Warping from Russia, the group find themselves in the Southern Carpathian Mountains of Romania. A small town has offered to aid the warriors on their quest, in exchange to investigate the mysterious disappearance of its citizens. Women and children are taken at night, while the remains of men are found in the forest. Xena and Gabrielle leave the town to track down the entity responsible. Will Xena be able to stop a god that worships blood and malice, and can Discord be trusted all alone?
A new location brings new problems to Xena and company. Xena and Gabrielle go off to search the woods for whatever is terrorizing the town, while Discord is too stubborn to join them. Discord doesn’t seem the benefit of participation and relaxes with her capybara friend. But when days go by without any news, Discord laid back attitude changes when she thinks Xena and Gabrielle might be in real trouble. The former mischievous goddess heads out to woods and face-off this hidden evil holding her companions.
In a change of pace, Vita Ayala gives Discord the forefront in this issue. Xena’s antagonist had been forced to rely on Xena and Gabrielle to get out of trouble and is returning the favor. Discord has been on a path of redemption since her own wick ways caused her to be exiled from Greece by Zeus. The TV show did have a few antagonists turn a new leaf as the series progressed, Ayala follows the tradition by having Discord step up and lead a rescue. Vasco Georgiev brings a new flavor to the story. His art style has a manga-like design that gives every character a sleeker look. Even the capybara gets even more huggable appearance. Rebecca Nalty’s colorwork nicely compliments Georgiev designs. The woodland scenery pop with great lighting effects and the interiors of a castle are ominous with a glowing hue of red.
Xena: Warrior Princess is a delightful story that explores the growth of the characters with each issue. Vita Ayala charming writing has been giving this series a more of a fairytale tone and with it, the darkest monster the group has yet to face. The group will have to fight their way out if they want to make it home, and next month’s issue brings their story to an end.