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E.G.G Episode 49: The Inner Circle
AND THERE CAME A DAY, A DARK DAY. A DAY WHERE THE LIVES OF THREE FRIENDS WERE SINGLEHANDEDLY DESTROYED. BUT THAT DAY HASN’T HAPPENED YET. NOW, HISTORY HAS BEEN REWRITTEN, AND E.G.G WILL WAKE TO SEE A BRAND NEW DAY.
Previously, on E.G.G...
Emma Frost has teamed up with Mystique on a mission with one objective: Find Eileen. Mystique snuck into E.G.G and began impersonating people, successfully fooling them with Emma's telepathic probing. From revealing Allyson's true feelings to Josh to almost getting caught by Jocasta, Mystique fumbled her way through E.G.G Base until she had finally found Eileen, but unfortunately was in her form. Tricking Josh into taking out the real Eileen, Mystique kidnapped her and handed her off to Emma Frost, where Eileen's fate remains to be seen!
Click here for E.G.G Episode 48: The X-Factor
Click here for Episode 48 Q&A
-The Inner Circle-
Eileen awoke to find herself strapped down to a stone table in a large circular room, lit only by torches. She looked down at the straps, and pulled with all her might, flexing her arm as much as possible, but it wouldn’t budge.
“Ugh, perfect.” She said. “Hello? Is anybody there!”
“We are here Ms. Wuthrich.” A voice came from the shadows. Suddenly six people, four men, a woman and Emma Frost, emerged. “Welcome to the Hellfire Club. We are the Inner Circle.”
“What is this?” Eileen asked. The man smiled. He and all of the others were dressed in 1800’s England garb. He had long curly black hair.
“My name is Sebastian Shaw.” He said. “I am the Black King of the Inner Circle, I am also a mutant.”
“A mutant?” Eileen asked.
“Yes, I absorb energy and transform it into physical strength. Allow me to introduce my cohorts.” He pointed to a man with long straight black hair and a mustache. “This is Mastermind, the White Rook. He can create very convincing telepathic illusions.”
“My, my,” Mastermind said. “You are even more beautiful in person Ms. Wuthrich.”
“Don’t make me sick.” Eileen said. Shaw pointed to a man with long blonde hair and robotic limbs.
“This is Donald Pierce the White Bishop, he’s a cyborg.” He said.
“And just because I’m half robot, doesn’t mean I’m less of a man.” Pierce said, smiling. Shaw pointed to a woman in a black corset, cape, and long flowing hair.
“Selene Gallio, the Black Queen. She can drain the life force of others to strengthen herself.”
“So don’t get too close.” She said with a smirk. Shaw pointed to a man with red hair and a goatee.
“This is Harry Leland, the Black Bishop. He can increase the mass of anything, or anyone.”
“Multiply your weight by a thousand times if want.” Leland added. “Send you plummeting towards the core of the planet.”
“I’m sure you already know Emma Frost, our White Queen.” Shaw said. “She’s the one that found you.”
“How?” Eileen asked.
“Why, that brutish little Wolverine girl.” Emma said. “I willed her to move in front of your car, it was only a simple matter of following you back to your base.”
“That’s nice.” Eileen said. “Now what do you want with me?”
“My dear,” Selene said. “You should really treat your hosts with a manner of respect.”
“I’m strapped to a table!” Eileen exclaimed.
“A necessary precaution.” Leland said.
“Eileen, you are very important to the Inner Circle.” Mastermind said.
“Why?” She asked.
“Are you familiar with the legend of the Phoenix?” Shaw asked.
“What, that death and rebirth stuff?” Eileen asked. Shaw nodded towards Pierce. Pierce grabbed a torch and held it to a wall that was decorated with inscriptions and paintings.
“Years ago, an entity formed in deep space.” Shaw said. He moved to a picture of a giant fiery bird flying through stars. “The legendary Phoenix Force. For centuries, the Phoenix wondered about the galaxies, searching for knowledge, its thirst never quenched. It longed to live, to experience. It longed for purpose.” Emma moved to a picture of the Phoenix hovering over a crystal.
“The Phoenix found purpose when it was recruited by the alien race known as the Shi’ar to guard their sacred M’Kraan Crystal. But alas, the Phoenix’s longing for more knowledge was rekindled.”
“That’s when the X-Men got involved.” Mastermind said, spitefully.
“The X-Men? What do they have to do with this?” Eileen asked.
“While encountering the Shi’ar people,” Selene continued. “The Phoenix possessed the X-Man known as Jean Grey. For years, it lived within her, unbridled power incarnate, sitting untouched by the unwitting girl.”
“Until we unlocked its true potential.” Leland said.
“Either way, an incident followed,” Shaw said. “And Phoenix’s desire for knowledge became a lust for power. She transformed into Dark Phoenix.”
“I heard about that.” Eileen said. “She nearly destroyed the entire planet! You maniacs were behind that monstrosity!”
“Hardly,” Emma said. “It was Jean Grey’s inability to control the full power of the Phoenix force that is truly to blame.”
“In order to rectify that problem, we need two things.” Pierce said. “A way to transfer the power, and a stronger host to contain it.”
“Wait a second…” Eileen said. “After you saw what the Dark Phoenix is capable of, you still want to let it loose! And even crazier than that, you want to try and control it!”
“We can, Eileen.” Emma said.
“How are you even going to get it?” Eileen asked. “I thought it was vanquished.”
“No.” Shaw said. Just then five identical girls emerged from the shadows. They looked exactly the same, short blond hair and about 18 years old. Also, they all were wearing a green outfit, with yellow boots, gloves, belt, and a Phoenix symbol on the chest. “Meet the Stepford sisters.”
“My little Cuckoos.” Emma said, running her hand through their hair.
“A portion of the Phoenix is contained in all of them.” Leland said.
“But in order to let it flourish, it needs to be combined.” Mastermind said.
“I still don’t see where I fit into all of this.” Eileen said.
“Why my dear,” Selene laughed. “You’re the new host!”
“What?” Eileen asked. “Me? Why!”
“Experimentation on mutants is a shameful thing,” Shaw said. “But rarely does it yield… interesting results. The Extremis virus you have in you must have amplified your mutation. You are now the most powerful mutant on the planet Eileen.”
“Wait a sec, I’m not a mutant!” Eileen said.
“Why of course you are dear!” Emma said. She held up a file. “I snatched your S.H.I.E.L.D profile from your databanks when I first possessed your Director Westbrook. It says here that you are an omega class mutant.”
“What!?” Eileen exclaimed. “That… That’s not possible! Then again, it would explain why my powers evolved…”
“Yes, it would.” Shaw said. “I can’t believe Nick Fury never told you. Oh well, I guess that’s part of being a spy, keeping secrets.”
“So I’m a mutant…” Eileen said. “I have Extremis in me, and now you want to add the Phoenix! You’re crazy! I’ll be ripped apart!”
“Well you don’t really know that, now do you Ms. Wuthrich?” Mastermind said.
“Trial by error.” Shaw added. “Either way, we’ll figure out. The Inner Circle will finally complete a century old task, and the Phoenix will fly again!” Everyone in the Inner Circle laughed sinisterly, as Eileen laid helplessly, about to be subject to the worst experiment of her life.
* * *
Josh and Acacia stood behind James, as he knelt on the ground just outside of Grand Central Station. He was holding an infrared device from 2099 that made footprints on the ground visible. He had calibrated it to Mystique’s shoe from her prints inside of E.G.G Base and was following her tracks.
“Well, she’s got a healthy head start.” He said, standing up. “But there’s no reason we can’t catch her. Shape shifter or not.”
“That’s nice.” Josh said. “Now which way did she go?”
“It’s a bit more complicated than that,” James said. “She met with someone in a car, luxury vehicle given the amount of exhaust. They went separate ways. Only I don’t know if Mystique has Eileen or the person she met with in the car.”
“I’m sure someone would have found it odd if she was carrying Eileen down the street.” Acacia said.
“Actually, her trail goes cold in a few feet.” James pointed out. “She may have taken a cab.” Josh looked at James skeptically.
“You sure that thing is accurate?” He asked.
“You said you invented it when?”
“A week ago.” James lied. Josh shrugged.
“Okay, whatever, our top priority is finding Eileen.”
“I couldn’t agree more.”
“I say we split up.”
“I couldn’t agree less.”
“It’s the most logical way to cover ground Collins!” Josh said. “If one lead goes cold we got another to follow.”
“I think we should figure out who Mystique was working with.” Acacia said. “We might know who they are and where to find them, and even if they don’t have Eileen, we can shake ‘em down for Mystique’s location!”
“Excellent plan!” James complimented. “But how do we figure out who Mystique’s partner is?”
“Emma Frost.” Josh said. Acacia looked at him.
“How do you know?” She asked.
“Celeste told me that she temporarily lost her mind and wiped Jocasta’s memory circuits.” He said. “Along with that, Mystique somehow knew exactly how I met Eileen. Only a telepath could dig that info out of someone.”
“But that makes no sense, how’d she find E.G.G Base?” James asked.
“X-23.” Acacia said. “When she was talking to Sarah, she complained about voices in her head, then lights…”
“That’s when I hit her with my car!” Josh said. “Frost must’ve forced her in front of me!”
“And then followed us back home!” Acacia said. Josh shook his head.
“Why does Frost want Eileen?” He said. Then he looked up. “When she possessed me she stole something from Mother Egg. I asked what and you told me I didn’t want to know, but now I need to know.”
“She stole our S.H.I.E.L.D personality profiles.” Acacia said. “You know, the ones we don’t even have clearance to see.”
“Yeah, ‘cause Fury has his dirt on us stored in those.” Josh replied. “She must’ve seen something she liked on Eileen’s, or something she didn’t…”
“Well what are we standing around for?” James asked. “Where do we find Emma Frost?”
“I’m don’t know.” Josh said. “But Nick Fury does.”
* * *
Squirrel Girl rushed down the street on all fours, Rice following close behind her.
“And you’re sure these guys can help us?” He asked.
“Yeah,” She replied. “Mutants are their game! They know everyone who’s anyone in the mutant community!”
“I hope you’re right…” Rice said. “Man, I’m such an idiot.”
“Hey, quit it okay!” Squirrel Girl said. “It wasn’t your fault. That creepy telepath sneak attacked you, but I’m sure if she’d have taken you head on, you’d have won!”
“Thanks.” Rice said. Squirrel Girl rushed up a grassy hill and in front of a large gate with a huge mansion behind it.
“Here it is!” She exclaimed.
“This is a school.”
“I know, come on!” She said, scurrying up a tree and leaping over the gate.
“Wha- wait a minute! Agh.” Rice backed up, jumped into the air, and flipped over the gate, landing on his feet. He walked up to the front door, which Squirrel Girl was banging on. The door opened, and Cyclops peeked his head out.
“Can I help you?” He asked.
“Yeah, I’m a mutant, see?” Squirrel Girl said, turning around and swinging her tail.
“Oh, okay, well come on in.” He said, stepping aside. Squirrel Girl happily rushed in. Rice began to walk in but Cyclops checked him at the door and forcefully pushed him back. “And what’s your mutation?” He asked. “S.H.I.E.L.D agent.”
“I don’t have one.” Rice replied. “I’m with her, this is an emergency, let me in.”
“No.” Cyclops said, staring Rice straight in the eyes through his red shades. Rice stared right back at him.
“I’m gonna ask you one more time to move.” Rice said calmly. Cyclops stepped up to him.
“Or what tough guy?” He asked.
“It’s alright Scott.” He turned to see Professor X wheel up in his wheelchair. “His intentions are pure.” He held out his hand.
“Professor Charles Xavier.” He said, as Rice shook.
“Kyle Rice,” Rice said. “Listen, I won’t take too much of your time, it’s just that…”
“Professor!” Squirrel Girl exclaimed, hugging him.
“Oh, hello Doreen.” He said, embracing her. “Have you reconsidered my offer?”
“I thought about it,” she said. “I might do it, but Agent Rice is teaching me how to be a spy first!”
“Well, that’s very nice of him.” Professor X said. “Now, I understand you two have a pressing situation?”
“Yeah,” Rice said. “I think Emma Frost has kidnapped a woman named Eileen Wuthrich.”
“Eileen is in trouble?” Warren Worthington III, Angel, said from the top of the stairs.
“And Frost is involved?” Cyclops asked.
“Yeah, you know these people?” Rice asked.
“Eileen is a friend,” Professor X said. “And yes, we are very familiar with Ms. Frost. Scott, get the team together.” Cyclops nodded and rushed out.
“Do you know what’s going on?” Squirrel Girl asked.
“Well, if Emma Frost has kidnapped someone then the entire Inner Circle is most likely involved, and Eileen may be in grave danger.”
“You know where to find her?” Rice asked.
“I will in a few moments.” Professor X said, wheeling away.
“Who are you people?” Rice asked. Professor X turned and smiled.
“We’re the X-Men.”
Josh, Acacia and James approached a building labeled ‘Hellfire Club’.
“Is this it?” Josh asked.
“One way to find out.” Acacia said, walking in. The place was crowded, there were flashing lights, loud music, people dancing everywhere.
“Are those the agents Fury said were ‘on top of this’?” Josh asked, referring to two S.H.I.E.L.D agents dancing promiscuously with two girls.
“Looks like they’re on top of something else…” Acacia said.
“Yeah, and if Fury only sent two agents to deal with Emma Frost, he must be crazy!”
“This is a front.” James said. They turned to see him kneeling down, touching the floor. “There’s a basement, or something underground…”
“How do we get there?” Josh asked.
“I’ll bet a million bucks it’s in the private room labeled ‘Guests of Ms. Frost.” Acacia said. Josh looked over.
“Yep, that’s probably it.” He said.
* * *
In the lair, the Cuckoos had formed a circle around Eileen. She was still struggling to escape.
“You can stop that my dear.” Selene said. “Even if you break those straps, you won’t get away.”
“I’ll be the judge of that.” She said, continuing to struggle. Mastermind approached.
“I grow tired of waiting,” he said. “Shaw, are we ready to begin?”
“Nearly,” Shaw said. “Emma, make sure the patient is… complacent.”
“Gladly.” Emma said. She approached Eileen when Pierce rushed into the room.
“We’ve got intruders!” He shouted. “They took out Leland! They’re coming to…” He was cut off by a laser blast and thrown into the wall. Josh walked in in his Web Blaster armor. Behind him were Acacia with fire on her hands and James with two guns.
“Knock, knock.” Josh said. They all charged forward.
“Stop them!” Shaw shouted.
“Emma, give me their worst fears!” Mastermind said. “I’ll make them come to life before their eyes!”
“Transmitting now!” Emma said, putting her hand to her head.
“Excellent.” Mastermind said, throwing out his hands. James stopped. He looked to see a grown man and woman walking in front of him.
“Keep up James.” The man said. “We’ll miss the show!”
“Dad…” James said hesitantly.
“Don’t rush him dear,” the woman said. “He’s just a boy.”
“And one day he’ll be a fine man! Won’t you James?”
“Mom, dad…” James said. “I thought you two…” Suddenly a man in a mask came around the corner and took out a laser gun.
“Credits, now!” He shouted.
“No!” James called out. “Get away from them… No!”
“Don’t worry James.” His dad said, slowly taking out his wallet. “See sir, I’m taking out my wallet, just put the gun down and…”
“Hurry up!” The man shouted aiming his gun at James. “Or the boy dies!”
“No!” James’s dad shouted, jumping at him as the man fired and killed James’s father.
“NNNNNOOOOOO!!!!” James shouted. James mother looked back at him.
“Go James, run!” She exclaimed.
“But… But…” James began to run against his will. And then the man killed his mother.
Acacia looked around. She was in a dark room, trapped in a circle of Weeping Angels.
“Oh no…” She said, backing up.
“Help!” She turned to see Josh and Eileen tied together.
“Guys!” She shouted, rushing towards them. But the Weeping Angles slid in front of her. “Ah!” She shouted, jumping back.
“Aaaaahahahahaha!” She looked up to see the Green Goblin fly down on his glider. “Ah, ah, ah, Acacia, no playing hero!” He said. “Besides, they’re next.” He flew down, and came back up, holding Celeste by the neck. “She’s first!”
“Auntie Acacia! Help me!” She choked.
“No! Celeste!” Acacia began to run but the Weeping Angels held her down. The Goblin took out a razor bat.
“Hahahahaha!” He laughed.
“Auntie Acacia!” Celeste screamed.
“No! Let her go! NO!”
Josh looked to see James and Acacia suffering on the ground.
“You can’t get in my head Frost!” Josh said. He pointed to Mastermind. “And I don’t know what you’re doing to them, but it ends now!” He leapt forward only for Selene to kick him to the ground and grab his face.
“Shh…” She said as she began syphoning Josh’s life force.
“MMMM!” Was all Josh could say, as she was covering his mouth. “MMMMMmmmm….” He began to fade out.
“Guys! No!” Eileen shouted. Each Cuckoo put their hands on Eileen.
“Begin the transfer!” Shaw called. Just then the door blew down. Cyclops stepped in, adjusted his visor, and blasted Selene off of Josh.
“Ah!” She shouted, flying into Mastermind.
“No!” He screamed, falling to the ground. James and Acacia sat up. Behind Cyclops came Angel, Nightcrawler, Wolverine, Storm, Iceman, Beast, Shadowcat, and Jean Grey.
“It’s over Shaw!” Cyclops shouted. Jean spotted the Cuckoos standing over Eileen.
“You psychopaths are trying to unleash the Phoenix again!” She shouted.
“Now Jean dearest…” Emma said. “Don’t tell me you’re still upset about that little Dark Phoenix dust up last time…”
“Logan, don’t be afraid to kill them.” She said to Wolverine. “Any of them.” With a snikt, Wolverine smiled, popped his claws, and leapt into battle.
“I take that as a yes…” Emma said, turning her body into diamond. The X-Men scattered about. James looked at Mastermind.
“You’re gonna pay for that…” He growled. Just then Pierce punched him from behind with his robotic arm.
“Ha!” He shouted. But suddenly Nightcrwaler teleported in front of him and kicked him into the wall.
“Kitty, now!” He called as Shadowcat phased up from the ground and through Pierce, short circuiting him.
“Agahhhh!” He shouted, falling to the ground. Angel soared by and knocked down three Cuckoos as Beast tackled the other two. Acacia rushed up and burned the straps.
“Come on.” She said, helping Eileen up.
“No!” Emma shouted, holding her hand to her head.
“Agh!” Acacia screamed, clutching her head and falling to the ground.
“Hey Frost!” Jean shouted, lifting the stone table mentally and throwing it at her.
“Good heavens!” She shouted, jumping out of the way. Wolverine leapt at Shaw, snarling, when suddenly he fell immediately to the ground.
“What the?” He asked, as Leland emerged.
“Say goodbye animal!” He said, increasing Wolverine’s mass.
“Grah!” He screamed, falling through the floor and plummeting underground.
“Exemplary work Leland.” Shaw said.
“Heads up!” Iceman shouted, surfing by on an ice path and freezing Leland where he stood.
“Storm, on my target!” Cyclops ordered as he blasted Shaw with his optic beam and Storm struck him with lightning. Shaw put his hands on his hips and laughed.
“You fools!” He exclaimed. “You’ve only made me more powerful!” He clapped his hands together and blew everyone across the room. Josh stood up and shook his head.
“We need to go now!” He called.
“I agree!” Eileen said. She began to help Acacia up when she was grabbed from behind by Selene.
“Your energy is mine!” She shouted, draining Eileen.
“Get off her!” Angel called, smacking her off with his wing. Jean was tossing items at the Cuckoos, who were ducking for cover when she heard Cyclops.
“Jean!” He screamed. She looked to see Emma Frost stab him with a sword.
“No! Scott!” She cried. Cyclops looked to see Jean screaming and crying.
“Jean, it’s not real!” He called, but was punched by Shaw. Mastermind was holding his hand out at Jean.
“Yes,” He said. “Feel the pain! Feel the- ack!” He looked down to see a blade had pierced him. James pulled it out and he fell to the ground, clutching his wound.
“Trash.” James growled, as Jean held her head. Shaw looked around. The Inner Circle was losing.
“No! This can’t happen!” He shouted. “The Phoenix will fly again!” Suddenly the entire place shook. Everyone stopped and looked.
“What the shell was that?” Josh asked. Then the ceiling began to crumble. Everyone screamed and ran for cover as the roof to the lair was ripped off, the nightclub with it. Cyclops looked up.
“Oh no…” He said. Looking down on them with bright, glowing, red eyes was a 50 foot tall robot. It was predominantly purple with some gray on it. It had two glowing yellow circles, one on each palm, and a glowing yellow triangle in the center of its chest. It was a Sentinel.
“DESTROY!” The Sentinel thundered, as about 25 more flew down from the sky.
To Be Continued…
See you Thursday!
Alright, make sure you tune in next week Thursday, September , 24 and catch the Q&A for this episode! Then come back the next day, September 25, for The E.G.G 50th Episode Spectacular, E.G.G Episode 50: Destroy! It's finally here! Well, next week...