Uncanny X-Men (1st series) #426

Issue Date: 
August 2003
Story Title: 
Sacred Vows - part 2

Chuck Austen (Writer), Philip Tan (Artist), Avalon Studios (Colorist), Russ Wooten (Letterer), Ron Garney (Cover), Warren Simons (Assistant Editor), Mike Raicht (Associate Editor), Mike Marts (Editor), Joe Quesada (Editor in Chief), Bill Jemas (President).

Brief Description: 

Lorna switches off the powers off all the mutants at the wedding by reversing their blood flow, except for Iceman, who tells her he still cares for her before she knocks him out, and Havok, who uses his powers to blast himself, Annie and Carter to safety. Lorna follows in pursuit, and Alex tells Annie that he knows all about her, revealing that her son used his powers to link their minds while he was in the coma so they wouldn’t be lonely. He tells Annie he loves her, before Lorna finds them, and after getting mad with Alex for ruining her wedding day, she attacks him with her powers, until the Juggernaut knocks her out. Afterwards, Alex and Annie go to Paris to live out a fantasy.

Full Summary: 

The Xavier Institute for Higher Learning, the home of the X-Men, and today, celebrating what should be the wedding of Alex “Havok” Summers and Lorna “Polaris” Dane, though not everyone is celebrating. In one of the recreation lounges, Cain Mark is cursing a pinball game, venting his rage at not being able to talk to Samuel Pare. As he smashes in the game he glances out the window – and sees a wedding ceremony gone terribly wrong.

The bridal party, the X-Men and the guests are all taking cover as Polaris takes to the sky, unleashing her vast magnetic powers, and destroying the wedding area. Magnetic energy is thrust about as tables, chairs and kitchenware go flying about the grounds. Juggernaut stares out the window and being blatantly obvious, says that this doesn’t look good.

Wearing the lower half of her wedding dress, and a top half-resembling Magneto’s costume, Lorna hovers over Havok, Iceman, Annie Ghazikhanian and her son Carter. Lorna tells Annie that it is all her fault, but Annie protests and tells Lorna she had nothing to do with this, Alex tells Annie to run, and orders Bobby to ice Lorna up. Bobby just stammers ‘But, Alex – it’s Lorna –’ Holding Annie and Carter, Alex yells at Bobby to do it, adding there is no metal in water.

As Iceman unleashes his ice powers, trying to freeze Lorna, the Mistress of Magnetism tells Alex that there are trace metals in everything, and she averts the water easily with a flick of her hand. She closes in on Bobby and reminds everyone that the metals run all through the body, especially the blood. Mockingly she tells them they should know that by now. Clutching his neck, Bobby pleads with Lorna, telling her that he still loves her. His glasses fall off and blood trickles from his mouth, nose and eyes as Lorna stands over him, and asks him if he still loves her after all these years. Polaris smiles and says that that is so sweet, but tells Bobby that she cannot love him back, because she is getting married today – ‘Over Annie’s dead body!’

Meanwhile, Alex orders Annie and Carter to grab onto him, and tells them to say a prayer, as he has never done this before. Annie asks him what he means, before the three are propelled off the ground and into the air by Alex’s plasma blasts. Annie pleads with Alex to not hurt her son, and Alex tells her that they will both be fine, though the landing may be a little wet, and passing a forest near Xavier's, the three plummet into a nearby lake.

Back at the mansion, a green cloud has covered most of the grounds and Lorna stands alone in the middle of it, several unconscious bodies around her. She tells Alex, not that he can hear her, that that was new, and guesses she will have to go looking for him. She starts singing ‘Here-comes-the-bride-all-dressed-in-white- Dum dum dee dum dum dee dum dum dee dum’ ‘Great now I’ve got that stupid song stuck in my head’ Lorna says annoyed, as she takes to the skies again.

Back at the lake, Alex is pulling Annie and Carter out of the water. Carter tells him it was really cool, and Annie tells her son that any other time she would agree with him. She asks Alex what they are going to do, and guesses Lorna is going to come after them. Alex tells her that she is, and Annie asks if she is going to kill them. Alex pulls of his tux, revealing his costume on underneath. He tells Annie that he doesn’t know, maybe she will, as she did kill of some Church of Humanity cronies recently, he stresses to Annie that they were ‘bad guys’, and that Lorna has not killed anyone else that he knows of.

Annie looks at Alex a little scared and says ‘None that you know of?’ She asks him if he is afraid, and Alex says that he is, especially as Lorna is extremely powerful. He adds that his brother Scott told him Lorna studied with Magneto. Defiantly, Annie tells Alex that Lorna can take her as long as she leaves Carter alone. Her son clutches at her waist and wails that he doesn’t want her to die. Alex leans down and tells Carter that his mother is not going to die.

Alex puts one hand on Carters’ shoulder and wraps the other around Annie’s waist, adding that she is not going to die especially as now he finally understands his feelings for her – and hers for him. Annie looks up bewildered and says ‘What’? Alex lifts Carter onto his shoulders and tells him that they will explain later, but that right now they need to hide and buy themselves sometime while he thinks a way out of this mess.

Meanwhile, high above the forest…’Yoooo hoooo! Alex, Annie and Carter! Olly-olly-oxen-free!’ Sardonically, and not really talking to anyone, as they wouldn’t be able to hear her, Lorna asks them if they are not buying it, not that she blames them. ‘Dum dum dee dum dum – Ah Dammit!’

Annie is looking off vacantly, while Carter brings Alex some more wood. Annie asks Alex if he is going to have to use that wood on Lorna. He tells her that he hopes not, but reminds Annie that Lorna’s powers are magnetic and tells her that if it comes between her and Carter or Lorna…his voice trails off. Annie is wide-eyed and slightly confused, she reminds Alex that he loved Lorna.

Alex proclaims that he did, but that it was a long time ago. He tells Annie that he and Lorna were together, then broke up, were together again, before breaking up again so many times. He tells her that the last time he and Lorna broke up was before his plane crash, it was for the stupidest reason, and that somewhere during all of that, he just stopped loving her. He adds that it was not an excuse to dump someone at the altar, but reminds Annie that the last few weeks had been so chaotic – that he was busy making wedding plans, when deep down, he tells Annie, that really he wanted to be with her.

Annie’s mouth drops open and she tells him that he can't, as he doesn’t even know her! Alex tells Annie that he does, and that he has known and dated her for almost a year now. ‘Haven’t I, Carter?’ Annie’s son protests, saying that he hasn’t done anything. Alex smiles at Carter and tells him that it is all right, and that he is a very powerful mutant. Alex tells Carter that he thought he may have done it by accident, but then last night, nicely timed on the eve of his wedding, he realized that he had a more conscious hand in it. Annie is still confused and asks Alex what he is talking about.

Havok asks Annie if the place they are at looks familiar, and the school nurse tells him she doesn’t want to say, as it is embarrassing. Alex smiles trying to put her at ease, and tells her it is not embarrassing to him, that he was here too, and kissed her. He starts to recall to Annie the things that they have done together; dinner on Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco; walked on a black sand beach in Hawaii; sharing their first kiss at the Eiffel Tower in Paris; that she sleeps in rolled -down socks with one leg out of the covers; that she hates seafood and loves stories about two-headed alien monkeys from Mars more than she likes the news.

All this while, Annie’s mouth has been gaping wider and wider, her body trembling slightly at the revelation that Alex knows these things. Alex tells Annie that she wants to write children’s books and has one about a magic nurse who heals sick children hidden in an envelope in her closet. He tells her she is a terrific mother, with such a loving heart and more courage than most super heroes he knows. Alex stops smiling and gets serious, telling Annie again, things she already knows – that she doesn’t like mutants, but for her sons sake she is trying to face her fears, fears she has in the first place because an old boyfriend, Carter’s father, was a mutant – with mutant friends who tried to kill her because she was pregnant with his child, and he didn’t want children.

‘Oh my God’ is all Annie can muster up and say. She clutches herself uncomfortably and asks Alex how he can know all of this. He tells her he knows it from her, as Carter put their minds together when they were asleep and dreaming, because he didn’t want his mother to be alone, and because he knew that Alex was alone, and scared in the void. He asks Carter if that is right, and Carter tells his mother that she was sad, and would cry sometimes. He tells her he didn’t want her to be sad that he could tell Alex was nice, but sad too. He reminds his mother that she told him not to use his powers and tells her he didn’t want to get in trouble.

Mother and son rush to each other and Annie tells Carter that he is not in any trouble. She hugs him and tells him that she could never be mad at him for this, she says that she thought she was going crazy having Florence Nightingale syndrome or something, that she was in love with a man in a coma who she couldn’t possibly know, and she thought she was losing her mind.

Annie looks up at Alex and tells him that all the fantasies and dreams she was having ‘– the walks on the beach, kissing here last night…you really hate cauliflower’? Alex smiles and tells her he can’t stand it. Annie starts to cry and tells Alex that he loves chocolate milkshakes with extra whipped cream and no cherries. Alex says that those ‘maraschino things are gross’. He leans down to the ground where Annie is still hugging her son and Annie announces to Alex that he loves her son, and wants to have more children. Alex tells Annie that with her he does. They gaze into each other’s eyes and Annie proclaims that she has never been to the Eiffel Tower, but that she really fell in love with Alex there.

‘Are you trying to tell me that if I had known you hate cauliflower – we’d be getting married – right now?’ Lorna is leaning against a tree, arms folded across her chest very unimpressed. Alex tells Annie to run, and she replies that she is not leaving him. Alex tells Annie that if Lorna cant se her then she will have a harder time affecting her with her powers. He reminds Annie that she has Carter to think of, to go. Annie lifts up her son and prays to God that she doesn’t lose Alex now.

Alex stops firing plasma energy at Lorna and picks up a stick. Lorna asks him if he thinks those pathetic sticks are going to help him, and he tells her he doesn’t know, before begging her not to do this. Lorna mocks him ‘Please don’t do this, please don’t do this’ She yells at him, asking him why he waited until today to cancel their wedding. She narrows her eyes and grimaces, telling him that it is bad enough for it to be done to her ever, but when she is walking down the aisle, in front of her friends and family… She raises her voice further, asking him why he had to be such a Summers brother about it!

Lorna begins to cry and asks Alex to imagine how it feels, to be cast aside on her beautiful, perfect wedding day! Before powering up and telling Alex that it wouldn’t have happened if not for her! ‘That irritating little candy-stripper!’ Alex frowns and tells Lorna that it has nothing to do with Annie.

Lorna composes herself and tells Alex that Magneto – her father – was right, but that he never went far enough. She tells Alex that the human’s presence among the mutants corrupts and lessens them. That they turn mutants against mutants. Lorna’s powers flare up again, and she cries that the humans need to go, as do those who consort with them! She lifts Alex up, and pain pulses through his body. Like Bobby earlier, blood flows from his mouth, nose and eyes. Lorna smiles and tells Alex that after he is gone, she will drop Nursey Annie from the Eiffel Tower, the place they “fell in love”, she asks him if it seems as fitting to him as it does to her.?

Suddenly, Lorna is attacked from behind, her body is slammed to the ground and she is rendered unconscious. Alex, free of Lorna’s control, falls to the ground and looks up, tears falling from his eyes, at Juggernaut. Cain tells him that Havok did say he was on his team, remember?

Later, back at the Institute, Husk and Jubilee are sitting on a couch with Carter, discussing the events that took place earlier. Paige tells Jubilee that everyone seems fine now, and that Lorna just reversed the blood-flow in anyone with powers, knocking everyone out. She adds that Polaris probably could have killed everyone, but didn’t. Jubilee tells Paige that it is scary Lorna is that powerful before asking why Lorna didn’t stop Bobby’s powers. Alex she can understand why, but Bobby?

Husk says she doesn’t know, but that maybe in spite of everything Lorna said, she does still care for Bobby. She adds that she doesn’t want to figure it out, as that is Professor Xavier’s job. Jubilee asks where Alex and Annie are now, and Paige tells her that she doesn’t know, except that they asked her to watch Carter for a day and took off in one of the X-Jets. They told her something about turning a fantasy into a reality, whatever that means.

Paris…atop of the Eiffel Tower, Alex Summers and Annie Ghazikhanian are kissing, their dream has come true.

Characters Involved: 

Havok, Husk, Iceman, Juggernaut, Polaris (all X-Men)

Jubilee (former X-Man)

Annie Ghazikhanian

Carter Ghazikhanian

other X-Men, former X-Men and more wedding guests

Story Notes: 

Alex and Lorna had been lovers most of the time they were together, even though both of them were at various times possessed or brainwashed by villains. While they eventually broke up, they were cautiously on the way back to becoming an item again before Havok was tragically killed [X-Factor #149]. Following his death, Lorna was the only person who had faith that he was still alive. Havok was revealed to be alive in Uncanny X-Men #411, in #413 Annie and he moved to the mansion, in #419 he was woken from his coma. In #421 Polaris proposed to him. Annie has had a crush on Alex since she had been taking care of him at a private institute.

Lorna had been part of Magneto’s court after X-Factor disbanded and she thought she could make a change in Genosha. She is one of the very few survivors of the Sentinel massacre of the country, and was witness to the sixteen million deaths. She was found in Genosha in New X-Men #132, and returned to the Institute in Uncanny X-Men #418.

Polaris killed the Church of Humanity soldiers in Uncanny X-Men #424 by holding the bullets they just fired in mid air, and sending them back towards them.

There were other non-mutants at the wedding ceremony, including the Hulk and several of the Starjammers, all who are not mutants, presumably they were too disorientated by Lorna’s attack to stop her at the wedding (not to mention it wouldn’t fit in with the plot).

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