Elfquest: Welcoming the newborn

By Wendy and Richard Pini

The latest page of The Final Quest: Prologue is published online first for the first time here at Boing Boing. First time reader? You're a few issues behind.

Published 6:11 am Mon, Jan 28, 2013

About the Author

Conceived in the heat of creativity early 1977. Born in the throes of Ypsilantean adversity on February 28, 1978. Entering that long golden afternoon even now.

38 Responses to “Elfquest: Welcoming the newborn”

  1. Oh, she’s a little angel! How similar to her dad! She even has “wings”!

  2. Alex says:

    Ok, that baby is beyond precious!!!

  3. Tavie says:

    Angel fins. So beautiful. So – now the inevitable questions about tribe names and Wavedancers. Is this her tribe name? The other Wavedancers have “descriptive” tribe names but no secret soul names (?) – this baby is difference – how does this work? Will everyone call her Korafay, or is that between her and her parents?

    Stunningly beautiful work here.

    • David Miz says:

      Well, it says her tribe name is Korafay.  Whether or not she has a Wolfrider-style soul name remains to be seen.  But to be honest, I gave up trying to figure out the “rules” for names around the time of Tyleet’s birth.  I don’t think there’s any difference between descriptive names (e.g. Cutter or Snakeskin) or nondescriptive names (e.g., Leetah or Korafay).  The descriptive ones have just been translated into English for us.  As for soul names, who knows.  Wolfriders are the only ones we know of that have them.  Except Kahvi (a Wolfrider who doesn’t seem to have one) and Sunstream (not a Wolfrider by blood, but who does have one).  So who knows?  ;-)

      • Tavie says:

         Hm, good point – about them being translated into English for us. That works for me.

      • Maybe Kahvi doesn’t know her soul name yet, or lost it somehow. It’s okay if she doesn’t have one, but it’s strange.

      • From what I know, Kahvi is not a Wolfrider.  She is/was Chief of the Go-Backs, which is not a Wolfrider tribe.  There has been speculation that the Go-Backs are the splint of Wolfriders that followed Two Spear but I haven’t seen it in official canon.  She joined the Wolfriders for a while during the saga of the Broken Wheel because she was looking for Rayek but then left with Tyldak to find a way back to the Go-Backs over land.

        That said, I haven’t read everything just yet.  

  4. Tavie says:

    And – Cutter’s hair and Leetah’s eyes. I love that.

  5. Ej Doe says:

    Beautiful!!! And I think this is the first blond elf that does not have blue eyes! Finally.

    • I can think of a few…

      • David Miz says:

        Mender has gray eyes, and so does Yun.  Which ones are you thinking of, Rob?  Joyleaf, Treestump, Dewshine, Eyes-High, Newstar, Wing, Rainsong and I think Woodlock (it’s hard to tell) all have blue eyes.

        • Tavie says:

          Rainsong and Newstar have purple eyes.

          • David Miz says:

            I hestitated to include Rainsong because her eyes do lean towards the violet end of things.  I guess Newstar’s do too based on her childhood back-cover portrait.

        • Freefoot has unambiguously not-blue (i.e. brown!) eyes 

          • David Miz says:

            Where do we see Freefoot’s eye color clearly?  I can’t think of any place in the comics.  Or are you basing this on a description in the Blood of Ten Chiefs books?

        • By the way, Wendy has a great eye for keeping this stuff subtly grounded in reality, even when its wildly fantastical. Take the two main characters with purplish eyes, for example–a color that does not really exist in human populations, but which is often observed among two particular groups, anecdotally.

          Firstly, in pale, dark-haired eastern europeans, where the iris is very nearly black and appears a rich purple under warm lighting (but not sunlight) — Liz Taylor being a good example. 

          Second, in people with light red hair, who lack eumelanin generally and have grayish eyes. These appear blue in natural light (presumably the result of Rayleigh scattering in the cornea), but it takes on a lavender hue under … certain environmental conditions.

          • Performance Interval says:

            In before “Has anyone ever told you that you are the spitting image…”

          • Emby Quinn says:

            Now I know why Pike in your icon looks so befuzzled–the genespeak makes even MY head go all hurty.

            (Yes, I know it’s a panel from the OQ. Get off me.) ;)

  6. So precious! And the look on Sunstream’s face — so sweet! My eyes see with joy! <3

  7. More pages! More Pages!!! Pant pant….. 

  8. *sudden realisation*Korafay…. Coral Fae?

  9. Kristin Hunt says:

    KORAFAY!  (Coral Fae?) Which is an approrpiete name for this little gir lwith her ‘wings’. She’s so cute!  I think she’s going to be an interesting wave dancer (webbed and  cute)

  10. giraudebenet says:

    Leetah and Tyleet are descriptive names —  Leetah means “Healing Light” and Tyleet means “Healer’s Gift.”

  11. Korafay seems a strange tribe name. At first read, I thought that was her soul name and that this might be Jink. 

  12. Kristin Hunt says:

    Korafay is  bit strange, but not unexpected.  I mean the Wavedances can easily  simply speak an off-varient of the elfen language.

    • Emby Quinn says:

      From what I recall, all elves speak the same language, albeit they each have different dialects shaped by the circumstances of their lifestyles. The Wolfriders and Go-Backs (for example) speak in a far rougher and more colloquial fashion than the Sun Folk or the Gliders, but they all understand each other perfectly well.

  13. Stella says:

    So cute!! Love her name. Its so different from the names we are used to.

  14. Tavie says:

     Rob is Pike Purple-Eyes!

  15. If they are still underwater in the final panel why are they talking and not sending? And why is the baby so much paler than either of her parents?

    • David Miz says:

      They are always depicted as speaking underwater.  Obviously there’s something different about their inner ear workings that allows them to hear underwater more effectively than purely terrestrial creatures.  But I agree, sending would seem more logical underwater.

    • Wyldenay says:

      Sunstream has the benefit of having a dark-skinned mother (genetically) while Brill IS actually very light of skin, though a different hue. I love her skin color. But remember that Cutter is very pale. It’s possible she inherited some of Grandpa’s skin genetics. Additionally, babies are usually born very light skinnned anyway, even black babies have been known to be born “white” due to the melatonin in their skin not being fully functional. It can take hours or days, even weeks for such a baby to get its dark skin. In the past, women could be accused of cheating for giving birth to a light-skinned baby when it simply wasn’t true.

      Of course, as Wendy might point out, elf genetics are not the same as human genetics so I’m only guessing here based on what I know.

  16. Elfquest says:

    @ – David Miz is correct. Precedent has long been set that the Wavedancers talk underwater (most often when they feel safe). Anyone ever been snorkeling in the Carribean? Richard and I discovered we could talk to each other briefly through our masks…mostly we did it to exclaim over something gorgeous or to laugh. In my mind, Brill and Sunstream are kind of laugh/speaking in the last panel. Perhaps we’ll include laugh fx when the book goes to print.
     FYI – What’s baby Korafay’s soul name…or Brill’s?
    Well, as Richard and I view 2013 Elfquest canon, the use of soul names is, by and large, a Wolfrider thing. Immortal Sunstream has a soul name because of his early Wolfrider upbringing and whatever genetic heritage from his mortal dad, Cutter, he retains. The Wolfriders are the rugged individualists of the World of Two Moons (yep, even more so than the Go-Backs), requiring soul names to preserve their innermost privacy. Conversely, the Wavedancers are more of one heart and one mind than any other elf tribe. From ancient times they’ve been deeply dependent on sending for silent communication on the surface or underwater. As a result, they are intimately psychically bonded…a “school” we might say. Anyhow, this is how Richard and I see the Wavedancers today. It makes sense to us…and makes for great story opportunities, too.

    Wendy Pini

    • David Miz says:

      I should have added that for marine mammals on Earth, aural sound is very much a part of their communication (think whales and dolphins).  Sound actually travels really far in the water, much further than it does on land, so the fact that Wavedancers tend to do it when they feel safe rings true to the real world.  You just have to have the right kind of ear construction to hear it.

      • Wyldenay says:

        That’s also why weapons that use sound can severely impair the hearing of aquatic mammals. I used to feel so angry when I was in the Navy and entire pods of dolphins would be found dead or lost entirely because the Navy was testing out something THEY thought was harmless. In the articals, they would scratch their heads and say, “Wasn’t us,” and go on and test something new. Underwater sound is an amazing thing.