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Originally Posted by Byrd Man
Charles and Moira sat in the back of her chauffeured car, stuck in midtown traffic. Moria glanced at her watch and then up at the traffic ahead of them. She had one hand wrapped around a cellphone and pressed to her ear.
"Yes... Yes. We're going to be late. Traffic, but we'll be there as soon as we can. Okay, bye."
"You never told me what this banquet we were attending is for," Charles said after Moria hung up. "Or exactly why I needed to be arm candy."
"It's for the National Academy of Sciences. I'm being given an award."
"Did you finally invent that cure for cancer you always talked about?"
"Not just yet... Do you remember my bio-engineered corn project back at university? The corn that can grow with minimal water? It works like a charm. They're using it in the famine areas of Africa right now."
"Well, it's not cancer, but you managed to put a fair size dent into world hunger. Congratulations."
"And as for why I needed you as arm candy? It's been so long since we saw each other, I just wanted to catch up. And if I have a good looking date at my disposal, I'll use him. How have you been, Charles?"
"I've been fine, I suppose. I haven't went bald yet, so that's a feat."
"What about your research into genetic mutations? Do you still see Erik?"
"I'm still busy studying mutants... As for Erik, him and I had a falling out sometime back. We didn't see eye to eye on several things."
"That's a shame," Moria said, reaching forward and touching Charles by the arm. "I remember you and him were such great friends. Spending nearly every waking moment together, the trips abroad, those hushed conversations when I was around. I always thought the two of you were... umm, more than friends."
"You thought that we were... No! We weren't...," he stammered. "I mean, not that there's anything wrong with that. No, Erik and I were engaged in research."
"It's fine, Charles," she said with a smirk. "It's the twenty-first century, and you were a student at university. So you experimented, so what?"
"Perhaps we should change the subject?" Charles said quickly. "Like, what we might have planned after the banquet? I had a few ideas. There's a place uptown we can go to--"
The roar inside his head threw Charles back against the seat. He grabbed his head as pain filled his mind. The pain he felt didn't belong to him. It was coming from Jean.
Fighting against the pain, Charles shut down his telepathy and killed Jean's psychic screams.
"Charles?" Moria asked with a confused scowl. "What's wrong?"
"I need to go back home," he said with sudden urgency. "My children are in danger."
"What are you talking about?" Moira asked as Charles rubbed his forehead. "Who's in danger?"
"My children. The students I told you I've been teaching."
"Yes, but how do you know they're in danger?"
"I'll explain later,"
he said, leaning forward. "Driver, take us back to Salem Center right now."
"Listen, pal," the driver spat. "I don't like your tone and I'm working for the lady."
~Turn us around and head back to Salem Center,~
Charles said inside the man's head.
"You got it," he said obediently. The driver put the car in gear and began trying to merge over into the next lane.
"What's going on?" Moria asked. "Your students are in danger? From whom?"
"How? I don't understand."
"Maybe this will help,"
he said, putting his hand to his temple.
Thoughts, memories, and feelings appeared in Moira's mind. The first time Charles heard the voices in his head, his stay in the mental institution, the realization of his powers, the truth of the nature of his telepathy, meeting Erik, their travels searching for new mutants, their falling out and fight. Then the last year with the government and his students, all their uphill struggles and their fight to be free of their control.
"Oh, my God," Moira said with a gasp. "All this time I've known you. All these years. You're..."
"Yes. I'm a mutant."
Charles turned away form his old friend and looked behind him.
"Someone's coming for me. I can their thoughts. I have to leave now."
"Go," Moira said, squeezing his hand. "Be safe."
He nodded and climbed out the car. The town car was in the middle of 5th Avenue, parked in traffic. Down the block, Charles could see a group of five men in dark clothes weaving through traffic towards his location.
"There he is!" One of the men shouted. They began to pull weapons from their jackets when Charles reached out and touched their minds. The five men fell back and hit the pavement. They were all asleep before they had even realized what hit them.
Adjusting his tie, Charles looked through the window at Moira and nodded before going to the sidewalk and walking down the street towards the unconscious men. He combed through their minds and got all the information he needed about the attackers. They were military men and they had been sent to dispatch him. Their mental blocks were poor, not on par with the foes his students had went up against. The man they were under the orders of, he knew all too well.
Turning away from the scene, Charles ducked down a side alley and made his way through the city. He tried his mental link with Jean and the rest of the X-Men for nearly two hours, being greeted only by silence. He was in Central Park, his bowtie unknotted and his jacket off. He held his hands in his head and tried to figure out what to do next.
Over the Pacific Ocean
The Osprey cut through the wind currents high above the ocean as it continued west towards its destination. Inside the cargo hold, the ten Sentinels sat in silence with their helmets removed. On gurneys in front of them, the five young mutants slept.
"We're twenty minutes away from Krakoa, sergeant,"
the pilot said through Trask's earpiece. Trask rogered and passed the news along to his soldiers.
On the gurneys in the floor, one of the mutants stirred. The girl's eyes fluttered open and she looked around. "Where...,"
she started to say.
"The hell," one of the Sentinels said. "There was enough tranq in those darts to take a horse down."
"Hit her again," Trask ordered.
One of the soldiers unslung his rifle and prepared to fire. The gun was wretched from his hands and floated in the air above them. On the floor, the mutant girl manipulated it. Trask began to panic. Those shots had been filled with the gene-supressing serum that supposedly negated a mutant's special ability.
"The ****?!" Bolt yelled. He began to go for his gun, only to have it taken away from him.
"Shoot her!" Trask yelled. "Take her down."
"I'm trying!" One of the soldiers hollered back. His Sentinel armor was being ripped from his body.
"YOU WILL RELEASE ME,"
a voice boomed through the girl's mouth. It sounded vaguely like her own voice, but it was filled with power and malice. "OR I WILL RELEASE MYSELF."
The girl's eyes glowed bright red and the entire Osprey began to sway and shake widlly. Cursing, Trask leaped forward and brought the heel of his boot down on the girl's head. She flinched and fell unconscious. The swaying stopped immediately, the guns and armor clattered to the floor. Panting, Trask slumped back against his seat and pulled his pistol out. He shot the girl with six darts.
"Double dose," he wheezed. "That'll keep her down. Everyone keep your goddamn guns pointed at her at all times!"
Trask leaned back in his seat, his gun still trained on the girl and breathed a small sigh of relief.
"Jean," Charles said, sitting upright on the bench. He had felt the surge of psychic energy even from this far away. It was a powerful blast. And it was all Jean. He had felt her reach out, and she knew where she was. Just like that, a plan began to form inside Charles' mind. He looked around and mentally reached out the people in the park, making sure he was not still being followed. Once he felt that it was clear, he closed his eyes and began to channel all his psychic energy into communicating to a psyche he had been in touch with not that long ago.
~Logan. This is Charles Xavier. If you can hear this message, meet me in New York City. It's in Central Park, I'm sending you the mental images of the location and time. It's an emergency. Please, my friend, hurry.~