Grumbling the texaswookie just barely manages to dodge the ball of fire and as it is the chair that he was sitting in catches on fire. The Human Torch smirks at the Texan.
Was that really necessary? And you’re not even in this story, so why do you care?
“Actually I am in this chapter remember? Even If Reed and Sue got more time than I did. Which is extremely wrong by the way.
“Eh, you’re an arrogant attention seeker, besides you insulted Hockey in this chapter. For that you just had to be punished. I could have had Ben give you some wedgies instead.”
“Fine, but you still have to say it.” Johnny Storm said, as he formed one of his fireballs.
“Fine for those of ya’ll that haven’t caught the hint yet, I don’t own any of these universes that are being used in this story of mine. For a more complete look check earlier chapters. And The FF belong to Marvel as well, in case you decided to skip the credits for that movie.” The Human Torch sighs in disappointment, as he extinguishes the fireball.
Westchester, New York: Xavier Mansion sub levels
Logan bumped Alex in the shoulder roughly as he passed the younger Summers boy. The feral mutant refused to consider him as anything other than a boy after what he had done.
Alex opened his mouth to call the short mutant on his action, but decided against it. He just rubbed his arm where the heavier mutant had hit him. He knew he deserved the cold treatment that some of the others were giving him; it didn’t make it any more bearable, though. Of course, it was better than the pity that most of the others were giving him.
“You may be smarter than you look,” Nightcrawler said from the shadows, stepping out of the darkness. “I was wondering if you would try and call him down after what he did. He would not mind a fight right now, actually. And unless you got in several lucky shots, you could be in for quite a bit of pain.”
Alex nodded; he had seen what the guy had done to the Danger Room. Logan had destroyed all sorts of things in there, and in about half the time it would have taken Alex to do the same. “What more does he want from me?” he asked the blue furred mutant. “It’s not like I don’t feel bad about it all. I am trying to be objective now when it comes to him.”
“True, but Herr Logan is not angry about your behavior regarding him. He and I have long grown accustomed to the judgments of others. Where as people see a demon when they see me, when they look at him all they see is an animal that needs to be kept in a cage until it is needed.” Kurt Wagner shook his head sadly as he stared in the direction of the short mutant. The others had only had a few days worth of experience at Weapon X; he and Logan had much more experience in that place. Only they, and possibly Xavier, who had been in their minds, knew all that could happen there
“Really? Then what is it that he’s so angry about?”
“You have caused grief for his girls,” Nightcrawler explained as if it was the most common thing in the world. “For this, there is not an easy escape. You should be glad that they have stopped him from trying to exact revenge for them. They are not happy with you, but they are willing to give you a chance, for the moment.”
Alex nodded in understanding; the Professor had been the same with Scott, Hank, Jean, and Ororo. No one was allowed to hurt his kids when they were growing up, and it looked like Logan shared that mind set. At least no one could try it without having to answer to the Professor. Of course, he somehow felt that if the girls hadn’t stopped Wolverine, he would have gotten more than a scare and a headache. He probably would have been lucky if he’d been able to walk after Wolverine was done with him. “Don’t suppose you happen to know where his girls are now? Maybe I should…”
“Stay away from them,” Nightcrawler finished for him, his eyes glowing slightly.
“Well, actually, I was thinking that it might help if I… I don’t know… saw how they were doing and stuff like that?”
“The girls are not Wolverine’s favorites for no reason, Herr Summers. Both girls used most of their control to convince Herr Logan not to gut you. However, I do not think that they are ready to talk to you. You have also caused more damage than you can possibly comprehend,” the blue mutant said. “You have estranged the two girls from the romantic interests in their lives. Where as normally they would have gone and confided in their counterparts, they now cannot because they are the problem.”
Alex shifted uncomfortably at this, but knew there was nothing he could say. “The fact is, that even their very teamwork has been affected by the dark words that you used. The four of them may only be a backup team, but they were good at what they did. Now the girls are having trouble trusting in the boys, if they are so willing to doubt them. Peter is also seeing another mutant girl now.”
Alex winced at this; he knew how girls could be over their dates sometimes. How many times had Lorna hurt people, or come close to it, when another woman showed interest in him? “And she actually defended me?”
“Yes, but make no mistake, if you think it’s because she cares that her friends are happy, then you are mistaken. She just will not lower herself to the same level as Callisto has, when it comes to being around Peter. She now thinks that she will replace the co-commander on the team, despite the fact that Kitty is her superior in every way.”
“Iceman and Rogue are better; they are used to having strains placed on their relationship. This is but another hurdle for them, I believe. Of course, it could also be the proverbial straw to break the camel’s back,” the German mused.
“I guess I better go do what I can to help with the repairs, huh?”
“Yes, mein friend, I think that would be an excellent plan.” The two disappeared in a cloud of smoke and brimstone. They reappeared in the hangar to see Beast, Shadowcat, Rogue, and Iceman working on the Blackbird. The other X-Men were all upstairs, or working with the other students.
“Hey, Kurt,” Bobby said, waving to the blue mutant. The only sign that he noticed Havoc was the clenching of his fist and the drop in temperature. “Think you can head for the top and measure how big the hole is on that side?” His breath was coming out in puffs as he fought for control of his temper and powers.
“Of course,” the mutant said, his tail snagging a measuring tape from the floor. He disappeared again, reappearing on top of the jet.
“Is their anything I can do?”
Bobby opened his mouth to say something, but a quick jab in the stomach from his girlfriend silenced him. The younger mutant settled for just glaring at Havoc, before turning back to his work. “Why don’t you employ your impressive handiness over there, my friend?” Hank said, pointing with one of his blue furred feet at a nearby table filled with circuit boards in various damaged states. “If you will, scrutinize which ones they are, and see about apprehending the obligatory replacement components from over there.” He pointed with his other foot at the supply cabinet that held all of the replacement parts for the supposedly experimental jet. “It would be most accommodating.”
Havoc nodded as he went over to the bench and looked at all the damage that he had done to the internal pieces of the jet when he had been acting like an idiot. Hopefully, they could get this all done before things got any worse. ‘And what could be worse?’ he seethed to himself. ‘My baby cousin is dead and it’s all my fault.’ Scott had protected him, and he had protected Buffy. That was the way it was supposed to work; he could still remember their fathers saying that! It was one of the few family memories that he had of his father, and he had let the man down! When he had found out about everything, he had learned that his occasional look into Buffy had been nothing more than a smoke screen that someone had set up. It had been set up to either to keep her from learning about the blood that her family had, or to keep them away from her.
“Guilt like that tears ya up, don’t it boy?” Wolverine commented as he looked with distaste at Havoc.
“Yeah, it does.”
“Well listen to me, boy, and listen good,” the mutant growled as he stood over the taller man. “My girls, fer some reason, are willing to ignore what ya’ve done ta em. Step out of line, though, and I’ll explain to em that unlike when they were doing stupid things, you weren’t under any kind of power that ya had no control of.”
“What are you talking about?”
“I mean I ain’t forgot that this First idiot can’t touch anything. Ya ain’t been under any kind of mind control, which means that the only way you could of done this was if you were manipulated verbally. It was all you, wasn’t it?” Shaking slightly, Havoc nodded. “Well, let me explain something to ya, Summers. I’ll even say it nice and slow, so that you’ll actually be able ta understand what it is I’m saying. When my girls got infected with darkness, they didn’t have a choice. And whatever changes were made to them, were forced on ‘em. Ya think I like the fact that they’ve had to become touched by the dark, boy? They were kids at the time, confused and scared when it happened. Do you think that Marie wanted Magneto in her head? Or that Kitty wanted something similar ta happen ta her?”
"You make it sound like they didn’t have a choice,” Havoc said.
"Rogue still can’t control her abilities. I’d figure someone like you would at least be understandin’ of something like that."
"And why would I understand?"
“Because she’s in the same boat as yer brother,” Wolverine growled. “She can’t turn her powers off any more than your brother can turn his eyebeams off. That’s why, where most girls doing heavy work like she is when their boy is around, would be doing it in some cute kind of tank top or something, making me want to skewer the boy for looking at her, she has to wear a light long sleeve shirt and gloves so she doesn’t hurt anybody.”
Havoc looked at the girl with a stripe of white hair through her brown locks hair. "I didn’t know."
“Oh it gets better, boy. Ya see that bit oh white in her hair?” Havoc nodded dumbly at the growled question. “Well, ya know how a person that gets scared to death ends up with white hair? Well Rogue was terrified enough by what she saw in both my head, and Magneto’s, to scare her that bad. Kitty has a lot of similar traumas of her own, because of her time in Japan. And because of what happened, she nearly killed me and several other people. And she had no control over what she was doing. Just like Rogue ‘cause she has no control of her powers. But you, boy? You had a choice. And you decided we were nothing but monsters, because we’ve been targets of some evil people. You ever try anything on it, though, and I will gut ya so fast ya won’t know what happens unless I want ya to. Got it?”
Havoc nodded as Logan went to help with some of the damage. “I hope he has made his point, Alex,” Xavier said, rolling up beside Havoc. “It would be rather difficult to explain to Scott what happened to you.”
“Good. Then I won’t have to warn you about doing anything to further your thoughts.”
“And what are my thoughts, sir?” Alex asked.
“That while you may have misjudged the situation, you had all the proof you needed to come up with those theories. All I ask for now is that you act professionally, and try to work with them all. Preferably, without trying to cause problems.”
“Sure, I’ll do that,” Havoc replied, heading off to get the parts he needed. Several hours later,all of the systems and blasted parts had been replaced, leaving the jet in perfect condition.
Scott came down and looked at the jet. He nodded and then looked at the assembled group that was waiting for his word. “Suit up,” he ordered. “We’ve got a world to save.” The others nodded as they finished putting their tools away. They put on their black uniforms with the large X on the chest. Some of the uniforms had additions to them, like Storms cape or Cyclops’s visor. Colossus stood up and removed the sleeves from his jacket. He then gave a weak grin as Callisto came in to bid him goodbye.
“I wish that I could go with you,” she said, holding him for a moment.
“Da, I wish that you could, too,” Colossus replied. “Perhaps with a little more training, you shall be able to,” he comforted her. Callisto looked over his broad shoulder with a smirk at Kitty, who was finishing some last minute adjustments to the jet, and ignoring them.
Storm glared slightly at the couple, before she turned to the guests that Xavier was giving a tour to. “And here are all of the security codes. I’m sure that the four of you should be able to run the school for a few days.”
“Of course, Professor Xavier. this will truly be an honor.”
“You better give me those, Reed. Besides, we know you don’t have the head for administration,” the woman beside him said, holding her hand out to him.
Reed Richards nodded, handing the codes over to his fiancée. “Whipped,” the biggest and strongest of the four said, shaking his head sadly. “Come on, matchstick. Let’s go introduce ourselves to the rest of the people.”
“Sounds like a plan,” Johnny Storm, AKA The Human Torch, told his rocky hided companion as the two went off to find something to do. “I mean it beats watching hockey.”
“Hey! I happen to like hockey,” The Thing said to his teammate as the door shut behind them.
“I hope you’re able to determine what’s going on down there,” Mr. Fantastic said, shaking hands with the group, which was all the more interesting as his feet never moved, but his arm managed to extend to Kitty who was forty feet away.
“As do I,” Cyclops replied. “Let’s head out X-men.” The team boarded the jet and took off.
“Good luck,” Sue Richards, AKA The Invisible Girl, said as she watched the jet hover for a moment before it took off.
Xavier turned to Scott, who was piloting. “Switch to hover mode.” Scott nodded, though he didn’t know what they were doing. “Storm, Kitty, you know what to do.” Nodding, the teen and woman phased out of the jet.
“Where are they going, sir?”
“To warn the last people,” the Professor said simply.
The two women landed on the roof and walked up to the four figures that were waiting for them. Three of them were regular humans. One dressed in red armor, had enhanced senses; one wore black combat armor, the only thing that wasn’t black was the white skull painted on his shirt. Another one of the figures was a woman that worked for the highest bidder. They were Dare Devil, Punisher, and Electra, three of the most deadly humans out there. The last one, it was unknown whether he was a mutant, human, or something else. Spiderman took his folder, and then jumped off the roof of the building with a reckless abandon. Daredevil nodded as he took his own, pausing to grasp Electra by the shoulder before he disappeared into the shadows. The woman followed his example, but headed in a different direction. Punisher flipped his open, nodded, and then headed for the door on the roof.
“Let’s go,” Storm said as she flew them upwards. Shadowcat phased them both through the jet. “Mission accomplished, Professor. And please never ask me to hand that man anything again.” Storm shivered; despite all her power, she couldn’t shake the feeling that the Punisher could have killed her easily.
“Good. Next stop Sunnydale.” Cyclops nodded as he steered them westward.
Truck Stop, Again
Prue and Piper stood back while Phoebe looked around in shock at the truck stop that she had stopped at from time to time. The place had a reputation for having some of the best hamburgers. The place had been completely trashed, though. Where there had once been a friendly diner, there was now the shell of a building and a smoking crater where a truck had blown up. The three of them were almost afraid to go in, afraid of what they might find. Prue clicked her phone shut. “The police said they’d be here as soon as they can, to check this out,” she said, waving her hand at the mess before them.
“You know, that doesn’t exactly fill me with a whole lot of confidence, since they haven’t noticed this mess on their own yet,” Piper commented.
“She’s right, you know. We saw this smoke from a couple miles away, yet they haven’t sent any kind of emergency vehicles to check it out. I mean, come on! Even I’m not that oblivious.”
“As much as I hate to admit it, Phoebe actually has a bit of a point,” Prue admitted.
“You know, I really hate it when you two start agreeing on something,” Piper said in annoyance. “It usually means that something really, really bad is about to happen, or has already happened.”
“Yeah, well just be glad you don’t have any jinx worthy habits,” Phoebe shot back. “Oh wait, you do,” she said as if she just realized something. “Every other time you go on a date, we end up having to vanquish him.” Piper glared at her younger sister, but couldn’t say anything because sadly she was right.
“Yeah, well can you two have that conversation in the car?” Prue asked as she wandered around the parking lot. “Unless you want to explain to the cops what we’re doing when they finally get here? Something I’m not sure of myself.”
“Um, hoping that despite all of this they might still be serving?” Phoebe suggested almost hopefully.
“Cute,” Prue replied, kneeling in the dirt in front of one of the windows. She glanced at the handful of cars that were still here. For some reason or another, most of them had blacked out windows, making it nearly impossible to see enough to drive. She turned back to the window she was looking at, wondering why it had attracted her. Her eyes wandered toward the ground and she suddenly understood what had drawn her here. “Hey guys, take a look at this,” she said, pointing to the broken glass where one of the windows had shattered.
“What?” Piper asked, kneeling beside Prue. “A lot of the windows are cracked or broken. What’s so special about this one?”
“The way the glass shards are, for one,” Prue answered, going into lecture mode. “If this one had broken like the others, because of the explosion, the glass would have been on the inside instead of the outside.”
“It means, that whatever caused this window to break, it came from inside the diner. And depending on how fast whatever hit the window was traveling, there’s a chance that it hit the truck and made it blow up.”
“Okay, it’s official. You and Andy spent way too much time together talking, and not enough making out.” Phoebe paused as she realized that she was attacking a soft spot of Prue’s.
“Sorry, but not all of us are as sex starved as you,” Prue reminded her sister coolly.
“Okay, that’s enough,” Piper said, coming between her sisters yet again. The two women backed off and looked around for a few more minutes.
“I guess we should check the inside.”
“Think we’ll have enough time before the police or someone comes?”
Phoebe was about to answer when several army trucks pulled up. “Oh great,” she muttered. “Think someone will try and blame this one on us as well?”
“No telling,” Prue replied as she sidled in front of her sisters. She would defend her family no matter what.
Several people began getting out, examining the damage that had been caused. The sisters noticed that the people didn’t seem to realize that they were all carrying guns while examining the area. “This could definitely be trouble,” Piper said, eyeing the guns distastefully.
The man that appeared to be in charge made his way up to them. “Hope you don’t mind telling us what happened,” He said lightly, though there was a bit of steel in his voice. The man was possibly old enough to be their father; if the amount of gray hairs he had was any kind of indicator.
“Wish we could,” Prue answered warily. While a part of her felt that she could trust him, she knew that talking about magic wasn’t the smartest thing to do right now. “We saw the smoke from a couple miles off and decided to investigate. We called the cops and have been listening for anyone that might be inside.”
“Hear anything?” he asked as he eyed the truck stop, looking for a way in that wasn’t through the front door.
“Nothing,” she admitted. “Though we’re pretty sure there were some people here when this happened.”
“Why’s that?” the man asked, obviously fighting an eye roll.
“Well, the splattered blood that’s all over this place was a pretty good indication,” she told the soldier dryly.
The man nodded in agreement. “You usually make a habit of stopping at disaster areas?” The man obviously didn’t want them here, and it was possible that he might not want to be here himself.
Before Prue could respond, Phoebe snapped her fingers. “Wait a minute, you’re one of the people from my vision.”
“Are you sure, Phoebes?” Prue asked, not sure she wanted to team up with this guy.
“Yeah, I kind of have to be good at spotting people in order to understand what’s happening in them.”
“Um, excuse me, still here,” the graying man interjected.
“Sorry,” Piper said. “They’re the rude ones. I’m…”
“Piper Haliwell,” a blonde man finished, coming up behind the older man “You three lost? ‘Cause this isn’t exactly your usual stomping grounds.”
“You know us?” Prue asked in nervous surprise.
“Yes. We got your names when we were doing a background check on a relative of yours. And you’ve recently been getting into a lot of trouble, or at the very least been around when trouble is. Makes one wonder if it’s a family thing, but you’ve done nothing to warrant an investigation,” the man said, shrugging. “I presume you’re on your way to check on Buffy?”
“If you go there, it will be dangerous,” the man warned.
“We’ll be careful,” Piper assured them before giving her sisters a meaningful look. “Right?”
“Sure,” the other two answered with innocent smiles that didn’t fool the middle sister one bit.
“As safe as we can be, at least, under the circumstances,” Phoebe added, continuing to smile brightly at her sister.
“Absolutely.” Prue nodded, neither of them backing down under the glare Piper was sending them.
“Right,” the first soldier said, obviously amused by the sisters. “The name’s Jack. Jack O’Neill. Buffy’s my niece somewhere on the family tree. At least, according to her mom’s record keeping,” he joked lightly since he had never met the woman, and it would be just his luck that they actually had. “If you want someone to explain that sort of stuff, I’ll get Daniel to explain it to you. ‘Cause there is no way that I would be able to go through all of that stuff.”
“Or we could get Prue to do it,” Phoebe said. “If you can believe it, it’s actually the sort of thing that she gets paid to do.” She and Jack shuddered in mock disgust.
‘Amazing. Keeping his my mouth in control has actually prevented me from getting slapped,’ Jack thought. ‘But it’s certainly not as much fun.’
“Hah, hah,” Prue said dryly. “I’ll remember that,” She promised them both.
“Buffy’s our eldest cousin’s daughter. The one with the attitude is Prue, and the one that likes to mouth off is Phoebe.
“A pleasure to meet you,” the soldier boy said, shaking their hands.
“Don’t suppose I could convince you to turn back?” Jack asked hopefully.
“Fine. The man you’ve just shaken hands with, is Agent Riley Finn; his wife is the shorter blonder over there. Her name is Commander Sam Finn. She’s co-commander of this little group for now.” He pointed to a blonde woman in fatigues and combat gear. “The taller blonde is Major Samantha Carter,” he said, pointing to another blonde in a green jumpsuit, with slightly different gear. “Then there’s Daniel Jackson, Graham Miller, Murray, and his partner Bray. They make up our command staff.”
“We’ve called in a cleanup squad, sir. They’ll have this whole place cleaned up in about an hour,” a soldier reported to the two men. Finn nodded at the report. Evidently, enough had been overheard that the soldiers were going to try and scare them off. Of course, if the stubbornness that was in Buffy and Jack was a family trait, then the guy had about as much hope of succeeding as he did in being able to figure out how many of those letters actually got out. “We also found the remains of some type of hostile.”
“Oh yeah, before I forget,” Jack said after the soldier left. “What vision?”
“They’re something I sometimes get,” Phoebe said evasively “I get these little glimpses of the future.”
“A Seer?” Riley asked skeptically. “Don’t they usually only see people that need help, or something like that?”
“You seem pretty well informed about this kind of stuff.”
“It’s an occupational thing,” Riley replied quickly, not wanting to give away any information that he shouldn’t.
“So what was this vision thing that you had?” Jack asked again as he watched Finn and two of the sisters dance around giving answers.
“Huh? Oh yeah. Let’s see. It showed you, that Daniel guy, Major Carter, and Murray all standing in front of this big circle thingy. You were all strapping on weird looking weapons. And the big guy had this weird looking stuff on his head.”
“I see,” was all Jack said as he heard the girl describe Teal’c’s tattoo.
“And what color was it?”
“Dunno. So far, all of my visions have been in black and white.”
“Did the big circle do anything?”
Jack nodded in relief. What the girl had somehow seen was he and his team strapping on the last of their gear before they went topside. They had all stopped at the gate while they slid the last bit of their stuff into their bags, or equipment pouches. He remembered what Daniel had said to them all, being the introspective kind of person that he was.
‘You know, with everything that we’ve done, I’ve almost been convinced that whatever finally got me would be out there. Now I find out that the very thing that may get me, is actually here on Earth.’ After that, they had all paused to stare at the gate before someone had paged them saying that their forces were ready. That had snapped the four of them out of their reverie and back into action.
“Don’t talk about the big circle thing unless I tell you to, okay?” he told her.
“All right,” the girl said shrugging, as if she could care less that she had seen inside one of the government’s most top-secret installations
“Let’s head out then campers,” Jack said, wanting to distract the other sisters in case they might have heard anything. “We want to get there in time to save the world and all that. Right?” The sisters nodded in agreement.
“Shame this place got messed up; they served real good burgers as I remember,” Riley commented to his current boss.
“You’re telling me!” Phoebe agreed. “Now we’ll have to stop at McDonalds or something like that.”
“I have found very little wrong with the foods of McDonalds,” Teal’C said as he joined the group.
“Oh, it’s all right, but come on, diners like this are what make road trips half the fun,” Phoebe told the large man who merely raised an eyebrow at the youngest of the three sisters.
“It is obvious that she is of your kin, O’Neill,” Bra’tac said. “For there cannot be that many of the Tauri that think like that.”
“If you say so, Bra’tac,” Jack said, shrugging as he put his sunglasses on. Not really paying attention to him, Prue copied the motion. Riley and Bra’tac shared a knowing look as several bits of their body language mirrored each other. “All right, people, load up! I want to get out of here as soon as possible. Secure anything that needs to be secured, then we’re outta here,” Jack ordered.
“Head for the car. I want us out of here and out of the way now,” Prue ordered her two sisters. She then turned to O’Neill. “We’ll either meet you elsewhere on the road, or we’ll see you at Sunnydale. Then we’ll see what the First is made of.”
Jack wanted to argue with the woman in front of him, but if she were even half as stubborn as he was, then there would be problems doing that. And right now he needed to be focused on the mission. He could always whine to these girls about doing crazy things later. It would be up there with chewing his niece out for staying in a town that tried to kill her. “Sounds like a plan,” he said, instead of what he really wanted to say, much to the surprise of SG-1. ‘Gotta keep ‘em guessing somehow,’ he thought with amusement. “Hey,” he called to the three young women.
“Be careful,” he said. “You want to be able to help her.”
“Gotcha,” Prue said while Phoebe gave him a thumbs up as they all climbed into their car and drove off.
“Yours is truly an interesting family, O’Neill,” Bra’tac noted as he watched the three women pass the guard, who waved them out. “It is a family of great warriors.”
Jack nodded in agreement. “Yeah, but their MY family.”