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Either Way, Really
Order of the Stick comic
OOTS0838
Comic no. 838
Date published 18 February 2012
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"The Name of the Windy" "Finding Something"
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Thwarted in their attempt to use magic to find Girard's Gate, the party comes up with a new plan: follow Belkar's nose.

Cast Edit

Transcript Edit

Panel 1

Roy: Oh look, another three-way split. Anyone have any preference for which way we should go?
Haley: I’m a big fan of the Right-Hand rule.
Vaarsuvius: I fail to see what this has to do with electromagnetic vectors.
Haley: What? No, I mean we always take the rightmost path that we haven’t explored yet. Eventually, we should see every part that way.
Elan: Can’t we drop breadcrumbs, like that story where they dropped breadcrumbs but the birds ate them all and they got lost and never mind, I get it.

Panel 2

Belkar: Ugh! If you ask me, they should have called this place Stinkass Canyon! I cannot believe the smell in here.
Roy: *sniff!* I don’t smell anything.
Belkar: That’s ‘cause your feeble human senses are like your feeble human brains: Cute, but not really up to snuff.

Panel 3

Roy: What? What’s wrong with human senses?
Belkar: Nothing. I’m sure it’s very relaxing to be oblivious like that. Like living at a spa.
Vaarsuvius: To be fair, you are quite bad at seeing in starlight.
Durkon: Or total darkness.
Vaarsuvius: Or noticing secret doors.
Durkon: Or yer depth unnerground.
Vaarsuvius: Or hearing things.

Panel 4

Roy: Fine, fine, OK, we get it. Why don’t you tell me what it is you smell that’s so rancid. Is it garbage?
Belkar: No.
Roy: Rotting corpses?
Belkar: No.
Roy: Troglodytes?
Belkar: Close. Humans.

Panel 5

Roy: Excuse me? Humans don’t smell THAT bad!
Belkar: The fact that you think that makes my life miserable on a near-daily basis.

Panel 6

Roy: Belkar, you just spent three days cooped up with a bunch of sweaty human gladiators. You’re fine.
Belkar: Yeah, but this is worse! I don’t know, stronger!
Haley: And you can smell it from here?
Belkar: We’re downwind from the entire canyon.

Panel 7

Haley: Roy, Girard’s human, as would be any family members.
Roy: I can’t imagine that Girard would think to block divinations but not mask their scent, if it’s really that strong.
Roy: Kids at Julia’s school use that spell when they pull an all-nighter.

Panel 8

Roy: Then again…even if it’s not Girard and his people, it might be someone who can help us narrow down our search.
Roy: And if Nale IS here, he’s probably having the same trouble we are…any advantage we can get helps.
Roy: OK, let’s give it a try. New plan: We follow Belkar’s nose.

Panel 9

Belkar: Come on, Freshmouth. I want Mr. Scruffy to stick near me.
Haley: Wow, it’s amazing how useful that little guy has become.
Roy: He might seem cooperative now—
Roy: —but don’t forget that he’s a cold-blooded monster that we’re just managing to control through intangible means until either he escapes, or he dies for a cause that isn’t his own.

Panel 10

beat

Panel 11

Haley: Are we talking about the kobold, or Belkar?
Roy: Eh.

D&D Context Edit

  • In the third panel, when Belkar points out his superior sense of smell as a halfling, V and Durkon point out all of their racial sensory abilities as an elf and dwarf respectively.

Trivia Edit

  • In the first panel, Haley and V play on dual meanings of the term "right hand rule". One is a Maze solving algorithm, and appropriate to the task at hand, and the second is a vector multiplication mnemonic that can be applied to physics and other applications.

External Links Edit

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