Seal(ed) Power – Chapter 7, Act 3, Strip 27

Whoever is the lord of this fortress obviously takes a rational approach to security: all the doors are either heavily secured, or not at all. This approach is rational, since it offers appropriate challenges to an intruder without making their adventuring too tedious. Good job.

The next few doors that K’ip and Si’ri encountered after getting past the copper dragon were obviously of the un-secured variety, so their progress was rapid. Notice how K’ip didn’t even bother to employ the Medusa-mirror when rounding those corners…he only does that when there actually is something dangerous lurking around the corner in question. In a movie, you don’t employ that sort of trick into empty air – it’s said that the audience would get annoyed with the pointless repetition. Apparently, more so than they get annoyed with obvious lapses in logic. >_>

But now their progress is arrested by one of the heavily secured doors.* A powerful seal has been placed on it…an elephant seal, in fact! Which is, obviously, a lot more secure than blocking a door with leopard seal…let alone a door blocked only with an otter. ._. I don’t really know, frankly, why only aquatic mammals can be used for securing a door in a fantasy world…but there are probably plausible, if arcane, reasons for it. That’s why they call it a magic seal…it’s magic, so it doesn’t have to make sense.

Come to think of it, I’ve never heard of any wizard placing a magic whale on a door…I wonder why, one would assume that that would be even more effective than even an elephant seal. I mean, you wouldn’t even be able to see the door anymore. ._.

And in terms of public relations, harpooning a whale would be nearly as problematic for a hero as clubbing a seal. Si’ri might be worrying too much about that, by the way…yeah, clubbing seals is generally not a good look for a hero, but the most problematic category in that regard are baby seals. Adult elephant seals don’t get quite the same reaction from audiences, although it’s still safer to be seen clubbing orcs, goblins and kobolds – being self-awarene and intelligent doesn’t count for much when you’re also ugly and evil.

More on Mon…uh, Thursday.

* Which is entirely coincidental, by the way. Contrary to K’ip’s assumption, Si’ri didn’t jinx anything. She couldn’t. For a messenger fairy like her, jinxing is a special qualification, and she never got around to taking the course and passing the exam.

2 Replies to “Seal(ed) Power – Chapter 7, Act 3, Strip 27”

  1. I can shed some light on the subject of the popularity of the seal for securing doors. As any long-time pet owner will tell you, land mammals have a tendency to either randomly open doors or get stuck in them. Aquatic mammals, however, don’t have this problem thanks to there being no doors underwater and the species never having adapted to be able to manipulate them.
    Then of course is the question of why seals specifically. Well, a whale or narwhal is certainly imposing and keeps away the general peasantry, but adventurers deal with malicious beings many times their own size generally at least once per adventure. The whale, being incapable of movement while on land, is thus simply hacked at (the tried and true tactic for anything in an adventurer’s way) until the adventurer can “dig” their way to the door. But a seal, that’s a nice big aquatic mammal that can still actually move and avoid being hacked to death until only an adventurer of sufficient level comes along to break said seal.

    1. That does seem like a pretty plausible explanation for why wizards prefer to put seals on their doors…although you’re kinda restricting yourself (wisely) to aquatic mammals from our world. In a fantasy world, wizards would have a wider range of aquatic mammals to choose from, of course…marids, merrows, sea hags, sea elves, and so on. But I guess they’re hard to get in a house-broken state, which would also be crucial to preserving the value of your real estate.

      I do disagree with you regarding the narwhals. I think narwhals are awesome and would make for a much more effective guardian animals than seals. There’s even a video clip I could supply in support of that theory…but I guess that just mentioning it will be enough to get that song stuck in your head again. =P

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