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(Transcript and visual captions below}

   "You have to realize that all those times you disappeared were really hard on me, Jack. I mean, you'd be gone for longer than the duration of the average high school relationship. You always had some reason for it, you were on an extended bender or had to sleep at the docks because some smugglers needed a look out. It was hard to understand for a regular kid. Not that you weren't, like regular but you weren't regular you know? I was always wondering if it was a real relationship, what was going to happen, were you gonna get choked to death by Harvey the Leg-breaker... I mean those absences could've been enough to doom things on its own... nnnnot that I'm saying that it's your fault exactly buuut..."
   "--Oh hey, remember that one time? Y'know, uhhh that one-- oh the time we..."

In which the boys take the safety off the pin.

It was the kind of party that was thrown for no reason other than no one else was having a party that weekend. Karl got his mother out of the house with the understanding that if he was arrested he'd have to serve out the sentence. But really, if she was any kind of a psychic she should know whether he was going to wreck up the joint or not, so he wasn't sweating it. Nonetheless the party was feeling a bit uncanny. The interminable school year was wearing on the teens and they seemed even more jaded than normal. Black-clad youths leaned against walls miserably, engaging in only the most weary nihilistic conversations. Perhaps that meant they were truly becoming as adult as they felt.

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     October 11th, 2013
     By:  Kelly

PSA: Kids, don't pierce your... anything like that.

The end draws nigh on Chapter 9.5, I hope you've enjoyed the diversion. I like having a bit more time to have characters goof around and be cute, and not have to be constantly beheading fools and having dramatic intrigue. Noble though the decapitations may be. I'm super pumped for Chapter 10 though, and our Halloween surprise/Kingfishaversery! I hope it will chill you to your very socks which will fly off along with your monocle.

So, ALSO because I need to pack every exciting thing into this, the best of all months of the year, NaNoWriMo prep! (National Novel Writing Month, write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days. It begins November 1st.) We've been having some discussions on our Horror Boys writing forum and all of you are welcome to come chat about your future novels should you choose to write them. I hope you do, it is really fun and writing is fundamental. Or something is anyway. I have stayed up too late.


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


(Young Jack is in Monkey Adventure t-shirt and boxers, lounging about with young Karl - who is in corduroys and a sweater.)

KARL: Do you ever think about getting an earring?

JACK: Not really... Why?

KARL: Want to?


(Karl is moderately excited, Jack less so.)

KARL: One earring is supposed to be gay, right? We can just do it here! Cotton did her nose herself.


(Jack is inquisitive, Karl thoughtful.)

JACK: Wait, just one earring? Which side is the gay one?

KARL:Uhhh... okay maybe we should do both.


(Karl is poised to pierce Jack's ear with a safety pin. He looks more nervous than Jack.)

KARL: Oh man... I’m really sorry if this hurts.


(Close up of Jack's ear, needled, bleeding.)

KARL: Ugh...


(Karl is a wincing baby.)


JACK: I haven’t even touched you!


(Jack is happy, looking in the mirror. Karl looks on Jack affectionately. They both have safety pins in their ears.)


(They lean toward each other smiling.)


(They wince in terrible pain from jostling the ears.)


(Another time, on a sidewalk, Karl's fashion is critiqued.)

BUCKET OF CHEESE: It’s kinda... retro cool I guess.

KARL: Maybe I’ll get more... Or tattoos or something.

GIRL: Uh huh.


(Jack walks by and gets a friendly wave from Karl. A shadow of Curlyfry has its doubts.)


(Modern times, Karl is in a nostalgic reverie. Jack is less awed by the memory.)

KARL:It’s so cute! Sometimes I remember that day when I look at these.

JACK: I’m shocked we didn’t get an infection.


(Adult Jack raises a chastising finger and has the dryly impish look of one eager to ruin someone else's fun.)

JACK: These are cute stories, but let’s cut to the chase. The end, remember?


(Karl slumps into his hand and looks appropriately dismayed. Now Jack is smiling.)

KARL:Yeah yeah, Jack is cool and Karl sucks forever.

JACK: Truer words were never spoken, mignon?


(In the past again, it's the panoramic view of Karl's large house, crowded with jaded teenagers.)

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