Hand outstretched – Page 1129

TRANSCRIPT:   MALDIK:...uh  … yeah … YANORA: (Very serious) Maldik, I do want you to succeed.  I want you to succeed as a leader, as a patriot, as a prince.  If the world could furl itself up and unfold again into something different, I would want you to succeed as a horse trainer, or anything your spirit wanted to embrace - but we are here, we’ve done what we’ve done and you are who you are.  And, it seems, you need some help. Let us help you, before it’s too late. MALDIK: You  wouldn’t. YANORA: We would.  (laughing) Gods, what other option do I have? MALDIK: You … you’re always … you always have something.  Some extra card ready to play. YANORA: What if that card is you?

19 thoughts on “Hand outstretched – Page 1129

  1. The face prince Maldik makes, in the first panel, is just nice.
    I cannot believe he literaly planned to have his older brother assassinated.
    Or was it bishop Macon’s doing?

    1. I meant to reflect on it in the previous page, indeed.

      I mean, Maldik has shown himself to be a fuckwit and a jerk, but to plot the death of his own brother sounds a bit much to me. I wonder how much of that part of the plan has been glossed over by his co-conspirators. As in “Yes, Gudik is the rightful king for now, but he’s off fighting a war, and people die in war. Not that anyone wants that, of course — but it does happen, doesn’t it?” And Maldik might not have thought it over fully; most people have that knack of avoiding thinking too hard about uncomfortable topics.

      1. True story, sir.

  2. Can Yanora fashion a silk purse from Maldik?

    1. She may have to settle for a pigskin slipper.

  3. Oh, yeah, totally didn’t plan to have your brother murdered or anything. *whistle* Oh well, Yanora isn’t going to be too hard on him for it; they both need each other to get out of this messy situation, after all.

    I really like the look in Yanora’s eyes in the last panel. 🙂 (But why pink teeth?)

    1. Why was the dress gold and white, not black and blue?

      Lighting styles & types can and will change our perception of color, including reflected light, shadow or shade, so on and so forth.

  4. “What if that card… is you?”

    JED, you’ve written a lot of excellent dialogue in those almost fifteen years. Yet right now I feel you have just outdone yourself. And so has Yanora.

    I fully reserve the right to change my mind about this being the single most excellent line in the current history of the webcomic, maybe at my next archive binge, but right now it stands. Even before, say, “I didn’t need those ribs anyway”, “What, they don’t have mirrors in this place?” (Mentl, to Zona asking if he really thinks she’s beautiful), “Can I help it if I read books?” (if you don’t know who said that, read the whole story again, you’re welcome), and the ever-loving “I think they’re gonna kill us! — Is that all? — Ladies and gentlemen: My girl.” Among countless others.

    To go back to the current situation, all I hope is that if Maldik does help her, he won’t be discarded thereafter. Yanora might do so (she has admitted to being pretty callous on occasion). So might Gudik. I want to believe they’re better than that.

    Then again, if he does help and get away with it (which won’t be easy because he’ll have to fool both Macron and Gorshash, with his only asset their very low opinion of him) he might just have proved himself worth the attention.

    I’ve never hated Maldik, more like pitied him (with maybe a little disdain). Now I want to like him. And maybe I’m projecting, but I feel Yanora wants to as well.

    1. Already almost fifteen years??! My goodness. :-O

    2. My favorite line is still Tula’s extended geeking out over the look on Pontagar’s face after Mentl slapped him. Not sure if the better line there is ‘earthquake in your fists’ or ‘it would upset the alliances a bit’, but the look of delight in her face in the last panel is up there for the best image JED’s ever done.

  5. Maldik’s motivation all along has been “I’ll show you that I can be somebody!” He’s gotten Yanora to admit that he can be somebody, so that leaves Macon who certainly won’t. I think he’s likely to act against Macon, but it may require another scene in which Macon belittles him before he does act. A scene with Maldik and Macon wouldn’t contribute much to character development or plot, but it could provide pacing depending upon how JED weaves the other plot threads.

    1. The exact sort of scene you suggested would indeed contribute quite a lot to both character growth & plot buildup. It might not seem like much, but pivoting points don’t have to be huge, they just have to exist and not crumble away when pressure is applied.

      1. I think there’s been enough development that Maldik’s redemption is justifiable both in terms of plot and character development A scene with him and Macon would be icing on the cake, but not the cake in my opinion. It would be an enjoyable scene, but the pacing might be better with or without it depending upon what happens with the other plot threads. So if it happens I’ll be happy and if it doesn’t happen I’ll be happy.

        1. So, maybe something slightly off-camera? Something like the full group discussing the current emergency, Macon excusing himself, and Maldik, and coming back fuming, and dripping in red wine, while Maldik comes back smiling and asks them to please continue?

    Yes, I am truly happy to see a crappy guy like Maldik have not just a second chance, but stand in a place where he can actually show that he CAN do something right… Now. Will he take this hand? Knowing Yanora like he does? Because there are scar that don’t go away that easily.
    I’ll agree that a scene with MAcon would help…. but not just for pacing. Maldik won’T easily come over years of mistrut from his own mother. he can want to double her to be sure he will “be on top”…. And Macon acting like the bully he is would cement his resolve.
    But… but but, JED always surprise us and keep doing it.
    Truly great writing JED!

  7. I highly approve of Queen Yanora’s plot twist.

  8. Time to play some Euchre, Jack.

  9. Rereading this page, looking at Maldik’s expression and words… I’m wondering if his reaction is less “Oh, uh, I think I got caught,” and more “Hum… let me think… I think some of my new “friends” might have done exactly that… fuck…”

  10. I really admire the character development in this arc. You inspire me.

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