The Defenders #4

    The Defenders » The Defenders #4 - The New Defender! released by Marvel on February 1973.

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    The Valkyrie is born! Astride her winged horse Aragorn, the warrior goddess vows to protect Asgard. Enchantress may have imbued Barbara Norris with power, but she taketh away from Black Knight. Now, Dane Whitman has turned to stone!

    Three members of the Defenders return together to Earth having rescued Barbara Norriss from another dimension. The Hulk bounds over a nearby castle wall to get away from Dr. Strange, believing he is responsible for harming Barbara. Strange and Namor pursue Hulk into the castle. Strange and Namor are transported to a mystical realm, where they encounter the Executioner and his berserker knights. Strange and Namor are overpowered and thrown into the dungeon.

    Locked in the same cell with Bruce Banner (who has changed back into human form) and a catatonic Barbara, they notice that in the opposite cell are the Enchantress and the Black Knight. Black Knight explains that after the Enchantress' last battle with the Avengers, she and the Executioner traveled to this realm where the Executioner soon became the consort of the queen Casiolena, much to Enchantress' chagrin. Wanting revenge, she charmed the Black Knight into helping, but both were defeated and locked up.

    Enchantress turns Barbara into the Valkyrie with her magical powers, and with the help of the Defenders they manage to free themselves. The Enchantress then kills Casiolena in the heat of battle, and reclaims the Executioner as her own. However, when the Black Knight revolts, believing that the Enchantress loves him, she informs him that he was only a pawn in her game, and turns him into stone before leaving with the Executioner.

    The Defenders then travel back with the stone Black Knight, where Valkyrie adopts Aragorn, and is welcomed into the ranks of the Defenders.


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