|“No Time to Lose”|
|Order of the Stick comic|
|Date published||18 Oct 2007|
|View the comic|
Roy learns about Postmortem Time Disassociation Disorder.
- Roy Greenhilt (as spirit) ◀ ▶
- Eugene Greenhilt ◀ ▶
- Sara Greenhilt ◀ ▶
- Horace Greenhilt ◀ ▶
- Roy's Archon ◀ ▶
- Panel 1, Page 1
Roy: OK, somebody better friggin' explain this RIGHT NOW!
Roy: And if this is some solar's idea of screwing with the new guy, I am NOT laughing!
Sara: Roy, honey, calm down.
- Panel 2, Page 1
Roy: Three and a half months?!? How is that possible? Does time like, flow at a different rate here??
Sara: No, nothing so "sci-fi" as all that.
Horace: This is still a fantasy story.
- Panel 3, Page 1
Roy's Archon: If I may... it's really very simple.
Roy: Yeah? Then shine a little light on it for me, glowbug, because I'm not seeing it.
- Panel 4, Page 1
Roy's Archon: It's called Postmortem Time Disassociation Disorder. It happens to a lot of souls when they first cross over into the afterlife.
Horace: You know the old saying, "Time flies when you're having fun"? This is the dire half-dragon version of that.
- Panel 5, Page 1
Roy's Archon: As a mortal, your perception of time is fluid, allowing you to lose yourself in a pleasurable activity—for a time.
Roy's Archon: While you were alive, though, there were always limits as to how long it could go on.
- Panel 6, Page 1
Roy: Limits? What are you talking about?
Sara: He means no matter how engrossed you were in your studies, eventually you'd get hungry, or sleepy—
Horace: Or have to take a dump, at the least.
- Panel 7, Page 1
Roy's Archon: And even if you were taking care of your immediate needs, over time, your beard would come in, your fingernails would grow...
Roy's Archon: Around you, the sun would set and rise, the seasons would change, dust would accumulate.
- Panel 8, Page 1
Roy's Archon: Here, none of that happens. The sun sits stationary in the sky, the temperature never changes, and no matter how long you're here, you never need to eat or sleep.
Sara: You don't even have the beating of your heart to count out the moments for you anymore.
- Panel 9, Page 1
Roy's Archon: Now, at the exact same time that you lose all reference points to the passage of time, you're thrown into this amazing place where everything is strange, yet somehow perfect.
Roy's Archon: Where everyone you meet is the same alignment as you, and you're back together with long-lost friends and family.
- Panel 10, Page 1
Roy's Archon: The combined effect leaves your mortal mind so enthralled that you become completely unaware of time racing past you.
Roy's Archon: Three and a half months feels like a day.
- Panel 11, Page 1
Roy: Yeah, I don't buy it.
Roy: I'm sorry, but what was I doing all of that time?
Roy: Besides decomposing, apparently.
- Panel 12, Page 2
Sara: It's true, honey. It happened to me too.
Sara: It turns out I spent eight weeks making love to this knight from—
Roy: NOT HELPING, MOM!
- Panel 1, Page 2
Horace: C'mon, boy, use your head. Ask yourself this, then: How tall was that first portion of the mountain you climbed to get here?
Horace: Far taller than any mountain back on the mortal plane, right?
Roy: I guess.
- Panel 2, Page 2
Horace: And yet scaling the world's tallest mountain would take the most experienced climber days, even weeks. Did you really think you had gone higher in a few hours?
Roy: I thought I'd found a shortcut.
- Panel 3, Page 2
Horace: You didn't. It took you eight weeks to get to your mother's house, and you spend another three playing with your little brother.
Roy: Oh come on, it wasn't THAT elaborate of a block castle!
- Panel 4, Page 2
Horace: But how many times did you knock it down and start over again from scratch?
Roy: No idea. I wasn't counting.
Horace: Would it surprise you to learn you did so 34 times?
- Panel 5, Page 2
Roy: Why didn't you say something? You're supposed to be my guide!
Roy's Archon: You didn't ask. And we're not in the habit of spoiling the eternal reward of our petitioners.
Roy's Archon: It's bad PR, and it sends our customer service ratings into a tailspin.
- Panel 6, Page 2
Roy: OK... OK, fine. I understand how it could be that long. But WHY has it been that long?
Roy: Durkon was supposed to rendezvous with Haley the next day and raise me from the dead. So why am I still here 14 weeks later?
- Panel 7, Page 2
Roy: What's happening down there? What about Xykon? Why haven't I been brought back??
Horace: Good questions, son.
Sara: We don't know the answers.
- Panel 8, Page 2
Roy: Why the hell not??
Horace: We don't know what is happening in the mortal realm any more than you do, Roy.
- Panel 9, Page 2
Horace: Trust me, it's better that way.
Horace: After a while, you'll realize that it's better to let go of what may or may not be going on down there. You'll just make yourself upset for no good reason.
Horace: You're dead, I'm dead, we're all dead up here. There's nothing we can do to influence the mortal realm anymore.
- Panel 10, Page 2
Roy: Yeah, well, unfortunately it's not that simple. There's a lich down there that needs to be stopped, whether I'm dead or not.
Roy: There has to be something I can do. There must be somewhere we could go and look down on—
- Panel 11, Page 2
- Panel 12, Page 2
Roy approaches Eugene in the demiplane outside the Celestial Realms.
Eugene: Well, well, well, the prodigal son returns.
Eugene: Looks like that fatted calf isn't off the hook just yet.
D&D Context Edit
- A Solar is a type of powerful Angel in D&D, among the most powerful non-divine Outsiders (natives of the Outer Planes).
- The initials for Postmortem Time Disassociation Disorder (PTDD) are very similar to the psychological disorder PTSD, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, common among combat veterans.
- Eugene's comment refers to the parable of the Prodigal Son from the Christian Bible, Luke 15:11-32.