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'Til I Return by DarthFar 'Til I Return by DarthFar
[from the diaries of Stephen Garrity]

Was rudely awoken this morning by my discovery that, sometime in the night, the phone had burrowed a tunnel through my head and taken up residence in my brain. It was Thomas, with another of his ghastly openers. This time it was, "If the Stromboli erupts, does that make it a pizzaruption?" I groaned at his hideous lack of taste in puns. He went on to tell me that the Bird Parker records had arrived, and what should he do with them? I mumbled instructions for him to put them in the back room and that I would deal with the lot when I returned. The boy's an uncomplaining hard worker, but his misguided aspiration to become a stand-up comic has left him a little lacking in the sense department.

It is obvious, from the disruptions I face daily, that I should find a new home for my alarm clock. The ditch would be a good place.

___________

Ellen and I went out for a walk earlier today, getting sand in our shoes the way we used to do as children. A strange thing to do, I suppose, but Aunt Laura was there, and we needed a break from our routine, at any rate. There wasn't very much to talk about – I've only seen her once since we left home, and the circumstances that brought us together then weren't exactly conducive to a happy reunion either – and I suppose that neither of us wanted to raise the issue of dad's condition, but we laughed about when I was seven and scrambled up the Norwegian Lady and couldn't get back down, and the time the Ferris wheel got stuck and mom went into full panic mode and dad had to call the fire brigade. I think that, deep down, we secretly regret our loss of innocence; probably I more so than she. She didn't seem to want to talk about Tijuana; I won't ask her again. I'd have liked to talk to her a little more, but time has torn an irreparable rift between us that we could not hope to mend.

I think dad'll be fine after all. The acquiescence that had temporarily taken over for the duration of this ordeal has receded back into shadow, and the grumpy, downright pushy old bastard has resurfaced, much to our chagrin. The nurse who left his room in tears this morning is proof enough that he's on the road to recovery – which is good news for me, because I can go home soon. When the emergency call came through, nothing else mattered but the urgent need to return to this place; there are so many things I've left unfinished back home that I, had I been in a better state of mind, should have taken care of first. I know it's selfish, but – I hope she's still waiting for me, that I'll have someone to come home to. I didn't treat her properly in abandoning her the way I did, and I'm truly sorry; I'll do right by her soon.

Phil tried to call me on my cell phone again last night. (James, I swear, if you gave him this number, you can go find a new drinking partner). I simply put it in the bathroom and allowed it to ring itself off the proverbial hook. He's probably just calling me up for help with another piece again. And it's not even as if I left the company last week. I wonder how long it'll take for the fact that I'm no longer working there to sink in. Probably for as long as I continue to allow myself to be made use of. Molly's always said that I give in far too easily, after all.

--[Oh God, what if Phil decides to pop ov]--Stop it, Steve, you're being ridiculous.

Yet even now, I find myself being unreasonably concerned about matters beyond my control: how Thomas is running (or ruining?) the business without me; whether our radiator has malfunctioned again; if my car, which I so foolishly left at James' place, will start when I pick it up. I'm battling that persistent inner voice nagging me to up the travel agency and book a return ticket; I can't afford to make premature plans, not before the shadow has passed. But how do you choose between what's right and what's right for you; how do you balance duty with overwhelming need?

--------------------------------------------

Update: Fixed the recorded message colour and Stephen's teeth.

100 Pictures Challenge 82: Can You Hear Me?

LOOK TORY, NO DONUTS! Oh wait...

So, uh, this idea was conceived back in 2006, shortly after True Love is, but I failed in every way imaginable in trying to convey it in pictorial form because (1) I hadn't the technical skills to draw *any* kind of interiors and (2) it never occurred to me back then to do it in comic form. I suppose I might do better next year, but -- oh for gizkas' sake, I might not *live* that long! :rofl:

Anyway, I was trying for that slightly vintage comic book look, you know, with very simple shading and that halftones look. Admittedly, the colours weren't as rich in their original flat version; the halftoning(?) turned them a little darker and richer, and I couldn't be bothered to tamper with that. LOL. And sorry for the green text in panels 8 and 9; I didn't want to use overly obtrusive colours because... well, the text can be read or ignored. :laughing: Oh, and imagine that the incomplete sentence in the third last paragraph is struck through; dA won't let me actually do that. LOL.

Many thanks to my betas (no six-fingered hands this time though, guys)!

`DragonWinter refers to Panel 6 as "creepy sad". Gee, I wonder why. :rofl:

Inked with a hard brush pen and Chinese calligraphy ink. Digitally coloured with Corel PhotoPaint.

This is a chapter in the ongoing Project Garrity. To read previous chapters, please click here: [link]


Stephen Garrity, and all other characters and fictitious locations named in The Diaries of Stephen Garrity © Farlander.
Add a Comment:
 
:iconrilwenshadowflame:
RilwenShadowflame Featured By Owner Dec 19, 2008
Really cool stuff there. And I still feel sorry for Garrity... at the same time as relief at his being A) fictional, B) far from itty bitty redhaired me. ;p
Reply
:iconwincenworks:
wincenworks Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2008  Hobbyist Digital Artist
No six fingered hands... I'd have taken that as a Hannibal reference. ;)
Reply
:icondarthfar:
DarthFar Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2008
Actually... that was with reference to a painting I did sometime back in which I forgot to count the guy's fingers and accidentally painted six. :rofl:
Reply
:iconwincenworks:
wincenworks Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2008  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Well yes, out of context it can be embarrassing... but in context you can just pass it off as awesome. ;)

I suppose it's better than the occasions where I've forgotten to draw a leg.
Reply
:icondarthfar:
DarthFar Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2008
Maybe his pet iguana went berserk and gnawed it off...
Reply
:iconwincenworks:
wincenworks Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2008  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Pet iguanas, correcting art mishaps since...
Reply
:iconpsychoticdustbunny:
psychoticdustbunny Featured By Owner Sep 23, 2008
Panel 10 - the roses :rose:- that is the creepy, sad moment. :cuddle:

Garrity in comic form!! :faint:

*Note to self--do not allow my children to ever read comic books. :paranoid:*

I am concerned about my children's mental health. I have long since given up on yours :crazy:.
Reply
:icondarthfar:
DarthFar Featured By Owner Sep 23, 2008
:D Creepy sad. I like creepy sad.

Aw, surely there's no harm in letting your kids read Billy the Bunny and the Children's Picnic. Unless, of course, it was written and drawn by Far, in which case the children would be savage little monsters who subject Billy to unspeakable horrors before skinning him and roasting his carcass for their picnic sandwiches and using his fur to make a fluffy purse. It'll all be done in cute pastel colours.
Reply
:iconpsychoticdustbunny:
psychoticdustbunny Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2008
Sounds like you were watching my children's last picnic. I do like my fluffy purse though. :boogie:
Reply
:icondarthfar:
DarthFar Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2008
Oh yeah, it *does* sound like something Johnathan would do. I blame it on his mum...
Reply
:iconpsychoticdustbunny:
psychoticdustbunny Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2008
Stop listen to Freud. Not everything is the mother's fault. I would never blame you on your poor mother :D.
Reply
:iconhubby-n-dad:
Hubby-N-Dad Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2008
really like the comic, when I'm not so tired, I'll read the description...
Reply
:icondarthfar:
DarthFar Featured By Owner Sep 23, 2008
Thanks, Tom! It's not so much a description as it is a story to go with the comic, in the trend of the other Garrity pictures. ;)
Reply
:iconmadman42q:
Madman42q Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
Dammit, Far, you made me squeal in utter delight. I squeal for no one!
This looks great! The last two panels are a bit dark, though. It's hard to tell what's going on in them. But the rest is fantastic!
Reply
:icondarthfar:
DarthFar Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2008
The thought of you squealing is... disturbing, to say the least.

Thanks very much, Dale! Is your monitor adjusted to full brightness? Mine is; it never occurred to me to check to see if my friends do the same. :blushes:
Reply
:iconmadman42q:
Madman42q Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
It is, on both computers that I've used. I can see a little better on this one, so I can tell more of what's going on. She looks a bit...er, cold.
Reply
:icondarthfar:
DarthFar Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2008
She looks er, very cold. :rofl:
Reply
:icontatooine92:
Tatooine92 Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2008  Student Writer
Nice work! (Apologies for the short comment; I've had to go through a whole slew of deviations and am running out of creative comments. XD)
Reply
:icondarthfar:
DarthFar Featured By Owner Sep 23, 2008
Thank you, Steph! and no worries; I've been faving and running a lot lately too.
Reply
:icontatooine92:
Tatooine92 Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2008  Student Writer
:lol: No problem.
Reply
:icondavincipoppalag:
davincipoppalag Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
Great work on this.. it does look vintage comic!
Reply
:icondarthfar:
DarthFar Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2008
Thank you very much, David. :)
Reply
:icondavincipoppalag:
davincipoppalag Featured By Owner Sep 23, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
Welcome sir
Reply
:iconshrunkenjedi:
ShrunkenJedi Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2008
Aw... very bittersweet, makes you wonder (like most of your work, I must say!). :D And I definitely like the framing and the last three panels make you feel like you're walking down stairs. :)
Reply
:icondarthfar:
DarthFar Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2008
Or maybe descending into darkness. :laughing: Thank you very much!
Reply
:iconanubis:
anubis Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2008  Professional Traditional Artist
Really wonderful comic!!!!
:manhug:
Tassos
Reply
:icondarthfar:
DarthFar Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2008
Thank you, friend. :)
Reply
:iconwraithten:
WraithTen Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2008
Why do I look forward to these so much when I know they make me sad as well?

I love the way you split the last 3 panels. You've illustrated the scene without giving it all away, making us work a little bit to piece it together. Molly's key chain is a nice touch. ;)

Oh and nice socks. :roll:
Reply
:icondarthfar:
DarthFar Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2008
Because you're a closet masochist? :rofl: I kid! I kid! don't hit me with that plush carrot!

The actual answer would be: because you feel drawn to Garrity despite the fact that he's not the sort of guy you should be around, unless you like being spread out over a vegetable patch.

Thank you very much, Tory. ^_^

Oh, and green socks are better than bright yellow ones, no? or orange ones, for that matter?
Reply
:iconwraithten:
WraithTen Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2008
I may secretly want to be fertilizer, it's possible.

I suppose I should be grateful they aren't striped. ;)
Reply
:icondarthfar:
DarthFar Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2008
:O

YOU. Want to be. Fertiliser?? :O_o:

Should I even begin to point out to you what's wrong with that?

BTW, *my* socks weren't striped either!
Reply
:iconwraithten:
WraithTen Featured By Owner Oct 3, 2008
I knew you had striped socks. ;)
Reply
:iconfirera:
Firera Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2008
You, are amazing. From someone who didn't draw much to one who could do hyper-realism and now comic strips...

.....

...........



[builds a shrine for Far and worships]

And yes, this comic is awesome! I love the feel, the angles and especially that hand when putting a key to the lock. ;)
Reply
:icondarthfar:
DarthFar Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2008
Thank you very much, Fifi. ^_^ I try my best.

Oh yeah, the angles. :rofl: You should've seen the perspective lines for panel one. I did the perspective grid digitally, and then printed it out. Had I attempted to plot it out on *real* paper, the actual panel would occupy a corner on one paper, and the left vanishing point would be something like six pieces of paper away. :rofl:
Reply
:iconfirera:
Firera Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2008
I can imagine it. I used to have perspective classes and they were a waste of paper, all because of that sort of problem. :rofl:
Reply
:iconsvera:
Svera Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2008
That's looks great! It's very thrilling to read it :)
Reply
:icondarthfar:
DarthFar Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2008
Thank you. :thanks:
Reply
:iconsvera:
Svera Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2008
You're welcome! :aww:
Reply
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