|“A Comic as Lovely as a Tree”|
|Order of the Stick comic|
|Date published||21 February 2005|
|View the comic|
Durkon's hidden fear is about to be tested to the limit. And no, it's not of forest monsters.
- Panel 1
A sign reads "Druids Local 303 welcomes you to Wooden Forest"
Durkon: May Thor protect me soul as I journey into the heart o' darkness.
- Panel 2
Haley: Durkon, don't tell me you're scared of a few forest monsters.
Durkon: Na tha monsters, lass. Something far more sinister:
Durkon: Tha trees!
- Panel 3
Haley: You're kidding.
Durkon: Nay! They may look all peacef'l, but they be out ta get us dwarves.
- Panel 4
Durkon: I ne'er saw one 'til I be a man, leavin' the dwarven tunnels fer good, but I know they be Evil.
Durkon: Haven't ye ever thought aboot how suspicious it be tha trees can always be found in such large groups?
- Panel 5
Cut to Thor in a cloud striking a tree with a lightning bolt.
Durkon (off-panel): And why else would me patron, Thor, strike down so many each year with his mighty lightnin' if they weren't Evil?
- Panel 6
Flashback to the Dwarven Lands where two dwarves battle a tree root.
Durkon (inset): Back in the homelands, they always be encroachin' on our territory.
Dwarf #1: Captain, roots are breaching our perimeter in Tunnels F, Q, and V.
Dwarf #2: If I don't make it, tell my wife I love her.
- Panel 7
Haley: That's ridiculous. Why would anyone be scared of a tree?
Durkon: Think about it, lass.
- Panel 8
Durkon: Just one tree has Colossal size, natural armor, damage reduction, hundreds o' hit points, and enough limbs ta make a dozen or more attacks per round.
- Panel 9
Roy: Durkon, trees can't MOVE.
Durkon: Can't they move, lad? Or is it just tha they move so slow, we cannae see them sneakin' up on us?
- Panel 10
Roy: So now trees are some kind of stealthy assassin??
Durkon: Gods, yes, man. It's like yer people always are sayin':
- Panel 11
Durkon: "If a tree kills alone in the forest, does it make a sound?"
D&D Context Edit
- Durkon has a pretty good grasp of how trees are represented in game. Colossal is a specific size category in the game.
- The "Druids Local 303", a reference to workers unions, provides the name of this location: Wooden Forest.
- In the first panel Durkon references the 1899 Joseph Conrad novella, Heart of Darnkess, which was famously adapted into Francis Ford Coppola's 1979 film Apocalypse Now.
- The title is a reference to the famous poem "Trees", which begins with the lines: "I think that I shall never see / A poem lovely as a tree."
- This is the first comic where Durkon reveals his fear of trees.
- In the final panel Durkon corrupts the famous philosophical thought exeriment, "If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?"