Alberta, Canada, many years ago:
For as far as anyone could remember, being born a Logan had only ever meant one thing: that you’d never be worth a damn. His granddad was hanged when he was 17 for stealing two chickens. He’d already sired three sons. Grandma was stabbed to death in the middle of town in broad daylight on accounts of what townfolk called “her boundless capacity for offensive and unnerving acts.”
His pa, Thomas Logan, was a man known only for his drunkenness and confounding ability to convince comely women to take him into their beds. His ma was such a woman, a blacksmith’s daughter who left for parts unknown as soon as his cord was cut.
To his Pa’s credit, he did take him in after that. By which he means, he let him follow him around and eat whatever scraps he didn’t. Only problem was he’d sometimes forget the boy was there and leave him in places. But somehow he always made it home. It’s like he was part hound, his father would say. That’s how he finally gave him his name: Dog.
One day when Dog comes home, the drunk Thomas shouts at him where he’s been. Weakly, the boy asks if there is anything to eats. He always wants something, Thomas replies. Wants to go to school, wants his own damn bed. Thomas never had none of these things when he was his age. Maybe he thinks he is better than his Pa? Politely, the boy replies he doesn’t. Can he fetch him some more beer? Thomas calls him a filthy little mutt and begins hitting him with his belt.
His Pa worked for the Howletts, who owned a big spread in the Rocky Mountains. Dog had one friend. James, the sickly son of the Howlett family.
James excitedly asks Dog if this is an eagle. Dog corrects him it’s probably a hawk. James’ governess calls him to come home and tells Dog to stick to his own kind.
Even though James had everything and wasn’t beaten, Dog still felt sorry for him. He was so frail and sick; no doubt sure to live a short sad little life. A life without one bit of adventure. Dog on the other hand was gonna live the kind of life they write about in stories.
Later, he climbs into James’ room to tell him it was a hawk.
Over the next couple of years, he sees less and less of James. Especially once there is a girl involved.
Dog grew up fast. Faster than he shoulda. He became more and more his pa’s son. Just never in Thomas’ eyes. He beat him and called him a worthless dog.
And then came the night when everything changed. Turns out one of the girls dad seduced was Elizabeth Howlett. Not only was James not so weak and sickly after all, but he wasn’t really a Howlett. He was just as much a Logan as Dog was, maybe even more so, once he went and killed Pa. He was Dog’s brother, yet he’d grown up soft and pampered - he’d never had to learn what being a Logan meant. James ran away after his mother and Thomas died.
Some day Dog would have to teach him…
The Savage Land, now:
Dog shoots a high-tech rifle at Wolverine that incinerates some trees. How the hell is he here? Wolverine snaps. Good to see him too, Dog retorts, calling him James. Destroying the weapon, Wolverine remarks he disappeared 100 years ago. He thought he was dead.
Just took a little trip, Dog replies. Been exploring like he always wanted. Even brought some presents for his little brother. He hits Wolverine with a mace, explaining it’s the same stuff that lines them bones of his - Admant-something. Least that’s what the purple-skinned fella who sold it to him, said. Stuff’s kinda rare these days but in another thousand years or so you can buy it on street corners.
Wolverine prevents another blow by crossing his claws before the weapon. Costs a little extra to have this done, Dog remarks. Dog presses a button and a blade comes out, cutting Wolverine. He kicks Dog off.
He reminds Dog he ain’t his damn enemy. Just tell him what happened and he’ll do what he can to help. But he’s gotta turn back now, before he does something Wolverine can’t let him walk away from.
Dog lashes out with his weapon. Wolverine dodges the blow and hits him. Just let him know when that happens, Dog remarks and whips out a futuristic mini crossbow. The darts hit Wolverine. Dog explains that it’s the venom of an Atom Bomb Ant. Really antsy critters that live on some plane that ain’t been discovered yet. Venom is so strong it even packs a wallop for folks with fancy healing powers. He’d be surprised what sorta weapons get invented in a few hundred years once Earth starts paying bounties on mutants.
Wolverine pulls out the darts. He wants to play the damn super-villain? Fine. He’s gonna treat him like the damn super-villain. He runs towards Dog.
He still doesn’t get it, Dog scoffs. He heard what Wolverine’s been up to these last hundred years. All the people he done killed. He bets he doesn’t even know how many. He drops some small balls which create an energy field around Wolverine. Here he has the nerve to call him the villain. He tells Wolverine to open his eyes. He’s the hero in this here story!
Alberta, Canada, many years ago:
After Dog’s pa was killed, he was on his own. He hooked up with a bunch of wild dogs, trying to feed them. But he realized they wouldn’t share. He didn’t have no damn kind.
He becomes a trapper. Drinking, he listens to two men talking about a wolfman, hairy little fella who runs with wolves, and his big bone claws. Where did he see him? Dog asks. Violently, he threatens the men until he is thrown out. Bitterly, he thinks that his brother is the wild man of the Yukon and lying in the dirt with wolves and Dog is still being made to feel like an animal.
He calls out for James, tracking him all over Canada. He almost has him at a quarry. He finds something in the mine but not what he expects…
Dog hits Wolverine again. He grabs the pendant hanging from his neck. They are called Time Diamonds. Whole damn mine was full of them. All he did was pick up this one here and the next thing he knew he found himself in the future. It’s got a mind of its own, this here stone. Most times all he’s gotta do is think on something for a spell and it takes him wherever and whenever he wants to go, quick as greased lightning. Other times… he reckons it takes him where it figures he needs to be.
He hangs a metallic-looking line from a tree. Just a couple a good ol’ Logan boys fighting with space weapons and mutant claws in a land of dinosaurs. They’re a long way from the woods around Howlett house, ain’t they?
Wolverine tells him to wake up. He’s not his father. He’s not the enemy!
He misses that old place, Dog continues. He misses his own time. Meat don’t taste right to him here. Air don’t smell right. Ain’t had a decent beer in a hundred years.
Wolverine attacks. Dog hits him with his weapon, explaining he is only here to teach him a lesson. One he shoulda learned a long time ago. One that might still save those kids of his.
When he hears the word “kids,” Wolverine attacks with his claws. He tells him to stay away from his students, or he swears, brother or no brother -- He believes him, Dog grins.
Dog tells him he’s seen all the futures there is to see. Seen all the different ways that school of his can play itself out unless it’s stopped… and none of ‘em pretty. Some of those kids are gonna die right horrible deaths. And they might be the lucky ones…
The line grabs Wolverine and binds him.
Dog continues: Because deep down, he’s still the same spoiled rotten rich kid who grew up in the house on the hill. He never had to work for nothing. He never learned the kinda lessons Dog did.
“Don’t do this,” Wolverine pleads. It’s already done, Dog replies. He wants to teach those kids to survive. You gotta give them the proper motivation. That’s one the lessons James never learned from their pa.
Dog opens a time portal to bring through treats from different times, savages, cowboys, futuristic robots. Dinosaurs were a good start, but he can do a helluva lot better. He’s a better man than James Howlett, in every possible damn way! He’s about to show him. Wolverine isn’t the teachers these kids need. He is. And Dog Logan’s class starts now!