“Chapter 4: The Oath”
Writer: Tini Howard
Artists: Kate Niemczyk and Scott Hanna
Years ago Belit’s father and N’yaga were best friends. Atrahasis is worried because Belit’s mother suffers from madness and may not live lone. He gets N’yaga to promise to look after Belit. Which is why he has come back to her now that she is a pirate captain. The ship comes on a Stygian ship and The Tigress manages to capture it. Belit decides to take the ship to Stygia and also drags along the eye of a sea-beast. She uses the eye as ballast to shoot at the Stygians. She lands and is greeted by the high priest. Later in his chambers he offers Belit employ as a privateer. Belit decides that the Stygians are not worth the effort and chokes the priest unconscious.
Later Belit plans to take The Tigress and leave her crew but N’yaga convinces her not to. So with the crew they set sail. Only the Stygian priest has awakened and uses dark sorcery and human sacrifice to Set to strike Belit down.
“Bone Whispers Episode Four”
By Michael A. Stackpole
Belit has come to Knegetalla and has an audience with it’s king Toraten. Belit offers to return treasure that was stolen by pirates. She charms the king and he takes her on a tour of his vast wealth. He shows her the Codex Osyrania.He also reveals he knows her true plan. The wine he gave her was drugged and Belit wakes to find herself in the dungeon with N’yaga. She meets her fellow prisoners of the Ibex clan. The king is a tyrant and uses his enemies for sport in the arena. Belit is sentenced to die in the games.
Well this issue had some confusing plot points. Like what the hell was the point of her visit to Stygia? Where did she get the giant sea beast eye? There was some real sloppy writing to this issue. Some of the background to Belit we get was interesting. Still I just don’t think this origin is doing the character that Howard created justice.
The novella on the other hand is competent. For a short story it does a job of telling an interesting story. Probably the highlight for this issue.