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Good Deeds Gone Unpunished is the third prequel book in the Order of the Stick continuity, covering stories from before, during, and after the events of War and XPs. The book compiles two stories previously released to Kickstarter backers, along with three all-new stories. The title plays on the aphorism, "No good deed goes unpunished."

Each story focuses on a character who hails from Azure City, known to be the "good guys" in the Order of the Stick world.

The compiled stories are:

  • That's the Spirit - Kazumi and Daigo find a lost soul in need of their help on their new island home.
  • Scruff and Tumble - Surviving alone behind enemy lines, Mr. Scruffy searches for food.
  • Spoiler Alert - Therkla is tasked to retrieve a priceless artifact, but she's not even supposed to be here today.
  • Pier Pressure - Young Lien comes face to face with a sinister choice.
  • How the Paladin Got His Scar - Before he joined the Sapphire Guard, Captain O-Chul led a ragtag team to stop a bloody war of retribution.

PlotEdit

That's the SpiritEdit

While exploring the castle dungeon on the island Vaarsuvius teleported the Azurites, Daigo and a still-pregnant Kazumi Kato find a secret door to a crypt haunted by an elven ghost woman. When she touches Daigo, he falls asleep, and wakes up to find Kazumi has befriended the ghost, a former servant named Melisander, who wants to now serve Hinjo since her old lord is dead. The Katos are worried Hinjo will smite her if she can't serve a purpose, and she can't interact with the physical world to do chores, so they decide to brainstorm jobs she can help with as a ghost.

Melisander possesses Daigo to do chores under Kazumi's command, but after leaving his body, Daigo notes he's still as sore as he would be doing it all himself and the experience on his side was unending torment. They try to use Melisander's Withering Gaze on a banana tree to instantly grow fruits, though the bananas turn out to be evil and they need to burn the tree. While unsuccessfully trying to contact the other side with a Ouija board, Melisander accidentally raises a legion of undead elf warriors that the Katos defeat with ease, and when she tries to possess the last zombie, she's overcome with the urge to eat Daigo's brain until getting stabbed out of the body by Kazumi.

Later that night, Daigo and Kazumi continue to worry about Mel, talking about the nobles looking down on them for originally being soldiers - even refusing to eat Kazumi's lemon squares at the last meeting, much to her chagrin - and how they can be parents. When Daigo hears a tea kettle, Kazumi tells him it's their neighbor awake at the same time she usually is, and they get the idea for Melisander to use her sleeping touch on those who can't fall asleep at night by signalling her with green flame candles (made from a beehive that Mel used her Withering Gaze on), as well as act as a night watchman.

They explain this plan to Hinjo, who tells them he wouldn't smite Meslisander if she's not hurting anyone and gives her a paid job so she can buy wizard-crafted Ghost Touch objects, while she also offers to give the Katos advice on how to raise children as a mother of three. Daigo and Kazumi comment on Hinjo seeming happier running the island than the kingdom and how the nobles might be jealous of the two soldiers finding happiness with each other after the loss of their homeland. They sit to enjoy the beach together... though Kazumi is still upset over the lemon squares.

Scruff and TumbleEdit

In a dialogue-free story set after the goblin invasion of Azure City, Mr. Scruffy wakes up from a dream remembering his life with Lord Shojo and goes off to find food. He gets chased off by a goblin vendor after trying to get fish and runs into a giant rat that ends up trying to attack the cat. Mr. Scruffy escapes into a tower basement where a Carbuncle is trapped in a magic circle, and he helps free the magical creature as it teleports them away from an approaching Redcloak, who blames the Monster in the Darkness for its disappearance.

Using the Carbuncle's power, the two animals teleport around the kingdom and steal food for themselves, having fun and battling Demon Cockroaches together. After their adventures, however, the Carbuncle hears its mate and children on a nearby hill, and Mr. Scruffy reluctantly leaves his new friend to be with its family. As a last gesture of kindness, the Carbuncle teleports Mr. Scruffy to an empty warehouse, and the cat sits sadly on a crate, unaware of Belkar Bitterleaf attacking wights with thrown pineapples right outside.

Spoiler AlertEdit

Main article: Spoiler Alert

Pier PressureEdit

Set years before the start of the series, Lien sits on the dock wondering what it's like under the water, getting into an argument with her "not-boyfriend" Daesuk about him not understanding her interests. They get interrupted by a noise under the dock coming from a cave that wasn't there the day before, and find a group of skitterlings inside asking them to "follow" and "help".

A Sea Witch then appears, scaring off Daesuk while Lien stays and is offered a Ring of Water Breathing that will let her explore beneath the waves, though she can only get it by answering the Witch's three riddles or instead be turned into a skitterling like all the children who came before. Before getting through the first riddle, however, an outraged Lien beats up the Sea Witch and brings her to the police.

At the station, she meets a paladin woman, Yu, who explains the skitterlings will be returned to normal and the Sea Witch used a polymorph wand and Detect Thoughts spell to entice teens with their "heart's desire" only to transform them when they lost her game. After being told the Ring of Water Breathing was real, Lien reluctantly gives it to the police, though Yu later finds Lien smoking and offers the ring back to her as a reward for returning the children to their parents.

Lien sneaks out from her house to find Daesuk at the dock, and though she isn't mad at him for running away, she still breaks up with him for not even trying to understand her, so he insults her before storming off. Meanwhile, Yu reports to her boss that she may have found a prospect to join the Sapphire Guard, but suggests giving it a week before visiting her home while Lien uses the Ring of Water Breathing to explore the ocean depths.

How the Paladin Got His ScarEdit

Main article: How the Paladin Got His Scar

Continuity Edit

The stories in this book take place at different times and places, and proceed in reverse chronological order.

  • That's the Spirit takes place contemporaneously with #1122, and so are in the "present".
  • The events of Scruff and Tumble take place after the fall of Azure City and lead up to strip #514.
  • Spoiler Alert takes place the day of #406, with the last page showing events from #429.
  • Pier Pressure is the first prequel of the book. It takes place while Lien is young, still living with her parents, but after How the Paladin Got His Scar, placing it between 1171 and 1183, probably on the early side of that range. Lien's age is five years older than Hinjo, but sources are conflicting on his age (see below).
  • How the Paladin Got His Scar is the earliest and most extensive story. It takes place in 1171, 22 years after the destruction of Redcloak's village. There is some discrepancy with this date and the age of Hinjo in this story as compared to his age given in War and XPs.

LocationsEdit

CastEdit

Forward Edit

That's the Spirit Edit

Scruff and Tumble Edit

Spoiler Alert Edit

Main cast

See also:

Main article: Spoiler Alert

Pier Pressure Edit

  • Lien
  • Daesuk
  • A Sea Witch
  • Multiple Skitterlings
  • Yu
  • Yu's boss in Sapphire Guard
  • Two Azure City Police Officers

How the Paladin Got His Scar Edit

Main cast

See also:

Main article: How the Paladin Got His Scar

Gallery Edit


OOTS Books
LYRE
Main Series: Dungeon Crawlin' Fools · No Cure for the Paladin Blues · War and XPs · Don't Split the Party · Blood Runs in the Family · Utterly Dwarfed
Prequel Comics: On the Origin of PCs · Start of Darkness · Good Deeds Gone Unpunished
Kickstarter Comics: Uncivil Servant · Haleo & Julelan · Spoiler Alert · How the Paladin Got His Scar
Other Books: Snips, Snails, and Dragon Tales · Order of the Stick Coloring Book
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