Friday, November 30, 2012

X-men Supreme Issue #68: The Phoenix Saga Part 6 PREVIEW

The end of the X-men Supreme Phoenix Saga is near! It's already the longest arc of the X-men Supreme fanfiction series to date and there's still one issue left! I've been working very hard to make this final issue to this amazing saga the best it can possibly be. Part of what made the original Phoenix Saga so iconic under the pen of Chris Claremont was the sheer emotion of the ending. It was an ending that would have far reaching implications for the X-men and for Marvel comics as a whole for decades to come. As we saw with the recent events of Avengers vs. X-men, those events still have a major impact on the comics today. I intend to have the X-men Supreme Phoenix Saga leave an equally profound impact on this fanfiction series for many issues to come. The Phoenix Force affects more than Jean Grey or Cyclops or anyone in the X-men. It effects the entire world they live in and you'll see why in the final issue! As such, I've prepared a brief preview for this very important issue.

“This…this doesn’t make sense.”

From the far reaches of deep space, the Phoenix soared through space and time to find herself back to this small planet known as Earth. Guided by the mysterious call, she followed the whims of Jean Grey to this seemingly obscure location. Neither she nor Jean was fighting for dominance anymore. They weren’t unleashing the full range of power that a cosmic entity was capable of wielding. They were more or less sharing in these many conflicting feelings. The hunger was still there, but it was different now. That same hunger was driving her towards actions of a different kind. What those actions were was still not clear, but they sensed the answers were close.

Now standing in the driveway, she carefully took in the structure before her. This seemingly innocuous domicile triggered within her and Jean so many emotions.

“I…I’m home.”

The festering confusion drove Jean and the Phoenix forward. Something very important lay inside this house. She sensed it was the source of this mysterious call. Whatever it was, she needed to confront it if she was to get the answers she wanted.

Moving cautiously, the powerful figure approached the front door. With barely a thought, she used her vast psionic power to blow open the door and rip it to shreds. Once inside, she stopped to take in her surroundings. She now stood in front of a flight of stairs. To her left was the living room. To her right was the dining room. As she looked to her right she had a powerful vision of an event years ago in the life of Jean Grey.

“No Daddy, I don’t want you to drink!”

“Jean, sweetie, Daddy needs that bottle! Now hand it over!”

“No! I don’t like it when you drink! Please stop!”

Before her eyes she saw a vision of a growing young girl standing before her father as he sat with a bottle of hard liquor at the dining room table. He was already drunk and Jean was using her powers to keep the bottle away from him. He kept reaching for it, but the mysterious force in her mind was pulling it away.

“That’s enough, Jean! Don’t make me call the hospital again!”

“Don’t do it, Daddy! You’re drunk! I just want to…”

“STOP IT THIS INSTANT!”

A twinge of anger filled both Jean and the Phoenix as this vision played out. They triggered in her a different kind of sensation that the Phoenix was not used to. With glowing eyes, she turned away and looked towards her left into the living room. Yet this only triggered another vision.

Before her eyes, another scene played out. The man she recognized as Jonathan Grey was sitting in what was then a destroyed living room. There were holes on the walls, broken windows, and a TV that was in a million pieces. He was in tears, holding another bottle of hard liquor. Sitting next to him was a man in a suit offering a hallow comfort.

“Just look at what she did, Dr. Lee! She’s completely out of control!”

“It’s not your fault, John. Her mother’s recent passing has put a great deal of strain on her. These growing telepathic incidents aren’t helping either.”

“I know they’re not! But I just can’t deal with her anymore! My wife is dead! My little Sara is dead! Jean’s all I have left and I can’t control her! What am I supposed to do?!”

“You have options, John. That’s why I’m here. Now I’m not saying that committing her to my ward is a sound solution, but it is something to consider. Jean is a disturbed young girl. She needs treatment.”

The look on John Grey’s face was sad and distant. He seemed to know he was doing the wrong thing. His only response was to sit there and take another heavy gulp of hard liquor. At this point, the vision took another turn. From across the room, she saw the same timid redhead from before looking in on the conversation. She had tears in her eyes as if she knew what this meant for her. Alone and in a deep despair, she ran off to her room.

More powerful sensations consumed her. Jean Grey was bombarded with feelings of sorrow and regret. It was becoming clear now. That little girl was her. These experiences were memories of her life. It was the same life the Phoenix was pulling her away from in her madness. These were not pleasant experiences. These were sad, distressing moments that triggered in her an emptiness that could only be felt by someone still very much tied to her humanity.

To the Phoenix, it was a darker part of mortal experience. It was not the kind of experiences that fueled her hunger. They were experiences that caused her pain. It was a sensation that was completely foreign to her. She could sense the pain of mortal beings as they drew their last breath. She could sense the pain of the cosmos when something was destroyed. But this was a different kind of pain, one that struck her in ways that a cosmic force couldn’t comprehend.

“This…this isn’t right. These sensations…they’re not right.”

“No…they are right,” said Jean distantly, “I remember now. These feelings…they’re a part of me. I must know more.”

“More…yes, the hunger still beckons. But still…so confused.”

“Your hunger will have to wait! I cannot stop. I won’t!”

Even though it was causing her pain, Jean pressed forward. She followed the vision of the little girl as she fled up the stairs. With each step she took, more of these sensations filled her. Once up the stairs, they followed the visions towards a room at the end of the hall. This was the room in which Jean Grey had a powerful connection. Standing before the closed door, the Phoenix hesitated briefly before entering. But the burning need to know drove them forward.

A casual burst of power shattered the door, turning it into a shower of splinters. This revealed to her a room that looked as though no soul had set foot inside for a long time. There was just an unmade bed, a dresser, and a few boxes in the corner. It may have looked empty now, but in the visions she saw a room that was messy and disorganized. When the little girl ran into this room, she lost control. Everything that could be moved was levitated into the air and swirled about. It was chaotic, yet it seemed lost on the girl. She just kept sitting in the corner, hugging her knees as she cried out in anguish.

“Mommy’s dead! Daddy’s throwing me away! Nobody loves me anymore! I’m a monster! A MONSTER!”

“A monster…”

Tears formed in the eyes of the cosmic being. The Phoenix had never felt tears before. This sorrow was a new experience. It was agonizing, tearing at her in ways she did not understand. In her tears, the bird-shaped flame surrounded her as took in these visions of the past and present. In her mind’s eye, she was looking at that scared little girl as she sat crying in the corner. This little girl was in so much pain. It was a pain that the Phoenix and Jean Grey shared. The feeling fed off from one another. The Phoenix made it worse for Jean and Jean made it worse for the Phoenix.

Eventually, the pain was too much. The cosmic being that could snuff out entire stars on a whim fell to her knees and sobbed. There was no use running from the truth. No amount of cosmic power could change it.

“I…I am a monster!” Jean cried out.


The Phoenix Saga marks a very important moment for the X-men Supreme fanfiction series. So much of what I've been trying to do with the X-men has been building towards this moment. After a great many stories and character development, it's finally coming together! The X-men Supreme fanfiction series is about to undergo a profound shift and for that reason it's very important that people take the time to provide feedback. I'm hoping that the X-men Supreme Phoenix Saga will establish this fanfiction series as something that's on the same scale as anything readers will find in Marvel comics, but I can't be sure of that unless people take the time to provide feedback. Please post it in each issue of the X-men Supreme fanfiction series or contact me with your questions or comments. Until next time, take care and best wishes! Excelsior!

Jack

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