An unexpected guest arrives at the desert gate.
- Roy Greenhilt ◀ ▶
- Vaarsuvius ◀ ▶
- Laurin Shattersmith ◀
- Miron Shewdanker ◀
- Snarl ◀
- Two Soldiers of the Empire of Blood
- Hundreds of Soldiers of the Empire of Sweat
- Panel 1, Page 1
Vaarsuvius: Should I depart, then? Begin penance—in whatever form it ultimately takes—at once?
Roy: I won't stop you, but I can't recommend it. Not when this whole thing is coming to a head anyway.
- Panel 2, Page 1
Roy: Plus, based on the timing, it sounds like those three archfiends are interested in the Gates.
Roy: Thwarting whatever their plans are may not count as atonement, but sometimes you have to stop the bleeding before you can start to heal.
- Panel 3, Page 1
Vaarsuvius: I suppose if the world is obliterated, there will be no one left to whom I might make restitution.
Roy: That, too. Though honestly, I don't even know if we are saving the world anymore.
- Panel 4, Page 1
Roy: Obviously, Xykon is a menace that needs to be put down hard no matter what his plan really is.
Roy: But after seeing that ocean through the Rift... and what you say that bird of yours saw...
- Panel 5, Page 1
Cut to the Rift that used to be Girard's Gate. Empire of Sweat soldiers have occupied the blast crater and the surrounding desert in Windy Canyon.
Roy (inset): Can we even be certain that this "Snarl" really exists?
Laurin: You were better off getting out when you did. The whole thing was a fiasco.
- Panel 6, Page 1
Miron: I'm surprised he agreed to your favor.
Laurin: Well, I may have asked him before agreeing to 'port him back to his palace.
Miron: Heh heh.
- Panel 7, Page 1
Miron: Still, I don't get it. Why ask for control of this valley?
Laurin: Because our usual "Finders Keepers" rule meant that he was entitled to—
Miron: No, I mean, why spend a favor on it?
- Panel 8, Page 1
Laurin: I peeped a look in this weird portal thing with Clairvoyance before the battle started.
Laurin: When you're close, you can see a whole ocean in there! Enough water to support a new city, with the right desalination magic.
- Panel 9, Page 1
Miron: Well, gosh, Laurin, it sounds like some lucky plumber will be getting the job of a lifetime!
Laurin: Now you're catching on! Ha ha!
- Panel 10, Page 1
Miron (off-panel): This isn't going to be like that time with the marids, is it?
Laurin uses her Clairvoyant Sense power. Laurin: No, it's definitely not the Plane of Water.
Laurin: I've been telepathically scanning into this hole and I haven't even sensed any...
- Panel 11, Page 1
Laurin: Wait, I think...
- Panel 12, Page 1
Laurin's eyes turn from yellow to purple
Miron (off-panel): ...Laurin?
- Panel 1, Page 2
Tendrils of the Snarl suddenly burst out of the portal and attack.
- Panel 2, Page 2
The scene changes back to Roy and Vaarsuvius.
Roy: The truth is, we don't know what is really going on anymore.
D&D Context Edit
- Laurin reveals that she has the Clairvoyant Sense power.
- In D&D, Marids are genies from the Elemental Plane of Water, based on the supernatural beings from Arabic folklore.
- This is the first appearance of the Snarl which was not a flashback. It appeared four times in The Crayons of Time series, as well as trapped within the sapphire of Soon's Gate in a flashback in #411. This is also the final appearance thus far of the god-eating Snarl.
- This is the final appearance to date for Laurin Shattersmith, the psion member of the Vector Legion. Laurin is in charge of the figurehead queen of the Empire of Sweat. She has appeared in twenty-one strips, beginning with #758.
- Likewise, this is the final showing of Miron Shewdanker, arcane spellcaster of the Vector Legion. Miron first appeared in #757, and has since appeared in thirteen strips. Miron shared charge of Tyrinaria with Tarquin, but now runs the Empire of Tears with the unnamed fighter member of the Legion. Miron's name first arose in the comics attached to the ransom letter he sent Haley which was revealed in #131.
- In Panel 9, Page 1, Miron and Laurin were referring to Laurin's daughter Hannah, a plumber, who was mentioned in "Shot Down".