Back in the dining room Rachel took a closer look at the newcomer and noted that his eyes resembled those of her mother. She had sensed an affinity with him the moment she saw him that she had only felt with her mother.
"Rachel, I would like you to meet Alexander Grey Logan," Xavier spoke up introducing the newcomer and breaking the silence that had descended from Scott storming out. "He is the son of Logan and your mother from another reality, thus in a sense making him your half brother," he explained.
Rachel turned to look at her mother who nodded her head in agreement with what the Professor had said. She then turned back to the newcomer, who was busy looking her over.
"Nice to meet you," Alexander finally said. "Sad to say you don't exist in my reality, as Mom and Oneeye broke up a long time ago," he told her.
Rachel ignored the slight dig at her father and noted Logan's smirk. He was clearly pleased someone shared his dislike of the man, nothing in that regard would ever change. Not even in the future she came from. Still Logan was like an uncle to her and because of this she did not bother to complain.
"Do you feel the same connection to him that I do Rachel?" Jean inquired of her daughter.
"Yeah I do," Rachel answered as she finally sat down and ran a hand through her short red hair. "I take it he has the Phoenix inside him as well?" she asked. "Yes he does, how did you know that?" Jean shot back.
"I can sense it inside him, as well as see it in his eyes," Rachel responded. "So, why is he here?" she asked.
"We were just about to discuss that Rachel," Kitty said to her friend. "It seems that before he came here, he and his version of the X-Men were in a fight with the Sentinels," she continued. "How did you get injured?" she inquired, turning back to face Alexander.
"I had just nailed one of the rust buckets with a phoenix blast when I noted Kitty had been injured," Alexander answered, his eyes going slightly dark. "That pissed me off greatly and I wanted to vent my rage, but I had to make sure she was okay first and so I headed in her direction. The next thing I recall is my Mom's sudden warning and four more of the tin cans came out of nowhere and opened fire on me," he told them. "I knew even my healing ability would not save me from that kind of injury and my last sight was Mom using the phoenix force to try and save me," he stated. "The energy blasts from the Sentinels hit me first, but her power quickly washed over me and I must have blacked out. The next thing I know I'm wakening up in the medical bay," he finished.
Kitty flushed a little as she began to suspect her alternate self was in some kind of relationship with Alexander. A brief glance at Rachel showed her friend smirking at her, clearly having picked up on that as well. She stifled a groan knowing she would be teased about it later on. Kurt had also picked up on this, but kept quite. It might be true in Alexander's reality, but not in this one and he hoped to confess his feelings to Kitty one day and finally ask her out.
"Is it possible that the combination of the Sentinels energy blasts and your Mother's attempt to save you displaced you to this reality?" Storm inquired.
"No I don't think so," Alexander replied with a shake of his head as he thought that over. "I can see no way the Phoenix force would interact with the energy from the Sentinels weapons," he mused.
"I think I can answer what happened?" a voice said from behind them and one they all knew well.
Turning, they all noted another Jean Grey, or at least what looked like a mental projection of her, appear before them. By her side was a man the majority of them knew as their enemy, but he was vastly different from the man they knew as Magneto. His costume was different than the one he used as the leader of the Brotherhood with a different color scheme. Under his arm he carried his helmet. His face was much more open and he had a smile on his face, something they were not used to see.
"Hello Eric," Xavier said as he moved forward.
"Charles Xavier," Magneto responded and his smile widened. "I had not thought it possible that the dimension Alexander ended up in would be one where you still lived my old friend," he said. "It is good to see you in good health although I note you seem to have suffered damage to your legs," he added.
"Thank you Eric. I must say it is nice to see a version of you which isn't corrupted by his anger and hatred and according to Alexander has taken on my dream as his own," Xavier replied with a smile of his own. "I hope the fight that led to Alexander being sent here was won?" he asked.
"It was thanks to the early return of Alexander's sister Lara as well as the fast response of Beast and Juggernaut who were close by," Magneto answered looking relieved. "Once the fight was over we saw to our wounded and then turned our attention to recovering Alexander," he stated.
Some of the seated X-Men shared surprised looks at the mention of Juggernaut helping any incarnation of them in a fight, clearly the reality Alexander came from had many surprising differences.
"How did I turn up here, Mom?" Alexander asked, noting that the two Jean's were almost identical except for little things like hair length and their costumes.
"I knew I could save you from the attack by the four Sentinels you hadn't seen, but even had I done so I would not have been able to heal you due to the ongoing fight and thus I used the Phoenix force to its full potential and sent you to the closest reality where I felt there was another Jean Grey who could give aid you," Alexander's Jean responded. "It took nearly every bit of power I had, but it worked. I knew the other Jean would help you and I can see you are indeed healed from your wounds," she went on.
"Yeah I'm good thanks to you and dad on this side," Alexander agreed. "But I have to say this reality is kinda creepy as you are still with the old stick in the mud one eye Summers himself," he added. "A dead guy is in charge of the X-Men and everyone has different histories, which means the Kitty over there is not my girlfriend," he stated with a put upon look.
Kitty blushed harder as Alexander said aloud what she had already guessed to be true. Rachel and Rahne began to tease her whilst she noted Kurt had become slightly solemn and would not meet her eyes. She let out a sign as she realized the problem. She knew Kurt liked her as more than a friend just as she liked him, but she was not ready to admit it to him and he seemed to be of the same mind in this regard. Still hearing about a reality where the girl you want to be your lover is with someone else can't be a nice feeling. She guessed this was why Scott was so upset.
"It is one of the things you learn with visiting alternate realities Alexander," Magneto told him with a chuckle. "We have crossed the boundaries of realties before when you were still a child. The world we found ourselves in was unlike the one we were so used to," he explained. "The next time we did it things were more similar to our world, but the difference between the two still shocked us, such as learning that in that reality Logan was the lover of Psylocke while Jean had long been dead," he added.
"We've had our own experiences with alternate realities. However it was Kitty who realized that is where Alexander came from," Xavier replied. "We were under the impression he might be part of Sinister's continued plan to use Jean's DNA to create the ultimate mutant," he explained.
"It would seem no matter what reality she is from Kitty Pryde is a smart woman," Alexander's Jean said with a smile. "There is another difference in our worlds as it seems. We don't have anyone called Sinister," she told them.
"Then you are lucky, he has long been a thorn in our side," Jean told her counterpart. "He has created clones of me and stolen my DNA in his obsession with me and Scott. He is evil on a scale that dwarfs some of our other foes," she stated with a dark haunted look in her eyes.
"Then maybe while I'm here I should pay this dude a visit and introduce him to my claws," Alexander suggested, not liking the sound of this guy they were talking about.
"You will do no such thing Alexander," Jean cut him off. "He is our problem to deal with. Clearly you have inherited your father's darker nature as well as his healing factor," she noted.
"Red, I know you and the others sometimes argue that my methods in dealing with certain people are over the top, but at least my way the threats we face stay buried," Logan cut in. "Sometimes the permanent solution is the only one," he said as he lit a cigar and began to smoke it.
"Amen," Alexander agreed. "Think of it this way Mom, every time we put people like Sabertooth, Mystique, the hellfire club members and Apocalypse behind bars they escape and cause more death and destruction in their new plans," he argued. "If we dealt with them on a more permanent basis lives would be saved," he stated to which Logan nodded in agreement.
"That is not the way Alexander as I have told you long ago," Magneto responded with a tired sigh, clearly having had this talk many times. "We are not judges and executioners that is best left to the law," he stated.
Jean noted however that her counterpart seemed to agree slightly with Logan and her son to some extent. Shaking that thought of, she refocused on what they were here for.
"How do we return Alexander to you?" she asked.
"I will show you if you will allow me to briefly contact your mind?" Alexander's Jean answered to which Jean nodded in agreement.
Scott went to argue as he returned, but a look from Jean and Xavier silenced him and instead he leaned against the wall and watched what happened. He ignored the look Alexander sent him, which showed he did not trust or like him.
"I understand, and at least with Rachel's help I will not end up draining myself," Jean suddenly said after she received the information needed to return Alexander to his own dimension.
"When can we do this?" Alexander asked, wanting to go home and see his Kitty.
"Give us an hour or two to prepare and then we can start," Jean answered after a brief look at Rachel who nodded in agreement and then Xavier who after a small time of thinking it over also nodded.
"Professor, you are not really going to let them attempt this are you?" Scott couldn't stop himself from saying. "This could all be one big trap to ensnare Jean and Rachel," he argued. "I mean come on, a nice Magneto? As if," he went on, as he began to pace. "I don't believe a word any of them has said," he grunted out at the end.
"Scott enough," Jean shot back, annoyed by his constant arguments in this matter. "We will aid Alexander in going home and that is final. Nothing we have seen has pointed out he is a threat to us," she reminded him.
"Yeah oneeye, be silent or I might accidentally remove your tongue," Alexander added with a growl, ignoring the frown his statement gained from Jean herself.
"Be warned Summers, if any harm comes to my son through your actions you will suffer greatly," Alexander's Jean's warned him with a death glare. "Stay out of this as it does not concern you, I can understand that in this reality our relationship continued, but that gives you no right to try and ensure my counterpart only sees things from your limited point of view," she continued.
"I agree, Jean and Rachel have agreed to aid Alexander and thus the topic of conversation is now closed," Xavier cut in before Scott could respond.
"I think it best if you leave the mansion until this is over oneeye," Logan suggested. "Otherwise you might be tempted to interfere and I won't allow that," he added with a glare. "Maybe some fresh air will do you some good and allow you to regain control of yourself," he pointed out. "Looks like you aren't thinking clearly," he stated.
"I agree with Herr Logan," Kurt spoke up. "This isn't going to be easy for Jean and Rachel to do from what Alexander's Jean has said and having your negative views and thoughts close by could distract her and that might be dangerous for all involved," he speculated with a worried frown.
"Yeah that would not be a good thing to happen for all involved," Rahne agreed. "Sorry Scott, but in this regard you might be more of a problem than a helping hand," she said.
"I am sorry Scott, but I must agree with all three of them," Xavier finally put in. "I am banning you from the mansion for the next three hours until Alexander has been sent home and the extra hour will hopefully, as Logan suggested, help clear your mind and help you calm down," he added.
Scott wanted to argue and rage back, but the look in his wife's eyes convinced him to turn and leave the mansion. His anger and hatred of Logan increased and he hoped Alexander never came back to this reality. He failed to notice Emma Frost quickly moved to join him, until she was right next to him and soon enough the two of them were in a discussion about what was going on. Back in the dining room Magneto and Jean's projections faded after thanking Xavier and the others for their agreement in helping to return Alexander to them.
"Oneeye needs a couple of beers and good scrap," Logan mused turning to face Jean who found herself smiling back at him before she shook her head and decided to go to the library to prepare herself. Rachel headed for her own room, knowing it wouldn't be easy returning Alexander to his dimension. As Kurt as said any mistake could be costly to them all. Alexander remained at the table with Logan and Xavier while the others broke up and went their separate ways for now.
Storm paused near the door before turning back and asked, "Alexander, I am curious why I was not part of the X-Men in your reality?" she inquired.
"All I know is you chose to remain with your people who worshiped you as a goddess," Alexander answered to which she nodded and then left.
Gambit grunted as Rogue flung up against the wall for what had to be the tenth time during their rather heated discussion, but he had suspected he wouldn't get through it without suffering some pain. Rogue had told him exactly how betrayed she had felt when she learned of his part in the Morlock massacre. The absorbed memories of that event just made it worse for her. He cursed Magneto for forcing Rogue to kiss him and thus absorb his memories, one day he would come face to face with the so called master of magnetism and he would make him feel the kind of pain he had felt since that day.
"God damn it Remy, why couldn't you confide in me?" Rogue asked for the third time and ensuring Remy looked her in the eye.
"Chère, I wanted you to believe me," he responded. "But it is not a period of my life I like to recall, it is one of the worst moments of my life," Gambit went on. "But in trying to avoid thinking of it, to avoid facing it, cost me the most important thing in my life and that was you," he told her. "I lost your trust and worse maybe it killed your love for me," he added looking away.
"Close swamp rat," Rogue responded after a brief tense silence. "But it seems my love for you will not die so easily. I know everything there is to know about you now and I know that your love for me is as real as mine is for you," she told him, using her hand to make him look her in the eye again. "Rebuilding what was broken between us will be hard, but I'm willing to give you another chance. All I ask is that that you never lie to me again or keep something so important from me, no matter the situation," she stated.
"I swear Chère I will do as you ask," Gambit instantly responded unable to believe she would be willing to give him another chance. "My heart is yours and always has been since we first met," he told her with a small smile.
"And don't you forget it swamp rat," Rogue replied before she turned and began to leave the room. "Well are you coming, we have things to do?" she asked.
Gambit did not bother to ask what and quickly moved to follow Rogue, passing a few people as he went he noted they either had hostile looks on their faces or a brief smile and a nod of their heads in his direction. He knew it would be hard regaining the trust and friendship he had once had with many of them, but now that he had Rogue by his side again he knew he could do it.
(Xavier's Office, an hour later)
Alexander watched as Jean discussed the process of how to send him back home with Xavier and Rachel. He hoped nothing went wrong as he really wanted to see his parents and sister again and especially Kitty. Feeling a presence behind him he turned around just to find Logan there, the feral mutant just nodded a greeting which he returned.
"When you get back kid, tell your father he is a lucky man and not to mess up the greatest thing to ever happen to us," Logan told him, feeling very jealous that in Alexander's reality he had married Jean and had two kids with her. He missed the brief glance Jean shot him from behind them as she picked up the rather strong emotions he was giving off, his control was slipping.
"I will and I think he would say in return don't give up on mom," Alexander responded, shaking Logan's hand. "Oneeye is going to mess up eventually and then you will have your chance to capture mom's heart," he told him with conviction.
Logan didn't respond as he found the idea rather hard to imagine. He had seen no signs of the marriage between Jean and Scott weakening and he doubted it would. He knew Jean would not appreciate him chasing her again, but still giving up on her was one thing he would never do. Jean caught a bit of the conversation between the two and found herself half hoping Alexander was correct and half angered by what he had said. Shaking her head she decided it was time to get Alexander home.
"Ok, we are ready," she announced. "All you need to do is stand there and wait, and pray nothing goes wrong," she told him.
"You got it mom," Alexander replied. "Thanks for your help Professor, it was nice to meet the man who inspired Magneto to take up the cause," he added turning to Xavier.
"Thank you Alexander, it has been a pleasure meeting you as well," Xavier replied with a small smile. "Tell Eric never to give up and I will do the same here," he requested.
"Of course, maybe you can reach the Magneto in this reality and make him see sense," Alexander suggested. "He would be a great ally," he stated.
"Yes he would be," Xavier agreed. "Sadly I doubt I will ever be able to change Eric's mind in this reality, he long ago set his cause," he told him.
Before Alexander could reply Jean and Rachel both lit up with the power of the phoenix force and the small group knew it was time to say goodbye to their guest. "Good luck kid," Logan said.
Alexander nodded as his view of the group was overcome by the combined powers of his mother and half sister, granted technically that was not exactly true, but in his mind they were his mother and sister as much as Logan was his father. Different realities aside, they were the same people just with different histories.
"Goodbye and thank you," he shouted before he vanished as Jean and Rachel collapsed into the nearby chairs, Storm had put in place in case they needed them.
"You okay Red?" Logan inquired. "Squirt?" he added, turning to Rachel
"Yes, thank you Logan," Jean replied. "It took a lot more energy than I believed, but I managed to follow him in his path and he indeed reached his home reality," she told them.
"I'm good Logan," Rachel said with a tired look in her eyes. "I think I'm going to go to lie down and probably sleep for a long while," she added before forcing herself back to her feet and heading for her room.
"Do you think it is possible we might see him again someday?" Storm asked, as they left the office.
Jean met Logan's eyes and both knew the answer was yes, there was a good possibility that they might see Alexander again, glancing away Jean headed for her own room to rest, while Logan headed for the Danger Room to work of some of the hurt he felt at knowing another Logan had reached his dream.
Alexander blinked as the light of Jean and Rachel's powers faded before he noted he was in the same room, but in front of him stood Magneto, his parents, his sister and Kitty. Letting out the tense breath he had been holding he moved forward and was brought into a family hug which Kitty quickly joined in on.
"Welcome back Alexander," Magneto said as he sat down at his desk and watched the family reunion unfold. "I am thankful Jean's plan worked and you arrived safely," he added.
"Thank you Professor," Alexander responded as he pulled away from the hug and faced his mentor and teacher. "It was an interesting adventure once I understood what had happened to me, but oneeye was really pushing me," he complained. "I almost gutted him and I can't believe you are still with him in that reality," he added turning to his mother, while Logan let out a growl as he listened to his son.
"As we told you Alexander, different realities have different histories and it is something you have to learn to accept," Jean told him. "But this is your home and its history should be all that truly matters to you," she told him.
"Yeah I agree with mom," Lara told him. "Ok so what in another reality her taste in men is clearly twisted and we were never born, but here we were born and her taste in men was clearly spot on," she added with a teasing smile at her mother who smiled back.
"I did get to meet a future child of that Jean Grey and Summers called Rachel," Alexander told them. "I didn't get the full story like how she traveled back in time, but she seemed like a nice person and so I didn't hold who her dad was against her," he continued with a small smile.
"You should have nailed oneeye in the face for me," Logan finally spoke up. "In fact I'm surprised my alternate self didn't do it himself," he added.
"I doubt my double would have appreciated it, unless Summers truly deserved it," Jean cut in. "Now I think it is time we all had something to eat to welcome back Alexander, plus we still have to finish tidying up the mess the latest attack left behind," she reminded them.
"I agree Jean," Magneto responded as he got back up and began to lead the group towards the dining room. "I have to say it was nice to see Charles Xavier alive once more. I had long missed my old friend," he told them.
"Sad to say the Magneto in that reality is a bad guy, as he never got inspired to take up Xavier's dream due to his death," Alexander pointed out. "He kept going down the dark path you told us you were on before Xavier's assassination," he stated.
"A pity, to find a world where my friend still lives only to learn that I am the enemy he faces in our dream to unite the world in peace," Magneto replied with a frown.
"Xavier did tell me to say never give up and neither will he," Alexander told him. "I suggested that he tries to convince your counterpart to change his ways. You never know, he might be successful," he added.
"A long shot at best," Magneto concluded as he could imagine what his double may be like as he recalled his earlier days before Charles's death and given that so many years would have passed he guessed he would be even worse than he had been.
"I'm just glad you're back," Kitty said, pausing only to kiss her boyfriend in a small, but passionate kiss before she pulled back and took his hand in hers.
"Me too, I missed you," Alexander told her before leaning down and bringing her into a deeper kiss.
Jean and Logan smiled as their son and his chosen lover lost themselves in the kiss before they turned and continued to follow Magneto, who was lost in his owns thoughts of his lost friend.