|Order of the Stick comic|
|Date published||20 August 2013|
|View the comic|
Nale crosses his father for the last time.
- Haley Starshine ◀ ▶
- Elan ◀ ▶
- Nale ◀ ▶
- Tarquin ◀ ▶
- Laurin Shattersmith ◀ ▶
- The Army of the Empire of Blood
- Panel 1, Page 1
Tarquin: Now, if you need transportation, Laurin can open another Wormhole to your next dungeon.
Elan: No way, Dad! I'm not playing your game!
Tarquin: Then you're willing to let the world be destroyed or conquered or whatever?
- Panel 2, Page 1
Haley: Just 'cause you benefit from our actions doesn't mean we have to accept your assistance.
Elan: Yeah! That's right!
Tarquin: Ah, then you're willing to possibly fail just to spite me? How enlightened of you.
Nale: This is horsecrap.
- Panel 3, Page 1
Tarquin: Nale, please, I'm trying to manipulate your brother into tacitly accepting my authority.
Nale: You don't even have the balls to go big anymore. You're just a scared old man protecting his rut.
- Panel 4, Page 1
Tarquin: Be quiet. I've heard quite enough out of—
Nale: I killed Malack.
- Panel 5, Page 1
Laurin: What? What did he say?
Nale: I made him scream for his god in the desert sun.
Nale: Read my mind if you don't beleive me, "Aunt" Laurin.
- Panel 6, Page 1
Laurin: Ishtar's crown... he's telling the truth.
Nale: His ashes smelled like burning leather.
Nale: He suffered.
- Panel 7, Page 1
Laurin: You arrogant little sh—
Tarquin: Laurin, please. Try to stay professional.
Tarquin: I need a moment to talk to my son. Alone.
- Panel 8, Page 1
Tarquin: Do you care to explain yourself?
Nale: Not to you.
Tarquin: What the hell is wrong with you?
- Panel 9, Page 1
Tarquin: Putting aside the years of friendship, do you have any idea how valuable an asset he was?
Nale: More valuable than me, right? That's why you were going to let him kill me.
- Panel 10, Page 1
Tarquin: No! OK, yes, I led Malack to believe that. But I told you before I left to collect the army:
Tarquin: This was your chance to impress me.
- Panel 11, Page 1
Tarquin: If you'd outmaneuvered your brother and secured the gate, I would've had something to show the rest of the gang.
Tarquin: I could've convinced them your rebellious days were in the past and you were too useful to let Malack kill you over petty revenge.
Tarquin: He'd have had no choice but to accept their judgment, and this whole ridiculous feud would've been over!
- Panel 1, Page 2
Nale: So this was all just another one of your cruel tests.
Tarquin: Are you even listening to me? I'm saying that I came out to this miserable desert for you.
- Panel 2, Page 2
Tarquin: To give my son a second chance.
Tarquin: Now come on, I'm sure I can smooth things over with Laurin. We'll have you up and running as part of the team in no time.
- Panel 3, Page 2
Nale: I don't want your hand-outs!
Tarquin: You'd rather I had just stood by and let Malack hunt you down?
Nale: YES! Malack was my problem, not yours! And I solved it my way, without your help!
Nale slaps away Tarquin's outstretched hand, "smack!"
- Panel 4, Page 2
Tarquin: That makes no—
Tarquin: I swear, Nale, I don't even know what you want from me anymore.
- Panel 5, Page 2
Nale: I want NOTHING from you! I am my own man, not some cog in your latest oh-so-clever scheme!
Nale: I don't want your nepotism or your charity or your pity! I want NOTHING!
- Panel 6, Page 2
- Panel 7, Page 2
Tarquin: Is that really how you feel?
- Panel 8, Page 2
- Panel 9, Page 2
Tarquin: As you wish, Son.
- Panel 10, Page 2
The scene pans back, revealing that Tarquin stabbed Nale, much to his shock.
- Panel 11, Page 2
Tarquin: What did you think the price for killing my best friend was going to be?
Tarquin: Really, Nale, you would have been dead years ago if it weren't for my protection.
- Panel 12, Page 2
- Panel 13, Page 2
D&D Context Edit
- Laurin is likely using either the 2nd level Telepath power Read Thoughts, or the 5nd level Telepath power, Mind Probe to confirm Malack's fate. The former is perhaps more likely because Nale is not attempting to conceal his thoughts on the matter.