Now I certainly don't wish anybody harm, but ever since Jean Grey returned from the dead, her Dark Phoenix persona keeps clawing its way to the surface. There is usually some trigger that sparks the personality change. This time it was Cyclops making some remark about Jean's hips looking a little large lately. What an idiot that boy can be! If a girl asks you how she looks, you say great. Period. No ad libbing.
Dark Phoenix had incinerated Wolverine while he was in the middle of a Fast-ball Special. Not to worry. He was back in front of the TV with a can of Pringles within the hour. That still left the Phoenix for the rest of us to deal with, though.
Jean flew over the school, engulfed in her giant fiery bird. "Who's next?" she kept shouting. "Scott - where are you? I have a something for you."
Several of the X-Men came running up to me. "Nightcrawler, I want you to teleport onto Jean's back," I said to Kurt. "Then I want-"
"Um, I am zorry, Profezzor," he interrupted, "but I don't have zee healing vactor of Logan. I vill be in zee game room if you need me." And then Kurt disappeared in a puff of smoke. Some hero.
Longshot stepped up to me. "I'd like to help, Professor."
"Well . . your only power is that you can be lucky. That is really pretty useless in battle. Why don't you go play backgammon with Nightcrawler." He seemed a little hurt as he skulked off, but I really didn't have time to waste.
"Jubilee," I said, "why don't you go join Longshot?" She left, too.
"Now Storm, what I want you to do -"
"Professor?" Cyclops interrupted. "Maybe I should talk to her."
"I think you've done quite enough already, don't you Scott?"
"But . . she loves me! I'm sure I can talk her down."
"Haven't you heard what she's been saying? She wants to kill you. She hates you. And I think I know why. You've slept with half of the mutants on the planet."
"But we were on a break!" he whined.
"Now Storm, what I want -"
"Professor!!" shouted Beast as he ran up to me. "I have something that should help!"
"What is it, Hank?" I asked.
"I've had the boy Leech in the isolation chamber, as you directed. With the oscillation magnifier I invented, I can reflect his power to de-power onto Jean. That should be enough to take out her powers!"
"Well then, get to it Hank," I said.
As the Beast ran back to his lab, Jean decided to step up her game. The Phoenix flared up and a giant fireball launched from her beak and roared into the sky. We all heard a huge explosion in the direction of Morris Park. I reached out to Jean with my telepathy.
"Jean, this is the Professor," I thought.
"I'm a little busy right now, Professor. We can talk later."
"Don't you think you have done enough? I mean you did almost kill Wolverine and it looks like you just blew up that town to the north of us."
"First of all, I don't think you can kill Wolverine. Did you know the Hulk ripped him in half a couple of weeks ago? He crawled a couple of miles until he found his legs and then let them reattach. He was up and running around in no time."
"And what about that town?"
"Oh please. No one's ever heard of it so no one is going to miss it."
"Come now, Jean. Enough is enough. Put the Phoenix away and come down and have some cake."
" . . . well, let me just kill Scott then."
"That certainly is tempting but I do feel a bit sentimental about the boy. He was my first student, you know. Now, if you'll-"
And then my telepathy cut out. Beast came running up with Leech under his arm and some kind of large gun with an umbrella on top in his other hand.
"Hank you idiot!" I yelled. "I had just about talked her down!"
Phoenix, out of Leech's range, shot a fireball down towards us. The flaming blast exploded all around us. Fortunately, Gaia was just at that very moment returning with Forge from 7-11. Gaia dropped her Slurpee and from a distance, used her reality warping powers to create a protective shell around us. Gaia also dampened the flames before too much damage was done to the school. Luckily for us, she was beyond the range of Leech's power.
Beast stuck a tube down Leech's throat and aimed the gun and umbrella at Jean. A bizarre purple energy bolt shot out at her. Almost instantly a blanket of eerie light surrounded her. When it dissipated, the flaming bird was gone and Jean started to plummet to the Earth.
I thought to myself that letting her fall would be one way to solve the Phoenix problem permanently. I knew I was just kidding myself though. She's always going to come back.
Gaia again used her powers to create an air cushion under Jean. She landed softly and Scott carried her back to her room. Hopefully when she wakes up, she won't be too mad. We'll see.