Don't Close Your Eyes
|Don't Close Your Eyes|
|Dates run:||July 1, 2011|
|Read the logs:||Don't Close Your Eyes|
"You like to cause fear? And pain? How about your fears?" Jean said, walking over to the man's bedside. "Unable to wake up, screaming. Driven mad. Trapped in his own body. I've got a new one to add to your list."
He found himself paralyzed standing there at the foot of his own bed, unable to move.
"A link can go both ways."
An old enemy comes back to haunt Jean Grey and pulls everyone else in the mansion into his revenge as well.
Don't Close Your Eyes
The Fourth of July long weekend started off normally enough. Warren Worthington had taken a group of mansionites to the Hamptons to enjoy the holiday at the beach, with those remaining looking forward to a bit of peace and quiet. The first small sign that all was not right was when Kurt ran into Jean leaving the Professor's office doing some "last minute work". It was unusual for anyone to go into Charles' office without him being there, but this was Jean, his oldest student and trusted friend. Nothing to worry about.
The nightmare began the next day. A group of men - a technopath, a teleporter, an illusionist and a strongman, all with a disturbing knowledge of the mansion - infiltrated the building and overcame the residents with the sleeping gas that was part of the mansion's own security measures. The captured mansionites - X-Men, students and staff - were carried into the Danger Room and locked inside. The Professor was isolated from the rest, imprisoned in the Box to prevent him from contacting anyone outside. The invasion was quick and terrifyingly efficient.
Returning to the mansion from an overnight trip to the city, Haller discovered what was going on when he tried to open the gate. He received an ultimatum - four Brotherhood members to be released from jail, no feds, in twelve hours, or the the mansion would be blown up with everyone in it. In a panic, Haller began calling anyone and everyone, managing to contact Doug, Kurt and Crystal. Meeting in a motel in Salem Center, they discussed options and came up with a plan - Kurt would teleport into the Box to rescue Charles. What they hadn't anticipated was the illusionist (Straw Man) was also in the Box, pretending to be Charles, and Kurt was taken down and locked in the Danger Room with the rest of the mansionites.
In retaliation for the attempted rescue, Amelia was killed by a psionic attack, the backlash also killing Sofie Stepford. Horror-struck, Haller, Crystal and Doug were unsure what to do next, when Jubilee contacted Doug from inside the mansion. She let him know that the mansion dwellers were trapped in nightmares and that she, Amara and Meggan had managed to escape their own shared dream. The three escaped the Danger Room when someone came to retrieve the dead body of Sofie, Jubilee choking him out. They managed to get to the Box and rescue the Professor while the illusionist, realising the plan was starting to unravel, fled the mansion.
With Charles freed, Haller and Crystal sneaked into the mansion via the escape tunnels and Crystal took on the teleporter (Aarkus) while Doug hacked the system and Haller shielded them psionically from detection. Returning to the Danger Room to come up with a plan, it was decided that Haller and Charles would try to wake the sleepers while Crystal and Meggan tended to the injured and acted as guards. Jubilee and Amara would create a distraction and draw attention away from the Danger Room, in order to allow Charles and Haller to work undisturbed for as long as possible.
Meanwhile, the hostage-takers were having their own troubles. Having second thoughts, the technopath (Dark man) reluctantly armed the bomb, but was killed by one of his co-hostage takers (Fear-Eater). Charles and Haller discovered the sleepers were all linked together and to Jean and that simply trying to cut the connection between her and their unknown psychic attacker would lobotomise everyone; they began the slow task of removing minds from the net, one by one. Others, such as Garrison and Vanessa, appeared to wake on their own and revealing that Parker Matthews was the one responsible. Kyle awoke with a trigger implanted by Nightmare that set him to attack Meggan, injuring her before Kurt teleported him into the Box. The reminder of the White Room drove Kyle into a worse frenzy and Kurt was injured as well before teleporting back out.
Kurt, returning from depositing Kyle in the Box for safety, ran into Hank and Sarah, on their way to disarm the bomb in Cerebro and joined them. With Kurt prepared to teleport the bomb away and potentially sacrifice himself and Hank providing support, Sarah managed to shut down the bomb, suffering from electric shocks in the process. Garrison and Vanessa went to help Amara and Jubilee battling the two remaining men in the mansion, only to have the teleporter escape and the other, Fear Eater, collapse unconscious as his link with Nightmare was cut.
Inside her mind, Jean fought Mesmero(now calling himself Nightmare), on the astral plane and defeated him, but nearly destroyed her mind in the process. In the aftermath of the battle, Charles and Haller discovered Jean's mind is too damaged to contact her, and the mansion dwellers regrouped, they discovered what has happened, to Nightmare and to Jean, and the cost paid by several.
Dream 1: The Lamb And The Knife
Meggan, Jubilee and Amara are trapped in a dream where Selene has taken New York and Meggan is her apprentice. Amara is forced to generate a volcano in which Meggan is sacrificed while Jubilee watches. The dream repeats, only this time the girls manage to overwhelm Selene and escape the nightmare.
Dream 2: Après moi le déluge
Vanessa and Garrison are trapped in Jean's nightmares with a version of Scott, first experiencing her memories of Alkali Lake and then her memories of having a miscarriage in California, while they are betrayed by Jane. Jean realises who is responsible - Parker Matthews, also known as Mesmero, now calling himself Nightmare and shoves Garrison and Vanessa out of her mind.
Dream 3: The Devil's Science
In their shared nightmare, Angel, Yvette, Sarah and Klara are vacationing in a small seaside town where things seem a bit off. Discovering they are being followed, Angel and Yvette move to accost their stalker, only to have a crowd attack Klara and Sarah for being witches. Yvette's suit fails and she injures several of the crowd before she and Sarah are overwhelmed and taken by Dr. Henry McCoy, seeking new mutants to sell overseas. Hank - the Dark Beast - tortures and disfigures Sarah while Yvette is locked in a crate nearby, helpless to save her.'
Angel tries to save Klara from being burned at the stake, but her powers go out of control and set fire to the town. Kurt enters the dream and has to kill his brother, Stefan, in order to save Klara. Chased down to the docks, they see Hank sailing away with Sarah and Yvette, but Angel's powers fail as she pursues him. As the mob draws closer, Kurt is ready to kill Klara to stop her being burned to death, but Charles and Haller manage to sever the link to Jean at the very last minute.
Dream 4: Devour
Monet, Kyle, and Piotr wake up in an abandoned stadium in Sydney; Monet is horrified to discover herself in the body of Marius St. Croix. Kyle, more feral than usual and recognizing his old foe, attacks her while Piotr tries to stop them but cannot understand what they're saying; eventually Kyle realizes Monet is trapped in Marius's body but he suddenly loses control and starts to attack people. They are soon rescued from the nightmare by Xavier and Haller.
"Jane", "Jeannie", "Nightmare"
After weeks with no change, Xavier and Haller went inside Jean's mind to attempt to heal the damage, finding Jean's mindscape a half-flooded wreck with the corpses of friends and family floating in the waters and every pitfall a painful memory. Splitting up, each telepath met a different version of Jean - Haller with Jane, Charles with a teenaged Jeannie before returning to the mansion. They attempted to enter, but a memory of Nightmare attacked them, forcing them to retreat to the centre of Jean's mind where they found an untouched child version of Jean. With encouragement, Jane and Jeannie join with the child Jean to become the adult Jean and they banished the memory of Nightmare from her mind, allowing her to wake and continue to rebuild the damaged parts of her psyche.
Recovering from her own ordeal, Jean 'felt' traces of her co-worker's mind and summoned Charles to help her look for the Russian doctor. It was difficult, Amelia's mind being fragile and reluctant to leave the 'safety' of the astral plane, but gradually, using their memories of her, Jean and Charles were able to bring her mind back. From there, it was a simple enough matter for Amelia to recompose her gaseous form and return to her old acerbic self, much to the relief of the mansion.
Trivia and Meta
Revealed during the shared nightmare in Jean's mind was the fact she'd suffered a miscarriage in California as the result of a mission.
Those who had stayed in the Hamptons returned from their trip several days after the events, as the mansion needed repairs.
Injuries that were suffered in the dreams carried over as pain in the waking world.
Several weeks after the death of their sister, the remaining Stepfords transferred to the West Coast Annex, to continue their university studies there.