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The Young Protectors: Engaging The Enemy Chapter Three—Page 96

390 Comments on The Young Protectors: Engaging The Enemy Chapter Three—Page 96

Double uh, oh.

***SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT***

First of all, the TL;DR version: I’m replacing the donation bar with a Patreon page. I’m doing it 1) so I can more directly reward those who are supporting this comic and also 2) so I can keep making this comic and others like it for a long time. There will be special rewards for being a Patreon backer, but no matter what, I’ll keep posting the pages up here for everyone to read for free. If you think The Young Protectors is something worth supporting and want to get some special, insider rewards, please check out my Patreon page and its video here:

Check out Alex Woolfson’s Patreon Page

Now the details:

What is Patreon?

Patreon lets readers like you support their favorite creators by becoming patrons. Unlike other fundraising services, which raise for a single big event like printing a book, Patreon is for creators who regularly post up creative work, like a webcomic. Instead of making a single large pledge like you would with Kickstarter, with Patreon you pledge to make a small donation every month (like $3 or $5) to support a creator’s ongoing work — and, in return, you get some nice rewards (that are often also ongoing). Patreon accepts both credit cards and Paypal (although I get charged less fees with credit cards); they also accept international payments in any currency; and you can pledge as little or as much as you’d like. Lots of my friends who make webcomics have had a good experience with it, so I’m giving it a try.

You can watch their video on this page:

http://www.patreon.com/about

(There are two different kinds of Patreon campaigns: one where you pledge to pay per update (“patronage per content release”) and one where you pledge to pay monthly (“patronage per month”). The “pledge-per-update” Patreon campaign is the best solution for creators who publish on an irregular schedule, like once every couple of months, and that’s the kind of campaign their video focuses on. Because my updates are consistent, though, I’m using the “monthly pledge” method because I think that’s most clear and easiest for everyone. You can read more about the two different types of campaigns in their FAQ.)

You can read their FAQ here:

http://www.patreon.com/faq

Here’s my own off-the-cuff FAQ:

Why are you replacing the donation bar with a Patreon page?

A couple reasons. The first is that I’ve been wanting to come up with a better system to more directly show my gratitude to those who support this comic on an ongoing basis. My personal “thank-yous” under the pages are truly heartfelt—I really do feel tremendously grateful to y’all—but I’ve wanted to do more. Patreon makes it easy for me to set up a system of direct rewards that do just that and I’m excited to be able to show my gratitude more directly to each of you.

But there’s another important reason. From the very first moment I decided to make webcomics, I’ve always been very committed to making that work sustainable, meaning that it would be set up in such a way that I could always finish what I started. I’d been burned myself by getting involved with various webcomics only to have them go on long hiatuses and then eventually stop altogether with the story left unfinished. I never wanted my readers to experience that. It’s one of the reasons Artifice was only 88 pages (I wanted to make sure it was short enough that I could be sure I could finish it.) It’s one of the reasons why we’re so hardcore about not ever missing an update. I consider it a sacred trust.

And, as this comic has grown in readership and has consistently been posting at twice-a-week, I’ve had to turn down more and more work from the day job, which has meant burning through my savings. And, while I’m not on the verge of financial collapse, that can’t continue for much longer. I know many of you would understand if I chose to put the comic on hiatus for financial reasons, but I absolutely don’t want to do that.

Right now, a small group of awesome folks are donating to keep the bonus pages flowing. It’s my hope that with a Patreon campaign, even more people will find it rewarding to support this work and that more folks would see that even small donations over time make a huge difference in my ability to make this comic possible. Will that happen? I don’t know. I’ll never take your support for granted, so I’ll certainly understand if that’s not something y’all can do. But, by the same token, you’ve also all amazed me again and again with what you can do when you all come together, so I thought this would be worth trying. 🙂

Does this mean people will now have to pay to read The Young Protectors?

No. Absolutely not. The comic pages will always be available for everyone to read for free just like always. Patreon backers do get some extra awesome stuff (like special Disqus Avatar badges and getting to see sneak previews of the art and, if certain Milestone Goals are reached, things like exclusive NSFW rewards), but I’m not going to put the regular comic pages behind a paywall. Not ever.

If you want to support the comic and my work, then hopefully I can make that worth your while. But if now isn’t the right time for you to do that, you’ll be able to enjoy The Young Protectors just like always. I want as many folks as possible to enjoy this story and the last thing I would want is for anyone else to be put into a tough financial spot by making a pledge they couldn’t afford.

What about the bonus pages?

OK, so here’s where I need to explain a bit more how Patreon works. This might get a little TL;DR, but here’s what you need to know: you know how in a Kickstarter campaign, there are often “stretch goals” — meaning extra dollar goals that when they are hit, it means every backer’s rewards get better? Patreon has a similar thing called Milestone Goals. And turning The Young Protectors into an official, permanent, twice-weekly comic is now one of those Milestone Goals.

Milestone Goals work like this. As more people join the Patreon campaign, Patreon tracks how much total money is being pledged monthly when you add all those individual pledges together. It then puts that total dollar amount (converted to U.S. dollars) under the number of Patrons for that project. (For example, on the Questionable Content Patreon page, you can see that Jeph Jacques has 3362 Patrons and his Patreon project is receiving $9,722.01 in pledges each month.) That dollar amount under the number of Patrons is what triggers the Milestone Goals.

The Young Protectors is officially a once-a-week comic that updates every Saturday. The Wednesday updates (like this one!) have been “bonus pages.” The way bonus pages have been working on this site so far is that a new bonus page has been triggered whenever the donation bar hits $400. Since that target has been met every week for well over a year, that’s meant about $1600 (4 x $400) of support per month. Even though this doesn’t come close to covering the art costs for a month’s worth of comics pages, let alone other costs, this is still huge and has been a big reason why I’ve been able to sustain things for as long as I have. But ultimately, over time, the workload and expense of those two pages per week has meant that I’ve had to continually turn down paying work and continually dip into my savings to keep things going. And like I said, that can’t go on for much longer.

So, I’ve decided to set the Milestone Goal for keeping this a twice-weekly comic at the amount that covers my actual art and webhosting expenses for 8 pages of comics per month, and that’s $3000 per month. That amount doesn’t include any money for me, but if we hit that goal, at least I wouldn’t be out-of-pocket for creating the monthly pages of this comic, and so it seems like a good minimum for making things more sustainable if we’re going to keep this comic at two pages per week (which I think we all want to do.) $3000/month is an ambitious Milestone Goal, but The Young Protectors has thousands of readers. If only 10% joined the Patreon campaign at $3-$5, then we’d have more than enough to hit that Milestone Goal and then some.

Now, to be clear, I don’t feel any of you are obliged in any way to give me any of your hard-earned money, even if it’s “just” a few bucks. But one of my biggest responsibilities to y’all is to make sure this story is able to continue to its completion and that means asking for what’s actually needed. And, ultimately, the more successful the Patreon campaign is, the more time I’ll have to devote to creating the stories you love, including extras with your favorite characters which I’ve been wanting to do. I believe setting goals based on actual costs is the best way forward for serving the needs of this comic and, in particular, you as readers. And for those of you who can support this work, I’ll do everything I can to make being a Patron fun and rewarding.

I’ve removed the donation bar below and right now, we have three more bonus pages “in the buffer” — so, no matter what, there will be bonus pages through February 4th. If we hit the $3000 Milestone Goal, then I’ll be able to keep posting up two pages of comics going forward, just like we have been. If not, then no matter what I’ll keep posting up a page once-a-week every Saturday and, with the extra time, I’ll change my focus from creating comics back to drumming up more work for the day job. Now, I really want to keep us at two pages a week (I’d much rather spend my time making awesome comics for y’all than editing corporate video), so I hope we are able to hit this Milestone Goal. But either way, I’ll always feel tremendously grateful to you all for being such amazing, thoughtful readers. The best community in webcomics period, IMHO. 🙂

Does this mean you won’t be doing any more Kickstarters?

Kickstarter and Patreon are actually very different and serve very different purposes. Kickstarter is great for making specific big things (like a book) that would never be able to be made any other way. It’s absolutely terrible for making rent. (After Kickstarter fees, $120,000 from the last Kickstarter was placed in my bank account; that project’s rewards costs are over $117,000 and are looking, after shipping, to be a bit north of that…) Patreon, on the other hand, is about supporting the artist while they create ongoing work.

I’ll still use Kickstarter to fund the printing of future volumes of The Young Protectors (although with a lot more restraint when it comes to the stretch goals so folks don’t have to wait so long for their books), but the point of Patreon is to make the day-to-day life of a working artist into something sustainable, especially now that the merchandise market (like T-shirts) is so over-saturated and ad income is so unreliable (and, in my case, with a comic that features gay romance, mostly unavailable from the mainstream ad networks other creators can use.)

What if I just want to donate every now and then instead of monthly?

I hear you. Right now, Patreon doesn’t support an easy way to do that. What is easy is changing and/or cancelling your pledge which you can do at any time. I’ve been supporting other creators for months on Patreon and it’s very simple to make changes to your pledge; it happens immediately. So, in theory, you could make a pledge, wait a month (or whatever) for your credit card to be charged and then cancel future pledges, thus making a “one-time” pledge. But let’s face it, that’s a pain in the butt. The folks at Patreon have told me they might someday offer one-off donations, but they don’t now. So currently there’s not a great solution for one-off pledges and, while I could keep the donation bar up here on the site, I think for now anyway that that would just confuse things.

For what it’s worth, as I said, the whole reason I’m doing this is to make being a comic-creator sustainable. And something that’s really helpful for that is having a predictable monthly income (which ads and selling merchandise absolutely do not give you.) Making a living as an artist means living within a tight budget and making that happen means needing to know what I can count on for sure. If you are able to afford supporting my work here, it’s much better for me if you make a small pledge that you know you can afford to make monthly, than a much larger pledge that happens at random and I don’t know is coming. I can totally understand if that won’t work for some folks, but having a predictable monthly income will really help me make things sustainable if you’re able.

So, okay, I get why you’re doing this. Do I get anything by being your Patreon backer?

Glad you asked! Besides the good feeling you get from knowing that you’re directly responsible for making the stories you like possible, depending on your pledge level, backers get all kinds of rewards! Like sneak peeks of the art, a special badge for your Disqus Avatar, access to a special monthly Google Hangout where you’ll get to ask me and the artists questions, free Kindle e-books, and even free stuff from my store.

And if we hit Milestone Goals, other rewards get unlocked, like access to script and pencil pages, access to the digital Kickstarter rewards (yes, even the “Full Monty” rewards), special new sexy pin-ups and more!

And the rewards will only get better as the Patreon campaign succeeds and I’m able to devote more and more time to making comics. While I prefer to call y’all “readers” instead of “fans” — I’m just a regular guy, not all that and a bag of chips, y’know? — Patreon is set up to reward fans. I’ll know the folks who back the Patreon are true fans of this comic and so I’ll do whatever I can to make being a Patreon backer feel special and to offer as much inside, special access as I can to the comic and its world. Like with the Kickstarter, Patreon backers will be able to vote to decide what new rewards I should create and together we’ll make this into something really fun.

Okay. I’m willing to give this a try. What do I need to do?

Awesome. 🙂 If you believe this comic is worth supporting and if you want special access to The Young Protectors goodies and inside information, then I think you’ll really like being a Patreon backer.

Please check out my Patreon Page. Take a look at the video (where you’ll be able to play a fun drinking game based on the number of times I say the word “basically.”) And consider being a Patron.

And thank you so much for taking the time to read my little novel of an explanation here. A lot of folks have never heard of Patreon and hopefully now y’all know more what it’s about. I really appreciate your interest in The Young Protectors and in supporting this work! 🙂

Oh, and…

***THIS IS A BONUS PAGE!***

Our seventy-ninth bonus page in a row! And you yet again tipped the donation bar past its target below! That means that, thanks to your generous donations, and in addition to our regular Saturday updates and bonus pages on Wednesday, January 21st (page 98!), and Wednesday, January 28th (page 100!), there will now be an additional bonus page (page 102!) on Wednesday, February 4th!

Special thanks go out to long-time supporters Amelia B. (who makes their second generous donation to The Young Protectors!), & Antonia S. (who makes their twenty-second generous donation to The Young Protectors!) and a warm welcome and grateful bow go out to new supporters Erin C., & Roger T. for their generous donations over the last few days!

Big hugs go out to new friend of The Young Protectors Mary C. for their super-generous $25 donation and also long-time friends Marc B. for their super-generous $25 donation and Pam W. for their super-generous $39 donation! And this makes Pam’s tenth (!!), and Marc’s eighteenth super-generous donations to this comic!

Thank you all so much for your generous support! And a HUGE, BIG THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO HAS EVER DONATED WITH THE DONATION BAR! You have no idea how much your support has meant to me. It’s been HUGE and I love you all. 🙂

So! First blood… and it’s Spooky’s! And it looks like Kyle and Tsunami are now a bit distracted by that while, at the same time, The Annihilator is ripping his way through the Spookster’s ectoplasmic restraints. Is Spooky now out of the fight? Will The Platinum Priestess take advantage of this distraction? Will The Annihilator be able to get free and, if so, what will that mean for the rest of the team?

Tune in this Saturday to find out! Hope to see you there! 😀

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!
  • davefragments

    Now that might hurt like yanking a nose hair

    • Congrats BTW and graphically, if accurately put!

      • davefragments

        Thanks

    • syllibub

      My eyes are watering just thinking about it – ouch

      • davefragments

        I thought it was more colorful than merely “ouch”

      • I thought you had minions for trimming those?

        • syllibub

          LOL, it’s never been an issue for me, but I think yanking stubborn eyebrow hairs is maybe comparable? Lord knows that stings!

    • Congrats, Dave!

      • davefragments

        thanks

  • Sapfo

    Distracted by comments 😀

  • syllibub

    Ah, poor Spooky! Sircea’s looking a little nonchalant over there — maybe not a great thing that Kyle and Gordon are distracted…

    • stickfigurefairytales

      Too true!

    • And Kyle is, isn’t he… that CAN’T be good!

  • Saxon_Brenton

    No! Don’t allow yourselves to be distracted, guys!

  • Nooo! Medical attention for Spooky stat!

  • Oh nice… A soupçon of skullduggery and a dollop of heroism and nom nom nom!

  • Sapfo

    Oh no, my sexy brave Spooky! That did not go according to the plane.

    • Nurse… get to Spooky and bind that wound. Hurry, all our hopes are riding with you!

      • Yes, Sapfo! Spooky needs help!

      • Sapfo

        I think I better take Spooky to bed. I will take care of him. you go out there and fight the big fight. And I nurse Spooky back to health…

        • stickfigurefairytales

          Good idea. You’re the expert, after all!

          • Sapfo

            Yes…
            <..>

          • purplefoxglove

            As a former nurse, I volunteer to help you. We could take shifts, and it’s easier to help Spooky move around when there are two of us.

          • I’ll be the expert’s helper. (*eager look*)

          • Adam Black

            Its just a flesh-wound

          • It’s just the ‘flesh’ I’m concerned with… clearly these jeans are ruined will have to be removed…

          • Adam Black

            but they are designer!

            I think the rip just adds some authenticity .

  • Spooky took a shuriken to the knee! (well thigh)

    • stickfigurefairytales

      He used to be an adventurer like us.

      • I’m just glad it’s a thigh and he didn’t get circumcised… (oooops…)

        • Adam Black

          probably happened in Hell

          • Damn… probably… I hear they have a demon for that.

          • Adam Black

            They are ALL Demons, thats their secret

          • Dang… that’s right.

          • Adam Black

            if you can afford it

          • I don’t think I need to meet a demon-mohel EVER!

          • Having seen the NSFW art from the kickstarter I can tell you the answer to that is: No 🙂

  • Nuu! Spooks! I didn’t realize how much I love you until this moment! D:
    Also, Alex, when I am no longer in college, one of the first things I will be spending money of my own on will be this comic. Just wanted you to know. 🙂

  • For every scar on my spooky a thousand shall die a hideous death…

    chris looks around to see it that was too hyperbolic…

  • Tsu, Kyle keep your focus!!

  • stickfigurefairytales

    SMACK HIM INTO THE PANEL BORDER, SPOOKY!!!!!

  • Now is SO the time for one of those magik tentacles to go somewhere really uncomfortable! PLEASE!

    • stickfigurefairytales

      Actually, I like the idea of the magic turning Anni upside-down and banging his head repeatedly on the ground.

  • Okay, so I claim the first prediction! Kyle is going to be just distracted enough that his fire putters out and the Platinum Priestess is gonna smack him with some crazy magic juju and that’s gonna cause Tsunami to jump in and try to save the boys, beginning the snowball of fail.

  • Adam Black

    Oh No Spooky, You used the Godzilla-Gigantor ray by mistake

    • Ermmmmm… how big does the damn thing need to be?

      • Adam Black

        he will crush them all

  • stickfigurefairytales

    I wonder what Anni has in all of the little pouches on his belt.

    • Tiny razors so that he can be sure that his beard comes to a perfect point at all times. Also tiny bottles of shaving cream.

      • Adam Black

        where is he shaving again?

        • stickfigurefairytales

          Most of his face, to keep his goatee looking that good.

          • Adam brings up an interesting point though. Wonder if, ahem, OTHER areas come to a perfect point. XD

          • Saxon_Brenton

            Hmm, does Annihilator have the same problem that Silver Age Superman did, where his hair is also (near) invulnerable? Maybe he waxes?

          • So he carries super-wax in his pouches? I like that idea.
            Also, I now want to see infomercials for super-wax, with superheroes hopelessly fumbling as they attempt to wax their bikini line with regular wax.

          • Well if Anni wants to go to Aruba and wear his mankini during the off-season he’s going to want to look his best… still ouch.

          • Okay… OUCH… just OUCH… (damn that would be invulnerable).

          • Adam Black

            Superman could grow out his nails and harvest them for razors.

        • Bathroom probably, shower maybe if he can keep the mirror from fogging up. Why do you ask?

    • davefragments

      pomade

    • Adam Black

      Make-up probably.
      Older gay men are very vain

    • Erm…. he has pouches on his belt. I’ve never noticed. LOL.

  • Sapfo

    That was a lot of news Alex.

    • Yes, a lot of absorb and thinking about.

    • syllibub

      It’s pretty exciting — I think in the long term this could be a wonderful alternative to the donation bar.

      • I’m for anything that allow sour Alex to do this forever, or until the sun burns out and destroy our solar system… at which point his brain will be a series of circuits on a space station and still making Graphic Novels in the Andromeda Galaxy!!!

    • Yep, I know. 🙂 I’m here if y’all have any questions.

      • I remember you talking about the issue of sustainability at your Y-Con panel. You’d mentioned Patreon, I think.

        • Yep, I’ve been thinking about doing this for some time. Doing research, etc. to make sure it was the right thing, even talking to the Patreon folks on the phone.

          I found they were very good people, actually. 🙂

          • syllibub

            It really does seem like a great system. I’m sure it’ll be nice to have a concrete idea of how much you’re making each month in donations — easier to plan that way.

          • Definitely. The founder of Patreon is a creator himself (Jack Conte, a musician who puts out music videos on YouTube) who was faced with the same problem a lot of creators are—making creating the work and being an artist sustainable financially.

            And he uses it himself. So they’ve really put good thought into coming up with something that works well for both fans and creators.

          • davefragments

            I can tell you for myself because I enjoy writing my short stories, the only way it works for me is that I could retire early and now I have the time to devote to some rather endless hours of editing. When I worked for a living, I couldn’t devote that time in any meaningful way.

          • That’s true for me know. For sure.

          • I’ll be selfish though, Alex, and say I love the idea that I can pin-point target what I WANT TO SUPPORT. Comcast or Time-Warner Cable doesn’t get me to pay for the fricking “Shopping Network” along with ESPN or Animé… not with Patreon. I’m supporting the exact art that brings me the most pleasure. So, for ME, it’s a great system.

            I give $2 a month (a month) to Cris-art, because I LOVE her images of men in romantic, warm, sexy situations. It’s so rare. I want her to be able to keep doing them. Make’s me feel good to give her one of my cups of coffee each month. You know?

            Just sayin’ it’s not just good for the artist, it’s good for us too.

          • I remember being amazed when you said you had thousands of readers and yet only a few of us regularly camp. Obviously, not everyone has the time but I’m surprised there aren’t more people.

          • I think there are many lurkers. 🙂

          • I think that is very true now that I think about it!

          • Posting is scary for many. (I’m very shy also, you know)

          • Adam Black

            On the internet no one knows you are Genghis Khan .

          • Or that you are Vlad the Impaler? So true.

          • Adam Black

            Ive been compared to a “wedge” but never a stake.

            This could be a whole new form of kink for me. But it suffers from one bad problem: I dont get second dates when I leave them bloody. I’m more like the Sad the Impaler, “No no you will hurt yourself”

          • HA! (Says the one who can be shy/silent around people, believe it or not, even though I’ve become much better in recent years).

      • davefragments

        I have to read it closely tomorrow. My eyes are revoltingly red tonight.

      • Sapfo

        The dream of you doing this for a living is a nice dream. And I do like it when people try and live their dream (with a realistically plane). So you go Alex! 🙂

        • Thank you, Sapfo! 😀

        • Sapfo… you and I have talked recently (with D-wolf) about comics that have had to close doors or go on hiatus due to life and earning livings… I realize how stuck on these two-pages a week I am. Page day totally lifts me up. I love the idea of it being AW’s full-time job. MOAR TYP. Ha!

      • Adam Black

        I got some!

        favorite color(s)?

        favorite characters ( you didnt write )

        your favorite city to Con in?

        • not killing… but like a butterfly emerging from it’s cocoon… it’s now a new a special thing… (enya starts playing in the background like at the spa)…

          (what? too much?)

  • davefragments

    I thought it was a knee shot. Two inches too high.

  • I’m a Patreon already for a couple of other artists (as I’m sure others are) it’s easy and awesome and I love being able to target the one “TV program I really want to support” and let the other 500 channels of crap go fend for themselves. I’m so in! It’s so much better than cable! Heeeeeee…

    I’m also happy to answer any questions. It’s super easy to understand.

  • Eris, elder daughter of Nyx

    I may have to learn how to do this Patreon thing; I really, really, really love having YP update twice a week and might lose my mind if it went down to only once a week. It would be worth more than a few bucks to prevent the loss of my mind, so learning how to navigate Patreon seems like a good investment ^_^

    • Ha! I so agree about the two-page a week thing. If we had to go down to one… I’d be curled on the floor in withdrawals and the DTs (delirium tremens). NOT pretty. We don’t want that. Trust me. lol.

  • By the way, I love how that little ad for Patreon up there has the boys’ shocked faces, but especially that Tsunami looks so horrified. XD
    It really is a great idea though, I wish I had extra money to spend.

  • Sapfo

    Well I am running of to work now. Thank you for a great camping, A wonderful new page and a lot of news to take in.
    have a good night/day good people

    • davefragments

      Have a good day.

    • Good Day Sapfo sweet!

    • stickfigurefairytales

      Take care, Sapfo!

    • Have fun storming the castle!! Um… Have a good day!

      • Sapfo

        Storm the castle? I think you might have the wrong idea of what a nurse do… Or are you right?…

        • If that IS what nurses do, I am switching careers.

        • Of course I’m right? Um… or was it a secret?

      • HA… “Good night, Westley. Good work. Sleep well. I’ll most likely kill you in the morning.”

        • Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.

          • HA! “Stop saying that!”

          • Haha, one of my favorite parts though was “Fezzik…you did something right!”

          • And mine:
            Inigo Montoya: Who are you?
            Man in Black: No one of consequence.
            Inigo Montoya: I must know…
            Man in Black: Get used to disappointment.

          • Oh there are so many beautiful lines! Falling down the hill, yelling as you wish…Inconceivable!…I wonder if he is using the same wind we are using…

          • Thank you. This just makes me realize I’m due for an annual viewing. So great.

      • “Do you think it’ll work?”

    • Have a great day! (I feel like a mom sending her kid off to school)

    • Good night/morn beautiful!

    • Have a good day, Sapfo Dear!

  • SofiaT

    Phew!

    So Anni did aim the throwing stars towards Spooky’s legs!
    I’m really glad I got that one right, and not my other guess that Mitch would end up hurt.

    Also, I’m proud I calculated the trajectory of the stars all of my own, because I’ve always been crap in trigonometry. (It was a straight line, but it still counts for trigonometry, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.)

  • Alright, I’m going to get back to writing and wish I had food in my fridge. Goodnight all, and good luck with Patreon Alex! Its great to see that this comic is going so well for you – I only hope art can be how I make my living as well one day!

    • I hope so for you too, Amaya! Good luck with the writing! 🙂

    • It was nice having you in the campsite tonight!

  • So, I know TECHNICALLY that magic stream is coming from Spooky’s HANDS, but… Yeah. That’s totally not where it looks like it’s coming from 😉

  • AseretZone

    Something tells me that when Lampros gets out, Anni will have no qualms about handing Spooky over in a little basket (especially since he’s NOT a kid and therefore is NOT protected by the no-hurting-kids rule). I’m sure Lampy would like to have the pretty toy again.

    Ouch, that looks like it hurt! Poor Spooky! And…where is he aiming Anni? Seriously, he’s just shooting him somewhere. Or is that him trying to hold onto him as he breaks free?

    If I could give money, I would. :< Sadly, I'm scrounging to find a job so that when little Nate comes it won't be too hard a strain on our finances.
    By the way, I'm having a boy. 🙂 His name's Nathaniel!

    • Congrats! I love that name!

      • AseretZone

        Me too! I’ve been wanting a baby Nathaniel since I was little! <3

        • I want to have a boy myself, (one day) and name him Leonardo. 🙂

          • AseretZone

            Good luck. 🙂 Leonardo is an awesome name!

    • Congrats… that’s great.

      • AseretZone

        Thanks. 🙂 I’m both excited and nervous.

        • I’ll bet, but you’ll be great, BECAUSE you are “excited and nervous.” I’m just a happy gay Uncle, and when it becomes to much I just hand them over to my little brother while he curses my name. (It’s awesome).

          Check back with us when you get to sleep again. 🙂

          • AseretZone

            XD I’ve been sleeping just fine, which is good since once he’s born that’s going bye-bye.
            I’ve been looking at so much baby stuff and talking to family and friends and gushing all over like a glass filled too full. XD

          • Awwww… that makes me happy to hear. I have straight friends with tiny ones of various ages and I swear just watching the little ones trip on the world is so much better than any television program.

            One of my friends has a three year old boy who spent an entire hour building a castle out of wooden blocks surrounded by a room full of adults fascinated and staring at him.

            He never even noticed us. He was so into the world of his fort. It’s the age of magic for sure and you’ll get to watch it. Enjoy. Enjoy!!!!

          • AseretZone

            Haha, well I gotta get through one and two before he’s three! I hope he likes music, ’cause between his mom and his aunts he’s gonna hear a lot of it. Especially since we do open mics together every month.

    • SofiaT

      Congratulations!
      And a beautiful name too 🙂

      • AseretZone

        Thank you! I love this name. 🙂
        He’s so cute, and we’ve already caused him to facepalm with our antics. XD Went back to see him on the monitor after a heated discussion during the ultrasound and he had his little palm on his face! <3

        • SofiaT

          😀

    • Congrats!

      • AseretZone

        Thank you! ^^

    • Congrats, AseretZone! That’s exciting! 🙂

      • AseretZone

        Thank you! Yes, I’m so very excited! I’ve been putting the ultrasound pictures into a photo album for the baby shower in April, and when he’s born it’ll be filled with pictures of him out of the womb! <333

        • davefragments

          I’m an April baby, a Taurus and a chemical engineer. I turned out all right. I hope for the best for you.

          • AseretZone

            Well, he’s actually due in late-May. 🙂 Possibly early-June if he teases us like some babies do. The baby shower is a month before so we have everything ready for him! XD

          • davefragments

            That’s OK. I was a little early. My brother and I were an only child and in those days they only knew from heartbeats. No ultrasound to see. My father always said after getting two on the first try, they were afraid to try again.

          • AseretZone

            Well, now the ultrasounds are so clear that there’s no question of boy or girl. XD My mom was amazed when she first saw it, they’re much better since my 17-year-old sister was born.

          • davefragments

            I”m 64. All they did was listen with a stethoscope then and they barely had incubators that worked. They never told my Mother that she had two until about 4 days after we were born. Stupid and cruel is my opinion of that. Mt Brother has four kids and three grandkids. He;s the old one (ha ha ha, wink, wink). I stayed single.
            It is much nicer now for parents.
            Except for those “gag a maggot” diapers.
            And Nate will demonstrate the fountain of youth. (roll your eyes, please).

          • AseretZone

            Wait, wouldn’t she know when you were born? O.o
            Oh gosh, those diapers. Luckily my cousin gave me a lesson on changing diapers and let me practice with her daughter. Those things will be expensive to keep in stock, though!

          • davefragments

            It was the stone ages – 1950. What can I say?

          • AseretZone

            Crazy. XD That was a long time ago now.

          • Awww those were the days… when Dave The Barbarian rode on his faithful velociraptor, Scoundrel, and was the terror of the mid-western plains.

            Kingdoms rose and fell during that epoch, but then (thank goodness) he settled down, got a steady job and civilization was allowed to evolve and reach the heady heights that we see in the American midwest today.

            Dave? Do you still keep the Axe of Ultimate Despair in your bottom drawer? For old times sake? The kids of 2014 don’t know what they owe you, but a few of us old-timers still do. 🙂

          • davefragments

            It wasn’t that long ago. wink, wink.
            I’m not ancient. I’m barely retirement age.

          • I’m just making the point… you’re a young pup! LOL.

        • You should totally whip out that photo album on Prom Night. 😀

          • AseretZone

            Pft, I’ll keep it and show it to all his love interests. XD

          • My mother was cleaning and just sent me (AND MY PARTNER) naked toddler pictures of me at various ages 1-3… being super cute, but… OMG. My partner informed me that I was adorable, and has now hidden them.

            WORDS ARE GOING TO BE HAD!

          • LOL! That’s awesome! 😀

          • D. Garrett

            awwwwww!!!

    • Congratulations!!! *hugs* I fell in love with a Nate once. ^_^ It is a good name. ^_^

    • Congrats! And Nate is a lovely name!

      • AseretZone

        Thank you! I love that name so much. 🙂 I can’t wait until May!

    • Congrats! Parenthood is a big responsibility; kids are so cute to compensate.

      In one of my ongoing fiction projects, I have a character Nathaniel. I really hope *your* Nathaniel is not twins.

      • AseretZone

        XD Well, unless he’s hiding a twin behind him REALLY well, which isn’t likely with how clear it was, it’s only one. One very cute, already-facepalming baby. XD

        • Facepalming already? He has a career in tech support, then.

          • AseretZone

            XD He was listening to his parents and aunts and grandma having a heated discussion about something and when we went to look at his face right after, his palm was pressed up against his face. It’s the cutest thing!

          • D. Garrett

            “my first job, peacemaker. great!”

    • Maus Merryjest

      I’m not sure that when Laampros crosses over, the no-hurting-kids rule will matter anymore :/

      • AseretZone

        Well, Laampros isn’t gonna touch America, one of the terms, so the kids should still be safe there. But Spooky isn’t a kid, so Anni can just hand him over in a gift-basket, tied up with ribbons.

  • Hmmm, if the bleeding is too much, could Kyle send just enough flame to cauterize the wound?

    • Do you really want Kyle experimenting with “cauterizing” flame high up on your thigh… (ummm near Lil Spooky?). Nervous I am… LOL.

      • It would just be a very small flame!

        • LOL.. good one. I hope one of Spooky’s many bottles can help him now.

    • Klaus

      Ouch!

  • SSF

    No, my precious Spook! I like you and all for a villain Duncan but I hope he kicks your hot ass.

    Anywho… I’ve never even entertained the thought of this comic having a Patreon, maybe because of the donation bar being such a hit. I have to admit I haven’t been the best fan to other comics and haven’t signed up for Patreon yet but since this comic is consistent (always amazing storytelling-great artwork-and keeping up with its update schedule) I’m definitely becoming a Patron for this comic.

    And although I haven’t used Patreon in the past I have made recurring monthly donations to podcasts over the years and for anyone who is worried about it being complicated I can tell you this sort of subscription is really easy to sign up for and really easy to cancel if you try it out and it’s not your cup of tea.

    • Thank you for the very kind words, SSF! You rock! 😀

    • You make a good point SSF. Some of us follow a lot of comics. There is not one that I know of on the web that is as diligent about ALWAYS posting as promised and, even then, we get written updates if there is any technical snafu that even causes a delay. I don’t get THAT anywhere else. I’m with you, TYP is super consistent.

  • SofiaT

    Spooky is a trooper. He lost his concentration only for a moment (he’s not Chuck Norris, he’s entitled to a human moment) and now he’s handling Duncan one-handed!

    …which -*Sofia thinks hard*- is… not… an easy… thing… to do… even with two hands.
    Maybe he is Chuck Norris after all?

  • WarGoddess

    Spooky’s taut and beautiful thigh is hurt!!!!!!!!! NOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!! (O0O)/

  • Ummm Spooky… I think I just discovered I have the power of HEALING!!!! Now there will be a traditional laying on of hands… and then…

    • Let’s all pool our healing powers together… a hurt spooky makes for worried TYP readers *sends healing thoughts*

  • Don’t get distracted guys! Let Spooky deal with what he’s got to deal with, keep your eyes on your own targets.

  • No, no, no.. don’t turn around and look away from PP… I know Spooky is hurt (which would make me react too) but DANGER, DANGER.. don’t lose track of the most dangerous person on the battle field.

    Just let me fret enough for every team member about Spooky being hurt.
    Where’s that bag of scones when I need it?

  • If Kyle gets distracted (oh very young) and Sircea whomps him… I wonder if Duncan will care?

    • syllibub

      I think he’d care very much, and that if Sircea wants to keep him on her side, she’ll only give Kyle a light whomp.

  • My eagle eye was off by which side Duncan aimed for but I was dead on about his going for the thigh. Ouch! Nasty!

    Oh, and Spooky, Darling, haven’t you read “Dr. Strange”? Multiple shields, boy! Though, you aren’t a sorcerer supreme for sector AW-911 so all is forgiven.

    I’m ashamed for, as much a pervert as I am I did not catch the little magic emitting from Little Spooky until after someone else pointed it out. Mein Gott, I feel old!

    The art feels vibrant. The colors are beautiful, and the action is intense. I see Gordon winding up for what looks like a bad hair day for Platinum Palpatine! I knew she was all wet. Arp-arp-arp!

    Lastly, I’m glad that Alex has Patreon now because I am able to donate a modest amount. Count me as a proud regular supporter, now Alex!

    • Thank you so much, Donald! I really appreciate your support and all your thoughtful reactions here in the comments! 😀

      • Alex, I have spent too much time on your Patreon page starting at the Mitch images. I plan on donating as soon as I get a job and have monies.

        • LOL! Did you check out the special Mitch image in the video? 😉

          • ^_^ Do you doubt me? I paused it at that moment. ^_^

          • Yay! And all is right with the world! (I saw that and just thought… okay… Doki just paused the vid. LOL)

          • Ha! Awesome. 🙂

    • bandanajack

      me too

  • Toli Bera

    D: The grandma sweater did not save him! Oh no!

    • What grandma sweater? Spooky wears a hoodie and a trench coat (it’s not constructed right to be a duster)

      • Toli Bera

        but he does layer. and as per the page before hand, there was a joke that Spooky wore kevlar under the hoody, or a grandma sweater since those are bulletproof due to being lovingly stitched.

  • Oh, guys this is an extra special page. Definitely a page with it’s big boy/girl pants on. In every way, it’s sharing the extremity and energy of battle and the height of emotion that’s frantically running through this moment. Thanks for this!

    First and foremost, I loved the combination of the colors which had a cohesive punch all their own. It made this page feel unique and special and, in a way, it is. This is the first REAL battle. The first time anyone has been injured. This is the big leagues. More to come, but the beginning definitely.

    I loved the fractured and shattered panel framing. That was brilliant. However you guys came to it, it gave the entire action of the page a chaotic energy and power that fit with this moment in battle. Events happening simultaneously. Peril at all sides. And yet the flow of the read was very easy and clear. That is good work in every way.

    I loved P#1 — Spooky fending off some stars while keeping Duncan in the air (bang his head, bang his head).

    P#2-3: These were awesome. Horrible yes. Hard to see my Spooky hurt. Then I thought… dude has LIVED in hell. Of course, he can deal. Even if it’s rough. I really give Adam and Vero a huge round of applause for these two. I can FEEL that star entering the flesh of his leg. What is more powerful, is that it is NOT a gore-fest, but I can see and feel Spooky’s pain

    P#4: You can feel the effort in Duncan STRAINING to fight free here. The energy and motion is barely contained by the panel. He doesn’t like being contained like this and his animal frustration really shows.

    P#5: And then Spooky rallies. Barely, but at least in this panel he hangs on as only a hell-boy could. I’ve been wary about bagging on Duncan’s hubris… hell it’s deserved. However, if Spooky can keep him hanging in the next page we’ll know that Duncan truly underestimated the cojones on Spooky. You can feel this struggle between them. It’s great work.

    The part (and I agree with many below) that is most worrisome is watching both Tsunami and Kyle get nervous and look away from Sircea. There is a maxim about battle and trusting your comrades to have your back and keeping your eyes forward so, in essence, you have their backs. I fear for them here. She is the most dangerous viper and they may have lost everything, in letting their attention be drawn by their friend’s pain. And saying that? I feel for them, for they are so young. These are not vets hardened by war horrors, but youngsters in their first real battle.

    No matter what happens next, this is a masterful page and a perfect one for this changing moment, as every character revolves and turns.

    Alex, Adam and Vero… thank you, yet again, for giving me my fix. A page that makes the week more vibrant and alive. A page I personally am so invested in because these heroes are like me, some gay, but all working so hard. A page that doesn’t talk down to me or expect me to go on some ordinary journey. I’m nervous about what happens next to my friends, but it’s a thrilling ride. I wouldn’t have it any other way. Thank you indeed.

    • Thank you, Chris. Another really wonderful play-by-play that’s so fun for me to read. 🙂

      When Adam sent me the pencils for this one, I was over the moon—everything from the engaging panel layout, to Spooky’s poses and expressions, to The Annihilator struggling against those ectoplasmic bonds, to the wide shot at the end—it was everything I could hope for and more. And Vero just brings it all to life.

      Thank you so much for the kind words and for sharing your reactions. A real treat for me. 🙂

    • Chris, hon, your blow by blow of this page is exciting and inspiring in itself! I loved reading this and I agree with every point you make. Nicely done!

  • Okay, that’s now a Patreon account to go with the Project Wonderful and Kickstarter accounts I can blame Alex for… I’d been dithering about Patreon already, and with two people I’d like to support now on it, it’s time to set up an account.

    Which won’t put a stop to the occasional Project Wonderful ad for *my* gay romance, since it amuses me to be able to claim my support of a gay romance comic as a tax-deductible business expense. 🙂

    • Yay! It makes me happy to inspire other creators to explore these new services. Let me know what your experience is like. 🙂

  • kiri

    I’m pretty sure Tsunami and Kyle should be concentrating on PP no matter how worried they are for Spooky. Spooky will ask for help if he needs it, I expect. But losing focus on PP could end up being a big mistake. She’s the Brain, Anni is just the brawn.

  • bandanajack

    alex
    i think you may have done a better thing than you know by switching to patreon, and i will tell you why. as a senior citizen living on a paltry social security check, i have almost zero expendable income for entertainment, and though i have been a fan (yes, a fan) since halfway through ARTIFICE, i have not really been able to chip in, as much as i might have wished to be part of your support. by engaging patreon, i can find a very small amount each month out of my budget to contribute. as i was signing up, i even thought of a way to do so painlessly. i have not used my netflix membership anywhere near enough to justify the cost, but since it was so minor, and i spend so little on entertainment it wasn’t a significant enough drain to discontinue… until now. i will take one last pass to look for any new releases in the lgbt genre that is my primary netflix interest, since so little of that sees public release, and then suspend my account for the foreseeable future, or at least until they acquire something i haven’t been able to see elsewhere.

    i was going to chip in a couple bucks a month, but your $3 plan enticed me, so that will be my level, and i will actually be minutely ahead of the game. i am also going to make it a point to suggest that other low income fans come aboard this way. we can be a part of things for little more than the cost of a candy bar, which i don’t eat, but that is beside the point.

    jack

    • Thank you, Jack. I’m really glad to hear that Patreon is a better fit.

      With the previous system, I think some folks felt like a smaller contribution wouldn’t make much difference, but with Patreon, because it’s crowdfunding, the “small” contributions make all the difference. It was actually my hope that using Patreon would allow more dedicated readers (ok, “fans” 🙂 ) to feel more connected (“a part of things” as you say) and also for everyone who offers support to benefit. So, I really appreciate you letting me know that was your reaction.

      Thank you very much for your support. I really appreciate it! You rock, sir! 🙂

    • Way ahead of you, Jack! I jumped in immediately. I have Social Security too, and I could not support Alex with large donations. I can however do my small part through Patreon. I’m grateful for the opportunity to support something I truly love.

    • Eris, elder daughter of Nyx

      I’m in this boat, too! When I’d see all those people who would donate lots of money each week to YP, I’d always be super grateful and happy and in awe because it would enable me to get more YP, but I’d also sit here and think, “Wow, I wish I could do that, but I totally can’t.” But $3 a month? $5 a month? That I can pull.

    • Jack that’s a perfect way to look at it. I already do a couple of Patreon artists for $1-3/mo, (Cris-art is one, and she’s not even story driven, Alex’s work truly fits with Patreon’s style) and the first time that’s what I did. I actually thought of ALL the crap I spend money on each month and get little or nothing for. And then thought… well for, almost nothing, I can cut out “this thing” and not even miss it and in return. I get All THIS. My TYP fix (which I live for), Alex’s notes which are damn funny, these comments which I’ve come to find often fun and funny and fill the inbetween and the extras.

      I’m not much of a TV-watcher outside of sports with my partner, and I think of how much that costs me and I spend WAY more time on TYP. So totally agree. I hope lots of others do to.

      For a cup of fancy coffee each month from enough people we can have MOAR TYP! (erm… yes… heh…)

      chris

      • “I’m not much of a TV-watcher outside of sports with my partner”
        … watching for those handsome players with their well toned bodies, nice legs and firm butts xD
        (We need that German goalie to be more on tv *lol)

  • Klaus

    PP is missing from the featuring list.

  • Maus Merryjest

    I am glad that now, through Patreon, I can support this most excellent comic! 🙂

    • Thank you so much, Maus! I really appreciate the support and the kind words! 😀

  • Maus Merryjest

    My dear Spooky- this is why in D&D mages are allowed to at least wear leather armor. Don’t go into battle again without at least something more durable than jeans!

    Anni- you (totally censored) 😛

  • TwilightDreamer

    SPOOKY!! D:
    Grrrr!! Oh Duncan…..as if you weren’t in the bad books enough already…. D:<

  • bronakopdin

    I understand where you’re coming from Alex!
    and I really just wondered WHEN it will be the time you do this actually (I know Patreon from other webcomics I read) since you always said the donations won’t cover all your costs so it was really just a question of time ^^

    but as one of those with really less money per month I’m a little sad as well…
    as I said I do understand and of course those who can pledge should be rewarded! Everything fine on that front!
    But it’s just plain impossible for me to help out each comic I’d like to support on a regular basis. Though with what you described that of course WOULD be possible but if I did that each months with several comics, the probability of me forgetting something is soooo high xD
    And even if I gave only 1$ to each it would be too much in the whole, actually some months I can’t really even afford 1$ (though of course that is and should be seldom ^^)… so yeah as you and all the other artists say: then I don’t have to pledge of course 🙂
    But with those rewards all the people receive I feel a little left out.
    Of course I would love to see those
    (apart from the ebook thing, since I guess it would be impossible on Amazon Germany again like with the Artifice offer ^^’)
    I wish I could do sth but I simply can’t and that’s what’s letting me down
    With random donations I felt like it could do a little even if it was absolutely unregular xD I don’t een remember when I last donated here, it must have been ages ago >_>’ but then I donated to others who have a less big fandom so I tried to help there

    but if there was a way for not-backers to get to the rewards it would be unfair again for the backers *sigh*

    sorry for my banter I just somehow needed to say it xD
    I really hope you will gets LOADS of backers! This comic really deserves it! It’s one of my – if not THE – absolute favourite(s)! It was actually my first ever webcomic, others only followed after I knew what webcomics even are xD

    and now finally some page-ish talk!
    MY POOR SPOOOKY!!!!!!!!! T__T
    It’s amazing in itself that he was able to protect himself from the more dangerous one, but his leg!!!!
    At least he could keep the spell going! Hopefully Anni won’t break free!
    But seeing Kyle and Gorden… I really fear Sircea will make her move now >////<'
    it's as dynamic and thrilling as as always over the last weeks 😀

    • I hear you, bronakopdin. There are a lot of worthy comics out there deserving of support. Money is a limited, precious resource. And sometimes even $1 is too much. I try to support as many creators on Patreon as I can and even I have to make some tough choices. And, as I said, the absolute last thing I would want for any of my beloved readers would be to get in a bad financial position because of a pledge.

      The good news is, if I’m able to make this work, I hope to stick with Patreon for a long time and so, if your situation ever changes, even for a short while, those extra rewards will be right there waiting for you. (Including the e-books, actually. If you get one of my Kindle e-books through Patreon, it actually doesn’t go through Amazon, it goes to you directly, so international Patrons get the exact same thing.)

      Thank you very much for your kind words and your understanding. That’s awesome to hear this webcomic was your first! I’m really glad that you’re part of our community here and I hope you’ll continue to enjoy what I’m putting out there. 🙂

      • bronakopdin

        only now I saw your reply when I made another post above xD

        and you’re right!
        depending on how long this comic will take at some point I might be able to pledge 🙂
        It’s just in far away future as long I I have university and part-time work, STILL borrow money from 4 different uncles/aunts on a monthly basis with actual loan contracts that want their money back after I finished studying xD

        OK, now this is whining again, sorry!

        anyway you TRUELY give me hope here! Because different from other patreons I DO think it’s really possible to get to everything later on!
        I got sad because some patreon rewards at other artists pages are monthly or weekly things, that can’t be accessed if you didn’t pledge that month, only after you started pledging and onwards… and somehow I guess I automatically assumed this would be the case here, too, but from what youwrote above at least NOW it’s not planned yet 😀

        and depending on how long this comic will last I SURELY will back one day 🙂

  • Megan Staples

    Spooks has probably been hurt far worse and still kept his concentration. Oh, the stifling rules of a kid outfit for an adult. If “Avada Kedavra” would work on Annie, I’d probably just kill him. Of course, taking that kind of action needs dispensation, and wouldn’t be allowed in a group with minors, surely.
    It’s one of the most serious rules of war and as hard as it is, I agree with it: “Never leave a living enemy behind you.” Leaving holes in a strategy will only give a living enemy a place to hit.
    And something can kill Annie. He complained about being old. Kyle actually burned him. So he can be hurt, and that means he can die. Taking out the Platinum Priestess would be a priority for me as well.
    Yes, killing is serious, and Annie talked about the various “guidelines for villains.” Even trying to attack kids is contemptable. But trying to turn the Earth into a sub-leased section of Hell? I’d like to think villains would be against that, too. People who want to take over the world also have notions that they change it and “make people better.” (Serenity, anyone?)
    These ‘take over the world’ types can’t be all that great at sharing, either. So, the heroes are away. Make a call to the villians!
    My goodness, I’m bloody-minded, aren’t I, Alex?

    • Ant-Man

      Why does being able to hurt him equal that he can be killed? Immortal beings can be harmed & still be immortal. Not saying he’s immortal- just saying being able to hurt him does not automatically make being able to kill him true

  • bronakopdin

    ok just to add to my post below ^^

    In the whole it sounded so whiny in a way xD
    really sorry for that 🙂
    I sure AM happy for Alex to make this step! To make the comic possible on long term!
    It’s what is most important for everyone here 😀
    And I guess it’s true that 3-5$ should be affordable to the majority of people 🙂

    My point was just that I couldn’t justify to myself which comic I should back and which not, it’s just the mass on money I would need to go regular
    when with random donations I could easily switch and decide where I could support today 🙂

    but I guess there ARE people who only read this webcomic and for THOSE it’s simply awesome 😀

  • purplefoxglove

    Oh no, I’ve only been 50% correct about the shield! O.O

    Alex, I’m sorry, but you’ll have to re-do the page. You’re missing out a petite woman throwing herself in front of Spooky in order to keep him save.

    • Ha! I’ll get right on that. 🙂

      • purplefoxglove

        Good boy 😉

        Btw, I quit my TV deal last year, and now am spending the money I saved far better 🙂 [Is this sentence correct?] I don’t have an avatar yet, but plan on creating one and adding your badge to it. Will it still be possible to get the badge in a few weeks?

        • Absolutely! It might take a couple days if I’m buried in some writing, but you’ll be able to get a badge from me whenever you become a Patron. 🙂

  • I just have to say that those are some guns you’ve got there, Duncan.

    • “Well, it’s all about having the right caliber, little Lady.”

      (and the admiral realizes that she’s not really suited for working at a saloon and wisely decides not to change her name to belle.)

  • rgleon9986

    If Commander’s psychic assault is no longer effective against PP, then she might try her luck against Anni. Of course, she might still be waging a psychic battle against PP which is the only thing keeping her from overwhelming Tsunami and Red Hot. I wonder if/how well she can do both that and fight priest/cronies.

    • Your question inspires me to speculate. My geek muscle needs exercise!

      Nerve impulses travel at the speed of sound. If Amanda’s mind is honed to function consciously at this level then it is conceivable that the combat is moving as if in slow-motion to her senses. She doesn’t have super speed or reflexes but rather, super awareness. She is able to multi-task on a level that mundane humans can scarcely conceive.

      Provided this is in any way accurate, she can fight minions, attack Platinum Palpatine telepathically, keep her link with Mich, and strategize on the fly. The only time she might have to focus her attention on a single action is if she is about to launch the mother of all punches or brain blasts.

      There, you have my two-cents, adjusted for inflation.

  • Johndar

    Good move going to Patreon, it seems like a really good service for independent creators as well as their audiences, I hope it works out. Sadly, my card doesn’t work well with the service, maybe after I get Pay Pal sorted I’ll see about using that to be a patron.

    • I use pay pal. I find it easy and actually like it better than my card. Lots of places take it now too…

    • Thanks, Johndar! 🙂 And FWIW, I’ve found Patreon tech support to be very responsive. So, if you continue to have issues, they should be able to fix them.

  • Pikinanou

    oh no, Spooky! At least, drop Anni on the head, you might knock him unconscious for a short while :O

    • D. Garrett

      given anni’s skills i almost expect him to somehow land on his feet.

  • I for one think the move to Patreon is really a good one. I know, as a webcomic writer, that the cost of producing these just goes up and up! Thank you for producing such an excellent product, understanding your limitations and making every effort to bring quality to this part of the comic book world.

    • Thank you for such kind words, Marina!

      And I’m hoping that if I have good success with Patreon that other creators will hear about it and be able to use it too. There are some really good resources out there now for independent creators—it’s a very exciting time to be a writer (and one I find exciting as a reader as well.) 🙂

  • larry

    … and here’s where it all goes to Hell. These aren’t two top super villains for no reason, after all.

    • Klaus

      Or vice versa. Hell goes to everything.

      • larry

        Point.

  • Jen Roberts

    I really enjoy it when comic panels go all wonky. It’s one of the things I enjoy about comics – and especially webcomics – as a storytelling medium: that ability to convey information through the structure of the page/strip itself. In this case, the suddenly jagged, not-quite-fitting-together jumble of panels representing how quickly things are moving there as well as Spooky’s pain. (Poor Spooky; when this is over, maybe Amanda will make you some cookies!)

  • Wayne Lunkwitz

    How I picture this going down is all good…..Spooky is distracted but holds on to Anni long enough to pull the star out and send it back to him at a certain level , the star hits perfectly , disabling Anni , and the battle continues!

    • I like the way you think… Now does this magically aimed return start hit anything critical on Anni? Ummmm… inquiring minds and all that. 🙂

      • Klaus

        There is disabling, and then there is disabling.

        • AseretZone

          Yeah, I don’t think Spooky would do THAT. XD Maybe Fluke would, though. Don’t let him get ahold of any blades around Anni, or Little Anni is in danger! XDD

      • Wayne Lunkwitz

        Aimed to cut his wrist of course……only Kyle would aim elsewhere after what he was put through >:) Yes I am evil, but so far I haven’t seen anything “R” rated

    • SSF

      I’m imagining the look on Anni’s face and loving this.

    • D. Garrett

      which would cause a mixing of blood. is spookys blood special?

  • Klaus

    I am in two minds about the move to Patreon. On one hand Alex can not go on living off his savings, and I will be very pleased if the 7000 goal is reached. On the other hand this will divide our community. Some of the discussion gets taken to a forum reserved for first class citizens. The rest of us will not be able to take part. I might support at the $5 level, but I think it is a safe bet that the hangout sessions will be held in the middle of the night when I am not able to participate.

    • Hey Klaus,

      Thank you for understanding why I’m doing this. I actually put a lot of thought into how Patreon might affect the camping culture we have here.

      Many Patreon campaigns offer the reward of posting the comic pages a day early for Patrons. But I’m choosing not to do that. While I will post there first (which might help those “virgin hunters”), it’s going to be by a matter of minutes not hours, because I do want to keep the camping intact.

      Now, depending on what folks want, I might consider posting up the Wednesday page (the traditional “bonus page”) earlier than that as an extra special perk. I do want to offer real value to my Patrons and I will be responsive to what they think will make the best experience. But I believe folks are well aware that camping (and discussion in general) is “the more, the merrier” and so I think most folks will decide, like I have, that we don’t want to divide that. And it’s my plan to always keep the Saturday updates on Patreon and here very close in timing.

      I’m sure there will be some special discussions that will only happen in the Patreon Activity feed, especially around Patreon-only rewards. And I think that’s OK and as it should be. But I see real value of having camping take place on the main site and, while I can’t control what sites people choose to refresh, I’m going to encourage folks to camp here. As far as I’m concerned, this is the “official” camp site.

      And even for non-camping, a dedicated commenting system like Disqus offers some appealing features—I expect that lots of Patrons will continue to want to start and participate in discussions here. I can’t predict the future and I will be responsive to providing an awesome experience for Patrons, including being open to making changes, but I think keeping the page discussions on this site is in everyone’s interest and I’m optimistic that our community will remain strong here.

      As for the timing of the Google Hangouts, it’s true, I live in the U.S. and so those hangouts will definitely need to happen when I am awake, which means that it will be very late or very early for some international folks. But those Hangouts will also be recorded and accessible to the Patrons afterwards, so everyone should be able to enjoy them, regardless of timezone or ability to attend while they are live.

      (And FWIW, a likely time for the hangouts would be noon on Saturday my time, which would be 9:00 P.M. in Denmark, so not 100% in the middle of the night in your case.)

      There will certainly be special rewards for being a Patron. That’s part of why I find using Patreon so appealing—the chance to give back to those who are supporting my work directly. But I think a strong community here is in the best interest of all readers, both Patrons and non-Patrons, so it’s something I will work to maintain. 🙂

      • I like how you try to keep it all as favoritable and ‘as it is now’ even after the change. Can’t wait until I can be a part of it, hopefully from next month, and the hangouts and stuff 🙂

        A little input about the tuesday (wednesday) update. If you talk about posting it earlier, I guess you mean earlier in the day. IF so, I’d say at least 5 hours earlier than now or let it be. As it is now, the tuesday page goes up in the evening US time, early morning in Europe (but not too early) and noon-ish around the Aussie-land.
        It’s still early for me when I get up around between 4.30-5.15 to start camping, but it’s my choice and it’s doable by going to bed a bit early (or my own fault for not). I personally COULD wait until between 5.15-5.45 most times but I want that camp time so I plan for it, except for a few exceptions.

        So for European readers the page goes up somewhere between 5-8/9-ish a.m. A suitable time IMO. Now should you decide to regularly do the tuesday update just a couple hours earlier, that would really screw up a possible camp on those days, as it WILL be in the middle of the night for us in Mid-Europe and not early morning. So from a personal view the time on tuesdays are fitting now, or it would need to be moved at least 5 hours earlier, so it could be done before bedtime.
        New ‘problem’ is that 5 hours earlier would mean a lot of people in US might not be free (from work or what ever yet), so ..well.
        Wow.. that input wasn’t so small after all 😉

        • Thanks, Danish! And that’s good advice. If I decide to do that with the Wednesday pages, I’d like post it up 24 hours earlier, so that it really feels like a benefit. I agree that the current time of day I already post seems to work for a lot of folks. 🙂

      • Klaus

        Thank you for your answer. And once again, I hope you reach those 7000.

  • davefragments

    Well, my cellphone didn’t break when I took a selfie.
    Patron is quite easy to use. I think self-sustaining is the way to go.
    However, it’s the angst of actually seeing myself on a computer screen that might keep me up tonight.

    • SofiaT

      Nice smile!

      • davefragments

        thanks

    • Well, I think your Avatar is awesome. Thank you so much for your support!

      (And if you need help taking out that spellchecker… 😉 )

      • davefragments

        Thanks very much.

    • Nice to see you Dave!

    • Your selfie looks good, Dave!

      • davefragments

        thanks

    • zunden

      I don’t know if this helps (or works on your browser), but if you right-click on the word, you can add words to the dictionary…?

      • davefragments

        My problem is fat fingers and tiny keys.
        wink, wink

  • Xalun K

    Oh my gosh. Okay, so first off, congrats on your Patreon page. I very sincerely wish I could donate, and hope I’ll get the opportunity soon, because your work is truly amazing.

    Second, I really REALLY hope Spooky drops Anni on a rock… oh his head. Though the shuriken getting embedded in his thigh is much better than some other places it could have hit. I hope he can maintain his concentration long enough to keep Anni up and out of the way.

    Now, someone REALLY needs to help out with PP. I mean, with Anni held up in the air, Kyle and Tsunami don’t seem to be getting anywhere with bringing PP down, she’s holding her own against them entirely too well. Ugh. FLUKE DO SOMETHING! lol

    • bandanajack

      fwiw, i have less money than almost anyone, but the patreon system allows you to pledge as little as a dollar a month, and you have the option of turning the pledge off, so you, like i, can chip in without damaging your financial prospects even if you are seriously broke. that is what is so excellent about the patreon system. for half the price of a cup of coffee per month, i am in, and i feel much better about that.

      • Thank you for the support, bandanajack! You rock! 😀

    • Klaus

      Dropping Duncan head first on a rock, even from a great height, would not do any real damage, I think.

  • davefragments

    Alex, this is what Disqus lets me load. How does it look to you? It is OK for me.

    • I see your pic and a Silver YP logo – though it’s a bit hard to se the P-part clearly on a white icon background.

      • davefragments

        My only black t-shirt is in the laundry (Its name is stinky, today). And worse, the background wall is the only wall in my house that does not have artwork on it. So rather than take a selfie with a picture frame growing out of my head or ear or having some strange image behind me, I had to go into the garage and use daylight. The sun has set now.
        How involved can this get, you ask? Well, it is my real face and I’ll take the hidden jowl behind the YP logo. Vanity of Vanities, to quote Shakespeare.

        • Well, we who know about YP will know what that logo is and what it means. That’s all that is needed 🙂 I like the icon pic.

          • davefragments

            Thank you.

    • Looks OK for sure. But in the future, if you decide to change it up with a darker bg so the silver pops more, just send me another image the same way with the same subject via email and I’ll be happy to make you another. 🙂

      Thank you so much for your very generous support, Dave!

      • davefragments

        Great. Thanks.

      • Uhm.. have you thought about making the YP logo another color as well, like gold or flame (orange-ish) like the keychain? (Might have missed if you already have)
        I don’t know if I’m gonna have it added right away when I DO become a patreon, but it would be nice to have two color options – also since a silver color might pretty much dissapear on my icon for example.

        • It comes in blue, silver, and gold, depending on pledge level. You can see the different examples in the Rewards section of the Patreon Page.

          • Great 🙂

            (Brillant, I must have been so focused on anything else because I missed that clear info *facepalm*)

          • Klaus

            Have you considered offering an alternative version of each icon, which comes with a border, or in other words a little bit of background, in a contrasting color?

          • They actually all have white borders. I’m a little hesitant to offer individual customization because it’ll add significantly to the amount of time it takes for me to add these and that could potentially start taking away from my comics-making-time fairly quickly (and changing colors would actually be more time-consuming that even hand-positioning the logos because the badges are made in a different app [Illustrator] than the one I use to composite them [Photoshop].)

            All that said, though, offering some kind of customization of the badges for silver and gold levels is a good suggestion. And over the next week or so, I think it’ll become clear what kind of overall changes (e.g. maybe the silver badges should have black or blue borders) are needed to help them really read here on Disqus.

            Now that I think of it, that’s something I might try — adding a blue border to the silver and gold logos. What do folks think of that?

          • Klaus

            With choice of color I meant choice from a few options, not that that you could specify any color you liked.

          • Ah, understood. Right now I’m thinking white, blue, or black.

  • Woo hoo! My new avatar and badge! So happy about it.

  • Derkins

    we were all right! he both got hit, and blocked. let’s all have a cookie.

    • D. Garrett

      not me. i think i said he would dodge…:(

      • Derkins

        d’oh!

  • bandanajack

    i don’t know about most other people, but i really don’t need additional enticements to contribute, it is enough for me to participate in funding something i have been enjoying at a fee i can live with. for those folks who are able to chunk down bigger bucks, my thanks for keeping you afloat, and the bonus pages flowing, and happy that you get a little extra massaging for your willingness and effort.

  • Kate G

    The move to Patreon is definitely a good move; we don’t want Alex going broke (heaven forbid!) Obviously, not everyone is going to be all rainbows and kittens but being any form of artist comes at a high cost and I think a lot of people forget about this. All people see is the finished product, not the money it took and the the amount of back and forth in terms of communication for something like this. It sucks up a lot of personal time too. I crochet and let’s just say that is NOT a cheap hobby. If I actually had the money, I’d support all of my favorite artists and comic writers but there’s my hobbies and I have to prioritize even those. (And let’s face it, I like staying warm so yarn usually wins, especially when there’s a sale.)

    I’d rather lose out to the extra stuff but still have my comic stay free. Just my two cents here. Plus, you never know, the NSFW stuff may appear in the books if they come out soon. MWA HA HA HA HA!!!!

    • Kate G

      Also, SPOOKY DOWN!!!!!! SOMEONE COVER HIM!!!

      • AseretZone

        Spooky will be fine, he’ll get the thing out of his leg and fight on. If anyone tried to help, he’d tell them to focus on the mission, ’cause if PP and Anni get their way they’re going to hell in a hand-basket. Literally.

        • Kate G

          This….this is true. It would go to hell in a hand-basket. Or more like hell in an eyeball.

    • The NSFW stuff will be digital only. Alex won’t be showing it with the comic (as in the comic)., always keeping them PG-17 🙂

  • Did some avatar changing *silver sparkles*

    Spooky, I am worried about you! Don’t drop Duncan (hot potato!) We don’t want him running around on the loose… XD

  • AseretZone

    Hey, where do I buy a copy of TYP? Is it available to buy yet? I’m only seeing Artifice in the shop.

    • Klaus

      Not yet. But soon.

      • AseretZone

        Hopefully I have the money when it does! And hopefully a signed copy is offered…

        • SofiaT

          Signed copies of Artifice were offered in Alex’s shop so I’m sure if you order your copy there instead of Amazon (when it becomes available), it will be signed by Alex at least (I expect that if there are any copies left with Vero’s and Adam’s signatures as well, after the Kickstarter backers have gotten theirs, he will most likely offer those on the shop too *fingers crossed*)

          • AseretZone

            Then I will wait patiently for TYP to show up in the shop. 🙂

  • Alt+F7

    Would love to support you directly, and those patreon rewards look great! Hope I can start donating when my expenses stabalise a bit >.<

  • Klaus

    This is where the Amander steps in and orders Paul and Kyle to concentrate on their tasks.

  • ctsuda

    NO! Not Spooky! As always, brilliant work.

    PS I was thinking about checking out Patreon myself. 🙂

    • Thank you! And I’d say Patreon is worth other creators taking the time to check out. 🙂

  • Happy birthday to Sofia 🙂

    • SofiaT

      Thanks, Wolf!
      I just blew the candles on my Frozen cake 😀

      • stickfigurefairytales

        Happy belated birthday, Sofia!

  • Lillihandra

    Supported, and looking forward to seeing how things go. Loving the fight scene so far.

    • Thank you so much, Lillihandra! You rock! 🙂

      • Lillihandra

        … Just realized that I could have included my commenter name in the LoA listing. I’ll leave it up to you whether you wish to mess with it at this point or not.

        • Never too late. If you send me an email with the SUBJECT: Leaderboard of Awesome and exactly how you’d like to be credited, I’ll hook you up. 🙂

          • Lillihandra

            Sent. Thank you. I feel extremely shortsighted with that.

  • HAPPY BIRTHDAY, SOFIA! Thank you so much for being a moderator for our community here as well as for being such a great contributor as well! It’s been a great pleasure for me to get to know you through this comic and I hope you have an amazing, fun-filled day with people you love. 🙂

    • SofiaT

      Thank you, Alex!
      It’s been a fun day, the celebrations wilk continue well into the weekend. 🙂

      (P.S.: Too. Much. Food!)

      • Happy Birthday Sofia!!!

        • SofiaT

          Thanks, Doki!

      • davefragments

        Minutes before I’m too late for the day – – –
        HAPPY BIRTHDAY and many more to come.

        • SofiaT

          Thanks, Dave!

      • Happy Belated Birthday, Sofia!

        • SofiaT

          Thanks, Gryph!

      • purplefoxglove

        Happy Belated, Sofia! 😀

  • Happy Birthday, Sofia!!

    • SofiaT

      Thanks, AJ!

  • Melinda Maddolin

    Spooky! ;o;

  • Ellen Harman

    Here it is Alex. It looks great. I also added it to my Patreon profile.

    • That’s beautiful! Thank you very much for your support! You rock! 😀

  • fujoshifanatic

    Supported! But aww, I think Nubia’s too dark for that size icon and that shade of blue. 🙁 It’ll do for now until I try my hand at designing something else while I teach myself Illustrator. So glad you went with Patreon, Alex; while I’ve always supported your Kickstarters, I always felt guilty not contributing on a regular basis, especially since you work so hard to produce such a quality product for us all. This way, I feel like I am a part of helping you “live the dream,” as you like to put it, because I believe that much in you, and what you do, and it inspires me to work that much harder to making my own dreams come true. Hopefully, when i find a steady job, I can contribute even more.

    Now to the page:

    SPOOOKY!!!! NOOOOOOOOOOOO! Please just hang on to Anni (maybe knock him out with an ectoplasmic fist?)! And Kyle, DON’T TURN YOUR BACK ON PP, FOR GOD’S SAKE!!! This is an awesome page, but you have me clenching my own ass tighter than Kyle’s a couple of pages ago! Is it Saturday yet?

    • Thank you so much, fujoshifanatic! You really are very much part of helping me “live the dream” and it would make me very happy if being part of that inspired you to do the same for yourself!

      And I see what you say about the dark blue on black. I’m still learning a little bit about the best way to create these badges, so I’m allotting a little time to change things up for the next couple days. For example, I’m thinking I might send everyone both light and dark versions of their badge. I just created what I think would be the light version for the blue badges and added it to your avatar. Please take a look at it and let me know what you think. 🙂

      And tighter than Kyle’s buns, huh? LOL Glad to hear you’re finding these pages engaging. 😀

  • Saxon_Brenton

    [glances at Patreon page] Hmm. Coming up on the first 48 hours, and we’ve just passed $1,500. That bodes well for getting our beloved twice weekly updates that kick in at $3,000. Warm fuzzies for everyone.

    Oh yes, and happy birthday Sophia. Especially warm fuzzies for that.

    • SofiaT

      Thanks, Saxon!
      Warm fuzzies right back at ya!

      • bronakopdin

        Happy Birthday 😀

  • fujoshifanatic

    Yay! Liking my new and improved avatar! Thank you Alex, for going the extra mile to accommodate Nubia and me. You truly rock! 😀

    • Yay! My pleasure! And if anyone else with a blue badge wants a similar upgrade to the lighter blue YP, just shoot me another email and let me know. I’ll get one out for you too. 🙂

  • Edging ever closer to the first Milestone Goal… can we get it before the page upload tomorrow night? Check in tomorrow, for the exciting update! 😉

  • Tahir Raines

    After looking at Spooky’s origin card and seeing the oft appearing red demon boy, does anyone else think that a romance between Spooky and Little Red (what I call the demon lad) will be in the futures after the walls between the demon and human world breaks down (assuming the wall does dissipate)? I imagine emotional reunions and a slow build up of romance with potential betrayal depending on how much Little Red changed during the years he remained in the demon world.

    • Alt+F7

      To me he looks a lot like spooky, so I wonder if he’s a hellish equivelent or maybe a manifestation of spooky’s powers. But your position is much less convoluted and far cuter.

    • Then, I’ve just cast myself as the Demon Boy and Spooky’s love interest in the feature film version of this Graphic novel. Wow that was an easy decision once I was in possession of all the facts! LOL.

      (don’t worry Alex Woolfson, I plan to be famous by the time you’re ready to direct this film. Heeeeeee)

    • Klaus

      He is bleeding from a wound in his right thigh. Just like spooky. Whill he appear to defend Spooky now that Spooky is wounded? Lige for lige når venskab skal holdes, as we say in these parts.

  • D. Garrett

    maybe tsu could put a waterspout under anni since spooky cant keep him suspended anymore. tsu doesnt look very busy atm.

  • Tyler Griffin

    And look, EVERYONE blinked.

  • …Are we camping? *sets up tent with shifty eyes*

    • stickfigurefairytales

      I’m here now! I brought marshmallows!

      • *runs away with marshmallow bag!*

        • stickfigurefairytales

          You know, one time when I went camping with my school (this was in either first or second grade, since we went both years), a racoon ran off with our entire bag of marshmallows and we just had graham crackers and chocolate instead of s’mores.

          • Ha! Well, I suppose I could share one or two. 😀

          • stickfigurefairytales

            Thank you! You’re far more generous that the raccoon. 😀

          • 😀 I do try.

      • *curls up like a cat in a spot far away from the campfire where she won’t get too hot or too cold and promptly falls asleep*

        • stickfigurefairytales

          *puts a blanket on the snoozing Doki*

  • Derkins

    What exactly is Gordon doing with that wave? I think this might not only be bad for Spooky, but also a distraction for the rest of the crew. They were told to keep moving, but this is new for them. It’s hard not to at least be stunned by it for a sec. And that second can give the enemy a major opening. :/

    • Saxon_Brenton

      It would be nice if Red Hot’s brief distraction on this page is literally that: a brief distraction on this page, so that next page we see him doubling down with his assault against the Priestess with a similar line to what he already told himself about keeping himself focused on the objective that he was given.

  • stickfigurefairytales

    I’m here for camping, but I might not be able to stay until the new page if it’s a later one tonight. I’m really tired!

  • The page is baking in the oven. Should be up in a half hour or so… 🙂

    • stickfigurefairytales

      Ooh, excellent!

  • davefragments

    I have the Grand Budapest Hotel on and I keep giggling too much to type.
    Ralph Fiennes is Mister Gustave!
    gales of laughter

    • That was a strange movie.

      • davefragments

        quite strange, delightfully, weirdly and most assuredly strange
        but fun

        • Ha! Indeed.

          • davefragments

            It is so NOT a Marvel Comics movie, or a monster, or a sic-fi, or even a feel-good romance.
            It’s a movie of times gone past warped by cataracts and nostalgia.

          • It was definitely warped! 😀

    • stickfigurefairytales

      New icon, dave?

      • davefragments

        yes, It used to be just my eyes and I put my insecurities aside after nearly 20 years of internet and showed my face.
        and gray hair

        • stickfigurefairytales

          I thought it still looked like you!

          • davefragments

            If you’d ever have seen the image I used of an icon for man years, all I can say is – I was never a red head, never that tall and well-built, and never that (never mind) blush.
            I just gave up the pretense.

  • syllibub

    It’s a little hard to grasp in comic format how quickly everything must be moving in this scene. It’s actually really impressive that Spooky managed to block one of the throwing stars, considering how hard and fast Duncan can throw — it must have been like blocking a bullet.

    • I just keep imagining Spooky pulling a Hulk and slamming Duncan back and forth until he’s a limp rag, quietly groaning.

    • Saxon_Brenton

      A good point. It might also explain why the villains’ reaction time seems a bit slow : it just seems slow to us readers. (Although it still suggests that Annihilator’s default option in any confrontation is to bluster first, fight later…)

  • syllibub
  • stickfigurefairytales
  • Hours Left

    Just a test.