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  • Markus

    I’m kinda worried Patrick’s gift giving is a sort of coded language of social manipulation. He knows exactly what she wants, and exactly what any gift he gives will imply. His last one was either a subtle encouragement to pursue her studies or an allusion towards the sort of social change Allison can’t seem to achieve.

    Needless to say, she should open it now so I can kibitz about it.

    • Johan

      That’s a good theory.
      I like the last two panels, so much is going on I can’t chose one interpretation or another. Does she realize what you just explained on some levels? Did she think romantic though and knows he heard them? Do they both think it’s inappropriate for Pat to randomly offer her something, because of her feelings?
      Is Alison frustrated because she didn’t burst through a wall in a long time? I know I would be. Must be addictive XD

    • Classtoise

      He just admitted to kidnapping people from their hotels and then returning them, as if that makes it less of a crime, in front of a(n ex) superhero. He’s already got her well and wrapped around his pinky, I’d say.

      • Some guy

        He didn’t admit to it, he ignored the question. In all likelihood, these scientists knew that they’d periodically go to a hotel and get put under for vague reasons, but don’t care because they finally have the funding they’ve wanted since before the graduated.

        They probably have both this and “Don’t talk to these other guys ever” clauses spelled out for them before they sign the contract (which also has them spelled out).

        His response two panels later doesn’t confirm that’s what he’s doing, it reinforces that this doesn’t follow the traditional pattern of kidnapping.

        Alison’s expression while she’s asking these questions put it more as banter rather than an informal interrogation. Her questions aren’t serious, and she’s not expecting serious answers. Patrick being who and what he is is probably playing towards that, as he’d know what to do when Alison is in whatever mood better than anyone.

  • Some guy

    “I had one of my Templar bots implant a tracking device under Moonshadow’s left shoulder blade during one of our early confrontations. Here’s a unit that tracks it. Happy Birthday! Want to watch some cartoons?”

    • Lostman

      The sad part is that wouldn’t be surprised if he did.

  • Dave Van Domelen

    To finish her sentence, “…suspicious.”

  • David

    He has her wrapped around his finger when they are together. I truly believe he is able to subtly control her.

    When she was at her dorm, and messaged him…she was all “You got two minutes”.

    Then when she got here with him…she let’s everything go with ease. Doesn’t ask any follow up questions.

    Whether it’s through knowing what to say next to stop her from asking follow ups, from “reading” her mind, or actual mind control, I’m not completely sure.

  • Floweramon

    Well it’s been established that he can’t control the mind reading, so he’s always mind reading people whether he wants to or not. But yes I agree, even with him assuring her that they’ll be returned, Allison is weirdly non-reactive about the kidnapping.

    • http://wiki.urbandead.com/index.php/User:Jerden Jerden

      It’s presumably FOR SCIENCE! That justifies it.

    • S.I. Rosenbaum

      Just because you CAN hack someone’s brain doesn’t mean you SHOULD

    • Morgan

      He can’t turn it off, but he can try to be responsible and conscientious about who he puts himself in range to read. We’ve seen he moves more or less freely in crowds, which indicates he doesn’t worry too much about it (which is bad already), but here he’s specifically setting out to make these people targets of his powers, so he’s definitely exercising control there.

    • Classtoise

      Just because I can overhear someones conversation does not mean it’s rude and potentially an invasion of privacy to ACTIVELY listen.

      There’s a difference between just ignoring the two people talking (or the mind) and going “Huh. I wonder…”

      And besides, he didn’t just “accidentally” stumble upon a group of scientists in his office. They were brought there. This was no case of “Well, I can’t really STOP the mind reading anyway.”

  • http://wiki.urbandead.com/index.php/User:Jerden Jerden

    I think he’s decided that there’s no way for him to change the world.
    So I (and I think others) suspect that he’s going to change time so that all the people with useful powers don’t die.

    • Guilherme Carvalho

      OR he’s going back to stop the appearance of superpowers altogether.

      • Paradoxius

        I would doubt that. He wants to change the world for the better, not maintain a status quo. He’s expressed disappointment that everyone with world-changing powers was killed, so it seems that he sees powers as an avenue to his goal of improving the world.

  • KatherineMW

    I just noticed that Allison’s new haircut looks quite similar to Patrick’s.

    I’m not sure if that’s just how the art turned out, or if it’s a red flag. She does seem more relaxed about the kidnapping than I would expect.

  • Sendaz

    You need to be putting on the Caruso Shades :P

  • S.I. Rosenbaum

    I don’t think that Patrick can help but manipulate Alison. In fact he would probably say that all social interaction is manipulation, and that all the counts is the intent and outcome of that manipulation.

    • D. Schwartz

      And it is to some degree even if the intent and outcome is maintaining friendships.

  • ampg

    I think that Alison made her peace a long time ago with the fact that Patrick is going to have a different understanding of ethical behavior, and she has to live with it if she wants a friendship with him.

  • ampg

    I’m assuming “You don’t have to open it now” was the answer to a question she hadn’t yet asked. I wonder if it’s difficult for Patrick to remember to carry on “normal” conversations with people where they speak and then he speaks, rather than just responding to thoughts as they’re formed.

    • Classtoise

      I think this is all part of his manipulation. Drop subtle hints that “Well, shucks, I just read your mind”.

      If you keep someone believing that you’re just a bumbling fool around them, they’re that much less likely to suspect you’re still an evil genius. Think about it. Who do you fear? The guy who reminds you “I can read your mind. You have no secrets. I can get you anything you want and I know what you truly desire” or “Oh, I’m sorry. I can’t turn off my mind reading, it’s so rude…I try not to use it for presents, but it’s hard to keep straight what someone told me they wanted, what I inferred, and what I read off their thoughts…”

  • Markus

    I use body language to perform non-consensual mindreading all the time. What’s wrong with doing it more efficiently?

  • Jack Lostthenames Warren

    my takeaway: Patrick is working for ROBERT DUVAL??

  • AlpineBob

    Actually, I think they probably signed intellectual property rights agreements as they were hired. It’s just that he can take intellectual property more literally than most.
    The “kidnapping” is more problematic, but once again, they likely agreed when hired to occasionally be taken to a non-disclosed location for “debriefing”. The drugging is the part I really don’t like. People might have allergic reactions, etc. But I suppose they all underwent a thorough physical when hired as well, so Patrick would know of any problems of that nature too. Still not a fan.

  • Subbak

    Well, she did once point out that it’s very easy to judge badly misuses of powers when you don’t have those powers yourself.

  • Sabriel

    I think it’s just the art, but it bothered me too. She sort of looks like she has a sun burn.

    The design of her dress is cute, though.

  • Darkoneko Hellsing

    This is glorious.

  • Darkoneko Hellsing

    They are… both blushing in the middle panel line. Even Patrick, a bit.