Chapter 5, Page 26


It’s probably kinda weird to stumble upon your own dead body (unless you’re Kalla)

And obligatory MI book Kickstarter countdown: 8 days left! If you didn’t see it, last week I featured Simon Roy, our final guest artist! Good stuff

Next page! Monday!


  • chiz


  • Luces

    Got some work to do for long, long days… Especially without the proper tools!

  • Lost Yooper

    Man, Levi was chock full of parts.

  • JJ

    That must have been a wild party.

  • Becky

    Kinda looks like maybe the processor un-processed him? poor Levi. Wonder if Mike will try to put him back together in some way even partially?

  • Dylan Bargteil

    But weren’t Levi’s remains at the bottom of the pool near Kayla’s nest/home?

    • shingworks

      The shell definitely was

    • March

      ah, thanks, I was thinking of that too!

  • An antic dumpyard ?

  • awhorl

    “The only thing left is a shell and the corroded remains.” Are these the “corroded remains” we saw before–perhaps brought here by Kalla for mourning purposes? If so, Mike already decided that they weren’t good for much–he would be surprised to find them laid out like that, but not encouraged to tinker.

    Or did somebody yet unnamed eviscerate the corpse before Mike dislodged Previous Kalla’s body, so that Mike and Kalla found only useless leftovers, while these parts are actually useful?

    If it was the second, then it must have been the Processor, because Present Kalla couldn’t have gotten around Previous Kalla’s body. Besides, Present Kalla seems too squeamish for that–she would have no motive as we know her now.

    Or Kalla lied about them being corroded, Mike didn’t look too closely, and Kalla’s been cleaning parts all this time.

    I’m no scientist–if Mike did rebuild, where would they get an energy source? Extra packs in their suits? (I’m starting to imagine Threvi piloting an MI equivalent of a paper airplane, communicating with their great-grand-levis on something like a short-wave radio. I had better stop typing.)

    • David

      lolz, I like the way you think!

      My own guess is that maybe the processor disassembled him, in the attempt to replicate him- the processor mainly deals with organics, so maybe it had trouble with an actual machine.

      Either that or Kalla was trying to put Levi back together.

  • Solanuma

    I guess Kalla tried to tell Mike about this but chickened out after he interrupted her…
    Hey now i wonder if the processor could revive someone in a manmade machine. It can put a robot into a martian body so it’s not farfetched to assume that the opposite could be possible too

    • JJ

      Yeah the processor interfaced with the levi-the-machine to get his mind out. Should also work in reverse.

  • Ben

    Now I’m confused. Didn’t we previously see a derelict, but largely intact LeVi underwater, at a different location?

    • Malefantasy

      Yep, but i think there was just a shell, and now we see inner parts. Seems, someone was studying these pieces.

  • detrius

    I just noticed that Mike’s eye is glowing.

    What’s up with that?

    • Leandra

      His eyes have been glowing for a while now, but not always very noticeably. I think it’s been since he confronted Bex before she went in to talk to the processor. Seems to have to do with the body-modifications the processor’s given him.

  • Lilian

    Let’s see if LEVi has anything to say about this discovery.

  • Lilian

    Little artistic thing I noticed: in panel 1 that the black stripe on Mike’s shirt appears to have been colored over part of LEVi’s tail.

    • shingworks

      That’s actually just the shadow thrown by his tail, but I don’t really like the way it looks now upon review, will probably move Threvi’s leg down so it doesn’t look so weird.

  • Noel

    Just had a moment of Nausicaä music playing in my head and this comic got that much better.

  • ikabubu

    Now that we’ve gotten this far: could someone explain to me (even in theory) why only Bex can understand Levi?

    I’m fully aware that the organisms in the inner sea are physical programs, and their data network is the water.

    However, seeing that Bex is the one who rejects everything about the inner sea, how did she come across the ability? I’m assuming, ASSUMING, that it’s mostly because there’s a blackout period with Bex (we don’t know where she was or what she was doing) until she ran into Michael again.

    If the explanation is supposed to be during that period, then I suppose it’s still a potential reveal about Bex.

    • Spark

      Another question could be, why did the processor see fit to give Box the ability to understand Thripese, but not Mike or Kalla?

    • JJ

      The processor meddled with her brain in the moment she’s submerged in chapter 3. When she fell she wore her helmet, therefore the processor had no access. Then she boiled all her water, rendering it inert. So that moment in chapter 3 is the first time she comes in direct contact with neural water.

      • ikabubu

        Thanks for pointing that out, I missed that detail.

        Bex was grabbed and dragged into the water, therefore, integrating her into the network. I only assumed that she could understand Levi beforehand, and didn’t make the correlation, at the time, that the water gave her the ability to understand immediately afterwards.

        This is the most plausible explanation, I think.

  • Tim F

    That might be the site of first contact between LEVi and the processor’s minions…which means it could be the start of a navigable route to the surface. That does not mean a person could realistically walk back up (we can’t hover) and it would be a LONG walk*, but…interesting.

    (*) Assuming no airlocks on the way, for air pressure to change from normal to Martian surface they would have to climb at least twice the height of Everest.

    • CosmicStresshead

      Oooh, that’s an interesting thought. I wonder could Mike get some kind of anti-grav device working from the remains?

  • Ceceoh

    Threvi: “Man! Am I glad to be out of that dump!”

  • Kyle

    Remember that Kalla can’t fit into this cavern, so she didn’t put this here. Maybe that’s exactly WHY the processor put it there.

    • Sumgai

      This was supposed to lead to her alcove though, the other end might be accessible.

    • Sheridan

      If the Processor wanted to dispose of LEVi’s remains, there’s a lava field right next door.
      There has to be a reason for his parts to be lying here, and his chassis to be at the bottom of The Mirror.

  • Kent

    The lighting on the page is way too good. Especially panel 5. Do you make b/w thumbnails to test out lighting ideas or do you just jump into color?

    • brokenidealist

      My thoughts, too – the light & shadows on this page are amazing! It’s almost like a sampler of different lighting styles: broadly illuminated “outdoors”, glowing water and eye, and the directed light from Bex’s helmet. I love the highlights and shadow work from the latter, particularly Levi’s thrip shadow extending out in front of him toward his remains.

  • tatch


  • Leon

    Levi Internum

  • Margaret Hogg

    I’m not loving the way this, combined with Kalla running off and this being a tunnel to her lair, is making me feel.

    • JJ

      It would be fitting. Both Mike and Bex have shown destructive sides. And Kalla was introduced trying to dismantle Mike+thighfriend.

      • Margaret Hogg

        I read back, and she ran away from Mike after being asked if she hurt LEVi. I wonder if she possibly took LEVi apart in an attempt to build something to escape with, died in the effort, and now really doesn’t remember what happened. That would be horrible, by the way… waking up and learning you “killed” your only companion in the Mare, but not any of the details around the act.

        That, or the processor staged the same kind of thing to keep Kalla both in the Mare and suppressed with guilt.

        • Lilian

          Now that you mention it, the readers may be confronted with a history in which Kalla killed LEVi. This would be something of a parallel to Bex killing Kalla, though in Kalla & LEVi’s case a relationship was already established.

          • Margaret Hogg

            Mike “kills” LEVi, Kalla kills LEVi, Bex kills Kalla. This crew sure loves killing each other. I guess that leaves ThrEVi left, with his choice of either Bex or Mike to kill…

            I’m gonna go work on my MI version of Paper, Rock, Scissors now…

    • Pylgrim

      Thanks. I was fearing I was the only one whose thoughts veered that way.

      We still don’t really know the circumstances that caused a past Kalla to die under Levi’s shell, do we?

  • awhorl

    As anxious as I am to see the next page, I really appreciate the comments, and the way they develop as people consider what has been presented. Call me happily conflicted . . .

    . . . and yes, concerned about Kalla. Yet another thing I love about this graphic tale is the way that we can’t exactly count on old-fashioned notions about where the borders of a thinking/feeling entity might be. How are people (that includes Kalla and Threvi) connected–or not connected–by/in/after contact with the Sea/Processor? Some notions are in play, but wow, that play is elegant in the way it provokes thought. And the ideas are still up in the air even now.

    (When I was quite young I was underimpressed by models of the psyche that were prevalent; sadly they offered zero help when I needed a lot. Now on the cutting edge it’s soooo different. yay.)

  • Ponyhome

    I love how people say “Come here, HURRY!” to get you to come see things that have obviously been lying exactly where they are for who knows how long and are NOT getting up and going anywhere in the foreseeable future.

    I’m thinking in that pile of junk is also a previously working levitation unit. That could be useful.

    • Lost Yooper

      That pile of junk will make it .5 beyond light speed. It might not look like much, it’s got it where it counts.

      • Ponyhome

        It made the Schiaparelli Canal run in under a thousand miles.

  • Eversist

    “Thrip thrip thrip.”
    Imagined translation: “Ho-Lee Shit”

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