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FIC: X-Book 1: New Allies New Enemies, (PG-13), Chpt 1 of 28

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  • Kathleen
    X-Book 1: New Allies New Enemies - Chapter 1 Rating: PG-13 By: Kath713/Leen713 Summary: (See Prologue of Book 1) Disclaimer: I own nothing associated with
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 26, 2003
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      X-Book 1: New Allies New Enemies - Chapter 1
      Rating: PG-13
      By: Kath713/Leen713
      Summary: (See Prologue of Book 1)
      Disclaimer: I own nothing associated with characters from the Marvel
      universe or any previously published work.


      ***

      New Allies, New Enemies – Chapter 1


      Across the world, people fell to their knees in pain.

      First, the mutants, others like himself, and then all other human
      beings, all falling in agony as he reached out with his mind.

      Finding each one, focusing on them, fighting them, killing them…

      ***
      Eight months later…

      In one very quiet and pleasant part of upstate New York, a
      man sat by a window in an empty classroom and waited for his
      children to arrive. It was early, only a quarter of eight, and he
      knew it would still be sometime before his first class of the day
      began, yet, the man seemed quite content to sit alone and stare
      thoughtfully out at the bright morning sky. Below him, he could
      sense the children moving through the mansion, preparing for their
      day.

      A small, warm smile touched the man's face, and his
      thoughtful blue eyes were lit with a quiet delight, and a not-so-
      subtle pride.


      Across the world, people fell to their knees in pain…


      The man touched his hand to his temple and closed his eyes
      against the warm light. Suddenly, the brightness of the sky burned
      behind his eyes…a cold, bitter fire.


      …people fell to their knees in pain…


      The thought surfaced again, and a dark shadow fell over his
      face. The sounds of life below him faded away, the light from
      outside dimmed to nothingness. All there was, everywhere, was the
      dark…the pain…and the cold…


      Professor Charles Xavier opened his eyes and stared out at
      the world silently.

      To the casual observer, he would have seemed to be simply
      what he appeared, a scholarly gentleman who seemed to move and speak
      with a learned grace. The air about him was one of dignity, a man
      who stood taller than most people ever could, despite being confined
      to his polished wheelchair. Yet, to those who knew him best,
      friends and enemies alike, they would need only to look at his eyes
      to know he was haunted. To know he had been changed.

      For eight months, Charles Xavier had been haunted, by the
      memories of a place called Alkali Lake. Not many have heard of it,
      being hidden deep in the snowy mountains of Canada, but to those who
      had, it was a place that lived in their nightmares, reminding them
      of their pain…and of their loss.

      Xavier sighed, deeply and listened again to the sounds and
      minds below, trying to block out those painful memories, if only for
      a short time. The children had begun to wake now, all alive and
      eager, ready to face the challenges presented by the professor and
      their other teachers. The life that echoed in Xavier's mind as
      he listened brought a new light into his darkness. He wanted
      nothing more than to feed that fire of hope and try to forget the
      bitterness forming over his heart.

      Over the years since he had founded his school, Xavier had
      brought many gifted children off the streets and helped them grow.
      He had worked to make a difference in their lives, and most of them
      had found more hope in the walls of the mansion than they had ever
      found anywhere else in the world.

      For the gifted, like himself, for mutants, the world had
      become a colder place than even the icy waste surrounding Alkali
      Lake. In his youth, mutants had first come to the attention of the
      population, their proven existence changing the face of humanity
      like no other event had in the past. In a time of chaotic change,
      mutation had suddenly become the primary taboo of the late sixties
      and early seventies. Now, the burning force for civil rights and
      equality had become an empty indifference when it came to mutant
      rights, ignored by most except those who spoke out against those who
      were different. Humanity was divided again, and the gap was growing.

      After all, it was difficult to convince the world that
      mutants deserved the right to live and exist, when there were
      powerful mutants determined to take that right away from the rest of
      the world.

      Yet, are the lines so clearly drawn? Xavier thought wearily,
      again rubbing his temple, How can those who cause pain be blamed
      when that is all they have known?

      That question had also been burdening Xavier's mind of
      late. In the past, he had always been so clear on right and wrong,
      good and evil. But, now, after listening to the minds of those he
      condemned, was it fair to draw that line so clearly?

      Xavier stared out the window again, and listened to the
      other lives below. These men and women were not children, though
      most had been when they arrived. They were his students, his most
      talented and dedicated, those who chose to stay and help educate the
      next generation of the gifted.

      Apart, they had been lost in a world that shunned them.

      Together, they were strong…a team…a family.

      They were his X-Men, ready to follow him into hell and back
      for the good of the world…and now most of them had. Unfortunately
      (and unforgivably to himself), not all of them had come back.

      As the image of a billion people dying before him rose up
      again in his mind, Xavier wished he could speak with the one he had
      lost. He wished he could speak to Jean Grey.

      Inwardly, he knew the pain felt by the world nearly a year
      before had not been of his own machinations. He had been used, his
      power had been used, to act on the whims of a madman.

      Still, he could not help but think back on that incident and
      realize one terrifying thought. Part of him...had enjoyed it. Not
      the killing, not the pain that had been caused, only the simple yet
      unbelievable pleasure of feeling his powerful mind opened to its
      fullest. The rush of pure energy, the lost need for control and
      caution…

      Everything he had taught his X-Men not to be.

      Jean would have understood, he thought gravely, Jean would
      have known what to say to get us through this...


      A soft knock on the open classroom door pulled Xavier from
      his dark thoughts, and he turned his chair away from the window
      without another glance.

      "Excuse me, Professor," a clear deep voice said and Xavier
      smiled with effort as Dr. Henry McCoy entered the room.

      "Good morning, Henry," Xavier greeted the large man in a
      friendly voice.

      McCoy returned the Professor's smile, his expression
      entirely more genuine, as he ducked to clear the classroom's
      doorway. The long, dark blue hair that covered his skin swished
      lightly as he moved, his large eyes shining out from a kind,
      thoughtful face.

      "I hope I'm not intruding..." he began, hesitating when
      he noticed the distance on the other man's face. Xavier shook his
      head and made a welcoming gesture with one arm.

      "Not at all," he replied, "I'm not expecting my
      class for at least another half hour."

      McCoy walked over to Xavier and sat down cautiously on the
      room's one sofa. He lowered himself slowly, obviously still
      adjusting to the new massive bulk of his body. Charles resisted the
      urge to look on the man with pity, knowing how difficult the past
      eight months must have also been for him.

      Henry McCoy had been one of the many mutants around the
      world who's genes had been activated by the incident at Alkali
      Lake, and one of many that had come to the mansion since that
      incident.

      However, by the man's demeanor, one could almost believe
      that he had lived with his mutation his entire life. Aside from the
      impediments caused by his body's size, Dr. McCoy seemed to have
      adjusted quite easily to his new physical condition, and seemed to
      have escaped the trauma that so many other's had endured.

      "How have you been settling in?" Xavier asked.

      "Fine...fine, everyone has been very helpful," McCoy
      responded, steepling his large hands politely, "This is quite a
      remarkable place you have here, Professor."

      Xavier nodded appreciatively, "Thank you. And, please, feel
      free to call me `Charles.'"

      McCoy looked almost sheepishly at him, "Well...maybe I'm not
      entirely settled yet..."

      Charles laughed quietly, "I hope your first class won't be
      too overwhelming. The children can be quite a handful when they
      want to be..."

      The larger man's eyes lit happily and he chuckled.

      "They're a delight, Professor," he replied, and then
      added with a wink, "Scott and Ororo have already pointed out a
      few of the `handfuls' to me already. Such remarkable gifts
      these
      children have, I feel privileged to have the chance to work with
      them."

      Xavier beamed as Henry spoke. The man's optimism was almost
      enough to make the professor forget his earlier sad reminiscing.
      Almost.

      A new shadow fell into Xavier's eyes, though McCoy did not
      notice as the professor spoke.

      "I trust the medical bay was found to be satisfactory," he
      asked, trying not to let his sorrow touch his voice.

      McCoy blinked in surprise, "Beyond satisfactory! It may be
      the most impressive office and laboratory I have ever worked in. I
      hope to make significant advances to my research into the mutant
      genome during my time here. With your permission, I would like
      to..."

      He trailed off as he looked on the professor with concern.
      Xavier's attention had wandered away from McCoy, and he seemed to
      age as his thoughts pulled him away from their conversation.

      "Of course," McCoy continued tactfully, "The lab and all
      of its equipment have obviously been maintained with great care. Dr.
      Grey must have been a dedicated clinician..."

      The name startled Xavier back to himself, and he met McCoy's
      gaze again with an uneasy glance. For a moment, neither man spoke,
      and finally McCoy went on.

      "And a remarkable woman," he concluded, his voice soft and
      soothing. Xavier sighed deeply, and then smiled apologetically.

      "Indeed, she was," the professor replied honestly, "Her
      loss has been very difficult..."

      "Of course..." McCoy said, "I must admit...she's
      left me with some pretty big shoes to fill."

      For a moment, the large man's eyes glittered empathetically
      at Xavier, and then he continued with a shy grin.

      "Fortunately...I have very large feet..."

      Charles returned the smile, a touch of gratitude on his face.

      "I wish you could have known her," he said sadly.

      Henry nodded, and shifted to stand as the professor's gaze
      drifted again. He waited a moment in meaningful silence before
      speaking again.

      "Well," he said, looking down at the professor, "I
      suppose I should get to my own classroom. I have a lot of
      `handfuls'to meet today."

      Making his way to the door, Henry McCoy stopped once more
      before leaving, and glanced back at Charles Xavier.

      "Thank you again, Professor," he said, meeting Xavier's
      eyes one more time, "For...everything."

      Charles nodded deeply and gave the man one more smile before
      he exited, again ducking to clear the door's upper edge. The
      professor moved his chair again to the classroom's large window
      and looked out at the sky.

      Jean would have liked him, he thought, and continued to
      smile as looked back on the memory of his lost student, for the
      first time in eight months, with something more than sorrow.
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