Infestation 2: G.I. Joe issue 2
|First published||March 28, 2012|
|Written by||Mike Raicht|
|Line-art by||Valentine De Landro|
|Colors by||John Rauch|
|Letters by||Shawn Lee|
|Editorial consultant||John Barber|
Interrogator and the inmates of Cobra-La must find a way to stop the rise of the Elder Gods. Also, Snake Eyes!
With Storm Shadow killing the Elder God-possessed guards, Interrogator and Crystal Ball make for the cells of the Snake Pit's inmates — the only residents of the facility able to resist the Elder Gods' song — to seek their aid as reinforcements. Raptor agrees to join their cause for the good of animal and human alike, while Gristle is merely glad to have an opportunity to blow stuff up; but while Interrogator helps a drugged-out Razor Claw to his feet, he realises where Crystal Ball is heading for their last recruit. He shouts for Crystal Ball to stop, but it's too late: the mystic has opened the cell of Cesspool, who was only faking his insanity, and been ensnared by the scientist, now possessed by one of the Elder Gods... but Crystal Ball is saved by Razor Claw, who reveals hidden blades from his arms and uses them to slash the monstrous Cesspool apart. With Interrogator balking at the insanity of their plan, Crystal Ball leads the way to the facility's armories, intending to use incendiary weapons to burn their way to the door... a plan that Gristle is more than happy to take part in.
While the possessed Dr. Llund calls for more incapacitated workers to fuel her blood sacrifices and keep the doorway open, the former Vipers report on their digging efforts at the exits, which are also being tackled from the other end: specifically, by a G.I. Joe team led by Scarlett, who are listening in on what's happening down below thanks to Dee Jay's audio equipment. Unfortunately, this exposes him to the Old Ones' song, and he takes of his headphones to broadcast it to those around him, leading all except Snake Eyes to fall to their knees, entranced. As the Joes rise, possessed by the Elder Gods, Snake Eyes is forced to hold himself back to avoid seriously harming his comrades when they attack him. Other Joes, further away, attempt to come to his aid, but he uses gunfire to hold them back; fleeing into the ruins of the chemical plant, he prepares to make his stand in one of the still-intact rooms.
The Cobra agents sneak into the Snake Pit's armory, loading up on incendiary weapons; Interrogator is skeptical of the plan, but Crystal Ball assures him that he knows how to deal with the door. Storm Shadow, meanwhile, assures Interrogator that — contrary to Crystal Ball's implications — Interrogator is far from insane; it is his understanding of the mind that prevented him from falling victim to the song. The ninja, meanwhile, has resisted thanks to his Arashikage training; the same training that renders Snake Eyes immune to the thrall of the Elder Gods. Fully armed, the Cobra team head for the observation room where the door is being kept, Gristle eagerly leading the way with his flamethrower; but the fire does not faze the creatures, Crystal Ball having only intended the others as a distraction while he and Storm Shadow make for the doorway. Gristle goes down, killed by his own grenade, while the other Cobras are forced to fight up close and personal to stop the possessed Vipers from coming for them. Meanwhile, Crystal Ball and Storm Shadow confront Dr. Llund in front of the doorway; Storm Shadow engages her, but his ninja abilities are nothing to the possessed scientist, who effortly smacks him into a wall and knocks him unconscious. Llund's followers force Crystal Ball to his knees, but the mystic reveals the truth: he can hear the song of the Elder Gods, and in fact worships them, having longed for their arrival... but not like this. Intrigued, the Elder God possessing Llund is willing to listen...
Snake Eyes incapacitates his fellow Joes with ease, but he is hesitant to engage with the last one standing: Scarlett. The Old One possessing her recognises that he cares for her, and threatens to blow her head off if the ninja does not step aside... but does not get the chance, for at that moment the Elder Gods seal their deal with Crystal Ball and vanish back through their doorway, undoing the possessions and mutations exerted on the Joes and the Vipers. Though neither the Joes or Interrogator's team know quite how they won, they're happy enough to accept that they did; Storm Shadow, Interrogator and the inmates escape through a secret High Command exit thanks to instructions left by Crystal Ball, who has vanished along with Llund and the door. The Baroness is unimpressed with his decision to evacuate Raptor and Razor Claw rather than the hundreds of Vipers, but Interrogator is grateful to them for saving his life... though when she asks about the artifact, Interrogator describes the experiments as a "complete failure".
Elsewhere, Crystal Ball forcefully awakens Dr. Llund, surrounded by many other doors of the Elder Gods. Crystal Ball did not close the door because he didn't want the Old Ones to come through, but because he did; just one door is barely a foothold, and to truly bring them through, opening all the doors is required. Crystal Ball begins threatening torture, wanting to know what it felt like to be possessed by a god, but Llund doesn't remember anything... so it's a pity Crystal Ball doesn't care. As she begins screaming, Crystal Ball remarks that it's like a sweet song...
(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
"Are we supposed to taunt them to death or what? Not all of them have been improved by the good Cobra doctors... or dentists, I guess."
"I did this myself."
- —Gristle and Raptor discuss the latter's sharpened teeth
"Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn."
- —The possessed Dr. Llund and Crystal Ball
G.I. Joe references
- The member of the G.I. Joe squad with mustache and the goggles on his helmet is Mutt, the Joes' dog handler. His faithful friend Junkyard can be seen going through the rubble of the chemical plant in the first panel of page 7.
- On page 7, Scarlett asks Airtight a question, but the response comes from Mutt.
- Cover A: Snake Eyes vs tentacles, by Valentine De Landro.
- Cover B: Storm Shadow in front of an Elder God-thing, by Valentine De Landro, Livio Ramondelli and John Rauch.