#08 ICEBOUND, CHAPTER FOUR: RUN FOR DAYLIGHT
Publisher: Devil's Due
Issue Date: July 2003
Issue Number: 8
Airtight and Lifeline discover a way out of the Coldfire Laboratory, but it requires disabling the electric lock, and leaving the doors open. The Joe team is able trick the creatures into areas where they are trapped and are unable to escape from he laboratory. Duke and his team then escape from the laboratory with all alive plus the civilian Chuck Trellice. Lifeline is not infected.
Notes of Interest
Duke's first mission to the Coldfire Laboratory was in 1995.
The Joes: Airtight, Duke, Frostbite, Lifeline, Scarlett, Snake-Eyes
Additional Characters: Chuck Trellice
Duke's 1995 Team: Officers Mull, Shapiro, Akins, Silver & Cormwell (all deceased)
Story: Dan Jolley & Drew Johnson,
Script: Dan Jolley,
Pencils: Javier Pina,
Inks: Albert Xiques Coll,
Colors: Estudio Din & Mita,
Letters: Dreamer Design,
Cover: Tony Harris
Duke, Snake-Eyes, Scarlett, Frostbite civillian survivor Chuck Trellice find themselves trapped behind a wall of ice as they try to escape the caverns beneath Project: Coldfire.
Airtight, meanwhile, reports to Duke that he and Lifeline have found another section attached to the project above, that hasn't been wrecked, and has working equipment - and an emergency escape door. Only problem is, it's locked electronically, and Airtight doesn't have the decryption skills to get it open. Duke tells him and Lifeline to sit tight - they're making their way back to the main lab. In the meantime, Airtight and Lifeline decide to run some tests and see just what effect the scratch Lifeline sustained from the creatures is having on him.
As Duke's team makes its way through the caverns and back to the main lab, Mr. Trellice confesses he's nervous; all he wants is to get back to his wife and child. The Joes try to reassure him and Duke tells him to stick close. Duke then flashes back to the first time he was at project coldfire...
Duke remembers the frightened reaction of his men after they faced down the first of the creatures. Duke calms them by telling them this is what they train for, and they're going to complete their mission - gather information and eliminate the threat...
Back in the present the Joes are attacked by more creatures. They fight their way through, reaching Airtight and Lifeline just in time.
Duke says it was a planned ambush, and when he realizes that Airtight has lost his wrist-comm, it becomes clear the creatures were listening in - and are therefore more intelligent than the Joes thought.
Seven years ago, Duke pulls the last surviving member of his team out into the snow, holding a flare to guide the chopper in, but the man dies in his arms...
Scarlett, thinking out loud, says the Joes will have to shut down the generator to bypass the electronic lock and open the door, but getting back to the generator will be dangerous. Before they can formulate an action plan Duke speaks up and says no one is going on any suicide mission... and pulls out the EMP pen Mainframe gave him before he left.
Using the airducts to move into the next room, the Joes manage to trick several of the creatures, trapping them. Scarlett attaches the EMP pen to a crossbow bolt, and fires it at the lock, disabling it.
More creatures appear, attacking the Joes. As they fight their way to the door, one of the creatures is accidentally knocked into a gas valve, and room fills with gas.
The Joes make it out, except for Duke, who's trapped by one last creature. Duke manages to defeat it by smashing it in the face with a centrifuge, but he hasn't enough strength to make it out... until Airtight arrives with a spare breathing apparatus, and helps him out into the clear.
Outside, Duke tells the Joes to get Wild Bill on the comm, to tell General Hawk to get containment teams out to the area. Lifeline suggests he should stay behind - after all, he still doesn't know what effects that scratch might have on him, as they never got to see the results from the test. But Duke pulls out a small printout, saying he saved it from the centrifuge before he used it to defeat the creature, and that Lifeline has nothing to worry about... it says "negative." Not that it would have mattered anyway - Duke says "we're not leaving anybody behind."
Summary by: Josh Kern