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Companions
Order of the Stick comic
OOTS0781
Comic no. 781
Date published 15 March 2011
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"The Duel Everyone's Been Waiting For" "Not Yet Met His Match"
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A touching scene of a halfling and his cat parting company... not goodbye, just au revoir.

Cast Edit

Transcript Edit

Panel 1

Guard #1: Here, kitty kitty kitty Don't hurt us.
Belkar: Hey! If you touch my cat, that prisoner guy won't be the only one around here who ended their sentence with a semicolon.
Guard #1: He's not your cat.
Guard #2: He belongs to one of General Tarquin's guests. The elf with the purple hair, I think.

Panel 2

Guard #1: So get back to the catacombs with the rest of the—
Mr. Scruffy leaps into Belkar's arms.
Guard #1: Huh?
Guard #2: On second thought, YOU bring it over to the elf, halfling slave.
Guard #3: Yeah, I'm not getting disemboweled over this.

Panel 3

Belkar: Don't worry, pal. It'll be OK. No reason to be scared.
Belkar: They're just a bunch of low-level NPC warriors. They don't matter at all.
Mr. Scruffy: purrrrrr

Panel 4

Belkar: Hey! You! Uptight-looking androgynous elf!

Panel 5

Vaarsuvius: Yes, dim-witted halfling thug?

Panel 6

Belkar: Were you taking care of this cat?
Vaarsuvius: Yes,. I was watching it for a... for an acquaintance of mine.
Belkar: Well, get him, then, and use that racial Spot bonus to keep a better eye on him.

Panel 7

Vaarsuvius: Bugsby's Cat-Retrieving Hand!
Blackwing: Bugsby's...?
Vaarsuvius: I am a wizard. Being prepared comes naturally.

Panel 8

A giant pink disembodied hand lifts Mr. Scruffy off the sand of the arena floor.
Belkar: OK, Mr. Scruffy, chill with the big people for now, got it?
Mr. Scruffy: Meow! Meow! Meow! Meow! Meow! Meow!
Belkar: Hey, hey, hey! Calm down! I'll come and find you when this whole stupid gladiator thing is over.

Panel 9

Belkar: You and me to the end, remember?
Mr. Scruffy: Meow. Mr. Scruffy touches Belkar's hand with his paw.
Belkar: Now go, and don't let that Vulcan-in-fantasy-drag push you around.

Panel 10

Guard #3: Awwwww, the jowwy widdle hawfwing wuvs his widdle cat! How cute!

Panel 11

beat

Panel 12

Kilkil: I don't mean to alarm you, General, but I think that halfling is force-feeding another man's intestines to one of our guards.
Tarquin: Oooooo, bonus action!
Elan: I can't tell if the cat is a good influence on Belkar, or Belkar is a bad influence on the cat.
Haley: Both, I think, but it probably still average out somewhere south of Neutral.

D&D Context Edit

  • The title refers to the fact that Mr. Scruffy has become Belkar's Animal Companion, a feature of the Ranger class that prior to Mr. Scruffy (whom he adopted in #516), Belkar had not availed himself.
  • Warrior is an NPC class which is not as powerful as the PC Fighter class.
  • Elves have a +2 racial bonus to Spot checks.
  • Bugsby's Cat-Retrieving Hand is, of course, not a canonical D&D spell. However it plays on the several "hand" spells named for the Archmage Bigby. Bigby was a character played by D&D creator Gary Gygax. Originally created by Bob Kuntz as an NPC henchmen for Gygax's Mordenkainen, Bigby became a PC in his own right and a member of Gygax's Circle of Eight. Due to copyright constraints, the name cannot be used in the SRD and in this comic it is parodied variously as "Bugsby" or "Bixby".

Trivia Edit

  • Belkar's quip in the fist panel is a double entendre on the words sentence and colon. The first meaning of sentence is linguistic, and semicolon refers to the punctuation mark. The second meaning is a punishment meted out by a court, and semicolon refers to half of a colon.
  • Vaarsuvius will use the oddly-specific Bugsby's Cat-Retrieving Hand again in #1021
  • In panel 9, Belkar refers to the Vulcan race of aliens from the Star Trek franchise.
  • This is the final appearance of Evisceratus, the disemboweled gladiator. He first appeared in #736, Do You Like Comics About Gladiators?

External Links Edit

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