No Quarter—No Sanctuary!

Issue #85, April '94: William Messner-Loebs—writer; Mike Deodato—penciller; Terry Beatty & Kevin Conrad—inkers; Paul Kupperberg—editor. "Black, Blind Destiny."

Issue #86, May '94: William Messner-Loebs—writer; Jeff Parker—penciller; Aaron McClellan & Kevin Conrad—inkers; Paul Kupperberg—editor. "Turning Point."

Issue #87, June '94: William Messner-Loebs—writer; Jeff Parker—penciller; Aaron McClellan—inker; Paul Kupperberg—editor. "No Quarter, No Sanctuary."

cover of issue 85

A winged demon and Diana crash through the windows of the hospital where Diana has been waiting for Donna Milton to come out of surgery. Diana notes that her flying ability has been slowly returning, and manages to stop their fall by angling and smashing back inside the building. She uses a cafeteria chair to attack the demon, which she realizes it is some sort of transformed human. As opposed to an attitude she would have in later eras, she is not adverse at all to killing a human, and sets about to strangle this one. As it dies, it bursts into flame and disintegrates.

Meanwhile, the White Magician and Paulie Longo are interviewing candidates to be magically remade into super thugs. Longo had been Antonio Sazia's personal leg-breaker, but the Magician has chosen him to be Sazia's successor.

This first applicant is transformed into a metallic robot cat demon named Dreadnought. The Magician gives him an address where Dreadnought will find his targets.

After the demon leaves, the Magician wonders if Sazia's wife will pose any problems, since she witnessed Sazia's murder. Longo has sent his men after Julie Sazia to convince her that she should take the next train to Pittsburgh and keep on going. We see a lost-looking Julie sitting next to her luggage.

Back at Diana's boarding house, Camille Sly watches her old silent movies. During that era she had been called “Doug Fairbanks in petticoats.” The same year John Barrymore made Don Juan, she made The Dueling Countess. After sound came in, her career had gone south.

As she watches, she hears the front door being burst open. It is two ultra-muscled, armored constructs, one of whom has named himself "Backstabber." Camille faces them with a sword and broom. "I'm no lady," she tells them as she sets on them in furious motion. She declares that everyone in the house is under her protection, despite their plans to kidnap some “broads.” The thugs find themselves outmatched by Camille's expertise with her sword and athletic ability. She slices and dices 'em. In fact, she kills them both. “Nobody hurts my girls, you wolfheads.”

At Precinct 15, another monstrous man is breaking through the very walls of the building. He has come for Inspector Indelicato.

Back at the hospital, the doctor—the same one we've seen since, oh, issue #75; does she have a name?—patches up Diana and comments on the general destruction that follows the heroine. Diana is confused when the doctor says that Donna Milton had only been shot once. Diana was sure she had been shot several times, and by a gun designed to kill meta-humans.

They check on the newborn baby, who has not yet received her name. The doctor tells Diana that the hospital routinely tests for the meta-human gene whenever new patients come in. (Probably to run up their profit margin, don't you know.) Neither Donna Milton nor her daughter have tested positive; they are both human. Still, something about all this bothers Diana.

Now we see Micah Rains being threatened by yet another hoodlum, Salvo. Micah thinks it's because he might owe him money. Juice, the owner of the bar in which Micah has his office, manages to blast Salvo to smithereens, which turns him into flames and makes him disintegrate.

The final scene of this chapter begins as Quinn Thomas arrives home to the Kapatellises' to find the door pulled off its hinges and the interior of the home in shambles. Julia K. lies bleeding and badly injured, but is able to report that someone has taken the Vanessa. She had been left with a message that Diana has to do whatever the kidnappers say.

Letters: Trina Robbins, Nancy Champion, Matt Levin.

Once again Diana stands by the bedside of an injured friend in the hospital. Julia Kapatelis has massive internal injuries, every bone in her body is broken, and her spinal cord is ruptured. The doctors don't know why she's still alive, but she is able to tell Diana that Dreadnought attacked her and, even though she shot him several times, he beat her up and then waited for Nessie to come home. Julia was too injured to shout a warning. Julia instructs Diana that if they want ransom, not to pay it. She tells Diana just to find Nessie, and Diana promises.

Quinn arrives and for some reason berates Diana for her treatment of Julia. Quinn informs her that Julia has told her that Julia's mother was kidnapped by thugs when she was a girl. They tortured her to death, while they extorted money from Julia's father. This is why Julia says no ransom.

On the way out of the hospital Diane muses that all her friends have been attacked within this past day. Quinn asks if that includes Etta Candy, whom she describes as a pilot. Diana replies that no: Etta and Steve have been gone for “months” (since the birth of the baby who'd been newly-born just last issue/yesterday. Ah, time passage in a WML story!) but are expected back that morning. In shock at that realization, she races off into the sky, any worries about her flight ability completely forgotten. She's hauling!

Steve and Etta arrive back at Trevor Field in a biplane of all things, having finished some survey work. Etta feels guilty about not checking in with Diana yet, so Steve says that she can send them a “Sorry I rescued and ran” card. But as they enter their hangar they are attacked by a giant octopus monster. Steve shoots it and Etta hacks it with a fire ax, but they cannot inflict any injury.

Enter Diana, who strangles the beast with her lasso. It erupts into flames and Diana complains that all these demons are doing so and not leaving anything for her to question. But she turns and finds that, quite without logical explanation, the guy who had been in the heart of the demon is still very much alive and surrenders.

The guy spills his guts to the police, explaining the whole turning-people-into-demons set up. Inspector Indelicato says the public isn't ready to see the White Magician as a villain, so they'll need more evidence before they can bring him in. He also notes that Diana isn't wearing her tiara (she hasn't had it since she fell into the tunnels under Boston), and she says, “It is lost, Inspector… Like everything else.”

Paulie Longo and two of his gigantic bodyguards gloat at their plan to make Wonder Woman leave Boston. She is scared, she will come to him and try to bargain and maybe beg. He will lord it over her and because he has Nessie he holds all the cards.

Indeed Diana does come in and demand that he turn Vanessa over and never attack her friends again. Longo counters that she will leave Boston for two years, and at the end of that time Vanessa might make a reappearance if he feels like it. “Otherwise, really bad things could happen to her. Really bad. I mean she's a good-looking kid and the guys are only human…”

Of course this infuriates Diana. Four guards hold her back from striking Longo, who taunts her by saying that all she ever does is talk, never hitting somebody unless it's self-defense. He notes that his bodyguards are all strong as 20 men, and she's too civilized to sink to his level.

Diana throws off the bodyguards, tossing them like rag dolls, even tossing one through a window into a swimming pool. She throws one through the roof, then comes after Longo, who hides underneath an extremely sturdy mahogany desk which he has prized because it belonged to Sazia. She destroys the desk with him under it, crushing his legs.

Diana: “In the last few months I has lost nearly everything that matters to me. And now you threaten what little remains… Do not count overmuch upon my goodwill. Return Vanessa Katpatelis, unharmed, in an hour, or I will DESTROY you. Be afraid."

Letters: Thomas DeWitt, Bryan English, Robert J. Hemedes, Donna Mills, Frank Bonilla, Josy Marchese.

Wonder Woman crouches in front of an American flag

During this crisis, Diana takes three hours to scour the bottom of those watery caves, searching for her tiara. “There is a part of her that is connected to the God-stuff she was given.” With her tiara finally found, she begins the next phase of her search for Vanessa.

A warehouse holds mob-related explosives, guarded by men with guns and two monster-men. They relate that Diana has already hit three shipments today, all with “hotshot super-guards too.” Diana bursts through the wall and dispatches a big stony guy rather easily, performs bullets and bracelets against a machine gun, and takes out a flaming plastic crook, who falls into the ammunition and sets the warehouse of fire.

“Tell your masters this… there is no place to hide while they hold Nessie Kapatelis. No place.” She then uses her tiara to scratch “No quarter, no sanctuary” into what remains of the walls of the warehouse.

Twenty minutes later Diana decimates a semi loaded with illegal cigarettes. Meanwhile, Quinn and... Is that Brian Elliot from issue #74? Darn, I wish WML would introduce his characters—are busy hacking mob-run banks' computer accounts. They aren't sure that they're targeting the correct ones, but Quinn says, “By the time we're done, no one in Boston may have any savings left!”

Diana busts a pimp by flying him into the air and dropping him several times until he thinks it might be a good plan to retire. She distributes the money she finds on him to his prostitutes and advises them to quit the business.

Inspector Indelicato confers with the CEO of Mega-Tech, who is worried that Wonder Woman might attack them. Indelicato asks if this is proof that the corporation is mob-connected, but they are interrupted by a secretary who gets them to view a shattered wall of windows on the building and their entry, on which Diana has graffitied the words: “no quarter–no sanctuary.”

The police commissioner is angry at Indelicato. “You're supposed to be holding her leash.”

Indelicato offers his badge. “It seems to me that what everyone is saying is that organized crime is such an important part of our society… that any real attack on the mob is an attack on society as a whole. That we cops are just here to keep the gears from getting gummed up.”

The Commissioner replies, “You didn't hear that from me.”

Indelicato meets with Diana and we discover she's been doing this for three days now. Diana says that if she stops, “Nessie dies. And after her, the rest of my friends, one at a time. Without meaning to, I have given these men the impression I am weak. I must correct that impression.” This argument is a very logical one. Keep it in mind as you read the next story arc. Anyway, Indelicato gives Diana a list of all remaining mob fronts that the police know about in the city. “If you're going to do this, you might as well be accurate.”

Paulie Longo is one day out of the hospital after having his legs broken. He meets with representatives from the Triad, the Yakusa, the Posses, the Belgian, and others. “In this room we got enough firepower t'burn Boston to the ground. It's time t'use it!” He bellows that they will kill all Diana's friends and pile their bodies at her door until she stops hassling them. No one replies except for a new voice at the door.

Julie Sazia enters and tells the group and Paulie how appallingly stupid he is. If this plan goes through, the US Army will arrive, then the Marines and the Air Force. If they do manage to kill Wonder Woman, the Justice League will come. She notes that Superman once had a thing for Wonder Woman, and he will do more than just break Paulie's legs.

Sazia notes that their organizations do business by keeping quiet; if they become visible, they will be dead. The others in the room now look to her for leadership. She tells them the answer is to give Wonder Woman the White Magician. “He's not exactly a prime ally. Nothing he told you has worked out. And if they fight, maybe they'll kill each other off!”

In return for setting this up with Wonder Woman, she demands her house back as well as her people. She also wants the private accounts of her husband returned. “That's all… for now.”

Julie Sazia meets with Diana. She will give Diana information on where Vanessa is if Diana kills the white magician. After a moment, Diana accepts the paper that holds the transportation spell.

There's a nice sequence here: Diana says, “I know spells. I know spells that can enchant… I know spells that can force the gods to speak… and can blind the eyes or bind reason… But do I know of any magick that can undo the mischief of today… or show me what I've done to bring my friends to such terrible danger…?”

Diana goes into that trance that puts her into a dreamlike dimension. She materializes in an idealized version of Randolph's mansion. She knows his magic is strongest in the library, and here things get a little vague. She talks about having materialized there in mortal form (they're in reality now?) and sure enough, there is a giant glass egg in the library. Vanessa sleeps suspended inside. But a skeleton dressed as the White Magician is sprawled next to the egg. Someone has killed him before she arrive?

The narration tells us: “Etta couldn't imagine why [Diana] should search so hard for such a symbolic bauble [as the tiara]…. That same hand that forged her unbreakable lasso had made this. And it had many uses.”

Diana takes her magical tiara and cuts through the magical egg to draw Vanessa out into her arms.

Vanessa: “Hullo, Diana. I knew you'd find me.”

“Time to go home, Nessie.”

Letters: Melissa Page, Derek Johns, Joanna Sandsmark, BlackJack, Cesar Arauz-Cuadra, Anne Rindeunas.

Notes: Definitely Diana in warrior form here, but she doesn't go completely nuts in doing so. She means business! And she's extremely efficient at getting her job done. Though WML has her on a lower power level than the Perez era, she shows her stuff brilliantly. She's truly a Wonder Woman!

Also, it's good to see her current supporting cast utilized so well. Now, if only WML would remind us of who is who. The ever-changing artwork certainly doesn't help the situation there.

previous issueNavigation back to Synopses Table of Contentsnext issue