The superstar team of Warren Ellis and Simone Bianchi take the X-Men to the "Second Stage"!
" Messiah Complex" pulled the X-Men team together, " Divided We Stand" tore them apart. Now the X-Men are back to business -- with a new look, a new base of operations, and a mystery to solve that will take them into previously uncharted territory and test them to their core. It all starts on a spaceship hovering 300 hundred feet above the twisted wreckage of Chaparanga Beach. Its sole inhabitant: the mysterious Subject X. Five minutes -- just five minutes is all he needs, all he’s asking for.
Can the X-Men afford to give it to him?
Synopsis:The X-Men – Cyclops, Emma Frost, Storm, Armor, and Wolverine – touch down on Chaparanga Beach, a junkyard for abandoned spaceships. They are hunting Subject X, who murdered a mysterious artificial mutant in San Francisco.
Emma quickly zeroes in on their quarry, holed up in one of the few ships still aloft. Armor launches Wolverine at the ship with a Fastball Special to scout ahead while Storm lifts the rest of the team into the air.
Wolverine crawls through the bowels of the ship, discovering Subject X tinkering with a box connected to the ship's power supply. Subject X lights Wolverine aflame with a single touch and goes back to his box to power it on. When Wolverine recovers and presses his attack Subject X incinerates the air around them!
Storms arrives with the rest of the team in tow and repels the flames, but they're too late to stop Subject X from bringing his box online. When mysterious figures manifest around the now-glowing box, Cyclops orders the team to abandon ship and Storm to strike it once they're clear.
Storm's lightning bolt spits the space ship in two. It crashes to the ground in an impressive plume of flames, scattering the salvage workers on the beach below.
As the team makes their way into the charred hull of the ship, Ororo worries she might have killed Subject X. Scott cuts her off, insisting the ends of preserving the mutant race justify any means necessary.
Their argument is interrupted when they discover the prone-but-conscious form of Subject X. He insists, “you can't stop the Annex,” and then immolates.