Generation X (1st series) #31

Issue Date: 
October 1997
Story Title: 
Rites of Passage

James Robinson (writer), Chris Bachalo (artist), Richard Starkings & Comicraft/EM (letters), Digital Chameleon (colors), Mark Powers (editor), Bob Harras (editor in chief)

Brief Description: 

Skin and Tores are attacked by a horde of Prime Sentinels, where Skin finds out that Tores is a mutant. The rest of the team comes to the rescue and ambushes the Sentinels. The plan is going well, but the tides quickly turns and, one by one, the team falls. The Sentinels converge an attack on Synch and M, and Monet tells Everett that he must synch with her invulnerability in order to survive. When Everett synchs with her, he finds out the secret of her true nature. The Sentinels attack and both survive the blast. Down below in the car garage, Skin's cousin, Gil, gets ready to set fire to all of the cars, according to Angelo's plan. At that moment, a Prime Sentinel crashes behind Gil and he ignites the gas rag in the car, hightailing it out of there as the building explodes behind him. The police come to extinguish the fire and Everett rises from the rubble. He uses his mutagenic aura to seek out the others, finding M… both of her. The force of the explosion split M into two little girls. Still desperate to know where her students are, Emma Frost meets with Emplate to strike a deal: Emma will give Penance over to Emplate if he tells her where the Gen X kids are. Banshee wakes up and punches Emma in the face. He lets out a sonic blast at Emplate and DOA, but they manage to escape back into their dimension in time. Sean takes Penance and leaves with her, leaving Emma alone to contemplate her wrongdoing. Meanwhile, in New Mexico, Daria helps Jubilee escape the Operation: Zero Tolerance compound, protecting her from the Prime Sentinels and telling her the way to get out of the canyon.

Full Summary: 

In a warehouse in California, Skin and his former "business associate," Tores, are surrounded by a horde of Prime Sentinels. As the Sentinels lunge at them, Tores releases a psi-blast at the nearest one, catching Skin be surprise since he didn't know that she was a mutant. Skin and Tores dive for cover as the Sentinels reconfigure their attack plan by downloading plans to deal with the newly revealed telepath. The two friends bicker as they jump out from under their cover, just as the rest of Generation X crashes through the roof.

They have the upper hand, Paige even is able to husk into stone under pressure, but their victory is short lived. A Prime Sentinel comes up behind her and Chamber shoots at him to protect his crush. However, the Sentinel dodges the attack and the blast hits Paige, knocking her out cold. With Chamber distracted, he is easily taken down by an optic blast from one of the Sentinels. M is knocked across the room, landing to a bloody Synch, effectively caught in the corner.

The Sentinels converge on their remaining targets, preparing for a group attack. M tells Synch that the only way for him to make it through the attack is for him to synch up with her invulnerability. He questions if it is safe, because he never tried that before, but M tells him that there isn't enough time to dwell on that fact. As he synchs up with her, he finds out the truth about her, but she tells him that they will have plenty of time to talk about that later. The Sentinels fire upon the two young mutants and they step out of the blast with hardly a scratch. Synch tells M that invulnerability is amazing, that last attack kind of tickled. The teens pose to strike back at their attackers.

In the garage below, Skin's cousin Gil pours gasoline all over the cars, stuffing a soaked rag into one of the gas tanks. He wonders if his friends are all right up above and finds it a shame that he has to destroy so many good cars. A Prime Sentinel crashes through the wall and lands on one of the cars behind Gil, giving him the incentive to light the rag in the car and speed out of the building on his scooter before the building explodes in a fiery blast.

In Florida, Banshee lies unconscious on the floor as Emma Frost makes a treacherous bargain with Emplate and his lackey, DOA. In exchange for the information on where her students are, Emma is willing to give Penance back to her former tormentor. Sean awakes from his stupor to punch Emma in the face. Emplate panics, he hasn't fed on mutant marrow in too long, he is not fit for a confrontation. He orders DOA to transport them back into their dimension, but the button on the device is jammed. Banshee calls out to Penance and she slashes at Emplate. DOA fixes the device and transports them, just in the knick of time as Banshee releases a devastating sonic scream, obliterating the wall where Emplate had stood. Sean says that no one will ever take one of his children as he is still breathing. He kneels down next to Penance, telling her that since he missed out by not raising his daughter, he will not fail his students. As he picks her up and walks out the hole in the wall to leave, Emma comes to her senses and yells to him.

At the top secret Operation: Zero Tolerance base in New Mexico, Bastion and his operatives watch as Jubilee escapes on the back of Daria. Jubilee tells Daria that they should probably surrender, but Daria tells her that she will keep her promise to get her out of there. Three Prime Sentinels take off after the two girls, closing in fast. The Sentinels land moments later, scanning the surrounding area for their targets. They see a shape take off from a crevice in the canyon and immediately fly after it. From the safety of the canyon, Jubilee watches her friend's valiant sacrifice, thanking her for her bravery.

The fire department finishes putting out the blaze of the remnant factory. The chief says that they are going to need back up to find the missing people. Gil wonders if anyone could have survived the blast. Just then, one of the fire fighters finds someone and pulls him free from the rubble. It is Synch and the only thing on his mind is finding the others. He stands up and extends his mutagenic aura to find his missing teammates. He locates M and runs to her, digging her out from underneath the wreckage. He holds two girls, twins, in his arms and replies that he has got her… both of her.

Back in Miami, Emma pleads with Sean not to leave. She tells him that he has to believe that she would never give up Penance. Sean lashes out at her, telling her that he can't believe anything she says; words come cheap to her and every other villain. He had forgotten that she is still the White Queen of the Hellfire Club and tells her that she is not welcome around the institute anymore. With that, he says his goodbyes and flies off, leaving Emma to wallow in her self-pity.

In the New Mexico canyon, Jubilee reruns the plan that Daria gave her.
The high walls of the canyon will keep her safe from Sentinel scans and, if she works her way out of the canyon, there should be a road where she can get a ride into town. As she wanders off into the distance, she wonders how everyone at the school is doing. Probably nothing new, she thinks. They can't get into trouble without her.

Characters Involved: 

Chamber, Husk, Jubilee, M I, Penance, Skin, Synch (members of Gen X)
Banshee, White Queen I (teachers and tutors of Gen X)

Tores (former "business associate" of Skin)
Gil (Skin's cousin)


Daria (agent of Bastion)
Prime Sentinels

Story Notes: 

Tores first appeared in Generation X (1st series) #25.

Banshee's daughter is Theresa Rourke a.k.a. Siryn, formerly of X-force and now with X-corporation Paris. Her uncle, Black Tom Cassidy, raised her.

Emplate resides in a pocket dimension beside ours.

Penance was the prisoner of Emplate for quite a long time, where she was basically his mutant marrow buffet in his home dimension.

Jubilee was captured by Bastion in Generation X (1st series) #25, when he saved her from an insane Mondo.

The Gen X kids arrived in California in Generation X (1st series) #28, and their headmasters have been looking for them since Generation X (1st series) #25.

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