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Order of the Stick has several Heartwarming Moments (all of which are quite spoiler-y, so if that worries you, don't click!)

Start of Darkness

  • Eugene Greenhilt, amazingly enough, gets one in Start of Darkness. When Right-Eye gives him the first lead on Xykon he's ever had, he refuses to go after the lich. Why?

 Eugene: I'm married now. I have a son, Roy. He's almost 8 years old.

Right-Eye: So? It's not like I'm asking you to bring him along.

Eugene: So if this assassination thing you're so eager to set up goes south, my son is an orphan and his mother, a widow. Or worse, Xykon finds out about them and kills them too, just for fun. The risk isn't worth the reward anymore.

    • Made more fascinating by the fact that earlier in the book (but later chronologically), Eugene lies to Roy saying he never had another lead on Xykon, and if he had he would have walked out on them in a second.
      • However in Start if Darkness he is surprised by Sara saying children in the plural. That means this is before Eric was born. And we all know how that turns out. Or it was after, and he forgot.
        • There's the other possibility -- he worked this out after Eric's (recent) death. So, yes -- shock at the coming Julia. Maybe he doesn't just express his love to her openly solely for being mage-material, but is unable to do this with Roy because of their history beforehand. And, a touch of guilt. Just maybe.
  • Subverted in Xykon's first appearance, we first see him as a four year old crying over his dead dog Barky; when his sorcery powers activate and resurrects Barky, he is completely overjoyed. The subversion comes when the newly zombified Barky eats a bird's brains, which entertains Xykon, cluing the reader into his psychopathic tendencies.
  • The hug Redcloak gets from his mom when we first see them.
  • Dorukan and Lirian's final reunion.

 Dorukan: It looks as if I am to share your prison forever now...

Lirian: no, no (hugs him)... Not a prison anymore

The Order of the Stick

 Any way you want to analyze it, it's surprising. Certainly, I'm still shocked. There have already been media stories about it, and there will be more now that we've ended. And they'll talk about crowdfunding and what this success means to the future of blah blah blah. You know what? Screw that. This is between me and all of you. This is because you guys love the story I'm writing, and I love writing it. We made this thing together, and no one is going to replicate it, not exactly. Oh, sure, these records won't stand forever. Some won't even last a month. But it doesn't matter, because you didn't pledge money to me so I could beat a meaningless record. You pledged your money to me because you believe in me and my silly stick figure comic. And that is not something that is going to be mentioned in those media articles.

  • The last of the strips that Rich did for dragon magazine before it switched to an all-web format has one too. After the party breaks the dragon out and saves it from being turned into electricity, we get this exchange:

 Dragon: Yes! The sweet taste of freedom! Thank you!

Roy: Eh, don't thank us, we just provided a largely symbolic gesture that doesn't actually change anything.

Haley: Yeah, we should be thanking you

Dragon: For what?

Haley: Everything.

  • Tarquin finally gets tired of Malak's whining about his dead children, and tells him to suck it up. He does, but later, Tarquin showboats around in order to test Elan's skills--something that is very much a tactical liability. Malak yells at him, telling him he's not going to put Tarquin's family over his own, Sabine gets ready to watch them fight...and Tarquin genuinely apologizes for his actions. Yes, they're evil (well, Tarquin is, Malak is still a little up in the air), but they're still friends.
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