Ross Andru takes over the reigns of editorship from this issue onwards.
Ross Andru takes over the reigns of editorship from this issue onwards.
People standing in a New York hotel lobby are stunned when they see an Amazon warrior, decked out in a red blue and gold uniform, make a dramatic entrance. But although they are used to seeing Wonder Woman, they are not prepared for the woman who addresses them now – Orana!
She asks the shocked receptionist for a room and he stammers that they do not often have guests of Wonder Woman’s notoriety. Another man steps forward though holding a newspaper and says that she is not Wonder Woman. He points to a photo showing Diana in the Wonder Woman costume. Seeing that the female in front of him bears no resemblance to the photo, the receptionist rebukes Orana for daring to pose as Wonder Woman!
Enraged, she punches the counter, destroying it. She yells at him that she is Wonder Woman. As she storms out, she looks back over her shoulder and tells them that she is the new Wonder Woman and that Man’s World had better learn that fact quickly!
Outside, she tosses her lasso into the air and hooks onto her waiting invisible jet.As she climbs on board, she wonders to herself how Diana had survived all these years in “this madhouse”. She has been here almost two weeks and only her Amazon endurance has kept her from starving. Although she has all the trappings – the plane, the lasso, the tiara and the uniform, the men of this world still stubbornly refuse to accept her as the new Wonder Woman. They seem to want something more but she does not know what. She ponders what the secret of the Princess’ success has been?
Back on Paradise Island, Diana breaks into the Amazon Launch Bay and boards one of the spacecraft. She knows she is defying the gods by leaving the Island but feels that she must in order to live her own life again. Sirens begin to blare as her intrusion is detected but as the guards rush in, Diana blasts off.
Immediately the Amazon defenses are alerted and they open fire on the fleeing craft, unaware of who they are actually firing at. Diana uses all her training to dodge their weapons though.
Queen Hippolyta enters the command centre and is informed that one of the rockets has been stolen is trying to leave their airspace. Hippolyta thinks to herself that whoever it is has been able to out maneuver everything thrown at her and only one Amazon she knows could be capable of that – Diana! She quickly orders them to cease firing.
Up in the atmosphere, Diana relaxes as she realises she is now out of range and wonders to herself why the defenses had suddenly stopped?
She is soon flying over New York using stealth technology to hide her craft from radar and leaping out, glides down through her apartment skylight. She changes into civilian clothing, having to do it the slow way without the use of her lasso!
As she checks herself in the mirror she hears a commotion outside and steeping out into the hall, sees a policeman together with a group of people.
One of the men introduces himself as Conrad Starfield from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and tells her that she has been accepted as a trainee astronaut. He had come to see her at her apartment on several occaisions but had never received a reply. When neighbours reported that she had been missing for over a week the police had been called.
She explains that she had had some personal business to attend to but that she was now ready and anxious to begin her training. She and Conrad then set off together to attend a hastily arranged news conference.
A few hours later across town, police pursue a speeding car along the Roosevelt Parkway. As they close in they suddenly find Wonder Woman dropping down from the sky right in front of their police car and they have to perform an emergency stop. They demand to know why she stopped them chasing the international criminal Warhead who was even now getting away. She looks at them puzzled and tells them that she thought they had been the threat.
Quickly realising her mistake, she tells them that she will catch him and races off up the freeway, jumping her way through the traffic. As she draws near her quarry she makes one more jump and crashes down onto the back of the vehicle, mistakenly thinking that its power source will be located here… The car smashes into pieces instead sending her flying into the air. As she recovers her senses she finds to her dismay that Warhead has already run away, leaving the police staring at Orana’s failed attempt to catch him in amazement.
One of the officers shows his colleague a newspaper headline proclaiming the arrival of this new Wonder Woman and he tells the other policeman that she is a rookie compared to the old one. As Orana looks over his shoulder at the article, she sees another report further down the page showing a photograph of Diana, with the headline ‘Former UN Employee named as newest NASA Astronaut’. Furious that the Princess has obviously defied the gods and left Paradise Island, she races off.
Hours later, Conrad Starfield walks Diana to her apartment door for the last time, telling her that tomorrow she is heading for Houston, Texas. Bidding him good-bye, she enters her room and hears a sound outside her skylight. Suddenly it shatters as Orana leaps through it, grabbing a surprised Diana by her arms. The new Wonder Woman demands to know what the ‘traitor to the Amazons has to say for herself?’.
Orana spits that Diana has defied the gods by leaving Paradise Island and that only Wonder Woman has the right to leave – that being her. Diana tells Orana to keep her hands off and that while she may have won the right to be Wonder Woman, the life of Diana Prince is hers. She tells Orana that she will stay out of her way and let the new Wonder Woman grab the glory she so obviously craves. Orana can go on making the mistakes that even the newspapers have begun to comment on but there is no point in her running to Diana for help. She is now just Diana Prince, Astronaut.
Orana arrogantly replies that she has not come to Diana for help and that she is perfectly capable of handling this criminal the police called ‘Warhead’. Diana instantly recognises the name…
Meanwhile across town Warhead arrives at a deserted warehouse and is met by another man. He is led inside to be greeted by Mr. Four, his partner in crime. They walk over to a console where a technician is monitoring the progress of an Altitude Bomb in orbit around the Earth…
Back at Diana’s apartment, Orana asks Diana how she seems to know about Warhead. Diana replies that when she worked at the UN there was a file in him. He is a munitions expert who sells his deadly discoveries to whichever nation bids the most. But before he makes a sale he always runs a test. Orana asks Diana to go on and the Amazon Princess explains that he murders people by the hundreds in order to impress his buyers. The last report she had read talked of a short range neutron bomb. It can kill hundreds without destroying any buildings!
Orana rebukes Diana for trying to frighten her with such monstrous fairytales and turns to leave. Diana calls after her that she is telling the truth and that Man is often monstrous and inhuman towards his own kind. Warhead usually attacks the largest group of people he can find, so Orana should try and locate the largest crowd in New York because that is where he will probably strike. Orana ignores her and leaps on board her waiting plane, furious with Diana and vowing that she will pay for breaking the law of the gods as well as trying to make her look a fool!
As Diana watches her leave, she thinks to herself that if Orana does not believe her then there will be no-one to stop Warhead. She cannot contact the Justice League because her transmitter is in the tiara. What should she do?
On Paradise Island, a guard reports to the Queen that all of the Amazons have been accounted for except for Orana and Princess Diana. She asks Hippolyta whether they should alert Wonder Woman to bring back the fugitive but the queen turns on her and reminds her that she is speaking about the Princess and that she is never to be considered a fugitive. She orders the sergeant to take no action.
Realising her tone, she apologises to the Amazon soldier and then instructs her to prepare the Island’s defenses for a devastating attack – from the Gods themselves!
In New York meanwhile, Diana is scanning a calendar and sees that the greatest concentration of people that day will be at the Fifth Avenue Columbus Day Parade. She picks up a pair of binoculars and looks out across the city, knowing that this is where Warhead will strike. If only Orana had believed her. But just then to her joy she sees Orana in her jet high above the parade.
Inside the invisible jet, the new Wonder Woman thinks to herself that she has to acknowledge that the Princess has had more experience in Man’s World. Even though she may be breaking the ancient laws, she has to honour Diana’s judgement and therefore check out the parade. Suddenly she is confronted by a helicopter flying towards her.
Back in her apartment, Diana watches it approach Orana and sees in its cockpit Warhead himself. Mr. Four is sitting next to him with a machine gun. He orders Mr. Four to open fire on Wonder Woman, who leaps out onto the wing to play bullets and bracelets with the oncoming barrage.
Warhead tells Mr. Four to keep her busy while the bomb thunders down towards its target. Diana sees that Orana is too occupied defending herself to see the approaching missile and decides to act. She leaps across the rooftops towards the scene of the action, thinking to herself that she cannot let the bomb fall even though it will make Orana hate Diana even more.
After six incredible leaps she arrives at the robot plane and catches the missile. She orders Orana to keep them covered while she instructs the plane to climb higher. Orana tells Diana not to issue orders just as Warhead takes over the firing. He cuts the distracted Orana down with his machine gun, killing her.
In her rage, anger and total frustration, Diana hurls the missile at the hovering helicopter. It detonates, destroying the craft and its occupants but not endangering the people below.
Hours later on Paradise Island, the robot plane touches down. The queen and the other Amazons watch a sorrowful Diana climb out with the lifeless body of Orana in her arms. Once they lay the valiant Amazon to rest, Hippolyta steps forward with the garb of Wonder Woman in her hands and places the golden tiara on Diana’s head.
The crowd of Amazons proclaim as one “Hola, Princess Diana! Hola, Wonder Woman!”