All-New X-Men (2nd series) #13

Issue Date: 
September 2016
Story Title: 
untitled
Staff: 

Dennis Hopeless (writer), Mark Bagley (pencils), Andrew Hennessy (inker) Nolan Woodard (colorist), VC’s Cory Petit (letterer), Bagley, Hennessy, Woodard (cover artists), Bagley, Hennessy, Woodard (variant cover artists), Chris Robinson (assistant editor), Daniel Ketchum (editor), Mark Paniccia (X-Men group editor), Axel Alonso (editor-in-chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer)
X-Men created by Stan Lee & Jack Kirby

Brief Description: 

Oya and Genesis take Iceman out to a gay club to help him get used to his sexual orientation. Bobby’s attempts at flirting are clumsy at best, disastrous at worst. When he runs out of the club, he literally runs into a cute guy improbably named Romeo and they instantly hit it off, though Romeo seems distracted. They are surprised by a human-moth creature. Bobby and the other two X-Men attack him, despite Romeo’s protests. Finally Romeo manages to calm him down, just as they are joined by Crystal and her Inhuman team. It turns out that Romeo is Inhuman empath who helps the team finding and calming new Inhumans. With the encounter over, Romeo programs his number into Bobby’s phone, making it clear he wants to meet him again. Idie and Evan consider their work done.

Full Summary: 

Miami, Florida:
Outside a trendy club are Bobby Drake, Idie Okonwko and Evan Sabahnur. Bobby is nervous. What if there aren’t any gay guys here? Evan points out this is Miami. What, so Miami is full of gays? Bobby asks. Idie draws him closer and states the world is full of people, all kinds of people. Let’s just say Miami is particularly full. Many willing to talk to his pretty face.

Provided his mouth can shape words, he points out. Bobby reveals they don’t understand. He tried flirting with girls back in school, even went out on a few ill-advised dates before he came to Xavier’s. One girl called him a poop tornado. To his face!

Idie and Evan try to calm him. The difference here is that he will actually be attracted to the people. He can be himself. Idie adds they aren’t looking for the love of his life, just get him to talk to guys, so he gets better at it. Rejection is part of this. She assures him, he is in good hands, as they enter the club.

They immediately throw him at a guy. He loves turtles! Bobby bursts out, confusing the other guy. They quickly abort and Idie jokes, now they have super awkward out of the way, things will get easier. Just let her do the heavy lifting on the next one.

Idie flirts with some guys. She asks if has something stuck between her teeth, because she been in here twenty minutes and she can’t get a single guy to look at her. Wrong club, the guys tell her good-naturedly. Smoothly, she figures she has to buy her own Red Bulls tonight, but which of them is going to buy a drink for her friend Bob…? She turns around to introduce him, but he has left for another part of the club.

Idie joins him and asks what happened. Those guys were super nice. He admits Idie was hitting it off with them and he was standing in the back like a weirdo. He felt he was in the way. She interrupts: she has seen him talk nonstop for hours! This is different, he claims. Idie insists it isn’t Stop hitting on people and do Bobby!

Bobby considers her words for a bit, then joins two guys and just honestly explains his friends sent him over, because he is terrible at flirting and needs practice. They laugh kindly and agree don’t they all?

But practice at what, exactly? Bobby continues. Topless dancing? Interrupting strangers with non-existent pick-up lines? He keeps on babbling and the two men share a look.

Evan leads Bobby away and informs him that that went well at first, but he was oversharing. He suggests they dance. He explains he always does that when he is in a dark place and tries to forget about leaving Apocalypse to his fate. He dances so well, he is immediately surrounded by admirers while being completely oblivious, and Bobby is left at the side. Right, he sighs. Idie remarks she should have warned him about that: never compete on a dancefloor with Evan Sabahnur. She suggests they get to it again, then notices the cold he is projecting and suggests he gather his thoughts first.

Bobby plops down at the counter, where another young man laughs he knows that look. Someone’s well-meaning friends have tried to set him up. Bobby pipes up. The two fall into an easy conversation.

Evan is panicked he lost Bobby, but Idie points out that all they had to do was make him miserable enough to walk off on his own. They decide to pretend it was their plan all along. Idie joins Evan on the dance floor and wants to talk about Hank and what happened in Egypt with him. Nothing new to report, he replies. If Hank approached him, he would be, but Hank has been closed up in his lab all week. Evan continues he knows it’s not Hank’s fault. Apocalypse is Apocalypse, and Evan was the one being selfish there. Idie replies he wasn’t selfish. Yes, he was, he cuts her off. He’d have let all of this burn to save Apocalypse. To save himself…

At the counter, Bobby tells his new friend how they beat Unus the Untouchable. Beast had created a weapon that made his force field so strong he couldn’t even touch food anymore. The other guy laughs and touches his hand. Nervously, Bobby literally freezes up.

Ashamed, he runs outside and tumbles over a dark-haired young man. They both fall. The young man says ‘hi’ and asks what this was all about. Bobby babbles how he met this great cute guy then froze like a crazy person. Sounds about right, the other man says and helps him up.

He reveals that his first crush was on the high school wrestling team. Therefore, obviously, so was he. Spent three months flirting and play fighting with that kid before finally kissing him. After which that guy promptly punched him in the teeth. He literally dropped out of school the very next day. Bobby’s sorry. Don’t be, the other boy tells him. Wrestling guy came out a few years later, tracked him down online and apologized. Humiliation is a rite of passage; there’s a reason they call it a “crush,” right?

He changes the subject, telling Bobby he could stare into his eyes all day, but a friend of his is around here in a bad way. He asks for Bobby’s name and tells him he is Romeo.

A moment later, a giant fly being bursts forth from the dumpster. Romeo greets him.

Bobby tells him tell him to get down and blasts at the creature. Romeo shouts ‘no,’ even as the moth creature tries to flee.

Idie and Evan come running. Idie orders Genesis to handle the bystanders while she’ll help Bobby. Romeo shouts at them to stop. He hits Bobby in the back, then tries to calm the Moth being down, promising they can help him. The moth calms down and Romeo supports him.

She supposes this counts as a win, a voice comes from above. It’s the Inhuman Crystal, with her team from their ship. Though this doesn’t count as his best work. It isn’t like him to be so sloppy. Romeo leads the new Inhuman to the ship and explains the X-Men showed up. She supposes that explains it, Crystal remarks coolly while Gorgon scoffs about mutants.

Later:
So he is an Inhuman? Bobby asks. Romeo replies he is a student, a runner, a gamer. And – believe it or not – a recovering pickpocket. But yes, he is also an Inhuman. It’s a lot like being a mutant. Except there’s a weird cocoon thing involved, and for some reason the world has chosen not to hate and fear them… yet.

Bobby guesses Romeo used his power on the moth man to calm him down. Seems like, Romeo smiles. Or maybe he just didn’t attack him with a bunch of ice and fireballs. Bobby stutters, embarrassed, but Romeo calms him. He knows they were trying to help. They were just sort of awful at it. Bobby agrees.

While typing something into a phone, Romeo explains he is an empath. He can sense and manipulate people’s emotions. It’s useful with new Inhumans like him. They tend to come out of the cocoon scared. So sometimes he patrols with Crystal’s team. He finds them first and they scoop them up.

So that’s why he felt so comfortable with him earlier, Bobby figures. Is it? Romeo asks. Bobby admits he crashed and burned with half a dozen guys earlier and everything was so easy with him. And could he please look up from his phone to let him down easy? It’s Bobby’s phone, Romeo corrects him and hands it back. He’s gotta go back to work now, but Bobby should definitely call him sometime. He enters the ship. Recovering pickpocket? Bobby asks.

So what happened here? Idie and Evan asks if they can join him and see his goofy grin. Digits, he replies and holds up his phone. The two congratulate themselves.

Characters Involved: 

Genesis II, Iceman (time-displaced), Oya (all X-Men)

Crystal, Flint, Gorgon, Grid, Naja (all Royal Inhuman Diplomatic Mission)
Romeo

Story Notes: 

The Unus story couldn’t have occurred like that, since the original X-Men were taken from their timeframe before Unus got his comeuppance.

The adventures of Crystal’s team are shown in All-New Inhumans.

Written By: