X-Men '92: House of XCII #5

Issue Date: 
November 2022
Story Title: 

Steve Foxe (writer), Salva Espin (artist), Israel Silva (colorist), Virtual Calligraphy's Joe Sabino (letterer), Jay Bowen (designer), David Baldeon & Israel Silva (cover artists), Lauren Amaro (assistant editor), Jordan D White (editor), CB Cebulski (editor-in-chief)

X-Men Created by Stan Lee & Jack Kirby

Brief Description: 

On Asteroid X, Storm is preparing to meet with Lilandra of the Shi'ar Empire when a Nimrod Sentinel with the persona of Bolivar Trask attacks. The new X-Men arrive to battle the deadly threat – but Nimrod is powerful and seconds later, the X-Men are mostly defeated. Rogue and Jean Grey escape back to Krakoa, where they meet with the Inner Circle. The altered Beast suggests launching his pet project against the Nimrod – a Chimera who combines the best abilities of mutantkind. The Inner Circle briefly debate this before Cyclops and Storm arrive. Nimrod has reached Krakoa, too, and begins killing as many mutants as he can find. A powerful team of mutants opposes the Nimrod, but some of them are defeated, too. Professor X instructs Beast to release the Chimera, which he does. The Chimera latches onto Nimrod and teleports away – according to the Beast, into the sun. The remaining mutants gather themselves and discuss what has transpired, with most of them unimpressed with the Beast for his diabolical scheming – however as the Beast points out, others have been scheming, too. Cyclops, Jean Grey, Rogue, Storm, Gambit and Professor X find Jubilee alive in Sinister's lab, where Sinister and Wolverine are being held captive by Sabreooth and several others. The Beast is in possession of Jubilee's diaries, while the others are shocked that Jubilee is alive. Professor X finally shares the secrets of Jubilee's many lives with the others, with Cyclops and Jean Grey particularly frustrated in the Professor for keeping this a secret from them. The Beast talks about Krakoa becoming a dominant world power, but Cyclops assures him that would never happen, as they would have stopped him. The Beast then claims to have deployed his Chimera across the planet, replacing world leaders who now all await his signal. Suddenly, Nimrod returns and Wolverine cuts Sabretooth in two to free Jubilee, who is then crushed by some falling debris as the Nimrod battles Cyclops and Rogue. Jean unleashes the Dark Phoenix to give Jubilee the power she needs to destroy the Nimrod and ensure the safety of Krakoa. Other mutants across Krakoa watch as a Phoenix symbol lights up the sky, and the X-Men remember Jubilee. Jubilee then wakes in another life, back in the mall playing video games at the arcade.


Full Summary: 

Asteroid X, specifically the Interstellar Diplomatic Hall, where Storm sits on a throne. At her right stand Shard and Sunder, while to her left are Cypher and Warlock. Behind them is a Krakoan portal. Standing before Storm are two important guests – Empress Lilandra of the Shi'ar and her bodyguard, Gladiator. Storm welcomes the Empress and tells her that it is Krakoa's honor to greet the Shi'ar as allies. 'The honor is ours, Queen Storm' Lilandra responds, adding that she told Charles long ago that mutants belonged among the stars. Storm tells Lilandra that she is not a queen, although the title is flattering. 'Perhaps “Goddess” is more -' Lilandra begins, interrupted by a sudden rumbling in the Interstellar Diplomatic Hall. 'Bright Lady, preserve us' Storm utters, when suddenly, a large white robot bursts into the Hall: 'Caution. Extraterrestrial political leader. You are here to parley with an obsolete species' the robot declares.

The robot is called Nimrod, and claims that in its prior flesh-based existence as Bolivar Trask, it committed a processing error by fearing human evolution. Nimrod claims that the data is now clear – neither humans nor mutants are fit to inhabit Earth. The Nimrod then unleashes a powerful blast which seemingly cuts Gladiator and Sunder in two. Storm instructs Shard to get Lilandra to the docking bay where the Starjammers can evacuate her, before she projects her thoughts to Jean Grey, asking her if she can hear her. 'Loud and clear, Ororo' Jean responds to her friend. 'We've got this, team – just like our practice drills' Cyclops declares as he, Jean and the rest of the X-Men appear through the Krakoan portal. With Cyclops and Jean, who goes by the name Phoenix now, are Rogue, Polaris, Sunfire, Random and Feral.

Storm flies over to aid her allies, while Nimrod tells the mutants that they delay the inevitable, and that the rise of the machines begins now. 'Not if the X-MEN have anything to say about it!' Cyclops responds. But thirty-four seconds later, Storm and Feral lay motionless at Nimrod's feet, and the strange robot holds Random by his head. Polaris is on her hands and knees after being knocked aside, while Cyclops clutches at his wounded chest, and Sunfire has collapsed to the ground in front of him. Sunfire tells Cyclops that it is no use, that they cannot stop a Sentinel this powerful. 'Then the least we can do, Sunfire... is by the others time' Cyclops replies, while Rogue drags Phoenix to the Krakoan portal. 'Scott!' Jean calls out, wide-eyed, but Rogue tells her that if they don't warn Krakoa about “Tall, Pink and Deadly” then everyone they know is going to be cooked faster than a crawdad in a bucket boil.

Meanwhile, on Krakoa, at the Inner Circle Chamber, where the Inner Circle is meeting and Callisto tells the other leaders of Krakoa that Artie and Leech are petitioning to refurbish the Morlock Tunnels, when suddenly, 'Asteroid X has fallen!' Jean Grey calls out as she and Rogue stumble through the Krakoan portal. 'What is the meaning of this?' Magneto asks, standing up. Professor X begins to scan Jean's mind, and tells the rest of the Inner Circle that a hyper-advanced Sentinel is attacking the station, and using the combine powers of Krakoa's own defenders against them. Madame Web and the White Queen look over at Jean Grey, before the Beast, recently transformed into a darker version of himself, declares that he is sure there is no shortage of spandex-clad cannon fodder to toss against this latest model of mutant terminator, he would like to suggest a novel solution.

The Beast holds up a hologram projector which depicts the image of a strange mutant who appears to have the combined abilities of several other mutants. The Beast reports that Sinister dubbed this pet project of his the Chimera Program. 'Not my preferred nomenclature, though I understand the application' the Beast adds, before boasting that it took his own genius to realize Sinister's plans for combining the strongest abilities Krakoa's united gene pool has to offer. 'Nyet! Omega Red will not be made an experiment again!' the Russian mutant snaps, standing up and stepping away from the table, while Mystique reminds the Beast that the Inner Circle has rules against unauthorized cloning. 'Krakoa is not your personal petri dish!' she adds. Suddenly, Cyclops and Storm emerge through a Krakoan portal, with Cyclops clutching his wound as he announces that he has never faced a Sentinel so strong before, while Storm declares that they must evacuate Asteroid X before it plummets to Earth. Storm suddenly looks shocked as she sees the Beast: 'What is that abomination?' she gasps, before Cyclops realizes that they are too late: 'Don't you hear the explosion in the distance?' he asks, exclaiming that Trask is on Krakoa.

Indeed, elsewhere on the island, Trask is on the attack, firing energy blasts everywhere, one of which strikes Hairbag, cutting him in two, while Slab, Siryn and Phantazia look on, horrifed. Trask tells the mutants not to attempt escape, as their end is statically inevitable. Trask claims that he has upgraded beyond the need for emotional processing boards, before revealing that there is one among them who he must eliminate personally. He fires a blast from his eyes which cutes through Siena Blaze, while other blasts strike the Gamesmaster and Revanche. 'Where is Logan, codename designate Wolverine?' Trask shouts, releasing a sonic blast which knocks the Blob off his feet. 'His pager must be out of batteries, mon ami!' Gambit jokes as he appears with Cyclops, Jean Grey, Storm, Rogue, Havok, Magneto, Fabian Cortez, Omega Red and X-Force members Cable, Bishop and Psylocke. 'Maybe you want to play a hand with Gambit and friends instead?' Gambit asks, holding up his kinetically-charged playing cards.

Cyclops tells Fabian Cortez that they should make this maneuver two for two, so Cortez uses his powers to enhance Cyclops' optic blast, which he fires straight ahead at Trask's robot form, but it doesn't work, as Trask moves forward and tells Cyclops that his tactics will not succeed twice, and reveals that every ability displayed agianst the Tri-Sentinel is now at his disposal. Trask fires some energy towards Cyclops, but Jean throws a shield around herself and Cyclops to protect him, while telling Magneto that she has to end this. 'No, Jean – it's too dangerous. What if it absorbs -?' Magneto starts to reply, before Trask blasts Omega Red away, and uses the acquired tendrils of Omega Red, wrapping one of them around Havok, while ordering the location of designate Wolverine, so they can proceed with genetic extermination more efficiently.

'Not even Magneto is strong enough to repel this model...' Xavier utters as he watches the battle telepathically while remaining at the Inner Circle chamber. 'The path ahead of us is...dark' Madame Web utters. Xavier turns to the Beast and tells him that when this is over, they will discuss his lapse in ethics, but that for now, if his Chimera can turn the tide, then he must deploy it. 'With pleasure, old friend' the Beast grins as he clicks a button on a remote control device.

Back at the battle, 'I didn't travel through time just to bite it at the hands of a Nimrod model!' Bishop declares as he finds himself struggling as Nimrod stands on him. 'The only thing you will “bite,” anomaly, is extinct-' the Nimrod begins, before the Chimera appears, blasting down towards Nimrod and pushing him back off Bishop. 'Error...your genetic profile is...impossible' Nimrod utters as he is slammed into a wall. 'But my programming will not fail...before Yuriko is avenged!' Trask can be seen screeching from the screen where his image is displayed on the front of the Nimrod. Suddenly, there is a BAMF, and the Nimrod and Chimera vanish.

'Can anyone tell a gal what's going on?' Rogue asks as she, Gambit, Storm, Cyclops, Jean Grey and Magneto regroup, while Xavier and the Beast arrive to join them. The Beast explains that thanks to a synthesis of Nightcrawler's and Lila Cheney's powers, their gear-powered grim reaper was just teleported into the sun. 'A lamentable loss of our first Chimera, but so it goes' the Beast adds. 'What was that terrible Combination Man?' Storm asks, before Jean wonders where Loan is. 'Not like Wolverine to miss a brawl' Cyclops points out. The Beast reports that he can answer both queries, and explains that following his demise on Polemachus, he awoke with fewer qualms about accomplishing Krakoa's goals by any means necessary. He reminds everyone that Sinister had been experimenting on mutant DNA ever since he was granted amnesty, but was missing a few elements. 'Luckily, Krakoa has its own explosive secrets, right, Charles?' the Beast grins.

Magneto quietly tells Xavier that he and X-Force will handle cleanup, and suggests that he find out what Beast knows. Jean turns to Xavier and points out that Beast isn't telling them everything, before adding that she senses Wolverine is in Sinister's lab – and that he isn't alone. Xavier announces that it was a mistake to trust the Beast, but Beast snaps back, and tells Xavier that his mistake was not going further. 'In the words of Dostoyevsky, “Power is given only to those who dare to lower themselves and pick it up”' the Beast quotes.

Moments later, at Sinister's lab, the heroic mutants arrive with the Beast to find Sabretooth and the transformed Silver Samurai, Solarr and Forearm looming over Jubilee with a large needle, and a captive Wolverine. 'It's impossible! We all saw her die on the mansion lawn!' a shocked Cyclops exclaims. 'No, Scott – I can read her thoughts. Somehow...JUBILEE IS ALIVE!' Jean Grey shouts. 'Uh...surprise?' Jubilee calls back, as Sabretooth wraps his arms around her. 'Take another step and the girlie will be as dead as you thought she was' Sabretooth snarls. Wolverine is restrained by Forearm, and tells Jean that he had been screaming for her, but that Sinister had the lab covered in psychic blockers. 'A decision I now regret! But thank Darwin you're all here to rescue me now' Sinister calls out as he hangs from the ceiling.

The Beast reveals that Sinister employed Sabretooth to accumulate blackmail, should the Inner Circle inevitably turn on him, and that Logan simply couldn't accept Jubilation's demise, and his pursuit led right to her hiding spot. He grins as he holds up a pink diary and remarks that he did not expect to learn anything of scientific use from a self-proclaimed “mall rat” but that her diaries are positively full of speculative writings about scenarios for mutant advancement. 'I'm sure her eventul vivisection will illuminate how she came across this knowledge' the Beast adds. 'Hey, Hairy – the Hendersons called. They said they shoulda run you over twice!' Jubilee snaps. 'Popular culture – how topical' the Beast smirks. 'Never woulda guessed you'd be the one to stab us in the back, Hank!' Rogue exclaims as she and Storm rush into the lab. 'Storm, mistress of the Eelements, commands you to release that child!' Storm declares. 'Shall we skip the cliché fisticuffs? Death is but a minor setback on Krakoa – take it from me' the Beast remarks.

With his Cerebro unit over his face, Xavier tells the Beast that for someone so brilliant he can be an utter fool. 'Brace yourselves, my students. It's time you learned...the truth about Jubilation Lee!' Xavier exclaims as he projects the many lives of Jubilee to the other mutants. 'How could you like to us, Professor?' Cyclops asks. 'You had no right!' Jean exclaims. But Xavier tells them that they could not risk the timeline resetting – not when they had come so far. 'Had I known that the child's death would endanger the end goal of the Chimera program I might have tortured her less' the Beast admits. Struggling to break free from Forearm's six arms, Wolverine asks the Beast what he is yammering on about. 'And will someone get me out of this bozo's armpits? Smells like the Savage Land in July!' Wolverine adds.

The Beast begins by stating that Sinister's initial plans for the Chimera were expectedly small-scale. 'I take offsense at that!' Sinister snaps. The Beast continues, pointing out that with the abundance of mutant gifts available on Krakoa, the right Chimera could infiltrate any world government and replace any leader – and guarantee that Krakoa becomes the dominant power on the planet. 'That was never the purpose of Krakoa! We are a peaceful nation!' Xavier exclaims. 'The X-Men would have stopped you, Beast' Cyclops boasts, shaking his fist. “Stopped me?” the Beast asks, revealing that he deployed the Chimera days ago, and now President Kelly, Boris Yeltsin – dozens more – have all been replaced by Chimera, awaiting his signal.

Before anyone can respond, a powerful blast slams into the lab and strikes Silver Samurai and Solarr, while others are knocked about – it's the Nimrod – Trask – annd he has returned. Part of the robot's body has been damaged, but he manages to announce that Wolverine will pay. Wolverine is now free from Forearm who is slumped against a wall, and as he gets to his feet Wolverine assures Jubilee that he is coming for her. 'What's the rush, Logan? You know I like to play with my -' Sabretooth begins as he steps between Wolverine and Jubilee – but he doesn't get to finish his sentence as Wolverine slices Sabretooth in half. At the same moment, some rubble falls from above, and traps Jubilee. She is weary as Wolverine and Jean reach her. 'Wolvie! I knew you'd save me' she cough and hacks. 'I don't know if I have, pip-squeak' Wolverine replies, while Jean warns him that Jubilee doesn't have much time.

'I will germinate/laminte/aggregate/exterminate – ERROR ERROR' the Nimrod calls out while Beast, Rogue and Cyclops try to bring the Nimrod down. 'You on the side of the angels again, Hank?' Rogue asks. 'The enemy of my enemy and so forth, Rogue' the Beast responds. Xavier and Storm go to Jubilee's side as Jubilee tells her friends that she never wanted to lie to them, and that they are the only family she has ever had. 'We don't blame you, child. But in your next life, trust us to protect you' Storm replies. Jubilee looks up at Storm and tells her that she doesn't want to be a bummer, but she doesn't think she has another life in the tank. 'Which means you have to stop Trask...before he destroys Krakoa forever'.

Suddenly, 'Then it is worth the risk – I must unleash the full fury of the Dark Phoenix!' Jean exclaims, energy glowing around her. But Jubilee grabs Jean and tells her to wait, as she doesn't know if it will work, but that the cosmic power of the Phoenix may be enough to jump-start her big-bang powers one last time. Trask then initiates a self-destruct nuclear fission reactor within the Nimrod, as he hurls the Beast towards Gambit. Jean tells Jubilee that the Phoenix is an entity of death and rebirth, and while her plan may succeed, her secondary mutation would be burned away completely. 'When – if you awaken – you will remember nothing of your past lives' Jean explains. 'But then...next time around. We'd have to make it all up as we go' Jublee utters. Wolverine tells Jubilee that she should know by now that the only thing the X-Men need is a fighting chance.

'Here goes nothing...' Jubilee utters as Jean begins to engulf Jubilee in the flames of the cosmic Phoenix. The Nimrod grabs Cyclops, but his system is buffering – and then Jubilee flies upwards, the cosmic Phoenix energy surrounding her, 'Hasta la vista, baby' she utters asshe grabs the Nimrod and takes it with her away from Krakoa.

In her tenth life, Jubilee remembered something she first learned a long time ago. That it doesn't matter how much people change, how many new faces come and go and switch sides, or how much time they spend in Limbo our outer space or whatever. The X-Men are a family. And as long as they are together, their story is never over.

Wolverine, Jean Grey, Cyclops, Gambit, Storm, Rogue, Beast and Xavier together and look upwards to the sky, as do Magneto, Cable, Bishop, Psylocke, Maggott, Marrow and Cecilia Reyes, gathered elsewhere on Krakoa, and Apocalypse, his wife Genesis, and Archangel on Polemachus. The Phoenix lights up the sky, and there is a loud BANG. 'Did it work?' Cyclops asks. 'Her last thoughts...were of the X-Men' Jean announces. 'Always knew she had it in her' Wolverine remarks.

Meantime, elsewhen, Jubilee is in a video arcade playing the X-Men arcade game. 'Not this again...I don't want to be a mutie!' she mutters as the arcade game begins to crackle. A video report on a television behind her grabs her attention as she sees the X-Men battling a Sentinel, and decides that mutants aren't all bad. 'The one with the claws has a cool 'tude, anyway' she adds, before looking at the arcade and discovering that it is game over. 'Let's try this one more time...' she suggests.

Characters Involved: 

Cyclops, Feral, Phoenix, Polaris, Random, Rogue, Sunfire (all X-Men)

Callisto, Madame Web, Magneto, Mr Sinister, Mystique, Omega Red, Storm, White Queen, Professor X (all Inner Circle)

Bishop, Cable, Psylocke (all X-Force)

Fabian Cortez (the Five)

Blob, Cypher, Gambit, Gamesmaster, Hairbag, Havok, Maggott, Marrow, Phantazia, Revanche, De Cecilia Reyes, Sabretooth, Shard, Siena Blaze, Siryn, Slab, Sunder, Warlock

Beast, Forearm, Silver Samurai, Solarr (all Dark Riders)







Nimrod/Bolivar Trask




(in psychic projection)

Jubilee in various lives

Story Notes: 

This issue's cover pays homage to Inferno (2nd series) #1.

This issue includes a Nimrod Upgade Setup Wizard in the style of a 1990s computer alert notification.

The Tri-Sentinel attacked Krakoa in X-Men '92: House of XCII #2, during which Fabian Cortez used his abilities to enhance Cyclops' powers to defeat the Tri-Sentinel.

This issue includes a diary entry dated July 14th, September 15th and October 31st, 1992, from Jubilee's tenth life in which Jubilee comments on some events going on around Krakoa.

Jubilee refers to the US sitcom “Harry and the Hendersons” which ran for three seasons and lasted 72 episodes between 1991 and 1993 and revolved around the Henderson family who adopted a bigfoot, Harry. 

Written By: