Categories > Cartoons > X-Men: Evolution > Cult of the X

Xavier Island

by slickboy444 1 review

Six years after Apocalypse the Xmen struggle against growing mutant hatred. Then one day they come across a mysterious group who sees them not as freaks, but as gods. Multiple pairings.

Category: X-Men: Evolution - Rating: R - Genres: Action/Adventure, Drama, Fantasy - Characters: Avalanche, Berzerker, Blob, Boom Boom, Cannonball, Colossus, Cyclops, Gambit, Iceman, Jean, Magma, Magneto, Multiple, Mystique, Nightcrawler, Professor Xavier, Quicksilver, Rogue, Scarlet Witch, Shadowcat, Storm, Sunspot, Toad, Wolfsbane - Warnings: [!] - Published: 2007-07-28 - Updated: 2007-07-28 - 6269 words - Complete

Cult of the X
Chapter 3: Xavier Island


Times were strange for the X-men. Fighting for peace in a world that hated and feared them had a ways of bringing unexpected happenings. But few were as unexpected as the one they had just endured. It wasn't so shocking that a sentinel attacked just as a self proclaimed mutant hater held a rally against them. Over the years, they had grown accustomed to such public slander. But things took a major turn.

Instead of the usual fight to save lives and stem anti-mutant sentiment, they were aided by a mysterious group who revered them with mysterious grandeur. They wielded technology well beyond anything they had seen and their loyalty knew few bounds. One even sacrificed his life for them, showing this was serious.

Now aboard their high tech submersible, the Sparta, the X-men had time to recover. They still had many questions, but they also had wounded to tend to. And since Xavier sensed no hostility, he decided to wait these strangers out despite suspicions from Logan.

"This is just too freaky, Chuck," said Logan, standing next to the Professor and Ororo as they watched the healers treat the team, "They say they wanna help, they've got their own church, and we're all saviors or something. Now they wanna take us to their home on some freaky island. So why the hell are we lettin' em?"

"Because I'm curious, Logan," said Xavier, "These people, this technology, and the way they see us...there must be greater forces at work here."

"I agree," said Ororo, "I too am curious."

"Still doesn't add up," said Logan, casting each guard and healer a suspicious gaze, "And I won't let it slide until we get some answers."

"Do you always have to be this judgmental, Logan?" sighed Ororo, shaking her head in exasperation.

"It's a tough gig, but somebody's gotta do it."

Professor Xavier didn't contend Wolverine's view. Given how much animosity the X-men had faced, Logan was more protective than ever. Ever since he adopted Laura, he spent a lot more time training and preparing the X-men for the unexpected. And he was usually the first one to cast suspicion.

However, Xavier didn't share such hostility. Being the world's strongest telepath, he could sense things nobody else could. And the more he sensed, the more intrigued he became.

"I understand your concerns, Logan," said Xavier, still deep in thought, "But I have sensed no hostility from these people thus far. In fact, I've sensed quite the opposite. The reverence they hold for us is quite remarkable."

"Reverence?" said Ororo curiously.

"Yes. They take it very seriously and it's important that we learn more."

Logan scoffed and cast Athena a suspicious gaze as she dutifully watched over both teams. Sensing his distrust, she humbly turned away. She was a loyal soldier, but there was so much more Logan wanted to know, especially when it involved the students he worked so hard to protect.

The others, however, were a bit more welcoming to the treatment. The medical quarters were on par with the equipment they had back at the mansion. There were enough beds and supplies for all of them. And after fighting through the city and beating through the ruthless GRSO unit, they needed it.

Remy was treated for a gunshot. Having long since passed out, Rogue stayed by his side while the healers worked. Kitty was still having coughing fits from the tear gas, but Piotr stayed close by to help her though. Jamie's broken arm was now discolored and swollen. And Jubilee, Rahne, and Ray had numerous wounds from shrapnel.

"Ow! Watch it!" grunted Jamie as the healer laid his arm out on table.

"Please be still," said one of the male healers, "The bone is heavily fractured. I must administer the silicate so you can regain full function."

"At least I won't need a cast," he groaned.

"Oh quit your whining, Jamie. Stop acting like such a baby," said Jubilee, who had her shirt off while the healers went over her wounds with some strange liquid.

"Hey, just because I'm the youngest doesn't make me the baby!" shot Jamie, grunting as the healer injected something into his arm.

"No, but acting like one sure does," quipped Ray, who also had his shirt off so his wounds could be treated.

"Will all of you just mellow out already?" groaned Laura, "It's bad enough we were attacked. Let's not make things worse by fighting each other."

"Easy for ye to say," groaned Rahne, "Ye be the one with the healing factor. And glass shards hurt like hell."

"We've been hit by worse," sighed Roberto as the female healer rubbed more of the liquid on his wounds, "But the way, what is this stuff? I can really feel it working."

The healers smiled warmly, bearing the same reverence as Athena and her Poseidon unit.

"It's specially treated water," she explained, "It's rich with oxygen and nutrients to aid the body in healing itself far quicker than usual means."

"It also doubles as a powerful disinfectant," said one of the male healers as he poured some of it on Remy's wound, "It is just one of the tools that has allowed our society to eliminate disease."

"Fascinating," said Beast, watching as Remy's wound started to heal before his eyes, "I'm familiar with the concept, but I had no idea it had been perfected."

"You'd be surprised how many advances we have perfected, my lord," said one of the female healers respectfully, "We'll be happy to show you more once we return."

"I would very much like to see that," said Hank, looking over more of the high tech equipment, "This technology is unlike anything I've ever seen. There's enough on this ship to write my own encyclopedia on."

"Try and contain yourself, Beast," laughed Bobby.

"Look who you're talking to," commented Sam.

Beast ignored such joking as he kept looking over the equipment. Everything was so advanced. He hadn't seen technology on this level since Apocalypse. And if he wasn't mistaken, this craft bore an uncanny resemblance to the same hardware the ancient mutant once used to bring the world to its knees. That made it all the more important they find out more.

Meanwhile, Rogue hovered over Remy. Scott and Jean were with her for support, unable to keep themselves smiling at their friend's behavior. As cynical as she was when it came to Remy, she clearly had strong feelings for him. She was just very stubborn about acting on them.

"Wow, the wound is healing fast," said Jean, the doctor in her intrigued by this technology.

"Sure could use something like that to recover from Danger Room sessions," said Scott, "What about you, Jean? Are you okay?"

"Scott, I've handled a cosmic entity, blown up a star, and flown through space," she grinned, "I'll manage."

"I know. Just doing what all good husbands do after nearly being lynched by a mob of angry protesters."

"You're sweet," said Jean, giving her lover a kiss on the cheek, "But still overprotective."

"Love does that to you," he shrugged.

"Yeah," said Rogue distantly, "I'll bet."

Casting Scott a knowing look, they gave Rogue and Remy some privacy while they helped out with Kitty. The wound continued to heal, but it still worried Rogue. She tried to hide it, but she didn't do a good job on it.

Her thoughts drifted, remembering back to when Remy first joined with Piotr. He wouldn't stop flirting with her and at times she'd flirt back. But there was no point because she couldn't touch. She even yelled at him for wasting his time pursuing a girl like her. But that all changed during the Genosha incident.

Now she had no excuses, but things between her and Remy were so complicated. She didn't know where things between them would go, but she couldn't deny she had feelings for this man.

"Ugh...bullet wounds is hell," groaned Remy, finally stirring from his state.

Remy opened his eyes to see Rogue protectively hovering over him. Looking upon her beautiful face, he smiled.

"Let me guess...Remy died and went to heaven and you must be an angel."

"Do you ever stop flirting?" said Rogue with a dry smile.

"I'll take dat as a maybe," smiled the Cajun mutant.

"Don't push it, swamp rat," said Rogue, "I outta break ya in half for scarin' me like that."

"It's okay, Roguey. Dis here Cajun can take a kickin' an' keep on tickin'."

Rogue rolled her eyes, diverting her gaze. She was never one to show emotion, but Remy understood and cast her a warm smile.

"Aw, Remy's sorry," he said with a cocky grin.

"Just don't do it again," said Rogue, "Otherwise bullets will be the least of yer worries."

Even though she was still angry at him, Rogue managed a smile. The sting of the bullet seemed to fade for Remy, even if Rogue wouldn't go for the nurse thing.

Over with Kitty, her coughing fit finally died down. Piotr helped her stay upright while one of the female healers gave her an oxygen mask to help her breath. Jean, being a doctor as well, helped by talking to Kitty along the way, distracting her from the burning sensations in her chest.

"Easy Kitty," said Jean, removing the mask, "You've got some fluid buildup in your lungs."

"Yeah..." she gasped, "Tear gas will do that."

"Please don't talk, Katya," said Piotr, holding his girlfriend steady in his strong arms, "I don't want you to strain yourself any further."

Managing a slight smile, Kitty's breathing eased somewhat. It still felt like her lungs had been shred, but it was getting easier.

"Drink this, my lady," said a female healer, "This specially treated water will heal your lungs in no time."

"Thanks," she choked, gulping down the clear liquid.

Upon finishing she coughed again, but it quickly subsided. Whatever that water was, it worked fast. Even though she was still in a lot of pain, it was subsiding as she leaned on her boyfriend for support.

"Man that was rough," groaned Kitty, "Can't we have one rally where we're not attacked?"

"Now where's the fun in that?" joked Bobby.

"Yeah, inhaling tear gas is a great way to spend an afternoon," groaned Kitty.

"Look on the bright side, Katya," said Piotr, hugging his girlfriend close, "We made it out and everybody is safe."

"Yeah, but it still doesn't help with all the angry mobs out there who want to see us publicly hung," commented Bobby.

"We just have to pick ourselves up and keep at it, Iceman," said Scott, "It takes time for humanity to change."

With a tired sigh, Kitty felt the sting in her lungs fade. Feeling strong enough to move about, she got off the examination table with Piotr's help.

"But still, it would be nice for humanity to cut us some slack once in a while," said Kitty.

While she was regaining her poise, the sliding doors opened and Artemis approached and respectfully bowed.

"Ignore humanity for the time being, my lords," she said, "Leave them to wallow about in their barbaric world."

"Glad to have your support, amigo," said Roberto, "But we're going to have some serious fallout when we get back."

"But you shouldn't have to live in a world of such hatred!" said Artemis strongly, "You work so hard to help humanity see the ways of peace, yet the mindless masses don't listen even after you've saved them!"

Artemis's views were strange to the X-men, but her militaristic tone roused further suspicion from Logan.

"Easy, mien friend," said Kurt calmly, "Ve just got out of a major fight. Let's not get vorked up again."

Letting out a deep sigh, Artemis held her head low in shame.

"Forgive me. Your dedication to such causes is truly admirable. You are every bit as noble as the teachings."

"Teachings?" said Scott curiously, "What teachings?"

"Those taught by our church, of course," said Artemis, "But it is not my place to reveal. I'll leave that to the high priest and priestess."

"And will we be meeting these figures anytime soon?" asked Xavier.

"Of course, Lord Xavier," said Artemis with a humble bow, "We shall take you right to them once we arrive. Until then, relax and recuperate. If you need anything at all, we will surely provide it."

"Thank you," said the Professor with a smile, "We are all indebted to you."

"Oh no, my lord. It is we who are indebted to you," said Artemis, "More so than you think."

The X-men exchanged curious glances. Such adulation was overwhelming. It was definitely a nice change from what they usually faced, but there was still a sneaking suspicion for some.

"I can't wait to find out why," said Logan, his words dripping with sarcasm.

"Father..." groaned Laura, shaking her head in exasperation.

"Let it go, Laura," said Ororo with a smile, "It's just part of Logan's charming personality."

"I would know. It's not like I don't share it."

Ororo and Laura shared a good laugh while Logan hid his underlying suspicion for the time being. They needed answers and he was getting impatient. But whatever those answers may be, he had a feeling they'd find them in this so called Xavier Island.


After each member of the X-men got a thorough checkup, they settled in for the remainder of the trip. The mysterious member of the Church of X did everything to make them comfortable. They set up a nice lounge area just behind the deck with some cards, books, and even a few handheld video games. They offered food, water, and other comforts. But they remained hesitant to give answers.

Everyone from the healers to the crew and commandoes still approached them as if they were royalty. They humbly bowed and spoke to them with great reverence. It was a new feeling for the X-men, but it was better than the lynch mob back in New York.

"Man, it feels nice not having an angry mob after you," said Bobby as he sat lazily on a couch.

"I'll say," said Jubilee, "Maybe our luck is finally changing for the better."

"Shh! Don't jinx it, Jubes!" said Ray.

"Yeah, let's not have this end with another big fight," said Roberto, "Saving the world is all well and good but it's nice to have a little appreciation every now and then."

"Well you have plenty of that here, my lord," said Artemis, who had been sticking close to the X-men the whole way, "We are not misguided fools like the rest of the world."

"Then you're okay in my book!" said Tabitha, biting into an on overstuffed sandwich the crew made for her.

"Mine too," said Remy, still reeling from the bullet wound, "Dis has got to be the quickest Remy's ever recovered from bein' shot."

"Same here," said Kitty, her lungs no longer burning.

"As I've said before, none are necessary," said Artemis.

It was a gesture some still found disconcerting. It was nice to be appreciated, but being treated like kings was an odd feeling. For some, it was an ominous sign.

"You know, you don't have to do that around us," said Scott.

"I'm sorry, but I must," said Artemis, "Standing in your presence is a great honor. We all must show our respect."

"You've done enough of that already, Artemis," assured Xavier, "My team and I are grateful for your help, but we still have many questions that need answering."

"Soon, X-men," assured Artemis, "All your answers will come very soon."

While the X-men waited and speculated as to what they would face when they reached Xavier Island, Logan remained an outside observer. He still didn't trust these people and he wanted to keep a close eye on them in case they tried anything funny. He paid special attention to Laura and Ororo, the two most important women in his life. And he was not about to let a bunch of nut-jobs harm them.

"You still don't trust us, do you?" came a voice from behind.

Recognizing it as Athena, Logan kept his eyes squarely on the team.

"I don't trust easily."

"I understand," said Athena, "The X-men are lucky to have a protector like you."

"Enough with the flattery, lady," said Logan sternly, "You can lavish everybody here all you want, but it's still just a cute parlor trick to me."

"Surely there is something I can do to ensure that we're sincere?" asked Athena intently.

"There is," grunted Logan, "But I ain't tellin' you until I'm convinced."

Falling silent, Logan continued his watch over the team. Despite their smiles and goodwill, he was ready to pounce at any moment. The rest of the X-men were warming up nicely to these strangers. But it would take a lot more than that for him.

"Very well," said Athena with a bow, "We'll be docking soon. Hopefully your views will change once you hear the full story about the Church of X."

"We'll see..." said Logan skeptically.

Without another word, she made her leave. If Wolverine was suspicious, then so be it. She was just a lowly commander. She had no right to question them. And as a loyal soldier, she tended to her duties for the final approach to their homeland.


After about an hour, the craft finally reached its destination. The high tech submersible moved smoothly into shallow waters, rising to the surface and slowly moving inland. The X-men gathered on the deck to watch as they approached the aptly named Xavier Island. Tensions were running high, but excitement hung strong.

"We're entering the port, X-men," said the captain, "I hope your ride on the Sparta has been a good one."

"Thank you," said Xavier kindly, "You've been very hospitable."

"Yeah, ever think of opening up a cruise line?" commented Jamie, earning him an elbow to the ribs from Jubilee.

"This is where our part of the journey ends," said the Captain, "From here the Praetorian Guard will escort you to the temple."

"Temple?" said Jean curiously.

"You'll see, my lady," said Artemis, "Come, we mustn't keep the high priest and priestess waiting."

Leading them to the loading area to the rear, Artemis and Athena escorted the X-men out onto a waiting dock. And when they saw where they were, a feeling of great awe came over them.

It was like a mix between a tropical paradise and a temperate plane. All around them, they saw elaborate architecture that resembled Greek, Roman, and Persian. There was also a very futuristic feel to everything. There were exotic machines everywhere, each working silently and efficiently.

They also noticed that atop each structure, there was a glowing miniature pyramid that glowed softly in the warm sunlight. Around the air, exotic aircraft hovered like flying cars carrying people, crates, and other such goods. And in the distance, they could see the outline of a pristine landscape perfectly laid out for the masses.

"Wow..." said Rogue, "Where are we?"

"Home," said Athena with a smile, "Welcome to Xavier Island, X-men. We've waited a long time for this day."

The Praetorian Guard stuck close as they escorted them as they stepped off the dock and onto the port. They were now standing near a bustling market packed with people. The X-men noticed they were just like the crew. They were dressed in elegant Greco-Roman attire, had strong attractive bodies, and exhibited a wide range of nationalities. They even noticed a few of them were mutants. And from the looks of it, there were many.

But the second they saw the X-men, everything stopped.

"Oh boy, here it comes," said Bobby in a tone of dread.

The team was vigilant. Logan was ready to draw his claws and fight through every last one of them. But what happened next surprised even him.

"They're here! Our lords have returned!" proclaimed an elderly man.

"Yes! Just as was prophesized! All hail the X-men!"


Chants of grand praise from men, women, and children, mutant and human alike echoed through the crowd. Everybody was gathering, bowing and cheering to the team of mutants that the world hated and feared. It was nothing short of overwhelming.

"Okay...that was unexpected," said Bobby.

"I'll say," said Piotr, smiling awkwardly at the adoring crowd.

The X-men didn't know what to do. Some of them just waved back while others got into it.

"Finally! An adoring public!" said Tabitha, "This is WAY past overdue!"

"Almost reminds me of home," smiled Amara.

However, for others this praise was confusing.

"What are they doing, dad?" asked Laura, not used to such adulation after being born in a lab.

"Honesty darlin'...I have no idea," said Logan.

"They're just praising us," said Ororo with a smile.

"But for what?" asked Laura, "What did we do?"

"Can't say," said Logan, still suspicious, "But it's high time we find out."

The crowed kept chanting, throwing flowers and praise upon their lords. The Praetorian Guard acted as body guards, making sure no harm came to them. It was like being a major celebrity, definitely a new feeling for the X-men.

"Amazing," said Xavier, "They think we're saviors?"

"That and so much more," said Artemis, punching in a few commands on her wrist controller, "This is a place where humans and mutants live in peace. And it's all thanks to you."

"Thanks to me?" said Xavier curiously, watching as mutant and human children threw flowers over them.

"You'll see," said Athena, leading them onto the metal platform, "Come, the temple awaits."

Suddenly, a large metallic sheet descended from atop one of the port buildings. It hovered silently by means of some unseen force. The Guard cleared an area for it to land, allowing the X-men to room to step aboard.

"Oh my," said Beast, enthralled with the exotic technology, "An advanced magneto levitation apparatus! I'm guessing it operates on remote power?"

"Well spoken, lord Beast," said Artemis, "It shall be your chariot."

"I was hoping for a limo, but I'll take this too!" said Ray.

"Aye, I be liking this place already," said Rahne.

"Ah think Ah just found mah new favorite vacation spot," grinned Rogue.

"And I zhink I know vhere to spend my honeymoon vith Amanda," smiled Kurt.

Once they were all on the platform, Artemis entered more commands into her wrist controller. The metal platform rose up like a magic carpet and began carrying them over the masses. As soon as they were above the port, the true grandeur of the landscape could be seen.

"Mien Gott," said Kurt in awe.

"Mon dieu," said Remy, equally amazed by the sight.

"Okay, I'm officially impressed!" grinned Kitty.

It wasn't as big as a city, but its majesty had no equal. The architecture was elegant, futuristic, and well organized. It was laid out in large concentric circles with artificial channels in between. Roads connected everything from the markets to the luxurious homes. And there was no pollution in sight. Everything was clean and peaceful.

Down below, the people in the streets soon took notice of the X-men's presence. And like before, jubilation erupted within the crowd. There was dancing, singing, and chanting. Everybody was praising them, celebrating at their long awaited arrival.


The echoes went on for miles. Much of the team shared smiles while Xavier looked on in a daze, picking up many projections with his telepathy. They looked at them so strangely, but with such adoration. It was as if they truly were gods to them.

"Such a beautiful island..." said Ororo in awe, "Why hasn't anybody heard of it?"

"We are a self sufficient people," said Athena, "Our technology and social structure allows us to survive without help from the outside. We are careful about who we allow into our world. We cater mostly to mutants, who we hold in the highest regard in our church. We offer them a place to use their powers in a place where it is celebrated and not scorned. We still accept humans who wish to live in a land without conflict. And for you, of course, we welcome with the most open of arms."

The team watched on in awe as they passed over the beautiful architecture, listening to the chanting below. After having dealt with so many anti-mutant mobs, this was a nice change. Even Logan couldn't help but be taken by the spirit, but he kept that to himself.

"We're almost there," said Athena as they neared the temple.

Nested in the center of the city, the temple was the most magnificent structure of all. It towered over the surrounding buildings. Its appearance was elaborate, looking like a cross between a medieval cathedral and Roman temple. The bright sunlight bounced off the marble rock, making it glow in a peaceful aura. It also bore many of the other high tech features of the other buildings, only this one was far more elegant.

"Here we are," said Athena, "Welcome to Temple X."

"Nice...very spacious," said Jubilee, looking up at the imposing structure.

"How did you build such a structure?" wondered Beast.

"With hard work, undying faith, and a touch of advanced technology," said Athena, "This structure was made in your honor. We've long awaited the day when you would enter these halls."

"Our own temple?" said Rogue, her eyes running over the vast structure, "Ah like it."

Turning towards the rest of the guard, Athena prepared for the grand entrance.

"Return to your posts," she ordered the guard, "I'll take it from here."

"I'll come too," said Artemis.

"No, you report back to the barracks and make sure the palace is ready."

"You can't be serious!" scoffed Artemis, "You said we would escort our lords together!"

"That was before you disobeyed orders and blew up an entire block," said Athena sternly, "Now go. We'll discuss this later."

A look of bitterness fell on Artemis, casting Athena a hard scold. But she was her commanding officer. She couldn't question her whether she liked it or not.

"Fine," she said coldly, "But rest assured, Athena. I have no regrets."

Storming off in a fit of anger, Artemis left the X-men to their destiny. Athena couldn't help but look on with concern. Artemis was a great soldier, but a very stubborn person. She was proud to have her in the Praetorian Guard, but she always gave her something to worry about with that attitude of hers.

"What's her deal?" asked Scott, picking up on the discontent as he so often did with his leadership roles.

"Artemis is just too thick headed for her own good," muttered Athena, "But don't be so quick to judge. She's had a hard life. Her parents died by the time she was eight, her uncle was very strict with her, her Catholic faith abandoned her, and she was dishonorably discharged by the United States military."

"Wow, that is rough," said Kitty, casting the departing woman a sympathetic gaze.

"Yes, I shutter to think what she would have become had she not learned of our church and become so taken with our beliefs. Sometimes she takes our humble beliefs a little too far as I'm sure you witnessed back in New York. But try not to concern yourself with such things. The high priest and priestess await."

It was a curious matter. Artemis sounded like a pretty rough character. But that was for another time. Approaching the imposing temple doors, Athena reached into her combat uniform and pulled out a silver amulet. It bore a strange seal that caught Xavier's eye, but he shook it off as he and the others watched Athena open the doors.

Holding the amulet up to a crystal, a series of lights activated around the door. Slowly, the heavy structure opened itself to the curious team of mutants. Many burning questions had plagued them since this whole mess began. Now it was time they got some answers.


Back outside, Artemis was still fuming. Athena may have been her superior, but she had no right to go back on her word. She wanted to be there for this momentous occasion. She only did what she had to do to protect the X-men. Now she was being punished for it.

"I take it she shut you out," came a voice from behind.

Turning around, Artemis was met with a tall figure wearing a white cloak. He had black hair, dark eyes, and an imposing gaze. But to Artemis, it was just further annoyance.

"Not now, Isaac! I've got work to do."

"As do I, my dear," he said ominously, "But just answer me this. Based on what you've seen, do you really think Charles Xavier and his X-men the ones?"

Thinking back to the stand they took in New York, Artemis couldn't help but admire the resolve of the brave team of mutants. The world was so cruel to them, yet they fought so bravely to make it a better place. It was every bit as noble as the teachings she was so familiar with and it left little doubt in her mind.

"Yes," said Artemis confidently, "I have no doubts they are."

An ominous smile formed as Isaac took out a book he had been holding onto. So eager with anticipation, it was just what he wanted to hear.

"Excellent. Then we can proceed with our plans. Soon, the Orion Prophecy will be fulfilled and a new era shall dawn on this ailing world."


Inside the temple, the X-men followed Athena down the vast halls. Everything was so elaborately decorated. Gold statues and vast mosaics told fantastic tales. Many of the images looked strangely familiar.

"Hey, check that out, Jean," said Rogue, a certain image on the wall catching her attention, "Doesn't that look like..."

"The Phoenix," said Jean in a daze, walking up and touching the familiar figure.

Memories of what happened came rushing back to the young woman. It was still so vivid. She lost control of her powers and became the avatar of a cosmic entity of unstoppable power. Many mysteries still surrounded that affair. The Phoenix was a conscious entity that reached out to Jean. They tried to contain it, but when a group called the Hellfire Club got involved, things got even worse and she became the malevolent Dark Phoenix.

With it, she flew through space, experienced great euphoria, and even destroyed a star. She was lucky no inhabited planets were nearby, but it was a truly frightening experience. She had been on the verge of becoming Phoenix completely, but through the love of her friends and family she regained control, forcing the Phoenix out of her being in an epic struggle that nearly killed her.

The Phoenix was a part of her that she could never forget. And seeing such images made her remember just what she had become.

"You okay, sugah?" asked Rogue, snapping Jean out of her daze.

"I'm fine," she said, staying close to Scott, "Just spaced for a moment."

Scott smiled, slipping his arm around her waist. He too remembered the Phoenix all too well. He had come so close to losing her, but in the end their love pulled them through. The Phoenix realized that and accepted it. But it was a bit disconcerting that these people had knowledge of the Phoenix in the first place.

"Are you okay, my lady?" asked Athena as she led them into the central area.

"I'm fine. But just out of curiosity, how do you know about the Phoenix?" asked Jean.

"Oh we know all about your exploits," she said, "In fact, the story of the Phoenix is one of the most popular tales on the island. But I'll save such tales for the high priests. They're the ones who created this humble utopia within a mere six years."

"Six years?" said Kurt in disbelief, "How do you make a place like zhis in six years?"

"You'll see..."

Approaching the final door, Athena led them into an area resembling a Christian church. There were rows of seats facing towards a center stage-like area. The whole room was bathed in the soft glow of blue fire torches, illuminating statues and mosaics strewn along the wall telling stories of days long past.

On the stage, hovering over a glowing podium, two figures held their hands over the light in a soft prayer. One was a man, wearing a white robe draped in ancient symbols with a headdress. The other was a woman draped in an elegant gown, much of which was partially transparent, revealing garments similar to Persian dancers. They stood together, their hands joined as they chanted.

Athena kneeled before the stage, bowing her head respectfully as the light on the podium faded and the two figures laid eyes on the bewildered team of mutants.

"Your holiness, our mission was a success. The X-men await your presence," said Athena.

"Thank you, Athena," said the man, smiling down at the loyal subject, "Please, I must see for myself."

The man and woman gazed upon the X-men with great awe. Their faces lit up as they approached Professor Xavier. Logan remained a little apprehensive, but Ororo held him back, wanting to see where this went.

For a moment, the man and woman were silent, gazing over Xavier with unparalleled wonder. At long last, they could see for themselves. It was a true test of fate. Now here he was, the mythic figure himself. It was truly a grand moment.

"By the IS him!" proclaimed the man, "He bears the look, poise, and purity. I can see it in his eyes!"

"Yes, me too," said the woman.

"Whoa, hold up!" said Wolverine, getting defensive, "What the hell are you yammering about?!"

"Logan, please!" said Ororo, restraining him with Laura's help.

"Ah yes, the protective guardian," said the man, "Every bit as brash as we have seen. I suppose I shouldn't be surprised. But please, forgive my forthcoming. My name is Arion and this is my wife, Ayla. We are the high priest and priestess of the Church of X. And on behalf of our sacred society, I humbly welcome you to our domain."

With sincere shows of reverence, the tension eased somewhat. But Logan remained skeptical. Yet for the sake of keeping things civil, Xavier took over.

"I appreciate the hospitality, but it's gone on long enough," he said seriously, "What is this place? Why does everybody looks at us like we're some sort of gods?"

Arion smiled with great excitement as he ran his hands over the soft light on the podium.

"Because that's exactly what you are," he answered, sounding every bit as serious.

"Gods?" said Bobby, "Well, sure beats the hell out of being called monsters."

"I'll say," said Rogue, "But where in the hell did that come from?"

Ayla cast the team a warm smile. She and her husband had worked long and hard for this moment. And after years of planning and strife, it was finally coming together.

"That, my lady, is a story for the ages," said Ayla, "Long ago, a special group of individuals led by a wise and noble man fought in a world wrought with conflict and established the greatest empire the world has ever seen. That empire came to be known as Atlantis. And those gifted souls are your predecessors."

"Predecessors?" said Beast with great intrigue, "You mean our ancestors?"

"Not quite," said Arion, "Those enchanted beings we speak of were much more. They came into this world as mortals, yet they left as gods. And you, the mighty X-men, are their reincarnation. You, a talented team of gifted humans, have the legacy of divinity flowing through your veins."

This was a lot to take in. Being mutants was one thing, but being gods was something else. This bordered on the line of impossibility, a term rarely used in their worldview after what they faced. But near as they could tell, these two were dead serious.

" think we're gods?" said Xavier in bewilderment.

"Yeah right," scoffed Rogue, "And just how did ya figure that one out?"

"Why...this, of course," said Arion with a grin.

Suddenly, the blue flames illuminating the room erupted into a bright yellow flame. Now the room was bathed in a bright glow and behind the podium, the back walls opened up to reveal a sight that rendered every last one of the X-men speechless.

"Wow..." said Scott, at a loss for further words.

"Okay...that's pretty convincing," said Kitty, her eyes wide with shock.

Standing before them was a statue like no other. It towered above at over 40 feet, depicting a wise looking man draped in royal attire sitting upon a magnificent throne. The man was bald, poised, and projected an aura of enlightenment. It looked exactly like Professor Charles Xavier, only in a much grander form.

The X-men could have taken these people for misguided fools, but seeing this brought a new dimension to this matter. Clearly, the Church of X had more credibility than they thought. And they had a lot to learn.

"Do you believe us now?" said Arion, "You, Professor Charles Xavier, are the incarnation of King Xuthasius, the greatest mind the world has ever seen and the first king of Atlantis. And his story is truly one worthy of the ages."


Up next: the story of Altantis and the secrets of the Church of X
Sign up to rate and review this story