I'm thinking about hand-lettering this comic. And by hand-letter I mean I'm going to do all the letters once and then copy them over and over on every page. I call it Lydia Sans Serif version 2.0. Version 1.0 was created by moy in 2006 and it looks like crap. I like to think this is a huge improvement.

Question: Why not do all the ASCII characters?
Answer: You know, I thought of that, but I can't really see when I'll need any other characters. These will suffice. I've even added a few that I'm pretty sure I won't need just to be safe.

There are probably a whole lot of problems ahead with doing things this way, but at least for now it seems readable.
Last night I was despondent over the fact that every story I've put poor Melanie in has failed to take off. So I decided to throw caution to the wind and write about her lost year following the band Iron Belt.

I drew this sitting in a cafe in one hour.
Designed as a test of the perfect human. They don't look it, but they're human alright.

Humans as is are incapable of using the Seed. To do so perfect humans need to be created. 22 test units are created and 1 final Omega unit planned to be the final product (the Seed itself is Alpha). Elements from human test subjects are combined with Seed material to create the Kanaim.

Depicted here are Beta, Eta (recommissioned Upsilon), Sigma, and Phi. Also depicted is the Merkaba, which is situated inside next to the [White] Core.*

*[Red] Cores only appear in the Abdals.
I don't even know what her name is, but she appears in the chapter "Devious Whispers". This character was the protege of Atlas, who is sort of the god of good (Oblivion is the god of evil, and they've been fighting since the beginning, in a climatic battle that destroys the universe, so the universe has to be continuously re-created every trillion years or so). Atlas separated itself from The Heart of The System, which is the source of all power, and this character wanted to find it, but Atlas wasn't ready to go find it, because he's crazy like a fox and is trying to lure Oblivion into a final battle to end the cycle of creation and destruction forever. This character didn't want to wait, so she went rogue and started jumping from one universe to the next (there are at least 776 universes) looking for the Heart. Atlas then makes Devi his protege because he needs to train someone to look for the Heart. And I didn't figure out what happens after that.

Drawn in 2013, and I just finished it today!

The System never got off the ground because:
1. Some of the bigger battles are just too difficult for me,
2. I don't have a scanner anymore,
3. I don't have the time.

Still, I wanted to finish the few pages that I started, just to give you an idea of what it would have looked like.
Since I'm cutting this story short in order to finish it I'm going to have to do without some really cool stuff. The Abdals are among the menagerie of otherworldly beings I won't get to touch on.
The last chapter in the story. I'm going to wrap everything up.

I chose the title "One Last Time" because I needed something with a capital L in more or less the middle. This is also, hopefully, the last rewrite I will ever do.

The grey text in the background are several passages from Revelation, in order, in Greek (from the official Greek Orthodox Bible).
Arnold Harris was a computer programmer or something until he became a wire fu master somehow before the story began. Pythia - whose real name is never revealed - can also do wire fu and can also see the future.

Last panel - in the crowd is Alfred Bester.

Throughout the number 776 appears in various places. The universe the story takes place in is universe 776. There are at least 1000 universes that have humans, but only about three of them are any interesting. There's also the Wormverse inhabited by giant worms and the Crystalverse inhabited by living crystals. The reboot will (if I get around to it) involve Crystalverse inhabitants.
First panel - you can see a portrait of Alfred Bester hanging on the wall. He inspired a lot of the story.

Boss Tweed embodies three jokes. For the first half of the story his head was covered with a paper bag, then he took it off. The other recurring jokes are his shirt changes in every panel for no particular reason, and he has to say "PIG" after every sentence and spit like the villain in the movie "Cobra". That was cool. Most of the characters were based very loosley on real people.

Nameless Girlfriend was never given a name in the story. She's a sadist.

The original story was about 40% absurd comedy, 30% kung fu, and 30% philosophy.
The Atlas is the guy with the glasses and the partly shaved head. He is the physical incarnation of The Heart of The System, which is sort of the central program of The System that governs everything else. The Sampler works for The System, The Probability Generator works against The System, Hitler was the current incarnation of Oblivion - an entity that wants to destroy existence itself, I don't remember sunglasses guy's name, but he can jump bodies, Alice is sort of the living MacGuffin. Everyone wanted to find her because they thought she had power to remake The System. Her parents are assholes.

At the end of Chapter 12 "Messiah" Oblivion has been reduced to its most basic form and won't be dangerous for another trillion years or so, and now everyone wants to get control of Alice from Atlas.
The last page of the original System comic. I still don't understand the ending.
Xev is Hero's daughter. The Committee of Twelve promote him as President of the United States, though the position is totally worthless as they are the true authorities. She is the oldest character in the story, created before I started the first incarnation of the story in 2001. She is also, probably, the most stable character in the story, after David/Julian, and certainly one of the most mature, though her nurturing attitude is covering up her own insecurity. She was born 2 June 2012, so here she is 14 (I was 15 when I started writing the story and I tend to write about characters who are my age, even today).

This scene is based off of a chapter in the original story Glimpse of God, where unit Beta goes crazy and has to be destroyed in the desert. Here it is a little different, since Beta did not transform while Omicron does.

Remember that dust storm. It wasn't really a dust storm. The Seed (which the human mind is too fragile to comprehend in all its glory) is trying to run its per-programed operations, and the humans keep getting in the way. They, Sweet and the Twelve, are trying to harness its awesome power, and it is fighting back. Remember, a lot of cruelty, a lot of things go horribly wrong. The dust is really more like a solid holographic fungus (sentient light you can touch) that has coated the surface of Omicron and is controlling it like a puppet. With Xev quickly being killed inside. And it can transfer itself to different surfaces, making it difficult to eliminate, because if you touch it it may transfer onto you.

Why? To eliminate the human threat? Like an immune system? Maybe, but more than that, because the Seed was damaged and needs to be repaired. Outlaw Seed was kind of like an arms race, where the humans and the Seed were constantly trying to outdo each other. Kind of like the real immune system trying to keep up with ever changing pathogens. Does that mean the humans are the villains? Maybe? Of course, none of this may be happening. It may all be one extended metaphor for whatever, unless it isn't. It's hard to tell at this point, with all the changes that have happened with the story.

I'll admit, after all these years I still can't figure that part out. I'm satisfied thinking that the Seed is so alien that it is impossible to comprehend its motives.
I'm uploading some stuff I did way back. This is from Outlaw Seed, the series that I was working on before The L. It takes place after the events of The L. Quite literally, the last scene of The L is one of the first scenes in Outlaw Seed.

Outlaw Seed dealt more with those things you see on pages 14, 15, and 110. The Merkaba fits inside (see pages 35 and 36). They are called Kanai (plural Kana'im). They are test platforms for the creation of the Abdals ("Replacements"), the only beings perfect enough to operate the Seed. The human mind cannot comprehend the Seed, cannot approach it, cannot activate it, and as such more intelligent, totally obedient, completely unemotional creatures must be created. There is a lot of trial and error involved over several decades. Making something more perfect than humans involves wrecking a lot of human test subjects.

As Sweet mentions on page 110, certain individuals are raised from birth specifically to operate them after it was discovered that the Kana'im have a tendency to turn suicidal. The idea was to give them a reason for living: a person to protect. As such, each is paired with one specific person. The process involves a lot of cruelty, and a lot of things go horribly wrong.

There are three series: P (don't remember), E (Experimental), and K (Production).

E Series
Unit Omicron
Operator: Xev Strife (the little girl from page 8, now older)
Date Activated: 8 January 2027
Date Destroyed: 8 January 2027

Omicron was the second "empty" unit tested (Nu was the first. Operated by Skyla Sweet, activation failed). This time they brought it to the Nevada Test Site, in the middle of a dust storm.

Omicron is probably the only one with four eyes.
Another test, with text instead of numbers (which I guess could be some sort of overflow error).

Bonus points if you guess what this text passage comes from. It too is very significant to the story.
Since the story begins with people finding the secret code to the universe on a computer I wanted to see how the computer text would look.I like it, but I think there could be a bit of variation in the brightness of individual characters.

Bonus points if you guess what all those numbers mean. It is something very significant to the story.
What happened to the bump on his head?
Methinks this should have sound effects. I was thinking "PLUNK", but others would fit nicely too.
@Sasoman: What the cuss are you talking about?
A lot of the characters from the original The System, plus a diagram of the cosmology of The System and a panel from the very end of the original story.

Lafayette, Harris, and Strife discover the formula for The System, and later they let Pythia and Amos Green in on the secret.

The Ethers come from a world full of Ethers instead of humans. Distinguishing between them is like distinguishing between different penguins. Atman, Goliath, Avatar, The Sampler, and The Probability Generator are similarly not human.

Alfred Bester is an author who inspired a lot of the story. See how often you can find him!
The System Tenth Anniversary. Coming June 2014.

The font used at the bottom is appropriately called "system"! It looks like crap and won't be used a lot in the actual story.

The Hebrew letters in the background are the result of a mathematical formula I created that spell out "THE_SYSTEM". It took forever to encode so all subsequent code in the story was made up on the spot, which actually works since it's non-repeating so the same letter or number can be encoded as different Hebrew triplets (as you can see, both Ts Ss and Es are different from one another).
It's already been established at the beginning that this story is a flashback and everyone is already dead, but some people might not want to see how they die. If that includes you, please skip this page.

With the mouse scene (pages 11 and 12) we saw that Sally likes to glue body parts together (an idea I started using in a 2005 story called "Metropolis" that didn't go anywhere). The challenge is making sure its mass does not spontaneously increase while growing mouthes or tentacles. Any growth of body parts MUST be balanced by a loss of equivalent mass somewhere else. The good news is Sally doesn't need too many organs to function, so things like extra bones and intestines can be transformed into fun.