AoA: Wait and Plan

October 01, 2017:

The X-Men have been dragged into the conflict with Apocalypse's heirs and now they have to wait for Magneto. That leaves an unhappy bunch of mutants.

AoA Triskelion, Manhattan East Side

It is a fortress with three wings.

Characters

NPCs: AoA Magneto

Mentions: Phoenix, Nate Grey

Plot:

Mood Music: None.


Fade In…

The few hours after War’s attack are an exercise of organize chaos. The army is in the streets, the militia is mobilized, schools close, atomic refuges open and part of the population is evacuated. Obviously nuclear strikes are not a remote possibility. Apocalypse used nukes without mercy in the past.

The Triskelion is surprisingly similar to SHIELD HQ in their reality, although in this world SHIELD was an early casualty in the war with Apocalypse. But when there was the need of a building to house the military command and security operations, the Triskelion was built. And probably it designed by the same people that designed it in their reality.

More Spartan than the other Triskelion, but also more obviously defended, it stands on the east coast of Manhattan, close to the ruins of the old UN building, overlooking the poisoned Atlantic Ocean. From where more than once cyborged monsters have attacked the city.

The X-Men have been asked to wait there, and now it is darkening outside. A darker night than the one before, since half the electrical grid is still down.

And it is now when Magneto finally appears, looking tired and worried.


The Triskelion. Yet another moment of eerily familiar but so radically different. Darcy found that her office in the old reality was nearly the same. An central hub of supply logistics, in this reality it controls more than just paperclips. She ended up standing off to one side, arms folded over her chest, watching things in silence.

The entrance of Magneto draws her attention, but she doesn't rush over nor give greeting.


Lorna was impatient. Had been so since Nate had been grabbed. She'd raged at Pietro, at practically anyone that hadn't been involved in planning how to rescue the missing X-man. That had lasted for the past few hours, as it had grown increasingly dark.

Though at least, by now she'd calmed somewhat and hadn't destroyed anything in her irritation.. It was clear that when the door swung open and revealed her .. not-her-father, Magneto. She sighed and rubbed her temples. She'd had a head ache since War's electromagnetic pulse. "Is there any news? Do we know where to find them?"


Since arriving in this dimension, Logan had mostly kept to himself. Searching for resources for the those of X-Men who came with him. He preferred it like that, keeping himself away from others meant that he would not bring harm to them. However, in his absence during one of his trips, he had heard rumour of Nate being taken by his uncle.

Concerned about the mutant's wellbeing he had tried questioning the others to see find out as much as he could. Now he finds himself standing in bloody knock off SHIELD HQ, "The Triskelion". He was standing slouching against a wall, staring at the floor. When Magneto enters, he looks up at the guy, his face lined with age and worry. Logan was never a fan of the pompous jerk from back in his own reality, and now he is waiting on this worlds version.


Quicksilver explained Magneto has been wheelchair bound since the battle with Apocalypse, five years ago. He won, but his spine took severe damage from the battle and previous torture. Then the nukes damaged the Earth magnetic field and disconnected him, adding further damage. He looks older because now he is aging at normal human pace. Still looks young or having almost 80 years.

"Come with me," he says, "we can use one of the conference rooms," spares a glance to Logan, perhaps surprised by how old he looks when most X-Men are younger than those he knows. "To answer your question quickly, Ms. Dane. We tracked the portal back Washington. But we don't know the exact coordinated, nor can we verify what that man said. I might try to talk with Cyclops tomorrow morning."


"Don't you think waiting until morning is a bit too long?" Darcy cuts in, unfolding her arms and moving to follow Pietro. She paces Lorna though, so she's walking at the other girl's side.

"One of OURS was taken, and you want to take this slow? Knowing I'm being rude, that's fucking stupid coming from a speedster. Tell me why we aren't waking Cyke's ass up right now to get the information we need?"


Lorna went to Magneto's side without hesitation. Her expression was stormy at beast, her arms folded. "That man that took Nate said that this world's version of me is weaker. He was able to get through Nate's shields and to reflect my powers at me.. and he had Scott's laser eyes. What is he? Is he like Rogue? Does he absorb powers or something? How do we fight him?" She swallowed a hard lump in the back of her throat as she glanced at Darcy.

"We can't defeat him and take Nate back without having some kind of a plan." She bit out, and it seemed to hurt her to accept that that would take time.


Logan watches the interaction between the rest of group, barely paying any attention. As the move he stands watching them go, before eventually dropping his head, and shaking it. Eventually, he follows after them keeping a decent distance between him and the others.

His mind wanders as he looks around, he knows how much of a powerful mutant Nate is. To kidnap him must take a lot of power, planning, strength or all the above. It's beyond what he is personally capable of, yet he can't but think what he would do with that kind of power.


Magneto looks at the gathered mutants and closes his eyes, taking a few seconds himself. He has a temper himself, but he has learned to restrain it. "I had never seen or heard of a third Summers brother," he starts, "or of such a powerful energy manipulator. Therefore I don't know his limits, but I suppose engaging exclusively him in the physical plane would be the best general strategy. Although Apocalypse was known to keep some powerful mutants imprisoned and in stasis. I have to wonder if even Scott Summers would know about him. In any case Cyclops has been imprisoned since the war, meeting with him is not so simple."


Darcy's lips pull thin at Lorna's comment. The human knows too well that feeling of being unable to act until there's enough information to go on, and Darcy is more than aware that if her SO, May, was here she'd have gotten the stink eye for the brash insistance that they act without the needed information.

The problem is, Darcy had no way to start to get het information they all needed. Lorna was more kind than Darcy would have been to herself in reminding her that they needed to go slow to make sure none of them died.

And then Magneto states that Scott has been imprisoned and Darcy makes a table-flip motion in the air.

"Fuck it all! This place is a fucking nightmare. Do you have ANYONE that can get in and get the information we need?" A pause. "Fuck it! I'm not a mutant! I'll go. Who's going to bother stopping me for anything?" Darcy says, temper flaring a bit as yet another set back is put before them and there's yet another reason to feel helpless. "Give me a map, a car, a bag of Doritos, a towel… a working goddamn fucking cell phone. You all are talking like you've sat on your fucking hands and given up. Fuck that noise. Tell me where Scott is too. I'll go pay his sorry ass a visit. I don't give a shit. I want fucking answers."


Lorna pursed her lips, glancing at the others briefly and back to Magneto. "You think he just thawed out and escaped? This guy sounded like he's not gonna stop with whatever he has planned." She exhaled a breath, pinching the bridge of her nose. "If this world's Scott is in lock up, and you're VP… can't you get us a visit? We need to know if he has any ideas about this brother. I dunno. We don't exactly have options otherwise.. do we?" She arched a brow, looking back at Magneto.

It was strange, to sense him on such a different level than what she was used to. She still had a tie to the magnetic fields, after all.

Anything else was lost as Darcy went off the rails, expressing the anger Lorna had barely restrained through hours of trying. Her throat tightened, and she crossed her arms again. But she didn't argue with her either.


Logan decides to break his silence. "Maybe, you're right kid." He says looking at Darcy. "We could all sit on our respective assess until we contact Slim, then spend ages coming up with a plan. Meanwhile, the mysterious Summers completes his plan, and god knows what happens to Nate then." He says with an edge to his voice. "What we need a small team of durable mutants who are hard to kill, to go in quick, quietly, and get out as fast as we can. Is that not how you guys normally operate?" He asks as he looks at Lorna. "I don't know why we are listening to Mags here. I mean look at him! I'm older than he is and I'm still more capable. Heck! I'm not sure if I can die, except maybe from old age. But I'm sure as hell not going to sit around to see if I can." He begins to walk away. "So, are you with me?" He looks at the green haired mutant, before turns to Darcy. "Sorry kid, I'm not sure how much you will be able to help out."


"Enough," Magneto does not raise his voice, but gives Darcy a serious glare. "Everyone is doing all they can, and anger is not going to help. But the safety of city is our priority. Cyclops was one of Apocalypse Prelates and accomplice in countless crimes against humanity. Because he rebelled at the end and he had helped some people escape he wasn't executed, but imprisoned in a high security secret facility." He sighs, "and I doubt he will want to see me. But I am sure he will accept to see Jean Grey. So I'd prefer if she is the one going."

He gestures at the seats in the room, inviting the X-Men to sit down. "We are going to Washington to take the fight back to the enemy. But we can't just go in blind. I have reports of the telepathic attacks on those trying to get close to the city. It is… beyond anything seen before. It would cut even through my helmet defenses. We need to prepare and I want to bring here more X-Men, including our Weapon-X."


It was reflex, Lorna decided, that she paid attention to Magneto first and foremost. He was a dangerous element in their world, one that had caused more harm than good. So when it came time to choose between him and Logan? She remained at Magneto's side, silent as he called for quiet. She pursed her lips, and looked back to Logan. "I fought this guy, he can absorb and redirect my powers. I threw everything I had at him. Jean, got hurt for it. I'm not risking Nate or anyone else's safety by charging in blind!" She exhaled a breath, her eyes shutting as she struggled to contain the rising anger that choked her throat.

Then her focus returned to Magneto, "What about this world's version of me? Is she around? Can she be used? With her ties to the magnetic field and my own.. wouldn't that be a useful power boost?" Her brows furrowed. If they had to wait for Jean, they'd have to wait for Jean. But damned if she wasn't going to just sit around waiting.


"Fuck you, Logan," Darcy mouths off, turning her ire on the Wolverine who is much older than she lasts remembers him, but at least she ran into him and gave him beer before they all did the Time Warp together.

"Who the fuck got Pietro back from Apocalypse? WHo the fuck distracted his ass Gambit and Rogue and the rest could get in and kick his fucking ass? Who track information down on his sorry ass to get us all there? Yeah. Not fucking you!"

And then Magneto calls for everyone to 'calm' with a glare that is enough like May's that it stills the storm of Dracy's angry for the moment.

Does it matter that she just made it clear she knew her world's Pietro and there's still plenty of emotion there? No. Likely not. The human of the group just folds her arms over her chest from where she'd given Logan the one-finger salute. Fuming, she looks back at Lorna and at least seems to be willing to listen for something like a plan… or a hint that leaving with Logan on a reckless scouting mission really is the best option.


Logan looks blankly as Lorna joins Magneto, before being stuck dumbfounded by Darcy's outburst. Finally, he sharply pulls out a chair and sits down. "Look…" he states looking towards Darcy but unable to make eye contact, "…I did not mean any disrespect. I just don't want any one getting killed. I've seen enough death, most of it by my hands." He turns his attention to Magneto and looks him square in the eyes, "Fine then, let's play it your way for now."


"Thank you," Magneto nods to Lorna, hesitating. "Our Lorna has been missing for years, I'm afraid. She was mentally unstable and lost most of her powers to Rogue at one point. The story is long and unfortunate. I will tell you… if we have time."

He looks at the others, "for now I want to bring into the operation both Colossus and Weapon X. We will need them against this Summers who was so easily able to fight off Phoenix and Polaris," Looks like Magneto has bothered to learn their codenames. "And we most need is learning who our enemies are."

"Then we will go to Washington. Both teams, as well as a many of Ross and Creed best soldiers. We will use air transports and direct teleportation, anti-telepathic technology and our own telepaths and force the Shadow Thief to divide his attention. If you wish to go looking for Nate Grey first, do so. His own telepathy might be very useful."


Logan's apology helps somewhat, and Darcy's ire at him lessens a bit as Magneto's plan is listened to. Her arms, however, stay folded over her chest.

"And do you have a plan for gathering intel?" Darcy asks of Magneto, not bothering to sit as Logan has. "Since it's what you need most, and all," she quips and shifts her weight from one foot to the other.


Lorna's expression twisted and her skin paled at the mention of this world's version of her being mentally unstable. It was something she, herself had feared, given her world's father.. She turned her thoughts away and nodded. "I would appreciate a chance to talk to you at some point." She murmured. There were questions that she wanted answers to, even if he wasn't her father, maybe she could learn from him.

Then her focus returned to the matter at hand. "The guy was able to handle us and Nate. I dunno if bringing more firepower will help. He didn't seem troubled to absorb everything I had." She pursed her lips together and exhaled a breath, her green eyed gaze settling back on Darcy.

"I don't really care whatever the plan is, or whoever makes the plans. I'm willing to do whatever it takes to get Nate back and get back to work on how to get home." Her hands fell back to her sides, though she flexed her hands into a curled fist and let it go again.


"Wait a minute…" Logan says as he raises a hand, before pointing at Magneto. "Did you just say Weapon X? As in this world's version of me?" He asks. "And he still goes by Weapon X?" He lowers his hand, and shakes his head in disbelief. "I can't believe." He pauses, lost in the thought. Logan takes a moment before breaking his thought. "OK, so there's another me, who I'm going to say is just as much of an unkillable a-hole as me. So that's two of us right there!" He holds up two fingers on his right hand, "Colossus, makes three. Do you have a Laura? A Wolverine? Or is she still going by X-23?" He looks at Lorna, "Did your Laura come with us?" He counts off each person, on his fingers. "So that makes about three to four of us right there. Hard to kill, and probably just as stubborn too."


The old man shakes his head at Lorna. "You three have energy powers. Colossus and Weapon X' are purely physical." Magneto studies Logan for a few seconds. "Neither 'Wolverine' or 'Laura' are familiar names. But… X-23? That would be Kirika Yashida, perhaps? Logan's daughter is in New Japan. Still, if you feel you can go to Washington undetected, I can arrange for transportation."


"What kind of detection does Washington have?" Darcy asks, forcing herself calmer in order to focus on the task at hand, namely gather intel to rescue Nate and then get home. In that order. She wonders if this world has a Thor. After all, hers told her that if she ever needed him, she could just pray. While not a praying type, there are situations that warrant it.


Lorna shrugged, but fell silent as she watched and listened. She had nothing further to contribute to the conversation in regards to planning what would work against War. "I dunno if Laura ended up here with us. Nate didn't land with the rest of us at first, and he still ended up here." She murmured, it was possible that their Laura ended up here too.

As Darcy spoke she tapped her chin, but glanced toward Magneto to answer. He had mentioned the telepathic shields and such..


"Nothing we can't counter," replies Magneto to Darcy. Or at least that is what he wants to believe. "But I will be honest with you. For years we have been preparing for some kind of counter-attack from Apocalypse followers. And yet there was very little activity. We captured a few former elites and destroyed hundreds of Infinites, yes. But not Shaw, or the Beauvier siblings. Or the Shadow Thief. And then we lost Washington despite all the precautions. There is little doubt they have been preparing too, and they must have a new leader in Apocalypse's place. We don't know who he is yet."


Lorna frowned, "But what do they want with Nate? I mean, he's powerful, sure. But he's not gonna switch sides. He's a strong telepath. Do they want to try to force a prisoner exchange or set some terms?" Her eyebrows furrowed, and she frowned.

"What are the chances that they've got the other stronger mutants kicking around that we don't know shit about yet?"


"Shaw… Shaw… Why is that name familiar?" Darcy murmurs to herself a moment before shaking it off and getting back to the task at hand.

"Ok. You can counter their detections, and you have no intel in Washington. A potential new leader but no info on him either… Hmm.." She glances at Lorna, going quite for a moment as she ponders what a human could do in this situation.


Logan turns to Lorna. "Well, from the experience in my world. I'm going to take a guess that they are going to try to bring Apocalypse back." He turns to Magneto. "What do you think oh fearless leader? Am I anywhere in the right ballpark?" He smirks to himself, having knowledge of his own timeline and world has allowed him some insight to what could be happening to the other worlds. "So, if you could Mags, would you summarise what we have decided? And you didn't answer my question."


"I am afraid, Polaris, it is a given," replies Magneto thoughtfully. "But they didn't know about you either, which means we will try to keep you hidden and hope they can't extract the information from young Grey. And we also study why and how you got here, as the timing is at the very least an unlikely coincidence, hmm? Would you agree to allow Stark's people and myself to study your dimensional shift?"

As for bringing Apocalypse back, Magneto pales slightly. "I don't think it is possible. We cremated his remains," and tossed the ashes to the ocean, not to leave any place for worshipers to go rally. “Sinister had cloning technology, but it was rarely used, and I doubt it a 5 year-old clone without the armor would be too dangerous. Still, we should be ready for the worst."

He pulls the chair back back and heads out. "I'll see you in the morning, try to get some rest, the next few days are going to be difficult."


Lorna glanced toward Logan as he mentioned that the point of all this might be to bring Apocalypse back to life. "But why take Nate? It's not like he can bring people back from the dead whenever he wants, right?" She blinked, her brows furrowing as her gaze swung back to Magneto.

"I might not be your daughter, but I am the daughter of a Magneto. My powers work the same, more or less. Help me, train me, whatever. They might not expect you to be at full power, but I'm willing to bet that I can make a nice show of force with your help. Maybe it'll scare them to panic or something." It was an idea, at least. Even if she wasn't sure how effective it might be. "And yeah, I don't mind your world's Stark trying to figure out how we go here. I dunno how much he can get out of studying us, but whatever he needs. I'll try to help him with." She dragged a hand through her hair and glanced back to Logan and Darcy, sighing softly as it seemed that most everything else had been settled. They at least had a direction.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 License