Prologue

Katherine Pryde was a woman of great confidence. She had spent most of her twenty-three years on this earth dealing with one crisis or another. Her parents’ marriage ended in divorce while she was still young, and when she hit puberty, she discovered that she could walk through walls, literally. Like Jubilation Lee before her, she was drawn into the X-Men, and also, like Jubilee, she had been mentored by the mysterious Canadian mutant known as Logan. Her career with the X-Men has been diverse to say the least, at one time; she switched places with a future version of herself to prevent a modern day Holocaust. During her time as a member of the New Mutants, she became the dear friend of a demon sorceress and while she lived on Muir Island, as a part of Excalibur, her closest companions were a celestial avatar and a miniature dragon. Still, Kitty, as she was known, had her fair share of tragedy. Both Ilyana and Rachel had been taken from her long before she was ready to lose them, further casualties of the conflict that formed so much of her life.

The past year had been no better. She had returned to the X-Men for a while when Excalibur disbanded, then left when she finally realised that Xavier’s dream was doomed to fail, unless something changed. Kitty had enrolled in the University of Chicago, majoring in Literature, with a minor in Politics. It had been two months into her first term when she had learned that Moira MacTaggart, the woman who had been like a mother to her, had been killed in a terrorist bombing. She returned briefly to Westchester a few months ago, when she had received word that her friend and one-time lover, Piotr Rasputin, had also died. Kitty’s heart had been heavy and sorrowful for many weeks, the shock of more death weighing heavily on her soul. Her friends in Chicago did not understand what she was going through but they tried their best to support her, a fact that touched Kitty’s heart.

She had managed to put most of the grief behind her when she discovered that Pete Wisdom, the man she had once loved, had been murdered. Peter’s death had been the last straw; Kitty had retreated again into seclusion, operating in a zombie like state, until Jubilation Lee came to stay.

Jubilee had been living in Los Angeles for several months with a former classmate, Angelo Espinosa, until circumstances forced Jubilee to consider her life there. Kitty found Jubilee in a chatroom one night and invited her to come and live in Chicago with her. Jubilee was on the next flight out. That had been two weeks ago now, and Kitty was starting to mend slowly, having a friend that truly understood her past and the situation she found herself in.

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