Saturday, July 27, 2013

Brand New Brood Control part III: It's Not Just The Power Of Christ That Can Compel You...

The Brood saga ended in Uncanny X-men # 234, a comic with a cover so shockingly disturbing to kids, yours truly couldn't bear to look at it without getting nightmares... Well done, Marc Silvestri.

The X-men had been fighting medic Harry Palmer, who had accidentally been infected by the Brood. By the time the team tracked him down, Harry had implanted several mutants with Brood eggs as well, which made dealing with this particular Brood incursion a bit more of a challenge.

After their initial encounter, the X-men had lost both Psylocke and Rogue to the Brood, while Wolverine had been implanted with a Brood embryo. So things weren't looking too hot for the team when the fight moved to the scene of a giant outdoor church event led by reverend William Conover. For once, a religious figure who isn't against mutants.

In fact, he's more concerned with his wife Hannah's chronic rheumatic arthritis.

"If you'll let me... I've something that can fix that"

By the way, that paramedic offering to help Hannah Conover is Josey, colleague and partner to Harry 'Brood Embryos For Everyone!' Palmer... What a coincidence! Guess it *is* a small world after all, right? Speaking of the Brood, let's check in on Temptress, a pheromone fuelled mind controller who managed to snatch both Rogue and Wolverine.

"With each breath, my pheromones bind your will more tightly to the Brood. And soon, after Harry's implanted an egg in you...same as he did with Wolverine... you'll be one of us in flesh, as well as spirit."

After a sales pitch like that, all Rogue can say is: "Ohboyoboy! Ah can hardly wait". Unfortunately for her, Wolverine's metamorphosis was being hindered by his healing factor, just like it had during the previous Brood arc.

Incensed after watching him kill Temptress, a still clouded Rogue threw Wolverine to the ground and raced back to Harry Palmer and the others, who were trying to get away from the other X-men by car. But Storm, Colossus and the others put a stop to that. finally caught up with them.

"Brood got plans for you, Storm... You're gonna host the Queen's egg! An' it's my duty... my pleasure, sweetheart... to see those plans fulfilled!"

Luckily for Storm, she was saved by a well timed laserblast, courtesy of Dazzler. The Brood escaped by foot, heading towards the religious convention led by reverend Conover... Who was already entertaining a most unexpected guest...

"Poor fella must mean drugs."

Yeah, that's a nasty dose of MGH, to be sure. Usually, Logan's healing factor would have gotten rid of the egg with some effort. But Wolverine suffered additional severe injuries from his involuntary sky diving without a parachute incident. This meant his powers had trouble keeping up, allowing the rapidly maturing Brood embryo to gain the upperhand. But the reverend kept on praying...

 His voice and manner... as different, as changed as his body! The "demon"... it's real!"

At the last possible moment, Wolverine's healing powers come through and destroy the embryo. But it's not like Logan can rest easy. Contrary to what the reverend promises... the danger's far from past. Harry and the Brood arrive, almost strangling Conover before the X-men manage to kill most of them.

Yes... Kill. For once, the team has adopted a zero tolerance policy. Not a single Brood may survive, or Earth is doomed. That's why sweet, innocent souls like Colossus and Havok slay Brood left and right, until only Harry remains. And he's got a hostage: Hannah Conover.

Luckily, Wolverine's just about done with all of Harry's nonsense... He crawls underneath the podium the Brood is standing on and pulls a surprise move, before pulling a not too surprising move...

"You don't understand, bub... Harry Palmer died a long time ago.
Now, at last, he'll have a chance to rest in peace...."


With Harry Palmer's death, the last of the Earth born Brood have been dealt with. For once, the X-men can enjoy a nice, clean victory that in no way will come back to haunt them somewhere down the road. Heck, even reverend Conover and his wife have extra reason to celebrate...

"Your hands!?! They can move again, are they healed?!!"


A woman finding herself spontaneously cured of debilitating, chronic arthritis? Surely, this miracle must be an act of divine intervention... Or, well...erm, wait, remember how Brood embryos are able to boost their host's immune system so they're in perfect health by the time they take over?

And wasn't nurse Josey riding around with Brood host Harry for lord knows how many weeks?

... Crap on a cracker. 

Friday, July 26, 2013

Brand New Brood Control part II: Temptress *IS* A Harsh Mistress...

The Brood are back, baby... And we all know what that means...

A few months ago a lone Brood Queen crashlanded her space shark on Earth, snacked on some unlucky campers and infected medic Harry Palmer with a royal embryo. The Queen herself conveniently enough vanished into thin air, but Harry set out to recruit new soldiers for the cause... And what better hosts than mutants? By the time the X-men caught up with Harry, he had gathered quite the, erm, brood.

"Breathe deep, Storm! Flood your system with my pheromones."

But Harry had chosen his mutant brood wisely. Brickbat's strength rivalled that of Colossus, Tension could choke the life out of everyone from a safe distance and of course, there was Temptress, the mind controller...

"Don't you feel better now, dear? Don't you just adore me?
Won't you do simply anything I ask... to make me happy?"

Storm managed to get away before she was completely under Temptress' pheromone control. Unfortunately for her, one of the Brood spawned wings, announcing his name was Divebomber and went after the windrider. After all, Harry planned to have her carry a brood queen embryo.

Meanwhile, Temptress had to deal with Rogue... Who on second thought might not have been the best X-man to take her on.

"Can't help myself. Ah'm absorbin' Temptress's power.. an' psyche. Which seems to have overwhelmed your own, Rogue."

Ignoring the fact that even with Rogue out of commission, Carol Danvers was still inside her head at the time... Temptress effortlessly uses her powers in her new skunk haired body to mind control Psylocke. And together, they take on Wolverine...

 "The perfect one-two, my sweet. I telepathically seize your mind...
while my temptress pheromones make you worship me."

After a brief struggle, Wolverine finally gives in and is knocked out... which left him vulnerable to what we all knew was coming...

"And you know, X-man... what happens next!"

Before he could implant eggs in Rogue and Psylocke, the remaining X-men rallied their forces and Harry decided to play it safe, calling for a strategic retreat.

"Protect Temptress and Wolverine... with your lives!"

And so they did... Harry, Psylocke and the other Brood ran to the nearest getaway car, while Rogue picked up Temptress and Wolverine and flew off, straight into the third part of Brand New Brood Control: It's Not Just the Power Of Christ That Can Compel You...

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Brand New Brood Control part I: Guess Who's Back?

 The BROOD is back!"

If you'll allow me to borrow a line from Stephen King: "Sometimes... they *do* come back."

'They' being the Brood, the massively popular alien race that almost turned the X-men into host bodies for their new queens back in 1982. Chris Claremont had refrained from bringing them back too quickly, finally giving in to popular demand with a three parter in 1987 that felt more like a modern day horror flick than the original Brood saga that felt very much like the 1979 cult movie Alien. 

But Claremont wouldn't be Claremont if he didn't subtly weave the return of the Brood into his ongoing storylines, months before the frightful aliens would actually appear in the book. Take for instance this scene from Uncanny X-men # 218, which features a frightening discovery by X-men reservists Havok and Polaris after getting run off the road by a frantic driver behind the wheel of a VW van.

"Lorna, if that one's a Broodqueen... if she lays her eggs, if they hatch... the human race is doomed."

No, that isn't a scene from Jaws VII, it just so happens Lorna and Alex encounter one of the Brood's space sharks, personal transports the aliens use in their stellar travels. It crashed near a New Mexico campsite, apparently killing everyone around. 

Claremont would pick up this thread a good fourteen months later in Uncanny X-men # 232, in which we discover the link between the crashed space shark and that VW-driver who ran Alex and Lorna off the road.

Meet Harry Palmer... a medic who was present when the space shark literally crashed his camping trip and everything went straight to hell...

"Harry... I fell... my ankle... broken... I can't WALK!"

Harry thought he'd been able to escape this gruesome scene unscathed, despite feeling horrible about leaving his friends behind to die. But he couldn't have been more wrong, as we see this issue when he visits a lawyer who suffered a heart attack when his mutant fire breathingpowers first manifested themselves in court. He has a rather... unique... way to heal his patient...

"Rest easy Bob. Your troubles are over. You're going to be fine. Just fine.
In fact, I can pretty much guarantee... that you'll live forever."

Oh snap, so Harry has been infected by the Brood as well! And by infecting the dying Bob with an egg, he quite rightly claimed the man would live forever. After all, as has been previously established, Brood embryos boost the human immune system to the extreme, making sure their host bodies recover from the most serious of injuries or ailments.  

After a hard day of saving people and/or turning them into Brood hosts, Harry returns home to find the X-men waiting for him. As Rogue thinks to herself during the ensuing fight, the team had been on Harry's trail ever since Havok (allegedly) clued them in on finding the crashed Brood vessel in New Mexico.

"Palmer was infected at the crash site in New Mexico...
I spotted that the moment I tagged his scent."

Harry however, still has no clue he's actually a Brood. Even though he effortlessly withstands and repels attacks from Colossus, Psylocke and several other X-men powerhouses. He runs for his life, even boarding a bus in order to cover his tracks. But he finds Rogue posing as one of the passengers, ready to take him down. Unfortunately, due to lack of experience with human/brood hybrids, Harry manages to gain the upperhand and this anything but phallic scene is a fact...

"This is a moment long overdue, little X-girl..."

Sigh, threatening to stab Rogue with a claw that's rather clearly tentacle porn oriented is a minor kink of Claremont's, seeing as he would expose Rogue to pretty much the same thing years later in a 2000 X-men annual...

It didn't work then, either.

Rogue is saved and the team finally manages to corner their quarry. That is, until the police and some locals showed up to reveal they weren't exactly who they seemed to be...

"We're all of us Brood her. And soon, old enemies, very soon... YOU will be too!"

Oh boy, talk about a cliffhanger...

To find out who lived, who died, who spawned wings and tossed airplane engines around, check back for Brand New Brood Control part II: Temptress *IS* A Harsh Mistress...

But before all that good fun... consider this: remember how Harry was shocked to see the Brood that killed his friends and recruited him. So, whatever happened to her? She didn't just die off, or Havok and Polaris would have discovered her remains among the campers she killed. And given the Brood's strong matriarchal society, it's pretty hard to imagine an elder queenf would relinquish or even share power with Harry, her half human daughter. Anyone care to explain this away?

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Legion Lost part III: Sole Soul Survivors

In the third and final installment of Legion Lost, the New Mutants and professor Xavier finally come face to face with 'the Arab', supposedly controlling the mind of David Haller, better known as the mega powerful mutant Legion... who also happens to be Xavier's son.

After surviving inside David's wartorn mind, Xavier and his students finally took to the offense in New Mutants # 28, by taking the fight to the  Arab who was living inside the big, black dome that kept on growing and growing. 

According to Jack Wayne and Cyndi, split personalities of David who controlled his telekinesis and pyrokinesis respectively, the Arab was using his control over David's telepathic gifts to influence the young boy in a sneaky attempt to completely take over his mind. That's why professor Xavier was determined to stop him, with lethal force if necessary.

But, how does one penetrate a seemingly impenetrable object? Well, as Douglas Ramsey points out by referencing an old Star Trek episode, and the Vulcan scholar Kiri-Kin-Tha from that same franchise was fond of stating as well: "Nothing unreal exists".

"Thing is, the phasers worked all along. 
It's just that the villains, who were telepaths, wouldn't let the crew see that."

Once inside, Charles Xavier realises Jack Wayne might not have been too truthful about what 'the Arab' had been doing... For one thing, it seemed many of young David's damaged memories had been carefully repaired, giving the boy small fragments of his sanity back. In effect, his ever increasing mental health might be the big black dome that was slowly taking over the ruined mindscape outside. 

So the Arab... Or Jemail Karami as his real name turned out to be... was actually helping him. Karami was part of a Palestinian death squad that attacked David and his mother Gabrielle, killing his foster father David Shomron in the initial assault.

The shock of witnessing this triggered David's vast telepathic powers and he absorbed Jemail's mind into his own, shattering the lad's psyche in the process. But during the time inside David's head, Jemail got a new perspective on the world, renounced his violent ways, and actively tried to repair the damage he had caused...

Which was something Jack Wayne, as a splinter personality, wasn't too pleased with... If Karami cures David, there'd be no more Jack. That was reason enough for Jack to trick Xavier and the others to get him close enough to Jemail to do just that.

The moment he got within striking distance, Jack attacked...knocking out Jemail, Charles and several of the New Mutants. Luckily, Moonstar was on hand to revive Jemail using a subtle form of mind control....

"She reaches out with her psi-talent... praying to the great spirit and her Cheyenne ancestors for help as she uses her power to draw upon Jemail's happy memories to calm and revive him."

With Jemail restored to normal, the different aspects inside David Haller's head finally have a heart to heart. Neither of them can actually leave the boy's mind, that's why they decide to make the best of it and work together in David's best interest... But that's something Charles Xavier didn't realise until he woke up from the coma Jack's assault blasted him into... A good two weeks later.

So, after all this time, Charles finally gets to properly meets his son David. But while Jemail did his best to mend the boy's mental state of mind, part of the 'peace treaty' negotiated by Dani meant that he still wasn't all there. In fact, splinter personalities Jack Wayne and Cyndi were now openly fighting for 'air time'...

"Forgive me, professor. I lacked the strength and knowledge to deal with these psi-selves"

But at least David was communicating again... And father and son had an emotional, heart felt first meeting that also doubled as a reunion in a way. After al, they'd already met back in Haller's own head. At the close of the issue, Charles made a very poignant promise to his son...

"You have my word... I'll never lose you!"

Well, if you can't trust your father, really... who *can* you trust?

Anyhoo, a month later Secret Wars II kicked off and Charles was too preoccupied with the Beyonder to really notice the plight of his son. And by the time the Beyonder left, Xavier had pretty much signed his own death warrant by pushing himself too hard for too long, collapsing in Paris during Magneto's trial (where Gabrielle Haller was present too, who was watching Legion?)
Still, that's why, a short six months after the touching father and child reunion, we get to Uncanny X-men # 200 and this particular scene...

"And we'll never know... if you don't... try!"

Words to live by, Charlie... even if you were in the middle of a fatal heart attack at the time. Unfortunately, after Lilandra and the Starjammers used their advanced alien medical technology to save him, circumstances made it impossible for Charles to return to his son... A boy he never told Lilandra about on panel to begin with...

Xavier remained in space for most of the 80s, only returning to Earth when the X-men told him about the rise of his old enemy the Shadow King...who by then had taken over his son's mind... After Moira MacTaggert forced him in Uncanny X-men # 259  to use Cerebro in an attempt to locate the missing X-men...

"My head... it hurts it HURTS!"

Yeah... If only Xavier had been around to train his very vulnerable telepathic son. The Shadow King took control of the boy and he became the focal point of Claremont's final story arc during his initial X-men run: the Muir Island saga. In the end, the Shadow King possessed David Haller's body and father and son were forced to fight. Charles won, driving the King from his son's mind, but he was crippled in the process.

Still, one has to wonder if things would have turned out differently if Xavier had remained on Earth. For instance, if Charles had been a presence in Legion's life all the way through the modern day, would he have been able to provide a lasting impact?

"In mercy's name, cease fir...*"

Probably not.

And let's not forget what other writers did to Legion after Chris left. Scott Lobdell and Fabian Nicieza used poor David as the impetus for the wildy succesful 1995 crossover Age of Apocalypse. The lonely, hurt young boy woke up one day and figured out why his father was never there: Magneto.

If Magneto never rose to power, his father's dream of mutants and humans coexisting peacefully would come true and 'daddy' would spend more time. David used his latent temporal powers to travel back to 1950s Israel, where Xavier and Magneto first met. He also ran into his mom and this disturbing scene happened...  


Those glowing eyes are usually a dead give away mind control is in play... Because this is what Gaby saw...

"Don't call me Charles... Not tonight..."

Urgh, talk about oedipal complex... A son sleeping with his own mother, who he mindcontrols into believing he's in fact his father. But hey, let's not claim comics are formulaic, it's not like the son would plan to kill his father... Right?


Well, not unless your father happens to jump in front of the psychic knife you were planning to kill Magneto with... Xavier's death caused the Age of Apocalypse... way to parent, Charlie.

But hey, back in 2012, Xavier got yet another chance to prove himself as a parent when he went off with Legion to teach his son what he needed to know... And right in the middle of that, the Avengers versus X-men crossover went down...

"Father... make it stop..."

Xavier did indeed try and make it stop, by forcing former star pupile Cyclops and the other members of the 'Phoenix Five'  to stand down. An enraged Cyclops finally incinerated Charles, killing the professor and forcing his son to grow up...Legion did just that, scoring the lead in the recently relaunced X-men Legacy. 

And whát a legacy indeed...

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Legion Lost Part II: Charles Xavier You *ARE* The Father!

When we last left the New Mutants, they had accompanied their mentor Charles Xavier to Moira McTaggert's mutant research lab on Muir Island. One of her patients, an autistic boy called David, had accidentally put Tom Corsi and Sharon Friedlander into a coma and Charles was asked to help out.

When Moira and Wolfsbane suffered a similar fate before the end of New Mutants # 26, that gave Xavier a lot to do ánd recap at the beginning of # 27.

"Only an extraordinarily powerful telepath has such a capability"

Isn't it funny how intelligent people can be oblivious to the obvious at times? David is the son of Charles' former lover Gabrielle Haller... and now turns out to be a powerful telepath. You'd think Xavier would put two and two together, right? He doesn't... not until he finally, with the help of Mirage, enters the astral plane to look for Rahne and the others. But first, we're treated to this delightfully creepy tidbit...

"WOW! Professor, you look fantastic! I never dreamed you were such hot stuff!"

Here we have a 14 year old girl basically telling her teacher he has a nice ass. Can't blame her for being surprised, after all he was in a wheelchair for most of the time she's known him.

Anyway, while it looks like Wolfsbane is approaching them, it's actually a psychic illusion that tears into Xavier and Dani, before bursting into flame. Meanwhile, in the real world, the flames appear around their bodies, shocking Doug Ramsey and Gaby Haller... right before sucking them on to the astral plane as well. Because... well... because.

Shocked and tired of being toyed with, Charles brings the full range of psi talent to bear and bluntly tears into the walls around David's mind, hoping to break through. This causes the boy considerable pain, and as he cries out, his true face ánd an obvious truth is revealed...

"This is Gaby's secret, the boy sees it in her thoughts and I in his. David Haller is my son!"

No duh, Charles... look at the size of those bushy eyebrows Bill Sienkiewicz drew on the kid... Apparently, it's a hereditary trait. 

After breaching his mental wall, Xavier tried to bring the others into David's mind... but he got surprised by how quickly the boy's defenses were being rebuilt and lost most of them as they tumbled down into his mindscape. Holding on to Gaby, Charles literally came face to face with the people who ran David's head...

"Momma... poppa... help me!"

You have to feel sorry for the little boy on the far right. No way this child is able to deal with the three adult personalities vying for control over his body. He wants to be good, but he can't help doing bad. But now his parents were there to help... unfortunately, they weren't in the best of shape. Gabrielle was unconscious and Charles was still suffering from the severe injuries he received after a beating in Uncanny X-men # 192.

Xavier pushed himself and Gaby into David's mind. But the effort proved too much. He passed out and when he came to, he was alone and a little disoriented by what he saw...

A dark, disturbing amalgam of places the boy had been to, with a mysterious, seemingly impenetrable black dome dominating the scene. Sienkiewicz's abstract tendencies really sold this premise, giving the inside of David Haller's autistic mind a true sense of alienating weirdness.

And that was before Charles even met the many, curious inhabitants... Like a curious telepathic Arabic man and... Jack Wayne.

"The big man's grin is infectious. And in spite of himself, Xavier warms to him"

But it's not like they have too much time getting acquainted, because the mind of David Haller is like a war zone in more ways than one.  Xavier gets chased by black helicopters with gatling guns, and Jack is the first to explain to him what was going on...

"See that dome... that's where you'll find the kid's essence, whatever's left of his true personality. The Arab's responsible for the dome and the military hardware... he keeps the kid prisoner inside."

That's enough to convince Xavier he needs to penetrate the black dome and with Jack's help he sets out to do just that. Meanwhile, in another part of David's mind, Moira McTaggert, the New Mutants and Gabrielle Haller meet the same young Arab that Charles ran across, but Gaby's reaction to the man is rather explosive.

Turns out he was part of a Palestinian terroristgroup that attacked Gabrielle, her lover Daniel Shomron and David, killing Shomron and traumatising the young boy into his current autistic and catatonic state. Ignoring for a second that autism isn't triggered by trauma, it's obvious Gabrielle is more than a little ticked off at this terrorist.

But he disappears before she can catch up with him, just as a young punkish girl makes her first appearance...

"Watch how you talk to m, ladydoc..."

Meet Cyndi, another one of David's made up personalities. While Jack Wayne controls the boy's telekinesis, she possess his pyrokinesis... In other words, she can set things on fire. Heck, in all likelihood her name is derived from 'incendiary', which means 'capable of causing fire. She also has a fiery personality, a typical teenager distrustful of any and all authority figures, preferring chaos over boring, adult order. She's also the one who torched Moira's lab...

But Dani Moonstar has bigger concerns, not to mention questions for Gaby Haller.

"I want to know more about that Arab."

You gotta love how innocent the mid 80s were, in retrospect, Nowadays, refering to someone as 'that Arab' has an ever so offensive ring to it. But here we have Gabrielle Haller, smoking in her astral form by the way, explaining how 'that Arab' terrorist attacked her and her family in Paris. 

Gaby finally decides to come clean about her son. She always knew he was Charles' child and that he had mutant potential. Witnessing the terrorist attack as a young boy, triggered his enormous psionic powers before he was ready to use them.

This caused David to fully absorb the Arab assailant's mental being into his own, which caused his autism and the formation of split personalities like Jack and Cyndi to help deal with a trauma he couldn't grasp at that age...

While Gabrielle is filling in the New Mutants, the professor is getting briefed by Jack Wayne, who has a slightly different take on the Arab's influence on David's mind...

"Imagine... Bein' killed an' then reborn as part of the consciousness of your intended victim.
Ironic, huh?"

Basically, Jack tells Charles that 'the arab' is holding his son prisoner and expanding the black dome to increase his control over the boy's mind. If he isn't stopped, it won't be long before David completely disappears and a murderous terrorist is allowed to run the show inside the head of an extremely powerful psionic mutant.

Handing Charles a knife, Jack dares Charles to end it... If he has the guts for it. Accepting the weapon with grim resolve, Xavier ends the issue with a classic 1980s action movie tagline... "Let's go!".

Just how all this will end is answered in the third and final chapter of Legion Lost: Sole Soul Survivors

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Legion Lost Part I: "Charles Xavier *ARE* You The Father? "

Nothing good ever came out of Muir Island.

It's not the fault of the island itself, it's a perfectly decent piece of chilly rock. Mostly, it's Moira McTaggert's fault. After she opened up her mutant research facility there, things took a turn for the worse.  Whether it was Moira's own son Proteus going mad... and deciding to mind and body control his mom while inhabiting the body of his father...

"You're mine, body and soul. Accept that... reality, Moira. You won't like the alternative."

... And let's not forget the Charles Xavier had most of Moira's pupils killed in a desperate attempt to free his X-men from Krakoa...  Needless to say, Muir didn't exactly have a stellar track record when it came to aiding ailing mutants. Knowing this, one would think Israeli ambassador Gabrielle Haller would think twice before sending her severly autistic mutant son David to the Scottish research center. But no, in fact, when she made her first appearance back in New Mutants # 1, Gaby seemed far more occupied with dropping this behind the scenes bombshell...

"Charles Xavier... is the boy's father."

Yeah, but don't tell him that. Just move the boy to Muir for treatment and hope for the best...

And everything seemed fine, until the troubled lad caused all sorts of problems... Especially for cop Tom Corsi and nurse Sharon Friedlander, both former Caucasians who found themselves transformed into Native Americans in the wake of getting possessed by the Demon Bear. They went to Muir to recover and regroup, but didn't exactly get too much downtime.

 "It's an astral form... like the one Professor Xavier manifests! This kid must be a telepath, too!"

He was, and then some... this spectral astral image from Gabrielle's son was so intense, that he put both Tom and Sharon into a mental coma. Distraught, Gabrielle urged Moira to do the obvious but rather unwanted thing: call in Charles to help out.

Arriving with the New Mutants in tow, Charles was totally unaware David's mother was his former girlfriend... In fact, this was the first time readers realised the professor wasn't hallucinating when he fought alongside Magneto to save former nazi deathcamp survivor Gaby from Baron Strucker back in Uncanny X-men # 161.

"Then, I'll have to use all my feminine wiles... to attract its attention"

Yes, the young Gaby from Charles' fever dream turned out to be Gabrielle Haller, a prominent Israeli politician currently working as an ambassador. But the care for her son David had taken its toll on her, which became painfully apparent when Charles and Gabrielle met after so many years...

"It's been so long. You're as lovely as ever."

Gaby is right, Charles *is* a silver-tongued devil. After all, she looks extremely worn down, what, with her chain smoking, prematurely graying hair. The stress from having both a demanding job and a troubled son clearly took its toll.

Speaking of a troubled son, let's check how David's doing...

"Why did you wait so long to call me?! Gaby, I could have helped the boy as I did you!"

So that's why, without further ado, Charles decided to enter David's mind... Unfortunately, he found a bit more inside than he had bargained for. 

  "The thoughts directing David's actions seem somehow alien...
as if there's a portion of his mind that isn't him."

Something inside David that might not be him? Sounds like a proper reason for Charles to go inside the boy's mind. But because he was still suffering from serious injuries received after a near fatal mugging over in Uncanny X-men, Xavier wasn't exactly at his best. That's why he needed a bit of time to collect himself before dealing with David head on... And that left a window of opportunity for Charles and Gabrielle to catch up...

"A telepath can play god. You've no idea how tempting that is. I can change thoughts, twist memories, destroy a personality... erase it utterly...and recreate it any way I choose"

In these quiet moments together, Charles confesses his long hidden guilt about the way things went between him and Gabrielle. After all, she was his patient and after he brought her out of her catatonic state with his mental powers, they became lovers... ignoring the fact he might have subconsciously used his telepathy to influence or even seduce her. But Gaby, chainsmoking Gaby, would hear nothing of this...Even though it seemed clear she wasn't telling Xavier the whole truth about David...

Meanwhile, in the closing pages of New Mutants # 26, Moira McTaggert was finally having a long overdue heart to heart with her adoptive daughter Rahne 'Wolfsbane' Sinclair when they discovered an unexpected visitor...

Ending an issue with a big BWHOOM! of an explosion only raises interest in the sequel, so check back next time for, spoiler alert, Legion Lost Part II: Charles Xavier You *ARE* The Father!"