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(Transcript and visual captions below}

Demetri removed the sign from the bloody corpse with a sickening sound, that even he found distasteful. He turned to Jack, his mind still racing to process the scene, but he had to play it cool. That was the only way to find things out, be cool, be cool...

In which Jack learned all the dirty words.

      "I never agreed to that."
      "Well you didn't have to fucking smile about it! Don't think I didn't see that."
Jack stood back from the corpse, which now maintained at least a small semblance of dignity. He tried to forget the thought of what it looked like, but even the blood stain forming on the velvet traced its shape, it wouldn't soon leave his mind. Santi, he was kind of boring and creepy, but he certainly didn't deserve that. Nobody did.
      "Jack, please. What was I supposed to do, let your friend kill me?"
      "He wasn't my friend."
      "...Then why are you so upset?"
      "Because it's not right to kill people, GOD!"
      "Let's not use crude language here. So was that one of Theodore's friends? You helped me so I can't imagine that you're really in on it, or at least you are not committed to this treachery."
      "You would've done that to me, wouldn't you? If it was me doing that, you would've ch--chopped my--Gh--"
He couldn't get the words out. If he'd been a human, maybe he'd feel like vomiting.
      "Jack, please. He was going to eat my heart. You saw that. I wouldn't call him innocent and it's a completely different situation."
      "Like you’re any better! You did the exact same thing."
      "...Did exactly what?"
      "Eating Dragomir's heart to get his powers! They had a meeting I saw on Skall."
      "Now, did they really say anything about hearts? How do you know about that?"
      "....I don't know," Jack said under his breath, sounding like a guilty child.

Demetri began to piece together something, but it wasn't what he'd expected.

In which Jack learned all the dirty words.

      "I see... Theodore must have provided you with-- oh Gaston-Louis? He went missing, that would make sense. I never liked that bloke.
I imagine you must have a very strange world in that head now, but you don't seem to be too disturbed, well any more than normal.
Jack, we have something in common now. How does that feel?"
      "Don't try to say I'm as bad as you. I had to do it because no one was going to protect me."
      "I would never suggest you are as bad as me, that would just be cruel. Why don't you come with me, I'll take you home. You don't want to hang out with these violent sorts."
      "...I hope you're joking."
      "Why would I joke? Do I joke? I'm perfectly forthcoming in all matters. Aren't I?"
      "Dude. After all that? What you did? Forget it! I can take care of myself now, since no one would do it before. Theodore might be a creepy weirdo, but at least he helped me when it mattered. At least he cared about it at all."
      "Oh well, you know where to find me."

Jack fell backward into a bush in a display of exasperation, and transformed into the small brown bird characteristic of the Sombreta family. Demetri found it charming in a funny way. The small bird flew away, with its strange looking, but powerful flight.

In which Jack learned all the dirty words.

      Even after all that, he was in a fairly good mood. Jack was alive and well, and all was peaceful. Well except that bit about Angela... Ouch. Vitus was sure to be crushed by it. What a strange world it was becoming...

Oh yes, the heart. He spent a moment trying to put it back in his chest cavity, and it came tumbling out again and again. He was glad that he was only in the company of an insensate corpse. He gave up and stuck it in his coat pocket, musing about the poetry of the whole thing.




      Jack made his way to the Sleepytown Motel, flapping high above the city. He was sure he'd never get used to it. He felt a growing sense of dread-- He hadn't been home since Minchin dragged him through the floor. What would he find there now? All his friends must think he was dead. What if Minchin was still there? Theodore claimed he'd have the power to fight for himself now, but he didn't feel different. What would that even feel like? Can you even fight something like that?
      The motel hall was deserted and silent, and smelled of sweat and mildew. He came to the door, which was unlocked. Well, it wasn't like that would stop the fucking bogeyman anyway.


In which Jack learned all the dirty words.


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     June 13th, 2013
     By:  Kelly

Damn, what a chapter. That's all I gotta say, haha. PS as ever, tell me if my French sucks. I will be suitably humbled, since I'm trying to actually learn it unlike all the other languages I co-opt. xD

By the way, this is the official end to Chapter 9, but there will be a short denouement to follow, along with super cool fan content made by lovely people! After that, I have a very weird surprise for you. Thanks everyone for sticking by through this chapter, even though it's been slow. I love you forever, never forget that.

Now as for bonuses, I'm getting faster but not quite there yet. Technically I compressed two pages into one here, but.. it's gotta be legit since y'all paid for it. If I can actually get two comics into a 7 day period, I will count it!


TRANSCRIPT: This is the text of the comic, for purposes such as translation and internet searches.


(Demetri looks casual, holding the bloody stop sign.)

DEMETRI: How did you do that trick with the lights? I didn’t really need it...


(Jack angrily throws Demetri his heart back.)

JACK: You fucking monster!

DEMETRI: It was needlessly gory, perhaps. I apologize.


(Demetri looks nonplussed, Jack covers Santi's corpse with his jacket, looking very upset.)


JACK: I told you not to kill him!


(Demetri questions Jack, who is becoming increasingly angry.)

DEMETRI: Why did you call out Angela’s name?

JACK: She’s dead!

DEMETRI: ...Why would you care?


(Jack balls up his fists and says something very rude to Demetri.)

JACK: AHHH!! Va te faire foutre!! Putain de monstre!


(Demetri is shocked.)

DEMETRI: You did it too... didn’t you?

JACK: So what?!


(Demetri smiles wistfully, looking up at the sky.)

DEMETRI: Why do I feel like that was progress?


(Demetri stands next to Santi's corpse.)

DEMETRI: *sigh* Naughty boys will be my downfall.


(Jack opens the door to his empty room, light coming in from behind him.)


(He sees the shoes he left behind, sitting alone.)


(He picks up the shoes, and they let out a little plume of dust and ash.)


(He hears a flapping noise coming from the window.)


(The back of Vitus' head, as he looks in Jack's window.)

VITUS: And there you are.


(Vitus looks pissed off, and bloody.)

VITUS: I knew you were lying. Minchin was a ruse. You were just helping Theodore the whole time.


(Jack tries to defend himself.)

JACK: What? No I w--


(Vitus is ever so cranky, he yells at Jack.)

VITUS: Did you keep me alive just so you could gloat? I’m going back to the estate. It is not your home and you are NOT welcome!


(Vitus-bird flies away as Jack looks shocked.)


(A light above Jack burns out, leaving him in the dark.) END CHAPTER 9.


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