Cumberland, Kentucky, the home of the Guthries, as the sun begins to rise, the winged X-Man, Warren Worthington the third, a.k.a. Archangel, tells the Guthrie family matriarch, Lucinda, that they have been talking for a while, but still have not reached the subject he believes she wished to talk about. Looking out her kitchen window, Lucinda Guthrie tells the handsome X-Man that they have not, but tells him that she appreciates him telling her why he brought along several other X-Men, and that she agrees with him for doing.
Lucinda turns to Warren and tells him that she wants to get some sleep today and suggests they start talking about what she wants to talk about – ‘What’s with you and Paige?’ Warren looks to the ground and starts to speak until Lucinda cuts him off, informing him that she has seen him looking at her with something in his eyes, but that he keeps trying not to let Paige see it. She asks him if there is a reason they are torturing themselves the way they are, and wonders if it is because Paige is only nineteen. Lucinda tells Warren that the age thing does not matter to Paige, nor does it matter to her. Warren says nothing as Lucinda stands arms folded asking him if he does it all for fun, teasing the emotions of a young girl, what with him being the ‘rich playboy and all’. Warren frowns and says nothing for some time, before telling Lucinda that if there is anyone he can talk to this about it would be her. Lucinda looks somewhat awkward when Warren says ‘After all, you lost someone you loved, as well…didn’t you?’
Nearby, Lucinda’s son, Josh, and the daughter of the Guthrie family enemy, Julia Cabot, are making out in a forest. Suddenly, someone cries ‘Get up!’ and the startled lovers look up, surprised, Julia realizes that it was her father, Chester Cabot, inside a super-suit that he recently found. Josh holds Julia tight as she asks if it is her father, to which the armored man cries furiously ‘I said, “get up” not “lie there and ask me questions!”’.
Back in the Guthrie homestead, Warren admits to Lucinda that he is not very good at expressing emotions, but that he does love Paige. He tells Lucinda that he would never lead Paige on the way she thinks he has been, but that he is just torn, and that also the age difference does concern him. However what concerns Warren more, is Paige’s inexperience and strong-willed determination to be an X-Man. Warren hesitates somewhat before informing Lucinda that he asked Paige on a mission recently – a mission where she was killed. Obviously Paige was revived, by Warren in fact, but he feels that this does not change the fact that he killed Paige with his own stupidity, brining along an untrained novice into a dangerous situation all because he was attracted to her.
Lucinda watches Warren thoughtfully as he reveals that out of pure luck and some new found healing ability he managed to revive Paige, but she was dead, and it was on his watch. Down the hallway, Paige makes her way to the kitchen, but stops when she hears her mother talking to Warren, who tells Lucinda that he thought he could push it from his mind, but as time went by it just ate him up inside. He informs Lucinda that he already lost one woman he loved very much…but that Paige is different. Warren tells Lucinda that Paige surprises him, she makes him laugh, she is passionate and ‘eats life with a shovel’. He reveals that he feels so much for Paige, which makes him very afraid. Afraid that if he lets his emotions go, he might not survive – if anything ever happened to her.
Back in the woods, Josh pulls his pants back up, as Julia gets dressed, while her father bellows that he never thought he could be so disgusted seeing a Guthrie – a mutant – forcing himself on his daughter. Julia walks over to her armored father trying to tell him that Josh didn’t force himself on her, and asks him to stop threatening him with the stupid suit. Cabot orders his daughter into the car, and Julia starts to cry as she tells her father that Josh didn’t force her to do anything she didn’t want to do. Cabot exclaims that that is not what they are going to tell the town. Julia declares that she will not lie, and Chester cuts her off, exclaiming again that they will tell the town Josh attacked her.
Julia screams ‘Daddy, I wanted him to be with me!’ and Chester smacks her, using the powerful armor to send her careening into the lake. Josh cries her name and runs over to her, picking her up from the water he pleads for her to be all right. Cabot tells Josh to get his ‘filthy mutant hands’ off his daughter, or else he will kill him.
‘You idiot’ says Paige, as she stands in the kitchen in her nightgown, staring at Warren. Warren calls Paige “Honey” and tells her not to be angry. Paige asks him if he has put through all this emotional upheaval because he is afraid she is going to die – and that her death may somehow be his fault. Warren tells her to listen, but she cuts him off, reminding him that she is nineteen years old, which is the legal age to make her own mistakes in most states – including the one where they reside. She adds that this means she can chose to fight for her country, chose who she has relationships with, and whether or not it will put her in harms way for a cause she believes in.
Paige defiantly tells Warren that he is not her replacement father figure, nor is he her baby sitter, but the man she chooses to give her heart to. Paige tells him that she feels he is treating it like dirt, no mater what his intentions are. Paige quickly walks out of the room as Warren asks her to wait and listen to him. Paige walks into the courtyard around the back of the house and tells Warren when he follows her out that he should have talked to her about it, not her mother. Paige cuts Warren off again when he asks her to listen to him, telling him that he should have told her he was afraid and given her some sort of understanding instead of treating her like he didn’t care.
Archangel walks over to Paige and tells her that she is right and that he is sorry. Husk informs him that it is too late for “Sorry” and asks him to remember how many times she came to him, or how many times she ever asked for anything – and yet he opens up to her mother. In an unusual move for Paige, she raises her voice and shouts ‘No wonder Betsy stopped loving you!’ Warren stops in his tracks and looks stunned as Lucinda and the other X-Men on the farm – Polaris, Wolverine and Nightcrawler – watch in anticipation too.
Warren looks to the ground and admits to Paige that she is right, and taking her in his arms and pulling her close to him he tells her that that may be why Psylocke withdrew from him, and that maybe it was better that way, because he needed the someone with the strength of conviction to stand up and tell him when he is wrong, rather than run away – and someone he could love more than he ever loved her. ‘I would die if I lost you’ says Warren before he and Husk kiss, and when she manages to catch her breath, Paige replies ‘You wont, you wont lose me, I promise’. Warren holds Paige in his arms as he flies up, still kissing, and Paige’s slippers fall off, one of them falling on Kurt who asks where they are going. When Paige’s nightgown falls down, Logan catches it and he and Lorna smile, while Lucinda Guthrie walks away declaring that she does not want to see any of this.
Back in the woods, the tragedy continues to unfold as Cabot grabs Josh Guthrie by the neck and Josh tries to explain that he wants to see if Julia is okay. Cabot unleashes a blast from the super suit and sends the winged Guthrie careening backwards. Another super suit turns to Cabot and tells him that Julia is breathing, to which Cabot thanks the Lord.
On the Guthrie farm, Logan turns to Nightcrawler and asks him if he heard what sounded like a weapon discharge. ‘I didn’t take enhanced hearing at university’ jokes Kurt, as the sultry Lorna Dane takes flight, declaring she will go take a look. Logan rushes after her and Kurt goes to see to the Guthries. Lucinda asks Kurt what he thinks it was, and the elfin X-Man replies that it is probably something he would like to get her away from and suggests they gather the children.
As Nightcrawler and Lucinda walk into a bunk room, a man gets off the floor, and Lucinda is surprised to see him still here, she asks Ray what he and his son are still doing at her place. Ray tells Lucinda that it didn’t seem right to leave her alone with the Cabots misbehaving, to which Lucinda proclaims that that is why she loves him and grabs Ray’s hand. The two kiss as Kurt declares that they are being incredibly sweet but probably need to get the children to safety. Sitting up in his bed, Jeb tells his mother to do her ‘smoochy-face stuff later on’ when they do not have to look.
Lucinda orders everyone into the car and Elisabeth, Jeb and Ray Jr. follow her, Ray and Nightcrawler out of the room onto the porch – where they are met by Sheriff Pete. Pete greets Lucinda and telling a lie, informs her that the Cabots made bail and that they may be considering trying something over at her place – he is about to continue talking, until he sees Lucinda and Ray holding hands, and looking forlorn he just says ‘Lucinda?’
One of the armored Cabots asks his father what they should do about Julia, and Chester tells them to take her to the hospital. The Cabot replies that Julia is not hurt that bad and that they want to go with him. Chester raises his voice and tells his child that their sister is lying there and that they need to take her to the hospital. The other armored Cabot points to the sky and tells Chester to look. ‘Greetings and salutations’ cries Lorna as she hovers above them before a green glow flickers around her signaling her mutant powers and Lorna wickedly tells the Cabots that she is glad they decided to wear metal to ‘this little party’. Cabot informs Lorna that it is not metal but carbon composite and he fires a missile at Lorna, which reaches the startled mutant almost instantly. As the missile explodes, Lorna’s blood splatters everywhere.
One of the others tells Chester that someone was bound to have heard that last explosion, and the other tells Chester that they should quit, before seeing that Julia is awake. Cabot declares that they go on now, as he does not want to miss this opportunity. Julia calls to Josh and sees her beloved lying still on the ground, blood all over him. She wails in horror, and as Cabot walks away he tells his sons to ignore Julia, as one day she will thank him.
Back on the Guthrie homestead, Lucinda asks Sheriff Pete what is going on, to which the Sheriff replies that he came to save her. Lucinda ignores that comment and instead tells Pete that there are explosions going off in the hills behind them. Kurt sees Pete pull a gun and asks quietly why he would be doing that when Pete raises his voice and tells Lucinda angrily that he cannot believe she is doing this. Ray tells his son and Lucinda to get behind him as Kurt asks Pete to put his gun back in its holster. Kurt says it again, with a little more authority this time, to which the Sheriff asks where Kurt came from before realizing that he must be one of the X-Men.
Pete turns back to Lucinda and asks her what is going on, asking her if she knows she lives in a freak show, before revealing that he wanted to take her away from it, that he wanted to love her. Lucinda asks Pete to listen, but he cuts in, telling her that she pushed him away, and all ‘for a black man’. Pete aims his pistol at Lucinda and pauses before telling her he could forgive her for almost anything, as it is not her fault she gave birth ‘to a bunch of freaks’. But he doesn’t agree that she should have had them in her home – or to lie voluntarily with Ray, ‘making me look stupid in the process’.
Pete cocks the pistol as Nightcrawler teleports to Pete’s side and punches him in the face, knocking the pistol from the Sheriff’s grasp. Elisabeth stands on the porch with a rifle and supposes it means she doesn’t have to shoot Pete, before looking to the horizon and seeing three armored figures approaching, she declares that they now have a bigger problem.