise Chicago will be destroyed. Sunspot and X-Man cover Magma, protecting her from irate concert attendees, while Mirage, Warlock and Blink take on Diskhord. The band is defeated with ease, while Sunspot continues to flirt with Magma as he urges her to keep the earthquake in check. With the band defeated and the earthquake prevented, Warlock transforms himself into a “shuttle” of sorts, and with Blink inside him, she teleports the two of them into space, where they then hurl the creature into open space. They return to Earth, and Magma thanks Sunspot for having faith in her. Later, the New Mutants return to their new home in San Francisco, and Mirage contacts Cyclops, informing him that Blink has chosen to go to Westchester over Utopia. The starving New Mutants are greeted by their elderly neighbor, Mrs Livitz, who has prepared prokporzhki prod for them.

Full Summary: 

‘I’ve figured it out. Go me’ Douglas “Cypher” Ramsey remarks to himself. He knows it has taken him a while, but to be fair, he has been unconscious for a stretch, not to mention taken hostage by a crazy metal band. ‘And, you know, empathically communing with a piece of sentient extraterrestrial technology’ Doug adds. Referring to the strange green, tentacled creature he found in a box, Douglas remarks that is what it is, part of a ship. He knows there is a more complicated name for it somewhere in the universe, but that ship is a word they understand. ‘It’s a ship that crosses universes. Travels between realities’ Doug remarks, adding that it is amazing stuff. Cypher would like to talk to it for longer, to learn where it came from, but they didn’t get much time to chat, and when they did, it was confused and upset.

The creature came so far, and from that came so many different fars. It came through so many places, so many simultaneous places, yet still it could not avoid the accident that left it so hurt and broken. Staring into the box where the creature is kept, Doug knows that it crashed, the ship crashed and suffered some kind of terrible accident. He closes the box, wide-eyed, realizing that the ship disintegrated and scattered across time and space, and a bit of it ended up here on Earth. Just a bit, like the mind, the black box, the sentience. Doug remarks that it has been trying to repair itself and send out a distress call ever since, as it wants to be rescued.

Sitting in the back of the metal band Diskhord’s bus, Doug holds the box containing the creature, which he now knows communicates using chaos energy, which is what powers it. Doug realizes that it is trying to generate a lot of chaos energy so it can make itself better and cry for help loud enough to be heard. Standing up and making his way to the bus door, Doug isn’t sure how a heavy metal band ends up with a piece of sentient extraterrestrial technology, but that is what happened. The creature has been using them, using the band and the energy of their shows to generate greater and greater levels of power. The creature is in their heads, rewiring them, so much so that they don’t even know what they are doing anymore. ‘They’re getting desperate. We nearly stopped them back at Stroud’ Doug remarks as he exits the bus, looking around at his surroundings, he realizes they have come here to play one last time.

‘To raise a chaos storm that will wipe the city of Chicago off the map and thus generate enough energy to make a call for help’. Doug declares. ‘You’ve got to stop them’ he adds, before remarking that, on the up side, his suit microphone has been working for the last ten minutes, so they should have heard all of this.

‘We did. We’re on it, Doug’ Danielle “Mirage” Moonstar replies as she and the rest of their New Mutants teammates - Bobby “Sunspot” DaCosta, Amara “Magma” Aquilla, the alien Warlock, and newcomer Nate Grey a.k.a. X-Man are teleported to Diskhord’s new concert venue in Chicago, courtesy of Clarice Ferguson the mutant known as Blink. The crowd are chanting Diskhord’s name, while energy rises from the heavy metal band. ‘Where’d this crowd come from?’ Sunspot enquires. ‘Flashmob’ Blink explains, adding that the band is well-versed in crowd sourcing. ‘So, even chaos-s[ace-demon-possesses death metal bands use Twitter?’ Sunspot jokes. ‘Kids today, huh?’ Blink remarks.

Suddenly, one of the crowd looks at the New Mutants, and as the rain falls down around them, shouts ‘It’s them! They’re the ones! The band said they’re not allowed here!’ The crowd moves towards the New Mutants, so Sunspot and Magma power up, and Bobby warns them all to back off. Blink points out that they have got to figure out what form the disaster is going to take this time. Mirage asks Blink to explain, so Blink tells her that the band manufactures natural disasters, basically industrial quality of bad luck, which is what generates the chaos energy. ‘It’s been blizzards, flash floods, the twister in Stroud -’ Blink begins, before Amara interrupts, announcing that she knows what it is. ‘Amara?’ Bobby asks. Wide-eyed and staring at the ground, Amara reveals that it is an earthquake, that the band are shifting tectonics.

Mirage asks Magma if she is sure, and touching the ground, Magma announces that she can feel it, and that it is going to be huge. ‘They’re going to split the lakeshore open. Sink half of Chicago. Drown the rest’ Amara reveals. Dani asks her if she can stop it, or block it, but Amara tells her that the scale is way beyond her levels of manipulation. ‘Yeah, that’s nonsense’ Bobby declares. ‘You don’t believe me?’ Amara asks him, to which Sunspot tells her that he doesn’t believe a word she says. ‘You said you don’t love me, and you’d rather date the Devil than me, and I couldn’t live if I thought that was the truth’ Sunspot exclaims, before asking Magma if she can do this. ‘You are such an idiot, DaCosta’ Amara smiles, as she concentrates on the ground. Dani tells Sunspot and Nate to cover Magma, while the crowd surrounds them, and Dani, Blink and Warlock head towards the band.

Energies rise from the band members who play their instruments with gusto As the drummer pounds his sticks against the drums, Dani fires an arrow down, which pierces one of the drums. The drummer turns and looks up at Dani, who warns him that the next one goes through him. The drummer ignores her and continues to pound the drums, and Dani suddenly slips from the ledge when energy strikes her. Blink looks up at Dani, before teleporting the drummer and his drum kit - several feet into the air, and letting him fall down, the drums piling up on him. ‘Drum roll, please. Anyone? Anyone?’ Blink jokes. ‘Crap!’ she exclaims as the drummer leaps up and lunges at her. Mirage lands on one of the drums, and kicks the drummer hard in the face. ‘That’s enough from you!’ she tells him.

Back on the ground, Bobby and Nate are keeping the band’s fans away from Magma. ‘The ground’s shaking!’ Nate announces. ‘Yes, thank you! We noticed!’ Sunspot remarks, while Magma declares that she cannot stop this. Sunspot kneels down beside her and tells Amara that she can. ‘Tectonic plates are your thing’ he reminds her. ‘Bobby…’ Amara begins, but Sunspot interrupts, telling Magma that she rocks his world, that she always has. ‘You’d never let anything else rock my world, right? Right?’ Bobby asks her, adding that she totally cancels out all other world-rockers. ‘Okay?’ he asks. ‘You are so lame, Bobby’ Magma mutters as she continues to concentrate on the serious task at hand.

Up on the stage, Warlock approaches the male guitarist and, grinning, exclaims ‘Your rock+roll, friend. It is noise pollution’. The guitarist suddenly smashes his guitar against Warlock, but Warlock isn’t harmed, and exclaims ‘Self doesn’t think much of your greatest hits’ before adding ‘See? Humor. Ba-dum’ as he turns his hands into large cymbals and clashes them on either side of the guitarist. Suddenly, though, the female guitarist fires energy from her guitar at Warlock, causing him to keel backwards as part of his body is torn apart. ‘Warlock!’ Dani calls out when she sees him fall to the stage. She readies an arrow, but cannot fire it, as there are civilians between her and the guitarist. ‘Take the shot!’ Blink shouts. Blink then teleports the arrow straight to the female guitarist, knocking her back.

‘God, was that -’ Blink begins, but Mirage assures her it was blunt tip and non-lethal. X-Man calls out to Dani, informing her that Amara is holding the earthquake in check and is doing an amazing job, but that the chaos storm is reaching overload. Mirage tells Blink to grab Warlock, who has repaired himself and sitting up, and declares that they need to locate this black box. An instant later, Blink teleports Mirage, Warlock and herself to Cypher’s location. ‘Hi. Hi. Interesting night, huh?’ Cypher remarks as he hold the box out to them. ‘How do we shut it down?’ Mirage asks. Doug replies that he isn’t sure they can, as it has gathered critical levels of energy - of raw bad luck. Doug adds that they shouldn’t look at it, before telling Warlock that he did. Doug adds that he thinks it’s still in his head, kind of, like it got in the band’s head.

Mirage informs Cypher that the creature is going to sink Chicago with a super massive earthquake. ‘Conclusion: it has got to stop being here!’ Warlock declares. An instant later, Warlock has transformed himself into some sort of space-capsule, and with Blink inside him, they have teleported into space, well above Earth. ‘That’s the limit of my range! As far as I go!’ Blink tells Warlock. ‘Then together, self / friend! Throw!’ Warlock exclaims, as they hurl the box into space. ‘Let it be enough’ Blink remarks.

Back down on Earth, ‘Oh goodness!’ Cypher gasps. ‘Doug?’ Dani calls out. ‘It’s gone. There’s just a sense of loss’ Doug replies. He begins to cry, explaining that it is an emptiness, as the connection has been torn away. ‘Just give me a moment’ he asks. Suddenly, Warlock and Blink re-materialize near the bus, and Dani rushes over. Warlock releases Blink from inside him and announces that she will be ok, that the physiological effort of teleporting to her range limit exhausted him. Mirage suggests that they need to get her home, and Cypher agrees, before asking ‘Uhm. Where’s that?’

At the stage, the band begins to recover, and as the rain continues to pour down on them, the guitarist asks what they are doing here. ‘It’s raining mud, man!’ one of the audience exclaims. The female guitarist remarks that the last thing she remembers, they were playing the Axe House in Phoenix. Nate asks if the ground stopped shaking, and as she powers down, Magma smiles: ‘Ha! How’s that for stopping an earthquake with your bare hands?’ she asks. Magma and Nate embrace, causing Sunspot to shout ‘Wait. He gets the hug?’, before Magma goes over to Sunspot, and they embrace. ‘That’s more like it’ Bobby smiles. Magma quietly thanks Bobby for having faith in her, and tells him that this is simply a thank you. ‘Let us be clear. And that “rock my world” riff was completely dumb. And made no sense’ Amara adds. ‘Understood’ Bobby replies ‘You can let go now’ Magma tells him. ‘Will do’ Bobby remarks, still holding on to Amara.

Later, Scott “Cyclops” Summers sits in his office on Utopia, when his phone rings. ‘Dani. I was beginning to get worried’ Cyclops remarks. Dani informs him that they found Clarice, and that she is safe. ‘Are you bringing her home?’ Cyclops asks. ‘We’ve brought her home, Sir’ Dani tells him. Standing outside the house she shares with her teammates in San Francisco, Mirage reminds Cyclops that he said he wanted Blink found and returned to the mutant community. ‘I offered her a choice of what that community should be, and she picked the Westchester School. Not Utopia’ Dani reveals, adding that she thinks Blink made the right choice. When she gets no response, Mirage asks Cyclops if he is still there, and if she has disappointed him. Smiling, Cyclops tells Dani that he is not mad, and points out that she made an independent decision based on an individual’s needs. ‘It’s why I gave you this job. I’m proud of you’ Scott declares.

As Nate, Doug, Warlock, Bobby and Amara climb the steps to their front door, Nate asks if was really a good idea to just throw the creature into space. Doug explains that that much accumulated bad luck could not stay on Earth, not without killing the planet. Warlock states that the object is adrift, and that it will not bother anyone for a significant time period. He suggests that in the interim, the object will calm down and manage to call home for pickup. ‘Even so -’ Nate begins, but Bobby tells him to give it a rest. ‘I’m tired. And cold. But mostly hungry!’ Bobby exclaims. Amara points out that there is no food in the house because they haven’t finished moving in yet, and that they have no cash for take-out because they don’t have jobs. ‘Apart from the saving the world from a bad-luck bomb one, huh? This blows. Our home blows’ Bobby mutters.

Suddenly, ‘What’s that smell? It’s delicious’ Nate declares as a scent wafts down towards them. Doug smiles and announces that it is prokporzhki, revealing that is braised pork, potatoes, allspice, cream and paprika. ‘Is I make. For welcome!’ the elderly neighbor of the New Mutants declares as she opens her door, smiling. Nate is drooling, while Dani pushes her way past the boys, and greets Mrs Livitz. ‘Mrs Livitz, these are my friends. Guys, this is our neighbor, Mrs Livitz. She promised to cook us dinner’ Dani announces. ‘You are people come and enjoy eat?’ Mrs Livitz declares as she leads the New Mutants inside. ‘Yes, Mrs Livitz…we come and enjoy eat very much’ Dani replies. Soon, the New Mutants are seated around a small table, as Mrs Livitz dishes up their prokporzkhi, while suspiciously eyeing up Warlock, who is wearing an oversized sweater and hood.

Characters Involved: 

Cypher, Magma, Mirage II, Sunspot, Warlock, X-Man (all New Mutants)



Mrs Livitz

Members of Diskhord

Concert attendees

Story Notes: 
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