Close your eyes.
Imagine yourselves in a giant banquet hall. The tables are handsome oak adorned with runners of purple and orange and blue and red and green. The walls festooned with tapestries made of fine silk thread by the finest tapestry spiders ever known to man. The cutlery is silver, each piece stamped with the crest of our people, the one that currently sits between the two grand words at the top of this page. In the northeastern corner, a string quartet plays in harmony with all the great alternative rock bands of the 90’s and 2000’s. The finest of meats and not-meats-but-still-appear-and-taste-as-meats, cheeses and breads, fresh vegetables, and elaborate hors d’oeuvres make a fine banquet for us all. This is grandeur. Expect nothing less. Spare no expense. This is The Hall of What May Be.
At the head table are Grymm and me, flanked by our regular ensemble of characters you’ve come to know and love. We, all of us, are making quiet conversation while we finish our meal. It is at this moment that I rise and take my wine goblet in one hand and my oyster fork in the other.
Oh yeah, you bet your ass there were oysters.
“Well, where to start? I guess, welcome to The Hall of What May Be, so named because right now we have to take this trip in our minds, but the future…well, that can be anything. We’ve gathered here tonight to celebrate the relaunch of Voodoo Walrus, something that we, each of us, love and hold dear. There were times not too long ago when Grymm and I didn’t know if we’d be able to continue. It’s been a hard three years; we’ve lost a lot, the both of us, and our lives have changed completely from what they were to what they have become now. We put everything else aside to deal with these things. And then once, every couple of months, one of us would ask the other ‘what about Voodoo Walrus?’ Sometimes we’d get a few strips done here and there and we’d post them, but ultimately the idea of returning to doing Voodoo Walrus regularly seemed like a dream, something we couldn’t manage, something we couldn’t attain.
“Then we would look at the site, or at the Facebook, or in one of the email accounts and we would see the love and support we were shown by you, our fans. With every personal tragedy many of you were there sending us wishes and good fortune. With every spurt of creativity, we saw the encouragement and the desire for more. We’re not generally one for tears — well, Grymm isn’t — (pause for laughter), but we shed a few. Not out of sadness or despair but out of genuine appreciation because we knew that when and if we relaunched you would be there, waiting for us. You never left, not really. Some may have ventured a little further than others, but ultimately you all find your way back to this place, to The Hall of What May Be.
“If you find this speech a little pretentious I would remind you that pretension is giving something a degree of importance far greater than its worth. And nothing, NOTHING, is more important or of greater worth to us than you, our fans. We may write this comic, or draw this comic, or color this comic, but you make it.
“Because you make it worth doing, every goddamn fucking day.
“Before each of you is a shot of the 1995 Royal Blitzgrün, distilled by the blind monks of The Order of the Grande Haberdasher and the finest liqueur ever produced by Liechtenstein. Before tonight there were only seven bottles left in existence. Now there are none. So raise your glasses and hold them high and say after me,
“If I had a ticket to Heaven and you didn’t have one, too
I’d tear my ticket to Heaven in half and go to Hell you!
To Hell with you!”
I take my sit and the evening resumes. There is dancing, perhaps, or cigars on the balcony. One of you will likely not be able to handle the Blitzgrün, which tastes of potent whiskey, herbs, and mint, and will invariably end up naked in the fountain, singing AWOL Nation’s Kill Your Heroes. There is also, of course, the 3 AM food fight, because what’s the point in renting a tuxedo if you’re not going to mess it up. I’m sure that at some point Mirth will summon forth a creature from the 9th dimension which we chase through the hall until it eats somebody’s plus one because they hadn’t made it as far as The Diner Arch. And through it all Grymm and I make eye contact with you, for just a brief moment, and smile, so that even if we don’t talk or share a story, you know without a doubt one true thing.
We love you. Each and every one of you.
Thank you all.