pipefan413: The witch in truth was a world famous baking baroness. Her cruelty made life miserable for the two children, who did not have their father anymore to protect them. pipefan413: He was the greatest prankster who ever lived, and a true southern gentleman. He was killed by a comet on the day the boy was born, and the wicked baroness raised them alone, with a hand as firm as that which she ran her brutal baking empire. pipefan413: The children pledged to each other that one day they would run away together. pipefan413: They followed in the footsteps of the dear colonel, in defiance of the old batterwitch. They studied his every jape, and practiced them in secret! pipefan413: But as they grew older, their interests drifted apart. The boy developed a passion for adventure and put aside his study of practical jokes. He dreamed of wealth and fame and discovery and swore he would wander the world. pipefan413: One day he decided to run away with the loyal dog he inherited from their father. He asked the girl if she would come along, but she was too scared of the retribution that might follow. pipefan413: The boy scoffed at the danger, and assured his sister there was nothing to worry about. But he had not seen first hand what the baroness was capable of! pipefan413: He told his sister that he believed in her, and that she could handle whatever the witch could throw at her. And with that, he was off, and she would never see him again. pipefan413: The baroness would raise her very strictly, mentoring her in the art of baking. The girl took to the lessons with fierce determination. Her only act of defiance left was to one day surpass the baroness in skill, and beat her at her own game. It was all she could do, for the baroness made sure she knew there could be no escape. pipefan413: The girl surely missed her brother, and soon enough he achieved fame for his exploits. She followed him in the newspapers, the tales of his remarkable discoveries, inventions, and riches. How she wished she could rejoin him, and be free from toiling for the pastry hag! pipefan413: One day, the girl was able to gather enough bravery to mention her brother to the baroness, and her desire to see him again. With contempt, she guaranteed that this could never happen. When the girl asked why, that is when the baroness began to reveal to her more than just her baking secrets. pipefan413: She mentioned that like in many fairy tales, there was more to the children's past than they knew. The colonel was not their father, nor was the baroness their mother. They in fact had no father or mother at all, nor were they ever actually born. They had both fallen from the sky! They were not actually brother and sister as they had been told either. Again like in many fairy tales, the truth was that they were always destined to become married one day. They were to have two children, a son and a daughter, and these children were meant to save the world! But the batterwitch was determined to make sure this destiny would never be realized. In her limitless cruelty she would do all in her power to keep them apart for the rest of their lives. pipefan413: The girl that day swore she would bring down the baroness and her evil empire. She would use the many secrets she'd learned over the years against her, and began carefully plotting her downfall. pipefan413: Years went by. The girl was nearly ready to put her plan into action. But then, just like that, the baroness disappeared. She was never seen or heard from again. pipefan413: The girl was finally free, by a strange turn of events. But not without a final jab from the witch. It turned out that in her will she had left the entire company to the boy! pipefan413: The boy, now a grown man, was already very wealthy in his own right. He had no particular need for the baking empire, but assumed control nonetheless, and integrated the company into his extensive collection of enterprises. pipefan413: The girl, instead of seeing this as more misfortune, took the news as a relief. She'd just as soon have nothing to do with the witch's empire, and far preferred to pursue her original passion for practical japery. Hoo hoo hoo! pipefan413: She considered a reunion with her estranged brother, and once destined husband to be. But the days of longing for a future with him seemed to be from another lifetime. The chance had come and gone. She was content to let him live his increasingly elaborate life, while she sought a simpler one. pipefan413: Besides, now was not the time to revisit a destiny with an old star-crossed lover. She had recently become betrothed to a fine, upstanding gentleman. Soon, she would start a family. No, not one meant for heroism as foretold, but one that would make her happy nonetheless. pipefan413: In following years, she was left to ponder all that might have been. pipefan413: What might have been if there had been no baroness to keep the girl and boy apart? pipefan413: What might have been if the baroness had not disappeared, and she had the opportunity to use her secrets against her! pipefan413: For you see, the girl had uncovered so many dirty secrets about the terrible batterwitch, including the most troubling one of all. pipefan413: Of course no one would have believed her, but she knew. pipefan413: She knew the baroness was not human! :B
-- fedorafreak's gray, serviceable hand-held computing device's battery has died. --
Not that it's particularly relevant, but remember I'm not actually working on the next update in the meantime. I wrote all this stuff almost a year ago. Just spacing out the content while I get more stuff done. Feels odd to be pulling content off a dusty shelf like this instead of making it all on the fly at breakneck speed, with my keen finger GLUED to the PULSE of the fandom and "the cyber zeitgeist". So if you read a joke and go, pff, that was SO last year, that's why. But really, the joke is on you, because cracking wise about DeviantArt weeaboo culture I believe was en vogue in 2007, so in summary, eat it nerds. Actually it's amazing how DA still seems to be running about as strong as ever on that front. It will be our cultural touchstone for crude anime while we are all being lowered into our sad lonely graves.
Ok, I lost track of what I was actually talking about, so see you next week.
Meant to put this here sooner along with the updates, but still been tweaking some server stuff. Caliborn's self insert guy is a nod to some classic fan art from 4 years ago, which to my memory was the first speculative drawing of LE before he was introduced. (Actually I guess two people made it? Didn't know, but thanks to both of them for the inspiration.) Also definitely wanna point out I'm not making fun of that art, which I think is a good drawing. I do remember once upon a time thinking it was pretty funny to imagine LE as a cool anime guy though. So maybe that idea stuck with me all these years and led to the inspiration for this ridiculous arc? Who knows how inspiration really works. Anyway it's all in good fun, and I still sometimes try to do the "reader input influencing story outcomes" in little ways like this to keep that part of MSPA alive, even long after the fanbase got too big to do it directly through commands.
Or maybe, since Halloween is coming up, I should call it The Itinerscary. Especially because we may be in store for some spoooooky server crashes with these first few update dumps. Eep, I'm gettin the willies here!
One page today to test the waters (or uh, yesterday). When that's done and the coast is clear (it won't be), I'll post a bunch of pages on the 17th and 18th (oops, now the 18th and 19th). Then there will be nothing until 10/25. And then nothing until 11/1, at which point regular updates will begin again, according to an update schedule which I will share with you on that day. Then you will know which precise pattern of dates you will need to handcuff yourself to a computer and plug in your custom keyboard that only has a single giant F5 key.
It would seem against my better judgment, or really my ability to control in any way whatsoever, a fair amount of hype has been brewing for the return of Homestuck. People are jacked up. They are doing little dances in places they cannot be seen. They are writhing in kiddie pools of pins and needles for the return of all their favorite fantasy children. "John." "Karkat." And more. So it's hard to avoid finding it just a LITTLE funny that after a year-long drought, hopping back in the saddle means we will have to wade through 50 pages of completely atrocious garbage before anything happens. It's funny how life works out sometimes. Funnier than a clown tickling a horse. Sometimes you pause your famous webcomic for a year, and then your grand reopening is a lot of bad anime. On such occasions, when life hands you those kooky lemons, there is really only one thing you can say.
Let's see if I can "tldr" a few things up top, since this news item might begin to nose dive dramatically through the vertical space of this web layout. Am I finished HS yet? Um, nope. But I think enough is probably enough on the site's indefinite period of hibernation, so it's likely I will just start posting some stuff I have anyway, starting next month. Either mid or late October, let's say.
I said it would be a long pause, didn't I? Let's face it, a gigapause is just one big ass pause. It contains the smaller word "giga", which, in addition to literally meaning "one billion", you will find to be the root of the word "gigantic", which as we all know, means super huge. This intriguing fact reminds us that in our culture of words, we hold the number one billion as the indivisible quantum of general bigness, as a matter of principal. Food for thought!
We're coming up on almost a year since I paused. So that means I got like, SO much done on the story, right? Wow, no. Innumerable unspecified problems happened which badly prevented this from being true. I'd estimate out of those 12 months, I maybe squeezed in a grand total of 3 months worth of work on HS in there. Kinda dribbled across the year in the most frustrating way possible. So, I'm just gonna cry uncle on this dogshit pause and start posting stuff, but probably in a regimented way so I don't blow through everything I have too fast, thus giving me some time to work on the rest.
Back at the onset of the pause, I said I'd just post everything at once. (I was oversimplifying. I had always intended to stagger the final content to whatever extent, so as not to destroy the server.) But also that "post everything at once" idea was predicated on actually sorta... having it all done. Which as I have already culpa'd, is not the case. So I'm improvising at this point. I'll (probably) relaunch the story next month, come up with some kind of update schedule, and we'll see how it goes.
What have I been doing all year? Let's chalk it up to, in this order of relevance, a swirling multitude of Daunting Life Challenges, a flurry of accidental weird adventures causing me to thrash wildly across the nation, and the escalating complexities of running a business while tending to peripheral creative projects, not the least of which has been overseeing the development of an expensive video game. Actually, all things considered, I'm surprised at how much I actually HAVE gotten done this year. It just happens that "making a ton of HS pages" isn't one of those things.
What were the problems? What were the adventures? Sorry, nothing to see here. Me and the General Public just aren't that tight, and wild sob stories ain't my bag (unless they pertain to visits to the Olive Garden). Well, maybe I'll mention some things some day. But definitely nowhere in the proximity of a virtual stage adjacent to the sphere of rhetoric which could conceivably be construed as a series of excuses for why a mammoth load of free entertainment hasn't been finished yet. Did you follow that? Look over there. (When you look back at me, I am slowly rolling into a pile of trash.)
The good news is, I'm still all about horses. Did you know that about me? It's true as shit. Horses; wow. Pretty good weird big animals? Or pretty GREAT weird big animals??
What else should I say here. Oh.
We've also been chipping away at upgrading the server over the last year. It's been surprisingly complicated and slow-going. Actually, prior to the pause, it was one of the most difficult things about updating, having an insufficient server that was GUARANTEED to crash every time I posted something. This was even after many, many upgrades over the years. It gets a little demoralizing trying to make tons of cartoons every day for a small nation of lunatics when the server constantly struggles to keep up with the ever-burgeoning readership, no matter how much I upgraded it. This was one of the (lots of) factors which contributed to me finally just saying, fuck it, time to pause.
Hopefully it can handle it now, but guess we'll see. It all runs on fancy clouds and such now. Which has been tricky to configure for such a complicated site utterly dependent on all the garbage ass-backwards code I've written over the years. Maybe... maybe once I start updating again, nobody will notice?? Man, wouldn't that be sweet. It will just be me and like a cozy little clique of 50 randos and 10 web bots, just like the old days. We'll bring this sucker home together, then hit up the local bargain Italian restaurant to celebrate. (Then a horse nuzzles me out of my sleepy dream fantasy, and the hammock flips over and dumps my screaming body on to the lawn.)
Feels a little odd even TALKING about revving up this monstrosity again. It's been pretty serene on the web these days. I've been reluctant to even drop a pebble into the pristine glass-like state of the fandom, before being good and damn well ready to. Why wake the beast prematurely? We'll enjoy more than our share of blistering pandemonium when all is said and done. We are slowly building to a particular moment I foresee on the horizon. It's not just characterized by the end of the story, though that should be a factor. It's more than that. Things I have planned, and some other things we'll say may be fortuitously aligned. Invisible pieces of a heinous machine all snapping together, mechanically congealing with a grim sense of purpose. I'm tentatively branding to this moment as The Rapture, and it will be more than you can bear. More than anyone can. And everyone won't.
Happy 4/13, a.k.a. 5 years of Homestuck being a thing! Since I know how much you like things, to celebrate I thought I would show you another thing that's been in the works for a while.
It's a new webcomic based on Homestuck, called Paradox Space! Have a look. That is all I will say about it here. But if you would like to know what the heck this ACTUALLY IS, here is a permalink to the news post where I talk about such matters.