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You’re ruining my high!! A Question of Promise #2

a comic by thuyen nguyen


We’re going to be late!

Dice! Hurry up!

Hold your horses...

AlkaSeltzer

oh...

The deep clean begins...

z

Fiz

zz

Fiz

Come on!

yeah...

zz

z

damn it, shup up! I’m Effervescencing!

It ends all too suddenly.

01

You’re ruining my high!!

But... clear as crystal!


We were meant to be at Eden’s house at 7pm.

Yeah, like this is really my fault.

Yo.

yes, well... Where’d that save point go?!

you know the drill. we ain’t leaving until you get in.

I’m sorry. i don’t quite follow...?

a plastic cup? Not even going to dignify me with glass?

tightly surrounded by a layer of fake skin...

numb to all the sensations around me...

I’m familiar with the concept; yes.

Do you even know how that feels!?

02


Wanna ride shotgun?

Or you can sit in the cup holder?

This never gets any less Embarrassing.

Better give him a call...

Meanwhile, across town... Where are they?

Hello?

Hey Eric, it’s me. where are you?

Isn’t it illegal to use your phone while driving?

are you driving? you shouldn’t be on the phone.

! g rin ring

In the car. e.t.a about 15 minutes.

Did you just hang up on her?

Damn it, you’re right.

p

bee

03

Did he just hang up on me?


I shouldn’t have done that.

Do you know the only time when you truly have to make a decision?

But she’ll understand. She’s a smart girl.

when you’re driving towards a yellow light.

She knows that you have to make tough decisions sometimes.

Do I slow down? Do I speed up? now that’s a decision!

You just ran a red light.

Oh crap! Did I?!

Chill, dude. I don’t think anyone noticed...

you know you should stop me when I start talking nonsense.

04

p p! woowoo

Yeah, my bad. Won’T happen again.


know why I stopped you?

Any reason why Eric would run a red light?

Name? yes sir.

No sir. my fault. I wasn’t paying attention.

Eric looks like a nice kid, but he wouldn’t be hiding anything from me?

Has Eric had any drinks tonight?

Absolutely not, sir.

Eric.

No-

Then why is there a cup riding shotgun?

Really? Would Eric mind if I had a closer look?

That’s just water, sir. In case the car overheats...

Eric’s correct. it’s H20 alright.

my eye...!

Umm... sure...

Drive safely, Eric. Thank you sir.

You can go.

05


Eden’s place Pasta ready to be cooked...

Let’s see...

Salad ready to be tossed...

All I need now is some guests. Ready to roll.

Should I tell eden about the cop?

But do I want to look foolish on just the second date?

This is a date? Why am I here?!

Why not? it’s mildly amusing.

She invited you. My charm. Gets them everytime.

! k oc ck Kn kno

hey, imagine the cop was eden’s dad. that would be awkward.

Yeah, imagine that.

06

we meet again.


Holy crap!

Did I scare you?

sorry about that. the hallway light Just blew out.

No...

Thanks for making me paranoid, jerk.

yeah right, scaredy cat.

Come on in.

You flinch like a baby! hahaha!

Boo! Just for that, you ain’t coming out of the cup.

Holy crap!

Whoa, dude. Don’t be harsh.

You know what happens if I stay in a cup for too long...

Eric? Coming! If you’re in the cup, you’re less likely to cause me trouble.

No! Not the tang!!

07


No worries.

Let me put on some music.

make yourself at home.

Come on, dude...

Is that so?

Dice has been a bad boy, so ignore him.

damn you!

they say you can learn a lot about a person by the music they own.

okay...

Sorry, but Where’s the toilet?

 would anyone like a drink?

First door on the left.

How’s it going, dice?

Curses! He’s fooled you too!

You look like a nice girl, eden. pour me out, would you?

Besides, you look alright. Water and cups are a perfect match, right?

08

Sounds like you two had a tiff, and I don’t want to get into any domestics...

yeah, like humans and body bags...


That sounds like a threat...

Not to worry. I’m not going to kill you.

Does a pool of water even have a “mother”?

Momma didn’t raise no fool.

Not really. I heard that line on TV.

I look terrible.

Bathroom

Not while you’re still useful to me anyway...

Not the way to make a good impression, buddy...

!

sh

u fl

What the hell?

A pimple on the second date?

When did this pop up?

What am I; a teenager? Why, why, why?

It never ends!

09


What’s taking him so long? I’d better go check. Dunno.

does she have any makeup in here...?

Eric? You Okay in there?

Floss, soap, cotton buds...

k ! oc ck kn kno

Yeah, I’m fine.

Anything wrong?

Umm... Just taking longer than I thought...

know what I mean?

I see...

You were late to her house...

I guess I’ll leave you to it.

You hang up on her...

10

My God, man...

And now she thinks you’re taking an extended dump in her bathroom.


He’s... occupied.

if it’s anything like at home, you may need some professionals tomorrow.

What a second date this has turned out to be.

I see.

I’m prepared to take on Eric’s date responsibilities if you pour me out.

Because humans can’t be trusted. Present company excluded, of course.

Why are you in a cup anyway?

of course.

The knowledge of your existence would forever change science-

The last thing I need is to be poked by eggheads.

if humans are such a threat, why did you hook up with eric?

there must be more than that?

He amuses me.

well then, part-time lover, care to do me a favour?

I’ll leave the anal probing between you guys and the aliens, thank you very much.

Indeed. that’s why I’m talking to you while my date is on the can.

Who knows why relationships work?

I have an itch. Poke your finger in and give me a stir.

You name it, my wet friend.

11


This is stupid, eric. You’ve been in here for 20 minutes.

if Eden cared about looks, you wouldn’t even be here.

Ooh, yeah...

I’m not really sure how this helps...

Umm... Like this? I mean, it’s alright.

Faster! Yes...

Shh... Don’t speak.

Slower! Ohh...

Don’t... Stop...

My...

Oh...

Besides, Dice would cause more trouble than this pimple ever will.

God!

Hey, sorry for taking so long!

Eric, can I see you in the kitchen, please?

Eric! 12

Oh, you.


Eden?

Eden, what’s wrong?

Listen, I just want to apologize...

Well... Umm... I think...

Hey, it’s okay. Please tell me.

Umm... Alright then...

I think I just had sexual intercourse with dice.

I... see...

Well, not really. It was my first time.

Are you sure?

I mean, I’ve done it before, just not with...

13

... something that is possibly alien in origin. Know what I mean?


‘sup blood? Wats happenin’?

how many lives do you have to destroy?

Dice! What did I do?

What did you ask Eden to do?

That’s it?

Like you don’t know.

I asked her to stir me. that’s all. There’s no crime in that.

Unless, of course, there was a rip in time and I lost 5 minutes...

That’s it.

Moody human... Must be his time of the month.

How about you just say it to my face?

And Eden, unlike you, was kind enough to help a brother out!

Be right back. What the-?

Only women have periods.

Hair loss and the willingness to do stupid things to amuse other men.

Really? What do Men get? Noted.

14


Eden, relax! nothing untoward happened.

By the way Dice was reacting, I thought the worst!

thank heavens for that.

Really?

What can I say? He had an itch and you scratched it good!

I must ask him about his sensory input sometime.

Okay...

Both of you come to relish in my pain, have you?

There! Freedom, sweet freedom!

Give me a moment...

This evening has been a mess, what with the toilet, the police, sex...

Sex?

Police?

Incoming!

So I suggest a replay. We restart everything and begin at level 1.

Sounds good.

Okay. 15

And thus, the evening began... Again.


Eden served a lovely pasta amatriciana with Italian sausage.

Her salad, Greek with a hint of asian, was cool and refreshing.

Anyone care for a nightcap?

For dessert: golden gaytimes. no jokes were made about the name.

No, thanks. Driving.

10:00pm

What are you doing?

Don’t touch the stuff, personally.

You said before that one’s CD collection tells a lot about oneself...

You believe that music should have a tactile experience as well as an auditory one.

So what does mine say about me?

Well, by the amount of CD’s you own...

True! Am I the only one left who enjoys reading linear notes?

Value for money, eh? CD, booklet, case...

16

I just want to know what the band looks like!


I like to keep my ears open.

I will say that you have quite an eclectic taste in music...

Grateful Dead, Crowded House, Miles Davis...

What about you? the sea is a musical adventure, say the Beatles.

I wouldn’t call that “singing”. It’s just noise to me.

Wow, obscure!

There’s nothing to dance to down there.

What was the last CD you listened to?

Never heard their stuff, but One of their albums has a knight on it.

Never know when a good tune will come along.

What about dolphins? They sing, right?

Return to forever.

So they’re metal, like Manowar?

Know ‘em?

Jazz fusion. Not every band that puts a guy with a sword on their CD is metal.

Similarly, not every water-based lifeform comes from the sea.

17

Really? Interesting...


What kind of movies do you like?

So you’re in to movie memorabilia?

No blood and gore. Is that a girl thing?

Yeah, movies and music: my vices in life.

I had a bad experience with a horror movie. Wanna hear about it?

Anything except horror.

Absolutely!

Well, I think I was about 9 or 10 years old.

My dad had just bought a new video camera... Please.

My brother said he wanted to make a scary movie.

He told me to pour all the ketchup we had into a big bowl.

When I was finished, I carried the bowl outside.

He tripped me, and all the ketchup spilled over my head.

It wasn’t an accident. so while I was on the ground crying...

He was filming it all, laughing. REC

A!

AH

HA

H HA

HA 18


Bastard!

Thanks for the support guys, but you’re about 15 years too late!

My parents hit him twice: one for being unkind, one for wasting the ketchup.

I’ll kill him!

Got any movierelated anecdotes, Eric?

What about the story of your anime friend?

Not really...

Oh! This isn’t my story, but it’s kinda funny.

My friend is an anime fan. He wanted his wife to be too, so he forced her to watch something.

“Spirited away?” It won an oscar-

Guess which one?

“Urotsukidoji.”

and isn’t that film filled with “tentacle porn,” so to speak?

Urotsukidoji? Wasn’t that banned in some countries?

Clearly not the best choice to recommend to a weary newcomer.

19

Yep.

Ever Since then, his wife thinks she’s married to a pervert! ha!


Follow me. I want to show you something.

This is my bedroom. Notice anything?

Let’s see...

Hey!

That’s the poster I gave to you!

Yep. First thing I did when I got home was put it on the wall...

Gotta go to the bathroom. be right back.

Good work, dude. This relationship might actually work.

Bathroom I shouldn’t have shown him the poster.

I know that talking about marriage at this early stage-

Yeah, and the present was totally improvised!

You don’t want to scare him off, do you?

Stick to the game plan!

Hello? You still there?

20

I gave her the first thing I saw to distract her from you.

Remember the last time you were too eager?

I think this one’s a keeper.


Although, she might have put the poster up out of politeness.

why’d you have to put that thought in my head?

It’s a poster. It belongs on a wall. Doesn’t mean she likes it though.

Don’t look at me like that. I’m just keeping it real.

Back to the lounge?

Got a question for you, Dice.

Tell me something that would make me think twice about dating Eric. Shoot.

Oh, that’s easy.

He has a thing for women wearing fake moustaches.

That’s not too weird, I think...?

21

!

Oh, thank god.

!


Other than that, he’s actually quite normal.

Well, he does attend a beauty school...

Is Eric a ladies man?

Oh, crap.

That said, I am a pool of water. Human behaviour isn’t my forte.

Hahaha!

But seriously folks, he’s got a couple of ladies in his phonebook...

So... hey! How about that coming election, eh?

Oh, I’m sorry. I thought you said “girly man!” Ha!

His mum at home, his mum at work...

hahaha!

Okay Dice, you can stop now...

Let’s leave Mr. boring here and blow this joint!

Oh, you’re no fun.

A fast car, an open road... Adventure awaits! 22

p! jum

You’ll have to drive, of course. I don’t really have hands.


Saddle up, partner! Let’s ride!

Look at the time! We really should be leaving.

h!

uis

sq

I’m going to kill you...

Thanks for dinner. I’ll show myself out.

Really? Are you sure?

Why are you making me look like an idiot in front of her?

Just jokes... dude... She knows that...

Like you would know, Mr. “Human behaviour isn’t my forte.”

When she goes to bed, your stupid “jokes” replay in her mind.

I’m a laughing stock. all because of you!

I think... you’re... taking this too seriously...

Let’s just go home.

23


Eric? Is everything okay?

There’s nothing to apologize about... I’m just feeling a bit ill.

Get in the car.

I see... Well, I had a good time tongiht.

I’m sorry if you were offended in any way...

Yeah, me too...

I guess I’ll see you at school then.

Bye.

What’s wrong, Eric?

I don’t... I don’t know.

24


Unfazed by their awkward first date, Eden invites Eric and Dice over to her house for dinner. Relieved that he has a second chance, Eric accepts and gladly brings Dice along (in a glass cup). Eric’s learned from his mistakes and is ready to make this date a success... Will this night have a better ending?

Story, Art and Created by Thuyen Nguyen Copyright Š2007 Thuyen Nguyen www.devinquest.com


A Question of Promise #2