Rogue (3rd series) #8

Issue Date: 
April 2005
Story Title: 
Forget Me Not: part 2

Tony Bedard (writer), Karl Moline (pencils), Magyar, Pennington & Hennessy (inks), Transparency Digital (colors), VC’s Dave Sharpe (letters), Scot Eaton (cover), Sean Ryan (assistant editor), Stephanie Moore (editor), Mike Marts (supervising editor), Joe Quesada (editor-in-chief), Dan Buckley (publisher)

Brief Description: 

Rogue angrily drops into Sunfire’s office building. She suspects him to be behind Lady Deathstrike’s earlier assault on her, so she absorbs Shiro’s memories to know more. She learns about Sunfire’s past and concludes that they have a lot in common, though there’s no connection to Lady Deathstrike at all. Rogue tries to apologize, but he doesn’t accept. Sunfire tries to contact the Silver Samurai, but he doesn’t answer the call. They start to doubt the Samurai’s true motives. Meanwhile, the Silver Samurai seems to be back up to his old tricks, and kills all the leaders of the Yakuza clans. A few minutes later, he returns to his lair. There, he has a discussion with a locked up woman. She explains to the Silver Samurai that she has the power to take someone’s memories away, and even place them into someone else’s mind and later on even make that person forget about them. She wants to be partners with both him and the Silver Samurai. The Samurai opens the woman’s cell, but when a furious Lady Deathstrike enters the building she attacks the woman. The woman again explains her offer, and suggests a “win-win” situation. Meanwhile, Sunfire realizes that in order to learn the truth about it all, they’ll have to find the Silver Samurai. He puts his costume on and leaves together with Rogue.

Full Summary: 

Rogue shoots tranquilizer darts into Sunfire’s neck and jumps through the window of his office building. Surprised and startled to see Rogue acting like this, Shiro doesn’t know what to do. Rogue is furious at Shiro for sending Lady Deathstrike after her, while she offered to help him out. Rogue informs Shiro about the hard times she had getting to Japan, like absorbing Deathstrike’s pilots memories to learn how to fly, and steal a dogcatcher’s tranquilizer’s gun. Rogue wants to know what Sunfire was up to, so she touches his head and absorbs his memories. Soon afterwards, Rogue finds out that she made a mistake and that Sunfire didn’t have anything to do with Lady Deathstrike’s attack.

Shiro gets angry at Rogue, because she had no right infiltrating his mind like that. Rogue can’t believe that Shiro is innocent and enters his mind once again. She goes back to his childhood, back when he was trained by his Uncle Tomo. She sees everything through his eyes, though keeps her own body.

Rogue learns that Shiro’s father was a diplomat, always away on business, and that Tomo was left to do the child raising. But Tomo filled Shiro’s head with hatred against their “American oppressors,” so that Shiro would one day fight against them. The training was hard, and Shiro often couldn’t handle it. And when he tried to apologize for his failure, Tomo hit him hard with a stick. The training went on, and Shiro mastered several fighting techniques and learned how to fire an arrow with a bow.

Rogue learns that Shiro’s mother hails from Hiroshima and that, when she returned to visit her hometown, she soon afterwards died of cancer. And Tomo even blamed that on the Americans. Rogue witnesses how Sunfire’s mutant powers manifest themselves and he literally becomes Tomo’s response to the A-bomb. Rogue relives these memories in the worst way imaginable, and recalls that Mystique used her too because of her powers. She concludes that Tomo and Mystique have that much in common. Rogue sees how Shiro’s hatred grew ever since, because he believed Tomo’s lies that the Americans killed his mother and that they kept his father away from him.

Rogue sees how Tomo continued to train Shiro. Shiro agreed in Tomo’s plans to attack the State Capitol, and dress in a costume that represented the land of the rising sun so that the Americans would know who attacked them. Shiro desperately wanted to earn his uncle’s respect, so he traveled to America to fulfill the evil plans. But that’s when he had his first run-in with the X-Men, the best folks either Rogue or Sunfire would ever meet. Rogue doesn’t know why, but when she sees Shiro’s father approaching and calling out to him, he stopped the fighting. But Tomo was ready for that and killed Sunfire’s father. Rogue witnesses how Shiro got out of control, and felt so guilty that he even killed his own uncle.

Rogue finally knows why Shiro always acts so hot-headed: deep down, he’s filled with guilt. She withdraws from the memories and stops absorbing. She can’t believe that she still didn’t find a connection to Lady Deathstrike. Rogue tries to apologize to Shiro, but Sunfire is so angry at her that he punches her in the face!

Rogue quickly recovers, but the flames do give her a blue eye. Shiro is still angry at her. He doesn’t see a punishment strong enough for Rogue. Rogue tells Shiro that she never knew that they were so much alike, and recalls to her time in the Brotherhood. Sunfire wants to attack again, but then remembers… did Rogue mention Lady Deathstrike being aboard Kenuichio’s plane?! Rogue confirms it and tells Sunfire that she waited just like he told her to, and after that Lady Deathstrike attacked her.

Rogue tries to apologize to Shiro, but he doesn’t accept. But all this makes no sense to him. Sunfire thought that the Silver Samurai wasn’t the villain he used to be. After all, he recalls, the Samurai spend last year dismantling Clan Yashida’s criminal empire. Sunfire tries to phone his cousin, but he doesn’t answer. Rogue suspects that Lady Deathstrike got to him. Sunfire angrily responds if Rogue thinks that she killed him. Rogue believes rather otherwise, because she knows Lady Deathstrike. If that were the case, Deathstrike would have bragged about it during their battle, and she only told Rogue something about something that was stolen from her father. Sunfire is confused and wants to know if it’s true that the Silver Samurai once more betrayed him. And if so, what could he possibly have gained from it after renouncing the Yakuza?

The Sagacho District:

Kikuchio, the big boss of the Yakuza, welcomes a late guest. Kikuchio suspects that one of his men leaked out the information about the Yashida Clan to the news reporter and wants to know who did it, before this meeting evolves in a mob war. All men present of course claim to have nothing to do with it and are insulted by it. Kikuchio doesn’t believe it, and follows that only a handful of people had access to that information. So one of them had to do it. Again, he offers to the people present to clear their motivations, so that they can solve it in a reasonable matter. There’s a complete silence in the room.

Suddenly, energy flows from a window above and a sword cuts it open. A voice from outside tells Kikuchio that a bigger sacrifice shall be needed. The mobsters open fire, but the Silver Samurai drops in unharmed and fights the gangsters without getting hit! The defeated leaders get up, and mock at the Samurai for betraying both them and his family. Doesn’t he understand who they are? The Silver Samurai looks serious. He channels his sword, and tells the gangsters that they are the heads of the Yakuza clans. And he is here for the heads of the Yakuza clans. He fights again, and this time kills all of them.

Twenty-three minutes later, half a kilometer away:

The Silver Samurai enters his lair carrying a body bag over his shoulder. A female voice from behind a locked door asks the Samurai if no one wondered what was in it. “Nobody who wanted to continue to live,” the Samurai jokes. The woman asks the Samurai if Honjo remembers the Samurai bringing him here two nights ago. Of course not, the Samurai responds. Or, does he asks the woman, does she doubts her own abilities?

The woman denies that. She explains to the Samurai that he trusted her to plant the idea in his head for the big meeting, and then make him forget about it. She only wanted to prove worthy of that trust. The Samurai takes off his helmet. The woman looks at him, and tells Kenuichio that she can do more than what she showed him. She explains that when she takes away memories, she can even put them in someone else’s mind. She asks Kenuichio if he wants to know Honjo’s bank codes and offers to give them to him. The Samurai is on to her. He realizes that in return he would have to let the woman free, and after that she would wipe his mind and when Deathstrike returns she would kill him.

The woman, looking serious at Kenuichio, explains to him that, when Lady Deathstrike first brought him here, it was all kicking and screaming and he really believed that he had gone straight. The woman explains to him that she reset his mind where it was supposed to be. And she gave that reporter everything they needed to ruin both Rogue and Sunfire’s lives. And now, thanks to her, the woman continues, the Samurai is about to control every major mob organization in the world’s greatest city. The Samurai hesitates. The woman asks the Samurai why she would kill him, if instead she could be best friends with the most powerful man on the Earth.

The Samurai opens the door. The woman thanks him for that and, smiling, she says that she knew he could listen to reason. Just then, a furious Lady Deathstrike enters! She knew she couldn’t leave the Samurai alone with the witch. The woman tries to defend herself, but Deathstrike attacks her and slams her against a wall using her claws. Deathstrike warns the woman not to try to use her powers on her, as they won’t work because there isn’t anything organic on Deathstrike’s body from her shoulders on down. The woman tries to make a deal with Deathstrike to make her their partner. Lady Deathstrike isn’t interested, but then the woman offers a “win-win” situation.

Elsewhere, Rogue tries to make Sunfire understand that the Silver Samurai betrayed them, and that he was behind Lady Deathstrike’s attack. Rogue even suspects him to be behind the news report. Sunfire isn’t sure, as he knows that, if the Samurai would want to attack them, he would have used his sword and not the news. Plus, he still finds it odd that they posed on a picture neither of them recall of having taken.

Nonetheless, Sunfire knows that Rogue is correct. In order to learn the truth, they’ll have to find the Silver Samurai. He puts his costume on and, together with Rogue, flies out of his office building.

Characters Involved: 



The Silver Samurai

Lady Deathstrike

mysterious unnamed black-haired woman

Kikuchio, Hashimoto and various other Yakuza bosses

through-out Sunfire’s memories:

Sunfire (as a young boy and adult)

Saburo Yoshida (Sunfire’s father)

Tomo Yoshida (Sunfire’s uncle)

Angel, Beast, Cyclops, Iceman, Marvel Girl I (all original X-Men)

Story Notes: 

The flashback from Sunfire fighting the original X-Men comes from X-Men (1st series) #64, which was Sunfire’s first appearance ever and first meeting and battle with the X-Men.

It’s a little odd that Rogue mentions that Sunfire thinks of the X-Men as the best “folks” he ever met, because he always disliked them. He even disagreed to join the second team of X-Men, and had more arguments than friendly intercourses with them ever since.

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