Ultimate X-Men #88

Issue Date: 
January 2008
Story Title: 
Sentinels: Epilogue

Robert Kirkman (writer), Yanick Paquette (pencils), Serge Lapointe & Kris Justice (inks), Salvador Larroca (pencils pages 1-3, 21-22), Stephane Peru (colors), VC’s Joe Caramagna (letters), Lauren Sankovitch (assistant editor), Bill Rosemann (editor), Ralph Macchio (senior editor), Joe Quesada (editor-in-chief), Dan Buckley (publisher)

Brief Description: 

The former X-Men are playing a friendly baseball game against Emma Frost’s Academy of Tomorrow when Emm’a boyfriend, Shinobi, arrives, along with Gerald. Emma introduces Shinobi to Jean and quickly acts jealous when they get along. Later that day, as she is leaving the bathroom, Jean is attached by Gerald and Shinobi, who attempt to inject the contents of a syringe into her neck. However, the Phoenix immediately arises and attacks both Shaw and Gerald. With a fiery rage, it declares to the two that it has a message for the Hellfire Club which consists of the fires of the Phoenix. Later, after Shinobi & Gerald are arrested and the fire department has left, Scott tends to Jean, who is now more convinced than ever that the Phoenix really resides in her. Though he tells her Emma told him that she had no idea Shinboi was related to Sebastian Shaw of the Hellfire Club, elsewhere Emma return to the organization, reporting the failure of the operation, as she predicted. They are no closer to freeing the Phoenix from its host. Elsewhere, in Sydney, Australia, Hank finally convinces everyone he is really him, thanks to the aid of Psylocke’s telepathy and Bishop’s knowledge of the future. After a while, he and Storm even manage to renew their relationship. Meanwhile, Pyslocke and Bishop also discuss the fact they are married in the future, much to Psylocke’s discomfort. However, Bishop promises he won’t try anything. In the future, Cable is forced to release Xavier from his cell when he comes under attack by an army of robots. After they together destroy the invading machines, Cable reveals that something is about to happen in Xavier’s timeline, and he wants to train Xavier to prevent that very thing, as it caused all hell to brake out in the future. And the one responsible for all that is… Apocalypse!

Full Summary: 

The future…

Cable is sitting in his communications rooms, where he talks to Bishop over a computer screen. After thanking Bishop for the update and finishing the transmission, Cable asks his helper robot, Joe, to mark this point in the time stream so they can stay concurrent with Bishop’s timeline. Joe obediently replies that it has already done that.

On that moment, two blue-colored robots with red eyes crash through the ceiling. Cable has been discovered! Quickly, he orders Joe to quickly release Xavier from his cell, to which Joe immediately replies it has done already as well. As the robots open fire on Cable, Joe jumps in front of Cable and takes the blasts, promptly destroyed in the process. Meanwhile, Cable runs to Xavier’s cell and opens it. In his cell, Xavier was wearing handcuffs and a color which dampens his powers. Cable informs Xavier there has been a change of plans: he needs Xavier’s help.

Xavier doesn’t see why he would help Cable. “Because it’s the only way you’ll stay alive,” Cable answers as he snikts out three claws from his wrist. He tells Xavier no to move, as he doesn’t want to slice off anything but the collar. Xavier is a bit surprised to see the claws, realizing who he is actually dealing with now. Cable explains he was going to tell Xavier about him sooner or later. This wasn’t part of his plan. He tells Xavier to stand up. If they’re going to survive this, Xavier will have to stay mobile.

“Stand?” Xavier asks once more, surprised. Cable repaired the Professor’s spine: he can walk again. Cable hears the robots getting closer and takes out a gun. It’s time for them to move.


Storm stands stunned before Hank McCoy, who has just rejoined with the group. Storm can’t believe it; she thought Beast had died. Smiling that he didn’t, the Beast adds that he knows it’s a lot for him to just come out and say, and that it comes with a larger explanation, but it’s just… he’s alive. He truly and really is alive right now. Doesn’t she believe him? Wolverine takes a whiff of Hank, after which he confirms that it could be him. But that could be faked… Not easily, but it can be faked. But it could also be Hank.

Hank says he knows things weren’t great between them before, that they had issues. But, he asks Storm, isn’t she at least a little happy to see him again? “I am,” a confused Storm says. She is, but… she just doesn’t know. Wolverine stands besides her and looks suspiciously at Hank.

Suddenly the group is interrupted by the arrival of several police cars. Dazzler wakes up with a headache, at first thinking she was drinking. She then sees a demolished Sentinel head next to her and remembers what happened. Regarding the approaching police, Bishop thinks it is their cue to leave. He opens a teleportation portal and, as the others jump through it, Bishop says they’ll swing by the Sentinel factory in Sydney and pick up Angel there. They’ll sort everything out there, in private. Seeing Storm lingering, still regarding the Beast, Bishop calls for her attention. She apologizes, flies up and jumps through the portal as well. Bishop asks Beast if he’s coming too. Though a bit hesitant to answer, Hank says he will.


A baseball game is taking place between the X-Men and Emma’s Academy for Tomorrow. With Colossus as catcher and Emma herself looking from the sidelines, Scott is at bat – and with a mighty swing sends the ball sailing.

As he rounds first base, Rogue compliments Scott on the nice hit. Bobby, standing behind his girlfriend, asks Rogue if she saw the news this morning. The Sentinels are all done for, and it looks like Bishop’s team took them out last night. It also turned out the Sentinels weren’t sponsored by the government at all, but that Fenris was behind it. Rogue hopes they’ll rot in jail. She also says she dislikes the fact that there they are, playing baseball against those Academy of Tomorrow losers. She hates agreeing with Scott but, she has to admit, how things are now… this is much better for her. But Rogue can’t help but think that maybe they should’ve been there.

Iceman took it the exact opposite. He means, there they are, teaching the next generation of mutants to be peacekeepers and to use their powers wisely. That’s important, too. And all the whack jobs and evil “dudes,” as Bobby calls them, are taken care of. Seems to Bobby that Scott was right about this the whole time. “Yeah… maybe,” Rogue hesitantly agrees.

Nearby, Scott slides into a base and the crowd goes wild. Jean proudly shouts out that Scott’s safe. “Cute,” a rather disappointed Emma sighs. While the others continue their game, Emma asks Jean if she has seen her boyfriend. Jean confirms she has and compliments Emma on him. But that’s not what Emma meant, she replies, calling her a twit. She is looking for him. After mocking Emma for being so pleasant, Jean replies that, the last time she saw Shinobi, he was with their supervisor, Gerald, who is the man who makes sure they don’t spend all of the Shi’ar’s money constructing a baseball diamond. Emma noticed Gerald and Shinobi seemed to hit it off as they’ve been inseparable since. Maybe she should be worried. “Don’t worry”, Jean jokes, eying Emma’s chest. “Gerald doesn’t have your assets.”

Meanwhile, Rogue is at bat and has hit the ball between 2nd and 3rd base. Urged by Jean, he darts for 3rd base, but Northstar has already grabbed the ball from the outfield and throws it to Colossus, who is at third. Scott dives for the base, but Colossus tags him out before he can make it. Jean can’t believe it. Iceman remarks that he can’t believe that Peter’s playing for the other team, but then trails when he realizes the unintentional double-entendre of his statement. Picking up on it or not, Toad remains silent.

That night, in Sydney, Australia

Hangar 3265, the current home of Bishop’s X-Men team…

Beast explains to the group what happened after his death. He tells them how he left his equipment at the mansion so SHIELD couldn’t track him anymore, and eventually saw the rally at Central Park on the news. By the time he showed up, the fight had already started. Hank did what he could to help out, and then the rest of the team showed up. Hank finds difficulty that he’s really going to have to prove it’s him.

Speaking up, Psylocke announces that Hank isn’t lying. Everything he just said, he at least believes to be true. That, coupled with Wolverine’s smell test, has her convinced. Bishop thanks her for the gesture. He reveals he couldn’t really mention it before now, since Bishop does have to treat lightly in this timeline, but Beast is very much alive and well in this time period. He thinks this is him.

Happily, Hank asks Storm’s opinion. Storm, who has a hard time dealing with the whole thing, takes off saying she needs some time. As the others watch Ororo leave, Bishop promises Hank that he can trust him when he says Ororo just needs some space. She’ll come around. Hank sure hopes so.

After he asks Bishop if he’s really from the future, Bishop takes Hank separately from the team and they take a walk throughout the base. Confirming with a “yea,” he promptly changes the subject, saying that he wants to talk about Nick Fury for a bit. He can’t really go into too many details but he believes that, in the back of Hank’s mind, he’s just a little worried he was right about this Legacy Virus and, by escaping, Hank is endangering the life of every mutant on Earth. Hank admits he might be, if he wasn’t convinced Fury is a liar. He does wonder how Bishop knows about this.

Bishop gives a friendly smile, revealing that rescuing Hank and halting the Legacy Virus program was going to be the X-Men’s next mission. But he supposes Xavier’s death got Hank out of there on his own. He claims that the Legacy Virus is another one of Fury’s attempts to duplicate Captain America’s super-soldier serum, so Fury can continue Cap’s legacy. It used mutant genes, Hank’s genes, to radically alter human physiology, to enhance it, much the same way Steve Rogers was enhanced to become Captain America. The only problem is that, while it works on humans, if it comes in contact with mutants, it kills them almost instantly. In the wrong hands, it could end mutantkind forever.

Beast panics for what he has done. They had him working on this thing, working on a cure. Bishop states they did, and Hank did nothing wrong to help them. Fury wanted a cure on hand before he even revealed its existence to his superiors. He claimed Admiral Stryker created it to keep anyone from discovering its benefits. Bishop confirms that Fury wasis a good man. Hank asks Bishop if he’s saying he shouldn’t have escaped.

No, Bishop continues. Hank did the right thing. There’s a conflict on the horizon, something big, something involving the entire mutant population. In Bishop’s timeline, it got out of hand. They were losing, Fury was forced to use the virus in the most unspeakable way and, in the end, it didn’t prevent anything. By escaping, Hank saved nearly every mutant life on the planet and he prevented a good man from being executed for genocide. So Hank can rest easy… he did the right thing. Nobody is in danger.


The baseball game is over and Scott’s team has won. A disappointed Alex shakes hands with his big brother, complimenting him on the nice job. Scott jokes that there’s always next time. “Next time then,” Alex promises. At this moment, Shinobi and Gerald finally show up. Emma is glad to see her boyfriend, telling them both they missed the end of the game. Her school lost, though, so she doesn’t mind them missing it. However, the two men are just in time to help with the cookout. Shinobi is glad that no harm is done.

Emma introduces Jean to Shinobi, to which Jean remarks it’s a nice name. Shinobi smiles to Jean that she has his father to thank for that name, and his father is dead. But he thinks Jean already knew that, because she’s a telepath. As the two shake hands, Jean confirms she is, but Shinobi seems to have a strong-willed mind. It would take work to see his thoughts and mocks she doesn’t think it’s worth the effort. Shinobi tells Emma he likes Jean already. To this, Emma takes Shinobi by her side, telling him “hand off the jailbait.” Taken aback, Jean begins to reply her actual age, but before she can, Emma tells her to zip it.

Sydney, Australia

The X-Men’s kitchen…

Entering the kitchen, Psylocke stands in the doorway and looks at Bishop, who’s having some coffee. He notices her and tells Psylocke she can come in. Immediately, she asks what the deal is. To this, Bishop asks her what she wants him to say. He’s said too much already. He is from the future. In this time, he is a young man and she is a young woman. He can’t believe it’s that hard to imagine that they might find each other at some point over the next twenty years.

Looking at Bishop, it seems “bloody” impossible to her. But, no offense, she adds. Bishop doesn’t take any. He wouldn’t expect any less, but Psylocke is very much the woman he loved and married. It was very important to him that she didn’t learn of this as he understands how creepy it can be. As far as he’s concerned, it never happened. He never said anything. The more they ignore this, the better. So, Psylocke asks Bishop, he isn’t going to be trying anything. Bishop promises he won’t, not at his age. But if he gives her a warm smile or a meaningful glance from time to time, she just has to know that it’s nothing more than him reliving a memory. He expresses he loved Psylocke very much.

Back at Xavier’s…

Scott is cooking some burgers over a grill when he is joined by Bobby, who remarks that he is kind of tied to the grill, huh? When he asks Scott how many burgers he thinks he has already cooked tonight, Scott jokes back he lost track at fifty. Bobby thinks they should have gotten Sunspot to help. He then asks Scott if he has seen Jean, to which he replies that she went inside the school to the bathroom.

Jean is just finishing in the bathroom, washing her hands. She still laughs a bit at Emma’s earlier reaction towards her and Shinobi. When she opens the door, she is surprised to see Gerald. She apologizes, as she didn’t know he was waiting for her. For a moment, Gerald just glares quietly at Jean, a very serious look on his face. Gerald then quickly pushes Jean back inside the bathroom and against the sink, much to her surprise. As he apologizes for doing this, Shinobi enters as well and asks Gerald to restrain Jean, who wants to know what’s going on.

Shinobi reveals that it’s true… his last name is Shaw. Jean killed his father, but now he’s going to achieve for the Hellfire Club what Sebastian couldn’t. He calls Jean “Phoenix” and injects something in her neck.

Suddenly, yellow sparks appear from the syringe needle, which quickly consumes her body, covering it in fire. As her entire body burns brightly, Jean begins to speak with an unearthly voice. The Phoenix is back! “You are both fools,” Phoenix angrily says as Shinobi and Gerald scream. She’s informs them she has a message for the Hellfire Club she’d like to relay. Phoenix unleashes a powerful fire blast throughout the entire bathroom, causing the windows to shatter. This can be seen from outside. The party is over.

Sydney, Australia.

Beast is hanging upside down on the ceiling when Storm enters. She wants to talk, so Hank jumps down. Ororo apologizes for acting weird since Hank got back. She explains that his death really tore her up. She just wasn’t used to seeing him, so seeing him all of a sudden. She confesses that she missed him so much. Ororo knows they weren’t exactly on good terms when he left, but… she wants Hank to look at it this way: there is no way Xavier could be causing her feelings for him now. Hank asks if that means… “Yeah, I do,” Ororo answers. They kiss.

Xavier’s, night…

Ambulances and fire trucks have arrived outside the school. Inside, Scott is taking care of Jean in her bedroom. He tells her that everyone is leaving. Emma is taking things well, considering, he adds. She had no idea Shinobi was related to Sebastian Shaw or the Hellfire Club. He asks Jean if she’s okay, but she says she doesn’t know. Scott also mentions that Lilandra and the Church of Shi’ar Enlightenment have pull in places they never would have thought. The police were going to take Jean in for questioning until Lilandra called it off.

Jean admits she is worried, but he thinks there’s nothing to be concerned about. The cops got what was left of the syringe, and they photographed the puncture on Jean’s neck. The syringe was filled with a powerful sedative, he explains. Gerald and Shinobi were trying to abduct her. What she did was clearly self-defense. But that’s not what it was, according to Jean. She says Gerald did the testing on her for the Shi’ar. He’s the one who determined she wasn’t the Phoenix… that it was all just something she had imagined based on her parents’ involvement with the church when she was a child. But she thinks that, if Gerald was a mole for the Hellfire Club, and if they are still after her, she believes what’s inside of her is real.

New York City...

outside a mansion…

A limo stops and a gentleman opens the door. Emma Frost steps out of it, and the gentleman wishes Emma a good evening. She thanks him for it and enters the club. After passing through a grand hall, she enters through an event grander door, guarded by two men. One of the guards informs her that “they” are expecting Emma. She already thought that would have been the case. Emma enters the room, where a group of men waiting for her.

Once inside, with the doors closed again, she takes off her white jacket, revealing a white corset and underwear underneath. She reports to the men that it didn’t work, just like she predicted. And now she is angry that these old men still had to act at this moment. They’re no closer to freeing the Phoenix from her “pathetic” host, Emma angrily states and, with Gerald and Shaw in police custody, they’ve lost their mole inside Xavier’s. And she is in need of a new boyfriend as well. This is not the best day in the history of… the Hellfire Club!

The future…
It’s raining, from a sky tinted with yellow. Inside his hideout, Cable stands back-to-back with Xavier, who is holding a gun. Now that they have just finished destroying the invading army of robots, Xavier asks Wolverine what he’s going to do with him, and also wants to know why he is there. Cable finds it weird, as it’s been so long since someone called him “Wolverine.” But first, he says, they need to gather anything they can use here and then get the hell out. There will be a whole armada of these robots at their doorstep soon. Priority number one will be securing another location with the necessary equipment for Cable to train Xavier.

“Training?” Xavier asks surprised. “For what?” To this, Cable claims that something is coming, a conflict on the horizon in Xavier’s timeline. Xavier is the only thing capable of stopping it, but in this timeline Xavier wasn’t prepared. He lost, resulting in this living hell he can see around him. Cable will be training Xavier to fight.

When Xavier inquires as what the conflict is, and who Cable is training him to fight, Cable promises Xavier he doesn’t have to worry… he’ll find that out soon enough.

Outside, an immense statue of Apocalypse stands in the middle of the rubble of what was once a city.

Characters Involved: 

Angel, Beast, Bishop, Dazzler, Psylocke, Pyro, Storm, Wolverine (all New X-Men)

Cyclops, Iceman, Marvel Girl, Rogue, Toad (all former X-Men)

Phoenix Force

Cable, Professor X

Joe (Cable’s helper robot)

Colossus, Emma Frost, Havok, Northstar, Polaris, Sunspot, (all Academy of Tomorrow)

Gerald Lavigne, Shinobi Shaw (both Hellfire Club)

various other members of the Hellfire Club (all unnamed)

as a statue:


Story Notes: 

The X-Men faced the Hellfire Club in Ultimate X-Men #25. In that issue, Sebastian Shaw was murdered by the Phoenix.

Apocalypse had been mentioned a few times to exist in the past. The madman called Sinister once worked for him, but died when Apocalypse ordered Sinister to choke himself when he failed a mission, as seen in Ultimate X-Men #49.

Gerald tried to discover if Jean was Phoenix in Ultimate X-Men #70.

Issue Information: 
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