In the past, we see John and Jade having a chat over Pesterchum! They are talking about the birthday presents that John has been sending to his friends. (Their birthdays are all very close together.) Then Jade is being pestered by carcinoGeneticist. His sign is Cancer! Jade does not want to talk to him, but it seems that he has a message for her from her future self. He seems to be unusually conciliatory toward Jade, and generally seems both worried and exasperated, and apologizes in a sideways fashion for his previous misbehavior. He delivers his message and stops pestering Jade.
Jade returns to her conversation with John, and we learn that these trolls have been bothering all of them for years. After talking some more, John indicates that he plans on changing his name to throw the trolls off. On the next page, we see the little gray dude we glimpsed briefly at the end of the Midnight Crew intermission. This is our friend carcinoGeneticist. He does not look very happy!
Next, Jade’s pen pal sends her John’s gift. This is apparently a project she and the pen pal have been working on. While Jade is doing that, John is receiving a message from gallowsCallibrator. In this case, she is just being nasty and creepy instead of nasty yet weirdly helpful. She tells him that she intends to cut his throat and listen to him bleed as she smells him die. During their interaction, we learn that she is apparently blind and that she considers John to be a disgrace to the field of ectobiology. John is extremely freaked. The next page is gallowsCallibrator who is another little gray alien kid with horns. She seems to be extremely amused by her very successful trolling of John.
Next, PM is directed to follow the agent. She has followed the Authority Regulator into enemy territory! She plans on claiming that she is paying a fine if questioned. She has no idea of where to go, and she is too afraid to ask anyone for directions. She eventually wanders into the throne room of the Black Queen. The Queen directs her to the Arch Agent’s office, since the Arch Agent is the one who handles all the tedious paperwork.
Meanwhile, the mysterious Exile with the fancy script is telling Rose she must leave. Rose is talking to Dave about her encounter with gallowsCallibrator, while the Exile is explaining to Rose that this is the last time the Exile will be speaking to her. The Exile’s final words to Rose are “Find your sprite, realize your purpose.” This leaves Rose feeling empowered to make important decisions, without any kind of supervision! This may explain why the next suggestion is for Rose to sip her Mom’s martini. Rose discovers she does not like martinis.
Next, the fourth Exile is directed to appear. We are back in the apocalyptic wasteland where we see a white carapace appear. Her name is Windswept Questant. PM is directed to tell John to put the carved tablet into a pyxis. This is done, and the next direction is for past PM to locate the Arch Agent. PM does not find the Arch Agent, but she does find the green parcel. She is directed to grab the box and run. However, just as the follows the direction, the Arch Agent makes an appearance!
Fortunately, he mostly concerned with the citation, which had better have all the bureaucratic bells and whistles attached, because he has better things to do, like goof off. PM however states that the ticket she was holding was already on the desk. She is actually here to pick up the green parcel! Jack points out that if she were really hear to pick it up, she would have the necessary forms. He also indicates a general unwillingness to process the confiscated freight! He offers her a hit list in exchange for the package–if she brings him the crowns, he’ll give her the box! (He does not however thing it very likely she’ll go through with it. He just has a habit of offering this deal to just about everyone.)
Jack is directed to examine the package. Whatever he sees inside the box is apparently very surprising!
Meanwhile, Dave is directed to punch some cards. After some experimentation, he figures out that the Jumper Block and the Punch Card Shunt uses the cards punched by the designix to upgrade the alchemiter. (After creating a completely useless blender upgrade and a Game Bro bust.)
While Dave is struggling with figuring out the alchemiter, Jade is directed to draw a punch card designix on her scribblepad. This creates a card containing the ghost image of a designix, with the code on the back. She is directed to send the code to Dave, which she does, telling him to put the code into the Punch Card Shunt. This causes the alchemiter to have a built in designix! (Said built in designix is much more convenient than having a separate designix out in the hallway, which is where Jade had decided to put it.)
The next thing Jade is directed to draw is a holopad. She does not have the grist to deploy the pad, but she can have it become a freebie upgrade to the alchemiter. Dave upgrades his alchemiter with a holopad that will preview items from the punch cards! However, it still renders the alchemiter useless. The next upgrade is a totem lathe. This creates an image of any card’s totem. Now Dave’s alchemiter is a “one stop shopping hub” where he can create any object he needs. For some reason known only to the unseen director, Jade is directed to draw a Jumper Block: this upgrade creates a more compact device that has built in Punch Card Shunts!
The next item Jade draws is the “Intellibeam Laserstation.” Unfortunately, Jade’s drawing is so terrible that the scribblepad mistakes it for a mech. Dave is directed to captchalogue an “enlarger.” (This is an item from his photography lab.) He does this, and uses the enlarger to upgrade the alchemiter. Jade is directed to draw the air conditioner on the roof. With the enlarger upgrade to the alchemiter, Dave is now able to make any item any size he wants. (He makes a tiny air conditioner. This is totally not a waist of time!)
The next command is for John to find the car.