'DIE, ASSASSIN!' Bishop shouts inside the X-Mansion as he attacks Remy LeBeau a.k.a. Gambit, 'NOOO!' cries Gambit as he is leaps to safety. 'You move swiftly, killer! But my second shot will not miss!' Bishop warns Gambit, while Rogue flies towards Gambit and tells him to get down – before Rogue is struck by Bishop's second, taking the brunt of the impact.
'You okay?' Rogue calls out to Gambit, who replies that he is well enough to make this attacker wish he was never born. But before Gambit can act, Jean Grey steps forward to announce that she will handle this, as she telekinetically removes Bishop's plasma rifle from his grasp. 'Jubilee?' Jean calls out to the young mutant, who replies 'Yes, Ma'am!' as she knocks Bishop backwards with a surge of plasma blasts. Bishop falls backwards and Logan a.k.a. Wolverine and Scott Summers a.k.a. Cyclops move in to restrain him.
'Cyclops – he is the assassin – and must be terminated!' Bishop calls out. Gambit is confused, and asks if someone can explain to him what this is all about. Bishop grits his teeth as he informs Gambit that his teammates already know this. He introduces himself as Bishop, from the year 2055 and reveals that he came back to slay Gambit, for in doing so, he will prevent his future from ever coming into being. 'You are destined to kill a prominent anti-mutant politician.
Bishop reveals that the politician's death will be mourned by a nation, precipitating a wave of violence against mutantkind – the monstrous Sentinels will be unleashed against homo sapiens superior, and though the X-Men like Cyclops, Rogue and Beast valiantly respond, the cause is hopeless, and mutants are captured and herded into internment camps – there to be executed and buried. Bishop has seen the graves. Then, the Sentinels began to enslave mankind itself in order to preserve what they deem “order”.
'Pretty story. One can't nobody prove – or disprove! Got a good mind to -' Gambit begins, but Cyclops tells Remy to take it easy, that they are going to keep their heads and sort this thing out. Bishop tells Cyclops that Gambit must die by his hand, that he is a traitor whose actions doom them all. 'Liar! I rip de tongue from your mouth!' Gambit shouts as he lunges towards Bishop, however Wolverine comes between them and tells them to cool down. 'Stand aside!' Bishop tells Wolverine, warning him that if he stops him, then he is equally responsible. Wolverine pops his claws and tells Bishop that he doesn't know what secrets this scruffy Cajun is hiding – if any – but he knows less about Bishop. 'So zip it – or else' Wolverine suggests.
Xavier frowns and motions to the armband Bishop wears, and asks him what its purpose is. Bishop explains that it puts out a temporal displacement field that keeps him here, and that if it is destroyed or removed, he is sent back to his point of origin. Gambit turns away from his teammates, telling them that he can see it in their eyes – none of them trust him – they believe the stranger instead. 'Remy, that's not true. We just -' Cyclops begins, but Xavier stops him, and points out that Gambit's bitterness is understandable. 'Think of the accusation leveled against him – and its consequences'. Xavier tells the X-Men that they will go to Washington and search for answers as he address the Senate Committee on Mutant Affairs.
Some hours later, in the hangar bay, Wolverine, Gambit and Bishop watch as the X-Men's Blackbird departs. Wolverine tells Bishop and Gambit to get a few things straight – Charlie left him to babysitthe two of them, and ain't neither of them going anywhere so long as he is breathing. 'We seeing eye-to-eye on that one?' Wolverine asks them. Gambit acknowledges that he comprehends, and Bishop remarks that he can see Wolverine can make a point without unsheathing his claws. Gambit thinks to himself that he will find a way to make his move and do what must be done, while Wolverine lights a cigar and asks Bishop how he got picked for this dirty job. 'I... replaced someone' Bishop replies. 'Some wimp who got cold feet huh?' Wolverine asks. 'Not exactly' Bishop responds.
Inside the Blackbird, bound for DC, 'Ya'll don't believe Gambit – our Gambit – could be an assassin, do yuh?' Rogue asks the others. Xavier tells her that it is perplexing, but that this man, Bishop, isn't lying, and adds that for now he wants Gambit immobilized while they investigate . 'But, like, how can we stop a killing if we don't know who's wearing the bullseye on his back?' Jubilee asks in between blowing bubbles with her gum. 'How indeed? The future itself rides on the answer to that question' Charles thinks to himself.
Sunrise finds the Washington Monument with an unlikely visitor perched atop it, as Storm informs the Professor via communicator that she is in position. 'Ah'm heah, too, at the Tidal Basin. You see anything, Ororo, give a holler!' Rogue calls out over the communicator as she and Jubilee wait in the basin, Jubilee looks unimpressed and blows a large bubble with her gum.
At the Watergate Hotel, the scene of heinous crimes past – and to come – several mutants are inside one of the hotel rooms. The Blob looks out the window and remarks to Pyro that it looks like there is going to be lots of sunshine. 'Spiffing good weather for an assassination, eh, Blob?' Pyro replies. 'And if we fail, you will be eliminated' Mystique warns Pyro, who tells Mystique that there is no need for threats. 'It's all in my hands, now. Leave it to ol' Pyro' the mutant grins.
Back at the X-Mansion, Wolverine and Bishop are playing cards. Wolverine asks Gambit if he wants to play poker, or if he is going to fidget with that monitor screen all night. Gambit is discretely putting some kinetically-charged playing cards into a monitor screen and tells Wolverine to give him a moment to focus the monitor. Bishop remarks that he is getting suspicious and asks Gambit what he is doing that is taking so long. 'Something to liven the game' Gambit replies, as his kinetically-charged cards suddenly detonate, causing the monitor to explode. 'Au revoir, mes amis!' Gambit calls out as he makes a run for it. 'Get back here, blast it!' Wolverine calls out as he and Bishop are knocked back by the force of the explosion.
Gambit rushes into the hangar bay where he approaches a plane that is smaller than the Blackbird and decides that it will be easier to handle with simple controls. Moments later, he takes off, as Wolverine and Bishop arrive on scene. 'Nuts! He lit out! I should'a known!' Wolverine snarls. 'Well, you obviously didn't! Do you realize what this means?' Bishop asks. 'Yeah. I'll be stuck with you longer than I figured' Wolverine mutters. 'No! He's going to Washington to commit murder!' Bishop retorts.
And inside the jet, Gambit thinks that he won't be taken out of this one. The controls are set up to take him to Washington and he decides it will take a couple of hours to get there. He hopes there is a nice greeting waiting for him.
Outside the Washington State Capitol Legislative Building, protestors have gathered. 'Lock them mutants up and throw away the key!' one of them shouts. Among the protestors are Blob, Pyro and Avalanche, all wearing civilian clothing. Avalanche suggests that now the gang is all here, they should drop these stupid signs and get down to cases. Pyro tells his companion that he hears him, but that he can't split without telling the Blob how beautiful his threads are. 'Real touristy' Pyro jokes, commenting on the Blob's bright pink shirt with yellow flowers. 'Heh. I'm the kinda guy fits in anywhere, y'know' Blob replies. He holds his camera up and asks the others to let him get a few more snapshots so they can keep up with this image. 'C'mon, man. Just waddle away. We all got work to do' Avalanche mutters as he drops his anti-mutant sign on the ground.
Inside, a Senate Subcommittee hearing is being chaired by Senator Robert Kelly, who sits on a raised platform along with the other senate members. Charles Xavier sits in his hoverchair and looks up at the subcommittee, while Jean Grey and Cyclops, both in civilian clothing, sit in the audience. Senator Kelly asks Dr Xavier if he has consorted with renegade mutants at any time or place. 'I have not, Sir' Xavier responds. 'I'd love to give that creep a piece of my mind, Scott' Jean whispers. Scott tells Jean that it is okay, the Professor is giving as good as he gets. Senator Kelly waves a piece of paper around and asks 'Isn't it true that your so-called “School for Gifted Youngsters” is merely a clearing house for pro-mutant propaganda?' to which Xavier frowns and announces that his school is dedicated to the idea that mutants can live harmoniously alongside their human breathren. 'Yes, a very inspiring answer, I'm sure' Senator Kelly replies through gritted teeth. 'Need I remind you this hearing is not to be used as a forum for your rather subversive views on human-mutant propaganda?' Senator Kelly declares.
Xavier responds by announcing that he takes offense at his remark. 'And the record shall note that' Kelly replies. Xavier tells Kelly that before him is a prepared statement detailing steps he believes will promote understanding between their kind, and requests that it be read. 'You are here to answer questions – not propagandize or promote your views! Do you understand that?' Kelly shouts, standing up and pointing at Xavier. 'I understand that intolerance such as yours is the root cause of our difficulties' Xavier replies. Suddenly, the room begins to shake. 'An earthquake?' Senator Kelly asks, while Xavier looks back into the room and notices someone gesturing. 'Close, but no cigar, Senator!' Avalanche exclaims, introducing himself, he explains that vibrations are his speciality – like bringing down the house – or the Senate. Pyro stands next to him, flames at the ready, and Avalanche points out that his name is self-explanatory. 'I'm from what you yanks might call the motherland. Ya might consider this lil' display payback for independence' Pyro grins.
'What is the meaning of this... further evidence of mutant malevolence?' Senator Kelly calls out, while a woman on bench alongside him grins, 'Keep talking. My allies were right on time. And this Senator's aide is ready' she thinks to herself, as Pyro suddenly projects his flame towards Cyclops and Jean. 'Awright, mates, let's start the festivities with a Pyro produced flame dragon! Got your attention, wot?' he exclaims. 'Scott, the heat!' Jean calls out, while Cyclops tells Jean to stay back while he handles this – and fires an optic blast towards Pyro, who dodges it, the blast striking the wall behind him. Cyclops knows that Pyro isn't out, but his concentration has been broken, so the fire dragon is dissipating. Suddenly, Avalanche is surprised as he and Pyro are lifted up and through the hole in the wall. 'What's the deal?' Avalanche calls out. 'Got me, matey! Someone's giving us the old heave-ho!' Pyro replies, while Jean thinks that she is using her telekinesis to take out the trash.
At that moment, the woman up on the bench suggests to Senator Kelly that it is getting too hairy, so they should slip out, and leads him out of the hearing room. Senator Kelly addresses her as Barbara and mutters that the safety of a US Senator is paramount after all. At the same time, Xavier uses his telepathic power to contact the other X-Men, instructing them to come to the Capitol Building at once.
Moments later, near the Reflecting Pool, after Jean released Avalanche and Pyro from her telekinetic grasp, the two mutants run towards the Blob, who asks if they did some serious damage, or just pitty-patted around. 'Enough to get their attention and make our point!' Avalanche exclaims. 'Glad I got these here chance to see yer capital! Got nothing on Parliament, of course – excuse my chauvinism' Pyro remarks, when suddenly, Rogue drops down from above and tells them to hold their horses. Rogue remembers kicking Pyro and Avalanche's tails a few weeks back on Muir and realizes that some people never learn. 'Maybe ya whipped them, lady – but the Blob don't go down for no broad! And I never been on Muir Island, sweetie!' Blob exclaims. 'Ah'll take care of you right now, tubbo!' Rogue exclaims as she slams a fist into Blob's face. 'Great right hand!' Blob tells her. 'Let me acquaint yuh with mah left, too!' Rogue replies as she slams Blob in the face again. 'Can't decide which one I like better, babe!' Blob jokes. Rogue then attempts to punch his stomach, but finds her fist stuck in his blubber. 'Now ya did it, princess' Blob frowns. 'Muh hand – stuck in yoh belly!' Rogue calls out. 'Yeah, people doing that's an occupational hazard with me! Now beat it, witch! I got stuff ta do here!' Blob declares as he swats Rogue aside with ease.
In the Capitol's hallways, Barbara is still with Senator Kelly, 'I think we should head this way' she tells him, while Gambit watches from around the corner of the corridor. He recognizes Senator Kelly and decides that he needs to follow like a shadow.
Back outside: 'Wow, lucky we showed up! Rogue got knocked for a loop by fatso!' Jubilee thinks to herself as she blasts Blob with her plasma bursts. 'Are yuz done yet? This is getting to be a bore!' Blob mutters. 'Let's put these losers down for the count and make tracks!' Avalanche calls out as he releases a seismic vibration which knocks Cyclops, Jubilee and Jean Grey, who screams 'UNNH!' off their feet. 'Oh, I'm gonna make some tracks, awright – all over their pasties little pusses!' Blob laughs as he looms over Cyclops and Jubilee, ready to strike them – only to be stopped when Wolverine leaps on his shoulders. 'Now ain't you the jolly jellybelly with gthe jokes 'n' all!' Wolverine snarls. 'Makes me wanna split a gut laughing' he adds as he brings his claws towards Blob's oversized belly. 'I think I'll split yours instead, lard butt!' Wolverine exclaims. 'Get offa me, insect!' Blob mumbles as he tries to knock Wolverine off of him. Pyro sees Blob in danger and tells him not to move. 'Let me warm things up a mite!' Pyro calls out as he blasts some fire towards Wolverine, who tells him to watch where he is tossing that sutff. 'Smokey the Bear's got enough to worry about' Wolverine jokes.
Wolverine turns his attention back to the Blob, 'Get to you in a minute, firebug' he tells Pyro while informing the Blob that he is going to give him some exercise, work off some of that flab. 'Move!' Wolverine snarls as he somehow forces Blob to walk forwards. 'Yer looking good, twinkletoes! Just another step or two!' Wolverine remarks, before Blob falls straight into the pool. 'Nice workout! Let's hit the showers!' Wolverine jokes, before telling Storm that she is up. Storm appears overhead and throws a hand into the air, 'I summon the cold of arctic winds! Let them work their wonders on the water below!' she declares as she freezes the pool, trapping the Blob within the ice. 'Hey – get me outta here! Water's freezing – I can't move a tootsie!' Blob pleads. Wolverine, Cyclops, Jean Grey and Jubilee gather around the pool and Wolverine tells Blob to stop complaining and offers to throw in a bar of soap so it wil be like Saturday night. 'Have I missed anything, X-Men?' Bishop calls out as he moves in, only for Pyro to approach him and blasts him with fire, telling him that he missed a hot time in the old town. 'But you can join in now!' pyro exclaims.
Bishop holds his ground and reveals that he is capable of absorbing energy directed at him. 'Now...eat hot plasma!' Bishop shouts as he blasts that energy back at Pyro, sending him careening backwards into the frozen pool. 'I want out!' the Blob shouts, before Avalanche tells Bishop that he hopes he is ready for this uplifting experience, and knocks him into the air with a seismic blast. 'And that'll be all out of you, mister!' Cyclops exclaims as he fires an optic blast at Avalanche, knocking him backwards. Cyclops then turns to Wolverine and Bishop and asks them what they are doing here, instead of guarding Gambit. Wolverine informs Cyclops that Gambit made a ruckus and split, so they figured he made for the Capital. 'THAT DID IT, I'M FREE!' Blob shouts as he breaks through the ice, grabs Pyro and Avalanche, and knocks the X-Men over as he runs away. 'Fatso busting loose knocked us over – and Bishop's running off, too!' Wolverine calls out. Wolverine calls after the Blob, telling him to get back and fight like a man. 'Sticks and stones, guy. We're outta here! I'll squash ya another time!' the Blob boasts.
Bishop is now inside the Capitol Building, running down a corridor, he knows he must find Gambit before it is too late – there will be no second chance. Further up the corridor, 'We've reached your office, Sir. We'll be safe in here' Barbara tells Senator Kelly as she leads him into his office. 'Fine. But who's that fiture in the dark? Can't quite make it out' Senator Kelly remarks as he enters his office, only to see the figure in the dark, bound on the floor is Barbara! 'It's you – blindfolded! But you're standing here! What's happening?' Senator Kelly asks, looking between the Barbara on the floor and the Barbara standing next to him. 'Calm down, Senator' Barbara standing next to him remarks, suggesting to him that he should be happy, as he is about to make history – and suddenly, “Barbara” transforms into Gambit! 'You're changing! Your appearance is altering – how?' Senator Kelly asks, confused.
“Gambit” goes over to the real Barbara and remarks that they need a witness to Senator Kelly's death. 'And we have a pretty one' he comments, before telling Barbara to tell them all that this is what happens when you defy mutants – especially Gambit and his X-Men. 'Senator Kelly, are you all right?' Barbara calls out. Suddenly, the real Gambit enters the office, 'Surprised to see me?' he calls out. 'Stand back or -' “Gambit” warns him as he holds his gun towards Senator Kelly's head – only for the real Gambit to throw a kinetically-charged playing card at it, knocking it out of “Gambit's” hand. 'Keep your distance, fool! I will not allow your stupid interference!' the fake Gambit exclaims 'Imposteur!' Gambit shouts, before punching the fake Gambit in the face and telling him that he isn't so tough as this Cajun. Gambit declares that no look alike is going to frame him, and suggests to the fake that he might like to start talking now. 'Go to blazes! I'm saying nothing!' the fake Gambit exclaims, when suddenly, an energy blast strikes one of the Gambits.
'An eleventh hour rescue. How timely' the other Gambit whispers, as Bishop enters the office, his weapon emitting energy residual. 'It's insane! I'm in a nightmare!' Senator Kelly exclaims. Bishop tells him that this is quite real and warns him to keep out of harm's way. The Gambit who was not struck with the energy blast leans over the other one and warns Senator Kelly to stay back. 'And you with the rifle – blast this impostor again! He's only stunned!' Gambit declares. 'I don't know which of you is the real one!' Bishop points out, before deciding that he will kill them both. But, before he can pull the trigger, Rogue enters and grabs Bishops gun, telling him to hold that trigger, that he is killing nobody. 'Let me go! They must die!' Bishop shouts. 'Destiny demands it!' he tells Rogue. 'Destiny mah foot! Ah'm sick o' yoah highfalutin talk!' Rogue declares, as she suddenly takes his armband from him. 'What are you doing?' Bishop calls out. 'Just sending yuh back where you belong! Bye bye, Bishop!' Rogue calls out, as Bishop vanishes.
Rogue turns to Senator Kelly and Barbara and tells them to mosey, that there is liable to be some more fireworks until she can figure out who is who. 'You don't have to ask twice' Senator Kelly replies. 'Oh... Senator?' Rogue calls out before he leaves the room. 'Yes?' Senator Kelly replies, turning to Rogue. 'Hate what you stand foh!' Rogue scowls at him. Rogue then turns to the one Gambit still standing, and tells him that he better come clean if he ain't the real McCoy. 'Spare me the threats, chere. You really care for this Cajun, don't you' Gambit replies. 'Don't push it' Rogue warns him. 'No need for disguise any longer. The game has ended. See me now as -' “Gambit” replies, as his form changes again. 'Mystique!' Rogue exclaims, remembering how Mystique was helping Apocalypse on Muir Island. 'Ah'm gonna make you wish you never left that island, gal!' Rogue warns Mystique, but Mystique replies 'You won't harm me' to which Rogue asks 'Why not?'
'Because once I looked like this' Mystique reveals, as her form changes again, to a woman with white skin and dark hair. 'You do know who I am don't you?' she asks Rogue, who goes wide-eyed, 'Mom... momma!' Rogue gasps. Rogue turns away, tears fall down her face, as the woman replies 'Yes. That's what I told you to call me when I took you in. and that's what you called me until the day you ran away'. Mystique asks Rogue if she is going to stop her, to which Rogue asks how she could stop her own mother. 'Just leave me alone' Rogue declares.
Mystique leaves Senator Kelly's office, thinking to herself that she has failed Apocalypse – that Apocalypse wanted Kelly assassinated to ensure the human race the future it deserves. 'I hope he will be merciful'.
Outside the office: 'Hold up, Cyke. I smell something oily' Wolverine tells Cyclops as they run down a corridor, and Senator Kelly ad Barbara approach them. 'What happened?' Cyclops asks. 'It's crazy! First one of you mutants tries to kill me, then another one saves me – only it's the same one!' Senator Kelly exclaims adding that there is a woman who looked like him, who changed into a man, and back, in his office. 'A shapeshifter! That explains why Bishop thought Gambit was the assassin!' Cyclops exclaims as he carries on running down the corridor. 'Can't tell 'em apart with a program no more!' Wolverine snarls as he follows Cyclops.
Moments later, Cyclops and Wolverine arrive in Senator Kelly's office, to find Rogue sitting beside the unmoving Gambit. 'I can see he's still breathing, lady. Wanna fill us in?' Wolverine remarks. Rogue informs them that Mystique was here, that she took on Gambit's likeness to kill Kelly, with his aide as a witness and then, once word got out that a mutant did the dirty deed, they would be headed right for Bishop's rotten future. 'But Ah stopped her, and she... ran off' Rogue concludes. 'So, sleeping beauty wasn't the culprit. I knew it. Must be that honest face' Wolverine remarks, as Gambit starts to stir. Rogue tells Wolverine to shush and informs him that Bishop blasted Gambit while he was fighting his lookalike. 'If Ah hadn't come in Bishop would'a killed him – her, too' Rogue adds. Gambit rubs his head and remarks that he hasn't felt this bad since the morning after Mardis Gras. He adds that he has something to settle with Bishop, though. Rogue tells Gambit that is all taken care of, that Bishop will be back in his own time by now. 'Lucky for him, chere'
And, in that dismal time yet to come, the year 2055, Forge is burying Wolverine. 'Another casualty in this war which has no ending' he thinks to himself, wondering how many graves he must dig, how many moldering bodies must lie beneath the earth until they know freedom.
Suddenly, there is a flash of energy, and Bishop returns to this time period, landing near the grave Forge has dug. 'You've returned' Forge calls out. 'Yes. Not willingly. The X-Men -' Bishop begins, rubbing his head. 'Then you encountered the legends in the flesh! Did they -' Forge begins to ask, when suddenly, there is another flash of energy, and the temporal transceiver returns to this time period. Bishop takes the transceiver and informs Forge that Rogue tossed it into the timestream, causing his removal from the twentieth Century. 'I failed in my attempt to kill Gambit' Bishop informs Forge. 'Then the assassin still lives in the past – and this future hasn't altered' Forge replies. Bishop tosses the transceiver into the grave and suggests that perhaps it cannot. He tells Forge to be thankful that he survived the Sentinel's assault, as he was certain they would have killed him and Wolverine. Bishop remarks that Wolverine may have been the better choice for the mission, and asks Forge to excuse his bitterness.
One day after the attempt on Senator Kelly's life, Professor X, Jean Grey and Cyclops are in a corridor within the Capitol Building, and Jean asks the Professor why Senator Kelly wants to see him. Charles wonders if perhaps the events of the last twenty-four hours have made him a more personable man.
Suddenly, there is a crashing noise, and Cyclops realizes it is coming from Senator Kelly's office. They rush to his office, and Cyclops discovers the office has been trashed. There is a gaping hole in the wall, and Senator Kelly is nowhere to be seen. Cyclops assumes Senator Kelly has been abducted, and remarks that there are probably more mutants in Apocalypse's gang than they thought. Charles holds up his watch and tells Cyclops and Jean that he doesn't believe this is the work of those same mutants. 'Why not, Professor?' Jean asks. 'Because my watch has stopped' Charles announces. Cyclops asks him how this is important, and the Professor drops his watch. 'Because not only has it stopped, Scott... it's been magnetized' Charles reveals as the watch suddenly attaches itself to his hoverchair.