FANDOM


EVENT: Xmen: War is Hell
Event-icon Who: Domino and X-Men: Magik, Colossus, Angel, and Cyclops. Emits by Cyclops
Where: Mureybet, the Middle East
When: Night
Emitter: Cyclops
Tone: Gritty - Angsty
What: The X-men and friend descend on the Royal Palace in Mureybet's Royal City to put an end to the saga.


"Infantry must move forward to close with the enemy. It must shoot in order to move. To halt under fire is folly. To halt under fire and not fire back is suicide. Officers must set the example." -- George Patton





Outside Mureybet City

The wind rushes past like an angry hair dryer. In the distance the lights of Mureybet City stand as pinpricks against the black sky. Here, out here in the air, a group of paramilitaries float down toward the Royal Palace from the sky.

Equipped with makeshift wings, a bastardized version of base jumping equipment, the X-men and friends descend rapidly from the sky, except for Angel, of course, who has his own wings.

The team glides down efficiently in a v-formation. Cyclops voice comes through the coms, "Easy everyone. Remember the plan. As soon as we touch-down-engage."

  • Earlier*

After briefing with the rebellion, Cyclops and the commander have come up with a plan.

"Our assault on the palace is going to need to be flawless. According to intelligence reports, there is a small bunker within the palace walls that houses most of the Mutant forces. Our job will be to intercept those forces and prevent them from coming to Munqid's aid inside the fortress. Essentially we will be working as a diversion. Meanwhile, the rebellion forces will arrive just later and attack the palace itself. Our goal in this mission is to apprehend Munqid, bring him to justice, and have him stand trial in front of the international community for the crimes he has committed.

"Mureybet stands on the precipice of revolution. It needs one final swift kick. And we're going to give that to them tonight."

Team environments... So many unpredictable elements, so many things which could go wrong. This is the sort of job that Domino feels she could have done on her own, more quickly and more efficiently than being part of a full-on strike force. But, it was never her call to make. Care must be taken, shot placement must be spot-on, every variable must be taken into account. It's because of this that she's opted to lighten up her gear load, leaving the bulky, hard-hitting rifles behind in exchange for smaller and easier to maneuver hardware. Twin sidearms, suppressed, with spiked handguards for those up close and personal situations.

Touchdown, engage. Dom's landing involves a forward roll across the ground, claiming the first patch of cover that she can find before her guns do the talking for her. Two muted -thwips- later and a pair of guards drop cold, her sights already in search of their next target. "South point secure."

"The plan, da. A diversion. And a counter to the mutants." Colossus agrees. "I shall give us a way in." As they spiral downwards and get over the palace, Piotr hits the release on the main unit then shifts to metal and plummets downard. His aim is pretty good and the hole he makes in the roof of the palace is close to the wall the others intend to land near. The ground floor stops him though he sinks to his calves before coming to a halt. Ignoring walls, he makes a straight line to the outer wall and makes an opening for the others.

This is certainly not a form of travel that Illyana engages in, and it looses some of the thrill-factor when one knows they can teleport away instead of smashing into the ground. While her brother takes the direct route into the building, she lands with the others. Front-line, this sorceress is not. She does have a sword, a very normal sword, set into a sheath across her back.

Angel is happy to fly in on his own wings, but he doesn't land. Instead, he stays circling above, "I'll keep watch...see if I can point out any snipers or something," since he really doesn't have all that much experience in taking out people with guns. Let those who are more comfortable shooting them handle that part of this.

As soon as the heroes clear the wall it is obvious that the terrain inside the palace walls is far different from that inside the walls. Outside there is dirt, sand, death. Inside there are lush gardens, pathways, and trees. It looks like two completely different nations. Different worlds.

When Cyclops pulls his chute, it doesn't take long for him to hit the ground about 50 yards from the barracks that serve as their initial target. Palm trees, vines, and other landscaping are dotted here and there, with the opulent palace off toward the right. His boots hit perfectly manicured grass-the only problem is that the sprinklers are on and dampen, literally, his fatigues. No matter. He shrugs out of the flight-suit easily enough after a tuck and roll and discards it with an almost disdain. In a mere moment he's sprinting towards the barracks in the dark.

"Roger, Angel. Be sure to keep on the move and keep yourself small when the shooting starts. They shouldn't notice you, but if they do, you'll want to be in a position to dodge."

So far, no one has been seen. Cyclops and Domino land with little fanfare other than Domino's quick and efficient disabling of two of the guards.

Colossus lands with a large crash. He makes his way toward the wall and can easily enough bash a hole through it for the rebellion to enter. The downside is his movement has now awaken many of the mutants who were sleeping, taking away some of the advantage.

There's some commotion from the interior of the barracks before the gunfire begins. Assault rifle fire sprays out in a plethora of directions from points within the barracks out towards the heroes.

Cyclops hits the deck and returns fire without hesitation. A red streak of optic blast force tears from his visor through the night sky and takes out one of the corners of the barracks.

The only problem with stealth engagements, all it takes is one slip. Or mutant cannonball. Domino can't argue the proverbial swift kick that Colossus gives to the palace itself, it just further encourages the rest of them to keep moving and to not get sidetracked. She's a fan of speed, too.

There's enough time to ditch the coveralls and press forward before the return fire begins, and quite a lot of it. Everything else about this palace is fancy, it's no surprise to her that they're also the best armed within these walls. Times like this, having some armed buddies can be a good thing. While Cyclops is blasting the bunker, Dom closes in around the side. Let the bright, scary light draw their attention, leave the ghost to the shadows...

Anyone that spots the merc earns themselves a high priority ticket, brass tinkling across the floor as she takes them out. Quickly, and efficiently.

Once the rebellion has a way in, Colossus grabs a couple chunks of broken wall and makes his way toward the others. Once the barracks is in sight and range, he hurls the masonry, sending them through the wall and into the interior.

Illyana hits the ground in a practiced roll and as she comes up to her feet and the bulky dropsuit shrugged off, one hand goes up to pull her sword free and she starts to walk forward. A stepping disk appears in front of her, like a shield and another off to one side. As she walks forward, they move with her and if bullts hit the disk in front of her, they come out the one to the side of her, back at the barracks.

Climbing a little higher in the skies, Angel still keeps his lookout as instructed. As he flies wide circles about the area, he'll point out, over the comm units, where he catches sight of any enemies in sight so that the others on the ground are aware of the layout.

The chunks of wall that Colossus gathers smash into the barracks, creating two large holes inside along with a host of screaming and yelling. From the right side of the bunker there is far less shooting coming.

Cyclops and Darkchilde begin taking fire, but Domino's slinky antics leave her still without having been seen. She's able to get close, very close, while Illyana easily dispenses with bullets in her direction. Cyclops takes cover behind a troop vehicle.

"Closer now. Remain steady everyone. Colossus, give us a bum rush if you would. I'm getting hail. Angel, what do you see?"

For the most part, Warren's eyes will pick up chaos and confusion. To the north, the rebellion has arrived and are using Colossus' hole to enter in through the palace the quick way. So far there is no shooting in that direction. The barracks south eastern side has been blown away by Cyclops, while the northern area of it has two giant holes where Colossus has thrown the pieces of his wreckage. Inside, Warren will be able to see a handful of downed mutants, but there are those getting ready for an assault. Worthington remains safe in the skies. The light of the gardens work against the Mureybetans. It is decently well lit, well lit enough for Warren's eagle eyes. But the halo of light causes a difficulty with seeing what lies above the halo, giving the soaring X-men excellent cover.

A stream of Janissaries, 6 or 7 in total, now make their way out of the building, heading towards Cyclops, Colossus, and Illyana. They are heavily armed but their assumed powers have yet to be showcased.

So far, textbook. Aerial surveillance, distraction, cover, and a wildcard. This is almost too easy. Working with an unfamiliar lot can cause plenty of problems, but this bunch..? Granted Domino doesn't have a lot of direct orders, she's free to meet objectives on her own terms, but as a whole this is -working.- There hadn't been much time to plan things out, even. Points to these kids.

"In position, south-east quadrant. Cover ready," she tells the others, keeping herself out of sight while preparing for an ambush. One seems necessary before long, a solid half dozen guys making a run out from cover after the others. Let them stay focused on their attack, it gives her all the time that she needs to line up the sights--

--Onto an artistic pillar crafted of stone, or cement, or something suitably solid and heavy. A few rapid shots smack into the base of the pillar, drilling chunks out of the material. Weakening it. Giving it that little bit of incentive to fall across their path. Or directly on top of them.

At Cyclops' request, Colossus starts running forward. "Be careful." he says over the comm as he sees the enemy taking to the field. But as he pulls even with Magik, he calls "STOP!" He has to try, especially since they should be the mutants they were told about. "Do you speak English? We do not need to fight each other. Just leave and we will step aside. Or help us and be heroes of the revolution!" He repeats his plea in Russian since dictators often have dealings with the Russian government for arms and such.

Illyana comes to a stop as Colossus makes his plea, but she's not holding her breath. She eases aside enough to see around the disk, so she can get a look at the advancing enemies.

Angel continues to relay over the comms what he sees from above, including the rebellion force coming in. He still does have the gun from the first attack, but it's currently sheathed at his side. Besides, shooting from this distance would be sure to miss. It might work if they need some sort of a scare tactic.

Domino's shot strikes true. It takes out the other support and the building completely gives way, bringing the building crashing on those who have not yet evaded. There are the normal screams, moans, and the like.

Unfortunately, Piotr's thoughtfulness falls on deaf and dead ears. These people have been born, bred, and taught to live and die for the regime. They know, as do the people-the real mandate of Mureybet-that after the revolution justice will come for them. And justice will be swift and fierce for the scores of crimes they've committed.

Sirens begin to blare, as expected, but Cyclops doesn't seem at all worried. If the intelligence was to be believed, he's confident the X-men will be victorious today. As the mutant forces exit the building, he picks one off with a blast and sends the bulbous looking fellow skittering back from where he came with a force hard enough to knock his large body clear off his feet.

Almost immediately one of the mutants, a female with green hair, leans down and puts her hand on the downed mutant's chest. Almost immediately he is revived and free of injury.

Another mutant reaches his hands out towards Colossus and a steady stream of fire comes at the Russian.

Another is there one moment, gone the next, the only residue is a pool of liquid making its way towards Illyana.

One with super speed comes at Cyclops and is able to take him by surprise, leveling a punch that-under normal circumstances-would have little effect from the skinny man. But with the super speed it makes a SMACK against the X-leader's face, knocking him down.

Angel will notice that there is a lot of machine gun fire coming from the palace off to the north, the right of the heroes. There's a lot of commotion and it looks like the rebellion have started their half of the battle.

Finally, one thinks to actually look up. He cannot make Angel out, but he knows someone or something is up there. He stops for a moment, and with a look of constipation, seems to be pressing something. Suddenly, a handful of long needles shoot upwards in Angel's general direction.

Colossus shakes his head as they attack. He tried. He really did. And now the consequences are on their own heads. Fire is not something he worries about but it's often best not to take chances when it comes ot mutants so he leaps to one side, rolling a couple times before getting back to his feet. "Magik." he says quietly over the comms. "The puddle over the healer. Cyclops, are you all right?" Grabbing a fistful of sod and dirt, he throws it at the one staring into the sky.

Domino's shot strikes true. It takes out the other support and the building completely gives way, bringing the building crashing on those who have not yet evaded. There are the normal screams, moans, and the like.

Unfortunately, Piotr's thoughtfulness falls on deaf and dead ears. These people have been born, bred, and taught to live and die for the regime. They know, as do the people-the real mandate of Mureybet-that after the revolution justice will come for them. And justice will be swift and fierce for the scores of crimes they've committed.

Sirens begin to blare, as expected, but Cyclops doesn't seem at all worried. If the intelligence was to be believed, he's confident the X-men will be victorious today. As the mutant forces exit the building, he picks one off with a blast and sends the bulbous looking fellow skittering back from where he came with a force hard enough to knock his large body clear off his feet.

Almost immediately one of the mutants, a female with green hair, leans down and puts her hand on the downed mutant's chest. Almost immediately he is revived and free of injury.

Another mutant reaches his hands out towards Colossus and a steady stream of fire comes at the Russian.

Another is there one moment, gone the next, the only residue is a pool of liquid making its way towards Illyana.

One with super speed comes at Cyclops and is able to take him by surprise, leveling a punch that-under normal circumstances-would have little effect from the skinny man. But with the super speed it makes a SMACK against the X-leader's face, knocking him down.

Angel will notice that there is a lot of machine gun fire coming from the palace off to the north, the right of the heroes. There's a lot of commotion and it looks like the rebellion have started their half of the battle.

Finally, one thinks to actually look up. He cannot make Angel out, but he knows someone or something is up there. He stops for a moment, and with a look of constipation, seems to be pressing something. Suddenly, a handful of long needles shoot upwards in Angel's general direction.

Dom 1, Pillar 0. There's another chunk out of the opposition, but the heavy-hitters are only now starting to spread out across the field. Mutants fighting mutants... "This seems so wrong," she mutters while readjusting her aim, trying to place priorities where they most count.

There--green haired female. Capable of reviving teammates..? Okay, that's a problem.

"Watch out for Celerytop, guys!"

Deep breath, hold, aim, squeeze. One more shot -thwips- out of the suppressor, aiming to incapacitate the other woman.

This feels so, so wrong.

Illyana apparently had the same idea that Domino did on targets, as a stepping disk opens at her feet and she falls through, only to drop down from another behind the green-haired woman while the original two wink out. As she drops though, so does the other woman. "Well." Instead she turns her attention to the guy on the ground that was just healed. There's no flicker of emotion in those cold blue eyes as she lifts her sword and brings it down, two-handed.

It's hard to see things actually coming at Angel in the dark, especially things like needles. He has also, however, been told to keep an eye out for anything coming at him from the ground. By the time he actually sees light glinting on the oncoming needles, they're a little too close to completely avoid. He quickly tilts to make a sharp turn to the side but a couple of those needles to slam into ths side of his leg.

A continual problem with speedsters if their arrogance. Cyclops has dealt with many over the course of his decade, and despite his throbbing cheek bone, which has broken skin and has begun to bleed, he uses this tell tale weakness against his adversary. As soon as he's rolling, he fires in a mini-arc, and is able to catch the speedster mid run. He grunts. "Amatuer."

"Yeah, this is Cyclops. I'll be okay. Look alive, guys."

The guy who shoots needles is distracted as sand gets into his eyes. He sways with confusion, rubbing at his face. He never saw it coming and is disabled.

Domino's bullet shoots straight through the green haired woman's shoulder. She screams in agony and hits the dirt, but after reaching up to touch her own shoulder, she's back on her feet quickly.

Just then, Illyana grabs the green haired healer and disappears before re appearing to cleave straight through the mutant foe, killing the fatty instantly!!!

Luckily the guy who has been shooting at Warren has been momentarily taken care of, giving Angel a chance to take a look at his leg.

The fighting over at the palace intensifies. "We need to finish the job and provide support over at the palace," Cyclops yells into the coms. "I have a feeling they're going to need our help."

The Fire-throwing Mutant takes advantage of the opportunity to fling flames at Colossus. There's a problem, however, for him, as the fire glances harmlessly off Colossus with no effect. That sucks, Mureybetan guy.

Well, that's one way of handling the healer. Try as they might, there's no way around this bunch other than to put them down. No taking chances. Fair enough. Domino leaps out from behind her cover, sprinting across open ground while the fight grows hotter. "I'll give our boys some cover!"

Not that she can't also take several running shots at the needler mutant on her way past, because those things look downright -nasty.-

Across the grounds, diving and rolling down a small flight of stairs, catching another armed guy with the spiked handguards and a snap shot to the temple, then a brief intermission to reload. The rest of the team seems to be holding their own against the other mutants and she's in a real good position to offer long-range support while continuing to not draw too much attention. The tricky part isn't making the shots from here, it's finding the right targets to strike.

Truth to tell, Colossus is paying more attention tot he fate of his team mates (one in particular) than he is to anyone targeting him. And he sighs softly as Illyana stabs one of them but, as he said earlier, it is war. Given they all seem to be all right, he leaps at the fire mutant, intending to grab and throw him at the needler.

Illyana gives a sharp spin of her sword, clearing some of the blood from the blade as she looks about. Ah. There's the pool of liquid. She raises a hand and a portal opens beneath it. Water often has trouble jumping away.

Angel remains in the air as landing could make him far too easy of a target. With a wince, he looks to his leg to see how bad it might be. "I've been hit, but I'm all right for now. Just...eventual landing may be hard." But flying...he can try to deal with the pain. He'd pull the needles out, but if it hit an artery, he doesn't want to risk bleeding out.

Now that Illyana has completely vacated the premises, the puddle decides he'd better pop back up and re-evaluate to look for his Russian prey. But unfortunately for him, as soon as he reanimates, Illyana herself reappears behind him. That's not good for you, liquid-man.

Domino, meanwhile, hits the guy with the needles with two shots to the kneecaps. One for each. He screams as he falls to the ground and reaches for the gaping holes where his patella used to be, just as the flame guy lands atop him after a throw by Colossus. Both are, mercifully, knocked unconscious.

"GO!" Cyclops yells as he motions towards the Palace. The fire has minimized and it isn't clear who exactly is winning the battle inside the palace. What is clear, is that Cyclops has not received a message from the Commander since the beginning of the battle.

"Angel, roger that. We're moving to the palace. See if you can land on the roof when and if you're able and rendezvous with us on the inside. They'll be expecting us coming from the bottom."

Cyclops breaks into a run, stopping for a moment to check the bleeding from his face. He pulls a bloody glove away. It's bad, but not too bad. The adrenaline fuels him and he doesn't feel too badly given he may have a broken cheek bone.

Cylops ducks into the building through the large double door gates which had been propped open sometime during the battle. To get someone in? To get someone out? It's not clear.

All it takes is one quick motion for Dom to holster both of her pistols and pop the fallen guy's rifle up off of the floor with the toe of her boot, catching it and bringing it to her shoulder with downright unnatural precision. There's a couple of options left open to her, up until the command is given to the team at large. "Copy!" The doors are open, the team's pressing their attack. This is why she's here. This is what she's going to do. A little cover fire, a bit of acrobatics to dodge incoming fire, all in a day's work!

Not too far behind Cyke she sweeps around through the doors, covering the opposite side. Time isn't wasted, once it's clear she's pushing further in. It's time to bring this home.

"How're ya holding up there, Angel?" His codename's easy to remember, anyway. "Won't be able to offer you much cover while we're inside."

Colossus takes a last look at the enemies, the ones not in Limbo, to make sure they're all disabled then follows Cyclops. "Angel, see if you can see any vehicles leaving. We don't want him to escape."

Illyana turns look after Cyclops' running form and then starts to portal walk her way over as well. As long as she has line-of-sight, she can teleport there. And then from that new vantage, teleport again. It doesn't take long (or any running on her part) to get to the main entrance with the rest of the team.

"Are you sure I shouldn't stay out here? Continue scouting? I don't know how much use I'll be inside..." without a place to fly and not really terribly skilled at using the gun at his side. At the question from the strange voice, Angel actually smiles, "I'll live, I'm fairly sure. Unless those things were tipped with poison, I'll live. Thanks for asking though." Colossus' instructions seem to suit him much better, "Ten-four...will watch for any vehicles leaving."

Angel sees no vehicles coming or going. It seems tha the entirety of the forces were already here. A handful of mutants can pluck off terrified and unarmed humans with ease, and it seems that has been how Munqid has kept his tenuous clutch on power.

Cyclops is about to radio to Angel to respond, when he notices what's in front of them. A giant of a man-no, not a man-a monster. 10 feet tall. A modern day Goliath, but bigger. There's a rocky exo-skeleton that looks like dried lava. The monster eyes and mouth blaze with fire. All around them are the remnants of the rebellion, at least in appearance. Cyclops swallows with some difficulty in seeing the commander, or what's left of him, severely burned from the chest down and dead.

Straight behind the monster seems to be an entrance to some sort of parlor, but it's not clear what's beyond, from this vantage point.

Stopping short, now..! With only a rifle and a small portion of her body creeping out from around her next vantage point, Domino stops. And stares. "Aw, crap." This is probably going to take a special sort of crazy to deal with. Okay, resources... Iron Russian might get melted from the heat (does that even happen?) Wings doesn't have any way of reaching Mister Magma. Laser-Eye can press ranged attack, but that's heat against heat. How well's that going to work out? Then there's the other one. Portal Girl. Seems like the wildcard has just changed hands, though quite possibly still within their favor.

"Hey Portals, you got any good ideas on what to do against a living lavabomb?" Dom queries while popping a frag grenade from her combat webbing. Somehow she's getting the impression that bullets aren't going to do the trick. Now, maybe if she could bring the ceiling down on top of the guy... Maybe. "Failing that, I've got a hot potato with his name on it."

Hopefully someone's got a plan, here.

Now this is a threat to make Colossus worry and he steps in front of Cyclops to look over their opponent. "Domino, collapse the floor under it." Preferably quickly.

Illyana has found a nice perch to stand on to see the lava-giant and the mess of what used to be the commander. There's no flicker of sadness or revulsion in her eyes. She didn't know the guy and the mangled body... well, she's sadly used to seeing bodies in pieces. "Big." She notes of the guy, and as Domino asks if she's got any ideas her lips curve into a cruel smile. "Well. I've got *bigger*." She gestures forward with her hands and a portal, a *big* one this time, a good fifteen feet in diameter opens a dozen feet behind the guy and a red, clawed and scaled hand, that's all that fits is a hand, comes through to grab for the Goliath to drag him back through the portal.

He doesn't see the Magma-monster from his circling of the Palace. However, Angel does convey, "No vehicles leaving or arriving yet. It's fairly quiet out here now..." now that they've taken care of the 'enemy' forces.

The giant red claw grabs the lava-monster mutant and rips downward, pulling it into the nether reaches of Limbo with a wild shriek of terror. It's flame breath singes the ceiling, but within a moment, the threat is gone. Completely.

Cyclops sticks his head out from the side of Colossus with a sardonic look. "That was easy." He doesn't waste further time and bolts for the room behind the throne room.

Cyclops skids to a stop, however, when he takes in the full view.

. . .

"Stop right there," a man says in broken English. It's Munqid.

And he's got a hostage. One of the rebellion.

"No. . ." Cyclops mutters in disbelief. There, with a gun under his throat, Ali-Saladeen's son-is clutched helplessly in Munqid's arms. "One more step, American, and this boy joins the others in hell."

Collapsing the floor, now that's something Domino can manage! The odds are well within her favor, but why use one grenade when she can use two? "Rog--" Her hands stop while crossed in front of herself, thumbs hooked into the pins, utterly motionless as she -stares- at that massive hand which comes out of nowhere and just removes the threat altogether. "--er." Quick. Clean. Maybe not professional in the traditional sense, but she's not about to raise a fuss over the point!

Her hands lower to her sides, her brain still trying to come to terms with what it just witnessed. Whatever it was. "That's..one way of doing it." Okay, grenades are going back onto her harness now. Back to the rifle, and just in time. She's got it braced, charged, finger ready, and what amounts to a trick shot on her hands with -no- room for error.

Just how confident is she, here?

Pretty damned confident, actually.

"Say the word," she quietly reports, following the motions of the man, of his weapon, of his hostage. This is something she should be able to do. But, there's no way for her to know if the others could handle it as well. Perhaps better. At the very least, they have a fallback plan. Dom's got a shot.

Colossus is Illyana's brother. He knows what she is, what she can do. He's been to Limbo many times. He's badgered her into telling him about Limbo, about the Elder Gods, about her role in things on many occasions. He probably knows more about Limbo than any non-wizard from this dimension. And his eyes still widen, and he still turns to give Illyana a look, when that demon hand comes out of the portal. He did NOT know they got that big or that she had something like that at her beck and call. "Be careful." he tells her with a Significant Look. Once more following Cyclops, he too stops when he sees what's in the room. "What do you want?" he asks the dictator. They always want something.

Illyana dusts her hands off, but there's not even her usual smirk. "I'm gonna need a whole lotta butter pecan ice cream when this is done." She mutters to herself. Meeting her brother's look, she tips him a small nod. She understands the warning. The sorceress comes up behind Cyclops somewhat more slowly than his dash, even a portal-step to where she wants to be. Her lips thin down into a frown at the situation and she looks to Cyclops. This is where having a telepath would really have helped.

Upon hearing no response to his report, Angel finally does land on the roof of the Palace, the landing rather messy due to the needles still in his leg. Limping along, he makes his way to the entrance of the Palace and, as stealthily as a guy with giant white wings can, he tries to make his way inside.

"What do I want?" Munqid laughs. "Power. To remain in power. You've barked up a tree you shouldn't have, Americans. You will wait here until a squadron of my troops arrive, and you will be deport-"

Cyclops interrupts Munqid. "Take the shot, Domino."

Munqid's eyes grow wide, "What?!"

Slow breath. Steady pulse. Squeeze the trigger. This is their job. Munqid is to be removed from power. Domino has the shot. She knows what to do.

CRACK!

Colossus looks over at Cyclops whent he man gives the order and then Domino fires.

Illyana just turns her head to look towards Munqid as Cyclops gives the order.

The gunshot helps to guide Angel to the others...he hopes, "Is everyone all right? Can I get a report?" he asks quietly through the comm system as he limps his way through the Palace to try and rendezvous with the others.

There are two pops and it's not clear what happens first. They both sort of happen at the same time. Almost simultaneously both Munqid and Ali drop to the floor. Two pools of blood merge together slowly before anyone can really grasp what's happened.

Cyclops first instinct is to rush over to check for pulses, but there's not much use. Most of each Munqid's head is splattered against the far wall. Most of Ali's is against the ceiling. There's no need to check for much of anything. It's clear.

Angel's request for a status report goes unheeded.

Cyclops stands there, staring.

Cyclops takes one more look at the floor and purses his lips for a moment. 5 seconds. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Then it's gone. He has to move on.

"Magik. Check to see if Angel is okay. Colossus, contact the Blackbird. Let's move out."

Shit.

Domino's shot lands true. Somehow, so did a second one.

-Shit.-

The rifle lowers to her side, a thin wisp of smoke flowing into the air from the muzzle. Had it been too far against the odds, or did this happen for another reason..? She may never know. But, the job is completed. This is the kind of moral weight which her shoulders willingly accept. Sometimes..shit just happens. All she can do is stare onward for a moment of silence, herself. Acknowledge, then move on.

"Copy that."

"Not yet, Cyclops." Colossus says quietly then turns to the mercenary. "You're more familiar with this kind of thing." he tells her. "There's bound to be cameras all over the palace. You probably have an idea where the security room is so can lead us to it. We need those recordings destroyed."

Illyana turns back as Cyclops lowers his head, watching with emotionless blue eyes. Cold. Empty. When he finally lifts it and gives orders, she just nods. Hands raise and a portal takes her away. She knows Angel well enough to find him from Limbo to teleport to him. One of her disks opens, setting Illyana down beside Angel. "Keeping your hands clean, Angel?" She says with a dry manner and a smirk that doesn't touch her eyes, fading as though it were forced. She looks at his leg. "Let me get you back to the Blackbird."

Angel gives a start as Illyana appears through a portal right in front of him. The movement causes another wince as it causes him to put a little pressure on his leg, but her words pull his attention away from that. "What?" He then looks past her, "What happened? Are we done? What about the others?" He follows her gaze to his leg, "I'll live."

Dom's almost surprised to hear that Colossus has her back like this, but she looks back to him with a slight bow of her head. "Yeah." Then looking to Cyclops, she adds "Give us ten for final cleanup. We'll catch up." Colossus did say 'us,' after all.

Still no flicker of emotion on Illyana's features. Siberian ice-queen indeed. "We're done. I think you're the worst hurt. Let's go." Another portal opens and she steps halfway into it, waiting for Angel to walk through before she does as well, and lets it close behind her.

Poor Angel does look a little confused at Illyana's blunt response, but he does follow her after a moment's hesitation. It's faster than flying, at least, even if it may not be quite as pleasant.

Cyclops nods to Colossus, but says nothing in response.

The battle has been won, but not without casualties.

Saladeen's son has sacrificed his life in much the same way that his father did. And Saladeen's father beore him.

Mureybet will fall, and it will fall tonight. Most assuredly. Was one boy worth it to avenge the tens of thousands of innocents who lost their lives in this year alone at the hands of this wicked ruler? Cyclops wasn't sure. How many more would Munqid have killed given the chance? Cyclops wasn't sure.

He was sure that under the same circumstances, he'd make the same call.

Colossus is wise to look for cameras. Indeed after some careful searching, Domino does, in fact, find a lone camera. There's only one problem. It's not sending the signal internally on a closed circuit. It's broadcasting. Where to? It's not clear. A satellite of some sort. From there, who knows?

  • EPILOGUE*

Scott Summers stands at the chalk board at the front of the auditorium while a slideshow plays on giant monitors above him. The pictures look to be from the late 1800s or early 1900s and depict warfare and include refugee camps.

"The Boers had enough of English rule. They'd had enough of their friends, wives, and children rounded up and placed into camps. They took to the fields and engaged in guerilla warfare as a sort of weekend warrior."

"Every morning they would get up, have breakfast, clean their homes. They would clean their guns and head out to the fields. The organization was weak, but their intent was strong. At some level, they'd simply had enough. Their only recourse was to take arms. To kill in the name of freedom and the greater good-in their minds."

"It seems that the atrocities of the British pushed the Boers into action. At some point war went from being something they were not willing to do, to something they were forced to do in order to be victorious."

Scott's words trail.

"Mr. Summers, are you okay?" Melody Atkinson asks from the front row.

Scott looks back at her, and back at the board, but doesn't say anything for a moment.

"I'm not sure, Melody."

"Class dismissed."



X-men. War is hell.

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.