Nightcrawler (4th series) #4

Issue Date: 
September 2014
Story Title: 

Chris Claremont (writer), Todd Nauck (artist), Rachelle Rosenberg (color artist), Virtual Calligraphy’s Joe Sabino (letterer), Jamie McKelvie with Matthew Wilson (cover artist), Xander Jarowey (assistant editor), Daniel Ketchum (editor), Mike Marts (X-Men group editor), Axel Alonso (editor-in-chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer)

Brief Description: 

The Jean Grey School is under attack from an army of Trimegas who want Nightcrawler and Amanda Sefton. While the students seek refuge, several of the X-Men engage the strange robots, while Nightcrawler and Wolverine go to find Amanda Sefton and Margali Szardos. When they come across the room where Margali was being interrogated by Storm and Beast, however, they find no one - except their friends’ costumes and pieces of paper with their memories. Amanda enters the room and explains that Margali clearly wanted information, and used this means to extract it from Storm and Beast. Nightcrawler hopes that the process can be reversed and Amanda promises to set it right. Amanda starts to cast a spell, restoring Storm and the Beast - but realizes something is wrong - pieces of the Beast’s memories are missing - he doesn’t know Nightcrawler is alive. Wolverine deduces that Margali might want to follow the road to where the X-Men rescued Nightcrawler from. Amanda is furious with her mother, and Nightcrawler is worried about the chaos she might unleash. After kissing Amanda and telling her to restore their friends, Nightcrawler and Wolverine leave to deal with Margali. Racing through the mansion they encounter more Trimegas, so Wolverine holds them off, enabling Nightcrawler to find Margali. And find her he does, as she is outside, a portal to the afterlife has been opened, and Margali intends to claim it as her own. Nightcrawler is forced to battle her personal guard, and Amanda soon arrives, begging Margali to embrace the better side of her nature, but Amanda is knocked over by the Trimega. Nightcrawler decapitates the Trimega and throws its head at Margali, knocking her out, but leaving the portal open. Amanda thinks she can close it, but not from this side. They prepare to cross over together, but as Amanda enters the afterlife, Nightcrawler is blocked from going back to it. Amanda reminds him that he left Heaven, and that has consequences. Crying, Amanda tells Nightcrawler to be a hero and find his way back to her somehow, and as Amanda closes the portal to the afterlife, she remains trapped on the other side. The Trimegas all vanish, and the X-Men race to find Nightcrawler, who may have saved the world, but he has lost his heart.

Full Summary: 

Today, the Jean Grey School has become a war zone. Long ago, Kurt “Nightcrawler” Wagner became inured to the sounds of battle - for X-Men, that is a way of life. But he will never get used to the sound of children screaming in terror.

‘Nightcrawler, HELP!’ a female student screams as she and Match, along with several other students, have ducked to the ground as the front windows of the Jean Grey School are blown open by dozens of the robot-like being called Trimega. ‘We can’t let the Trimegas into the building! Take the fight to them!’ Nightcrawler calls out, as Wolverine, Husk, Chamber and Cecilia Reyes rush past several students, including Hellion, Ernst, Mercury and Indra, and out the front door. In a matter of seconds, Husk tears away her skin, revealing a replacement husk of armor underneath. Husk calls out to her ex-boyfriend, Chamber, and tells him to watch her back. ‘What’s our plan?’ Chamber asks.

‘I’ll break these clowns. You burn ‘em!’ Husk replies as she slams into two of the Trimegas. Chamber generates beams of psionic fire, and as one of the Trimegas blasts Husk backwards, Chamber mutters that he may have to break them and burn them, as he releases a surge of energy, sending the Trimegas that are nearby careening backwards.

As Cecilia Reyes keeps the young students moving through the school, Wolverine asks ‘What’cha figure, Elf?’ Nightcrawler reminds Wolverine that the Trimegas want Amanda, so their first priority is to save her. ‘Second, we deal with them - permanently’. Cecilia tells the kids, including Bling, to get behind her so that her force field can protect them.

‘Eyes front, people! We got trouble!’ Wolverine calls out as one of the Trimegas leaps through a window, where a female student has just fallen over in front of him. The insect-like mutant called Rico comes between the Trimega and the girl - he has more courage than sense, as the Trimega grabs him. Luckily, he has Wolverine to protect him. ‘Don’t worry, kid! You ain’t gonna die today!’ Wolverine declares as he attacks the Trimega, who frees Rico.

Nightcrawler teleports over to Rico and after grabbing him, teleports him to Cecilia. ‘Leave the Trimega… to us!” Kurt exclaims as he teleports back to Wolverine, and after grabbing his swords, uses them to slice off the robot’s head. ‘Nice call, Nightcrawler’ a telepathic voice calls out. ‘Psylocke?’ Nightcrawler asks. ‘Going all proper on me, Kurt - shame on you. I thought we were mates!’ Psylocke replies, adding that he should leave the Trimegas to them, as there are more than enough X-Men to handle them. And, back outside, Chamber and Husk continue to battle the Trimegas, though they have been joined by Psylocke, Northstar, Iceman, Angel and the alien Warbird. Psylocke telepathically instructs Nightcrawler and Wolverine to deal with Margali Szardos and Amanda Sefton. ‘On our way’ Wolverine responds, to which Psylocke reminds him to take care, pointing out that he has limits, now. ‘Take care of yourself, Bets’ Wolverine replies, as he and Nightcrawler rush off, joined by several of the Bamfs.

As Psylocke slices through one of the Trimega with her psychic blade, she informs Wolverine and Nightcrawler that she has lost psi-contact with Beast and Storm, and suggests they start with checking on them. ‘Though I’ve a really bad feeling about what you’ll find’ Psylocke adds.

Indeed, ‘Hank! Ororo!’ Wolverine calls out as he and Nightcrawler enter the room where Storm and Beast were interrogating Margali. ‘Merciful God in Heaven!’ Kurt utters as they stare at the room, covered in paper, some of them depicting images, and the remains of Storm and Beast’s costumes scattered on the floor. ‘There’s nothing here but empty costumes… and a roomful of paper!’ Kurt exclaims. ‘What’cha think?’ Wolverine asks. ‘Truth? That if I don’t say it aloud… what I fear most won’t be real’ Kurt replies, before Wolverine points out that the papers are nothing but pictures, and as Kurt picks two of them up, depicting Hank and Ororo as infants with their families, Kurt remarks that each appears to be a memory. ‘What we see before us is the totality of both their lives.

‘That’s it then? They’re dead?’ Wolverine asks. ‘Barring a miracle, I fear so’ Kurt tells him. Wolverine asks Kurt if his girlfriend could have done this, but Nightcrawler replies that she does not use baleful magic. ‘Isn’t that right, Amanda?’ Kurt asks. The glamorous Amanda Sefton steps out of the shadows and replies that she doesn’t use magic at all, if she can avoid it. ‘And never to do something like this’ she adds. ‘What about Margali?’ Wolverine asks. Amanda explains that if Margali wanted information, this is a good way for a sorceress to get it - and take out the opposition at the same time. Kurt enquires as to whether the process can be reversed, and Amanda replies that she has learned a lot since she and Margali last parted ways. ‘You have my word, Kurt, I’ll set this right’ Amanda assures him. ‘Why should we trust you?’ Wolverine asks. ‘Because I trust her. Logan, she is my heart’ Kurt tells his friend. ‘Your call, Elf… let’s hope it’s the right one’.

Amanda stands in the center of the room and magical energy courses around her, as the papers start to rise. But suddenly, Amanda announces that something is wrong. ‘I’m putting together Hank, but pieces are missing. He doesn’t know you’re alive! Margali’s stolen everything they knew relating to your rescue!’ Amanda reveals as Beast and Storm start to form from the papers. ‘But why?’ Nightcrawler wonders. ‘Maybe to follow the road the X-Men took when we came to rescue you’ Wolverine suggests. ‘That fool!’ Amanda exclaims. She continues to release the energy needed to recreate Storm and the Beast, and remarks that the Winding Way has led Margali to the secrets of life, and now she wants what lies beyond. ‘She’s an addict - give her the chance to acquire more knowledge, more power…. she can’t say no!’ Amanda declares. Nightcrawler points out that the after-realms are in chaos, and if Margali opens a portal, God himself knows what she might unleash. ‘Kurt, we have to stop her!’ Amanda calls out as she spins around and starts to leave the room. ‘No!’ Kurt replies, teleporting in front of Amanda to stop her leaving.

Kurt begs Amanda to save their friends, to restore them and keep them safe. ‘Keep yourself safe’ he adds. Tears fall from Amanda’s eyes as she and Kurt kiss. Kurt informs Amanda that the Bamfs will stay to protect her. ‘Leave the rest to us’ he adds. As Kurt and Wolverine leave the room, Kurt picks up his swords, and Amanda calls out to him, telling him that he will need her help. ‘Hank and Ororo need it more’ Kurt adds, pointing out that stopping Margali will be a hollow victory if they cannot save their friends. Wolverine tells Amanda that they are past talking. ‘Just do what’s necessary, Same as us’. Amanda assures Wolverine that before she is done, she plans to do that - and more. She turns to the Bamfs who are staring up at her, ‘What’re you runts looking at? Do your job, Bamfs, secure the area’ Amanda tells them. She casts more energy forth, towards the paper forms of Storm and the Beast, ‘I have lives to save!’ Amanda exclaims.

Running down a corridor, Wolverine and Nightcrawler pass Armor, Warbird and Iceman who are battling Trimegas, as Kurt asks Wolverine if he is sure of this. ‘I’ve lost my healing, Elf, not my senses. Margali’s this way!’ Wolverine replies, claws at the ready. Iceman and Nightcrawler glance at each other, as Kurt tells Wolverine to remember his training. ‘Look out!’ Kurt shouts, as he leaps into the air, dodging three beams of energy which strike Wolverine. Kurt drops down before the Trimegas and tells Wolverine to get his bearings and leave the rest to him. ‘He battles the robots and supposes that they must be Margali’s chess pieces, that she used them to ensure they would play right into her hand. ‘She planned this from the start!’ Kurt exclaims after ripping the hand off one of the Trimegas and firing it’s blast at another. ‘Which means in order to stop them, you have to stop her’ Wolverine points out as more Trimegas rush towards them. ‘We will, both of us’ Kurt calls back. But Wolverine points out that Kurt can get to her faster without him, as he will just slow him down. ‘Go!’ Wolverine shouts. Kurt knows that Logan is right, but that doesn’t make him feel any better, Wolverine grins and turns to the approaching Trimegas, ‘Okay, bubs - you’ve had your fun. Now it’s my turn!’ he growls as he attacks them.

Kurt arrives outside, ‘Mein Gott - Margali - what have you done?!’ he exclaims in horror, as he stares up at a rift depicting various portals and spheres, where Margali stands beneath it. Looking very pleased with herself, the Witch Queen exclaims ‘Consider this the culmination of a lifelong dream. You fled the world beyond, Kurt - now I intend to claim it for my own!’ A Trimega with six arms stands nearby for protection.

Kurt teleports over to Margali and lands above the six-armed Trimega, kicking it backwards. ‘This is not a game, woman. You are playing with forces far beyond your comprehension - or your control!’ Kurt calls out as energy swirls around the mad witch. But Kurt knows that his foster mother isn’t listening, and it is likely she doesn’t care. To her, this is the most spectacular adventure. The Trimega gathers itself and lumbers forward to strike Kurt, but he dodges backwards, then flips over the large robot, dodging its energy blasts, before shoving one of his swords into its chest. Kurt tells himself that consequences don’t matter to Margali, and she will never be satisfied - nor will she ever stop.

Suddenly, Amanda and the Bamfs teleport to the terrifying scene. Amanda calls out to her mother, begging her to embrace the better side of her nature. ‘Amanda! Watch out!’ Kurt calls out, as Margali’s guardian Trimega answers for his mistress, slamming several fists into Amanda, knocking her backwards. ‘ENOUGH!’ Nightcrawler shouts, teleporting over to the Trimega again, flooded with rage - for the woman he loves is in danger. ‘I will save her’ Kurt thinks to himself as he slices off the Trimega’s head with both of his swords, then grabbing the head, he violently hurls it towards Margali, striking the back of her ram-horned head, she falls to the ground. ‘I will find a way to end this!’ Nightcrawler thinks to himself.

Kurt teleports back over to Amanda and taking her hand, he asks her if she is all right, while the scattered Bamfs regroup around them. ‘you saved me - again’ Amanda remarks. ‘My pleasure - always’ Kurt tells her. Amanda points out that Margali would have let her creature kill them both. ‘But never again. I’ll see to that’ Kurt announces, before Amanda alerts him to the fact that the portal is still open. Wide-eyed, Kurt asks Amanda if she can reverse Margali’s spell. ‘Not from this side. I don’t have her stolen knowledge. I’m not sure how’ Amanda replies. Standing before the wondrous portal filled with colors and shapes, Kurt tells Amanda that they will cross over and do it from the realm beyond. They clasp hands and Amanda reveals that she is scared, for once they cross, there is no coming back. Kurt tells Amanda not to be afraid, as he is right beside her - but as he teleports them through the portal, a barrier comes up between them, leaving Kurt at the Jean Grey School. ‘KURT!’ Amanda screams.

‘There’s a barrier!’ Kurt calls out, announcing that it won’t let him pass. Amanda stands on the other side, and tells Kurt that she was afraid of that. ‘You chose to leave Heaven, Kurt. That has consequences’ she points out. Kurt forces his arm through the portal, past the barrier, ‘Whatever it takes - I’ll find a way to win!’ he boasts. ‘NO!’ Amanda shouts, as she hovers amongst swirling energies. She warns Kurt that he will kill himself, erase his existence from every plane. She starts to cast some magic, tears stream down her face as she declares that she won’t let that happen to the man she loves. ‘If you truly want to save me, prove yourself a hero. And find your way back to me somehow’ Amanda calls out. Kurt begins to cry, too, and he calls out to Amanda. ‘However long it takes… I’ll be here’ Amanda utters. ‘Don’t do this - I beg you!’ Kurt pleads, as Amanda proves herself a hero.

But with that, Kurt is knocked back from the portal, as the energy around Amanda intensifies, before the portal whirls, and Amanda’s image grows more distant. ‘AMANDA!’ Kurt roars, as the Bamfs gather around him. ‘Don’t leave me’ Kurt utters. Around the School grounds, the Trimega’s all vanish. ‘Hey, what’s with the bad guys?’ Chamber asks as the robots around he, Husk and Angel disappear. ‘They all just vanished’ Iceman remarks to Warbird. Psylocke telepathically informs everyone that the battle is over. ‘check the damage, take care of any wounded’ she instructs the others, before asking Kurt if he is all right. Kurt looks up to the sky, the portal has closed, the last of it disappearing like a burning star. ‘No, Psylocke - far from it’ Kurt declares. As Wolverine, Storm, the Beast, Iceman, Psylocke, Rachel Grey, Chamber and Husk approach Kurt, who has dropped to his knees, Margali’s unmoving body lying nearby, Kurt looks up to the sky still and declares that he may have saved the world - but he has lost his heart.

Characters Involved: 

Angel, Beast, Cecilia Reyes, Chamber, Husk, Iceman, Nightcrawler, Northstar, Psylocke, Rachel Grey, Storm, Warbird II, Wolverine (all X-Men)

Amanda Sefton


Margali Szardos



Armor, Bling, Ernst, Hellion, Indra, Match, Mercury V, Rico and other unidentified students




Story Notes: 

Wolverine’s suspicion towards Amanda seems unfounded, given how many times Amanda worked with the X-Men, and her tenure as a member of Excalibur.

Written By: