Title: X-Book 2: Shadows and Steel - Chapter 23: Bullets and Glass
Rating: PG-13 (violence, language)
Genre: Crossover, SPOILERS FOR X2
Summary: See Chpt 1
Disclaimer: I own nothing in regards to the Marvel characters or
any character from a previously published source portrayed in this
Three black helicopters began to circle the house and Magneto smiled.
He glanced back, and saw the Sentinel destroying the home of two
Far to his left, he noticed two X-Men loading their companions onto
their small black jet.
Four large transport vans stopped on the street and soldiers took
positions around the yard.
As his side were three of his own strongest soldiers, awaiting his
command to attack.
not the beginning. That had been Alkalai Lake.
the next battle, each conflict
a step to victory.
Magneto focused on the transport vehicles and tilted his head
curiously. They were also not made of metal. How clever
too bad for the soldiers that almost everything else around them was.
With barely a thought, he lifted one of the piled automobiles into
the air. It hovered, gleaming beautiful silver in the dim light,
and he heard the soldiers shouting orders to each other. Magneto
regarded them again curiously. They seemed somewhat disorganized
and very young. They had not been meant as the main threat, simply
clean up after the machine.
And, who, he wondered, had been completing Stryker's work? The
man was dead, after all. Magneto had made sure of that, chaining
the human's body to a wall, left to drown under the waters of the
ruined dam. Another ignorant fool, he supposed. No matter
The soldiers began to scatter as the hovering automobile flew
towards them. The car impacted on van, which tumbled over and
cracked. Three other cars followed, causing a minor panic among the
troops. Magneto turned his attention to one of the helicopters
circling above. With no small measure of enjoyment, he turned the
aircraft upside down and watched the humans within fall to the
ground. He drew the machine to him, a more effective means of
escape than a land bound vehicle.
Magneto was so enthralled by his own actions, his own power; he did
not immediately hear Sid Malloy's shouting voice.
"Look out!" Sid yelled to Magneto and the others as the
Sentinel crashed forward through the front of the house.
Mystique looked back, up into the cold mechanical stare and watched
the machine lock its gaze on Magneto. The four green searchlights
moved together as one and shone on him. The green light made his
crimson helmet shine with a sickly light, but Magneto seemed
entirely focused on landing the helicopter.
"Erik!" Mystique yelled and sprinted toward him. Magneto
shifted his eyes to the right but did not turn around. Instead, he
lifted another car into the air and hurled it at the Sentinel. The
machine swung one heavy arm and knocked it easily aside.
" he said, and gave Sid a long serious look.
Sid shook his head, "I can't! I can't just leave them
with that thing
The younger man ran off and Magneto sighed with frustration. The
twins were not members of the Brotherhood (yet) and his orders were
easily ignored. The helicopter landed solidly and Magneto walked
quickly across the yard. The others did not wait for an order to
The machine also followed Magneto movements, and began to again walk
toward them. Magneto glanced at Deathstrike, and she spun around
quickly and leapt toward the Sentinel, knowing his order without him
having to utter a single word.
She sunk her long claws into the lower hull and slashed into the
opening at its `knee' joint. There were sparks from within
but the Sentinel did not stagger. Deathstrike looked up and began
to climb higher. Its chest cavity was still open, and she saw three
figures encased within. She began to slash at the tentacles, when
one shot out and hit her in the neck with an injection. She ripped
it away, and gripped the machine firmly to keep from falling.
From below, Sid began to form small balls of glass into sharp
spikes. His face was red with rage, and he fired the broken pieces
at the machine. The shards impacted the giant robot's head and
shattered without causing any obvious damage. If Sid had been able
to look closer, he would have seen small cracks forming at the
impact sights, rounds breaks, like stones on glass. He noticed a
figure climbing along the body of the machine and halted his attack.
Deathstrike waited a moment, and shook her head to clear it.
Sedatives, even strong ones, were pushed out of her system quickly,
another facet of her regenerative mutation. However, the small scar
on the back of her neck began to ache, and the memories it triggered
of her involuntary servitude to Stryker hit her harder than the
She shuddered and then ground her teeth angrily. Glancing across
the darkness, she saw Magneto and the others boarding the conquered
helicopter. She reached up and touched the ear worn communicator.
"Magneto," she called, "Respond."
"Deathstrike," his voice called back, "Where are you?"
"On the Sentinel," she said, "Would you like me to
Magneto stood at the door to the helicopter and glanced upward
toward Deathstrike. The machine was still taking slow steps towards
them and Magneto pondered on a question which needed an answer.
"No," he said, thoughtfully, and tapped his fingers against
the hull. Pyro jumped slightly every time the massive foot caused
the ground to shake and Mystique was staring at Magneto with angry
Magneto smiled again, "Why don't you stay with this new
and we'll see where its playmates live
From the ground, Magneto could see Deathstrike grin menacingly. If
this was constructed by followers of William Stryker, then they
needed to be dealt with quickly. This battle would not end
Sid Malloy ran toward the Sentinel and tried to climb up one leg, as
Deathstrike had. However, as his hand touched the machine's
skin, it sunk into the strange material. Sid pulled his hand back
in surprise. He knew that sensation, a trick he had done a hundred
times before. He ran up to the leg and tried it again.
The same result, his hand began to sink into the machine's hull.
Holy shit, he thought, The fucker's glass
He stood solidly and focused his power on the Sentinel. His head
began to ache with the effort and he swore again.
Shit...not entirely glass.
But, that did not matter. He could stop the machine that had
destroyed his home with his bare hands.
Cyclops helped Wolverine load Iceman into a passenger seat on the
jet next to Storm. They were both out cold, but their vitals were
"Come on," Wolverine said, "Gumby and that kid are still
Cyclops followed him with a nod, and they ran out of the jet.
Had they been present a moment longer, they would have heard
Rogue's voice call over the radio.
The surrounding soldiers held their positions, even as they saw
several mutants escaping in one of their helicopters. That had been
the order, monitor but do not interfere with the Sentinel. However,
they had also been instructed to kill any mutant who threatens them.
Captain Dolan, recently promoted and barely twenty-five years old,
decided having cars hurled at you was pretty threatening. He picked
up a communicator from one intact van and called to the lead team.
"Targets have proven hostile
repeat, targets have proven
initiating defensive response."
"Stow that shit, soldier," William Stryker's voice rang
viciously back, "If your men can't duck, they should learn
I want Lensherr alive."
"Yes, sir," Dolan radioed back, "What about the other
"Has the prototype acquired any of them?" Stryker asked.
"Yes, sir," he replied, "Only two or three
"More than enough to satisfy," Stryker said, and Dolan frowned,
unsure of what the General meant, but forget any lingering questions
upon the next order, "Kill any of the others who get in the
Dolan responded in the affirmative, and order his men into attack
Wolverine and Cyclops charged across the grass, and stopped as the
awaiting soldiers began to approach. Cyclops reached for his visor
to fire but Wolverine grabbed his arm.
" he said, "Once you start, they won't
stop until we're dead."
Cyclops looked at him doubtfully but Wolverine was glaring at the
I was them..."
They continued to move across the yard and saw the machine
approaching the helicopter. Magneto was standing at the door hatch,
glancing up at the Sentinel with a bizarre grin. Wolverine followed
his gaze and spotted Deathstrike clinging to the hull.
Cyclops, however, was staring downward and saw a young man pacing
the machine and trying to touch it. At one point, the large foot
nearly came down on his head, and Cyclops called out to him.
"Hey, get away from it!" he shouted and ran towards him.
Sid heard a voice shout but did not pay attention. He leapt onto
the machine and pressed his hands into the lower leg. The hull was
pliable under his touch and slow circular ripples formed around his
hand. A gleeful blue light filled his eyes, a look that seemed
quite mad to the approaching X-Man.
Dolan approached with his troops and surveyed the mutants coolly.
Two were clinging to the Sentinel, two were standing in the grass,
and the others were aboard the helicopter. None were paying
attention to the approaching troops, and Dolan grumbled with
He hated mutants. He had no specific reason, except that he had
always hated them. So had his parents. They told him mutants were
a disease, passing it on like a genetic plague through the
population. He had heard it for so long; Stryker had been the only
man in the world who understood that as much as Dolan did. Dirty
he just wanted one reason to open fire
As he drew closer, he saw the mutant with his hands on the
Sentinel's hull, and the distortions he was causing. No normal
human could do that.
Dolan raised his weapon and grinned. Stryker said to fire if the
troops were threatened. Fuck, the Sentinel was more human than
no one will miss just one
He aimed at Sid, and pulled the trigger.
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