Oktober Guard, Part 4
|"Oktober Guard, Part 4"|
|First published||January 23, 2013|
|Cover date||January 2013|
|Written by||Mike Costa|
|Art by||Werther Dell'edera|
|Colors by||Arianna Florean|
|Letters by||Neil Uyetake|
|Editor||John Barber and Carlos Guzman|
The Oktober Guard's base comes under assault by Cobra, leading the Joes to effect an escape.
The Oktober Guard's base is under siege! With the building shaking from the impact of the ordnance, the imprisoned Flint — certain that G.I. Joe couldn't negotiate a military strike within Russian borders — wonders who might be attacking, but Chameleon already knows... Cobra has arrived. From outside, Cobra Commander orders the pilot of a helicopter gunship to shell the building to rubble after sweeping it, while a team of Vipers takes out the base's guards; Daina is shocked that Cobra bypassed the base's aircraft warning systems, to which Major Bludd points out that Cobra used to own the facility, and can predict and respond to any attack that the Oktober Guard can mount... but Daina knows that they have at least one that Cobra cannot counter. From the roof, Horrorshow and Shturmovik open fire on their attackers, but are forced to take cover when the gunship circles around for another attack.
Gorky leaves his prisoner Ronin to respond to the attack, allowing the captive Joe to free herself by bashing the chair she is tied to against the wall. Stealing a women's uniform from a locker in a nearby room, Ronin searches for a weapon, but the closest thing she can find is an ice skate. In the prisoners' cells, the Joes' guards are executed by Vipers searching the building, who — not caring who they are — make to execute them; however, one of them recognises Chameleon as the girl who used to work for the Paoli brothers, and decides to kill the others but take her alive. He doesn't get the chance, though, as Ronin — wielding the ice skate's blade as an impromptu knife — comes to their rescue, killing both Vipers and freeing the prisoners.
With the assistance of Gorky and Daina, the Oktober Guard have managed to repel the ground forces, but have not yet taken down the biggest threat — the helicopter. Major Bludd tells Colonel Shtern that the base can't withstand the gunship's assault, and seconds later, the building is shaken by its attack, knocking Shtern to the floor... and throwing his pistol into Bludd's reach. Threatening the Oktober Guard's leader with his own weapon, Bludd orders him to release him, offering to show him and his soldiers secret routes out of the building, but when he refuses — not trusting Bludd's word — the major simply shoots him dead, before shooting the padlock off his own cage and escaping anyway.
As Bludd passes by the hidden Joes, they mistake him — now wearing Shtern's hat — for the colonel, but Flint refuses to risk jeopardising things further for more intel. Reluctantly pushed into leading the group to safety through the tunnels, and reassured by Flint, Chameleon takes point as the team makes their way out. Meanwhile, Bludd reaches the roof, and — taking control of the Guard's powerful Czar Cannon railgun — makes three shots: one on the attacking gunship, and the other two, as he reveals to Gorky, on Cobra's base camp and a government building in Vladivostok. With Shtern dead and his own super-weapon used to attack the Russian government, the Guard are leaderless fugitives with nowhere to go; and so, Bludd proposes, they follow him — a leader with connections all over the world, who knows what they really want...
Back in the Joe team's base, Chameleon checks in on Ronin, recovering from surgery. She asks her teammate how she keeps going despite all the darkness and death that surrounds her, but after experiencing Gorky's torture, Ronin doesn't have any answers for her. Flint believes that their mission was close to a total disaster, with Ronin injured and her intel potentially worthless now that they don't know where the Oktober Guard are; the entire team made mistakes that endangered the mission, and Flint knows that they have to do better.
While Clockspring sits alone in thought, he is walked in on by Tomax Paoli, who assures the IT specialist that he's his friend. And as his friend, he would never jeopardize his relationship with Chameleon by letting her find out that Clockspring allowed Tomax alert Cobra to the Oktober Guard's location. Clockspring insists that he did it to save her and had no other options, which Tomax understands, but he knows that Chameleon wouldn't. Of course, Tomax always takes care of his friends... and he's looking forward to the next stage of their relationship.
Characters in italics are shown only in flashback. (Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
|G.I. Joe||Cobra||Oktober Guard||Others|
"Well, this place is definitely under attack. We need to find a way to turn this to our advantage."
"I'd like to know who was attacking."
"Who do you think?"
- —Lady Jaye, Flint and Chameleon
"Hey. Thanks for the rescue mission, guys."
"You're a great soldier, but you're no leader, Shturmovik. The girl and the giant have no friends in the outside world. And this maniac with the knives is a lone wolf if I've ever seen one. But me? I was a high-ranking member of the most powerful organization in the world. I've got connections all over the globe. I'm a leader."
- —Major Bludd
"Flint and Lady Jaye are true believers. They're doing this for God and country and whatever, and that's what keeps them going. I'm never going to have that. You don't have that, either. But I know you've seen and done things ten times darker than they have, and you slink around here like you're teflon. How?"
"Last week... maybe I could have told you. But that Russian. The bald one. He defeated me like I was some... he toyed with me. Like I was a child. The things... nobody is teflon, Chameleon. We're all just flesh and blood."
- —Chameleon and Ronin
"Oh, not to worry! Like I said. We're friends. And I always take care of my friends. I'm so glad we've gotten closer recently. I'm looking forward to this new stage of our relationship."
- —Tomax Paoli
- The door to the room that Ronin steals the uniform and ice skate from reads "Дайна" — the Russian spelling of "Daina". The ice skate comes from Daina's days as a professional figure skater, as shown in issue 19.
Real life references
- The helicopter gunship in this issue is named by Major Bludd as a F.A.N.G., after the 1983 toy; its design as an enclosed gunship is a big departure from the '80s design, a one-man, open-cockpit gyrocopter.
- Ronin snarks that Chameleon might want to watch The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants with her.
- This is the last issue of Cobra vol. 2. After this issue, the series would take a two month break before returning in April as G.I. Joe: The Cobra Files.
- Regular cover: Ronin and Shturmovik vs a horde of Vipers, by Antonio Fuso.
- Cover RI: Ronin and Lady Jaye vs Shturmovik and Horrorshow, by Joe Eisma, Juan Castro and Simon Gough.