X-Men (4th series) #8

Issue Date: 
February 2014
Story Title: 
Muertas part 2

Brian Wood (Writer), Terry Dodgson and Barry Kitson (Pencilers), Rachel Dodgson, Barry Kitson, Hanna, Kesel and Pallot (Inkers), Jason Keith (Colourist), VC’s Joe Caramagna (Letterer), Terry Dodgson and Rachel Dodgson (Cover), Tom Brennan (Associate 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: 

Typhoid Mary breaks into the Jean Grey School and steals all the information relating to Arkea and even takes a live sample with her. Psylocke gives chase but Mary gets away. Nevertheless, Psylocke decides to track her down and see where she is going. Rachel informs John Sublime of the theft, unaware that John is actually meeting with Ana Cortes, who brags how she has stolen Arkea. She wants to upgrade herself with the tech but John warns her off doing so, as Arkea is the most dangerous thing alive. Mary enters and gives Ana the Arkea sample. After a short talk, Ana opens the package containing Arkea and John attempts to stop her. However, he soon discovers that sample is dead and is amazed that Arkea can be killed. Ana guesses he knows where more samples of Arkea are but he won’t tell, so Mary uses her telepathy to rip it from his mind, leaving him in a vegetative state. After the two women leave, Psylocke, who had followed Mary, enters and rescues John. Ana and Mary travel to Norway where they come across Amora the Enchantress, who explains she was stripped of her powers and exiled by Thor. She also tells them a meteorite landed a few months ago. After Ana offers her deal, Amora helps them in their quest, in return for which she will be upgraded with the Arkea tech. The three find the meteorite, at which point Mary decides she also wants to be upgraded as well. The Sisterhood take the meteorite and continues on. Elsewhere at the school, Jubilee is talking with Mercury about her romantic problems at school when to her surprise Bling! kisses her on the lips. Before the stunned Jubilee can react, M calls her away on a mission.

Full Summary: 

(Jean Grey School)

It’s night time at the school and everyone is asleep. However, a small, flying, security drone races down a corridor, sounding an alarm and informing everyone that there is an intruder. The intruder is Typhoid Mary, who is trying to conceal herself amongst the shadows. Once she realizes she has been spotted, she makes a bid for escape.

Psylocke is woken by the alarm and immediately grabs her katana. As she leaves her room, Rachel makes telepathic contact with her to make sure she is aware of what is going on. Rachel asks who the intruder is and Psylocke tells her to give her thirty seconds.

In the security room, Rachel is operating the schools cameras and security defenses. She informs Psylocke that she has about fifteen seconds, as the intruder is headed for the creekside exit. Rachel tells her the security indicates she was in records and then the mainframe room. As Psylocke runs down the corridor in her nightwear, she tells Rachel to wake some of the kids like Primal, Oya and Surge who are near the creekside exit. Rachel tells her no, as they don’t know who they are up against and then says she has eight seconds before the intruder reaches the security exit and bugs out.

Rachel tells her she is on her own and Psylocke informs her she isn’t exactly dressed for the outdoor and asks Rachel to drop a cache for her. Rachel presses some buttons on a holographic display and smirks as she says everyone laughed at her for sleeping in her uniform. She tells Psylocke that a bot will resupply her thirty meters out of the exit. She asks Psylocke if there is anything else she can do but Psylocke replies that she can stay off the air, as she has work to do.

Psylocke finds Typhoid Mary at a security door and yells for her to stop. Mary spins around and swears at being caught. The security door opens and she runs out onto the lawn. Over the radio she tells Lady Deathstrike she has been busted. Deathstrike asks if she can escape and Mary informs her she already has but was pinged by a telepath on the way out. She says it may get traced back to her but Deathstrike says it was worth it and she wants Mary back ASAP.

Psylocke races after Mary but she gets away. A flying bot drops a uniform down to Psylocke and she puts it on quickly. Rachel asks for an update and Psylocke tells her she is getting dressed and she’s pretty sure Quentin Quire is taking pictures from a window. Rachel asks about the intruder and Psylocke says she is locked on and she won’t escape. Rachel tells her they need to know who she is as she has taken the box. Psylocke asks if she means the files and Rachel tells her she took all of it. Psylocke tells her to stop tracking Mary on her end. That means no Homeland Security taps, travel flags and no Sabra. She will track Mary all the way to her boss. She then tells Rachel she needs to call John Sublime. Rachel says she knows and Psylocke adds that if Rachel doesn’t call him then she will. She also needs to loop Storm in on everything.

As she says that, Storm walks into the security room. She points out they have had two attacks in three days and she doesn’t like the coincidence. She asks Rachel if she knows what they were after. Rachel corrects Storm and says it wasn’t “they” but rather “she.” And she took the box. All the files, evidence and medical data they have on Karima and Shogo. Rachel then says that she even took Arkea. She knew where to look. Storm suddenly realizes something and asks what Rachel means my all the files. Rachel cuts her off and confirms that she even took the living sample.

(Amtrak, the Northeast Corridor)

Typhoid Mary sits on board a train and looks inside the box she has stolen. She takes out a sealed bio-hazard plastic bag that contains a circuit board and smiles.

(Cortes Compound, Colombia)

Rachel phones Sublime and asks if she caught him at a bad time. He asks what he can do for her and she informs him that the Arkea sample has been stolen. She knows they promised it would be safe but it’s not. Psylocke is in pursuit but they are going to give the thief some space to see where she leads them. But right now it’s out there and they don’t know who has it. John tells her it’s bad and asks that she keeps him updated on the situation. Rachel asks if everything is okay, as he seems a bit pre-occupied. He says he is a bit and asks her to call him later.

He hangs up and turns back to Ana Cortes, who is sitting a in a chair opposite him holding a sheathed sword. John takes a swig of drink and asks her if she knows what she has done. He calls her Cortes but she corrects him and says she is Yuriko. He brushes it off and tells her Arkea is not a toy. She walks over to him and says that, if it amuses her then, it’s a toy. Based on what she knows, she will get a lot of pleasure out of the Arkea body modification. John tells her Arkea isn’t an upgrade. She is alive and has a consciousness. She can’t be injected like a drug.

Ana sternly tells John she does what she wants. She has done what she told him she would do. She has tempted him to come to Bogota to witness her steal the greatest biotech enhancement this planet has ever seen. John takes a sip of his drink and tells her it doesn’t matter, as the X-Men will stop her. Just then, Typhoid Mary walks in the room and scoffs at the concept. Carrying a rucksack, she says it was a cakewalk. Ana asks if she was followed and Mary tells her no. She kicked up a hornets nest but she knows how to lose a tail.

Unbeknownst to her, Psylocke is on the roof of the villa listening to everything they are saying.

Inside the villa, John is aware of Psylocke’s presence but decides not to say anything. Ana opens the bag and picks up the circuit board containing Arkea. John glances over and yells not to touch it. Ana holds the plastic bag holding the circuit board and shows John. A worried John says that every day he wakes up and wonders if today is the day all life on Earth is wiped out. He points to the bag and says that’s why. He asks Ana to put it down but she ignores him.

She tells him she checked him out before he arrived. He is a man with a complex public life. Up until recently, he was doing a lot of charities, benefits and appearances. She asks why he has been hiding. He replies that he has told her. Arkea is incredibly powerful; she’s a destroyer of worlds. She’s the human race’s worst enemy and she’s also his sister. He has no idea how the X-Men had a live sample. Mary asks if it’s like a contagion and he says she is in a way. She infects technology and spreads via energy. Once she is active, she is impossible to stop.

Mary seems impressed and Ana asks if it is the only sample on the Earth. John replies that it is the only one he knows of and so Ana rips the plastic bag open. John lunges forward and wrestles with Ana for the circuit board. He grabs it off her and dives onto the floor, grasping it tightly in his hands. Above them, Psylocke monitors what they are doing and preparing herself to act. Ana wipes blood from her nose and orders Mary to cut John’s head off. John yells for her to wait and says it’s inert. The sample was live but it’s dead now. John stands up and looks at the board. He says she’s dead and that he had no idea she could die. Everything has changed now. Behind him, Mary raises a sword, ready to cut his head off.

Ana stops her and asks John if this was the only sample he knew of. He says it is and she asks if there are others, ones he doesn’t know about for sure. She asks if he has a list with GPS coordinates. She guesses that it is what he has been up to recently. John places the circuit board on the table and tells her he never knew Arkea was mortal. But now she has a crack in her armor. He says Arkea arrived on the planet via a meteor and he has the time and date of the entry. He can probably cross reference it with meteor strikes and come up with possibilities. But he won’t give her that information, now that he has a chance of destroying her. And he knows Ana won’t kill him as long as he has the information.

Mary walks up to him and tells him that it’s tedious. She tells him it would have been more fun to chop his head off. With that, she grabs the back of his neck and energy pluses from her hands. After a few seconds, she announces she has four locations and says they should go.

She lets go and John collapses to the floor in a stunned state. Ana tells Mary to leave him to drool for a while and she will send someone to dispose of him later. However, Psylocke mentally contacts him and tells him to hold on. After the two women leave, Psylocke jumps down from the roof and enters the room. She muses that she can’t believe she is going to facilitate the utter wrongness that is him and Rachel, but she is going to take him back to the Jean Grey School. John groans on the floor and she says that Typhoid Mary scrambled his brain. She says she can fix it as Mary was a total amateur with no finesse, style or technique. Besides, she needs him functioning enough to order them a bizjet. It’s been a long day and she isn’t flying coach.

(Troms, Norway)

A figure walks across a snowy, mountainous landscape, collecting firewood. As they approach a small log cabin, a loud booming noise grabs their attention and they turn to see where it came from. The figure, a blonde-haired woman, is shocked to see a small aircraft flying incredibly close to the ground. The plane lands on a snow-covered, frozen lake and the woman runs up to it. She yells for whoever is on board to get out of the area. Typhoid Mary and Ana get off the plane. Even though they are dressed in thick clothing, Mary shivers at the cold. They see the woman and wonder who she is but the woman continues to yell for them to leave.

The woman uses one of her sticks as a weapon and advances on Mary, but Mary whips out her sword and slices the stick in two. However, the woman grabs Mary and throws her across the lake. She says they can’t be there and orders them to get back in their plane. Ana tells her they mean no harm and when the woman grabs her, she recognizes her as Lady Deathstrike. Yuriko recognizes the blonde woman as Amora the Enchantress and tells her it’s a lucky twist of fate. She says they have things to discuss and spots the cabin in the distance. The Enchantress invites them into the warmth.

Later on inside the cabin, Amora confirms a meteorite landed a few months back. Ana asks why she has been out here for so long. Amora tells her that Thor stripped her of her powers and exiled her here. That boom they heard when they came meant they punctured the Odinforce dome. She didn’t think anyone could do that, as she spent a solid week hammering it when she was first dumped here. Mary angrily says it killed their electronic and they could have died. Amora asks Mary if she knows of the Norns. She says they are miserable hags who spin people’s fates and at any minute they can snip the threads with their shears. Ana asks Amora what she would think if she had a way to cheat fate. Amora says it is impossible but Ana tells her to show her the meteorite and she will make her more powerful than Odin himself.

(Jean Grey School)

Sitting in the dining room Jubilee tells Bling! she has her attention but she isn’t sure she can give her what she wants. Bling! replies that she doesn’t have to talk about it like that. Bling! points across the room and says she’s over there right now, probably laughing about her with her friends. Alls she did was ask Mercury out; it wasn’t a big deal. It’s a yes or no question. She thought the X-Men were all about inclusion and acceptance and appreciating people that are different. Jubilee tells Bling! she knows they are and that she also knows Mercury isn’t a bad person. Bling! glares towards Mercury and says that, just because she likes girls, she gets attacked in the hallway. Jubilee tells Bling! she needs to talk to Storm or Rachel about it and then asks why Mercury was so bothered about it.

Before she can do anything else Bling! leans across the table and kisses a surprised Jubilee on the lips. Mercury looks on stunned. After the kiss Jubilee is a little lost for words and doesn’t know what to say. Bling! sits back down and says she has wanted to do that ever since Jubilee got back.

Just then, Monet strides past and, without looking at her, tells Jubilee to suit up for a mission if she isn’t too busy. Jubilee stands up and starts to speak to Bling! but the young girl interrupts her and starts to says she knows Jubilee doesn’t feel the same way. Jubilee says they will talk about it later and they will get through it. After Jubilee leave Bling! leans back on her chair, puts her arms behind her head and smiles.

The three women find the small meteorite crater in the snowy mountains. However, as they get to it, Typhoid Mary yells for Yuriko to wait. She read the files that she stole and she wants to renegotiate. She says she is done being a hired muscle and she wants to be a partner in this. Whatever Arkea is going to do for Ana and Amora, it can also do for her. Yukrio asks what that is and Mary says it should integrate her split personalities and make her whole. Yuriko accepts the deal and says that Reiko is building a new Body Shoppe as they speak. She proposes a partnership. Help her gather the Arkea meteorites and she will promise her whatever she needs or desires.

Yuriko tells Amora that Mary has read the file and she knows what is possible with the alien tech. Mary says they will need help if the X-Men are planning on stopping them. Yuriko jumps into the crater and says it won’t be a partnership then, more like a Sisterhood. With that, she picks up the meteorite and smiles.

Characters Involved: 

Jubilee, M, Omega Sentinel, Psylocke, Rachel Grey, Storm (all X-Men)

Bling!, Mercury (students)

Shogo Lee

Ana Cortes/Lady Deathstrike, Typhoid Mary (both Sisterhood)

John Sublime

Story Notes: 

Ana Cortes is the host to the consciousness of Lady Deathstrike. She attacked Karima and M last issue in the hopes of acquiring Karima and her Omega Sentinel tech. She recruited Typhoid Mary into her newest incarnation of the Sisterhood.

Typhoid Mary has an array of powers that include telepathy, pyrokinesis and telekinesis. Access to these powers depends on which of her multiple personalities is in charge. The “Typhoid Mary” persona has access to the full range.

The Amtrak is a rail network that includes a section called the Northwest Corridor.

A bizjet is a small aircraft designed for business travel.

Amora was exiled in Mighty Thor #17.

The Sisterhood was a team of female mutant villains consisting of Madelyne Pryor, Spiral, Lady Deathstrike, Revanche, the two Lady Masterminds and Chimera. After their leader, Madelyne, was defeated, the rest of the team went their separate ways.

Issue Information: 
Written By: