As if it weren’t enough that the Celestials and Skrulls wanted to establish a beach-head on the U.S.’s left coast – Don’t they know NYC is where it’s happenin’? – recently the refugees from a planet known as Breakworld, its society upended and its people desperate, have come knocking on the X-Men’s door at Utopia.
What can Scott Summers do? His team did, after all, practically destroy their civilization. Just causes aside, this is the X-Men’s mess, he believes, and Scott determines to fix it and aid the aliens.
But he reasons without taking into account the manipulative mind of the Breakworlder known as Kruun.
If you are of Scottish blood, as am I, Kruun’s plan of vengeance in Uncanny X-Men #537 reminds you of nothing if not the great wolf-in-sheep’s-clothing escapade, the Massacre of Glen Coe. As the alien’s revenge runs red and debts are bloodily settled, one can see the Clan MacDonald dying at the hands of their “guests.”
It was early in the morning on Feb. 13, 1692, in the aftermath of the Glorious Revolution and the Jacobite uprising of 1689 led by John Graham of Claverhouse that an infamous massacre took place in Glen Coe, in the Highlands of Scotland. The massacre began simultaneously in three settlements along the glen -- Invercoe, Inverrigan and Achnacon -- although the killing took place all over the glen as fleeing MacDonalds were pursued into the freezing night at the swords of their “guests.”
Thirty-eight MacDonalds from the clan were killed by the “guests” who had accepted their hospitality, on the grounds that the MacDonalds had not been prompt in pledging allegiance to the new monarchs, William and Mary. Another 40 women and children died of exposure after their homes were burned.
Kruun, despotic ruler of Breakworld, was created by the brilliant Joss Whedon and John Cassaday for Astonishing X-Men. In an arc of that book, after the Breakworlder psychics known as the “Augurs” seemingly predicted the destruction of their world at the hands of an unknown mutant from Earth, Kruun dispatched his subordinate, Ord, to eliminate the threat. Following Ord's failure and the discovery that the mutant destined to destroy Breakworld was Colossus, Kruun dispatched an armada of Bruteships to Earth to finish the job.
Agent Abigail Brand of SWORD subsequently abducted Colossus and the other X-Men, teleporting them onto a spaceship bound for Breakworld, in an attempt to lure the armada away from Earth. Kruun took the bait and ordered the Bruteships to pursue the SWORD vessel. The X-Men discovered that the foretold prophecy was an elaborate scheme created by Aghanne, the insane leader of a Breakworld reform cult, intended to bring about that world's destruction. Colossus had been chosen for the prophecy as his unique organic steel form would allow him to destroy the planet's power source, initiating a chain reaction that would destroy the entire world.
As his plan unfolded, Kruun revealed the “Retaliator,” a giant missile destined to be hurled toward Earth. As the X-Men prepared to end the confrontation with Kruun, the team split up with Kitty on the team appointed to stop the Retaliator. Kitty phased into the missile to disrupt its circuitry, noting that it was composed of the same material as the rest of Breakworld -- a material that’s difficult and exhausting for her to phase through. After phasing for a mile into the missile, Kitty found the center only to discover it empty. The Retaliator was fired, causing Kitty to pass out inside of it as the Beast discovered too late that due to its shape, trajectory and lack of internal circuitry, Breakworld’s weapon was not a missile so much as a bullet! As it hurtled toward Earth, Kitty laid unconscious within.
As the situation became increasingly dire, Emma Frost established mental contact with Kitty, reassuring her that she would come out of the danger fine. Kitty and Emma come to an understanding and reconciliation, Emma stating that she never wanted something like this to happen. Kitty then phased the bullet through Earth, but remained trapped. At the end of Giant-Size Astonishing X-Men, Scott mentioned that Dr. Strange, Reed Richards and other MarvelU.“top men” tried to save her, but believe she had fused to the bullet as it continued to hurtle through space.
Meanwhile, Colossus refused to kill Breakworld although he does threaten to seize power and rule it if the aliens destroy Earth as planned.
The Retaliator was later returned to Earth and Kitty rescued by none other than Magneto, who came to the island of Utopia professing his desire to join and support the team in its effort to unite the world's remaining mutants. However, Kitty remained trapped in her intangible form, much like during another Glen Coe situation, the Mutant Massacre!
It is in this aftermath that Kruun, armed with a mixed batch of the power-nullifying “Cure,” systematically begins taking out those he sees as responsible for the woes of he and his people – including the X-Men!
Uncanny X-Men#537 hits stores May 25!