Zarak wonders if he's done the right thing...
N.B. No credits are given at all.
(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
Lord Zarak keeps thinking he's made a mistake. The Nebulans around him won't say it but he knows. Then the Decepticons arrive outside the gates of his estate. Zarak studies them - over fifteen in total - with the most impressive being the leader, Scorponok.
Scorponok recalls how his enemy, Fortress Maximus, had disappeared and Scorponok located the Autobots' secret base. But the Autobots had gone. Then a signal from Zarak came through asking for Decepticon help to rid Nebulos of a group of Autobots - including Fortress Maximus! But since arriving Scorponok hasn't seen any sign of the Autobots and wonders if perhaps the Nebulans have dealt with them - but that's impossible isn't it? Upon meeting Nebulans for the first time he realises the absurdity of the suggestion.
Zarak starts to welcome the Decepticons but Scorponok asks him why he thinks they're here. Zarak recounts how the Autobots turned up uninvited on Nebulos sparking fear, even though they claimed to just want to live in peace. A visit by an emissary was a disaster causing chaos. Kord, head of the governing World Watchers, bowed to the majority viewpoint and reactivated ancient weapons to defend the capital city. The Nebulans attacked the Autobots and drove them deeper into the forest. Then a group of Autobots removed their heads from their shoulders, whilst others surrendered their weapons. Kord was taken in by this but Zarak realised that the Autobots were trying to corrupt the Nebulans and turn them to war. He talked to the Autobots and learned of the war on Cybertron, then contacted the Decepticons and asked them to come and help the cause.
Scorponok tries to comprehend this, finding the idea of the Autobots attacking innocent Nebulans preposterous, though can believe that Autobots like Fortress Maximus would resort to such a ridiculous idea as removing their heads. Zarak offers to discretely procure the heads and headless bodies whilst the Decepticons attack the Autobot encampment, but Scorponok will have none of this. The Decepticon commander declares that Fortress Maximus is the main threat and they will attack the Nebulan city.
Zarak is horrified at the potential casualties and protests. Scorponok picks him up and tightens the claws on him, but not fatally. He tells Zarak that the Decepticons are not here to help but to destroy the Autobots and seize the planet's resources. He stoops down and drops Zarak. The Nebulan shouts to his guards but the Decepticons raise their weapons. Scorponok announces he will deal with the Autobots and then come back for Zarak. Zarak says out loud "You've made a mistake."
- Skullcruncher is spelled "Skullcrusher". Athough...
- ...in the first illustration showing Zarak facing several Decepticons, Skullcruncher is present in both robot and crocodile modes. So maybe he has a twin brother?
- Scorponok is referred to as "almost unoticeably flexing those enormous cruel claw hands". It should be "unnoticeably".
- The flashback illustration of Fortress Maximus removing his head depicts the head and body of Cerebros. But then the regular Headmasters series made this kind of mistake all the time so perhaps it's a homage? Alternatively this could be evidence of Cerebros having his own existence before being bonded to Fortress Maximus et al.
- Lord Zarak's hair is consistently coloured blonde, rather than grey in the regular comics.
- Although the text states Scorponok is stooped when he drops Zarak, the accompanying illustration depicts him standing upright. (Perhaps he straightened up really quickly.)
This tells a slightly altered version of the first meeting between the Decepticons and Nebulans in "Broken Glass!". However the Decepticons do not take Zarak and his allies prisoner immediately. Other than this and the use of the name "Kord" instead of "Galen" (see below) the story is a pretty accurate recounting of the events of "Ring of Hate!" and "Broken Glass!".
Items of note
- All of Scoponok's dialogue is written in BOLD AND CAPITALS.
- Throughout the annual the character elsewhere called Galen is here called "Kord". No-one knows why.