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ISSUE NO. 831
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Rio debuted in a three-chapter story. We covered Chapter One in our last issue, so now it's time for Chapter Two, which originally ran in Eclipse Monthly #5 (February 1984) cover pictured below...
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Chapter Two of the story, sub-titled "Satan's Doorstep," opens with the awesome double-splash spread seen above. It's barren, it's cold. The snow-covered ground, the dead tree branches, the horse's frosty breath, the white streaks of snow still falling, and, of course, the hunched-over, freezing, lone figure of our hero, Rio! I don't know about YOU, reader -- but I get the shivers just looking at it.
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ABOVE: The original art (with an acetate overlay indicating coloring instructions) for the second page of the story.

BELOW: The printed page. Equally freezing, with Rio's red kerchief providing the only touch of color and warmth -- ineffectual warmth, that is, as seen by the ice forming over it from Rio's freezing breath.
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Days later, the cold turns to heat, and Rio is attacked!
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Rio escapes by seeking refuge in a fort run by a US Army Colonel who's a real martinet, and a die-hard fan of the great French General, Napoleon Bonaparte. When the fort is surrounded by hostile Indians, the Colonel throws a fit, and tells Rio he'll prevail by using the tactics of his idol -- Bonaparte!
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Rio attempts to introduce a bit of sense into the situation, the Colonel rejects his advice,and delivers a terrifying bit of news...
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OMG! A real crap-your-pants-moment.
Meet the leader of the Indians...
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Knowing a devastating battle is about to begin, Rio takes it upon himself to free an innocent Indian Boy the Colonel has been holding hostage...
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Ignoring the impossible odds -- and the safety of his men -- the Colonel orders his troops into a suicide charge, "as Bonaparte would have done." Rio is aghast, but he can't stop the carnage. All he can do is...
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After the battle ends with the bloody death of every last soldier, Rio prepares to meet his OWN doom. But then fate -- in the form of the grateful Indian parents whose child Rio had saved earlier -- intervenes, and...
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And ride south to Mexico they DID... as we'll see in Chapter Three of this story, covered in our next DIAL B for BLOG issue! Don't miss it!

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Chapter Three (conclusion) of this Rio story:
"Robber's Roost"
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