Vote over at TWC and you can see Elias and Vincent making googly eyes at each other in a drawing I’ve been working on. Baseball! Sports!

Pauvre t-bête is Cajun French for “poor little thing”, which I’m gonna say feels appropriate. Also, it makes it clear that Charlene is talking in that last panel, which is helpful.

I liked the parallel of Elias reacting to his grandma becoming merged with Connie, and then on this page, it’s Malaya being mad for Aubrey. This page just…has a buuuunch of stuff in it. I hate heavy dialog pages, but there’s also no reason to drag this dialog out to more pages, so sometimes it must be done. A few people pegged Connie as someone who probably grew up with a lot of money or resources, and yeeeah she did. I have no idea how day trading worked in the 90s, with shitty internet access and especially from a creepy house, so I’m gonna say *magic* is the best explanation. *Maaaaagic*. I also decided to go with the idea that magic has an emotional component, thus the fact that Tom was pissed when he clawed her would make the wounds harder to heal. They CAN be healed, but instead, she’s just keeping them at bay and spending all her resources elsewhere. Just like you COULD pay your utility bill before they cut off your power, or you can take the hit of a fine later, and buy yourself a nice steak dinner in the meantime. Her priorities aren’t great. I saw about a whole bunch of comments yesterday about the wounds coming back, so hopefully this gives you guys some answers! But if you figure that even though Malaya clawed her brother out of childhood annoyance, her love for him helped those wounds heal into a regular old school protection spell instead, which is a nice contrast with the wounds Connie has.

But yeah. Connie is the kind of terrible person that drives you nuts, because if she would just make one rational decision, things might be okay. But instead, she compounds her problems with more bad choices, and in the end, has dug a hole she can’t get out of. I’ve been watching old Dateline episodes, and one was about some state representative and his wife in Alabama who adopted three little girls despite everyone telling them that they weren’t qualified to handle kids with a history of abuse and parents with drug problems, and they’re solution was to try and perform exorcisms on these kids instead of like, not continuously pursuing adoption in the first place. So people make stupid choices, and they’re good at justifying stupid choices. That family then rehomed the two youngest girls to another family, and the dad turned out to be a pedophile and was sent to jail. The kids are all in good homes now, but like, waaaaay to fuck it up there by being self-absorbed assholes who believed troubled little girls were just full of demons. The state representative guy also had this very weird, soft baby voice and a very round head and ugly glasses, so like…he was very punchable.

Anyway, the good news is that this chapter has gotten hella long already, and this flashback has taken more pages than I thought, but I’ve found a workaround that cleans up the last half of this chapter really nicely and throws out a lot of unnecessary nonsense, so it’s a net win. Most of telling a story is “I have all these pieces, how do I get from point A to point B and have it make sense”, and I found a much faster route to point B that I like much better. Hurray!

I’m so sleepy, so please excuse this rambling. I was up til 1am building houses in the Sims 4 because of who I am as a person.