X-Calibre #2

Issue Date: 
April 1995
Story Title: 

Warren Ellis (writer), Roger Cruz, Renato Arlem, Carlos Mota, Eddie Wagner (pencilers), Harry Condelario, Tom Wegrzyn, Phillip Moy (inkers), Richard Starkings / Comicraft (letters), Joe Rosas / Digital Chameleon (colors), Suzanne Gaffney (editor), Bob Harras (editor in chief)

Brief Description: 

Carrying the refugees and Nightcrawler towards Antarctica, the Excalibur submarine is having troubles. A power surge forces the submarine to go afloat. Problem is, the doors to the cargo bay won‘t open and the refugees are suffocating. A nearby freighter comes to help and gets the doors open with a torch, only Nightcrawler is no longer in the cargo bay. He teleported to safety when the ship reaches the surface and decides to stay hidden in the shadows. The captains agree that the refugees must switch boats in order to get to Avalon. But Callisto, the freighter’s captain, has other things in mind. She leads the refugees into her ship’s ballast tanks, claiming that they are scan shielded, yet once the hatches are sealed, she dumps the refugees into the Atlantic, killing all of them. Kurt gets revenge by killing Callisto’s crew one by one, and finally faces herself in a swordfight. Suddenly an aircraft shows up, it’s Mystique coming to Kurt’s rescue as she is holding a gun to Callisto’s head. A second jet stays hidden in the clouds. Aboard are the Pale Riders who receive new order from Apocalypse : they are to kill everyone in Avalon once they have followed the Darkholmes there. Getting annoyed by Danielle constantly cutting up Dead Man Wade, Damask kills her and has to admit that it gave her a certain pleasure. Back in New York, the Madri arrive at the Ghost Dance, and kill all of the Infernal Gallop members who are still there on Apocalypse’s order, including John Proudstar. In Avalon, Destiny is shocked by her precognitive vision of Avalon’s citizens burning in a fire.

Full Summary: 

In Destiny’s vision, is Avalon is in flames and people dying everywhere. The vision was triggered by touching the newly arrived Switchback, and once she lets op the vision stops. Destiny sinks to the ground and Cain catches her.
Over in Manhattan, the Madri are attacking the Ghost Dance. The inhabitants fight back but get overpowered. Proudstar, firing with guns in hand, tells the Madri that the Ghost Dance and the people they helped to smuggle to Avalon will never be forgotten. Before Proudstar can fully finish his sentence he is shot from behind for his actions against Apocalypse’s rule.
Meanwhile, a thousand miles southeast of New York, the Excalibur submarine is on his way to Antarctica, carrying a hundred refugees and Nightcrawler. However the refugees are choking to death after the air conditioning unit has blown up. Kurt uses a com link to speak with Newell, the captain of the sub, only to learn that the ship’s stealth arrays took a power surge. The submarine resurfaces, hoping that they are beyond american detection range, yet when they break air the crew discovers that the surge is keeping the cargo bay doors closed and the refugees are still trapped and dying. The Excalibur is forced to send out a flare for an incoming ship.
A freighter arrives and brings a torch to cut through the doors. Callisto, the freighter’s captain, makes a deal with Newell to take the refugees to Avalon as the doors finally get opened and most of the refugees are still alive, yet Nightcrawler is nowhere to be found. Turns out, Kurt selfishly ported himself out to safety, although he hated leaving the others behind, he could not gather the strength to teleport anyone else with him.
Above in the skies is the craft of the Pale Riders, hidden in the clouds. While Damask is bored waiting for the ships to move, Danielle is having fun with Dead Man Wade by playing the “disappearing graffiti trick“ with razors and Wade’s healing factor. Apocalypse sends them a message of new orders. Instead of simply following Nightcrawler to learn the location of Avalon, they are now told to kill everyone living there. Apocalypse also informs them that he sends a secondary expedition to follow them. After the transmission ends, Damask hears Wade scream. She gets annoyed that Dani is still cutting at Wade and finally having enough of it, kills her. Wade curiously asks why there is so much blood and why Dani is no longer moving.
Back at the ships, the refugees transfer over to Callisto’s ship. Newell still doesn’t like it, but he knows he has no other choice, after all he will be lucky if they can restore partial power on the submarine and get back safely. The Excalibur leaves as the refugees are put in the ballast tanks, which Callisto claims are scan shielded. After the crew sealed the tank hatch tight and got up top, Kurt exits the shadows he was hiding in. His instinct told him that it was safer to remain hidden. Suddenly he hears screams from the tanks. Kurt hurries to open the hatch but it is already too late. The ballast tanks open directly into the atlantic and Callisto has all of the refugees into the ocean where they die of cold shock within seconds.
The crew take some time to relax and celebrate “another job well done“, they fail to notice that their ship drifts into the Atrocity Zones, an area in the Atlantic where Apocalypse’s forces dump the millions of dead bodies from the pens and the cullings. The props get clogged with bodies so the ship stops, opting not to shatter the blades on the bodies. Callisto gets angry and shoots the crewmen who was manning the helm, as they are now stuck for several hours till the tide changes. Kurt, taking advantage of this time, kills crewmember after crewmember. The only one left is Callisto. She and Kurt have a standoff as Mystique finally shows up, hanging on a ladder from her aircraft. Pointing her gun’s to Callisto’s head, she tells her to leave her son alone.

Characters Involved: 



Cain Marko

Captain Walt Newell

John Proudstar

Damask, Danielle Moonstar, Dead Man Wade (all Pale Riders)


the Madri

Story Notes: 

In the main Marvel Universe, Walter Newell is the reserve Avenger called Stingray.
One of the refugees aboard the submarine is wearing a T-shirt with a picture of Wolverine on it, however not as he looks in the Age of Apocalypse, but his brown and orange costume from the main Marvel Universe.

Issue Information: 
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