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SARAH

At the same time as these other solo adventures were taking place, Gambit attempted to regain the trust of the other X-Men. Even though most of them were glad that he had returned, their forgiveness was a long time coming. They had been hurt by what Gambit had done and by his inability to tell them of his past. All in all, it was not a pleasant time for Gambit. He was in servitude to the New Son. He still had the green, misty parasite that he had picked up in Antarctica. Rogue was not sure what she wanted from him, switching between flirting shamelessly and giving him the cold shoulder. Even worse, one of the few surviving Morlocks had joined the team and was surprisingly unaware of his role in the massacre. She called herself Marrow now, but she had been Sarah when Gambit had rescued her from the massacre that he had set in motion and taken her out of the tunnels to safety.

The situation was exacerbated when the team was teleported to the Skrull homeworld minutes before its destruction at the hands of Galactus. When he injured her by accident, he rushed her to an alien, hospital facility where she underwent intensive therapy in a regeneration tank. Not only was her life saved, but she was suddenly supermodel beautiful. Because of her secret obsession with looks, Marrow was delighted at her new appearance and was incredibly grateful to Gambit. It was even implied that she had a slight crush on him. Every time Gambit tried to tell her about his role in her people's death he was defeated by her gratitude. Whenever he broached the subject, she would make a comment about how much she was thankful to him and he would freeze. He could not burst her bubble regarding him.

Sadly, how this situation might have played out is a matter for speculation. Marrow quietly faded away into limbo before she found out about Gambit's involvement in her past, and the plot seems to have been dropped.

CHARLES

Not all the tension in the team was due to Gambit's return, however. Charles Xavier was showing signs of extreme paranoia. He worked the team past the point of exhaustion and pain, apparently to prepare them for some unspecified threat. Naturally, Gambit took issue with this treatment and stormed out of the mansion after a fiery argument with Xavier. However, this was later revealed to be a ruse when he returned with a device that would allow Xavier to check that the X-Men were whom they appeared to be.

This same device was used in an elaborate psychodrama where the X-Men were pushed to the limits, both physically and emotionally, and eliminated one by one when Xavier was sure they were who they claimed to be. The other participants in the psychodrama perceived this elimination as their death. Interestingly, Gambit was one of the last two to be eliminated, which suggested that Xavier was not sure about him or that he was very hard to read psionically.

Again, however, little explanation was given for Xavier's erratic behaviour and the plot was dropped.

BYE BYE, BEBE!

Gambit finally managed to rid himself of the green, mist parasite.

*smooch*Upon returning to the mansion, Gambit decided he needed to determine where he stood first and decided to stay in the boathouse for awhile. Amid a fight with a self-proclaimed goddess, Kali, he and Rogue talked, but issues remained unresolved due a female entity that only Gambit could see, and who says Gambit belongs to her. Gambit is concerned about what this entity might do, and though Rogue saw it in his head during the X-Men's hunt for Xavier (who was found and has returned to the X-Men), Gambit was unwilling to tell her because of the threat to her and the other X-Men.

Eventually, however, this "mist"-ery woman was discovered by the team in Gambit '99 when Marrow accidentally stabbed him in the chest in a routine Danger Room session. The bone did not hurt him, the wound was completely sealed, and the X-Men obviously were mystified. By threatening him with a psiscan, Xavier eventually pushed him into undergoing tests at the hands of Moira, where the ghost was exorcised, as it were.

Upset by what she saw as a breach of their agreement, the GML (Green Mist Lady) brought him to Manhattan, Indiana, where he managed to unearth the truth about her. It transpired that she was a girl by the name of Mary Purcell, who had supposedly died when she spontaneously combusted at a gas station. In reality, she had evolved into a form of life that was pure energy. After unsuccessfully trying to possess Magneto, who took her to study at his Antarctic base, she latched onto Gambit after his abandonment by Rogue. Her purpose? To make something worthwhile of her life by creating a new form of life with Gambit. Unfortunately, their "baby" would cost them both their lives and, obviously, he refused.

At this point, the X-Men intervened and managed to separate her from his body. However, because of the close connection between them, they could not stand the strain and both were in danger of dying. In an attempt to help her, Gambit charged a card and destroyed the device that had been used to separate her from him, but she was obliterated with it.

Gambit was elected leader of one of the two teams . . .

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