Rifts in Reality: Professor X

January 17, 2019:

The X-Men try to revive Professor X, and find many open portals… and more mystery.

X-men Base: Medical

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

(( Event run by Bruce Banner. ))

Professor X had been missing for quite some time. Months. The timeline matched up to the course of the infernal attack on New York. At some point during that he simply slipped through the cracks and vanished. There wasn't information available, and no evidence presented itself.

Just gone.

And things have run as well as they can in his absence. The senior X-Men have done what they always do. Yet to some degree, without the leadership of the heart of the school, it may have felt like treading water.

Just over a week ago, threads in the portals, the ones opening all over the city, were found leading to evidence of Xavier. More, that he has been stuck between these portals, in this odd space between these open, strobing rifts.

On a mission, Sage, Logan, Psylocke and Dr. Banner traversed into the rifts with a number of the Avengers. While the Avengers moved to deal with a massive energy entity, the X-Men zeroed in on their missing professor. They found him with a group of similar victims: people trapped between, though he was nonresponsive entirely. For a week now he has been absent, his mind a locked vault, laying in the infirmary.

He has had many visitors: his room is an abundance of well wishes: flowers, cards, and often the cot in his room is occupied. Only those who were on the mission at first had access, but it has since opened to the other X-Men.

Today, though, has caused some alarm. A twisting rift anomaly has started to tear open in the ceiling in Professor Xavier's medical room. A mix of lime greens and pearl pink, it strobes and pulses like a vein in the ceiling, approximately three feet long.

*

One second Rachel Summers was pondering just how she was going to fit one more clothes item into her overly stuffed wardrobe, and the next - alarms start going off throughout the Mansion. The kind of alarms that cause alarm. That cause a kind of 'drop what you're doing and find out what the heck is going on' kind of alarming reaction. So yeah, Rachel's dropping what she was shoving into the closet, and is now heading towards the hallway, then down the stairs. As the red-head's moving, her clothing is telekinetically altering, a swift blur of power around her form. From jeans and sweater, to her costume, Rachel's still in swift, and quick motion. The other thing Rachel does? She offers a quick mental sweep to cast out over the mansion, seeking thoughts of those she knows - at least those who's minds might be open to her, and accepting of a telepath's inquiry. » Nate? Anyone? What's going on? «

*

Simultaneously with the alarm a series of text messages are fired almost instantly to the cellphones held by the senior X-Men. A quick image, a warning, and its unique identifying buzz or ring. Enough to snap attention to it, and outside in the garage of the mansion, Logan pulls his from his jacket's pocket and frowns.
The student who had been helping him with the Charger looks up, "What's that?"
"Nothin', here." He tosses the wrench to the kid and scowls even as he rises ot his feet. "Tighten up the headlight fluid. If I'm not back in five minutes head to the gate and wait there."
And as quick as that, the Wolverine breaks into a run out of the garage, shouldering open the door and sprinting up to the front door of the mansion.

*

During the week of Xavier's return; there were many instances that Alex would venture down into the sublevels to check on the Professor. The same question would escape his lips to fellow Xrs, "Still no change?". And when there was a negative response, Alex would turn on his heel and head back upstairs to occupy his time with various duties, training, and adventures.
Today, like any other, Alex was occupied in the rec-room doing rec-room stuff when the alarms sounded. Since there is no fireman's pole, which there should be, he quickly made his way to the turbolift and hit the down button to see what the trouble is all about.

*

Rogue is down in the hangar in the X-Men Base when those pesky alarms started. She was doing maintenance checks on the Blackbird with all that knowledge of SR-70-variants she stole from Captain Marvel a decade ago. But when the alert went out she set down the tools she was using, picked up her jacket which she slipped onto her arms, but let lay back off of her shoulders, and went gliding down off of the jet and toward the exit to the hangar and into the main corridor, visually scanning around as she flies now through the base.

*

Although Nate is one of the rare X-Men that doesn't live in the school grounds (usually) and rarely involves in the usual ongoing drama, he makes exceptions for a few people. Xavier happens to be one of them. The old telepath earned Nate's respect through his indefatigable efforts to protect human and mutant rights.

That even though Nate is not always in agreement with Xavier about the best way to proceed. But the old man has never pressed the issue, and has never made him feel unwelcome to the school, not even after Nate did something really, really dangerous. (Or just really dumb).

That means Nate has tried to be around the past week or so, asking about Xavier's status. And now a weird thing has appeared in the room, he is among the first to get there. "We should move him out of here," he suggests, forming a telekinetic shield between the rift and the Professor.

*

The disturbance is confined, at this time, to the medical chamber that Professor Xavier is located in. It has not changed, the rift has not grown, though there is plenty of video available to indicate that it is there, to those that check on security. There is a portal. There isn't much more information than that. It is not different than any of the others that have been in the city, except for the location and proximity to Xavier at the moment.

Mentally, a sweep of the mansion will pick up an awareness with the portal. It isn't a familiar one, and it doesn't have a normal pattern of thought. It is a jumbled clump of emotional messiness, and from a distance, it may feel very much like a crowd of upset people that somehow are also just one person.

The telekinetic shield that Nate makes causes the rift to pulse in response: it starts to shrink a little bit.

*

Through the foyer, to one of the closer elevators, Logan hits the sliding panel with the back of his fist then presses the biometric red emergency button that flares yellow as it's activated. Two slim moments pass before the doors open and Logan darts inside, sparing a moment to look up and down the hall connecting to the foyre to make sure any others that might be running will catch this ride.
But likely seeing none he'll step back into the chamber and drops down as it descends.

*

Rogue is able to see Nate up ahead so she glides through the air in his direction and then drops out of the air to land on her feet, her leather knee high boots making quiet thuds as she touches down and comes around to look inside the medical area where Xavier and the… event is occuring. Rogue's eyes get more than a little huge at the sight of it and she looks over to Nate, then to the Professor and then back to the rift. "I thought this kind of stuff was blocked out down here?" She says, staying close to the medical lab exit for a moment longer before she starts toward Xavier, likely preparing to move him out of this room!

*

Eventually Rachel does make it down to where she can sense Nate and well, whatever the hell is going on with that rift. At full tilt run to skidding to a stop, and a little out of breath because of it, Rachel's gaze flickers from Nate, to Rogue, to the unconscious Professor, and back again. She is completely and utterly uncertain on what it is that she's sensing from the portal, and as a result, can only gape her mouth open and get a blank. "…"

Splayed hands run through her short locks of red, as Rachel is fairly well at a loss for words. When words finally DO come, she's still slightly gasping for breath. "Have you sensed anything from within? All I'm getting from within is .. nonsense. Jumbled up, tangled up, emotions and annoyance and upset and I can't describe it." And she can't.

Rachel has no clue what it is, though she does reach out further, sending her thoughts careening through the rift, or portal. If there is a conscious thought behind it, or in control of it, Rachel would like to know, right?

*

Lorna was running as she came through the elevator and down the subbasement to the medical lab where the Professor lay just as the alarms had blared. She'd sensed the portal's opening, how could she not? She'd been chasing them hopelessly over the months, running or flying where she could try to get to them before they closed.. She had never been fast enough though they had chimed in her senses. The amount of energy, on the electro-magnetic scale, was massive and blew her mind. In comparison to her father, the only other energy signature she felt across such a great distance, he was nothing in his passive state.

The green haired woman ran, dashing into the room by the lee of the door way, swinging through by the hinge of the door frame. Her boots skidded as she threw out her hands and threw everything she could summon to try to shut the rift. "It's energy, I can sense it. I'm going to try—" She grunted from effort as her teeth gritted together. Her breathing going sharp as she tried to force it shut.

*

Nate has not been involved in investigating the rifts, so all he knows about them is what he read (skimmed over, really) from the mission report. When Rachel asks the question, he shakes his head. "Can you get anything through that thing? I… wasn't trying," and he does now, but if Rachel can't make any sense it is unlikely Nate can. Alien minds have always been very difficult to understand for him.

This kind of stuff was blocked, she says… "I don't know, Rogue. I heard Cable put some super-tech things to block intruders, but I don't think they can be all-encompassing. I am taking the old man away. Whatever this is, I bet it is after him," so unless Rogue is faster, he grabs Xavier (carefully) and heads out of the room.

*

When the lift doors open on the sublevel, Alex steps out. He's wearing his civilian attire. Jeans, red t-shirt, and runners. He missed all the connections in the hallway and he will catch up with the rest of the group when he enters the medbay with a squeak of his shoes. He questions aloud when he gets into the room and assesses the group, "What's going on?!" It's an open ended question just asking for intel on the situation for people who cannot fly, teleport, run really fast, and are always last on the scene.

*

Two things alter the portal. One, exerting pressure on it, by Lorna. At first, it collapses almost entirely, like she simply reached out and crumpled a piece of paper. It closes down to a small, base-ball sized little rift. And then the room fills with rifts, dotting around the room, creating a glowing and chilly swiss-cheese effect on the ceiling! Two of the portals start to gush with salt water, which begin to pour all over the floor. Some of the portals are bigger than 3', but most are about two foot. There is now perhaps 15 of them.

Nate has no trouble picking up the lightweight professor, he is easy to move where-ever Nate decides to take him.

The emotions sensed in the portals don't change: there isn't any expression of anger at all, there's no emotional reaction. It is more as if eyes were opening and looking into the room. When Xavier is moved, most of them begin to close.

*

Arriving in that hallway and skidding to a halt, Logan catches up just as Nate is wheeling the professor out. He quickly takes up a position beside and a little ahead of the X-Man, bracketing and ready to escort as he gives a nod towards Alex.
"What's the situation in there? Takin' Chuck to the Panic Room or we got another destination in mind." He strides quickly, eyes quickly scanning the hall and trying to take in possible angles of attack.

*

With slow, precise, very controlled concentration, Rachel's thoughts careen through the portal, the rift that is some how targeting the Professor. As her thoughts reach outwards, she can feel many different emotions, many different fears, and uneasiness, loneliness and agony. "I'm feeling." Rachel's features shift slightly, mouth twisting down into a scowl. "So many trapped. Starving. Terror. I sense so many tortured emotions." Rachel's left hand index finger rests upon her brow, her thumb splayed down to press against a tattoo on her cheek.

The red-head doesn't even, initially, register that salt water is now surging through the room, rather Rachel's concentrating fully on what she's picking up within. Her green gems flicker towards Nate and the others around. "There are a LOT of people trapped inside." Impulsive thoughts begin to run through Rachel's mind, that Nate might pick up, as her gaze flickers to the largest rift in the room.

*

Rogue watches Nate gather up the professor and she nods her head softly before her eyes look around at the other rifts cracking open. "Right…" She clears her throat and turns back toward the room exit. "I'll just… wait out there, unless somethin' starts hoppin' outta those things that I gotta punch. Otherwise? I don't know what t'do about this Poltergeist crap." She gives a glance toward Rachel on her way back out. "Yep. A lot of people… And I sure as heck don't wanna be the next one."

*

Lorna had a very, very, brief moment of triumph when she started to collapse the portal inwards. She'd only been working off theoretical work, texts and assumptions that she might be able to do something about it. Of course, that hope was dashed as soon as multiple portals opened up from all over the ceiling. Her focus shot, her grip on the first portal slipped and she made a deep sound of frustration as she threw up magnetic barriers as she could in a desperate gamble to at least protect those in the room from whatever energy might try to pass through.. Salt water passing harmlessly through her barrier to trickle onto the floor. Her boots squeaked as she glanced toward Nate as he picked up the Professor and made to leave.

"I can't stop them. Not all of them. It's too much energy powering them." She thought, it was another assumption on her part. She gritted her teeth, closing her eyes as she threw out her senses and decided to try to do something different. If trying to close one had opened others… what would happen if she tried to open one of them wider so they might see inside without going inside?

She once more threw her powers out, trying to grasp on the most stable feeling portal and yank it wide, like a door.

*

"Panic Room sounds good," replies Nate. Or maybe the Danger Room, where the Shi'ar tech can likely counter the rifting. He has to dodge Logan and one of those mid-sized portals to get to the door, "but if… yeah, punch anything that tries to chase us," he adds for Rogue.

« Any luck with the mind-scanning, Ray? » He quietly asks the redhead, just catching a glance of the thought that passes through her head. "Wait, don't!" The young man almost drops Xavier as he turns to Rachel.

*

Stepping to the side, Alex plans to flank Logan but also giving himself a clear shot if anything manages to come out of the rift or pop up from somewhere else. It's a standard move when Logan is in the scene. He's always going first and the blasters take up the rear. His blue eyes remain sharp, alert, and he scans the room for potential threats or angles in which threats can emerge. His knees slightly bent, elbows flexed, and he's already heated up since turning on his power. Every now and again, there's a subtle energy spike and flash from his chest. He also listens to the remarks of his fellow teammates. It's really the best way to figure out what's going on. Because rifts… that's really not his thing.

*

Portals open along the ceiling in the hallway where Xavier is being taken. These are larger: they are very long rips, about six foot. Suddenly, things start to fall out of them. Yes, one of them is sea water, but then a human person actually falls straight out. She is battered and confused and screaming bloody murder, landing hard on her back with a sound of possibly crunched bone, since she landed on a wrist.

Two more forms start to follow, out of different portals; one is overly big and hairy. It's hard to tell exactly if they are enemies, victims, or anything else: all of it happens very quickly!

The portal that Lorna focused on careens open like a suddenly flung car door, giving full entry into the zone beyond. Scent of a forest thickly fills the room, but nothing dangerous comes bursting forth. The light of the portal itself blocks vision into it, but the pine is reasonably peaceful in scent.

Perhaps just Nate will notice something else that's extremely important and remarkable: there's some consciousness coming back to Xavier, though he isn't awake quite yet. But even a quick mental scan will pick up that he's not absent: not anymore.

*

"This stuff is centered on him," Logan scowls and keeps himself in between the Professor and any of the nearest intrusions. The woman that falls out of the portal and is screaming he quickly moves towards and holds up a hand as if trying to steady her, "Calm down, lady. Yer in a medical facility. Just calm down." Since that's what is best to tell someone when they're freaking out.
"Rogue, keep with the Prof." He says quickly then starst to try and help the injured.

*

Impulsiveness is usually a trait that Rachel happily gives to Nate, or to Illyana, or others. Then again, Rachel has been known to be overly dramatic in her days. As Nate picks up that stray thought, Rachel's already in motion, moving towards one of the wider rifts - only to pause as /THINGS/ and people and who knows what begin to fall through the larger ones. It's enough to get her to stop, Nate's 'wait' doesn't, but THAT does.

The poor woman who's screaming bloody murder will be the focus first, though Logan's already there, trying to calm her down. Rachel will offer, if it works, a little mental nudge to the woman, that everything is now okay, that she's safe.

A brilliant, though small, aura will begin to form about Rachel's eye, the image is a miniature fire-bird, the only remnants of the power Rachel use to have. With that, Rachel's thoughts begin to sweep through each and every portal, each and every rift that opens, seeking if any emotion, any thought is close. So very much focused there, and seeing if she should do something reckless, that she doesn't notice that Xavier is - returning?

*

Lorna was too focused on the energy of the portals, trying to hold one open and trying to stablize it as the others widened and ripped along the hallways after the professor's figure as Nate headed away from the medbay. She stifled a noise of frustration, even as the scent of pines came through the the portal. It wasn't what she was hoping for. And frankly, she wasn't sure what she was hoping for either.

All of them opened to different places but not the energy source that powered the portals.

She cut off her powers from the sole portal she'd toyed with, turning around and following after the group of X-men down the hallway.

"Something is powering these and I can't get a lock on it. Whatever it is is massively powerful. The energy cost alone is beyond anything I've felt." And she'd felt other portals opened by aliens, and magic. Her gaze widened at the sight of everything else that spilled out, and she jogged to catch up.

"Rachel, I can try to stabilize one of these as best I can, keep it open. We need to find whatever is powering these."

*

Nate whews when Rachel decides not to do something so reckless that… well, -he- would have done. And then he has barely half a second to move out of the way as someone crashes almost on top of him.

"The hell… are these the folks missing from the rifts?" Two, three… no, Nate is pretty sure there are dozens of people missing. "This is ridiculous," he grumbles, moving quickly down the hallway, towards the panic room. "We need Illy here, she could get Xavier out quickly and deal…" he pauses, looking at Xavier and frowning. "Professor? Can you hear me?"

*

Rogue's eyes go pretty wide again at the sight of the woman who's screaming, she looks to Logan and then back to the woman. "Make her stop…" She says then. "Slap her or somethin'." That'll work, it always works in the movies, like Airplane.

"The rift things are tied to Xavier?" She asks, stepping closer to the Professor while mumbling. "If this gets me pulled inta one'a these things, I swear t'god…" But she doesn't finish that though, instead she looks up at one of them and takes in the pine scent. "Smells like Scott's car." She mutters further while protecting the frail old man who these portals seem to love!

*

The portal Lorna pulled open doesn't slam shut, but it does naturally start to go back down to the previous size. The scent is constant, but the smell of the salt water still pouring into the room overpowers it. Some fish start to flop out from the water sources, and swim around their feet in the medical bay.

The woman in the hall that fell out does stop screaming, but she does huddle against a wall, baffled by her new location and pain, and all the portals. The emotional nudge from Rachel does wonders, she is able to nod at Logan and huddle by the wall out of the way, or wherever he puts her. Until the furry thing from the other portal drops into the hallway. It's, loosely, a very hungry bear, with a big bite on its hindquarters. It handles panic differently than the girl: it roars, and swipes at the nearest threat: Rogue. Beyond it, another person falls out, a young male, but he's more in shock than anything else. After all, there's a /bear/.

Nate asks something of Xavier. And —- he gets an answer.

"Scott, I am… preventing her from going home," Charles Xavier quietly says to the person carrying him. "If she goes… Everyone within her dimension will die." His eyes are closed, his focus still distant, disconnected, in the same way he has when he goes Astral. Perhaps, in a way, he is doing exactly that: within a different plane. He moves an exhausted, narrow wrist a little to pat Nate's chest near his shoulder once. The skinniness to Xavier is possibly alarming: he has barely survived this ordeal. The past week has helped him physically, to allow at least that much motion.

"I think she knows. But she is desperate. It's up to us to get them free, and let her go." From his tone, time is limited. Charles probably will die for this cause, if necessary, holding things as long as he's able. He starts to draw away again, starts to go absent.

*

One of the side doors are opened and Logan's at first trying to get the woman in there when there's that heavy /thud/ and the giant ball of fluff rolls out of its fall, rising on its hindquarters like some great beast and roaring angrily. So now his attention has to shift.
"I got this." He lashes his arms wide and with a /shing/ the blades slice forward through his knuckles as he bares his fangs back at the large creature. With no hesitation he leaps forwards, hurling his considerable mass into the chest of the large creature trying to tackle it backwards while stabbing viciously all the while.

*

It is to Lorna, that Rachel's head inclines, the glowing Phoenix aura still situated about Rachel's eye. "There are hundreds in there, some are animals, but most are humans. I." Rachel's eyes shut tight, mouth moving into a deeply rooted scowl.

And then the Professor speaks, and Rachel's gaze once again flickers towards Nate. "Nate, be my mental anchor. I can find your mind anywhere, brother." And then to everyone else, Rachel asks, "Who's coming in with me? If Lorna can keep one portal open, we might be able to get in there, get as many people out, and back again. I don't know if it'll work, but we can't let them suffer or - whatever the Professor said. Die. I'm willing to go by myself."

As Logan attacks the bear, Rachel's moving swiftly towards the portal that Lorna is keeping open.

*

A nod as a plan was set, and Lorna once more reached out her senses to find the more stable feeling and looking portal. The one of pines had done well before, but it was back in the medbay proper, which was still filling with fish and salt water. She vaguely wondered if the whole ocean might spill inside. Then where would they be? She closed her eyes, exhaling slowly through her nose as she held her hands out and spread her fingers wide as her powers pushed a portal open. Wider than before, at least two door-ways, to give people room to run into out out of.

"I'll do my best. If it looks like I can't hold it, I'll jump inside. I should in theory be able to sense the rips in space and find something weak enough to get out." In theory. It was all in theory. Her physics textbooks and other scientific journals hadn't actually tested what magnetism and worm holes through space might do after all. How could they?

*

Nate's eyes narrow at being called 'Scott'. Seriously? No time to be annoyed, though, as Xavier's next words are probably very important, and also kind of cryptic. "Mindlink with me, Professor," he offers. "Who is HER?"

But Xavier is drifting, so it is Nate who jumps into his mind to force an explanatory mind-link with the old man, and he also tries to include the other X-Men into the psychic rapport.

All the while as he drags Xavier out of the medlabs, and dodges rifts, people and bears. Who said he was not good at multitasking? (He is -not- good at multi-tasking).

*

Nate's eyes narrow at being called 'Scott'. Seriously? No time to be annoyed, though, as Xavier's next words are probably very important, and also kind of cryptic. "Mindlink with me, Professor," he offers. "Who is HER?"

But Xavier is drifting, so it is Nate who jumps into his mind to force an explanatory mind-link with the old man, and he also tries to include the other X-Men into the psychic rapport. Particularly Rachel, to anchor her.

All the while as he drags Xavier out of the medlabs, and dodges rifts, people and bears. Who said he was not good at multitasking? (He is -not- good at multi-tasking).

*

While looking for targets, Alex is noting the diversity of things coming out of the portal. Animals - they don't need blasting. But what is that thing that Logan is slicing and dicing?

Hearing that Lorna intends to jump through the portal, Alex chimes in, "Don't even think about that, Lorna. We're not losing you in all this mess."

*

Xavier makes an effort to answer the question before he goes. He is patient, just involved in what he is trying to do. If Nate wants to hold open a link, that's fine, but Xavier is not adding energy to it for now. "I must focus to keep her here, now. She IS the dimension in some way; she doesn't belong connected to us. The energy of the demon portals injured her, and she was stuck, attached to us, I believe. She is not an enemy. But I am holding her: so she is looking this way."

The bear is an enemy NOW even if it wasn't before. It rolls back and tries to bite Wolverine's head and shoulder off while lifting him off the ground. The stabbing claws go deep into the thick hide of the bear as it roars. It is weak and hungry, but fighting for its life, which makes it a tough creature.

Behind the bear the young man skitters backwards and tries to fumble his way into any room he can manage to hide in. More portals open, Lorna's attempt to widen one has no resistance, except that a child appears from it, eyes extremely huge. The child can't be more than three; she's muddy and her hair is sticking out to the left with grime. Human hands from the portal grasp through at the child worriedly, trying to draw her back inside blindly.

From a different portal, the forest one from the medlab while probably nobody is even paying attention anymore, emerges a strange, hovering robotic object about the size of a volleyball. It rotates its eye and begins to scan the room, the other portals, and so forth, humming quietly as it does so, easily drowned by all of the other activity, splashing, screaming, bears.

*

If there was ever a time Rachel wished Illyana was here, now was it. Beyond just being a powerful teleporter, it would be nice to have Magik there to help with any untoward enemy that might be within the rifts. As the child comes forth, and hands reach for it, Rachel's own powers sweep outwards, telekinetically collecting both and pulling them through, while mentally calming them down. It is to Nate, that Rachel hands them. "Nate, take care of them. Here I go." Then, she's flying through the portal, disappearing into its depths.

*

Lorna bolted forward as Rachel went for the portal she was holding open, her figure standing tall by the opening as she held her arms out before her to keep her own magnetic fields bouncing against the walls. "Sorry Alex, but if it slips my grip, I'm going. I can fly and have some control over these. Logan got out somehow." She added, over her shoulder before she turned her focus back to the portal that Rachel had jumped into.

Even as chaos spilled all over the hallway from others jumping out, to the sounds of fighting from Logan and the bear.. It was a mash up of sounds, and electrro-static in her mind and senses. She closed her eyes, relying on the sense and feel of the portal around her to maintain the opening for Rachel to return through it if possible. She didn't spend any energy trying to close other portals, merely focusing on the one around her that she kept held wide open.

*

Alex continues to scan for targets and what do ya know, he spots something that looks out of place. /Yeah, that's not good./ thinks Alex as he spots the robotic flying orb. He announces, "Flying robot thing. Gonna take it out!"
Alex raises both his arms and in a flash, the white hot plasma emerges from his shoulders, down his arms, and will FOOOOOM its way across the metlab toward the flying robotic orb. He intends to vaporize the Coalition States scout.

*

Xavier drifts, entirely going limp again, head rolling to the side. He's busy, he's elsewhere: doing what he feels is right. In this case, giving his X-Men time to save lives. As many as they can.

The portal Rachel enters empties her into what appears to be a New York street, except that there is a giant forest not half a mile from where she stands, beyond a clump of buildings. Ghostly shadows move on the street, hints of a partially connected 'real' world. The ghosts seem to spot her, and flee her presence. A reach of mind can find other people in the dimension, scattered, but mostly in clumps in the buildings, as they make the best of their situation.

The robot Alex attacked barely has time to turn towards him before it is bombarded with energy. It actually holds out for a surprisingly long time, before falling into the salty water and combusting into bits. Alex definitely killed it.

As for the bear? Logan definitely killed it. There's a lot of blood in the hallway now. The boys are very good at killing the things coming out of the portal.

The elderly man who had been with the child gathers her up but doesn't argue. He does ask, "Is it over?" in a shellshocked way.

*

"Eh? I am not good calming people," protests Nate. Besides, he is carrying Xavier. And Rachel just went through the goddamned rift! "Rogue!" He calls pretty much shoving Xavier into her arms.

Then he stands in front of the portal and curses loudly. If he goes in the 'anchoring' makes no sense. So he can't go. And Lorna needs to stay to keep the gate open. "Alex… Rachel went there alone, she needs backup!"

Well. She maybe needs backup. Details. In any case Alex needs to go there. Maybe Logan too, once the bear is properly stabbed.

*

Rising up from the gore, Logan /shoves/ the body of the bear over and out of the way with a heavy crunch from his boot impacting the corpse. It's enough to clear the hall somewhat, though the floor is going to be slick for a good chunk of time. The blades slice back into his forearms with a /snakt!/ as he turns and gestures to the old man and the child, "C'mon, in here!" He steps quickly over towards the room he had urged the other civilian gal and opens it with a thump of a fist on the panel.
To the team he says, "I'll stay here and play crowd control, you guys handle the hellever this is."

*

So. Many. Thoughts. And … shadow people? Ghosts!? Wait! Rachel saw this on Ghost Nabbers International. Only she was sure that was fake. Well, a strange urban setting is something Rachel is only too familiar with. » Nate. « A very faint, very quiet mental voice echoes through to Nate then. » Let Lorna know she doesn't need to keep it open. I'll find a way out. There are a LOT of people in here, and I don't want to threaten everyone there at the mansion. If she can close them, have her do so. « With that, Rachel's mental voice begins to fade, then disappears entirely, as she disappears deeper into the city.

*

A grimace, and Lorna glanced back at Nate as the telepath stepped up close to the portal she held wide open. "I don't know. The energy that ripped this and the others open is massive. It's not something I've exactly done before. In theory? So long as I have the power to stabilize the fields that it displaced, a while. But I've never done anything like this Nate. I've only ever read about these kinds of rifts in space and time displacement. The physics behind it are complicated." She bit her lower lip, her gaze swinging back out to the land beyond the portal, hazy in power and light to her senses and her eyes.

"What did Rachel say Nate? Did she find the people that are inside it?"
*

Nate nods. "She has found… she said a lot of people. I suppose they are those missing from the rifts," explains the young man, trying to peer through the portal. "I wish Xavier was more coherent, but I am getting little from the mind-link now.

He sighs. "I think… as long as there are other gates around Xavier I can track Rachel down, so you can relax this one. But if you could find Illyana and send her here, I think this stuff is more up her skillset."

*

Knowing that he needs to do something, Alex has flashes of when he died. Remembering his multiple deaths. Without fear. He looks to the portal where Ray was last seen and he says, "Well, see you people in another 6 years!" And he will rush toward the portal, leaping without looking. Because, well, that's how he is.

*

Lorna gave Nate the side eye, "Right, Alex, or Logan can go find Illyana. Nate can stay and watch out for Rachel and keep watch on whatever else comes through the portals. I'm going to shut down the ones with ocean water that's still coming in down here. And I'll keep my toe in the door metaphorically speaking. Until Rachel wants to send people through here, there's no point in keeping the door wide open I guess." She pursed her lips, ready to stepping back from the center of the portal and allow it to return to its original size.. When Alex jumped through too. She cursed, her eyes going wide as she lunged after him.

"Alex! Get back here! What are you doing?!" She shouted, partially in and out of the portal, as if she wasn't entirely willing to leave the safety of the hallway behind entirely. She couldn't.. not if she was going to keep the portals open as a door holder essentially..

*

Inside the portal, the strange, stilted dimension sprawls for what seems like miles. Various terrain covers it like a bizarre quilt, as sections from the other dimension influence it. Much of it is city, but large portions to pull from other places. New York being the center of it makes sense: That's' where all of the infernal gates were. But now, there are so many other places, as the dimension reached out into other areas of the world.

The portals in the medical lab finally close (with some coaxing by Lorna), and the ones near Xavier seem to cycle: sometimes a victim will fall out of one, and can be dealt with. It is as if the dimension didn't want those victims inside it, and is steadily trying to put them on top of Xavier. Perhaps over time many of them will naturally be shoved out in this way. Is the creator of the portals sentient? It seems in some way, it is. Xavier is too unconscious to clarify.

"Is it over?" asks the shell-shocked elderly man with the child, again. Telling him any definite answer may be a lie, at this point. The little girl in his arms decides to nod at him, and he hugs her. That's good enough for now.

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