X-Men (4th series) #15

Issue Date: 
August 2014
Story Title: 
(1st story) Bloodline (part 3) (2nd story) Bromo-superior (part 3)

(1st story) Brian Wood (Writer), Matt Buffagni (Artist), Paul Mounts (Colourist), VC’s Joe Caramagna (Letterer), Terry Dodgson and Rachel Dodgson (Cover), Frankie Johnson (Assistant Editor), Daniel Ketchum (Editor), Mike Marts (X-Men Group Editor), Axel Alonso (Editor in Chief), Joe Quesada (Chief Creative Officer), Dan Buckley (Publisher), Alan Fine (Executive Producer)

(2nd series) Brian Wood (Writer), Phil Briones (artist), Matt Milla (Colors), VC’s Joe Caramagna (Letterer), Frankie Johnson (Assistant Editor), Tom Brennan and Jeanine Schaefer (Editor)

Brief Description: 

(1st story)
Kymera tells the X-Men that in her timeline the Future comes into the school, maims Jubilee and takes Shogo. The incident will happen in four hours time. The other X-Men wonder why she hasn’t told them about it so far and she replies that she has been taking steps to ensure things turn out differently. When M tells her she shouldn’t murder people, Storm disagrees and sides with her future daughter. Jubilee and Shogo’s lives are in danger and so any and all options should be open to them. Rachel is impressed with Storm’s attitude and tells her she has been waiting for this Storm to lead them into battle. In the lab, Beast is working on something to help Primal and Sprite. Jubilee is hanging out with him but seems alarmed when she realizes he intends on injecting them with Arkea. Beast explains that Arkea is dead and he has been using gene manipulation to come up with a way of helping the students. After being given a boost of confidence off Jubilee, he uses his cure. As dawn comes, the X-Men are watching out for the Future. Psylocke finds him in the gardens but he knocks her out and finds Jubilee. The girl won’t give up Shogo and the Future realizes things are turning out like he predicted. He decides to alter his plans and kidnaps Jubilee, leaving Shogo behind. 

(2nd story)
As Hellion takes on the virtual army, Psylocke kills a soldier that was about to take him down. She ends the program and Hellion angrily confronts her. He asks how they are supposed to sit by when their friends are being attacked. They are never given the chance to prove they can be on X-teams. Psylocke explains the soldier she killed was her virtual boyfriend, confusing the boys. In the field, there are no safeties and no medical bay to help them. They have to rely on their friends. She tells them she will overlook their intrusion into her program and they are now on active reserve. As they leave, Psylocke permanently deletes the program.

Full Summary: 

(1st story)
The Jean Grey School is on lockdown and Jubilee is sneaking through the halls with Shogo on her back. A voice suddenly catches her attention and she turns to see the man known as the Future leaning against a wall. He tells her he will take his son now but Jubilee, with tears streaming from her eyes, tells him Shogo is her son, not his. The Future calls “Shogo” an absurd name and tells her he will be given a proper one once he has taken care of her. With that, he pulls a knife out from behind his back and tells her Shogo will never know she existed in time.

Jubilee leaps forward as Shogo activates his force field bubble. With her vampiric teeth showing, she pins the Future against a wall by his throat and hisses at him. He simply grins at her and swipes her away, sending the young girl across the hallway. He tells her he has lived a long time and the truth is that she isn’t scary. He goes to kick her but she grabs his foot, momentarily stopping him. A little way off, Shogo’s bubble bounces along the floor as the Future continues to assault Jubilee. He tells her that Shogo is his, he is his property which she stole off him. As he walks away from an unconscious and bleeding Jubilee, he picks Shogo up and tells her that she and her friends are utterly inferior. He wishes her a nice life as he walks away.

However, it was all a story being told by the future daughter of Storm, Kymera. She explains that it is their future as she knows it but she cannot let it happen. An annoyed Rachel asks when it is supposed to happen and Kymera tells her it’s due to take place in four hours time. Storm briefly recaps Kymera’s story and asks her why she was hiding the information. The young girl points out that not telling them isn’t the same as hiding it. She killed a man so she is taking steps herself. Shogo, in her timeline, is her best friend and what happens here tonight takes him and Jubilee nearly fifteen years to recover from.

Psylocke asks her if it is why she chose not to return to her timeline, to which Kymera tells her absolutely. It is worth it not to properly see her Shogo again, as she will do anything to spare him and his mother that pain. M tells her it is not permissible to execute prisoner on school grounds but Storm disagrees. She continues and says that they all lived through a timeline crisis recently and so are all complicit with tampering with the past or the future. She believes what Kymera is saying and so agrees that any steps are justifiable to stop it from happening. She does not condone murder but, when they are in this grey area, she will trust their intel and protect their own. Kymera tells her that’s all she wants to do. M tells her it is a bold statement and points out the others won’t agree.

Storm tells her she dares them to disagree. The Jubilee they saw in the future is barely recognizable from the girl they all know and love so much. She challenges anyone in the mutant community to stand back and not do anything about it. She then thanks Psylocke for what she said the other day in the hanger; it was what she needed to hear. Psylocke replies that she did it out of love. Rachel tells Storm that if she gets her through this crisis then she will have her back forever; she has been waiting to follow this Storm into battle. Storm asks about the team leader vote but Rachel tells her to screw it, as she would rather just punch something.

In Beast’s lab, Primal and Sprite are still unconscious and being monitored. Beast asks Jubilee, who is watching the two students, if Shogo should be in bed. She replies that he sleeps pretty solidly in her backpack as he listens to her breathing or something. She isn’t letting him out of her sight and she is too wired to sleep. She asks Beast, who is tinkering with some machinery, if he is working on a cure for the students and he replies that he is, of sorts anyway.

He turns around and asks Jubilee if she can share her thoughts on Arkea, which she saw firsthand. Jubilee tells him Arkea is bad news and there is nothing else to say. Beast disagrees as he has been doing some poking around. Seeing that he is sat in front of a petri-dish, Jubilee becomes very alarmed that Arkea is inside it. He tells her to relax, as the sample is brain dead and he is merely doing some gene manipulation. Experimenting with turning things on and off. What’s truly fascinating is that Arkea can self-repair and adapt on the fly, regenerating from nearly nothing. He tells Jubilee his mind turns to his two patients. Primal has suffered terrible damage to his heart and lungs and Sprite has been ravaged by a custom toxin.

Jubilee asks him if he is going to inject them with Arkea and he tells her he is designing a treatment using some of Arkea’s genetic material. It’s going to save their lives and he apologizes for burdening her with the information but he had to tell someone. He asks who she will tell but Jubilee asks if it saves their lives who cares how he did it. He tells her he is not used to feeling helpless and skirting on the edge of his ethics. She tells him to joint he club but being down here with him is making her feel better. He tells her it is the hardened bunker at work but she replies that it is him. He is like a rock or stable force that only wants to protect them. As he injects the students with the Arkea strain, he thanks Jubilee as he needed to hear that.

Afterwards, Kymera and Storm are sat alone in her office. Kymera thanks her and says she didn’t have to sign on to her mission there. She understands it will make things more complicated for Storm. Kymera says she has no ties there and can expend herself with no worries. Storm points out that she does have ties and her presence here may have already altered the timeline. What she knows as history may be different and the Future may have already altered his plans. So maybe they have already won and she won’t have to expend herself. Maybe they will all come out of the crisis in one piece and will have her to thank for it. If not, then it would be an honor to fight alongside her to save the lives of her friends. She will go down with her if that’s what it takes.

As the sun rises, Rachel asks the team to report in. On the roof, Kymera and Storm report that everything is clear, as does M who is walking through the halls. As Psylocke heads into the southern gardens, she will reply in five minutes once she has checked it out. She suddenly spots a figure hunched over doing some gardening. She walks over and tells them they are not authorized to be there. She demands they identify themselves and the man quickly stands up to reveal he is the Future. He throws a dagger towards Psylocke but she easily deflects it with her telekinesis. He tells her he is there for his son and recognizes her as one of the telepathic mutants. He tells her to call for backup but if she wants to take him on alone she can. He is a mere human and should be easy to take down. Even for a fake ninja such as herself. He asks what kind of twisted identity issues make a white girl want to live in a Japanese body.

Psylocke loses her temper and telepathically blasts him, causing him to clutch his head and kneel on the ground. He tells her a human mind can develop a resistance to nearly anything if the body and soul are willing to put the work in. He gets back up and tells her she wasn’t good enough. She lunges at him with her psychic dagger but he swiftly ducks and punches her in the stomach. As Psylocke collapses to the floor, he tells her human or not they all have guts. That punch should have killed her outright, so he is impressed. It’s safe to assume she has a ruptured liver, though, possibly kidneys too. She goes to call for backup but the Future punches her, knocking her out. 

He has done his homework and completed his training. He has already taken out more X-Men than many of the flamboyant super villains, but the fact they killed his inside man gives him pause. The X-Men should not have killed in that manner. He was human and a prisoner. An execution is completely out of character. He must adjust his approach as there is at least one mutant in the building he cannot predict. With that, he takes off his gardeners clothes and walks into the school. 

Jubilee is walking down the corridor, teaching Shogo how to walk. The Future catches up with her and tells her he is grateful for her, as Shogo looks clean and healthy. Jubilee holds her child close to her chest as the man tells her good help is so hard to find. Pointing a gun at her, he tells her not to move. She may survive but the child won’t. Jubilee tells him he would go to all this trouble and then walk away empty handed. She says the X-Men would hunt him down and he has just signed up for a lifetime of watching over his shoulder.

The Future pauses for a minute, thinking about what Jubilee has just said. He had counted on the mutants cutting their losses with the kidnapping, as Shogo was not one of their own. He felt confident he could evade whatever search they put into motion. But they murdered when he expected a rule of law. Jubilee is also defiant when he expected submission. He decides he has made a fatal error and needs to adjust again.

The Future tells her to put the child down but she asks why. He fires the gun, striking her head and causing her to drop Shogo. As the baby bounces along in his bubble, the Future walks over to Jubilee. He picks her up and tells Shogo he will see him soon, he is sure of it.

(2nd story)
As Hellion lays waste to the holographic army Anole yells for him to dial it back and asks what he is trying to prove. Broo turns to Psylocke and asks her the same question. She tells him to hold that thought as she readies a telekinetic bow and arrow. She fires it, hitting a soldier creeping up on Hellion from behind. After “killing” the soldier, Psylocke ends the Danger Room program, much to the relief of Broo. Rockslide seems disappointed but Hellion is angry. He charges over to Psylocke and tells her he understands he broke her stupid program but then asks if she can see how frustrating it is. Some madman is out there targeting the students of the school. All of them are capable of being on an X-team but how can they prove it when they are not given the chance? Psylocke tells him she just killed her boyfriend, which causes all the boys to stare at her in confused silence.

Eventually, Anole asks her to explain and she tells them that the warrior about to kill Hellion was her boyfriend. She assumed her Danger Room boyfriend was the talk of the school, to which Rockslide tells her he assumed it was an urban legend. Hellion thanks her and points out he is just a program and she can just bring him back. She could but is anyone the same when they come back? Broo tells her he believes he has deciphered the point as being a teaching moment. Psylocke explains that in the field there are no Danger Room safeties and no Hank with his billion-dollar lab as backup. If they are lucky, they have friends on their side, as they will do anything to save your life.

She tells Hellion that she will overlook the intrusion because in his own cocky way he was willing to prove he has what it takes to take down the Future. Hellion tells her he was, Primal, Sprite, Jubilee and Shogo are their friends. Psylocke tells all of them they are on mission standby and then orders them to get out of her program space. As the boys quickly leave, Psylocke gets the Danger Room to select the last file. It asks if it should restore and restart but, after a small pause, she tells it to delete all copies and backups. 

Characters Involved: 

(1st story)
Beast, Jubilee, M, Psylocke, Rachel Summers, Storm (all X-Men)
Kymera, Primal, Sprite (all students)

Shogo Lee

The Future

(future timeline)
Shogo Lee
The Future

(2nd story)

Anole, Broo, Hellion, Rockslide (all students)

Story Notes: 

Kymera is the future daughter of Storm who first appeared in the Battle of the Atom crossover.

Kymera killed the X-Men’s prisoner and the Future’s minion last issue.

Primal and Sprite were injured by the Future’s forces in #13.

The team fought the sentient bacteria Arkea in #1-3 and again in #7-12.

It’s odd that Beast would say he is not used to feeling helpless and resorting to Hail Marys. In recent years, he has been shown to turn to or do some morally questionable things in the name of science, such as working with known villains during Endangered Species, wiping out entire worlds in Astonishing X-Men and as part of the Illuminati. Most recently, he retrieved X-Men from the past to teach them a lesson in All-New X-Men.

This is the first time it has been mentioned that Psylocke had a virtual boyfriend.

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