As I looked around our new surroundings, I realized that we were actually in a Starbucks. Was there a corner of reality this place hadn't reached? I had pretty much managed to ignore their inhumanly fast virus-like growth rate up until the point that one opened up in the main hall of my school. Could Starbucks actually be some kind of mutant entity? I will have to explore that.
"Professor," said Emma Frost, walking up to me, "what is with all these Phoenixes?"
The Starbucks was located in the midst of some kind of giant white room. Also present in this room were dozens of people of indeterminate origin. They all had one thing in common - the Phoenix symbol on their chests. Two of them, a man and a woman, walked past us.
"So you really destroyed everyone?" the woman asked her companion.
"Oh yeah," he answered.
"Why did you do it?" she asked.
"I'm don't know. Because they were there, I guess."
Mystique leaned close to me and whispered, "I wish I had my guns."
Scary. Jean came back over to our little group. Somehow her body had changed to look like the organic steel body of Colossus. This whole situation was very confusing.
"Jean," I started, "what is this place? Who are all these people? Where are we? How do we get home? Please start with that last one first."
"Getting home should be easy enough. Apparently I can use those TV sets to tune into alternate realities and then I can enter them. That's how I found you in the mirror universe. As far as where we are and who those other Phoenixes are, I just don't know."
I asked Jean to get us out of here. She walked over to the televisions and began changing the channels. I saw all sorts of strange images. In one, Captain America appeared to be president. In another, Spider-Man had joined the Fantastic Four. There was even one where it looked like Magneto was ruling the USA. Now that was scary.
Finally the TV tuned into what looked like my very own school for gifted students. The familiar mansion looked very calm and peaceful. But as I well know, looks can be deceiving.
"That's our universe," Jean announced.
"Are you sure?" I asked.
"I mean, are you sure your sure?"
"I'm telling you, that's our universe."
"I'm only asking because I'd really hate to walk in on myself in the bathroom, you know?"
"Professor, don't worry. I promise you, that's our universe."
Still not fully convinced, I none the less nodded and Jean approached the TV. Reaching out to the set, she was somehow able to pull us all through the screen and in an instant we were back in my office. I looked around uncertainly, but it did indeed seem to be my own office. Everything seemed to be in its place. Jean moved back towards the shimmering screen.
"You're going back?" I asked.
"Yes," she answered. "I'm curious what that white room is. But don't worry, I'll be back." Jean blew a kiss to Scott while winking at Logan and then disappeared.
As the others left me, I let out a long sigh of relief. I felt a bit like Odysseus returning from his incredibly long journey home. I plan to take a long, long nap.