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After defusing a potential gang-war and saving Remy from the bounty on him, the X-Men had no time for relaxation. The very day they arrived back at their Australian base, they were attacked by an interdimensional warlord by the name of Khan. He wanted both the Storm's part of the Madripoor Set (a group of gems under the protection of the Guild that would allow them to open gates between worlds) and Gambit as the 'battery' to power them.

Despite Gambit and Lifeguard's best attempts to flee and hide them, they were captured and taken to an ancient temple on Madripoor. There, the gems were placed on Gambit's body and triggered to create a beam of crimson light. This beam in turn began to solidify to create a monstrous tower enclosing Madripoor.

Khan's minions started to trickle through it, as it became more and more solid. However, as the X-Men discovered, this was just a prelude to his real plan. When the Tower became completely substantial, he would be able to bring his entire force through it and would conquer the world without any problems. Naturally, the gate had to be closed.

This conclusion led to a lot of outer space and interdimensional adventures on the part of the X-Men. Storm was kidnapped to be Khan's queen and had to be rescued; Heather discovered her Shi'ar heritage and so on.

Meanwhile, back on earth, Gambit was doing everything he could to close the beam from that side. When the beam was interrupted for a second, he managed to charge a little pebble and push it through the beam to bring the entire temple down on himself. Naturally, if he died, the invaders would lose their energy source and the gate would shut automatically.

However, Rogue had other plans for him. She refused to let him sacrifice himself, and tried to use her body to block the beam while she used her strength to pull him free. Unfortunately, she had imprinted his powers in the past, and the beam ate through her in exactly the same way, draining her dry. She was just as stuck as he was:

Gambit: Rogue, you're bein' absorbed into Khan's network. Get away from here b'fore you're trapped.

Rogue: Ah was trapped the moment they put your life in danger.

Gambit: No no no no no no no!

Rogue: Yes. While Ah live, you don't die, it's that simple.

To add to their problems, Vargas showed up at that point and decided it would be an opportune time to put an end to Destiny's prophecy about Rogue being the one to kill him:

Vargas: And now, Rogue, at long last, I come to you.

Rogue: You call this a fair fight?

Gambit: Break free! Go!

Rogue: Can't.

Gambit: How many powers you imprinted, woman? Fire an optic blast? Use super-spit! Do somethin'!

Rogue: Remy, Ah can't. It's this beam. It's drained me dry! We're in this together!

Vargas stabbed Gambit and Rogue with his sword. The beam died and the invasion was over, but at what cost?

Onto Next Part...

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