X-Men Legacy (1st series) #251

Issue Date: 
August 2011
Story Title: 
Lost Legions, part two

Mike Carey (writer), Khoi Pham (penciler), Tom Palmer, Craig Yeung & Nelson DeCastro (inkers), Marte Gracia (colorist), Virtual Calligraphy’s Cory Petit (letterer), Mico Suayan & Marte Gracia (cover artists), Sebastian Girner (assistant editor), Daniel Ketchum (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: 

Rogue and Magneto arrive in London, and are instantly surrounded by countless “replicas” - people taken over by - Chain, one of Legion’s escaped personas. They do what they can to defend themselves while attempting to locate the Chain 1(A). Gambit, Legion, Frenzy and the Professor soon arrive on scene, and while the Professor remains in the X-jet to scan for Chain 1(A), the others go to assist Rogue and Magneto. They battle for a while, before being forced to flee. In the catacombs beneath Paris, Styx, another escaped persona, talks to his apparent followers, while in their safe location, tensions run high between Gambit and Frenzy - amplified by the sudden arrival of another escaped persona, Susan in Sunshine. Frenzy and Gambit kiss, while Legion and Magneto argue with each other and begin to battle, until Rogue separates them. Frenzy manages to take down Susan in Sunshine, enabling Legion to re-absorb her. Xavier locates Chain 1(A) and the heroes descend on his location, where Legion is able to re-absorb him with surprising ease. However, when they return to the X-jet, they find Xavier has vanished, and Styx has left his calling card.

Full Summary: 

‘Hope you’re listening in, Professor. This is Rogue, and we’re down. No problems so far’ Rogue calls out as she and Magneto land in London, hoping that Professor X will pick up on her. Looking around the square, Rogue adds ‘In fact, no people. Did we pick a quiet neighborhood?’ But Magneto informs Rogue that they are in the very center of the city, in Piccadilly Circus. He motions to a statue, and tells Rogue that it is of Eros, the God of Love. ‘Is it, now?’ Rogue replies. Rogue looks at Magneto and calling him Magnus as she usually does, tells him she would hate to think he took this assignment just so he could talk dirty to her. Magneto assures Rogue that their relationship was not a consideration, confirming that he is here at Cyclops’s express instruction. ‘And why did Scott think we needed -’ Rogue begins, before stopping herself. ‘Okay. Maybe that questions better wait a while. Ah heard a shotgun being cocked’ Rogue declares.

Looking around, several dozen people surround Rogue and Magneto. ‘So Ah guess we don’t have the place to ourselves after all’ Rogue points out. However, the “people” are all in fact one person - the same person, or, rather, persona. Chain. ‘I know what you’re here for, X-Men’ he declares as he walks towards them, this one armed with a machete. ‘I know everything about you’ he adds, this one armed with another sort of weapon. Each of them have different sorts of weapons, as a third introduces himself and points out the obvious - that each iteration of him has a different set of weapons. ‘Three or four of me are an army. And you’re facing an entire city full of me’ he boasts, as Chain - all of them - lunge towards Rogue and Magneto. ‘There’s no way you’re getting out of this alive!’ one of them boasts.

At that moment, aboard one of the X-jets, Legion a.k.a. David Haller tells his father, Professor Charles Xavier, Remy “Gambit” LeBeau and Joanna “Frenzy” Cargill that after Styx, he thinks Susan in Sunshine and Chain are the most dangerous of his escaped personas. Legion explains that Chain spreads like a virus, turning anyone he touches into a copy of him, only the weapon changes, while Susan amplifies emption and then feeds on it - turns it into raw energy. ‘Are you sick or something, Haller? You’re talking like this is nothing much’ Frenzy declares, reminding him that these are pieces of his mind, loose in the world. Legion replies that he is far from calm, explaining that this sort of fragmentation terrifies him.

Gambit announces that London is directly below them, and suggests to his comrades that they keep their seatbelts fastened, for unlikely as it sounds, they are drawing ground fire. Indeed, as the X-jet approaches Piccadilly Circus, Chain - all of those he now commands - aim towards them. ‘Stxy was right’ one of them shouts. ‘They’ve come to destroy us! To reduce us back to one!’ another exclaims as they continue to fire their assorted arsenal at the X-jet. ‘Better to be dead!’ another shouts. ‘Bring them down!’ yet another declares. Inside the jet, Gambit informs the others that the center is infested, so he is going to try to land on the parkland in the west. Charles turns to his son and tells him that he knows his sub-personas better than anyone. ‘How do we deal with them?’ he asks.

‘With Chain?’ Legion replies, explaining that you have to find the 1(A) iteration, the original, for if 1(A) falls, the others revert to their normal selves. He adds that Susan’s powers dissipate when she is unhappy. ‘We have to pick on a little girl and make her sad?’ Joanna asks. ‘Yes’ Legion confirms. ‘I’m taking the virus guy. Seriously’ Frenzy declares. Gambit announces that they are coming in for landing, while one of them remarks that, any other time, they could stop and do some sightseeing. Charles tells the others to get going while he searches for the 1(A) version of Chain telepathically. He informs them that they need to extract Rogue and Magneto, as they are heavily outnumbered. ‘How do you outnumber Magneto?’ Gambit asks.

At that moment, Magneto uses his power to rip every weapon he can out of the hands of all the various Chains. Rogue knocks one who approaches her aside and tells Magneto that they cannot hurt these people, as they are innocent victims. Magnus replies that he has never encountered innocence, but that he believes in it, as a theoretical possibility. Magneto casts the weapons aside as he tells Rogue that he will keep his response sub-lethal wherever possible. Suddenly, one of the Chain calls out ‘Non-ferrous units, converge on target one!’. ‘Copy’ several Chain reply as they rush forward, armed with various bows and arrows. ‘Magneto! On your left!’ Rogue warns Magnus. An arrow strikes Magneto, while Rogue calls out ‘My turn!’ as she leaps to Magneto and touches his cheek, under his helmet, with her bare fingers. ‘Non-ferrous units, take her down!’ Chain orders again. ‘You’re welcome to try, boys!’ Rogue declares, now in possession of Magneto’s power.

Legion, Gambit and Frenzy arrive at the battle in an energy bubble, and begin to engage the various Chains in combat. Legion tells his companions to avoid skin contact at all costs. Holding one by its neck, Frenzy lifts the Chain into the air and mutters ‘Pity. These losers would look at lot better with multiple contusions. ‘But you work with what you’ve got!’ she exclaims as she uses this Chain by tossing him about, knocking several others over. Legion uses the abilities of another persona, one which enables him to give instructions to Chain. ‘Panic. Flee. Turn on your brothers’ he orders those he can, before he sees Magneto, and asks Rogue if he is wounded. Rogue replies that it was crossbows, that Chain adapted their weapons to whoever they have to fight. ‘Yes. They do’ Legion replies, suggesting that, for the moment, it is probably best that they retreat. He then uses the power of one of his personas to teleport himself and his allies away. More than a hundred have fallen to Chain’s influence, and they gather around the statue of Eros. ‘Okay. Stand down. And tell Styx he’s clear for phase two’ Chain identity 13(b) calls out.

Moments later, Legion and the others materialize inside Elephant and Castle. Frenzy asks how come they ran away, and boasts that she could have taken those toy soldiers out by herself. Legion and Rogue help Magneto walk upright, and Legion informs Frenzy that taking out the lower links in the chain is irrelevant, as the target is 1(A). ‘Then let’s find him and put some creases in him!’ Frenzy declares. Legion asks his father if there has been any progress on that front, and Charles replies telepathically that Chain 1(A) is close to where they are now, which is why he asked them to teleport south of the river. From inside the X-jet, Charles tells Legion that all of his personas are extremely hard to read telepathically, and that Chain, with his near-infinite flawed copies, is the hardest of all. Charles tells everyone to stay where they are and that he will have directions for them soon. ‘So we sit and wait while this freak is out there high-fiving half of London?’ Gambit holds up some playing cards: ‘If anyone is interested…I have a deck of cards’.

At that moment, in the catacombs beneath Paris, the horrifying persona Styx sits on a throne, with his “subjects” standing before him. ‘In a spirit of proper reverence - with souls sanctified by terror and awe…you may approach’ Styx calls out. One of them informs Styx that the woman - the conduit - spoke again. ‘Indeed? And what did she say?’ Styx asks. ‘That Chain has engaged your enemies in London’ another reveals. He adds that they attacked in the configuration expected. ‘And was there something else?’ Styx asks. The first replies that the conduit said these things and then died. ‘Her body died. But her spirit lives on in me. So rejoice!’ Styx proclaims.

Back inside Elephant and Castle, Frenzy throws a car against the wall, smashing it. ‘Joanna’ Gambit calls out. ‘What?’ Frenzy asks. Gambit points out that the noise is a bad idea, as they want their next encounter with Chain to be on their terms. Frenzy turns to Gambit and tells him that would be a novelty for him, as most things in his life happen on “hers”, referring of course to Rogue. ‘You think I’m jealous of Rogue’s closeness to Magneto? You’re wrong. I sent her to him!’ Gambit retorts. ‘To get over her feelings for him, all she has to do is look at him from close up. It works every time’ Gambit explains, suggesting that Joanna try something similar, if she wants to conquer her desire for Cyclops. ‘You might want to shut that mouth before I shove a five-door saloon into it!’ Frenzy retorts as she rushes over to Gambit, who points out that Joanna critiques his relationships, and yet hers are off-limits. ‘It doesn’t work that way’ he tells her.

Joanna grabs Remy by his trench coat and declares that it works however she says it works, and calls him a pocket-picking piece of garbage. ‘Crois pas’ Gambit replies, to which Frenzy tells him that if he keeps speaking French to her, she is going to rip his tongue out. ‘Any time you want to try -’ Gambit begins, before Frenzy begins to kiss him. Gambit kisses back, but suddenly, ‘What - what’s going on here?’ Joanna gasps as she pulls away from Gambit, who replies that he doesn’t know. He suggests it might be some kind of mind control, when they both notice a young girl standing before them. She smiles and introduces herself as Susan. ‘Isn’t it a lovely day?’ she asks.

Nearby, Legion and Rogue are with Magneto. Rogue has wrapped a make-shift bandage around Magneto’s leg and tells him that will hold until they get back to the Blackbird. Magneto thanks Rogue and tells her that she might like to step out of the line of fire. ‘The line of?’ Rogue asks, before turning around and looking at Legion, who calls Magneto “old man” and asks him if he really wants to do this now. ‘An entire city is on the brink of destruction. Can you think of a better time?’ Magneto asks. Legion tells Magneto not to scrape around for justifications and asks ‘This is why you came with us, isn’t it?’ Magneto informs Legion that Cyclops is aware of his potential, and that he instructed Magneto that if it came to a choice between saving him and saving the world, he should choose the world.

‘What?’ Rogue asks as she stand between the two men. ‘You’re the kill switch. The final sanction!’ Legion declares. Magneto replies that is exactly what he is, before asking Legion is he has any last words, or a preferred epitaph. ‘I’ll write yours!’ Legion boasts as he surges with energy.

Back in the other area, Gambit looks at Susan in Sunshine and tells Frenzy to be careful, as this is Legion’s other persona. ‘I know who she is’ Frenzy replies. ‘Okay, little girl, you’re coming with us’ Frenzy announces. Susan replies that she is happy here, and but thanks Frenzy anyway. ‘I’m very happy here’ Susan adds, before releasing a massive burst of energy, which creates a small crater. ‘This is why we fought, and why we kissed. She manipulates emotion, and uses -’ Gambit begins, to which Frenzy interrupts again, ‘I said I got the sleeve notes, LeBeau’ she tells him, before ordering Remy to go and warn the others, and to pray that they are out of Susan’s range.

At that moment, Magneto ducks two powerful beams of energy that surge towards him from Legion. However, Rogue goes over to Legion: ‘Sorry, David’ she tells him as he she pulls him away. ‘This is gonna hurt. But you got more powers than you need, in any case. Ah don’t think you’ll miss a few’ Rogue tells him as she touches his skin and absorbs several personas from him - ‘Either way…nobody dies here’ Rogue declares as she uses several of the powers on Magneto.

Susan in Sunshine sings a song as the glowing energy continues to radiate around her - but Frenzy surges on and steps closer and closer to her opponent, until finally, ‘ENOUGH!’ Joanna booms as she tears the head off of Susan’s doll. Susan begins to cry, ‘M-my dolly! My doll’s all broke!’ she cries. Gambit returns and asks Joanna if she is all right. Sitting down in the crater, Frenzy replies that she is just a little hot to the touch right now, while Susan begins crying about her dolly. Legion and Rogue follow Gambit, and Legion calls out to Susan, asking her if she wants to go home. Susan sniffs and asks him if he can fix her dolly. ‘As good as new’ David assures her. ‘Then yes. Yes, please’ Susan tells him.

Legion absorbs Susan back into him while Susan exclaims that it is time for a picnic and that all the toys are invited. ‘Won’t it be fun!’ she declares. Rogue looks at Legion and tells him that no one was thinking clearly back there. ‘Ah don’t believe that Scott’s orders to Magneto were -’ she begins, but David interrupts, telling her that there is no need to spare his feelings. ‘If I were Cyclops, I’d probably already have pressed that switch’ David claims. Suddenly, the Professor’s voice resonates in their minds, telling them to listen. Rogue asks the Professor to go ahead, so Charles announces that Chain’s 1(A) self is at the location he is sending them now, a derelict housing estate in Peckham, surrounded by many thousands of his other selves. ‘Then what are we waiting for? Let’s go do some damage!’ Frenzy declares.

In Peckham, literally thousands of Chain are gathered. Inside one of the buildings, ‘You hear anything just then?’ one of them, sitting on a chair, asks. Another addresses the seated Chain as 1(A) and tells him that he is fine. He adds that there are three thousand copies between here and the road. ‘Nothing is going to get close enough to -’ he begins, before there is a crash, and Chain 1(A) vanishes. ‘Uhh - 1(A) wh- where did you?’ one of the others calls out, the chai lying upturned on the floor.

But Chain 1(A) is lying on the ground, with Legion standing over him, and Frenzy, Gambit, Rogue and Magneto standing nearby. ‘Among the millions of cells of my brain, there’s one where you belong’ Legion tells Chain, who orders Legion to leave him alone, warning him that he will kill him. ‘Really? That would be interesting to see’ Legion replies. Chain aims his gun at Legion, but does not fire it. ‘No. Of course not. If you could win a fight by yourself, you wouldn’t be so desperate to raise arms’ Legion remarks, as he absorbs Chain back into himself. ‘We’re done here. Tell my father to fire up the engines’ Legion calls out casually.

Soon, a glow of energy at the X-jet signals the return of the mutants. But as they enter the X-jet, ‘Look at the door! Something isn’t right here!’ Rogue calls out. The heroes look around and Gambit finds blood, while Legion announces that his father is gone. ‘There’s this, too’ a wide-eyed Frenzy calls out, she holds up a white lily. ‘A white lily. For the dead’ Legion announces, revealing that is Styx’s symbol, and his calling card. ‘Cute. So he wants you to know he was here’ Frenzy remarks. ‘More than that. He wants us to follow him’ Legion declares, adding that they thought they were hunting Styx - but it is really the other way around - Styx is waiting for them!

And deep under Paris, in the catacombs, Styx sits on his throne….

Characters Involved: 

Gambit, Magneto, Rogue (all X-Men)

Professor X


Legion III

Chain, Styx, Susan in Sunshine (three of Legion’s personalities)

Styx’s followers

Story Notes: 

While commonly referred to as Eros, the statue in Piccadilly Circus actually depicts Anteros, the god of requited love, literally "love returned" or "counter-love" and also the punisher of those who scorn love and the advances of others, or the avenger of unrequited love.

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