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Duane: Consider it, Sette. If a tree could think thoughts, what might it value most of all?

Sette: Your face.

Duane: Tranquility. Peace in which to thrive and grow. Acutely empathic, it will with hostility react to your hostility. Entreat it with tranquility, however, and it will in like fashion answer.

Sette: That's STOOPID. Walky roots are STOOPID critters.
Chapter 1

Rude, loud-mouthed Sette Frummagem has been sent by her Da' to get the jukrum, the cut owed to the Boss-King thief, from her cousin who's "gotten too fancy for his pants." Accompanying her is Duane Adelier, a markedly eloquent Galit who was, uh, persuaded to protect Sette from the dangers of the realm.

Cue problems.

Unsounded is a webcomic by Ashley Cope.

Tropes used in Unsounded include:

 From author comment: "Legality"? I would never let issues of legality effect what I draw. Sette looks the way she looks because that's how she's supposed to look.


 Ephsephin: I hate today.

  • Kick the Dog: Literally, on this page.
  • Ladette: Elka.
  • Language of Magic: Old Tainish, which is what wrights speak their incantations in. It's said that it was the language the gods used to shape the world, so by speaking it yourself, you can tap into that same power. Naturally, though, you have to be careful and very specific with your language, otherwise the spell may just blow up your organs.
  • Literary Agent Hypothesis: Letters written by a researcher who's found Duane's journal are inserted here and there, implying that the comic is (possibly) pieced together from his and other accounts.
  • Lizard Folk: Called "two-toes" here, named after the fact that they have, well, two toes. They're pretty small compared to humans though. They used to be subterranean, so they have poor sight and hearing but excellent senses of smell, making them useful as trackers.
  • Magic Is Mental
  • Magic Knight: Duane is not only an exceptionally skilled wright but skilled with a Simple Staff as well. According to his Formspring account, when he was a military commander, he trained all the wrights under his command in weapon skills as well in order to defy Squishy Wizard.
  • Magitech: Pymarics. Usually of the bionic (replicating living creatures) variety. Due to how the magic system works, they can only be made out of special materials. Word of God explains in a colourful metaphor here.
  • Master of Illusion: Sort of. The illusory arts are Duane's favourite type of pymary, not necessarily because of practical application, but because of the artistic possibilities. He's still better at combat spells, though.
  • Mistress and Servant Boy: Sette and Duane, with the twist that the mistress is prepubescent.
  • No Pronunciation Guide: A commonly-asked question on Ashely's Formspring is the pronunciation of the characters' names. A guide to the two protagonists' names can be found here however.
  • The Nose Knows: Sette.
  • Oblivious Adoption: Sette mightn't be as oblivious as some, but she wants to believe she's her father's daughter. Despite the tail.
  • Odd Couple: He's an elegant lich sorcerer. She's the foul-mouthed child of a thief king. Together, they... walk across a country.
  • Our Liches Are Different: Called "galits" in this universe. Duane is one of them. Not to be confused with the "plods", as seen below. They appear to be quite rare (although Sette not knowing a word certainly doesn't guarantee its rarity); Duane somehow maintaining his intelligence after his death and reanimation is evidently quite strange.
  • Our Zombies Are Different: Actually something of a return to the original voodoo-zombie tradition. The "plods" of the East are corpses that were deliberately reanimated with magic, and are widely used as a cheap source of slave labor. They are considered quite ordinary in the countries that "employ" them; making a mindless magical meat-puppet do punishing work for days at a time is said to be a more humane practice than enslaving living, feeling humans.
  • Older Than They Look: Plats in general, but their lifespans are incredibly short.
  • People of Hair Color: The people of Alderode have demonyms derived from their hair colors, such as Coppers, Silvers and Plats.
  • The Pollyanna: Young Matty Quigley. According to his bio on the cast page, "Three years ago Matty was struck blind but he still manages to see most silver linings."
  • Royal Brat
  • Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness: Duane uses big words and a lot of them.
  • Simplified Spellcasting: Tacit casting, i.e. casting without the verbal component. Duane is unusually adept at this.
  • Sir Swearsalot: Sette is as vulgar as you'd expect for a child raised by thieves, but never goes beyond a PG-13 rating (unlike the villains, who drop F-bombs).

 Duane: Betimes the words that pour out your young mouth send chills through me.

  • Small Annoying Creature: Sette.
  • Standard Female Grab Area: Beautifully subverted here.
  • Sticky Fingers: Sette.
  • Sufficiently Analyzed Magic: According to Word of God, the reason magic is called "pymary" and not "magic" is because "magic" implies something unknown or mystical. This is not the case with pymary; it is a common fact of life and essential part of society. It's even taught in schools!
  • Supernatural Sensitivity: Sette's olfactory talents extend to being able to smell magic.
  • Tomboy: Take a wild guess.
  • Talking Is a Free Action: Averted hilariously by Duane and Ephsephin's second brawl when the former gives his eloquent Let's Get Dangerous speech. Cue facepalm from Sette.
  • Troubled Backstory Flashback: Glimpses of Sette's life at home are occasionally shown in dark, damaged, and obscured panels, suggesting that her dear ol' Da is not a great guy, contrary to what she claims him to be.
  • We Are as Mayflies:
    • Inverted with the Plats. They're fairly supernatural, having an increased affinity towards the khert (or something), which gives them heightened magical abilities. However, this also causes them to age very rapidly, so they can only live up to about 30.
    • Inverted in a different way with the Coppers, who are notoriously awful wrights, but very long-lived.
  • When Trees Attack: The Mamalen Entak (Wandering Root) was the antagonist of the first chapter. Bittersweet portrayal.
  • White-Haired Pretty Boy: Quigley, and Plats in general. Combine with We Are as Mayflies above.
  • Wizard Duel: Duane and Quigley in chapter 5. By the end, though, it turns into an all-out brawl as Quigley starts breaking rules with abandon, culminating in him calling a powerful summon beast.
  • Would Hurt a Child:
    • The Red Berry Boys. And not just a child but children, plural. And they seem to delight in it, except for Quigley, who leaves the Red Berry Boys' service for this exact reason, and rejoins only due to a heftier reward.
    • Starfish especially has been confirmed by Word of God to be a pedophile.
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