SFP

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  • Zechariah Val Judy

    Yeesh, I hope the eye was saved. But wow, imagine seeing the glory in power and the pain in humiliation at the same time. No wonder this is beyond the barriers.

  • AshlaBoga

    Remember Patrick was 14 when he became Menace. Committing murder by 14 means we’re not going to like what comee next

    • Gotham

      I find it interesting how killing people is such a hard line in people’s minds. Extortion, torture, blackmail, identity theft, so easy to a teeny tiny telepatrick, but murder? No Ma’am, this is where this gets too far.

      I take it as Alison herself said. When you don’t really have an option to anyway, making the conscious moral choice to not kill people is not really all that.

      • Olivier Faure

        … yeah, but I don’t really have the option of extorting, or torturing anyone, and I don’t approve those either. Blackmailing and identity theft, I could learn to do, don’t approve either. For that matter, I don’t have the power to order drone strikes in the middle east. Does that mean my opinion on them is irrelevant?

        • Gotham

          I didn’t say an opinion on murder is irrelevant / unwarranted / unwelcome, at all—I said the one most of us have on murder is really peculiar.
          Sometimes to a weird all-encompassing degree, even: one of my friend killed someone in self-defense and no matter how outside of her control the situation was, people can’t help but put her in a different category than the rest of us, that of “those who caused the death of a human”.

          And I don’t mean that disparagingly at all even, even she does that when she doesn’t catch herself.

          • Tiago Quintana

            I’d say it’s not so peculiar when you consider death is permanent. It may not be an easy or simple process, but a person can, at least in theory, recover from most other wounds, or at least learn to live with them.

      • MoonicaMusing

        I’m not saying those crimes don’t inflict permanent damage (physically, emotionally or financially) but murder is absolutely final. There’s no chance for the victim to come back from that and try to rebuild. I am of course speculating but I think that’s the reason for the divide in most people’s minds.

        I know we could talk about whether some things are worse than death to have to live with, but at least on paper, you have options afterwards. You might be able to move on, get better, seek justice, start again, etc. Small as the odds may be of those things, they’re non-zero. With murder, they are absolutely zero.

      • Lisa Izo

        Well… murder is worse than the other admittedly horrible things you mentioned that Patrick has done. Yknow, since you can’t recover from being murdered or do anything in your life after being murdered. It’s sorta …. final. And people do have the option to murder. People murder other people all the time. It’s just most people have to deal with consequences for their actions, and Alison unfortunately (for everyone on Earth) does not.

  • Gotham

    POINT TAKEN BUT YOU‘RE HURTING MY FACE

    • Xin

      That truck looks like it has some corners to it, so hopefully not too many points were taken…

    • motorfirebox

      What’s extra awful is that he feels that, too.

      • zarawesome

        stop hitting yourself

  • Kifre

    I wonder if mental/emotional pain is more *real* to Patrick than physical pain. It would make a great deal of sense.

    • Gotham

      …isn’t all pain mental?

      My god, Menace came to be because Patrick lived a nightmare feeling the pain that other felt around him when they stubbed their toes or something

      • bryan rasmussen

        well if that’s the case why is he able to hurt the bully’s face, maybe physical pain – translated to the mental level through the central nervous system, can be more easily neutralized by Patrick.

        • palmvos

          no. this is what unrestrained and inescapable anger do. it does not matter in the moment- the pain is already extreme. also Adrenalin levels shut down the brain until only the animal is left… and it is cornered

      • Eric Schissel

        or substitute for stubbed toes, very strong but regularly experienced pains, traumas, humiliations… that adults experience and learn how to function with in some suboptimal fashion- but a child experiencing them telepathically/telempathically, and directly, would risk being broken by.

      • You saw the recent study that showed that Tylenol helps deal with the emotions of being socially ostracized, right? People have been discovering that acetaminophen dulls emotional pain in a way that appears to be analogous to what it does to physical pain. The effect has been reproduced enough times to make it look pretty convincing that it happens, but WHY it happens, nobody knows yet. Or even whether it’s specific to acetaminophen, or works for other analgesics, too.

        But one strong hypothesis is that emotional pain and physical pain use some of the same neural pathways, and acetaminophen interferes with those transmissions. That mental pain and physical pain are, on a neurophysical level, the same thing.

        • lightdefender

          The same studies are showing the acetaminophen dulls the sensation of pleasure and feelings of happiness, too. It doesn’t just dull pain; it dulls all strong emotions.

        • Tylikcat

          Or, at least, at some point along the pathway converge. I mean, nociception clearly is it’s own thing – but I’m talking about the periphery, and what’s going on as the signals come it. How they’re processed higher up (I’m not implying a nigher value, it just really is higher up in humans) converges at some point. …and many of these drugs have multiple effects.

    • Zinc

      This is how I read this page too. I think this might also connect to Alison and Patrick’s last discussion – in particular

      http://strongfemaleprotagonist.com/issue-5/page-112/
      (and the lead-up in pages 107-109)

      Patrick expresses a rather odd morality – he has no qualms at all about murder, but detests slavery and considers rape unthinkable, and Alison calls him out on it. It might all come down to his ability to empathize (or perhaps – his inability not to empathize) with the emotional pain of others, while not sharing their physical pain. Perhaps his whole moral system is built on an entirely selfish base – he is willing to do (and does) unto others only that which does not cause him to suffer as well.

      • palmvos

        or perhaps- his experience of death is fleeting.. but slavery, rape, assault, humiliation- those linger. death can be easy. Living is always hard.

        • George Washington

          Dying is easy, young man. Living is harder.

        • tygertyger

          This is exactly what I was going to say.

      • Insanenoodlyguy

        Nah, physical pain would still cause emotional feedback. People don’t exactly LIKE getting hurt.

        I’d put forth though that it might be in fact his POWER not to emphasize. When your as strong an empath as him, detachment is an actual requirement for sanity. His power might take him further away from the human condition as it gets strong as an actual defense mechanism.

        But, like many people with lessend morals, Patrick has developed standards in their place. especiallyt as a mind reader torture is useless to him. The only reason to hurt others is for reasons of power, to MAKE them do what you say or stop what you don’t want them to do. If you know that won’t work, just kill them. Needless pain or sadism along the way is just a waste of time.

        Though I think palvos has something there as well. Kill them and the emotions you’d rather not experience are quickly gone.

  • Gotham

    Thankfully the glorious American justice system means the one asshole who’s using his position of societal power and cultural privilege to harass someone with all the lifelong damaging effects of systematically-accepted-bullying WILL be punished rather than the one jumping in her defense, right?

    Right?

    Right?

    …right?

    • Lostman

      I would like to point out, Patrick gouged out the other kid eye and with a weapon. That not going favorable with adults, or counts.

      • Gotham

        Trauma is not material enough to point to the blood splatter, I know

      • Meghan

        I didn’t actually read it as eye being gouged out – just hitting him on the forehead.

        • Lostman

          If you look closely, then you can see what look like red droplets.

          • Meghan

            I guess I just figured that was blood spray from getting hit? Either way, adults are not going to take that well.

          • palmvos

            facial cuts bleed profusely.

      • Tylikcat

        On the one hand, I wouldn’t want to dismiss the possibility that he maimed the kid. On the other hand, the evidence isn’t much stronger than for the maiming of Patrick via the thrown mug (which was, afterall, thrown by a superhero)… and Patrick was not noticeably maimed. I mean, maybe once he gets cleaned up a bit, there will be something, but certainly, not on the order many people postulated.

        On that precedent, I’m reserving judgement. And… it doesn’t have to be maiming to be, well, a memory that’s emotionally laden enough to need to be kept outside of adult Patrick’s barriers, for whatever reason.

    • JohnTomato

      “Thankfully the glorious American justice system”

      You misspelled ‘legal’ as justice.

      • Gotham

        English may not be my first langage but I’ve heard the free association of “justice” and “system” from time to time in my day

        • JohnTomato

          Trouble with too many Americans is that they don’t want justice.

          • tygertyger

            I seriously doubt that Americans have a monopoly on that.

          • Lisa Izo

            Justice is subjective. The law can be objective.

        • TimG

          For sure, it’s often referred to as the “justice system”. I think John’s point was just that the phrase is a bit of spin, because enforcing the laws is not always about achieving justice. (Not that you needed to be told that, since you were obviously using “glorious American justice system” sarcastically.) Similarly, one might argue that the U.S. Department of Defense was more accurately described by its original name, the Department of War.

      • Yup. My father explained it as “the legal system exists to provide a decision, not justice.” It is a way to answer questions so you can get through them; it’s nice when the answers line up with justice, and you need to at least be vaguely in the same ballpark enough of the time for most people to more-or-less tolerate it, but the point is to just resolve disputes, more than to resolve disputes fairly.

    • palmvos

      no. the superior social standing allows the bully to get away with it. unfortunately- even if the system actually would punish the bully. young pat would still end up at the next memory. two wrongs don’t make a right.. oh i’m sorry. only Patrick was in the wrong. the other kid was just using their freedom of speech. no harm done it was just a joke. maybe in bad taste.

      i’m not done- the bully grew up and was able to leverage his skills into a superior position, so guess who your boss is? and no he hasn’t learned a thing.

      • Gotham

        😐

      • Weatherheight

        I think I’ll go sit in the corner and be depressed about this for a while.
        Same as it ever was…
        Same as it ever was…
        Same as it ever was…
        Same as it ever was…

    • Olivier Faure

      “Societal power and cultural privilege”? You’re extrapolating a lot. He’s an older boy bullying a younger girl. You don’t need societal power or institutional complicity for that to happen.

      • Gotham

        Bullying doesn’t work in a contextless and frictionless vacuum because the victim and the perpetrator both die very quickly of suffocation

        • Weatherheight

          I see what you did there…

          • palmvos

            and I aprove

      • “Older boy” has societal power and cultural privilege over “younger girl.” Yes, culture and society is established that young. The playground has a society and a culture, one that is passed down from generation of child to generation of child.

        The thing is, different playgrounds have different cultures, and this sort of bullying happens in some and not others. And the children who grow up in different playground cultures end up acculturated differently to their grown-up cultures later.

    • Isaac Burke

      I’m not sure how badly young!Patrick injured that kid, but at the very least he shouldn’t have jumped to violence immediately. They should probably both be punished.

      • Gotham

        I’m not saying he should have jumped to violence, only that discussing the morality of impulsive acts of retaliation against violence is tenuous to begin with, and that’s without factoring in the fact that he’s four.

      • Tylikcat

        I don’t know how old the bully is, but let’s keep in mind, Patrick’s four. Even in Murika, there’s pretty limited punishment for four year olds, and it’s almost certainly going to be besides the point in terms of Patrick’s experience.

        • Lisa Izo

          If he’s four then he cannot be guilty of an intentional tort (and obviously not guilty of a crime) in most states, since intentional torts and crimes tend to require the capacity to form intent or mens rea respectively (heck it’s in the name intentional torts, and crimes are about either negligence, intent, or strict liability – assault and battery would involve intent). But I’m confused about one thing – why is everyone saying he’s four? There’s nothing that says he’s four in the comic. The only thing referring to age that I’ve seen was he is younger than 13-14.

          • Gotham

            It’s not stated, but it’s a simple deduction based on the facts we’re presented with.
            – Anima said he started showing signs of his power at age four
            – We just left the memory of his first experience of mindreading his dog (meaning he was four when that happened) which is most likely to indicate this one is not far after
            – It would make the most sense to understand this event as a display of the first time he was struck by the pain of someone else considering the severity of his reaction. Which sure if he lived in isolation could have happened years after the last memory, but most likely not because bullying happens everywhere all the time

            The other option, that it took years before he was close enough to bullying to react to it, is made unlikely by those facts. It would mean either that:
            – He didn’t witness bullying for years
            – He did witness bullying but his mindreading was still developing and it didn’t affect him as much as it did now
            – He did witness bullying /and/ his mindreading was in full gear and it’s just the fortieth time he assaulted an abuser.

            The strongest argument you could make for him not being four would be with that second option maybe, I could see it. The shallowest argument you could make for him not being four would be that bullying doesn’t happen that often, which is wrong.

          • Lisa Izo

            Ok that actually does explain a bit of why people are saying he’s four. But I don’t remember where the Anima said he showed his powers at four. Or a reason to say that the toy truck incident was at the same time as when he was talking to his dog.

          • Gotham
    • AlbinoAlias

      Fortunately it should be obvious to all readers that the act of stabbing a young boy in the eye was enormously out of proportion to the crime of calling someone’s doll stupid, right?

      Right?

      …right?

      • Gotham

        Considering the crime is not planned or agreed upon by an ethics committee but rather done in the heat of the moment, stopping to wonder whether it was the right thing to do or not is really irrelevant I feel?
        And that’s before remembering that the law of talion is really really dumb

        • Lisa Izo

          Um… a crime does not need to be planned in order to be a crime. Not sure what you’re arguing about from what Albino said.

          A lot of crimes can be done in the heat of passion. It doesn’t minimize that there was a crime. I think you’re confusing that implied malice, as opposed to heat of passion, INCREASES the severity of the penalties for a violent crime.

          • Gotham

            Again with not understanding simple English. I didn’t say it wasn’t a crime, but that pondering over the legitimacy of something done when intent is fuzzy is pointless. There’s a reason why we argue over what Alison did to Max but not over what Alison did to the arsonist who tried to burn Feral in the hospital back in issue 2.

          • Lisa Izo

            “Again with not understanding simple English”

            You literally were talking about a crime in your post. I think maybe you might be the one having trouble with simple English. Or you could stop making unnecessary personal attacks when posting in response to me and just respond like a normal person.

            “There’s a reason why we argue over what Alison did to Max but not over what Alison did to the arsonist who tried to burn Feral in the hospital back in issue 2.”

            Because one person was murdering people and the other just has opinions she didn’t like?

            Albino is saying that grevious injuries is not proportional to ‘hurting ones feelings.’ And you started with how ‘the law of talion’ (ie, rex talionis – eye for an eye – proportionality in the punishment fitting the crime) is dumb and that stopping to wonder if a person is doing the right thing BEFORE trying to commit violent assault is irrelevant to how one feels. It sounds sort of like you’d be in favor of that planet on The Next Generation where the punishment for all crimes, including walking on the grass, is death. 🙂

          • Gotham

            You have understood absolutely nothing of what I said.

        • AlbinoAlias

          If you were the school principal and told that one boy called another child’s toy
          “stupid” and the other beat him into submission, whom would you punish?

          You imply that the bully should be the one receiving the greater punishment, but that makes no sense considering that he committed the lesser offense.

          • Gotham

            I would punish neither because punishment does nothing to help and instead provide both with school therapy so they can work out their separate problems constructively and hopefully get to their root causes.
            (To the girl as well because she needs to know it’s not normal and it’s not going to be her first of million of instances of being overlooked by a sexist society, right? Right?)

            If this is a repeated offense however, the bully get expelled. You say it like it’s objectively, undeniably a lesser offense, and there is nothing in the world I disagree more with.

          • AlbinoAlias

            “I would punish neither because punishment does nothing to help”

            In your initial post you stated that the bully should be the only one punished, and that it should be the obviously “correct” course of action. That is what I disagree with.

            “You say it like it’s objectively, undeniably a lesser offense, and there is nothing in the world I disagree more with.”

            Do you seriously consider stabbing of a person’s eye with a physical object to be less significant than verbal insult directed at a person’s doll? Or is this a rhetorical device on your part?

          • Gotham

            This is still what I said. The bully is the one being punished /eventually/. Because sure, you can compare the material effect of stabbing versus harassment, but it’s worthless without context.

      • The point is that he is a four-year-old child and a telepath and there is no distinction in his own experience between the emotional pain of another person and physical pain for himself. If that kid was kicking Patrick in the gut, and he managed to squirm around and smash the truck into the kid’s face, you’d probably be accepting of his actions, right? For him, there isn’t an experiential difference between some other kid being teased and himself being punched in the face. It’s the same thing.

        • Gotham

          (And even if he wasn’t a telepath, defending others is just as commendable as defending yourself, if not more.)

          • AlbinoAlias

            The bully called someone’s toy “stupid”.

            Patrick stabbed him in the eye with a sharp object.

            The act is understandable, because Pat is a young and emotional telepath, but it is certainly NOT commendable.

          • Gotham

            Defending oneself or others against oppression gives you much leeway regarding whatever method used in my book.

        • AlbinoAlias

          I’m not arguing that what Patrick did was some kind of unforgivable evil, the context of the strip clearly shows that it was a largely thoughtless and instinctive act of a very young child.

          What I was attempting to point out is that the logical response of adults is NOT to give him a medal and punish the boy who got injured.

      • Danygalw

        He’s, like, four. Someone was hurting someone else,e and he could feel it, and he tried to make it stop.

        • Lisa Izo

          Pretty sure he’s not 4. You aren’t in school at age 4.

          • The_Rippy_One

            actually, pre-kindergarden can start as early as 3, and we’ve already seen that Pat learns intensely and osmoticly – he probably skipped a grade, if not several before he figured out that being too small among not yet civilized barbarians (ie other kids) is a poor idea XD

          • Lisa Izo

            1) How do you skip a grade in ‘pre-kindergarten?’
            2) That seems like a recess yard, like a regular school (not like some sort of nursery).
            3) He doesn’t look like a 4 year old. .Where did anything say he was four? Did I miss where he said it? If so, just let me know which comic page. Where are people getting that age? So far, all we know is he’s younger than 13-14.

          • Tylikcat

            He said earlier that he started manifesting his powers at age four (I’m too lazy to look it up, but it was fairly recent).

            He says here that the incident with the dog was his first memory of telepathy, and that he manifested it a decade earlier than most anomalies.

            http://strongfemaleprotagonist.com/issue-7/page-57-4/

            Do you see a difference worth mentioning between Patrick-with-Dog and PlaygroundPatrick? They seem pretty close to me. (And, allowing for art style, believably four. I taught preschool for a year, and the classes were roughly divided into 3, 4, and 5 year olds – the latter being kindergartners. But figuring out age from art that already has a certain degree of neoteny is weird, I’ll grant.)

          • Lisa Izo

            “He said earlier that he started manifesting his powers at age four (I’m too lazy to look it up, but it was fairly recent”

            I don’t think he said that at all, but i’m beginning to get an idea of why some people are assuming that. He said that he believed that many biodynamics may have developed their powers as much as a decade before when they typically are believed to develop them, at 13-14. So that’s why people are assuming he’s 4.

            It’s a lot of supposition of the extreme, and I think that’s not correct, but at least now I see the rationale being used.

          • The_Rippy_One

            ask the person who pegged them at 4, then?

            as to the rest, I was simply pointing out that people can be “in school” at an age younger than sighted.

            As to skipping grades – If, at age 4, someone was reading at a 1st grade level, solving mathematics at a grade 2 level, and speaking relatively well, I could see some schools skipping them from k to 1st. It wouldn’t even be that weird. in the cases of actual genius, kids have been documented to skip through all of elementary in 2 or 3 years, hitting middle school curriculum by age 6 or 7 and completing college in their early teens.

            Pat isn’t necessarily a genius, but he has his teacher’s brain to learn directly from, which makes the difference sort of moot, if he shows off that information afterwords.

            Oh, and my pre-k was attached to an elementary school – we shared the recess yard with them, though we didn’t get to be out there at the same time as the older kids. I’ve been through 4 elementary schools (moved often), and in 3 of the 4, there was a kindergarden attached, in one form or another (whether it was directly under the auspices of the school, or privately run and closely associated due to proximity)

  • Walter

    Ouch. Patrick’s childhood must have been a nightmare. Maybe not as bad as that child he maimed, but still…

    • Dwight Williams

      Worse. He was able to see the same event through the eyes of bully and victim alike.

    • Tylikcat

      If you look at the outcomes studies of people with debilitating injuries, they’re pretty good. People tend to freak out during the first few months, and get pretty depressed, and then, less than a year in, their outlook on life tends to be back up to where it was before.

      Don’t get me wrong – I don’t want to make light of the maiming and associated trauma, but Patrick was in a very different boat.

      • Walter

        To be super clear here, the maimed child has it worse than his attacker, yeah? The ‘villain’ in this strip is the one who smashed a kid in the face with a brick.

        • Tylikcat

          Two problems here. 1) You’re talking about how difficult people’s childhoods must have been. That’s a very different question than “who is the villain in this scenario?” The kid who was hit in the face with the toy truck (and we don’t know the outcome – a bunch of folks were pretty sure Patrick was maimed when Al threw his gift back at him, but apparently not obviously so) is not coming out of this with out of control telepathy without any social support.

          2) The villain? Seriously? Your “villain” is four.

          • Walter

            He *looks* like a four year old human person. We are seeing ‘his’ mind right now, and it doesn’t even resemble one. What would ‘social support’ for Patrick’s telepathy even looks like? What tiny percentage of his/their experiences even take place in the observable world?

            Alison tried to support him, and he transformed her likeness into a monstrous statue that he uses to oppress himself. I’m not trying to make the point that Patrick = evil or whatever here, I’m trying to point out that he is *alien*. Having a crush on him helped out his inner supervillain. Throwing a mug at him started an internal revolution. Alison intended neither of these things.
            There is no way to know what kind of action ‘social support’ would even entail.

            Honestly, locking Patrick in solitary in antarctica might be the kindest thing you could do to him. Or it might be torture crueler than one can imagine. There is no way to know. Even if he told you, what version of him, or Guwara-esque hijacker, is even talking?

            Long winded way to point out that the ‘nightmare’ of Patrick’s childhood has nothing to do with how other people treat him, and has everything to do with his inner demons. The child has a quantifiable injury, which we can understand. Patrick is exhibiting signs of distress, but he is not a trustworthy reporter, and we know he makes it through this and becomes a telepathic billionaire terrorist, so my sympathies aren’t quite as engaged.

          • Lisa Izo

            How exactly are people saying he’s four? Was this said somewhere that I’ve missed? Or are they saying he’s four to take advantage of the ‘you can’t commit an intentional tort if you’re under a certain age because you can’t form the mental basis for intent?’

  • Ben

    Sociopathy is a perfectly understandable response to untamed empathy. This is, in fact, an (Optimus) prime example.

    • Eric Schissel

      but suboptimal. … but yeah.

  • zellgato

    Yup. That looks about right.

  • Dave Van Domelen

    “If I’d been playing with a so-called ‘stupid girl toy’ then maybe this wouldn’t have hurt so much!”

  • M. Alan Thomas II

    I’m just going to point out to my fellow commenters that it’s a skin wound (forehead) if it’s immediately producing that much blood. The loss of an eye, even through an eyelid, would produce very different results.

    • Gotham

      The toy truck was full of ketchup.
      You know how children are the grossest creatures in the universe

      • Lisa Izo

        The bully’s eye was full of ketchup too.

        • Gotham

          Oh hey while I have you here can you tell Arxkone to stop whining about me every chance he gets? I still see his comments and the cringe is terrible it’s been months now like move on dude

          • Lisa Izo

            Um…. I don’t see that happening. Not seeing any cringe.

          • Gotham

            Not on you to see!

          • Lisa Izo

            Wha?

          • Gotham

            I said that whether you see it or you’re oblivious to it is irrelevant.

          • Lisa Izo

            No, you said ‘not on you to see.’ To which I said ‘Wha?’ Because that didn’t make any sense.

            Why are we having this back-and-forth?

          • Gotham

            Because you don’t understand simple English.

          • Lisa Izo

            So in your mind what you said was a coherent sentence?

            I mean why are you bothering to argue with me over something I have no part in? Seems like you’re just angling gor a fight, and it doesnt reflect well on you. Makes you look petty and rude.

          • Gotham

            Yes it was. “It is not on you” is not a secret grammatical structure I created, it is a common way to say “this is not your responsability, not your concern”. For the millionth time, when you don’t understand something, it’s very likely to be your failing. Start questioning yourself.

            And you can tell him first about you having no part in that fight because he doesn’t hesitate to involve you in his persecution complex.

          • Lisa Izo

            Honestly Gotham, you’re not really worth arguing with. If I was to say anything to him, who I actually can respect because he responds to my posts intelligently and not all ‘You wanna fight?’ like you do, my only advice would be that you’re not someone worth taking much notice of. I’m not Arkone’s keeper.

            Also, if I don’t understand something you’re saying, it’s generally because you don’t know how to write non-aggressive (or at least grammatically correct) posts when it involves me. You’re just so anxious to get into a fight with me instead 🙂 Honestly you’re the one who seems to be having a complex right now. Anyway, not going to respond to you on this thread anymore because it’s a stupid argument literally about nothing. I prefer to argue about things that have a point.

          • Gotham

            It’s kind of bittersweetly sad to realize you interpret as aggressive anyone who doesn’t do the unwarranted effort of indulging your constant smug cluelessness.

  • JohnTomato

    “Do not dawdle.”

    Keep the mark so busy / conflicted that they can’t exercise good judgement.

    • Eric Schissel

      … or, maybe, “these memories hurt to re-experience, I’d like to be somewhere else please”

      • Arkone Axon

        Upvoted you both because I’m thinking you’re both right.

        • Weatherheight

          Me too

    • Olivier Faure

      Wow, that did not even occur to me. I mean, Patrick has at least plausible deniability, but wow.

      • JohnTomato

        Watch the final 20 minutes of ‘The Sting.’ Everything you need to know about not getting hustled/conned is in that film.

    • Gotham

      Or:
      “You don’t want to know what happens to this place when Patrick Prime starts to need to go to the bathroom. It’s… indescribable.”

  • Thomas S

    What makes this memory unsafe could be a valuable bit of Knowledge of Patrick, showing something that is deeper and more damaging than the memories maintained in the hall, the one that we already know is pilfered from. I feel this will illustrate they ease by which Patrick’s mind has been penetrated and manipulated by the conspiracy, of which Guwurra surely must be a part. My question is – how does a fragmented telepaths mind defend itself from visitors? Where are the memories white blood cells or their equivalent?

    • Arkone Axon

      Definitely read the Dune series. From what I can tell, the whole point of fragmenting his personality was to create a bunch of individual components who could multitask. We’ve already seen the Guardian…

      • R Lex Eaton

        …waitaminute. Is Patrick this setting’s Shinobu Sensui from YYH?!

  • R Lex Eaton

    I’ll skip the more obvious elements of the page here and get right to the pressing concern…

    Have we met a Dr. Moss in this comic yet?

    • palmvos

      Dr. Moss will probably grow on us. and Dr moss does not rock and roll.

      • Weatherheight

        His mama don’t dance either, I suspect…

        • palmvos

          The Rolling Stones do not gather Dr. Moss.

          • Gotham

            So this is what happens in the lowest reaches of the comment section, /where puns belong/

          • Darkoneko Hellsing

            I thought this worked only in french

          • Gotham

            It comes from Latin, basically every langage has its translation.

            Thank God we were almost made be more careful next time we must protect the secret at all cost that we’re actually all French people posing as English speaking folks

          • Weatherheight

            but do they grok him? 😀

          • palmvos

            you are assuming dr. moss is male. the profile on the next page supports this. but still.. :: looks at profile picture:: ok.. 1/2 way there.

          • Weatherheight

            Actually, I was using “lazy English rules where gender is unknown”.
            I was tired… 😀

  • Weatherheight

    Hmm.. compassion fatigue was not something I saw being a thing for Patrick, but it does make sense.
    In a “I can’t take it any more, walls, walls, walls, walls, walls, walls, walls…” sort of way.
    It’s hard to care when it keep hurting…

    • Gotham

      I knew there would be hurdles along his path but I’d be disappointed if he became Menace simply because telepathy taught him that woe is existence and life is pain and everybody’s a monster. I guess at some point we’re going to learn what happened with his parents and I expect it to be some version of that, but I’d rather like a more challenging narrative.
      Patrick had to learn to shield himself from the misery of human self-awareness but I also want him to fall in love with the capacity for hope, wonder and love he experienced. I want to see him burst into tears at 12 because he passed along a non-assuming looking couple of teenagers in the park and was just struck in place by the infinite depth of resonant bonding the two managed to create, or by the awe and unbridled curiosity of an old woman looking at the stars in the night sky, or the wealth of complex emotions ranging from peace to sorrowful longing going on the mind of someone quietly grieving in a cemetery, all the optimism and enthusiasm and genius and empathy and lust and admiration for beauty and justice of the world, or the countless, countless, countless stories that he will ever be the only other person to know because they’ll only live in their minds and never be shared.

      I took a mug thrown in his face for Alison to realize his performed disdain for humanity was pure bullshit, but I never believed it one second.

      • palmvos

        your final sentence…. do you mean:
        it may have taken Alison throwing a mug at his face for Patrick to realize his disdain for humanity was pure bullshit, but I, Gotham, never believed he felt only disdain for humanity.

  • Nightsbridge

    Makes me wonder if that’s a trans girl that the bully is talking too, honestly, considering the ‘girl’s toy emphasis, which doesn’t make a lot of sense if he knows or at least believes he’s talking to girl.

    I mean I don’t think we’ll ever see her or the culmination of this memory again so it’s not like it matters, but still. One wonders.

    • BMPDynamite

      I was wondering that too.

  • There are a lot of parallels with high functioning autism, here.

    Folks on the spectrum can often come across as aloof or emotionally distant, but in reality things can be really intense all the dang time. I can be hypersensitive the emotions people give off around me.

    It’s overwhelming, sometimes.

  • Philip Bourque

    I wonder why violence was his first reaction and not huddling in a corner in fear and pain hoping that it would eventually go away?

    • Tylikcat

      This kind of thing is incredibly individual, but it almost certainly isn’t all a matter of outside circumstance – nor is it all innate.* At four, I probably would have thrown myself between the two, and attempted to argue with them, logically and passionately, most likely with tears running down my face. (Argument was *always* my first resort. Especially at four. And I had a really strong sense of how things ought to be. If this sounds like I was a total pain in the ass, you would be right.**)

      My sister probably would have watched in mute horror (she might have tried to find an adult, but we’re talking about how people react under really strong emotions.) My brother probably would have hit someone. And we grew up in more or less the same family. (I’m the eldest, but the younger two are close in age. There was a sister between me and them, who died, so there’s an age gap of seven and nine years between me and them.)

      * That’s the thing with the nurture vs. nature debate it’s clearly both, sometimes provably both…
      ** This is far from theoretical, at least excluding the wild card effect of telepathy. My memories start when I was about a year and a half old (as do, I just learned, my sister’s – not a huge surprise, she has similar recall in other ways). The early ones are pretty episodic, but firm up and get a much stronger narrative structure over the next year or so. By the time I was four thing are really solid, and I had a pretty rich interior life when I was four. (It was also a pretty important year for me. Though, I mean, this is not the interior life of an adult, okay?) I guess I should add, I could be persuaded by logical argument, by damn, I was death on hypocrisy, and I hadn’t figured out yet that adults just forgot things, sometimes.

    • Gotham

      Having his dog literally express him his unwavering love in explicit terms on a daily basis did wonders for his confidence.

  • Lisa Izo

    A few things….

    1) That has to be the dumbest schoolyard bully ever. He’s…. making fun of a girl for playing with what he has called a ‘girl’s toy.’ Wouldn’t he normally make fun of some weak boy instead? Or a BOY playing with a doll so the whole ‘you’re playing with a girl’s toy’ would be more in line with the whole bully mentality? I’m not sure if he’s picking on a girl because it would run counter to the idea of a girl being victimized or what, but it just seems like a weird situation for a ‘schoolyard bully.’ Might have made more sense if the victim was a Clevin-type of boy. More the target of a stereotypical schoolyard bully of this ‘type.’ Or is the reason the victim is a girl in order to further show how evil the bully is from a literary standpoint, because in real life, there tends to be a much stronger ‘rescue’ instinct when the victim is a girl, rather than a boy.

    2) Does the bully have fangs? Or is that just a mindscape sort of thing to show the bully as being far more menacing than he really is?

    3) Is he flying at the bullet while both pulling the bully’s shirt forward AND smashing the truck into his head?

    4) I could probably make some sort of statement about ‘hurting feelings =/= hurting someone physically… except the bully is also stealing from the girl. But little Patrick doesn’t seem to be hurting the bully because he’s physically doing anything to the girl, or stealing from the girl. He’s doing it because, as a telepath, he literally does equate ‘hurting your feelings’ with ‘I now get to hurt you physically.’

    • Gotham

      1. Bullies are morons and their reasons for bullying are always asinine.
      2. It is as you say a “mindscape sort of thing”. Same reason as to why him and the girl are represented in a very different art style in Patrick’s mind.
      3. Yes.
      4. Yes, the framing of the scene is meant to indicate that lil’ Patrick feels the emotional pain of someone else as pain (of any kind) affecting him. Legally emotional and physical pain may be different, but that’s irrelevant since we’re meant here to consider both as mental pain, which doesn’t discriminate origins.

      • Lisa Izo

        1. Bullies usually have at least a ‘type’ that they go after though. Going after little girls isn’t generally a target because there’s no peer approval for that. It just seems unusual to me how he’s picking on a girl for playing with a ‘girl’s toy.’

        2. Okay

        3. Then maybe it’s not a memory, but it’s an ‘I wish I had been able to do that.’

        4. Well, I do think there’s a pretty major difference between emotional pain and physical pain, but I suppose that if I was a telepath who was too young to understand the difference because everything gets filtered into thoughts, he might not be able to discriminate origins like pretty much any other rational person would be able to.

        • Gotham

          I worked with middle school children as an assistant counselor for years, you couldn’t be more wrong about point one.

    • Tylikcat

      On point 4, I wonder if you might be over interpreting his thought process. “Now I get to hurt you,” implies a fairly reasoned response, inside of some kind of moral or retributive framework. “This hurts / I feel it / I’m lashing out,” strikes me as equally likely, without nearly as much of a basis of reason behind it.

    • Arkone Axon

      I can’t help but think about some of the bullies I knew back in school. Some were big and bulky. Some were… small and scrawny, but good at gaming the system and appealing to teachers while being nasty little sneaks. This guy does indeed seem very stereotypical.

      As for the bully having fangs and such… this is Patrick’s memory, and memories are notoriously fickle things… subject to the whims of nostalgia and the filters of memories. The boy might have seemed to have been more demonic than he actually was, to Patrick’s young and malleable senses.

  • Herwood

    The question is if he could read the bully’s mind, couldn’t he understand his motivations and empathize, then try to solve it by talking… ?

    • Lisa Izo

      That reminds me of a movie called The Last Supper with Ron Perlman.

      They’d give this hypothetical question to people, so that no matter what they answer, they will judge him guilty and murder him. And he answers the question in a way none of them prepared for.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xn9tT_5GLtI