Synopsis for “Chapter 1: The Sign of the Skull!”
Story continued from Avengers #156…
Having spied a strange ship watching Dr. Doom and the Avengers battle against Attuma, Captain America had grown suspicious and followed it, however its pilot then killed himself. Returning to New York City, Captain America breaks into the Latverian Embassy and fights through it’s defenses and makes his way to Dr. Doom. Before Doom can attack him, Captain America shows an item that he pulled off of the craft that was spying on Doom: A staff carrying the mark of the Red Skull. Doom is furious that the Red Skull would once more take advantage of his absence from Latveria.
Meanwhile, deep below the sea in Atlantis, the Sub-Mariner (still believing that Dr. Doom is dead) returns to his kingdom and laments over his fellow Atlantians who are still caught in a state of suspended animation. He is disturbed by a sea-quake and goes to investigate. There he finds an under water drilling operation being conducted by surface dwellers. Attacking them head on, he learns that they were hired by a mysterious man named the “Orbiter” who’s identity is secret.
While in Latveria, Prince Rudolfo is still posing as Dr. Doom (And also believes that the Latverian despot is dead) and has the aid of the Shroud in his plan to usurp control of Latveria as he is the rightful ruler of the country. When Rudolfo’s cover is blown, the two men have to fight their way into Doom’s control room. Arriving there they are met by a man hiding in the shadows who takes down Rudolfo in an energy blast.
While in the air Latveria, Dr. Doom and Captain America race to Castle Doom however despite their best efforts they are blasted out of the sky. Back at the castle, the mystery man reveals himself to be none other than the Red Skull, who intends to once more use Latveria for a means of launching his Fourth Reich.