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For the Future
Order of the Stick comic
OOTS0331
Comic no. 331
Date published 15 July 2006
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"Paid in Full" "The Ephemerality of Memory"
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The Oracle reveals the Order's future.

Cast Edit

Transcript Edit

[Note: the Oracle's prophesies appear in green speech bubbles, and are noted as such in the transcript.]

Panel 1, Page 1

Roy: OK, so if we each pay the fee—
Oracle: Bupbup buupbupbup bupbup!
Oracle: Enough foreplay, let's get this party started. Lights!

Panel 2, Page 1

Oracle: I will now go into the oracular trance from which I shall answer your questions. Don't forget, these answers will be all that you remember of your visit here.
Oracle: Actually, I guess you WILL forget, so never mind.

Panel 3, Page 1

The Oracle levitates in a tight spotlight surrounded by a green glow and a vision of Tiamat. Roy: Great, more dramatic lighting.
Elan: Shhh!
Oracle (prophesizing): Oh great five-headed Mistress of Dragons! Hear your servant and grant me the power to see the future for these poor sad pathetic lonely unclean annoying disgustingly-hairy mouth-breathing ape-people.

Panel 4, Page 1

Roy: That list of insults was strictly necessary, I presume.
Oracle: Well, the spell DOES require me to identify the recipients unambiguously.

Panel 5, Page 1

Oracle: Now don't be shy, deposit your payment and ask your question.
Durkon: Guess I'll be goin' first, then.

Panel 6, Page 1

Durkon: How will I finally be returnin' ta me beloved dwarven homelands?
Oracle (prophesizing): Posthumously.

Panel 7, Page 1

Vaarsuvius: How will I achieve complete and total ultimate arcane power?
Oracle (prophesizing): (Prophecy) By saying the right four words to the right being at the right time for all the wrong reasons.

Panel 8, Page 1

Haley: Bfqe zqp M rt et fjketfj wi kljjzf?
Oracle (prophesizing): (Prophecy) When the gift horse comes calling, don't look it in the mouth.

Panel 9, Page 1

Elan: Will this story have a happy ending?
Oracle (prophesizing): (Prophecy) Yes—for you, at least.

Panel 1, Page 2

Belkar: Do I get to cause the death of any of the following: Miko, Miko's stupid horse, Roy, Vaarsuvius, or you?
Oracle: (Prophecy) Yes.
Belkar: Sweet! Which one?
Oracle: Next!

Panel 2, Page 2

Roy: There are two magical gates that Xykon might try to control next: Girard's Gate, on the western continent, or Kraagor's Gate, near the northern polar cap.
Oracle: Is there a question—

Panel 3, Page 2

Roy: If the lich sorcerer commonly referred to as "Xykon" will ever be, at some future point in time, within a 1000-foot radius of one of these two magical gates, of which of those locations will he be within said radius first, chronologically?

Panel 4, Page 2

Oracle: ...
Oracle: That, uh... that's your question?
Roy: Yes.

Panel 5, Page 2

Cut to Xykon astride his Zombie Dragon.
Xykon: To Azure City!

Panel 6, Page 2

Cut back to the Oracle.
Oracle: You're sure? You wouldn't rather ask something a bit—
Roy: I'm sure. I worked it out specifically so that you couldn't twist the answer.

Panel 7, Page 2

Cut to the hobgoblin army in the Southern Mountains.
Hobgoblin Cleric: You heard Xykon, the lich sorcerer! To Azure City!

Panel 8, Page 2

Cut back to the Oracle.
Oracle: OK, but I'm just saying, wouldn't it be easier to just ask, "Which gate is Xykon heading towards next?"
Roy: Are you going to answer the question I asked or not?

Panel 9, Page 2

Cut to Redcloak with the Hobgoblin army.
Redcloak: Yes indeed, let us go to Azure City, and NOT to either Girard's Gate or Kraagor's Gate, as might be expected!
MitD: Wait—what gate?

Panel 10, Page 2

Cut back to the Oracle.
Oracle: Fine. But I want it on the record that it is not my fault if the plot sequence gets screwed up.
Oracle (prophesizing): Of those two given locations, Xykon will be within 1000 feet of Girard's Gate first.

Panel 11, Page 2

Roy: HA! Once again, careful planning and deliberate thinking win the day.
Oracle: Yes, You've certainly managed to cunningly outsmart yourself at the very least.
Blackwing: Caw caw caw caw, caw caw caw?
Oracle (prophesizing): Try ginkgo bilboa[sic].

Trivia Edit

  • The translation of Haley's line is:
    • Panel 8: What can I do to restore my speech?
      • There is again a double encryption of F as both H and R.
  • Shojo also uses dramatic lighting in his throne room, he "can finally turn the spotlights off" in #289.
  • Gingko Biloba is commonly used as a memory aid. The raven may presumably be asking, "How can I get my master to remember that I exist?"
  • The three cutaway panels (page 2, panels 5, 7, and 9) line up.
  • Durkon's prophesy comes true in #992.
  • Vaarsuvius' prophesy comes true in #634, The Wrong Reasons.
  • Haley's prophesy comes true in #382 (page 2, panel 3, to be precise).
  • Elan's prophesy has yet to come true, though presumably it cannot come true without ending the story.
  • Belkar's prophesy comes true in #567.
  • Roy's prophesy comes true in #899, Prophecy Fulfilled.
    • The title of the comics where Roy's and Varsuvius' prophesies come true relate to the Oracle's prophesy.

External Links Edit

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