Publisher: IDW Publishing
Issue Date: November 2012
Series: G.I. Joe Cobra Vol. 2 Cobra Civil War
Issue Number: 19
In flashback, Shtern introduces Tomax and Xamot to the various members of the future Oktober Guard as he discusses his plans to protect post-Soviet Russia. In the present, Ronin infiltrates the Oktober Guard-occupied Cobra base, and gets in a losing battle with Oktober Guard-ninja Gorky.
Notes of Interest
Joes: Ronin, Flint, Firewall, Clockspring
Cobra: Tomax, Xamot, Major Bludd
Oktober Guard: Colonel Shtern, Daina, Shturmovik, Horrorshow, Gorky
Writer: Mike Costa
Artist: Antonio Fuso and Atilio Rojo
Colorist: Arianna Florean
Letterer: Neil Uyetake
Editor: John Barber & Carlos Guzman
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Cover A: Art by Antonio Fuso
Cover B (Retail Incentive): Art by Antonio Fuso
In flashback, Tomax and Xamot, along with Colonel Shtern, watch a young Daina ice skating, impressed with her grace until she falls doing a jump. The Colonel explains she was a young Olympic hopeful until her criminal father went to war with the Tambov family, and they broke her knees in retaliation, ending her skating career. As they leave the rink, Shtern pays the Paoli twins for information they supply him, confirming for the Russian the existence of G.I. Joe as an American secret taskforce. Shtern is concerned that Cobra hasn’t engaged G.I. Joe directly to gauge their strength, but the twins assure him they’re fully aware of Joe’s capabilities. Shtern is creating his own covert operations team. The Paolis tell him he’s been out of the game too long, but he says that Russia needs a means to solve its own problems in both foreign invasion and the growth of substantial organized crime. Tomax and Xamot laugh at his condemning of criminal activity when he’s employing ex-criminal enforcer Nico Tchitcherine, whom Shtern calls “Shturmovik”. Shturmovik tells the Cobra officers that on Shtern’s orders, he killed a man named Temuri Stanislov, his entire family, and all the men in his organization, which Shtern says demonstrates his loyalty to his country. Daina is escorted out of the arena by former Soviet soldier Peter Danko, now serving as Daina’s bodyguard, “Horrorshow”. The Colonel insists on their loyalty to Russia as well. Tomax and Xamot dismiss his mercenaries, and tell him to scuttle his plans. Shtern tells them not to underestimate his agents, and that it isn’t their training, but what is in their hearts that will make them strong and dangerous.
In the present, Shtern and Daina discuss the events that led to taking the Cobra base they are currently occupying. Their prisoner, Sebastian Bludd, kept in a tiny cage just big enough to stand in, asks if he can use the bathroom in exchange for the information he gave them that led to the occupation, but Shtern refuses, telling Bludd he prefers him totally at his mercy.
In the ventilation system above them, Ronin is watching, having killed several guards. She relays information back to Flint’s Joe team. Flint is going over the phone call Tomax had made to Colonel Shtern, finding nothing that Tomax didn’t already admit to. Clockspring interrupts, telling them that Ronin is reporting in. Flint says to pull out, but Ronin informs them there is a vehicle hangar she hasn’t
investigated yet. Flint tells her to let it go. Ronin begins leaving the facility, but decides to check out the hangar anyway, discovering an impressive weapons system. As she relays the information back to Clockspring, she is attacked by Oktober Guard operative Gorky. Ronin is surprised he was able to sneak up on her, and that he found the bodies she had hidden, but Gorky is unimpressed by her skill as they fight. He beats her handily, disarming her, and plunging his own sword through her. He takes her back to Shtern.
As Flint declares the uploads of the weapon system Ronin sent to be trouble, Clockspring notes that the ninja’s vital signs have dropped dramatically. Struggling for consciousness, she manages to send the message “3894-B”, which Flint recognizes as a distress call and assembles the team, ready to leave for Russia.
Summary by Patrick Duke