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"Tales of the Twilight Menshevik"

Stories in this series:

Sisters under Their Skins
Midnight Sun
A Year in the Life
October 6: A Night 2 Remember
A Day's Work
Late Summer Interlude
The Time the Twain Shall Meet
Message to a Grandchild
Ergo Bibamus 1: Eat, Drink and Be Merry
Lights in the Dark
Between the Woods and Frozen Lake
Ergo Bibamus 2: There's a Tavern Near the Town
Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Someone Blue
Valentine Allsorts
The Ballad of Trish and Henry
Rogue's Fairy Tale
Magneto, My First Love
To My Dark-Haired Lady
The Raven and the Oriole
Trish -- A Rapture

Val and Ray at the Movies
March 2002
July 2002

Tales of Future Twilight
Ergo Bibamus 3: Drink to Me Only With Thine Eyes
They Will Always Be Penny and Max to Me
Getting to Know You
Fourth Thursday in November
The Iceman's Tale
Pictures at an Exhibition
The Survivor Has a Different Kind of Scar

Twilight Yet to Come
Hang on to Your Ego
Strange Headfellows
Sonnet for Magnus
Between the Winds

DISCLAIMER: This is an unauthorized work of fiction using characters that are (c) & TM by Marvel Comics Group (the exceptions are listed in the notes at the end). No profit is being made on this story, so I invoke The Marvel Readers' Bill of Rights:
"8. The right to practice scripting and drawing our Marvel characters for your own pleasure and amusement."
The story is (c) Tilman Stieve ( You can download this and copy it for your entertainment, but don't sell it for profit, or Marvel will set their lawyers on you. Please do not archive this on your website without informing me first.

Introductory Note:
The Survivor Has a Different Kind of Scar is set in an alternate future based on the timeline of my "Tales of the Twilight Menshevik", which diverges from Marvel's main timeline after X-Men (2nd series) #3. You can find the other Tales archived on "Fonts of Wisdom", on "Down-Home Charm" and on "Queen of Hearts."

The Survivor Has a Different Kind of Scar

"I want to go to Salem Center with you one last time," she says.

I don't like going there, the wounds that place opens in me are too painful. But it is Valerie's wish, and we all know she is not going to live out this year, so how can I refuse? I ring up Errol, and he takes us to the front door of Xavier Mansion in a flash (but without the smell of brimstone that characterized his father's teleportations). The first time I was here, it was called Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters and it was the secret headquarters of the X-Men. Now it houses the X-Men Museum and the offices of the Charles Francis Xavier Foundation.

The Museum is closed today, but the Foundation's managing director, Robert Drake, opens the door for us after Errol rings. He is surprised to see Valerie, but when he hears why she is here, he picks up his cane and accompanies our group to Memorial Park. As he walks beside Val's wheelchair, you can hardly tell that the former Iceman's right arm is made of steel and plastic. He has known her for decades, he does not have to be told she does not want him to be maudlin, so he just inquires after the other members of our family and tells us about Cordelia and Imogen. His daughter is now preparing to become a lecturer at Harvard Business School.

We approach the Cenotaph, the memorial to Charles Xavier and those connected to his school who died in the pursuit of his dream. Valerie has me roll her up close as she solemnly looks at the frieze with the marble effigies of the fallen. Alicia Masters and Lyja Storm collaborated on the relief portraits, but why did it have to come to a situation where such a big group portrait became necessary? They also wanted to celebrate the lives they had given, and so the dead are portrayed not in heroic poses, but as they had been in life, most of them wearing everyday clothes. A single white rose lies at the feet Emma Frost -- Robert lays a new one there every evening before he goes to sleep. Valerie takes his hand and squeezes it in silence while my eyes are held fast by the disconcertingly lifelike face of my son Kurt. Errol too is as if transfixed at the sight of his father's statue, and we move close up to each other almost involuntarily. It would be easier for us if it were a more conventional monument, with Kurt boldly erect and with square-set jaws in a standard expression of heroic determination, for we know he never was like that in his life. But seeing him in his characteristic hunched posture with a gentle smile on his face makes it much harder to bear.

Now comes the part I dread the most as I wheel Valerie down a footpath into the woods. It is so narrow that Errol and Robert have to walk behind us. At last we arrive at the little gamekeeper's lodge where the daughter of my heart spent happy, but far too few days with Magneto. It is off-limits to the general public. Maybe it is selfish of me, but I could not bear the thought of strangers walking through the intimate rooms of Rogue's time of happiness while I am still alive, and so, with some support from Luna Maximoff, I had asked for the lodge not to become part of the museum until I die.

The rooms are as the two left them; they are kept spotlessly clean by Magneto's service drones which so far have not needed maintenance themselves. We look around the living room: everything is in place, from the bronzed hand-prints of Rogue's sisters next to the door-frame to the gardening-shears she had hastily put down on her computer keyboard before she set off into her final fight. The clock on the wall has been stopped and set to 5:47, the minute the two owners of this lodge were killed, the cartoon calendar is on September 2nd, the Day the X-Men Died. We go on into the cozy (or should I say: cramped?) little bedroom. The wall is almost completely covered with photographs of Rogue's and Magneto's loved ones and with the crude little drawings by the youngest members of their families. The books they read in their last night in this house lie on their bedside table, Rogue's Terry Pratchett novel face-down and opened at the place she had reached, Magnus' copy of Lion Feuchtwanger's Goya tidily bookmarked with a paper-thin iron wafer he must have made from a paper clip. It looks almost as if they would return any moment. I shudder involuntarily, desperately try to keep ahold of myself, but when Valerie whispers, "Not long until I'll be joining them," I break down. I sink to my knees, throw my arms around her neck, cry in loud sobs, not wanting to let her go. Val does her best to comfort me and Robert and Errol discreetly go outside.

I am of course embarrassed at making such a scene, but I can't help myself. You'd think I'd have learned to deal with the grief of losing a person close to my heart by now. But it has not become any easier. The dark depression I went through after Irene Adler's passing did not help me deal with the agony of grief I went through after Kurt and Rogue's death, and the fact that I have been living in the shadow of Val's impending death for weeks and months has not really prepared me for it, so far. I suspect my children and grandchildren must already be dreading what I'll be like when Valerie is no more. It was hard for Irene and Hope when Rogue and Kurt died: they did not just lose two beloved elder siblings, but for over a year they had to live with my obsessive mourning. Val had to work double to keep them convinced that I still loved them even though I could not have a conversation without turning it to the subject of Rogue and Kurt, and to kick me in the pants, reminding me of my duties to my living children, to her and to myself.

My reaction did not come as a surprise to Valerie; my cold analytical side somewhat suspects that it was what she had been aiming for. She quietly tells me that she does not want me to live in the past, that she wants me to achieve closure. She picks up Rogue's book and closes it shut. The pages are so fixed in their position that she has to weigh it down with the table-lamp so it won't open again. I look on in something approaching shock. "My love," she says, "when I'm gone, I don't want you to turn my rooms into a shrine and then become scared of going into them. You must get on with your life. I said it before: You might as well face it, with your power you can live as long as you want to." She told me that on my hundredth birthday, three years ago. "And I don't want to become the reason for you losing your will to live. Remember, you'll have the love of our children and grandchildren, and I hope that as you found me after you lost your Irene, you'll find someone else to take our place."

What can I say to that? We both know that she's right, even though my heart still is not ready to embrace the blessings and possibilities that my mind knows exist. But I manage to regain my composure.

Before we go home, Robert invites us for tea. My breakdown has shaken him too, and so naturally the conversation turns to the power the dead can hold over the living. That certainly is in evidence in Robert's private quarters, filled as they are are with mementos of his late teammates and especially of Emma Frost. Among them, the reminders of living persons are almost hard to find. As the four of us explore the subject from several angles, a song from one of Rogue's favorite albums comes to my mind:

Well, he came back from the war zone all intact
And they told him just how lucky he had been

But the survivor has a different kind of scar
Stillborn dreams and no more hope
Hooked on booze or hooked on dope
The survivor has a different kind of scar
Yeah, the survivor has a different kind of scar

It is a bit tactless of me to quote those lines, considering the drinking problem Bobby had in the years of the immediate aftermath of the Second of September. But he himself seems to be glad to have someone to whom he can voice his problems: "It definitely was unhealthy with me. If not for my obsessiveness about Em, it might have worked out with Trish." For a few years, Bob had been married to his best friend's widow. "Maybe if I had been able to say good-bye to Emma before she died, I would not have kept going on about her. And then maybe Trish would not have kept comparing me to Hank and we wouldn't have gotten into so many fights." Having the Nobel Prize Laureate who overcame the Legacy Virus held up as an example to him in a confrontational fashion really must have hurt him, probably more than Trish intended. We see her occasionally -- after retiring from TV journalism she joined Irene's staff -- , and she always is wistful when she talks of her third marriage.

"I guess a change of scenery couldn't hurt you," Val interjects.

"No, I guess it couldn't," Robert replies with a self-ironic laugh. "I'm just too much a creature of habit to change all this." His hand sweeps around the room with the big paintings of Emma and the original X-Men and the glass display case with a few of the White Queen's personal effects. "And I get out more often, especially now that Imogen's moved to Cambridge."

But he thinks he is resigned to living the rest of his life alone.

Had someone told me I would become so wrought up over the passing of a 'mere human' when I first met Valerie, I would have laughed out loud at them. At the time we were enemies, she the government official trying to put a lid on 'the mutant problem', I the underground fighter, one of the people about whom she worried the most. Thanks to my inborn power of changing my shape, she never suspected that her trusted colleague Raven Darkhölme was actually the dreaded Mystique, leader of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants. Still her brains and determination made her one of the few 'flatscans' who at that time won my grudging respect. When the Brotherhood gave up its 'terrorist' ways and entered the services of the US government, it was she whom I approached.

We then became antagonists for a time, co-operating, but always keeping a watchful eye on each other. Although she and I, somewhat to our surprise, discovered personal affinities and she sometimes -- for instance after Irene Adler was killed -- wished we were closer, she did not let that diminish her efficiency. She was a tough taskmistress for me and the others, and later, after our original experiment failed, she succeeded in forcing me into her new team, X-Factor, much as I had tried to wiggle out of it. I wanted to get my own back by taking the shape of a man she fancied and tricking her into having sex with me. It was not my brightest idea, and Valerie was furious when she found out. But it set in motion a sequence of events which ended with us as lovers for real, something neither of us had counted on.

Becoming a couple and parents changed us both and the adjustment did not come easy at first. I had to learn to quieten down a bit after my wild phase, to adjust to the new family life. Valerie is a 'high-maintenance' partner compared to patient Destiny, but for all the problems I grew to enjoy life with her. Valerie had different problems to overcome, especially the reactions she got from the outside world and her own insecurities. What I love about her is that she does not do things by half once she overcomes her doubts, even if it may take a period of hesitancy to get there. With me she was a bit reserved and guarded at first -- for understandable reasons -- and would only cast aside her inhibitions and loosen up when we had sex. Only after making love would we both be relaxed enough to talk to each other without watching what we said; it took patience and some work from both of us to extend our trust to all our private life.

Val also had some difficulties adjusting to the fact that thanks to my power I do not visibly age, and this at a time when she noticed the occasional gray hair on herself and her body, for all her looking after it, did no longer look exactly as it had before the birth of our first daughter. But she faced up to this in characteristic fashion. We never married, even after same-sex weddings became commonplace, but we do (did) celebrate the 6th of October, the anniversary of the day we admitted and first honestly consummated our love. After I had reassured her I would love her no matter how she looked, she took me at my word and would give me a nude portrait of herself as a present every October 6th, to record the aging of her body. The first one, thirty-five years ago, was a photograph by Annie Leibowitz, where she wore a red-haired wig and had her skin painted blue, the second was an oil painting by Piotr Rasputin that showed her nursing Hope, the third was a sculpture by Alicia Masters, and so on. The last one, the one she presented me with the day after we returned from Salem Center, is again a photograph. She had made after she heard how long she had to live, and she had her picture taken sitting, propped up against a black marble gravestone with the inscription 'Valerie A. Cooper *** 1962-2032' and resting her right hand on a skull. Her body is marked by her age and her sickness -- the skin is wrinkled and splotchy, her left breast has been amputated, her head is bald from the chemotherapy -- but she still can hold her head up high and blows me a kiss with her left hand, the one that is nearest to the heart. Good-bye.

By now she has to spend most of her time in bed and her smile is painfully forced as she hands me her final anniversary present, but she keeps fighting. She has accepted her fate, but she is glad for every additional day that she wrests from the claws of the Reaper. Looking back over our years together, she says: "We had some good times together, Ray old girl."
"And some bad ones," I reply, quickly adding: "I wouldn't have made it through some of them without you, Val. What will I do without your strength to help me?" I am thinking of her patient work, her untiring exertions helping me overcome my black depression after Rogue and Kurt died ridding the world of the menace of an Apocalypse possessed by the Shadow King. And how she refused to knuckle under after an assassin's bullet (a present from beyond the grave intended for my by my late and unlamented first son, Graydon) smashed her spine and confined her to a wheelchair for the rest of her life.

Valerie too remembers our dark hours: "Naturally it was harder for you, you were much closer to Rogue and Kurt. But I consider myself blessed for having known them, and they live on in their sons. In no small part thanks to you." A melancholy smile briefly settles on her lips. "You know I was pretty steamed at you when you procured Rogue's eggs and had them implanted in you." When it was confirmed that because of her power Rogue could not hope to complete a pregnancy successfully, she and Magneto had thought about having a 'test tube baby' born by a surrogate mother, but had changed their mind. Years after their death, I found out that the fertilized ova were still in storage on Muir Island, and refusing to accept their decision as final, broke into the facility. "I hated the idea of becoming a parent again at sixty, but now my only regret is that I won't see Thad and Freddy grow up." Or to manifest their mutant powers. Considering who their parents were, they may well become two of the most powerful mutants in the world -- or things could turn out unexpectedly, and one or both will be powerless. "You're a headstrong woman, Raven...," she grins.

"Not as stubborn as you, though," I mumble.

"...and I love you for it. I'm happy that you got your way on that one. Even if being a widow with two nine-year-old sons is not going to help your chances of finding someone new." Bless Val, she always has a way of putting a humorous spin on things. "Guess that means you'll maybe have to wait until they have children of their own."

She lightly touches on something that sometimes weighs heavily on my heart. Will I be fated (cursed?) to survive everyone I love because of my power? Irene Adler, Kurt and Rogue met violent ends, but even though Valerie's life is cut short by cancer, her seventy years would have been considered a very respectable age by my parents. Graydon Creed, my eldest son, was even older than that when he died peacefully in his bed (curse him!). Will I have to bury all my children? Unless I managed to pass on whatever makes me survive to any of my descendants or unless I finally manage to get myself killed fighting with Factor X (despite my ever-growing combat experience), that is a distinct possibility.

But Valerie is being cheerful for me, making jokes about her not wanting to act as a matchmaker for me, because we had seen how that worked out when Destiny had tried to do it. Or of hoping that I'll take my time in dying so she can have a little peace and quiet in the afterlife before I rejoin her. At times like this, I envy her for her faith that makes her able to calmly face her fate, against which I inwardly continue to rail.

And so the weeks pass by. Her condition deteriorates more rapidly. She gets less and less sleep and requires larger dosages of painkillers. I guess Charles Xavier's dream really has come much closer to fruition: Even ten years ago I doubt I could have spent so much time at home without being called out on missions a lot more frequently than I am now. And this gives us the time for her to prepare me for the inevitable.

We sit together. She has me read Fontane to her, the story of old Dubslav von Stechlin and his final illness. Somehow I too find this 19th century novel oddly comforting. Valerie makes me laugh when she tells me that I am at least more of a comfort to Val than his stern older sister Adelheid was to Dubslav.

In the afternoons, she has Thaddeus and Frederick tell her about what happened at school and watches me play ball with them in the garden. The twins at first took it hard when we finally told them what will happen. But they're tough -- with their parents how could they not be? -- and they too do what they can to ease Mommy Val's final weeks, even though for her sake they try not to behave too out of the ordinary.

On weekends, the girls come and visit, and on weekdays Val and I discuss their lives. She still takes a great interest in them, especially Irene, who is now having the career that she herself could not bring to its full potential after she became involved with me. It really is astounding how far she has come in so short a time. This is the kind of opportunity for mutants that her late brother and sister gave their lives for, and when I consider it, I feel that Kurt and Rogue and their teammates' sacrifices have not been entirely in vain. But often I think the price was too high, and Valerie too feels the pain intensely. "Where is it written that the X-Men had to be killed before mutants would finally be treated fairly!" she likes to exclaim.

Mommy Val always tried hard to treat her two daughters the same, but she could not always hide that Irene is her favorite. They are more alike in character, and "I can live her life vicariously," as she ruefully said when she finally admitted to her feelings. And of course there is Irene's daughter, eleven-year-old Louise Persephone Cooper-Marks, to whom Valerie is a doting grandmother. This meant that Mama Ray had to pay special attention to her younger sister Hope, who looks more like Val (for one thing, they have the same color of skin), but otherwise is quite dissimilar. Luckily Hope did not let her jealousy over Val's special love for Irene diminish her own affection for her elder sister. But there was a bit of a family crisis when Hope gave up her law studies in order to become a costume designer for the stage, film and television. Valerie at first was enraged at this 'frivolous' career choice, and for a time relations between her and Hope were poisoned. Irene and I had to do our best to bring them back together again, and thankfully that episode is now history. Maybe it is a good thing that Valerie enjoys going to the movies so much. She also grew much closer to her younger daughter after Hope became a superheroine. Yes, like her 'nephew' Errol (she never calls him that, he is a year older than she, after all), Hope keeps the Darkhölme family tradition alive. That came about pretty much by accident when she fell in love with Marygay Parker, an actress she met through her work. When Hope found out that she moonlights as the costumed vigilante Arachne (sometimes known as the Spider-Girl), she decided to be her partner in cowl as well as in private life.

"Mommy Val is dying!"

The message goes out to everyone, and Errol collects her children and their families to bring them to her bedside. They're all here: Irene, her husband Ed and little Louise, Hope and Marygay, Thad and Fred, even Lyubov, Errol's new girlfriend (they've been together for three months now), insists on being here.

Irene smiles when she sees them all, but her eyes are moist. "I've been telling Raven quite a bit of how I'm resigned to dying," she says, "but I'm afraid now the moment of truth is here, it is not so easy. Thanks for being here to support me."

She bids everyone farewell, one by one, trying her best to console the little ones, and even mustering up an element of humor when she wishes Lyubov good luck with Errol: "Guess you're going to need it with that little rascal."

At last, she speaks to her daughters. "I tried to hold out for your big day, Irene, but I didn't quite make it to the finishing line. Sorry, dear. And Hope, I'm sorry I wasn't always the perfect mother to you. I love you both, and I tried to do my best, but I'm glad you got over my failings."

"Oh mommy," Hope sobs. Tears are freely running down her and Irene's cheeks. She tries to say something, but Valerie stops her.

"Keep an eye on Raven, you two, just in case. And you know your sister and Ed are going to be very busy, so could you and Marygay perhaps help clean out my rooms? " Hope nods silently.

And then she has me sit beside her, holding her hand: "I know you promised me you wouldn't build a shrine to me, but I thought I'd better make sure," she says and winks at me. She sighs. "We've pretty much said everything that needed to be said this past month, I guess we can be grateful for that." She asks me to kiss her one last time, which I do, fully, on her lips. And when I think of the other kisses -- the first one I stole from her in that forest hotel, the one when we admitted our love, the ones in the nights when we conceived Irene and Hope, the consolation she gave me when I was close to despair over Rogue and Kurt -- my tears rain down on her face to mingle with hers.

Actually, it still takes a while after that. We sit and stand around in the room, talking in hushed tones. From time to time Valerie joins in, to remark something about an absent friend or the like. But most of the time she just looks fondly in my eyes as I hold her hands. Finally, she whispers: "Good night my love. I know you won't disappoint me." And she lapses into unconsciousness.

I sit by her side for the hours that follow. The others keep us company in shifts. It is getting late, the twins are bundled off to their beds, and the spare bedroom is prepared for Louise. Trish and some other members of Irene's staff arrive, and they hold a hushed conference in Valerie's study. From time to time I hear the telephone ringing for her. But Valerie does not wake anymore. At 2:30 a.m., a mute spasm goes through her body, and there is an exhalation like a sigh. Then stillness. It is over.

I walk out of the room in a daze, going past my daughters who are crying and holding each other tight. There will be a time to get a grip on myself, but not now. As I leave through the back door into the garden, fur springs up all over my body, teeth grow in my mouth, my ears become pointy. My anguish must out, and I stand in the middle of the lawn and howl, howl, howl out my grief and rage at the world that has robbed me of the woman who was all to me.

I don't know how long I'm at it, but after some time I notice Errol standing in the door behind me. "Grandmother?" He's concerned about me, bless him.

"I'll be okay, dear. Just give me five seconds to turn back."

"I'm afraid you've woken the children," he says as we go inside. Of course! They did not have to be told who that keening werewolf was, or why she was screaming. The living room is in uproar when we get there. Irene is hugging her distraught daughter to her, and Hope and Marygay are doing what they can to console my sons. In a way, I'm relieved to take them off their hands. There is work to be done, and as long as I am able to carry my weight, I won't let anyone else do it for me. I won't disappoint Valerie.

I am numb as the man in the dark blue uniform hands me the flag, which has been tightly folded into a stiff triangle as protocol demands. Valerie always tried to be loyal to her country and to her friends, and I suppose the presence of the military detachment shows she succeeded against the odds.

Valerie is buried in the family plot we bought after the Day the X-Men Died, next to Rogue and Magnus (Kurt's remains lie with those of his dead Szardos relatives in Europe). Thad and Fred stand close, with my arms around them. They cried when the coffin was carried out of the chapel, but they've quietened down now, only from time to time is there a sniffle beneath my left ear or my right. Irene, Hope, Errol and the others are also here, as is Val's sister-in-law Audrey (her brother is too infirm to attend). In fact, there is quite a crowd of mourners, especially considering it was at such short notice.

If Storm was still alive, she would have ensured that the weather fits the mood, with dark gray clouds weeping great big tears of rain. But it is in fact a bright late fall Monday, which however may be more appropriate to the kind of woman Valerie was.

The funeral is over, the guests take their leave of the bereaved family. Hands grip hands, people embrace, some of the mourners kiss before they part. I notice that Robert Drake and Trish Tilby walk arm in arm towards a cab. I know they haven't seen each other in seven years, but evidently they still feel something; the hunch Val and I had must have been right. They just never had the courage to make the first approach. Whether it will be friendship or more I suppose only time can tell. That was one of the last things Valerie had asked me to do: see to it that they sit next to each other at the funeral, and Luna did it so unobtrusively for me that I don't think they'll ever know they've been set up. But I think I'll save my chuckle for when my heart aches less.

The final guests leave. We take a final look at the wreaths and flowers being piled on top of the new grave. Errol hands me the two special bouquets held back until now, and I lay them before the headstones of my eldest daughter and her mate. We bow our heads one more time before the three graves, then we turn around and head for home, not looking back.

The family is gathered in the den to watch the TV news. The twins are growing tired in my arms, but don't want to go to bed, Hope and Marygay sit beside me on the couch, Errol sits in the rocker, Lyubov stands behind him, her hands on his shoulders. Irene left the room with Ed and Louise five minutes ago, and everyone is impatient to see them come on. I am sceptic about there being an afterlife, but Valerie was unshakable in her belief. It would be so nice if she was right, and if she is, I'm sure she will be looking on right now, and so will be Rogue and Kurt, and 'Uncle Mags' and dear Irene Adler, and they'll all be as proud of our Irene as we, the living, as we listen to the announcer say:

"And here once again is tonight's main story. In a closely run race, Irene Cooper-Marks was elected the 49th President of the United States. She will be the second woman and the second metapowered person to hold this office, as well as the first known mutant. Outgoing President William Foote conceded defeat half an hour ago in his Wyoming home and sent his congratulations to Ms. Cooper-Marks. The President-elect could not attend the election party in her hometown of Eugene, Oregon, which was led by her running-mate Jack Ellison instead. It was also attended by Bernadette Rogers and Steve Rogers, Jr., the widow and son of President Rogers, whom Irene Cooper-Marks had served as Attorney General in the final year of his second term. The President-elect is currently staying with her family at her parental home in Georgetown, D.C., after the funeral of her mother, Dr. Valerie Cooper, who died of cancer a week ago. We now go live to Georgetown, where Irene Cooper-Marks will make a short acceptance speech."


The End... and the Beginning

The lines quoted in the title and in the story are from the song 'The Survivor' from the album Music to Wake the Dead by the Nazgul. They are copyright by Peter Faxon 1971. (Actually they are from George R. R. Martin's novel The Armageddon Rag (1983) and copyright by him). You may remember Rogue listening to the Nazgul in UXM #192 and the New Mutants story where Lila Cheney mentions that she once opened for them.
The characters of this story are TM & copyright Marvel Comics. Hope Cooper, Irene and Louise Cooper-Marks, Frederick and Thaddeus Darkhölme, Imogen Frost, Lyubov, Edward Marks, Marygay Parker, Steve Rogers, Jr., and Errol Wagner are mine.


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