Comic for July 25, 2020: Watch Your Step

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Rafe
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Comic for July 25, 2020: Watch Your Step

#1 Post by Rafe »

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Looks like Maren (but probably isn't), and is trying to communicate withe Karen.
Also, let's hope Mike or Evals (or Reni - I see a dragon wing there) can catch Karen.

I get the impression that whoever is sending this image of Maren is somewhat weak. The way they say "g... green... house", and the general "incompleteness" of the Maren image. The magic light behind it is blue. Not sure who that might signify is doing this.

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Re: Comic for July 25, 2020: Watch Your Step

#2 Post by Eclipse »

It looks like Maren's trying to fight off something that's controlling her. Whatever's in control probably beckoned her into falling off the balcony, but her last comment of "g..green.. house" is probably the real Maren trying to reach out to Karen for help.

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Re: Comic for July 25, 2020: Watch Your Step

#3 Post by CrRAR »

Rafe wrote: Sat Jul 25, 2020 6:42 pm Also, let's hope Mike or Evals (or Reni - I see a dragon wing there) can catch Karen.
*The trio hear Karen's distressed screaming and rush blindly to her approximate falling location only to crash into each other haphazardly and slump into a pile*

*Karen lands on top*

"OOF! Thanks guys!" :karen:

Guys: *in unison* "Don't... urgh... mention it"

*Evals thumbs-up visible from the pile*
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Re: Comic for July 25, 2020: Watch Your Step

#4 Post by Bellhead »

Does anyone think Karen heard "..g..green.. house.." from the fading Maren before she went into freefall?

Also, based on her location, and what Mike and Evals said in the last page, it's more likely that either Natani or Red, possibly Reni, would see and/or hear her falling, and would levitate her just above the ground, for a split second, just enough to slow her descent so as to not hurt her. If I recall, everyone knows she's up there, since she called out the arrival of the stone statues, so it's not unreasonable for a group of fighters to take a second to magically save her. Might even be Raine, if she has another sudden magic outburst. From what we've seen, her magic seems to respond to emotion, so that might actually happen.

Also also, called it. She was looking quarter-turn right, straight off into the air... just didn't think of the platform going that far..

Now the questions remain, since we can reasonably assume that there's more than one external force at work here, who's doing what, who's interfering, and who will win? My guess is that Shadow Trace created the illusion from Maren's memories, and Rose either shoved some of Real Maren's consiousness into it, or used it to relay the message. I honestly can't see this being a situation where Shadow Trace wouldn't have barred Rose from communicating with the group, given the depth and seriousness of the plan... she would have had to find a loophole. Else it was a projection of Maren herself being puppeted by Shadow Trace, and she only gained enough control for two words.

Well, at least we're getting some more insight into what the actual frig is going on here..
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Re: Comic for July 25, 2020: Watch Your Step

#5 Post by Technic[Bot] »

Bellhead wrote: Sat Jul 25, 2020 9:45 pm Does anyone think Karen heard "..g..green.. house.." from the fading Maren before she went into freefall?

Also, based on her location, and what Mike and Evals said in the last page, it's more likely that either Natani or Red, possibly Reni, would see and/or hear her falling, and would levitate her just above the ground, for a split second, just enough to slow her descent so as to not hurt her. If I recall, everyone knows she's up there, since she called out the arrival of the stone statues, so it's not unreasonable for a group of fighters to take a second to magically save her. Might even be Raine, if she has another sudden magic outburst. From what we've seen, her magic seems to respond to emotion, so that might actually happen.

Also also, called it. She was looking quarter-turn right, straight off into the air... just didn't think of the platform going that far..

Now the questions remain, since we can reasonably assume that there's more than one external force at work here, who's doing what, who's interfering, and who will win? My guess is that Shadow Trace created the illusion from Maren's memories, and Rose either shoved some of Real Maren's consiousness into it, or used it to relay the message. I honestly can't see this being a situation where Shadow Trace wouldn't have barred Rose from communicating with the group, given the depth and seriousness of the plan... she would have had to find a loophole. Else it was a projection of Maren herself being puppeted by Shadow Trace, and she only gained enough control for two words.

Well, at least we're getting some more insight into what the actual frig is going on here..
I am pretty sure she did hear eat. Keidran ears after all. Beside they had to figure out were the rest are, if not how are we supposed to get an epic showdown at the end?
Considering Reni looks relative close to her i think she might help her break the fall. Alas i do no think the intention was to kill her via gravity, more likely simply make her go down from her perch. The statues can do the killing then. But this means that now that Reni-Keith-Red have to protect her on top of trying not to get killed by the lizards and not trying to burst the wall. Not a good situation.

I think Shadow trace et.al probably projected Karen simply to get Karen down there. But since the actual Karen is connected to the state she migth have used the projection to call for help. Or maybe even Rose. In all likelihood Shadow!Trace probably has more clearance and can override Rose on all situations normal situations. But this is not a normal situation, a lot of limits on Rose has been removed, she might not be able to interfere the ritual or inside the greenhouse or directly confront the other NecroAI but she most likely still has influence on the rest of the manor. which can lead to a very interesting scenario: What if HAL-9000 had a pair computer that did wanted to keep everyone alive?
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Re: Comic for July 25, 2020: Watch Your Step

#6 Post by Hulk10 »

I hope no one else in the main cast dies........
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Re: Comic for July 25, 2020: Watch Your Step

#7 Post by CrRAR »

Technic[Bot] wrote: Sat Jul 25, 2020 11:03 pm
Bellhead wrote: Sat Jul 25, 2020 9:45 pm Does anyone think Karen heard "..g..green.. house.." from the fading Maren before she went into freefall?

Also, based on her location, and what Mike and Evals said in the last page, it's more likely that either Natani or Red, possibly Reni, would see and/or hear her falling, and would levitate her just above the ground, for a split second, just enough to slow her descent so as to not hurt her. If I recall, everyone knows she's up there, since she called out the arrival of the stone statues, so it's not unreasonable for a group of fighters to take a second to magically save her. Might even be Raine, if she has another sudden magic outburst. From what we've seen, her magic seems to respond to emotion, so that might actually happen.

Also also, called it. She was looking quarter-turn right, straight off into the air... just didn't think of the platform going that far..

Now the questions remain, since we can reasonably assume that there's more than one external force at work here, who's doing what, who's interfering, and who will win? My guess is that Shadow Trace created the illusion from Maren's memories, and Rose either shoved some of Real Maren's consiousness into it, or used it to relay the message. I honestly can't see this being a situation where Shadow Trace wouldn't have barred Rose from communicating with the group, given the depth and seriousness of the plan... she would have had to find a loophole. Else it was a projection of Maren herself being puppeted by Shadow Trace, and she only gained enough control for two words.

Well, at least we're getting some more insight into what the actual frig is going on here..

I think Shadow trace et.al probably projected Maren simply to get Karen down there. But since the actual Maren is connected to the estate she might have used the projection to call for help. Or maybe even Rose. In all likelihood Shadow!Trace probably has more clearance and can override Rose on all situations normal situations.
I'm partly wondering if there will be consequences for slipping in that hint there. Clearly some form of Maren's consciousness is being used to the plan's advantage - and she is resisting. Stepping out of line is sure to be treated with discipline of some sort - which I would not be surprised if Trace/Flora are possibly in prime position to witness.

There has to be some reason Rose remains so diligently dedicated to her tasks, lest the Master come a troddin'. :twisted:
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Re: Comic for July 25, 2020: Watch Your Step

#8 Post by tony1695 »

I suspect what we're seeing here is Maren fighting against whatever dark magic's being used.

I feel it highly likely that Trace's original plan would not have had anyone Maren would be familiar with be at the estate with her. No-one for her to call to for help. Just the panic and despair of... whatever was happening. But with her sister and friends there? She's gonna fight, because they might be able to save her.
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Re: Comic for July 25, 2020: Watch Your Step

#9 Post by Bellhead »

CrRAR wrote: Sun Jul 26, 2020 12:17 am I'm partly wondering if there will be consequences for slipping in that hint there. Clearly some form of Maren's consciousness is being used to the plan's advantage - and she is resisting. Stepping out of line is sure to be treated with discipline of some sort - which I would not be surprised if Trace/Flora are possibly in prime position to witness.

There has to be some reason Rose remains so diligently dedicated to her tasks, lest the Master come a troddin'. :twisted:
Almost certainly, provided whoever made that illusion (Shadow, Rose or otherwise) takes notice. But possibly only restrained harder, if Karen didn't catch that. Technic pointed out that Karen has keidran ears, and while they do hear more, what actually reaches the brain is limited to how focused the listener is at the time. I know I for one have had times where I'm so oblivious, for one reason or another, that I didn't hear doors slamming, or dogs barking. Karen was, essentially, falling off an invisible cliff, flailling about. I'd call that pretty distracting.
tony1695 wrote: Sun Jul 26, 2020 12:31 am I suspect what we're seeing here is Maren fighting against whatever dark magic's being used.

I feel it highly likely that Trace's original plan would not have had anyone Maren would be familiar with be at the estate with her. No-one for her to call to for help. Just the panic and despair of... whatever was happening. But with her sister and friends there? She's gonna fight, because they might be able to save her.
This... actually makes a lot of sense. If Maren were to believe (likely as Dark Trace originally intended) that they were alone, she likely would accept the situation a lot more easily. On the other hand, now that, well, everyone is here, she's likely to experience a whirlwind of emotions ranging from "That's my SISTER in there!" to "Very powerful mage, they can help me", and back again. And as we've seen with Raine, and Natani at one point, magic seems highly affected by emotion. It wouldn't suprise me if the strong emotions Maren would be feeling right about now were wreaking havoc on whatever is holding her in that crystal.
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Re: Comic for July 25, 2020: Watch Your Step

#10 Post by CrRAR »

Bellhead wrote: Sun Jul 26, 2020 2:29 am
CrRAR wrote: Sun Jul 26, 2020 12:17 am I'm partly wondering if there will be consequences for slipping in that hint there. Clearly some form of Maren's consciousness is being used to the plan's advantage - and she is resisting. Stepping out of line is sure to be treated with discipline of some sort - which I would not be surprised if Trace/Flora are possibly in prime position to witness.

There has to be some reason Rose remains so diligently dedicated to her tasks, lest the Master come a troddin'. :twisted:
Almost certainly, provided whoever made that illusion (Shadow, Rose or otherwise) takes notice. But possibly only restrained harder, if Karen didn't catch that. Technic pointed out that Karen has keidran ears, and while they do hear more, what actually reaches the brain is limited to how focused the listener is at the time. I know I for one have had times where I'm so oblivious, for one reason or another, that I didn't hear doors slamming, or dogs barking. Karen was, essentially, falling off an invisible cliff, flailling about. I'd call that pretty distracting.
Oh 100%, and I do not suspect anything short of complete obedience - heard or not - to be acceptable to... the management. I'd imagine if there is dominion over her consciousness that anything uttered will be detectable. On the beach-fight side, I could see, Karen, being saved, raving about what happened then being like, "I tried talking to her... she didn't say anything... just 'green... house'. Then, she vanished!" "Green... house..." anyone getting a creeping suspicion of a Citizen Kane "Rose... bud..." reference?

Also one other thing that is worthy of consideration is, sure, Maren passed off "...green... house"... but Karen does not remember the hallway and no one knows where that is, plus it's hidden, so unless Karen and Maddie go back on a chaotic sock-clad romp through the halls no one is going to know how to get there, other than maybe from the outside (Reni aerial assault, anyone? :reni:) or maybe somehow Trace/Flora end up reconvening with the group? That will take time, unless... teleportation... but I seriously think in the short-term Maren's slip is going to serve to illustrate further just what forces are at play within the mansion. May end up being a "paaaathetic gesture made in vain". :evil:

Also, Stoney, he WAS hallway security and is under Trace's (our Trace's) control lately. Maybe operating under an old directive, but the viciousness toward Maddie/Karen wasn't Rose's doing, her warping them to the dungeon was her "dealing" with their trespassing and saving them from their more sinisterly chosen fates. Which wouldn't have happened if she wasn't unlimited. So it has to be at the least OldTrace's order for protection, or shadowTrace's, but can shadowTrace reorder him to be hostile if he sees fit? Wouldn't seem so if the voice could protest "NO!" to unllimiting Rose, but not readminister the limits. Arg, lots still to be revealed.
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Re: Comic for July 25, 2020: Watch Your Step

#11 Post by Bellhead »

CrRAR wrote: Sun Jul 26, 2020 3:46 am So it has to be at the least OldTrace's order for protection, or shadowTrace's, but can shadowTrace reorder him to be hostile if he sees fit? Wouldn't seem so if the voice could protest "NO!" to unllimiting Rose, but not readminister the limits. Arg, lots still to be revealed.
Yeah, I don't think Stoney can be "programmed" like that. With the way he was acting, and Trace's reasoning for having Nora make him, I'd bet he's pretty much (if not completely) autonomous. "Spark of Life" wouldn't mean much if you could control it at the drop of a hat.
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Re: Comic for July 25, 2020: Watch Your Step

#12 Post by Technic[Bot] »

Bellhead wrote: Sun Jul 26, 2020 10:15 am
CrRAR wrote: Sun Jul 26, 2020 3:46 am So it has to be at the least OldTrace's order for protection, or shadowTrace's, but can shadowTrace reorder him to be hostile if he sees fit? Wouldn't seem so if the voice could protest "NO!" to unllimiting Rose, but not readminister the limits. Arg, lots still to be revealed.
Yeah, I don't think Stoney can be "programmed" like that. With the way he was acting, and Trace's reasoning for having Nora make him, I'd bet he's pretty much (if not completely) autonomous. "Spark of Life" wouldn't mean much if you could control it at the drop of a hat.
I think that for all intents and purposes Stoney is a dog in a golem body. I doubt Nora would admit it but I do not think even her powers are enough to make anything more sophisticate. (So a real dragon pal for Trace's son was always out of question)
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Re: Comic for July 25, 2020: Watch Your Step

#13 Post by Naldru »

The page where Rose's body is located is named "The Rose Garden", which certainly sounds like it belongs in a green house. Perhaps "Karen ... Green house" is Maren instructing the house to teleport Karen to the Greenhouse. Perhaps, the ghostly voice saying "The body has been prepared" in the previous strip may mean that Maren is being prepared as Rose's successor since Rose was approaching the end of her life. The body in the crystal at the bottom of "The Rose Garden, Part 2" looks like it might be Maren.

By the way, the dark red text on a black background is going to be difficult to read for some people. Perhaps a black outline around a light grey text bubble with dark red letters might be easier to read. Remember that some readers do not have the artist's youthful eyes or eyes that are as good in distinguishing shades and colors. My feeling is that if you take the R+G+B sums for the text and background, they should be very far apart, perhaps by a value of 100 or more.

Mode additions. I just at the entry on the characters page for Maren Taverndatter. Trace had met Maren before he lost his memories and apparently noticed her resemblance to Saria (unless Trace had multiple wives). In "The Rose Garden, Part 1", Rose says that Trace had been interested in prolonging life and bringing back the dead. It may be that Trace, before he lost his memory, set up the castle to implant Saria's essence into Maren's body, but lost his memories before he could implement the plan. That would explain why the voices were complaining about how long it took for Maren to arrive. It may be that Trace had been on his way to kidnap Maren when he lost his memories.

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Re: Comic for July 25, 2020: Watch Your Step

#14 Post by Bellhead »

Naldru wrote: Wed Jul 29, 2020 12:56 amSnip
Generally, that's the going theory regarding the Manor's purpose. That said, I kinda doubt that Maren or Karen would be Rose's successor, given that Rose died about 2 years ago comic time.

Trace had been looking for ways to revive the dead, and prolong life, likely for reviving his dead wife, who Maren looks very similar to. Given his insanity later in life, it would be an unnecessary waste to use a body so similar to his wife, just to run the estate which is already run by an undead being with a possibly infinite lifespan.

With that, the going theory for that crystal in the Rose Garden is that Maren's body has been prepared for some kind of ritual for bringing Saria back. That said, we don't know how she's appearing now, unless it's an illusion created either by Shadow Trace or Rose, for some reason. It's my personal theory that that red text, The body has been prepared, was said by Shadow Trace, who I assume is some kind of copy Dark Trace made for the purpose of assisting with his plans on account of he trusted absolutely nobody towards the end.
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Re: Comic for July 25, 2020: Watch Your Step

#15 Post by Naldru »

Thanks, Bellhead.

I probably should come to the forums more often. Of course, I don't think it will necessarily lead to understanding. I have visions of the Ritz Brothers, Marx Brothers, Three Stooges, Abbott and Costello, Martin and Lewis, and similar levels of bizarreness.

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