Rogue (3rd series) #6

Issue Date: 
February 2005
Story Title: 
Going Rogue: Conclusion

Robert Rodi (writer), Cliff Richards (pencils), Norm Rapmund (inks), Transparency Digital (colors) VC’s Dave Sharpe (letters), Rodolfo Miglari (cover), Sean Ryan (assistant editor), Stephanie Moore (editor), Mike Marts (supervising editor), Joe Quesada (editor-in-chief), Dan Buckley (publisher)

Brief Description: 

Rogue and Campbell arrive at the Far Banks. While heading for her mother, Campbell reveals what the Far Banks is all about. He also explains what Rogue’s connection with the young girl that looks like her is, who is in fact Rogue’s “dream twin.” Meanwhile, Gambit and the young girl, Anna, land in the Far Banks as well. Anna is still caught by the evil spirits and Gambit tries to rescue her, but the spirits take him as well. They both try to get themselves free, but are confronted by… Priscilla! And Rogue’s mother is rather angry at her imagined daughter for disobeying her and bringing strangers to the Far Banks. Rogue and Campbell find Anna and Gambit. When Gambit can see Anna, but not Rogue, Anna thinks that’s because Gambit loves her, and not Rogue. She tries to make a deal with her mom: if Gambit can stay in the Far Banks, so will she, with no further arguments. Neither Gambit, who does love Rogue, nor Priscilla won’t allow it. Priscilla even recognizes Rogue as her one true, real daughter and hugs her, and wants to destroy her creation, meaning “Anna.” Rogue won’t allow that to happen and has a solution: she will absorb Anna in her own body, so that she can live on into her. Anna agrees and the plan works. Rogue reunites with her mama and introduces Gambit to her. Gambit can see the beautiful woman, which can unfortunately mean only one thing: Priscilla is a dream too! Campbell confirms this and Priscilla vanishes from sight. Rogue gets angry at Campbell for not telling her and leaves with Gambit. But before they go back to the real world, Campbell thanks Rogue for saving the world, but warns that things aren’t over yet: they’ve got more worlds to discover and will contact Rogue again later. Before Rogue can deny that, she and Gambit are back where they came from. Gambit is blind again and wants to go home. Rogue promises they will, but first has one more thing to do: square things with her real mother. A few hours later, she’s back in Caldecott, carrying a bouquet of flowers in her hands. She rings a bell, and a surprised Carrie opens the door. Rogue apologizes for everything that happened between them, and tells her aunt that she loves her. Carrie doesn’t know what to say, but smiles and lets Rogue come in.

Full Summary: 

Rogue and Campbell enter the Far Banks. Rogue is still confused… does she really have to fight her mother?! Rogue finds that impossible, since her mom is dead. Campbell tells her to be quiet and to take a look at the many different kinds of natives of the Far Banks.

Campbell tells Rogue that she has to respect them and show some manners. They are approached by a female, buffalo-like citizen of the Far Banks and Campbell asks the woman how she is doing. “Fine,” she says, “just dropping off jaundiced promontory.” The woman explains that it’s all necessary above shirks forth radical and double retrenchments. Campbell understands and claims to have mornings like that himself.

Campbell wants to go further, but Rogue holds him back. She won’t take another step before Campbell explains what’s going on. Campbell tells Rogue not to worry about that, since they’ve got plenty of time since time moves different than on the material plane.

Gambit lands in the Far Banks too and can see everything! He takes a look around and, when he sees all the variant types living in the Far Banks, Gambit jokingly kind of wishes he didn’t see them.

But, no time for doubts, Gambit has to go rescue his Anna! He turns his head around and finds the girl that looks like Rogue, and she is still being hold by the evil spirits. Gambit charges up a play card and rushes towards “Anna” and tells her not to worry: he will rescue her!

Anna notices Gambit but doesn’t understand why he is there. It shouldn’t even be possible. Gambit throws his cards at the “Dream Beasts” but they fly right through them. Anna remembers how Gambit bumped his head against that tree, and he must be hurt a little so that’s why he can enter the Far Banks.

Gambit tells the spirits to stay solid so that he can hit them, but the spirits don’t give him the chance and catch the Cajun as well. Anna tells Gambit not to bother fighting them, since it’s no use. She tried it several times. But Anna knows that one person was capable of hurting the Dream Beasts, and she thinks that they are about to meet her.

Campbell and Rogue continue their quest. Campbell promises Rogue to tell her everything he knows while en route. Rogue decides to follow and they step over what looks like a small river. Rogue asks Campbell if he knows what it’s made off, since the river looks like corn husks. Campbell explains that everything there in the Far Banks has been made of the same thing, no matter what it looks like. But, for as far as Rogue’s mother is concerned, he says, the woman permanently exiled herself here. And she regretted it. She made that decision in anger, without thinking it through.

Campbell says that Rogue’s mother was indeed angry at her husband and never wanted to do anything with him. But, Campbell continues, their were other things the woman really missed: the house, her garden… her Anna Marie. Campbell reveals that the Far Banks is a dream realm. He knows that everything here is just raw ectoplasm, waiting for something to shape it. To tell it what to be. He says that mostly happens when people’s subconscious thoughts filter through while they are sleeping. But Rogue’s mama, she was a whole lot closer and more present than that.

Campbell and Rogue ride across the “river” on a crocodile-like being. Campbell continues to explain that by sheer force of will, Rogue’s mom used up all the dream stuff in this realm to recreate the world she had left behind. That was better, he says, because now it was really her dream life Rogue’s mom was living. All the heartache erased and the trouble spots bricked over. A little patch of eternity just for her and her flowers and her daughter.

This is what Campbell found at the heart of the Far Banks back when he came to investigate it. This is what was causing all of the trouble in the waking world. It wasn’t a ghost, not a demon, not a spirit-hell bent of vengeance… just a humble little paradise for a very lonely lady.

Meanwhile, the spirits bring Gambit and Anna to a familiar looking house. Gambit asks what the place is. Anna says it’s the place where she grew up… her home. A dog barks. Anna lands and greets her dog, which she has named Jigger. Gambit remembers the name… he knows that it was his Anna’s dog, but she told him that the dog died when she was just a child. A voice from behind tells Gambit that nobody dies around her. Though for Gambit, the person is willing to make an exception…

Rogue and Campbell continue to cross the Far Banks, this time they sit in an imagined truck. Campbell continues to reveal more about Rogue’s mom. He says that the trouble was that the woman loved her. And as much as she would have liked to keep her forever, the woman thought it was selfish. She let Rogue grow up. Or rather, he says, Rogue’s dream twin. This is all just too much for Rogue. She can’t take it. Campbell tells Rogue that’s because she is still concussed. It’s made her head all fuzzy.

Also, he adds, Rogue mustn’t forget that it’s a dream they are talking about here. And dreams tend to be a mite elusive at the best of times. Anyway, Campbell continues and says that “young Anna” grew up here with her mother in the big old house in the middle of the Far Banks, with pretty much no one else to see or to talk to or to play with, except for an occasional dream creature she manages to corral. And Campbell knows that they are no fun because those creatures simply do what they are told to. It’s no real difference from playing alone. So “Anna” got bored. This is her mothers dream after all and not hers.

And Campbell admits that the fake Anna is enough as the real Anna Marie that she wants more than that. The young girl has got Rogue’s spunk and her courage. So she does what she has to do. Ups and leaves… finds her way somehow to the material world, which shouldn’t even be possible.

They take an imagined plane to fly to their destination, which will be faster. Campbell’s best guess is that the girl followed him back after one of his visits here. He reckons that all of this is his fault somehow. That’s why Campbell wants to set things right.

Rogue asks if this double of hers, the one she keeps meeting, is the daughter he is talking about. Rogue wants to know what the girl is doing in the real world. What does she want? What any dream wants, Campbell says: she wants to come true!

Anna shouts at the spirits to leave Gambit alone. She knows that he has done a lot of good things for her, or at least tried to. She won’t allow him to get harmed, not even by… her mama! Anna’s mom, Priscilla, floats right out of the sky and is angry with her “daughter.” She has had enough with Anna’s angry tongue and denying her authority. Priscilla says that she has given Anna a perfect world and life, and now she wastes it away at this Creole trash.

Gambit gets angry at that remark. Anna steps up and tells her mom that he is real. And that Remy is beautiful and silly and charming. She doesn’t know why she wouldn’t “consort” with the man. Priscilla doesn’t know how, but she finds it clear that her father’s bad blood leaked through from that “filthy other world” to taint her. Well, Priscilla adds, there’s plenty of things she can still do about that…

The plane of Rogue and Campbell lands. Rogue asks Campbell where he is taking her. He is taking Rogue to the heart of the Far Banks. Campbell thought that they best went through the Scenic route, which is shorter, but there isn’t much to see there besides some pointy rocks. Rogue still doesn’t understand why she has to fight her mother.

Campbell says that Priscilla was rather upset when her dream daughter gave her the slip. Fact is, Rogue’s mom is one fiery lady. So by sheer force of will, she pulled in a whole army of the sad, lost creatures who live here in the Far Banks. As they take an imagined escalator up to a high mountain, Campbell further explains that Priscilla fired those gathered creatures up with her fury and sent them into the material world to fetch her daughter back.

Rogue doesn’t see how her mama could do that. She thought that you can’t just send dreams into the waking world. They arrive at the top, and Campbell reveals that you can do just that when you’re angry enough. And Rogue mustn’t forget that’s how her mom got into the Far Banks in the first place. Her anger at her husband drove the doorway right open. Anyway, he continues, when the Dream Beasts got to Rogue’s world, they started causing a heap of trouble. They began to terrorize the locals, while Rogue’s mother stayed behind, getting angrier and angrier by the minute!

Anna protects Gambit and won’t let Priscilla hurt him. Gambit tells her to let go of him since he can take care of himself. Anna tells Remy that he can’t, because he is not from the Far Banks. She tells him about this place and explains that this is a dream dimension and that her mother is the queen of it. And if Priscilla says that Gambit will die, he will!

Gambit won’t go out without a fight. And he knows that he’s a powerful, fine fighter. And now that he’s got his sight back, he’s the best! Anna tries to tell Remy that he doesn’t got his sight back and that he is still blind, unable to see anything. Remy knows that Anna is wrong since he can see her. Anna corrects Gambit that he can’t see her: he is just seeing a dream. Anna explains that she isn’t in front of Gambit, but behind them.

A furious Priscilla cries and has had enough of all this. She finds that Gambit has deranged her perfect daughter, and she hates him. And for that, Priscilla will kill him! Gambit smiles and jokes that he’ll make the punishment fitting then. He takes Anna into his arm and passionately kisses her!

Priscilla commands the evil spirits to stop Gambit and to take him away. The spirits do as told but Gambit and Anna won’t let go of each other. Rogue and Campbell arrive and Rogue is startled when she sees Gambit kissing another. Gambit hears Rogue and looks at her… but is confused. Anna hates to see that Gambit belongs to someone else. But Anna is at leased pleased to see why Remy thought that he knew her, since she looks so much like Rogue.

Priscilla is astonished as well and can’t believe that Rogue is actually her Anna Marie. Campbell jokingly tells Gambit that he sure is shaking up things. Gambit is confused as why he can see Campbell and not Rogue. Anna smiles because Remy can see her. Anna offers her mom to make a deal: she will stay with her, as long as Gambit is allowed to stay as well.

Gambit asks Anna what she means by that. Simple. Anna knows that Gambit and Rogue can’t fight her mom, unless they want to lose. And she also knows that Gambit doesn’t have much reason to go back to the material world. Why should he, she wonders. To go back in a world where he can’t see, or touch his girlfriend. And Gambit can touch Anna. Anna says that she’s even better than the real Rogue. Heck, she will be the fantasy version Gambit has of Rogue, if he wants to.

Anna touches Gambit’s cheek, and he takes her hand. Rogue asks Gambit what he’s doing. Campbell tells Rogue to let the Cajun go, since it’s best all around. He realizes that if Remy stays here with Anna, the troubles stop and the world is saved. And Campbell promises Rogue that she won’t be lonely: he will be right at her side.

Gambit also wants to have a say in this. He brings Anna’s hand away from him and tells her that he is a man, and a man needs reality. Flaws and all. Rogue cries of happiness. Anna gets angry and attacks Rogue. She won’t let her have Gambit! Anna punches Rogue a few times, but Rogue gets herself together and knocks Anna on the ground, telling her that this way simply isn’t an answer to the problem.

Rogue tells the defeated Anna that they’ve all got places to go. She will take herself and Gambit back to the real world, and Anna will have to stay here in the Far Banks and make the best of it. Priscilla won’t let either of that happen. She knows she has been a fool, creating this fantasy world, and asks Rogue if she doesn’t want to come home with her.

Priscilla takes a crying Rogue in her arms, and Rogue tells she will be happy to go. Anna doesn’t want that to happen. Priscilla tells Anna to be quiet. She knows that Anna isn’t real, or ever was. She is her own creation, and what she has created, Priscilla can just as easily unmake.

Rogue stops her mama. She says that she knows that Anna is real. She has watched her and seen Anna grow in the outside world, and there is something separate in her. Something of her own Anna picked up somehow. Rogue doesn’t know how the Far Banks works. How could anyone? Since there are so many bits of ambition and courage and courage leaking through there from so many different types of people, maybe Anna somehow locked onto them. But they’ll never know this for sure. But she won’t allow her to get killed if she can prevent it. She has a solution.

Rogue explains to Anna what her power of absorption holds. She sees her mutant powers as both a curse and gift at the same time. Rogue knows that she touched Anna once before and nothing happened because she is only a dream. But that also means that she is open to suggestion. And Rogue’s suggestion to Anna now is: come on board. Anna accepts and Rogue absorbs her being in her body.

Campbell asks Rogue if she’s alright. She is, and graciously rubs her own body, content that she and Anna are one now. And she remembers everything now: growing up here with her mama, living this dream Priscilla built with her love. Priscilla smiles and is glad to hear that Anna didn’t hate it and was actually happy with her. Rogue confirms that Anna, and she herself, were. But Anna was restless. She had to go searching for more. So, she went looking for the life she couldn’t remember. Things like the hospital she was born in, the school Priscilla told her she went to; simply put, the places Anna felt connection to, when all along… the place Anna really needed to find was right inside Rogue.

Gambit doesn’t understand everything, but asks Rogue if she’s going to explain it all later to him. Rogue promises she will. But for now, Gambit asks, he wants to be introduced to Rogue’s beautiful mother. Rogue almost does, but then realizes that, if Gambit can see her mama, that must mean… that she isn’t real! Priscilla is a dream too! She knows that’s the only reason why Remy can see her. Priscilla cries that she is real! She screams to Rogue that she’s her mother! All she needs to do is believe in her. But, the warning comes to late: Priscilla vanishes.

Campbell was expecting that this would happen. He apologizes for it. He explains that, when he saw Rogue and Priscilla embrace, their skin touching and nothing happened, he just knew it. He thinks that Rogue’s mother must have died here in the Far Banks, but that her dream was so strong it just kept on going without her. Rogue gets angry at Campbell for not telling her and takes off with Gambit. That’s fine by Campbell, who tells Rogue that she’s free to do what she wants now. She has done just what Campbell wanted her to do: to save the world.

Rogue asks Campbell to help them get back to the real world, not realizing that it’s already happening. As they go, Campbell warns Rogue not to think that it’s all over now. He informs the southern belle that they’ve got a whole passel of repercussions to deal with, but he will tell more about that next time. Rogue doesn’t want to hear about it, but can’t tell Campbell that because they’ve already landed back home.

Rogue and Gambit both wake up in a grass field. Rogue asks Gambit if they are really back. Gambit thinks so, since he’s blind again. He wants to go home. Rogue promises that she will, but needs to deal with one final thing first: she needs to square things with her real mother. Gambit is confused, because he thought that Rogue did just that a few seconds ago. Not even close, Rogue replies.

A few hours later, Rogue is back in Caldecott. She goes back to the house where she was born in and rings the bell. A startled Carrie opens the door. Carrie is even more surprised when she sees Rogue, holding a bouquet of flowers! Rogue says hi to her aunt, and says that she stopped by to say that she’s sorry for everything that happened. And also to thank her. Rogue tells Carrie that she… loves her.

Carrie doesn’t know what to say, but smiles, and lets Rogue in.

Characters Involved: 

Gambit, Rogue (both X-Men)

Campbell Sainte-Ange

Priscilla (Rogue’s mother)

“Anna” (the young girl looking like Rogue, her “dream twin”)

“the Dream Beasts” (the evil spirits)

various Far Banks natives (unnamed)

Carrie (Rogue’s aunt)

Story Notes: 

Rogue first touched Anna in Rogue (3rd series) #2-3 when she first saw her and, indeed nothing happened, when in fact Rogue should have absorbed her life essence, like she always does when touching another person.

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