CAVE HQ Airspace

[Is there nothing I might say that could turn you from this path? The road ahead leads to death, fool child. You are as a moth to the flame,] says the disembodied head of Grigori Rasputin, his messy black hair bobbing along in the formaldehyde jar that is his eternal prison. Rasputin isn't too keen on any of what's going on here, quite understandably, but he especially hates the way the fluids shift and sway when his jar is in motion. It reminded him too much of the frigid waters of the Malaya Nevka, accursed be its name.

"It does not, and I'm not a child, Grigori. Jury's still out on the whole 'fool' thing, but I'm more than old enough to be making my own ridiculously stupid decisions," Malice answers, rolling one red eye at the Mad Monk perched atop his shoulder. Can you believe Griggs wanted to walk the whole way? Walk! Like one of those dirty peasants, with their villages burned to pieces! I suppose it's not ideal to have the spidery robot legs of Rasputin's containment jar digging into his shoulder like this, but come on. What kind of amateur hour villain needs to use their legs to get from place to place? That's the kind of thing that marks you out as henchman. That's how you get one of the dragon's underlings waving a membership form in your face.

[So you agree then, that this foolhardy venture is both unwise and unwarranted?]

"Absolutely not. Look, Raz, we're just saying hi to the new neighbors. You really think they're going to shoot us just for saying hi? We're just seeing what they've got, what they're doing, if what they're doing here is going to conflict with any of our goals later on. A harmless fact-finding mission. If they don't like it, we can just melt a few hundred of them and go home. Easy-peasy."

[Our goals?] The Russian raises a bushy eyebrow. Malice was hardly ever one to speak of goals. He mostly just sat around and let life pass him by, waiting to see if that stupid superheroine girl was going to emerge from deadtime. It was good to see him speaking of the future again. A shame they would almost certainly never live to see that future, because someone's bound to take offense to this red-robed cyborg drifting through their airspace, a visage of pink flesh and golden brass hovering overhead like he owns the place. Malice is many things, and could become so much more under Rasputin's watchful eye, but a slayer of dragons, he is not.

"I mean mine, of course. You're a disembodied head, Grigori; you don't have any ambitions. I'm going to take back what's mine, and maybe these big dragons will be part of the bridge of bodies I tread upon as I pass over the raging river of fate below. Maybe we'll be business partners, archrivals, best friends, or allies of convenience. Perhaps they might even join up with the forces of good someday, in a desperate gambit to curtail my own greater machinations. Who knows? Not us, that's for sure, and that's because we don't know a single thing about these lizards or their robots. Now shut up, I think we're getting closer to their main base and I can't have you sassing me in front of strangers."