At the X-Men’s Hellfire Gala, love is in the air, but a mutant Marvel hero sees red after an awkward encounter with his ex.
WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Hellions # 12 by Zeb Wells, Stephen Segovia, David Curiel and Ariana Maher of VC, on sale now
All manner of romance was an expected element of the Hellfire Gala, with the celebration showcasing various mutants along with other characters from the Marvel Universe in their finest outfits. While some romances have been teased throughout the event, only one has exploded into actual violence so far, as the former Alpha Flight couple of Wild Child and Aurora reunite.
After a brief and embarrassing encounter, Hellions # 12 lets Wild Child see red when he sees Aurora with his new partner, Daken.
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Years ago, Wild Child was one of the mutants recruited for Alpha Flight, Canada’s first superhero team. Despite his attempts to control his wilder side, one of his best hopes for normalcy came with Jeanne-Marie Beaubier, the high-flying Aurora. At the time, Aurora was struggling with her own mental issues and began a romance with Wild Child at a time when her appearance was more human than usual. However, their romance ended badly, with a mutating Wild Child ending it by fleeing Alpha Flight. Their subsequent reunion, while they were both part of Weapon X, only painted their relationship in a worse light, and the two have changed dramatically since then.
After being revived in Krakoa, Aurora has been more at peace with herself and the world, working alongside her brother Northstar as part of X-Factor. She even started a romance with another mutant with a dark past: Daken, who found redemption as a member of the X-Factor. Meanwhile, Wild Child was killed in the Kingdom of Amenth during the events of X of swords, resulting in his resurrection – and a surprise power boost, giving him a smarter mind and more harmonious senses. Wild Child has been on the lookout for a romantic relationship since its rebirth but is unsure of how to do it.
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After crushing the Hellfire Galal along with the other Hellions, Wild Child finds Aurora on the dance floor. Wild Child asks her to dance, but Aurora – clearly in conflict – reveals that she tried to get past the “really confusing place” she was in when they were involved. As the Cuckoos note using their telepathy to monitor the situation, Aurora is not ashamed to be with Wild Child, but the person she was when they were together. It’s a tragic moment for the couple, with the Cuckoos remarking how sad it is for everyone involved, only to see Wild Child make matters worse. Wild Child spends a little drinking to overcome his nerves, and after hearing encouraging words from his friend and teammate Greycrow decides to speak with Aurora again – only to find her in Daken’s arms.
Wild Child quickly unleashes a fight, taking a blow to Daken, who, in a display of restraint, simply dodges the attack and recoils as Greycrow interrupts the brawl. Ultimately, the fight is interrupted by Magik and Magneto, who force Psylocke and Greycrow to escort Wild Child and most of his party teammates.
Aurora has apparently found a strong sense of peace with Daken, and seeing their flourishing relationship threatened is disturbing, although it is truly encouraging to see Daken controlling herself and not getting drawn into an embarrassing fight. It might also, in the end, only compound Wild Child’s concerns about finding a “mate,” though Mindee du Stepford Cuckoos admits being attracted to him despite (or partly because of) his emotional reaction to the situation.
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