Uncanny X-Men: First Class #4

Issue Date: 
December 2009
Story Title: 
Sisters of the Dragon

Scott Gray (writer), David Williams (art), Veronica Gandini (colorist), Blambot’s Nate Piekos (letterer), Roger Cruz (cover), Paul Acerios (production), Michael Horwitz (assistant editor), Nathan Cosby (editor), Joe Quesada (editor-in-chief), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (Exec. Publisher

Brief Description: 

Phoenix invites Storm to a girl’s night out with Misty Knight and Colleen Wing. However, the evening is crashed by Misty’s enemy, Nightshade, who takes them prisoner and cancels Storm’s and Jean’s powers with special collars. Storm is forced to steal a certain helmet from the SHIELD helicarrier and Jean then uses it to transfer Misty and Colleen’s martial arts skills to Nightshade’s robots. Still, thanks to a localized thunderstorm created earlier by Storm, she manages to put SHIELD on their trail. Nightshade sics the robots on them and flees, chased by Storm while Misty, Colleen and Jean, mimicing the others’ martial arts, fight the robots. Storm manages to take down Nighshade in hand to hand combat and eventually stops the robots. Elsewhere, Starcore One is under attack by the Knights of Hykon. Peter Corbeau sends a warning to Professor X.

Full Summary: 


Storm is flying across the Manhattan night sky, chased by a SHIELD avian Squad, who are ordered to bring her down. As she swoops down, she realizes that those men are well trained. It is taking all her skill to avoid their fire. She descends, for if she tried the stunt she does now at a higher altitude, her foes would stand no chance. She creates turbulence, traps them in a downdraft and they land in the Hudson River, bruised but unharmed.


Two hours earlier, she arrived at the apartment of her friend, Jean Grey, more nevous at the prospect of a night out than she would be at fighting a supervillain. Inside the apartment, Jean Grey, her flatmate Misty Knight and Misty’s parner Colleen Wing, all three of them dressed up, are already waiting. The goddess has landed, Jean announces and introduces the others.

Referring to Ororo’s costume, Misty remarks she thought the X-Men operated strictly undercover. Does she want to step out tonight in her super-threads? Storm re-polarizes the clothes with an electric charge, changing it into a dress. Wow, she’s gotta show her where she shops! Misty exclaims.

Jean announces the plan for the night: She’s booked a private room at the Silver Lotus in Chinatown for dinner. Then they’re going to hit a couple of clubs over in Soho. They are having for a legendary night!

However, they are unaware that they are being eavesdropped upon by a sinister lady, who promises that the night is going to be legendary but not the way they think.

Soon the four heroines share dinner. Colleen recommends some food to Ororo who admits that this is her first Chinese meal. She’s kidding, Misty exclaims. She’s handing the chopsticks like a native! That’s Ororo for you, Jean remarks. Poetry in motion. Everything comes easy to her.

If only that were so, Ororo thinks silently, then asks Jean if she has talked to Scott lately. Jean makes a face. Not since that fiasco in Attilan. Can she believe the way Scott blew up at her? When he’s ready to apologize she’ll be waiting.

Does she have these kinds of bust-ups with Danny? she asks Misty. Nah, Misty scoffs, he’s just too darn calm. He’s all “relax, Misty, focus your chi” and she’s all “I left my chi in Shanghai, fool!” He drives her nuts sometimes, but what can you do? He’s her man. How about her, she asks Ororo. There a guy, making her all crazy with love right now?

Ororo stammers, revealing there was someone when she was younger. They parted in anger… Waiiit a minute! Misty announces disgusted and agitated. Is she telling her a supremely fine sister like her hasn’t had a date since she was a kid? It is a crime, a federal felony! They are gonna find Ororo a guy!

She can think of one who’d apply for the job like a shot, Colleen remarks calmly. Who, Luke Cage? Ha, Misty snorts that’d be like Mr. T dating Nina Simone!

Ororo is uncomfortable at the topic of her love life. The others speak of men like they are food on a table, something to simply sample and discard. It is all so alien to her. She hates this and wishes this night would end now…

She’s in luck, as all women suddenly feel woozy. The food’s drugged, they realize moments before they pass out.

Ororo awakes to an African-American woman with a unique afro-hairstyle, dressed in tight skimpy clothing standing over her and the other three in what looks like a warehouse. Glad she liked the shrimp, the stranger comments. She was worrying the chloral hydrate would ruin it. Pleased to meet her. The name’s Nightshade. Misty and she go back some, but she wasn’t hurt when she didn’t get an invited tonight. Misty probably thought she was still in the prison she stuck her in. She’s had her apartment bugged for a week. Imagine her surprise when she heard Misty was hanging with two genuine mutant superheroes. Now they got themselves a party!

Jean still feels woozy from the sedative but tries to reach out and stun Nightshade with a psionic blast. Ah-ah, Nightshade tuts. Their collars will detect even a tiny increase in bioelectric energy, so if they use their powers, the collars will fry them with enough voltage to light up Times Square.

Misty attacks, shouting she’s forgotten about her bionic arm. Oh, she’s got total recall, Nightshade retorts, that’s why she rigged up this little override model. That fancy prosthetic arm of Misty’s is super-strong, sophisticated… Why it’d take a genius to hack into its software and take control of it.

Misty loses control as Nightshade takes control of the arm and slaps Misty’s face with it. A worried Colleen runs to her side. With Nightshade still controlling the arm, it goes for Colleen’s throat. Friendships can be so fragile, Nightshade comments. Kinda like necks.She warns the four not to give her any grief or Misty starts playing volleyball with Colleen’s head. Now she’s got a job that needs doing and the two super chicks are perfect for it. Stormy is up first. Is she ready to fly for Nightshade? It appears she has no choice, Ororo admits grimly.

Soon she is flying in the night sky. Her power is turned on again, but still monitored by Nightshade who orders her to hold that bearing for another twelve minutes. It will put her right on top of the SHIELD helicarrier. Nightshade informs she is too small to register on the radar. Storm is to enter through an exhaust vent in the starboard section. She guides her around. Nice going she comments. Jean wasn’t lying when she called Storm a hotshot lockpick. Storm silently vows Nightshade will learn to her cost that she is far more than that.

She freezes the tertiary monitor system enabling her to move into the corridors. Nightshade is impressed and admits Storm could be player with her skill, power and looks. Why is she wasting her time, saving the world, when she could be getting rich? She chooses to use her abilities for the benefit of others, Storm informs her. The reward that provides dwarfs any material gain. Don’t jazz her, Nightshade snorts. Storm didn’t get that kinda training out of a cereal box. She’s a born thief! She’s busting into the tightest joint in the world and doing it in style. She’s loving it, admit it! She stole to survive when she was a child, Storm replies. She was proud of her skills but learned it was a life without honor. Why does Nightshade do this?

She was born uptown, the other woman replies. Dirt-poor. Dad skipped out early. Mama was dead weight. She was alone. Everyone said she was heading for the gutter. But she had brains and used them to claw her way out. Whatever she needed she took. Guess they ain’t so different? Hmm?

If she believes that, she hasn’t been listening to a word! Storm begins to hiss, when suddenly she is discovered by two SHIELD agents. She silently curses Nightshade for bringing her to this, then blasts the two men. They are unconscious but they’ll live, she announces. Great, Nightshade comments. Perhaps she can bring them some chicken soup in the sick bay.

Storm enters the room – the cybernetics lab. Nightshade informs her what she wants is dead ahead – a helmet. What is this device? Storm asks. Later, she is told, but it’s a weapon.

As Storm lifts the helmet, a motion sensor goes off. Nightshade orders her to shake her tail-feather, and she is chased by SHIELD agents.


It’s a long hard chase but finally she returns alone to Nightshade’s dockside warehouse. A cold rain begins to fall. Storm reluctantly hands Nightshade the helmet. Nightshade tells her she is the business and warns her the control collar is on again, so no more super, dig?

She turns to Jean, ordering her to listen carefully. This helmet is a mnemonic adaptive transmitter. SHIELD scans memory patterns from their agents and uploads them into the Life Model Decoy robots. This gives the IMD’s years of experience in a heartbeat. Clever, huh?

She puts the helmet on Jean’s head. She’s gonna scan Misty and Colleen’s memories. Skip the high school traumas – all she wants is the years they spent learning how to fight. She is one piece of… Jean begins. Nightshade tells her to stow it. And if she tries to psi-stun her when her collar is off, Misty flexes her finger…

Slowly, carefully Jean swims through the myriad streams of consciousness that form the pasts of Misty Knight and Colleen Wing. She witnesses the long years of dedication to the martial arts. The sacrifices made, the pain endured… the sweat, the bruises, the triumphs. She sees them all. And when she does, Nightshade transfers the data from the helmet into her “babies” which break out of their boxes, her new generation of cybernauts.

Their older brother had plenty of muscle, Nightshade explains, but that didn’t help them against superheroes. Then she realized what they were missing. Skill. Now these boys have all the fighting experience of two martial arts experts in their heads, and ladies, they are open for business! Time for a field test. Thanks for volunteering, girls! She’ll give Misty her arm back to make this a fair fight. She wouldn’t know fair, if it walked up and kicked her in the butt, Misty snarls.

Suddenly they hear lightning. What was that? Nightshade asks. That was her, Storm smirks. Lighting hits the roof. Storm explains that as she returned she started a very small thunderstorm only above this building. SHIELD is searching for a woman who can control the weather. She thinks this should draw their attention.

Well, ain’t she the smart cookie, Nightshade grudgingly admits. But all they’re gonna find is one broken warehouse and four dead women. Waste ‘em, boys, she commands her cybernaut and bolts.

Jean orders Storm to get after her. They’ll cover her back. Colleen warns Jean that, without her powers she is no match for those creeps. Guess again, Jean replies as she kicks a Cybernaut’s head off, ‘cause starting tonight she is a Daughter of the Dragon! She absorbed their fighting skills like the Cybernauts and she plans to use them.

As the women begin to fight, Colleen wishes Danny and Luke were here. She hears that, Misty agrees, but she has an Iron Fist all of her own! Jean discovers that scrapping on the physical level is a rush.

Nightshade runs to her escape boat, figuring that she still has the helmet and can start over any time she wants and when she does Storm is gonna regret the day she ever crossed--

That moment, a very angry Storm tackles her from behind, telling her she better pray her friends survive the night or she will make her suffer! In the attack, Nightshade loses the helmet which tumbles into the water. Ticked off, Nightshade begins to fight Storm. She has some moves, she tells the mutant, but shame, she can’t see the truth. She tries a dropkick, telling Storm they are both outlaws marked from the day they were born. They are sisters with powers. They don’t like that.

Storm kicks Nightshade’s gun out of her hand. If the world sees Nightshade as a threat it’s because she has given it good reason and she is not her sister!

True that, Nightshade retorts as Storm hits her. In Harlem they learn how to take a punch. She kcks back. Storm thinks she’s something, huh? Big shot African goddess, slumming it with the common folk. Bet they look real crude to Storm!

Storm fends her off as she snarls she grew up in the alleys of Cairo. She knows what a slum looks like. She was taught how to lie and steal and fight. She walked the same path Nigtshade has taken but was shown a better path. Her strike hits home. A young man of great honor entered her life. She strikes again. His sense of duty inspired her, even though it finally pulled them apart. He also taught her this. With this blow Nightshade stays down. Whoo, she mutters, maybe Storm got some Harlem in her after all. True that, Storm replies.

Back in the warehouse, things are getting dangerous. The cybernauts have the ladies’ fighting skills and unlike them they don’t get tired. Colleen successfully decapitates one but is hit in the back of the head by another and goes down. It’s only Misty and Jean against all the cybernauts who surround them.

Jean figures she could send a telekinetic pulse to destroy the cybernauts. The control collar will kill her, but at least Misty and Colleen will be saved. She wishes Scott goodbye but before she has to do it Storm flies in, having finally removed the collar with her lockpicks. She uses her control over the winds to hurl the robots into the water.

Soon the ladies are freed. Jean cannot find any telepathic trail of Nightshade. Too bad, Colleen was looking forward to slicing off her Minnie Mouse hairdo. SHIELD will be here soon, Misty states and promises they’ll explain why Ororo invaded the Helicarrier. Storm refuses. That would raise too many questions about the X-Men and expose Jean’s identity to the authorities. They mustn’t tell them.

Forget her identity! Jean protests. Storm is in serious trouble here! She has made her decision, the weather goddess insists. She does not want to end up on SHIELD’s most wanted list, Jean warns her. She means she will be branded as a thief? Chased by the police? Storm asks with a sad smile. It will hardly be the first time.

On Starcore One its designer Dr Peter Corbeau is running for his life and the life of his world. He tries to send a warning but his foes laugh cruelly and shake Starcore One like a toy. He tries to keep moving to reach his cabin. In there, he has created a makeshift Cerebro helmet based on Xavier’s design though he never tried it out. Praying for it to work, he puts it on and tries to call Charles Xavier. They need him! The whole world needs him! They’re coming!

They are not coming, a voice behind him corrects him. They are here!

In the X-Men’s home professor X supervises a Danger Room session with only the male members present. Wolverine asks Cyclops how come Storm got to go partying with Jean tonight. She flew the space mountain run in twelve seconds without a scratch, Scott replies. Xavier said she earned a day off. He’s sure though she’ll bring Wolverine a doggie bag…

That moment, Corbeau’s message overwhelms Xavier. He cancels the session and announces they have a crisis.

And on Starcore One, three strange metallic beings are holding the crew prisoner, marveling at how easily humans break. The tallest one announces that Corbeau is the best. It made this place. He’s peeked into its little head and there is something even better. A big busy world not far away, but the right size for the Knights of Hykon!

Characters Involved: 

Banshee, Colossus, Cyclops, Nightcrawler, Storm, Wolverine (all X-Men)

Professor X

Phoenix II

Misty Knight, Colleen Wing (Daughters of the Dragon)

Dr Peter Corbeau


Knights of Hykon

SHIELD agents

Story Notes: 

On page three Colleen’s and Jean’s speech bubbles are exchanged.

On page 18-19, the artist clearly draws Jean (and she is colored that way as well) when it’s supposed to be Colleen.

Jean and Scott argued over her behavior in Attilan in issue #2.

Danny is Daniel Rand aka Iron Fist.

Ororo refers to the Black Panther when talking about the young man in her past.

Issue Information: 
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