Behind the spectacular cover by Ivan Reis and Joe Prado is the continuation of "Alignment: Earth", with Vostok saving the bacon of The Operative, who has just been attacked by the KGBeast:
Vostok seems be familar with their would-be assassin, going so far as to insist he doesn't want to fight him! The Operative doesn't understand what's going on, but doesn't have much time to ask questions, because at that point the Beast's partner Chesire gets involved. But the odds seem to go back in The Others' favor when their leader drops in:
Despite Aquaman's involvement, KGBeast and Chesire get away, having grabbed what they came for, a flash drive (probably old DC Comics scans). After calling out to someone named Maelstrom(!), they take off, leaving Aquaman and Mera--to ask The Operative and Vostok just what all that was about.
Meanwhile, in Pennsylvania, Dominick Torrez (aka Prisoner of War) and Aaron are visiting the widow of one of the men POW carries within him. Dominick tells her that the story she was told about how her husband died is not true--they were attacked by the KGBeast, leading to the man getting shot to death. But as we see, not even Dominick knows the whole truth. While his body is under the control of the man's ghostly spirit, new Other Sayeh arrives, with some startling news:
In addition to everything I've just described, there's a scene on the moon with Chesire, KGBeast, and other members of the informal group of bad guys that seem to be behind all this. Now that Vostok has abandoned the HQ, they are using it. The whole thing gave me a whole "Injustice Gang" vibe, like writer Dan Jurgens is setting them up to be a recurring bad guy team to take on The Others. Of course, we will see...
Another beat that feels like it's moving along is a comment Mera makes when it becomes clear that The Operative and Vostok are not telling Aquaman everything they know. She openly questions why her husband would associate with these people, when they seem so untrustworthy. Knowing how powerful and fiercely protective Mera is, how long can this go on before she pulls a Yoko and spirits Aquaman away from the group? Again, we will see...
If you're a fan of Aquaman and the Others, make sure to enter our contest to win a copy of the first TPB signed by Dan Jurgens!