Moondragon’s all-out attack has left the Defenders dejected and injured! Will the team be able to go on?
In New Mexico desert a motorcycle with a couple riding it runs towards a barricade made by the US army. They jump over the troops with incredible skills.
In Angel's Aerie, base of the Defenders, US troops are removing Angel and Cloud, both of them severely injured during last issue's battle. Moondragon and Valkyrie are apparently dead.
Candy Southern shows up and tells the general she is the leader of the Defenders and that he can to talk to her about anything. Suddenly a soldier appears shouting that some motorcyclist had just passed from their barricade and is coming to them.
Later, in NY, the mysterious injured jogger from last issue, Andrea, is having a fling with her good Samaritan, Tony--and also cloning his credit cards.
Back to the Defenders, Beast is trying to cure Cloud, but he doesn't know what she really is or anything about her physiology; outside experts point out that her organs don't work the way humans' do. Suddenly the alarm goes on, because the motorcyclist has reached their home. It is actually Johnny Blaze, the Ghost Rider, and his wife Roxanne. They manage to make it through the Defenders' defenses and illusions (Dr. Strange, Captain America, Hulk, Namor and Wolverine) and finally reach the Aerie along with the others. The couple say they saw some of the strange events caused by the slime monster and wanted to help out their friends.
Suddenly the power goes down and the alarm goes off, and someone breaks into the medical center. When the lights comes back it is actually Valkyrie, alive!
Val tells everyone that Moondragon is also still alive, but little about Heather Douglas still remains in Moondragon, who has now only anger, pain and madness inside her mind. Then Valkyrie says Odin took her special powers away now that the Dragon of the Moon was defeated and separated from Moondragon; now she is just herself again. Angel awakens but is still blinded. We see that Moondragon is now living in disguise elsewhere in the world.
Later that night the Defenders have a meeting to discuss about their situation: are they really are a group of super heroes, or a bunch of amateurs? Gargoyle thinks they should join the Avengers, Angel says they had paid a price too high, but Candy replies saying they have been fighting bad guys, aliens and robots for years and they are good at it. Valkyrie agrees and Beast tells Iceman that they will make it work.
Some days later, Johnny Blaze enters Angel's room and says that he had thought about his offer to join the team, but he has to turn it down it, he doesn't want to go back to a super hero team, even to be just a mechanic. Then he congratulates the Defenders on what they have been doing. Finally Roxanne asks for some money to Warren. Of course Angel loans Johnny some money, and the couple goes away happy.
Back at the medical center, Beast is thinking about the end of the Defenders, when some woman sneaks in and looks at Cloud. She is actually Nancy, a girl from the US army who says she once went out with Beast. When Beast leaves the room, Nancy stays looking at Cloud, and then picks up an old newspaper with a picture of Carol Faber, 17, who nearly died in a car accident. She looks just like Cloud.
The "Five Women" of the title presumably refers to Cloud, "Andrea" (later revealed to be Andromeda), Candy, Moondragon, and Valkyrie, although one of them could be "Nancy," later revealed to be Seraph.