New X-Men: Academy X #7

Issue Date: 
January 2005
Story Title: 
Haunted: Part 1

Nunzio DeFilippis & Christina Weir (writers), Michael Ryan (pencils), Rick Ketcham (inks), Pete Pantazis (colors), Dave Sharpe (letters), Randy Green (cover), Stephanie Moore & Sean Ryan (assistant editors), Mike Marts (editor), Joe Quesada (editor-in-chief), Dan Buckley (publisher)

Brief Description: 

David’s younger sister, Kim, arrives at Xavier’s to visit her brother. David first introduces Kim to the rest of his New Mutants squad, and next gives her a tour around the school and its many classes. Kim is very impressed and a little jealous as well, because she thinks that her school is boring compared to Xavier’s. Meanwhile, weird things are happening around the Institute. It begins with Icarus. While preparing for gym, his picture of his lost love Julia starts to crack, and he didn’t even touch it! He freaks out and sulks about it. Surge notices that and talks to him, but they only end up in an argument that Jay once tried to kill himself because he thought he had lost everything. Noriko, upset hearing that, knows that isn’t true, because Jay still has a family that loves him, and runs away to her room. There, she tries to contact her parents again and phones them, but her father doesn’t believe that it’s really Noriko calling them and hangs up on her. Noriko gets even more upset and stays in the room. After a while, Jay enters to apologize, and they both find Noriko’s room trashed! But Nori didn’t trash it, and neither did her roommate. At the lab, Wither and Wall Flower find a beaker smashed, and later a threatening message gets written on the blackboard, to “leave now.” Some time later, the New Mutants begin their Danger Room session and Kim gets to watch. Some of the squad members panic, but David suspects that it’s all just a prank of Julians. After a successful training session, Noriko doesn’t feel well after an overload of her powers. Dani goes to check on her and Kim has to stay behind in the observation deck. A ghost appears next to her and, after feeling that Kim is different, it warns Kim to get out of the place while she can and then disappears. Overjoyed, Kim rushes to Dani and the New Mutants, telling them that she has just found out that she is a mutant!

Full Summary: 

The Xavier Institute For Higher Learning…

Kim Alleyne arrives at the Xavier Institute. She gets out of her cab and looks up, where she finds a few mutants with flying powers playing with each other. Kim is amazed. She enters the Institute, and her older brother, David, approaches her together with the rest of the New Mutants squad. David says hi to his sister and starts to introduce his teammates to her, and at the same time describes their powers to Kim. Kim is amazed and mostly interested into the mutants with the more obvious powers, like Elixer, Surge and Icarus. But this doesn’t bother Wallflower and Wind Dancer, who promise Kim to make her stay a pleasant one.

David and the New Mutants decided to show Kim the campus. Kim envies David because he can go to such a cool school. David tells Kim that she hasn’t seen anything yet. They arrive at the Projectile Class, which is taught by Gambit. Noriko apologizes to the team and hurries over there, because she was supposed to be present. Jay apologizes as well because he has a gym class coming up, so he should go to and change. David tells Kim to go with Sofia and Laurie to get set up in their room, and then he’ll take her to his classes.

As they move, nobody notices that they are being watched. An invisible person places his hands against the widow, and says “No more.”

Some time later, David has brought Kim to his Drama Class. Kim isn’t impressed. David explains that Dani thought that this would be a good class for him, hoping that it might loosen him up a bit. Kim says it’s okay because “Dani said so.” Kim asks David why he didn’t show her a cooler class, like a flying class or something. David says that’s because he doesn’t fly. Kim replies that Sofia does fly, so maybe she can go with her. David tells Kim to give this class a chance, as he thinks that she will like it. Nightcrawler teleports in, right on time! Today, he says, they are going to talk about dramatic entrances! Kim is impressed by Nightcrawler’s appearance. David tells Kim who Kurt is and asks if this is cool enough for her now.

Meanwhile, Jay has made it to his room. He takes a look at a picture of his old girlfriend, which stands on his desk. He turns around and starts putting on a sweater. When he turns around again… the picture is gone! It’s on the bed now! Jay can’t understand how it got there. Suddenly, the frame of the photo starts to crack! Jay panics…

Elsewhere, Beast finishes his science class and gives his students their assignment for next week. Josh whispers to Laurie. He asks her if she think that Kim was freaked out by him because he looks golden, since, Josh admits, it even freaks him out sometimes. Laurie doesn’t think so and thinks that Kim was instead impressed, and tells Josh that gold looks good on him.

Beast explains to the kids that they will be broken into pairs, and that each pair will have to perform the analysis and record their results on the work sheets provided. Rahne hands out the work sheets and has gotten the assignment to make the groups. Rahne tells Julian that he will be working with Noah. And Laurie and Kevin will work together as well. And Josh, he will be working together with Phoebe. The bell rings and the students leave the class. Kevin approaches Laurie and asks her if they are going to make plans to work together. Laurie agrees but wants to do it after her upcoming Danger Room session. Beast walks out as well, wanting to grab some lunch. He thanks Rahne for the help. Rahne says its nothing and tells Henry that she will join him in a couple of minutes.

Josh stays behind and goes over to Rahne, and she asks him if she can help with something. Josh wants to know why Rahne made Laurie and Kevin lab partners. Rahne says that’s because it’s her job as a teacher. Josh doesn’t understand, because he and Laurie sit together and are even on the same squad. And Rahne also knows how crushed Kevin is over Laurie. He wants to know the real reason why Rahne did it. Rahne tells Josh that she and Laurie were talking the whole time while Beast gave out the assignment. She says that it’s her job to make sure that everyone gets the work done and not to arrange some alone time with Josh and his girlfriend. Josh tells Rahne that Laurie isn’t his girlfriend, but Rahne is!

Rahne tries to get out of it and makes up that what they have is complicated. She tells Josh that he and Laurie have gone on a couple of dates and that is good. Josh knew that Rahne was jealous! Rahne claims that she isn’t, and agrees that Josh should date other students. Josh doesn’t believe that, and tells Rahne that Laurie is his friend and that he likes her, but not in the same way he likes Rahne. He kisses Rahne. Surprised, she drops her notes. Rahne doesn’t think that this is the place. Josh tells Rahne that everyone is at lunch now and that they can clean up later. They kiss again…

At lunch, Kim can’t keep her eyes off from the mutants with obvious mutant powers, like the kids that look like a lizard. Laurie approaches her friends and tells them that Josh will join them soon. That’s fine by David, but he still wonders where Jay is, as he was supposed to meet with them too. Noriko looks outside, and sees Jay sitting on a basketball ring with his shirt off. She finds that weird and goes out to get him. Sofia asks Kim if she wants to join them in the Danger Room session this evening. Kim wants to, but David wants to ask Dani first. Kim is overjoyed, but isn’t really sure about what a “Danger Room” is. At another table, a kid’s tray disappears, but nobody took it.

Noriko goes to Jay and asks him what he’s doing here outside with his shirt off, since it’s freezing. Stalling, Jay tells Noriko that he had to get out of his room. Noriko asks him if he was thinking about Sammy. Jay denies that and explains Nori what happened with the photo that started to break. Nori can’t believe that Jay is actually scared because of that. Noriko notices the wound on Jay’s chest and finds that weird, because she thought that all his wounds automatically healed. Jay explains that the wound healed, but not completely. He tells that he got the wound just before he came to the school.

Noriko notices the wound being near Jay’s heart. She wants to know how he got it. Jay explains that he gave him the wound by himself, but Nori can’t believe that. Jay tells about Julia, the love he lost and that he wanted to die as well to be with her. Noriko gets scared and asks Jay if he still wants to die now. Jay says that he doesn’t want to die, at least most of the time. But sometimes, like today, his mind plays tricks on him, and after Sammy died he started wondering again. Noriko doesn’t understand it and almost cries. Jay says that he feels like that he lost everything and tells Noriko that she wouldn’t understand it. Noriko cries and runs away, not believing that Jay could say that. Doesn’t he have, like, twenty brothers and sisters? And a mother that loves him? Yeah, Noriko tells Jay, he really has lost “everything.”

Tokyo, Japan…

A phone rings at the Ashida residence. Noriko, in Japanese, asks the woman who answers the phone if she can speak to Keitaro. The woman recognizes Noriko and asks her if it’s really her. Noriko, sitting at her room, says that she doesn’t want to cause any trouble and just wishes to speak with Keitaro. The woman promises that she will go get Noriko’s brother, but first wants to know if Nori is well. Noriko explains that she is, and mentions that she is in a safe place where she is learning to control her abilities. The woman is so glad to hear that.

A man enters and tells the woman to hand him the phone. He angrily says that he doesn’t know who he’s talking to, and that he doesn’t find this to be funny. Noriko tells her father that she just wanted to say hi. The man seriously says that his daughter chose not to be part of this family and has brought nothing but shame and hurt to her mother and to himself. And he also knows that she would never call here. Noriko can’t get any more words out of her mouth.

Inside the Institute…

All the kids walk to their classes. Wither is alone. A voice from an unseen person says that there are too many and shouldn’t be there, and that he will show them all.

Kevin enters the science class where Laurie is too. He says that he’s certain that he isn’t the lab partner Laurie wanted. Laurie corrects Kevin that isn’t true because she likes him. Kevin tells Laurie that she doesn’t like him as much as her boyfriend, Josh. Laurie corrects Kevin again that Josh isn’t her boyfriend. At least, not yet, she thinks. But, she says, that doesn’t have anything to do with whether or not they are friends. “Doesn’t it?” Kevin wonders. They both stare around the lab for a while, unsure what to say, and look at the many beakers standing there.

Laurie sees what he means, but at least doesn’t want that to affect the friendship she has with Kevin. Kevin doesn’t want that either and suggests that they move over to work. He wants to grab the beaker he just saw, but… it’s gone! Suddenly, he and Laurie hear something break. They go outside and find the beaker laying broken on the floor. This is weird. Laurie, staring in front of her, warns Kevin that he might want to get away from her because she is starting to get scared and she may not be able to control her pheromones. Kevin doesn’t see what Laurie means and goes back into the class. He tries to find out what Laurie sees, and they both stare at the black board, on which stands written in chalk “Leave now.”

Meanwhile, David and Kim are walking outside. Kim wants to know what the Danger Rooms holograms are of. “Anything,” David responses. He explains to his sister that, sometimes, the training is just a big obstacle course and other times they fight super-villains. Whatever it needs to be so the students at the school can practice. But David assures Kim that the holograms feel real enough. Kim wants to know if Dani would really let her come. David honestly doesn’t know, because she doesn’t have any mutant abilities to defend herself.

Kim doesn’t think that to be fair but David thinks that Kim is joking. Kim says that her school is boring. She wants to be able to fly and go to school with kids who are green and have classes in a Danger Room. David tries to explain that he is here because he can’t be anywhere else and that people hate him because he is different. He admits that Xavier’s is cool and that he is grateful to be here, but he doesn’t want Kim to be jealous that she isn’t him.

They move over to the basketball court, where Julian is playing. He jokes to David that he is picking his girlfriends a little young. David tells Julian that Kim is just his sister. Kim realizes that Julian is from the Hellions, and tells the young man that her brother hates him. Julian doesn’t care because the feeling is mutual. David tells Kim to be quiet and suggests they go talk to Dani.

They enter Dani and Shan’s office. David introduces Kim to Dani. Kim tells Dani that David writes about her all the time, and says lots of good stuff. David tells her to be quiet. Kim recognizes Shan and asks here if she is running the library of the Institute here as well, like in Chicago. Shan agrees that she is and that the library is her domain, so nobody better messes with it. But unfortunately, Shan adds, they lost some rare first editions when the school was recently attacked. But now, they are rebuilding the collection nicely. Kim asks Shan if she has a squad like Dani. Shan denies that, and explains that she instead mentors the kids who are too young to be on squads. David moves over to the fact that Kim wants to watch a Danger Room session. Dani might be able to arrange that, if Kim promises to stay in the observation deck. Kim asks if it’s dangerous. Dani jokes that her kids have a track record in there and sometimes things get a little out of control.

Meanwhile, Noriko sits at her room and listens to some music, looking at a family photo. She doesn’t hear the nocks on her door. Jay enters in costume. Angry, Nori asks Jay what he wants. Jay thought that he let Nori blow off some steam, but got worried when she didn’t show up in English class. Noriko tells Jay that he didn’t lose anything, because he has a family. Jay knows that. He takes a look around the room, and asks Noriko if that’s what got her so upset to trash the room. Trashed? Noriko takes a look at the destroyed room. She doesn’t know what happened since she didn’t do it. And her roommate is a “neat-freak.” She honestly doesn’t know how things got smacked because the room was spotless when she came in! Okay, things are definitely getting weird around there…

Later in the Danger Room…

The New Mutants discuss matters and Laurie thinks that they are dealing with a ghost. Kim is excited to find out that the Institute is haunted but David finds a ghost to be a little farfetched. Besides, he says, the school is filled with kids with all sorts of mutant abilities. He thinks that what happened to Jay and Noriko could be the result of invisibility, teleportation or even telekinesis. And it could also even be Julian trying to scare them. Jay finds it all to be cruel, even if it wasn’t a ghost. It had him thinking that he was losing his mind.

Dani enters in costume and asks the kids what’s up. Laurie asks Dani if the Institute is haunted. Dani highly doubts that, since the school was rebuilt just before the start of the semester, giving that it hasn’t been around long enough to be haunted. Josh tells Dani that David thinks that ghosts aren’t real. Dani admits that she believes in ghost and that they are real, but she knows that Xavier’s doesn’t have any. Dani wants to know specifically what’s going on. Probably nothing, David says, and thinks that it’s just Julian messing with them.

Dani opens the Danger Room and hopes that David is wrong about that, since they’ve already got enough problems without the fights between the New Mutants and the Hellions. Dani takes Kim into the observation deck and activates a session for her squad. Dani explains what it’s all about. The New Mutants have each been trapped in a situation where their powers don’t work. For example, David’s captors are skilled martial artists. But because they are robots, he can’t telepathically copy their skills. Laurie gets trapped in a cage and can only get out of it the way she got in. And the robot that guards her has no sense of smell so it is immune to her pheromones. Sofia is covered by green liquid. Dani explains to her that the organism is growing quickly and, as Sofia notices, it’s quite sticky. Plus, Sofia’s wind powers won’t be able to blow it away. She will have to escape before it engulfs her.

Noriko is forming a closed circuit with the ceiling and the floor. Her gauntlets can’t help her control the electric flow around her and she will be overloaded soon. With Jay, the winds he is dealing with are far too strong for him to walk or to fly out of his cage. He will have to find another way. Josh is the key of this exercise: he will have to help his teammates free themselves. “Great,” Josh sarcastically says. Him, the guy with no offensive powers whatsoever. Dani doesn’t care if Josh wants to see his situation that way. The exercise begins… NOW!

Josh runs to David, wanting to get their leader out first. David tells Josh not to do that, since he has studied with Wolverine and has had enough training to keep moving. He wants Josh to help Sofia out first. He warns Josh that his goggles are giving him no information about the slime that holds her, but he remembers that Dani mentions that they are organic. He suspects that maybe it’s some sort of virus or bacteria. He tells Josh to use his healing powers to stop it from replicating. Josh does so, and the plan works! Now, Sofia is free to use her wind elsewhere. Sofia sees what David is thinking and uses her wind powers to control the air that trapped Jay. He is free as well and asks David what to do next.

Kim is impressed by the session, where instead at her school, they play dodge ball. Dani tells Kim that her brother is the best strategic thinker at the school. Jay helps David destroy the robots, but David suggests to free Laurie first. He hears a hum coming from her cage. David tells Jay that he has a fancy voice, so maybe he can match the frequency of the lock. Jay moves over to Laurie and sings until the lock breaks open. He helps Laurie get out of the cage, and she congratulates Jay on the beautiful voice he has. Jay picks Laurie up and they move over to Noriko, who is almost overloaded.

Sofia makes sure that the wind will assure Laurie that her pheromones find their target and that they will calm Noriko down. The plan works. Noriko admits that when so much powers floats through her at the same time it’s hard to stay calm and in control. But she needs to be calm to control the flow. Noriko destroys the circuits around her and is in full load. But now she desperately needs to discharge. She sees David still struggling with his robots and unleashes her powers to help him out. She also takes care of Sofia’s slime, and Josh makes sure that Sofia isn’t hurt by the electricity.

Noriko almost collapses due to the so many electricity in her. Sofia warns Dani that Nori isn’t feeling well. Dani wants to go over there and Kim wants to go too, but Dani tells her to stay in there, because she knows that incidents have happened in the past. Kim does as told, but mocks about it.

Suddenly, an intangible kid sits next to her! The kid feels that Kim is different. Kim sees the kid and asks him what his mutant powers are. Sadly, the kid says that he is dead. Kim realizes that it was the kid who caused all the troubles around here. The kid tells Kim to get out of the Institute while she can. Kim doesn’t know what the boy is talking about. The kid gets angry and shouts at Kim to get out while she can and disappears!

Startled and happy, Kim walks over to the New Mutants and Dani. Dani tells Kim that she asked her to stay upstairs. Kim knows that, because she doesn’t have any powers. But, she gladly corrects, that’s not true. Kim has just discovered that… she too is a mutant!

Characters Involved: 

Elixer, Icarus, Prodigy, Surge, Wallflower, Wind Dancer (all the New Mutants)

Hellion, Rockslide, Tag, Wither (all the Hellions)

Karma, Moonstar, Wolfsbane (all former New Mutants)

Beast, Gambit, Nightcrawler (all X-Men)

Phoebe (one of the three Sepford Cuckoos)

Kim Alleyne (Prodigy’s sister)

Surge’s parents (unnamed)

Noah and various other (unnamed) Xavier Institute students
unnamed ghost

on different pictures:

Julia Cabot

Surge’s brother Keitaro and her parents (unnamed)

Story Notes: 

Jay dated Julia Cabot, the girl on the picture, from Uncanny X-Men #438 - 441. They were happy together, but her family was against their relationship because Jay is a Guthrie, and their families had had an argument together for years. The fight resulted in the death of Julia. Seeing his girlfriend dying in his arms, Jay indeed tried to kill himself to die alongside her, but couldn’t, due to his healing factor.

Sammy Pare, aka Squidboy, was Jay’s roommate from the moment Jay arrived at the school. Unfortunately, Sammy was killed during the Brotherhood’s latest attack on the mansion (X-Men (2nd series) #157, 162)

Shan talks about the last time Magneto destroyed the entire school. That wasn’t Magneto, as recently revealed, but Xorn I, as seen in New X-Men #147. The school later on was completely rebuilt (New X-Men #165).

In this issue, Gambit’s eyes are shown, making this story taking place somewhere after X-Men (2nd series) #165, where Gambit was cured of his temporary blindness by Sage.

Noriko’s roommate is Dust.

First brief appearance of Xavier Institute student so-far only called Noah.

Kim was first shown in New Mutants (2nd series) #4, the same issue as Prodigy’s first appearance.

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