Friday, December 14, 2012

X-men Supreme Issue #69 - Kings and Tyrants Part 1 PREVIEW

The X-men Supreme Phoenix Saga is over and this fanfiction series will never be the same. Jean Grey, Cyclops, and the X-men as a whole will never be the same. But the world around them will continue to carry on. In the midst of the Phoenix Saga, the ongoing drama with the Presidential Election is still unresolved. Whereas the real election has passed, an election that's every bit as important to the X-men Supreme fanfiction series is almost here. The X-men won't have much time to recover from the impact left by the Phoenix Force. A new conflict is already brewing in a new arc that will set the stage for the epic conclusion of X-men Supreme Volume 3: Ashes of Hope. As always, I've prepared an extended preview of what you can expect from this latest issue of X-men Supreme.

The presidential hopeful and proud father gave his kids another firm hug before letting them go. His son and daughter weren’t the only one who he hadn’t seen in a while. His wife, Sharon, had been working just as hard as him during this campaign. It was refreshing to see her in person for once.

“Kids, go with Daddy’s friends and get changed real quick,” he told his kids, “Daddy needs to talk to Mommy.”

“Do we have to?” his daughter complained.

“This is an important night, sweetheart. We have to be looking our best for it.”

The two young children begrudgingly conceded and followed one of the body guards into the bedroom so they could get changed. This left him alone with his wife, who was smiling just as much as he was.

“Hello there, stranger. How have you been holding up?” she asked as she pulled him into a quick embrace.

“As well as can be expected, Sharon,” sighed Robert, “Stryker’s been taking care of the setup. He’s also going to warm the reporters up before the festivities begin.”

“I hope you’re not giving him too many responsibilities. You know how I feel about that man. After that mess with Graydon Creed, I find him less than trustworthy.”

“Yes, you’ve made no secret of that. But I would rather not have that discussion again. Tonight is about the future. Not the past.”

“It still feels like we’re getting ahead of ourselves though,” Sharon pointed out, “This elaborate victory party feels a bit premature.”

“It helps to present an aura of confidence. You’re a former public relations consultant and political aide. You know how important it is to present an image.”

“It’s not your image that worries me, Robert. A lot of people are already painting you as the White Knight setting off to do battle with the mutant menace. It’s the target you’re painting on your back that keeps me up at night. Even this army of security guards you’ve surrounded yourself with isn’t putting my mind at ease.”

“You’re still worried I’ll invite retaliation from disgruntled mutants?”

“With the policies you’re pushing, that’s a given.”

“And it’s a risk we have to take, Sharon. If I don’t do this, someone else will have to and they may not be as strong,” he pionted out.

“I never doubted your strength, Robert. But it isn’t just the mutants that worry me. That madman who tried to kill you in Philadelphia was just as dangerous. If you do win this thing, what’s to stop other people from doing something just as extreme?”

She clung to him a little harder as she detailed these concerns. This wasn’t the first time she brought them up and it probably wouldn’t be the last. If he won the election, it would become an even bigger issue. It was something that was always on Senator Kelly’s mind and something he didn’t take lightly.

“I understand this is stressful. I’ve lost my share of sleep over it as well,” he said in a caring tone, “But that is the risk every president takes.”

“So why do you continue to take even greater risks?” asked Sharon.

“Because this time the stakes are even higher. We’re not just talking about making the transition from one president to the next. We’re talking about a new era for this country and the world as a whole! I thrust myself into this position because I truly believe I can lead everyone down the right path.”

“You don’t have to convince me of that, Robert. I knew from day one how important this is to you. It’s important to me too. I wouldn’t have supported you this much if I didn’t share this ambition.”

“And I’ll need that support if and when I take office. You’ve known me for years, Sharon. You know I’m a man of conviction. Every politician may say that, but I’m the only one who truly means it. When I said I wanted to protect my family from all the dangerous mutants out there, I meant it.”

“I know you do. I’m just as concerned about mutants as you are. I do not want the children growing up in a world where they have to worry about some freak shooting them with heat vision or lightning bolts.”

“And the sad part is that’s probably not the worst of it,” he added.

“Even if it wasn’t, you’re bearing an awful heavy load for the world, Robert. I know you feel ready for it. I just don’t know if I’m ready. Or the children for that matter.”

“Hey, I wouldn’t have done this in the first place if I didn’t think my family was ready,” said Robert, holding his wife a little closer, “You’re strong, Sharon. That’s one of the reasons I married you. The kids are strong too even if they are restless. I just need you to hold onto that strength. These are historic times for us all. One way or another, I’m going to be a part of it and I want you to be a part of it as well.”

When he put it in such a grand context, Sharon couldn’t help but be overwhelmed again. Even in the comforting embrace of her husband, she still had so many concerns.

“Oh Robert…” she said.

“Please Sharon…I need you for this.”

The presidential hopeful gently cupped her chin as he gazed longingly into her eyes. It was a gaze she always struggled to tear herself away from. She wanted to be strong for him. She really did. This was just such a big endeavor it was hard to wrap her head around it.

Trying to show his support, Senator Kelly began to draw her into a kiss. He had to remind her that they were in this together. They would make it through together. But just as his lips were about to touch hers, there was another knock on his door.

“Ah hell, hold that thought,” he said, placing a finger on her lips, “Could one of you get that? I don’t remember inviting anyone up.”

“Of course, senator,” said one of his body guards, “Go ahead and carry on with the Misses.”

The lone body guard rushed to the door. Ever since the Philadelphia debacle, the Senator kept many layers of security around him. Not just anybody could be allowed to get close to him. They always had to go through security, less some renegade mutant tried something funny.

Maintaining a cautious demeanor, the body guard looked through the peep hole to see who it was. He quickly identified it as Reverend Stryker.

“Reverend Stryker?”

“Please, let me in. I need to talk to Senator Kelly. It’s very important,” he said in a strangely mechanical tone.

“He’s a bit busy with his family, but so long as it’s important,” the body guard replied.

Since Reverend Stryker was one of the few man who had easy access to the senator, the body guard relaxed somewhat as he opened the door. But as soon as he did, he noticed something was off. Reverend Stryker’s expression looked somewhat…stiff, for lack of a better word.

“Reverend Stryker? Are you alright?” he asked, “You look a little…”

Suddenly, the body of the Reverend fell forward and landed flat on his face. It was as if he was a statue, landing with a hard thud. The body guard fell back in shock, confused at what he just saw. Then he looked up to see that someone had been standing behind the Reverend.

“Don’t worry. He’ll be fine,” said Exodus in a cold tone, “You on the other hand…”

I'm very proud of how the Phoenix Saga turned out. Some have already commented on how the ending was much different than the X-men comics or even the cartoons. I've also had a few comments from those who are a bit confused about what I've done with the Phoenix Force in X-men Supreme. I'll say right now that the Phoenix Force operates much differently in X-men Supreme than it does in other mediums. It's very different from what some Marvel comic fans recently read in Marvel's recent Avengers vs. X-men story. But the nature of the Phoenix Force in X-men Supreme hasn't been completely fleshed out yet. I left a few questions unanswered for a reason. So rest assured, this is NOT the last Phoenix story you'll see in the X-men Supreme fanfiction series. Both the Phoenix Force and Jean Grey will undergo some major developments in future stories, but details on those developments will have to wait.

For now, my focus is on wrapping up X-men Supreme Volume 3: Ashes of Hope. The X-men have come a long way since this fanfiction series began. And the next step promises to take them in a bold new direction. As always, I strongly encourage everybody to provide feedback on each issue or contact me if you have any questions or comments. I'm always happy to listen and respond! I have so much I want to do in the post-Phoenix Saga world of X-men Supreme. I hope many others will come along for the ride. Until next time, take care and best wishes! Excelsior!


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