X-Men (4th series) #4

Issue Date: 
October 2013
Story Title: 

Brian Wood (Writer), David Lopez (Penciler), Cam Smith with Norman Lee (Inkers), Cris Peter (Colorist), VC’s Joe Caramagna (Letterer), Terry Dodgson and Rachel Dodgson (Cover), Jennifer M. Smith (Assistant Editor), Jeanine Schaefer (Editor), Nick Lowe (X-Men Group Editor), Axel Alonso (Editor in Chief), Joe Quesada (Chief Creative Officer), Dan Buckley (Publisher), Alan Fine (Executive Producer)

Brief Description: 

Logan, Jubilee and Shogo travel around LA to all the places Jubilee inhabited as a child. They go to Santa Monica Beach and then to her old house. Afterwards, they travel to the mall where Jubilee lived after her parents died. She reminisces about her parents and the day the X-Men appeared in the mall and how she followed them back home. She asks Logan if he thinks she will make a good parent and he tells her he doesn’t know anyone more kind and caring than her. She is worried about the life Shogo will lead but Logan reassures her he will be fine. Later on, as they chill out at the Four Seasons, Logan rings up a realtor and puts in an offer on Jubilee’s old house, which is for sale. Whilst she had told him earlier she didn’t want it, he is secretly buying it for her in case she changes her mind in the future. Elsewhere, Storm and her team of X-Men are dealing with a plane that has one of its engines on fire. Whilst Rogue, Psylocke and Kitty formulate a plan, Rachel and Storm get into an argument about the leadership of the team and the previous mission in which they saved Karima Shapandar. Rachel is angry that Storm assumes she is leader of the team and that she was willing to kill Karima to make sure Arkea died. Storm says she made a tactical decision but thankfully everything worked out for the best. However, if she was in the same situation with the same knowledge she had back then, she would make the same call. On the top of the Blackbird, Rogue uses some of Psylocke’s power and creates a grapple line to the passenger plane. She attaches it to one of the wings and then makes her way to the other. After attaching the line to the other wing, she fires the line back at the plane. However, she accidentally stabs the Blackbird’s hull with it, causing the plane to lose air pressure inside. As the Blackbird drops lower, an explosion on the passenger jet causes Rogue to fall off. Thankfully, Storm saves her and the team continues to land the passenger jet.

Full Summary: 

(Santa Monica Beach, California)

Wolverine, Jubilee and Shogo are at the beach. Shogo happily prods at the sand with a small plastic spade as Jubilee sits under a beach umbrella. Jubilee tells Logan, who is standing a little way off, that she was Shogo’s age when she first came here. Logan tells her it’s a nice spot to grow up in. She says that she’d come here for seven hours a day then catch the bus back to Beverly Hills for supper. That was her summer. She didn’t have to stress about UV rays back then. Even with her lightbenders, she’ll never be able to enjoy the sun like she used to. She feels sorry for Shogo, as it’s going to limit his fun in the sun. Logan tells her Shogo will have a different childhood, an unconventional one. It happens and kids thrive. He did and so did she. As Jubilee applies sunscreen to Shogo’s head, she tells Logan she knows and thanks him for making the trip with her.

Logan asks her what the point of being in charge is if you can’t bail out on training to hang out with an old pal. Jubilee tells him she means it; she’s a California girl and always will be. She says Shogo is so little but he’ll remember it and it will become part of him too.

(Sierra Nevada Mountain Range, Northern California)

A plane flies through the sky, with fire and smoke pouring from one of its engines. The pilot contacts one of the ground towers and asks for emergency landing. After no response, the pilot radios through to the tower again and announces it is a mayday. Storm’s voice comes over the radio and tells the pilot that the tower is offline due to forest fires in the area. She tells them that she is with the X-Men and they have them.

The Blackbird jet, with Psylocke and Rachel piloting, flies above the plane. Psylocke tells Rachel this is why they keep the Blackbird’s radio tuned to the emergency bands. She confirms that all the nearby towers are reporting outages or delays due to the forest fire and that the plane has nowhere to land. Rachel tells her no worries as “Storm and the X-Men” are there. Then telepathically she says “right boss?” to Storm. Storm tells Psylocke to go to Kitty and Rogue and to come up with ideas. She then tells Rachel to come talk to her.

As Rachel heads off down the plane, Rogue quietly tells everyone there isn’t anything to see, it’s just mom and dad fighting. Storm tells Rachel she doesn’t have to be a telepath to know something is bothering her. They should talk now because she isn’t leading anyone into a mission with bad blood. Rachel tells her that’s just it and asks who made her leader of the X-Men. Then telepathically Rachel says it’s not Karima Shapandar, because she didn’t die as she stopped Storm.

Storm tells Rachel to stay out of her head and, if she wants to accuse her, then do it openly so the others who are eavesdropping can hear. Storm says that, with the Karima thing, she considered making a call. A tactical decision and if she felt it was the way to go she would have done it. She thanks the goddesses that she didn’t have to. She then tells Rachel not to flatter herself as she could have stopped her if she tried. Rachel yells and asks if it’s because she’s leader of the X-Men. Storm calmly replies that someone has to be.

Logan, driving a car, pulls up to a house in Beverly Hills. Jubilee yells that that’s it and Logan says it’s a nice house. Jubilee says her bedroom was upstairs and points to a set of windows. She tells him it fells weird now thinking that strangers live there. She loved that house. Some of her friends had much bigger places with pools, nannies and caretakers. Her parents were pretty rich but they didn’t show off like that. Logan says they must have spent it on something. She replies that it was gymnastic lessons. She did it every morning at 6 am before school. She was a classic over achieving tiger-baby. She stayed pretty grounded but she knew how to goof off when need be. Then her parents lost a big chunk of money in the stock market and then they died. Jubilee looks forlorn as she tells Logan. He says it never gets easier and she replies that it was a long time ago.

Logan then points to a sign on the lawn and asks if she knew the house was for sale. He asks her if she wants it. Jubilee sarcastically scoffs at the prospect but Logan tells her he’s serious. The Jean Grey School always invests when he can and something tells him upscale Southern Californian real estate is a good bet. Jubilee tells him to save his money as she won’t be moving back into her old bedroom. She suggests they grab lunch as she knows a great spot. As they drive off, Logan notes the phone number on the sales sign of the house.

In the Blackbird, Kitty tells Storm and Rachel that the plane is starting to lose altitude and asks if they want the suggestions they came up with. Rogue says they pulled the passenger manifest of the plane and it is full up. Plus its cargo limit is maxed out so it definitely needs that engine. She explains that commercial jets often take on freight shipments separate from the passengers and their gear. It’s not normally a big deal to max out, provided that everything is in good maintenance. Rachel telepathically contacts Psylocke and says that she and Storm will take over the controls. Psylocke asks if they are cool and Rachel replies that it depends on Storm. Storm asks what the plan is and Kitty tells her it’s crazy. It involves grappling hooks and a ridiculous amount of brute force. So she thought she would show them instead of trying to explain.

Psylocke climbs out onto the top of the Blackbird and attaches a metal hook onto it. Both she and Kitty are wearing breathing masks due to the altitude. Kitty asks if she’s sure she can handle it to which Psylocke replies “completely.” She explains she has been spending a lot of time in the danger room in a medieval warfare simulation. There’s a virtual quartermaster, a sort of janissary type, who is hot to death and he has been teaching her a few things. Kitty awkwardly acknowledges Psylocke’s comment. Psylocke creates a telekinetic crossbow and fires it at the plane, creating a purple TK grappling line.

Rogue comes up top and tells Psylocke to hook her up. Psylocke tells her just this once but to leave the telepathy to the natives. She then touches Rogue’s hand to give her some power. As Rogue adjusts to the power, she tells Psylocke she is a sweetheart. Kitty informs Rogue that the only action Psylocke is getting is from a danger room simulation, so it’s no wonder she is wound so tight. Psylocke sighs and reminds them both she is standing right there. Rogue smiles and says, if this is what a ninja-telepathic-assassin feels like, then she could get used to it. Kitty asks if they are ready and Rogue replies she was born ready.

Inside the jet, Storm tells Rachel to tell the others to take it easy on the Blackbird. They are the rescue here and it won’t do any good to compromise the structural integrity. Rachel tells her to trust the team. Rogue says that she hopes the two in the cockpit can stop fighting long enough to keep the line stable. With that, she grapples onto the TK line and begins to make her way along it to the endangered plane. She yells to Psylocke that she will add gymnast to her list of skills as this feels amazing. Psylocke telepathically tells her not to overdo it but Rogue asks what the point of borrowing powers is if she can’t go all out.

In a fast food court in a mall, Logan looks around him and tells Jubilee she can call him a snob but this isn’t what he had in mind. As they sit at a table, Jubilee tells him to be quiet, as this place had actually improved since she used to go there. He looks around again and comments on the fact this is the place with the M-squad and the girls went on the infamous night out. Logan says that Storm told him they went to a strip club. Jubilee scoffs then smiles and says this place really had it all. She tells Logan she thinks the “Hotbods” joint is now an Apple store. She says when the M-Squad had her pinned down and then she saw Storm, Psylocke, Rogue and Dazzler she thought they were total rock stars. So of course she followed them to Australia.

Logan tells her that now she’s here with Shogo. Jubilee says she knows she has dragged them all over town but these spots were important to her. They live inside her for sure but at the end of the day this isn’t home anymore. It’s with the X-Men, wherever that may be. Logan tells her the restless little girl he met at the base camp is kind of hard to reconcile with the young woman in front of him right now. She tells him she’s grown up but not too much; she still loves fast, food court noodles.

Jubilee then asks him if he thinks she’s making a mistake and if she’s too young to be a mom. Logan asks her since when has the expectation of society meant anything to them, as they are mutants. He tells her she’s one of the smartest people he knows. Despite all the stuff she’s been through, she is also one of the most caring. The best day of Shogo’s life will be the day she rescued him. She smiles and picks Shogo up and says just like the day the X-Men rescued her. Logan tells her it’s exactly like that.

In the Blackbird, Storm comments that Rachel does consider them a team. Rachel replies that she thinks they have potential. But not if they are all thinking, in the back of their heads, that their glorious leader will frag them if it came to it. Storm asks Rachel if she can see that the Arkea situation was unique. Karima was considered brain dead and Beast had her in stasis for months. She then asks Rachel what she would have done. Rachel replies that she would have done everything before she’d consider sacrificing her. As it turns out, she would have been right too.

Rachel asks Storm what she imagines the others are thinking when they see Karima around the school. Storm evades the question and asks her how John Sublime is doing. Rachel is stunned and then angrily tells Storm that was a low blow. Storm says that they live in a world of grey areas and imperfections. She agrees they have the potential to be a team but not if they hold each other to fundamentalist extremes.

Suddenly, Rogue comes through over the radio and asks if they are seeing this. She is on the wing of the jet plane, holding a reel of TK line. Psylocke is on the top of the Blackbird taking the strain of the line. Rogue radios Kitty and asks if the wings hold the fuel. She replies they usually do but the pilots would have pumped the fuel into the fuselage to control the fire. After hearing that, Rogue stabs the wing with a TK hook, securing the TK line to it. Trailing more line behind her, she makes her way across the wing to the fuselage of the plane.

Up on the Blackbird, Psylocke asks Rogue if she knows she is carrying the psychic load of what she is doing down there. She tells Rogue that she has the power but not the training, so be a little judicious with the TK she generates. Rogue apologizes and tells her it’s too much fun sometimes. With that, she fist bumps with a girl on the other side of a plane window.

Rachel tells Storm she can’t and won’t let the Karima thing go, so she doesn’t know what it means for the future. Storm says she doesn’t either because, in the exact same situation, knowing what she knew then, she’d do it all the same. On the plane down below, Rogue informs Storm and Rachel she will be shooting the Blackbird. Kitty asks Psylocke if that was the plan and Psylocke tells Rachel that, if Rogue throws any more TK out, she will need help. Storm tells Rachel to help her. They are not Storm and the X-Men. They are the X-Men so let’s get this done and they can talk later.

Rogue is now standing on the other wing of the wing, which is pouring smoke and flames from one of its engines. She stabs it with a TK hook and then creates a TK crossbow. She fires it at the undercarriage of the Blackbird, causing it to lurch around. In the cockpit, Storm shouts they have a hull breach and they are losing pressure. She tells everyone to hold on as they are going to have to get below 10,000 feet. Rachel links with Psylocke to help take the stress of the TK being generated.

Storm radios through to the plane and informs them that they have them secure but she needs them to dump their fuel, luggage and whatever else they can as they need them as light as possible. The pilot radios back and tells them they will comply. Rogue tells the others she is headed back now and Psylocke tells her not to use any more TK. However, before Rogue can do anything, an explosion on the engine blows her off the wing. Storm yells for Rachel to open the Blackbird’s bay door. Rogue is blown upwards and Kitty tries to reach for her but she can’t grab her.

(the Four Seasons, Los Angeles)

As Jubilee and Shogo sleep under an umbrella next to the outdoor pool, Logan makes a phone call. He is speaking to the realtor and he asks about the property they saw earlier. He then offers them 10% over asking price to ensure a quick sale. He will pay by cash and someone from JGS holdings will contact them in the morning. Logan sits down near Jubilee and Shogo crawls towards him. Logan picks him up and says that one day she might feel differently and it’ll be there for her. And if not at least they are keeping it in the family.

Back at the planes, Rogue plummets to the ground as the Blackbird carefully handles the passenger jet. As the Blackbird bay door open, Storm flies out and hurtles down to Rogue. She grabs Rogue, who was sure she was going to die. Rachel radios through and asks if Storm got her. Storm says she has and then tells her to keep supporting Psylocke. The Blackbird’s automated systems will set them down somewhere just west of Lake McClure. She congratulates her team on a job well done.

Back in LA, Jubilee and Shogo pose for a picture on the beachfront.

Characters Involved: 

Jubilee, Psylocke, Rachel Grey, Rogue, Shadowcat, Storm, Wolverine (all X-Men)

Shogo Lee

Girl on plane

Pilot (voice)

Story Notes: 

Jubilee was turned into a vampire during X-Men (3rd series). The lightbender to which she refers is an amulet that bends UV rays around the wearer. During the Curse of the Mutants event, vampires were wearing them to let them walk in the sunshine without being killed.

It’s interesting that Rachel has issues with Storm assuming leadership of the team. Storm has the most leadership experience of anyone on the team and she and Rachel have worked together numerous times before.

Arkea possessed Karima Shapandar in X-Men (4th series) #1. Storm was going to destroy Karima to take out Arkea in #3 but thankfully Karima regained control just in time.

The M-squad and the girls’ night out occurred in Uncanny X-Men (1st series) #244. It was the first appearance of Jubilee and she was living in the mall. The “girls” were Storm, Psylocke, Rogue and Dazzler, who had teleported there by Gateway for a night out as they were living in the Australian Outback at the time. When they went back, Jubilee secretly followed them back through the portal before it closed.

Issue Information: 
Written By: