The X-Men have had a rather rough go of it in recent years, including losing most of their teammates to the misguided meddling of Nathan Grey. The ones who are left find themselves knee deep in a world that has doubled down on its mutant oppression and is even vaccinating humans so they don't risk having mutant babies. That's all pretty grim, and since then they've lost even more members of their family thanks to the "War of the Realms", so they are just hoping for any sort of light at the end of the tunnel. They just might have received that light, however, though in a very unexpected way in the pages of Uncanny X-Men #21, and if you don't want to know what happened don't read any further.
The remaining X-Men head to the Hellfire Club to confront Emma Frost about wiping memories of her from their minds, though they also learn she's been directing them a bit to pieces of the overall puzzle she deems important. To hear Emma tell it though, it wasn't just out of self-preservation, but the preservation of mutantkind from O.N.E., and once Hope scans her mind, she reveals the full plan to the team.
They need an extra piece of two to make it happen, and so they split up into teams to fulfill those needs. Eventually, everyone who's going returns to the Hellfire Club estate, but O.N.E. is converging on it, and so while Emma and her team work on executing the plan the remaining X-Men try and hold the line from the advancing forces.
At one point the X-Men are completely overwhelmed, but as things look dire, everyone freezes in place. Then one of the soldiers reaches out their hand to Havok, saying "lemme help you up." They help him up and then walk away, and everyone is wondering what happened.
Emma Frost then steps out with Cerebro in her hand, and tells them, "They don't recognize us. They can't see what we really are, and they don't remember us. As of right now, the world at large has never even heard of mutants. We never existed. You're welcome."
While mutants of course remain, the world isn't aware of them now, which could mean the X-Men will finally get some peace while they try and figure out how to get their other friends back. Of course, this is Emma Frost, so this could be part of a larger plan, and very well could bite the X-Men later on. Either way, it will certainly be interesting to see how this plays out, and you can check out the full spoiler image above.
Uncanny X-Men #21 is written by Matthew Rosenberg and drawn by Salvador Larroca with a cover by Whilce Portacio, and you can check out the official description below:
"IT ALL ENDS HERE. THIS IS FOREVER. As Cyclops' cleanup mission nears its close, all the problems the X-Men face come together. The truth behind the Hellfire Club's intentions, the culmination of the O.N.E.'s assaults on mutantkind and even the inner struggles within the team... It all ends here. This is forever."
Uncanny X-Men #21 is in comic stores now.