It’s been a while, hasn’t it.
Pretty much everything else in the comic is done. I just have this one spread. And a couple other little bits, but mostly this spread. Getting it done seems a little bit closer now that I’ve finished this page of it, and now that I’ve gotten a few of my friends to pitch in for the next page of it.
I am never doing a spread like this again. Future me, if you’re looking back at this thinking that it’s been a while since you did this trick and maybe you’re ready to do it again? Don’t. Working on a climactic spread that takes months to do is a dreary, dispiriting thing.
Admittedly it also doesn’t help when your mother dies in the middle of the process. That ground work on comics to a halt for a couple of months.
Nice new color schemes. Is that a bucked witch hat?
Yep! She’s a Weird West kind of Rita.
So with zoom I can just barely read/infer/guess about 2/3 of the text in the darkgreen/lightgreen/white universe-line. I think am limited by the pixel resolution of the image. Looks like the ending of the story, so ends the life of Rita Franklin, something about her husbands staying together for several somethings — orbits? — before drifting apart and something about a research project that the narrator either finished or moved onto.
That is pretty much exactly it! It should be more legible in the printed volume, if anyone cares to pull out a magnifying glass.
This is what’s in the Illustrator file (the first paragraph is pretty much entirely off-panel):
Ultimately no more could be discerned against Her radiance. Half the crew watched Tom and Gary begin their mourning, sharing many of the stories recorded in these volumes. Our journey back to port was uneventful.
And thus did Rita Franklin’s story come to a close.
Her husbands remained together for twenty-three orbits before they drifted their separate ways. As for your humble narrator, I remained on Straylight, completing the research that lead me to meet her in the first place. Now that it is complete, I believe it may be time to journey outwards once more, seeking even stranger Whims of the Goddess.
– Kim Holder
Straylight, o.7521/Brumaire 16
Wow, thanks. Ask and ye shall receive.
The text is very interesting in terms of the story, of course, but also interesting that the text shows that the events in this particular universe-line are not “real-time-synched” In other words, in terms of a physical story, the physical time between the middle green panel (where we get the last look at the floating ship) and the last panel (where we see the narrators pen on paper) is a Very Long Time — at least physically. In contrast, we seem to have a few Very Short Moments ticking by in the blue-future-robotic-Rita line as we see her hand reach in “slo-mo”. And perhaps a somewhat longer time intervels in the brown-bronze-dragon-Rita line and the Weird West line.
Sorry all of this a long-winded way of making a very simple point that as a result of the presentation details, we can infer from the page the potential important fact that time-flow is not well-synchronized across the different universe-lines.
Oh, good. That came through my oblique image-based storytelling. Hopefully it also comes through with the earlier green panels in this chapter when it’s read all as a whole.
Half of me wants to see the rest of the stories of the other Ritas. Half of me is slapping the first half of me around for being a durn greedy fool. rita3396 (or is that rita417?) looks like she’s in real trouble.
If I ever decide to do some sort of sequel there is a good chance it’ll be about one of these other Ritas! But first I want to spend a few years on some other projects.
The bunny is 8892 according to my layer names, and she is in pretty deep right now! A lot of Ritas are in trouble at this point.
Condolences on the loss of your Mom, Margaret. To lose someone you’ve known your whole life is hard, but when she’s the one who saw you draw your first picture… words can’t encompass it. We wish you all the best.
I’ve mostly worked through it. At least to the point where I can get back to doing what she raised me to do: make art.