January 24, 2011
Page 50 Book 5: Malevolent Machinations
Good too see you again.
So yes, Nemes survived the Fall of Arcania. He was a test subject for the Empire for thirty years before they released him into the Guinoid population on “Alphantica”, and he’s suffered a lot.
Quite why he’s still alive is something only he can explain, since he’s certainly had enough reason in his lifetime to end it, but rest assured he and Igon are in the minority of Arcanians that magically extend their lives.
But of course, with Nemes’ resurfacing, there is the matter of another character that left the story at around the same time he did. That being Steph Lawrence.
Bearing in mind this started in the late days of 2007, I’ve been contemplating end for some time. And it’s taken me a lot of time to come to a full consensus on what happened to her. Initially, I’d intended that she would survive and be a test subject with Nemes, eventually being mother to his son and his wife (We’re talking people that have lived over a century, a decade or two between them isn’t that big a gap relatively speaking).
However, I’ve finally come to a conclusion on what happened to Steph:
She was taken alive during Book 1 and Arcania’s fall, where she was also held prisoner with Nemes.
She was experimented on like he was, and developed into a Guinoid specimen as he did.
And she died near the end of testing, she was dead by the time Igon arrived in Baator in Book 2.
I’m always sad and reluctant to kill anyone off in this comic, because I spend so much time actually designing them and putting them together that to me they seem more like people I’ve come to know than created. But Steph’s death being waved off as being a narrow escape into captivity would undermine a lot of things, such as the lethality of the Fall, its impact on Igon for two Books, and the finality of a death scene in the comic in general.
I’m bringing Nemes back because he serves an important purpose in his son, but Steph deserves to be left quietly alone in the bright beyond she ended up in.
It’s just a shame that I have to bring Nemes back to ask something terrible of him once again, when he’s already lost so much…