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Artifice Page 62

106 Comments on Artifice Page 62

Ready… Aim…. Hmmm. What happens next?

We have new Fan Art by qui-gon-robot, a dark imagining of Jeff and Deacon’s eventual “escape” entitled “A Perfect Dystopia”. Totally appropriate for today’s darker page. Check it out!



The 15th bonus page in a row! You are UNSTOPPABLE! 😀

Special thanks go out to long-time supporters Virginia H., Micheal B. (who has now donated for the seventeenth week in a row! Stunning!) & to Brent B. (who got the ball rolling on the next bonus page—thank you!) and a warm welcome and grateful bow go out to new supporters Paula B. & Kenya F. for their generous donations over the last few days!

Big hugs go out to long-time friends of Artifice Clidiane A. and Jennifer B. (who has now made their fourth super-generous donation in a row!) and to new friend Christian S. (who put us over the top for this page! High five!) for their super-generous $25 donations!

Finally, android-strength hugs and much, much holiday love go out to Ethan R. for their extraordinarily generous $50 donation (which makes their third mega-generous donation to Artifice! And yes, thank you, Ethan—it was indeed a lovely Christmas gift!)

Thank you all so much for your awesome support! (And also for the holiday well-wishing—reading your kind words helped to make this Christmas a very special one for me.)

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!
  • YangYueLan

    and the plot progresses! (comment virginity gone!)

  • Really?  You REALLY just left us to wait on a panel where Jeff has six guns trained on him?

    Excuse me while I have a heart attack.  Thanks for NOTHING, Alex, Winona!  (Except, y’know, I love you, so strike that last statement.) 

    Aaahh the spaceship in panel one has a really freaking cool design, and I love Deacon doing the Superman pose in panel two while Jeff’s just cold and hungry next to him like ‘hey f*ck you man’.

    I continue to fail to see why anyone would view Jeff as dangerous.  He’s on the same threat level as puppies and fluffy ducks; the only problem he creates is the one where your mom doesn’t agree with your decision to take the adorable stray home and makes you stop hiding him under your bed and put him back where you found him.

    I also feel like the team should’ve taken the huge hint that was the fact that their killbot not only didn’t off Jeff but tried to speak out in his defense as the flashing neon ‘we’re totally boned by that PO’d android if we try to shoot him’ sign that it was.

    Not that I’m complaining.  Deacon, carnage if you please!  Yeah, I’m way more enthused about the upcoming vigilantism than I should be.

    • Thanks for the love, Megan! 🙂 (And yes, I’d want to adopt Jeff too…)

  • I see a bloodbath ahead!  Yeah, this ain’t gonna be pretty. :3

  • Hyperminimalism

    Let me take a wild guess and say that Jeff makes it out after Deacon kills or maims all of them. /gasp HOW DO I KNOW THIS?  Anyway, it is very nice to see the plot moving forward…not that it wasn’t before, but this is bringing us to some much needed answers to the questions we all have.

  • plot…. so much plot…. *drool*

    oddly, i find the two quite sexy even in their clothes. in a militant sort of way. something about this update is just so goddamn beautiful in a dark fashion. it looks way futuristic but miserable at the same time… attributed to our winona’s amazing talent maybe? just generally beautiful.

    on a side note, PLEASE DONT KILL MY JEFFY :C

  • Aikka

    *sigh* explaining wouldn’t really had a chance to work here Deacon…

    anyway, as always can’t wait for the next page *-*

    What will be from now on may not be the most… pleasant things but i really want to see how exactly it all happened now o..o
    and of course what will happen… later… *sigh* *wants a happy ending ;-;*

    You know that today i again dreamed about the update? _-_
    This time my mind did something weird there but ok… o_o”
    and i woke up early even if i was really sleepy by myself just to not be late.
    [usualy a few alarms wouldn’t be enough hah XD]

    Ok. i’m sleepy, better end this comment now before i’ll say something weird “XD

  • timeaesnyx

    of course their going to leave us w/the guns trained on Jeff. We already know that jeff survives (though not necessarily in one piece). 

  • George Moore

    It just got real up in this. 🙂


    • wasEnkidu

      RUN FOR YOUR LIFE!! *headbangs furiously* X3

  • Andrew Thibeault

    Nice! Things are heating up action-wise…

    Can’t wait for the next page!

    • Sequinn

      Amen to that!

  • AnyOtaku

    Poor Jeff, he looks so scared! No worries, Deacon will come and safe you… In the next page that I can’t hardly wait for!
    Btw, that Spaceshift looks amazing!

  • …if I were Jeff, there might be some suspicious looking liquid running down my pants legs right about then…  ::quivers::

  • Poor Jeff… Loving an android isn’t easy. ^^’

  • fujoshifanatic

    Oh my, shit got real real fast, didn’t it? Like someone said earlier, those soldiers must not be very smart if they decided to ignore the KILLBOT entreating them to hold their fire against the harmless human (he does look like a cold, wet, hungry little kitten in panel two, doesn’t he?)! They’re not really good at assessing a situation, are they?

    Oh well, it’s on them; let the redshirting begin!

    But wait, I count only six redshir–er, solders here. Where’s the other one…!? *bites fingernails as a cheesy ‘Dun dun DUUUUN!’ sounds in my head*

  • Syreen

    I want to touch all over those soldier’s strong arms *-*

    • Hehe. Not the reaction I was expecting. But I’m happy to Word of God that they are all stunningly amazing lovers. And as of this moment, all available. Anything for our readers. 😀

      • Syreen

        Well, you see, it’s not that I don’t feel the weight of the situation… but look at those arms!

  • wasEnkidu

    Why should they listen to him? All that time with Jeff skewed his perception. He’s not a “person” to be talked to or listened to, he’s a piece of equipment they came to retrieve.

    • timeaesnyx

      Sadly accurate

  • Amerou

    Oh, this can’t end well. 9_9

    We need a Maven trolling with popcorn .gif, because I’m sure in the back of her mind that’s exactly what’s going on.

  • C K

    This update is leaving me soooo anxious.  Not because I don’t know that Jeff lives, but because I keep getting a ‘this will not have a happy ending’ vibe with every update.

    Because…well, I doubt Deacon’s company will take kindly to the guy who caused their killer robot to kill seven of their own.  I suspect they’ll either decide to kill Jeff or use him as a hostage for Deacon’s cooperation later on (or, if we want to suspect Maven of lying, Jeff could be dead already).  And even if Deacon somehow grabs Jeff and makes a grand escape…it’s already been established that Deacon needs recharging every now and then.  So where could they go?

    I very much hope I am wrong, and I blame the high quality of the comic for my intense curiosity.  Can’t wait for Saturday to see what happens next!

    • Glad to hear you’re looking forward to the update, C K. And as always, I enjoy reading your analysis.. 🙂

  • Arwwwww man ; _ ; JEFF!

    I pretty much dislike how this man simply pushed Deacon aside without giving him a look or listen to him >:T Like “Get away. You are just a machine. Like our guns here. I am superior. Get out of my way. Why should I listen to a machine.”Kick there asses Deacon! >:O

  • Ooh, we’re gonna see Deacon in action! Exciting!

  • Yukiness

    Given the context clues I predict some bloodshed is to commence any second now, as well as possible emotional  trauma on Jeff’s part.

  • KBatty
    • yaoikitty

      LOL! Don’t mace me, bro!

    • This is the best comment/image ever. I applaud you. :>

      • KBatty

        Also, <3 <3 <3 El Dorado.

    • qu_gon_robot

      Occupy cop lol XD
      I wanted to make a hipster Jeff, (with a caption saying something like ‘I was in to robots before it was popular’) but I don’t feel like breaking away from my usual doom and gloom.

    • W Nelson

      Hahaha!  This is awesome 😀

    • Oh, man, I love this, KBatty! Well done! 😀 LOL

  • Ayella

    Awesome art AND plot unfolding.
    What more can I wish for my Wednesday?

  • yellowrock


    And however much I love the lovey dovey scenes and the angry Dr. Maven scenes, this page is just plain awesome.  The use of color, the uniforms, the panel where the guys are walking out of the lander thingy, it’s just perfect.  Although, those guns look awfully big for how small the magazines are.  Other than that, this page is fantastic.  😀

    • I’ve been really looking forward to sharing this page with you all, yellowrock. Winona is a brilliant designer of tech and gear, and as other have noted this page has a different tone/feel from the others. It’s very exciting to show this different side to her art. 🙂

  • JM

    This page is so different from what we’ve been seeing so far. I love it! The establishing shot in panel 1 has so much crazy detail. I demand more space ships!! Gorgeous page.

  • Dex X.

    NOOOO!!! JEFF!!!!! D:

  • leorising

    Beautiful page. Also: EEP! D:

  • Bailey Carswell

    Oh my goodness, I’m sooo nervous for Jeff. I mean, even though we know he makes it out alive, there’s a lot of potential physical and mental trauma here. I’m pretty sure there already has been some mental trauma, though, staring down the barrel of six big guns!!! D8

    Also the art is even more amazing than ever here. Fantastic job Winona!

  • qu_gon_robot

    Deacon said they ran out of food… Does this mean that Deacon has a need for it?
    I was kind of taken with the idea of him being 100% synthetic. It would have been so interesting if his senses were different from a human, if he were able to sense spiritual and social forces that humans are oblivious to…

    • Actually, only Jeff needed the food. Deacon is just being inclusive. 🙂

  • He probably went ape-shit.

  • And that’s when Deacon goes “RAAAAAAWRRRRR” and kills everybody.

  • ;___; I really hope Deacon saves the day. Actually, I bet Jeff saves the day by himself. He’s a capable guy. 

  • Finzz

    Wow, beautiful futuristic environment Winona!  I love the background, makes me wanna watch a great movie or play an awesome game.  I’ll have to figure out which, but looking forward to more great pages from Artifice, you dynamic duo!

    • Thank you, Finz! (And you’ll have to let us know which one you chose. :D)

    • W Nelson


  • Gares H.

    Mr. Alex, Ms. Winona; I discovered this comic today, certainly i can’t figure why i didn’t know of this AWESOME comic before, it’s amazing!!!!!!!! i read it two times until page 62 by now >w< i like everything, the storyline, the art (awesome body language), everything!!! You make me a very happy man 😀

    • Well, heck, your kind words make me a happy guy too, Gares92! So glad you found us! (And please feel free to tell your friends! 😀 )

  • catyra

    Just like previous poster, I found his comic today and I love it! The art is fantastic! And they’re such a cute couple :p

    • Thank you, catyra! Glad to have you with us! 😀

  • Ryn

    hit the deck jeff! hmm… seeing the aftermath of a slaughter and seeing your now lover rip people to pieces…might be rather traumatic; though maybe not as traumatic as having guns aimed at you. Certainly it’s given Jeff an interesting perspective on Deacon.

    it never stops raining there does it? oh those poor computers.

    • That’s right. It pretty much never stops raining on Da Vinci Four…

  • Total stereotypical straight boy comment for Winona: those guns are awesome. Did you design them or are they from a reference?

    • W Nelson

      I designed them and built them in 3d with Sketchup.  I LOVE designing guns ^_^

    • geneticsgirl

      do straight boys squee like us fangirls when a new page comes up? and props to your sexual maturity for admiring the beautiful art of this comic which is rife with man-candy.

      • “Squee” is probably overstating my reaction, but only because I’ve been Alex’s friend for many years and actually read this whole story years ago and I know what happens next (spoiler: it’s awesome). And thanks for thinking me sexually mature. The man-candy is fine, but I do get excited when we go from Maven’s beige office to a rockin’ sc-fi page like this one with spaceships and awesome-looking guns. Part of me is still twelve. 🙂

  • crimsonkiss22

    Oh, yes. 

    Deacon is about to go nuts on these bastards. >:| Go, Deacon, go! 

  • Krondor2000

    All I can say is if Deacon had not “malfunctioned”, he would have perished with his “brothers”.  And Jeff, the last survivor, would simply be killed on sight by this very team.  So the question remains why the massacre of the colony?  Why are they a threat to the corporation?

    • OR, Jeff could’ve hid when the retrieval team came.  Gathered up what food there was left and hid somewhere.  Retrieval team comes and sees that the “people” they were retrieving got blown up and then leave.  Jeff, meanwhile, is left on the planet/colony alone, to eventually starve.  That or sneaks his way on board.  Or leaves somehow.

      All speculative there.  And assuming Jeff doesn’t need extraordinary hiding skills or anything and that the team comes and goes just as quick, not checking extensively for survivors.

  • The subtle use of different shades of grey on this page is very good.

  • CommodoreZelda


  • What do you mean head and midsection?!  They don’t think the same and aim at the same place?! 

  • Erica

    wow, what assholes . __. ignoring a cyborg and ready to kill a dude tht doesn’t even look like he can lift an ak… no offense, Jeff. lol

  • Kittery Brazelton

    I can only, giggling, imagine what they filled their time with without the food.  Have to do something to keep your mind off being a little hungery =D

  • Matt Menke

    I have Winona’s concepts of those guns saved off, from, like years ago! I thought they looked familiar!

    • That’s awesome, Matt. Glad to have a long time fan of Winona here! 😀

    • W Nelson

      Haha wow, that would have been a while ago!  Nice memory there 🙂

  • Lorescien

    Holy crap… sexy soldiers with bad attitudes. Get ’em, Deacon!

  • I’m guessing a big ol’ can of whoopass is about to be opened. XD

  • mwxl

    I haven’t commented on this in a while (and never with disqus before) but I certainly haven’t stopped reading. I f-ing love this comic. Great characters and story, fantastic artwork and art design.

    Best facial expressions in any comic I read right now. Love details like the moon colony, even the simple passage of day to night. Love how unbashfully gay it is, but also not forced or contrived, rather it fits with the rest of the richness of the story. I think it would work gay or not, and that’s a good thing, but it makes me happy that it’s this way.

    I like the contrast of future / present tech in this page… the spacecraft with the obviously yet-undeveloped propulsion, against the soldiers who look curiously like present day riot police, still using rifles, too. They seem like oddly cumbersome pieces of equipment for a mission into an indoor environment, actually. Very cool design, though!

    I’m not sure these soldiers made a very good decision here (android scorned?), although perhaps they assume Deacon is on their team? Or a “job’s up, get back in your box now” “just a robot”? An irrelevant part of their picture? Are they contractors perhaps? I don’t notice any noneco emblems on them.

    Also, I like the use of the word “mid-section” in this page (:

    • Well, gosh, thank you for all the kind words, mwxl! I’m really glad to hear you’ve stuck with us and I appreciate how specific you were about the things you’re enjoying with Artifice—you’ve got me blushing and smiling over here. Thank you. 🙂

  • Superjenny

    Ready…  Aim…  Aaaaaaaaand…


  • Guest

    Can’t help but notice the presence of only 6 soldiers. Can’t wait to see what happens with #7.

  • Adam Black

    Alex, Winona, and friends, …
    I’d like to report a Brilliant discovery…the complexity of the plot has developed enough to allow a fantastic new way to view Artifice….Due partly to the Flash-back nature of the comic, and the progession of the plot,  the Random button now allows a post-modern  non-sequestial storyline to unveil itself!!  I encourage fans like myself to try for 30 minutes and discover an entire new way to view the “Art” in “Artifice”….
         Maybe when its finished, you can run a contest for the best non-linear fan presentation…
    …Looks like i spoke to soon…The “random button” isnt random…The flaw of randomity is that is allows duplicates…which is forgivable…but not casual loops…
    I just got stuck on a temporal loop of 50-20-58-30…

    • Ah, temporal loops. Well, every sci-fi series needs at least one episode with that trope, yes?  And then one where a character finds out what the world would be like if he/she was never born.  And of course the one where all the characters lose their memories and have sex with unlikely partners—Bob/Maven, perhaps?

    • Sharon Kerr-Bullian

      I decided to try it for myself, and my first two random pages gave me some good dialog.

      Pg 59
      Deacon: But that doesn’t mean I’m not a good soldier!
      Maven: Oh doesn’t it?

      Pg 53
      Jeff: Jesus. You say all the right things.

  • locked box

    The fact that they established that Jeff was the last remaining colonist before shooting him makes me suspect that this is some kind of cover up. After all, why wouldn’t they want Jeff taken alive otherwise? If the colonists we’re really performing dangerous/criminal activities then any sensible soldier would capture and trial as many criminals as possible in order to prevent creating martyrs and to obtain information and evidence of any accomplices who were not on the colony. Killing all the colonists makes this look like they are trying to cover something up, or shut something down that they were responsible for or connected to. That makes the idea or sending robots to do it more sensible, because robots arn’t supposed to question or think outside of their orders. I’m really looking forwards to how things are going to unfold for Jeff and deacon once we leave Maven’s office.

    • I like the way you’re thinking abou this, locked box. Good analysis. 🙂

  • Oh no!!! ;3;

  • Kittery Brazelton

    I really think it’s interesting, the choice of weapon the soldiers roll out with.  That design is not at all appropriate for close in spaces.  The barrel length makes it impractical.  But damn, do they ever look like they can deal some punishment.  It’s a great visual statement about what they think they’re going to do.  

    Hehehe… what they “think”…

    • Sharon Kerr-Bullian

      Since when did the powers that be ever give two hoots whether the equipment the soldier on the ground has is actually useful and practical? Those poor soldiers probably lament their commanding officers’ decisions regarding everything, every day. I would imagine their officers chose those weapons based on the demands of the last conflict that officer saw action in (which could be as many as five or six wars ago), and not two hoots were given about choosing a weapon relevant to the modern battlefield. History is filled with that kind of bad decision making at the top of the military, why would it be any different here? 😉

      • Kittery Brazelton

        Hehe, there is that 😉 but I’m thinking there, where a carbine would be eminently more practical, that The Corporation’s only directive for their weapon R&D is:

        “Make the guns scary.  Really scary.  Like… Maven, scary.”

        And viola, a bullety death cannon harpoon, with buttery smooth full-auto action and self cleaning non-stick social media integration, is born.

        If Dr. Maven has a purse, which in my mind she does, I would hope she has one of these tucked away in there.  

        J/k, Dr. Maven, I love you, just in that terrified-of-you-love, way.

        • Sharon Kerr-Bullian

          roflmao “Like… Maven, scary.”

          One of these tucked in her purse? Run Deacon!

        • “Like… Maven, scary.” LOVE IT! LOL

  • Word of God needed!  I had no idea Deacon actually needed food to maintain himself!  Could we get a little more detail into that, or is it restricted as a plot point?

    • Deacon does not need human food. He is merely using “we” inclusively. 🙂

      • Oh, okay!  Good to know.  That would have been some kind of game-changer.  An android seeking food to supplement basic organic compounds difficult to synthesize?  Why, that sounds…human.  Or it would if it were the case.  Mwahahaha.  Thanks!

  • i am totally donating!

    • Thank you so much for your super-generous donation, Daniel—and for all your wonderful reactions as your read along. They were a lot of fun for me to read! I’m very glad you found us! 🙂

  • Brittany Brain

    Hi, Alex and Winona! I’ve been reading your comic for a while but I was too shy to comment, and afraid of saying something stupid or awkward. XD;
    I love Arifice! It’s really intelligent, you know, it makes me think about what it means to be human and stuff… The art and storyline are just fabulous. I love reading all the comments as well. These people say the smartest things!
    Anyway keep up the good work! (good is an understatement but you understand what I mean)

    • Aww, thank you, BrittanyBrain! I’m delighted that you took the time to comment and I appreciate all the kind words. (And I love to hear that the story is making you think about larger issues—that’s always wonderful to hear. 🙂 )

      And I agree, the comments from all you smart readers is one of the best parts!

  • Jeff! Don’t kill my baby!

  • mikakitten

    EEEEK!!! Noooooooooooooooooooo!!! ;_; … I know he gets saved…but still!! Scary!! It’s understandable Deacon freak/schized out!! Go super hero Deacon!! Save Jeff!!!

  • Robert Endicott

    i am new to this comic   but i love it     i absolutly love jeff   as a fellow gay longhaired man myself i myself tho am curious what he did on the colony as a job i know deacon is a soildier and know jeff has some job there i keep thinkin a nurse 😛

    • I’m really glad you like Artifice, Robert! (And as far as we know, Jeff did not have a specific job on Da Vinci Four. Or at least none with any authority.)

      • Robert Endicott

        well not thinking he had one with atthority  tho thinking like janator or food service by looks of his outfit it deff help figuring out more about him after all we know deacon is a soldier and jeff had to have something he was doinging even if was just mopping the floors as a janator

  • strangeangel24601

    I’m a little confused about one thing that no one else seems to have commented on – how did the rations run out so fast? One would think that, being so remote, the colony would have at least a few week’s worth of supplies for all those people. By my calculations, that should keep one person for years, in theory anyway. Had Corporate completely cut off their supplies to try and starve them out before sending in the androids? Do food preservation methods of the future require a power source that two people just couldn’t maintain by themselves? Or maybe Jeff just had to burn one hell of a lot of calories to keep up with Deacon… 😉

  • Ree

    WOW, all the architecture and machinery is wonderfully wonderfully drawn!! (and this page is very sad 🙁 )