The story opens with a woman and a man dressed in balaclava’s – by the name of Geof and Moot – waiting in hiding upon the rooftop of Steve Trevor’s Air school hangar…
Meanwhile at the Kapatelis residence, Diana is bringing Julia and Vanessa up to speed on her adventures during her absence, including how Asquith Randolph had deliberately sabotaged her space rescue mission and during her enforced exile had reestablished himself as the city’s hero, the White Magician.
Vanessa adds that he is out and about catching bank robbers and such like and the TV have even been doing specials about him. Diana says that she is still unsure what his motives are and when the young girl asks if she intends to confront him, Diana replies that it would do not good and she will instead bide her time and wait for him to show his hand.
Just then a woman steps down the stairs and seeing she has interrupted a conversation, apologises to the other women. Julia replies that it is alright and introduces the woman as Quinn Thomas. Diana shakes her hand and she tells the Amazon it is an honour to meet her at last as Julia has never stopped talking about her ever since she had rented the room. Diana turns to Julia in surprise on hearing that her room was being rented out to someone else and a sheepish Julia responds that the Amazon Princess had been gone for such a long time. Diana smiles back that of course she should have rented and that the Amazon should never have said anything about it.
Quinn offers to vacate the room and look for digs elsewhere but Diana will have none of it. “It is time for me to have my own place.” she says, before adding that when one grows up it is time to leave the nest and for her, it is also time to leave her second mother. Julia takes her hand at the kind words offered as Quinn says that of course, she keeps forgetting Diana is an Amazon like in the comic book, with the “mental radio and purple healing ray”. Diana smiles back that it’s not exactly quite like that and in fact it is a long story. Julia suggests they get some popcorn while Diana begins to recount her culture’s history to Quinn…
“Well, my mother said it all began with tragedy.”. She continues to explain that throughout millennia women died before their time and Gaea, the Earth, gave their essences sanctuary in the Cave of the Souls. Meanwhile the Gods had swept all the demons and the cursed ones from the Earth and forced them back into the Pit of Tartarus, sealing them beneath the ground. On that spot a large island named Themyscira was formed out of earth, fire and wind. It was there that the thousands of female souls were released from the cave, clothed in flesh and given life. The Goddess Aphrodite appeared before them, telling them that the woman would remain immortal as long as they stayed on the island guarding it – and in the process create a civilization based on love and the teachings of the gods, rather then power and conquest. At that moment Diana’s mother, Hippolyta had stepped forward to directly address the powerful Goddess. She told the deity that the women were ignorant of the world since their passing long ago and could not build a civilization here without the knowledge of what had transpired before.
As she recounts the tale, Diana smiles, adding that she does not know how her mother had the courage to bargain with a Goddess but then Hippolyta had always managed to find courage aplenty. Her mother had suggested to Aphrodite that the woman were allowed to go out into the world for ten years so they could learn what they needed to know in order to return here and then build a civilization the likes of which the world has never known. And Aphrodite agreed!
The women were magically swept up and sent to every corner of civilization. Hippolyta was transported to Athens where for the next ten years she lived the life of a typical Athenian woman.
Quinn and Vanessa are eager to know if each of the women were living their own lives or telepathically sampling pre-existing lives? Diana replies that the legends are light on this level of detail but suffice to say it is clear what the effect was. Athens may have been the birth place of democracy and philosophy etc, but the good life was only enjoyed by the men. Women were always confined and isolated, either in the homes of their fathers or husbands. They never even visited other rooms in the household! And it was not a life of leisure for the women either. They would spin wool into thread fourteen hours a day. Most women were married at the age of 13 to men in their 40s. The only glory allowed for women was to die in childbirth, bearing a son. Many women died.
All the cit’s public buildings were decorated with friezes depicting the mythical Amazons being defeated by Herakles and his soldiers. Hippolyta came to hate those adornments.
Finally however, the long exile was ended and the women returned to Themyscira to find it changed. Aphrodite had created a temple and a library. The rest of the city the women would have to build for themselves. And Diana’s mother too, found herself a changed woman. She resolved to call herself Hippolyta. From her time in Athens she brought her love of democracy and free inquiry. The other women accepted her wisdom and elected her as their Queen. The women all brought back with them different experiences and skills. Tolerance and enjoyment of hard work. A love of leisure and the fruits of peace. The notion that fitness and health should be pursued by all citizens.
Meanwhile the Demigod Heracles, having completed his labours, was given yet another by Eurytheus. He was to capture the Girdle of Gaea which Hippolyta wore as a sign of her trust. The Amazon Queen always suspected that Ares, the War God who hated Aphrodite, had secretly suggested this task to Eurytheus.
And so Heracles arrived on the island. Why would anyone sale across the sea to pillage a peaceful people who had never done him wrong? Well, that was Heracles all over. All he could think of was the deal her had struck with Eurytheus and many men are after all threatened when strong women succeed. Still, whatever his true motives he greeted Hippolyta with honeyed words. He offered the Queen an alliance whereby his men would settle on the island to help protect it and the men in return would benefit from a portion of the abundant hunting and fishing available. But was there was an element of personal attraction between Queen and Demigod too?
Diana tells the others that her mother to this day denies it – yet Heracles was certainly an attractive man and a Demigod. Whatever the truth, they sealed their pact during a celebration that very night. But Hippolyta discovered too late that the wine she was drinking had been drugged by Heracles. She awoke to find her head pounding and her wrists manacled to a stone cell floor. In the distance she could hear the laughter of men and the shrieks of women as Heracles soldiers looted the city. With bitter tears in her eyes, Hippolyta prayed to Aphrodite, swearing an oath that if just one link of her chains would break, she would swear to never again let a man set foot on the island – and that the Amazons would rather die than be bound again. And her prayer was answered!
The Amazons the fell upon the half drunk men and savagery begat savagery. The men were defeated and and were sent back to the mainland in disgrace. Hippolyta decreed that henceforth all Amazons would wear the slave bracelets as a warning against male bondage and treachery.
Having recounted the story to the avid group Diana asks Julia what her mother had said regarding the Amazon Princess’ enforced absence. Julia replies that she is unsure, as the week after Diana disappeared the Themysciran Embassy closed and all communication channels were shut off. Julia had tried to contact her mother through the JLE but with no luck. Diana nods and replies that if she goes to the Meyer Agency or to the Bank in person then they should know how to contact Hippolyta.
As Quinn offers to give Diana a ride, the Amazon Princess ponders how strange it is that Hippolyta had not herself tried to contact Diana’s friends? As they make their way to the car, Quinn asks what happened next after Heracles’ defeat?
Diana responds that centuries passed and the Amazons remained hidden away on Themyscira, hidden under a permanent bank of clouds. But over time the seal that held the denizens of Tartarus began to weaken and hundreds of demons spilled out above ground hopelessly outnumbering the Amazons. And then a miracle happened. Out of the skies landed a plane flown by a female aviator named Diana Trevor. She had been flying supplies to the loyalists in Spain and had somehow ended up over Themyscira – perhaps influenced by magic from Aphrodite perhaps? Her cargo of 20th century weapons helped the Amazons to stand against the demon hordes which seemingly had no end.
In the end through Diana Trevor eventually realised there was only one way to end the battle and climbing onboard her plane, crashed the craft still loaded with explosives into the cave entrance, sealing it for good.
Diana and Quinn pull up outside the Meyer Agency building but as Diana gets out she is puzzled to see a notice on the door indicating that the firm is closed and has gone out of business. She gets back into the vehicle and tells Quinn she must get to the Bank as a matter or urgency because something is clearly wrong.
But at the bank Diana is dismayed to hear that the Themysciran account had been closed months ago and the Meyer account had been frozen around the same time. Nobody seems to know anything about why. Frustrated, Diana decides she needs to speak with Steve Trevor and once more Quinn is only too happy to oblige.
As they head towards the airfield Quinn suddenly makes the connection between the Diana Trevor of the story and Steve – and asks if the two of them have a special relationship. The Amazon Princess tells him how, after the victory, Hippolyta was granted the life of the child that Diana Trevor had been carrying when she had died. Under the Gods direction Hippolyta molded a clay figure on the beach and then with a prayer brought the child to life! Aphrodite promised the Queen that as compensation for the treachery of Heracles, the child would match his strength and more – and the other Gods also bestowed gifts of abilities upon the baby – who of course was Diana.
As the years passed and Diana grew up another miracle occurred. She rescued a pilot who had crash landed upon the island and once again a man set foot upon Themyscira. He was Colonel Steve Trevor, the son of the woman who had saved the Amazons and the entire world from hell. The Omens foretold that the Amazons had to send a representative into Man’s World to teach by example and thwart the plans of Ares. Hippolyta called for a contest to decide who should take on this daunting task of leaving the island forever – but deep down the queen knew who the representative should be.
Diana took part secretly wearing mask to disguise herself and of course won the contest. She then set forth into Man’s World wearing battle armour based on the Stars and Stripes flag that Diana Trevor had loved so much.
Quinn is amazed by the story and asks why Hippolyta had not managed to recognise her own daughter – even with a mask on? The Amazon replies that she is almost certain the queen knew full well it was Diana but that she could not disregard the fates.
As at last they reach the turning for the airfield entrance, not far away on the hanger roof Geof and Moot see the quarry – an old man carrying a briefcase – and leap down upon him. He cowers in fear, asking what they want of him and they reply that they know his case contains a number of rare stamps and that they are going to take them.
Etta is working in her office and hears the commotion outside. Seeing that a mugging is taking place she grabs her gun from the drawer and races outside to confront the two thugs. But Geof sees her and kicks her to the floor, sending the gun flying. As Moot then prepares to pound the helpless Etta a golden lasso snakes down from the sky and loops around him. As Geof draws a knife Wonder Woman warns Etta to watch her back.
She then touches down but is puzzled why the lasso seems to be having no effect on Moot as he lunges at her, grabbing her in a bear hug. Wonder Woman is surprised just how strong he is and surmises that he must be a robot. She finally manages to smash off his head sending it bouncing across the tarmac. As Geof continues to grapple with Etta she yells at Wonder Woman that even without his head she can still control Moot’s body. But Etta uses the distraction to grab for the gun and presses it against a surprised Geof, who is forced to surrender.
Once Geof has been bound with the lasso and Moot is given back his head, Etta warmly greets Wonder Woman and says she is glad to see the Princess has returned as they had all feared she was dead. Wonder Woman says that apparently Hippolyta has severed all links with the mainland and asks if Etta knows why?
Etta replies that of course when Steve had found out what had happened to Themyscira he had been very upset and had been flying out there regularly looking for some clue. A puzzled Diana asks what she is talking about and Etta suddenly realises to her horror that Wonder Woman does not know about the recent event.
A few minutes later after Etta has explained, Wonder Woman races out to sea and approaches the cloud bank that sits over Themyscira. Not far below she can see Steve’s place circling, searching.. and as she dives down through the cloud cover fearing the worst, she discovers to her horror that what Etta has said is true…
The Island of Themyscira has completely vanished!!!