New X-Men (2nd series) #46

Issue Date: 
March 2008
Story Title: 
Messiah Complex – Chapter Twelve

Craig Kyle & Chris Yost (writers), Humberto Ramos (penciller) Carlos Cuevas with Dave Meikis (inkers), Studio F’s Edgar Delgado (colorist), Dave Sharpe (letterer), Will Panzo (asst. editor), Nick Lowe (editor), Axel Alonso (executive editor), Joe Quesada (editor in chief), Dan Buckley (publisher)

Brief Description: 

After Sinister tells Mystique there is no hope for curing Rogue, Mystique grabs him and forces his face to touch Rogue’s. Rogue’s accelerated “death touch” kills him instantly. Gambit arrives with the mutant infant and is shocked to see that Sinister is dead. The X-Men arrive and fight the assembled Acolytes and Marauders for the child. The battle is quite vicious with casualties on both sides. Reinforcements arrive, as the X-Men come to stop the traitorous Bishop. Guided by Destiny’s predictions, Mystique uses the baby to save Rogue, touching their bare skin to each other. The child survives contact with Rogue, but she doesn’t recover as predicted. Gambit is appalled at the lengths Raven will go to in order to win back Rogue’s love. He confesses to working with the Marauders to aid her in her plans. Predator X attacks the Institute and is held at bay by Surge and the New X-Men. Pixie teleports the team to X-23 in the hopes that she can kill it, unaware that she’s transported them all into the middle of an intense battle. Xavier takes the newborn from Gambit and gives her to Cable to take into the future for safety. Predator X feeds on Vertigo and then heads straight to the baby. Bishop confronts Cable just as Predator X arrives to devour the mutant antichrist he was engineered to destroy.

Full Summary: 

Muir Island:

Mystique hovers over the unconscious Rogue, caressing her face in a motherly fashion. She talks to Rogue and tells her that this island has brought her nothing but pain. Her life has been altered in dramatic ways on this island: she lost her life partner Destiny here, she killed Moira MacTaggert here and now she fears she will lose her daughter here as well.
Sinister arrives and Raven says to him that he’s there to tell her that Rogue is going to die and there is no hope for her survival. Sinister replies in the affirmative and adds that if he had more time, perhaps he could have saved her, but right now he has no cure for her. He urges Mystique to take a moment now to grieve because when Gambit returns with the mutant child he will have need of her services.
Mystique replies simply “I know.” She then grabs Sinister in a choke hold and forces his face down towards Rogue. When Sinister’s skin touches Rogue’s it cracks. His eyes go wide and he slumps to the floor, apparently killed by Rogue’s hyper-charged “death touch”. Raven sits huddled in the corner of the room and simply says, “I’ve always known.”
Gambit arrives three hours later to find Sinister sitting in a pool of his own blood. He realizes that Mystique used Rogue to take Sinister out as he hands the mutant infant to Raven. She tells Remy “Sinister got careless. That carelessness killed him. You knew it had to happen.” She reminds Remy that Sinister would have never let this child go once he had control of her. “And I need it”, she adds.
Gambit leans down close to Sinister’s dead body and says that he can’t believe he’s finally free of him. He asks Mystique what they do now. Their dialogue is halted by a scream from above. Mystique recognizes it as Lady Mastermind’s scream. Gambit realizes “The X-Men are here.”
Wolverine’s new X-Force along with Bishop is surrounded by the combined forces of the Marauders, Exodus’ Acolytes and their allies. Lady Mastermind has been sliced through by Wolverine and is bleeding at his feet. Exodus commands them “Kill them all.”
Wolverine dives headlong into the battle, slicing at the Malice-possessed Omega Sentinel. He warns Warpath and Wolfsbane that if they hold back here they’ll die.
Scalphunter targets Logan and shoots him through the eye. Logan falls hard and Bishop orders the others to keep moving and locate the child. Arclight taunts Wolfsbane who slashes the Marauder’s face and tells her fiercely that this “is nae a game”. Sunfire attacks Rahne from behind before being taken out by Bishop. Rahne is then swooped up by Riptide who declares “Time to die, girlie.”
Logan begins to recover from the shot to the head but is not even to his knees before Scrambler moves in. He grabs Logan’s head in his hands and uses his mutant power to cancel out Wolverine’s healing factor. The effect does not last long as X-23 impales Scrambler from behind, seemingly killing the Marauder. She tells Logan “You heal to slow” as she moves on to her next target. Logan replies “So you keep telling me.”
Elsewhere on the field of battle, Scalphunter shifts his sights to Hepzibah. He is about to kill her when Warpath catches sight of him and throws his Vibranium knife through the Marauder’s shoulder. This pins Scalphunter to a wall.
Mystique emerges and tells Scalphunter that Sinister needs more time with the child and they are to do whatever it takes to hold the X-Men off. She pulls the knife from his shoulder but as she turns, she sees the ceiling above them collapse as the rest of the X-Men as well as X-Factor come crashing through. She curses as Cyclops orders the others to take them all down and bring Bishop to him. She tells Scalphunter again to do whatever it takes to buy the time they need with the infant.
She descends the stairs to where Gambit is waiting with the child. She tells him they don’t have much time before one of the X-Men finds them. Remy asks if she’s sure about this. He tells her that he’s only stayed with Sinister and the Marauders because he trusted in her devotion to Rogue. He hands Mystique the baby and asks if she really believes in her. Raven replies that she doesn’t need to believe, she knows. She tells Gambit that Destiny saw them in this room with Rogue and the baby. “Everything I’ve done, it’s been to bring us to this moment.”
Mystique steps callously over Sinister’s body towards Rogue. She tells Gambit that this child will save Rogue and that he’ll never know what it’s like knowing what lies ahead and having to leave her life left to fate. He asks what happens now and how exactly this child will help Rogue. “Does it have some kind of power? Do you hook it up to a machine?” he asks. Mystique says “not exactly.” And gently touches the baby’s forehead to Rogue’s lips.
At the Xavier Institute, Predator X has attacked Rockslide, Mercury and Dust. Rockslide warns his two teammates to move as Predator X attacks! The silvery beast bites Santo in half with its powerful jaws. It then moves towards Dust and Mercury who are still reeling from the fact that they found Predator X feasting on the corpses of their dead friends.
As Predator X reaches Sooraya she transforms into her dust form. Seeing it up close, Cessily realizes that it is one of the creatures created by the Facility using her mercury-like skin. Santo calls for Predator X to come back and fight him but the creature merely stops and sniffs the air.
Indra, Trance and Wolf Cub have noticed the scuffle outside and ask what that thing is. They get a better look at Predator X as it dives through the window to attack them. The three scatter and Indra falls in front of Predator X. He says “I don’t want to-- ” as the murderous monster roars in his faces and edges closer to eat him. Predator X is suddenly thrown back by a blast of electricity. Surge steps between the creature and Indra and tells him to get out of there and join the others in the infirmary with the Beast. Indra asks what she’s going to do and Nori replies “Not let you die” as she takes Predator X on single-handedly.
Meanwhile, Riptide has flown away from the pitched battle on Muir Island and is about to kill Wolfsbane, who has lost consciousness and reverted to her human form. He tells her that Colossus broke his neck once and it hurt. He says she should be thankful that she’s asleep. But before the Marauder can make good on his threat, he is psionically subdued by Professor X. Cable asks the professor if he killed him and Charles replies “Of course not.” Cable suggests that he rethink that decision and Xavier simply replies that Rahne will recover as her wounds are mostly superficial. The two agree to split up as things are about to get messy.
As Mystique touches the mutant infant to Rogue there is a blinding flash of light. Gambit cries out “No!” and snatches the child away from Mystique. She calls him a fool and tells him that it’s too late. He curses at her and is enraged that she didn’t tell him that she planned to kill the child to save Rogue. He points out that Rogue would never allow an innocent newborn to die, even to save herself.
He then realizes that the baby is fine. He is shocked, especially given that the strain of contact with Rogue killed Sinister. Mystique tells him that “It’s destiny” and turns her attention to Rogue. She tells her to wake up and begins to lose it when Rogue does not. Mystique falls to her knees, saying that this was all foretold in Destiny’s diaries and that Rogue was supposed to wake up. Mystique was convinced that if she saved Rogue as Destiny foretold, that she would love her again as she once did. Remy tells her that Rogue wouldn’t and that she would die trying to stop her from harming a child. He adds “And so would I.” Professor X enters and says to Gambit that he’s glad to hear him say that.
Outside, the battle rages on. Storm and Siryn are in pitched combat with Exodus who is incensed that they would dare touch him. Colossus deals with Cargill and asks why no one can find the child. Emma reports that Exodus is putting out telepathic interference but she can sense another telepath. Bishop takes down Unuscione as he desperately tries to find the baby himself. Tempo says that it’s time to end this and is about to use her time-warping abilities when Cable takes her down by clocking her with the butt of his rifle. He telepathically checks in with Xavier who confirms that he has the child. He asks Nathan to clear a path and says that he will meet him upstairs. Charles asks Remy what he will do now and Gambit says “Stay where I belong. At Rogue’s side.”
Back at the Institute, Surge faces Predator X on her own unleashing a barrage of electrical attacks on it. As she pours it on, she tells it to go to hell. Predator X is only momentarily delayed in its attack and lunges towards Nori. He is stopped by a strong right hook from Anole using his newly empowered arm. Prodigy dives at Surge, knocking her out of Predator X’s path. Predator X sniffs the air and glares at the New X-Men who have come to save their leader. Mercury asks if Nori is okay. She then asks where Predator X is going. Anole points out that they are right there and wonders why it isn’t trying to eat them. Prodigy suggests that it’s a predator and predators always go after the weakest prey.
In the infirmary, Pixie and Beast are catching Nightcrawler up on all that has transpired while he was unconscious. Hank admits that they’ve just been reacting as things have unfolded. Suddenly, Predator X comes crashing through the wall and straight towards Hellion who is still unconscious. Nightcrawler reaches him first and teleports him out of harm’s way.
Pixie calls to Nezhno to hit it, which he does. Armor activates her psionic armor and joins Gentle in containing it but calls out for some back-up. Beast tells Pixie to stay back and Kurt notes that he cannot teleport everyone to safety. The rest of the new X-Men arrive. Surge orders Mercury to see what she can do to hurt it. Prodigy orders Anole, Dust and Rockslide to keep it busy and away from Josh and Julian. Pixie has an idea. X-23 killed one of the other Predator X creatures and she decides to take this one to X-23 to deal with. She casts her teleportation spell with the words “Sihal novarum chinoth!” The entire room is filled with mystic energy which transports them all to Muir Island where X-23 and the X-Men are in the middle of their battle against Sinister’s Marauders, the Acolytes and their allies.
Just before they arrive, Cyclops orders Wolverine to break off and find the baby and kill anyone who gets in his way. Predator X and the entire group from the infirmary arrive to everyone’s surprise. Predator X recovers his wits a second faster and attacks Vertigo, literally biting her in half! Wolverine asks “what the #%$# that things is” as it devours Vertigo.
Nearby, Xavier brings the infant to Cable and tells him to take her to the future where she can be safe. He is going to go and help his X-Men. Cable understands and thanks Charles. Nathan smiles at the baby and says “Just you and me again, kid.” Bishop arrives and declares that they are not going anywhere and that it ends here with the child death! Cable pulls out his gun and tells the kid that there’s one more bad guy to deal with and he’ll get her to safety. As he says this, Predator X approaches him from the opposite direction, growling hungrily as it finally finds the mutant infant it has been genetically created to hunt.

Characters Involved: 

Anole, Dust, Hellion, Mercury, Pixie, Prodigy, Rockslide, Surge (all New X-Men)

Elixir, Gentle, Indra, Loa, Trance, Wolf Cub (all Xavier Institute students)

Hepzibah, Warpath, Wolfsbane, Wolverine, X-23 (all X-Force)

Archangel, Armor, Beast, Bishop, Cannonball, Colossus, Cyclops, Emma Frost, Iceman, Nightcrawler, Rogue, Storm (all X-Men)

M, Siryn, Strong Guy (all X-Factor)

Professor Charles Xavier


Unnamed mutant infant

Mister Sinister

Arclight, Harpoon, Riptide, Scalphunter, Scrambler, Vertigo (all Marauders)

Exodus, Frenzy/Joanna Cargill, Random, Tempo, Unuscione

Gambit, Lady Mastermind, Mystique, Omega Sentinel/Malice, Sunfire (all former X-Men allied with the Marauders)

Predator X

Story Notes: 

This is Chapter 12 of Messiah Complex. It is continued from X-Factor (3rd series) #27 and is concluded in X-Men #207.
This issue featured a cover by David Finch and a variant cover by Marc Silvestri.
Mystique killed Moira MacTaggert in X-MEN #108.
Destiny was killed by Legion in UNCANNY X-MEN #255.
Rogue’s mutant ability to absorb the psyche and powers of others has been spiraling out of control for some time. Her power was exponentially magnified through being infected with Strain 88, a virus created by the villain Pandemic [X-MEN #196] and contact with the Hecatomb [X-MEN #199].
This is the final issue of NEW X-MEN. Based on advanced solicitations, various characters will be appearing in other titles now that this series is cancelled. Dust, Rockslide, Blindfold and Wolf Cub will all be appearing in the new title YOUNG X-MEN which launches in April 2008. Anole, Gentle and Surge are all featured in the two-part X-MEN: DIVIDED WE STAND Limited Series. X-23 is a regular cast member in X-FORCE. Pixie has appeared on a future cover featuring the team from ASTONISHING X-MEN. Her name has also appeared in the solicitations for a special X-Men issue being released in conjunction with FREE COMIC BOOK DAY 2008.
Mystique mentions several times in this issue that she knew what was going to happen. Mystique’s long-time lover and partner-in-crime Destiny had precognitive abilities and had mapped out much of the future in a series of diaries. She had undoubtedly shared many details of the future visions she had seen with Raven, particularly those that pertained to their foster daughter, Rogue.
Colossus broke Riptide’s neck in UNCANNY X-MEN #211. This was during the Mutant Massacre and was only the second time that Piotr had killed an opponent. The first was the mad mutant Proteus in UNCANNY X-MEN #128.
X-23 decapitated one of the three original Predator X creatures in NEW X-MEN #46.

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