- Whatever it is, we can handle it.
- -- Iceman
Appearing in "The Origin of Professor X"
- Dr. Kurt Marko - (Only in flashback), (First appearance), (Death)
- Sharon Xavier-Marko - (Only in flashback), (First appearance)
- Juggernaut (Cain Marko) (First appearance)
- Unnamed X-Mansion staff - (Only in flashback)
- Unnamed clergyman - (Main story and flashback)
- Unnamed high school students - (Only in flashback)
- New Mexico
- Korea - (Only in flashback)
- Temple of Cyttorak - (Only in flashback), (First appearance)
- Temple of Cyttorak - (Only in flashback), (First appearance)
Synopsis for "The Origin of Professor X"
Continued from last issue...
Cerebro is calling out an intruder alert prompting the X-Men to dawn their uniforms and come to the Professor's study to learn who this mysterious intruder is. Telling his charges that whoever is approaching the mansion is extremely powerful, he sends the group out to set up defenses including an ice wall, live-wire lined trench and fence posts rigged with grenades. When the X-Men return to the Professor, they are shocked to learn that their attacker is none other than Xavier's own brother.
The Professor tells his X-Men that his father was a nuclear research scientist who was accidentally killed during a nuclear bomb test in the New Mexico desert. During his father's funeral, Kurt Marko -- his father's assistant -- would come to comfort Xavier's mother. However, the young Charles, already developing mental abilities, could read Kurt's mind and learn of his less than covets intentions to take his mother and his father's wealth, two things that Marko had become envying of. Shortly thereafter, Kurt would move into the Xavier mansion, and marry Charle's mother. Kurt became a ruthless and verbally abusive step-parent and would shun his new family for his work, during this time Kurt's true motives would come out. One day, Kurt would be thrown into a fury when his own son from a previous marriage, Cain, when Kain would come to the Xavier Mansion after yet another expulsion from school. Cain would turn out to be a cruel tormentor to young Charles.
The Professor's narrative is interrupted when Cain's advancement on the mansion progresses, easily smashing through the ice wall put up by Iceman, much to the X-Men's surprise. Charle's continues the story of his youth: He would explain one day that he would overhear Kurt and Cain arguing over money. When Cain would suggest that Kurt had orchestrated the death of Charles' father (an accusation that Kurt would flatly deny) Charles would enter and confront Kurt. During the moment of tension, Cain would try to throw chemicals at Charles, however Kurt would attempt to stop them sending the volatile brew crashing to the floor and causing an explosion and fire. Kurt would carry the two boys out of the blast, and having been mortally wounded in the blast, would beg Charles to believe that his father's death was only an accident before dying.
As Cain manages to break past the trench and live-wire trap on the mansion grounds, Charles plays for time to finish the final part of his story. Charles explains that by his adulthood he found that his mental powers (which by this point have rendered him bald) could allow him to have an advantage over other students, however he decides against it. Xavier would then decide to challenge his body, as his mind was already vastly superior and would get into sports. His trophy winnings would earn the ire of Cain who would push Charles too far one day and the two would get into a fight which Charles would easily win due to his superior fighting skill. Some days later, Cain would attempt to make Charles cry out in fear by driving recklessly. He would only succeed in making the car drive out of control and smash through a detour sign and down a cliff. Cain would bail out, but Charles wouldn't be so lucky, however Charles would tell his X-Men that he was able to erect a mental shield around himself to protect him from the crash.
Outside the mansion, Cain finishes with the live wire and still manages to get past the grenades and gas traps that were set out for him. With their attacker mere feet away, Iceman puts an ice barrier over the window of Xavier's study to allow the Professor to tell the final part of his story: How the now adult Cain and Charles would be enlisted in the military and would be sent to fight in the Korean War. The two would be separated from their unit and would be forced to seek refuge in a cave to escape enemy fire. Inside the cavern Charles and Cain would discover the long lost temple of Cyttorak. The greedy Cain would grab for a crimson gem that was left before an altar. Upon contact the gem would absorb itself into Cain's body transforming him into a hulking form. The transformation would cause a cave in which Charles would flee from and Cain would seemingly perish in.
Finishing his story, Charles realizes that this is far from the case and that Cain has finally dug himself out from the cave and sought out his brother for revenge. With the last of the outer defenses the X-Men would seal the mansions front door with a near impervious steel plate and wait for Cain's next move. Much to the X-Men's surprise, Cain is able to smash through the supposedly indestructible steel wall and easily knock the X-Men aside. Revealing himself for the first time in years, Charles looks at his brother -- garbed in a special mystical armor -- and calls him a Juggernaut.
This story is continued next issue...
- Xavier claims that he was able to put up a mental shield to protect him from a car crash caused by Cain Marko. As Xavier is not a telekinetic, this would be impossible.
- Xavier and Cain enlisted in the military and take part in the Korean War. Due to Marvel's sliding time scale, this historical reference is to be considered topical. Recent editions of the Marvel Handbook state that the two participated in a "military conflict" in Korea, and no longer specify it was the Korean War of the 1950's.
- This issue is reprinted in many other comics and books, see references for more info.
- Professor X's full name 'Charles Xavier' is revealed in this issue. We also learn his father's name was Brian, and his mother was named Sharon. Both died during Xavier's childhood.
- The back-story of Professor X's flashbacks of Alamagordo, New Mexico in this story will be revisited in X-Men (Vol. 2) #12 & 13
- The name of the atomic test site city is misspelled as "Alamagordo" instead of the correct name "Alamogordo".
- All of the X-Men learn of the existence of Cerebro.
- Cyttorak had previously been mentioned in Doctor Strange stories.
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