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Artifice Page 37

185 Comments on Artifice Page 37

Maven asks the hard questions so you don’t have to.


We have new Fan Art — “I don’t want to talk about it.” by ~SinfulSari involving a disturbing (yet very colorful) dream. Thanks, ~SinfulSari!

And golly, you folks caught me by surprise with the donations this week! Namely, you managed to donate the entire $250 needed for an extra bonus page within a week and a half! The last ten dollars came in at 10:00 P.M. on Tuesday! (Meaning just over an hour ago as I write this! Just under the wire!). So two weeks and two bonus pages in a row! Gosh, I was not expecting that! I had to hustle to get this page out to you. But fair’s fair and a deal’s a deal. And awesome readers like you all deserve me burning the midnight oil (literally) to get a bonus page out! 😀

So, special thanks go out to long time supporters Tanya A., Annette A., Meghan P. (for the 2nd week in a row!) and Laura Beth W. (for the 3rd week in a row!) as well as to new supporters Christina B., Jennifer R. and Chris V. for their generous donations since the Saturday update.

A big hug goes out to Sue T. for contributing $20 and twice in one week (!), a high-five and fist bump goes out to Micheal B. for making this their fifth straight week of donations (wow!), I offer a deep, humble and grateful bow to long-time supporters Jose H. for their $22 donation and Cotina S. for their $25 donation (making it Cotina’s 2nd donation in two weeks!) and finally a big cheer to Alison T. who put us over the top with the last $10 needed. Please thank these fine folks in the comments!

You folks have stunned me with your generosity. I was watching TV with a pal of mine when I saw the Donation Bar tip over on my smartphone and then leapt from my couch and did a little dance, I was so surprised. I said this last time, but I’ll say it again. You are rock stars. You are superheroes. All of you.

And now, in just a few days, this Saturday, October 8th, faster than you can say “bow chika bow wow”, we’ll be back on Da Vinci Four! See you then!

If you particularly enjoy any of these pages and use Facebook, please click the Like button on that page. It’s useful to know what’s working and it helps me get the word out!
  • MiyuKazukii

    Oh my, Deacon!  ‘What would you want to try with this boy,’ indeed!  I’m sure that your blush gave it all away.  I wonder what Dr.Maven thinks of you thinking about something like that!

    • fujoshifanatic

      She must be thinking “I am the world’s greatest coder—I programmed an android to develop into a curious horndog!” ;-P

      Seriously, I was so excited to wake up to this bonus page. Yay! Especially now that it will take us back to Da Vinci Four soon! Deacon continues to deliver the priceless faces while Dr. Maven’s mind gets blown. You guys are soo awesome; I saw that the ticker was close and that you would probably hit goal by late Tues or early Wed., but I didn’t think you would whip out a page so quick!

      My instant gratification junkie says thank you, and great job as always. 😀

      • You’re very welcome, fujoshifanatic! Fun for me too! 🙂

  • Yukiness

    I love how There is one hair out of place on Dr.Maven in Panel four. Good work Deacon, it’s not good therpy unless there’s hair out of place.

    That couldn’t of been me in the room. I woulda been like, “I wanted to learn how to F*ck.”


    • LOL Yes, that might have dislodged at least two hairs from Maven’s head. 😉

      • Yukiness

        However, onn a more serious note, I believe that Maven’s out burst says something about the relationship and the objectivity that Deacon faces. Shrinks almost never blow a gasket because it sends a wrong impression, and they may very well end up throwing the trust they’ve accumulated with the said patient under a bus. With that in mind, I believe that Maven might be taking advantage of the fact that Deacon is not human, and is currently programmed to be very docile (at the present time). She can yell all she wants without having to worry about a stressed out individual running and crying from the room, which would most definately happen if the subject were human.

        If even half my observation is correct about the said relationships between human and andriods in a “theryputic” situation then you, Mr.Woolfson, deserve some cookies for your badassetry.  

        • You are absolutely right that Deacon could not run from the room no matter how much he might want to. And Maven does know that.

  • Ooh Maven is really REALLY losing patience now. Poor Deacon, I just want to scoop him up in a big hug! :3 *super squishy hugs to the donators for giving us more! You guys are just awesometastic ^_^* Loved the comic as always! ♥

    • Thank you, Mandy! And yes, Deacon could absolutely use a hug right about now…

  • T Tran

    I squealed uncontrollably a little when i read the last panel.
    I scared my dog, sister and also myself.
    /facepalms/ it’s just too overwhelming.
    I love this comic.

    • LOL That’s awesome. Wish I had a picture. 😀 Glad you liked the update! 

  • LadyThanatos

    That stylus thing Maven has… I’ve been thinking it’s a pen, but she’s not actually writing anything or even holding her tablet. She points it at Deacon a lot, though. Does she need it to code-command Deacon?

    • A fair question, LadyThanatos, but it’s really just the stylus for her tablet. Styli came back in vogue about sixty years ago among the intelligentsia and even with today’s direct neuro-interfaces, there are those like Maven who still prefer it. 

      (And I suspect one reason she prefers it is because it allows her a prop with which to make dramatic gestures. In addition to her glasses, of course.)

  • Holy cow. Who makes a BLUSHING android? 

    • Kayla

      Must be the same people who make an android anatomically correct so he can do the naughty, even though his programming is only really for military use.

      • You make an interesting point, pepsikayla! While I haven’t confirmed that the ASO models are actually capable of erotic functions, I did notice that popular WaveCast AI evangelist, SteveMcSheffrey weighed in on this question with these thoughts. While I can’t be sure that what he suggests is true (it’s what prompted my email to the developers actually!), I do remember there being some discussion about “holistic integrity” that resonates in my mind with what Steve is proposing. But really I should wait to hear back from the developers and tech support!

        Thank you again for your interest in NoNeCo products! Together we truly can manufacture a brighter tomorrow! 😀

    • Hello Mousie!

      Thank you very much for your question. Believe it or not, it’s surprisingly common!

      I have an email out to the developers looking to determine who was actually responsible for this feature, but in the meantime let me encourage you to check out some of our literature here and here.

  • Thanks to all the donaters for letting us appreciate more of this AWESOME~!  And this is pretty awesome.  But jeez, Maven, must you SCREAM?  I think not.  XD

  • Kayla

    Oh, please share, Deacon.

  • “Maven asks the hard questions so you don’t have to.”

    This needs to be an icon or something.

    I LOVE MAVEN. She is awe. some.

    and oh Deacon, you are so awkward. xD

    • Glad you like, Dr. Maven, nebulia!   (And my little quip. 🙂 ) 

      She is a lot of fun to write.

  • I SAY.

  • ladyaoi

    HA! Deacon went in there all cocky and sure of himself now he’s been reduced to a blushing blubbering thing…way to go Maven….Maven’s scary ‘;’

    Hang in there Deacon relax and tell us all the juicy details  O__O…

    • Heh. Yep, one of the fun parts of this story for me has been writing that transition. Maven is a powerful woman.

  • ROFL I think this “doctor” is a drill sergeant. Not that it isn’t fitting for this corporate/military environment! 😀

  • ithilloke

    Mean lady…

    • I do know she is kind to puppies. Or at least she was. At least once.

  • Ari


  • CommodoreZelda

    Deacon is so freaking adorable!!! I can’t wait to see the next page…

    • Glad to hear it, CommodoreZelda! Next page is just three days…

  • Two pages of blushing Deacon!  8D  -faint-

    Man you would not believe how much I was bouncing off the walls when I saw the email for a bonus page!  You know that thing that zipped through the Men in Black HQ in the movie?  Yeah just imagine that with a person and you got my reaction.  Then I see blushing Deacon!  I have a bruise on my jaw from it hitting the desk. ~_~  Soo happy!
    “bow chika bow wow”??  Is there gonna be some upcoming fluff?  I loves me the fluff!

    Thanks for consulting tech support for me.  I kept getting put on hold and then connected to some place called the “State Hospital”.  Weird huh?

    Thanks also for burning that midnight oil.  You are epic as are all the people that donated!  YOU GUYS ARE AWESOME!!!!

    Now for a little rant…
    Hey Maven!  Back off!  Stop yelling at the defenseless android (even if his physical reaction was freaking hilarious).  Hell of
    a bedside manner you got there doc!  Did you go to the Gregory House
    School of Social Interactions?  -GGGRRRRRRRR-  It really irks me that
    earlier in the comic she seemed amused about her control over Deacon. 
    Man!  Physician heal thyself!

    Now that I got that off my chest… sorry I ranted Mr Woolfson.  I do actually like her character it’s just a few things that make me wanna throw a thick heavy book at her.  I love how when she gets agitated her hair impersonates a hissing pissed off cat. I blame my dislike on the fan girl syndrome. it can be an ugly thing.

    • Yay! Glad you liked seeing there was a bonus page! Fun for me too. (And I love your metaphor from Men in Black.)

      As for Maven, well, she is a complicated character. And just as with all my characters, there’s no guarantee you’d want to invite her to your birthday party. 😉

      And fluff? What is this “fluff” thing of which you speak?

      (whistles innocently)

  • damn me, but she’s so scary!!


    Deacon, I have to be honest, when I first read this comic it never crossed my mind that you’d someday be the cutest one in this story! He’s just so cute i can’t even—

    • One of the most enjoyable things for me in releasing this webcomic has been watching readers reactions change to both Deacon and Jeff. In the beginning, many readers found one or both of them unlikable. But now, some of those opinions seem to have changed. 

      Much fun. 🙂

  • Ivan_Braginsky

    I don’t know but I really want to give Deacon a hug now (and protect him from the mean lady haha)

  • Dick, Maven… he wants to try DICK! Maybe you need to try some yourself. XD 

    • Who is this “Dick” of whom you speak? Was he one of the security guards?

      • Well, after reading this comic I’m starting to wonder if YOU know who dick is! Oh no she di’nt! 😀 

  • Emperor_Meiji

    Well, so much for Dr. M’s empathy and professionalism. There goes her chance to be Psychotherapist of the Year.

    One nagging thing does concern me: Deacon points out, correctly, that Jeff was “completely under my control.” Doesn’t sound like the makings of a healthy, loving, consensual relationship to me.

    Maybe my old-fashioned attitudes are showing. Or maybe I just need to stay tuned.

    • I don’t think anyone could accuse Deacon and Jeff’s relationship of not being “complicated”… 🙂

  • singerblooming

    oh my god oh my god oh my god
    These last few pages have been getting REALLY intense.
    I love everything about this page; the way Maven loses it and is like “OMG DEACON FREAKING TELL ME” and Deacon SCOOTS AWAY! And then he’s hunched over like that… Yet still is avoiding her question!
    I swear, everytime Deaccon blushes I fall for him all over again. ;D

    On another note, I wonder how Jeff is doing right now…? ALSO, I don’t know if you’ve been asked this, but how long is Artifice suppose to be?

    • Hey singerblooming! Glad you’ve been enjoying the last pages.

      Some people have indeed asked how long Artifice supposed to be. And my response remains “Just as long as it needs to be.” 😉

      I will say though that it’s a complete story with an ending. And that ending has already been written.

  • Yesss, Bonus page! YESSSSS!

    Blushing Deacon is rapidly becoming my favorite thing ever in this comic. Although my fav thing still is Maven being totally amazing. Which means I’m pretty much in love with this page! <3 So much win <3 <3 <3

    • Yay! Glad to hear you liked the new page, Alis! I too like the blushes—and of course Maven’s awesomeness. 😉

  • You see Deacon, when a guy and an android like each other very much…

    Ha ha this page is awesome on so many levels! I like Deacon’s continued reluctance and hesitancy to talk about the elephant in the room, his sexuality. Deacon may not be flesh, but it seems his personality is plenty uncomfortable talking about sexual curiosity for all the bravado he can put up. It offers this really awesome tension that Maven just cuts through because she doesn’t take bullcrap. 

    Great work as always and I eagerly await Saturday’s update!

    • Hehe. Yes, that would be a lovely way to open that discussion with Deacon. 🙂

      And thank you very much for your kind words, Brian!

  • iamlingy


  • Maven is sooooooooooooo angry. xD

  • Wow Bonus Pages left and right!

    Thank you guys for working so hard on these pages. <3

    Anyway, can't wait to see what things Deacon will be doing with Jeff, ohohoho.

    • You’re welcome! (And we’re back on Da Vinci Four this Saturday. Maybe we’ll find out…)

  • Beefnoi

    When will Jeff be back? I would like to know what they have been up to 😉

    Awwww Deacons face in the last 2 panels is so cute.

    • We’re back on Da Vinci Four this Saturday. It’s possible we might see Jeff then… 😉

  • Maven really wants those answers XD Though I can’s say that I don’t want those answers too >.<

    Poor Deacon, he looks so embarrassed/shy. Right now, I gotta say: His cheeks look so pinch-able.

  • Reign

    Ok last panel is too adorable!!! I could eat Deacon up 🙂 I am like Dr. Maven I want to know what Deacon wanted to learn *evil grin* I need those answers!!

    • I think you might start getting some answers soon… 😉

  • Oh god Maven don’t make him say it! DX

  • Emily Hood

    I’ve been reading this from the beginning but am a first time commenter
    (am very comment shy). I just wanted to tell you what you’ve heard a
    million times before; that your comic is fantastic, amazing, awesome,
    and everything in between. I am really enjoying where this is going and
    thought it was about damn time I let you know.
    Also I wanted to say
    that right now Maven is by far my favorite, he no nonsense attitude is
    awesome and badass. She kind of reminds me of an ex of mine (is that
    weird? Probably). She’s all like “Your bullshit, my good sir, I will
    have none of it.”
    I’m going to stop before I write a novel.
    Thanks for making such a great webcomic!

    • Emily, what a wonderful sweet and thoughtful comment! Thank you so much for your very kind words! 

      (And I’m glad to hear you have a soft spot for Maven. So do I. 🙂 )

  • whoa maven… Seriously, sugar over vinegar hun. She has to be the most impatient therapist in the world. She’s more of an interrogater then a therapist, perhaps a career change would be suffice. XD Why is she having such a difficult time figuring it out? Right when he said “curious.” I would’ve already asked, “curious, sexually or curious, physiologically? ” Not only that, but his physical demeanor too! Haha perhaps she already figured it out but is in disbelief like: I have to hear and see him say it!

    Either way, she is not a patient person. Lol.

    • kendrawcandraw

      I kind of thought she just needed to hear it for herself too. Even though there’s pretty much no doubt to what Deacon’s implying, I think she is just so baffled that it’s hard for her to believe the clues he’s dropping. And I’m guessing, being the smart practical person she is, she doesn’t like to be confused and therein comes the shouting and impatience.

      • seekmore

        But she’s a trained therapist!

        Here she is demanding answers from someone who is clearly uncomfortable with the questions. Shouting at him is no way to go about it.

        Simply put, if she is smart and practical, this should not be her reaction.

        • I see it as more her trying to stress him. If he’s a malfunctioning unit, best to see if he could be set off if confronted with aggressive behavior from his “bosses.” Or perhaps just trying to keep him off kilter with unpredictable behavior of her own, preventing him from an attempt to manipulate her.

        • But she’s not a therapist. She *is* an interrogator.

          She’s not trying to heal him, she’s trying to figure out what went wrong and maybe salvage some broken machinery. 

          • seekmore

            True, but they’ve obviously decided the problem isn’t his programming, it’s psychological. Otherwise they’d have already “fixed” the problem and dismantled him.

            Which means she is still going about it in the wrong way.

          • It’s entirely possible she was lying when she said that she was there to fix him. The lie may have been intended to put him at ease so she more easily discover the source of his dysfunction.

          • seekmore

            She is attempting to discover what psychological issue caused Deacon to go against his orders. Presumably, they what that information so they can use it to eliminate such a thing from occurring in Deacon v2.0.

            The fact that they brought an actual therapist in shows they know that actual interrogation won’t work. Whatever his origin, Deacon is programmed to think and respond like a human, for the most part. Screaming “TELL ME YOUR DEEPSEATED PERSONAL ISSUES” at a person, especially one who views his own emotions as a weakness, is not the way to get into his head.

        • Bart Nuytinck

          I’d say she wants Deacon to explain it all in his own words, that’d be more effective from a therapeutic point of view than her asking it outright and Deacon simply saying ‘yes’.

          He’s emotionally little more than a juvenile – the sexual curiosity, uncomfortableness, hesitations towards Jeff – so maybe a good shock therapy might actually help obligate him to voice to his emotions (in so far as he’s capable of doing so).

          And of course, considering how she’s ordering him about and messing with his codes, I guess she wouldn’t really see him as a ‘normal’, ‘fragile’ patient anyway.

  • Aw, I just wanna give him a hug! 🙁 I’ve been thinking how hard it must have had been for any of the AP’s. Being nothing more than a tool, treated like you’re some type of creature instead of a person who is capable of feeling… Poor Deacon! *hugs* And I’ve been wondering… how old is Deacon exactly?

    • Deacon celebrated his third “birthday” just before the start of the Da Vinci Four mission.

  • ErrorTime

    Aw Deacon. Although I couldn’t help but laugh at the doctor’s sudden outburst of rage. I can’t wait until Saturday. Her reaction will be priceless.

    • Glad you’re looking forward to the next page, ErrorTime!

  • Deacon, “Things they don’t teach you in military training” is still avoiding the question.  You’re going to get yelled at again.
    I’ll throw in my general appreciation on the heap with everybody else’s.  The blushing, squirming Deacon is cute, and Winona’s art is depicting the intracacies of the character’s expressions and body language is fantastic.
    Now, the down side.  I have to agree with Emperor_Meiji that on closer examination Deacon and Jeff’s relationship does not look too healthy, at least at this point.  I mean, okay, we know this is a yaoi romance and in the long run things will probably turn out fine, but… 
    It struck me after reading this page that Deacon isn’t very socially adept, and that his question back on page 29, “Would you *like* me to hold your penis?” could be construed as a very clumsy come-on.  Depending on whether you take his ‘curiousity’ to be about sex, or merely about socialising with people in a way that doesn’t involve killing them, of course – but at this point it’s pretty clear that most of the fan-kinder are hanging out for the former.  However that question made Jeff uncomfortable and angry, and probably counts as sexual harrassment.  The facts that Deacon probably doesn’t know any better explains but doesn’t excuse that.  Now, how far is the socially maladroit ruthless killer android, who claims to have had Jeff under his complete control, and isn’t afraid to make threats of torture to get his way, prepared to take that in order to indulge his curiosity?  All the way to sexaul assault (aka, rape)?
    I hope not.  From a storytelling perspective going over that line that would kill all the goodwill that ‘cute, blushing Deacon’ has accumulated.  I would hope that the discomfort he’s showing in front of Dr Maven, and the sympathy he seemed to show Jeff’s ostracism for being gay, are all part of a genuine emotional complex that includes empathy for other creatures.  The alternative is that Deacon is a classic bully, showing fear when in somebody else’s power (Dr Maven’s) but using and/or ignoring other people’s discomfort when they are in his (Jeff).

    • Hummm….. Your assessment is sound.  It probably won’t be a case of
      rape( that doesn’t seem to be the author’s style) and not all yaoi ends
      happy.  There was one I saw that ended with one of them having to kill
      the other because he’d been taken over by a “borg” (google it if you
      don’t know what I mean) like race.  And Ai No Kusabi both of them died. 
      Not all end happy and maybe this one won’t either.  Just look at the

      Deacon is property and an android.  To his human owners he’s a tool
      that’s malfunctioning.  What do most people, that aren’t hoarders, do
      with broken things?  Throw them out.  Yes they are making an attempt to
      fix him but if they can’t then they may shut him down and just use him
      for parts or study the abnormalities in his programming to avoid such an
      anomaly from occurring on the following models.

      Jeff was on a planet where everyone should have been killed, but he
      survived.  He’s currently being questioned.  What about, we don’t know. 
      Only Mr. Woolfson does.  But we can speculate.  And  that one thing I
      love do to.  He may be being questioned about what he knows and what he
      may have done with their expensive tool.  I’m sure that when they get
      all the info they want they will probably kill him.  Not only for being a
      survivor on that planet, but for also being gay.  Remember Maven (jerk)
      said that he was surrounded by folks that were bigoted against such

      So maybe this won’t end as happily as we would like but who are we to
      say.  In the end it’s Mr. Woolfson’s call and I love this story.

      •  While I will agree with a lot of speculation here, the part about being gay was referring to the colony, not Maven’s world.  Her comments pretty much relegated the anti-gay mentality as part of their backwater culture.

        • You’re right, Liam. Maven would be as appalled for someone being killed for being gay as for someone being killed for having blue eyes. In the Core Systems, there is much more acceptance of diversity that supports targeted marketing. In the outer colonies, the experience can be quite different.

      • I’m enjoying this speculation a lot too. And I’m glad to hear you’re enjoying Artifice, Sara! 🙂

    • crimsonkiss22

      I’m not sure how it being a yaoi webcomic means that things will turn out fine. Most yaoi webcomics I’ve read, and in fact most homosexual-geared movies that I’ve seen, have ended very badly; if death or growing apart is seen as bad. 

      Their relationship at this point amounts to nothing more than brief conversation, so it’s almost impossible to say what it’ll be like. At this point it does seem like Deacon is comfortable when in control, which is strange seeing as he seems to be a submissive individual when under the heel of authoritarian figures. (Understandable seeing as that’s probably how he was created to behave.)

      I’m interested to see how Deacon and Jeff grow closer together, or if they even do at all. I can’t say it’s troublesome or unhealthy, because I still don’t know how they work as a couple, or if this isn’t just a sexual relationship/struggle for dominance. 

      As a story goes, there’s nothing wrong with those dynamics. But that’s my two cents.

  • psiquest

    Poor Maven… she’s not going to react well when Deacon admits he just wanted to learn to play Tic Tac Toe.

  • KBatty

    I really cannot bring myself to like Maven. I keep thinking I might, and then a page like this follows.

    That being said, Deacon’s come around to that odd mixture of pitiful and creepy again.

    I wonder how Jeff’s doing…

    • I wonder if you’ll find out this Saturday, KBatty. 🙂

  • i love this, its so much fun

  • ohhh dear

  • Momo Javrotsky

    This lady needs to cool her tits. 

  • so excited! more jeff on my birthday!
    i wanna see them nekkid >:D
    can ya do that for me? /O.O

    • Hmm. I want to get you a nice birthday gift. Could I meet you half-way? Half-naked maybe?

  • melinda stumpf

    holy shit women scared the shit out of me

  • crimsonkiss22

    And look, already another $44 in the counter! 😀 
    Deacon is becoming too cute. If it’s possible to be too cute… he’s there.

  • Oh my God.  That was amazing!  And the next page is gonna be even better.  I really hope we get to see Jeff and Decon together soon.  This wait is gonna kill me.  And hell, we’re already half-way to Sunday even. 

    • I think you might get a chance to see our friend Jeff very soon. 🙂


  • I want the week to go slow but I want saturday to arrive SO MUCH. I bet we will have a glimpse of the stuff Jeff taught Deacon ;D

    • Anything’s possible, Maria. Glad you’re looking forward to Saturday! 🙂

  • I was half expecting him to say as Yellowrock suggested a few pages back, “Because I wanted to put my cybernetic dick in him!  GAWD!” XD

    And I really DO want to say “Bow chicka bow wow”. I want to say it so BAD!! It will now replace Abra-cadabra in my lexicon. I swear it!

    We now rejoin the sausage party already in progress on DaVinci IV! 8D

  • Randi Brough Snowdon

    It’s funny, every other comic I read is well beyond 100 pages, and they pump them out quickly and it satisfies me, but you, the girls over at Teahouse, and Hamlet all keep me waiting for one page a week. And when it’s filler? OhGawdpleasemakemore. Goes through my head. IT’s very unfair and awesome at the same time. D:

    • Glad you’re enjoying the ride—and the tease. 😉 Your patience is appreciated (and I hope you’ll feel that patience is rewarded when Artifice comes to its finish.)

  • SteveMcSheffrey

    Wow. I like the doctor less which I didn’t think possible.  Easy to see why the shrew doesn’t  treat humans anymore.  Made me want to see Jeff crash through the window, yell ‘I command you to leave my man alone’, and shoot her between the eyes…

  • Qvos50

    Why is she so angry??

  • Bethany Mayfield

    Artifice = Clever or cunning devices or expedients, esp. as used to trick or deceive others: “artifice and outright fakery”.

    Going by this I can assume that someone here is going to deceive the other in this love story? I suppose the question is who, and why?

    I can’t wait! I love this webcomic so much, thank you for the fantastic work!

    • You’re very welcome, Bethany! Thank you very much for your kind words! 

      (And you’re asking the right questions. 🙂 )

  • paired with panel 5 and this page.
    I have made the following conclusion
    Deacon. you are fucking adorable. That is all.
    I want you as my teddy bear.
    can someone make a plushie Deacon that has a cute chibi blush on it? He’s fucking cute.

    • I’ve actually thought about making a Deacon plushie… 

      • Do eeet! XD I’ll buy one! Hell, if they’re cheap I’ll buy FIVE! And Four of them won’t have NAMES. DX

  • samae

    Unhinged much……when was the last time she got laid?  The poor chair is getting dug into.  The way i see it is this. She is us. lol.   We ALL want to know what happedned with decon and jeff and we shall get our answer! lol in good time.

    • When I was writing Maven in this scene, even though what I wrote for her is really about her character and her goals, there was part of me that saw her as a stand-in for the reader. It’s natural to want ANSWERS! 🙂

  • Cydalima

    I think this is the first time I left a comment on this comic, altough I’ve been reading it almost since the beginning. I think that’s because I’m not very good at English and it’s very difficult to me to express myself in this language. But I have to say something this time. I mean, this is the moment, when something (relevant to my interests) is going to happen, and that makes me really happy!

    And Deacon is so adorable, I really love him 😀 Oh, I can’t wait ’till Saturday!

    • Glad we’re finally getting to a part you enjoy, Cydalima! I hope you like the new update! 🙂

  • You know, I’d say Maven should cool it, but she IS starting to crack Deacon’s composure and if he can’t hold out, he might finally spill the beans that she’s so desperately after. So… go Maven…?

    (C’mon Deacon, lie and say you wanted to learn how to burp comedically or something! Ahhh but we all know what you’re thinking… except Maven apparently…)

  • Adam Black

    got a question for W.O.G, about something that already happened…
    —The last 2 pages were fucking great btw…
    On page 32 , I made a detailed analysis which, is starting to looking prescient after today ( page 37).
    But it was inspired then because I thought their eyes were focused, not on Deacon Holding Jeffs arm, ( the simpler explanation) , but on Deacon’s crotch. In retrospect I thought I blew my wad on a premature speculation ….
    (1) So where are their eyes supposed to be aiming? I’m uncertain to what degree its is meant to be uncertain or just an artifact of the art. (2) Accidental or Intentional?
    If on his crotch, I might be spot on ( puns are just rolling off the tongue) .

    Now if you can reveal that much? Can u reveal further?
    (3) Was Deacon Presenting? ( this might be occurring independent of a male gaze by Jeff ) …
    is there a tent being pitched ( page 32) ?
    If you cant tell me this, because it will be revealed later I understand,
    but if it spoils nothing, I’d like to know what I can since…
    since almost everything I predicted as a result of that potential mis-perception of mine, seems to be developing that way ( right now).
    Back then, to know for certain might have spoiled some fun…
    but ti know know will add to it. So it seems fair game to ask

    (4) I’m assuming the story is created too far in advance for anything we say to effect the outcome. ( yes ,no?) On the other hand if i am wrong here, ( about advance writing /drawing etc) and our comments to the creator actually may shape events, even in in small ways, well that could be cool too… ( back on page 32 I was assuming it wasnt drawn that far ahead, an assumption I dropped) A lot of the comments are truly excellent.

    • Hey Adam!

      Glad you’ve enjoyed the last couple pages. 🙂

      You asked for Word of God and I’m happy to respond

      You’ve asked about Page 32, Panel 6. This is what was in my script for that page (without the psychological notes that might be spoilers):

      PANEL SIX: Jeff has glanced down at the Deacon’s grip at his arm, with an eyebrow raised, but not with malice. Deacon has followed the boy’s gaze to that grip…

      So, no tent, no crotch stare. (But it was fun to read your speculation at the time. 🙂 )

      And in answer to your second question, Artifice is completely scripted out. While I do listen to my readers and their thoughts (and have recently changed a line of dialogue as a result), I consider it a matter of sacred trust that if I’m asking my readers to go on a ride with me, that I know where that ride is going. That everything is leading up to the ultimate climax with no narrative cheating. That there is in fact a narrative climax worth waiting for.

      Does that answer your questions?

      Thanks again for coming along for the ride!

      • Did you add the Cybernetic Dick line? 😀 Is that the dialog that got changed? oh plz oh plz oh plz! XD

      • Adam Black

         Yup, thanks…

  • I have SO loved these last couple of pages! Deacon’s expressions, they’re awesome! And we allll know what he wanted to try out x3 I can’t wait until we get to see how it (awkwardly, I’m sure) unfolded! 

    • Thank you, HurrDurr! I’m glad to hear you’ve been enjoying these last couple pages. 🙂

  • She is so very feisty!  😀

  • thisboybroken

    OMG!!!! That’s all I can say. Well besides, Hurry up Saturday!

  • Wow, I really like the expressions, aand this whole-answer me or I’ll blow your artificial brains out- Maven behaviour. She she is awesome. I just hope everything will work out, because I’m worried about Jeff…

    • Hehe. Glad you’re enjoying watching Maven’s technique. 🙂

  • If I kill Friday, will Saturday come early this week?
    lol  Just kidding. I wouldn’t know how to kill a day of the week xD

    • I am both glad you are looking forward to the update and comforted that you do not have the power to kill days of the week. 

    • crimsonkiss22

      You built up my hopes there, Megi. 
      I was going to ask you to kill Monday for me. 🙁

      • Kill ALL the weekdays!! o[]O

      • If I ever acquire the power to kill days of the week, I will kill Monday for the entire human race. Monday is a global problem.

  • CK

    Ohh I’m so happy right now! Deacon, you just keep getting cuter by the page!

    Oh and btw, Alex did you get the email concerning the fanart I sent you? Just wondering:) this one

    • Hi CK! Glad you’re enjoying seeing Deacon increase his cuteness. 😉

      And yes, I did get your email. I believe I asked you how you wanted to be credited— “Christina.K”, right? I very much enjoyed seeing the fan art and it’s going up with tomorrow’s update. (I like to stagger out the fan art postings so everyone has a chance to get a little special attention for their fan art when it’s put up. While I can’t guarantee I’ll always be able to do that—one new fanart per new post—so far that’s worked out well.)

      Thanks again for your kind words and great work on the art! 🙂

      • CK

        Oh thank you so much! 😀

  • Okay I’m commenting again :3
    I have to say, I have read this series over and over hoping that when I get to the last page, its a new one lol
    waiting patiently is hard, but sooo worth it. Artifice is working out to be my favorite online webcomic. And believe you, me: The moment I get any semblance of money I’m donating as much as I can.

    Oh and also, I’m working on a fan art, so look forward to that as well 🙂

    • Wow, thank you, Ayisha! That you find Artifice worth re-reading is very flattering. And that’s it might become your favorite online comic? Well, you’re a sweetheart!

      And I will look forward to that fan art! Please let me know when it’s ready!

  • Woman on psming or what? lol

  • telling225

    Deacon is the cutest character I’ve ever made! i would love to see a real life deacon lookalike

    • I believe one of your fellow readers has mentioned that her husband looks just like Deacon. Maybe she’d be willing to link to a picture. 🙂

  • telling225

    She just wants a piece of Deacon

  • If Only I Could Steal My Moms Credit Card To Donate. Next Tactic-Puppy Eyes.

  • OMG. I WAS NOT EXPECTING THAT. O_O That is…epic. She went…completely bonkers on him! D: OMG. And…he looked so shy…I WANT DEACON. I AM GOING TO KIDNAP HIM.

    • LOL. No need to kidnap our prototype Advanced Security Operative—although I certainly understand the impulse!—soon you’ll be able to get your own. A representative from our Sales Department will be in touch with you to discuss pre-ordering shortly. 🙂

  • Dex X.


    • Hehe. Thank you very much for the love, Dex—I’m glad you’re liking what you see! 🙂

  • It’s quite silly how Maven hasn’t been able to connect the dots yet, or maybe she already did and she just needs him to confirm it

  • ShiftyEyes

    D’aw, don’t hate on the doctor, guys. Don’t you see?
    She NEEDS to be tough in order to deal with Deacon.
    In the beginning, he was cold, tight-lipped, and was being a smartass.

    You don’t see much of that anymore, do you?
    Her method may seem harsh, but hey, it’s working, isn’t it?

    I think she knows what she’s doing.
    She’ll crack him open like an egg in no time~

    • Dr. Maven would like the cut of your jib, my friend. 🙂

  • pedro_martines

    Woman, I love you. This shrink is my ROLE MODEL 8DDD

  • i had the same scared face when i saw the angry doctor in panel 4 XD this is awesome!

  • mutisija

    ALWAYS when i am angry to my boyfriend, he makes that face what Deacon has on panel 5… then i just cannot be angry anymore 😛

  • kyashan

    Its getting so good XP yall never disappoint ^_^

  • kyashan

    Its getting better and better! (in fact… i just made this account to tell yall how much i like it ^_^;) yall never disappoint ^_^

  • I saw the last two pages at once. I especially adore page 37, it’s so charming and perfect. His face in that panel. Also Jeff’s a such a cutie-pie. I like the progress that panel shows in their relationship.


  • DAT BLUSH!  Again… Send my heart aflutter!  Although I’m pretty sweet on Jeff right now XD

  • I swear Maven is another form of Satan. 

    • Dr. Maven: for when your rampaging killbots need therapy. XD
      Holy crap, her salary must be half the income for an entire STATE/PROVINCE. (Depending on where you’re from :P)

  • CottonCory

    i really don’t like how she gets so worked up all the time :S
    but i like deacon blushing like a little school boy 🙂

  • Deacon is an amazing piece of machinery! He smirks and feels superior, he has habits and nervous tics like wringing his hands (That seems to be his default behavior when he’s very nervous) and biting his lip, he does have the ability to lie although it can be turned on or off, and he BLUSHES! I can’t begin to imagine how complex he is!

  • She wants to hear about the hot, gay sexes.  You know it to be true.  <3

  • he is so adorable

  • Rule number one, Deacon, man, don’t evade her questions. Also, yikes, I don’t blame him for nearly jumping off the couch when she hollered.

  • anonymouslizzy

    Oh snap! Then where’d you learn it? 😉

  • SolrSurfr3

    Aaaaw, he’s so cute when he’s embarrassed! ^w^
    Okay, Deacon, tell EVERYTHING. 😀

  • Ikaru Sentinal-K’Valshar

    I love how scared he consistently is of her. (or is acting)

  • kat-homestucknerd-666

    poor deacon he is like a beaten puppy

  • Potato-

    I think Maven is the one who needs therapy.

    Maybe anger management classes too.

  • Deacon is honestly to adorable

  • ohohohoho~