Earth-717: X-Men Vol 2

Chapter 4: The Sapphire Weapon
A chill, Februar !ornin" bree#e $ille% the at!o&phere o$ 'o&ton( )t &eepe% into the ori$ice& o$
the *all&+ it &na,e% an% &lithere% in&i%e o$ e-er crac, in the "roun%( An al!o&t eerie cr in the *in%
*hi&pere%, it& &oun% *a-e& echoin" a& &ilentl a& the coul% throu"h the &treet& o$ the "reat cit( The
pe%e&trian& on the &treet *al,e% b a& i$ the coul%n.t notice it(
/ne %i%(
/n a hi"h*a o-erpa&&, near the e%"e o$ the railin" *here there *a& no &i%e*al,, a lone !an
pre&&e% $or*ar%, cuttin" throu"h the thic, noi&e o$ the bree#e( Each &tep *a& an ar%uou& 0ue&t+ a
-ictor in a *ar a"ain&t the oppre&&ion o$ hi& &urroun%in"&( While he ha% a bro*n leather 1ac,et *ith a
hoo% o-er hi& hea%, it %i% little to 0uell the pain roarin" an% ra!pa"in" acro&& hi& "ho&tl &,in( 2e *a&
&*eatin" an% $ree#in" at the &a!e ti!e(
A &e%an race% pa&t hi!, the %ri-er hon,in" hi& horn a& it %i% &o( The !an pai% it no !in%,
re$u&in" to brea, $ree o$ hi& internal thou"ht ccle( 3eepin" hi& hea% $acin" the "roun% an% hi& han%& in
hi& poc,et&, he !a%e it nearl i!po&&ible $or anone to "et a "oo% loo, at hi& $ace( Another car %ro-e
b, *ith no atte!pt at interaction( The !an *a& in one *a, &ati&$ie%, but in another, a!bi-alent(
Attune% to the air aroun% hi!, the !an $elt a brea, in it( 4oo,in" up into the &,, he &a* a blac,
1et $lin" a*a $ro! the cit, into the hori#on( 3eepin" hi& ee& traine% on it $or &e-eral &econ%&, he
pon%ere% it in hi& !in%( 2e %i% not ,no* that it *a& a !o%i$ie% S5-71 'lac,bir%, but he al&o %i%n.t
care( /nce it *a& out o$ hi& -i&ual ran"e, he %i&car%e% it $ro! hi& thou"ht&(
4oo,in" to hi& ri"ht, the !an &a* the &treet runnin" un%erneath the o-erpa&&( )t le% into the
heart o$ the cit.& bu&ine&& %i&trict, *ith a %o#en &,&craper& in clo&e pro6i!it( The !an &toppe%,
narro*in" hi& ee&( Scannin" the &treet na!e on the &i"n o$ the &topli"ht&, he then &toppe% an% $ace% it(
2i& blue hea%&-up %i&pla then acti-ate% *ithin hi& -i&or(
While no one el&e coul% &ee it, the !an *a& co-ere% co!pletel in a blac, bo%&uit *ith
&nthetic i!plant&( Mo%ular, li"ht*ei"ht pol!er ar!our line% the li!b&, che&t an% bac, piece&( 2i&
$ace *a& hi%%en behin% the !a&, &ection, *hich ha% no %i&cernible $eature& a&i%e $ro! a "lo*in", can
-i&or( )t *a& thin an% rectan"ular, a&i%e $ro! the !i%%le, *hich &lante% %o*n*ar%& in an up&i%e %o*n
trian"le &hape(
'reathin" in, the !an coul% hear the ra&p -oice be"in &pea,in" into hi& earpiece(
7Sapphire Weapon( Thi& i& the Ma&ter( Where are ou89
The Weapon breathe% in be$ore re&pon%in"(
7En place(9
7) a! $ee%in" !i&&ion rele-ant %ata to our hea%&-up %i&pla no*(9
The Weapon *atche% a& &e-eral panel& opene% in $ront o$ hi& ee&, &ho*in" picture&,
%ocu!ent& an% %ata &trea!&( 2e &ilentl !o-e% hi& ee& $ro! one panel to the ne6t, ab&orbin" the
in$or!ation(
7:our tar"et.& na!e i& Senator 5obert 3ell,9 e6plaine% the Ma&ter( 7/ur in$or!ant *ithin hi&
or"ani#ation ha& $e% u& %ata about hi& itinerar $or the %a( Within the ne6t $e* !inute&, hi& li!ou&ine
*ill pa&& un%er ou( Collateral %a!a"e i& not a concern( The re&t o$ the !i&&ion %ata i& in the $ile& )
ha-e &ent ou(9
The Weapon %i% not re&pon%, continuin" to rea%( 2e then "lance% at the i!a"e o$ 3ell on the
le$t &i%e o$ the hea%&-up %i&pla( 2e *a& a !i%%le-a"e%, *hite !an, in a &uit an% tie( 2e appeare% to be
e6hau&te%, a& i$ he *a& barel ,eepin" hi!&el$ "oin"( A loo, o$ $ear *a& in hi& ee&(
E6halin", the Weapon clo&e% the %ata panel& an% ,ept hi& ee& on the roa% ahea% o$ hi!( ;ullin"
hi& han%& out o$ hi& 1ac,et.& poc,et&, he $le6e% an% &tretche% hi& pal!&, be$ore curlin" the! into $i&t&(
Each *ri&t *a& a$$i6e% *ith a !iniature "auntlet, co!po&e% o$ three thin tube rin"& &trappe% to a piece
o$ &oli% !etal( The tube rin"& *ere connecte% to a *ire o$ tubin" that ran throu"h the bo%&uit, but *a&
!o&tl protecte% an% co-ere% b the pol!er ar!our(
A$ter $our !inute&, the Weapon narro*e% hi& ee& upon &eein" a couple o$ police crui&er& turn
the corner behin% the &topli"ht& that he *a& *atchin"( Another o$$icer on a !otorccle $ollo*e%, alon"
*ith a a li!ou&ine *ith t*o <nite% State& $la"& attache% to the $ront en%( A SWAT truc, brou"ht up the
rear o$ the con-o(
)n&i%e o$ the li!ou&ine, 3ell tappe% hi& han% a"ain&t hi& ,nee( 2e then o-erhear% a -oice
&pea,in" on the police ra%io(
7All unit&, be a%-i&e%+ *e ha-e an apparent alert on the Ea&t Si%e( 5epeat, Ea&t Si%e( We.-e "ot
con$ir!e% or%er& $or all cit unit& not on &pecial a&&i"n!ent to hea% out there no*, o-er(9
3ell loo,e% o-er at the a"ent &ittin" ne6t to hi!(
7That.& not u&, ri"ht89
The a"ent &hoo, hi& hea%(
7=o, &ir,9 an&*ere% the a"ent( 7The &0ua% car& co-erin" u& are con&i%ere% un%er &pecial
a&&i"n!ent( >on.t *orr, Senator(9
7/,a(9
3ell no%%e% an% loo,e% $or*ar% a"ain, hi& breathin" at an ele-ate% rate(
?oo!in" in *ith the tar"etin" reticule built into hi& -i&or, the Weapon con$ir!e% the licen&e
plate on the $ront en%( 2e then opene% the co!!unication& channel(
74a cible e&t %an& un con-oi &ur-eill@,9 &ai% the Weapon(
The -oice o$ the Ma&ter on the other en% chuc,le%(
7E6cellent( 5i"ht on &che%ule( E6ecute our or%er&(9
7Enten%ue(9
The Weapon clo&e% the co!!unication& channel an% let in a %eep breath( <pon e6halin", he $elt
a%renaline $ill hi!&el$ up, %ro*nin" out the nu!bin" &oun% o$ the *in%( 2e 0uic,l to&&e% o$$ hi&
leather 1ac,et, re-ealin" hi& $ull bo%&uit( >e&pite bein" co!pri&e% o$ ar!our, the tube net*or, an%
&nthetic i!plant&, the &uit it&el$ *a& nearl &,inti"ht, allo*in" $or a $ree ran"e o$ !o-e!ent(
Acti-atin" the a"ilit &er-o&, the Weapon &pun hi& bo% aroun% an% hel% hi& ar!& ti"ht a"ain&t hi& che&t
a& he launche% hi!&el$ into the air, o-er the railin" o$ the o-erpa&&(
A& the con-o pa&&e% throu"h the inter&ection, the o$$icer %ri-in" the &0ua% car at the $ront en%
rai&e% her eebro* upon &eein" the Weapon lan% in a three point po&e on the &treet ahea% o$ the!,
crac,in" the pa-e!ent a& he %i% &o(
7What the $uc,89
The Weapon 0uic,l &too% up an% hel% out hi& ri"ht ar!( 2i& han% in a $i&t, hi& *ri&t "auntlet
"lo*e% *ith blue ener" $or a &econ%( )t then $ire% a $ocu&e% bea! o$ blue-*hite li"ht, *hich
connecte% *ith the $ront en% o$ the police car( Vapori#in" the $ront bu!per an% part o$ the en"ine, the
re!ain& o$ the -ehicle catapulte% into the air( Flippin" an% &oarin" o-er the Weapon, the car cleare% hi&
hea% b at lea&t t*o !etre& be$ore lan%in" up&i%e %o*n behin% hi! an% &,atin" %o*n the &treet $or
&e-eral !ore !etre&(
The Weapon too, a &econ% to loo, bac, at the car be$ore $acin" $or*ar%( The other -ehicle& in
the con-o &la!!e% on their bra,e&, an% the o$$icer %ri-in" the &econ% -ehicle hapha#ar%l "rabbe%
hi& ra%io(
7All unit&A9 &houte% the o$$icer( 7We are un%er attac,A 5epeat, un%er attac,A Con-o /ne i&
%o*nA ;riorit re%A9
A -oice re&pon%e% o-er the ra%io(
73eepin" pac,a"e &ecure( En"a"e an% eli!inate threat(9
)n&i%e the li!ou&ine, 3ell be"an to %art hi& hea% bac, an% $orth(
7What, *hat.& happenin"8A9
The a"ent &ittin" ne6t to hi! pu&he% hi! %o*n a"ain&t the &eat&(
7Sta %o*n, SenatorA9
The Weapon be"an *al,in" a*a $ro! the $la!in" carca&& o$ the $ir&t police car, &lo*l an%
cal!l approachin" the &toppe% con-o( T*o o$$icer& le$t the &econ% car, an% a thir% "ot o$$ her
!otorccle( The three o$$icer& too, co-er an% traine% their ai! on the Weapon(
7Sta bac,A9
The Weapon ,ept *al,in" $or*ar%, o$$erin" no re&pon&e(
7/pen $ireA9
The o$$icer& unloa%e% &e-eral bullet& at the Weapon, but the *ere %e$lecte% b hi& ar!our(
Stoppin" hi& a%-ance an% tiltin" hi& hea% to the &i%e, the Weapon then char"e% $or*ar%( Mo-in" at
incre%ible &pee%, he cro&&e% the t*o %o#en !etre& to the o$$icer& in le&& than a &econ%( 2e 0uic,l
&!a&he% the $ir&t o$$icer.& hea% a"ain&t the e%"e o$ the car %oor, &plittin" it open, cau&in" hi& brain
!atter to be"in lea,in" onto the roa%(
The Weapon then bur&t $or*ar% a"ain, punchin" the !otorccle o$$icer acro&& the $ace( The
&pee% o$ the &tri,e &ent her $lin" bac,*ar%&, *here &he cra&he% a"ain&t a buil%in" *all, her bone& all
bro,en be$ore &he e-en %i% &o( The la&t o$$icer &crea!e% an% unloa%e% the re&t o$ hi& clip at the
Weapon, *ho 1u&t &printe% to*ar%& hi! an% "rabbe% hi& ar!( Sla!!in" hi& *ri&t %o*n on the o$$icer.&
elbo*, &nappin" it, he then an,e% on it *ith "reat $orce, boo&te% b the &nthetic i!plant&, rippin" the
ar! ri"ht out o$ hi& &oc,et( The o$$icer collap&e% in &hoc,, an% the Weapon to&&e% the bloo%ie%
appen%a"e to the "roun% in %i&"u&t(
The li!ou&ine %ri-er *i%ene% her ee& in $ear an% be"an to re-er&e a*a( The bac, %oor o$ the
SWAT -an bur&t open, an% ei"ht &er-ice!en in $ull tactical "ear ran out o$ the -ehicle( Ar!e% *ith M4
a&&ault ri$le&, the o$$icer& be"an $irin" roun%& o$ auto!atic a!!unition at the Weapon( The Weapon
re&pon%e% b !o-in" at blin%in" &pee%, &tri,in" *ith ,ic,&, punche& an% pal! &tri,e&(
Mo-in" &*i$tl $ro! one SWAT o$$icer to the ne6t, the Weapon e$$ortle&&l ,ille% !o&t o$ the
tea!( /ne o$ the &ur-i-in" o$$icer& $ire% a roun% $ro! hi& ri$le.& un%erbell "rena%e launcher, *hich
bla&te% the Weapon bac,, into the air( See!in"l *ithout pau&e, he char"e% the *ri&t "auntlet on hi&
le$t han% *ith blue ener" be$ore $irin" a la&er at the "roun%( The $orce $ro! the bla&t ,noc,e% hi!
to*ar%& a nearb buil%in", *here he be"an runnin" alon" the *all, 1u&t out o$ reach o$ !ultiple &trea!&
o$ bullet&(
4eapin" o$$ the *all, the Weapon put $or*ar% both ar!& *ith clo&e% $i&t&, $lattenin" another
SWAT o$$icer *hen he lan%e%( 4oo,in" at the $leein" li!ou&ine, he then be"an to race %o*n the &treet,
$ollo*in" it( 3ic,in" a ci-ilian &e%an out o$ hi& *a, he then 1u!pe% up*ar%& ten !etre&, launchin"
hi!&el$ &o that he lan%e% ri"ht on the $ront en%, %eci!atin" the en"ine an% haltin" the -ehicle(
Buttin" hi& $i&t throu"h the *in%&hiel%, the Weapon "rabbe% the li!ou&ine %ri-er, "ra&pin" an%
cru&hin" her *in%pipe( Ber,in" hi& han% &o that it &nappe% her nec,, he then pulle% her bo% out o$ her
&eat an% thre* her behin% hi!( Crabbin" the roo$ o$ the li!ou&ine *ith both han%&, he rippe% a
&i"ni$icant portion o$ it o$$, until he &a* 3ell, *ho *a& bein" "uar%e% b t*o a"ent&(
3ell &tare% at the !otionle&& Weapon in terror $or $i-e &econ%&(
7Cet %o*nA9
Another "rena%e roun% &truc, the Weapon, bla&tin" hi! o$$ o$ the li!ou&ine an% &ent hi!
cra&hin" into a hot %o" &tan% a& the &tan% atten%ant $rea,e% out an% ran o$$( >a#e% $or a !o!ent, the
Weapon reco-ere% an% pu&he% hi!&el$ o$$ the "roun%( The re&t o$ the SWAT tea! cau"ht up to an%
opene% $ire on hi!, but he char"e% both o$ hi& *ri&t "auntlet& an% incinerate% the! *ith ener" bla&t&(
5unnin" bac, to the li!ou&ine, he tore open a %oor to loo, in&i%e( Seein" that it *a& e!pt, the
Weapon loo,e% all aroun% hi!, &eein" no &i"n o$ 3ell( A& he hear% police &iren& "ettin" clo&er, he
opene% up hi& co!!unication& channel(
75eport,9 co!!an%e% the Ma&ter(
74a cible c.e&t @chapp@e( C.@tait authenti0ue, co!!e -ou& -oulait(9
7<n%er&too%( 5eturn to ba&e(9
'reathin" in, the Weapon let "o o$ the ru&h o$ co!bat, an% the a%renaline in hi& -ein& $lu&he%
it&el$ out( Feelin" the cr o$ the *in% $ill up hi& ear& a"ain, the Weapon &neere% be$ore &printin" into a
nearb alle an% out o$ &i"ht a& a han%$ul o$ police -ehicle& turne% onto the &treet(