1. Divergence says:

    Hahaha, Galileo has to come first! I’m not sure if they know that they’re orbiting the sun and not the opposite. I don’t even know if they understand that the land and the sun are orbiting at all. For all I know, they might think that the gods are putting a perforated bowl over the flat land at night, like the Sumerians have believed 🙂

    • Meghan says:

      Definitely a good point. The tikedi haven’t even explored beyond their rather small continent. How much or little do they really know?

      Eeee, I love mythology and early explanations of “why” rather a lot. That is a lovely one. 🙂

      • StyxD says:

        Actually… I don’t think we’ve seen much about tikedi mythology. There’s the Circle, the concept of destiny and Teyka and her scriptures. But not much about what they believe about the genesis of the world, the matters of spirit and afterlife…

        Now, about this page… I’ll just say that Eika keeps looking majestic in every panel she appears in. Even in the second one here, where it’s just a part of her. 🙂

        • Meghan says:

          I guess you’re right. There’s not a lot that’s been said outright yet. *scratches head* I forget sometimes (all right, often) what I’ve actually said in-story and what’s just in my notes or in the sequel novels-in-progress and those assorted notes. In my head, it all looks more or less complete, but I’m pretty alone in that regard.

          I promise that there’s a ton, though, and I’ll get it all sorted, organized, written down and put out there eventually. Every group on this world’s got a slightly different perspective and I ultimately want to at least present them all, even if I don’t get the opportunity to go in-depth with every single one during the course of the story.

  2. Divergence says:

    I read the wiki long ago, and now I don’t remember such important info.
    Anyways, it’s even less reasonable now, because for the Tikedi species to survive and grow bigger, they must have that offspring average slightly bigger then 2 kids per couple, or else their numbers will decrease constantly with time. And that without considering the death factor due to violence, hunger and illnesses, which means that not all of the offspring of a couple will make it to have their own kids.

    So maybe the conditions on the planet are really good for the tikedi (good immune system and reasonably few dangerous bacteria and viruses), and they do make enough kids to survive, but those are only my speculations. maybe I’m wrong (or is the story universe defined wrong?).

    Well, many more things are interesting for me about that universe. Astronomy of the Tikedi planet mostly (for this batch). Questions like:
    -Does that planet have a significant axial tilt, or it lacks the concept of seasons?
    -How long is the year? The day? How far is their sun and how big is the planet?
    -People see in three different color channels- red, green and blue. Dogs have 2 channels, they lack the red. Birds can see a forth channel, of UV. How sees a Tikedi? and which wavelengths are those? It’s tightly related to the size and mass of the sun, and to the atmosphere composition of the planet.
    -If the Tikedi see different then us humans, then how is the comic painted? The way a human would see it, or maybe it’s the way tikedi see it, somehow translated to our human color orientation of our world? This question is of course meaningless if they see exactly like us, but that would also mean a lot about their solar system.
    -If we’re into astronomy, how good astronomers are they Tikedi? The ancient mesopotamians were pretty good at it, and they were more premitive than the most Tikedi societies. They have a calender at all?
    -I’ll leave that two gigentic moon thing out of the other questions, as it might be hard to explain, but if you can then I’ll love to hear.
    -Are there other continents on that planet? And if so, how come the Tikedi living on the shore (and surely eating all kinds of sea animal) were not sailing away to find those out? Is it water in the seas there at all?!
    -How intense is the magnetic field around the planet?
    -And I have so many more!

    Those questions might look odd, silly and scientifically annoying, but if you’ll look closely you’ll find that most of them are important and crucial in the building of such story universe. As Meghan might be to busy drawing those lovely pages and write the story, she for sure don’t have the right amount of time to build the universe so rigorously. That’s why I’m here, nagging about those: to help make an awesome story even more awesome! 😀
    So there’s not even a need to give an exact answer to each of those questions, but I believe that the comic can be written even better then now if the author will have those things in mind while writing and drawing the comic.

    So all that scroll of a comment is here because I really love that comic and I want to help somehow 🙂

    P.S. I won’t be surprised if the answers to most of the questions will be “earth like” and “man like”. That would be usual and will probably simplify that hard task of conducting to the readers the spirit of the story.
    But the other answers, they will make the twist in that world.

    • Rice says:

      *snickers* you nag her with Concepts of the World, i nag her with banners 😀

      atleast newton has his hands in that world aswell, they don’t float 😉

    • Meghan says:

      Good lord. That is the biggest pile of questions/theories/etc I have yet seen about my silly world-ball.

      Unfortunately, I can’t imagine that my attempts to respond to all of this would be well worth the time consumed, so all I can say is that yes, I try my best to have an explanation for why the world is as it is. I will admit that I hold no degrees in science and so I won’t ever claim to be able to build a perfect world, so there’s always the possibility that disbelief is going to need some suspending in the interest of keeping the story rolling. I do try to tell a story with some thought and consideration behind it, though, and I hope my derpy little adventure yarn continues to entertain, at least. That was always my main goal was just to tell the story in my head and make it enjoyable.

      I love seeing you and the others all talking about all this, for sure. Speculation on others’ universes is what led me to write in the first place, after all, but when it gets this detailed, I’d prefer to just let the story speak for itself, say what it’s going to say, and not say what it’s not going to, if that’s all right. I have no problems with others attempting to fill in the gaps I leave. If theorizing makes it more fun, have at it!

      But thanks for all the effort there. That’s all very interesting.

      • Divergence says:

        Well, don’t get me wrong. the story IS entertaining. IMHO, it’s one of the very best webcomics out there. I’m waiting for monday all the week 🙂
        But when something is so good, I would like to make it even better! I read too many comics with awful universe building, and sometimes it is not worthy of the artwork.
        The universe you have built is interesting, and CONSISTENT, which is great for a story universe. So if the poor Tikedi won’t explore it for us, we’ll, I guess that I’m just too curious to know more about that world. The macro perspective can tell a lot about what we see, and so is the micro perspective.

        But, well, after all, it’s so unfamiliar to see that civilization which isn’t eager for technology and world learning. So different than us humans. Your good answer about the Tikedi numbers in the comment to my first comment is a great example for this difference. For me, It’s another thing this comic have and others don’t.

        You see, most comics which are not the “slice of life” kind usually build a universe which is radically different than our universe. None of their authors seem to understand the vast options to build a really interesting stories in our universe. Instead of doing something crazy in our universe, for example, living on a planet which is always with the same side towards it’s sun. One side is too hot to live, the other one is frozen and dark. Civilization emerges in between the sides, in eternal sunshine/rise. What would happen if they will try to make colonies in the dark side? Underground cities in the light side? If some sort of collision with the planet will make the planet start spinning? And that’s just one not-so-original idea. They can make amazing story-worlds set in our universe.
        But nope, most of the writers will go to the magicky-superpowers option, set in an earthlike world. Sometimes it goes really good (“Unsounded” for example), but most of the time it’s just a boring and conformist fantasy world.

        And you did something else, which I’m fond of. You did something really close to what I was talking about, and it’s wonderful. That’s one reason why I like that comic (but not the only, or even the major reason).
        And of course, You don’t have to answer those questions. My purpose was to put those (and such) questions on the table. Just to say:
        “Hey, great universe there, I really want to know more. Have you considered those and those properties of the story world, or you prefer to consider them if and when the story will need those facts to move on? *now a huge pile of questions about physical factors of the story world*”.
        And I would love to read ProtC one way or another. But it’s so cool to see for once such a different kind of world, set in our exact universe, or something that is closely resembling it, that I simply had to ask all of those.

        And thanks for the serious answer comments. I do appreciate it. And sorry for the ultra-long comments, of course 🙂

        • Meghan says:

          Pfft. And here I just now realized that all three big comments on here were yours. XD Yup. I was being super observant yesterday.

          ““Hey, great universe there, I really want to know more. Have you considered those and those properties of the story world, or you prefer to consider them if and when the story will need those facts to move on? *now a huge pile of questions about physical factors of the story world*”.

          Oooooooohhhhhhhh, okay. I get what you were doing there. Sorry about that deer-in-the-headlights response that you got. I think I got a bit overwhelmed and panicked. Slight mildly traumatic flashback to high school. POP QUIZ! Oh god, I’m gonna fail!

          Whoops. =P

          But okay, I getcha.

          To now properly answer that question: I’ve considered some of those. If they’ll affect the plot later, then absolutely, I try my absolute best to do my homework. If it doesn’t affect the plot, I give it maybe a cursory glance but I don’t spend time on it unless it’s going to loom up and destroy something important. I world-build just enough to make sure that I can dance a jig on it and not put my foot through the floorboards. I unabashedly get most of my kicks instead out of weaving a plot around the characters and toying with social structures and mythology and religion and challenging myself to write the unexpected. Those are more of my strengths and what I’m keen to play to. I know I’ll never attempt writing hard science fiction with the intention of making something airtight because I just don’t have the head for it.

          You’re right in that it could probably be better. Personally, I don’t think there’s an endpoint labelled “best” in any sort of art. Improvement is always a thing to strive for. I’ll be upfront though that I’m not likely to significantly revisit the foundations of this one. At least not soon. Will I fix stumbling points as they arise? Certainly. Sometimes the story takes a turn that totally requires me to step back and fill in details (no, really, stories have lives of their own; I only partially feel like I’m in control here and I’m sure it’s an illusion). But I’m not planning to do any sort of exploration deep into the foundations of the world for now. This story’s so far along – with fourteen years’ worth of me writing, rewriting, giving up, shelving, coming back, and, yes, starting over, several times, that doesn’t even show up in the archives here – that I’m at a point where I’ve got to keep concentrating on moving forward or I’m never going to finish. There will totally be small-scale edits later. I’ve still got plans to retool early dialogue and early art and fix flimsy details in order to bring the quality into line in case I ever think ProtC would make it in print (so far the audience is far too small for the expense ), but major world-building is kind of done right now.

          At the end, I’ll look at it again.

          Still, god yes am I ever blessed to have such enthusiastic and intelligent readers. I didn’t expect the kind of amazing response this story got and I am utterly flattered that you truly deem this to be one of the best webcomics out there. I will always have a hard time even comprehending that I could come up with something worthy of that praise. I’m definitely one of those authors who does the “I’m a haaack!” dance on a fairly regular basis and greets every praising post with “No way.”

          So, er. Thanks! That is basically what I’m trying to say. Thanks, with a touch of dang, sorry, I’m awkward. Also a bit of you’re cool and thanks for speaking up.

          Blah blah, and now the comments section is really long.

        • Divergence says:

          This is becoming too long, so I’ll make it short.
          First, you’re right and I’m sorry. It might have been too much, that utterly scientific pile of questions. Sorry for overhelming you with this stuff.
          Also, I kinda wrote it bad. It’s your universe. You planned it, you written it, you live it. I’m just a visitor who came to see it, and I’m sorry if I offended you at any way, it was not intended.
          The thing is that the universe is really close to reality, some more technical detail will make it theoretically possible in our real world, which is really a cool thing. So close, just some little points were problematic in that aspect, points which I tried to point out. Sorry if it sounded somehow like criticism, it wasn’t. Just good intentions.

          Now I wrote too much and too long (the comment section wasn’t so long since people were talking about Shanka’s sexuality 😛 ), so I promise to write short and informative next time.
          But for now, I might give commenting a break. I really wrote enough for a couple of months or so. But I’ll still be reading, though silent as in the past. So you won’t have to waste time writing long replays anymore, yay!

          BTW, high five to Ashley Cope!

        • Meghan says:

          Hey, no worries. I absolutely love having readers who can challenge me, even if sometimes it makes my brain do the blue screen of death (which just means I need more practice). In the big scheme of things, what more awesome thing can a writer ask for than a smart audience? =D It gives me higher goals to strive for as I keep on with the writing. This isn’t going to be the last story I tell, after all, just the first that I’ve ever tried.

          I hope I’ll hear from you again sometime. 🙂

        • Meghan says:

          Also: whoooo Unsounded! I’ve been kind of a big fan of Ashley Cope since her Final Fantasy VII and Vagrant Story fanart/fanfic days. Got one of her old original drawings on my wall and it’s one of my most special art pieces. She’s a kind of creative that I’m in awe of. So high five to that.

          /fangirl squee

    • Larken says:

      This always seemed more like a fantasy story to me. I don’t think it needs to always comply with how our universe works to be good as long as it stays consistent and makes sense. It does. There’s a lot of planning in it and that shouldn’t be ignored.

      • Divergence says:

        I’m not ignoring! I really appreciate this comic and the universe it set on. I do believe that the fact the universe contains none magic and super power stuff (or almost none, I know nothing yet about the Harlech tree) make the story a lot more authentic and great.
        Of course story-universe is not everything, but I do like to get deeper into the universe details. After all, I really like ProtC. Would I not, I won’t put so much effort to write my silly comments 🙂

      • Meghan says:

        I do make a point to avoid magic and completely unexplainable world-building mechanics, though. I promised myself I’d take a science-based approach to this story right at the beginning.

        With the tekk looking like dragons its got the trappings of a fantasy story, but only sorta kinda not really.

        Still, thanks. I do at least try to keep it consistent. 🙂

  3. Divergence says:

    I’m a silent reader for a long time now, but this page got me out of the anonymous closet. Because Damn, this is pure gold!

    Not only a comic that has a great story for once, one of those stories you would like to hear around a campfire at a summer’s night, but also that beautiful traditional painting, which is SO awesome. ProtC is in the top league of webcomics for sure, and I’m still quite amazed with how small the audience crowd is here. Maybe because you don’t include loads of unnecessary sexual content which the peasants seem to like, which is another great thing about ProtC, which make it even more remarkable for it’s greatness in the dull landscape of webcomics.

    And then this page. Man, I like the paint. This effect of seeing Koro through desert heat and dust, all hand drawn with watercolors… this is just amazing!

    Though as a meticulous fidget I still can’t help seeing some cracks in the universe building (For example, how come parents in Oros have typically just 2 or 3 children? As I come in contact with more tribal communities from time to time, I know they have a lot more kids, typically like 8 or even 10, because in old times many would die of disease and accidents. I don’t know Tikedi anatomy, or the yearly death count of Oros, but it’s still quite making me wonder), I still think that this one is so good that it deserves the nagging. Most of the other comics I was used to read don’t even worth bothering over the universe because it’s weak and… well, not as interesting as the one here.

    So thank you for everything Meghan, and please, oh please keep up the good work! 🙂

    • StyxD says:

      The thing with the small number of children is explained (somewhat) in the About section. You’ll probably enjoy reading it, if you like the world. 😉

    • Meghan says:

      Wow, thanks for all of the thoughtful commentary. I’m super glad that you think so highly of this crazy thing. 🙂

      It’s kind of a niche interest sort of comic, I figure. You’re right, I’m not a big fan of fanservice and unneccessary sexual content. If it forwards the story, I’ll put it in, but I find that’s not usually the case. I also tend pretty heavily towards exposition and political tension and not so much towards action sequences, which I know is not most peoples’ cup of earl grey.

      As for the supposed crack you noticed, it is indeed in the woefully-in-need-of-an-update encyclopedia…. er.. somewhere. It’s been a while since I looked at that thing myself, admittedly. But basically, the tikedi as a species, and not just the Tarsin, physically have a hard time conceiving kids in the first place, and then, yes, there’s a lot that can kill them before they get past toddler stage. So where they would probably love to have eight to ten kids, two to four surviving to the teenage years is what they wind up having to work with. Sometimes less, every rare once in a while there are more, but most of our cast very likely has long-dead or stillborn infant siblings (and of course I’m not typically going to delve into the extended families of the cast until it’s plot and/or character development relevant).

      But the idea I had there is that it’s part of what gives the tikedi their tenacity when it comes to survival and adaptation: they’ve had to become really, really good at recognizing and thwarting danger, finding excellent shelter, making allies, making use of tools, etc. Whatever they can find to suit their needs, they try to make use of: they can’t make it with numbers alone. Among other remarkable talents, the Tieke took to Teyka’s technology remarkably quickly because of that, the Tarsin established a strange sort of relationship with what would have been their biggest predators and… we’ll get to the Harangin someday to look at how they tackle their problems.

      At least, that’s the partial, possibly slightly cockamamie answer (I’m just futzing along for fun in my spare time, after all) that I can tell you about right now. There are a few things about the long-ago history of the tikedi that the story is going to have to reveal. Keep reading! I’ll most definitely keep writing. 😉

      And thanks! =D

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