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You are in: Galleries > Wonder Woman > Volume One > Issues 301-329 > Issue 313

Issue Number: 313
Published: March 1984
Cover Artists: Ed Hannigan, Dick Giordano
Writer: Dan Mishkin
Pencils: Don Heck
Inker: Don Heck
Letterer: Phil Felix
Colourist: Nansi Hoolahan
Editor: Alan Gold
Story Title: The Animal Within!
 
Main Characters (in order of appearance):
Wonder Woman
(Diana Prince)
Hippolyta Sofia Constantinas
Circe Major Keith Griggs Etta Candy
Major Steve Trevor General Darnell Paula
The Gremlin    

Cover of Issue 313

Comments:

None.

Synopsis:

On the beautiful Paradise Island, home of the Amazons, their Queen surrounded by some of her subjects is conversing with her daughter via the telepathic radio on board her robot plane.

Hippolyta is surprised to hear from Diana that Steve Trevor had not wanted to be told who her secret identity was. The Amazon Princess continues that it seems he wants to keep her on a pedestal, and while that had troubled her at first she thinks she can understand why now. If she had told him that she was really Diana Prince, would that be the truth or just one version of it? "Wonder Woman" is his reality and that is how things will stay.

Hippolyta replies that Steve is most perceptive as he rightly remembers that he is only a mortal and what mortal is worthy to share such secrets? Listening to this, Sofia wonders to herself indignantly who Hippolyta shares her secrets with? Obviously not her daughter that is for sure, because she has kept Wonder Woman's past hidden from her daughter's memory for all this time.

Meanwhile, Diana continues her conversation with her mother, replying that it is not Steve's worthiness at issue here and that she thought her mother had accepted that fact. Suddenly, her plane alerts her to the fact that there is a Gyroscopic malfunction and her craft begins to tip onto its side! Wonder Woman cannot believe that she is losing control of her robot plane yet again as she struggles to bring it back under her command. A worried Hippolyta asks her daughter what is happening and Diana replies that the plane has previously been tampered with by Gremlins. The craft begins to spin downwards and she concentrates on pulling out of the dive. At the last moment she levels off but her relief is short lived when she realises that she is heading directly towards the Lincoln Memorial! Using every once of her might, she loosens the jet's controls and at the last moment pulls up and over the Memorial!

Elsewhere, far from the U.S. Capital on a small uncharted Caribbean Island, Keith Griggs has been overpowered and brought before Circe. Surrounded by wild animals, he tells the witch that she will get nothing from him accept name, rank and serial number. She replies that military men are so boring and predictable. She then steps forward and places a finger on his chin. Unleashing her magic, she smiles as Griggs begins to transform before her eyes. As he tries to fight off the spell's effects, she tells him that the animal within him longs to show itself and be set free! With a final cry of agony, Griggs is surrounded by light and mutates into a Ram Beast. Circe tells her new slave that he must obey her every command for now he belongs to her! A nearby Jaguar gives a growl and she strokes it on the head, telling it that he should not be jealous of Griggs. He is her one and only love and together they shall make the world their playground!

Back in Washington DC inside the Pentagon, Diana Prince enters her office and is greeted by Etta. But before she has time for pleasantries with her roommate, Etta tells her to step inside Darnell's office as she is needed in there urgently. As they step inside they find Steve bluntly telling the General that he should never have sent Griggs to the Caribbean in the first place. Seeing that the arguement is about to escalate, Diana steps between them and says that they are yelling so loud they can probably be heard in the Kremlin! She then asks them to tell her what all this is about?

Darnell asks Diana and Steve to take a seat...Steve apologises and says that it is simply a small difference of opinion between him and the General. She replies that it had sounded anything but small so why not tell her the reason. Steve proceeds to explain that General Darnell had sent Keith Griggs on a solo mission, even though he has only been part of the team a few months. Now, it appears that the inexperienced Griggs is in deep trouble, which is what Steve knew would happen. Listening to this, Etta thinks to herself that Steve sounds just a little jealous because someone else is becoming the General's favourite.

The General himself then speaks, ordering Steve and Diana to sit down. He then goes on to tell Diana that Griggs was at an Arms Reduction Conference in the Caribbean but that was only a cover. In fact, he was investigating reports of Arms smuggling by American Intelligence Officers. Diana then asks Steve that she had thought that he was working on that particular matter? Steve responds that he had thought so too. Darnell continues that as Steve had been hospitalised after the Abernathy affair so he had decided to send Griggs in place of Trevor. But as Keith neared the island where the illicit activity was thought to be taking place, his plane disappeared. Diana replies that they need to get down there right away in that case. Steve agrees and tells her she will be going there as soon as possible...

Far away in the warm waters that lap gently on the shores of Paradise Island, Sofia swims towards the nearby Science Island. She is sure no one has seen her leave because she does not want to explain what she is doing with the stolen memory tape. As she makes her way inside the laboratory she peers around for the memory machine. Spying the large chair with switches and wires surrounding it, she rushes forward and making a final check to ensure she is alone, she sits in the chair and loads the tape.

Suddenly a Gorilla swings from nowhere and hits Wonder Woman feet first, sending her tumbling to the ground.As the machine hums into life Paula, the chief Amazon scientist who is in one of the other rooms, hears the sound and races to the chamber. As Sofia's brain is filled with the images of Diana's stolen memories, Paula enters and sees Sofia is connected to the machine. She demands an explanation as to why Sofia is sneaking around in here and Sofia replies that she meant no harm and was simply curious. She adds that it will not happen again and Paula tells her that indeed it will not once the queen hears about this! 

But as she turns to switch the device off she is jumped upon from behind by Sofia, who rages that she must also be a part of this conspiracy! However, the Amazon scientist easily throws the girl over her shoulder and sends her crashing to the floor. She tells the dazed Sofia that she does not know what the girl is talking about, but what she does know is that it was a mistake for the Princess to bring her here for Amazon training! Sofia is not yet finished though and sees her chance to catch the Amazon unawares, delivering first a powerful kick to the head followed by a knock out blow to her chin!

She looks down at the unconscious Paula who is now sprawled on the floor and thinks to herself that the Amazon scientist is too trusting. She muses that she should perhaps admire Paula for that quality and maybe someday she will learn to...

Meanwhile, unaware of events at her Amazon home that will soon alter her life, Diana pilots an Air Force jet towards the spot where Griggs was last heard from. She hopes he has survived whatever happened to him and prays she is not too late. Suddenly though, she is buzzed by some sort of winged dinosaurs! She knows that such creatures should not exist and yet they are real enough! She tries an evasive manoeuvre to shake one of them from her tail but the creature stays with her and clamps onto the fuselage. Inside her head she hears a voice say "You are doomed Wonder Woman...your hour is at hand!". She recognises the voice as Circe's and realises that these creatures must have been conjured up by her magic. Unfortunately, she muses, it does not help her to free her plane from the clutches of the dinosaur! She decides that the only way is to sacrifice the jet and hope the air force does not dock her pay!

She punches a hole in the canopy and dives out of the plane, transforming into Wonder Woman as she falls. She glides gently down towards earth on air currents, hoping that if she flies low over the trees the creature might not be able to follow her. But suddenly a Gorilla swings from nowhere and hits her feet first, sending her tumbling to the ground. She swiftly gets to her feet and finds herself face to face with Circe and what looks like a man with the head and torso of a Tiger! The witch tells Wonder  Woman that twice before she has tried to stop the Amazon Princess from fulfilling the awful prophecy. But this time she will succeed! With a wave of her hand she transforms the man beast fully into a Tiger, which subsequently leaps at a surprised Wonder Woman! As she raises her arms in self defence the Amazon wonders what this Prophecy is that requires her death?

As Wonder Woman battles for her life in the Caribbean, a discussion is taking place in General Darnell's office. He is explaining to Steve that the Congressional hearings currently taking place are very important, because the committee has only to say the word and their funding could be gone by tomorrow! Steve asks him whether he thinks that is likely to happen? Darnell replies that he is not sure what to think and that is why he is spending so much time up on Capitol Hill. With that he dons his jacket and heads towards the door, telling Steve that he is leaving him in charge of the office while he is out.

Just then Steve hears a tap at the window and turns in surprise to see the little Gremlin smiling back at him! He tries to shoo the creature away before Darnell sees him. The General sees Steve by the window peering out and asks sarcastically whether the view is really that fascinating? Steve distractedly says " Yes Sir...I mean, uh, no Sir! Er...". The General then asks Steve what the matter is? Trevor looks outside again and sees that the Gremlin has gone. He replies that he thought he had seen something outside and assumed the general had seen it to? He is thankful to hear the General respond that he had seen nothing...

To Wonder Woman's horror she finds that the lightning bolt has fused her bracelets together!Back on Circe’s Island, Wonder Woman wrestles with the deadly Tiger. She knows that the creature is really a man...a puppet of Circe. Therefore she decides she must keep those claws away from her until she can disable him without harming him too badly. With that she kicks the big cat into a tree, knocking it out. She turns to face Circe who congratulates her. But she adds that she has more pets than even Wonder Woman could possibly defeat! The Amazon Princess asks why Circe thinks she can treat human beings as mere pets? The witch responds that she could call them slaves but that would overlook their devolution. Besides, even those she gives back their human form remain faithful to her. They act as her eyes and ears in the outside world.

Suddenly Wonder Woman hears a hiss from behind her and turns in surprise to see a snake man preparing to strike. She raises her bracelets and the creature bites metal instead of flesh. The creature staggers away, finding the bracelets an unappetising meal! Annoyed, Circe declares that she will not let the Amazon cause her downfall as the oracle has foretold. Raising her hand once again she summons a Rhinoceros which proceeds to charge at Wonder Woman. She swiftly unhooks her lasso and races around the confused beast until it is completely ensnared in the golden rope.

Once more Wonder Woman turns to face Circe, intent on dealing with the witch once and for all. But Circe has other ideas and says that other forces shall challenge the Amazon Princess today. With that she summons a lightning storm and a bolt zaps down towards Wonder Woman. She in turn raises her bracelets and absorbs the electrical charge, telling Circe that it will take more than thunder and lightning to stop her.

But to her horror she finds that the lightning bolt has fused her bracelets together! What is more, she cannot seem to break them apart! Her hands helplessly bound, her Amazon strength leaves her. But she cannot understand how this has happened because her powers can only be removed when a Man binds her bracelets?

A gloating Circe says that her ally's aid has sealed the Amazon's fate. And now her pet will complete the task. Wonder Woman watches a man with the head and torso of a Ram appear by Circe's side. She recognises the strips of uniform still draped around the beast's body and realises what fate has befallen Keith Griggs. As the raging beast charges towards her, she knows that he is completely under Circe's power and what is more, is intent on killing her. And with her hands bound and her powers gone, there is nothing Wonder Woman can do to stop him!

To be continued...

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