|Order of the Stick comic|
|Date published||2 March 2013|
|View the comic|
With Durkon low on spells, he resorts to melee attacks on Malack, even though he knows that sort of attack cannot ultimately destroy a vampire. Malack responds with an unexpected grappling attack that Durkon can't resist. Malack reveals he planted a "back door" in the spell Durkon was researching, allowing him to go in for the kill.
- Panel 1
Durkon strikes Malack with his hammer again.
Durkon: If'n I cannae beat ye wit spells, I'll just smash yer fanged face in til yer a puff o' smoke!!
Malack: You cannot destroy me that way, Durkon!
Durkon: Aye, but I can send ye back ta yer coffin. Good enuff!
- Panel 2
Malack: If you wish to end this with crass physical violence, I will oblige.
Malack: Divine Power!
- Panel 3
Durkon sings and misses, while Malack moves around him, "woosh!". The tip of Malack's tail coils around Durkon's neck.
- Panel 4
Malack's surprisingly long and prehensile tail coils around Durkon's body.
Durkon: Och! Get off, ye—
Malack: Tarquin has also taught me a variety of exotic holding techniques. Undignified, to be sure, but you will not escape.
- Panel 5
Malack clearly has no legs, and his entire snake-like body is coiled around Durkon, like a constrictor snake.
Durkon: Aye, alright. Ye got me wrapped up good. But what're ye gonna do now, Malack?
Durkon: Neither one o' us can cast spells grapplin, an' thanks ta me Death Ward, yer dreaded vampire bite's little more'n a tickle.
Malack: You are correct about your ward. The fruit of our joint labor is quite a powerful spell.
Malack: Normally, I would simply hold you until it expired, but the proximity of your allies makes that infeasible.
Malack: But let me ask you a philosophical question:
- Panel 6
Malack: What sort of man would help someone he just met develop a means to shield a large group of people from himself?
- Panel 7
Malack: At least, without sneaking in a back door, just in case?
- Panel 8
Durkon: Och! Me spell! Ye dismissed it?!? How—
Malack: My aid is mine to give—or withdraw—as I see fit.
- Panel 9
Malack: Now, let's see if we can't reach some sort of compromise after all. Malack bites Durkon's neck; blood sprays and black energy surrounds the pair.
D&D Context Edit
- Divine Power is a 4th level spell which imbues the caster with strength, giving him an attack bonus equal to the casters level (12, for Malack), +6 strength, and +1hp/level for a duration of 1 round/level.
- In this comic, Malack reveals that he has no legs. This means he is not a lizardfolk, (like Gannji, for example) as would be assumed. Malack is possibly a Yuan-ti. Yuan-ti were first published in the 1981 1st edition adventure module, Dwellers of the Forbidden City, and subsequently in the 1983 1st edition Monster Manual II.
- Malack revealed that when he was helping Durkon research Mass Death Ward, he inserted a back door, to dismiss the effect. The key word, "Xxzerkqei", might be pronounced, "Is this your key"?