- The X-Men are unprepared for the approaching threat of “Fall of X” because they do not understand the magical abilities and alliances of their enemies, Orchis.
- Orchis has formed alliances with both scientific and magical villains, making the magical opponents particularly dangerous as they can subtly affect mutants without detection.
- Krakoa needs to recruit more magic practitioners to their side if they hope to stand a chance against Orchis and protect their mutant society.
The X-Men are rapidly approaching the event that will change the Krakoan Era forever, “Fall of X.” It promises to be the culmination of the Orchis storyline that has been building up over the last few years, threatening to destroy everything the X-Men have built for mutant-kind. Unfortunately, Marvel’s most famous mutants seem less than prepared for the coming storm, and that is largely due to not understanding who their enemy is.
Orchis hasn’t just formed alliances with villains who have a scientific background, but ones with a magical one as well. If anything, those are the most dangerous foes the X-Men face today, as they lie in wait for the perfect time to strike, even managing to affect mutants subtly without anyone knowing. If Krakoa hopes to see another day beyond this future conflict, then they need to get more magic practitioners on their side.
The Deck Is Stacked Against the Mutants
Orchis has already made several powerful allies that have their own reasons to destroy Krakoa. The most notable are Moira MacTaggert, Nimrod, and Doctor Stasis—but these aren’t necessarily the most dangerous of the bunch. Orchis understands that the mutants are some of the most powerful beings on the planet, and they need to get every possible weapon to even stand a chance of defeating them. To that end, they have looked beyond the realm of science to that of mysticism and found a surprising amount of mages who also share their anti-mutant views.
The first of these new allies is the Coven Akkaba. An ancient organization founded during the mutant Apocalypse’s reign, the Coven Akkaba was a group of human mystics who believed that by harnessing magic, they could be seen as equals within the eyes of Apocalypse. Unfortunately for them, Apocalypse not only didn’t view them as equals but exiled them from their homeland for their attempt to do so. This created deep-seated resentments against all mutants, turning the wayward coven into a mutant hate group that has now joined forces with Orchis.
Perhaps the most dangerous of them although is their newest ally—or potential master, if she has anything to say about it—Mother Righteous. A clone of Mister Sinister’s wife, Rebecca, Mother Righteous has pursued magical studies since her creation and has been manipulating both sides to her desired goals. With her Machiavellian maneuvering, and the ability to keep her true allegiances hidden even within plain sight of the X-Men, she is arguably the biggest single threat to both groups.
Magic Has Subtly Been Used Against Mutantkind
An excellent instance of Orchis using magic against the X-Men is their hiring of Margali Szardos, Nightcrawler’s foster mother. A powerful sorceress, Margali was approached by Orchis with the intent to use her talents to craft a hex that would transform mutants across the globe into uncontrollable monsters. In essence, they had discovered a way to affect the x-gene without having to use scientific methods.
What’s even more disturbing is that this specific curse could not be broken by any other means, scientific or magical. During Mister Sinister’s dark timeline, it was revealed that despite having years to work in private on a monstrous Nightcrawler, he came no closer to fixing what was done to him than when he had started. Granted, Mister Sinister possesses no working magical talent, but that leads to the next part of the problem.
Mother Righteous, a clone of Rebecca Essex with a treasure trove of magical knowledge, was unable to break it by herself. Despite having had centuries to research magic, whatever Margali had done to Nightcrawler was so absolute that it took a years-long quest to find and kill the sorceress to break the hold her magic had on her foster son. Two of the most prodigious minds in the Marvel Universe when it came to magic and science were unable to find a way to undo a single hex. If that is the level of power it holds over the mutants, then Krakoa is in peril with every step toward “Fall of X.”
Krakoa Has Some Magic On Its Side
This isn’t to say that Krakoa is completely without its own defenses. They have recently elected the mutant Selene to the country’s ruling body: the Quiet Council. An External, Selene is an immortal mutant who is thousands of years old. Her talents lie in more than just her mutant gifts. Selene has spent millennia acquiring magical knowledge and power. At one point, she was even considered a potential replacement for the Sorcerer Supreme by the Eye of Agomotto itself, demonstrating how considerable her abilities are in this particular field. Unfortunately, Selene is not trustworthy even at the best of times, having been a recurring threat to the X-Men prior to their founding of Krakoa.
Then, of course, there is the most prominent magical mutant among them: Magik. A former ruler of limbo, veteran X-Men, and powerful magic user in her own right, Magik has enough skill that she has been a teacher at Doctor Strange’s Academy of Mysticism for some time now. With the threat of a magical attack on the horizon, Magik’s talents will be needed more than ever.
This isn’t even considering the allies the Krakoans have outside their borders. Many powerful magic users within the Marvel Universe call the mutants friends and would be more than happy to help with their current problems. Doctor Strange of course is among them, and if he was called into action, then a great many more would follow to help. Unfortunately, the mutants seem more focused on how Orchis is planning to attack their reputation and home rather than how they might attempt a metaphysical approach. While they have their eyes firmly set on the hate group, they underestimate just how thoroughly Orchis has prepared their final attack.