- My back is shattered, a parting gift from the Shadow King... it appears if I am ever to achieve my dream... I will need all of you... to walk me there.
- -- Professor X
Appearing in "One Step Back--Two Steps Forward (Muir Island Saga, Pt. 4)"
- Col. Alexei Vazhin
- Mystique (Raven Darkhölme)
- Shadow King
- Legion (David Haller) (Possessed by Shadow King)
- Dr. Moira MacTaggert (Possessed by Shadow King)
- Siryn (Terry Rourke) (Possessed by Shadow King)
- Multiple Man (Jamie Madrox) (Possessed by Shadow King)
- Polaris (Lorna Dane) (Possessed by Shadow King)
- Guido (Possessed by Shadow King)
- Valerie Cooper (Mentioned)
- Agent Reisz (Mentioned)
- Agent DeMarco (Death)
- Agent Heacock (Death)
Races and Species:
- S.H.I.E.L.D. scout-craft
Synopsis for "One Step Back--Two Steps Forward (Muir Island Saga, Pt. 4)"
Xavier enters Muir Island and discovers both the X-Factor and the free X-Men are being held in a telekinetic force by Legion!
Continued from X-Factor #69. The original X-Men unite with the new for the final showdown with the sinister Shadow King. This is one battle not everyone will be walking away from. Epilogue can be read in X-Factor #70, which starts a new era for the X-Teams.
Legion, having been possessed by the Shadow King, had just blown up half of Muir Island. Professor Charles Xavier and a few S.H.I.E.L.D. agents walk through the rubble to discover the fate of Xavier's students. They find Legion standing among the various X-Teams; everybody is being held in a sort of stasis. The Shadow King (through Legion) explains to Xavier that Jean Grey was able to get a teke-shield up just in time. This is no bother - he's still going to kill everyone and rule the Earth. One of the accompanying agents gets jumpy and shoots a plasma cannon at the Shadow King. He simply fires back and kills each of the agents. From the helicarrier, Colonel Vashkin, having just heard his men die, orders that a nuclear strike be readied.
Back on the ground, Legion plays with Xavier. This surprises Xavier. It was thought that Legion was possessed and was acting under the Shadow King's influence; it seems, however, that Legion actually likes parts of what the Shadow King has to offer. Legion then prepares to kill Xavier until Storm appears from a forgotten battle and blasts Legion with a lightning bolt. Legion quickly departs to recuperate, his hold upon the others released.
Legion burrows down to the nexus that holds the physical and astral planes together, a feat accomplished by filtering through Polaris. She tells him to give in, as the body of Legion is dying. Refusing to relent, the Shadow King orders those still under his control to attack Xaver's group and to show no mercy.
The teams with Xavier decide to split up. Xavier plans to enter the Astral Plane and battle the Shadow King himself. He needs one group to go find and destroy the nexus while the other group is to stay and protect his defenseless body. Jean Grey, despite her shaky abilities as a telepath, acts as Xavier's anchor to this reality. Upon entering Astral Plane, Xavier mentally suits up for a battle, and just in time, too. The Shadow King is there and he is huge, the power he's been siphoning from earthly inhabitants has done him well. Xavier proves to be a long shot in this fight, as the Shadow King seems far too powerful. The injuries the Shadow King inflicts on the Astral Plane appears to be harsh enough that Xavier's mind can't separate the two and his physical body takes on the wounds inflicted in his mind. Of note, the bones in his legs begin to crush.
The field group consists of Wolverine, Forge, Banshee, Iceman, and Rogue. As they proceed, Gambit appears and takes Wolverine on. Siryn is heard and Banshee goes after her. Madrox then shows up and Iceman immediately builds a wall to prevent any attack. The wall, it seems, traps Wolverine, too. It's not bother, as Wolverine quickly bests Gambit and moves on.
Back on the Astral Plane, Xavier is getting worked. Those protecting his body see only one way to ensure a victory and that is to enter the Astral Plane as well. As they do so, Legion stumbles onto the body of Xavier. Inside the Astral Plane, the Shadow King is about to devour Xavier. Cyclops gives the demon a worthy blast.
Banshee is hot on the trail of Siryn when he gets blasted by Moira, his girlfriend. She, in turn, gets blasted by Forge's neurosynaptic buffer gun. Once injected with the scrambler, Moira sees Banshee and immediately breaks down. Just down the hall, Guido attempts to bumrush the distracted trio when Rogue intervenes and knocks him around. Wolverine then corners Jubilee and knocks her out, despite her pleas not to fight him. Iceman takes on Siryn, but takes it easy on her because she is Banshee's daughter. Just then, however, Psylocke drives a psi-blade into his brain. A brief tussle ensues, but Forge is finally able to force Psylocke's blade into Polaris, effectually severing the Shadow King's nexus. He disappears from the Astral Plane. Legion, who had been close to physically killing Xavier, lapses into a coma at the Shadow King's departure.
Once back in the physical world, Xavier explains that he'd given the Shadow King one last chance before slipping into the void. It had been refused. Xavier must also admit that the use of his legs is once again gone. The others regroup and begin to deal with the aftermath of being influenced by such evil.
- Part 4 of 4 of the Muir Island Saga crossover event.
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Links and References
- Uncanny X-Men at Wikipedia.org
- Uncanny X-Men series index at Comicbookdb.com
- Uncanny X-Men (1st series) index at Uncanny X-Men.net
- Uncanny X-Men series index at the Grand Comics Database Project
- Uncanny X-Men at the Complete Marvel Reading Order
- The Unofficial Handbook of Marvel Comics Creators - accessed on 11/24/2009
- The Official Marvel Index to the X-Men Vol 2 #5 - See for further referencing
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