Gambit and the X-Ternals #3

Issue Date: 
May 1995
Story Title: 
To the Limits of Infinity

Fabian Nicieza (writer), Salvador Larroca (penciler), Al Milgrom (inker), Chris Eliopoulos (letterer), Javins, Rosas, Webb and Thomas (colorists), Electric Crayon (separations), Bob Harras (editor, editor in chief)

Brief Description: 

The X-Ternals and Starjammers make it to their destination, the planet where the M’Kraan crystal is located. While the Starjammers try to distract the Shi’Ar fleet, Deathbird accompanies the X-Ternals to the planet‘s surface. Guido, Jubilee, and Sunspot take on D’Ken’s army, while Gambit, Lila and Deathbird head off to look for the crystal. They find less resistance then expected and quickly arrive in front of the giant crystal leaving Gambit and Lila puzzled how to steal something that big. Deathbird explains that one shard is as much as the entire crystal – after all it contains infinity. While they wonder how top cut off a piece, Lila gets pulled inside the structure. Gambit and Deathbird follow and meet a creature by the name of Jahf. He introduces himself as the M’Kraan’s guardian. He brings the odd couple to Lila and D’Ken, both frozen in front of the pink sphere that contains the neutron sun that makes up the crystal‘s essence. Deathbird wants to use the situation to her advantage and tries to kill her brother, but ends up in stasis as well. Jahf explains to Gambit that it’s up to him to save the universe, or actually all universes. Because of Xavier‘s death, Jean Grey never received the proper training and Phoenix never repaired the crystal. With this nexus place left open, matter drafts into the structures anti-matter galaxy, and in a cascading effect every single reality will get consumed. To prevent this, Gambit needs to get a crystal shard, get back to earth and help to send Bishop back in time. However in order to gain a piece, he needs to sacrifice something. Outside the “Blinks” keep occurring as the three X-Ternals are fighting the Shi’Ar forces including Rictor and Gladiator. ‘Berto changes color with every “Blink”, absorbing more and more of the released energy until he glows bright white. Another "Blink“ turns all of the Shi’Ar to glass, and knowing that he has reached his absorption limit, Sunspot order Guido, Jubilee and Rictor into the crystal too. There the witness Gambit whispering Rogue’s name as he hits the sphere and is granted the desired M’Kraan fragment.
The team’s ready to head back to Earth, but Sunspot remains behind as he can’t contain the destructive energies much longer.

Full Summary: 

The Starjammers’ ship slows down and the X-Ternals find themselves face to face with the planet they’re supposed to go to. There’s a newly completed fusion energy absorption system surrounding the planet. Emperor D’Ken had it constructed in hopes of containing the powers of the M’Kraan crystal.

Deathbird has come up with a plan and relates it to the others. The Starjammers are going to distract D’Ken’s aerial armada while she and the X-Ternals teleport down to the planet’s surface. Once there, she, Gambit and Lila will go after the M’Kraan and D’Ken while the rest contend with any interference. They beam down to the planet and are met by hundreds of foot soldiers. Gambit assures his team they won’t pose much of a challenge and runs off with Lila and Deathbird.

Sunspot, Guido and Jubilee start blasting away. Needless to say, Guido’s is annoyed that Gambit leaves with Lila while they have to fight. Jubilee is not happy with the lack of progress they’re making. The soldiers just keep on coming, so how can the three of them hope to take out an entire army. Bobby explains that as long as they keep them at bay until Gambit and company are done, then they’ve completed their mission. Jubilee doesn’t like being set up as a sacrifice like this, but Bobby assures her it’s for the greater good.

Meanwhile, Deathbird has led Remy and Lila to the crystal. However, it’s three stories tall and impossible to take with them. Deathbird explains that one piece is as good as the whole thing… “How could one define the space needed to contain infinity ?!” After taking out the last of the guards, they survey the area. D’Ken is nowhere to be found, and Deathbird thinks that her brother must have abandoned his soldiers when the nexus-cessations began increasing scope. Lila says that this seems to be easier than she had thought, but she wonders how to get a piece off the crystal structure. Suddenly an arm pops out from the crystal and grabs Lila by the wrist, pulling her inside. Gambit lunges forward after her, but Deathbird holds him back. She’s afraid of what’s inside the crystal. Gambit tells her he doesn’t care and dives right in. Deathbird reluctantly follows. Inside they meet a creature by the name of Jahf. He tells them he’s been waiting for them. The universe is about to be destroyed after all.

Back outside, the battle rages on. Guido is worried about all the kinetic energy he’s storing u. Notices the crystal’s shimmer, Sunspot points out that it might no longer matter since another “Blink“ is about to occur. Bobby is right, yet the three X-Ternals remain unharmed by the energy‘s outburst. Yet looking down at his hand, Bobby sees it has turned bright white, apparently he absorbed some of the crystal‘s energy. Sunspot has no time to further think about the phenomena, as he sees Gladiator and Rictor coming in fast. He alerts the others, as Gladiator releases Rictor. During his descent, he sends out a vibratory shockwave that rock the planet. Tired and weakened, the trio aren’t sure if they have enough left to take on their newest foes.

Inside the M’Kraan, Jahf leads his two new friends onward. In the distance Gambit spots Lila and someone else next to her. They move closer and see that it is D’Ken who is next to Lila and both of them are frozen, staring at an illuminated pink sphere. Provided with the chance to settle the feud between the siblings once and for all, Deathbird attempts to spear her brother, but becomes transfixed as well. Gambit wants to know what’s going on. Jahf, thankful someone finally asked, answers him.

He goes on to tell him that anyone who ever came inside the crystal always wanted something in return. Except for the X-Men, that is. The inside of the M’Kraan, the neutron sun, is a nexus point between all matter and anti-matter crossing over to every different reality in existence. It’s very important the M’Kraan stays closed, not only in this but all realities. If that doorway would be left open in just one reality, the draft would eventually reach other worlds, and finally consume all realities and everything within them.

Gambit wants to know why nobody noticed this before, but Jahf tells him that somebody did - Bishop. He was present when this reality changed. Xavier died, which meant Jean Grey was never trained in her powers, never became the Phoenix and never repaired the M’Kraan crystal in this reality. Now, other realities are being affected one by one which will result in the end of everything. Jahf insists Gambit must do something.

Gambit is not sure he can do it, he never thought himself to be important. Jahf pleads with him, everybody, everywhere, everywhen is counting on Gambit. All he needs to do is steal a shard of the crystal, help send Bishop back in time and prevent Xavier’s death. Gambit wants to know if it is that easy, then why doesn’t Jahf do it himself, but he explains that as the crystal’s guardian he can’t effect it in any way. Despite he did not say it was easy – one can’t just take from the crystal. He explains to Gambit that he must leave something with the crystal in exchange for a piece. Gambit’s never given anything to anyone before and is unsure if he can do it now.

Back outside, Sunspot and Gladiator are duking it out. ‘Berto zaps Gladiator in the midsection, knocking him back. Gladiator charges, choking Sunspot with his left hand. Sunspot starts glowing white hot and another “Blink” occurs. Almost everyone is turned to rainbow colored glass including Gladiator. Now his entire body glowing with white energy, Sunspot urges Guido and Jubilee into the crystal. He doesn’t know how much more of the crystal energy he can absorb. Guido grabs Jubilee and they dive in. Sunspot swoops down, grabs Rictor and brings him into the crystal too.

Gambit and Jahf are still standing together talking. Jahf tells him he’s a good person inside and that Magneto sent him because he knew he would never fail Rogue. That decides it for him. Gambit raises his staff, and with a word for Rogue, strikes the crystal. The M’Kraan accepts what gambit offers it, and breaks free of the Shi’ar device which sought to contain it’s energies. Gambit is left with a shard of the crystal. Now the team’s only problem is getting back to Earth. Sunspot who looks more like a star than a human being tells them to go on without him. He’s absorbed too much energy and might endanger the mission. Lila starts to cry, but she knows what she must do. For the sake of everyone and everything she teleports them away.

Characters Involved: 

Lila Cheney, Gambit, Guido, Jubilee, Sunspot (all X-Ternals)

Ch’od, Deathbird, Hepzibah, Raza Longknife (all Starjammers)



Gladiator (Imperial Guard)

Shi’Ar Emperor D’Ken

Story Notes: 

Jahf refers to the X-Men of the main Marvel Universe. Apparently in the entire multiverse there is only one Jahf guarding the nexus point of the M’Kraan crystal in every reality.

In the main Marvel Universe, Phoenix repaired the M’Kraan crystal in Uncanny X-Men #107-109.

Issue Information: 
Written By: