The Red Guardian attacks! The Defenders go on the defensive against their former partner, now under the control of the Presence.
Note: This issue contains the Hostess Superhero Ad, Thor in "The Ding-A-Ling Family"
The Defenders confront the Presence and the mind-controlled Red Guardian. The Presence quickly and decisively blasts the Hulk miles away, leaving the rest of the Defenders shocked. Namor and Nighthawk take on Presence, while Hellcat tries to evade attacks from Red Guardian.
Nighthawk, hurt, looks for help while Namor presses (ineffectively) on.
Nighthawk finds an Atlantean horn, but doesn't realize that by blowing it, he is calling for a giant monster. It attacks, and now Nighthawk has something else to run away from. The Hulk finally gets back and attacks the monster.
Hellcat tries to persuade Red Guardian to reject the Presence and remember her former teammates, but is interrupted by the monster/Hulk fight. Hulk knocks the monster down, but it almost hits Patsy, who has to get herself and Red Guardian out using her rarely-used telekinesis.
The Presence swings by and destroys the monster; the radiation blast also turns the Hulk back to Bruce Banner.
The shock has brought Red Guardian back to her senses, and she tells Presence she doesn't want to be with him. He leaves, unhappily.
Most of the Defenders, except Bruce, now succumb to radiation sickness from the battle.
Meanwhile, back in New York City, Valkyrie and Ledge are walking along; Ledge asks her out, but she doesn't understand Earth customs. However, they are interrupted by Lunatik, who has just badly beaten two drug dealers. Valkyrie turns into her heroic form and attacks him for his excessive brutality.