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"And you're sure you won't come with me to Ha'rar? So I can become a Paladin?"
"In my eyes, you already are one. Besides, I've been to Ha'rar. Already went through the process, and, you see, Paladin is a title that can be stripped. Probably best that I settle down here. Work on my songs and storytelling."

The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance #8 is the eighth issue of the comic book prequel to The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance. It is included in The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance: The Ballad of Hup & Barfinnious.

Release of this issue was delayed for three months due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[1]

Summary[]

Set up and then abandoned by his hero and mentor, podling Hup has no choice but to fulfill the promises Barfinnious made to the village, and fight the great Beast that has been plaguing them. Armed only with his trusty spoon and his culinary wits, will Hup succeed in saving the village, or is something darker lying in wait for him?

Plot[]

Hup enters the cave and is confronted by the beast. He is frightened at first, but then discovers that the beast is not roaring, but yawning. He strikes a mushroom-like growth on the beast's arm with his spoon and it begins to cry. He warns it that he will break more if he has to, but Veara arrives and tells him not to hurt the creature. She comforts it and begins tending to its wound.

Hup is confused and Veara reveals that the creature is a seedle, a child of the Endless Forest that will one day lie down and become a forest onto himself, which she calls one of Thra's greatest wonders. She states that he often tries to get her attention before but has never smashed through a window before and deduces that nature is in upheaval and he is trying to protect her from something dangerous. Hup concludes that she has been studying him in secret and asks why she has not told the rest of the village about him, to which she replies that the village elder might understand but the others would not and would simply blame him for crimes her did not commit. Hup repeats her own words to her by stating the what a person does matters, not what they say they do. She commends him and decides to bring the seedle to the village.

Hup and Veara bring the seedle to the village and introduce him to the others. True to Veara's suspicions, the elder takes a liking to the seedle while the others consider him a menace. Vortina reminds the elder that the seedle attacked her and destroyed her farm. Veara begins to protest and Hup points out the seedle's teeth to her. Veara realises that they are too large and blunt to have caused the wounds that she treated and they conclude that something else has been attacking the village. The ground begins to rumble and everyone panics.

In the Endless Forest, Barfinnious rides on Marengax and wonders how to conclude a song he is composing about Hup. He decides against having Hup die defending his paladin and the beast destroy the entire village, considering it to be too much of a downer ending. He considers giving Hup a villainous turn by revealing that he was only posing as his squire and was actually an evil conjurer. Marengax lets out a sad groan at these suggestions and Barfinnious tells him not to look at him like that, but then realises that it is no longer his performance.

At the village, Veara tries to convince the seedle to overcome its fear and help defend the village and Hup promises to stand with the villagers. The Gelfling gather their weapons and await the oncoming attack. A Fizzgig infected with the Darkening rolls into the village. They comment that it does not seem so bad, but it bites Hup on the foot. Many more infected Fizzgig roll into the village and prepare to attack. As the Gelfling begin to grab nets to subdue the Fizzgig, Hup urges them to be brave and stand together. Suddenly, the Fizzgig merge together into a large sphere which begins to roll toward the villagers.

As the village elder suggests taking cover inside, Veara tells the seedle that what is happening to the Fizzgig is unnatural and not of the Endless Forest. The seedle holds back the Fizzgig as Hup concludes that there must be a way to win, as is always the case in stories if the hero is brave and smart enough. Marengax rolls into the village with the overwhelmed Barfinnious on his back. Barfinnious loses his balance and falls off of Marengax, who rolls into the Fizzgig and causes them to disperse. The Gelfling then take their chance and trap the Fizzgig in nets and sacks, causing the uncaptured ones to retreat.

The battle is won and Hup and Veara approach the wounded Barfinnious. He reveals that he lost consciousness and missed the rest of the battle, but Hup is grateful that he is alive and declares that he has saved them. As they celebrate their victory, Hup asks Barfinnious if he will accompany him to Ha'rar to see him become a paladin. Barfinnious states that in his eyes Hup is already a paladin and decides to stay in Sami Thicket and work on his songs and storytelling. Veara pulls Hup aside and kisses him on the cheek.

An older Barfinnious concludes his story to a group of younger Gelfling. One complains that the story was too short and another states that their mother has told them that the Darkening is a myth perpetuated by anarchists. They request that he tell another and states that he has many more tales of Hup and begins telling one the starts with him rescuing Deet from a Silk Spitter.

Gallery[]

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Artwork[]

References[]

  1. Johnston, R. (March 28, 2020), Boom Studios Stops Printing Comics, Keeps Graphic Novels, No Digital, Bleedingcool.com, accessed 11 June, 2020.
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