-This issue opens up with Longshot chasing after the woman who tried to shoot her daughter last issue. The crazy woman races to the door of the apartment building and grabs Darwin(who stopped by to check on Longshot)as a hostage. The woman threatens to shoot Darwin and Longshot tells her to go ahead, stating it would be interesting to see what would happen... Ha! Instead, the woman tries to shoot herself, but due to Longshot's luck powers the gun misfires and leaves the woman with a messed up hand.
-Longshot and Darwin bring the injured crazy woman to the hospital and are soon joined by Siryn and Monet. Siryn tells Monet to scan the woman's mind to find out why she did what she did. Scanning the crazy woman's mind seems to do something to Monet, as she grabs Longshot by the throat and says "cortex".
-In the future, Jamie follows the members of the Summers Rebellion to their stronghold in Atlantic City. Jamie and Layla make out for a while, before Scott asks Jamie to find out why one of the members of the Rebellion disappeared off of his surveillance equipment for 2 seconds during a mission. Jeez, leave it to Scott to make a big thing over two missing seconds!
-Finally, Guido and Rictor meet up with John Maddox in Vermont and question him about the last time he saw Jamie. John tells them about what happened in the church from a couple of issues back and Guido and Rictor wonder if the woman who took Jamie away could possibly be Layla.
-While they are talking to John, a masked man attacks the trio with some fancy wrist blades. Guido manages to pull the guys mask off before he gets knocked through the wall to reveal Shatterstar! The issue ends with Shatterstar simply saying "cortex" to the shocked Rictor.
I can honestly say that I didn't see that one coming... As one of the biggest fans of the original X-Force, I can say that I am very happy with Shatterstar's re-appearance here. Knowing the way Peter David writes, I can imagine the reunion of Rictor and Shatterstar is going to be absolutely hilarious. I can't wait for the interaction between those two!
It seems like the backstory in this comic is beginning to really heat up, with whatever this cortex business is all about. First we have the guy who tried to kill John Maddox a few issues back, then there's the crazy woman with Longshot, and now we have Shatterstar. It seems that all of these people have a strange pink glow to their eyes, which may or may not mean something... I know Psylocke gives off a pink sheen when she uses her telepathy, but I think she's popping up in Uncanny X-Men, so I doubt she's behind this cortex stuff.
I did want to see more of Jamie and Layla in the future, but with all of the other stories picking up steam it seems Jamie's story was pushed to the back burners. Hopefully next issue will give us a bit more Jamie-related stuff. For a score I'll give this issue an 8 out of 10. This is still the best comic book with an X on the cover being published today, but this issue felt just a bit slower than the last couple of excellent issues have been. This was still a very good comic though.