Rom Spaceknight #46: The end of an era. But you don't really feel it. Not until the next one begins.
It's more obviously the end of the Rom's European Vacation story arc, following Wraith covens from Maine, across the Atlantic, into Wales and then the USSR.
As we left things, Rom and a newly knighted Brandy Clark/Starshine agreed to help the misshapen Gremlin attack an icebound Dire Wraith base, while the Wraith-controlled KGB sent the Soviet Super-Soldiers to stop them. According to Marvel Rules of Combat, they fight, realize they're on the same side, and turn to fight the real enemy.
Which in this case is Husky Hellhounds. They Awrooooooo when they attack.
And yiiiipppe when they retreat.
Here, Brandy gets over her squeamishness about cruelty to animals. The Soviet Super-Soldiers do too, though one supposes the USSR doesn't really have the concept of animal rights, not when human rights weren't even a high priority. One thing at a time. They do have a sense of poetry though.
Especially Major Ursa.
They inspire Rom to his own epigram:
And where inspiration strikes, so does the Nullifyer.
Once defeated, the heroes infiltrate the base where they must contend with Wraith scientists and witches and the zombie prehistoric mammals they've raised from an icy tomb!
Don't ask me what that prehistoric zoo was doing buried all in the same spot in the north of the USSR, but I'm not complaining. How could I ever complain about an UNDEAD MAMMOTH CRAWLING OUT OF AN ICY PIT??? Answer: I could not.
The smallest of them, the Gremlin, saves the day by deactivating the Wraith machinery animating the beasts and keeping the aliens behind a forcefield - pardon, a "securasphere" (this is why they deserve to be exterminated). Before they can cast another spell...
...they're all turned into piles of ash. The Super-Soldier adopt the base as their own and vow to take on the State's corruption. Rom and Starshine fly off to new adventures.
Come back next week for a flashback to the Spaceknights' glory days: Rom Annual #2!