- Haley Starshine ◀ ▶
- Elan ◀ ▶
- Nale ◀ ▶ (as Elan ◀ ▶)
- Thog ◀ ▶
- The Crew of the Mechane
- Twenty-one Azure City Soldiers
- Panel 1, Page 1
Julio Scoundrél: Uh, Thog, is it? You know you don't need to wear that costume anymore. We have other clothes for you.
Thog: thog like costume. thog get in touch with inner greenness.
- Panel 2, Page 1
Julio: But... you're green on the outside.
Thog: thog get in touch with outer greenness, too.
- Panel 3, Page 1
Julio: Elan, I have to ask: Are you sure it's a good idea to bring the half-orc with you? He may immediately side with your brother.
Elan: Yeah, I know. But he helped me escape prison, so I guess I feel like I kinda owe him.
Thog: thog looking over four-leaf clover...
- Panel 4, Page 1
Elan: Besides, I never got him a new axe, so how much damage could he really do?
Julio: I fear that perhaps you will soon know the exact answer to that question, but I suppose it's your decision.
- Panel 5, Page 1
Julio: At any rate, we near our destination. Before we arrive, I would like to present you with a gift, in honor of taking your first level of Dashing Swordsman.
Julio: This +3 keen rapier was mine when I was your level. I fenced the Devil-King of Dinosaur Island with it, and I'd like you to have it.
- Panel 6, Page 1
Elan: Wow! Thanks, Captain Scoundrél! I guess since you have no children, you're passing it on to me instead?
Julio: What, are you kidding? I have a son and/or daughter in every port on the continent, I'm just too lazy to figure out which one should get it.
- Panel 7, Page 1
Julio: Now prepare yourself, Elan. Azure City is within sight!
- Panel 8, Page 1
The Mechane approaches the walls of Azure City, "whzzzzzzzzz". A voice rises from the castle
Azure City Soldier: AIRSHIP MECHANE! You are hereby ordered to land and prepare to be boarded!
Julio: Oh, right.
- Panel 9, Page 1
Julio: So, now's probably a good time to mention that I'm a wanted criminal in Azure City.
Julio: I admit to nothing, but I have it on good authority that there are several attractive young heiresses in this town that are quite shamefully lax in securing their most valuable jewelry.
- Panel 10, Page 1
Julio: Luckily, it's nothing the Mechane can't handle.
Julio: Man the ballistae!
Julio: Aft propellers to full!
Crewman with Eyepatch and Pegleg: Aye aye, Captain.
- Panel 11, Page 1
As the Mechane flies over the wall, "whzzzzzz", flaming projectiles are catapulted from the towers of the Azure City walls, "waTHUNGGGG! waTHUNGGGG! waTHUNGGGG!", one of which strikes the Mechane, "BRRGH!!"
- Panel 1, Page 2
Carol: Captain, we've been hit!
Julio: Oh, that's it. No one hurts my baby!
Julio: Hold on tight!
- Panel 2, Page 2
The Mechane flies over the walls of Azure City with its stern in flames, "whzzzzz", while archers and a catapult shoot from the battlements.
- Panel 3, Page 2
Three of the crew, including Crewman with Scar, drop glass containers filled with a red liquid over the side.
Mechane Crewwoman: Alchemist's fire, away!
- Panel 4, Page 2
The catapult is destroyed in flames as three soldiers scramble away from the fire, "BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!"
- Panel 5, Page 2
Elan: Are you sure that's a good idea? They ARE the good guys, you know.
Julio: Ahhh, relax. They'll have it fixed up in a week, tops, and we won't have to worry about it on our way out.
- Panel 6, Page 2
The Mechane, trailing smoke, flies into Azure City, "whzzzzzzzzz".
Julio: It's not like they're gonna get invaded before they can repair it, you know.
- Panel 7, Page 2
Julio: Can someone get that fire put out, please?
Julio: Where to?
Elan: Uh... I don't know! They could be anywhere!
- Panel 8, Page 2
Julio: Relax... Trust your dramatic instincts, Elan. The scene calls out to you, asking you to arrive in the nick of time.
- Panel 9, Page 2
Julio (off-panel): You just need to feel it...
Elan (eyes closed): The inn! Haley's room!
- Panel 10, Page 2
Elan: There! Second floor!
Julio: Good Work! Diving now!
- Panel 11, Page 2
The Mechane descends towards the inn.
- Panel 1, Page 3
Julio: Well, Elan, this is where we part ways.
Elan: Wait, aren't you coming down to help?
- Panel 2, Page 3
Julio: No, Elan, that's not the way of the Dashing Swordsman. This is your big entrance. My place is to fly off into the night, preferably while shouting out one last kernel of wisdom.
Elan: Will I ever see you again?
- Panel 3, Page 3
Julio: Well, as an older mentor figure, the most likely scenario is that I'd return only to be randomly killed by an enemy of yours so that you can cradle my dying body while swearing revenge—
Julio: —so don't take it personally if I say that I sincerely hope we never cross paths again.
- Panel 4, Page 3
Elan: Thank you, Captain Scoundrél, for everything.
Julio: Go get 'im, kid.
- Panel 5, Page 3
Elan: C'mon, Thog! Time to go!
Thog: yay! thog coming to save you, nale!
- Panel 6, Page 3
Elan: Time to buckle our swash
- Panel 7, Page 3
Epic shot of a grim Elan dropping down from the airship by a rope with his rapier in hand. A smiling Thog follows behind on a second rope.
Julio: Always remember, Elan: It doesn't matter if you win or lose—
Julio: —as long as you look really cool doing it!
- Panel 8, Page 3
Elan swings towards the window from the outside as Nale and Haley are kissing in her room.
- Panel 9, Page 3
Elan crashes through the window, "KEESHH!!"
- Panel 10, Page 3
Thog swings through holding a four leaf clover.
- Panel 11, Page 3
Nale: You know, the first two, I probably should've seen coming.
Nale: The leprechaun costume? Not so much.
Thog: thog brought breadcrumbs!
D&D Context Edit
- The enchanted rapier is +3 for the purposes of attack and damage rolls.
- Alchemist's Fire is a standard non-magical item in D&D. It causes 1d6 damage per round for two rounds on a direct hit, with the possibility for splash damage to those nearby.
- The translation of Haley's line is:
- Panel 11, Page 3: NALE???
- The title could be a reference to several things, but likely refers to either:
- The motto ("Mors Ab Alto" in Latin) of the USAF 7th Bombardment Wing(H), SAC
- The motto of the helicopter of Lieutenant Colonel Bill Kilgore in the 1979 film Apocalypse Now
- In the third panel Thog sings I'm Looking Over a Four Leaf Clover, a 1927 hit song by Mort Dixon and Harry M. Wood. The song is known especially for the version by Art Mooney from 1948 which held the number one position on the Billboard charts for 18 weeks. Eight other artists have had top 20 hits with this song.
- In #390, Julio calls Elan his padawan. Here we see Julio instruct Elan to "feel" the location of his friends, just as Obi-wan told Luke to feel the targeting of his X-Wing in Episode IV.
- The last three panels repeat the last three panels of #386.
- In #387 Elan convinced Thog that Nale wouldn't be able to find him because he had not left a trail of breadcrumbs. Thus, in the last panel, Thog announces that he brought breadcrumbs.
- This is the first appearance of Mechane Crewman with Eyepatch and Bandana, and Mechane Crewman with Scar.
- Julio was wrong, they will be invaded before they can repair the catapults, as noted in #403.