Categories > Cartoons > X-Men: Evolution > Extermination

Finding A Lost Soul

by slickboy444 0 reviews

Takes place 2 years after Apocalypse, 1 year after the Phoenix. The mutant problem has grown and a obscure general named William Stryker thinks he has a solution. Has Scott/Jean, Wanda/Kurt, Kitty/...

Category: X-Men: Evolution - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Action/Adventure, Drama - Characters: Cyclops - Warnings: [V] - Published: 2006-04-04 - Updated: 2006-04-04 - 5883 words

Chapter 25: Finding A Lost Soul


"Logan!" called Mystique as she followed him into the woods, "Logan, wait up! What's going on!"

"Quite! She's here..." said Wolverine as he sniffed the air, "I know she is. I'd recognize that scent anywhere...Part of it is me."

"What are you..." but Logan then cut her off.

"Shh! Stay alert..." he said in a quieter tone, knowing that their little aggressor had his ears and senses.

Mystique didn't say anything else, instead she found herself going on full alert. Logan hadn't been lying, somebody was watching them...She could feel it. A lifetime of looking over her shoulder and training quickly kicked in. Although she didn't have a clue as to who this mysterious onlooker was, Logan seemed to know and he seemed to be quite serious about it. From only getting to know him within the last hour, she could tell that whoever it was must be someone major and someone he's tangled with before.

As Mystique and Wolverine continued to carefully trek carefully through the unkempt ground under the shade of the tall evergreen trees, the lone figure that they both knew was there watched them from atop a large branch 30 feet above them. X23, the living weapon made in Logan's image, used the skills she had been forcibly taught since birth to remain concealed. She then extended both sets of claws as she used her keen senses to prepare her attack. Two years of living in the wilderness had brought out the animal within her and she was on full hunting mode with only one thought in mind...Kill. She was full of illogical and confused thoughts. Soon, many agonizing emotions...Emotions that she was not supposed to have, started to surface. Anger, fear, loneliness, depression, sorrow, sadness...They all began to surge through her like a painful spike through her brain. Soon, she couldn't take it anymore. The failed attempt at a living weapon could no longer stand the shadows...She couldn't stand the hurt she kept feeling with each passing day. Alone, confused, and misguided...She felt herself lose control once again as she leapt out of the tree and towards her main target.

"WOLVERINE!" screeched a loud, pained voice from the trees above.

"Oh shit..." muttered Logan, "Raven! Get back!"

Both Logan and Mystique jumped off to the side in order to dodge the incoming aggressor. The inhuman, animalistic growling that was practically a mirror image of Logan's soon echoed through the trees as she stood before the man whose blood flowed through her veins with her claws fully drawn and rage in her eyes. Her focus was solely on Logan, but from the side Mystique got a good look at her. And to her shock...It wasn't some powerful genetic creation...It was a teenage girl no older than 16. She took in her appearance. She still wore her black leather uniform given to her by Hydra many years ago, but now it was torn, dirty, and unkempt. Her face and hair were dirty and messy from two years of living in the wilderness all alone. She looked strong for a girl of her age...And if Mystique had to guess, she was probably a lot stronger then she seemed.

As Logan stood before her, he kept his claws withdrawn. He had no desire to fight this girl. He knew her. She was not an enemy...She was a confused young girl who had been tortured her whole life by assholes who wanted her to be a killer. And in doing so, had ended up sealing their own destruction. But now, Hydra was gone...Nobody was after her. So why did she look like she wanted to maim him? Logan knew that he couldn't fight her and win...She was his own blood. His only chance was reason...That is, if he could actually manage to reach the human part of this girl that he knew was inside her.

"Kid...It's me. Don't you remember?" said Logan, trying to get her to recall how they first met and how they took down Hydra together.

The rage in the young girl's eyes didn't cease. If anything, they grew even more ominous and full of rage.

"Don't...Call...Me...KID!" roared X23 as she lunged forth and attacked him.

Logan quickly went on the defensive, but still didn't unsheathe his claws. She was a lot faster than he remembered. She had grown these past two years. But that would only make things harder in the end, for while he was unwilling to hurt her...She was all too willing to hurt him. Her rage was unlike anything he had ever seen. It was a rage similar to his own...But more directed this time. From the side, Mystique quickly got up and prepared to enter the fight.

"Man...And I thought Logan had a temper," she muttered as she ran forth and delivered a solid, flying kick to the girl, knocking her away from Logan.

But this counter attack didn't do anything to alleviate her rage. In less than a second, she was back on her feet and now turned towards Mystique with the same rage in her eyes. The shape shifter took a fighting stance and prepared to attack, but before she could, Logan's voice rang out.

"Wait! Don't hurt her!" urged Logan to Mystique as X23 launched an attack with her claws.

"Her?!" grunted Mystique as she struggled to dodge the lightning fast reflexes of the raging teenage girl, "What about me?!"

Mystique continued to defend herself against the girl, but her skills were stretched with this younger, faster, stronger girl that also bore Wolverine's healing factor. Her fighting skills kept her alive...But nothing seemed to stop this girl. She was like a raging grizzly high on adrenaline and was slicing through anything and everything in her path.

As Logan saw her rage...A rage he was all too familiar with...He finally decided that this was enough. He had to end this before Mystique or X23 got hurt.

"X23..." he said, catching the former living weapons attention, "Leave her alone. It's me you want."

With animalistic reflexes, the teenage girl threw Mystique off to the side with her unnaturally powerful strength and once again stood before Logan. Mystique was about to assist him, but Logan quickly held up a hand signaling her to stand down.

"Stay back Raven...This is between me...And her."

"But..." argued Mystique, only to have herself cut off.

"This is personal..." said Logan, "This girl...Is my own flesh and blood. She was created from my DNA. She was supposed to be a trained killer...But she's not. She's still a part of me...And I know because I'm the closest thing to family she's got."

This only seemed to enrage X23 more as his words brought out more painful emotions that she couldn't deal with.

"NO! It's your fault! Your fault! I exist because of you! All my pain...All my miserable life...Is because of you!" yelled the teenage girl as she clenched her fists in rage, preparing her claws for the final strike.

"It's not because of me kid and you know it," said Logan in a calmer voice, trying to alleviate her rage, "We took down those pricks responsible. Don't you remember? I helped you."

The fuzzy image of her and Logan taking down Hydra briefly flashed before her mind's eye and actually caused her to hesitate. But she quickly regained her composure, trying to stay focused on taking down the man she felt was responsible for her life.

"You...I feel pain...Because of you!" grunted X23 in a voice that sounded more strained than before, "After I tried to kill you...And failed. After I destroyed those responsible...I started to feel it. And it was because of you!"

"Feel what?" asked Logan, trying not to start another fight, "What's making you do this?"

"You know what it is!" cried the confused girl, "After that day at the institute...It happened. I couldn't kill you...Instead, I ran! But you had already done it...I don't know what but it was YOU!"

"What did I do? Tell me...Don't fight me, talk to me!" urged Logan, trying to find the human side of this girl that he knew lay deep within.

"After I left...They started coming. Feelings...Emotions...Thoughts...Things I wasn't supposed to have! I wasn't meant to feel anything! I was made to kill! But after I encountered you...I started feeling them! Now I can't stop them...They hurt! I don't know what they are! But they won't stop! And it's because of YOU!"

Then, her body began to shiver from the havoc of her own renegade mind as she felt herself begin to falter in wake of feeling more confusing emotions that she did not understand. She wanted them gone...But she blamed Logan for them being their in the first place.

Mystique couldn't help but feel sorry for the girl upon hearing her confusion. She could sense her rage...But she could also sense her sorrow. It was something she was no stranger to and she stepped forward to help.

"Don't blame Logan, girl...This problem..."

"Doesn't concern YOU!" yelled X23 as she cut Raven off.

The shape shifter stopped in mid stride as Logan signaled her to stay back. This was his problem and this was his flesh and blood standing before him. He had helped her suppress her rage before...And he was determined to do it again. He knew the life that this girl had been forced to live. No child should ever be forced to suffer such inhuman treatment...Especially not a child of his own blood. This girl existed because of the desire to create the ultimate weapon...But she wasn't a weapon. Otherwise...She wouldn't have stopped on that day over two years ago when she first encountered him. And for that, he knew that she was not who Hydra wanted her to be...She was more than that and he was the only one in the world who could help her now.

"Kid...Calm down," coaxed Logan, trying to do anything to get this girl to lower her rage level.

"I told you! Don't call me kid!" yelled the girl as she lunged forth at him.

In one powerful swoop, she tried to stab him in the chest with her adamantium claws...But Logan caught both wrists and forced them away. She was very strong...But Logan was determined to get her to stop this. He now held her wrists at shoulder level and she struggled to break free and finish what she had started two years ago.

"You are not a weapon!" said Logan sternly as he held the girl in place and looked deeply into her rage filled eyes...The same eyes that perfectly resembled his.

"Shut up! I know what I am! And it's because of YOU!" she shot back.

"You are a teenage girl...Not a machine. You're confused, angry, and misguided. Hydra did this to you...They stuck you in a cage and tried to make you into a weapon. But you're NOT a weapon! You are NOT a number! You are a child! You are a human being who was tortured every day of her life because of what some other asshole wanted!"

"NO! I'm not..." cried the girl as the words from this man whom she was created from hit her deep.

"You are kid! I know you are!" urged Logan, "Believe me...I know what it's like to be confused. I know what you're feeling now. You're angry...Alone...Confused with nowhere to go and nothing to hold onto except many unanswered questions. Let me help you!"

"I don't need any help!" said the girl as she grew weaker from her struggle and Logan's words.

"Listen to me...I can help you," said Logan as he looked deeper into the confused girl's eyes, "I've felt your rage. I've been in the same position that you are right now. Fight the animal kid...Not me."

"NO! I'm..." but X23 soon lost the ability to form the right words.

"You're a kid...You're a confused, angry kid who's never had anybody there to help you make sense out of anything. You say you weren't supposed to have emotions...But you do. You feel...You feel just like the rest of us. It's part of being human...And you ARE human! You are NOT an animal! You are NOT a weapon!"

Then...Logan watched as the expression on the young girl's face began to change. Tears began to form, her body began to feel weaker, and the crippling emotions that had been causing so much stress in her life continued to affect her greatly.

"I...I don't know what I am..." cried the young girl as more agonizing tears burned in her eyes.

"But I can help you find out..." said Logan in a softer tone, "It's like I said before...I'm the closest thing to family you've got. I'm the ONLY family you've got. Let me help you kid."

X23's body continued to shiver and weaken as the intense emotional stress continued to work against her as her will to fight and her rage began to waver. She then opened her sad eyes and stared deeply into the gaze of the man who truly was her own family. The mere mention of that word 'family' brought up so many feelings that she was once forbidden to have. She remembered the images from her childhood of watching other families from afar while she was all alone and seen by her creators as a tool, not a human being. But this man's blood did flow through her veins...That much she couldn't deny. She had blamed him for being the cause of all her pain...And now he was making some of it go away with his words. Now, her confusion was too much to handle. She couldn't take it anymore.

"Look...I'm going to let go of you now," said Logan as he loosened his grip on her wrists, "I'm not going to fight you. If you still want to kill me...Then I won't stop you. It's your choice now kid."

Then, Logan fully released his hold on her and let her go. And like he said, he didn't take an attack or defensive stance. Now, nothing stood in her way...The path lay open and Logan was not going to stop her. The air grew tense as Mystique continued to watch events unfold before her. She truly didn't know if Logan's words had been enough. She could see X23 struggling...Fighting between the animal and the human that lay within.

Finally...She couldn't take it anymore. It was just too hard to keep fighting. X23 withdrew her claws and her arms went limp. She couldn't do it...She couldn't strike him. Like it or not...She was this man's flesh and blood. He was the only family she had. All those memories...All those images she still had in her mind growing up and seeing other children with their parents came rushing back. Instead of her usual anger, she felt all the once forbidden emotions wash over her. Then...She finally broke down.

"I can't..." she sobbed as a massive wave of tears hit her, "I can't do it...I'm so sorry."

Then, the young girl who was made all her life to be a heartless, soulless weapon...Collapsed into the arms of the man whose blood created her. She had no more strength at this point...All she could do now was cry. She cried and she cried...Feeling so overwhelmed and out of control...Feeling so powerless and so much at a loss. The human within her was there whether she liked it or not and it was by nature stronger than the animal. She wasn't a monster...She wasn't a killer...She was just a kid. She couldn't take it. It hurt so much now...Feeling so lonely and lost in the world without direction or purpose. And for that, she just kept crying harder and harder.

Logan, surprised by the gravity of her breakdown, simply wrapped her arms around the young girl as she cried her heart out in his chest. He didn't know what to do...He truly didn't know how he could ever hope to give this girl what had been taken away from her. But she was still a child at heart...A confused, lonely child that had been hurt more than any being, mutant or human, should be. She was still his own flesh and blood. She was created from him...That he could not change. The people that made her are long gone...And he was now all she had left.

"Its okay darlin...It's gonna be okay," spoke Logan softly as he continued to listen to her cry, "I'll help you...I know what you've been through. Just let me try...I promise I'll help you."

X23 didn't have the strength to respond. She was still alien to emotions for the most part and didn't know what else she could say at this point. Nothing made sense anymore...Except what she was feeling right now as she absorbed the comforting feeling in Logan's arms. It still hurt so much...But there was little more she could do about that.

Mystique stood awe struck at what had just happened. She was left speechless by the reaction of the young girl and how she went from a murderous rampage to an agonizing sobs. Logan hadn't fought her. He didn't need to. In seeing this, Mystique couldn't help but be amazed by Logan's compassion. In learning so much about him as she had along with the rest of the surviving X-men, she had no idea that a man like Wolverine could have such a human side to him. And like him, this girl seemed to struggle with the same problem. Unable to understand emotions, she had resorted to anger...A reaction Mystique was all too familiar with.

As the sobs die down, X23 finally passed out. The combination of an emotional breakdown, expending so much energy in the fight, and a lack of nourishment over these past few weeks she had been watching them had finally taken it's toll.

"Come on...Let's get her inside," said Mystique as she walked over towards them.

Logan didn't respond, he merely took the young teenage girl in his arms and followed Mystique back to the base.


Activity at the Pentagon was still going strong as time ticked away in preparations for the final step in the operation. William Stryker's efforts with the Canadian government had gone smoother than expected. In the end his deep pockets proved to be even more of an influence than he had hoped. But progress in finding the location of the surviving mutants was still not making any headway. Hundreds upon hundreds of satellite reconnaissance had turned up nothing. The general could feel it in his bones that they were still out there. He knew he was close...So close that he could already taste his victory coming at hand. His ever loyal associate, Magnum, remained by his side helping in any way she could. She still wore the same black trench coat and outfit she had upon her arrival. Her presence only further enforced authority and proved to be an extra driving force for the officers working to find the mutants.

As Stryker got of the phone with a Canadian official with a confident smile, he was then greeted by one of his officers taking part in the search.

"General Stryker sir, you requested a progress report?"

"Yes lieutenant," answered the general to his subordinate, who was wearing a Friend's of Humanity uniform like the rest of the high ranking officers, "Please proceed."

"Yes sir," bowed the soldier as he brought up a new image on the computer screen in the center of the room, "As you can see we've had to cover some area, but as my team can tell they have to be somewhere in the eastern part of the country no further west than Lake Ontario. Our last directional bearing from that jet of theirs during their last escape seems to confirm this. And while the vector trail eventually faded, we saw no signs of diversion in their path. But that still leaves an area larger than Texas to search."

"Are there any prime candidates in this vast area?" asked the general, not at all discouraged by his subordinate's report.

"Well sir, we can safely say that they're going to stay clear of the urban areas so Montreal and Toronto are out of the picture. But wherever they are, they have to be in a place near a population center so they can adequately support their needs. And if so, we should have gotten traces. However at this moment, we have none. The only real clue that has broken out within the last 24 hours is a strange magnetic spike in the northern area of the country not long after Magneto attacked and took Xavier. But we've been unable to find any possible locations because the area is nowhere near any population centers."

Stryker then considered this new development and scratched his chin. Most of the report didn't surprise him, but that mention of a magnetic spike sparked his curiosity. Being a man of education and intellect, William Stryker did not believe in mere random occurrences. He believed that everything had a cause and effect. Magneto rescuing Xavier and then having this strange spike in the middle of nowhere in Canada was just too suspicious to ignore. He never believed in coincidences. There had to be something else going on...Something that his officers must have missed.

"Lieutenant, do you have any spy photos of the area where the spike occurred?" inquired the general.

"Yes sir, do wish to see them for yourself?"

"Yes, if you would be so kind. I wish to see this for myself."

"Yes sir."

The lieutenant then ordered the computer controllers to bring up the satellite photo of the area that he had just mentioned. While the officer was confident that he and his team hadn't missed anything, he knew that if they did...The general would most certainly pick it up like he had earlier with the cave. As the large picture filled the high resolution digital computer screen, the lieutenant began to explain as Stryker went over the picture with his acute eye.

"As you can see General, this area covering 20 square miles encompasses virtually untouched woodlands with few paths leading in. It is nearly 100 miles away from the nearest population center and we have been watching it astutely. But there have been no indications of anyone or anything going in or coming out of the area within the last few weeks."

Stryker wasn't drawn away by this as he looked back towards the computer operator of the images.

"Pan around the quadrants slowly and increase magnification to factor 30," ordered the general.

"Yes sir," obediently replied the female computer controller.

The screen then slightly zoomed in and began moving around each area, not showing much else other than trees, streams, and usual rock formations not at all uncommon to that area. The lieutenant didn't say anything and dared not to leave until the general told him so, out of fear of the Russian woman standing beside him, keeping a close watch over him from the corner of her eye.

"What exactly are you looking for?" asked Magnum.

"Anything out of the ordinary..." Stryker answered, not tearing his gaze away from the screen.

The image on the screen continued to move over the seemingly uninhabited wilderness and it remained doing so for a good ten minutes. The general remained focused, always looking twice at an area and trying to see beyond was there visually. His mind filtered out the rest of the ongoing sounds in and around the Pentagon control room as he continued to process what he was seeing.

Then suddenly...Something caught his eye.

"Wait...Pan back a little to the right," he ordered the computer controller.

Instinctively, she obeyed. Then, soon after she did this, the general gave another command.

"Freeze it there."

Again, the female officer did so and the movement on the monitor stopped over a single area. The air grew tense among the lieutenants and the officers going over the data. But Stryker wasn't done yet.

"Zoom in on quadrant 13C as far as it will go," he ordered.

The female officer did just that as typed in the commands and the image on the screen changed once more.

Now, the picture was overlooking a heavily wooded area near a lake with several rocky structures off to the east of it and limestone outcrops from the south end. General William Stryker looked closer, stepping towards the screen trying to pinpoint exactly what it was that had sparked his suspicions.

"Something is definitely wrong with this picture..." said the General ominously as he scanned the structures, "Something in here shouldn't be...I can feel it."

"What is it?" asked Magnum, who was the only one who dared speak at this point.

Soon, Stryker's gaze was fixed on a single particular spot in the area not far from the lake. His excitement grew and a slow smile soon spread across his face.

"These structures...Some of them don't match," replied the general.

Now, many other subordinate officers gathered around to see what their general had found that they all seemed to overlook.

"What do you mean sir?" asked the lead search officer who had headed the group that had been going over the spy photos since the incident at the cave.

"Anybody who's taken a few courses in geology would sense something odd about this picture. But only those with an acute sense for detail could ever manage to see it exactly," explained the general as he felt all eyes on him now, "The hills in this part of Canada are not the result of traditional mountain forming due to the lack of seismic activity in the area. The only way mounds can form is through sediment deposits and igneous intrusion from hot spots below the surface that push other layers upward. And in this particular area, I could safely say that those mounds had to have been formed by igneous intrusion, hence their conic nature. But you see...A few particular formations near the lake area do not share this conic appearance. Unlike the others, they are more rounded. And in the world of geology, finding a single cluster of formations among a sea of others is never a coincidence. There are only two possibilities that those rounded formations could have happened, one: it formed overnight by a freak localized tornado that nobody seemed to pick up on, two: it was the result of inner collapsing caused my manmade intrusions into the interior of the ground below."

"You mean a bunker..." said Magnum, quickly catching on what the general was getting at before any of the other officers could think of it.

"Exactly..." said Stryker with a grin, "If it was a mine, there would be rail cars and roads going in and out of the area. But there are none...It is completely isolated. It can only be a bunker."

The general then turned back towards his subordinates and his search party that had overlooked this.

"You have underestimated our enemies once again. They may be freaks, but they are hardly stupid. You were looking for areas where they could hold up, yet still have access to population centers for sustenance...Yet they needed no such thing. They had all the amenities they could ever want in a single bunker."

It made perfect sense. They couldn't find them because they had an entire bunker to hide in with enough food and shelter to sustain them. Bunkers by their nature didn't show up on maps, so there was no way that anybody could have caught it...That is, except for William Stryker.

"Quickly, get me online with the attack division in Albany," ordered the general to his communications officer.

"Sir, yes sir!" she said as she frantically began to type in commands as a new aura of excitement soon filled the room.

General Stryker couldn't help but laugh at the reactions from his subordinates. They were once again left in awe of the general's intellect and astute observations. This could only help his growing stature and further reinforce his authority as the rest of the officers scrambled to get more data on the area.

After a few brief moments of relaying the signal and switching to an encrypted wavelength, the General heard a voice through his headset.

"General Stryker sir! This is attack team omega, what are your orders?"

"Captian...How goes the exercises?" asked the general casually, as he filtered out the fury of activity brewing behind him.

"We've been going over tactics and operations for the past few weeks like you ordered sir. We've succeeded in fully integrated the fighting force from the four target areas. We're just keeping our wits sharp and our minds ready."

"Excellent captain, but I'm afraid playtime is now over. Ready all forces and prepare to initiate a full scale attack on pattern 11 as discussed in the protocols and await my orders. I believe that we now know where the rest of those freaks are."

"Sir yes sir! We'll be ready!"


Professor Charles Xavier and Eric Magnus Lensherr had escaped the hold of William Stryker and his Friends of Humanity troops. However, despite the massive military presence around them, the two men remained in Washington DC. Stryker had been holding all the cards and gaining all the leverage for too long now. They were determined to find some way to fight back. They didn't have the X-men and they didn't have the Brotherhood. Many of their friends were now dead and more mutants out there would surly die if they didn't do something.

Since their rescue, Magneto and Xavier had held up in one of the many abandoned buildings in the downtown DC area. They were forced to stay concealed as military patrols continued to make their way around the whole area, performing random searches and seeking out any possible clues. However, both men had no desire to leave. They had in their possession, the only card they could possibly play now. And ironically, it was a card given to them by Stryker himself.

"These pictures Charles...They just...It's barbaric," said Magneto as he looked through the vast array of photos in the folder Xavier still had with him.

The photos that detailed the grizzly dead bodies of the students, friends, and teachers of his institute along with the bodies of others like Pyro and Gambit from the Acolytes, the three boys who didn't escape their house in the Brotherhood, and the gruesome bodies of the Morlocks that had been gassed to death in their sleep. None of these photos were even so much as mentioned by any media. If they were, it would surly not have the best of repercussions for what they had been saying about the operation. It was their only weapon against Stryker now...And they intended to use it.

"I know old friend..." said Xavier solemnly as he scanned each on of them into his laptop for unknown reasons.

"All this time...All this fighting for a war that I was hoping to start...And it leads to this," said Eric as his gaze fell upon the dead bodies of some of Xavier's students.

"War always leads to such tragedy...For both the victors and the vanquished. And we are on the verge of becoming the vanquished now because of Stryker," said Xavier as he scanned the last picture, "He has been playing us all like his own personal puppets for so long. Now, it is time we cut the proverbial strings and fight back."

"And you intend to do so with these pictures?" asked Eric.

"Yes old friend, we will show these pictures to the world. Every politician, news agency, and civilian must see these images. They have to know that the beings they killed were not soldiers or animals...They were children, teachers, lost souls that were slaughtered...Not contained."

"And what if this doesn't change the perception of the world Charles?" inquired the Master of Magnetism, wondering if there was anything more to Xavier's intentions beyond that of his dreams of peace.

Xavier's gaze drifted back towards the photos once more. As much as he hated to looked at the slaughtered remains of dead children, he knew that this was something he could never forget. What he saw and felt as a result of these images were things that would haunt him for the rest of his life. And for that, he felt even more determined to show these grizzly photos to the world.

"Magnus...Whether or not this changes anything is not what matters at this point for me," explained Charles, sounding haunted in his words as he kept looking at the pictures, "These children...These friends of mine that were like family to me...They are being talked about and referred to as soulless monsters. They died...Thinking that they were safe...That my institute and my school would protect them. In that...I failed. I accept that. But I owe my students...My family...I owe them as much to show the world the true faces of this charade. I owe them as much to make sure that their memory is not ignored...And never forgotten."

Upon hearing Xavier's words, Eric placed a comforting hand on his old friend's shoulder...Showing him that he was there for support. Such an action was long overdue, that Eric was aware of. But now more than ever, he was determined to stop living in his old world of violence and wake up in a new world of hope.


AN: I think I'll leave it there for now. So Xavier and Magneto are going to actually work together this time and X23 is coming into the mix as well! And don't forget Stryker! That guy is always a factor it seems. And be prepared! There is still more to come! There's plenty more action, drama, and angst to come! A lot has changed since the beginning and it shall continue to do so until this story reaches its inevitable end! So what do you think? Do you like the story thus far? Do you want to see where I take it? Please tell me! I really want to know! Send me your reviews via email or post them on the fanfiction website! Pleases review! They really help inspire me to do better in my work and that's what I strive for with my writing! Thank you all very much for reading! I appreciate it and wish you all the best!

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