Earth-717: X-Men Vol 1-6 | Nature

Earth-717: X-Men Vol 1

Chapter 6: Structural Integrity
The explosion was blinding. The sixth floor, which was the one through which the bomb
entered the building via one of its windows, completely collapsed, and the upper section of the building
fell onto the lower one. Thousands of shards of glass and chunks of concrete spilled onto the
surrounding street, smashing sidewalks and crushing cars. Distorted screams were heard from the
dozens of people who were instantly vaporized by the electromagnetic device.
Scott and Jean were knocked down by the force of the blast. Erik stood still, levitating,
absorbing the kinetic force with his shield. He then looked down at Xavier. Xavier's eyes were widened
in terror.
“See you in the new world, Charles.”
Erik floated away, over the nearby buildings. Xavier looked back at Kelly's building, which
began to fall apart. Scott pushed himself off the ground and looked at Xavier.
“Professor!”
Xavier didn't move.
“Professor!”
Scott shook his head and ran forward. As he did, he noticed a large piece of a column fall off the
building, about to land on the taxi that Hank was still collapsed against.
“Hank!”
Scott rushed next to Hank and hooked both of his arms under Hank's armpits. Using all of his
strength, Scott hurled Hank onto the road, and performing another barrel roll, barely dodged the
column smashing into the taxi.
“Piotr!” shouted Scott. “Get that building stable!”
Piotr ran to the building and jumped onto what little remained of the sixth floor. Bracing the
ceiling against his hands, he pushed upwards, causing the entire top section of the building to lurch and

hold in place.
“I've got it . . . . but I don't know how long!”
Jean helped Bobby get up off the fire hydrant. Scott looked at him.
“Bobby! Can you get some ice on those pillars? Help Piotr stabilize the building?”
Bobby's features sharpened.
“You got it.”
Bobby skated forward, and then started blasting the corner pillars. Xavier finally shook his head
and looked over at the X-Men.
“Scott! I . . . . I can't move!”
Scott turned to the Professor, but Jean put her hand on his shoulder.
“Let me.”
Jean held out her right hand, her palm open. Narrowing her eyes, Xavier's wheelchair started to
scrape against the ground. After a few seconds, the chair started to roll on its own until it arrived next to
them.
“Thank you, Jean,” Xavier said.
Jean nodded. As Bobby continued to freeze the unstable pillars, he heard coughing and
screaming coming from inside.
“Scott!” yelled Bobby. “I can hear people in there! We have to get them out!”
Scott turned to Jean and Xavier.
“Hank is still unconscious. I have to go in.”
“We.”
Scott looked back at Jean.
“We have to go in,” Jean said.
Scott nodded. Scott looked at Xavier for a moment, and then turned towards the building. Scott
and Jean ran for the front entrance, which was mostly full of shattered rubble. After Scott fired a laser

blast, which cleared a path, he took a moment to look back at Piotr.
“Piotr, we're going in to find survivors. You have to hold. Do you hear me?”
“Yes . . . .” Piotr said, struggling.
“You have to hold!”
Scott then rushed inside, Jean at his back. A piece of flaming wood crashed into Scott's
shoulder. He cringed and shrugged it off. Blasting open another door, Scott arrived in a large, marble
entrance hall. The marble composing the walls, stairs and floors had cracks running through it, and
three corpses were strewn about the room. Several screaming and crouching people were huddled in
one of the corners.
“The door's open!” Scott shouted. “Get out of here. Now!”
The people got up from their position and ran past Scott. Scott then tore his way up the stairs,
blasting various pieces of destroyed furniture and rubble out of his way. As he entered the next corridor,
a large wall of flame repelled him; his body being physically blocked by the amount of heat it was
giving off. Shaking his head, he looked behind him to see an alternate staircase which was not on fire.
Bashing the door open, he began running up the stairs, with Jean at his heels.
On the next floor, Scott saw dozens of people all in the centre of a ballroom hall, most of them
coughing incessantly. Large quantities of smoke filled the top part of the hall. Scott fired a blast
through all the nearby windows.
“Everyone! There's a path through to the exit! This way!”
As the people started to move towards them, a loud smashing noise emanated through the room.
A crack started to form in the ceiling.
“The ceiling's caving in!” shouted one of the civilians.
People started screaming and moving frantically. Scott turned to his right.
“Jean!”
Jean threw up her arms. The collapsing ceiling vibrated, and stopped falling. Jean grated her

teeth and closed her eyes, moaning.
“Hurry! Get out!”
Some of the people looked at the ceiling and then back at Jean.
“Now!” Jean screamed, shaking.
The crowd started to run past Jean, down the stairs. Scott beckoned them along. As Jean
watched them rush out, she noticed the face of Robert Kelly amongst the crowd. As the last few were
evacuating, Jean fell onto one knee, holding her vibrating arms as high as she could. Scott turn to grab
at her shoulder, but pieces of the ceiling started to break through Jean's telekinetic barrier.
“Jean! We have to go!”
“I can't . . . .” Jean said, weakly. “It's . . . . too heavy . . . .”
“I'm not leaving you here!”
“If I move . . . . we won't make it to the door,” Jean explained. “There's . . . . too much . . . .
pressure. You've got . . . . to go, Scott.”
Scott grabbed both of Jean's shoulders.
“Not without you!”
Jean looked at Scott, her eyes watering.
“Please . . . . go . . . .”
Scott placed both of his hands on Jean's cheeks.
“I'm not leaving.”
Jean winced and closed her eyes as Scott placed his forehead against hers. He then wrapped his
arms around her torso, pulling her close. After a few moments, Jean relented, and the ceiling collapsed
around them. Scott closed his eyes, waiting for the impact.
A few seconds after the noise stopped, Scott opened his eyes. Looking around, he saw that all of
the rubble was being kept from them by a bubble-shaped barrier. As Jean looked around, the barrier
disappeared.

“You were able to do this?” Scott asked.
Jean looked flabbergasted.
“I . . . . suppose so.”
Scott and Jean smiled at each other, and he let go of her.
“Alright, we have to move,” Scott said.
Jean started to fall towards the ground, sweating and shaking.
“The weight . . . . my muscles are so sore . . . .”
Scott grabbed Jean's arms and leaned her weight against him. Dragging her feet along the floor,
Scott pulled her towards the exit. As they reached the stairs, a tremor tore through the building, causing
them to lurch. Scott reached out and grabbed the metal banister, stopping himself and Jean from falling.
Jean groaned as her eyes started to flutter shut.
“Just hold onto me.”
Jean weakly reached out with one of her hands, which faltered and went limp. Scott took a step
down the stairs as the fire overhead continued to grow. Scott clamped his teeth together as he looked at
the fire. He felt his forehead sweating, but he took another step regardless.
“I'm going to get you out of here.”
“Ugh . . . .”
As Jean's eyelids started to close, her eyes rolled upwards. Scott took a few more steps, pulling
her with him.
“C'mon Jean, we're going to get out of this,” Scott pleaded. “Stay with me. Please, just stay with
me.”
“Scott . . . .”
“I'm here, Jean. Just stay awake. I'll do the rest. Just . . . . please . . . . stay awake . . . .”
Scott breathed in deeply as the fire caused more pieces of wood to fall on him. He held his head
over top Jean as he took the brunt of impact. Tears started to stream from his eyes.

“Please, Jean . . . .”
“Ugh . . . .”
Scott felt his own knees go weak. Burns on his shoulders tore into his nervous system. The taste
of smoking coughs welled in his throat. Streaks of light filled his field of vision.
“Just . . . . a few . . . . more . . . .”
Scott's vision went completely blurry. All he saw were muddled shapes in a wash of red. Taking
another step, he heard the sound of crackling fire grow louder. Then, as he felt his knees giving out, he
heard a familiar voice.
“Piotr! They're out!”
Scott cringed, desperately fighting to keep his eyes open. Everything went black for a few
seconds before he felt his legs lose contact with the floor. Rolling with the motion, Scott's head bobbed
back and forth until his skin was sharply cut by the cool air of the outside. Blinking furiously, Scott
breathed in before the hard slab of earth that was the street stopped his motion. His head facing
upwards, Scott blinked a few more times.
“Scott! Scott!”
Piotr's head moved into Scott's view. He had a concerned look on his face.
“Are you okay, Scott? Can you hear me?”
Scott coughed and sputtered. Piotr exhaled and then smiled.
“Is he alive?”
Piotr looked to the right.
“He's breathing. He's alright.”
“What . . . . happened . . . .”
“I barely got you two out in time,” Piotr said. “Just after I jumped out of the building, it just
collapsed. There's . . . . not much left.”
Pushing himself off the ground, Scott looked over to see Bobby and Hank standing over him.

Scott sighed and coughed. Hank held out his hand. Scott grabbed it and Hank pulled him to his feet.
Scott put his hand on his forehead.
“Ugh . . . .”
“Take your time, Scott.”
“Jean . . . .” Scott started, “Where's Jean?”
“I'm here.”
Jean walked past Hank and stood in front of Scott, smiling. Before Jean could say anything,
Scott grabbed her shoulders and pulled her in close. In the embrace, they placed their heads on each
other's shoulders.
****
Kelly opened the door to his office and entered. The wooden furniture was made of deep, brown
mahogany, with thick patterned carpets lining the floor. Sitting at this desk, he placed his head against
his hand; his index finger at his temple, and his thumb at his cheek. Furrowing his brow, he scraped the
nails of his free hand against the top of his desk. Exhaling, he reached for the remote. He pushed the
power button, and the nearby television flickered on.
“This is Frederick Foswell, with the Boston Globe. Right behind me, we can see what remains
of Senator Robert Kelly's headquarters, which was destroyed today in what appears to be a
bombing . . . .”
Kelly scowled.
“. . . . claim that there may be a correlation to Kelly's strong anti-mutant platform. Several
eyewitness reports say that there were in fact mutants on the scene, but nothing has been confirmed by
the authorities at this time.”
Kelly picked up his phone and dialled the number. He placed the receiver against his ear as it
rung. After two rings, the line clicked on.
“This is Macken.”

“Walter? It's Kelly.”
“Senator Kelly! My god, sir, I heard what happened. Are you alright?”
“I'm fine,” Kelly replied. “But I think you realize how dangerous this is getting.”
“Of course, sir.”
“I want the Sentinels online now. Full production.”
“But sir,” pleaded Walter, “without the authorization of the registration act . . . .”
“Do I sound like I give a damn about authorization? Start mass producing those machines now,
or everyone is going to know about your secret, you little shit.”
“Y-yes sir,” replied Walter. “Right away.”
“Good. If Stark says anything, just refer back to me. I'll handle it.”
“Okay.”
Kelly threw the receiver back at the phone. He then looked back at the television, which showed
his building in flames.

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