What is Hunter’s game here? Was this all a plot of his?
Well, looking back, I don’t really see anywhere he tried to fight back against Vane, just inconvenienced her. It could be that while she views him as an opponent, he never stopped seeing her as a lover…
Wow, look at the fire leaving Vane’s eyes. Beautiful art, beautifully done. Erin, you are amazing. Absolutely the most captivating chapter you’ve done so far. What’s ever in there is something really life changing for Vane, and Hunter knows he’s got control, for the moment.
Appreciate it as always, js.
Well now…that certainly is interesting ain’t it. Her eyes in panel 7, I mean.
I also like the effect in the first panel, like their past is burning through.
Thank you kindly.
how does hunter unlock that box O.o
On a side note, i love how the conflict has instantly died away. Always great to have the charred flashbacks 😀
One nice effect you’ve done on this page is how the box expands out of the last panel all the way to the borders of the page. Good job on that 😀
Looks like he made a “key” out of fire…
More or less; I don’t think it’s a spoiler for me to verify the box has a magic lock and can only be opened (or the sorcerous equivalent of picked, I guess) by someone of arcane ability.
That first panel. GOD DAMN Erin you are SO GOOD.
She is, isn’t she.
This is one of the most captivating stories I’ve read in years. And the artwork is simply magical in the way she uses it to convey subtle nuances of emotion.
Thank you both so much — very much appreciated.
I’m confused by what happens to Vane’s hat in panel one, but in awe of absolutely everything else! Whatever can there be inside that box??
Ok, now that I’ve really read the other comments I get it!HAH, brilliant!
I discovered your webcomic 2 days ago. Read last night till my battery wore down and heck it was bedtime anyways and finished it today and WOW! I read a lot of webcomics and being an artist myself I have to say yours is now on top of my list. Your artwork is really beautiful ( love how you do lighting! that was always my weakest point) and the story is amazing! good art but crappy story doesn’t work but wow you have one great story here ( I also read a lot of books so think I can spot a good story when I read one) . I do have to say being an equine sculptor and flat artist and lifetime horse owner and past breeder ( I know all breeds of horses very well) your horses are some of the best I have seen in a webcomic. Most of them in other comics are vagley horse shaped and some are down right awful and look more like dogs. Yea yours are more disney like but then your peopel are also but while they both are they are also realistic in ways that make it all fit perfect! and they look like horses and some of the movements you have them do is down right spot on! I can tell you know horse movement and may be using good refs for those movements to get them right. Good for you! I wish more artists would do that. One quite a ways back when she gets off from behind the one guy, you have the horse with widener back legs and his neck is swinging around, well that is just how they move to get their balance when someone if pulling their balance off. Anyways now I have wait a week! arrrggg! the only bad part is the waiting now for each new page.
I didn’t like John much at first but now I think he doesn’t really want to harm her at all. I almost wish they would kiss and make up! lol is he maybe trying to find a way to help her? so she magically comes back to life maybe? anyways love it and keep up the wonderful work! you have a new fan in me. I will be sharing this on my facebbok page with all my clients who also love horses because I know they would love this comic also.
Thanks for reading and thank you so much for taking the time for such a considered comment. I’m often bothered by lazy horse anatomy in comics, games & illustration so your pointing out that mine doesn’t offend means the world to me. 😀
Thanks also for spreading the word! It’s super helpful.
Wow, wait. You love horses and you will recommend this comic to other people who do so?
If there’s one thing I find questionable about the marvelous piece of art that is Next Town Over, it’s the overabundance of animal cruelty, first and foremost directed at the horses.
I can see how it is done to to serve the plot and character development, but that doesn’t change the fact that it’s often painful to watch.
So I hope your clients have stomachs as good as your’s and mine 🙂
Well doofus, I love horses too– in fact I have six, I’m involved in rescue, and I write a horse welfare blog. But I recommend this comic to horse people all of the time, and I have linked to it on my blog. Why?
1) Mature adults understand the difference between pretend and real.
2) The horses aren’t treated only as cannon fodder– they clearly have personalities and backstories that make them empathetic characters. You DO feel them suffering, and that’s not a bad thing. I’d rather feel it than have it glossed over as unimportant, like it is in every western movie.
3) I like my media medium rare, with a little blood in it. When you read or watch something, you SHOULD be affected, in your brain, your soul, your heart, your guts. Otherwise, what’s the point?
4) Beautifully. Drawn. Horses.
Something about this is screaming trap to me.
Also, the artwork on this page is absolutely gorgeous.
To me it looks like Hunter is ready to gently push Vane inside whatever it is, so yes, agree with the sense of trap! Eagerly awaiting next update…
Well that makes (at least) three of us thinking trap!
I know! Vane needs a spunky side-kick to help her out of these traps.
Well, you were watching. Did you see them arguing? No?
Is.. Is that a robot.
Well in this context it would more likely be called an “Automaton”.
I guess I’ll just have to drool over the gorgeous artwork while I wait for the reveal-and then obsessively ogle it for clues…
We know that Hunter values his own life, and avoids seriously injuring Vane even while she seeks to end him-that he still seems to care about her and that they were very close once. We also know that Hunter was able to resurrect Vane, and that she may have Come Back a Tech Wrong at the very least…
Does Hunter think he can win her back-all the WAY back, warm and healthy and free of the Pallid Masque and Perdition’s Eyes, laughter easy in her throat, the way it was Once Upon a Time? And could this devise be the key to possibly doing just that?
Or am I seriously overthinking this, and the first panel simply showing our dueling protagonists swept up in nostalgic flashback by a tender shared memory, the device simply playing catalyst and touchstone for Better Days?
Another. Week. 🙂
Ahe well-Quality like this is easily worth the wait. I sincerely hope that one day Erin will achieve the fame and wealth she so richly deserves for her works.
So do I.
I have to admit, this is rapidly approaching DID IT UPDATE YET??? status for me.
I’m getting the feeling once Unsounded ends, your badass comic and intriguing story will make me hardly feel the sting of loss!
Damn you are a excellent story teller. When I read this I was blown away by the art, but! This plot twist is a kicker. I suspect that this box, contraption has a lot to do with their past .
The first panel is amazing. Piecing together the forward/backward facing views of Vane, and the different orientations of John (above her / below her) is marvelous. It makes a believable magical transition from John on the floor under her foot to John standing up behind her. The essence of magic (so we are told by the masters) is distraction – something to focus the watcher so the trick can take place just out of focus. John’s magic doesn’t require that, but I had the feeling that his movement here was unnoticed because she was mesmerized. And the overlay is perfectly in tune with another moment of recollection of their past, of them sharing an emotion again.
I think it’s great fun that BOTH of my predicted potential next moves from John were true – he spoke AND moved into a position of greater control (but not the way I pictured).
Like my fellow fans, I love the strong message of the fire going out of Vane’s eyes. As well as the great job of framing the last cell (and the page) with a tantalizing view of what Vane is seeing, slightly out of focus (too close to us – and so the emphasis remains on their faces, as it should be).
I feel like you took your time with the story on this page…
And (usual last detail on my way out) the theme of gold and purple, not seen on anything in this chapter so far, helps to set the object apart. I always admire the way you hold things back until they can have maximum impact (brightest lights, most intense contrast, greatest color saturation, and, in this case, an entire color). I rechecked the rest of the chapter – nothing particularly purple anywhere but on the object. Some intense greens, reds, blues, etc. – but nothing like this. And I never missed it (purple) until I saw it on this page.
Reminds me of the Antikythera mechanism an ancient Greek device which tracked the movements of the planets, moon and sun, a form of “time machine”.
Panel one shows past/present .
Perhaps the device can rearrange the past or predict the future?
I just finished The Binge. AAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!! By the way, this is positively fantastic; this is honestly one of my favorite comics. Right up there with Nimona. I LOVE the art. also, WHAT IN HELL IS INSIDE THAT BOX?!
I’m starting to think ms.black might be more of a renevant than a zombie…… just sayin’
Well well well… it seems Hunter’s power is far more technical than simply burning things. And here I thought he was just a showy grifter that could set things on fire.
Oh, come on, he’s been creating things with his fire the whole time — swords, lassos, horses — so I wasn’t a bit surprised to see him open the lock with a key of fire.
I don’t think that I’ve seen anything that so evokes the mythic shadow side of America since Edgar Allen Poe and Lafcadio Hearn.
Whoa! Crazy high praise — thanks so much.
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