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Quote1 I would, if I could only free myself from this blasted so-called conscience that still pollutes me. ... if that is what is required for science to progress... then let me be a monster! Let me be a monster! Quote2
Dr. Nathaniel Essex

Appearing in "Digging up the Past"

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Synopsis for "Digging up the Past"

London, England, 1859: The scientist Nathaniel Essex and his wife, Rebecca, are awaiting the birth of their second child. Their first son, Adam, passed away at the age of four from numerous birth defects. The loss of his son drove Nathaniel Essex deeper into his work, and he became obsessed Darwin's theory of evolution. He rejects the moral doubts of his religious wife about his experiments and openly states that there is no god.

During a lecture in the Royal Society, Nathaniel claims that humanity contains the potential of evolving immensely fast, due to what he calls “Essex Factors”, predicting the emergence of mutants as an evolutionary breakthrough. When he shows the Royal Society a result of an experiment, the members are outraged and brand Essex himself as a monster. As he leaves angrily, Essex says that if becoming a monster is what is required for science to progress, then so be it.

In a pub, Essex meets Cootie Tremble who is part of a group named the Marauders. He collects all types of misshapen folk off the streets of London and offers them to Essex to be used in his experiments.

Two weeks later, the Marauders arrive at the Milbury House on the Essex estate and offload their cargo into the annex where Essex conducts his scientific work. Rebecca is a little worried, but Nathaniel is still able to persuade her that everything is fine.

Meanwhile, in the sewers of London, En Sabah Nur awakes from his regenerative slumber. As he is observing the streets of London, he believes that now might be the time for the rise of Apocalypse. But to prevent this, the two mutants called Cyclops and Phoenix have been transported through time. While Jean Grey miraculously appears in Westminster Abbey, Scott Summers lands in the sewers unable to see because he is missing his ruby quartz glasses.

At Milbury House, Rebecca’s doubts about her husband’s deeds continue to grow. After sneaking into the annex, she digs out the casket of her dead son, Adam. As she suspected, the casket is empty, which confirms to her that Nathaniel is using Adam’s corpse for his unholy experiments. When Nathaniel tries to calm his wife down, a man in fancy clothes suddenly shows up. He introduces himself as En Sabah Nur and shows interest in the work of Dr. Essex ...


Chronology Notes[]

Characters in this story also appear in other stories between this issue. The affected characters are:
Apocalypse (En Sabah Nur)

Dr. Nathaniel Essex

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