The X-Men are a team of Mutants who use their natural born abilities to fight crime.
There are no superheroes. There are just people. There are good people. There are bad people. On both sides of the morality spectrum, there are normal people and there are mutants. The mutant phenomenon did not come to light for the general public until 2010, but many of the governments of the world and conspiracy theorists have known about them since the late 80s or earlier. It is speculated that mutants of this caliber have been around since recorded history, only extraordinarily rare, and it was humans unlocking the secrets of the atom that created a spike, followed by more spikes that could be traced back to the Three-Mile Island accident of 1979 and the Chernobyl disaster of 1986... and other nuclear events. It is this theory that would eventually label mutants as "The Children of the Atom".
But that day has not yet come to be. Our story begins in the early 90s, but before can get there, some background information.
Following their discovery of an actual mutant phenomenon around 1983, the U.S. Government created an elite secret taskforce meant to locate and identify mutants. If the mutant was harmless, they were secretly tagged with an ID chip and monitored remotely. If the mutant were a threat, they could be captured or worse. If the mutant seemed useful, they could be recruited. This taskforce had many names, none of them official. Its elite human operatives are armed with state of the art equipment and mutant DNA suppressive weaponry and call themselves Sentinels. The mutants which the taskforce recruits are designated as mutants by the codename of 'Weapon' followed by an identification number and letter.
Charles Xavier is a mutant who has perhaps the most powerful mind. A powerful telepath, Charles was born in 1963, and after discovering his gift decided to try to find others like him. In college, he studied genetics and used his gift to greater enhance his mind, becoming a master of many disciplines. After school, Charles became involved in the Human Genome Project, hoping to discover the secrets to finding more like him. While working in this capacity, Charles met Erik Lehnsherr, another contributor to the project. It did not take long for a psychic such as Charles to discover that Lehnsherr was a man who possessed strange abilities, different from his own. The two became quick friends. It did not take long for Lehnsherr to admit he had come to the project as he believed the project was created to locate and identify their kind for extermination. Charles did not want to believe that, but together the two eventually found proof that there were organizations interested in this project for this very reason.
Upon learning that some people were taking information gleaned from the project to locate mutants, Charles and Erik decided to do something about it. The two retired to Charles' family estate and began sorting through stolen documents from the project to locate other mutants. During this time, Erik introduced Charles to his three children: Pietro, Wanda, and Lorna; all were mutants as well. Erik also contacted some other mutants he had encountered in his past to aid them, among these only Raven Darkholme and Jason Wyngarde were the only ones willing to assist. They received further help from Moira MacTaggert, a Scottish geneticist that Charles had wooed while both were working the Human Genome Project and had become sympathetic to Charles and Erik's cause when she overheard the pair conversing and Charles could not bring himself to erase the memory.
With their collected data, Charles and Erik were able to locate many teens and through some telepathic persuasion, Charles and Erik were able to relocate the children to Charles' estate which they then transformed into what would appear to be a private boarding school for 'Gifted Youngsters'. The teens they recruited were Scott Summers, Martin Toynbee, Jean Grey, Tessa Lisic, Hank McCoy, St. John Allerdyce, Warren Worthington III, Fred Dukes, Bobby Drake, and Anna-Marie Darkholme.
The year was 1992 when Charles and Erik had begun looking for students and with their stolen genome documents, they were only able to find their first ten students. On the Xavier estate, they began to train the children in the use of their powers while also working on means to find more students. Part of the students training introduced a tradition where they would rename themselves with a new identity as a way of coming to terms with their powers and accepting them as a core aspect of who they were.
Charles, Erik, Moira, and their student Hank began working on equipment that would enhance Charles' telepathic range, allowing him to find mutants through direct mental contact. While this was ongoing, Erik also oversaw Raven and Jason as they underwent covert operations to investigate the Sentinel program in hopes of finding captured mutants to liberate. When this finally paid off and Erik learned of a location of a secret detainment facility, he approached Charles with the idea of raiding the compound and taking the captured mutants by force. Charles did not believe this action was warranted, believing that by exposing the facility the taskforce could be compelled to release the mutants without bloodshed. An argument ensued and Erik left to retrieve the mutants without Charles' help.
Upon discovering that Erik had left without him and had taken the children on a 'training exercise', Charles and Moira rushed to the scene in an attempt to stop Erik but the firefight was already underway. As Charles rushed in, he saw Erik and the others pinned down and surrounded by Sentinels. There were no mutant detainees to be found. The entire thing had been a ruse to lure Erik out. Just as Charles realized this, he saw a Sentinel's rocket-propelled grenade thrown off course by Erik where it struck a support column. Charles realized what was about to happen and used his powers to assert control over Erik's mind to have him throw a protective shield over the children as the entire facility came crashing down.
Erik, Jason, Raven, and the children were all able to walk out of the debris. Charles was not, he was too far out of range of Erik's shield and had sacrificed himself to ensure the children's safety. Charles' spine was crushed by the debris while Moira's legs were likewise struck by a heavy load. Seeing what had happened to his friend, believing Charles to be dead, and blaming the Sentinels for it; Erik's rage was unleashed upon what Sentinels who survived the collapse, giving the children a glimpse at the darkness in Erik's heart. Charles awoke in time to cause Erik to spare a single Sentinel and then had Jean compel that Sentinel to flee.
Distraught over what had happened, Charles and Erik's relationship was strained. The two constantly argued about the future of their cause and the different directions that their school should be taken. Erik wanted a militant approach to counter the Sentinels and protect mutants by force. Charles thought there must be a more peaceful solution to this. The two's differing opinions were divisive among the students with over half of them believing Erik's path to be the true path.
Eventually, one day while Charles was in surgery, Erik left and took any student willing to follow him. When Moira returned from the hospital with a wheelchair-bound Charles, they found only five students to welcome them back... with Scott holding an envelope with Charles' name, written by Erik's hand.
Trivia and Notes
- The X-Men are a team exclusive to Subsidiary Reality M.
- Sub-Reality M is a take on the Marvel Universe within Earth-27.
- This is only part of Roy's original pitch for his version of the X-Men, as there have already been some known differences: