Getting this page to something like believability was a logistical nightmare. First Phil and I haggled over what kind of terrain would allow Bert to stand in our heroes’ way, release some gravity-powered automatons, and then, hobbled as he is, get to relative safety.

I think the key word there is “relative.” There’s definitely a non-zero chance those robots will run him over on their way to attacking the others. But that may be the point. Bert has few opportunities now to prove his physical courage, and he definitely isn’t going to waste this one.

Then John, Phil, and I had to figure out automatons that would bob and weave unpredictably as they headed downhill, representing a threat that Bandit and Fr’Nj couldn’t defeat just by stepping a couple paces to one side. And TBH, the logistics still don’t quite work, as the next page will make very clear.

Wrinkle I like: as field leader, Bandit is trying her best to be a diplomat, and forcing the respect for this wounded warrior that comes naturally to Fr’Nj. If she were thinking like a thief here, she’d just leave Fr’Nj to do the negotiations and already be through most of the shrubbery in panel 2.