A sequence of illustrations for a personal project.
Set in the distant future, this series follows the journey of two young brothers fighting to survive in a post-apocalyptic wasteland. When the leader of a wasteland gang hires the boys to track down a missing crew, the older must decide if protecting his younger sibling is worth putting others in danger. This series was inspired by anxieties brought on by the pandemic in regard to my own younger brothers and diabetic fiancée.
The world was changed forever with the invention of the hover car. Overland travel became faster—New York to Los Angeles now took 90 minutes by hover car. Hover cargo freighters could cross the world's oceans in hours rather than days. The world became smaller.
The newfound convenience of relocating led to wastefulness, and humanity consumed the world at a faster rate than ever. As habitable land became scarce, war broke out over the remaining territories. Nuclear attacks devastated what remained, leaving only the survivors that had managed to escape the blasts in their hover vehicles. Humanity was reduced to a nomadic way of life in order to survive the wasteland and its savage inhabitants.
To navigate the wasteland, some individuals possess the ability to connect themselves to carrier pigeons—nicknamed ‘homers’—to gain the ability to sense the Earth’s magnetic fields. These individuals are referred to as ‘carriers.’
Among the wasteland’s inhabitants are Jason and Bug, two young brothers left orphaned after an attack by raiders. Bug suffers from juvenile diabetes and requires insulin, forcing Jason to work as a pirate, raiding convoys for resources to use for barter. There is no job he won’t accept if it means keeping his little brother alive.
Jason has made a name for himself as one of the most skilled pirates in the wasteland, though having a carrier for a brother makes the job much easier. Jason chooses to keep Bug’s abilities secret in order to avoid any unwanted attention.
For the last several days, Jason has been tracking a shipment of medical supplies. By tapping into the old telephone lines, he was able to intercept communications from a convoy that he believes will be carrying insulin. Bug takes the rare moment of quiet to tend to his homers, knowing he and Jason will soon be back on the move.
The Convoy Approaches
As the convoy fades into view on the horizon, the boys start up the Argonaut, one of the toughest and fastest hover cars in the wasteland. Before they strike, Jason takes a moment to give Bug one of the few doses of insulin they have left.
To Jason’s surprise, the convoy belongs to the Reapers—an infamous gang of wasteland cultists—and the boys are quickly overwhelmed by reinforcements. Scythe, the leader of the Reapers, offers the boys a deal. In exchange for their lives and the insulin they attempted to steal, the boys would need to assist in tracking down some missing cargo. Days prior, a small crew had gone on a supply run, but only their injured homer had returned. Without another carrier in the crew, the supplies were lost. Bug, being a carrier, would have to connect to the injured homer in order to navigate to the crew’s last known location.
Along their journey, the boys cross paths with a woman under attack by raiders. They defeat the raiders and rescue the woman just as her hover car erupts in a fiery explosion. The woman recognizes the injured bird as her own homer. She, like Bug, is a carrier. There was no missing cargo all along. Scythe needed a carrier to track down the woman—a traitor to the Reapers. Her own homer had led them right to her. It wouldn’t be long before the Reapers caught up with them and attacked.
After rescuing the woman, the homer finally succumbs to its wounds, and Bug, still connected to the dying bird, falls into a coma. While the woman tends to Bug, Jason faces Scythe to seek revenge for putting his brother in harm’s way.