Categories > Cartoons > X-Men: Evolution > Between Life and Death

Confrontation

by slickboy444 0 Reviews

A mission gone horribly wrong leads Scott Summers to make the ultimate sacrifice to save his friends. But is he really dead? Or something more sinsiter going on? Scott/Jean, Kurt/Kitty, minor hints...

Category: X-Men: Evolution - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Action/Adventure, Angst, Drama, Romance - Characters: Cyclops, Gambit, Iceman, Jean, Magneto, Mystique, Nightcrawler, Rogue, Shadowcat - Published: 2006/02/02 - Updated: 2006/02/02 - 6637 words

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Between Life and Death
Chapter 15: Confrontation


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In the crowded Gut Bomb fast food restaurant, the Brotherhood ate their Sunday lunch in a sea of crowded people. The weather was fairly nice out so there were a lot of other people out today. Such a crowd didn't make the Brotherhood too comfortable because of some of the suspicious looks they received, but Blake kept them from lashing out and now they concentrated on their meal for the most part.

"Yeesh Blob," said Lance as he looked over at Freddy's rather impressive mountain of food, "How can you mix ketchup with mayonnaise?"

"Hey, don't knock it till you've tried it," said Blob as he dipped his fries in the reddish white mixture and stuffed them into his mouth as if they were candy.

"Blegh...I have enough problems maintaining an appetite from just looking at it thank you very much," he replied as he tried to focus on his burger.

"See...I told you I wasn't the only one who eats gross things, Lance," said Todd as his eyes followed a nearby fly as it landed on his burger, "Flies may be disgusting to you, but once you've had em, you'll wonder how you ever lived without em!"

Then, as the fly tried to get away, Todd used his extra long tongue to snatch it up before it could get away. While this helped him settle his appetite, it didn't do so well for others who didn't find insects as appetizing as he did.

"Ugh, I think I just lost my appetite," said Wanda as she set her half eaten burger down.

"I'll take it!" said Freddy eagerly as he took it and quickly began wolfing it down.

"Be my guest..." said Wanda.

While all this was going on, Blake remained fixated on the view outside. He wasn't necessarily looking at anything, but it was clear that he was thinking about something. He had only taken a few bites out of his burger and truth be told, he wasn't that hungry to begin with. His mind was just too preoccupied to think about food at a time like this.

"Hey Blake...You okay man?" asked Lance as he noticed Blake's thousand mile stare out the window.

"Yeah, I'm fine," he replied in a deep, monotone voice.

"You're a lousy liar, you know that?" quipped Wanda.

"Yeah, even I can see it," said Todd as he turned to face the troubled young man sitting next to him, "What's the matter yo?"

Blake didn't say anything. He just kept staring out the window lost in thought. No matter what he did or how hard he tried, he just couldn't stop thinking about the night before when he had seen that mysterious redheaded girl outside the boarding house. The strange memories and feelings that he had felt when he saw her kept his mind in a state of unease. Ever since he saw her, the nightmares that he had been having since he woke up grew even more vivid and detailed...Yet there still seemed to be a few vital parts missing.

"Hey Blaze!" shouted Pietro, "Are you awake?"

That managed to snap him back to reality, but it still did little to change his demeanor.

"I'm okay guys...Really," said Blake, "I just have a lot on my mind."

"Like what yo?" asked Todd as he watched him return to his dazed expression.

"Just...The regular things most people with complete and utter amnesia think about," said Blake, choosing to leave it at that.

Pietro simply rolled his eyes and returned to eating his meal. Normally, he wouldn't have gone anywhere with his so called 'guardian' that was still a minion of his father in his mind. But the promise of a good meal was enough for him, given that his hyperactive metabolism gave him an appetite second only to Blob's. And as long as his sister was out, he didn't want to leave her in the hands of one of Magneto's henchmen. His father had already taken away his sister once before and no matter how powerful someone like Blake was, he wasn't going to let it happen again.

Outside the Gut Bomb, Betsy and Emma had moved in closer across the street so that the Brotherhood was in plain sight. They were still eating their meal near a window and were still surrounded by people. The rest of the Nasty Boys would surly be ready to strike at any given moment now, but the prospect of the ensuing battle was not something either of them was looking forward to.

"Emma...I've got a bad feeling about this," said Betsy as she looked at the area around where their target was located.

"Tell me something I don't know," responded Emma, not seeing any clean way out of this situation.

They waited anxiously, hoping that they would at least leave or go somewhere less crowded and confined. But from the looks of it, they weren't going anywhere for the time being. With the lunchtime crowd still setting in, there was plenty to be worried about given the magnitude of this task. Sinister had already made it clear that this was one of his top priorities. He needed his precious test subject back and unless they wanted to end up on his hit list with Magneto, they would have to get him back despite the complications.

Just then, the cell phone Emma was carrying went off again and she promptly answered it.

"Yeah?"

"It's Vertigo...We're all in position," she said over the line, "Get ready. And remember, the test subject is the key objective. If we have to take hostages, namely the Maximoff twins, then be prepared to do so at a moments notice."

"Right..." said Emma, as she hung up the phone and let out an anxious sigh, "Well...Let the chaos begin."

As the two women mentally prepared themselves for what was about to go down, the Brotherhood sat completely unaware of what was going on around them. They were still in the process of eating their meals and the crowd around them hadn't died down all that much. Blake was still in a trance as he kept thinking about the mysterious girl from the previous night, but unknown to him or the others...A strange man in a trench coat began to walk along the row of windows. At the same time, Betsy and Emma began to cross the street...Knowing what was soon to happen.

Blake's gaze shifted back down the street as he chose to stop thinking about his troubles and focus on something else, but as he turned away from the window...The man in the trench coat caught his eye.

"So Blake, what do you wanna do after this?" asked Todd casually, not noticing the disturbed look on the young man's face, "Blake? Yo Blake!"

Blake's eyes remained fixated on the nearing man as time suddenly felt as though it was moving slower. Then, he got a brief glimpse of the man's face and suddenly...An instinct he couldn't explain kicked in.

"Guys, get down!" he yelled as he shoved everyone near him off their seats and down to the ground.

But before either of them could begin to respond, a deafening blast of high pitched sound echoed through the area, shattering the glass around them with ease. Everybody in the restaurant clenched their ears as the man with the trench coat revealed himself to be Ruckus of the Nasty Boys.

"We've come for you Blaze!" he said as he stopped his sonic blasts, "Sinister has been eagerly awaiting your return!"

Blake quickly returned to his feet, blocking out the pain in his ears as he made his body glow its ominous ruby red color in preparation for the fight.

"Well you can tell Sinister to kiss my ass!" said Blake as he stood in front of the still downed Brotherhood, ready to carry out his duties as their guardian.

He was about to send a powerful energy bolt directly at the loud mouthed mutant, but just then, the doorway was bashed in by Gorgeous George and more commotion began to break out among the crowd as people began screaming things like 'Mutant!' or 'Monsters!'

As the Brotherhood regained their composure, Blob's temper began to boil as he looked at the two aggressors that had shattered the calm of their little outing.

"ERR! Nobody interrupts my lunch and gets away with it!" he bellowed as he made eye contact with Gorgeous George and charged him like a raging bull.

"Bring it on fat boy!" said George as he charged right back at him as they both collided and became immersed in a bitter struggle.

As the rest of the Brotherhood got up and took a look at the chaos around them, they prepared to join Blake on the defensive, for they still outnumbered Gorgeous and Ruckus and they had fought much greater battles before.

"So THESE are the pricks that you're trying to protect us from Blake?!" said Pietro, definitely not looking too impressed.

"Yeah, they don't look so tough yo!" said Todd as he looked back at Ruckus.

"Well looks can be deceiving..." grinned Ruckus as he saw the overconfident look in their eyes.

"Hey! Loud mouth...Shut up!" said Lance as his eyes rolled back into his head and began causing a seismic tremor that began causing the area to shake.

This caused Gorgeous and Blob to lose their balance somewhat along with the rest of the people who hadn't managed to get out of the restaurant beforehand. But neither Gorgeous George nor Ruckus looked too threatened by this as the back door behind the Brotherhood suddenly opened and a new combatant stepped in.

"Time for you to regret having just eaten Brotherhood!" said Vertigo as he eyes began to glow and she began projecting psychic feelings of intense nausea and sickness to the Brotherhood.

"Ugh! I think I'm gonna be sick!" said Todd as he clenched his stomach and feel to the floor like the others.

Lance tried to maintain the tremor, but the powerful feeling of dizziness and nausea caused him to keel over try to keep whatever he had just eaten inside his stomach. Blake managed to fight this off and remain on his weary feet even as the Brotherhood remained down on the ground in agony. His body was still glowing bright red as he took the energy locked within the space around him and brought it within his control.

"That's it...Yield to the power of Vertigo!" said the young woman as she turned up the intensity of her power.

"Uhh...And to think I found mayonnaise and ketchup nauseating!" groaned Lance.

Ruckus then prepared another sonic blast that would hopefully take them the Brotherhood out of the fight permanently, but Blake remained focused enough to concentrate his energy into his strong hands as his eyes began to glow bright red at his aggressors.

"Time to end this!" said Ruckus as he took a deep breath.

"Not so fast!" yelled Blake as he let loose his powers in the first combat situation to his memory.

The intensity of the blast surprised Ruckus as he was sent flying off towards the street. This momentary show of power managed to cause Vertigo to let her guard down for a fraction of a second. And thankfully, this was all the time Wanda would need to focus her powers and hex Vertigo against the wall, breaking her nauseating spell over her and the others.

"You're gonna pay for that, bitch!" said Wanda as she let her temper take over, "When I get through with you, you'll know what it's REALLY like to be sick!"

Before Vertigo could respond, Wanda blasted her again with another hex bolt, sending her flying against one of the tables. The lights above her began to flicker and Wanda had no intentions of letting up. But it wasn't over yet.

Then suddenly, before Wanda could blast her with another hex bold, a psionic blade came flying towards her and she was forced to duck in order to avoid it. This gave Vertigo enough time to get up as Betsy and Emma made their entrance into the fight.

"Come on Emma...Let's get this over with," said Betsy under her breath as she looked at the angry Brotherhood before her.

"No argument here," replied the blonde telepath as she took on her diamond hard shell and prepared for battle.

Blob and Gorgeous George were still engrossed in a brute strength vs. brute strength fight while Blake and the others turned their attention towards the two newcomers.

"You're only making this more difficult than it has to be Blake," said Vertigo as her eyes began to glow again, "Come with us...Your creator is waiting."

"Fuck that yo!" said Todd in a cocky voice, "You mess with one Brotherhood member, you mess with all of us!"

"Have it your way then..." said Betsy as she began firing off psionic blades, forcing Todd to avoid them.

Just then, Ruckus came in from the other side and quickly attacked Blake. His aggression seemed somewhat fool hardy against someone as strong and skilled as him, but he didn't seem to care about that as he erupted in a fury of sonic blasts in an effort to subdue the powerful mutant that Sinister's machines had created.

This left Lance, Pietro, Wanda, and Toad to deal with Vertigo, Psylock, and Emma. But having the advantages in numbers once again gave them a feeling of overconfidence as they prepared to take down their aggressors.

"So we get to handle the chicks!" grinned Pietro as he looked at what Emma and Psylock were wearing, "It just so happens that's my specialty!"

"Oh please!" said Betsy as she began throwing psionic blades at cocky speedster, which he easily avoided, "I'm sure the ladies must love a man who does EVERYTHING in super speed."

This caught Pietro off guard long enough for one of the blades to land close enough to him to knock him off his feet. Upon seeing this, Lance took the initiative and prepared to start another tremor, but Vertigo quickly saw this and sprang into action.

"I don't think so boy..." said Vertigo as she focused her powers on Lance and once again caused him to groan in agony, "You won't be causing any trouble with those volatile little gifts of yours. Besides, we came here for only one thing...Blake."

"Well you aren't getting him!" said Wanda as her eyes began to glow again and the lights started flickering.

"Oh I beg to differ Ms Maximoff," said Emma as she looked into the eyes of the angry Scarlet Witch, "I think you'll find that we can be very 'persuasive' when it comes to keeping people out of our business."

Then suddenly, Wanda's hexing powers stopped and she clutched her head in pain as she fell to the floor. Emma had just used her telepathy to reawaken the old, painful images of the insane asylum that had brought her so much pain and conflict in her life. Only now with Emma's telepathic boost, the images were more vivid and it felt as though she was really there. The illusion was a painful one for her, but it was keeping her and her volatile powers out of the fight. She soon fell to the ground as tears began streaming down her face at what she was seeing flash before her minds eye.

"No...Please! Make it stop! Make it stop! No more!" she cried, her eyes clenched shut as she tried to filter it all out, but with no success.

"Sorry to have to do this to you Wanda..." said Emma, "But this situation is far grander than you and your friends could ever imagine. Its better you stay out of it...For you don't want to get involved with Mr. Sinister."

Wanda's pained yells only grew louder as Emma turned up the intensity, making her memories all the more vivid. Despite being outnumbered, Sinister had provided them with good data to help their fight. And with Wanda being one of the most volatile of the group, it would be many times easier if she was simply taken out of the equation...But this action didn't go unnoticed.

"Wanda!" yelled Pietro as her screams caught him off guard for a fraction of a second, but this short amount of time was all Betsy needed to make her move as she leaped forth and drop kicked the speed demon.

Upon seeing Wanda's predicament, Todd quickly decided to take action as well. Both he and Lance had been struggling against Vertigo, but her spells of dizziness and sickness weren't strong enough to keep him down. His whole body may have felt like it was on fire because of her powers, but he still had enough strength in his powerful legs to make one strong leap past Vertigo, leaving an open path towards Emma.

"I'm comin' baby cakes! Toad to the rescue!" he proclaimed as he leaped into the air and prepared a flying kick towards the blonde telepath.

Emma had to break concentration for just one moment to avoid the swift and nimble young man, but it was easily done thanks to Todd's rather brash and ill planned moves.

"Trying to be a hero swamp boy?" smirked Emma, still in her diamond hard form.

"Hey shut up! Nobody messes with my girl!" said Toad as he did a swift roundhouse kick maneuver that Blake had taught him.

However, despite his superhuman leg strength, Emma's diamond shell proved to be far too hard for him to even dent. And while Todd was quick, his unguarded mind made his attacks easy to predict and Emma was quickly able to counter with a double punch combo and a swift kick in the gut to send him flying back.

The Brotherhood was quickly losing their advantage in numbers as Blake watched the fight while he was still struggling against Ruckus. He watched as Todd and Pietro both made ill fated attempts to aid Wanda and saw Freddy starting to struggle against Gorgeous George. Wanda was also still ailing from the psychic onslaught that had been forced upon her by Emma and she definitely looked as though she was out of the fight. Seeing the Brotherhood faltering under the well planned moves of the Nasty Boys, Blake's temper began to boil as he summoned more power from the air around him and made his entire body glow.

"Oh no you don't!" said Ruckus, as he took a deep breath and prepared another, much louder sonic yell.

"Not this time..." said Blake.

Then, with an increasing level of power being collected in his body, Blake unleashed a powerful wave of concentrated energy and sent Ruckus flying back through the window he had come from with the force of a freight train. Blake had been holding back in his fight because he didn't want to unleash more power than he had to in a public place, but now...He was through with child's play. This fight had gone on long enough and it was time for him to end it.

Seeing Emma standing before Wanda once more with her psychic onslaught in full swing, she prepared to knock the Scarlet Witch out of the fight for good.

"Don't worry Wanda..." said Emma as she turned up the intensity, "My illusions only hurt as much as you allow them. And believe me...You'll thank me for taking you out of this fight."

"Hey blondie!" said Blake as his body continued to glow with intense ruby red energy.

As Emma turned to face the source of the voice, she was suddenly hit with a concentrated beam of energy. Normally, her diamond hard shell would have protected her against such a blast...But the sheer intensity of this one was too much for even her to handle. The force had been great enough to blast her through the wall, leaving a rather large hole. While her diamond shell protected her body, the impact was enough to nearly knock her out cold.

"Wanda!" said Blake as he rushed over to her side, "Wanda...Its okay. It's over now...It was only an illusion."

Wanda Maximoff let out a pained groan as she returned to her feet, still rubbing her head. So many vivid images of those memories that she struggled so hard with most had nearly paralyzed her. Only this time, Emma's illusions took it a step further by giving it demonic twists that made the people who restrained her look like demons and the men who taunted her look like tall, imposing giants bathed in a shadow of darkness. Such images were hard to forget, but Wanda had been dealing with them for quite some time now and she had become somewhat use to having all these horrible feelings lurking within her mind.

"Ugh...I feel like shit," she groaned as she leaned on Blake in order to keep her balance.

Just then, a psionic blade hit the ground before them and Psylocke now stood ready to fight the both of them. She had managed to fight off Pietro and assist Vertigo in dealing with Lance, but after seeing Emma get blasted, she was eager to end this fight before anybody else got hurt.

"You know...Emma's not the only one with telepathy," said the purple haired mutant as she prepared her mind for a psychic onslaught.

Blake stood in front of Wanda as he made his body glow a menacing ruby red color once again, prepared to unleash another burst of energy to take her out just as he had Emma and Ruckus. However, before either of them could strike first, Pietro used his super speed to step in.

"NO! Leave my sister alone ninja bitch!" yelled the speedster as he caught the young psychic off guard and tackled her to the ground.

"You little bugger!" said Psylocke in a greatly annoyed tone as she formed two psionic blades and prepared to take Pietro down once again.

Soon, Pietro and Psylocke were going at it again. And over with Lance, Todd, and Vertigo, Lance finally managed to break free from her spell long enough to send a light tremor through floor, catching her off balance just long enough for Todd to give her a swift jump kick to the stomach. Things also got better for Blob as he managed to use a spare trey of food from a table to throw in the face of Gorgeous George, causing him to falter just long enough for him to get the upper hand and land several critical blows.

However, this change of luck did not go unnoticed to Ruckus, who had fought intense bodily pain to remerge from the hole that Blaze had knocked him through. He was definitely not willing to let the Nasty Boys suffer defeat at the hands of a bunch of misfit mutant teenagers. They had come here for only one thing, but they had definitely underestimated just how difficult it would be. Never the less, Sinister was a man who prepared for everything...And Ruckus knew there was only one alternative.

With an insidious grin, he reached into his trench coat pocket and pulled out the strange looking ray gun that they had used to capture Sinister's test subject in the first place. It had been slightly damaged as a result of Blake's blasts, but it was still powerful enough to fire a devastating burst at a lower level. And the first thing he took aim at was the first Brotherhood member he saw...Pietro.

"Time to end this!" grinned Ruckus as he took aim and pointed the gun towards the speed demon as he was knocked back by a swift series of blows by Betsy.

Pietro didn't see the gun being aimed at him, for he was too engrossed in his fight with the purple haired mutant to care...But Blake saw this and before anyone could truly process the severity of the situation, he sprang into action.

"Pietro look out!" yelled Blake as he lunged forth and knocked Pietro out of the way just as a powerful yellow burst of light hit directly where the speedster was just a fraction of a second ago, missing them by only millimeters.

"Damn it!" cursed Ruckus, but then he noticed something else.

In moving to save Pietro, Blake had left the still recovering Wanda Maximoff behind and unguarded. Upon seeing a clean shot, Ruckus didn't waste any time as he pointed the gun back at Wanda and fired.

"AHHHHHH!" she cried as an overwhelming shock surged through her body, causing undue pain.

"WANDA!" yelled Pietro as he saw his sister fall limply to the ground.

Quickly, he rushed over to her side. Lance and Todd, who had also seen this, did the same. But for Blake...His attention was completely on the source of the blast now. Upon seeing that ray gun...Something within him let loose an even greater show of power as a blinding display of ruby red light engulfed his body and blinded Ruckus and Psylocke.

"You're going to pay for that!" said Blaze sternly as formed a powerful ball of energy with his hands and sent it directly at Ruckus, destroying the gun and knocking back against Gorgeous George with unmatched force.

He then turned to Psylocke and Vertigo, who were momentarily stunned at the powerful display of force, but such actions proved to be their undoing as Blake formed another ball in his hands and sent it flying towards them...Taking them out of the fight as well. Emma Frost, however, chose to stay in the shadows of the hole she had been blown through. After seeing Blake's use of his power, she knew it was foolish to try and fight him at this point. His anger over what Ruckus did to Wanda had triggered something within him that unleashed a level of power greater than he had ever tapped before. And knowing that the odds were not in their favor anymore, the Nasty Boys were forced to back down.

However, their actions went ignored by the Brotherhood for the most part as they all crowded around Wanda...Who was lying deathly still from the powerful burst she had endured.

"Wanda! Wanda please..." cried Pietro as he started to panic for his sister's well being, "Wake up...Wake up..."

Lance quickly felt for a pulse around her neck, but it was difficult to say the least. Wanda wasn't breathing very well and it looked as though the burst had sent her into a fit of convulsions. Despite this, Lance managed to find a weak pulse.

"She's still alive..." said Lance, "But we have to get her some help."

"But where?!" yelled Todd, looking just as hysterical as Pietro, "The hospital won't help mutants!"

"There's only one place and you know it!" said Lance.

"Xavier's..." said Pietro as he swallowed hard at the sight of his sister's unmoving body.

"Then that's where we'll bring her," said Blake sternly as he swiftly picked Wanda up in his arms and led the Brotherhood out the door towards Lance's jeep.

Pietro and Todd had to limp their way with along with them, still suffering from some of the injuries they had sustained in the fight. But they wasted no time as Lance jumped into the driver's seat and started the engine. Pietro, Blake, and Todd were with Wanda in the back while Freddy sat up front as Lance stepped on the gas and sped out of the parking lot down the road on route to the Xavier Institute.

Pietro kept talking to his sister, trying to bring her out of this deep state of unconsciousness. While he was never usually one to be afraid of anything...The thought of losing his sister again was something that truly did terrify him. Wanda was the only family he had left. Their father had abandoned them and all they had now was each other. And after so many years of bitterness, they had finally been working on developing a decent brother/sister relationship over the past few months. Even despite the complications of her memories...He still wanted his sister back and he refused to let her be taken away from him again.

"Come on Wanda..." he said to her, holding her head in his lap, hoping she could hear him, "Just hang on...You're gonna be okay. Just don't leave me...I just got you back...Don't leave me."

Back at the restaurant which now looked like a war zone in the aftermath of the fight, the Nasty Boys managed to get up and make their escape before the cops showed up. They were all still hurting from the fight they had just endured, but they were not defeated yet...Not by a long shot.

"Well THAT could have gone better," said Betsy as she rubbed the sore temples of her head.

"Yeah, I'm sure this will make Sinister happy once he hears about it," said Emma, not looking forward to facing an angry madman.

"Well maybe if you two had just taken hostages like Sinister had said, maybe it wouldn't have been such a disaster!" said Gorgeous George angrily.

"Hey don't blame this on us!" quipped Betsy angrily, "If you hadn't been so damn busy with Blob, you could have done it yourself!"

"Oh please you two..." said Ruckus, "Don't bullshit this situation any more than it already is. I saw all the opportunities you had Betsy...And that goes for you as well Emma!"

"Hey, I'm not the one who just sent the Brotherhood rushing to Xavier's!" shot Emma, not in the mood for being blamed for failure, "What in the hell were you thinking firing that thing off against them?!"

"I had to take part of the Brotherhood out of the equation!" said Ruckus, growing all the more irked at Betsy and Emma's attitude, "It was a part of the plan...Which YOU two didn't bother to follow! And because of that it's going to be YOU that takes the blame for all this!"

"Like hell I am!" yelled Betsy, fighting the urge to form a psionic blade and just disembowel this man for making her so angry.

Just then, Emma's cell phone went off again and the arguing abruptly stopped. They all knew who it was and didn't look forward to talking to him. For a moment, they just let it ring...But the longer they waited, the angrier Sinister would probably be on the other side.

"Go on...Answer it," said Vertigo, "It's YOUR phone."

With an annoyed grumble, Emma answered it, not at all liking where this was probably going to lead.

"Sinister..." she answered as she turned on the speaker so that everybody could hear and talk.

"You're late..." said a rather disgruntled voice, "What happened? Do you have my test subject?"

Emma took a deep breath, knowing this probably wouldn't be the report that Sinister had hoped for.

"No...We don't," she answered after a brief silence.

"WHAT?!" yelled Sinister into the phone, "What happened?!"

"We ambushed them, a fight broke out, and we lost..." explained Emma in simple terms, "Add to that, SOMEBODY used that paralyzing ray and shot Wanda. Now the Brotherhood is on their way to Xavier's to get her some medical attention."

There was a brief silence on the other line. And if they could've seen him...They would have seen the madman's eyes grow a bright, angry red as he took in this most unwelcome information.

"So let me get this straight...You shot the Scarlet Witch...You shot Magneto's daughter," he said with complete and utter distaste for the situation, "And now they're going to get Xavier involved?! What in the hell were you dead head's thinking?!"

"Hey, I'm not the one who shot her!" said Emma into the phone, "Blame loud mouth over here!"

"I don't give a damn who did it!" bellowed Sinister, "All that matters now is that the Brotherhood is bringing Xavier into this conflict at one of the most pivotal points! Add to that, once Magneto finds out what happened to his child he's going to be quite enraged and I don't need any more obstacles...Not when I'm so close!"

"So what do you want us to do?" said Emma, not seeing an easy way out of this whole dilemma.

There was a brief silence over the phone as Sinister pondered his next move. Back in his lab, his nearly completed machine was nearly ready for use...But he still needed his test subject back if he was going to make it work perfectly like he wanted it to. And now that he would have to contend with both Magneto and Xavier, he knew his only choice was to finish it before they could destroy it again. He had waited too long to see his true goals come to pass and he was not about to let anybody stand in his way...Not when he was so close.

"Seeing as how this development was mostly your fault, I think it's only fair that you face the consequences," said Sinister ominously, "Now you'll just have to get my test subject back the hard way."

"The hard way?" said Betsy, not knowing what he meant, but not liking where he was going with it.

"Yes...The hard way," he said, "You'll have to break into Xavier's mansion, fight both the X-men and the Brotherhood, and extract him yourselves."

"What?! You can't be serious!" said Gorgeous George, "That's suicide!"

"Since when was any part of this negotiable?" quipped Sinister, evoking a strong silence among the Nasty Boys, "Remember...You brought this upon yourselves and you have to face the penalty. I require this whole process to be over quickly before both Magneto and Xavier descend upon me in full force."

"But how in the hell do you expect us to get that precious test subject of yours in a heavily guarded mansion when we couldn't even get him here?!" shot Betsy, feeling increasingly anxious about trying to go ahead with such a daunting task.

"You'll just have to improvise," said Sinister, "Remember...Blake is very powerful now and you made a mistake in thinking you could go one on one with him. This time, you'll need hostages. I don't care what students you take or who you kill in the process, just get Blake back! Bring him here or make it so he'll have to come! And hostages will be the only way to do this. In addition...It will also show both Xavier and Magneto that I mean business! If they are going to try and stop me...They'll have to realize that it will not come without a price...One that must be paid in the blood of their loved ones!"

Both Betsy and Emma exchanged nervous glances, not liking where this man's plans were leading. It had gotten to the point where he was now prepared to kill those who have nothing to do with this conflict...And it was a line that Betsy and Emma didn't know if they could cross. But for the rest of the Nasty Boys, that was another story.

"You have your mission Nasty Boys..." he said with anger in his voice, "Don't fail!"

After that, he the line went dead and the Nasty Boys were left with their daunting task. It wasn't a very uplifting feeling, knowing the odds they were up against, but for Betsy and Emma it was completely lose-lose. Either way, someone would suffer at the end of all this and it would be because of them helping this madman. At this point, the incentives they had fought so hard for were beginning to take a back seat to their conscious as they wondered how they were ever going to get out of this. But for the rest of the Nasty Boys, they had a new challenge ahead of them and this time...They would not hold back.

"Come on..." said Ruckus, knowing time was definitely against them at this point, "Let's go...We have a job to do."

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Lance lost count of how many traffic laws he probably broke as he pushed his jeep to the limit as he sped towards Xavier's. Pietro, Blake, and Todd were still watching her closely and Pietro kept talking to her despite her deep state of unconsciousness. Her pulse was still very weak and her breathing was hardly noticeable, but there was still enough life within her to have hope.

"Come on Lance! Can't this thing go any faster!" yelled Todd as he kept getting more worried.

"Just hold your horses Todd...We're almost there!" he said as he put the petal to the metal for the last few miles of road before they reached the gates of the institute.

"You're gonna be okay Wanda..." said Blake as he closely monitored her pulse and breathing, "I promise you...You're gonna be okay."

It gave him little comfort, knowing that he had failed to protect her when he swore that he would. But he would have plenty of time to kick himself for this after they got Wanda the proper treatment. Whatever the Nasty Boys had blasted her with, it had been very damaging...But thankfully, it didn't kill her. The effects of the blast were strange because Blake had damaged the gun during the fight...But it was still devastating enough to cause undue harm. And the more he thought about it...The stranger it seemed to him, for it almost felt somewhat...Familiar.

Pietro kept talking to Wanda, telling her that he was here and he didn't want to lose his sister again. Among all the other members of the Brotherhood, he was by far the worst. Not only had he been the one who should have taken that blast...But because of his cocky arrogance, he didn't do a thing to prevent it. If he had just paid more attention to what was happening then maybe...It could have been different.

Blake had saved him from being the victim this time and because he had gotten himself into trouble, he was forced to spread his guard and leave Wanda the only target. It was a something Pietro's conscious tortured him about...Knowing he had given Blake such a hard time, yet he still saved him from the blast and now Wanda was suffering because of it. He didn't want to lose his sister again...Not now, not ever. His fears were now getting the better of him as the jeep came to an abrupt halt and Blake quickly took Wanda and his arms and ran up to the intercom and yelled into it.

"Xavier! I need your help!"

*************************************************

AN: That's it for now! Boy what an end! The Nasty Boys took on the Brotherhood and I guess you can say it was kind of a draw. But it's not over yet! Things are heating up now as Sinister now has to contend with the possibility of fighting two enemies. This will only cause him to work harder and more ruthlessly towards his goals and knowing him, that can't lead to anything too positive! So what do you all think? Do you want to see more? Do you want to see how things are going to end? Please tell me! Send me your reviews via email or post them on the fanfiction website! All feedback is greatly appreciated! Thank you all very much for reading and I wish you all the best!

YOU KNOW THE DRILL FOLKS! REVIEW!!!
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