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Chapter 8 Page 6

December 18th, 2013

Guess who managed to find Bertrande’s laboratory on Chapter 8 Page 6? To see a preview of the next page, please vote for Snow by Night on Top Web Comics.

This is the last page this year. We have an almanac entry this Friday and then we’ll be off for two weeks for a brief hiatus over the holidays. If you would like to have a piece of your fan art displayed during our hiatus, please send them to me. See my email addy on the About page.

Fun fact, when Brittany drew this page the sword hilt on the bookcase was obviously a katana. I replied that it had to change. No Samurai Jacques. At least not yet. The search for Catai is what drives so much of the exploration of this age. So Brittany made it a sabre for me.

Don’t forget to check out the SpiderForest webcomic of the week — The Sundown Boys.



    This is so cliche that it feels weird examining their characters.
    Jassart is suddenly the villain.


    It is so sad to see someone this bitter and resentful. An impressive portrayal, though.


    Whoa, what’s with the argument. :-) Jeremy’s trying to get under everyone’s skin. Relax. It’s just an (awesome) story. Characters should have a mix of black and white. Some really eloquent debate about morality from some of you, though.


    When I wrote this story, I purposefully tried to make all the characters have good qualities and bad qualities. So It doesn’t surprise me that we have a difference of opinion on the merits of the characters.

    When we have these differences of opinion, I ask that we all be respectful of each other and treat each other with the courtesy that we would want in return. I think everyone has had some very good points and I’m honored that you’re putting this much thought into our tale.


      Always a sign of good writing when the readers start getting emotionally involved with the characters. Always a sign of great writing when half of them side with one character and the other half with another. A tragedy is all about watching a group of flawed characters make bad decisions and being powerless to stop the inevitable disaster.

      Or of course, everyone may end up living happily ever after… ;-)


    Dvarin, I don’t think something that can freeze someone to death with a gesture is human at all.


      Do you stop treating someone as human if they pick up a flamethrower, gaining the ability to incinerate someone to death with a gesture? How about if we give them a tattoo that performs ice magic? I’d say the main difference between those and Snow is that merely that Snow can’t get rid of her ability.

      Actually I’d go so far to say that whether you can treat someone as human or not has mostly to do with psychological factors and relatively little to do with physical abilities. And Snow has, so far, not demonstrated any psychological traits outside the usual ranges of humanity. (At least as portrayed in fiction. Compassionless characters are hardly rare.)

      This conversation is starting to sound like the X-Men.


    Wow. From what I read here, Jassart has no honor, and Blaise is a hero.

    Ridiculous, not to mention rose-coloured and wrong.

    The difference between Jassart and Blaise isn’t honor, its INTEREST. Both of them are thieves who have each broken into homes, rummaged through the possessions and lives of others, stolen, tricked, lied and cheated their way through life. Blaise seems to care just as LITTLE as Jassart about all that. Its the way they live now, they’re too used to it.

    Jassart isn’t evil. Or if he is, then Blaise is just as bad. What he’s doing is little different from all the stuff the two of them were doing before. He lied and cheated? Guys, that’s what those two have been doing for YEARS. Why are people shocked?

    Blaise loves Snow. Its weird, and more than a little insane, but he loves Snow. And for most people, it doesn’t matter what kind of man you are outside that love, you WILL be benevolent towards that love. Many dangerous people are kind and loving to their kids, for instance. He’s still a man who cheated, lied and stolen outside of this.

    So enough with the ‘Jassart is Evil’ and ‘Blaise is Good’. Black and White. Ridiculous. Jassart is acting exactly the same as he’s been since page 1 because that’s the life he’s used to. I’m willing to believe he wouldn’t be so detached if it was Mathilde sitting there. Blaise, however, is acting against his nature because it happens he’s infatuated. There’s no real villain, and no real hero here. Its all a matter of perspective.


      An interesting point. However, there is a line between burglary and assassination. Jassart knows Snow is a person (at least she is sapient), but he chooses to deshumanize her(“she is only a spirit”) to justify betraying and destroying her for convenience and profit.


        Well, of course he dehumanizes her. She’s NOT human. How do you dehumanize someone who wasn’t human to begin with, and still obviously sees humans as lower lifeforms?


          Because anthropomorphism, sentience, and intelligence are enough to qualify someone as human-equivalent from emotional and moral standpoints. Especially in fictional worlds.

          That Snow regards humans as inferior is a problem with her personality, but I don’t think it disqualifies her from being human-equivalent. Presumably you don’t either, unless you’re also going to claim that racists are not humans. (After all, they also regard (some) humans as inherently inferior.)


          I can’t help but wonder if you go around killing animals just for fun because they aren’t “human” (funny this is, taxonomical, we are animals too).
          You claim that Jassart doesn’t deserve to be “killed” for what he has done and I agree, but your whole argument boils down to “Let’s kill the spirit, since she isn’t human, plus she look down on people, she totally deserves death”.


          Please be careful with the tone here. It’s getting very aggressive. The story is designed to allow people to have different opinions on the characters.


        Most human beings would either dehumanize or think its worth it to prevent another plague (humans have done far worse, that’s how we’re still around). So you’re judging him for… acting like most people.

        And you seem to have no problem with Snow murdering the other two humans, unless I misread your previous posts. I don’t believe in killing someone for what they MIGHT and STILL HAVEN’T done.


        I guess I jumped because assassination was used so easily. No assassination as taken place and, thus, killing Jassart would be completely disproportionate.


    I hope he deals with the witch.. er chemist…

    Jassart can find his redemption later.. but the witch needs to be dealt with now..

    *(in roll not in rl, no one puts “snow in a corner”)


      Why? The reasons behind her hatred are harsh but human in nature, and she aims to use that energy to stop the next plague.

      In my book, someone willing to stop a plague is an admirable person. One spirit is worth it if it saves an entire population center.


    He sure has a thing for entering through windows.


    Forget buttkicking, I get the distinct feeling someone’s about to get knifed…


      Forget buttkicking or knifing. Think in what Snow is going to do if/when someone breaks the seal.
      Death by freezing is NOT pleasant, mind you.


        You guys really want Jassart to die, don’t you? So its wrong for Jassart to die at Snow’s hands, but not the opposite. He hasn’t killed her, heck so far all he’s done is watch.

        And don’t bring self-defense into it. The moment Snow is free, he’s got no chance at all against her. And don’t bring in just cause, that’s an even worse excuse.

        So its okay for a spirit to kill a human you don’t like, but not okay for a human you don’t like to kill a spirit.

        Is Blaise justified in gutting Jassart? And if he is, isn’t Jassart justified in gutting Blaise in self-defence? Where do you even draw the line?

          Elsa Helsing

          I don’t think they ever claimed that they wanted Jassart to die, just said what they thought was going to happen.


          For the sake of argument I’m going to assume Snow’s life is ethically equivalent to that of a human. That is perhaps a point that is debatable, but that’s a debate I’d rather not have, or at least have seperately.

          In that light… Jassart has done far more than watch. He set this up, delivered her into the hands of someone who will end her life, and now watches passively while she suffers an evidently painful and slow death. He’s involved in a conspiracy to commit murder, and killing him may even be justifiable as self defense, or if Blaise did it, defense of another. Certainly if he actively tries to keep the procedure from being stopped.

          Yet, for Jassart to be killed by either Snow or Blaise would still be wrong, of course. However, Jassart is attempting to have Snow’s life ended for his personal gain. He has used her naivete against her and now stands by as she faces a painful death. If she did attack him, I think it’d be the most well justified violent act in her history so far, though I’ve admittedly not done a recent archive crawl, so I could be off there.

          Yes, Jassart and Blaise have both stolen and lied. However so far we’ve only seen one of them be willing, eager even to actively conn a person and then end their life for personal profit. They’re both far from heroic figures, but I think this puts Jassart rather farther from it than Blaise. And Snow’s callous cruelty is obviously a product of her lack of understanding of emotion in the first place. She lacks empathy because she lacks the experience for it, Jassart is another matter. I think this trait can be seen in his interactions with other humans as well, and moreso than in Blaise.

          Bertrande I find unpleasant, but not damnable. She’s shown an unwillingness to cause harm to her human patrons, her lack of sympathy for Snow is easily backed by dogma and the fact that Snow is indeed something of a unique case from all appearances. But if those factors were swept away, I don’t consider her reasons for doing this justification enough for murder.

          So yes. People are rooting against the person who is trying to kill the character that obviously has an arc set up about learning humanity and emotions from a very naive starting point. I don’t find this especially surprising.


          Leaving ethical and moral conundrums aside, I do hope Jassart dies (it probably won’t happen, though). He’s a character, not a real person, and I find him completely unsympathetic; don’t get me wrong, none of the other characters are perfect, but Jassart actions just pushed my buttons. So, yeah, I hope he dies or that he gets what’s coming to him.

    Omi Lynn

    Jassart’s going to get his butt kicked for this, isn’t he?


    Gotta get back, back to the past
    Samurai Jacques!


    D= Two weeks?

    Anyways, I love this comic.
    I wish it was updated more often. The wait is always so hard!


      I’m very sorry for the break. Unfortunately, with the holidays we lose our entire buffer. I’d rather take two week off now in a controlled manner than have to skip random updates over the next several months.


    Agh! A two week break at this dramatic moment!

    And Jassart, I really would recommend not walking over the magic containment circle with your outdoor boots on.

    It takes guts to make a main character (I was going to say evil, but) so very human.

    The look on Jassert’s face in p1 is the closest to honest I’ve seen him look.

    They say the first thing humans learn is how to lie. I don’t know if I believe that, but when you think about how often we tell untruths with our own faces, it makes sense.

    To see someone acting as if there are no consequences is to actually see them, good or bad.

    Nicely done.


      They say that honor is making the ethical decision when the only person who will ever know you did it is you.

      Jassart, as can be seen (and has been implied from the start), has no honor. As his (former) girlfriend has discovered…and as Blaise, his soon-to-be former friend, is discovering now.

        Apache- I almost think his girlfriend (although obviously now nearing fed up with him) likes the challenge of out thinking him.

        They’re both clever people, and nearly a good match. He probably knows exactly how to skirt the line to keep her hooked and not swimming away. She’s not used to waiting on a man, but also isn’t used to having an equalm (a guess, as she’s so proud of her status as performer/ informer etc).

        As for honor, I get the feeling it’s just number 7 on his list, after ‘gratification’, and ‘adventure’…

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