Sunday, September 14, 2014

Shade, the Changing Man - The Madding Crowd, Part 5 - R.A. Wonsowski


Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

PAGE 10:
We are back in the monitor-lit lab beneath MetaPharma. Some of it, however, has been trashed after a fight between DR. SKOLOS and SHADE...

Panel 1- A furious SHADE has DR. SKOLOS pinned to the wall by the throat with his madness-distorted hand. A nearby video screen is cracked, but still displaying fluorescent Aramaic script. A second closed-circuit TV shows JACK RYDER cartwheeling off of padded cell walls in the fashion of the Creeper. SKOLOS flashes his rictus grin at the raging SHADE.

SHADE: Dammit, Skolos, I'm not asking again! Where's Kathy?!

SKOLOS: Rrghn...she's in the... Area...of Madness...

Panel 2- SHADE's madness-fist fades, dropping SKOLOS to the floor. SKOLOS rubs his neck where he was strangled, his grin a little bit wider. SHADE is confused, sadly bewildered.

SHADE: What?

SKOLOS: Heh. You idiot. All that time, connected to it by the Vest. And you never knew...

Panel 3- SKOLOS laughs and points at a working video feed, showing a dessicated corpse in a white T-shirt and black jeans. Black hair wisps and flakes of skin are blowing in an unseen breeze. The body floats in the brown air above a mud flatland. SHADE is devastated by the sight of Kathy's body, dead in the Area of Madness.

SKOLOS: You call us "necrologists". Students of Death.

SKOLOS: But you, Shade...You were the true pioneer! The first NECRONAUT!

Panel 4- Our view moves in, as the video picture moves out: Kathy's corpse is distant, but the focus is a fleshless floating skeleton wearing only the Ditko-designed Madness Vest. SKOLOS is laughing, bearing shark teeth in his mouth.

SKOLOS: Your Metan corpse has lain there for how long? You ignorant tourist!

SKOLOS: The Area is the Next World! The Afterlife!

Panel 5- SKOLOS backhands SHADE across the face with his fist with one hand, digging into a pocket with the other. SKOLOS's face should be in the shadows only his fanged smile gleaming, and his feet should be planted apart, a combative stance.

SKOLOS: There is no Heaven! No Hell! No Entropy or Order!

SKOLOS: Only Madness!

Panel 6- Close-up: SKOLOS's face. The face is demonic, the goatee Dali-esque and exaggerated, the shark-toothed Glasgow smile, the fiery eyes, and darker on the right (panel left) 2/3 of his face. In front of his eye, between his thumb and forefinger, a black diamond, a sliver of the Heart of Darkness, sparks...

SKOLOS: God is an absent parent, necronaut. Kathy's dead.

SKOLOS: And so are you.

... To be continued...

1 comment:

  1. This dialogue is appropriately comic book-y and epic, as is the whole page. You've been throwing around some heady ideas, my friend, and each entry seems to be outdoing the last one. And those final lines here - giving me some shivers.


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