Open to Multiple Interpretations
Order of the Stick comic
Comic no. 533
Date published 24 February 2008
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Haley, Celia, and Belkar help the divided factions of the Azure City Resistance unite behind a new leader as they prepare to leave the city.

Cast Edit

Transcript Edit

Panel 1, Page 1

Haley: ...and then I want someone to go get the cart with my friend's body in it and check it over thoroughly. I don't want it popping a wheel off as we sneak out.
Rover's Owner: Yes, Haley.
Roy: Hmmm. I better follow, just in case.

Panel 2, Page 1

Haley: You know, I'll miss giving all the orders, but I won't miss making all the decisions. I just worry about what will happen to the Resistance once we leave.
Celia: Well, if my idea works, that should be a lot less of a problem.

Panel 3, Page 1

Haley climbs down a ladder.
Haley: I know, I'm just not optimistic. Did our messengers return from the other two resistance groups yet?
Celia: Yes. If they're sending a representative, they should be here soon.

Panel 4, Page 1

They walk down a passageway.
Haley: Just don't get too hopeful. Even if they didn't literally shoot the messenger, I doubt they'll show. They hate outsiders.
Celia: How would they know I was an Outsider from the message?
Haley: No, I meant "outsider" as in a foreigner, not the creature type.
Celia: Oh.

Panel 5, Page 1

Celia: Look, don't worry. I got a 3.5 in my Mediation and Arbitration class, and I'm a totally neutral third party.
Celia: I'm sure when I get them around the negotiation table, I'll be able to strike a deal.

Panel 6, Page 1

They approach Thanh at a door.
Haley: I hope you're right, or I'll be leaving my people in an even worse situation.
Ho Thanh: Two groups arrived a few minutes ago, Haley. I will stand guard here, to protect the rest of our team should they turn on you.
Haley: Thanks, Thanh.

Panel 7, Page 1

Haley: Hey guys, welcome to our headquar—
Resistance Leader with Topknot: Ah, the Northern pig-bitch shows herself at last.
Eyepatched Resistance Leader: The Twelve Gods teach us that keeping guests waiting is a sign of treacherous intent.
Haley: —ters.

Panel 8, Page 1

Celia: Thank you for joining us, honored guests. My name is Celia and I'm here to serve as an impartial mediator during these talks.
Celia: It is my hope that by starting a productive dialogue, we can put this unfortunate division behind us and focus on the task of reclaiming your homeland.

Panel 9, Page 1

Topknot: BAH!
Celia: Excuse me?
Topknot: The flame-haired trollop is an evil interloper, sent by our enemies to sow dissent!
Eyepatch: There can be no truce with the harlot who aided Hinjo's regicide.
Haley: And a good morning to you, too.

Panel 10, Page 1

Celia: Well, it may interest you to know that Haley will be leav—
Topknot: REGICIDE?
Topknot: Still your tongue! Lord Hinjo's holy righteousness is beyond doubt!
Eyepatch: Indeed. So far beyond that it has escaped detection by all my senses.

Panel 11, Page 1

Celia: We should really foc [cut off by topknot's speech balloon]
Topknot: You dare mock our lord? No one speaks lies about Lord Hinjo and escapes my steel!
Eyepatch: If you wish to meet your end defending the stained honor of an usurper I have no qualms about obliging you.

Panel 1, Page 2

The topknotted leader draws a katana while the eyepatched leader draws a pair of wakizishi. The table, chairs, papers, and Celia all go flying.
Celia: GAH!
Topknot: Die, traitor!
Eyepatch: Prepare a place for your wretched master in HELL! They cross swords with a "clang!"

Panel 2, Page 2

The soldiers join the fray with a "clang! clang!"' Haley hides behind a chair.
Celia: Haley, do something!
Haley: Yeah, I'm absolutely going to put myself between the swords of two people who recently called me a whore. I'll get right no it.

Panel 3, Page 2

Belkar (off-panel): STOP!

Panel 4, Page 2

Belkar enters followed by Mr. Scruffy. Thanh remains at the door.
Belkar: NO ONE is going to disembowel ANYONE around here until I find a seat with a better view.
Belkar: Got it?
Topknot: By the Twelve Gods... do you see?
Eyepatch: Yes.

Panel 5, Page 2

Topknot: The cat. Lord Shojo's blessed cat.
Belkar: Who, Mr. Scruffy?!?
Eyepatch: The cat is an omen.

Panel 6, Page 2

They sheathe their weapons.
Topknot: The late Lord Shojo speaks to us by sending his pet before us.
Eyepatch: He has settled our dispute through this action. The path is clear.

Panel 7, Page 2

Topknot and Eyepatch: We pledge our allegiance to you, chosen leader of the new unified resistance!
Belkar: Well, my schedule is awfully busy right now, but duty calls, I guess. I accept.

Panel 8, Page 2

Belkar: OK, first order of business? Let's get some strippers in here. And booze—good Northern booze, not that rice wine crap.
Belkar: Then, I want you to all draw lots and duel to the death for my amusement in a giant kung fu blood tournament.

Panel 9, Page 2


Panel 10, Page 2

Topknot: The cat...
Topknot: also near that paladin back there.
Eyepatch: His tail does seem to be pointing in that direction.

Panel 11, Page 2

Topknot and Eyepatch: We pledge our allegiance to you, chosen leader of the new unified resistance!
Thanh: Huh?
Belkar: OK, for that? You two are gonna be first in the tournament.
Belkar: Ready...
Belkar: FIGHT!

D&D Context Edit

  • Outsiders are beings from outside of the Prime Material Plane, i.e. the Inner or Outer Planes. Celia is a Sylph, which are native to the Elemental Plane of Air one of the Inner Planes. As a creature type it defines certain traits and abilities common to all creatures of the type.
  • When Celia says she's a "neutral third party" it's a joke because sylphs typically are Neutral in the D&D Alignment system.

Trivia Edit

  • This is the first appearance of Resistance Leader with Topknot, Eyepatched Reisistance Leader and Rover's Owner.

External Links Edit

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