Utopia, the sun shines down on the island nation, where Bobby “Iceman” Drake is currently relaxing on the beach. Ice surrounds where he sits, and Bobby looks up from behind his shades as Logan a.k.a. Wolverine approaches him. ‘Wow. Must’ve been one helluva fight’ Bobby remarks. ‘No. Just the usual’ Logan replies casually, various arrows and other spikes stuck into his body, his costume ripped and shredded. Logan then turns and walks away from Iceman.
Inside, Hope Summers and the Five Lights have gathered. ‘This is ridiculous. How long are we supposed to wait here?’ Velocidad asks. ‘You wanna be the guy who walked out on Wolverine, be my guest’ Hope tells him, while Primal makes a “woof” noise. As Wolverine approaches the young mutants, he asks ‘What’s this?’ Hope tells him that they are all accounted for, and ready whenever he is. ‘Ready for what?’ Logan enquires. ‘Combat training class’ Hope tells him. Staring at Hope, Wolverine supposes that he is going to be teaching this class. ‘That’s what it says on the schedule, Sir’ Hope replies. ‘What schedule is that?’ Logan asks, so Hope explains that Cyclops gave it to them. ‘I see’ Logan remarks.
Logan turns to one of the young mutants and asks her what her name is. ‘Idie’ replies the mutant codenamed “Oya”. Logan asks her how old she is, and she replies that she is fourteen. ‘Fourteen. Shouldn’t you be off playing with dolls or something instead of worrying about combat training?’ Logan tells her. Oya replies that she had a doll once, made from pretty beads, but she lost it when they tried to burn her for being a witch. ‘Did you have many toys when you were fourteen?’ Oya asks Wolverine. Logan just frowns at her, and yanks out an arrow stuck in his shoulder. ‘Class dismissed’ Wolverine calls out as he walks away from the young mutants. ‘Well that was definitely worth the wait’ Velocidad mutters as he, Hope, Transonic, Oya, Zero and Primal watch Wolverine walk away.
A sign has been taped to Wolverine’s door that reads: Logan’s quarters. Warning: trespassers will be stabbed repeatedly. And inside, Logan mutters ‘Avengers, X-Force, everybody can kiss my ass’ as, wearing only his briefs, he lies down on his bed after pulling out the remaining arrows stuck in his body, and remarks that he is going to sleep for three days. His arm drapes off the bed and his hand touches the ground. Suddenly, there is a knock at his door and a voice calls out ‘Logan?’, to which Wolverine unsheathes his claws, and they go through the floor. ‘Unless we’re about to be eaten by Galactus, just close the door and walk away, Slim’ Wolverine calls out. But Scott “Cyclops” Summers opens the door and tells Wolverine to suit up, as he needs him.
Logan sits up and mutters that this better be damn important. ‘As opposed to the sort of trivial nonsense I usually waste your time with?’ Scott asks, before informing Wolverine that he is scheduled to speak at an international arms control conference in Switzerland. ‘You can sleep on the plane’. Logan puts his uniform back on and replies ‘All right. But don’t expect me to be my usual jovial self’. Scott motions to the door and asks Wolverine if he wasn’t supposed to be teaching a combat training class right now. ‘Remind me to kill you when I have the energy’ Wolverine replies.
Sometime later, dozens of world representatives are gathered in Switzerland, all seated in a large theatre. At the security doors, Cyclops walks through the scanner and introduces himself. ‘And you are a representative of which country, Sir?’ a female security officer asks. Utopia’ Scott replies. The woman replies that she is not familiar with that country, to which Scott tells her it is the place where the people with wings and blue fur live. ‘Ah, yes, I see. And how many in your security detail?’ she asks. ‘Just one’ Scott replies as Wolverine appears and announces that the place is clear. ‘But…how did he get in without…’ someone asks as Wolverine stands on the inside of the security barrier. Scott asks the security personnel to tell everyone the X-Men are here and that they are ready to be heard.
As Logan and Scott walk through the theatre, the world leaders glance at them, and Logan tells Scott that they make the leaders of the free world nervous. Scott replies that he doesn’t need superhuman senses to see that, to which Wolverine asks him why he is here. ‘You’re my one-man security team’ Scott tells him. ‘You mean I’m your token Avenger’ Logan replies. ‘That too’ Scott admits. Logan asks Scott what kind of speech they are looking at here - something that is going to win them some hearts and minds, or just give everybody who hates and fears them another reason to fear a little more than they hate. Scott replies that he is better at shooting things with his eyes than he is at being a diplomat, but explains he does still remind himself on occasion to hope.
‘We been fighting to change the world a long time now and ain’t managed it yet. Why should today be any different?’ Logan asks. Cyclops replies that it is not the world they have to change, it is the people. ‘People can always change’ Scott tells him. ‘Yeah?’ Wolverine replies as he remembers an early argument he and Cyclops had many years ago in which he told Cyclops he is not taking orders from him. ‘So I’ve heard’ Logan adds as the two of them walk towards the stage. Logan sees the American delegation seats empty, to which Scott explains that the President sends his regrets, adding that, apparently, the country that created the Sentinel isn’t much interested in hearing his speech. ‘Don’t look at me. I been telling you for years we oughtta move to Canada’ Logan reminds Scott, who asks ‘Any last words of encouragement?’ ‘Don’t #@$& this up’ Logan tells him. Scott thanks Logan. ‘For what?’ Logan asks. ‘For being here’ Scott replies, to which Logan points out that Scott mace him come. ‘For always being here’ Scott adds.
Climbing the few steps to the stage and podium, Logan replies that when there is somebody around worth following, he will follow. ‘That’s probably the nicest thing you’ve ever said to me’ Scott tells him. ‘I’m the best there is at stabbing things, not pleasantries. Go make your stupid speech’ Logan replies. Scott smiles as he glances at Wolverine, before standing at the podium, he speaks into the microphones and begins his speech: ‘Ladies and gentlemen…years ago, an American military scientist named Bolivar Trask looked upon a burgeoning mutantkind with nothing but fear in his heart and was compelled to build a robotic weapon designed solely for the extermination of every mutant man, woman and child. That one foul deed sparked an international arms race. A race that as never ended‘.
Scott continues, announcing that as mutants spread to every corner of the globe, so too did Trask’s fear and the machines it spawned. ‘We all know this to be true, whether we’re willing to admit it publicly or not’ he remarks, adding that it is his belief that most every country represented here in this room today have at one time had and may likely still maintain their own variation of Sentinel. ‘So many, in fact, that with mutant kind’s numbers having recently been reduced to a scan 200, I sometimes wonder if there are now more Sentinels in the world than there are mutants’ Scott explains, before announcing that he has not come here today to point fingers, or to cast blame for the millions of mutant lives already claimed over the years by Sentinels. Cyclops tells the world leaders that he has not come to harp on the mistakes of yesterday, but instead to talk about the prospects of tomorrow. ‘My concern, ladies and gentlemen, is with the future. And insuring that there is one…for all of us’ he declares.
At the security entrance, some of the guards are listening to Cyclops’ speech via a monitor, as Cyclops explains, to that end, he would like to officially petition the nations of the world to decommission their Sentinels to once and for all demolish the machinery of mutant genocide. ‘Damn muties are all the same. Oughtta just round ‘em up all up and put ‘em on an island somewhere’ one of the guards mutters. ‘Uh…I think they already did that…’ another guard replies. Suddenly, a man in a trench coat appears. ‘Whoa. Where you going, pal? Let’s see some credentials. You can’t just’ one of the guards calls out. ‘Oh, but I can’ the new arrival replies as he walks up to the guards. The first guard suddenly growls and turns on his colleague. ‘What’s the matter? What’re you -’ the second guard calls out, before he is pushed to the ground by his much larger colleague. The pink-haired man in the trench coat then passes through security with ease.
Back in the theatre, Cyclops offers to the world representatives the full resources of the X-Men to assist in the dismantling and disposal of these Sentinels, and to insure that - but Scott is interrupted, by one of the representatives who stands up and points at him, apologizing for interrupting, he exclaims ‘You come here making these wild accusations yet you offer not a single shred of evidence’, and adds that his country, for one, does not even acknowledge the existence of these so-called Sentinels. Scott frowns at the man and replies that, with all due respect, he did not come here to debate the existence of something that has been trying to kill him since he was sixteen years old.
‘If you have no interest in debate, Sir, then it would appear you have come only to threaten this gathering with ominous talk of the future’ the representative points out, adding that it is this arrogance of Cyclops’ that has caused him problems over the years, as opposed to some sort of nefarious giant robot. ‘I’m sorry, but if anyone has any actual points to make, I’d be happy to hear them after I’ve -’ Scott calls out, when suddenly, the pink-haired man in the trench coat appears. ‘I got one or two’ he calls out. ‘Attention all humans and human sympathizers!’ he shouts. ‘#@*&%’ mutters Wolverine, who frowns. ‘You are now about to witness the dawning of the mutant revolution!’ the new arrival calls out. ‘Oh no’ Cyclops gasps. ‘Courtesy of Kid Omega!’ the villainous mutant shouts.
Kid Omega introduces himself as Quentin Quire, mutant freedom fighter and future leader of the X-Men. He announces that he has come here today not to bury humankind, but merely to make them wish that hey were dead. ‘Logan…’ Cyclops calls out. ‘I’m on it!’ wolverine shouts as he makes his way towards Quire, while some of the representatives have begin to make a run for it. ‘Move outta the way’ Logan orders, while Kid Omega declares that no more will mutants, humankind’s superiors, in every conceivable way, allow humans and their pathetic politicians to wallow in lies like pigs in excrement. ‘This time around, the revolution will not be televised. The revolution will be telepathic. I won’t lie to you, ladies and gentlemen, this is going to hurt. The truth always does’ Kid Omega declares as he uses his powers on them.
The world leaders stop trying to run, and gather themselves, while Cyclops helps Wolverine up off the floor. ‘You all right?’ Scott asks. Logan replies that his psychic defenses held, and Scott adds that his did, too, before pointing out that he doesn’t think they were the targets. Suddenly the representative who challenged Cyclops earlier calls out that, in the wake of these shocking events, he feels compelled not to say to everyone watching that he beats his children. ‘I do it quite often, in fact, I…I do it because…well, because I enjoy it’. Another leader stands up and announces that he would like to say he is currently cheating on his wife of 35 years while she slowly dies from leukaemia. He adds that in the interest of verification, he will now be emailing various sexually explicit videos to all major new organizations. A woman stands up and announces that she would like to take this opportunity to list the various ethnic minorities she despises. ‘I for one, am currently under the influence of the following illegal substances’ another man calls out, while another begins to list the deaths of which he is personally responsible for.
Scott and Logan look around, and Scott points out that it appears Quire has given the leaders of the world an uncontrollable telepathic compulsion to spout their deepest, darkest secrets. ‘I can’t decide if we should kill the boy or give him a medal’ Scott remarks. One of the leaders calls out that their fortune was pillaged from the poor, while another reveals that their election was fixed. ‘I married a Doombot!’ another announces, while someone reveals that they once shot a man just to watch him die. Another announces that they never believed in God, while one shouts that they actually love America. ‘We could always do both’ Wolverine suggests to Scott, while the security guards enter the theatre and one of them shouts ‘Stop the cameras! Stop the cameras!’
On Utopia, several X-Men are fathered, and Emma Frost a.k.a. the White Queen frowns, as she speaks to someone on her cellphone, while Piotr “Colossus” Rasputin and others continue to watch a media report. ‘Yes, this is Miss Frost. I’m afraid I’m going to have to cancel my 3:00 pedicure. On account of what? How about the supreme stupidity of everyone else in the world but me?’ she declares.
In Switzerland, Logan looks around and informs Scott that Quire is gone, but that his scent is so thick with energy drinks and body spray that he will be able to track him down in about two seconds. ‘I wouldn’t go rushing off just yet’ Scott replies. Wolverine looks out at the world leaders, who are all angrily waving their fists at them. ‘Don’t look now, but I think they might be blaming us’ Logan remarks. Scott tells him to be ready for anything, before he addresses the world leaders, assuring him that the X-Men were not responsible for this, but that they will apprehend the culprit and see that he faces justice. Scott asks the officials to let them do their jobs, adding that there is no reason for this situation to deteriorate further.
Nearby, a security officer touches his ear-piece and orders ’Attention all units, emergency protocols X are go! Code word: Pop the trunk!’ he calls out. ‘Repeat: Pop the trunk!’ he orders once again. ‘Copy that’ an officer outside replies as a large truck pulls up. The officer inside continues to talking to them via their ear-pieces and he informs the officers outside that the suspect’s description is as follows: ‘Male. Mutant’, and orders them to subdue anyone who matches that description. The back door of the truck opens, and a large hand extends.
Shortly, a door to the building is blown open. ’Oh, you gotta be kidding me!’ Cyclops calls out as he looks up and sees several Sentinels. ’They brought arms…to an arms control conference’ Scott mutters. ’Yeah? Well, so did we’ Logan replies as he unsheathes his claws, and the two powerful mutants engage the Sentinels in swift combat, with Scott blasting the robots apart with his optic power, and Logan slicing the heads off the Sentinels with his adamantium claws.
With the Sentinels destroyed, Quentin appears on the monitor overhead. ‘Attention, mutants of the world!’ he announces, before revealing that he takes credit for today’s action in the name of all mutant kind. ‘Today, the world has seen its leaders exposed as the lying, conniving human filthy they are. Today, one lone 16-year-old mutant patriot yanked the strings of the Earth’s mightiest puppet masters!’ he boasts. He suggests his “friends” sit back and watch them dance, to watch them scramble and fumble and fume, and watch them slather on more lies, to try and cover over the scars and sweeping wounds they exposed here today. ‘Watch them rage. Watch them lust. For blood. My blood. Our blood!’ Quire shouts.
He smirks as he tells his mutant brothers and sisters to stay tuned to their screens, for those of them out there who dare still doubt the hate and fear the humans harbor for them, it is time they turn on, tune in and pull their heads out of their asses, and just watch what happens next. The recording then ends. Wolverine begins to leap across the Sentinel rubble, informing Scott that he will pick up his trail and have him bleeding and crying by sundown. ‘No!’ Scott calls out, telling Logan to forget Quire, as he is irrelevant now. ‘The damage is done. We’re gonna need everyone back at Utopia’ Scott remarks. ‘You just wanna see what happens next, don’t you?’ Logan calls back. ‘Don’t you?’ Scott asks as he begins to walk away.
Elsewhere, a media frenzy has gathered, when suddenly, ‘Mr Kilgore! Mr Kilgore!’ several of the media shout out as a man in a suit strides towards his limo. ‘Carlton Kilgore, as one of the world’s pre-eminent arms manufacturers, what is your reaction to today’s events?’ one reporter calls out. Carlton replies that he is outraged and appalled by such a cowardly terrorist attack. ‘Hopefully we as a planet can come together and heal the wounds that were made here today. Until then, all Kilgore Brand small arms are officially half priced’ he announces as he gets into the limo - not any ordinary limo, one that flies.
The vehicle then takes off into the sky and Kilgore reaches for a drink, informing his driver that their website is processing a thousand orders a minute and that Kilgore stock has already gone up three points. ‘Now that’s what I call an arms control conference!’ he remarks. ‘Here’s to the power of irrational fear! May the X-Men live forever!’ he declares as he holds his drink up. ‘I’ll drink to that’ a voice calls out. Carlton looks across and sees his young son sitting opposite him. ‘Kade? What in the devil are you doing here? Why aren’t you in school?’ Carlton asks his son, who replies that he is in school, or, at least, his Life Model Decoy is. ‘He’s been taking my classes for three months now’ Kade reveals, before holding up a gun and aiming it at his father. ‘You didn’t even notice when my grades slipped to A-minuses, did you?’ Kade asks, adding that his father was never particularly attentive.
Carlton calls out to his driver, addressing her as Bessy, he remarks that it appears his son has pulled a gun on him. ‘If you could be so kind as to wring his neck for me, I would greatly appreciate it’ Carlton calls out, but Bessy looks up through the rear-vision mirror and replies that she cannot do that. ‘What?’ Carlton asks. Kade continues to hold the weapon up to his father and informs him that Bessy is with him now. ‘She’s never much appreciated your tendency to slap her behind or ogle her bosom. She’ll get none of that from me’ Kade declares. ‘That’s because you haven’t even hit puberty yet! My God, boy, you’re only twelve!’ Carlton exclaims.
Kade announces that he has been wanting to do this since he was ten, but that it has taken him this long to blackmail the board of directors into installing him as the new Kilgore CEO - which happened thirty minutes ago. ‘You traitorous little devil! I’m glad your mother didn’t live to see this, you -’ Carlton begins, before the door suddenly opens, and he falls from the flying car. Kade then begins shooting at his father, striking him several times, as his father falls to the snow-covered alps below. Kade puts the gun down on the seat and remarks that he has just shot his father in mid-air, after wresting away the company he worked his entire life to build, and yet, he feels not even an ounce of shame or remorse. ‘Tell me, Bessy…is this what it means to be a man?’
‘Near as I can tell, Sir, yes’ Bessy replies, before addressing Kade as “Mr Kilgore” and asking ‘Where to now?’ Kade replies that he needs to go to the clubhouse, as the others will be waiting. ‘But take the long way. Show me as much of the world as you can. I’d like a good look t what I’ve just inherited’ Kade calls out, while his father’s body lands in the snow below.
On Utopia, night has fallen over the island nation, but five of the senior X-Men have gathered. ‘That arrogant little twit! When I get my hands on Quentin Quire, I’m going to liquefy his brain and have him blow it out his nostrils like a snot-nosed toddler!’ the White Queen threatens. ‘How did he even get free? Last I knew he was trapped in a containment unit in the lab’ Cyclops remarks. Magneto points out that Quire is not the issue, and tells his colleagues that it is the world’s response that they should be worried about, and working to prepare themselves for. Namor the Sub-Mariner announces that Atlantis will not go to war over the impudent actions of one foolish pink-haired whelp. Wolverine stands away from the others and listens, before turning and walking down a flight of stairs.
Soon, Logan meets up with Kitty “Shadowcat” Pryde. ‘So, you got it?’ he asks his longtime friend. Holding a box, Kitty replies that she did the best she could, as it has been a while. Wolverine thanks her as he continues on, while Kitty calls out after him, asking him if he knows what he is doing. ‘I survived you being a teenager, didn’t I?’ Logan points out. ‘Yeah, but you also showed me how to use a sword before I was old enough to wear a bra. Who’s the new lucky girl?’ Kitty asks.
‘Idie?’ Wolverine calls out as he enters a kitchen, where Oya is seated at a table, several tubs of ice-cream laid out on the table in front of her. ‘This is for you’ Wolverine announces, holding the box up. Oya opens the box, and inside is a doll. She looks up at Wolverine and tells him that she doesn’t understand. ‘Is this part of my combat training?’ she asks. ‘No. It’s a doll. It’s just…you know, for playing with’ Logan explains. ‘Oh. I see. Thank you’ Idie replies, before turning back to her ice-cream. Logan picks up one of the tubs and asks her what she is doing. ‘Eating ice-cream. Have you ever had it before? It’s incredible. I can’t stop eating it!’ Oya exclaims as she shovels more into her mouth.
‘Yeah, I’ve had my share of ice-cream’ Wolverine replies. Idie smiles and looks up at Wolverine, asking him if he would like to eat ice-cream with her. Logan sits down on the bench next to Idie and replies ‘Yeah. Sure kid’, and Idie smiles as Logan begins to eat ice-cream with her.
Back in the other room, Scott, Emma, Magneto and Namor turn their attention to a media report, which announces that in North Korea, something appears to be happening in the skies above the Yellow Sea. Suddenly, Hope enters the room. Looking worried, she asks what is going on. ‘Nothing. Please, Hope, just return to your studies’ Emma orders. But Scott calls out ‘No. Let her in. She should see this’. Hope approaches Scott, while the media report continues, revealing that this live footage from the North Korean News Agency is of what appears to be military manuevers being conducted, which were previously unscheduled. Looking at the Sentinels on screen, Hope asks ‘Are those what I think they are?’ ‘Yes’ Scott tells her. ‘So…I’m guessing your speech didn’t go well’ Hope remarks.
Hope adds that it doesn’t even matter that there are so few of them left, as the feat just doesn’t go away. Scott informs her that they fear mutants more than ever - the ones in power do, more now when there were millions of them - because then mutant kind was scattered and broken. ‘We’re not so scattered and broken anymore’ Scott points out. Hope asks if it will still matter, as this is still the sort of thing that ends with mutants dying. ‘Not this time. Not unless they kill me first’ Cyclops replies. ‘Then how does it end?’ Hope asks. ‘With us still right here. Still standing together’ Scott declares. ‘No matter what’ he adds as Wolverine and Oya enter the room. The four stand and watch the news report, and Hope remarks ‘No matter what, huh. That looks like a pretty big what’ as she motions to the Sentinel. Oya announces that she doesn’t understand, and asks what it is. Logan tells her to go back to ice-cream, while Scott says she can stay if she wants to die. ‘Scott…’ Logan begins. ‘Hated and feared. We toss that phrase around so often its impact becomes hollow’ Cyclops declares, announcing that it is good to be reminded from time to time just what that means. ‘This is what it means. This is what it means to have the whole world hate and fear you’ he declares.
Emma, Namor and Magneto are still present as the group watches several Sentinels on screen, and a reporter announce ‘Our experts tell us these appear to be Soviet-made versions of early Mark I or Mark II grade Sentinel designs, a technology that the North Koreans had previously denied having’. The reporter adds that, at present, they have only seem them conducting flying maneuvers in the skies above the Yellow Sea, but now they are firing energy blasts down into the water. ‘This is quite the show of power’. The reporter states that there has been no official statement from the North Korean regime as to the motivations behind these maneuvers, but that considering the events at today’s arms control conference, one cannot help but assume - however, the reporter is interrupted, as another reporter switches to Beijing, where several Sentinels are standing guard. Sentinels begin to appear in other countries as well, including Egypt and France.
A reporter announces that some agencies are reporting that Pakistan is in the process of arming its borders with gene-sensitive land mines, and the outcry continues to rise among embattled European leaders to deny travel visas for all known mutants. The reporter adds that unconfirmed reports are coming in of a giant sword-wielding robot seen emerging from the waters of Tokyo Bay. Scott turns to Emma and tells her to get on Cerebra and to make sure everyone with a functioning X-gene saw this. ‘Tell them the mutant race is hereby on global high alert’ he orders.
But suddenly, Ororo “Storm” Munroe appears, and tells her friends that they should not overreact and make this worse. ‘These are maneuvers and tough talk, not open acts of aggression’ she points out. ‘How much more open do you need, Ororo?’ The world just stuck its gun in our face’ Cyclops exclaims. Storm asks Scott what he suggests they do. Adjusting his visor, Scott replies ‘For starters…not blink’.
Elsewhere, several people wearing hooded cloaks are gathered in a dark room, watching the same media report on the Sentinels. The reporter continues, revealing that the statement from the nation’s supreme leader, made while standing in the palm of a three-story Sentinel, decrying the unwanted influence of what he refers to as “genetic infidels”. ‘We like what we’re seeing here, young man. Indeed, we do’ one of the cloaked people remarks. ‘I told you it would work, didn’t I? Kade Kilgore always delivers!’ Kade boasts as he stands before the cloaked people who are sitting around a table. The monitor turns off, as one of the mysterious people asks ‘And what of this Quentin Quire person?’
Kade smirks and replies ‘Clueless. A psi-proof helmet, light-bending wetsuit and five minutes of my time were all it took to free him from Utopia’ Kade boasts. Kade explains that as far as Quire knows, his containment suddenly faile and he become corporeal again. ‘I figured he’d celebrate by either brain-frying the nearest bunch of school children, or disrupting today’s arms conference. Either way, I knew it’d get us what we wanted’ Kade explains. ‘Very impressive’ one of the hooded ones calls out. ‘Isn’t it, though?’ Kade replies, before the hooded person asks if phase two is ready to go. ‘Only if that means I’m in’ Kade replies. The hooded person replies that if the vote had been anything less than unanimous, he would have been murdered the second he stepped through that door. ‘Instead, your chair awaits’ he calls out, motioning to the chair at the top of the table. Kade sits down at the chair, a large “H” can be seen on the wall behind him, as the cloaked people raise their goblets and one of them exclaims ‘Welcome, Mr Kilgore, to the Hellfire Club! All hail the new Black King!’