Comic 1440 - Special Delivery

22nd Jan 2017, 9:00 PM
Special Delivery
Average Rating: 5 (23 votes)

Author Notes:

Tokyo Rose 23rd Jan 2017, 2:51 PM edit delete
Tokyo Rose
The situation of the kittens is resolved!

When I took the second pair in for their tests this morning, a young lady who was there to get her seven-month-old Maine Coon vaccinated immediately fell in love with them and took them home. With proof of testing in hand, I took the first pair to the Lost Our Home shelter, where they're settling into swank digs. Our bathroom is kitten-free and I AM NOT CRYING YOU'RE CRYING SHUT UP.
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Stormwind13 22nd Jan 2017, 9:03 PM edit delete reply

Ah! It was Tennyo that was talking. And yes, she shortened Douchimus' choice for Lord General by one head. :-D

Noctis APPROVES! =D Wow, that is about as much emotion as she has EVER displayed. :-D
Sheela 23rd Jan 2017, 3:00 AM edit delete reply

Well, when you are a government approved killing machine, one must approve of good kills.
megados 22nd Jan 2017, 9:09 PM edit delete reply

Very good, Tennyo!
Lurker 22nd Jan 2017, 9:18 PM edit delete reply
You know, if the Cassians ever retire, I think they might have a good future as a comedy troup!
HiFranc 22nd Jan 2017, 11:52 PM edit delete reply

At least, Tennyo would be on it.
xpacetrue 22nd Jan 2017, 9:21 PM edit delete reply

Gotta love that enthusiasm for her job. It feels a bit jarring, though. As Stormwind implied, this is more emotion than we usually see from her.

" I took the liberty of disarming a number of the Praetorians as well!"

I have to wonder if she meant that quite literally. If so, perhaps she should have emphasized the 'arming' in disarming?
DLKmusic 22nd Jan 2017, 10:02 PM edit delete reply

I dunno, xpacetrue, I kinda like the understated presentation. It's almost impossible to read it without the "Did she mean..." question in the back of your mind, which makes it (imho) brilliant!

My twisted evil brain had her dislegging a couple of them as well
Sheela 23rd Jan 2017, 3:01 AM edit delete reply

Dislegging, huh ?
She may have done that as well.

As for Noctis, maybe she's just emulating emotions?
megados 23rd Jan 2017, 7:23 AM edit delete reply

Sheela, I think Noctis is genuinely pleased.
That one guy 23rd Jan 2017, 4:27 PM edit delete reply
I suspect literal disarming. It's not like the Praetorians are considered likely to become decent human beings if given the chance, and the Cassians are intended as a scalpel to cut away the rot in order to keep the whole healthy.

I'm actually surprised she said "disarmed" rather than "disabled," "retired," "removed the from potential for being a threat," or "rendered docile."
xpacetrue 23rd Jan 2017, 8:31 PM edit delete reply

@ That one guy

I think I like "retired" even more than "rendered docile" or "disarmed." It has the same implied connotation, only stronger.

Though, "disabled" is pretty clever. Tennyo could have said, "...disarming and disabling a number of Praetorians" and the connotation would be pretty obvious.
That one guy 24th Jan 2017, 5:17 PM edit delete reply
I don't think "rendered docile" is good phrasing, but it was meant in the direction of considering that they're pretty well all unrepentant rapists and murderers and thinking what it would take to permanently make them no longer any kind of threat for harm to anyone at all. I think that requires a minimum of 75% limb loss to really be thorough about it.
jamie59 22nd Jan 2017, 9:31 PM edit delete reply

Took longer to loose his helmet than his head or is that his body.
Judy_IIDD 22nd Jan 2017, 9:46 PM edit delete reply
Looks like now that Princepts is dead and the contingencies are offline that a more complete cancer removal is being performed. Perhaps we should call it spring cleaning...Also since Prince Douchimus was the one who had the Cassians ignore stuff -- they can stop ignoring now.
Sheela 23rd Jan 2017, 3:03 AM edit delete reply

Yeah, the Cassians probably have quite the laundry list to go through. :)
Visvires 22nd Jan 2017, 9:52 PM edit delete reply
Promotion complete!
Stormwind13 23rd Jan 2017, 5:20 PM edit delete reply

Promotion? I think that was a DEMOTION, Visvires. Unless you are thinking that turning Adventus Albinus into fertilizer is a better use for him than being the pretender Lord General. :-D
Visvires 24th Jan 2017, 12:36 AM edit delete reply
Pretty much the latter.
robnot 22nd Jan 2017, 10:42 PM edit delete reply
lord general: Noctis this is nice,, but could you tell the Cassians we ARE pressed for time.!!
and topweb is still down...
Dragonrider 22nd Jan 2017, 11:05 PM edit delete reply

I really don't ever see Maxus ever using a helm accented with the mane of a mother fucking jackass. I note she disarmed the Praetorians but neglected to bring their arms with the head.
Mark_L_A 23rd Jan 2017, 2:49 AM edit delete reply

I think that was the "FWUMPLTCH". Their arms that is.
Gilrandir 22nd Jan 2017, 11:25 PM edit delete reply
Tennyo comes from the same batch as Parvati, doesn't she?
Hana 22nd Jan 2017, 11:25 PM edit delete reply
It is now comfirmed, I really like Tennyo.
Stormwind13 23rd Jan 2017, 5:47 PM edit delete reply

Me too Hana. She is gorgeous and has a sense of humor. Lots to like. Great job with her CentComm! :-)
Centcomm 24th Jan 2017, 8:49 AM edit delete reply

Rose designed her I just made her looks happen.
Stormwind13 24th Jan 2017, 3:17 PM edit delete reply

I approve of your making her looks happen then! :-D

And nice design Rose.
megados 24th Jan 2017, 5:28 PM edit delete reply

HiFranc 23rd Jan 2017, 12:02 AM edit delete reply

I'm reminded of what someone once said about being the astrologer to one of the Roman emperors (forgot which one):

Job with good prospects, shame about the retirement plan.
Rashala 23rd Jan 2017, 12:39 AM edit delete reply

Is it me or does it seem she is campaigning for kali's old job?
Gilrandir 23rd Jan 2017, 1:16 AM edit delete reply
She is apparently doing Kali's old job on an interim basis. Perhaps she is hoping the new leadership will consider making it permanent?
Mark_L_A 23rd Jan 2017, 2:51 AM edit delete reply

Following proper Chain Of Command, Noctis has Kali's old job. Tennyo will probably get Noctis's old job, of the day to day running of assignments, with overalll command by Noctis.

I actually think Noctis would be best for that because of her ability to do what is best for Roma.
Gilrandir 23rd Jan 2017, 10:58 AM edit delete reply
Except Noctis has already delegated to Tennyo while she (Noctis) is TDY to New Troy, escorting Acantha. I may be more of a stickler for details and protocol than most, but it seems unlikely to me that Tennyo would take it on her own initiative to perform extra-judicial executions without orders unless she already considered herself to be acting in the role of Cassian-In-Charge.
That one guy 23rd Jan 2017, 4:35 PM edit delete reply
I think a communication that Decimus is dead and Acantha and Maxus are alive would be sufficient to consider Adventus Albinus' life forfeit. Possibly he could've survived to be formally tried and executed by surrendering, but not certain that's really the New Roman way.

A remembered offhand remark by Acantha about having all the Praetorians killed if she's in charge being high on her priority list or anything that resembled resistance to a lawful execution could've been enough to kill the Praetorians (recall Acantha's instructions to Lynn and the way people scattered and avoid getting involved if at all possible). Possibly they were [likely literally] disarmed rather than killed for failing to give her the excuse to kill them [yet] and that's all she could currently justify?
megados 23rd Jan 2017, 6:20 PM edit delete reply

@That one guy - I have to believe that you are correct in that they were disarmed (weapons confiscated or dropped) and left alive, and told that if they wanted to stay that way, they must remain disarmed. That's my guess anyway.
Naldru 24th Jan 2017, 6:25 AM edit delete reply
There was a line from one of the Batman films (I think it was Batman Forever) where one of the villains has the line "But if you kill them, they'll never learn".
mjkj 23rd Jan 2017, 12:58 AM edit delete reply

Wow... what an entrance...

@alt text: indeed she did... <3

Edit: I hope she did not harm the runner... =S

Morituri 24th Jan 2017, 10:29 AM edit delete reply
You're only saying you hope they didn't harm the runner because she was female, cute, happened not to be wearing her blue shell at the moment, and Adventus Albinus was being a dick to her.

All these things together may be conspiring to garner her more empathy than she deserves. Adventus Albinus, in particular, was apparently a dick to everybody, so that didn't mean anything.
Cal 23rd Jan 2017, 1:49 AM edit delete reply
I love you.
Fairportfan 23rd Jan 2017, 1:55 AM edit delete reply

She disarmed a bunch of them?

Why didn't she bring those, either.


Mark_L_A 23rd Jan 2017, 2:52 AM edit delete reply

Are you taking about Cordelia Vorkosigan?
Judy_IIDD 23rd Jan 2017, 11:33 AM edit delete reply
Because she needed her right hand on the bottom of the helm to keep the head in place. Then it was just the matter of moving her fingers and a little jiggle to break the surface tension.
Sheela 23rd Jan 2017, 3:06 AM edit delete reply

Let me guess, she hung out with Malati, didn't she ?
Fafhred 23rd Jan 2017, 3:19 AM edit delete reply

I wonder if dis-arming is to be taken literally?
Greenwood Goat 23rd Jan 2017, 4:32 AM edit delete reply
Hello Tennyo. Noctis said she was stable and reliable, not to mention damaged... perhaps the damage left her a little less stable and reliable. Also, she seems to have a theme and a colour scheme going on... might it be just as well that she can never meet Yasakani in "person"?

Tennyo: You are wearing the same dress as me. *advances, draws sword*

Yasakani: Eep!

Kusanagi: *blocks Tennyo's path, sword drawn* Then you must go and change into something else.

Tokyo Rose: *eyeroll* Goddamn kids...

Noctis: An all too accurate observation, alas. Even with Dec and Malati gone, it's still akin to supervising a kindergarten sometimes...

Or perhaps it would go the other way...

Tennyo & Yasakani: *synchronised dance* Friends forever, super keen/ Buddies of the jewel so green/ In the club that me have made/ Fan club of the sacred jade!

Tokyo Rose: There's another thirty-four verses, and another five minutes of dance... I should never have let her start that damn fan club.

Noctis: Just how extensively has this fandom... penetrated my city?

Sheela 23rd Jan 2017, 9:53 AM edit delete reply

wait, wait .. just how much penetration is going on ?
Dragonrider 23rd Jan 2017, 10:11 AM edit delete reply

@sheela was wondering if Tennyo had the fun factory up grade and would be throwing wet panties to the gladiators. Still hope there is a copy of Malati around from before she got the kill order and we can get Ceci and Malati both back. They'd make a hella cute couple.
megados 24th Jan 2017, 7:49 AM edit delete reply

That's a good point: do the Cassians keep backups? It would make some sense, given their importance, and the chance of mishap. It would be prudent to "save often" :D

I have my own ideas about Ceci, but I'll keep them to myself.
Stormwind13 23rd Jan 2017, 5:09 PM edit delete reply

While it is amusing (as normal) Greenwood Goat, I have to point out that Noctis wouldn't think/speak that way. It could be Nova Roma or Acantha's city, but I can't see her CLAIMING the city.
Sevian 23rd Jan 2017, 11:29 AM edit delete reply

Oh, she's a bubbly one. I like her.
CptKerion 23rd Jan 2017, 11:49 AM edit delete reply
I wonder if disarming was literal removal of arms, simply removal of the weapons, removal of their 'swords' per se, or any mixture of the above.

Just kinda thinking about the bag of Praetorian dicks that TeeDee collected.
Gilrandir 23rd Jan 2017, 12:34 PM edit delete reply
I wonder what happened to the runner? Doesn't seem likely she would have been included in the wholesale and indiscriminate slaughter ... (Although, if she was a Praetorian recruit, that suggests she had as many heinous misdeeds and capital offenses on her rap sheet as any other random Praetorian.) Since the city is not yet under control, it seems unlikely she would have been ordered to just go back to bed and get some sleep. Tennyo has no need to use her to send messages, since Tennyo is linked into Cassian.Net. I would have expected Tennyo to bring her along in case Maxus might need a runner -- and she could have been used to carry any additional gifts from Tennyo to Maxus as well.

Maybe she's on mop and pail duty?
Centcomm 23rd Jan 2017, 4:45 PM edit delete reply

She was given a rifle and told to guard a room. Shes very healthy and just a bit rattled. but she has help. The Cassian had no reason to do anything to her.
Gilrandir 23rd Jan 2017, 6:28 PM edit delete reply
I thought Praetorian weapons were ID-locked, which was why Lynn couldn't take a weapon after Democulus and Acantha fought off a pair of them? How would the recruit (or Tennyo) defeat the lock?

Admittedly ID-locking weapons is a dubious principle, since it means that, if you lose your weapon and your buddy gets killed, you cannot re-arm yourself using ordinary means. Not sure if the benefit of not arming the enemy justifies the cost in flexibility and responsiveness.
Tokyo Rose 23rd Jan 2017, 9:31 PM edit delete reply

You really think Tennyo doesn't know where to find a weapons locker?
Gilrandir 23rd Jan 2017, 10:45 PM edit delete reply
I expect the runner knows where to find a weapons locker. I also expect, as a recruit, she knows where to find her own issue firearm -- assuming she were given permission and time to go collect it and then report to wherever her assigned duty station is.

I was just surprised by the phrasing "... given a rifle ...", which (to me) implied she was given one of the firearms that the Praetorians in that room no longer needed. And that raised (for me) the whole question of ID-locking.

And, @CptKerion, I agree that ID-locking in the context of a civilian police force (or even a martial law enforcement agency) makes a lot more sense than ID-locking for battlefield troops. The Praetorians seem to sit in a gray area. But, having established that their weapons are locked, ... (see previous paragraph) ^_^
CptKerion 23rd Jan 2017, 9:53 PM edit delete reply
Gilrandir, to address why I suspect they ID-locked it.

They're not actually operating under battlefield conditions, the primary thing the Praetorian numbskulls exist to do is to serve as a force of oppression, and a single lost rifle can be readily turned to end an action of oppression from a good position.

Had they been prepared for war rather than to serve as the tool of populace oppression I suspect they'd be using more flexibly applied weapons. That were also worth their salt in close quarters... or really just worth their salt in general.
That one guy 24th Jan 2017, 5:21 PM edit delete reply
Depending on the ID locking technology, it's quite possible that Cassians are able to disable or reprogram standard weapon ID locks.
Gilrandir 24th Jan 2017, 5:35 PM edit delete reply
It's certainly possible they could reset an ID lock in the same way Noctis overrode that military drone's IFF. But I'd expect that to be more appropriate to a smart weapon, like Officer Ray's gun, than to a standard issue Nova Roma firearm.
That one guy 24th Jan 2017, 5:59 PM edit delete reply
I'd posit for a New Roman ID locked weapon that's less than a smart weapon (say, something on the order of Maxus' room control), the Cassians could still easily have the ability to force register a new authorized owner ID.

I'd think it'd be similar to the way that you can look up on the Internet and/or download the tool for hardware encrypting USB drives to invalidate the old contents and encrypt for a new PIN/fingerprint/whatever, but that Cassians and certain officers or guarded locations would be the substitute for the Internet search to provide proper authentication before authorizing.

Granted, maybe the Cassians can't, but the fact that their inhibitors could make them safer stewards for the ID locks than pretty well anyone they'd staff locations for doing it (and no way Decimus or Maxus would be required for all ID lock changes).

Though actually, for battlefield systems, I'd think you'd want any kind of "smart" weapon to allow any friendly to use it while still preventing any hostiles. As a guard trainee it's possible the messenger was already implanted with an unlock mechanism of whatever form they use (some kind of higher tech version of a bone grafted RFID chip with better security, perhaps).
Matt Knab 23rd Jan 2017, 3:05 PM edit delete reply

I'm wondering how literally they've been disarmed... >;)
Haegan2005 23rd Jan 2017, 11:00 PM edit delete reply

I would imagine literally.
CptKerion 24th Jan 2017, 4:11 PM edit delete reply
I'm also wondering how liberal of an interpretation of arms she meant. I mean it could be possibly used to refer to 'swords' as well.
Stormwind13 23rd Jan 2017, 3:49 PM edit delete reply

::HUGS Rose:: I'm sorry you didn't get to keep them. At least they are going to good homes. And you still have your kitties too. :-)
Sheela 23rd Jan 2017, 7:15 PM edit delete reply

At least she's not crying!
megados 23rd Jan 2017, 5:43 PM edit delete reply

Glad they found a place :) No crying here! Man, now ya did it . . . :,)
KarToon12 23rd Jan 2017, 6:35 PM edit delete reply

I'm sure he'll love that just might wanna' clean out the blood in it first...and maybe use some Febreeze on it...^^;;;;
Timotheus 23rd Jan 2017, 9:39 PM edit delete reply

It may become a valuable historical artifact, the last mint crested imperial generals helmet worn in battle. After this they go with solid helmet rails (more practical and less clearance problems).
Steven-Vincent 23rd Jan 2017, 6:37 PM edit delete reply

... ew.
Pirtnac 23rd Jan 2017, 10:42 PM edit delete reply
The kitten situation has been resolved.... assuming that there are only four of them in total.


Morituri 24th Jan 2017, 10:36 AM edit delete reply
We once saw a pair of kittens running into the bushes near our house, so my brothers, sister and I decided to rescue the ferals and went out looking for them. It was a pretty big bunch of bushes, so we split up. There were four of us. Every one of us found both of the kittens. Eight in total.

Eventually mommy came around too. She wouldn't let anybody get near her, but she hung out in our yard and nommed the foods we put out for her. Eventually we trapped her and got her some vet care.
mjkj 24th Jan 2017, 4:53 AM edit delete reply

*comforts Rose*
Gilrandir 24th Jan 2017, 12:38 PM edit delete reply
I have a tendency to poke at details, pick nits, ask awkward questions and periodically raise objections. ...

It occurs to me that this might create a negative impression. ^_^

Since it has been a while since I have last offered some unalloyed praise for the creative team and their efforts, I thought I should do so, in order that they may have a better understanding of my levels of esteem for them and their efforts.

The characacter design is appealing and attractive, providing a diversity and aesthetic which delights. The art is faithfully and conscientiously rendered with both elegance and detail, including a wide variety of challenging environments and incorporating a well-executed dynamism. The plot line is full-featured, multi-threaded, and evocative on both the rational and emotional level. The dialogue is generally good and often sparkling. The personalities and situations are engaging, varied, and evolving, capturing both my interest and my sympathies. And, the creative team has created an environment here in the commentary which is welcoming, comfortable, interesting, and entertaining, as well as being delightfully active and diverse.

Well done.
notStanley 24th Jan 2017, 1:55 PM edit delete reply

"certain urgency of purpose" - I like that. So much more genteel then "I'm goddamn busy, what the fuck do you want now?"
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