“The Gamble”
Writer & Artist: Mike Grell

Morgan and Aton arrive at the small outpost of Banthum. Morgan hopes to find an armorer that can fashion him a better sword. So he leaves Aton at the local tavern. It is here that he meets Tevalco El Cint. El Cint is running the shell game and gets Aton to bet their horses. Well when Morgan comes back he is more than pissed off that Aton lost their horses. El Cint offers a deal. If they can retrieve a gem at the top of a mysterious tower they can get their horses back.

So this tower can be reached by going through a maze. Oh and El Cint locks the gate and says the key is also with the gem. So Morgan and Aton have no choice but to succeed. After avoiding the traps and rabid dogs they reach the tower. It is guarded by empty suits of armor that can move. A fire that is started burns the tower down before the two can retrieve the gem but they do get the key. El Cint then offers Morgan another deal. Win the shell game and they get their horses. Lose and they have to work for El Cint. Morgan is too smart and when he picks it is to chop off El Cints hand that holds the pearl. At the end as they leave Shakira reveals herself and decides to tag along.

“Games of Power, Games of Chance”
Writers: Dan Mishkin & Gary Cohn
Artists: Greg La Rocque & Vince Colletta

The world board votes to accept IC&C’s offer to acquire a majority share in Vernon Brothers. Omac becomes disillusioned with his deal with Quixote and head out. He comes upon a carnival and decides to check it out. A beautiful girl named Mariela latches on to him and gets him away from some Moonies. She convinces him to go into the Funhouse. This Funhouse has six volunteers go in and only five come out. Omac is appalled at how cheap life is but Brother Eye detects a dangerous spatial anomaly from the Funhouse. So Omac volunteers so he can put an end to this Funhouse.

So Morgan starts his quest for Jennifer. We find out in the beginning that Jennifer did survive and is rescued by a strange man who talks to a box. This was a fun little adventure. Aton is shown as a young naive man. He falls for the old shell game. Morgan played along to teach him that a man must pay his debts. He decided to cut off El Cint’s hand because he tried to turn them into the gutter trash that El Cint was and that was too much. We also get Shakira back in at the end. I really love her and can see why such a popular character was brought back. The epilogue had the group stop at Morgan’s crashed plane so he could retrieve some more ammo. Shakira goes off and looks at the old computer image of a city and sheds a tear. There are some really tantalizing hints that Grell drops about Shakira’s past the he unfortunately never gets around to revealing. I hope that some day he will write a Shakira origin.

The Omac story is getting interesting. We see the world that this future is and how the common people are finding entertainment. Volunteering to brave death in the Funhouse is popular with the jaded populace of the future. Interesting to see what is in store for Omac. This and the fact he is deciding not to back Quixote and getting a girlfriend all point to big changes coming.

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