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A Half-Elven woman named Silth-Kaonthil and a Goblin inventor named Thingumy appear in a place called Character Limbo. How can they be in character limbo if they are in fact in a comic detailing the fact they're character limbo? That's not important, since they fall out of the sky and into a small and poorly rendered town called Lonbridge. Silth and Thingumy are broght before Lady Aki Sazuko. Why is her last name a first name? Beats me. I think I had some kind of complicated rationalization for this, but I forgot it when Aki dropped out of the plot without a trace a while back. Anyway, Silth happens to be wearing an amulet with a phoenix rising (as well as a few random Japanese characters) on it.
This causes Aki great concern for some reason, so she arranges for Silth and Thingumy to be kept in a hotel. Hijinks ensue, and Silth acts bitchty, selfish, and completely out of character. The only important plot detail is that Silth gave the amulet to somebody as a tip. Why would she give up an amulet she's had all her life? More importantly, why is she still apparently still wearing the amulet as she explains why she doesn't have it anymore.
Silth, Akiko, and Thingumy arrive in the city of Harbourton, which inexplicably has a busy stagecoach station even though later strips illustrate it has a fucking airport, cars, and trains. Silth and Thingumy seem distressed about this, even though they live in Harbourton and pretty much got a free ride accross the entire nation.
Eventually, the hotel employee who had the amulet is mugged, and gives the amulet to the thieves.
Later on, as Silth and Thingumy look for Hotel Guy under the watchful eye of Aki, who's become Akiko by this point since, anticipating the smash hit that Final Fantasy movie would become, I prudently changed her name. They spot Hotel Guy boarding a ship for no apparent reason.
What follows is a very silly crossover, which I'd ignore entirely except for two notable events. First, the introduction of Other Silth, who notices Silth has the Kaonthil family mark on her arm and promptly tries to kill her for stealing her identiy. Secondly, the boat everybody's on is the first appearance of modern technology in The Midlands, and is the first baby step towards the world the later strips would take place in.
Other Silth has a good cry in some brooding ruins when she realizes real Silth is a year older than her. Why she just takes Silth's word for this is unexplained.
Some other very silly things happen, and the Prologue ends.
I celebrate this by using |33t sp33k and making an ass of myself.
The newly renamed Akiko Sazuko is getting to the bottom of the mystery of the location of the amulet. She finds the thieves who stole the amulet, and they agree to return the next day. Right after Akiko leaves, the Gobex Corporation arrives, blows up the house, and takes the amulet for themselves, the bastards. For the sake of arguement, let's say the thieves died in the explosion, even though they didn't and formed the center of a confusing and useless plot involving pants.
Meanwhile, hotel guy acts suspicous, and Silth and Thingumy go back home.
There's some fan-service, and Akiko decides to gather Silth, Thingumy, Hotel Guy, and Other Silth to pick up the amulet.
Horror and destruction.
I have no idea what happened in the next fews strips, so let's skip ahead to a conversation between Silth and Other Silth. Other Silth identifies her mother as Telith-Kaonthil, who's also actual Silth's mother as well. Hmmm.
Somebody is looking for Hotel Guy.
Following a brief but frank exchange of ideas on the nature of culture, Other Silth runs away crying. Silth feels bad about this.
When Silth returns to her flat, she finds Hotel Guy waiting for her.
Other Silth beats up some guards and is arrested.
Silth gives directions to a Public Network Access thing, and refers to electricity as a luxury, which it isn't.
Another plotline is introduced, but it doesn't make any sense either, and was abandoned a while ago.
The woman who's looking for Hotel guy finds Silth, so Silth tells her where the Netowrk Access thingy she sent Hotel Guy to.
The fiftieth proper Midlands strip isn't a proper Midlands stip at all. Shit. And drawing the comic with my eyes gougued out is pretty hard.
Mysterious stuff happens at the Gobex Building. Apparently, the corporation is concerned about the fact Silth has been carrying around the amulet for what could be a few hundred years.
Meanwhile, at the guardhouse, Comedy Accent Guard attempts to find out what the hell Other Silth's problem is.
There's a brief break for the Marathon Christmas Special, done as a present for everybody who still cares about Marathon after seven or so years, and then, abruptly, we're back in Harbourton. Silth and some Talithi soldiers yell at eachother a bit. We get the feeling the Silth cares about the civil war between Caladai and Talith for some reason. Thingumy is kind of tacked on to this strip to remind everybody he still exists.
Suddenly, a new character comes out of nowhere. It seems Silth has a friend named Isa-Lelad who wants to show Silth something the company she works for has made.
The two meet at a coffee place outside of the Public Network Access site Hotel Guy is slouching towards. Isa's mysterious object is a laptop computer. Silth feigns ignorance, although, as it turns out she's one of the finest minds in computer science the world has ever seen. Shows what happens when I don't think a character's backstory through. Also, Isa says "Internet" when she should have said "Network". God, I hate Chapter One.
Hotel Guy ices a Guard who's just one week away from retirement, sniff. Silth hears this, puts two and two together, and rushes off.
One bloody corpse sighting later, Silth's calling for the Guard. Hotel Guy is disturbed from his work at the Network terminal thingy, which is filled with cool looking text.
He flees, but the mysterious woman who was looking for him finds him and he blows up real good.
It's the next day, and Silth has purchased a computer. Isa's helping to set it up. If Isa knew Silth had been using similar computers since Explorer built the first prototypes, she probably wouldn't have bothered. Non-disclosure-agreement beats logic, though, so Silth pretty much just sits around in a funny hat.
Oh, and Silth gets the amulet back. This is where I started having some sort of plot beyond "find the amulet", so of course I had to resolve the old plot in as anticlimatic a manner as possible. There's a note with the amulet, though- "Keep this near in the coming storm".
Akiko is not pleased.
Yet another Guard comes in to question Silth about Hotel Guy, since she was around when he exploded. Turns out he was a robot or something. Don't ask me, it seemed like a good idea at time. Other Silth is lurking outside.
As it turns out, Silth recognizes Hotel Guy's assassin as a security guard for the Gobex Corporation, and Hotel Guy was believed to have been built by Gobex's rival, the Skragi company.
A Gobex Shooting range. Assassin girl and an spiteful little Goblin called Widjit act mysterious and evil. The name Hiroguchi is bandied about, as is the work "Key". I rather liked writing for Widjit, so it's too bad I killed him off later on on a whim. Anyway, we find out the corporation sent Silth the amulet again because in order to use it for their mysterious and evil purposes, they need to use her as well, since Silth has absorbed a good portion of the amulet's power for the two hundred and seven years she's been carrying the thing around for.
Silth and the guard hit it off pretty well, leaving Isa and Thingumy to catch up on the news. There's some kind of dictator growing in power to the west called Dominus.
Then comes the melodramatic flashback, where Silth details her experiences in the Ilthmiri civil war to the guard, Isa, Thingumy, and her boyfriend Solond-Yvelshi. Meanwhile, at the mysteriously more modern Guardhouse, Comedy Accent Guard (I think her name was Guardswoman Takezawa or something) makes the disturbing discovery that Other Silth has escaped. Ruh roh.
Anyway, back to the flashback. I hate, hate, hate this storyline now that I've thought more about Marcharian culture. Since Marcharius absorbed millions of refugees from the Ilthmiri Civil War, Silth shares most of her experiences with many others, including Isa-Lelad, who's sitting in the room listening to all of this. Ugh. So it makes Silth seem like a self-centered drama queen, which she isn't.
A feeble explanation is offered for Silth's apparent ignorance of computers. Cool interface, though.
Remember Other Silth? She breaks in, locks everybody except Silth in the bathroom, and ties Silth up her room, dresses up like Silth, decides she is Silth, and dresses up like Silth in a plot twist I swear to God I came up with before I read Kraven's last hunt.
Silth is trapped in her room, tied up and panicked for about twelve hours before somebody wanders in from another plotline and rescues her, as well as getting everybody else out of the bathroom.
Somewhere around here, we learn that the Gobex Corporation has bugged the amulet, but they didn't get their end of the system up until it was too late to help Silth out of her apartment. Widjit tells Assassin Girl to kill anybody who might threaten Silth in the future.
Also, Akiko is arrested, mostly because I wasn't sure what else to do with her.
Silth is having dreams, but that doesn't stop her from going to her job at Sekigahara Labs. After some clumsy hints that Sekigahara has built an Artificial Intelligence called MURAKAMI, Other Silth shows up, and decides to kill Silth. Fistifuffs, yay! Of course, Gobex doesn't approve of this, so Assassin Girl ends up killing Other Silth.
That night, Silth has another dream, where she talks to her past self. Past Silth, who's about thirty years old, is looking pretty pregnant. Silth, of course knows that this pregnancy ends in a still-birth, but has the tact not to mention this.
There's some weird romantic tension between Silth and Thingumy.
Silth has yet another dream where she converses with herself in the past, which makes her brain hurt, since she can remember having the same dream in the past only from the other end.
There's an sloppily colored 100th strip spectacular where Isa reveals that she has a daughter. Silth didn't know this, which is unsettling, since she's known Isa for most of her life. Anyway, Isa's daughter, who lives in the far-off nation of Coastland, is having her 100th birthday, and Isa wants Silth to come along.
At the floating city of Coriolis, two High Council members, let's call them Orsino Tewksbury and Seisha-Faelis, discuss a magical disturbance they've noticed. They decide to fly to Harbourton. Did you know the plural of "shaman" is "shamans" and not "shamen"? I sure didn't.
Another day, another dream.
And another, only this time Silth sees her future self, who seems to be a druid of some kind. Future Silth promises shows Silth some boots she has, and swears that Silth will have a pair just like it by the end of the day.
So Silth, being the non-conformist that she is, declines the boots when a street vendor offers them to her. Score one for free will, right? But Thingumy buys them as a gift for Silth.
Dream, take two zillion. Future Silth gives a speech about how helpless you feel if you know exactly what's going to happen in the future, because you can't do a fucking thing about it, since whatever you do is always what happened... or... something.
More Gobex Intrigue. Widjit decides he can trust the assassin, and makes arrangements to tell her the secret of the amulet.
Isa acts angsty, and it turns out she's been using drugs of some sort.
The next day, Orsino, Seisha, and a third Coriolis High Council member named Teithos-Niuthil arrive in Marcharius, when the mysterious magic source they've been tracking begins to move away rapidly. Seems somebody took it aboard a plane.
And a few hours later, Silth and Isa arrive at the New Philae, Coastland airport. What follows is actually a pretty decent bunch of strips, but if you really don't want to read them, here's the gist of what happened:
Elsewhere an Elven warrior named Caelin but bearing the Kaothil family mark kills Dominus but escapes his guards using an amulet very similar to the one Silth has. She calls it a teleporation stone.
Silth and Isa meet Isa's daughter, Maureen-Lelad, and Maureen's girlfriend, Li-Idolos.
The part in Silth's hair shifts to the left for no apparent reason and Isa finds out Silth has invented artificial intelligence. It seems it came to her in, yes, a dream.
Widjit tells the assassin that the amulet was the creation of an old Goblin shaman called Weirdkop, and a man named Shigeo Hiroguchi.
Isa makes a sad attempt to get closer to her daughter following about seventy-five years of ignoring her. Maureen brushes her off.
Silth has another dream, but Isa wakes her up before she figures out what the point is.
Silth tells Solond about her dreams, and, although this wasn't in the comic, Solond promptly contacts the Proper Authorities(tm).
Somebody Silth's past returns at the party, which makes Silth a sad panda. She doesn't have much time for sad pandaness, because Isa chooses that time to go into withdrawl.
Silth and Li (remember her?) are whisked away, and the Gobex Building flies away.
Li wakes up in Tokyo, which confuses her. Silth meets Michiko and Shigeo Hiroguchi, the latter of which claims he's her father.
Thanks to the amulet, Silth and Li manage to get home, and Michiko and Shigeo hitch a ride.
The assassin decides she has no use for Widjit in a world without Gobex, so she shoots him. And that's pretty much that. On to Chapter 2, which hopefully won't need a synopsis like this to make any sense.
suspiciously change the subject and break my concentration
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