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Final Quest #11 is Here!

Final Quest Cover 11 FinalFinal Quest issue #11 is here!

The one issue you dare not miss! The elves’ unprecedented gathering reaches a fever pitch when Strongbow’s lifemate Moonshade, Mender the healer, Skywise the stargazer, and even Oddbit the troll queen pursue their hearts’ desires—and some dare ask for even more! Angrif Djun’s war fleet invades the Wavedancers’ waters as a shattering moment of truth occurs between Cutter and Timmain.

Get it right now from Dark Horse Digital, order a copy from TFAW or get it at your local comics shop.


34 Comments

  1. Glad to see that the summary text changed! Was rather disappointed after reading it and not seeing Winnowill at all. And now the cover of the next issue makes sense too! Wow, what a twist! Can’t wait to learn more!

    • Yes, the teaser summary text is written months in advance of the actual issue, and every so often the events of an issue take shape slightly differently. We’ll catch up with Winnowill again soon!

  2. Good to know Thornbrake. Also really looking forward to hear your thoughts and theories about this issue in the next podcast.

  3. SPOILER ALERT!!!!!

    So, what are everyone’s thoughts on what Timmain was actually saying to Cutter? Her shapechange at the end, was that just a way of showing how his skin is only a vessel ( that can be altered if need be), and that his spirit is all that matters? Or is it more, is there a certain connection between both of them or, indeed, between all wolfriders (taking into account the teaser text for nest issue)? Are the wolfriders all ‘one’? There have been so many hints lately to things being connected, being one etc etc. And I still think there’s something to wolfriders having soulnames while most other elves don’t.
    So yeah, I wonder what she meant, how far this goes. But all in all, this private moment between the chief of chiefs and the last high-one was a brilliand and intense moment.

    Also, skywise’s conviction that all elves should be immortal and that the healers should join hands; wow… Intentions may differ but it sure goes into winnie-territory!
    And then there’s strongbow. Holy crap, his expression, such powerful artwork. And his comment towards Leetah *shudders*
    Awesome issue, great artwork, fantastic pacing.

  4. All great questions! Ryan and I are definitely going to explore all of this in the podcast. Skywise’s comment is particularly troubling!

  5. I’m wondering if this the secret of why the Wolfriders have soul names and why they’re such a guarded secret. Could it be that the Wolfriders are hosts to reincarnated first comer spirits in denial about their situation? The reason to keep the soul names private could be part of this denial. Maybe after all those thousands of years in wolf form, Timmain’s spirit went out and started going through the process as well with Cutter as a host.

    If this is the case, or something like it could it be that immortal elves and elves born out of recognition have unique souls? I guess if that were the case wolfriders born out of recognition, like Pike, wouldn’t have soul names either.

  6. Do we actually know of any non- wolfrider elves to have soul names? Sunstream has one, right? Ember got all the wolfblood but is sunstream part wolfrider enough to have a soulname…?

  7. Oh, and ehm, I just happened to read the high ones bio’s in the character page. I just noticed how much they refer to present elves when describing the high ones. Made quite an interesting read after this issue… Could that be that secret hidden in plain sight Wendy mentiond? Maybe some wolfriders and other new-born elves are indeed high ones or older elves reincarnated after all, or maybe fragments of their spirit?? And what about rayek/haken in winnowill’s vision during Siege at Blue Mountain?? I never stopped wondering about that.
    Oh, and another thing, maybe not very much related but still, Timmain’s words made me think; we all know wolfriders are mortal but have we actually ever seen one of old age, in their last years? All I can recall is Woodlock, Rainsong etc and they passed away during the big sleep, we never got to see them.

  8. @CaptainVimes – In the comics, we know OF Wolfriders who have died of old age (as you mentioned, Woodlock, Rain, and Wing), but we haven’t seen any. However, in the Blood of Ten Chiefs anthologies, I know that at least one story dealt with a Wolfrider dying of old age.

    As for soul names, it was always my understanding that the reason that only Wolfriders generally have them is that generally only Wolfriders NEED them. The Go-Backs don’t like magic, and other than Savah, Leetah, and Rayek, most of the Sun Folk had no magic, either. Since they didn’t Send, there was no way for another elf to get that close to their inner soul, so soul names weren’t needed.

    Now that the tribes are united, though, and there’s cross-tribe Recognition, I would assume that more elves have soul names than just the Wolfriders, we just haven’t been told about them. Although, I forget… did Ember hear Teir’s soul name? He does have Wolfrider heritage, but he’s not one.

  9. Oh, this new “connection” makes sense and is bursting my head at the same time. Keep finding new hints about it back through the storyline (see image). What Savah said very early on also puts things in perspective now. “Our race is of one heart and one mind, no matter the circumstances which shape our behavior or our bodies”​

  10. I feel like I’m really getting an idea of the true scope of the Pini’s vision now. Elfquest always had such depth, but I’ll be re-reading old issues with new eyes after this.

    My head is bursting, so feel the need to put down some thoughts:)

    One soul, two bodies – so did not see that coming. I still feel I need the next issue to understand this better (and the podcast!)

    Quite a few things feel ominous to me – Skywise thinking all elves should be made immortal. Strongbow blaming Leetah over Moonshade’s change. It feels like a brewing conflict between elves choosing immortality and the Way, and I love the path the story is taking with this. Elfquest was a big part in shaping my thoughts on death as a form of renewal as a child, and I always identified with the wolfriders and the Way. At the same time, change is necessary for growth, and I love how all these conflicts are playing out.

    Jink – I always felt Cutter wasn’t the father, and I’m now convinced she is Timmain and Skywise’s daughter, Skywise being the mind she wiped. But the one soul, two bodies concept makes her Cutter’s too, in a way, making sense of the master’s words. Also, in FutureQuest, a character comments that they have lost much lore, which I always took to mean Timmain, and probably Savah and Skywise too, must be gone. More ominous feelings:(

    Best issue so far? Loved every aspect of it, beautiful art and great storytelling!

    Gaaaah, two month till the next one!!!!

  11. I really didn’t take Skywise’s comment as sinister–at all–and am actually surprised that people did. I mean, think about it; he’s just had basically THE best day in his entire life. He’s glowing, in every sense of the word, riding the highest high elfinly possible. He’s a sensual creature–of course he wants everyone else to feel that!

    If you reread Pike’s explanations of the light vs. dark dreams in Dreamtime, his comment fits right in: there’s nothing dark to him. I don’t want to believe that Skywise would ever impose his will (or ideas on immortality) on another, if they didn’t agree with him. I think this is more about setting up how heartwrenchingly broken he’ll be when(if?) Cutter stays behind…

    [sidenote: I am positively DROOLING over that shot of him leaning against the tree, vest slipping off his shoulder… YUM YUM!]

  12. After re- and re- and re-reading it, I finally came to an conclusion: Timmain went bonkers. I assumed that a few issues ago, as she demanded, that all elves answering the call arrive at the palace by themselves – resulting in elves dying or getting injured. And there are pictures of her and her face that creep me out. She just looks cruel to me, and a bit arrogant, in her high-one-form more and more. Skywise clearly is manipulated by sex :) – but I love him anyway, particularly in this issue – the art is great and touching. And the issue is a great read. I am really curious, how the whole story will unfold…

  13. Ugh..
    Sorry, but…
    What the heck just happened?

    Yes, each of the elements inspected separately could be interesting (reuniting all elves, choosing between mortality and immortality / the stars versus the world, a potential threat from humans and something to do with souls / hive mind which was discussed on the old forums before and that Rob seemed to be in on http://elfquest.com/forums/discussion/8587/timmain-spirit-hacker) but somehow I’m missing a natural flow or progression in the story here. The Wrap It Up trope (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/WrapItUp) applies.. heavily.

  14. Jeez! What an issue!
    First of all: I’m very happy that the slow-paced storytelling is back. I don’t like these ten-years-within-five-pages-issues. And there was just too much character-hopping in the past issues as well. All very necessary, I know, but all these character-moments would have played out better with a little bit more space and time.
    But #11 is very satisfying in terms of rhythm and pacing. I loved all the quiet moments. Except Oddbit’s beauty-trouble. It’s too human in my opinion. But Dart and Mender – loved it. Moonshade and Strongbow – loved it (well, the drama at least). Skywise and Timmain – loved it (the spookyness at least).

    But then … Skywise. What the hell is he TALKING about? “I see now we’re all meant to change”?? What!?? Timmain has manipulated him big time! I don’t know how, but she has! And Leetah, the one who does the magic trick, keeps thinking and reflecting, but her conclusions are very weird.

    Some minor thoughts:
    Dre-Ahn – he has secrets. Big secrets. I know it.
    “One was slain by humans as she tried to come.” Oh. But who?? From which tribe? Another one we didn’t see in the Big-Sending-scene?
    The couple in wrapstuff – same question!

    Let’s talk about Timmain now. I love how she’s still recognisable in her small form. Her face features – it’s Timmain! Just a different one. I always adored the way Wendy managed to melt the parents’ features into their children’s faces. She does kind of the same magic with Timmain. Great!

    But in the end … she just lost me (Timmain, not Wendy. Well, no, actually both of them). Big revelation, indeed, but it doesn’t feel like a shock, because I just don’t get it. Yet. I like Captainvimes’ theory about reincarnation. But still … there are spirits, right? All the spirits of all elves there ever were on the world of two moons. How can they reincarnate? And even if they can – how can they SPLIT into two bodies? First I thought “time-travel”, but that doesn’t make any sense, and we’ve been there already.
    So … what??
    I’m totally confused and wait for the next issue (of course) and also for the podcast, which can be very enlightening sometimes. Please, guys, explain it to me! 😉

  15. I forgot one thing:
    I still don’t buy the threat of the Djun’s warfleet. You are wavedancers, for High One’s sake. Just dive and wait. The humans will never find you. Just send a distress call. Skywise will be there in no time with a pod and bring you somewhere else. If you want to stay in the ocean – fine. There is lots of water on Abode with no warfleet around. Just build another coral-palace, what’s the big deal? Or are you too busy combing Korafay’s hair? Sorry, I’m just not the biggest wavedancer-fan.

  16. It seems plain to me that Timmain is manipulating Skywise in order to conceive a child, but I can’t figure out her motive. Skywise is going to be hurt. My thought about Dre-Anh is a little wild – could he be the son of Door and Dodia? Children who are traumatized sometimes refuse to speak.

    I’m still thinking about Timmain’s revelation, but it makes me think that Jink is the daughter of Cutter, Skywise AND Timmain. Interesting thought after years and years of speculation. It is Skywise who’s Chief in Future Quest, in my opinion.

  17. I just read Rob’s theory that Anaid posted. Wow… It kind of fits with a lot of what’s happening or being hinted to, especially in terms of how the wolfriders differ from others with regards to the palace. I’m not sure if it covers all of what Timmain is saying (insofar as we know what she actually meant, hahaha) but it is a very very interesting way of putting it, wolfriders breaking from the main code, the main network. Still, does that mean that timmain is in her way connected to all wolfriders or is this newly revealed bond just specific between her and Cutter and if so, why them two?

    Few thoughts:
    – kahvi’s comment about seeing cutter’s sweet body in the palace: does spirit kahvi know that cutter’s soul might have more ‘vessels’ and is that how she can see him (or: his soul) in the palace? Does she see him in Timmain?
    – Krim’s final thoughts about going back being more than just to the palace: Krim was immortal, so for her it’s not just going back, but being reintegrated into the hardware? (Using rob’s metaphore)
    – IF that theory is true or true-ish, wouldn’t suntop be able to sense it now that he is linked to all elves?
    – oh and I agree with Fluxberg, I don’t get the human threat either. It feels tacked on, functioning only as a a reminder that ‘humans are the villains’ because every story needs one.

  18. Ok, let’s try this again:
    Timmain and Cutter are both made of the same soul-stuff, the “Tam”. I guess the same happened to Winnowill and Rayek. But Rayek immediately realised that the two of them are connected in a way as strong as recognition is. Why didn’t Cutter feel the same with Timmain?
    And: Skywise wants Timmain. That makes perfectly sense, because he knows her soulname. But he does for quite a long time now. The longing he was experiencing for the last couple of issues – it should have been within him since OQ #20.
    If Cutter is “Tam’s” new vessel – why does Timmain say “There has only ever been you. No us.”? Shouldn’t she say: “There has only ever been me. No us.” ?? Because she clearly was the first “Tam”. On the world of two moons, at least.
    And if Redlance and Leetah also share a soul with a High One (as the character description hints at) – why them? What about the others? Are there other living soul-couples besides Cutter/Timmain and Rayek/Winnowill? Do we know them? Will they meet yet?
    That’s tricky stuff, but I love it!
    Two thoughts: I also love Rob’s computer theories! Fascinating!
    And: When Kahvi’s spirit was laughing I thought she was referring to the fact that she saw Cutter as the future master of the palace. Because for spirits time has no meaning. IF he is the future master, then Kahvi’s spirit would know.

  19. Oh that’s right, she did make that “now? Oh yes, Time” comment. Good catch!

  20. Apologies in advance for posting images to the thread, but I keep finding clues and points that are given a new meaning now. ​

  21. ​This is one that both confirms what some of you have said with regards to “reincarnation”, and confuses a lot since Timmain is clearly alive still! Also somehow twists what she said in issue 20 (OQ) “Those with special gifts, those born of recognition, attract interested spirits who make magic more potent, visions more clear”. I don’t know, but is it possible that each individual elf is “molded” from only a certain handful of souls, limited to the original ones that came in the Palace?

  22. Or that they are aspects of that soul, maybe? Fragments, instances, with certain matching qualities? Cutter and Timmain both share a certain risk-taking, leadership and courage to accept change and use it. But yeah, that does make you wonder if there are more ‘matches’, or if some elves even are unique at all. Remember Rayek’s explanation of how the 2 palaces would merge like flames from a candle?

    Gosh, Wendy and Richard must be having a lot of fun reading all these thoughts of ours :) :)

  23. Agreed Captainvimes, a very good point. In HY and Wolfrider (broken circle) Timmain points out that each individual is colored by their purpose/function, and that their form is secondary. So if one sorts the elves based on this, you basically have all the different functions of the circle to choose from. Perhaps Cutters ability to remember is the main function he shares with Timmain, which would also link him to Savah and Aurek? I think this makes all elves “one” in a sense, which is logical for “beings of fire”. Fire merging and splitting to survive, but it does whack all concept of individual thought and free will… Wendy and Richard really know how to stir things up!

  24. Arvins, that first picture you posted -where is that from?

  25. The previous pictures I posted are from Siege issue 7 and Blood of Ten Chiefs issue 17 (Howl for Eldolil)

  26. Thank you. The artwork is that awful, I never read it…

  27. Kaija – not sure I would use those words. We’re all spoiled by the art of Wendy, but those who have tried to tell elfquest with different lines deserve credit too. It’s very different artwork, indeed, but it has beauty.

  28. Thornbrake – when is the podcast coming out? Looking forward to hearing you guys discuss.

    I’m overall stunned and confused by the last issue. I really wish that the Final Quest came out in a complete graphic novel so I wouldn’t have to live with these emotions!

  29. Many thoughts are coursing through my mind. I feel so bad for Strongbow the look of horror on his face…I wonder how he will act around Moonshade now will he ignore her and will his anger against Leetah become vengeance? Im staring to kinda think like others that maybe Timmian is manipulating the elves, all her answers lately have been so vauge I dont recall her being that way before. (Fell free to correct me) I also kinda agree with the notion that I dont see the humans as a threat I feel like after the dijun died the humans would be more concerned with who s going to rule next not the ravings of a madman king I mean aren’t there NO heirs? (again correct me if i am wrong) The end made me have a serous wtf moment but what Rob suggests could be true and the various comic bits posted by others kinda point that way to…

    But suddenly that moment when the wolfriders meet the gliders pop into my head. At the time I thought Winnowill was just saying it because she thought herself to be so…but maybe she knows the truth maybe THAT is what she found out when she had spent all that time alone and it was that knowledge that drove her nuts. Maybe it want her being vain but the truth when she said that we are the highones…..

  30. Okay, so last October, I was feeling kind of irritated by the pacing of the current Elfquest story. It was suggested to me over and over that maybe my problem with the pacing had to do with the comic release schedule and not with the story itself. So, challenge accepted. I continued to receive my Elfquest comics in the mail, but I did not open them and avoided spoilers for a year.

    As much as I wanted this to work, as much as I tried to make it work, it just doesn’t. I still have just as much criticism about the pacing as before. I find myself unconvinced of things that the story wants me to believe because I am told and not shown; characters are still doing things that don’t make sense; and it’s hard for me to feel engaged with the story when so many conflicts are introduced and then immediately resolved or glossed over. Surely, I can’t be the only one struggling with this.

    I won’t go into exactly all the issues I’m having with the various sub-stories (unless someone actually wants to hear it). I only wanted to say that for me, personally, reading the stories in collected form does not help.

  31. So I rewatched The Dark Crystal over the weekend and it made me thing of the revelations in Final Quest. In case you haven’t seen it (***spolers***) The Dark Crystal is basically about an invading group of aliens, urSkeks, on a reletively primitive planet. The crystal is damaged and each of the urSkeks divided into two bodies, one a Skeksis and one an urRu or mystic. The hero’s quest is to heal the crystal and reunite the urRu and Skeksis….anyway, all the comments throughout the comic about beings of fire, two flames being one, who Tam is, really make me wonder if the elves are in a similar situation. Maybe more closely tied to reincarnation rather than a singular event but that the elves themselves are “shards” of their former selves.

  32. Dark Crystal was amazing, yes, and just one of so many of the stories we have as a culture! (“which one do you want to hear?”) Think star-wars when Yoda just “became” the force and faded away. I do wonder if Timmain could do the same if she got tired of having a body.

    Her “function” in the High Ones circle -and why did it take all of them to control the palace, and now just one or two (Skywise/Sunstream)? Is it like your 4 year old messing with the car in the driveway vs a family road trip with maps and planning?

    Her function was to “remember”. Cutter has said he “remembers” too much and it has made him human… time and how they experience it. “Choose time, and you choose things (bodies) and space to put them in.” What happens if Cutter gets his memory cleaned? will he un-choose time? Is Timmain creating the child who can help her people find a newborn mind and start over, in the stars?

    Too much memory, too much pain, seems to make folks, elvish or human, bitter -holding a grudge, anyone? What if there is another way to live in the eternal “now” than wolf-thought?

    I’m intrigued, and afraid for my favorite characters; endings are something we are taught to fear in our world, we don’t see them as new beginnings. I still want to see Tier and Ember’s cub, and find out if Spine will ever have a pip, and find out what happened to Wavelet and Dodia’s son.

    … and where are the preservers? they changed and grew because they were in the palace, what could they become? Has the presence of the palace changed the humans? will they one day be able to “send”? etc. etc. :)

    Very much looking forward to the next chapter in this story! Thank-you!

  33. Finally got my copy a few days ago.
    Well, what can I say except apart from, like Thornbrake, I’ve read it several times, and every time I think I get it I get to the last page and then my head stops working!

    Is it that due to Timmain’s purpose of Memory with the palace, she has influenced Cutter and who and what he is by being his direct ancestor? Is he a Memory elf? Does Tam mean memory? Do the other Wolfriders represent other aspects of the High Ones? Motion, protection, eyes, time keeper, ears, balance, passion, caution?
    It seems that Timmain is trying to remind Cutter that when his skin flies free, he could build himself a new one if he wanted, as the High Ones used to do for themselves… could any of the elves build themselves a new body?

    I’m wondering if Dre-Ahn is Dodia and Door’s son… ?

    I’m also wondering if Leetah, through her choice to stay with Cutter and not go to the stars, will give herself wolf blood and make herself mortal. If she doesn’t there seems to be a bit of an Aragorn/Arwen situation going on. What will Leetah do when Cutter dies and everyone (or most of them) have left?
    Too many questions!

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