|April 1995: Mothers & Daughters 43|
|Administrative Assistant||Carol West|
|Mothers & Daughters: Minds|
Dave appears. . .Well, he talks with Cerebus in his head. "Call me Dave." Cerebus' response: "Not exactly awe-inspiring is it? 'Dave'" Dave talks to Cerebus about while he is Cerebus' creator, and he does have certain powers over Cerebus and Cerebus' world (making him forget about the pie throwing incident, what type of pie it was, having all the stars go out and come back, etc), Dave isn't Tarim. Dave goes on to say that he knows Cerebus must be thinking in that hearing voices in your head is a sign of insanity or demonic possession. Dave then asks Cerebus what that all proves: either Cerebus is really insane, or Dave is a really powerful demon or Dave is who he says he is: Cerebus' creator.
Dave then goes on to tell Cerebus that he went through something similar fifteen years ago, but it wasn't a voice in his head. Dave then shows Cerebus what it was like: a glowing light starts growing at the top of Cerebus' head and goes down in front of his eyes and then disappears. Dave explains that it happened shortly after Cerebus met bug for the first time (issue 11). At that point Dave knew very little about Cerebus, but after that incident he found he suddenly had a lot more to say.
Cerebus starts to ask Dave a question, but Dave says it is still his turn to talk, and that Cerebus will get his turn. Dave continues on to wonder if he passed his creator, of which he says "I believe in God -- or Tarim or something along those lines...", while walking down the street would he give his creator a second look? Dave continues to think if he creator thinks about his creator, and so forth up the chain, all curious about the ultimate creator.
Dave says he introduces situations in Cerebus' life, Cerebus reacts to it and Dave neither approves or disapproves but just provides the consequences in the form of the next situation. Dave then shows Cerebus a series of flashbacks: Cerebus as Prime Minister thinking how no one loved him, but Dave says Red Sophia loved him, but her mother did hate him; Boobah eating a sandwich and Bear sitting nearby and how they were the only two that had access to Cerebus while he was Most Holy; Cerebus as Most Holy sitting in his pile of gold thinking how he needs to get rid of everyone and get to Jaka.
Jaka is Cerebus' panacea Dave says, if Cerebus could just get Jaka then everything would be okay. Dave shows Cerebus what Jaka was thinking when Cerebus told her that "Cerebus isn't leaving here without you" (issue 118), that Jaka really doesn't love him any more and hasn't since the greenhouse (issue 36), but she is afraid that if he leaves something awful will happen to him.
Dave tells Cerebus that Jaka is alive, in Palnu with her Uncle Julius and her marriage is over. Dave shows Jaka talking to an artist called Mr. Zulli. The two discuss a painting that Jaka had done and that she would like another painting done among other things. After the new painting is sent to her, she sends Mr. Zulli an eggshell broken in half in a box made of gold. Mr.Zulli painstakingly creates a replica wooden box and sends her half of an eggshell. Dave uses the episode to show Cerebus that he knows nothing of Jaka, but Cerebus states "Cerebus knows that he loves her!"
Dave asks if this is true, and then tells Cerebus what little he knows of Jaka: "Lord Julius' niece, dancer, was married to Rick." Cerebus says aye as he pouts, and Dave says "a tentative step on a road which will release you from the prison that you find yourself." Cerebus continues to drift on his rock.
- Bear (last seen in issue 150; next appearance in issue 202) (In flashback sequence only)
- Boobah (last seen in issue 169; next appearance in issue 206) (In flashback sequence only)
- Cerebus (last seen in issue 192; next appearance in issue 194)
- Dave (last seen in issue 192; next appearance in issue 194) Voice-Only
- Jaka (last seen in issue 169; next appearance in issue 196)
- Mrs. Henrot-Gutch (last seen in issue 169; next appearance in issue 300) (In flashback sequence only)
- Mr. Zulli (last seen in issue 175; final appearance)
- Red Sophia (last seen in issue 163; next appearance in issue 300) (In flashback sequence only)
9. Jaka trading eggshells with Zulli. What does this mean?
Actually this was an entirely fictitious nature that I romanticized to an unnatural degree of subtlety and comprehension of metaphor that you would never find in a woman as attractive as Jaka. It was a kind of submissiveness and a gesture of friendship from a patron to an artist, her way of saying the Zulli had been more important to her then just "hired help". Because of the formality implied by the social gulf between them, that's very difficult to communicate. So what she was indicating was that his picture had been instrumental in helping her break out of her shell that she had been in. The fact that she imitates his wallpaper design in an obviously amateurish way on the eggshell expresses to him that she is aware that she could never have come close to having created the picture that he did and exactly how wide the disparity is between the two of them in that way and that she freely acknowledges that, thus putting herself irrefutably on a much lower plan than himself in a way that would be impossible in her privileged world and doing so with a token that can always remind him of those two facts. He helped her to break out of her shell and she will always be beneath him on the creativity scale. "Here, this represents me, when compared to the way your picture represents you. I can't even get one part of the wallpaper right." And then Zulli responds by sending her an amateurishly hand-carved ebony box whose lid doesn't fit properly, his message being: We're all amateurs at most things. I can tell that it was no easier for you to produce the wallpaper pattern on the egg than it was for me to produce it on the side of a box and, as you can see, the results are comparable. I'm no more a carpenter than you are a painter, so let's both have a keepsake to remind us of those humbling facts. In fact, I want you to have half of the egg. You worked too hard on it to give it up entirely.
To complete the story, should have sent him back the lid to the box, inverted, and lined with one of her own best silk handkerchiefs to hold his half of the eggshell, so that in both instances the eggshell half would be free, instead of enclosed.
Back up material
Bacchus (Campbell) (8)