by Jessica Greenlee
Gilad and his daughter, Mitu, are still determined to kill the gods and to find out precisely what has happened to Xaran, Gilad’s son. They head out into the storm to do just that, ignoring the counsel of the Earth wizard, who is surprisingly clear in his advice. It’s a crazy proposition, but it works, in part because Pak picks up on the idea that, if you kill a god, you are then responsible for filling the hole you’ve left, which is going to make for great drama come two thousand years from now in Eternal Warrior #5.
Pak works on developing the family relationships here, giving a glimpse into Gilad’s past before his children were called by the gods. This gives definition to Gilad’s loss and anger as he goes forward. It’s also clear that Buck, the geomancer, is right: Gilad and his daughter are happiest when fighting.
The art is strong. Hairsine and Bernard keep the action is dynamic and balanced. Both Gilad and Xaran are expressive and believable, carrying the story’s emotional weight. This is especially noteworthy as Pak takes Gilad through an emotional gamut here, and without credible portraiture, the tale would fall apart.
The one complaint I have here is about the pantheon: The Dead, the Wild, and Earth are an odd trio to set in opposition to one another. As Earth herself points out–and as we’ve all seen with Gilad’s fighting–death is part of life on earth, and it’s hard to see “the wild” as something separate and in conflict. I hope there are more beings in the pantheon, or the development of this strange mythology becomes clearer as the story goes on.