Generation X (1st series) #55

Issue Date: 
September 1999
Story Title: 
Sins of the Past part 1: In Another Man’s Shoes

Jay Faerber (Writer), Terry Dodson (Penciler), Rachel Dodson (Inker), Kevin Tinsley (Colorist), Richard Starkings & Saida Temofonte (Letterers), Lysa Kraiger (Assistant Editor), Jason Liebig (Editor), bob Harras (Editor in Chief)
Based in part on a story by Jim Lee, While Portacio and John Byrne

Brief Description: 

Generation X wake to find that their regular uniforms have been replaced with the costumes of the Hellions, Emma Frost’s first and now dead students, not to mention that when they look in a mirror, their reflection is replaced with that of one of the Hellions. Emma summons the students and she is wearing clothes she wore during her days as the Hellfire Club’s White Queen, and informs the students that an attempt has been made on her life and that at a party tonight the X-Men will be there to assist should anything happen. Jubilee realizes that Emma described the day that the Hellions died and convinces her somewhat skeptic teammates that they need to play along, for while the Hellions didn’t know they were about to die, Jubilee does know what is going to happen. At the party, they meet Jetstream, the only member of the Hellions not reflected in one of the Generation X members and soon a battle starts between the “Hellions” and the X-Men when Emma discovers another assassin and starts to torture her. Jean Grey stops the battle and while the X-Men talk to Emma, Jetstream tries to deal with the young assassin, until he is killed by Trevor Fitzroy who enters the Hellfire Club building. The X-Men and “Hellions” try to stop him, to no avail as he has an advanced weaponry system. When one of Archangel’s wing-blades bounces off Fitzroy and cuts Monet, she suddenly wakes up in the Danger Room of the Massachusetts Academy discovering that her wound is real, and unable to wake her teammates, she becomes concerned that they could die while trapped in the dream.

Full Summary: 

Sunday morning at the Massachusetts Academy, the one day of the week where mutant student Jubilation Lee, better known as “Jubilee” can sleep as late as she wants. But not this Sunday, for she is woken by a telepathic shout from her headmistress announcing that she wants to speak with her students in the combat room immediately. Jubilee gets out of bed and rubs the sleep from her eyes, grumbling that a telepathic shout is not her kind of wake up call. Jubilee suspects something may be wrong judging by the tone of Emma’s “voice” she sounds rather wound up. Jubilee thinks that it probably has something to do with the pressure of having “normal” students along with the mutants of Generation X is finally getting to her.

Jubilee opens her wardrobe and is shocked to find a pink and purple costume hanging in it – a Hellions costume! Jubilee thinks that whoever thought it would be funny to replace their regular uniforms with ones of Emma’s first students – who were murdered – needs to have an attitude adjustment. Glancing into her mirror, Jubilee’s confusion is doubled when she sees not her reflection, but the reflection of Sharon Smith, a.k.a. Catseye – one of the Hellions – one of the dead Hellions.

Minutes later, Jubilee is dressed in the Hellions costume and knocks on the door of her posh teammate Monet St. Croix, who wearing Tommy Hillfiger opens the door and upon seeing Jubilee declares that she is just the person she wanted to talk to. Monet tells Jubilee that she didn’t think even she would stoop so low as to replace her uniform – Monet sees that Jubilee is wearing one and mumbles that it rules her out as the prankster, as Jubilee tells Monet that she doesn’t know the half of it and asks her to use her telepathy to gather the others, as she has something to show them.

Soon, the four other members of Generation X, all dressed in the Hellion outfits, meet Jubilee and Monet in a bathroom as Angelo Espinosa a.k.a. Skin asks Jubilee what is going on, while Monet examines the costume and declares that they are hideous. Jubilee tells her teammates to shut up and look in the mirror – and they do. As they see their reflection replaced by the reflections of the Hellions – Marie-Ange Colbert a.k.a. Tarot replaces Monet, Beef stands where Chamber is, Catseye still takes Jubilee’s place, while Manual dela Rocha a.k.a. Empath is reflected instead of Synch, Husk stares at Jenny Stravos a.k.a. Roulette and Skin is replaced by Bevatron. See? Still think this is just some kind of prank? asks Jubilee.

Skin declares that they have to find out what is going on, as Jubilee tells everyone not to just stand there, Everett Thomas a.k.a. Synch thinks they should find Miss Frost, but Jonothan Starsmore a.k.a. Chamber believes they should check if Penance, Artie and Leech are all okay. However, a telepathic projection of Emma Frost appears before the teens and tells them that she wants them in the combat room and will not ask again.

In the underground combat room, Skin and Synch gawk at Emma, who looks younger and is dressed in on outfit she wore during her Hellfire Club days, as the Inner Circle’s White Queen. Jubilee mumbles that “dressed” is not the word for it. Hands on her hips, Emma tells the Gen Xers that she doesn’t know what kept them, but trusts that it will not happen again. Moving to the matter of why she summoned them, Emma tells them that they are aware of the fact that several days ago someone made an attempt on her life. Emma reveals that she believes the assassin acted in conjunction with attempts made on the lives of other members of the Inner Circle, and that in order to help determine who is behind the attacks she has managed to get assistance from the X-Men, who will be attending tonight’s party.

Jubilee’s mouth drops open and eyes go wide, for she knows that the events Emma just described occurred on a very unfortunate day – the day the Hellions died.

Later, on the campus grounds, the six mutants have met to discuss the situation. Paige “Husk” Guthrie wonders how Emma, with all her telepathic powers doesn’t realize that something is wrong, and Skin declares that if tonight is supposedly the night the Hellions – in this case though Generation X themselves – are supposed to die, he votes they should simply not go. From up in a tree, Jubilee shouts that she is appalled as they are X-Men – well, sort of – and that X-Men don’t back down from a fight. She tells Angelo not to think that if they do not show up that the fight will not happen. Angelo tells Jubes that they are not the X-Men and that he doesn’t recall suicide missions being on the curriculum.

Chamber telepathically declares that he knows it may seem “cowardly” but thinks that Skin is right. Jubilee proclaims that she cannot believe what she is hearing and states that when she was with the X-Men, Professor Xavier taught her that the only thing worse than failing is not even trying. Jubilee declares that the Hellions may have died, but Generation X has an advantage because they know they are supposed to die. Something else that Xavier told her was Forewarned is forearmed and she believes that they can use their knowledge today to change how things play out. She asks if anyone has a problem with that, but no one does.

Later, at the Manhattan Brownstone that serves as the headquarters for the Hellfire Club, all dressed up, the members of Generation X congregate at the top of a stair case and Jubilee declares that this place is gonna be crawling with Sentinels before too long, just you watch. Skin reminds Jubilee that she has already given them the run down and they now know what to expect. Husk is in awe when she sees Iceman and Colossus down at the party when their “teammate” Jetstream approaches them, apologizing for being late. Jetstream reveals that the visit with his family went longer than expected. He declares that this is some party and asks how they are all doing.

Husk, Synch and Jubilee all mumble that they are fine, and Jetstream smiles, asking them why they are acting so freaked out. Skin, whom Jetstream believes to be Bevatron pats Jetstream on the back and tells him that everyone is glad he made it so the party can really start! You know it dude smirks Jetstream before walking away and declaring that he is going to find some older women to flirt. Jubilee congratulates Angelo on a nice save as Husk walks down the stairs and approaches Bobby and Piotr, asking if they are Iceman and Colossus. Bobby replies that he knows she is Roulette and that it looks like she has been using her luck changing powers on herself. Paige jokes along before telling Bobby that she needs their help. Hoping to “get lucky” Bobby tells her that they know all about the attempt on the White Queen’s life and makes a pass at “Jenny” telling her that it doesn’t mean they cannot get to know each other better in the meantime.

Meanwhile, upstairs, Storm, Jean Grey and Archangel stand together as Jean, in telepathic contact with Bobby and Piotr, informs Ororo and Warren that some of the Hellions have approached them. Storm tells Jean to keep a close watch on the Hellions, but Warren declares that he doesn’t see a big deal with them, as they are just kids. Storm informs Warren that those “kids” have proven themselves to be dangerous. Jubilee alerts her teammates to the presence of the three senior X-Men and suggests that just because Emma’s telepathy didn’t register them, Jean’s might, and thinks they should go talk to her.

As the Gen Xer’s approach Jean and the others a Hellfire Club servant declares that Emma Frost will see them now, when suddenly Emma throws a mysterious woman through the doors, telling her that she is clumsy, as one should not bait the lioness in her den, nor the spider at the center of her web. Emma stands over the young woman as she announces that this is the second time in as many weeks that an attempt has been made on her life, though it would seem that the assassins are getting younger and younger.

Emma turns to the X-Men and greets them, adding that it is doubtless now as to why she invited them here before using her telepathy on the young assassin peeling her psyche like a ripe fruit. Generation X look shocked at how ruthless Emma actually was back in the day – for they have up until now only heard of her reputation.

Storm quickly comes between Emma and the young assailant, informing Emma that she would not deny her the right to defend herself but that she draws the line at torture. Emma tells Storm to unhand her as Jetstream turns to his “teammates” and asks if they are just going to stand around while Miss Frost gets attacked. He asks what they are waiting for and the mixed reply comes um, well…, it’s like, we don’t…. Fine, I’ll deal with this myself, cries the brash Hellion as he rips away his tuxedo revealing his costume underneath and flying towards Storm, knocking her away from Emma.

Archangel, Iceman and Colossus also rip away their tuxedos and Warren jokes that the truce is over before it even began. Colossus shifts to his armored form and tells Warren that they should have known it would have been the case as there is too much bad blood between the X-Men and Hellfire Club for any peace to be a lasting one. Iceman announces that the X-Men came in good faith, but if the Hellfire Club wants a fight then a fight they will get. Colossus picks Skin off the ground and informs him that he would do well to surrender now while he has the chance. Monet picks up Colossus, causing him to drop Skin and she tells him that it is he who should surrender while he has the chance. Skin thanks Monet, as Colossus just looks shocked.

Meanwhile, Storm throws Jetstream off her as Jubilee calls to both the “Hellions” and the X-Men trying to explain that they do not need to fight, when she finds herself stuck to the floor with ice. She narrows her eyes and declares that the kid gloves are off as she pafs her way free from the ice.

Archangel flies across the room and Skin extends his arms trying to grab him, but finds that his wings are too sharp. Colossus meanwhile has tracked Synch and clasping him, he informs him that his strength outclasses his. Synch smiles and tells Colossus not to be so sure as when he uses his aura he can “synch up” with Colossus’ mutant powers and Everett become steel like Colossus and breaks free from his grasp.

Iceman sleds down towards Chamber thinking that he will stop this fight cold and encases Chamber in a ice block. Chamber telepathically tries to calm everyone down and stop them fighting, and when he finds himself captured he uses his bio-blast to break free. Transformed into a rock-like body Husk apologizes to Storm for punching her but declares that the fight needs to end. Storm agrees and knocks Paige out with a burst of electricity.

In another part of the large room, Jean Grey stands on her own and quietly asks everyone to stop. When she receives no answer she telepathically screams STOP into everyone’s mind and all at once the X-Men and “Hellions” clutch their throbbing heads. With everyone no longer fighting, Jean reminds them all that the X-Men are present because Emma believes there is some force that is threatening all of them. She suggests that if they battle each other, it only leaves them open to attack from whatever the force may be.

Emma smirks and agrees with Jean before admitting she did not expect the call of reason to come from her, nor with such vigor. She declares that the time has come for them to get down to their cases, as the Inner Circle of the Hellfire Club is under attack and the identity of the attackers unknown. However the purpose of the enemy is clear, and Emma asks again If the Hellfire Club falls…can the X-Men be far behind?

Jetstream turns to his “teammates” and tells them that they will be able to get bonus points with Miss Frost if they interrogate the assassin themselves. Jubilee looks up at Jetstream almost saddened as she recalls that he is the first to die and doesn’t even know it. Jubilee – who Jetstream thinks is Catseye – reminds him that the assassin almost killed Emma and that it might be too dangerous. Jetstream declares that he doesn’t know what has gotten into his “teammates” to make them so gutless and storms over to the young woman demanding answers.

In another corner of the room, the X-Men stand and talk to Emma. Storm tells the White Queen that her logic is flawed, reminding her that they answered her cry for help as they would have for anyone in need – mutant or otherwise. However, Storm declares that the X-Men are not prepared to reinstate the truce until they are convinced of the truth of what she says. Ororo tells Emma that she must tell them everything, including who of the Hellfire Club has been attacked, when, where and their present condition. Emma declares that it is for her alone to know and proclaims that as for the severity of the threat it could be easily accomplished if the X-Men would allow her to complete the interrogation of the prisoner.

Just then, Jetstream standing over the assassin announces that she will talk – when suddenly someone walks through the door behind the Arabic mutant and grabs him by the neck before unleashing a power on him and rendering the young man dead. Wearing a protective suit, the green-haired man tells his female ally that she has been clumsy and should have chosen a target more within her reach, however it would seem a pity for their schemes to be unraveled because of her foolishness.

Generation X stand and watch as Jetstream is killed and those who didn’t believe Jubilee realize that the events are unfolding exactly as she said they would. Skin suggests they take Fitzroy and not let it end, while Emma tells the X-Men to watch and learn as her students make short work of the threat. Storm tells her teammates that they cannot let the Hellions face the danger alone and they agree. Jubilee reminds her friends that they have an advantage – that the Hellions didn’t know what they were up against, but they do. Synch uses his aura to copy Chambers’ power and they both unleash a psionic blast on Fitzroy.

Trevor Fitzroy smiles and informs everyone that his weapons system which is complete with a forcefield is more advanced than their mutant powers and even if they could injure him, they cannot attack what cannot be seen. Fitzroy disappears. Using teleportation he now appears across the other side of the room, near Monet – “Tarot”. Archangel flies over and shoots his deadly metallic feathers at the enemy. When the feathers bounce off Fitzroy, he asks why no one will take his word when he says that they cannot hurt him. However as the feathers bounce off of him one of the streaks past Monet and hits her in the shoulder. Monet cries out…

… and suddenly wakes up in the Danger Room at the Massachusetts Academy. Monet looks around realizing where she is, she thinks it must have been some weird dream and sees her teammates sprawled out across the floor. She calls to them and asks if anyone can hear her. No one replies and Monet starts shaking Jubilee, shouting that something weird is going on. Monet soon sees that her right arm has been cut from Archangel’s feather, and realizes that whatever happens in “there” happens in reality – and that the others could even die!

Characters Involved: 

Chamber, Husk, Jubilee, Monet, Skin, Synch (All Generation X)
Emma Frost

In Danger Room Scenario / Replica of Uncanny X-Men #281
Archangel, Colossus, Iceman, Jean Grey, Storm (All X-Men)
Beef (Chamber), Bevatron (Skin), Catseye (Jubilee), Empath (Synch), Jetstream, Roulette (Husk), Tarot (Monet) (All Hellions)

White Queen

Fitzroy’s female ally

People at Hellfire Club Party

Story Notes: 

The death of most of the Hellions, the Reavers and the “death” of both Jean Grey and the White Queen happened in Uncanny X-Men (1st series) #281-282, which this issue and the next are “replicating."

Jubilee was a member of the X-Men (though not present at this adventure) when the massacre of the Hellions occurred which is why she knows what to expect.

Tarot, Roulette, Bevatron, Beef, Catseye and Jetstream were all killed in the battle with the Sentinels, Empath being the only survivor of the battle. [Uncanny X-Men (1st series) #281-282] Former members of the Hellions include Warpath, Firestar and Magma. Tarot has since been resurrected. [X-Force (1st series) #87]

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