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The Earth Manipulating Mutant that Saved the X-Men

Cover of X-Men: Deadly Genesis

Cover of X-Men: Deadly Genesis

Every child on Earth probably has one favorite Marvel Comic Super Hero. Who wouldn’t? Although there are currently thousands of fictional characters that we can find on the web thanks to the power of the internet, Marvel’s Super Heroes remain one of the most popular, and is leagues apart from others. “Marvel has carved a name for itself as one of The Big Two in the comic book world by creating a stable of superheroes that everyone can relate to. Even though they are super powered beings, they are nowhere near perfect or omnipotent; giving fans an easy way to relate to them. They have so many well known characters, it is no surprise they have held onto the number one spot for so long.” (Aaron Albert)

One character that belongs in the Marvel stable of superheroes is a woman who has a way with diamonds — Petra. Who is Petra? Is she a villain, ally, or a combination of both? For those who do not know, Petra, whose original name is unknown, is a Marvel comic book character from the X-Men series. She was introduced to comic book fans in the first issue of X-Men: Deadly Genesis. Petra is a mutant whose powers include manipulating rocks or any form of earth. She and her family lived in Denmark, a country which has the highest per capita income, least corrupt government and ranked 1st in the happiest country index many times, before migrating to the United States. While on a camping trip, Petra’s family was killed in a landslide. She survived without suffering a single scratch, not knowing how it happened. The unfortunate Petra was then raised by a foster family. However, she left her foster home to avoid her abusive father. After leaving, she became a wanderer.

While traveling, Petra used her earth manipulating powers to make shelter. Eventually, she discovered that she could turn coal to diamonds. She sold the diamonds, but only in small amounts, fearing that the people may take advantage of her powers. Most people would wonder why did it not occur to her to make use of the diamonds in order to make quite an incredible of money, an amount that would allow her to live comfortably for the rest of her life. Instead of pawning small diamonds off frequently to buy food sustain and herself, Petra could have used her power a single time to procure a lavish home and the perks that go with it, without having to work a day for the remainder of her existence.

The young Petra was discovered by Dr. MacTaggert, a friend of X-Men founder Charles Xavier, also known as Professor X. Seeing her potential, Prof. X immediately assigned Petra to a rescue team to save the original X-Men. Along with Sway, Darwin and Vulcan, they battled the “living” island of Krakoa in an attempt to rescue the X-Men trapped inside. However, Krakoa proved to be too strong. Darwin and Vulcan were able to escape the island, but our heroine and Sway died fighting.

As a fan of the Marvel Universe, it is sad to see a character with so much to offer be taken off the comic books. Petra’s power was remarkable; she was gifted with earth manipulation and the power to turn coal to diamonds. She was also so well designed that she could have been a regular addition to the main X-Men team. With the popularity of Marvel today, maybe she could have been a member of the Avengers. It is just a shame that we will never know since she got killed off fairly early on.