|“A Walk in the Park”|
|Order of the Stick comic|
|Date published||5 September 2006|
|View the comic|
Vaarsuvius and Durkon banter on the finer points of Cliffport's curious combination of magic and technology before being approached by the evil arch-druid, Leeky Windstaff.
- Panel 1
Vaarsuvius: No, I understand, I'm simply saying that the architectural motifs found here in the city of Cliffport are inconsistent with the presumed medieval time period.
Durkon: It be magic.
- Panel 2
Vaarsuvius: Yes, fine, I grasp the premise that any sufficiently advanced—and in particular, reliable—magic would be indistinguishable from technology, I merely find the implementation here haphazard at best.
Durkon: Meh. It could be worse, ye know.
- Panel 3
Durkon: They could have magic trains.
Vaarsuvius: Point taken.
- Panel 4
A loud "CRACK!" resounds nearby.
Durkon: Did ye hear that? Sounds like trouble in tha warehouse!
Vaarsuvius: Now wait, do not jump to conclusions regarding the meaning of any—
- Panel 5
Another "CRAACK!" is heard.
Durkon: Thor's another 'un! Roy's in trouble! We're comin', lad!!
Vaarsuvius: Wait! We cannot hope to provide effective countermeasures without more information.
Vaarsuvius grips at Durkon, who is trying to valiantly march away after Roy.
- Panel 6
Durkon falters, disgruntled, reflecting on Vaarsuvius' words.
Vaarsuvius: We shall be little help to Sir Greenhilt if we go barreling in and fall prey to the same exact trap.
Durkon: But tha lad needs us! We gotta—
- Panel 7
Leeky (off-panel): ATTENTION MEWLING CITY DWELLERS!
Durkon: Well THAT cannae be a good thing.
- Panel 8
Leeky: Gaze in fear as the trees of your much-vaunted "municipal park" angrily awaken to wreak bloody vengeance on you for incarcerating them in a well-mowed prison!
Leeky: The once and future masters of this land walk among you now! Let those who led their dogs to urinate upon them now flee in mortal terror!
Leeky's namesake staff glows, and several awakened trees are seen harassing the park dwellers; they flee in terror as the druid delivers holy deliverance from their evil dog-wetting ways.
- Panel 9
Leeky: Crush them, my leafy comrades! Tear down this concrete abomination once and for all!
Leeky: So commands Leeky Windstaff, evil gnome druid! Bwahahaha!
- Panel 10
Vaarsuvius: Fascinating. Durkon, I have just formulated a theory that encompasses both Nale's likely method of engagement and the most suitable response on our part.
- Panel 11
Durkon: THA TREES BE ATTACKIN'!! RUN FER YER LIVES!!!
Vaarsuvius: Ah, I see you have already grasped the core principles of my theory.
Durkon panics, serving as foil to the stoicly observing Vaarsuvius.
D&D Context Edit
- Leeky does not shout the spell, as is the convention in Order of the Stick, but the spell he uses to animate the trees is Awaken, a 5th level druid spell, which allows a druid to awaken trees or animals and give them intelligence.
- The title of the strip references the common idiom "A walk in the park" to mean something easy and peaceful.
- This is the first appearance of Leeky Windstaff, and the second for Leeky's Trees, their first as awakened trees.
- In panel two Vaarsuvius is satirizing Arthur Clarke's Third Law, "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." It is, furthermore, a reference to the converse of this third law, "Any sufficiently advanced magic is indistinguishable from technology."
- The conversation between Vaarsuvius and Durkon may be in reference to the tropes Schizotech, in general, and more specifically (panel three) Magitek.
- Durkon's suggestion of "Magic Trains" is a jab at the Eberron campaign settings, which features these.
- In regards to panel eight: urine is high in nitrogen, one of three key macronutrients, and further contains phosphate and potassium. That a druid would not be aware of this shows either hypocrisy or vanity on his part—resource reallocation is a critical component in real-world ecologies. Further reading, from Wikipedia.